About a month ago, work agreed to let me alternate or "job share" and my "work partner" started last Thursday. So I've officially been home since last Thursday and it's been wonderful. It started off in a sort of bittersweet way because C took the girls on Thursday to attend his brother's wedding. So here I was, finally home from work and I spent the morning packing them up, then kissing them good-bye.
And either Sunday or Monday I'll kiss them good-bye and head back to work for two weeks. With our schedule changing in a fast and furious manner, I have a feeling I'll be at work more than I want to be. But I've still had the pleasure of an entire week off and the security of knowing a job and a paycheck is still on tap.
I've been able to swim in our still open pool, take Elena to and from school and watch her enjoy her very first playdate. She has thoroughly embraced school and can't wait every day for her afternoon session. It's not perfect as she still really needs her afternoon nap and school has nixed that, but she loves strapping on her little backpack and being a big girl like her sister. She's always been desperate to do everything her sister does and now she's finally right there, getting picked up after school like her sister.
She's had a cold all week and today I decided to keep her home after a particularly rough evening with her. I put her down for a nap during the time she'd usually be at school and she slept soundly until it was time to pick up Eliza. When she woke up, she thought it was time for her to go to school and she started trying to put on her little backpack. Upon the realization that school was not happening for her, she broke into sobs so loud I really felt awful. I knew she needed the sleep and I know I did the right thing but hearing my little girl sound so sad was so painful. However, I did enjoy the extra time with her before her nap, precious time that I would have surrendered to her time at school. I also enjoyed the much less dramatic evening spent with a child more suitably rested.
My Eliza still appears to be a little superstar. I had the pleasure of attending back to school night and upon opening her folder found a lovely letter she'd written to me. She'd mentioned making a family tree and not having enough room for everyone. Imagine my surprise when I looked at her family tree and it consisted of "Pap Pap" (my grandfather), "great-grandma" (my grandmother) her father, my mother, me and Elena. That's it. Even though the top of the page read her father's last name (her last name), it was the story of my family. I was moved to see my grandparents names there, people she barely knew but yet greatly respects because she knows of my love for them. I also think she is a savvy girl, she made the family tree knowing that I was her audience and the end result would be different if she'd made it for her father's eyes. In time she will get to know the story of her father's family and being that they are all alive and as such, may become more present in her life than my family, this tree will change. But in a weird way, knowing that I'm the one who really does all the work, who makes so many more sacrifices then C will ever make, it was nice to see her surround herself with my family.
I think the next two weeks of work will be pretty brutal and I will be missing the girls so completely. It will also be the first real test of my babysitter who so far has only worked for us part-time. She seems up to the task and I'm feeling very lucky with her but I'm nervous that this bubble I'm in right now will burst.
As for my mother's health, she is still hanging in there. She started an experimental treatment last week that made her seriously ill. She's been off it for a week but resumes on Friday, a day she's dreading. I think I'm still in denial about how sick she is and can't say I've seen her much or done much for her since I haven't been at work. I went over last weekend while the girls were away and haven't been back since. With Elena in school for only 2 and 1/2 hours, it's hard to do too much. I'm paying my sitter half her salary when I'm not working and I could use her more to help out with my mom but I'm trying to ease the sitter in with an easier schedule because I know it will get tougher later on.
Bur for now, I'm a happy mama. I got to go to back to school night, bake for the school's bake sale, pick out clothes for the girls, pick them up after school every day and tuck them in every night. I'm a lucky Mama, happy with my girls and my life.