Letter Writing Imgage
After I went out on maternity leave and returned to work, there were a few things I wish I’d had the opportunity to say to my employer.  Here’s the letter I would have written them:

A New Mama’s Letter to Her Employer

Dear Employer,

I’m about to come back from maternity leave, and there are a few things I want to make sure you know before you see me.

First and foremost, I am looking forward with GREAT excitement to having intellectually stimulating conversations with you in a clean, quiet office.

Now to confirm and deny a few things you may be thinking:

Yes, it is true, that I won’t be the same person I was before I left.  And that I may not be completely and entirely “with it” for the first few months.  No one whose sleep has been interrupted every 2 hours for weeks on end or whose body was just turned upside down and inside out possibly could be.

Yes, it is true that I may never look like the gunners down the hall, who stay at the office until 8pm every night and never take a sick day or vacation day.  My daycare does close at 5:45pm sharp, I do get charged $10/minute if I’m late, and that little petri dish of a baby will get some awful bugs.  But you can count of me to be back online after bedtime.  And I won’t miss a deadline.

Yes, it is true I love my baby.  And my career.  I am not conflicted about loving both.  But I do feel pulled in many directions every day.

No, it is not true that I’ve somehow lost value to you.  No, I don’t waste hours of my day pumping milk (did you know I’ve learned to hold the pump with one hand and type with the other?).  And while you may not see it yet through the bleary eyes or ponytail, I am and will be a leader in your organization.  I anticipate the needs of others (clients, screaming babies) in ways you’ve never imagined.  I prioritize like nobody’s business.  I am more efficient than anyone on the team.  And I have a newfound superpower of connecting with people – colleagues, clients, you name it – thanks to this fundamental thing many people do, called having children.

I have a few small requests for when I come back.  Meet these, and you’ll win my unending loyalty:  Cut me some slack the first few months; I won’t be sleep-deprived forever (or so the experienced parents tell me), but for the moment I am.  Be kind.  Ask about my child.  When my kids get sick, tell me to take care of them first.  And mean it.  Don’t expect me to return unchanged by motherhood; but do expect me to be an amazing, talented, intelligent, and thoughtful employee.  Keep me around and engaged in the work that’s going on.  You won’t regret it.

See you soon,
Mindful Returning Mama

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At Mindful Return, we know that calm, thoughtful planning, and time for reflection, are keys to success in working parent life. Our FREE guide, 99 Questions to Ask Yourself Before, During, and After Maternity Leave, is our gift to you and your new bundle of joy.

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