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Advice please. Finding maternity leave a real struggle

(10 Posts)
JKDcot Tue 15-Sep-20 17:09:16

Hi all

I have a 15 week old boy who I adore. He’s very much wanted and loved.
Obviously was pregnant and gave birth during Covid so it’s hardly been relaxed.

I have to be honest I am not enjoying maternity leave at all. I can’t tell if it is due to Covid restrictions and weirdness for going out / seeing people. Or if I’m just not cut out for it. I am bored, frustrated with no time to do anything properly, I still can’t tell what he needs when he cries (nap, food, pain) I still get it wrong. I’m worried he’s under stimulated and bored.

Also my husband is working from home so just sees me moping about. I feel embarrassed. I do go out for a walk every day, but other than that he is either napping, feeding or we are playing on his playmat or in his chair. What else do people do? What’s a normal day / week routine? Why do I feel so bored?

Any advice please help
Thanks

OP’s posts: |
Cheesewine Tue 15-Sep-20 17:13:33

My daughter was 15 weeks on Sunday. My partner works nights so it's just me and her all day and all night. She is awake most of the day and likes to be entertained, but appart from play mat / seat tummy time, bouncer and a walk every day there's not much more to do. No words of wisdom but I feel your pain. It's hard just getting to the kitchen to make food and my partner always says he's tired but that's another thread lol.

changednamealways Tue 15-Sep-20 17:20:36

Tbf I don't think he will be bored so don't worry, everything is new to them even watching you do chores is fascinating so I wouldn't worry. I have an 18 week lb so I get you but I think even without lockdown at this age he wouldn't have much more to do anyway ☺️

lemorella Tue 15-Sep-20 17:38:11

I do feel for you as when I had my dc I was signed up to a few baby classes and things like rhyme time at the library - mainly to get me out the house and break up the day! Obviously that's not available to you now, I think the issue is your lack of wider support network as society is temporarily shut down.

It's completely fine and normal to feel like looking after a newborn isn't that most spectacular time of your life. They aren't that exciting. In terms of what baby wants there is no real wrong, you sound like you are checking all the right things each time.

Practical suggestions: get out walking with the pram, every day. The fresh air will do wonders. I used to go to the Tesco for a crap takeaway coffee a lot just to get me out. Take baby to a coffee shop and treat yourself to a drink just for half an hour or for a quick lunch somewhere. Can you meet another mummy friend for a walk around the park? Sing along with a few nursery rhymes on the Alexa or you tube for some easy stimulation. I bought a couple of silver foil sheets from Amazon and some light up bouncy balls for 'sensory' time. On babies down time take time for you napping/ Netflix/ quick bit of yoga. Make sure your partner gives you time each evening for a bath and to eat something decent to keep your sanity.

Ihaveoflate Tue 15-Sep-20 18:44:01

You've already done longer than I could manage - went back to work p/t at 3 months. You're bored because it is really boring and there is nothing wrong in admitting that.

Some groups and classes are starting up around here now, which are a way to kill a bit of time. I always had a little trip out morning and afternoon to break up the day, even if it was just the supermarket. Otherwise, have you thought about shared parental leave and returning to work?

prisscalledwanda Tue 15-Sep-20 19:27:51

I felt exactly the same, my baby is a couple of months older

Things that helped me
- video calls with friends or relatives most days
- going on little adventures eg walking to a place id never been
- making a list of jobs I could do while the baby sleeps and getting them done so I felt like I'd achieved things
- audiobooks
- wine

It is hard and dull, it does pass and it does improve xx

VimFuego101 Tue 15-Sep-20 19:30:56

changednamealways

Tbf I don't think he will be bored so don't worry, everything is new to them even watching you do chores is fascinating so I wouldn't worry. I have an 18 week lb so I get you but I think even without lockdown at this age he wouldn't have much more to do anyway ☺️


^^ this - everything is interesting to them, even if you're just chatting away while you load the dishwasher. I was glad to get back to work though. Lots of people don't love maternity leave.

CuriousClownFish Tue 15-Sep-20 21:00:26

I also have a 15 week DS. For me it is my second maternity leave - I have a 3yo DD. My 3 yo DD was by far the harder baby and I had PND, but despite that this maternity leave is harder in so many ways, so really don't underestimate the impact of covid.

With my older DD we did groups and activities every day - I was always busy. It gave me structure and made the day go quicker. I saw lots of other adults and we could have a chat and share our struggles. This time I have been bored and lonely an awful lot. I have found myself obsessed with nap schedules because it's all I have to give me structure. Also, I know lots of people say little babies don't get bored but both of mine have been happier out and about from about 2 months, which I can only put down to some level of boredom. Which again is much harder this time with less places to go.

DS is my second baby and I am still rubbish at telling what his cries mean so don't worry - it gets much easier from that perspective when they talk!!

Things that do help me this time are:

-My older daughter does nursery 3 days per week, but the days she is home we go to the playground and DS loves watching the older kids play. Do you have a friend with a toddler/pre-schopler you could accompany to park? I guess it might feel a bit wierd taking your baby to the playground just to watch other children play!

-Lots of little trips out rather than one big one - so half hour walk first thing, then pop round the supermarket later, then in the afternoon takeaway coffee in the park.

-A couple of music baby group things have started up round us recently so I'm starting two this week. Will work out very expensive if we miss lots due to self-isolating or local lockdowns or anything, but worth it to keep my sanity.

-Dancing around holding him to music I like. Plenty of time for nursery rhymes when he's older (although I do quite enjoy the Spotify Disney playlist!).

-I give him a long bath early afternoon most days which he loves. A local family friendly swimming pool near us has reopened recently with really well thought through social distancing so maybe look into anything like that. Both my babies have loved water.

-I try and hang out in different rooms. Gives us both a change of scene! Especially useful if the weather is bad so we can't get out much. During the summer we put a tent in the garden for my daughter, but DS liked being in there to!

The mind numbing boredness will improve when they get older, because you just get more and more back from them, but also don't feel guilty if going back to work feels amazing. I absolutely loved years 1-2 with my DD because she was such fun to be around and developing so fast, but also I got three days at work to not think about baby stuff.

CuriousClownFish Tue 15-Sep-20 21:01:30

Sorry that was epically long - guess that's what the mind numbing boredness does to you...

PeigiSu Tue 15-Sep-20 21:05:08

There’s quite a lot of free YouTube Baby Yoga or Mummy and Me type workouts. DS was never really that in to the virtual baby groups but he loved the workout ones. Good for you too!

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