So I did it! I made my Big Return. I worked my 12 on Friday night, was off Saturday to recover, and was back on last night. I was honestly worried that I would forget how to do my job, but I learned that my role as a therapist has become instinctual without my even realizing. And I have never felt so welcome in all of my life, so valued, so appreciated. Everyone I encountered, from fellow therapists and nurses, to physicians, to housekeepers and other support staff, would stop me in passing and ask about where I had been, about the baby, and show sincere relief that I was back. Professional respect is a great thing for which I have worked day in and day out. It is nice to know I have been successful.
I was not prepared for a few things, and had a few surprises. I missed Zach so badly. I did cry a bit as I was leaving him. I knew I would. But I literally was counting down the hours until I could hold him again. Then, upon seeing him at the end of my shift, I felt this overwhelming guilt that I had missed out on 12 hours of his life. I didn't even want to sleep because I didn't want to miss anymore. Exhaustion took over, however, and my eyes finally closed involuntarily. And I realized that my job can be pretty physically demanding. I mean, I knew it could be, but I never realized...I left work this morning with blisters on my feet, aching legs, an aching back. You name it. And I used to do 9 12's in a row. Now, after being off all of that time, I am asking myself how I ever managed that and a demanding school schedule.
So I am back. I have my life back, only it is infinitely better now with Zachy's presence. I really do have it all!