Working Class

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It’s been such a long time since I’ve last posted. A really, long time.  I’ve noticed, that a great number of my posts over the last year have started this exact same way. Turns out, when I have two kids (whether in utero or out) I find it hard to make time to write, which bums me out, as I love it, and I’ve had so much I’ve wanted to write about.

As always, it’s been hectic. Most of our lives are, I’m sure. Since I last posted, my gorgeous, wonderful little boy (who I feel bad for not writing more about!) has started solids, gotten two teeth, turned 6 months old, been christened, started to scoot backwards, and even given himself his first real minor head injury. My daughter has continued to grow and become more herself every day, has had her first run in with a bully, and has been to the emergency room for the first time. And me? Well, I’ve kept us all alive, and I’ve just gone back to work.

Now if you remember with Moo, I was not what one would term super excited about working again, although I did try to remain positive. This time was a little worse. Moo, having gotten quite used to me being home, has taken a bit of adjustment this time around – that didn’t happen when she was 6 months old. Bear has taken it well, and I’m happy (and lucky) that he will get to have a close relationship with his grandparents through this. But this time, the main issue is me – I just wasn’t ready. Last time, I’d started to get back into personal routines, started to get myself back a little, started to feel like I was in not only in control of the kid situation, but also myself – and although work did make me feel like I went backwards a bit, it was OK. This time, I felt like it’s taken longer to get myself back, and in fact, I feel like although I have the whole ‘two kids’ thing well and truly down, I’m not back to myself yet, and consequently, I didn’t feel ready to go back to work. I knew the added time would make me step back further. And I feel a little bit crappy about it. I am sad about leaving my kids. I am wistful about losing that time with them. I am disappointed (and sore) about having to wean my son earlier than I was ready for – felt like I could have gone another 6 months, easy. I’m exhausted as my kids still tag team me most nights.  I was worried about becoming more time poor, when I already felt like every second of my day was allocated (and very little of that allocated to myself). But the money ran out, as it does, so there were no options.

But, again I’ve tried to remain positive. So I’ve made a list of the top 10  pros for me of being a working parent:

  1. Getting dressed nicely. I get to wear my nice dresses and match my shoes. I put on make-up, I have a shower. Yes it’s before 6 am, but when I look mildly put together, I feel better about the whole situation.
  2. The drive to work. I get to listen to my own music, without having to up the volume to eardrum shattering levels to drown out the cries of ‘ Mummy I want PRINCESS SONGS!’ coming from the back seat. I get to be by myself. It’s amazing.
  3. Morning coffee. It’s hot. It’s uninterrupted. I have it in the sun most days. And after a night of broken sleep (which is most nights) it’s pretty much the best thing that’s happened to me.
  4. The *ahem* facilities. No one walks in or yells outside the door while I am using them. The privacy is unheard of.
  5. I don’t have to explain where I am going every time I leave a room.
  6. Lunch – see No. 3.
  7. I can feel my parts of  my brain that have lain dormant grinding back into use. It’s a good feeling. I feel like a fog is lifting, and I can feel everything starting to move more quickly in there.
  8. The feeling of accomplishment. I accomplish a lot at home, but there is no acknowledgement (because they’re kids and I’m their mum- why would they acknowledge me fulfilling what is a natural part of our relationship?) and most of it has to be repeated the next day, which makes it all seem futile when you’re feeling a bit low. At work, I am acknowledged. People appreciate my work. People see that I’m worth something. When you’re at home, even though your role is just as important, and you’re worth just as much, you begin feeling worthless when no one acknowledges your efforts.
  9. The interaction. I can talk to other adults. Even though my introversion means I don’t crave this, even I have to admit it is good to have a conversation that revolves around higher matters (or TV shows whatever,) sometimes.
  10. Coming home. I miss my kids so much. The happiness I have when I see them at the end of the day and they are so happy to see me feels like a sunburst on a cloudy day. And even though I’m tired, I feel like I have more patience for them, and because I work hard to make the shorter hours worth more, our time in the hours after work is, I think, often a higher quality than how I am at 5 pm after spending the last 12-13 hours with them.

Truth be told, I would have loved more time, weeks, months. I would’ve loved to go back with a 9 month old, or 1-year-old son, (or even a two-year old, if we are living in a dream world), instead of a barely 6 month old. I mean, look at us in that photo up there. Who wants to leave those two? But, at the end of the day, it’s not all bad. And it can only improve from here – right?

I’m An, the wife of a wonderful, but extremely nerdy gamer, a mother to two, a scientist, an amateur pastry chef, a daughter, a sister and a friend.

One Comment on "Working Class"

  1. J says:

    So glad to see you got a chance to write again as I know how much you love it.
    You are doing so well, a courageous and strong mother, and person. I am proud of you. I hope you all continue to settle in to the work-life balance. Xox

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