Community Magazine

Advice to My Sister

By Specialneedmom2 @specialneedmom2

One thing I’ve found with any advice I give, is that I tell people what I want people to tell me if I am in a similar situation.  I remember chatting with one of the neighbourhood moms about how she really wanted to move back home to Newfoundland, and how they could afford to live on less money there, and how all their family are there and how she felt stuck in the city.

I told her to go.  Because that’s what I wished someone would have told me.  Get up and leave this place and look for something else, because where you are now isn’t where it’s all at.  Giving up something means you have room for something new.  You can check out Big City to Small Town for more on this one.

But just I told her to do what I really wanted to do.  I hadn’t even really realised it at the time, I only knew I wanted to do a similar move.  It was something I’ve dreamed of.  It took a while to process and plan, but we will be moving soon enough.  I’m not sure why I don’t listen to myself, maybe just needed to hear it from someone else.

I could always record myself telling someone else what I really want to do.  Maybe then I’d listen to myself.

My sister doesn’t read my blog, so she’s not likely to benefit from my advice.  I’ve told her this stuff to her face, but she won’t listen.  So I’ll post it here and then maybe I’ll listen to it, because I know this is what I want to hear.

The news: My sister is pregnant – with twins!  Yay!

So my tried and true advice for any new mom is this:

Go out and buy yourself a nice jacket, great shoes and designer handbag.  Expect that any of these may be covered in baby poop or puke, so durable materials are a must.

The jacket is to camouflage and cover your body post-baby and the shoes and handbag are to deflect attention from your other stained clothes, messy hair and frumpy appearance.  You want to be the lady carrying the nice handbag down the street, no one will even notice the dark circles under your eyes or the baby puke on your shirt.

Also, stock your freezer with protein-rich meals that you can eat with one hand.  You will be holding at least one baby with the other.  Think burrito so long as it’s not too drippy.  You may need to resort to a protein shake and a straw.

Easy-peasy advice anyone would want to follow, right?

But there are some bigger issues: my sister is expecting twins after a series of heart wrenching miscarriages, fertility treatments and IVF.  She is considered to be high risk but at a safe point in her pregnancy.  So I feel ok sharing this stuff, now.

The big piece of advice is this:

Let your job go.  It’s not that important in the grand scheme of things.  You will have two children that you desperately wanted and you will want to be with them.

Where we live the government offers a 12 month maternity leave and you are paid just under what you’d earn on minimum wage.  So my sister is taking 12 months off work, and then could have the option of taking up to three years of unpaid leave from her employer.  If she did this her job could be reshuffled in any way possible and she would not earn seniority for her time off.  So she could get bumped out of her position completely by someone else.

I say let the job go.  It’s not that important, really.

What’s important?  Your children, those precious beings you so desperately wanted.  You need to spend some time with them.

Time, you cannot get back time.  Time flies, time is lost, time is wasted.  You cannot get time back with your children.  I say take the time, and be prepared to deal with whatever job changes come your way.  Heck, those changes could happen even if you are working.

She wants to get a nanny.  She’s calculated the cost of childcare centres and the waitlists and decided a nanny is the best thing for her family.  The nanny’s salary would take up most of her earnings.  She is fortunate, her husband is the primary wage earner in their family.

I say let the job go.  There will be others.  There will never be this time again with your children.

That’s advice I need to remember.

What are your thoughts on this situation – twins, job, childcare??

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