A simple observation and hey I’m lucky I’m only working part time.
Today I had to leave work early for the second day in a row because Lizzy had a pead appointment. As I was walking to Lizzie’s classroom a thought popped in my head “working and looking after a kid with a medical condition is bloody hard work”. Turning off your work brain and turning on your carer brain (not mum brain) at short notice happens all the time. I’m not whining we have it good compared to many but it’s hard work so here’s a little list of what I think sux about trying to balance things.
My observations of our gig and others around me.
Dropping off Lizzy at school and she has had a bad night and just feeling tense and stressed as you drive away hoping she is going to be okay for the day.
Getting to work and getting into the swing of things and then getting that phone call that Lizzy needs picking up. Having to drop everything and sometimes for me that’s having to tell students sorry guys session is over I’m out of here.
I’m really organised at work because I have to be so if I take time off with Lizzy I’m ahead of the game. I can work from home if needed but you still feel shit because you can’t give fully to Lizzy or to work on those days.
Appointments yep like I said earlier with the pead. Well we have a few appointments for neuros, peads, OT, physio (again I know that others have a lot more) currently one appointment includes flying to another state cause that’s what you do isn’t it. Trying to fit these in around your work and always always having to readjust or say no to things work related because of this or that appointment.
(I will do anything for my girl but you all now how consuming it gets sometimes)
I’m really good now at boxing things up in my head and flipping from work brain to carer brain to mum brain. I like a good challenge but rocking in the corner would ensue if I didn’t box things up. And some days the boxes fall apart and their contents explode everywhere lol.
Getting home and putting your feet up bahahaha, what’s that yeah maybe at 9:30-10:00 at night. I think that’s part of the reason I stay up so late just to try and get a little bit of me time.
Catching up with people well I try too but between work and appointments it’s a 4-6 week exercise in settling a date and then when you get to the date something fucks up and you start all over again. You wonder why we make like minded friends on social media I think this explains it.
Money well that’s why we are working most of the time but depending on what kind of job you have eg casual – part time. If you don’t work you don’t get payed and then it’s a race to try and get on top of bills after a break or you use up all your sick leave and annual leave on caring for kids. Hmmm a relaxing holiday gone because you can’t bloody afford it or you don’t have any leave left.
We have more than one child and we want to make sure she can thrive and excel and be emotionally supported but after finishing work, meltdowns , getting tea ready, cleaning (where has my bloody cleaning fairy gone and what monster created the mess in my house within a day of cleaning it, if I find him he’s dead) organising for the next day, being on seizure watch or dealing with seizures the sibling misses out and all we really want to do is eat a full bar of chocolate or drink and just be comfortably numb but nope we emotionally support both our kids.
Mental health well mine went along time ago but you want to hope you have a boss that understands how freaking stressful this gig is and if you don’t have a good boss the anxiety that comes with that just piles on top of all the other things.
You work to pay for therapies or a good school which means that even though you earn good money it’s all gone.
Okay some of us work because we love what we do and it gives us another identity but the balance it’s just a massive juggling act like any mother working but our juggling includes knives and chainsaws. Roll up roll up juggling carer/mum/wife/employee/researcher/doctor/nurse/psychologist/therapist….
I’m not going to tell you the full list of what is in my head today because I will have to get the librarian to pull the box out and find the book required but I think she will be looking for an encyclopaedia today.
Just a few things that have been bugging me that I needed to get off my chest. I hope for anyone who does read this who is working that I know that it’s not an easy gig and also I don’t want to scare people who are thinking about returning to work but honesty is a good thing right.
Working mums (and dads) what are the things that frustrate, upset or stress you out.