The Ordinary Moments – Thursdays

When I first went back to work after maternity leave I returned full time. As a teacher I thought it would be fine as you’re only ever a few weeks away from a holiday. I very quickly realised it wasn’t fine and I hated it. On a Sunday afternoon I would start to feel anxious as I would feel it would be another full week before I got to spend any proper time with O.

I carried on until Christmas but couldn’t fail to notice how withdrawn I was becoming. I’d go into the staff room and just sit on my own, not wanting to talk to anyone (this isn’t like me at all!) and I was horrible at home, snapping at hubby and weepy a lot of the time.

Something had to change! And with a check of the finances to make sure it was doable we made the decision that I would request to go to 4 days the following academic year. I immediately felt a huge weight had been lifted and knowing this helped me get through the remainder of the school year.

With teaching you don’t really get a choice as to what will be your day off, it’s all down to timetabling! In the roulette that is secondary school scheduling I’ve ended up with Thursday as my day off, and I love it.

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I get the main chunk of the week over and done with and then get a very precious day off with my boy.  I love how on those days we have nowhere to go, and can take things completely at our pace.  If little man doesn’t want to put his pants on for an hour it really doesn’t matter.

Hubby tries as much as possible to not schedule any early meetings for a Thursday so we can switch the alarm off and have a relatively chilled morning with milk, bic bics and tea.  We can stay in our our PJ’s as long as we want, or we can get dressed early and hit the park while its quiet.  I love that we generally have no plans and can do pretty much whatever we want, a lunch trip to Costa, a visit to the local playgroup, a game of footie in the garden, whatever the mood takes us.

There’s nothing amazingly extraordinary about our Thursdays but they mean the world to me and I cherish every moment.  Plus I go back into work on Friday on a high as I’ve had a day out of the place and there’s only one day to get through until the weekend.  Thursday is my favourite day of the week by a mile and when we’re having snooozy cuddles at half 8 on a mid week morning, I know I made the right decision.

mummy daddy me
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21 Comments

  1. May 18, 2014 / 6:14 am

    It sounds like you definitely did make the right decision. Thursdays must be such a special day. They sound lovely here too. It’s so nice to be able to take things at your own pace without having anything to rush to. Well done you for making that decision x

    • May 18, 2014 / 6:42 am

      I treasure the mornings because every other weekday morning is a mad rush to get out of the door. If I leave any later than 8am I’ll be late so it can be a bit of a mad rush! x

  2. May 18, 2014 / 6:22 am

    Brilliant, and lovely post. I too was full time for just over a year, and weekends were never what I wanted them to be, as there was housework etc to do. Now I’m part time too (2.5 days) and it’s amazing – I’m poor now, and struggle financially, but I get the second half of the week with my girls, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
    I know the feeling of needing that lazy, quality time! Xxx

    • May 18, 2014 / 6:41 am

      Thanks, in an ideal world I’d love to go to 3 days but at the moment 4 works for us really well. He goes to nursery one day a week which is great for his socialising with other kids and the rest of the time he’s with grandparents who adore getting to spend their quality time with him.
      I know what you mean about the weekends, I felt like I was dragging him round busy supermarkets to get the weekly shop done and then watching me tidy. Not much fun for a toddler! xx

  3. cariemay
    May 18, 2014 / 7:18 am

    That sounds like a perfect solution, I’ve got two days at home with girls each week and I really look forward to them and treasure the less crazy manic get out the door kind of a morning. We still have to get the cleaning and the chores done, but there’s a bit of time to just hang out together too!

  4. pottymouthedmummy
    May 18, 2014 / 8:13 am

    That’s lovely that you have Thursdays. I can thoroughly appreciate how much difference this must make to you. I crave that sort of thing, for now I work from home one day a week and it helps a little but it’s not the same as being completely off xxx

  5. May 18, 2014 / 1:47 pm

    Oh how lovely do your Thursdays sound?! I used to be a teacher, until the kiddies came along and while, like you say the holidays are just around the corner, the weeks can be hectic and tiring!

  6. May 18, 2014 / 3:08 pm

    Your Thursday sound lovely, sometime the greatest days are when you have nowhere to be and you can take things at your own (or your son’s pace!) Like you said great that it’s on a Thursday then you only have one more day until the weekend, best of both worlds really! Love the picture of him snuggled in bed. lazy mornings are the best! xx

  7. May 18, 2014 / 4:08 pm

    It’s great that you managed to go down to 4 days. I have heard from others that there can be a struggle to get this arrangement when you’re a teacher! My husband is a teacher and I can understand that although it’s only ever a few weeks until a holiday it’s so so intense when it’s term time!

    • May 18, 2014 / 5:09 pm

      I’m really lucky as my head is really understanding of staff with young families and tries to accommodate most part time requests. I know a few schools not that far from where we are that refuse to have part-time staff. I must gave forgotten whilst on mat leave how intense those weeks in school are! x

  8. May 18, 2014 / 4:51 pm

    I am doing the timetabling this year and while I have been allocating the classes to part time staff, I have been thinking about the articles you have written about how difficult it is to juggle full time teaching with quality of life with young children. I can really feel the appreciation of your day off and your relief at taking the decision to go part time.
    I have to say that 4 days a week is much easier to timetable than 3 days and the 2 day a week staff are a nightmare!

    • May 19, 2014 / 8:06 pm

      I don’t envy your task, time tabling is a nightmare. Especially in our department as most of us are part-time. Luckily our timetable man is lovely and if you keep in his good books he’ll try to accommodate you as much as is possible! x

  9. May 18, 2014 / 6:32 pm

    Ah this is a lovely post and it is really nice to get an insight into your Thursday’s. I can imagine just how much you appreciate and look forward to your day off, and I bet it also really breaks up the working week as well. It’s great that you have the option to do this. x

  10. May 19, 2014 / 5:43 am

    Well done for making it through that first year full time! When I first went back I did 3 days, and the timetable meant I had Wednesday off each week, then either Tuesday or Thursday which was great as I could keep going to my favourite groups on alternate weeks!

  11. Ritz
    May 19, 2014 / 7:15 am

    so glad you got to make the decision and spend time with O on Thursdays during the week, must be so special. we go to the group on thursdays too and its something i really look forward too 🙂 xx

  12. May 19, 2014 / 12:09 pm

    I always have so much respect for worrking mothers. I have been volunteering but now needs to stop as I cant find someone who can look after my son. Its so hard to juggle work & motherhood personally. I am glad you are making it work =) #ordinarymoments

  13. Jenny
    May 19, 2014 / 1:28 pm

    Ahhh hunny so glad you took that step and realized something needs to change and have your special thursdays now with O. It’s so sweet and such a great thing to have a whole day together spending quality time that you wouldn’t have had before. Especially while they are young!!!! I have so much respect for you working four days a week. And i know that must be hard. You are so strong and such a great mother!!! I am proud of you what a lovely post. #magicmoments (I have thursday just with MM we must get a thursday together soon)! 🙂

    • May 19, 2014 / 8:09 pm

      Jenny, you always write such lovely comments, thank you. I love our Thursdays. It makes me laugh when hubby asks what we’ve done with our day and I can’t really tell him, the days just flown by without us really doing anything.
      I’m always up for a Thursday me up, name the day 🙂 xx

  14. May 19, 2014 / 9:08 pm

    It really sounds like you’ve got a good balance now and it’s great that your head is supportive of part-time teachers. I’m due to go back to school after the summer holidays, probably full time initially which I know is going to be really hard, but in a purely financial way it makes sense – we’re hoping to have another baby next year so if I go back full time I get full time maternity pay too! I may change my mind about it being a good idea when I have to do it though!

  15. May 20, 2014 / 11:16 am

    This sounds absolutely fab! And I am very jealous. I really, really, want to drop a day next year and only do four days, but our finances just won’t stretch that far. I am the main earner in our house. I miss Charlie so much 🙁 xx

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