A (not so) fresh start

You would think that after ten days of holiday, you would be back at work with a fresh mind, completely revived.

Well, think again.

The past ten days have been filled with lots of fun and good stuff, and even more stuff to entertain the little one. Don’t get me wrong. I loved all of it. But it was exhausting. So much so, that I felt more drained with every day passing by. This is of course a reality caused in part by the current situation, where daycare or a nanny is not really an option, so alone time or time for two is out of question. During the holidays, child care occupied our brains from about 6AM to 8PM, pretty much every day. However, on work days, it is a bit different. We take turns in keeping an eye on Rafa, so that the boy is never alone. That is our absolute priority. So we both get some self-time every now and then, albeit in the room next door, in our home office. The irony is that apparently work – sometimes – is a form of relaxation to me. A couple of hours in the greenhouse, working on my plants. Doing some data analysis, or even better, some writing, can be very soothing to the brain.

So for almost two weeks, that form of relaxation was not there. Today we had to flip the switch again. Back to work. Admittedly, the first day of the semester is not the best first work day. I started with two Zoom meetings right off the bat. The rest of the day seemed to be responding to students and colleagues, mostly. I am absolutely exhausted and braindead now*. I find it very tiring to switch from subject to sucject all the time, especially when I broke my old routine with a holiday. Rafa also seemed not to like the switch. He’s been very upset all day – about everything really. But I think he will be fine.

I’ll try again tomorrow.


* I have been having a few restless nights too. There’s a very good reason for those, and they should end soon. We’re in the middle of something new and exciting and of course my mind found it more interesting than proper sleep. I will explain more on this cryptic part in a coming post.

Published by Robin Heinen

Father of two | Husband | Entomologist and Ecologist | Postdoctoral Researcher @ TUM | Traveler | Coffee Addict

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