I’ve had a few dreams recently about going back to work and they weren’t the nicest. In one, my husband, Gregg suddenly wouldn’t look after our son. I had to get a friend to look after Jenson at the last minute and spent the whole of my first day at work worried about how he was doing and not concentrating on the tasks at hand.
I’ve had another similar dream about leaving my son recently and it’s made me think about what is going on. I mean, I want to go back to work and have Gregg spend quality time looking after him.
I know a lot of it is the unknown. I’ve got no clue how Jenson will be without me there to comfort him. It’s all he’s known and it’s all I’ve known – the thought of Gregg doing this task, my task, of comforting our son, makes me feel a bit apprehensive (what if Gregg can’t calm him easily) and sad (I love bringing him comfort, will this change the bond I have with him?).
There are also questions in my mind about how I’ll be at work – I used to give my absolute all to work but with less sleep and a baby I’ll be keen to get home for every night I’m unsure about how I’ll adapt back in the workplace. I know I’ll give my all, but my all might be less than before and this makes me nervous. It’s the reason why I’ve committed to fortnightly coaching sessions as I navigate this new reality of working full time and being a devoted mother.
I know there’s also something in this anxiety about control. During these past five months I’ve taken most of the decisions about Jenson’s care and have taken what’s known as an attachment approach focused on ensuring that Jenson feels secure and safe even if this means allowing him to feed to sleep on me and not forcing him to sleep in his own bed amongst other things. But with Gregg in charge, I’ll no longer be the main decision maker. About what Jenson eats, how he sleeps, what activities he does, how his time at home is spent. I trust Gregg and, as 50% his guardian, he has the right to have an opinion about how Jenson is raised. But I like being in control and this will take that control away from me.
But I know it’s right – I know we’ve done the right thing for our family by sharing the leave. So even if I’m anxious, I’ll continue to remind myself that this is an active choice we’ve made.
- A choice that is right for me as I love my job and don’t want to slow down my development as I enter motherhood
- A choice that is right for my husband so he can form a strong bond with our son
- A choice that is right for Jenson so he learns that both males and females can be carers
- A choice that is right for our society to normalise dad’s taking a more active role in the family care.
So even though I feel anxious subconsciously and may continue to have these dreams until my return to work, I know I’m doing the right thing.