Monday, February 18, 2008

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

Today was my first day back to work after 379 days of maternity leave.

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

We are very lucky in Canada to have a whole year off as maternity and paternity leave. I feel exceptionally lucky. You see, I never returned to my hi-tech marketing career after my first son was born. I could not. The main reason was that my passion now rested with my family and not with marketing and communication programs for software. I did not care if someone bought WordPerfect. But, I did care that I was there for my child...well, then it became children. I had my second son before my maternity leave ended! Then I could not see myself going back since daycare for two infants is so expensive...but mainly, I really enjoyed being a stay-at-home mom. Actually, I love it! And still do.

But, when my boys were 27 and 38 months old I hit the jackpot! A dear friend I met at playgroup found out about an interesting job with the federal government. It was the job I originally came to Ottawa for fifteen years earlier! I interviewed, and got it. And loved it. I became a media analyst for the federal government. My hours allow me to keep being a stay-at-home mom and have a "career". I work 4 am - yep, in the morning - till 8 am. No daycare required. It is perfect. And, it is kind of cool to think that I get paid to watch the news and read the newspapers and tell the Prime Minister of Canada and his staff all about it! I love my job!

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

When I became pregnant with our little girl I was acutally sad about leaving my job. My contract was set to finish February 2, 2007 and my due date was February 27. So, I just figured I would not get renewed and that would be it. I was sad. I loved my job! But then my managers gave me the best baby gift ever! They extended my contract to March 31, 2008! This meant I could take the entire year off for maternity leave, come back to a guaranteed job and be assured all the benefits of a government job. But to me, the best was the fact that I got to keep my job. I could continue to have the best of both worlds.

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

The year off has flown by. So much has happened in that year off from work. Madigan was born. She had her surgery & recovered. She learned to sit, crawl, jibber gabber, clap, wave, give kisses, eat real food, cruise the furniture, walk, and laugh. She went from being a little helpless babe to being able to let her wishes be known, and being able to interact& play with her big brothers. During the year away from work we participated in swimming lessons, play groups, countless outings & adventures. We had tons of fun. So much has gone on in the last year. Madigan has learned so much and grown so much in that one year. It is amazing!

Today was my first day back to the grind. I was a bit nervous. A year is a long, long time. So much can go on in a year!

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

Then I sat down with my two co-workers to review my responsibilities and go over all my early morning tasks. We reviewed all the technology we use to clip, edit and save news clips. We went over documenting and comparison reports. I even got caught up on all the office politics and gossip.

And in less than 10 minutes, I was more than prepared to jump back into my media analyst role.
10 minutes.

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

Now, I cannot seem to get this frigging song out of my head! It was funny at first...but damn annoying now!!! is all coming back to me now! It is amazing how so much can change in a year and how little can change in one year!

DAMN YOU Celine Dion!

Well, better run, and go set my alarm clock for 3 AM since I am thinking of it now...YEEEK 3 am is going to come quickly!!!


Kellan said...

This was a great post! Good luck being back at work - it sounds great! I can't believe you had a year off - that is crazy wonderful. Take care and see you later. Kellan

Kathryn said...

A year off! That is amazing! How lucky you are to have a job you love that fits your family! What a blessing! Still, a huge adjustment. Good luck! And happy first day back!

InTheFastLane said...

Wow! I hope the re-entry goes smoothly for you.

Barrie said...

Okay. Now I know why you're up so late! You're actually up very early! Happy First Day Back! (and I'm sorry you didn't win the book. :( But....the third time's the charm, right?!)

Emily said...

WOw. It is ROUGH going back, but a year of maternity leave is fantastic!

forgetfulone said...

3 AM!? Ugh! Well, it's probably good to be back at work in one way. A year is LONG! I only got three months. Good ol' USA. Right.

Kellan said...

Hi Laura - thanks for coming by today. Hope you have a good Tuesday - see you soon. Kellan

shay said...

How fortunate to find the exact fit for your family AND you love it AND they made a way for you to come back to it!

And thanks alot cuz now I have the silly song in MY head lol.

Happy first day back!

Nissa - said...

This was a 'wait for it, wait for it..' post! I keep reading, the whole time wondering how Celine Dion ruined your career! You sure had me fooled!

3XMom said...

wow, congratulations.

Mighty Morphin' Mama said...

Good luck! Sounds like an amazing job for a mom. Hope re-entry goes swimmingly for you.

Anonymous said...

A year off!? Dear Heavens, I never knew this...!! Holy Moly!! WHAT?! No....

Wait a minute, did you say a year off?

:-)) That sounds like the perfect job, lucky you, let Celine serenade you now.

Family Adventure said...

You have a fantastic job! Although I'm sure the 3 am wake up call hurts - especially in the morning.

Hope the transition goes smoothly :)


The MomBabe said...

I KNEW that was coming.... Be strong. And seriously? What an awesome job!

Life As I Know It said...

wow, that is a great job set-up!
I was always jealous of our canadian employees (when I worked) who got a year of maternity leave!

Glad you had a good first day back at work!

Janet said...

Hey! I used to work in high tech marketing too! Then I quit to be home with my kids and started freelance writing from home. Then I had a third kid!