Hello DrRuth - I can totally empathise with where you are at right now!
I have taken the last 4 months off to care for my baby who just turned 1 the other week. Its been the best year from the mother/baby/family point of view as we are all together and I so truly enjoy the daily milestones and just having time to patiently go through different textures of foods, read lots of baby books, take lots of walks together and show my baby the outside world!
I had started a surgical training job and decided it was family over work for this year and can honestly say no regrets over here!
I was encouraged to apply to our surgical college for a deferral (which I had also been told by others they would never ever grant me) and received it without further questions asked (the first time this has ever been done here apparently).
Basically this has proven to me that there are far more options out there than we lend ourselves to believe and that it is just a matter of seeking them out or more patiently, waiting for them to seek us out.
I have been working more savvy I guess this year by doing surgical assisting which over here pays us 20% of the surgical fee - basically translated as nice and a very sweet job to have without all that extra responsibility and +stress++.
However, I do miss the autonomy and the clinical side of the work with dealing with the patients when they are not asleep on the table. But for me, right now, this is the best of both worlds and my idea of balance that works for us.
Enjoy that time with your baby - much as I miss being a little out of the loop with my old work friends - I enjoy the mommy thing far more for now but know I want to pursue other things in the future if not this January. ( I have some serious decision making to do!)
I have considered doing other non-medical things as well - startup costs are the drawback, not to mention the time and energy req'd for that as well. I still feel a bit of the pull back to the hospital though......maybe I need another taste of it to really decide!
There are heaps of options out there and I do hope you find the one that suits YOU and your family....good luck