I've been back at work almost two months now, and it's gone by so fast that I keep telling people my baby is a month younger than he really is.
I'm enjoying being back in paid employment. I find work so absorbing that most of the time I don't even miss Wriggly too much. Perhaps this is because I only took about nine months off, so when I returned to my day job much was as I had left it and I naturally fell back into old routines that existed before my son was even a twinkle in the eye.
As the day grinds towards 5pm I tend to look forward to driving home, because I know that Wriggly will be there at the other end with a ready smile and a loving heart, keen to see his Mummy and have a cuddle. It's even better than having that Fresh 'n' Fruity yoghurt pottle welcoming you into the house each night. Although possibly stickier, as my arrival usually coincides with dinner time for the short one.
I thought I'd miss the milestones and get quite uptight about it, but I'm coping, so far. He's started that dragging pre-crawl movement some label "commando", and he's far more vocally communicative than in the past. I make an effort to spend as much time as possible with him on the weekends, around attempts to sleep. On Saturday I got to see my little boy pull himself up to standing for the first time ever, while his dad had a well deserved lie-in. I realised being home full-time isn't any guarantee that you get to see every development first.
Swapping roles with my partner has been good for us, as well as for Wriggly. We've got a much better understanding of what it's like to wear each other's slippers now and we're much kinder to each other as a result. I'm convinced that those with babies really do need someone to act as "wife" so they can get by; I love being released from cooking and cleaning most of the time and it means that when I'm home I'm there for my son, my partner and myself.
I'm not sure where this will go next. My work is changing, in ways I find exciting but also exhausting. Contemplating a near future that might involve more travel is less attractive than it would have been two years ago; the one night I've spent away for work so far was really hard.
Like so many mothers, and no doubt many fathers, before me I'm just going to hang in there and see what happens. I'm learning that adaptability is possibly the most important skill a parent can possess.