Back To Work

I started back to work this week which means Aiden started at his new school (aka daycare).  I went into this transition very much like I went into parenting – extremely unprepared.  If you had asked me the days leading up to my first day back, I would have admitted to some anxiety at the idea of dropping off Aiden with people that are essentially strangers after three months of not being away from him but for a few hours at a time.  But I also would have said that I feel like it’s important that I go back to work so that I can maintain my sanity.  After all, it’s more about quality than quantity, right?

Well that’s all fine and good, but here are some of the realities from the week:

1. No matter how sure you are that you’re doing the right thing and how many times you tell yourself not to cry, your emotions can still get the best of you.  Even Dan got a little choked up as we were passing him off.  The good news is that they waited until we got teary-eyed to take the family photo.

Family at Daycare

2.  There’s a lot to be said for proximity.  It only took one day to realize that all things created equal I’d be a lot happier if Aiden was in a daycare closer to my work.  Unfortunately I quickly found out that all the daycares around my office in Atlanta have 1-2 year waiting lists.  We’re now on all of them.

3. On a related note, if see a woman tearing down the road like a bat out of hell, it’s probably just best to get out of her way.  She might on her way to pickup her baby.  I can’t get there to pick him up fast enough.

4. Being away from Aiden makes me extremely tense like nothing ever has.  I have to concentrate on staying calm and relaxed, and a slow start to work made this so much worse.  I’m hoping this gets better soon.

5.  Pumping at work is a pain and there are people that are offended by pump parts being visible in the work place.

6.  Aiden is physically strong and crazy stubborn and he made sure his Mrs. Phi Phiteachers knew it this week.  I told Mrs. Phi Phi that we sleep him on his stomach at home and that he will likely not nap on his back.  After experiencing some of his stiffness, she placed him on his back in his crib and she was amazed that he managed to turn from his back to his stomach – generally a 6 month milestone.  Since he’s proved he can turn himself over, she’s now allowed to lay him down on him stomach.  She couldn’t believe his tenacity and thinks he’ll be walking by 8 months….her words not mine.

7.  Less is more.  Working 30 hours a week in 4 days (I get Fridays off) is an awesome schedule and I’ll probably never go back to full time.  Also, since my mom offered to watch Aiden on Mondays, he’ll only go to daycare 3 days a week.  Yay!

8.  This transition is far harder on the mom than it is on the baby.  Aiden has been eating well, is an absolute joy in the afternoon, and is still sleeping like a champ at night.  To me he seems relatively unfazed by the change.  This makes me feel a lot more comfortable with the place and people we chose to keep him.

9.  Having a child puts the importance of work into perspective.  I’m happy to have a job, and I’m glad that I’ll still get to use my brain in this capacity, but it’s just a job.

10.  Absence really does make the heart grow fonder.  I love my little man and am thankful for every moment we spend together.

Btw, for those interested, I did not go back to teaching which is what I did last year, but to software engineering which is what I did the five years before that.  The list of reasons is long:  less hours, more flexibility, no grading or work of any kind on nights and weekends, less stress, better pay…I could go on and on.  Despite knowing that I made the right decision for me at this time, I’m surprised by how sad I feel about not teaching.  I will miss it.


3 Responses to “Back To Work”

  1. kathy truhn Says:

    I anxiously await Sunday nights so that I might “catch up” on all the things I miss with you, Dan and Aiden. You write with such a beautiful flare that your stories read like a long lost novel that I am thoroughly enjoying and can hardly wait to continue reading.. I read your words and I am always sorry when I am finished. (Tell me more!) It is obvious to anyone who knows you that you are a wonderful mother. Makes me wish I could turn back the clock and start over with my life and mothering skills. Both of my children turned out to be wonderful people with reallly good parenting skills but oh how I wish I could take some of the credit for that. Enjoy these moments, they are all too fleeting. I wish you all as much love as a mother can share…and you know that is a lot!!! Until next Sunday….

  2. Natalie Says:

    Awww, that was great! You have a wonderful way with words! I remember when I went back to work when Katie was 3 months old like it was yesterday! Loved the place, knew she was fine but Larry & I just sat in the car and boohoo’d! It gets easier!

  3. Tyler Thigpen Says:

    And you’re missed in the schools! But I know you’re probably enjoying your new work on a number of levels. Regardless, MC Baby!

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