A New Chapter…Back To Work Again
Eleven months ago I wrote about the new chapter in our lives. I wrote about me giving up work to become a stay at home mum. There were many reasons for the decision, some bigger than others. It remains the correct decision for that time. I’m never going to regret the 10 months I spent at home with my boy, both in Berkshire and Derbyshire. We spent 10 months playing, cuddling on the sofa, exploring, and getting to know each other all over again. I will never regret that. But, 11 months on, we’ve begun another New Chapter. It’s a replay of an old one, with modifications. I’ve gone back to work.
This wasn’t planned. I haven’t been job hunting, or actively seeking employment. I hadn’t been yearning to go back to work. In fact, I had a fairly sweet plan for the rest of the year and TD starting school. Every morning I’d walk him across the fields to school, and every afternoon I’d do the same walk to collect him. For the rest of the day I’d go to the gym, do house stuff, do some crochet, and do some blogging. I’d be there to take him on outings in the school holidays, and to look after him if he was ever poorly. I was happy with that vision. It was perfect.
But, then, inevitably, we realised that we could perhaps do with a little more money. So, I landed a job I could do from home for just 1 hour a day. And I was aiming to start selling crocheted blankets by the end of the year. And, this blog. So there were all these little ways that we’d have more money coming in. And that was fine.
But oh, how I’ve missed working. Or, how I’ve missed my job, anyway. Not Working is blissful. Being able to lay in bed until late, being at home to accept parcels, being able to scrap your day’s plans if you feel a bit rubbish. Not Working was lovely. But, the job I loved so much 10 months ago…that was somehow more lovely. Perhaps…perhaps I did want to go back to work?!
BACK TO WORK
I didn’t want to go back into full time work. If anything, I was hoping to find a really awesome part time job that I could do from home. The Dream, right? Something may have materialised if I’d waited longer, but all of a sudden, out of nowhere, fell My Job. I don’t even know how I found it. One minute I was idly saving listings for part time jobs, the next My Job was in my Saved items. And one Monday evening I looked at the listing, internally said “Meh, worth a shot”, fired off a CV and an email, and that was it.
I wasn’t expecting a call the very next day. I wasn’t expecting a telephone interview that went on for two hours, or a load of tests to complete, or another call later that day asking me for a face-to-face interview the next day. It had been 10 months since I’d worn office clothes. And then, I wasn’t expecting to go to a two hour interview and get a phone call on the way home offering me a job to start in 10 days.
So, that’s how it happened: out of nowhere, and without warning. Back to work.
I’m now in my fourth week of this new job. The first couple of weeks were strange, but more for TD than for me. For me, it was like settling back into my natural habitat. It just felt right. For TD, it was a lot different. He struggled to wrap his head around the changes, and I struggled a bit watching him. He’s had his mummy at home with him for almost one year, and now with less than one week’s notice she was gone. So there’s been a fair bit of acting up, quite a few tears, and some clinginess at home in the evenings.
We’ve powered through it with a lot of cuddles, but also with a fair bit of raised tempers on all sides. I think though that we’re finally reaching a more stable point. TD has adapted to the changes – very quickly, really. He’s such a resilient little chap.
Obviously I’ve felt guilty about leaving him. But at the same time I’ve almost refused to let myself be bothered by it. I felt guilty in my last job for not spending enough time with him, and then when I gave that up to spend the time with him I felt guilty for not being a better SAHM. There’s so much that parents get to feel guilty about. So I just plain refuse to do it anymore. I need to live a life where I’m happy as well as TD, because he can’t be truly happy if I’m not and vice versa. I’m happy back at work. He’s happy either way.
We’ve got that other new chapter approaching in September, anyway. Full time school. Proper school. My little baby is growing up and becoming a Boy. At the end of the day, that‘s the chapter that’s going to mean the most to him. That’s the chapter that’s truly going to shape his life – not my new chapter. I refuse to feel guilty about mine, because I’m going to focus on his with him. That’s definitely the most important thing.