Transitioning Back to Work After Being a Stay-At-Home Mom

After slogging through three years of motherhood while teaching nearly full time, I was heartily ready for a break.  Last spring I took a year’s leave of absence to be with my children and experience stay-at-home motherhood.

I loved the intensity and importance of being with my kids full time, until one day, I didn’t.  Was it a dramatic episode?  Nope.  I simply reached a point where the endless cycle of laundry, meals, and playtime wore me out.  My brain felt rather mushy and creating daily structures and routines exhausted me.

Plus, although frugal living is a passion of mine, it felt a bit uncomfortable to have absolutely no spare room in our budget.  I longed for the occasional dinner out or swimming lessons for the kids.  If we stayed exactly on track and no emergencies came up, we still had to take a little out of our savings each month.
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Eco-Friendly Daycare Exists!

The memory of dropping my five-month-old son off at daycare for the first time on that winter morning still takes my breath away.  As I walked the long gray hallway, I wasn’t sure my arms would be able to surrender him to anyone else.   It felt as if handing this soft-cheeked child off to a stranger would be like cleaving off a part of my body.

When I was eight months pregnant and everything was hypothetical (including the love I’d feel for my newborn), it seemed like a perfectly logical arrangement.  The daycare facility was close to my work, recommended by other families, and certified at all the right levels.  I hadn’t even thought to ask whether they would be willing to use organic food or work with cloth diapers. (To find out why I later decided to use organic food, watch for my upcoming blog “Organic Baby Food on The Cheap”)

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