My son turns five on November 18 this year. I resumed work when he was two-and-a-half months old, and consequently only spend any real time with him on weekends and holidays. Going home from work last night, I was consciously thinking of him at home — as opposed to unconsciously thinking of him — which is something I do all the time, I suppose. But I had the strangest feeling that I didn’t know him at all, and didn’t know what went on in his little mind, simply because I didn’t interact with him often enough.
I can read him, and I can guess what will be enjoyable for him, but I still occasionally feel helpless when he throws a tantrum, and then oddly resentful when his grandfather (my father-in-law) is obviously able to calm him down sooner than I.
But this is not to air my petty grievances and resentments. What I want to find out is a way to connect with him. From what I can see, he’s growing into a difficult, opinionated child, who cries easily and who cannot be deflected from a course of action. and I desperately want him not to, for his own sake. But is this change in character coming about because I don’t spend enough time with him? I want someone to say no it isn’t, but I suspect it might be.
Will let you know when I find out, but I suspect my days as a full-time working mother are coming to an end.