Dreading Back to School/Work

Many of us have enjoyed the last weekend of summer, having barbecues, swimming and spending time with our children before they start school this week. There have been many posts of the excitement from some parents to get their kids out of their hair, to claim their house back and have some peace and quiet. I have personally said, “I can’t wait for Pre-K to start! Woo Hoo!”

Inside of a classroom with back to school on the chalkboard

But there is a large position of parents who are dreading back to school because it means back to work.

Yes, the teachers, school counselors or therapists that work in a school district. Some of them soaked up every ounce of summer break with their kids and even got some time for themselves as well. But the people who I am really referring to are the new moms who have to go back to the new school year and leave their infant behind. Many were on maternity leave this past spring and got to enjoy the additional two month summer break , but it still wasn’t enough.

Now I understand that there are many parents who envy the perks of a teacher’s schedule. Many mothers are lucky to get 6-12 weeks off before having to return to work. What about the other Parent? Many don’t get more than a few days to a week. It is incredibly challenging and emotional to dive right back into work after having a baby, regardless of the time off.

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I write this post because I am watching my sister-in-law struggle as she has to leave her son for the first time since he was born and return back to work tomorrow. I have so much empathy for her and send nothing but positive vibes her way.

I know there are many in her shoes that are also dreading tomorrow.

So what are some ways that can help with this transition?

-Spousal Support- Having your other half be there to really listen to your thoughts and validate your feelings

-Family/Friend Support- Leaning on others to let out the tears, frustration, anger and to make you smile and laugh

-Scheduling Quality Time- Having rituals that you get to do with your child (dinner, story time, bath)

-Ask for Help- You may need to juggle the housework and weekly errands. Maybe a friend, family member or mother’s helper can help pick up this work so you can focus that time with your kids.

-Me Time- You will still need time for yourself and shouldn’t feel guilty about it. It will help you be a better parent and de-stress from the juggle of work and kids.

Realize that no one is judging you. As a parent we are all our own worst critic. We shame ourselves too often thinking that we are damaging our kids when in reality we are doing an amazing job.

We should empower one another more often. We are doing our best, whether we are stay at home or work part-time or full-time. What really matters is that we embrace, support and love our little ones unconditionally.

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Urgent Care Visit

St. Patty’s Day was fun. Just hanging out with the boys, dressing them up in their green shirts and silly hats and trying desperately to get a decent picture of them.

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Our day was normal until 4pm rolled around and my four-year old started to complain of ear pain. He kept persisting that it was hurting and asked for medicine. Oh, great! Now, I know it was bugging him as he is the type of kid that never complains of pain. He climbed on my lap for some comfort as he continued to complain.

I was afraid that he would get worse through the night, so I Googled urgent care clinics in our area. I found one that was open until 8pm, grabbed my Go Bag, iPad, and his favorite stuffed animal.

He was seen within just a few minutes and had a confirmation of an ear infection. I got his antibiotic prescription and headed out the door. Of course it is now after 7pm on a Sunday and our pharmacy is closed. I located a 24hr pharmacy and was home by 845pm. Gavin got his first does of antibiotic chased with a superhero ice pop. He took it like a champ and was off to bed after 9pm.

Tip for parents

Know where the nearest urgent care clinic is and 24hr pharmacy. It will save you some time and stress.

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730am, eating a spiderman ice pop after taking his medicine

Related Articles

How to Pack a Children’s Emergency Go Bag

5 Tips to Help Your Child at the Doctor

Tip to Help Kids Take Medication

 

 

The Buddy Binder

My husband works crazy hours and is never home at a consistent time. This is challenging for my little ones. They don’t understand the concept of time yet and separation issues often come up.

Many parents and care givers are in similar situations. They work long hours, travel often for business or have a rotating schedule at work.

I have created a communication binder for my husband and four year old to stay connected with one another. This is a tool that is universal. It would be great with preschoolers, school aged and children with special needs.

Child life specialists can also utilize this in the hospital. Children who are separated from IMG_0423their siblings or parents during a hospitalization, can stay connected with them.

The binder is something special just between the two. It would work by having the parent write something and then the child responding to it or writing something new.

Ideas for the binder:

  • Write a joke or riddle
  • Hangman (give the option for 3-5 letters at a time)
  • Draw a picture
  • Outline of their hand
  • Scavenger hunt (hide something in the house and write down a clue to have them IMG_0424find it)
  • Tic Tac Toe
  • Create a picture together (parent draws a house, child adds the family)
  • Something new that they learned that day
  • Simple message

I think that this can go beyond the binder to different activities.

  • Puzzle (start a few pieces and let the other add to it)
  • leave a special treat (cookie, stickers)

You could always include a calendar too. It may be easier for a child to process the separation if there is a visual, concrete image.

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This is a simple project to put together. It helps our family out and I hope that it can do the same for you.