Maternity Leave, Christianity & More


JANET MTIMA

The Hopeful Designer



How did Christianity help you through your pregnancy and the postnatal period? 


In all honesty, I had moments of fear through my pregnancy. At the beginning, it was would I lose this baby? Then in the middle was, am I eating enough for him to be healthy? Towards the end, it was fearing about labour and delivery. And as cliché as this answer is, as a Christian, I had no other choice but to trust in the Lord. After all, I can't control what's going on inside of me but He can!

Why did you choose Hypnobirthing as a pain management method?  I heard about it, did my research and found it appealing! I like learning interesting facts about the body, so I thought I'd give it a try and then work my up if I needed more pain relief.

How long did you get for maternity leave? I took a year out. Currently still on maternity leave!

Did you leave before or after 29 weeks gestation?  Afterwards, I left work at about 34 weeks gestation.

What gestation would you suggest a pregnant mother to go on maternity leave? I think this is a personal, case-by-case decision. I know some pregnant women like to leave later because they want to be occupied and active as possible. But of course, if you’re feeling the strains of pregnancy I'd suggest you begin maternity leave and go home to rest. You’ll need the energy for labour.

What activities and ventures did you /do you get up to during your maternity leave?  Before my son came, I was nesting for the most part. I was organising his bedroom and getting bits and bobs for his arrival. After I had him, I would do the usual mummy social meet ups here and there but the most exciting venture was revamping my blog and going back to blogging!

What is a must have in your maternity bag?  Mmm, tough one. I think everything in a maternity bag is a must but if I had to choose one I will say pads.

How did you cope alone for the first few weeks of maternity leave?  It was weird being alone and not working but I was fine, I just took my time with household duties and left anything I couldn’t for hubby ha!

Were you eligible for statutory shared paternal pay? If no, would you have opted for this given the chance?  I believe I was, I briefly saw something like that in my work policy pack but I knew we wasn't going down that route so I didn't bother looking into it.

How did you deal with finances (statutory maternity pay) and maternity leave?  Living on maternity pay was/is hard! I’ve had to turn down some social events, cook meat-free meals at home and cut down restaurants for date nights. I took advantage of money planning apps to help me keep on top of spending and I saved bits of my pay for the 3 months when statutory pay would end which has been super helpful.

Are you back at work now? If so how did you settle back in? If not, how do you feel about starting work again or entrepreneurship? I'm not back at work yet, but I am open to returning to employment. I love my life as a mum and we desire that I fulfil that role as much as I can, if it means I'd be a stay at home mum for a short period. Entrepreneurship might be on the cards, who doesn't like making extra money? Watch this space!


If you had one top tip for a new mumma what would it be?  Something I once heard; despite the tough days, enjoy this new season of motherhood because your child will be a baby only for a short time of their life!



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