Back To Work = Back To Worry

Before I returned to work in February, I considered every angle. Childcare costs.  Commuting. My time away. The stress of long days in the office.  I mentally and emotionally prepared for stepping back into the work stream, after sitting two years out on the banks of mostly full-time motherhood.

Photo taken by my nanny that she texted me whilst I was a-working

Photo taken by my nanny that she texted me whilst I was a-working

The transition was as I expected.  Rocky waters on some days and smooth gliding on others.

What I hadn’t recalled– until I was a good month into the new job– was all the worry that happens about work when I am back at home.

How could I have forgotten about that?

I guess it was like some of those unpleasant aspects of parenting a newborn; you just forget until you are already holding your second or subsequent child.  By then it’s too late, you’ve got a 2- week old baby and you just then remembered what it was like to function with sore nipples and no sleep.

Anyone else return to work and struggle with reading your kids a bedtime story, but stressing about work in the back of your mind?  I hate that.  I need a solution or a way to turn off that part of my brain.

For a fuller discussion of this phenomenon, click here for my latest Mom.me post.

Now that I think about it, if I was truly being honest, my brain can always find something to worry about– job or no job.  But it feels so disheartening to be missing my now less-frequent moments with my kids because I can’t mentally step away from a work project.

So for all of us who mother– and aunt, and grandmother, and godmother– bless us, bless our worrying minds, and let us connect with each other so we can have some moments with our kids that aren’t marred by and weighted with worry. Or if they are, maybe I can just accept that and enjoy the moments in all their stressful imperfection.

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14 thoughts on “Back To Work = Back To Worry

  1. I’m not good at turning off the worry part of my brain. I’m also, sadly, not always very good about living in the moment. I am always thinking of what else needs to be done or accomplished whether it’s at home or elsewhere. I wish I wasn’t like that. That’s something I need to work on–among all the other things, of course. –Lisa

  2. Anybody who tries to say you should be able to leave work at work and home at home is either lying or taking better drugs than I’ve been able to convince my doctor to give me. I think as women, it’s par for the course to worry about what we’re short-changing as we enjoy the now.

  3. I have a hard time getting my brain away from things that can wait while I’m with my kids. When I worked in my “career” job – this was particularly difficult. Now, I am at a part time job that I can leave at the office when I go home, but now, it’s blogging in the back of my brain or something else a lot of the time!

    • You’re so right? Even when I wasn’t schlepping to my office for work and reporting to a boss, I’d be scheming and fretting about blogging. How quickly I forgot that I picked up worry even without the job!

  4. Your piece on mom.me is great. I sometimes think about how it will be for us when we have kids. I’m like you in that I am always worrying about something at work even when I’m at home, and David owns his own business, so his work permeates every part of his being. I know adjustments will have to be made, but if this is just who and how we are, how much can we really change? Complicated to think about.

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