I haven’t talked much about my back-to-work situation much lately because there hasn’t been much to talk about. That first month or so was a pretty drastic adjustment and I had a harder go of it than I really articulated. I was in a whole new routine, Matthew was in a whole new routine and the kids were in a whole new routine. There were a lot of bumps in the road and more than a few tears shed on all of our parts. There was more than one occasion where I closed my office door and let it all out.
Things have been better. Much, much better. Graham has whittled his morning hug quota from ten or so to one big one. Not only that, he always gets up while I’m getting ready to sit on the bathroom counter and talk to me while I’m putting on my face. Nathan is his regular huggy self but nothing out of the norm. If Emily is up, she will will give me a hug and then crawl in to bed with Daddy for a cuddle.
As for me, I’m doing alright. I’m a little burnt out from working six days a week but that will all come to a halt next Friday. I’m feeling a little creatively frustrated because being away from home for such long days and for half of the weekend doesn’t leave much time for some of the projects I have simmering on the back burner of my brain. This, too, shall be remedied soon – especially since our office goes to a four-day work week for the last six months of the year. I’m in the groove of my job, I’m enjoying the office/adult environment and I spend my lunch hours walking outside in the sunshine.
Matthew’s hours have recently been upped at the church (starting July 1st) but we’re pretty sure we can make it all work with my shorted/lesser days so that no child is left behind. Or something. We just need to make it through these next two months.
One little glitch has come up as of late which has caused us to evaluate our routine. Matthew works full days on Tuesdays, so Miss Emily spends the morning at preschool, has lunch with Daddy and then spends the afternoon with her favorite auntie and cousins. For the past month or so, the hand-off to auntie has been, shall we say, difficult. There are tears, there is clinging, there is the limp-noodle manoeuvre. When I cuddle with her at the end of the day to ask why she cries, she states simply, “I don’t want Daddy to leave.”
She’s been this way at other hand-offs as well. Sunday school, ballet, etc. Part of it is likely due to the fact that she is three (stubborn and opinionated) and the other part of it is likely due to the fact that she is three (still a baby who misses her parents).
We could just shrug it off as something she’ll need to deal with but she’s my baby and it kills me to hear about her being so upset. Have I mentioned that she’s only three? And that she’s my baby? Also! I have a fairly flexible work schedule.
We’ve worked out a solution. Starting in May, I will continue to come in an hour early every morning, but I will take Tuesday afternoons off. Daddy will pick her up from pre-school and share lunch with her per usual (the lake has been their recent haunt), then I will pick her up and bring her home. She and I will have a few hours together before we have to pick up the boys from school, and then the four of us can play outside, take photos, do whatever we want.
Emily will be spared the angst of feeling like we’ve left her behind and I will have an afternoon to “just” be a Mom. I’m pretty sure that the two of us will have a lot of fun and maybe get into some good-natured mischief together.
I’ll follow her lead.