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Adoption Blog: Painting the Nursery

A Working Mom’s Diary: Tearful Mornings and Peaceful Nights

A few weeks ago, I returned to work (again) after two blissfully busy months as a stay-at-home mommy (SAHM). Am I thankful for the full-time work and benefits? Absolutely. Do I find it nearly impossible to say goodbye to my son, Miles, in the morning? You bet.

Roughly five months after we brought Miles home and after 18 months of unemployment, I took a temporary position. When it ended in August I found myself home again during a fall filled with birthday and anniversary celebrations—not to mention the daily joys of being together as a family.

You see, my husband, Michael, and I were both home with Miles during the day. My husband works evenings and Saturdays, so we became “Team Parent.” Thanks to his ability to fall right back to sleep, Mike was kind enough to take most overnight shifts of feeding and snuggling. During my occasional nights with Miles, I often just sat silently watching him sleep, listening to him breathe, and smelling his hair while we lay together on the couch. I have found that those are the hours that last the longest, yet slip by all too quickly.

Miles with stay-at-home dad, MikeSince Michael and I were both home for a few months, you might assume that we accomplished a lot around the house. Um, no. All we really tackled this fall was snuggling with, playing with, and reading to our beloved baby Miles.

We did try to decorate our new house a bit and shopped for some drapes and an area rug—partly because learning to crawl can be tough on a wood floor. Otherwise, our attention was firmly fixed elsewhere—and with good reason.

I had applied for a new job back in August before my SAHM hiatus. The hiring process was long, and I went in for four separate interviews before receiving a job offer. All the while, I kept thinking that if I could afford to continue to stay home with Miles, I would love to do so. On the other hand, if I didn’t get this position, and it took me until next year to find something else, I knew it would be exponentially more difficult for me to leave Miles than it would be if I made the shift sooner.

We also knew the return to work would have to come soon. I’m the one who carries the benefits for our family, and our COBRA medical insurance—at around $1,500 per month—is not something we can sustain for long. 

When this offer finally came through, with the benefits and the nature of the position presented, I couldn’t pass it up. I’m thrilled to be gainfully employed and enjoying the work; however, it is very difficult to leave Miles. Some mornings I don’t see him if he is still asleep. Other days he is being cute and cuddly or squealing over breakfast with Dad while I get ready for work. I’m not sure which days are more difficult to get out the door. I won’t lie; there have been tears—and not from Miles.

I do know that I couldn’t do any of this without the help and support of my stay-at-home husband. He is the greatest father and somehow manages to accomplish cooking and getting laundry done even on the days when Miles is being particularly needy. I didn’t do so well in that arena, so I guess we know where our strengths lie as a couple.

Oh, and Miles already said his first word—“Daddy!” 

I know that many babies make those "de de de" and "da da da" sounds before they conquer "ma ma ma," but I must admit I felt a little teeny pang of jealousy that Miles’ first word was not “Mommy.” Not that I can blame him; he does have a particularly wonderful daddy.

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I go back to work in April after being off since last July and I am already dreading it.  Just yesterday he crawled for the first time!!  What will I miss when I am at work and he is with the babysitter?
I hope you will find it easier and share with us how you did it.

By Karen011 on Sunday, January 30, 2011 at 4:23 am.

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Renee Hoyt

Renee Hoyt


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