No more nights!

I am no longer a night-shift worker!  Yay!

No more night shifts

The last few months have been tough – working full time night-shifts, trying to parent Oscar successfully during the days whilst Dan has been working (albeit from home), trying to be there for family who were struggling during difficult times and also attempting to train for the Autumn 100.

My last night shift was Saturday and this week is all change.  Dan is back in the office today (although just two days a week now going forward) and Oscar has picked up an extra morning at nursery from this term onwards to prepare him for school next year.
I’ve woken this morning feeling motivated and energised – ready to tackle the world again knowing that I haven’t got to try and fit everything into just two days before juggling fitting sleep around work and life.

I slept for maybe twenty minutes on my return from work Sunday morning and then woke up feeling dreadful – sore throat, headache, feeling sick.  Just generally run down from a lack of sleep over the previous months I think.  It’s always the way – reach a holiday or some time out and my body decides to fall apart!  But the difference is, this time I won’t be returning to night shifts so my body will hopefully be able to completely recover.

Due to the pandemic I lost a big freelance contract and there was no coursework moderation role for me over the Summer this year, as exam boards did not ask for any to be submitted for the season.  But, by working full time hours in a well paid job and being savvy with our spending Dan and I have still managed to put away the money we would have saved across the year in just six months, so I have a bit of leeway now for a little while with the time to investigate further a few projects which I currently have in the pipeline.

I’m not sure what my options would be to return to full time work anyway – basically impossible with a child I imagine?  How do full time working parents work around school?  When Oscar starts next year I will need to be able to take him to school for 9 am and pick him up at 3:15 – 37 weeks of the year.  We don’t have family in the area to help with school runs so the responsibility of school drop-off and pick-up will fall solely on me.  I don’t want to put him into before and after-school clubs for hours on end if I don’t have to (although I know this works for many) and so working for myself is the only real option I have unless I want to return to working nights again (I don’t!)

The things I’m looking forward to being able to do now that my shifts have finished include; catching up on life admin, not having to struggle to fit all of my runs in across just four consecutive days, being able to raise my sleep average above 5 hours each night, feeling alive enough to enjoy Oscar during the day, my knees no longer getting a battering from kneeling for hours on end each night, not having to break my sleep up into three naps of 1-2 hours each day, removing the duvet that has lived in my car since March, there no longer being deep cuts in my fingertips from opening boxes 8 hours every night…

I will however miss; the extra money making its way into our bank account every four weeks, the discount on my food shop, the guaranteed 15,000 steps every night and the strength work I get from lugging cages of heavy cheese off the lorries and onto the shop floor, watching the beautiful sunrises from the car park roof at leaving off time and the feeling of being able to provide for my family.

Weston Favell sunrise from the roof

I did make epic use of my last day of discounted shopping yesterday – two full trolleys filled with enough store cupboard items to last another three month lockdown!  Good job we have a big kitchen!  I was super organised, – armed with a long list Dan, Oscar and I managed to get the whole shop done and to the car within seventy minutes!  (I still need to pack most of it away in the cupboards though – a task I saved for today!)

It’s just under five weeks now until the Autumn 100 and my training is well underway.  I’m happy with how my running has been going over the past few months – I even managed a new 5k PB time of 25:46 back in July!  My running club has begun meeting for training sessions again and I am lead coach for one of the groups from this term – something I’m really looking forward to.  I have lots of ideas for the runners of Group 4.

30 minute time trial

The year is looking up!

Has your life begun to return to some kind of normality again yet following the pandemic?
Ever worked through the night before?
If you’re a working parent, how do you juggle the school run around work?

6 thoughts on “No more nights!

  1. Yay for no more nights!! I am not a working parent but I was a child of working parents and while it was tough my parents made it work. My dad did morning drop off to school, my mom went into work super early in the morning, and then my mom did school pick up and my dad worked later into the evening. Is there anyway that Dan could have any more flexibility with his work schedule so its more of a “shared” responsibility??
    p.s. Have you considered working at the grocery store seasonally or as needed so that you don’t have to give up the discount??

    1. My degree is teaching – I stayed teaching until Oscar turned one – but I was up at 4am to get work done, would rush home to collect him from nursery at 4pm, get him fed, bathed and to bed, before working until 10pm or later each evening. We’ve been lucky that Dan’s job has been more flexible since Covid, as he now works from home on a permanent basis three days a week with just two days in the office. He has an hour for lunch each of those days, but he can’t really have Oscar outside of that time. He does a lot of the childcare at the weekends currently, and childcare is much more shared between us than it was pre-lockdown. I guess we just need to continue jiggling to make it work for us though! What did your parents do?
      Unfortunately to work at the supermarket seasonally I wouldn’t receive a discount – you need to have worked 12 continuous weeks to claim the discount – otherwise I would definitely be back for a bit over Christmas! 😉
      Mary recently posted…Less than four weeks to go and a possible parkrun returnMy Profile

  2. Hooray for no more night shifts!
    Since being back in school things feel further than normal for me because of all the changes we have had to make due to the pandemic, eg all the additional cleaning, handwashing, no assemblies, no leaving the room the bubble is assigned to, no hot lunches for the children etc. so it feels like I am thinking about it all of the time. I did see that parkrun is coming back by the end of October so that will feel like the weekends are more to look forward to again :)
    Maria @ Maria Runs recently posted…The final week of freedom (sort of) and autumn is settling inMy Profile

    1. It must be so hard to explain to the little ones, especially as parents will have had different levels of social distancing at home. I am so very glad that Oscar isn’t due to start school until next year, as it must be so hard especially on those going into reception. Or I guess those returning to Year 1, having missed out on most of their reception year.
      We will not have parkrun here in October as Public Health Northamptonshire have put a stop to it. I’m kind of glad as I don’t understand how parkrun could go ahead safely, yet we can’t meet with friends who have more than one child (three of us, four of them = more than 6. :( )
      Mary recently posted…Less than four weeks to go and a possible parkrun returnMy Profile

  3. My SMiL, who was a teacher, said that it was the children who had stability at home who thrived, even if they were at clubs and things after school a lot. The ones who had a haphazard life, with no idea what their schedule was struggled more than the ones who didn’t see their parents as much.

    I’m not sure how we’ll manage with LK – but she’s so used to having a full day at nursery (8am-5.30pm) that I think school will be OK. I suspect she’ll be a bit miffed that she’s at school late, considering how close we live to her school, but that’s something to worry about in 3 year’s time. And by that point, who knows what our working life will be.

    I tried compressing my hours – that didn’t work at all well. Being able to be part time was better, but that only lasted through the worst of lockdown. We’ve got no family nearby either – and what family we do have is decrepit in various ways anyhow, so I’m quite perturbed about when she goes to school. And holidays. Those will be trickier….
    Jane recently posted…Secondhand Rose?My Profile

    1. It’s so tricky to know what is for the best isn’t it? :( I guess at least while I was teaching I did have the school holidays off.
      Oscar is used to full days too. In fact I worked out the other day that his ‘mornings’ at nursery are the equivalent of a full day when he starts school, and he thinks they’re short days based on his full day on a Friday!
      All that we can continue to all do is what we think is best at the current time and maintaining this constant juggling act of Mum alongside everything else!
      Mary recently posted…Less than four weeks to go and a possible parkrun returnMy Profile

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