Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A day in the life...

I think most of you know that I had a hard time coming back to work after M was born.  I had always envisioned myself as the hardcore working mother with an amazing balance between home and work life.  Then, I looked into my daughter's face for the first time and my world (and dreams) changed.  I always think of the movie Baby Boom with Diane Keaton for some reason when I look back at my maternity leave and how I felt having to come back to work and leave my daughter behind.  I hated the thought of it with a passion.  Dropping her off with my parents-in-law for the day would leave me in tears on the short drive to work from their house or sobbing in bed at night because I didn't want to have to do it all again the next day.  I knew M was in excellent care, but I couldn't help but feel that the excellent care should come from me or A.R not my in-laws who have already raised four boys of their own.
Luckily, my company is large with lots of excellent employee benefits and allows its employees to do flexible schedules (whether you're a mom or dad, injured, sick, or just trying to save on fuel costs by not having to commute everyday).  I wasn't sure if my boss would go for it, but I filled out a proposal and hoped for the best.  I was stunned when she approved it and we did a trial run.  In the earlier days I did a compressed and slightly reduced work week where I had Wednesdays off and worked 4 days for a total of 36 hours, but with having to break for pumping my boss didn't feel like I was getting the hours in.  I was devastated thinking that she'd take the opportunity away from me, but she made a suggestion and I asked for some time to crunch numbers, speak with A.R., and make a decision.  Well, the numbers crunched nicely, A.R. was 110% supportive, and we decided to go for it.  I feel so blessed to have this oppurtunity and I appreciate the added balance it gives my work and home life.  I now work a 4-day work week and have every Wednesday off.  I get an extra day home with my girl and a chance to get out of the house and do adult things and interact with my coworkers.  I lost pay and vacation time doing the reduced schedule, but whenever I look into M's sweet face as she smiles sleepily and pads around upstairs in her footed jammies with hair all askew, it is beyond worth it.
Deep down now that I've had a taste of that one extra day at home, I crave more.  I hope one day to cut back another day, but it won't be anytime in the near future (unless I get the big ole pink slip due to outsourcing- more to come on that!).  I still feel a twinge of guilt thinking of the student loans I'm paying for a Bachelor's in Accounting and an MBA knowing that I would rather be home than utilizing my degrees, but the time will come when my kid(s) are grown and I no longer need to be home with them and alas they will be put to great use.  So, back to the point of this post...what do I do on my day home with Miss M?!  Here is a typical day: 

7:15/7:30 M wakes up and I sing her "Good Morning" song as I change her diaper and then nurse her

8:00-8:45 We start some laundry, she "helps" me of course, and I usually do one cleaning item on my chore list whether it's cleaning the toilets, vacuuming one floor, or dusting the upstairs/downstairs

9:00 breakfast!

9:30 play time with M mixed with more chores for me.  I usually make a game out of them or we go for a walk/run if it's nice out.  I've also treated her to watching me do Jillian Michael's 30DS in this time slot.  She thinks I'm a giant dork.

10:45 snack time!

11/11:30 M goes down for a nap while Mommy does things she can't do easily with M awake like shower, computer work, mopping, cleaning with heavy chemicals.  Sometimes if I'm super exhausted I try to sleep at least a half hour while she's asleep, but it is rare these days.

12:30-1:30 M wakes up somewhere in this time frame depending on the day and as soon as she's up we have lunch

2:00-4/4:30 Errands begin.  They can include going to the vet, doctor appointments, grocery store, Target, bank, library, play dates, walk/run, play time, snack time, etc.

5:00 Start dinner

6:30 Papi comes home and we eat dinner!

8:15/30 Bedtime routine begins.  We call it triple "B". Bath. Boob. Bed. ;)  Now we add in teeth brushing and we've implemented a brief (3 books- or she'd do it all night) story time if A.R. puts her to sleep.  Once she's weaned we'll do books every night to switch the second "B" in triple "B" to Book instead of Boob. :)
As you can see my day "off" isn't really a day of relaxation. I barely ever get to nap when she does anymore and she is constantly on the go.  Chasing a toddler who has two speeds (stop and run!) is a great workout!  I've attached some pictures of a recent trip to walk/jog the Farmington Heritage Trail when I was home with her on a Wednesday.  The trail is a great change of scenery for us and gets us out of the house on nice days.  It's only about 10-15 minutes from our home and is an old railway that was converted into a biking/walking trail

She was chilling as I did all the work walk/jogging!


Selina said...

OMG - you have a City Select! It is my current obsession, and I think I need one for when LO#2 arrives... can you share what you see are the pros/cons of it with me? Thanks!

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