Sunday, 14 April 2013
I cannot believe how much time has passed since I was last here, posting about a costume I made. Looking back, I am amazed that I actually had time to make that fox costume, let alone blog about it. In the past 12 months things have changed rather dramatically in our house; it's be turned upside down and inside out.
Almost 12 months ago I returned to work 4 days a week. To paid work, outside the house, with other adults, in a big tall building with computers and responsibilities. The decision to go back to work was difficult to say the least. What would happen our family - who would care for the little people, how would they be cared for, who would collect them, who would clean the house, walk the dog, do the shopping, buy the wine and generally keep things a float?
I believe that for most women returning to paid work outside the home the decision is not an easy one. For some women its about their career and striving for greatness in their chosen field and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. For many women its about achieving greater economic security and about contributing to the costs of running a home and a family. And for some women, they have no choice - without work they would not be able to feed their families.
I guess our decision was an economic one mixed with my desire to be back and a part of the working world that I did miss. I had been in the very privileged position of being able to stay out of the paid workforce for over 6 years. During that time I was able to add to the family income a tiny bit through grandy and baa but after losing Alice and then having Louis, this little business was put on hold.
Living on one wage for 6 years was at times difficult but we managed to pay a mortgage and live pretty nicely at the Blue House near the beach. But a move to inner city Melbourne meant that our dollars did not stretch as far anymore. I am not entering into that ridiculous debate about working mothers vs stay at home mothers - for the most part I think that debate is whipped up by people who love to see women feel they have to defend their positions. I have done both. Both are hard. There is resultant mother guilt in both. I think we should support each other - so enough on that.
So I went back. To the same organisation that I used to work for. Going back was a huge adjustment to say the least. Like I mentioned here it is a balance that involves precision timing and forward planning. It was a big adjustment for the family. And for me. I went back to an entry level position after leaving a senior position. And I can admit that some days my ego takes a beating. I smile and get on with my job but spend a lot of time thinking about how I could run this show...
In a perfect world we would have an extended family in our street looking after our children. But its not the case so Stella spends a great deal of time in before and after school care and day care for Louis. There are good bits and bad bits but thankfully, mostly good bits about the care we have for the children. They genuinely enjoy it and that makes it all so much easier. The fact that we live 200mtrs from school and 900mts from my tram stop at the day care front door is a huge bonus.
Like a lot of aspects of a adults life, the return to work has been good and bad all at the same time. Of course there are contradictions and inconsistencies like feelings of guilt about cooking popcorn for dinner and then days filled with great relief that I don't have to be there to battle to day time sleep circus.
When it comes to parenting and life in general, I believe that you have to do what you have to do to make it work.
*Every day I work I take a photo of my watch at the time I am heading home. You can follow me on Instragram 'grandyandbaa'