When I was off on leave after having a baby everything was about learning how to take care of a baby, how to take care of myself while taking care of a baby, what this new life was going to be like. (Or so I thought – life with a child changes every day).
When I went back to work there was a whole new learning process. How to fit in family and myself while working 37.5 hours per week with a commute tacked on.
When I left work I naively thought I was moving back to where I had been in leave. Not so much.
Being a stay at home mother has wrung me out. It is the hardest thing I have ever done and it has left me answering a lot of questions all the time. Not just the ‘why why why’ questions that the kid asks every day. (“Ducks don’t fly.” “Ducks can fly.” “Why?” “I don’t know how to answer that.”)
One of the hardest things has been losing the daily stimulation of being totally enveloped in news and politics – two things I love. The kid just isn’t that interested in letting me watch the news, she doesn’t understand why these things are important to me. Given the family she has around her, she will someday, but not just yet. Right now she has things that are more important to her, like Bananas in Pyjamas.
A couple of weeks ago my father sent me an email about a discussion being hosting by the Canadian Journalism Foundation titled On the Hill, Online and In the Loop. There was one panel made up of journalists and a second made up of politicians and they would be discussing social media and how it is changing politics and the coverage thereof.
I registered right away. A talk about politics, reporting and social media – three things that interest me very much. Unlike some things I’ve tried to get out to recently, I made it to this one. I took notes, I tweeted, I asked questions. Upon leaving I couldn’t stop smiling.
After weeks of dealing with all the things the three year old can throw at me, of her refusal to leave the house without a fight, of my struggle to be a human being while all this was going on, I had spent an evening in my brain, listening to intelligent thought about something I find important and interesting.
I feel revived.
She cried when I wasn’t there for bedtime, but we’ll both have a better day tomorrow.