Silver Linings to Being on Mat Leave During a Pandemic

During a pandemic, it’s easy to focus on the negatives to being a new mom on mat leave during the pandemic, like not being able to have family near to help, or missing out on some personal interactions with other people. But enough about that, stop focusing on negatives, and let’s find some silver linings to being a new mom during the lockdown!

  • When a new baby comes around, everyone wants to come by and visit/hold the baby! This lockdown brought a little peace and quiet, that we can focus on taking care of our baby and not over-stimulating her. I no longer feel like I need to visit everyone with a new baby either!
  • We can keep her out of reach of strangers who may try to get close to her or even (*gasp*) touch her, by staying our distance.
  • Other than taking the baby to her doctor appointments, we don’t really feel rushed to go out anywhere. We don’t really have to pack a diaper bag and much more that we would need to pack when we go out.
  • I no longer feel FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), since all the events are closed/virtual. Everyone needs to stay at home. (Hard to go out with a baby when you need to be home by a certain time to start her bedtime routine or put her down for a nap. It’s so much easier to also access these things online.)
  • We video chat a lot more to keep in touch with friends and family.
  • It’s normal to not need to dress up or do my hair/makeup.
  • We have tried food beyond our area with food delivery.
  • We have also decided to try Hello Fresh and ended up liking it to continue with it. Hello Fresh meant less groceries to need to buy, perfect proportions of ingredients, and new recipes. We are still making some items, like pickled red cabbage and tzaziki sauce using recipes from Hello Fresh.
  • Since stores are closed, we have been spending less time than shopping in stores by shopping online.
  • My husband works from home, so with the time he usually spends commuting, he gets to spend more time with me and the baby.
  • I just did a virtual Mommy Connections’ Mom & Baby class this spring. It was different from meeting the moms and babies in person, but we still had lots to discuss and learn in the classes. The classes had ended a couple weeks ago, but we still have a weekly virtual call! It sucked not getting to meet face to face, but here’s what I liked about the virtual program: 
    • I don’t have to rush out the door in the mornings, I can just wake up and do baby stuff/get ready, and then sign in online!
    • Any time we need privacy with baby (changing diapers, nursing/feeding), we can just turn the camera off to do so.
    • I can mute myself, if the baby is being too noisy!
    • We can easily put the baby down for a nap where she is most comfortable and safe (i.e. crib, playpen) 
    • She has easy access to her toys and play corner
    • If we need to miss any classes (I had to miss a class for baby’s 4 month shots), I could watch it online to catch up.
    • The sessions were recorded, so I could rewatch anything I missed during a diaper change/feed/put her down for a nap, or if I was just really tired from a bad night of sleep.
    • Two of the members have moved during this program to outside of our area. We can still keep in touch virtually!

So in the midst of a global pandemic, let’s focus on the positives, instead of the negatives!

Baby toes peeping out from a sleep gown

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