A New Chapter

Hello September! The start of a brand new month. Only this time, it marks my last month of maternity leave, and the start of a new chapter.

In a few weeks, Alice will be starting nursery. While i’m excited for her, it’s a bittersweet time for me. I know she will love nursery. She really enjoys being around other children, and she is such a confident, happy little girl so she will thrive. I’ll miss her so much though. For the past nine months, it’s been me and her all day everyday. And i’ve loved every minute of it!

It’s not just Alice starting somewhere new. I made the decision to hand in my notice at work so i’d have more time to spend with Alice. In my new role, i’ll be working Mondays to Wednesdays while she’s in nursery, then we’ll have four whole days together again.

I know i’m lucky. I never wanted to put her in nursery full time. We didn’t struggle for all that time to conceive, just so we’d only see her properly at weekends. Nursery is costly but that works in our favour. It means that working part time will leave us in the same financial position, with the added bonus that I get to still spend quality time with Alice.

I’ve had a brilliant time on maternity leave. It’s been such a special, amazing, life-changing experience. So much so, it’s incredibly difficult to sum it up in just a few words.

So as my maternity leave comes to an end, i’m doing my best to make the most of these last few weeks just me and her. 

I’m excited to see what the future holds but i’d like to end this post looking back on some of my favourite memories of maternity leave.

  • Alice’s birth

    • Playdates with Izzie and Theo

      • Alice’s first Christmas

        • Baby Yoga
        • Swimming

            • Meet-ups with the Early Days crowd
            • Alice’s Christening

              • Baby Sensory

                • Alice’s first holiday

                  • Alice’s first trip to the seaside

                    • Chester Zoo

                      • Mondays with Nanny

                        • Watching Alice conquer her developmental milestones

                          Here’s to many more with my favourite little person! 

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                          Day One And On The Ward

                          Once Alice was born, the first few hours of her life passed by in a blur.

                          Born at almost 11pm and after more than 33 hours of labour, I was shattered. I could barely keep my eyes open.

                          So once she had been cleaned, weighed, dressed and fed, we had a quick cuddle and all too soon it was time for Greg to head home for a few hours’ rest.

                          Alice slept like a dream, waking only a couple of times for a feed and nappy change.

                          Greg returned around 9am the following day. After a few more tests, I was allowed to go and shower while Greg looked after Alice.

                          At 2pm it was time for our first visitors! Nanny, Granny, Great Grandma and Great Grandad came to see us.

                          We were transferred to the ward which was a whole lot noisier than the room Alice and I had slept in the previous night.

                          That evening, we had more visitors. Grandad, Auntie Heather, Uncle Paul, Amber and Adiana all came to the hospital.

                          All too soon it was time for Greg to leave again, and Alice and I settled down for the night.
                          In contrast to the night before, we barely slept. Our ward was quiet but there were some very noisy babies in the ward next to us.

                          I think we got about 30 minutes of sleep in total.

                          It didn’t matter though. Yes I was exhausted, but I also cherished the alone time with my baby girl. I couldn’t stop looking at her, cuddling her, kissing her forehead and tiny button nose.

                          She was perfect. And she was mine. And she was here.

                          Greg returned early the next day, and after a few more tests, we were told we could go home!
                          The Bounty lady came round the ward to take Alice’s first professional photos, then we gathered our things and placed Alice in her car seat for the very first time.

                          We were going home as a family of three and we couldn’t be happier!