I’m going back to work today. I feel like I’ve written variations of this entry a million times on this blog. There was NikkiZ’s maternity leave, then the first day back after my layoff, and now AndyZ’s token, “I’ll miss you, kid!” entry. So, here it goes:
I’ll miss you, kid.
This time is a bit different. This is my third bought of being a SAHM in the last three years and I can tell you this honestly and openly: I’m a crappy SAHM. I lose my patience easily, I depend on the television as a babysitter too much, I get stressed out that no one ever notices how much I actually do during the day, and I have severe anxiety over not contributing to our financial well-being.
And also? Being a SAHM is the hardest job – physically and emotionally – that I’ve ever had. I am more worn out at the end of a day alone with the kids than I’ll ever be after a day at the desk. Emotionally? It is really taxing because I feel guilty if I’m not playing enough, or teaching enough, or loving enough. But if I try to do all of those things enough? I lose my patience and end up yelling…ENOUGH. And then the guilt rolls back in.
I am happy to go back to a job working with someone who actually acknowledges work I do. I mean, damn those toddlers and their inability to actually appreciate my labor over laundry and meals! And the infants? Can I not get a “Thank You” after a diaper change once in awhile? No – there is definitely an advantage to an office where a boss (if you have a good one) notices the work you do. You can actually go to bed feeling fulfilled and appreciated, instead of RUN OVER BY A DAMN SEMI.
So, while I’m going to truly miss my kids and I’ve already cried several times over the thought of leaving them a daycare today, I’m glad to be going back to work. I am not cut out for being a SAHM and I’ll always put those of you that do it on a high pedestal of tolerance and patience that I’ll always aspire to have. I don’t know how you do it without killing your kids or your spouse, but I’ll always be a little jealous that I couldn’t do it and love it. And a whole lot of guilty.
I’ll cry a bit today because I just love my kids that much. That even though I’m miserable a lot of the time, and worn out, tired, depressed and anxious – I’ll still miss being with them all day. I’ll miss taking LilZ to and from school, I’ll miss painting with NikkiZ, and I’ll miss cuddling with AndyZ. But I know for a fact I’m a better Mom when I’m not home all day. I have always done more good with those 3-4 hours at night than I could ever do with an extra 9 hours during the day. I cherish more and I yell less.
But I’ll still miss those little life-suckers.