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Mom of three confesses to taking secret days off while kids are at daycare


Everyone has a secret sometimes, a white lie, something they would rather not say out loud. In Metro‘s section Confession dares a Metroreader to do so anyway. This week: Anneke (32), who confesses that she regularly takes a day off when her children are at daycare.

“’Congratulations ma’am, it’s twins’. The midwife looked at me expectantly, expecting a happy reaction, but I was especially shocked when my husband and I went for a first ultrasound. It was our second child, we already had a daughter who was just 1 year old. The desire for a second one was deeply rooted, we didn’t know that it would succeed so quickly, because the first attempt took a year and a half. So twins came as a total surprise. The thought that I would soon have three children under the age of two took my breath away.

Confession: spicy, three children

Anyway, of course that feeling improved. I started to get used to the idea and found it very special, two identical mini-humans who would always have each other. And their big sister, of course. At least it would never be boring at home. Fortunately, my pregnancy went without too many complications and Stijn and Joep were born at 34 weeks. A few weeks later they were allowed to go home, they did so well.

Stijn and Joep have just turned one year old, and Cato is almost three. Well, it’s certainly not boring at home. To be honest, I find it tough, three very young children. And I’m not just talking about the broken nights we still have – teeth, runny noses, chicken pox, and so on. The days are also busy. The twins get excited about everything and break everything, Cato gets angry when they touch her things and the house is too small several times a day.

Weinig me-time

Our children go to daycare for four days. That’s a lot, but it is a conscious choice. My husband and I both work a lot – he in the construction industry, I am a freelance illustrator. On Wednesdays I am home with the children, we spend the weekends together, the rest we work. But that also means that I never actually have a moment for myself. On working days I have to focus on my work, on days off the children are there. Always. Everywhere. And I find that quite difficult. Of course, my husband and I take turns by sometimes going out on our own during the weekends, but there is little left of me-time. I also prefer to go to bed as quickly as possible in the evening, instead of meeting up with friends – sleep is sacred in that respect.

A month ago I was suddenly having a hard time: I had had yet another broken night, I was going crazy with ‘mama’ on my mind all day and I couldn’t bear it all anymore. So I decided to take a day off for myself while the kids were in daycare. After dropping them off, I immediately went back to bed at home for a few hours of sleep. I drank hot (!) coffee at my leisure, took a walk outside, watched a series and felt reborn. I thought it was great, I was completely charged. And the great thing is that I work for myself, so I don’t have a boss to reprimand me.

More often a day off

In fact, I enjoyed it so much that I have already taken a day off like this a few times. So I went shopping one morning, went to the movies alone and had an extensive lunch with a newspaper. I thoroughly enjoy those moments, but I also feel guilty. To my children, but also to my husband – after all, he is working hard and cannot just take time off. We really need the money for this working day – childcare is expensive enough as it is.

Still, I can’t resist, I notice that I need this to cope with the other days. Taking the children to visit family for a day is also not possible, because everyone lives far away. Besides, I think it’s a bit of a stretch to saddle people with three children.

That’s why I try to work even faster and harder on my other working days, so that everything gets done and I don’t miss a deadline. I take on more boring jobs that aren’t as fun to do, but pay better. And I secretly enjoy my days off. Because really confessing that to those around me? I would not dare to do that.”

The names have been changed for reasons of privacy in combination with sensitive topics. The real names are known to the editors.

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2024-03-29 18:35:00
#Confessed #secretly #time #children #daycare

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