I haven’t written a blog post, or even a thought for a long time… thank you very much school holidays! Who invented school holidays anyway – children should only have 4 weeks off like the majority of the rest of us!
A lot has happened to us in the past few months, we took the boys on their first holiday abroad, the boys moved up to the next school year (Year 1 AND Year 3!) and we got an Au Pair who moved in who is helping us around the house and helping us to get some of our sanity back! It hasn’t been an easy decision to be honest however so far so good. We prepared ourselves and the boys for the changes that would take place and to give them credit (despite a few little set backs), all has been well
Our decision was one made when my family were recently visiting from Australia. We noticed that with a little extra help, we could still continue to have our work lives as well as our home life and keep a happy balance. My mum was the one who suggested it, furthest from the person I thought would suggest it however she made a very good point “you need help!”
We aren’t in a position where we have the benefit of family living close by, we do have our amazing friends however they can only help so much and are not next door! We decided the hardest parts of our days was the evening pick up at 6pm. Like most places, we have a 6pm curfew to get the boys from “After School Club” meaning one of us needed to leave work half an hour to an hour early each day to get them otherwise running the risk of hitting traffic and getting hit with a fine.
Although the “After School” club provided an amazing opportunity to build relationships and bond with other children, we did feel that our boys in particular needed more specific one on one time and someone to dedicate time to helping them manage their behaviour, emotions and academia
The “After School” team were/are amazing and we were gutted to remove them but we felt the boys needed to have more time in their own home. We wanted them to be surrounded with their own toys, their own comforts, our dogs and be supported to do homework and play while in their own surroundings. We were giving up the opportunity for them to socialise and build relationships after school but we feel we were going to give them the opportunity to develop independent play and improve their academics with the au pair.
Week 4 and the plan is working (sort of), we are both working properly again and I feel like I am making progress with the business again without the constant need to leave and pick up the children and jeapordise our careers. The boys are learning German, they are doing homework after school and they are participating well in their after school activities
I, however, have this empty feeling inside… I miss them. I miss seeing their smiling faces (or grumpy faces) when they clock me in the school yard when we pick them up from the school, I miss our chats in the car on the way home, I miss hearing about their day while it is fresh in their mind, I miss hearing about the exploits (both good and bad) from the teachers and the minders, I miss walking along the beach on the way home with them, I miss our after school football sessions… I miss them completely…
Maybe this is the normal working parent feeling that every parent feels? I feel I am missing out on their life… #guiltyworkingparent
What can we do though? We need to work, we need to make money to keep the lifestyle we want to create for ourselves and our boys and to be honest, we need our careers to keep our sanity! We need a balance… it’s a work in progress
Would love to hear from others how they manage the working parent guilt!