after maternity leave

Returning to Work: How to Succeed after Maternity Leave

The Emotional Impact of Returning to Work

Returning to work after maternity leave can be emotionally challenging and often underestimated. Not only does it shorten the precious time you have with your child, but it also requires trusting someone else with their upbringing. Will they care for your child with the same love and attention as you do? In Belgium, the ratio of caretaker to children is 1 to 9, which can be a concerning factor for new mothers.

Struggles and Adjustments

My daughter is now 15 months old, and I still find it difficult to leave her in daycare. I understand the necessity of returning to work, but it doesn’t make the separation any easier. To strike a balance, I now work 50%, instead of full-time.

Planning for a Smoother Transition

To make the transition back to work more manageable, it’s crucial to have open and honest conversations with your employer about your needs and expectations. Discuss your work schedule, responsibilities, and any necessary accommodations to ensure you feel supported as an employee and mother.

Childcare Solutions

Having a solid plan for childcare can also help ease your concerns. Whether it’s finding a trusted caregiver or enrolling your baby in a daycare program, you need to be confident that your child is in good hands while you’re working.

Exploring Extended Parenting Leave Options

In Belgium, you can take up to 4 months of additional parenting leave until your child is 12 years old. Investigate this option with your employer to see if it’s a possibility for you, as it could provide extra time to bond with your child and ease the transition back to work.

Finding the Right Balance

In conclusion, returning to work after maternity leave can be challenging, but with proper planning, preparation, and support, it can be manageable. Accept your feelings and know it’s okay to be scared – many mothers feel the same way. However, you can make it work. Countless mothers have done it before, and you can do it too. Reading this post means you are actively seeking ways to ease the transition, and informing yourself is an excellent first step in finding the right balance between motherhood and your professional life.

Please note that I speak from personal experience. For substantiated information, we always recommend that you take a look at the World Health Organization.

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Margaux Luyten


Adventure-loving mom blogger. Breastfeeding from December ’21. Sharing her insight on pregnancy and motherhood while embracing a healthy & active lifestyle. 

Margaux Luyten

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