That's right. Back to work. This is the major change for our family. And it is a major change. I have been a stay at home parent with Preston since he was born. A month before he was born even, since that's when I started my maternity leave. So for us me going back to work is a huge change. One that we are now dealing with.
As I've mentioned before (a few times, I'm sure!), my sister was having a baby. Well now has had that baby. You know my nephew! Oh yeah, he's my sister's son too. In having a baby she has now entered maternity leave. That fabulous three month period where she gets paid to stay home and cuddle her new baby. Ahhh, bliss!
That maternity leave means that my sister's work position is suddenly available. I'm sure that I haven't mentioned it before but when I went on maternity leave and then later quit, my sister is who I trained to be my replacement. Nothing like an employee who finds a replacement for herself and then fills her position when she quits, without being asked to do so. It only seems fitting that with my sister on maternity leave I step up to help out.
Granted her position and responsibilities are different now. I had to be taught and trained to do it all, and I have been. We started about two weeks before her due date. A day here, a night there. Plus there are the step by step directions that my sister left me. I am set.
Even better is how part time this is. I'm given the opportunity for the next three months to make some extra money. Extra money that can go in savings, cover unexpected expenses, and help pay for our upcoming vacation. But even better to me is that I know that this will only last for the next three months. It's not permanent. I won't have to worry about leaving work hanging when I'm done. I know that in three months I will be back at home with Preston full time, which is where I want to be.
But that's not all. It gets even better. I'm really only working two days a week. Mondays and Tuesdays. On Friday my Dad brings my work home with him (did I mention it's a family business?) and I accomplish about one-third of my work from the comforts of my own home. Making it even less time that I'm away from Preston.
That's the hardest part of this whole thing. Preston. I've always been home. Never missed a thing. I've fully enjoyed the luxury that is being a stay at home Mom. And never once stopped to regret my decision to be a stay at home parent. It's hard to leave him. Really hard. Even though it's only for a few hours and he's staying with my Mom. Yes, he just hangs out with Grandma while I'm at work. If my Mom hadn't been able to watch him, I wouldn't have even considered going back to work. I still hate leaving him. I hate knowing that I'm going to miss things. Being that he's now two and a half, I'm not missing huge events but still I'm missing a couple hours of Preston's day two days a week.
I've also noticed that it's harder to leave him when he's awake. My Mondays start early so he's still sleeping when I drop him off. Knowing that he's passed out and I really won't miss much while he's sleeping makes Monday drop offs much easier. Tuesdays I drop him off a little later and it's close enough to his usual wake-up time that he just wakes up for the day. I had a really hard time leaving him Tuesday morning. A really hard time.
The whole drive there I had to remind myself of the reasons that I'm doing this. That the economy is crap and the extra money, even the chance to earn extra money, is too good to turn down. That it's really only for three months. I can handle three months. It gives Preston a chance to really hang out with my Mom. My Mom will be watching Mason when Jessie goes back to work, so things will be a little different when we visit Grandma during the week. I think that this Grandma and Preston time will be good for both of them. Finally, that my sister deserves a real maternity leave. She takes on much of the responsibility at work and I think that if I hadn't stepped up to fill part of her position she would be receiving daily phone calls from the office with questions. What kind of a maternity leave would that be?
So for now, I am working. Kind of. It's so part time that it almost seems silly to call it work. A big change for our family. One that really gives me a whole new respect for all you working Moms out there.
Before I take off to get some sleep, I do have work tomorrow you know, I have to tell you what my fabulous husband did for me after my first day of work. I came home exhausted. That first day was longer than it will normally be because I was still kind of figuring things out. I was dreading that my house was trashed and I'd need to start cleaning up. Until I walked inside. Coming home to the sounds of a dishwasher running was pure heaven. My husband had unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher and picked up the living room. The two things at the top of my cleaning up to do list. I knew there was a reason I married that man!