When I returned to work after spending 3 months with my newborn twins 24/7, I had mixed emotions. I was nervous and stressed about having to leave my babies with a stranger (who is now anything but, and thank goodness for her!), all while trying to get back into the swing of working and having very little sleep each night. But at the same time, I was looking forward to seeing my coworkers and having adult conversations that involved topics other than poop and breastfeeding.
Here are 3 things I would like to admit as a full-time working mom of twins:
- Most of the time, work is easier than being at home with the twins. As a nurse, work is often busy and stressful, not to mention the 12-hour shifts really take their toll. However, at work, I have an actual break. I can have a cup of coffee in silence in the break room. I can check my email on my phone without getting interrupted, especially when it is a slow day. There is no such thing as a slow day with twins, which brings me to the next item…
- There is no such thing as “time-off”. I know this aspect is also true for working moms of any number of children. But when my work week comes to close, I have to retrain my “pre-baby” self to remember that weekends are not what they used to be. Of course, I cannot wait to spend my days off with my children; especially when I have been at work all week and only get to spend a few hours a day with them. But as mentioned before, twins are a lot of work and my days off are not as restful as they used to be. No more leisurely and unlimited time spent binge-watching Netflix. Spontaneous nights out with the husband weren’t happening. No more sleeping in. Everything must be planned out, such as going to the grocery store or getting in touch with relatives to see if they are available to babysit. And because we have two babies, planning simple errands can be complicated. Not to mention, our “days off” go by in a flash!
- I have twice the guilt. Not going back to work was never an option for me, so I prepared myself mentally and physically during maternity leave for the reality that I was going to have to face. I know that it is common for working moms to feel guilty about working and leaving their children with a babysitter. But when I had to leave not one – but two- tiny babies; the guilt was unlike anything I had ever felt, and I don’t think anything could have prepared me for it. The guilt is still there but it has been something I have learned to live with.
Circling back to #1 on this list, sometimes I prefer busier days than the slower ones. The busier I am, the faster time goes. And the faster time goes, the sooner I am home with my sweethearts.