It’s been a while! I kind of lost my blogging mojo and have been focussing more on my Insta but I have quite a lot to say on a certain topic so rather than post a never ending rambling insta blurb, I thought I would hit up wordpress instead!
What a rollercoaster of emotions the past few days have been, for those who don’t know, I have just started back at work, full time. I’ll talk about that more later, but for now let’s talk about the EMOTIONS involved in deciding to go back to work!… I’ve always known that I’m not the kind of person to be able to stay at home 24/7 with the kids, I also assumed I would go back to work part time but finding a flexible/part time role has been agonising. There simply is NOTHING out there for mums/dads who still want decent jobs but want to make work fit around their babes. I’ve managed to find a role that is flexible and interesting but it is full time, I work from 7am-4pm. Already I have noticed a few raised eyebrows when I walk out at 4pm but I couldn’t care less, my focus is on making sure I get the 4:22pm train from waterloo so I gently jog out of those revolving doors! But the EMOTIONS, gahhh, every morning this week I have had to hold back the tears, Dax holds on to me so tight and bursts into tears as soon as I walk away, it literally breaks my heart into 5000 pieces. Bella has luckily been very mature about it all, yesterday she begged me not to go but quickly changed her mind when I told her I would bring her a gingerbread man at pick up from nursery!
It’s not just the day to day emotions, in the week leading up to my first day I was a mess. A mix of nerves, anxiety, stress, worry and tears. So many ‘what if’s’ flew around in my mind, what if the kids aren’t ok? What if I’m not ok? What if my work arrangement doesn’t work out? What if I don’t remember how to function in an office properly? What if this is the wrong choice? What if i hate it? What if the kids end up hating me? MASSIVE EMOTIONAL TURMOIL!!!
I won’t go into the nitty gritty but Dip and I also fell out MASSIVELY in the lead up. I don’t think he understood just how worried I was and he just carried on like it was no big deal, but it was the biggest deal for me. I guess this is where mums and dads sometimes differ, well for us certainly. Dips practical, he thought his input wasn’t required until I actually started at work and then he would step it up and help make dinners/clean up etc etc. I, on the other hand, think about all the granular details, I took out 5 days’ worth of clothes for the kids the weekend before I started so mornings would be less manic, I started telling Bella about the fact I was going back to work about 3 weeks before I started so she wouldn’t be upset, I told nursery to give the kids extra cuddles as I was worried they would be sad, I set really stringent work patterns, I planned my commute down to the minute and I started stressing about the balance of it all the day I got my offer letter!
It’s safe to say he’s been really helpful since I started. I’m used to being the one who is ALWAYS the go to person for the kids, I organise all their meals, their schedules, playdates, clothes etc. I also do all the cooking. Dip has been doing little things that have made it all a lot less painful for me, he wakes up and gets ready before any of us do so I have the bathroom and can get ready in peace and he is all set to look after the kids as soon as they wake up. I then run out of the door at 6:30 by which time he is giving them breakfast and is getting them ready for the day. He then drops them off to nursery at 8am and I pick them up by 5pm – It’s a long day for them but their nursery is lovely and they both really like it so that helps.
By the time I’ve picked the kids up, have given them dinner, bathed them, got them into bed I AM SHATTERED!!! But I’ll be honest, I’m not as shattered as I was when I was at home with them all day. I have said it before and I will say it a million times again
STAYING AT HOME WITH KIDS IS 500x HARDER THAN GOING TO WORK- regardless of if you’re a nuclear physicist or a rocket scientist, looking after tiny human beings is by far the most rewarding but most difficult job (and it is a JOB in case anyone tries to say it isn’t!)
I miss them so much that my heart hurts, literally. I can’t quite describe how intensely those kiddos have invaded my heart, they are the centre of my universe and it’s so important to me that they are always ok, part of that is teaching them independence and showing them that I work as hard as their dad does but that I’m still their same old ‘mama’ – It’s such a tricky thing to balance but I am going to try with every last morsel to make it work.
Back to my new job, it’s great, it’s really interesting and topical and I know it’s the right role for me but I’m having a big case of imposter syndrome, having been out of the game for nearly 2 years. Starting at a new firm (albeit one I used to work at 8 years ago) has been a bit odd too, I’m the new girl again. The new girl who doesn’t accept meeting invites after 4pm and the new girl who can’t do work drinks at the drop of a hat – How things have changed! A good friend recommended that I read ‘lean in’ by Sheryl Sandberg so I have added that to my amazon list. I think I just need some motivation and some clarity, I keep questioning if they will suddenly realise my brain is a mix of kids nursery rhymes, baby weaning recipes and extracurricular pre-school lists and that my cover will be blown! I need to keep asserting that I should believe in myself but I don’t think there is enough support out there for mothers/fathers returning to the work place after an extended period. In fact I am meeting with HR to discuss the importance of this next week in the hope that I can lead a campaign internally to make this more of a hot topic.
So heres to a new chapter, I would LOVE to hear about how other people manage the balancing act too!
Thanks for reading ❤️ xxx
(As always, if you want to see more from our mental little family/life, give me a follow @ldnmum on Instagram)