Tuesday, 25 February 2014


whorrified, piggly wiggly, daughter, granddaughter, working moms,
for whom playing hooky is totally worth the risk.

I did something today that merely five years ago would have been unthinkable. I took a day off work, not because I was sick, not because I had an urgent medical appointment, but because I felt like it. Because I hadn't seen my granddaughter for more than a week and I missed her dear little face. Desperately.

In case you missed this post, I was there the moment she came into this world six weeks ago and not one full week has gone by since that I haven't held her warm little body and listened to her breathing. It's a primal thing that nothing can match except of course, the feeling of holding my own babies but that was so long ago it was practically the pioneer days. I vividly remember tucking them into their rabbit-fur papooses while I lovingly prepared pemmican for our breakfast (and lunch, and dinner; no word of a lie every one of my babies' first words were: "Jesus Christ, not PEMMICAN again!"). 

For almost my entire adult life, with a few painfully short reprieves, I have been a single working mom, driven by equal parts financial urgency and ambition. I totally bought into the "you can have it all" lie theory because I had to. I worked long hours, I worked overtime, I worked holidays, I worked nights. I went to work when I should have been home in bed nursing a cold. I went to work three days after having surgery. I went to work, and this is actually borderline insane, after a car accident that left me with a cracked sternum and two broken ribs. I went to work on crutches way too soon after damn near ripping my leg off in a moped accident. My point being that even workaholics look at me, shake their heads and mutter, "Woman, you got a problem!" 

And then along came grandchildren, and suddenly, everything changed. Suddenly, the work/life balance has been turned on its head. Suddenly, if more than a handful of days go by and I don't get a texted photo of the newborn, I start to have trouble sleeping. So today, without even the slightest pang of guilt, I took the day off and I spent it with my granddaughter and my two daughters, and my heart fairly burst with happiness at the simple thrilling joy of it. 

Oh trust me, I still love my job. I still work hard. I still stay late and work on my days off and I still want to believe women can have it all. It's just that, these days, my definition of "all" is a bundle of adorableness, her mother and her aunt.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Good lord, woman, you've gone soft! I never thought I'd see the day.
MY NOTE: *shoots editor point-blank in the face, pours martini* I find the grown-up ones much easier to resist.