About 12 hours from now, I’ll be driving south with my mug of tea, and I’m pretty close to certain I will be bawling my eyes out.
I go back to work tomorrow.
And although I like my job and I fully realize I am lucky to have a job, I don’t know how I’m going to walk out on that sweet baby face in the morning.
These last three months have been some of the best days of my life, hanging around the house with Bruce & Lulu, strolling to the beach, running the washing machine at least once a day to keep up with all those essential wee baby articles that inevitably get covered in spit-up and poo.
Back when I was pregnant, back in my other life, I thought that after nearly four months of wearing sweat pants and rubber-band hair, I’d welcome the chance to jump back into the workaday routine.
I didn’t know what I was talking about.
Every day is a small new miracle. Every day I fall in love a little bit more. Every day is filled with a thousand tiny things that speed the hours along faster than ever before.
I don’t want to miss out on anything. A toothless smile. A new, drooly consonant. A gravity-defying poop. I want to see it all.
In the more rational moments, I talk sense into myself. I remind myself that we want Lucette to grow up here, in this amazing city of San Francisco. In this amazing, expensive city of San Francisco. And in order for her to build a life here, off to work I must go.
I remind myself that we’re lucky in so many ways… Bruce can stay home with Lucette most days, so she’ll have quality daddy-daughter time. And when he can’t be home, we have two lovely friends who have volunteered for nanny duty. She won’t be shuffled off to strangers.
But tonight, on the eve of my return to my other life, all of this common sense is cold comfort.
Because when I went on leave back in August, I didn’t really take into account the development of Mommy Brain. I knew life would change, sure, but I didn’t fathom, I couldn’t really understand, how very much I would change.
And I didn’t realize how delusional it was to think that three months would be enough.
So tomorrow I will set off to earn a living, to pay for this wonderful life that we have. And all I will be thinking about is, “When will it be time to go home?!”
-Lo, who has plans to start buying a regular lotto ticket.