It’s been a while since I’ve written a post again. The last month or so has flown by in a haze of stress! Today has been relaxing and good so far, though, and I am writing this from Gourmet Burger Kitchen in Beverley whilst my Mum has Hudson. I’m treating myself to a spot of lunch after a bit of a shopping spree (albeit all from the sale rails) in preparation for starting my new job. This bit of “me time” has been just what I’ve needed and I’m so glad I’ve done it today despite the drizzly weather.
New job celebrations…and a few tears too
I was always going to go back to work at some point, I just thought it’d be when Hudson was nearer to 18 months old but then all that stuff happened with Sam’s last two jobs and then he was off due to his bad back at the start of the year so I started to look for jobs to see what was out there. I’m glad I did start looking again as I spotted an ideal one at a place I have always wanted to work – the University of York. I’d applied for a job there a few years ago and unfortunately narrowly missed out to someone else but luckily this time I successfully got the role (as a content producer, exactly what I want to do so that’s an added bonus). Obviously I was really pleased when I got the call to tell me I’d got the job but at the same time I felt sad at the prospect of going from seeing Hudson every day to being away from him five days a week. I’ll admit that I also shed a few tears when my new manage told me that it was a full time position and that, despite me asking, I couldn’t do it four days a week. I can apply for reduced hours in six months’ time if I still want to though so all is not lost. It was an odd feeling when I got the job as at times over the last 11 months I’ve felt that I would have loved a little bit of time to myself so I should see going back to work as an opportunity to get just that and to get a bit of “me” back but then the good ol’ “Mum Guilt” creeps back in and gets all mixed up in my overthinking head. It’s that ridiculous that I’ve started to feel a bit guilty at the mere thought of potentially enjoying my new job and meeting new friends/colleagues…absurd, I know. I need to get a bit of a grip really.
Some well-deserved “me time” and choosing childcare
Today has helped as I feel really relaxed knowing that Hudson’s with my mum, she’ll be having him one day a week when I start work then he’ll have one day in childcare and the remaining three days with Sam. And it’s been nice going shopping for some new work clothes (alot of my old pre-pregnancy stuff is too big now) make-up and, to satisfy the geek in me, a new notebook and pens!
On Wednesday Sam, Hudson and I are going to have a look around a childminder’s that we’ve been recommended by friends – I hope we like it then we can book him in as it’s always booked up months in advance whereas they luckily have a space on Mondays for Hudson, yay! I’m sure he’ll settle in just fine as he’s very sociable and I’ve taken him to lots of groups, it’ll be me in tears I’m sure! Sam’s probably going to do drop offs though as I’ll be aiming to start and finish work early each day so at least I won’t be upsetting myself and Hudson every Monday morning. Fingers crossed it’s as nice as people have said.
Mammoth midnight meltdowns
The last few weeks have been pretty trying when it comes to nights. Hudson’s pretty much been going to bed fine, I’ve perfected the Ninja roll away from him after I’ve fed him to sleep on his floor bed, but he’s been having mega screaming fits in the middle of the night. These have been happening despite me trying to feed him straight away when he wakes up and are made worse if Sam or I just try to hug or rock him. It’s relentless and upsetting and…I’ll embarassedly admit…incredibly frustrating by the end of it. I know I should have patience but in the wee small hours my patience does seem to run out after 2-3 hours of on off screaming, crying and fussing. It’s not Hudson’s fault, he’s obviously been teething and maybe going through a sleep regression and I think he’s also had a tummy ache from the increase in solid food he’s been eating, but there have been times where I have really struggled to stand it any longer. Sam offers to “take over” every time but as much as I can’t take him screaming in the same room as me I find it even worse hearing it from another room so I end up going back in anyway and desperately feeding him, willing him to calm down and go back to sleep.
Add to this Hudson being a bit unsettled most of last week, again I blame teething and a tummy ache and him trying to assert himself when I’m trying to get him to do things he doesn’t want to do (nappy changes have been an epic battle of late), I just got to a point of being at the end of my tether. My cup was very much empty as I barely got 5 minutes to myself as all of the above has been made more difficult with added clingyness due to separation anxiety *sigh*
Cue several, ok far too many ranty, desperate WhatsApp messages to my Mum, sisters and local mum friends’ chat groups. I’m surprised they haven’t all deleted me from the chats to be honest! The local mummies have all been great and their empathy and saying they’re going through the same thing at the same time has been a saviour. My family has also been super supportive but I think the content of said messages has led them to be a bit worried about me. I’m fine in myself, just a little overstretched, overtired and, as usual, overthinking everything. I forget that it’s only my Mum who remembers that sometimes I just need to vent to get it out of my head and that I don’t need answers and solutions (as much as I’d like them I know it’s not possible in this case and I just need to be there for Hudson and ride it out) as I used to ring her to do this after I moved out into halls at college when I was 16. I think I’ve just been doing my sisters’ heads in with it too so I’m hoping that after we had a…erm… shall we say tense conversation about it yesterday when we were all together that everything will be ok again. I also feel much better after getting a decent night’s sleep last night, Hudson only woke twice and went back to sleep fairly easily both times so I’m hoping this is a sign of improved nights to come! Trying to stay positive here!
So my new motherhood mantras I’m going to try and stick to are “this too shall pass” and “you are enough” – i.e. all Hudson needs is me to be there for him when he needs it and for as long as he needs, even with all my “imperfections”. Trying to be a gentle parent has been incredibly hard but I’m going to persevere whilst making a slight change – being gentler to myself.