This week has been a tough one. For starters it was Little Z’s first week at full time nursery. It was the longest she and I have been apart in her entire life. I have been trying so hard to stay focussed and positive both for myself and Little Z, that when Sam drove off with them both in the car the emotions really hit. Just for a few minutes, But they hit and I had a little cry. Then I made a tea and a veggie cooked breakfast, watched two episodes of ‘Catastrophe’ and then spent the entire day sorting my garden. Exactly as when her big sister first started though, I was almost sprinting into the nursery to collect Little Z late afternoon.
Wednesday was a tougher day. I was personally really physically weary from the gardening so struggled to get myself up. Then I had to bid a weary Little Z farewell again although this time it didn’t break me. After breakfast was when the wobble started – I spent some time sorting my work email before having a short call with my manager to do my annual review – mainly a formality as I was only working for a out 4 weeks of the performance year. Unfortunately there was something about going through 1500 emails from a year of missed work that left me feeling a bit spaced out and lost. Luckily I had a long overdue haircut booked in and this perked my mood up. I then whiled away the afternoon sorting out some new picture frames of the girls to put up in the lounge. Looking at the photos of my smalls throughout the last 12 months made me smile so much. It was odd though as for the first time in a long time, I felt like the day had in part been wasted.
Then came Thursday. Another significant day because this time I was actually going into work. I had prepared everything the night before and Little Z / fate / whatever gifted me an uninterrupted night of sleep which was a delight. Little H got herself up and dressed without complaint. Little Z was cheery despite being weary and I fed her got her dressed in good time. As I headed out, my last sight was Little H, Little Z and Sam sitting round the table eating pre-nursery fruit. I got a seat on the train and again on the tube. Everyone in the office said hello and welcomed me back. I had tea with a friend and lunch with another. My handover started and went really well, albeit causing my brain to ache. Then I left a bit earlier than normal to get the girls after their tea.
When we all piled into the house on Thursday night my head pounded and I was physically exhausted. But we’d made it through the first big upheaval of life as we move to our new routine. Despite being beyond worn-out, Little Z was happily exploring her house again – as if she needed to check everything was still here. Little H flopped out on the sofa watching something on TV and eating a snack – her usual happy post pre-school zone-out. And as I scanned the room, I realised that whatever is thrown at us in the coming weeks, this was the hardest of weeks. The first of everything for us all. And we got through it. If we can do, then we can repeat it next week and onwards until eventually it will feel normal again for us all.
And on Friday morning I felt so grateful. Grateful for the days with my girls. Grateful that I have a job where my part time hours are accommodated and I am not held back or side-lined because of them. Grateful for my daughters and their respective natures, for taking these changes in their stride. Grateful for Sam having such a strong bond with them both. Grateful for the lighter mornings making it easier to drag myself out of the house. Grateful for Little H looking after her baby sister as she goes to nursery and making it seem less unfamiliar. And grateful for tea because, well, it gets me through all of this!