Well it happened, I returned to work last week at the law firm after a year of maternity leave. I guess I knew all along that this day would come, but I didn’t think it would be as difficult and as emotionally challenging as it has been.
I was chatting with my best girlfriend today and after telling her what a hell of a week I had, she told me that I should totally blog about it… ya, I guess I should. The thought of blogging lately seems so unachievable as I try to juggle home and work but, as Kennedy naps and Madison is watching a movie, the time is now.
Mother’s Day marked my last day of maternity leave. It ended on such a high note after morning of brekky at home, lunch at Quail’s Gate (which was to DIE FOR BTW). Chase doesn’t know it yet but I booked us an anniversary reservation for August because I need to experience the restaurant again as soon as possible! I had Bubbly to start from Blue Mountain Winery in OK Falls – YUM, followed by the Farm Crest Chicken for lunch which had a crispy, seasoned skin and to finish was an OH.SO.DELICIOUS. Lemon Tart with a Lavender Sorbet – like shut the front door it was so good I could have out right licked the plate!
The evening ended with a family dinner at my sister in laws. I was feeling so peaceful and motivated to start the morning off bright and early and get all dressed up and ready to kill it the next morning. I set my alarm for 5:30 AM so I would have tons of time to get all snazzed up for work the next morning and leave the house with the kiddos at 7:30 AM. Well…. I woke up at 7:15 AM (I must have hit snooze) and yelled “HOLY $@%!” You can guess…
So much for getting ready. I put a blazer on over my pajama shirt, threw on some black slacks and brushed my teeth. Fluffed my Mother’s Day hair up (which was greasy as all hell) and asked Chase (who had Monday off) to help with the kids. Thankfully I had prepared all of the kids meals the night before. I overheard Chase at one point telling Madison to give me a moment so I could get ready. I think he probably feared for all of their lives as I ripped around here like a bat outta hell!
I flew out of this house in the worst mood EVER! I forgot to eat my brekkie or grab lunch for myself. I wore these cute pumps but they weren’t practical to walk downtown on my lunch break to grab lunch so I didn’t eat at all. I stayed and worked through lunch on setting up my work computer and completing my ‘I’m back at work’ paperwork. BAD IDEA – the headache set in… Daycare called at around 2 to say that Kennedy wasn’t napping very long and Chase had to go get her. I began to feel extremely overwhelmed and like I was forcing it. I cried.
That evening, I cried even more. My neighbour knew I was having a terrible day and had dropped of a bottle of wine with Chase for me. Little did she know, I would later be asking her for contact solution at 8 PM and confessing my doubts while she hugged me as I cried uncontrollably. Poor Emily (and thank you) – she doesn’t know me all that well, but good enough. I felt terrible but I could not control this overwhelming feeling that this was the wrong choice. I went to bed that evening defeated. So exhausted, wondering how the hell I managed this long with keeping a house AND blogging 4 years ago until now.
Well, 2 AM Tuesday morning rolled around and Kennedy woke me up crying. I tried to open my eyes but they were closed shut – PINK EYE. Are you kidding me?! Let’s throw in the towel right now lol. I cleaned up my eyes, grabbed drops from the cupboard and hoped to hell that it would magically clear up by the time my alarm went off. Wishful thinking… by then all of my fake eyelashes have ripped out and I look like I have been up crying all night (I guess I had been). I HAD to go to work, so I did. Sanitizing every five minutes so no one at the office would get it. Kennedy made it until about 3 PM that day but she was SO tired and screamed all through dinner. She was in bed for the night by 5:30 PM. As the kids adjusted to our new schedule, I found that they were up once or twice a night. Which sucked for me!
By Wednesday I was still feeling overwhelmed. The lunches, cooking, cleaning, dishes… kids and WORK – I found being a homemaker much easier than juggling these two lives. I looked rough. Pink eye- bloodshot eyes. I couldn’t wear any makeup and just my glasses for a week. I joked with my girlfriend that people must have been like ‘OH jeez (sour looking face)… what’s up with her?!’ LOL. By evening, I put the kids down and crawled straight into bed for the night at 7 PM with my makeup and work clothes on. I was DONE.
Thursdays are my day off so that was nice. I could breath. I could think. I knew it wasn’t the job itself. I love working at this firm and it’s been the best firm I’ve ever worked at. Everyone is so nice and they were all being so understanding as I tried to pull myself together this week. Flowers, treats, lunches, you name it.
By Friday morning I was feeling alive again. It was jean day so I rocked it and by 4:30 I stopped by Beaumont Winery to buy myself some bubbly to celebrate the fact that I had made it through my first week. I celebrated a little too much that night – hehe.
We enjoyed a busy but awesome weekend. We participated in the Walk For MS downtown at Stuart Park. We walked in memory of my Mom who passed in 2009 and my sister who has been affected by the disease. Our team name was ‘Hillbilly Deluxe’. I had no camo, so I rocked a beer hat – haha.
As I entered week two of work I tried to be positive – ‘I’ve got this!’
I woke up Monday morning with………. double PINK EYE! Seriously?! I had sanitized and washed the entire house three times over. Can I not catch a break?! I skipped the morning at work and went straight to the doctor. I was over this! Turned out that I had a sinus infection and not pink eye. Over $75 in prescriptions and a new attitude, I was able to make it through week two with better looking eyes.
Needless to say, my return to work as definitely NOT as I had planned. I’m such a type A control freak, so it was super annoying that I couldn’t control what was going on around me (the joys of parenting lol). I’m still feeling very overwhelmed with juggling my work and home life (and finding ‘me’ time).
When I returned to work the first time I didn’t even look back (not to say that I didn’t miss Madison) but I was eager to get back into the work force. This time, I went back too soon and I should have pushed it until Kennedy was well over a year and a bit.
I guess only time till tell.
Credits – First MS Walk Photo courtesy of KelownaNow