- Catherine Irwin
- Perth, WA, Australia
- Hi friends. To those I have met in person and the many I haven't - welcome to our nest. Thanks so much for stopping by. I am a mama of six baby birds and wife to one papa bird. Our nest is an intricately woven home, crafted over time, through the highs and lows of life, and many in-betweens. We are soon to leave our Australian nest to re-locate to our second home, the UK. This is our story, of our new life in a new country, the trials and tribulations, bidding goodbye to precious friends and embracing new. I know at times, our wings will be flapping so hard to keep us moving forward that we will tire, however, a little perseverence will bring effortless gliding amongst a soft breeze, and even stronger wings for the journey ahead. Welcome to our flight......
Monday, 7 February 2011
Back to the Office
I started full time work last week. No let me clarify - of course - my current occupation is full-time, with so much overtime unpaid that the unions can't deal with my paperwork and have placed me in the pending file for the past 13 years. This is also not to mention the sick leave I am owed as well as extra holiday loading pay. I won't go down that road though, as all stay-at-home mum's know the deal pretty soon after conception of their first child, and if they don't, it doesn't take long for that elusive contract to expand and lengthen as our bellies do the same.
So now I have that off my chest, apart from the above constant duties, I did indeed embark on paid work in an office with grown ups (!) and surrounded by tailored clothing and dress shoes. There was not a flip-flop in sight or a pair of daggy trackies or unwashed hair. It was impressive, not the least of it being me, as I endeavoured to actually arrive at my stated time of 8.15am, with my hair washed and styled, my heels on and my makeup (including eye makeup) well applied. I kept wanting to give myself a little pat on the arm and whisper congratulations. You are awesome girl. Look at you all grown up now at 37 years of age, Mum of six and working!
I answered the phone with a perky voice and there was no babies crawling up my legs to grab the receiver. I had a whole half and hour to eat my lunch (!) and I could go to the toilet without company. I rediscovered my love of organization and administration and was constantly in awe of the fact that I was actually being paid to do that by the hour! I spoke in full sentences in adult language, not baby talk. I never once said 'Ta' or 'Bubba' or 'Don't Touch'. For eight whole hours I never changed a pooey nappy. I remembered that I do actually like to be sociable and chat instead of tearing around the house like a mad-woman. I could go on but that would make me sound ecstatic about being out of the house.
My incredibly devoted parents took shifts to help care for the children. It was a small military operation just to enable me to leave the house by 8am. Shift one started at 7.30am when my Dad would stagger in, who took over baby duties (but not nappies) and shift two at 9am when Mum would come and assist Dad with the rest of the day. Everybody was happy and fed and beautifully cared for and loved, probably a lot better than I have been doing it all lately. I came home to a clean and tidy house, with dinner made and babies napping. True working-girl bliss! Poor Mum and Dad were a bit bleary eyed by the end of the day but they looked happy and contended at days end (probably because they had their leave pass to go home!).
But then, of course, all good things must come to an end, and the kids got the vomits - badly. Like flies they fell to the dreaded gastro bug and the OBH and I found ourselves emptying more sick bowls and changing more bed sheets than we could ever have possibly imagined. Now what to do? I didn't account for the 'chucking-up- your-guts factor', and really, there is only so much your parents want to take on, and cleaning sick was not in their job description (can't remember it being in mine though either). So I called in sick on account of poorly children and necessary mothering duties taking precedence, and I have temporarily said goodbye to my cushy, grown-up-girl day job.
However, after all, I am a Mum first, foremost and forever and only a pretend-career- girl a very poor second!