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August 6, 2014

Becoming a Working Mom

After a glorious 12 weeks off of work, I found myself walking back in to my work building. I was 45 minutes earlier than usual, due to my new position. 
It was not a good feeling.
It was a lot harder than I expected.
I nursed Jaxon throughout the night, like usual, but when Jaxon fed at 4:30am I could not bring myself to fall back asleep. I cuddled my little boy and covered him in prayer.

I prayed for Jaxon’s day to be fun and exciting.
For him to be happy and content in his new daily surroundings.
For bottles to not upset his little tummy.
For Jake quickly find a rhythm in getting him ready and out of the door.
For SIL find a balance in adding another infant into her days.
For patients and strength to get through the day.
A also prayed very selfish things.
For my day to pass by quickly.
For my time as a working mom to be very short.
For any of his firsts to happen with me and not while he was with SIL.
For Jake to absolutely hate me working and want me to stay home full time.
For Jake do to amazingly well on his MCAT so that we could start early admission and get into a school faster.

I cried quietly as I kissed my little boy, placed him next to his daddy on the bed, and went to take my shower.
I cried in the shower then I steeled myself for the day.
Why did I have to leave Jaxon when I was just starting to get the hang of being a full time mom?!
I felt completely out of control as I chose my work attire. It was like an out of body experience. I was doing the exact thing that I have done for the past 10 years… Only everything was completely different.
My goal and purpose had changed. Work was no longer about the paycheck. It had turned into the one thing standing in-between me and my baby boy.
I hated it.
I still do.

That first day of work was the first morning Jake would be getting Jaxon up, ready and out of the house on his own. 
I was nervous for him.

That is a lie.
Really I was jealous and aggravated because I would not be in control of what was going on.
Believe me, I did just about everything I could. I packed the diaper bag, set out Jaxon’s diaper and clothes, told Jake what time he had to drop Jax off at SIL’s.
Short of being there myself, I controlled the morning.

He did really well.
A lot better than I expected, or really wanted.
Jake always handles new challenges well.
He always delivers.
And he is good looking to boot.

The day was full of people welcoming me back, asking to see pictures and hear an update about Jaxon.
And even with all of that, I couldn’t focus on anything.

I was heartbreakingly lonely.
It was along the lines with how it felt to have Jake in Afghanistan.
It feels so silly to say that that first day of leaving my baby boy with someone else and having my husband deployed to a foreign country felt the same. Jake would probably be mad about the comparison. But it’s truly how it felt.
Going from having my little man within hearing range at all times to knowing that I wouldn’t see him for 8 solid hours seemed impossible.
As impossible as getting through a year without my husband by my side.
The similarities are almost scary.

I handled both situations similarly.
I breathed in and out.
I checked in as often as my job would allow.
I made prayed constantly.
I watched the clock like a woman drowning, grasping for that last breath of clean, fresh air.

SIL really helped me get through the day by sending me pictures of Jaxon  playing.
{A new play mat!}

The second that my clock hit 1:30pm I was out the door.
There was not anything that was going to hold me in that building a second more.
I practically ran to my car.
I don’t even remember the 25 minute drive to my sister-in-law’s house.
I just needed that baby.

When I stepped through that door, I felt instant relief.
Greeting my nephew who was in his underwear, getting ready for his nap time. 
I smiled and picked up my sweet niece, who had crawled to the hallway to see who was coming into her house, giving her chubby cheek a kiss... 
All the while I searched for Jaxon.

There he was, sleeping in the swing.
I cuddled my niece closer as I just stared at my sweet boy, sleeping.
Everything was fine. 
I knew it before, but seeing him allowed me to take the first full, deep breath of the day.

After hanging out, nursing Jaxon, and talking to SIL for a while we headed home.
On the way home I thought about our arrangement.
It really was going to work out.
I could work part time, trust my husband and SIL with Jaxon during the day and not go insane.
I know that I will hate every second of it.
But it’s doable, for now.

Now, I just wait.
Bide my time and wait for Jake to take me aside and tell me to put in my two weeks.

Now that…
That will be a great day.

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