For about six months I have been preparing myself for little E having an operation. Many teary days and sleepless nights have been had, many prayers have been said, in anticipation of my little boy in surgery. We had waited months to see a surgeon, he has been prodded and poked and we had filled out the pre-op questionnaire in preparation for his op on Tuesday 18th August. I had planned moral support for me in the hospital so when I rendered useless my mum could take over. A had planned time off work to stay at home to comfort little M and I had prepared lots of little presents to be opened by both E and M throughout the day to distract them from their separation.
In the last week we have noticed that something might have changed, though was I do believe that something that apparently should have healed itself by the age of one could have repaired itself at the age of two? This evening little E was prodded and poked for the last time as we received the amazing news that the surgery could be cancelled! This evening we all breathed a sigh of relief, and although I can’t quite believe it, I am so thankful for this little miracle.
I am returning to work one day (two occasionally) per week. Yesterday morning while I crawled through 24 miles of traffic on route to work for my first day back I had plenty of time to think. In an age of equality for women why does it feel like we are now going backwards? Women fought for the right to return to work, but with the cost of living rising and the government backing childcare do women actually have a choice?
I am fortunate to only have to work occasionally and spend the rest of the time taking care of my family. Some I know have returned to work unwillingly, worrying their way through their maternity leave and crying their way through the mornings of their first weeks and months back at work, their children clinging to their legs as they leave them in the government’s subsidised childcare. Some research claims a link between extended periods of stress caused by separation anxiety and anxiety and depression in early adulthood, with this research emerging should the government also be investing elsewhere? Should the government be preserving the mental health of mums and our next generation by helping mums who chose to stay at home and take care of their children?
Something for the government to consider… when it is too late I suspect!
Some further reading
I love this book, I would recommend everyone gives this a read (child or no child): What every parent needs to know: The incredible effects of love, nurture and play on your child’s development by Margot Sunderland (2007)