After two weeks paternity of what I now genuinely consider the happiest time of my life, the time had come to return to work.
I felt I left our house in good shape. We were getting on top of the washing. It was relatively tidy and perhaps most importantly, Daniel had transitioned into our family routine brilliantly. Shout out to all those new born’s sleeping 16-hours a day. I run a tight ship in Daddoo towers (well, my wife does, but I make a great sidekick)
The concerns as always are the loss of the extra pair of hands I can provide. In our house I am what they would call in TV-land a ‘runner’. Staying nimble on my toes, fetching and handing Rachel things when needed so she can do what’s needed. Keeping a new born happy is a never-ending challenge and Ayla clearly wants to excitedly squeeze her baby brother in a Lenny of Mice and Men kind of way. Having two children is a tricky balancing act of sharing your attention equally. Avoiding ignoring one while still wanting to protect the smaller, more fragile one.
As much as a pain as it is dragging yourself out of bed and away from your new family, I couldn’t imagine how Rachel was feeling. My limited breast feeding/waking up/staying awake abilities meant Rachel was up every hour while our boy cluster fed. I was either in too deep a sleep to notice or struggled to keep my eyes open when I did. The return to work allowed me to feel less guilty about going to, and staying, asleep. I now had the “I’ve got work in the morning” excuse to use, which admittedly is terrible to use.
As they say, a change is as good as a rest and the return to work provided welcome rest bite from the house of screaming kids.
Seriously though, it pains me to leave the kids on a morning. Also, my wife who wakes tired from a night of cluster feeding and the day ahead must seem a daunting prospect. I feel so proud of my family, from my wife who continues to persevere through breast feeding, sleep deprivation and the new world of mothering multiple children under 3 and still doing a brilliant job. To our daughter, who continues to be loving toward her baby brother despite no longer being the baby and perhaps getting a little less attention than accustomed to. Finally, to our son who despite a tongue tie (more about that next week), feeding troubles and seemingly constant wind is luckily a placid, mild mannered chap the vast majority of the time.
The feeling of having my smiling daughter run toward me when I walk in the door certainly makes the return to work all worth it.