I've recently started Abbey in childcare. For two days of each week, she is there playing with other kids and being looked after by some very lovely ladies.
All because I needed to work. And because I was going quietly (and sometimes not-so-quietly) insane.
Working from home was one thing when she was little (and even then, I used to put her into occasional care when I had a lot to do). Even as she grew a bit older, at least I knew nap time would bring some relief - a quick couple of hours of rushing through things.
But for the last six months, there have been no daytime naps. Early bedtimes, yes, but my mind is virtually useless after mid-afternoon (and I, too, like early bedtimes, so there's not much time for work there!).
It all came to a peak a few weeks ago, when I had this feeling that I couldn't achieve anything I wanted to. Not at the same time as being the mother I want to be, anyway. I've written a few times about my struggle to find the balance between the two, but I just couldn't do it all.
So, Abbey now goes to childcare. Do I feel guilty? Surprisingly, no. But it helps that I've managed to get some extra writing work to pay for it (yay!). And it most definitely helps that my little girl is a social and outgoing child, who runs to the door at the sound of the word 'childcare', runs inside the toddler room with a brief 'See ya later!' to me, and has to be dragged from there at the end of the day.
She is loving it. And I'm loving having this time to write (my corporate work has dried up somewhat, so it's me as a part-time writer). I promised myself I would also find time in those two days a week to do something just for me, that isn't work - but I don't. I write all day long. And I'm thrilled to be doing just that.