Returning to work – the worries

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On Monday 9 June 2014 I will be returning to work.

I have a lot of questions:

  1. What will it be like to get on a tube train for the first time since April 2013?
  2. How will I get into the building as I can’t find my ID card and can’t remember who to ask for?
  3. Will I still be able to do my job?
  4. What is my job…?
  5. What if I can’t log onto the computer?
  6. What if my clients don’t take me seriously because I haven’t worked for 14 months?
  7. Will I have time to finish my work before I leave (an hour earlier than I used to…and then some) at 5.15?
  8. Will the baby miss me?
  9. Will my SAHD husband become the favoured parent?
  10. What will we eat?

I need a good slap, hundreds of people return from maternity leave every month and presumably they all manage.  We are in fact lucky in many ways that we have decided to try Jem staying at home with the Turk full time rather than having to juggle additional childcare.  Although this is difficult in some respects it seems to be the best financial answer in the short term.

In terms of the Turk taking on a full time parenting role, there is absolutely no reason why this can’t work, my worries about this are:

  • The Turk didn’t spend any time with Jem for the first 6 months of his life;
  • I can count on one hand the number of occasions the Turk has got up in the night to settle our son (which will now become his role…hopefully);
  • This morning Jem was choking on a deodorant lid  whilst sat next to the Turk in bed…he didn’t notice;
  • On two occasions after the Turk has put Jem into his high chair he “forgot” to strap him in and he fell out (…onto our tiled floor…the second time I caught him, the first I managed to lessen the impact but spilled a cup of tea over him in the process – no damage done but that’s not really the point);
  • The Turk thinks it’s acceptable to take the baby around the supermarket in the bottom of the shopping trolley, I don’t agree;
  • The Turk does NOT do routines;
  • A couple of weeks ago I found the baby up 2 flights of stairs in a room we keep building materials in whilst the Turk was looking after him as I got ready…

Our Turklish family is about to undergo a huge change, and mummy is really not very prepared for it.

It’s really important that I “let go” and allow father and son to develop their own bond and have confidence that they will cope and find their own level…

…but that will be hard.

Stair-gate, confession of an unprepared mummy

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Ahha, I know what the parents among you are going to think:

stairs + crawling baby = stairgate

Obviously!!!

Well, yes…but no.  You see we have 4 flights of stairs so stairgates are a bit of a contentious issue in our house.  Stairgates are expensive, and apparently you’re supposed to have them top and bottom of the stairs, that’s 8 gates, at £20 each minimum.  Hmmm…

8 gates x £20 + unpaid maternity leave + overrunning building work = never going to happen

Now I like shopping as much as the next person but stairgates just aren’t something I can get excited about buying, and given our current financial position the Turk nearly passed out when I suggested such an expense in Kiddiecare.  I’ve scoured eBay, Gumtree and Freecycle all to no avail.  However Jem is possibly the most inquisitive person I’ve ever met so something must be done.  At the top of the stairs to our bedroom I’ve cunningly constructed a barricade of handbags (something I can get excited about shopping for).  At the stairs down to our kitchen I’ve tried teaching him to go down the stairs as it’s only a few…this isn’t really working but he has started getting to the top of the stairs and screaming rather than simply plunging down them head first (this is in my eyes a success).

I couldn’t really understand the point of having a stairgate at the bottom of our main staircase, after all, he’s 10 months old therefore couldn’t possibly make it up high enough to create a danger.

Wrong.

Having removed all danger from our lounge and engineered a baby proof barricade to the fire I decided to nip upstairs to bring down a dry bib.  The nursery (home of the dry bibs) is up 2 flights of stairs, but no great distance, I’m speedy, however when I returned to the main stairs I was met with a dilemma…

The menace had climbed the stairs…

Not right up to the top where I could have grabbed him…

But around halfway up.

That’s fine surely?  I’ve seen him, I’m there, I’ll just run down and grab him.  Unfortunately my delightful son was so excited to see me as I moved towards him he expressed this but lifting his head up to smile at me and leaning back…and back…every step I got closer to him…EEK!

Before you call the Health Visitor, you can relax, I told you I was speedy and luckily I managed to run behind him and scoop him up before he overbalanced…phew.

Anyway, long story short, if you see any stairgates on offer let me know!