I guess most of us in the North of Europe know that life down south has a different schedule in terms of work, eating and bed times, going out etc. It is pretty well known that Spaniards for example have dinner quite late (in Dutch standard the “quite” can be replaced by “very”) but I had never realised what this means when you have kids.
Co-sleeping, or sleeping with your baby in the same bed, is another topic of great difference of opinion between the North and the South. I have to say that before the bichin was born I didn´t really have an opinion on this and also hadn´t given it much thought.
Working from home is not a very common concept in lovely Spain. I could write a book about the office culture of “if-you-are-not-visible-behind-your-desk-in-the-office-you-are-not-working” but let´s just say that they still have a long way to go before flex working can really get a chance here. Part of this is due to the fact th
at a lot of people get more evaluated on hours than on output, however another big part is also because “we” remote workers screw it up for ourselves and therefore the concept of “working from home” is more seen like a joke and definitely not as real working. Some people use working from home if their child is sick or if they don´t have a sitter and on these kind of days obviously not too much gets done.
The guilt of working mothers is a well-known phenomenon and something that a lot has been written about. Guilt about not being home enough, leaving your baby behind, not being able to dedicate enough time or attention etc. etc. Therefore the end of one´s maternity leave is usually being feared and every day that passes bringing her closer to that first working day makes mommy more and more nervous and already pre-guilty.
We all know the famous “pink cloud”, this place new mothers are supposed to be on when they finally have welcomed their newest family member in the world. Most stories from newbie mothers are usually quite black and white: they are either on a huge pink cloud where everything is so beautiful and amazing (= the large majority) or they have a postnatal depression. There doesn´t seem to be anything in between and I think actually most mothers are, especially in the beginning, somewhere in that grey in between area but don´t dare to admit it. It is as if the motherhood clan made a deal that we don´t share the bad stuff and all keep up the appearance about how lovely everything is and how perfect our new life is. But seriously, who are we trying to fool?