For 30-odd days I have been working very hard, missing my family, eating bad food, not sleeping enough. For 30 odd days I have been working for something that I believe in.
Now, most of you have a very simple job that will make everything that I’ve been working for mean a lot: Vote.
On Monday, just go and vote. It doesn’t take that much time or effort – though I would appreciate it if you vote for the candidate that represents your interests best, which might require some research. But, I digress…
Just go, use your voice, have your say and VOTE
I got a phone call yesterday. My mother called to ask me if it was okay if she visited us for Mother’s Day.
I know the reason for this visit is that she hasn’t seen the Baby Girl since October and she misses her terribly. One of the things I never understood until I had my child was how much my mother must love me – I can’t imagine how much she loves my daughter.
Three years ago, right after Joe and I got married, my mother – newly retired – moved to Saskatchewan. It was home to her. Where my grandmother was from – and where we spread her ashes. It’s where my mother remembers her childhood and where all her cousins were.
I was sad to see her go, but no more than when Maggie was born. My mother had come for two weeks, and then extended her stay and only managed to see the baby for one day. We brought her home on Thursday and mom flew out Friday morning.
Since then she’s seen her twice – once in the summer when she was six months, and once in October when she was almost 10 months. Since then she’s started walking, kind of talking, she gives hugs and kisses.
Her paternal grandparents were here last week and fell in love with her all over again.
I’ve said before that there is something quite special seeing other people love someone that you love so much. There is something even more special in knowing that the person who raised you thinks you’re a good mother.
There’s something wonderful about pushing for something you believe in. There’s something wonderful about being given the opportunity to make your pitch and having it considered.
Having a voice.
It took me a long time to find my voice.
It wasn’t until I was in college, 20 years old, that I realized I wanted to answer questions in class and I didn’t give a damn if it bothered other people that I was smart. I am smart. There are things that I know and if I don’t know I go about figuring them out – or I ask other smart people. Every day I get the opportunity to talk to other smart people – my husband, my friends, my co-workers and bosses.
I get to spend every day with smart people and brainstorm with them and they listen to me, because I have a voice too.
Where I am right now? It feels good. Work is hard but rewarding, home is hard, but so, so rewarding. I have a lovely daughter – she’s smart too – and she is always excited to see me. She gives me hugs and sits with me. Right now there is nothing better than taking a walk in the sunshine with my husband, my daughter and our dog. That is peace.
I get that. And I get to work in a place that challenges me and means something to me. And I get to talk to my friends online when I can’t see them. And I get to write on my blog and in my various notebooks and express myself and have other people share their stories with me.
This is peace. This is calm and comfort.
I forget the good things on days like yesterday, when I was tired and I had a headache because of all the noise around me, and every little thing was getting on my nerves. And all I could think about was going home and seeing my baby girl because I hardly see her at all right now. And when I did get home she was cranky and loud and I felt like it was better at work. Yesterday was a bad day.
Today I slept in a bit. I went to breakfast with family and got to spend some nice time with my kid. I went in to work with a cup of coffee and got through my start of day tasks. I snuck out to see my friends for a few minutes, and talked about real life. Today I left work later than I would have liked, but I didn’t mind too much because we were laughing and joking and generally in good moods all around.
Today I spent some time thinking about what I’m going to do during my time off after the campaign, and I thought about cleaning up our backyard, maybe planting some flowers and making it a place where we can sit and relax as a family.
Last summer there were days went I took the baby out to the yard in her vibrating chair, put the puppy in his leash, and just sat in the sunshine, reading or thinking. That was calm and peace.
For the hard work I’m putting in right now, I’m making my country greater and there are such rewards at the end.
I work in politics. My family talks politics. I have long been interested in politics and it drives me particularly crazy when people don’t care or don’t think their voice matters.
Everyone’s voice matters, if you speak when you have the opportunity.
I work in politics and I am a proud member of the mommy community online. I have met so many great women. Strong women with opinions to share and advice to give.
I am so happy to see the #momthevote movement gaining voices. There is nothing more important than showing our kids that we can have a say in the direction our country takes. I have already taken my daughter to vote with me and as she gets older I will explain what I’m doing. I will share my views when she asks me questions.
Right now I’m working through the campaign, so I don’t really have time to take part in the #momthevote conversations, but I just happy to know that the conversation is happening.
Two more weeks to the vote.
I love the work I do. I feel important. I love my days at work.
But I miss fresh air. I miss exercise an sunshine. The days are getting brighter and warmer. I want to jump in puddles with my daughter.
I bought her rain boots this week. I’ve been buying her presents – a book, a small Easter gift, new boots. This comes out partly of my guilt for not being there. It comes partly out of my thinking of her and wanting her to know that I do.
I was unprepared for just how much I would miss her. I was unprepared for how I would react to missing her.
Yesterday I spent about an hour with her in the morning and she’s been learning while I’ve been away. She dropped her water cup and she said ‘uh oh.’ She wakes up and calls out for Daddy.
The solace I take is that she and her Daddy are growing together. It’s nice to see, it’s what I’ve wanted. It gives me something else to think about.
It’s been a hard few days.
I feel like I’ve fallen out of stride with every piece of my life that was working so well. I knew things were going to be harder, but it when you get tired it makes everything seem that much worse.
By Friday night the thought of having to wake up on Saturday morning to walk to the bus had me near tears. And then I got a reprieve – a phone call offering me the day off. A wonderful day it was. I slept in, we had a family breakfast then took a walk outside in the fresh air and sunshine I had been missing. I had a nap, I spent time with my daughter. Everything felt good on Saturday night, and Sunday morning.
Now it feels worse, because I can’t sleep in again, I have to walk to the bus again, I can’t spend that time with my daughter again.
On top of all that, little things and bigger things keep falling out of place for us. There are a few things we’re dealing with as a family that are not fair, all made worse by the fact that I don’t really have time to deal with them.
It has hit me – that thing that I expected when I first went back to work a few months ago. I feel guilty for not being at home to see my baby, to help Joe, to make things easier, but when I’m at home – particularly when I’m leaving work – I feel guilty for not staying, not making sure things are done to my standards, for leaving things in the hands of others.
Right now, when I’m at home, I feel like I would be better off at work because I’m almost useless here. When I’m at work I’m missing my kid like crazy. I call just to hear her babble. I want to hug her so much. She distracts me, but I’m working for her. I believe in what I do.
It’s all too complicated.