Chapter ThirteenTouchpoint 8 Acknowledge the Transition to Working Parent

JUST AS WHEN you paused in Phase 1 to acknowledge your transition out of work and into parenthood, this touchpoint exists to remind you of how important it is to pause again as you return to work. You are moving to the next phase in your transition: becoming a working parent. This is the counterpoint of the self-reflection and life prioritization work you did in Touchpoint 4, and you will benefit in direct proportion to the attention you give it.

Although congratulations are in order with your return to work, this can also be an incredibly emotional time—remember the ups and downs of the emotional journey in Chapter 3, as you left work? Whether you are a new mom or dad, walking through those (figurative or literal) doors again is not always simple.

Taneka was just a few days away from returning to work when she woke up in the middle of the night, not because her baby needed to be fed but because she was sobbing in her sleep and it startled her awake. Another client, Jim, found he was angry that returning to work so soon meant that he felt less skilled about caring for his baby than his wife and he found himself acting out in ways that were harming their connection (and which he expected would leak out at work as well).

Just so you don't think it is all tears and anger, another client, Isabel, found so much joy and fulfillment in her work (and loved the predictability of her workdays) that she literally ...

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