I'm ill. I feel shocking and my body is aching. In the past I would have forced myself to go into work and got through the week on flu plus and managed to keep myself going on pure determination.
Today, I was different. I'll spare the details but it was a 3am bathroom trip that involved coughing and sick when I realised I wasn't helping myself if I chose to go into work. I pride myself on being reliable and conscious that a day off can have an impact on some of my students. However, this is different. I am genuinely ill, I make the decision to go in and i'm still going to be ill. The only difference now is my little girl. I know that next week or next month no-one will remember whether I was off sick or whether I was in work. I also know that if I went in work then I'd come home and go straight to be because I'd be exhausted. And that was my decision made. I might miss out on her days, but I sure as hell am not going to miss out on the nights with her too. I lose so much precious time with her when i'm well and I couldn't, not for all the reliability in the world, lose anymore when I can avoid it.
So I phoned in sick, and today I've lived with the guilt of no longer soldiering on. It's a small price to pay though for having an hour with my daughter without being too exhausted just to hold her. I also know the guilt of not having that time would far outweigh anything else.
They said my priorities would change once I had a baby to look after, I didn't realise that my whole perspective on life has changed. I wont have martyr on my headstone when I'm gone, but I'm hoping I'll have 'much loved mum' in its place.