Today is my last day in work for 3 weeks!
Three glorious weeks I don’t have to set my alarm.
Three weeks I don’t have to rush around in the morning getting ready to leave the house, to get the kid to where she needs to be and to get me to work on time.
I can enjoy my morning coffee rather than gulping it down, burning my mouth and chew my toast so it doesn’t give me indigestion.
This is exciting!
I’ve been looking forward to these 3 weeks for as long as I can remember, well since I booked it earlier in the year. I haven’t had so long off in one go since I was on maternity leave 5 years ago.
Now it is finally here and I’ve been pretty giddy all day!
Then I remember. I’ve taken this big chunk of time off in August because we’re experiencing our 1st school summer holiday and for the next 3 weeks, bar the middle week where we’ll be towing our caravan to Devon, I will be solely responsible for the care of the kid!
A little bit of dread creeps in!
You see, this parenting lark doesn’t come that easily to me.
I really have to try.
I’m not one of those crafty, energetic, patient, knows how to cook, has a clue what they’re doing, organised mummy’s.
I spend much of my time just muddling through hoping I don’t fuck up so much that I actually damage the kid long-term!
I’m not normally, due to work, the sole parent.
When I was on maternity leave Mr Cs hours at work allowed him to be home by lunchtime, just as I was getting out of bed! What? They do tell you to sleep when the baby sleeps! He would be around to help, to get us geed-up and out of our PJs.
After 9 months when it was time to return to work, I would pluck her from her cot all snugly, dozy and still in her sleep suit, drop her at my mother in laws so she could take her to nursery and I could rush for my train, Mr C would pick her up in the afternoon and by the time I go home it would be nearly bedtime! He was the sole caregiver then!
Now I drop her at breakfast club (different job so no trains) and Mr C does the school run in the afternoon.
He’s much more natural at this than me. He’s often better than me, more patient, more understanding. That’s not me looking for nice words of encouragement, it’s just a fact.
What am I going to do to entertain her? How am I going to make things fun so she’s not bored and without spending the invisible money we don’t have?
The kid and I are also quite alike which can result in quite a few interesting conversations that can lead to disagreements.
Yes it is acceptable to argue with a 5 year old and no it is not childish and yes I know I am supposed to be the adult!
I don’t want to spend the whole time falling out!
She’s already asked this week if it’s time to go back to school and she’s been busy at a holiday club! It’s not a great omen!
I don’t want to waste the next 3 weeks and then be sat back at my desk annoyed at myself for not doing enough with this time we have to spend together.
Maybe I’ll devise a mummy and daughter timetable of things that we’re going to do so we don’t waste our days watching whatever is on the TV like a pair of zombies!
Or maybe we will just spend some time cuddled on the sofa doing exactly that!
Maybe I will try to be a little more organised than I usually am.
I have 3 weeks off!!
By the end I will be begging to go back to work, I’ll be tired, I will have forgotten how to have a conversation with an adult, I’ll probably be pickled in vodka and I may have spent the whole time in my PJs.
For now I’m just going to turn my alarm off, take a deep breath and hope for the best!
I mean who wouldn’t want to spend some time with her?!