When will you return to work?
I was asked this question countless times by all kinds of people, including total strangers, before my maternity leave had even begun.
Pregnant me assumed that when my precious year of maternity leave was up, I would stop breastfeeding, get my baby into a routine, sort out childcare, and be back in my role, as that was the done thing. Fast forward to the end of that year and this couldn’t have been further from the truth.
Neither I nor my baby wanted to stop breastfeeding, routine (especially that involving sleep) was very questionable and there was no way I wanted to leave him with total strangers (and pay through the roof for the privilege thank you very much). However, I still planned my return to work, as that was what everyone else was doing.
So when my employer refused my flexible working request (on very questionable grounds), I had mixed feelings, but handing in my notice was the only option.