Little Warrior had his second day in daycare yesterday. He had a great day. He played, he ate, he slept and he got carried around by all the carers who thought he was adorable.
I, on the other hand, was not so great. We’re talking about someone who cries at her daughter’s first cross-country, so the odds were never going to be stacked in my favour. But I was unprepared for the feeling of loss. “A compass without a north” was a phrase I used more than once yesterday. I couldn’t settle on doing any one thing. I drove around aimlessly for about 30 minutes before coming home and half-heartedly cleaning the house (is there any other way to clean?). I didn’t draw a real, deep breath until Little Warrior was back in my arms. Which meant I was shallow breathing all day. Truly. I think I was on the verge of passing out for the six hours he was in care.
I called The Architect and cried down the phone. He said “I think it’s great that he’s in daycare now – it gives you a chance to get your life back”. And I just wanted to shout: What life? These kids ARE my life!
It was an awakening. I know that I have dedicated the last (almost) three years wholly and solely to my children, but didn’t appreciate the scale of how much of myself was wrapped up in them. Polynesian Princess is at school now, and Little Warrior is entering the system by starting daycare. And me? Well, as Polynesian Princess so clearly articulated to me yesterday “what are you going to do today Mummy? You’re going to be allllllllllllllllll alone”.
Relaying this story to my friend today, she laughingly said, “you can try to recapture the woman you were before kids. Would you even remember who she was?” Straight off the top of my head, the answer was “no”. I don’t remember. But then I said, “I DO know that woman couldn’t bake”. Or cook a proper meal. Oh how the times have changed.
I realise now my mistake was not having anything planned. I should have organised lunch or a movie with a friend. This would have helped. This would have ensured that I had a north for my compass. Something to anchor my day. I didn't do this yesterday, but you can be sure that I will be doing something next week.
The next step is re-entering the workforce. Once that has been achieved, I will be one step closer to being the woman I used to be.