Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Did you have a good day at work?

Well... no actually.

Because today I didn't go to work. 

I put my child in daycare and spent the day doing things without a 3 and 1/2 year old tornado following along behind.

A mental health day, if you will.

I used to be against taking these days. 

While I understand the need for everyone to have respite of some kind, in Hicksville I used to be the mother that was sitting in the carpark crying because she had fought and fought and fought to get her child a permanent place and couldn't, thus endangering her much needed job. 

All while a train of unemployed, lazy mothers paraded in and out of the centre more than twice a week dumping their entire brood to be cared for by someone else whilst they got together and drank endless tons of coffee and smoked never ending cigarettes. 

Legitimate respite for whatever reason - no family support, children with special needs, children at risk, etc - I understand and support this.

And I finally found that I needed it too.

After months of never being away from Frog other than to go to work or to a meeting, of never once peeing without a full cabaret show, of putting off all the paperwork and errands because after the third shop or office she is unmanagable (lets face it, it's not much fun being dragged around from bank to post office to shops where you can't touch anything); I'd had enough.

When we moved here I booked Frog into two permanent days of daycare a week, so that when I was called in on other days I was more likely to get a casual spot. It kept me at the top of the waiting list. When I was given my monthly relief roster I would move and re book days that were outside of those permanents, leaving them free for someone else on the list.

After much pushing from WonderMan I have started keeping one of those days a week even if I'm not working, because I was starting to sag at the knees. My mind was turning to complete slush and I was slowly spiralling downwards and could feel the clouds pulling over.

My family are 600kms away. Gone are the days of "taking the kids to Granny's" occasionally. 

This works for me.

It takes a village to raise a child. They are a part of my village.

Who is in your village? 

Linked up with Jess at Diary of a SAHM for IBOT

18 comments:

  1. Oh man, do I understand this. Until very recently I used to put M into FDC on a Friday, just to have a break. Mr S works a strange and long houred roster, and we have NO family in the state whatsoever. Our family daycarer is a gem and called us early on in having M in her care and offered to look after Millie out of hours, just for a bottle of wine, so we could have some time alone. She *is* our village.

    xoxo

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    1. She sounds like she is worth her weight in gold :)

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  2. I don't have any help so I can relate. My husband barely helps :) Rachel xx

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    1. I thought I was prepared when we moved, but I didn't realise for a long time that I was getting myself down by being a mummy matyr. We all need time to be "me" xx

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  3. You go, girl. Mental health days are 100% necessary. For a long time (the first 5 years I was a parent, actually) I believed that at any given time I should be working for money or working for my children/family. BS!!!

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    1. When I was a single parent with my first daughter, I used to teach dance classes and she would stay overnight with my parents once a week. I REALLY miss those days!

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  4. I would love a mental health day!! Hope you enjoyed yours!!

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    1. My work actually encourages mental health days for full time employees! I did not find this out until recently, now I know why I love them so much!! And yes, I did enjoy it very much, and now have a much much smaller pile of paperwork to be dealt with. Who knew you could get so much achieved without little people hands being involved?

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  5. You do what you need to I say. I don't get much time off at all, but when it's really hard, boatman will try and work something out for me. It's important to have mental health days. You can't stress its importance.

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    1. Your Boatman is lovely :) It's good to know you have the support to take some time when you really need it xx

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  6. Hi Natalie - I took a mental health day yesterday too! And I only work part time. I understand your reasons completely. I feel ya. We need those days now and then. My mum took my little one to her place and school's back on for my eldest. Seemed like a good opportunity for me to take a break from 'doing' and just 'be'... for one short day!

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    1. I hope you had a wonderful day Kriscia! I didn't do housework, but I did do a lot of overdue paperwork and make a lot of phone calls that were much easier without a little person interrupting every five seconds!

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  7. My only criticism is that you didn't sneak a bit of time out for you!! (to do something nice)
    I also used to be one of those who worked at all costs, hated cancelling meetings cos the kids were sick etc. but work doesn't really miss us that much when we aren't there...
    Good for you, I say!

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    1. Oh I forgot, I did! I went out for coffee with a couple of other lovely mummies :)

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  8. It must be so hard to have family that far away, I don't know what we'd do without my parents nearby, the whole reason we moved home was so that we'd have a support network. I think it's great for you to keep a day to yourself if you're working or not - it's hard to get everything done and as a working mum you're working two jobs most of the time, it never stops and time for you without the kids is essential (imo anyhow)

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    1. It is harder than I planned for, but at the same time, being back where my parents are and being miserable was much worse than being here and having less support! Every parent definitely needs some kind of time on a regular basis, so you can refocus and give your best, knowing you will get time to recharge later :)

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  9. Replies
    1. Oh I know how you feel! It was worth paying for it!

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