working seven till five…

What did I tell you about keeping friends? I’m now more convinced than ever that I’m cursed. Cursed I tells ya! There I was thinking that befriending an Irish person would mean an end to the “we’re leaving” syndrome, and now Faye and her family have moved! Okay, they’ve only moved to Clontarf, which is like two bus rides away and even shorter on the train, but it still feels like I’m losing a friend…again
Once upon a time, I used to be brilliant at keeping in touch with people. When I was twelve, I got a pen friend and kept that penship going for seven years until he professed undying love for me. Shudder. He joined the army and that was the last I heard from him after months of telling him no, I didn’t want to meet him as it would spoil everything, and yes I would keep writing if he did. He never did. Methinks he was miffed that I wouldn’t at least meet him for a coffee. But believe me, had you received his photo in the mail, you’d not have wanted to be seen out in public with him either! Me? Shallow? Never!
 Anyhoo, a year later, when I was nineteen, I got another pen friend and we only stopped writing to each other about two years ago. Life took over a bit too rapidly I suppose and with us becoming ‘friends’ on facebook, perhaps I got a bit complacent? I don’t know if she felt the same but I think I talked myself into the ‘we’ll keep in touch via facebook, and it’ll be easier’ box. There was talk of us meeting for a good while, but even when I lived in England in 2006/2007, it just never seemed to happen. And now I feel adrift without her. Sob, sob. 
If you’re reading this, you know who you are. I miss writing to you. Get in touch again and let’s rekindle our snail mail adventures.
So anyway, Faye’s last week in our part of town ended last Sunday, but we’ve promised to stay in touch. It’s still remarkable that I met her on a bus when Roz was three months old and Effie was four months old, and now the little babies are not so little any more. She’s fascinating and funny and a great laugh so I did promise to stay in touch and will try my level best. We’re meeting up for our weekly coffees this Wednesday to catch up and trade stories and maybe also do something constructive with the little bit of summer that’s left.
But on a sadder note, I started back in work last Friday. 
Of course I’m not going to write too much stuff about work on my blog. I wouldn’t want to get my ass sued…or fired, now would I? So I’ll stick to my feelings and general stuff whenever I write about it.
So, it felt surreal. All last week, I had Roz go to the childminder for four hours each day just so that the poor kid wouldn’t freak out when I have to leave her there the whole day! Well, it actually started three weeks ago when I’d leave her for an hour a day, then last week was two hours, which then got increased to four hours this week. 
I spent Thursday taking all my work clothes out of storage, giving them a quick sniff to make sure they had survived the vacuum pack still fresh as the day I washed, ironed and sealed them in there and I’m very happy to say that the majority did survive (the rest are getting washed tonight), and I could pick out some trendy togs to wear. The saddest moment was looking at clothes that I had put away because they would have been impossible to wear for breastfeeding. Dear god, what was I thinking?! Fashion horrors or what!
Needless to say, a major shopping trip is in order. Many women had warned me that once you have a child, as with any major life event, you feel you want to re-invent yourself. I suppose that for me, knowing how amazing the female body is just wants me to embrace this power and show it off. Before I had Roz here we go again, I can hear you say) I never appreciated what a great body I had. It took my tummy blowing up to the size of a massive watermelon to show me what great legs I have and hell yeah I want to show them off now. I appreciate my waistline a lot more now. Oh, a WHOLE lot more and I’ll be damned if it’ll just be left there under swirls of cloth. I’m showing off this figure. I’m dressing stylishly goddamit! Remember the dresses and skirt I bought a few weeks back…that was the first step to the newer improved me. 
The long and short of it all was that a LOT of my stored clothes are being given away to charity. I mean seriously, there was this hideous blue top that made me want to slap myself and ask,
“What were you thinking?!”
Wardrobe sorted, Roz was picked up and Thursday passed without incident. 
Friday morning, the alarm went at 6:50 and Roz had the grace to let me take a quick shower and do my make-up before she called for me. This is the first day that I really wished Krys was here in the morning. Roz isn’t a problem at all, but the time factor was so critical. If I missed the 8:20 bus, I’d be so late for work that my think my heart would have given out from the strain of merely running late. I’ve gotten so used to taking my time letting Roz breastfeed, eat her breakfast and give her tons of cuddles, that I felt incredibly rushed. I had to change her clothes and her nappy while eating my bowl of cornflakes, then dress and pack her meals and drinks, spare clothes, bibs…argh!! But I made it, out the door and at the childminder at eight with instructions at hand of how to reach me. Roz of course, didn’t even give me a second glance as I waved and said,
“Bye baby”
Little traitor!
I am glad that she likes it there because I suppose it would be horrible to have to leave her crying and prying her hands off me to give to Tracey, but I did feel a twinge of,
Geez! She won’t miss me at all, will she” blues. I know she will, and I know Tracey can’t replace me as her mum, but still, the feelings nearly overwhelmed me.
I left Tracey’s, hot and bothered and tottering in my high heels at 8:15 and headed for the bus stop. The bus arrived at 8:20 and I was in the city at 8:45…a bit too fast for my liking, but there you go. Nothing else left to do but head on over to the office, so I turned my key in the door at 8: 55, a whole twenty minutes earlier than I had wanted to be. I guess I can take my time on Monday.
It’s funny though how easily you can get back into the swing of things. We had lunch with Red and Brian last week and she said when she went back to work, it was just a matter of getting a new password to log into her system and business as usual. She might as well have never been gone. And that’s how it felt to me too.
I hooked up my laptop and monitor, got a new keyboard and mouse, rang IT to get new passwords into the system and I was back into the swing of things. Five hundred e-mails to look through and filter, meeting my line manager for a “catch-up” chat on what’s changed in the organisation; meeting my two new team members; brought up to speed by my replacement; popping my head into HR,  and the CEO’s office to say hi; holding off till twelve to text Tracey and see how Roz was doing then texting her again at three after touching my phone every five minutes and then finally, it was the end of my first day. 
The one thing I realised on Friday was that I work for a lovely organisation. Regardless of my love/hate relationship with my profession, I love what I do in this organisation.
I got the 5 o’clock bus and was home at 5:20…honestly, the buses just flew! I don’t remember them being this fast before. I went to Tracey’s to pick up Roz and the smile she gave me when i came through the door…my heart just melted!
 I’m going to be working a four day week for the next while as I’ve decided to take Wednesdays off to be there for Roz, so I’m hoping this will be a nice work balance for me.
Wish me luck.

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