I don’t want to go back to work. There, I finally said it.
It’s been hard to admit how I’ve been feeling since I’m in a pretty privileged position. My employer is most likely going to offer me part time hours, in my same role, for really good pay. Better pay than many working mums are on, I’m sure.
I’m not saying that to annoy you though. I’m saying it because I feel very ungrateful for wishing they wouldn’t. For secretly hoping that every time I have a ‘catch up’ with my boss, she’s going to break the news that it can’t be done. There’s no position left for me.
It would make this decision so much easier. Because between you and me, I really, really don’t want to go back.
I have worked my little socks off to get where I am. Before maternity leave, I was bossing it in a new role as an Insights Analyst and (despite being completely terrible at maths) I was doing fairly well. If a baby and a year off hadn’t stood in the way, I’m sure I would be even further in my career by now.
I was always going to go back part-time and I’d discussed it with my manager early on. Taking childcare and work-life balance into consideration, a three day working week sounded pretty decent. I’d keep my career ticking over, while enjoying some quality time with my baby.
The only problem with this amazing plan was that I hadn’t yet had a baby. Who knew you could change so much in such a short space of time!?
The minute my daughter came along, I started to rethink everything. The idea of leaving her, my own tiny little human, to work in a job that I don’t love seems absurd. If I had long, miserable days trying to blag a tonne of analysis before the baby, imagine the hell it’s going to be when I know I’ve left her for the entire day. With two more days to go.
As with everything in life, if money wasn’t a factor, I’d give it all up tomorrow. Without a second thought.
After all, my blog gives me all the mental stimulation I need – plus I spend a lot of my week out and about with family and friends, so boredom and loneliness don’t worry me. I could live this life and love it.
So a few weeks ago, I decided to try and make it happen. I might not pull it off, but I may as well go down fighting. I’ve turned to my original love of writing (hence the blog), to try and find the answers. I’m now learning as I go by attempting to kick-start a freelance writing career. I have one small client so far, but am confident that my dazzling content is just waiting to be discovered by a company that will pay me the money I need to survive without employment. About as confident as I am that my baby will sleep through the night tonight really. But working for myself, around bringing up my daughter would be the absolute dream.
I know this idea isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. In fact, I know many a mother that couldn’t wait to get back to the office by the end of maternity leave, but that certainly isn’t going to be me. I don’t want to miss a thing. Not a word, a step, even a sneeze. I think that I’m the one with separation anxiety!
But ultimately. I want to work in my own time, doing the things I truly love to do – because surely life is too short to be miserable?
So ladies and gents, I am in limbo. I’m just a helpless blogger being held hostage by my overly accommodating workplace. Please send help, advice and a bucket-load of wine my way!