I would love nothing more than to be able to stay home all day with my little sweetie pie. I want to watch every moment of her growth and discovery – finding her feet, noticing the stuffed kitty in her crib, practicing sounds in her tiny little voice. I get bummed when I think that I might miss her “firsts” – first belly laugh, first time rolling over, first clear word, first steps… and I get jealous that Nana (who cares for Lily while I am at work) will get to see them before me. But then I remind myself that the “seconds” and “thirds” and even “hundredths” can be just as exciting as “firsts.”
While I’m at work, I daydream about being home with Lily: reading to her in the backyard, showing her all of the ladybugs in the garden, taking her for a walk around the neighborhood, singing songs to her while we play with her stuffed toys in her crib, doing creative projects to stimulate her growing mind… and then I rush home and try to cram all of those activities into the few precious moments between making and eating dinner, doing laundry, cleaning the house and getting ready for bed.
In the end, I have to go to work. And my hubby has to go to work. We have to bring home our paychecks to keep a roof over our heads and food on our table. It’s just the way it is for us. Sure, we could sell our house and find a smaller place with cheap rent, but that’s not the lifestyle we want for Lily. We have a big yard for Lily to run around in with our dog one day and a garden for Lily to nurture and enjoy. We don’t want to go back to a tiny place where a dog and garden wouldn’t fit.
So we sacrifice time with Lily in exchange for things we want to provide for her and the things we want her to experience, and we are very lucky to have Lily’s Nana in our lives to care for her while we work. It’s not a perfect system, but we are a team, and we will make it work.