Family Life

The End of a Chapter

Today marks the end of a life chapter for me, my final day of maternity leave. Tomorrow, after ten months of maternity leave I will be returning to the office knowing I will probably never get this time off work again. After completing our family with our beautiful Tot I am now putting the full stop on the end of our pregnancy and baby-having chapter.


I feel extremely lucky about having had two long bouts of maternity leave at ten months each but there is something incredibly final about today and tomorrow that I was not prepared for. I have found myself in a bit of a ‘funk’ wondering if I did enough with my maternity leave? Did I make the most of my time off? Did I appreciate each day? Usually I’m a pretty positive person so having these thoughts really threw a spanner in the works for me. I feel like I almost shut down for a week or two whilst I tried to departmentalise my thoughts and come to terms with them. I think I was in denial about my imminent return to work and when it finally hit me, it did just that, hit me like a ton of bricks.

After having a bit of a hump and being a grump I decided to give myself a kick up the backside and to turn my frown upside down. I didn’t want to ruin or waste the last few weeks so tried to make the most of every single minute I had left at home. We’ve squeezed in a few family days out, strolls and bike rides in the evening sunshine, running and splashing around in the garden and lots of messy play to boot. There are a lot of things I said I wanted to do whilst on maternity leave but didn’t get around to but I am trying to just think about what I have done. For one, I started this blog, a little place for just me and I’ve met some truly wonderful people through it already. We moved to our new house and have been slowly turning it into our amazing family home. We got Willow potty trained and taught her to ride her balance bike. I’ve planned and booked our first family holiday for next year and reignited by love of baking.

I have come to realise that although I may be closing this chapter, we are starting a new and different one. A chapter that won’t include pregnancy, newborns or maternity leave but instead tots turning to toddlers and toddlers turning to pre-schoolers. First words, first steps, first holidays, first days at school and first rides on a pedal bike. The times we do have away from work will be precious and no time will be wasted, I am now ready to jump straight into this new chapter and explore it whole heartedly.



I like to see my life as a story, made up of many chapters. The last three years has been the most exciting, wonderful, scary and beautiful chapter of my life so far. I’m both intrigued and excited to be at the beginning of a new chapter. Have you recently started a new chapter in your life? How did you feel about it?


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  • Reply
    Thelma Booth
    17th August 2016 at 2:32 pm

    good luck.back at work,you will be fine. xxxx

  • Reply
    This Mum's Life
    17th August 2016 at 7:09 pm

    Awww Hannah, what a big change for you. Are you going back full time? Even though you say you’ve been worried about a lot of things, you’ve still managed to make this into a lovely, positive post! I have no words of wisdom to offer, as I went back after baby 1, knowing that in 3 months I’d be on maternity leave again with baby 2, then not going back at all-so it was quite different for me! I think I need to go back to work though-staying at home is making me a bit mental at the moment, so I’m quite envious of you! Good luck, let us know how you’re getting on! Xx

    • Reply
      Hannah G, The 'Ordinary' Mum
      22nd August 2016 at 9:08 am

      Thank you lovely, I’m only working part time so its not too bad but the first week back was definitely tiring and a little overwhelming. I did quite enjoy the adult company and lack of nursery rhymes though 🙂 I think within a few weeks it’ll feel like I’ve not been off!! Will keep you updated 🙂 xx

  • Reply
    22nd August 2016 at 12:16 pm

    Oh I love new chapters though – they can give you such a lease of life full of positivity and a new outlook. I know what you mean though about questioning whether you’ve done enough with the last chapter but I always think you mustn’t dwell – start the next chapter afresh – enjoy my lovely xx #BigPinkLink

    • Reply
      Hannah G, The 'Ordinary' Mum
      22nd August 2016 at 9:09 pm

      Thank you I’m really going to try not to dwell, I’ve definitely started it with a positive mind so I’m hoping it will continue that way xx

  • Reply
    Agent Spitback
    22nd August 2016 at 12:27 pm

    Oh Hannah, this is such a lovely and touching post. I love that quote about life being a book. You are right, life is about changes and if we don’t meet them head on, how do we know what is going up next. It is indeed a new chapter of new firsts. #bigpinklink

    • Reply
      Hannah G, The 'Ordinary' Mum
      22nd August 2016 at 9:13 pm

      Thank you lovely, I love the analogy of life being like a book and I think its a pretty good way to look at life. Thank you for hosting xx

  • Reply
    22nd August 2016 at 9:05 pm

    This is a really lovely post Hannah, I hope your first day back at work goes ok and you are all able to enjoy this new chapter in your lives, I’m sure you will with so may exciting firsts to look forward to xx #bigpinklink

    • Reply
      Hannah G, The 'Ordinary' Mum
      22nd August 2016 at 9:14 pm

      Thanks Wendy, my first day back was a success all though very tiring and long. I’m very much looking forward to all our future firsts. Thank you for your lovely comment xx

  • Reply
    Siena Says
    24th August 2016 at 8:08 am

    I think it’s a really positive way to look upon it as a new chapter. Going back after mat leave is never easy especially when you know it’s going to be your last time. I think you do appreciate the home time more though and it is nice to have adult conversation and a hot cup of tea! There are many more firsts to look forward to.
    As for me I am approaching a new chapter as Grace starts High School and Siena goes to pre-school 2 days a week. I’m quite excited about the changes so far xx


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