Posted by: mommytoo | April 13, 2008

whistle while you work

this post has taken me days to write!  i’ve now had four days back at work.  i feel very lucky to work only 3 days a week; but those days are long.  i leave the house around 6:30, and i’m gone 13-14 hours.  d sends me pictures while i’m gone, and they make me laugh and cry simultaneously.

there are a couple of gay men at work, but no other lesbians i know of on our unit.  they’re all happy for me — they’re excited to see me and ask questions, they ooh and aah over the pictures.  but i can see that a lot of them don’t get it.  they don’t get that i am mom to a two week old baby, that it’s torture for me to leave his warm little body every morning and imagine him all day while i’m working.  many of them are (bio) moms, and i doubt they could imagine doing it.  i think they think i’m more like a working father, or at least the easy image of the father — sure, he loves the kid, but he doesn’t have the magnetic pull toward the child.  well, i don’t think most fathers feel that way, certainly not if they allow themselves to feel everything in them.  but as for me, i’ve worked really hard to let myself feel what is really in me.  it’s an ongoing challenge in my life, and i’ve gotten better at it!  now that i’m there, though… well, it turns out there’s a lot to feel, and it isn’t all good.

i think that sounds sort of silly.  but these first few weeks are packed with so much emotion.  we’re learning a lot about nate, and about each other, and about our friends and family.  we’re not surprised by that many things — obviously we knew we wanted to parent together.  and if anything, friends and family have surpassed our hopes and expectations.  i feel really grateful.  as for nate… i guess we didn’t know what to expect!  there’s a lot of trial and error with almost everything, it’s so intense. 

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Responses

  1. Keep hanging in there. It does get easier. Will you be able to take any more leave? I’m guessing you know this, but just in case, you may be entitled to FMLA after a second parent adoption (if you can get one) depending on how long you’ve been at your job. Some employers are happy to give leave before an adoption is complete (mine was). It can be hard to ask though, and certainly hard if any leave is unpaid. As you say, people expect you to be more like how they think dads are. Keep interacting. Keep connecting. Soon they won’t be confused anymore. Nate is lovely.


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