The great experiment of finding my new work/life balance has actually gone well. Despite the job not being for me, the hours are working.
Why four shorter days works for me:
*I adore my midweek mama/baba day.
*Having a midweek break from work lets my body reset a little, I feel more refreshed on a Thursday morning.
*Doing school hours means I can be there for my baby in the morning and afternoon without rushing him off and adding stress to our lives. I don’t miss as much of his life.
*School hour days are more manageable for my pain and fatigue levels. Unfortunately the baby doesn’t tend to nap in the afternoon any longer so I can’t rest, but it was awesome when I could!
*We don’t spend as long in traffic.
*I’m actually really efficient so I manage to cram a lot into my workday, I’d posit that I achieve more than a person there two hours longer (full time).
I feel really strongly about part time work and fulfilling careers for part time workers. Not just to retain the talent of mothers, the talent of those not physically suited to full time work (particularly computer work, who is?!), but also to allow for greater productivity, greater health and greater passion.
I’d suggest that I was about right with my guess for balance: working half time hours over four days. I appreciate that I am super lucky to be able to do that in terms of affordability (though this is not without sacrifice, half of my net income goes to childcare) but also in my health. I’ve done some hard yards to build up to this point, but I also think I’ve been blessed with better health this year. And, as always, a big reason I manage, is my husband. He sometimes struggles with being the main breadwinner, but he supports me in this decision, which I appreciate to no end.