Taking Maternity Leave early.

I actually started my maternity leave at the beginning of this month, which might lead you to question how on earth have I been busy?

So I figured this post could be a bit of an update about what I've been doing since starting my leave, and how I've managed to pass the time, as well as the differing opinions about when to take maternity leave.

It seems to me that women are expected to work up until their 39th week of pregnancy, provided that they don't spontaneously go into labour early. This was the overwhelming opinion that seemed to follow me around when I announced that I would be taking my maternity leave as early as possible. Based on the Gov website, the earliest a woman can take her MA is the start of the 11th week before baby is due. So, I decided that I would do that, rather than forcing myself to be up and about and being at work, which was exhausting. Now, I don't mean that my work was particularly tiring, but just being pregnant in general and having to get up every morning, on top of the sleepless nights, caused by the unforgiving need to go to the toilet every hour. 

When I announced my intentions to leave early, I was met by the same question: 'What will you do with your time before baby is here?'. This question was followed by strange looks of outrage, which can leave a person feeling rather silly. Well, it certainly made me feel silly, anyway. 

I came to this decision, mainly because of some of my hidden anxieties about being pregnant and not wanting to put pressure on myself. So here I am, at home and quite frankly, loving it!
Now, this might, to some, come across as me being lazy, but let me assure you, I have found plenty of things to keep my mind and myself occupied. I have taken on my new role as a housewife and mother-to-be, rather well, if I'm entitled to say that? I find myself waking up relatively early, but not because I have to but because I am being kicked awake from the inside. 

My housework has never been so kept on top of, which feels great. There would be days where I would come home from work and I was so tired, that doing housework was the last thing on my 'to-do' list. Whereas now, everything is clean, and it leaves a sense of productivity on my part. Now, if I'd have been asked 3/4 years ago whether I could see my life taking this direction, then the answer would have been a resounding 'no'. Alas, here I am, living the life of the dutiful wife that I am. 

I am in no way saying that all women should be taking their maternity leave early, because of course, it depends on individual circumstances. I just find it so frustrating when opinions start to fly when someone takes a different course of action to the 'norm'.

Anyway, that post lasted a bit longer than I anticipated but there we are!

Thanks lovelies.

A. x

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