Being on maternity leave and, subsequently, working part-time, is a rather odd experience. It feels a bit like you're in limbo a lot of the time. I've felt guilty more than a few times on the days when I've had an 'easy' parenting day, and got to do something fun as well. Although there are days that more than make up for it, when the stars align, I feel like I'm getting away with something. I feel a general sense of guilt, probably because for almost all of my life, weekdays have been for *working* and not for fun, and also a specific one, in that Paul is stuck at work doing extra long days to make this work for us.
And so, when I had an idea on a random Thursday morning to make some berry pancakes for breakfast, I paused for a moment. Berry pancakes aren't for Thursday, my brain said. They're a treat. Something for a weekend. Something fun. And Thursdays aren't for fun. Paul probably ate a boring breakfast at his desk, so it's not really fair for me to make pancakes for us.
But, I eventually decided to make the pancakes anyway. Partly because I will do anything to make my greedy carb-loving baby happy, but also partly because I realised I was being a bit silly. Me not having pancakes wouldn't mean Paul could have them, and it certainly wouldn't make his day worse. And who says pancakes are for weekends only? Every day is worthy of pancakes. It is worth trying to make every day a little bit special, and doing something that makes you happy. So, I made the pancakes and Ben got covered in blueberries and we had a good time.
So, here's a reminder for me and for you...
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even if someone else can't or won't.
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even if you have a to do list as long as your arm.
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even if it's not the weekend (!)
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even when the news makes you want to despair.
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even if it's something out of the ordinary.
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, even if you feel a bit guilty about it.
You are allowed to do what makes you happy, just because.