Sometimes, when I am on holiday, I tell people I work for the Council – it stops all those embarrassing questions and conversations:-
“I got stopped for speeding last week. How do I get off the ticket”
“Do you get Commission for all the tickets you dish out?”
But today, I will admit, I am a Police Officer. And I work shifts. I don’t have a nice comfortable 9-5 office job.
And being a Police Officer raises a different set of problems for being a parent.
Take this week for example.
On Monday, I worked a 4pm – Midnight. I finished a little late and got home about 1am. After a quiet cup of tea, I got into bed and slept until 7am. I wanted to be able to take MiniM to school, because I needed to speak to one of the other parents.
Tuesday I was supposed to work a 4pm – midnight again. So, I didn’t see MiniM after school. I was late off, not finishing until 2 am. I got home at 3am, and got into bed about 3.30am.
Wednesday (today I think), there was no way I could get out of bed to take MiniM to school, so I had a guilty lie in. I am due to work a 4pm – Midnight again tonight. I won’t see MiniM until tomorrow morning, unless I get off late again.
I speak to MiniM by telephone, and because this is her ‘Norm’ she copes ok with not seeing me every day. I make a point of speaking to her every day, so that when we do meet up, we are not playing catch-up with each others news.
Time together is precious for us. I can go for days without seeing MiniM. I don’t like that, but it is a by-product of the job I do.
If you work permanent days and get to see your little people every day, you are very lucky. Cherish those times, and spare a thought for those parents who work shifts, or who work away and don’t get daily contact with their children.