Mummy-Guilt Slaps Me In The Face…
A few weeks ago I was hit with my first dose of mummy-guilt. Actually, I think I was hit with it as soon as Buzz was born, I just know what it’s referred to as now. A teacher at drama school once told me of her own experiences of motherhood, and said, ‘You feel guilty from the moment your child is born, and that feeling never leaves you’. I’m now starting to understand what she meant.
Like many mums, I’ve had to make the difficult decision about going back to work… although, even as I write that, I find myself asking, ‘Did I ever actually stop working?’ I wouldn’t call mummyhood a walk in the park – it’s flipping tough. So perhaps I should rephrase that and say I needed to make a hard decision about going back to what I get paid to do (rather than voluntarily getting pooped and puked on daily just for fun). And that for me, is writing. Books really don’t write themselves, so without time spent at my computer there’s no way I’d make my approaching deadlines. But what to do about Buzz, I wondered. I knew I’d be able to do some writing in the evenings when he’s in bed, but seeing as his daytime naps only last 30minutes each time, I needed to come up with another plan of action. A plan involving Tom’s wonderful mum!
Once we’d come up with the idea for Nanny Fletcher to look after Buzz two/three days a week I initially felt relieved that I’d be able to meet my deadlines. But, once that feeling subsided (and I received a couple of work based emails) reality hit and I was left feeling upset, worried and guilty. Upset that I wouldn’t be spending every waking minute with my little boy now that he’s started laughing and giggling (he’s so much more fun than when he was a screaming newborn), worried that I was doing the right thing about going back to work (I call it work – I’m at home in my PJs, living in my imagination), and then guilty that Buzz wouldn’t be with his mummy. I felt like I was failing him in a way. Like I’d brought him into this world and was then abandoning him for a few days a week… Needless to say I had a good cry and text a few mummy friends of mine who I know have been in the same situation. That’s when I realised it’s okay to be apart for your baby and get on with doing things that pay the bills AND MAKE YOU HAPPY – it’s even okay to feel like you NEED time away from your baby (although, I’m not quite there yet).
Life is about making situations work so that everyone involved is happy and content. It’s also important to look at the positives in any given scenario – so, in my case, I have an amazing baby AND an awesome job which gives me the flexibility to be around said amazing baby. I know Buzz is with someone who loves him a huge amount and who I trust. I also know that I’m going to thoroughly enjoy writing over the next few months and that all the new emotions and feelings I’ve experienced in the past few months will undoubtedly end up inspiring some of what I’m writing.
This week was the first official week of our new set up and I can safely say that the best bit of my day is seeing the look on Buzz’s face when I walk back into the room after a few hours in my office. It’s honestly priceless and fills me with unless amounts of love. It’s wonderful to know that he’s thrilled to have me back, but that my absence didn’t make him miserable – he’s VERY well behaved for his nanny!
Also this week…
· Buzz has moved into his own room. Waaaaaaaah! Sad times. He’s six months now and getting too big for his crib – so the move made sense. It’s odd not having him in with us at nighttime, but we wander in several times a night to check he’s okay AND have his monitor on full volume… even though he’s only next door.
· Rather excitedly, Buzz has learnt to roll over! The start of this was when we went into his room one night and saw him sleeping on his side. I total freaked out after having it drummed into us early on that he HAD to sleep on his back. The next day, while playing on his mat, he rolled onto his side and then carried on going. He’s got quicker and quicker at it, too. It’s amazing to watch and I haven’t got bored of whooping every time he does it yet.
Right, once again I’m off to lock myself away in my office and write Christmas With Billy and Me (it’s almost finished) and make some more vlogs for YouTube – I’m blooming loving my vlogging experience.
Big love to you all!