After two and a half weeks of daycare and only a slight stuffy nose, I started to think we were going to beat the odds and not end up sick all the time! Enter Thursday at 12:45 when I was sitting on a bus taking students to community service and noticed a message on my phone from 5 minutes earlier from the daycare. Oh, no. This couldn’t be good. I listened to the message and heard that my girl had a fever of 100.8 and they were going to monitor it but to call back when I got the message.
I felt sick that I had missed the call, but I called back immediately. They told me they were going to watch it and that I should just take my time coming to get her. That was a good thing since I was on a bus heading east away from school and away from the daycare. Luckily I have amazing colleagues and we made it work so that I was able to get dropped off halfway back to school and had another colleague and friend come pick me up to get me back to school. I was to my girl about an hour and a half after I got the message, which is still too long but was a miracle considering the situation.
I got her home and got her some Tylenol and that has helped to manage everything. We’re off school and work today to manage the fever and stuffiness, and if it gets worse I’m going to take her to the doctor. I wanted to take her in yesterday but they couldn’t fit me in.
My transition back to work has been a struggle of to-dos. I’ve enjoyed being back at work and continue to be so incredibly thankful for the wonderful women at our daycare for how helpful and caring they are with everything in relation to Olivia. And I think it goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyways) that I miss my girl. While all those were things I expected, what I didn’t realize to expect was how hard it would be to manage everything.
Our house is a complete disaster zone during the week with clean clothes on the dining room table waiting to be folded or picked through for our next outfit, dirty dishes in the sink that didn’t fit in the dishwasher the night before, baby items all over the couch and floor from playing with Olivia when we get home, and dirty bottles and empty bags across the kitchen counters waiting to be washed and filled for the next day.
I sometimes feel like a robot when I get home from work. Between being tired and happy to see my girl, I look around and want to pick up and clean while at the same time rest and play with Olivia. Most days I just sit on the couch or floor and talk to my girl (who continues to nap well at daycare so most days doesn’t need a nap immediately upon arriving home), but the bottles call to me to be washed, and on occasion I will lay her on her playmat to play while I go clean the bottles and pump parts. I like to get everything done the night before so we’re not rushing around in the morning trying to get out the door on time.
By the time the bottles are washed, dinner is made, and Olivia is asleep around 7:15, I’m exhausted and have to force myself to stay away to interact with Tim for a few minutes. But in truth I’m in bed most nights by 8:45. Olivia still wakes several times per night and likes to get up before we need to get up in the morning, so I still am not getting long stretches of sleep per night. Maybe when she’s sleeping longer I’ll feel more able to stay up longer and won’t worry so much about getting things done right when I get home in the afternoon.
All that said, the time I have with Olivia I spend as connected to her as possible. I don’t guilt myself into staying off my phone 100% of the time or not looking at anything work related ever, but for the most part I don’t do a lot of work or phone playing when I’m at home and she’s awake during the week. I enjoy talking with her and telling her how much I love her. We read books and sing songs, and I’m reminded that I can still be a good mom even though I’m not with her all day. I still get to do all the things that we did while I was on maternity leave, albeit a little less frequently.
I’m not sure what I’m trying to say with this post really. It doesn’t have pictures and it’s not pretty, but it’s real. It’s where I am. My thoughts are as scattered as this post is, and I’m working on figuring it out. I know that I won’t, but I know I will get better at it. Until then I’ll continue pushing aside the bottles when I want to and picking them up to wash them when I can’t take it anymore.
Happy Friday, friends!