Thursday, April 07, 2005

The working mum thing

We've been having a hard think about how much maternity leave to ask for. I've already decided to stop work in early July, so that I get four weeks of baby-less leave before my life changes completely, but what wasn't so certain was when to return to work. My imagination tells me that I would love being a stay-at-home mum who gets to do coffee mornings with other mums and learn to bake great scones and run up cushion covers on the sewing machine. The boy, however, is pretty sure that so much at-home time would bore me senseless.

I've had stay-at-home time before, when I was still in the throes of my art passion. For eight months I didn't work; I spent my days painting, thinking about painting and looking at other people's paintings. It wouldn't be like that this time around though; firstly because my painting passion has gone the way of all my other past passions; also because I'll have a baby to think of.

At the very least I'd like to take six months off, even if it's just to avoid the awkwardness of trying to breastfeed (or breastpump) in the workplace. After that, I can decide whether I want to continue being at home fulltime or go back to work part-time. See, if I do go back to work most of my salary would be going towards childcare anyway, so there's no point in working unless it's to keep a foot in the working world.

All the same, six months is surely a bit young to be a latch-key kid, eh?

8 comments:

Make Tea Not War said...

Its a very hard decision which only you can make. But one thing to be aware of if you think you might want to use childcare is that there is a shortage of places in childcare centres in Wellington and the waiting lists are pretty long.

Ms Mac said...

It is a hard decision but loads of mums do it with no adverse affects on their babies.

Wait and see how you feel. I love being a stay-at-home mum and children a very good icebreakers for meeting friends. My closest frineds are all people I have met through the children. Something for you to think about!

happyandblue2 said...

If you plan to breastfeed or use a breast pump while you work you probably won't have to worry about whether to work or not..

eb said...

My employer advised 12 months and to make a final decision after the baby is born and booking a place at childcare regardless just in case.

Jon said...

Why can't the Boy be a stay at home dad? Women of the world unite!

Violet said...

mntw: you mean I'm gonna have to put my kid on a waiting list now??Geez

ms mac: "children are very good icebreakers for meeting friends" - like dogs!

happyandblue2: well the thought of trying to breastfeed at work is enough to put me off the idea, if that's what you mean.

eb: I would actually prefer to get 12 months leave, but I've only been at this place since late January so I'm really entitled to that much. I'll make my final decision perhaps a month or so before I'm due to go back.

Jon:I'm sure the boy would love to be a stay at home dad (think of all the time he'd have to play computer games) - but he earns about six times as much as I do, so if we had to survive on my salary...we wouldn't.

glomgold said...

That might be the youngest latch-key child on record! An extra 6 months to get back into painting sounds like a good plan (oh, and to watch over the baby as well I suppose.

Violet said...

Glomgold: By that stage it will more likely be finger-painting...