Juno is now three months old. I kept to my word following my last post and strictly limited my work commitments. After all, with Christmas coming up and a new baby, my being seemed geared up to making mince pies and showing the little girl the pretty Christmas lights. I also figured that work could afford to begin in the New Year. As it happens, certain contract negotiations have still not been concluded so it was a fair call really.
And now here we are in the New Year and I’m looking ahead to next week when Juno meets her nursery team for the first time. When the letter came in offering Juno a place two days a week I had mixed feelings: deep sadness and guilt but also a sense of relief that I would be able to PROMISE a portion of my time to collaborators. Besides, I knew I’d look forward to catching up on sleep initially. So it is with mixed feelings that I gather what she needs for next week. I am keen to settle down to some proper creative work rather than snatches of thought here and there whilst bouncing an ever increasingly demanding but rewarding little person on my knee. I don’t think I could have dealt with much more than the logistical side of my job up until now as it does require stretches of four hours or so to be able to achieve anything but having said that, people have commented in surprise on my lucidity in meetings, despite the little one and supposed ‘baby brain’ and I have been able to art direct to a certain extent.
Juno is becoming more predictable and I know her boundaries better but that doesn’t result in my being able to freely move about with her: on the contrary. I feel terrible guilt if I neglect her with divided attention or a missed nap window so at least daycare will allow for more compartmentalisation and I need to attempt to give her my full attention on the days when we are together. After all, my maternal instinct is still telling me to stay at her side and tend to her and she has so many developmental milestones to get through in this first year that I want to be there to coach her through.
I am lucky that I don’t work a conventional PAYE job as I hope to balance work commitments and keeping my hand in with some solid mum time. It is a special time. I always become reflective over the New Year and my birthday as one would expect and I kept thinking ‘who would have imagined…’. I feel very lucky if quite tired and quite torn too. It is true what they say about perspectives shifting. Let’s hope I achieve the balance I seek with my little Libra lady.