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September 23, 2011 / mommylok

Project Back-to-Work

So it’s finally Friday, the end of my first week back to the “real world” after a 2+ year vacation from the corporate life.

Everyone’s been asking me how work is this week (thanks to everyone for your concern!)  But since I am practicing good business sense (and because my new boss knows about my blog-though I’m pretty sure it’s not on his list of “daily reads”) I won’t actually be commenting about work.  Well, except for the fact that it’s not nearly as stressful here in the office as it used to be when I worked at the NFL.  And except for the fact that this office is tiny (the number of people in the office here totals the number of people in my department from my previous job) – but it is a welcomed change in a very serene kind of way.  It has been making the transition back-to-work much easier (boss, if you are reading this – thank you!)

Though the work part of going back-to-work has been good, the home part is another story.  The decision for me to return to work obviously affects the entire family and it seems that I’ve disrupted everyone’s lives.  My 2 older kids (4 and 6 yrs old) have been upset that I don’t get to walk them to the bus in the morning.  My husband…well, he’s got all these new duties at home now but he’s been a good sport.  He’s even managed a “how is work today, honey” every day so far.  My youngest, Baby R, seems like he’s having the hardest time adjusting.  When I picked him up the first night from my in-laws, instead of a “MOMMY!” and a hug with arms wide open, I got a “you’ve abandoned me” stare and “I’m mad at you” pull-my-hat-over-my-face (anti)greeting.  Every night so far Baby R has told me “I want Mommy home, no Grandpa home.”  And in the mornings, he has the “I’m so depressed that you’re leaving me AGAIN” cries that it’s nearly broken my heart to leave him.  The only thing that’s comforted me is knowing that he’s with family.  I’m not sure what will comfort him at this point, but I’m hoping that as time passes, he’ll start to accept the change without so much anxiety.

I know it’s only been a little over 2 years since I used to work, but having a 3rd child and 2 kids now in public school with real homework responsibilities changes things a lot from the schedule that I used to remember.  The most stressful part of my day is actually the time from when I get home until when the kids are tucked safely in their beds.  We’ve been having a hard time so far trying to get the kids to bed at a decent time so that they’re not so exhausted in the morning.  If you have a system that works for you, please share – any bit of advice right now would be wonderful.

On a different note, though M (2nd grade) has been in the Gifted/Talented Program since last year and knows the expectations, K (Kindergarten) is new to the program, along with new to the concept of homework itself.  He’s struggled with reading (he seems to lack the same desire as his older sister) and was resistant all summer long to work on homework activities in his workbook.  Naturally, I wasn’t sure how being at work and not having that much time to help him with school work by the time I get home was going to be.   Surprisingly, however, he’s been very happy at school.  Last week, he couldn’t recognize half the words on his vocabulary list.  This week, he has his first spelling test and couldn’t be more ready.  I was very skeptical about putting him in the G/T program (despite qualifying) but now, I’m just upset with myself (and am embarrassed to acknowledge) that he’s capable of so much more than what I gave him credit for.  Needless to say, I am extremely proud of him.

M, on the other hand, seems to have so much more homework this year that she’s slightly overwhelmed.  It’s not necessarily that it’s difficult, it’s the actual quantity of the work.  She’s been doing homework until nearly bedtime every night.  Maybe she’s still in summer vacation mode (it’s only been 2 weeks since school started) – and I don’t blame her!  But now, my husband and I are struggling with coming up with different ways to help her get organized so that she can complete tasks without it being so daunting.  She is way too young to burn out from school, nor do we want to overwork her.  Ideally, my husband can prepare dinner while I help with homework.  However, with a 2 year old who misses his siblings terribly from being away all day around…it’s not so simple.

I really want to believe that going back-to-work was a good decision.  I’m hoping that with a little more time, everyone will settle down into our new routine and we can get through the work-week more efficiently.

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2 Comments

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  1. Michelle / Sep 23 2011 1:58 PM

    Congratulations again on re-entering the work world. I know that you and the family will be able to figure everything out and I hope it comes sooner than later! Wish we lived closer so I could help out. Soon you will get to have the stress of traveling with all 3 kids 🙂

  2. Bicultural Mama / Sep 23 2011 5:15 PM

    The first thing I want to say is that you shouldn’t refer to the last 2.5 years as a “vacation” because it’s not like you were eating bon bons all day and getting manicures. You were raising 3 kids, and anyone who has raised kids knows you give up “me” time to take care of your kids who always need something (You). The second thing I want to say is that things will get easier for the kids as they get use to the routine, although I’m sure it still breaks your heart to see Baby R upset. Lastly, you’re going to work for your kids, so you will have income to provide them with the things they need. You’re being responsible, don’t feel guilty. Nice post, love your honesty!

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