The biggest problem with so called “Gardening Leave” is when there is so much rain it becomes impossible to garden. Purposeful living taking a beating in these conditions.
I guess if anyone had read my blog post last month it was clear that I would be the perfect candidate for redundancy.
It still came as a suprise to me.
And I have tried to describe it as a type of grief. Not for a job that, let’s be honest, wasn’t really inspiring me, but for the plan I had that *this* time I would have a straight forward pregnancy in a supportive work environment with paid maternity leave and some semblance of job security on my return.
I lost that.
I didn’t lose any self esteem in the process which is one of the brighter spots in an otherwise very dark week. The redundancies spanned the business and hit people of all tenures and talents. Today I sat in one of the “outplacement” workshops and heard from people many years more senior and in many respects more superior than myself who had lost their jobs after 10,20 and 30 years! How could I feel bad after only 3 and with the company agreeing to pay my maternity benefit? I couldn’t.
What I could feel bad about is my inability to relax into my new role as stay at home mum. Even with my next child already kicking and squirming inside of me, clearly loaded with the same over the top personality that fuels my other children, I am not prepared to just be a mum. It isn’t that I undervalue the role. On the contrary, I think there are some amazing mums – including my own – who should be paid more than most of the business execs I’ve spent my paid career associating with. Sadly, I am not one of those. It is like starting as the lunch delivery person. I am on the bottom rung of motherhood.
David says I should be so happy – I will get to do one of his favourite things any afternoon I like. I can walk the kids down to the beach and sit on the pillboxes, having a milkshake with them and watching the waves roll in. Sounds great but not something I know how to relax into. Their tiny complaints and miniature arguments are like nails on the chalkboard and counteract any effort I make to relax into this lifestyle. Perhaps this will come in time. Maybe I need to write some kind of plan, maybe I need to change the routine again but this time instead of changing it to accommodate THEIR latest stage of growth – I change it to cope with mine.
Just save me from the world of the mummy-bloggers.