A colleague was returning to work today after her maternity leave. I baked some wholemeal chocolate star cakes to bring in and put on her desk. I remember how hard I found it returning to the busy pace of a hospital after time at home with Sian. I felt constantly pulled, wondering how she was and wishing I could win the lottery and stay home with her.
Over the following year I became pregnant with Rhiannon and the cost of two places in childcare v's my nurses salary meant that I gave up work. The next few years I really appreciated being home with the girls and then Gareth too.
I take my hat off to the many working mums I know. Although I am back working now it is not quite so hard knowing that they are at school while I am in the hospital. I really hope that my colleague settles back into a routine and that the coming weeks get a bit easier on her.
It's a bit of a cliche saying that those years when the kids are small go so quickly, but they do and before long they are almost forgotten, until you see a young mum starting her own juggling act and memories rush back.
"You will never have this day with your children again. Tomorrow they'll be a little older than they were today. This day is a gift. Just breathe, notice, study their faces and little feet. Pay attention. Relish the charms of the present"