Fear of going back to work and the January blues? Or fear about the absence of the blues?
I turned to my husband yesterday on a walk and asked him if he had the equivalent of the Sunday blues going back to work. Was he dreading the early morning commute, the long and pointless conference calls and the stresses and strains that work brings? He like many others did admit that he was slightly apprehensive about going back to work and that he envied me staying at home with our 15 week old daughter.
I had to smile to myself because I know that feeling all too well, having worked full time in a stressful PR environment for over ten years. However funnily enough, rather than breathing a sigh of relief about not having to go back due to my ongoing maternity leave, I on the other hand, massively envied his position.
My husband gets to go back to work, but I now need to go back to my job as a full time mummy rather than splitting my role in a job share with him. And I am all too aware of how hard it is and how lonely it can be.
I never thought I would feel envious of other people going back to work after the Christmas break, but I have to admit that I am. I will miss the routine that a day job brings, that feeling of going back to work after the Christmas break and catching up with colleagues, that feeling of a fresh start and the excitement of new ideas and creativity having given my brain a well-deserved rest. Instead I wake up today (shattered, I should add, given that Amelia decided 3am was a good time to start the day) and feel ever so slightly confused about what to do with my time. Wistful for a concrete task or big plan to take on. Envious of those who have made New Year’s resolutions focused around their jobs and jealous of those who can initiate a real change in their career path.
Sure I’m super busy. I have plenty of small tasks to do (Amelia’s passport form for example needs to be completed and I need to get on and organise her christening – two tasks I have been putting off for some time!) but it’s just not the same as that feeling of going back to work and the feeling of putting your ‘all’ into something professionally. Or the feeling that this year could be your year to really make a difference.
So today, yes I have the January blues and yes I have the ‘fear’. But this is altogether different to every other year. Today I guess what I fear most is that I don’t get to dread going back to work. And it’s that lack of fear that scares me the most.
And yes I know… contrary to the point above, I am making a massive difference as a mum and to one person specifically. And it is perhaps the hardest, and may I add, most rewarding job I ever could have imagined, but just today let me yearn for my job, let me miss my career, let me be a little blue because I don’t get those New Year blues like everyone else and I miss them!
As an aside….. Just prior to editing this blog I went upstairs to get Amelia up from her nap and she gave me the most magical smile imaginable. Guilt floods through me as I commit the above to paper (or screen) but I think it’s important to do so, if not just as a means of therapy for myself, but also to reassure others that they are not alone.