My life these days is about lists and a countdown. A countdown to returning to work full time outside the home. A countdown that makes tears come to my eyes, is filled with guilt and evokes a huge sigh from me. A countdown that I never thought I would dread. I never have seen myself as a stay at home mom. I LOVE work, I LOVE my job, my co-workers and at times over the years, I have likely loved it a bit too much. I don't think I realized how much I would LOVE LOVE LOVE being a mom. Work feels like an interruption in our plan but I have to return to work; our lives and our bank account will not survive too long without it. As the days wind down, I find myself selfishly wanting to freeze time, to spend every minute with G & R and to not have the nights turn into a new day where I am closer to leaving them.
And at the same time, I am in need of a break, a change. Not that work will be a break but it will be a different activity where I use different parts of me.
I broke this week. It was the cumulation of everything, of working on the girls baby books and realizing all we went through, reliving some of it all and having sadness that I won't be in the baby stage again. It's mixed emotions of leaving them during the day, for 5 whole days every week and of trying to figure out how am I going to continue to breastfeed, work, pump, make sure everyone has food and clean clothes and all the other tasks that life has for us. I'm slowly realizing that there are some things that are going to have to go on the backburner- my trips to the gym, computer time, and maybe even the odd shower or two :) And what if someone gets sick.....that doesn't fit in my schedule so I don't know how we will cope with that!
It's the realization that we live far from family and far from helping hands. Any hands I get to help, I'll have to find them, interview them, trust them and then leave them alone with my babies. I am sure the first time or two I will worry nonstop that they will take my beautiful girls. Rational me tells me to relax and that everyone does this and it will be fine. The mommy in me has her heart breaking with the thought of this.
So we have a plan. I am going to work full time, my husband is going to work full time. I'll do days at work, he'll do evenings and weekends. That equation leads to pretty near no family time, zero sleep in time and gratitude that the grocery stores are open 24 hours a day so we can shop when life permits. I am happy that the girls are going to be with one of their parents for 99% of the time. And the days when we can't be with them, we are just going to have to learn a new way of doing things. I just wish it didn't hurt my heart so much to think of it!
As for me and the break, not sure how I am going to build that in but we are committed to finding a way. I love love my girlies and I need a small break to be the best mommy I can be. Just a few hours without thinking of who needs to be fed when, of breastfeeding and changing two 11.5 month olds. It has become an olympic workout to breastfeed the two of them at once or attempt to change diapers. There seems to be no element of distraction powerful enough to engage them.
But tonight, we sleep and tomorrow we tackle the list again! Hopefully with crossing off a few accomplishments each day, the anxiety will get less and everything will fall into place.