After three or more years of not working, you finally decided to continue pursuing your career. It is about time you take care of your dreams. You’ve hit the pause button for the kids, but this is the best time for you to go back to work since the kids are going to school soon. It’s a big transition for the whole family. You should never underestimate how your work will affect your kids’ well-being.
Take It One Step at a Time
If you’re working as a process server, perhaps you can take smaller responsibilities in the beginning. Talk to your boss about the possibility of working part-time for the first few months. This way, you can begin transitioning your kids with very short separations. You cannot shock your kids by going back to work full-time immediately. These small and short separations will prove to your kids that you will come back every time you go away. This will build their trust in you, thus allowing you to leave the house without throwing a tantrum.
Talk to Your Children
Never underestimate your kids’ ability to understand what’s going on around them. They know more than you give them credit for. They understand the little nuances in your behaviors. When you are tired and frustrated, they feel that. When you are worried about leaving them for work, they know that, too. Talk to them. Tell them that there are going to be changes in their lives soon, but that these are good changes.
Be honest with your kids that you are going back to work because your family needs extra income. Tell them, too, that you want to pursue your dreams and career. Children are very loving. And because they love you, they will try to understand something that’s still alien to them as long as you say that it’s going to make you happy.
Create a New Routine
Children are creatures of habit. Though they get bored with their playtime, they also crave routines. They want to be sure that weekends are for family fun. Before going back to work, create new routines for them. If they are attending school soon, make weekdays for learning activities and weekends for fun. This way, they will look forward to spending time with the family on weekends. On weekdays, they’ll expect to go to school, learn, and not see much of you as they would like. Make them feel that they are busy with their lives, too, and they’re not just hanging around the house or school waiting for you to finish work.
Visit Your Children’s School
Never make your children feel that you are completely out of touch with their needs. Visit the school with them to show your support for their learning experiences. Talk to their teachers. When they get home and even during the weekend, ask them questions about school. Help them with their homework as much as you can. Show to them that they didn’t lose you to work. You may be busier these days, but you always have time to be present in their lives.
Do Housework Together
Because you aren’t spending as much time with your kids as before, they probably miss being with you. You can’t put off household work, but you can invite them to join you in cleaning the house, doing the laundry, and gardening. While doing these chores, talk to them about anything they like to share with you. Create bonding moments even in the most mundane of tasks. The more they see that you are making an effort to be present in their lives, the more they will accept this new routine.
Spend Time with Your Partner
Make sure that your spouse is okay with you going back to work. Sure, you shouldn’t need permission to want to pursue your career, but it helps to clear these things up. Create a new schedule with your spouse. You should be both responsible for taking care of the family and household. Divide the tasks, errands, and duties. The only way this will work is if you will become good partners. Lastly, spend time together, too. Never set that aside because you’re busy with work and the kids.
Always discuss your plans with the family. Even if you have set your mind to something, consider how it will affect them. That’s part and parcel of being in a loving and considerate family. As much as you have to consider your happiness and well-being, you also have to be practical about what will work and not for your family.