Contentious • 20 February 2009 • The SnowBlog
Everything about child-rearing is contentious. I have lost count of the number of times I've put my foot in it regarding breastfeeding, education, nappies... everyone's way is The Right Way and to suggest otherwise is akin to a slap in the face, it seems. So chances are, if you're a mother, you're not going to like this. As you know I adore Ro to absolute bits; I find him enchanting and love spending time with him. I can't believe how quickly he learns, how perky and bright he is, how every day he changes and grows. Already he's tottering around the place on his feet (well supported of course) and is vocal and knows his own mind. He's completely amazing and I've never been so in love or so happy.
But I don't know what I'd do without my work. It brings a structure to our days that I find invaluable. It helps me to wake up by getting my brain going when otherwise I'll loll on the sofa, half-asleep, after a long night's parenting. It gets me out to see people, with Ro in his sling along for the ride. It brings me pride, interest, continuity and fun.
The bottom line is this. Far from agreeing with well-meaning people who advise me that it's impossible to work and look after a baby full-time, I would ask how it's possible to *only* look after a baby full time. I am extremely lucky in that I can fit my work around Ro - it wouldn't do to take him into an office every day, of course. But I would be interested to hear from other people what they did when their children were tiny. Did you write a novel? Work? Set up a business? I am sure that there are people out there who feel, like me, that it's perfectly possible to combine childcare with brain work.