• Back at Work

    Date: 2014.01.07 | Category: Baby, Family, Home, Life, Me, Norah, Work | Tags:

    Although I’ve been working from home for a while now, yesterday was the first official day that I returned to the office. This meant it was also the first day that Norah went to daycare, or, as we like to call it, school.

    Let me back up and tell you about the first time I dropped Sarah off at daycare. It was bad for all kinds of reasons.

    1. Sarah was my first, precious baby and in my mind not a soul could care for her like I could, therefore no one else was worthy to care for her.
    2. Sarah refused to take a bottle, so I feared my baby would starve herself.
    3. I had post partum depression and anxiety, one of the symptoms of which made me want to hold my baby in a dark room and not let anyone touch her but me.
    4. I didn’t know anyone at the daycare, so I was leaving my baby with strangers.
    5. The baby teacher at the time was good and capable, but not very friendly and I wanted someone who would reassure me. The office staff did, but they weren’t the ones with my baby all day.

    And so I cried a lot when we took Sarah to daycare and my depression deepened into full on crazy. This lasted for several months and, although Sarah blossomed at daycare and eventually caved to taking bottles, I wasn’t well for a long time.

    Flash forward to now, or, Sunday really. The night before I was a big, giant, anxious mess. I kept thinking back to how things were with Sarah. And like Sarah, Norah hates bottles. But I reassured myself because I know all the teachers and staff now (and the teachers are much friendlier this time around). And, so far, the PPD has stayed at bay. I was trying to make sure we had all the things ready for Sarah and Norah to go to school (thankfully they are both in the same place). Norah must have been picking up on my anxiety, because she refused to go to sleep and screamed her head off for two hours until 11pm. As a consequence, both of us were getting more and more worked up. The next morning Mark and I were so busy hustling to get it all together that I didn’t dwell much on the whole dropping Norah off part.

    Side note: You should just SEE how much stuff we were carrying. We seriously looked like we were preparing to vacation for a week.

    We got there and took Sarah to her room first. We don’t have trouble with dropping her off at all anymore. She has an amazing teacher and loves going to learn with her and spend time with her friends.

    Then it came time to drop Norah off. I did so well with the emotions until I walked in that baby room, then I immediately started tearing up. The thought of being away from my baby for the most of the day, combined with the guilt that motherhood inherently brings with it anytime we think we might greatly upset our kids, combined with the thought of Norah not taking bottles, starting getting to me. I held it together until I got into my car, then I had a good cry and got all that anxiety and emotion out of my system. After that, I pulled it together and went into work.

    And guess what? Everything was just fine. My coworkers welcomed me back with open arms and chocolate. I called and checked on Norah throughout the day and no one at the daycare made me feel even remotely bad about that. She did refuse her first bottle, but took her second and part of her third (girl doesn’t want to miss a meal). And yes, she fussed and had to be rocked asleep in the office for a while, but I don’t think any of those ladies minded rocking a sleeping baby. Overall, it was a bit emotional, but a good first day back. I even got to listen to one of my audio books while I worked and felt like a little piece of myself was coming really and truly back.

    Today is day two and I was feeling much more confident about things… that is until Sarah woke up with a fever that meant she couldn’t go to school. All our carefully laid plans of Mark dropping the girls off quickly got scrapped. He volunteered to stay home with Sarah while I took Norah on to school – and while that worked, it also mean that I was 45 minutes late to work on my second day back. I was worried about drop off again, but guess what, it was just fine! Norah’s teacher embraced her and made me feel better immediately. I walked out of there shedding no tears, and when I called to check on her mid-day, she had taken her bottle and was napping.

    So now we¬† are embracing the normal, and I’m happy to say that it’s not nearly as bad as I thought it would be.