Peaches is entering nursery, or daycare if you will, very soon. Before officially starting nursery there are “settling in”, or taster, sessions. My partner took her to the first session - two hours long, he answered some developmental questions and watched her play (and almost completely ignored him). She took to it quickly and did not want to leave “school”.
I did not really know what all that or this meant. As everything is theoretical until put into practice first hand.
30 minutes ago I experienced it first hand. Woke her up from a nap telling her it was time for school, she squealed with delight and quickly got dressed. (What the what?! How is it suddenly not a fight to dress her?) We walked over, signed in, went into her designated classrooms and boom - off she went. I got an occasional glance, but not one with any kind of recognition. Suddenly I am Jo Nobody in her little world.
The nursery team let me know I could leave whenever I felt comfortable, and I could have left right then. But no. Instead I awkwardly stood around, looked at things on the wall, said hello to the children staring at me. If they could communicate better, I am pretty sure they would have said - “take a hint weirdo”.
No goodbye, I just slipped out of the room, signed out of the building and walked. Alone. Back into the school. (Stopping to give my husband a “WTF Time to Myself Boogie”.
Time to myself…. Especially unplanned time to myself.
What do I, how do I, should I….
I am lost.
And I guess that is what this, after two solid years of full time stay at home mum-dom, is going to be all about for me. She gets to socialise, grow, experience from outside my peripheal vision… and I get to.. relocate me. Check back in with that stranger who after a 32 year relationship took a backseat.
How do I even start? Sorry I ditched you, bae, you know I love you.
***Editor’s note : Children just love to prove you wrong, two days after I wrote this up Peaches broke out with impetigo.... so that was fun. Since she has recovered and returned to nursery she is having separation issues. Which is less fun than seeing her independently walk into the classroom of her peers.
It is difficult living in a school. No escape from work. None.
Even when trying to leave the grounds - - texts, conversations, thoughts all travel back to school. It is my second child -and third, fourth, fifth, sixth.
Those boys in our care.
Teenagers are a world in themselves, but I cannot help compare the simularities with our toddler. Both desperate for independence but need guiding. Both thrown fits when things do not go the way they think it should. Both demand and both eventually listen. Both need structure and a good example. Both have brains that are sponges and need a good night's rest to function at their best. Both are on the brink of a whole new stage in life.
One moving from baby to child, the other child to adult.
So this first half of term was absorbed by these children. Adjusting, learning, trying, aiding, teaching, listening, speaking, arranging and organising. Going above and beyond - it wiped us out.
The last week we were running on empty.
Cannot let that happen. So after a refreshing half term break - where we recharged the parenting batteries - we are back.
We are trying a new approach - one that still provides, offers, guides but mostly so that everyone knows we care about them. To do that - we need time to care for ourselves.
So here we are.
In the school.
In life, I did not always know where I was going but I had an enormous amount of hope. Hope that I would get my act together. Hope that I would stumble into a career of my dreams. Hope that I would find someone who loves me and I love in return. Hope that everything would come together after immigrating to England. Hope that my story would eventually wind up “having it all”.
What is having it all?
A loving and stable relationship? Amazing sex life? Career you love? Financial stability? Home of your own? Regular explorations from travel? An adorable pet? Healthy, beautiful family? Feeling like a valuable part of your community? Having a close knit community of love surrounding you?
Basically an enviable Instagram Worthy kind of life?
I spend a lot of time scrolling through other parental blogs - looking for….. something. Anything to tell me, “hey you are doing okay” or more likely “here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how I have it all and you can too.”
Nothing has yet squelched this need I have. It is a very needy need.
I want the career that gives satisfaction.
I want the comradery of lovely work colleagues.
I want the time with my child before she starts school.
I want the time with my partner, away from child doing grown up stuff.
I want the time with our families, to watch our relatives grow and change.
I want the time with myself to be creative, think of things and act upon them.
I want to be the best mother, provider, friend, colleague, relative, pet owner, and human being I can possibly be.
And until I am all those things, this needy little drive inside of “do better, be stronger, work harder, plan more, try again, not good enough, more-more-MORE!”
Now I feel guilty for being a whingemaster 3000 and listing all those “I wants”.
So now I'm off to scour haircuts/clothes/items (for a serotonin boast) that inevitably I will never get (for guilt reasons, food before fancies).
Not an instructional blog but the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth - so help me Mom.