This is it. My first day of work is tomorrow. Even though I’m only going in for a few hours, and my first full day isn’t until next Monday, it’s the end of a mini-era in our household.
I think Sophie is starting to feel the pain. After she woke up cranky from her nap a little while ago, she wanted me to sit next to her. This need for proximity was short-lived, about 2 minutes, before she started crying for her Papa, but at least I experienced it for a few gratifying moments. Her Papa was the favorite again as soon as I started to explain to her that I was returning to work and that we’d be seeing less of each other. I should have kept my mouth shut.
Chloe, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to care whether or not she sees less of me. My mom asked her today if she was sad that I was returning to work. Her response was typical Chloe (and, I can only hope, typical almost 7-year old): “It’s good. This way she’ll have more money to buy me stuff.” Lovely. It’s nice to know we’re instilling such worthy morals in our oldest daughter.
I’m anxious, a little excited, more than a little bit sad and already nostalgic for the last 8 months. I keep telling myself that it will be great to be among adults again on a daily basis. That my husband and I are going to do our best to carve out quality time as a family, and not let work flood the precious hours a week that we have together.
The thing is, we’ve used this refrain before – can we make it happen this time? It will take a lot of concerted effort and a lot of discipline. But we really don’t have a choice. We will never be able to recapture the girls’ childhoods. And if we want to continue to create lasting memories, like the hundreds we’ve enjoyed during my time at home, then it’s imperative that work, while important and hopefully fulfilling, takes a back seat to living our lives.
To be continued…