Whether you are working at home or working outside of the home and bringing your child to work with you, it can sometimes be challenging to balance working and parenting. Depending upon how old your child is, they can be doing any one of a number of things at any given time that makes it hard to get work done. Some children make a fuss whenever mom or dad is on the phone, because either they are not getting attention or, in my case, the little one wants to play with the phone. Sometimes, they could care less that there are neat toys that they can play with because getting in to things that they should not be getting into is much, much more entertaining. Other times, they just need you. A lot. Which is okay with me, since much of the time my little guy is happily immersed in play and does not want to be interrupted by hugs and cuddles so I take them when I can get them.
Sometimes in the place where working and parenting coexist, things can happen that are downright surprising. Today, for example, I brought my son to work. I knew that he would be coming to work with me today ever since I saw the schedule last week. What I did not know when I saw the schedule last week was that he would be walking. Not just a few steps here and there, standing and walking much of the time. This all happened within the past four days or so, which made Christmas extra special. I am so proud of him and so amazed at how quickly he developed such good balance and control. That said, I was apprehensive this morning as we got into the car to go to work. My son is quite different now that he has learned to walk. It seems as though he went from baby to toddler in the blink of an eye. My nervousness this morning was because this transition happened so fast and I am still adjusting to being the parent of a toddler, because it seems as though so many things about him have changed.
This is where the surprise comes in. I was bracing myself for a day filled with “no’s (from me, not from him – he has not quite caught on to that yet) and upsets caused by mommy having to remove him from this, that, and every other thing that he is getting in to that he should not be. Not today. Even though I pulled him out of bed hours before he would usually wake up, he was a very good sport about getting out of the house. Once we arrived at work, he toddled about the office and happily played with the toys we brought and other things that were not off limits. I was able to ward off any upsets that would have happened if I had to stop him from playing with the drawers or cabinets by taping most of the drawers shut with Scotch tape and using rubber bands to secure the doors of the cabinet. We had a great day. I got a lot done while he was “busy”, and we spent some nice time playing together too. As we drove home, I thanked him for a wonderful day. Even though he may not have known what I was saying, I was so grateful that I had to express that to him.