As soon as we found out we were expecting, we started talking about our childcare situation. Would we do daycare? Would we get a nanny? Could we do a nanny share? And then that all kind of changed when we realized we wouldn’t be living in Charlotte – and we’d have to reconsider all of those things once we moved. My incredible in-laws presented us with a wonderful solution one day at lunch: they wanted to watch the baby when I went back to work. (!!!!!!!)
Prior to that conversation, several people had commented to me how nice it would be for me to be able to have the baby with me while I work from home. But that’s not how my job works. While I do have flexibility, when I’m working I need 100% focus and can’t stop to get up when the baby is crying or needs to be fed. I spend a fair amount of time on calls and projects that require quiet around me (it’s hard enough with dogs!). I also interface with executives and senior managers who likely wouldn’t appreciate being put on hold while I dealt with a crying/dirty/hungry baby. So keeping him home with just me here wasn’t an option.
I also got the “will you go back to work?” question, multiple times. And the answer is yes. I worked very hard to get where I am and I enjoy working. I also have a good situation with flexibility that allows for working from home, time off, and flexible hours. And I’ve gotten myself into a good spot in my career that I’m not ready to step away from. While I love the idea of spending unlimited time with my babe, I also love being in the workforce. Maybe that will change in the future? I don’t know, but right now being a SAHM is not in the plans.
Landon and I were blown away and grateful beyond measure for his parents offer but knew it wouldn’t be fair to depend on them 100% of the time. They’re very socially active, love to travel and have another grandbaby a few hours away, so we started talking about a part-time nanny. We put a profile on Care.com and have already received more than 20 applications. There’s one that we really have our eye on – and have spoken with – but we’ll see if she’s still available come early next year. I’ve also put feelers out in a couple mom groups in our new neighborhood for referrals. I am so glad that Baby W will get to spend tons of time with his Gramma and Granddad but also that they’ll still be able to do the things that they want/need to do, too. I’ve only kept my cousins/niece/nephew and obviously don’t have any infants of my own just yet, but they’re exhausting. And 8 hours a day is A LOT. I think we’ll all be happy having multiple childcare options.
I have paid time off of work (and can take additional unpaid time if I choose). I haven’t decided just how much time I’ll be spending at home yet, but I’m thinking I’ll re-acclimate myself to work post baby by returning part time for at least a few weeks. LW also gets some paid time off (but not nearly as much as the rest of the world, or even other U.S. Companies like Bank of America, Wells Fargo, Ernst & Young, etc.). We’ll soak up the time we do have together and fortunately, LW works from home, too – so we may get to peek in on Daddy a few times a day. We plan to start our nanny while I’m still off work so we can all get used to how things will work, make sure everyone is adjusting well and so we can get some sleep!
It was a little daunting to think about all of that initially but I’m so glad that we’ll have it squared away before little man arrives. I want him to be comfortable staying with other people and for us to be comfortable with it, as well. Doing all of our homework beforehand will definitely payoff – and of course, my in-laws are the real heroes here.