So I can say I was blessed to be one of those mom’s that got 6 weeks paid by my job for maternity leave. Though two months was really a blink of an eye I was happy to spend those precious moments for both of my sons now 4.5 years old and 6 months old. Now that I am back to work the hectic days of returning home and trying to spend time with kids and getting other night time routines done like dinner, bath time, pick up toys time, etc are in full swing.
I work a weird schedule at work too. I have a 9/80 schedule which means I work 9 hour days but I get the 1st and 3rd Fridays off which is great because I can go to the museum and not worry about to much crowding.
So on my way home from work I plan. I plan on what we will have for dinner, is it a bath night and any other chores I need to think of before I get home. I do this because then I don’t have to think about it when I get home. First thing I do is put the phone down. I don’t need it unless I want to take pictures of the boys being cute. I can always call or text or surf when the boys are in bed if I need to do this. Second I always take the time to say hello to my family and ask them about their days before I do anything. I want them to know that I care about them and what is going on. I know a 6 month old can’t say much now but a few babbles back and forth do get the giggles going. My 4.5 year old takes a little more time so I can always tell him to come to the kitchen to talk with me or I play with him in the tub. I also ask my wife how her day was and look at her when she talks while we eat dinner.
During the bedtime routine I read a book to my older son and do some small talk if he wants to tell me anything then I always kiss him and tell him I love him. Then for the 6 month old I feed him and rock him whisper love you and kiss him on his head before I put him to bed.
Even though this seems like little stuff I think it matters in the long run. Spending time with family and not being on the phone if you don’t have too is key. These moments are fleeting and soon the boys will be gone and having their own life experiences. So for the time being I want them to know that I do care even though I don’t seem them as often as I would like I can spend quality time with them even if it is only for a couple hours a night.
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