Thursday, September 18, 2008

I Will Survive

C' know you were singing the gay-riffic disco tune when you read the title. Or at least humming it. Admit it.

Anyway, since I am writing, you can probably assume I survived my first day back at work. Yes, it was only 4.5 hours instead of my usual 8, but you have to crawl before you can walk.

You would've been proud. I only cried a little on my way out the door, as I went to kiss my boys goodbye. My husband told me not to cry and it would be okay - which only emphasized my anxiety. Nate was dozing off in his swing with the tender orchestration of Canon in D playing in the background. I couldn't even bring myself to kiss him goodbye, as the tears started rolling. I just had to walk out the door and take a deep breath. Concentrate. Just a few hours, I repeated to myself. You can do this. Nate is safe with Daddy and will be well taken care of. Just relax. Go with it.

I drove to work and cranked up the radio, singing along to jams that would distract me. When I pulled into the parking lot and turned off the ignition, I felt the the tears sting behind my eyes, begging to flow. But I squeezed them back, pretending to be strong. I repeated my earlier inner monologue to prepare myself mentally for the undertaking. I put on my glasses, took another deep breath, and walked briskly into the office. The surroundings seemed eerily familiar. Everything as it was before I left. Some things never change, I said to myself. It was amazing that I had a major life-altering event and yet for everyone else, it has been business as usual. And suddenly I felt at ease.

Everyone greeted me with a hug and asked me how I was feeling. The women complimented me on how good I looked for just having a baby. They inquired about Nate and of course, I gushed, as any proud momma would. We probably spent a good 30-45 minutes shooting the breeze. I actually felt good. A surge of confidence swept over me. I can do this.

I had a brief meeting with my boss in which she gave me the scoop on everything that had occurred over the past two months. I was praised for how organized I had left my files. Apparently, things had been quite hectic but had now become manageable. To my delight, I'm not going to be slammed upon my reentry. I have a gentle reintroduction into the working world.

I sat at my desk, and felt a tinge of sadness that my leave was officially over. But I quickly recovered and shifted into business mode. I had about 85 emails to sort through and I just dove in head first. I surprised myself at how much I remembered and how easily my routine came back to me. I had fleeting thoughts about Nate throughout the day and I pictured his sweet face as I pumped. I missed him intensely but at the same time, that desire to see him and hold him motivated me to push on. Before I knew it, it was time to go home. After saying my goodbyes (and enduring jabs from my co-workers as to whether I would stay true to my word and come back on Monday), the first thing I did was pull out my cell and call the hubby. Everything was perfectly fine. My little oinker had even eaten 10 ounces in my 5 hour absence. From a bottle!

I grinned as I drove home. I did it. I made it through my first day. If I can get through a half day, I can surely make it through a whole one. Right? Right?

And believe me, as soon as I opened the door, I raced in, picked up my boy and held him so close. He gave me a big toothless smile and it lit me up inside. It made everything worth it (even if he only wanted me for my boobs. Men.).

Distance - even 20 miles - sure does make the make the heart grow fonder.


alison said...

I'm so glad you survived. If you can do it, I can do it. :)

Fertilized said...

Thank you for this post. I am going to need to read it over and over again when it is time for my re-entry

Fertilized said...

and i am Proud for you! You should be very proud of yourself

Kim said...

I'm VERY proud of you. I technically went back on Monday, but I'm trying to resign.. so you're doing a lot better than I am!

Geohde said...

I can't believe you're back at work already. I'm so impressed. I don't start to october and now I'm wondering if perhaps I should have picked up some bits of work sooner. You've set an impressive standard.



Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

You did it! I'm so proud of you and I'm so glad to hear that things went well! You're my inspiration as I am DREADING returning to work. Bleh.

JJ said...

Im so proud of you! Sounds like you handled it really well--and that the big hug and smiles you got when you got home were super special!

Denise said...

Ahh, this is such a heartwarming, sweet post! I'm glad you got through your first day back in one piece. Hopefully it will just get easier as you get into your new routine.