How to Survive Your First Week Back From Maternity Leave

Heading back to work after being home with your beautiful new baby is scary, exciting, and…busy. You have just barely figured out how to make life work with a baby. It’s hard to even imagine ever coming back from maternity leave (If you haven’t chosen a daycare yet, read my post here about things to consider). But when you come back…you get to have adult conversations! You get to pee by yourself! You get to sit in a chair by yourself for more than two seconds at a time!

However…you’re away from your child, and you miss them. You might be packing around your breast pump. You might be falling asleep at your desk.

But even with all of this going on, you also still need to make sure your family (and you!) are taken care of. You need to have meals prepared. You have to wear something other than yoga pants. Spit up is no longer an appropriate accessory. It’s a lot to take in, and a lot to take care of. It can feel overwhelming.

Here are some tips to survive your first week back from maternity leave! (This article contains affiliate links. This allows me to continue to provide awesome free content. Thanks for supporting my blog!).

Extra outfits

You’re on your way out the door, and it happens. Your beautiful angel spits up, all the way down your back. But…you don’t have any spare work clothes so you have to quickly scrub your clothes and you smell absolutely… lovely all day.

As the parent of little one, you need to have extra clean work clothes on hand. You are absolutely tempting fate if you only have one clean work appropriate outfit.

Dry Shampoo

If you somehow find the time to wash your hair, you might choose to take a nap instead. Or binge on your favorite Netflix show. No judgement here. Do what you need to! That’s where dry shampoo comes in. Sometimes you’ll find yourself short on time and you can’t wash your hair, but never fear! It can still look clean! What a time to be alive! Am I right? Before I bought dry shampoo, I did some research, and this one comes very highly rated.

Pro tip: Spray it on your roots in the evening before bed, and then when you wake up it will have worked its way through and you don’t have to do anything to it!


I’ll be honest, I’m majorly headband obsessed. Want to magically look put together? Headband, boom. Magic.

And when you’ve stretched your unwashed hair to the limit but still haven’t had a chance to wash it…headband to the rescue! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had my hair in a messy bun (because it’s all I had time for) with a headband and I’ve gotten compliments on my “cute hair”. Hey I’ll take it! Headbands are definitely a working mothers staple! Head back from maternity leave in style!

Freezer Meals

Six sisters stuff is awesome for recipes, and especially for freezer meal recipes. It is absolutely excellent to just wake up in the morning, dump your freezer meal in the crock pot, and head on your way. And then when you get home, dinner is ready! Check out their free freezer meal recipes here.

Hello Fresh

Half of the energy of cooking is deciding what to make, and with Hello Fresh it is decided for you. It breaks up our monotony of usual recipes and adds variety.

You don’t have to continue getting them forever either, unlike many subscription services. You can stop and start easily. They send coupons pretty frequently as well. The recipes are all under 30 minutes, and I have tried some really awesome meals that I never would have thought to make on my own. It is pretty great. Use the link below to get $30 off!

Overnight oats

I love these since they are super quick, easy, and delicious. In the following order pour in a mason jar: ½ cup of oats, 1 tablespoon of chia seeds, some Greek yogurt, some fruit and ½ cup of milk poured over it and BOOM. You have yourself breakfast to grab on the way out the door in the morning. If you’re feeling generous you can make some for your kids or spouse as well. It’s pretty easy to add some variation as well, and if you want it a little sweeter you can add some honey.

Picture frames

There’s no doubt about it, it’s hard to be away from your little one(s). Even though it’s nice to get out of the house, all parents miss their kids when they are away from them. I bought a few picture frames for photos from my sons newborn photo session in my office. He’s not with me while I’m at work, but the pictures are a visual reminder that he is always in my heart.

You can’t “do it all”

It’s hard to try to balance a family as a working mom. It’s hard to feel like you are succeeding at your job and also giving your kiddos and husband the attention that they need. Give it some time, you’ll find a balance and a system that works for you!

How did you survive your first week back from maternity leave? Let me know in the comments below!

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