Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Adapting

I was a working parent for ten years before I left the bank in 2009.  Now I'm slowly adapting back to being a working parent once again, after three years at home with the children.  I like working (and studying), I want to work (and study), but the complexity of being a working parent does not get any easier with time or experience (or even with the advancing age of your children).  I find that being a working parent is a constant exercise in being organised and also being adaptable - and this in itself is a mindblowingly difficult combination to achieve.  Be super efficient and plan everything, but also chill out and go with the flow?  Hmmn.

Some nurses work shifts of long days, nights, and days off - and other nurses work 9am-5pm, five days a week.  I didn't realise this when I started my course - I just assumed it was all shift work.  I've done three placements of shift work since September, and am now on a 9-5 placement.  I wondered if a 9-5 job would fit in better with family life, but I'm not sure that it does.  I miss having days off during the week where I could catch up on cooking, have the children's friends round for tea, arrange for parcels to be delivered, and go for a mid-morning run.  On the other hand, with more regular hours I can take Olivia to school every day, and I don't miss out on any weekend family fun.  

I'm not sure what conclusions I can draw from this - other than that I am tired, primary schools demand too much of working parents (a last minute after-school play rehearsal can send finely tuned childcare arrangements into freefall, and do you really need to have parents' evening, a school fete, sports day, two school trips plus endless bloody play rehearsals all within one week?) - oh, and I have about four parcels to pick up from the sorting office.

But also...I love what I do.  And I know that the children are always pleased to see me when I get in - whatever time that may be.  The full, occasionally chaotic, busy life that we have as a family is a good thing, and there is really nothing new or earth shattering about it.

And amazingly there is still time to bake bread - and life is good if you can smell fresh bread occasionally.

Summer bread
Bread baked this evening, after work
  

5 comments:

  1. Hope you are ok (yes schools do like to drop things on you at the last minute and at a slight expense as well!!!) xxx

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  2. I love my day off during the week and wouldn't willingly trade it for an 8-4 or 9-5. It's just too useful... doctors, dentist, opticians. I love that when I book my six month check up at the dentist I can say "Friday please" and know I can make it. That said... I still don't have time to bake bread.

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  3. I remember that primary school thing of dropping everything on parents in the last weeks of term. It drove me mad despite not having a job to juggle as well. Thank goodness we have moved on.

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  4. I am in awe of all that you achieve, and are always so cheerful about x

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  5. I can relate to the primary school thing. There was something on at Thomas' school 3 days last week and every day this coming week. It's too much for parents and for the children who are equally as fed up of it all by the end of term. xx

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Even though I often do not have the time to reply to everybody, I really appreciate all your comments so much - thank you for taking the time to read my blog and share your thoughts on what I've written.