Sunday was a hard day.
So was yesterday.
We have just spent 3 days in Wellington for two events, with a day to do some business work in between. It was amazing! One of the highlights of the year. I got to meet amazing mums, spend time with my husband and had sleep. Oh glorious sleep. I felt like I slept more than I had in two years. Just two full nights deep sleep will do that.
When I first left both my babies to go away for work I wrote this blog. It stands true today. Going away is good for me. It makes me a better mother. I feel so fulfilled. Working in different locations both here in NZ and around the world is part of what my husband and I have (and continue) to create for our businesses as well as our lifestyle.
It also does not mean it is easy.
With children work is never easy. Going away is never easy and nor is coming home.
The logistics are there regardless.
The guilt is there regardless.
I find for me I already start thinking of ‘coming home’ even before we have left. Is there enough food in the house, are the boys set up with enough little things for them, be it clean clothes, daycare bags sorted, nappies, little pressies hidden away ‘just in case’. If I am especially organised I will even have ‘spare presents’ in case I can’t find something when I am away to give them.
And yes in that book I wrote before becoming a mum on all the things I said I would not do – buying my children presents every time I go away was one of them. And yet I do. And they love it. And because they love it, I love it and do it every time.
And then there is something that I have called the ‘chaos wave’. I don’t know about you, but when I get sleep, deep undisturbed sleep, I truly come out of the sleep deprivation fog which just always seems to linger and out of the whirlwind of life. BUT when I come home, that ‘chaos wave’ is coming back like a big tsumani. My body and brain know it, don’t want it and almost sense I cannot stop it.
When I am ‘in it’ running on a few too many coffees, not enough sleep, arms (and brain) going like an octopus, trying to do a million things at once….. that’s almost easier than waiting to get back in it. It is waiting for this to hit, to change gears back up to this pace that is the hardest part. Like a playground roundabout ride watching it go around and around trying to jump in (I was never good at that either!).
I have to steal my mind. Tell myself I have got this, and just wait for it to hit. There is a part of me that actually enjoys the chaos, it makes me forget about things that I would normally stress over, it forces to me really think about what is important. It keeps my tight ‘a-plus’ perfectionist personality in check (ok kind of in check). But there is also that tiny part of me which is saying ‘just a little bit more please’. I liked that sleep – can I have a little bit more? I liked having a shower in peace – just a little bit more? And I long for when I get it again.
Then I see my boys, so happy like it’s Christmas just seeing me after a few days. I too feel so happy to see them...and I feel so guilty. I feel guilty for wanting those things. Guilty for wanting to hold off the chaos wave a little bit longer.
I don’t normally have to wait long. Like Smushie waking up at 4am after I went to bed after midnight on Saturday trying to sort the house (when will I ever learn). And subsequently slamming back into the sleep deprivation.
Then there is work. All the work that I have carefully scheduled, rearranged and put aside. But let’s face it; half of which I had also forgotten to do or simply ran out of time….that all comes flooding in too.
Like on Sunday when I remembered I had 100 exams to mark, due on Monday morning.
Enter the Chaos Wave.
Maybe it would be different if I wasn’t doing so much work. Maybe.
Maybe it would be different if we had more help.
Maybe it would be different if we were going away for a holiday not for work (what is that again?).
I ask those questions many, many, many times….
We are always constantly looking to juggle work, business, help, paid help and the financial implications of it all.
I don’t think there’s a perfect solution – especially not with what we are taking on. I think we just have to keep trying. To know that it is not meant to be easy. To somehow ride those waves and accept the hard bits are just all part of it.
And to maybe just have an extra coffee…or two!!
xxx Dr Julie Bhosale