I knew returning to work would not be easy, but I did not prepare myself for just how little I would see Leo throughout the working week.
It is so hard.
My day starts at 7:00am and I spend that time getting myself ready. When Leo awakes I will spend as much time with him as possible before leaving for work. But this is only around 10 minutes at best. I come back for lunch at 2pm and if he is awake great, but he often naps at this time, making this another missed opportunity.
My last chance to spend some time with him is after work. I get in around 5:10pm after racing home in the rush hour traffic. He is usually out playing in the garden around this time, so I swoop in and hold him in my arms, kissing him all over, feeling incredibly guilty that I have not fed him his breakfast, lunch or even dinner.
They are my rights as his Mummy.
Those little opportunities that I used to take for-granted as an everyday experience have been stolen from me. Just being able to sit down with him and talk away to him while he throws his peas onto the floor and looks at me to see what I think, or when he wipes his mucky fingers all over my leggings after I have just wiped off the food residue he coated them with earlier in the day.
I don't even get to pick out his little outfits for the day any more. Granny get's him dressed. I feel like I don't do anything for him. My beautiful baby boy who I love so much. What kind of Mummy does that make me? I am not even here anymore. Or at least that is how it feels.
I fear that Leo will begin to call my Mum his 'Mummy', and my face will just be another one in the ocean of people that love him.
That he wont remember that I am his Mummy.
There are already instances of this, when he reaches out to his Granny and does not want his Mummy's cuddles. Granny loves it but I feel completely broken by it. Of course he comes back eventually, but what if he just wants Granny huggles when he is poorly? What if he wants Granny to tuck him in at night as she has been there through all of those days that I just wasn't.
Work is not bad, in fact it is nice to see everyone and have a little bit of adult conversation. However I don't think I have it in me to see so little of Leo for 5 days out of the week.
Lot's of people keep asking me how I feel to be back, and as soon as they ask I can feel the tears pricking up in my eyes. The truth is I don't want to be back and I don't want to leave my blue eyed boy on a permanent basis.
When ever someone asks me about work and Leo I just want to cry. I have felt so irritable over the last few days and I know it is because I feel I am missing out. When washing up his bottles and something goes a little wrong, I feel like throwing them against the wall.
I miss my maternity leave, and my care free days with Leo. I miss walking him to the park while everyone else is at work and school. I miss baby group and our little adventures. I miss sharing my lunch with him on a bench and feeding the ducks.
I miss him.
I miss his little singing hum and his infectious giggle. His beautiful smile and his cheeky disposition.
I just want to enjoy Leo's life and rejoice in every instance.
I know it is early days and I have lot's to consider. As the truth is I cannot afford a pay drop. But then I cannot bring myself to miss Leo's childhood. The weekends are not enough for me, and although I will make the very most of them, I need more of my little man in my life.
I want to be his Mummy.
Why is this so hard?