Thursday, December 3, 2009

Excuse me, but can I be you for awhile?

Last night I had this whole post written in my mind at 2AM, as I was nursing Tommy and crying. I was going to tell you how this is my last full month of maternity leave, and how I'm frustrated that I'm spending it with a thumb wound and how I spent two days bedridden with the flu. It involved the admission that I am scared, so scared, to return to work and that I don't think we can have any more children, simply because I cannot bear to go through this again. I was going to really tell you how as sad as it makes me that I have to go back to work, it makes my husband even sadder because he feels like he is failing as a husband. And I hate that he feels that way, oh, do I ever.

Today I'm still scared. I haven't been apart from Tommy for longer than half an hour since his sweet body first landed in my hands. How will I handle NINE HOURS a day, five days a week? I don't know, but I know there is a strength within me bigger than I can imagine. I know I can do it, simply because I have no choice. But I also know that I can keep hoping for the right part-time job or maybe for someone to just walk up to me and hand me a check for $20,000 and tell me to stay home for two more years, and it's probably okay to never let go of those hopes. I wish that I knew what it was like to not have to take a maternity leave, to just BE at home, but I know that there are many, MANY people who would wish to be in my position. Healthy children, a happy marriage, great health insurance, a steady job. The boys have a sitter who lives so very close to us, who is like family. Who calls to let us know when she finds boys' clothes on sale and calls to tell us she loves our Christmas card and who was one of the first people we called the morning after Tommy was born. Who I can TRUST with my children. Oh, I know I am blessed. And as a teacher, I know that the kids who have behavior problems are almost equally the children of parents who work and a parent who stays home, so I never fear that my children are somehow getting LESS because one of us cannot be with them all day long.

It's just.
067
I'm going to miss this face so much.

37 comments:

designHER Momma said...

It breaks my heart to read this post - as I've been in your shoes not too long ago.

I went back to work, with many of the same feelings you are having. Within 7 months, an amazing opportunity opened up for me to work from home.

I have faith that it will happen for you too.

Sharon - Mom Generations said...

Oh, Erin... I just want to cry for you. I remember when Janie was born in early November and my maternity leave was over right after Christmas vacation. I was actually HAPPY that I got sick with the flu and had to stay home an extra few days. But the inevitable was that I had to return to work. I feel through your words that I am living my life over again. I LOVED being home with Audrey for those precious weeks and Keith and Adam were with us ALL the time after school. It was winter and cold but I felt warmer than I ever had in my life. I know the feelings of Shane because Barry felt the same way (Barry was a teacher at the time and we taught at the same school). I wish I could say it was easy. It wasn't. But what I can tell you is that everything worked out just fine. My kids were so proud that I was a teacher... and once they were all in school, everything was just about perfect. We had the same vacations and days off and they had that sense that Mommy was doing something important. It takes time. It takes lots of tears. It is heart wrenching. It is awfully painful. I still get sad at the end of school vacations because of the FEELING of what I experienced. I am thinking of you and praying for you... knowing all full well how you feel. It is an overwhelming feeling of sadness...

Lynette said...

Erin, I will be praying for you. Praying for strength and peace, and most of all for you to be able to enjoy the remaining time of your leave.

Kristin said...

i love you. times a million.

Janine said...

This post brought tears to my eyes because I just went back to work last week after a very short 8 week maternity leave. Leaving my sweet baby boy each morning is SO HARD. All I want to do when I get home is snuggle him. Last night I sat on the couch and cried because I feel so overwhelmed. But, since he is the third child, I do know it will get better. It was just as hard the last two times for me, but it has not affected my older children at all. They are both happy, healthy, smart, and well-behaved. You are in my prayers.

pinkflipflops said...

((((hugs))))))

Cameron said...

Thinking of you, my new friend, and sending hugs!

keely said...

I love you. I want you to get your wishes, mama. A lot I want that.

Katie, Kevin and kids said...

Thinking of you Erin! Your post brought back so many emotions of my first days back to teaching after our son was born. I remember feeling so torn even though I knew he was in good hands (and that he would sleep the majority of the time I was away).I'll say a prayer for you that the transition goes smoothly and that perhaps some day you will have your wish to be home with your boys.

keli.h said...

oh how i hope you get your wish, erin. *hugs*

Kaycee said...

Oh my heart hurts for you. I completely understand your point of view, right down to the specifics like being a teacher and facing the return to work. My baby girl is 20 months old now, and it's still hard. I know you know that too since you have been through it before. Every break is lovely, but then I dread the end when I leave her again. I have no possibility of going part-time or changing jobs, but I really really hope you get your wish and something appears for you. Fingers and toes crossed, prayers sent.

Midwest Mommy said...

Can you job share? I know that isn't possible in the middle of the school year but at least next year? This sucks. I am so sorry.

Vanessa said...

Uck. (I think I made up that word). My heart ached to read this.
I'll pray somehow you'll be able to spend your days at home with your boys very soon.

--It's Your Movie-- said...

oh erin. i will be praying for you. this makes my heart sick. we are barely scrimping by, but i am thankful that we are barely scrimping by.

Sarah Viola said...

Oh Erin. This really sucks, and I'm sorry. I know how hard it is to go back.

fritzfacts said...

Oh hun, it just sucks. I am sorry you are feeling this way.

I hope that someone does walk up to you and give you that check, you deserve it.

~love said...

oh my soul.

okay, part-time job, $20,000 check, peace with the circumstances.....i'm praying for them all.

Cbellabell said...

I went through the same thing, but seeing how much fun mydaughter has in her daycare now is wonderful. Give yourself time.

Krista said...

Hugs! You can email me if you just need to vent about work or pumping or whatever. I understand.

Megan said...

Um, hi. I want to stop crying now. You so deserve to stumble upon a million dollars, birth another ten or so babies, and just stay home with them and enjoy. Hugs.

Mommy Mo said...

I so get this post. Sure, I am a SAHM now, but with my first, I was in the same situation you are facing now. I had NO CHOICE- I HAD to go back to work. And it sucked and I cried about it (a lot), and then I started back at work and although it took a long time to stop crying about it, I did eventually get used to it.

But I still thought about being with my baby and trying to find a way to make it work.

It took two years, a move to another city and a different job for the husband, but we finally did it.

Hang in there.

april said...

Awww, {{hugs}} friend. Win I win the lotto, I'm writing you that check. Promise.

anymommy said...

If I could send you that check, I would. You will do it because you are amazingly strong and your boys will be perfect, because you and their Dad are amazing. But, I can't imagine how hard it is. XO.

Elaine A. said...

Oh girl, my heart is breaking for you... I continue to pray that something else comes along that works perfectly for your family. Many hugs...

Anonymous said...

O Erin, my heart broke while reading your post because it took me back to my first day of leaving my son, and he was with my mom! No matter how much you trust the person they're with....it doesn't change the fact that they're not with momma! Prayers and hugs are being sent your way! And hopes that a check even bigger then 20,000 will fall into your hands soon, so that you can birth many more babies and have many more amazing birth stories to share with us here! I hope things get better, and know that on your first day back there will be lots of us thinking about you and praying for you:)
~Juli

Haley said...

I really feel for you here Erin.

It is so not fair for this to happen.

I hope that maybe in the future something will come up and you will have the chance to be at home with your little guys like you want.

Tina said...

I'm so sorry, Erin :(

I'll keep you in my prayers.

InTheFastLane said...

Yes Yes Yes. I know. And I still know. HUGS!!!

Adventures In Babywearing said...

Oh, this rips my heart out. I don't want you to have to think or worry about this anymore on your time still at home.

You are so amazing, though, you know that? You know in your heart what is best for your family. And it shows.

Steph

Rachel said...

Hi Erin, my name is Rachel. You don't know me, but I have followed your blog for a few months now. I find your posts very inspiring and often very funny:) I have a 3 year old daughter and 5 month old daughter. I went back to work at 6 weeks and know what you are going through. Hang in there and my thoughts are with you.

Mel @ A Box of Chocolates said...

I hear you and feel your pain through your words. You can do it!! I will keep you in my prayers. You never know when God may open up that other window. Hang in there.

~Mendie~ said...

You are such a strong person, I wish all of these things for you...don't ever quit hoping...that will help you thru the long days.

Hugs!

The Newlyweds said...

i feel ya, i think we both were dreading january so very much

Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

I remember feeling these same things in 2007 when I had to go back to work after having Jonathan. It was so hard even though, yes, we had a great sitter, a good job, insurance, etc. We are much luckier than other parents and yet it is still hard for me to go back to work each Monday morning because I love spending time with my child and helping him to grow.

I know you are a strong woman -- you had a child on your own -- literally! You can do this..even though you don't want to or feel you can't. If you need to do it and it is the best thing for your boys and your family...I know you can. I'll keep you in my prayers!

Shana said...

I am in the same boat. I was home for 5 years since my oldest was born but was forced to go back to teaching this Fall. I have a 5 and 2 year old. I feel really guilty that I was home for my oldest and only home with my youngest for 2 years.It breaks my heart as I know it does yours too. I trying to be thankful for the time that I did have with them. Just know you're not the only one. We can all support each other. Hopefully it is not the case forever (for both of us!)

Sara said...

Oh, this is so heartbreaking. You will be in my thoughts for the next several months. I hope you can enjoy every moment at home you have with your boys and cherish those sweet memories every day that you are teaching. I am sending "part-time job and/or stumble upon $20,000" vibes out to the universe on your behalf! Stay strong, mama.

Kaycee said...

I have seriously still been thinking about this post a lot - especially because I return to work from break on Monday and I know that your return date is getting too close too. Hang in there. I really really hope something works out for you to create a situation that you are more happy with.