THE words came out of Princess Ella’s mouth so casually, but they cut like a knife. It happened as I was preparing myself for work on Sunday morning, with my three-year-old quietly watching on.
The first words out of her mouth were to soften me up. “Why are you going to work today, Dad?,’’ she said simply. Now normally, I’m a Monday-to-Friday professional, leaving Saturday and Sunday to spend blissfully with my princesses. However, there are occasions when I’m required to work Sunday to Thursday.
“Daddy has to work today, but he’ll be able to spend Friday and Saturday with you this week, does that sound good?,’’ I said. Then, Ella went “WHACK”. “Not good enough Dad,’’ she said in much the same tone as her mother would address her after finding texta on the curtains (again). Those words and the look on her face knocked the wind out of me.
Now, I’m confident enough to know I maintain a pretty good work/life balance, but it still hurt me to think I’d disappointed my little girl by trotting off to work on a day she’d normally spend tormenting me in a million different ways. In a strange way too, it also made me feel good that she enjoys my company and is not sick of me yet (my guess is that will come in her teenage years).
Unfortunately, Princess Ella is going to have to get used to the idea she has a dad who works hard to provide things for the family. I enjoy my time with her and make sure there’s plenty of it, despite having a busy workload and some other community commitments, but it always has been, and will be, “family first”.
How do you manage your work/life balance?
Helena from New-Age Retro Mum debates Should Both Parents Be Home?
Feli from My Life In Mono, having just returned to work this month, discusses The Working Mum.
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