cat with glasses

Am I still a cool cat?

It’s Friday night and Frenchie Mummy is well excited. Tonight she is going out with her colleagues from work. First proper night out on her own, meaning that Grumpy Boyfriend will be looking after Baba while Maman is playing hard. Yes, it’s party time: she will have some food and maybe a drink afterwards if she feels very daring. Quelle aventure!

So Maman makes herself nice: no leggings and flat pumps tonight. She gets this (a bit tarty?) dress out of her wardrobe and allows herself a bit too much mascara and her strongest fragrance. Grumpy Boyfriend drops her because she can’t really walk in her high heels. She is not used to wearing that kind of shoes anymore. She even finds them uncomfortable, to be honest… But they cost her a little fortune in the sales, so she will deal with it!

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Cinderella is out!

She feels like a little girl in a candy shop. She wants to see everyone and get to know the latest gossips from school. The end of school year meal is always fun. The other teachers are usually relaxed as the stress of the exams is gone and Summer Holidays are close. Plus the Head of the Department is leaving to start working in a new school in September. He will definitely buy some drinks to the team.

Frenchie Mummy arrives at the hype restaurant booked for the occasion. Horreur, she is the first to arrive! She was so happy to go out that she is a bit early. She doesn’t like being early. It doesn’t seem cool enough. So she turns around and goes to the bank instead. ‘Aie! Those shoes are evil!’ She walks back to the restaurant after having taken some money.

This time, some people have arrived and she sits down with them. The evening gets started and everyone is in a good mood. Frenchie Mummy is very happy. She drinks up avec bonheur many glasses of Prosecco. The food is delicious, the conversation is going well. All good, right?

Oui mais voilà, Frenchie Mummy is disappointed. Nobody asks her about her (so fantastic!) blog. Nobody is curious to know everything about Baba either. To make it worse, she feels completely out of the bubble. ‘This one is going to get married’. ‘A is leaving the school because he applied for a better job, better paid’. ‘B is going to be the new head of year 8 from September’. And other gossips the rest of the team is catching up with. I am sitting there, sipping my Prosseco and all I manage to say is ‘What? How? When? Why?’ There are even some conversations that I am totally lost with.

My buddy who I normally have fun with is not there either, so I start feeling lonely. I don’t think the team does it on purpose to make me feel apart. It’s just a fact: I am not part of the cool cats anymore. Now, I am just a mummy at home who only worries are to make sure Baba has done enough poop on the day and is daily washed…

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The cool cats: c’est moi!

They talk about exams, new members of staff, new lessons they incorporate in the scheme of work and I am there thinking that I miss my baby…What happened to me? I used to be a member well loved. I mean, they still love me of course, but it’s not the same. I can’t even interact with them. If they talk about the bulletin from last week, I just nod and sip more Prosseco. What else to do? Brilliant, now I am going to get drunk as well…

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Prosseco time 🍷🎆

I better stop. I feel out of touch, a bit lost and suddenly, I feel a bit nostalgic. It used to be me, a French teacher running around, trying to do it all. Making sure that I would prepare the best lessons ever. Having some fun lessons with my form. Meeting parents and learning to know their family over the years. A different life from now

5 minutes later and all of sudden, I realise that Grumpy Boyfriend tried to call me twice. Anxious, imagining the worst (He can’t find a nappy and a lot of poo is all over the sofa? Baba fell on the floor? He misses me? Not, this one is very unlikely… He killed Baba?), I run outside as it’s too noisy and call him back. Once, twice, three times. No answer. So nothing on his mobile and every time I call our landline number, I reach the voicemail. Oh my god, first time ever I leave him alone with le bébé and he killed him. He is not at home. He must be on the way to the emergencies now!!!! I knew I should not have gone out

Eventually, after 10 minutes, I reach him. Imagine, a hysterical woman, dressed like a tart, screaming on the phone, blaspheming in French. That’s me. Yeah, the perfect picture…

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I don’t look like that!

‘Where have you been?! I called you like 20 times?!!!’ He was on the phone with Belle- Maman. She called him. Fantastic! Now my mother-in-law is probably thinking that I am the worst mum on earth, abandoning my baby to go out and party on a Friday night. I can even hear Baba crying in the background. Merveilleux… Best night ever. Not only I feel out of the loop with my colleagues, but now I also feel like the most selfish woman to have deserted my son…

I double-check mes hommes are both fine. ‘Do you want me to go home? I can catch a cab in 5 minutes.’ Grumpy Boyfriend reassures me that Baba is now falling asleep. It’s hot and I am not here to put him to bed like I normally do. Le pauvre petit must have been quite distressed. But it’s all good now. So I join the others back inside. I must admit that I am not into it. Secretly, I am even hoping that Grumpy Boyfriend calls me back and begs me to rush home as he can’t handle the baby…

The night continues and the others convince me to join them to the pub for one last drink. They are certain that Grumpy Boyfriend can handle the situation. For sure, he wouldn’t want to spoil my night out. Well, it’s already happened, to be honest. More drinks and diverse conversations, later on, I am eventually home before 11pm.

Exhausted, I rush to Baba’s bed to make sure he is fine. He sleeps like an angel. Grumpy Boyfriend did an amazing job. It’s just that I got worried for nothing. Happy to be home, I get rid of my tarty outfit and get showered.

The night out got me thinking. Of course, I loved seeing everyone and it was quite fun. But at the same time, I never felt so different from them. I am not one of them anymore. My life has changed. It makes me feel sad. I am even worried about January when I get back to work.

It will be all different. P, my boss won’t be there anymore. The person who is replacing him will be fabulous, no doubt. But it won’t be him anymore. Two other people would have left the team. I will get back to something different.

Et moi? Well, it will be massively different too. I will be back part-time. I know I am lucky to be able to do so and should not complain, but part of me fears it. I will have to manage it somehow. I will have to organise myself so that I do a good job as well as being a good maman for Baba. I am already scared of feeling guilty. You know, bringing some work back home on my days off and working when I should spend some time with him…

I go to bed, understanding how lucky I am to have a year off work. But sad as well, not to be totally part of the gang anymore… Just being on my own, not having the same worries and jobs as the others, as I used to do.

This night out was far from being a success: I felt lost, unable to really be part of it. And it makes me feel a bit angry, to be honest. I worked so hard to get where I am in the school and it feels like I will have to kind of start from scratch again. I am not sure I will have the desire or the energy to do so.

What about you? Did you go out with your colleagues while on maternity leave? How did you feel? And how was it to get back into it?

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Frenchie Mummy, forever a cool cat of course!

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0 thoughts on “Am I still a cool cat?

  1. I felt EXACTLY like this when I went out for the first time. It’s a hard adjustment when you’re reminded how much your life has changed in ways you didn’t really think about! X

  2. Maybe it did feel different because you’ve been completely out of it but when you go back in January there will be new teachers, a new dynamic and the other girls who were also on maternity leave. You will be able to share your experiences with them. It will be different too because it will be a new chapter! Xx 😊

  3. When my kids were born I was a stay at home mom, or I tried to be. Turns out its not my thing so I went back to school but I found that socializing after having kids is much harder than it used to be before the little humans came into my life. These days I’d rather just stay home and chill with them watching netflix or playing checkers:) Popping over from #fartglitter

  4. Thank goodness for Prosecco! I expect it will be easier once you are back at work and back in the loop. Even though life is different you’ll find a way to make the old and new you work together – just give it time! #fartglitter

  5. Ah bless you, it must be so difficult to start getting back in touch after having time off and living in a baby bubble! I personally didn’t go back so I’m not familiar with how it would feel, but I initially I imagine I would struggle. I hope you soon get back into the swing of things when you return.

    #DreamTeam

  6. It is such a weird feeling being between two worlds. I miss the work ‘gang’, but feel I am not that person anymore, either. I am glad you got out. It gets easier and you will know that your little one is perfectly fine at home with Daddy; look out prosecco!!

  7. I had a night out with work part way through my Mat leave and it was exactly like this. I also returned part time, and at first I was terrified of how it would work and what would have changed, but it very quickly becomes the new normal. You will have changed and you will probably be far better at managing your time and priorities now that you are a Mum. I actually love going to work part time, it’s just enough to keep me in the loop and give me a little grown up time before stepping back into my Mummy Bubble. I’m sure you’ll be fine lovely. Sending hugs xx
    Thanks for linking with #fartglitter x

  8. I went out with a colleague recently and stayed over at hers; the first time I’d been apart from my kids when one of us wasn’t in hospital. I begged to go home to bed and then stayed there as long as I could. Hahahaha! It’s definitely not what it used to be #chucklemums

  9. Aw Frenchie ! Next time will be better – there will be a next time ! And by January a little part of you might even want to go back to work . It’s a strange time , maternity leave. Still, at least you got to drink lots of prosecco – that’s the main thing ! #dreamteam

  10. I can’t relate to maternity leave however I feel pretty much the same with my old social circle. These days my 16 year old goes out more than me, my weekend are generally spent at home and life is chilled. You know what though? I wouldn’t change a thing 🙂 #stayclassymama

  11. I felt the same after having my first – I struggled and definitely lost who I was. I have nothing to say to people if I wasn’t talking about my baby. I just wasn’t in the clique anymore which made me sad.

    However I am in this new amazing clique called motherhood – my life has changed and whilst I do miss the old one I wouldn’t change it for the world. #stayclassy

  12. I totally agree, I feel a bit out of the loop since becoming a mum – it’s like I’m two different people now! I haven’t gone back to work yet but I imagine the transition can be really tough. Good on you though for getting out there and spending time with the girls again xx #stayclassymama

  13. Awww. It really is hard to integrate if you have been off. You will be fine though I am sure, you just need to get back into the swing of things 🙂 Thanks so much for linking up! #bestandworst

  14. I know what you mean. I met up with colleagues a few times while I was on mat leave and felt a bit out of the loop, even though everyone was nice. I kept checking my phone to make sure the baby was okay and didn’t stay out very late, because I pass out my 10pm these days anyway. Now that I’m back at work it’s a bit easier to fit in, but I still miss out on nights out because I only work on Friday mornings so I can spend the afternoon with my daughter – and I’m totally okay with giving up work drinks for that. #stayclassymama

  15. You’re so not alone in this lovely. And it’s normal to feel like this before going back to work but I promise it’ll be like you never left in no time. I took a year off and went back to a brand spanking new role full time and felt out of sorts at first but also excited. I could dress up a bit, have a coffee, go to the loo on my own…. But imagine how old and frumpy I felt heading up the cool cat social media team? Everyone was young and cool and they mustn’t have had a clue what to say to me. Luckily it didn’t last…and they were quite happy for me to stay for just one drink after work while they continued their coolness in peace lol.

  16. I felt the same when I went out with a few from work before I gave it out. I was so out of touch and realised that I didn’t have anything in common with them anymore. Made me really sad but now, I’m okay. I’ve realised I’m a bit of a home buddy who likes going to the cinema or having a few mates round at home! Sounds like your normal and perfect to me! #FridayFrolics

  17. I am sorry you didn’t feel it was a huge success and you have worries about going back. It is such a difficult balancing act as a part-time teacher and Mummy. I am also one. It is a difficult profession to be able to do as I think most teachers tend to be perfectionsists by nature, not only with work but with everything. So there is a constant battle with guilt all of the time. But you WILL be fine! Everything will work out. Just be kind to yourself. A lovely post balancing the comic with the serious.
    Love your blog and your writing. #momsterslink

  18. You must remember FrenchieMama, you are a part of a new gang. How many of them may be weary that they haven’t joined that party yet? You still have all you have ever brought to the party, and SO MUCH MORE! I am confident you and Baba and Grumpy Boyfriend will all make it through.

    #momsterlink

  19. I can COMPLETELY relate. My first night out was in a extremely packed bar, it was really difficult to even hear anyone. All everybody wanted to do was drink, drink and drink and I was standing there counting my drinks worrying about breastfeeding and being able to sleep that night. I’ve also returned to work, and while the first few weeks were hard (mostly due to lack of sleep and missing my son) it actually is very enjoyable now and I am so happy I am back at work. I am JUST starting to really feel like myself again, like my FULL self, the person I was pre-baby but even better, with a bigger heart and smile. : ) I know it will seem hard, but once you get through the first month everything will start to feel normal again. Surprisingly, it wasn’t like starting from scratch, I actually did remember how everything worked before I left! haha! Anyway, I absolutely love this post, I think it might be one of my faves : ). Thanks for sharing with #StayClassyMama!

  20. Oh I can imagine just how you feel. I say that I want time away from baby but then I miss him when I am away. We are living abroad for 6 months but am already thinking about having to find a new job when I get back. Really struggle with my identity now and know it will be hard and frustrating to build a career again….if that’s even what I want! I am sure when you go back in January it will soon settle down and be like you were never away. #fortheloveofblog

  21. Oh it’s a hard one isn’t! You want a life but then you go out and you miss your other life. Then you feel out of the loop from both lives! I am sure that you are still one very cool cat and that you have nothing to worry about 🙂 #FridayFrolcis

  22. It’s strange how you seem to fall out of sync with other people when you have a child. It’s almost like you forget that the world is still carrying on without you. I am sure you will be fine when you go back 🙂
    #fortheloveofBlog

  23. It’s a huge adjustment. Your whole world has changed, and so have you. It will get easier and you will feel part of the team again. As for the guilt. I’m afraid that’s there no matter what you do. It comes with the ‘mummy’ job title! Thanks for linking up to #FridayFrolics

  24. Going back to work after a year of maternity leave takes some adjustment, but you’ll get there in the end, I promise! I went back part time and felt a bit out of the loop for a while, but with so many other things going on in my life (my daughter!), I didn’t have too much time to think about it! Eventually there’ll be a new normal and it’ll be just fine. #momsterslink

  25. Hmm I felt OK when I went out with mine but we all have different roles in a medical team. My colleague tho works loads harder than me and I Hav felt behind since going back. I just don’t want to work at home etc. Work is done when I leave. It all changes after children and I think you’ll have a bit of catching up to do but I bet you find you may not worry too much!! Xx #fartglitter

  26. Awww bless you! Motherhood can be so hard at times especially drifting between two worlds of life with baby and your old life pre baby too. It does get easier, it just takes time to adjust. Thankfully prosecco always helps, so you’ve found!;-)
    #marvmondays

  27. I think this is common. My priorities had completely changed after I gave birth so I did find slipping into old friendships a little bit of a challenge to begin with. A little time, more sleep and my eventual return to work soon saw everything back to almost normal. Now I’m just boring people with stories about my wonderful boy instead of boring them about the latest TV show or movie I saw 🙂

    #fartglitter

  28. I was only on maternity leave for 10 weeks (yep, 10 weeks and the baby wasn’t there for two of them!) so there wasn’t a lot for me to miss. I went on the Christmas night out not too long after I got back and pretty much hated it. I just wanted to go home and snuggle with my baby and my hubby, so I understand exactly what you mean. It’s sad, but we all love your blog and mummy friends are totally better than work friends 🙂 #MarvMondays

  29. oh beautiful lady this both made me sad and made me giggle. Our lives do change so much one we have a baby. I was the first of all my friends to have a baby and it did feel isolating and like I was living a different life. I found I bonded better with other mums at that point. Now most of my friends have babies and it makes life easier. I think once you go back to wrk though you will feel better as you’ll be back in that loop too. Big hugs gorgeous xo #mg

  30. This was really interesting for me to read as I lost my job before I had Leo so have never experienced the whole maternity leave thing. I do know what it’s like to want a night out though and then when you finally get it all you want to do is be back at home cuddling your baby. I’m sure you will get back into the cool cat gang when you start back and work and how lucky you can go back part time xx #mg

  31. Really enjoyed this, brilliant pictures and top marks for using the word tart in the most comical way. You’re writing is fresh and you ARE a cool cat, maybe you’re just too cool for school??? he he he #mg

  32. And here we have the other classic French text book phrase: ‘Ou est la banque?’! Est-il pres les boissons?! (I am very unsure if I’ve got this one right!)

    It is very strange going out for drinks after having a baby. I never returned to work as had another baby very soon after first (& childcare costs would have eclipsed my income anyway!), but I would imagine that it is different to how it was before but probably becomes a new kind of normal.

    Thanks so much for joining us on #FridayFrolics. Hope to see you next time!

    1. Nearly correct pres des boissons. You are so lucky to be able to stay at home! Or not? LOL. Actually, I am sure I will love it when I am back to work. A bit of two worlds. Thanks for reading xx

  33. I really felt for you reading this, we have such high expectations when we are finally out of the house after months of staying in looking after a baby, that it can be really disappointing. I completely understand how hard it must have been not talking about the baby, when it’s all you’ve talked about for the last 12 months, and not being in on all the office gossip makes your slink even further into the background. I once had a similar thing where I wasn’t allowed to talk about the baby, I mean how rude is that when it is the number 1 focus and priority in your life. Please also don’t worry too much about going back to work, I’m 6 weeks in and it has had its highs and lows, but it’s ok (I promise you). The fear of it, is worse than the event. Thanks so much for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

    1. How come you were NOT ALLOWED to talk about your baby? did they tell you directly? Thank you so much for your comment. I am sure I will be fine. It was just so weird. I used to be a key member of staff and seeing that they could do without me really made me think about my work, all the the sacrifices… Thanks for reading and taking the time to put such a personal comment though xxx

  34. I remember the first time I went out, I felt exactly the same but I ended up getting so plastered I was so ill the next day and unable to do anything. Hubby was not happy… lesson learned! For a time at least. You are still cool, just doing a different thing. Popping over from the #BISS team

  35. Ooooh it s a difficult one isn’t it. My first few nights (with were with the other half. Or colleagues) out I didnt really e joy it, at all, I was too busy thinking about the baby at home and stress and worried about her. I was distant when out and just wanted to get home. However it is short lived, now I must say it is a different story I actively look forward to a night out, with hot food, nice wine and adult conversation. It gets better, honestly xx #marvmondays

  36. I went back to work 10 weeks after my eldest was born and had regular meetings with my team during that time so never felt I actually had a maternity leave to be honest. I can’t imagine being off for a year that is a long time to fall out of the loop so to speak but once you go back it will be just like getting back onto a bike. You will be fine. In the meantime keep going with making us all laugh. x

  37. I know how you feel, it definitely feels odd going on nights out with work colleagues when you’re on maternity leave. I know I certainly felt out of the loop when I did. I’m just about to return to work after my second baby and although nervous I know that within a week or two I’ll feel completely at ease and ‘back in the loop,’ try not to worry, going back to work was far easier than the night out 🙂 Thanks for linking to #bigpinklink x

  38. I remember when I first became a mom and how suddenly all those friends I once had were nowhere to be found. I had kids late in life so of course most of my friends were women who planned on never having kids. And suddenly I was a stranger. I have been a SAHM now for over 6 years…working part time here and there but mostly home with the kids and I am ready to get back into the work field. My youngest is 4 so I have one more year. I am glad you got a night out. It makes mommies better mommies and girlfriends/wives to have time to be who you were before this new chapter. Trust me. Thanks for linking up with #momsterslink and hope to see you tomorrow!

  39. This sounds exactly like my first night away from A! I just couldn’t wait to get back to him and even though I could’ve stayed at a friends to get some sleep, I was desperate to get home to him and make sure everything was fine – I even happily endured the 5am wake-up with a hangover! Thanks for linking up to #MarvMondays. Kaye xo

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