Back in the day, I wanted to be on The Real World as a reality star. Then I realized that I was way too boring and not scandalous enough to make the cut after the shocking Las Vegas season hit the air and so I let go of that dream. Fast forward about 9 years and my life has become the furthest thing from reality-TV-worthy because if cameras followed me around for a day they'd certainly get plenty of footage and the camera crew would be exhausted by the end, but they wouldn't have any of the requisite entertaining drama. Instead of slamming shots I clean baby bottles each night. Instead of partying at the club I go to work at a hospital each day. Instead of passing out at 5 am and sleeping in until 2 pm I'm up at 5 am getting ready for my day. There's no hangover-induced vomiting here but plenty of baby barf moments, if that counts. I hardly think changing dirty diapers, hooking myself up to a breast pump over and over again, and getting spit up down the back of my shirt would make me one of the most popular reality stars on television, do you?
Yeah, my life is insanely busy right now but perhaps not the most entertaining for the outside world. And yet, I'm completely content and satisfied with each day when I go to bed at night and I wonder if those living more 'exciting' lives can say the same. I want to remember these crazy days as a working mom to a newborn in the future because I'm already catching myself forgetting what it was like in the early weeks of Truman's life. Time flies when you're having fun, after all.
So I thought I'd give you a glimpse into one of our days of the week because sometimes it's interesting to see how others spend their time. Consider it your window into our version of The Real World if you will. You'll notice there isn't much (or any?) 'free time' or 'me time' to speak of and we have to make every minute count around here or the whole day will fall apart. And of course, every single day turns out to be a little bit different than the next when you have a 3.5 month old baby in the picture. Schedule schmedule, right Truman?
Alarm sounds, my hand reaches over my pudgy baby boy's head to hit the snooze button. Is it really time to start the day again?
Alarm sounds again and I turn it off carefully, then sneak out of bed and into the shower so I don't disturb the sleeping boys in my bed. If, at any time, Truman decides he wants his breakfast a bit early, my whole morning routine takes a turn to the boob instead of prepping for the day. You just never know with the boy...
Get out of the shower, get dressed in the dark room while I steal glances at Truman to assess the sleeping situation. If he allows it, I'll go ahead and put on my makeup and do my hair in my specialty style of 'wet-ponytail-mommy' for the day. I figure when you wear scrub pants and a lab coat at work a wet pony is perfectly acceptable, right?
Go into the kitchen to make breakfast (PB and honey bagel, duh!), my strong coffee (yum), and take my vitamins. If the beast hasn't awoken by now I sit at the computer to eat my breakfast and check my email. Ah, the luxury. :)
T-dogg is probably awake by now but if not, I go ahead and wake him up so we can get to nursing his empty belly. We'll usually head for the couch so mommy can sip her coffee and watch the news while baby eats. Lots of baby talk and cuddling from mommy is required at this point, too. This is what he looks like in the morning, for real---he is truly this happy and it's just sickening, really.
Done nursing, so we're off to the nursery for a diaper change and outfit selection for mister man. This is probably the highlight of the morning as Truman plays with his elephant friend above the changing table and I get to play dress up on the cutest baby boy eva (biased opinion noted). Blowing raspberries on his belly and being generally ridiculous might happen as well and it's hard not to get too wrapped up in this mommy nonsense but the clock is ticking for me to go to work.
Brush my teeth, gather my gear (pump bag, empty bottles with ice packs, and lunch), kiss my boys goodbye, and hand Truman to Tony (or Nate if it's a Monday). Hit the road for work and the countdown begins until I get to squeeze Truman again.
Arrive at work, start my day treating patients, typing notes, walking around to different floors of the hospital, and reviewing charts. Realize that I really do love my 'second' job even if it doesn't involve Truman. More than likely I'll get to gush about him at least a few times each day to my patients/co-workers/nurses so I really can't complain too much:)
First pumping session, back down in the department, while typing a note or making phone calls. Multi-tasking at it's finest right here, folks. Realize that my pump is louder than I thought as someone on the phone asks, 'What is that noise in the background?' I stammer out a response as my cheeks flush red, 'Oh, that's just one of our machines' and I vow to stop the pump next time I make a call. Done pumping in 15 minutes, assess the amount I got (usually 5-7 ounces this first time) and try to not freak out too much about not pumping enough for baby boy. Try not to spill any of the liquid gold as I hurry up to pack it all away for next time.
Back up on the floors for more PT stuff. Usually starving by now and counting down the minutes to lunch.
Back down for pumping sesh #2. Get 4-5 ounces this time while typing more notes. Lovingly stroke my milk containers for good measure (not really, but kind of). Pumping this often can make you a little crazed about the numbers for sure.
Lunch time, holla! Chat with co-workers, and force them to listen to me talk about my kid. I'm 'That Mom' now.
Back up on the floors for more therapy.
Final pumping session of the day, 3-5 ounces this time around for a grand total of 12-16 ounces. When it's on the low end my mood directly reflects it and vice versa. Pumping plays mind games with me for sure and I could talk about this for many more posts and perhaps I will. Did I mention I have a brand new AMAZING pump yet? Cause I do. Yep, another breastfeeding/pump post is a must. Clean up all of my parts and pack it in my udder sucker for the day.
Back up on the floors for my PT job. Hopefully find some adorable patients to treat that will let me talk about Truman (do you see a theme here?)
Leave work and begin the drive home, aka the LONGEST 30 minutes of my life. There's something about being done with work and headed home to baby boy that makes me want to put the pedal to the metal more than ever. I try to be a good driver and avoid road rage as much as possible but it ain't easy, my friends. Don't those people on the road know I have an adorable baby to get home to?!?
Arrive at home finally. Get report from Tony/Nate about Truman's day and lay eyes on the man of the hour. Promptly smother him with kisses and make voices that sound like I'm demented.
Rush upstairs to change out of my hospital-germ-laden clothes before holding Truman. Let Henry out of his crate and give him some loving, too. Take him outside for a pee, throw my bottles of milk in the fridge and ice packs back into the freezer to deal with later. Go get baby boy so I can cuddle him to death. Usually start nursing him right away on the couch. If he's totally focused on the boob and not me as a whole, perhaps pull out the laptop next to me to check email/internet happenings. Sometimes this is too much multi-tasking to handle and thus simply staring at Truman is enough.
Done nursing, sometimes T is half asleep and I'll try to lay him down for a nap. Things are a lot better when he succumbs to my request to sleep but more often than not he prefers to be awake. Realize I'm totally famished so I'll put Truman on his activity gym in the kitchen while I throw something together. While making dinner, continue to speak in baby talk and take plenty of breaks to get down and snuggle him on the floor. Remember to pet Henry, too.
My dinner concoction is done and usually I can't wait to eat for Nate (if it's a Tues/Thurs), but sometimes I have the will power to do so. Eat at the table while T watches from his gym. More baby talk, etc.
Wash dishes, or maybe wait until later. Play time with Truman--usually by sitting out on the front porch together with Henry, waiting on Nate to get home from clinicals. Love this time of night with my boys.
Daddy is home! Catch up on our days while sitting on the porch. Perhaps let Nate actually hold Truman if he's lucky:) Nate needs to eat, too, so we allow that luxury to him.
Take Henry for a walk while toting Truman in the Baby Bjorn. He might fall asleep on our trek and he might not. Remember to tell Henry he is a good boy and I love him, too. Spreading the love to both of my 'sons' as I can.
Home, snuggle time with Truman. Maybe time for Baby Einstein Jumparoo or other toys. By this time he is likely getting pretty exhausted from the day and is almost ready for bed.
Bedtime routine begins, and every other night includes a bath. My favorite is when we can bathe him on the porch because it's his favorite, too. He just loves those darn trees so much and his naked baby body is too much to handle.
Change into double-stuffed diaper for nighttime and jammies. Maybe a short baby massage with lotion if I'm lucky to avoid an overtired babe's wrath. If I really want to push my luck I might even try to read him a book:)
Nursing baby boy in the rocking chair, lights out, music on low. Attempting to be present in the moment and not get too ahead of myself about what needs to get done tonight. Soak in the sweet time I have with Truman before he drifts to sleep and stare at his sleepy eyes in wonder. How did I get so lucky to be his mommy?
T is fast asleep in my arms. I might rock him for a bit longer just to seal the deal before placing him in his crib for the night.
Then it's time to scurry around like a mad woman and yes, Nate will usually help me out here like a good hubby would do:
-pour pumped milk into bottles for the next day, or into freezer bags if we are using my older freezer stash for the next day.
-clean all bottles and pump parts used for the day...by hand, since we have no dishwasher.
-sterilize them if I feel really on top of my game.
-Wash the rest of the dishes if they are still overcrowding the sink
-Feed big brother Henry for the night
-Make my lunch for the next day, nibbling here and there as I go
-Grind the coffee for the next morning if Nate allows it. Usually he likes it to be freshly ground in the morning because he is a coffee snob.
-Lay out my clothes for the next day including breast pads because I'm just that anal about being organized. Plus it's easier to dress in the morning in a dark room when it's not packed away in drawers/closet
-If my father-in-law has done diaper laundry for us (I know, we are spoiled) on a Tues or Thurs, or if Nate did it on a Monday, pull all the diapers off the clothes line and stuff the pockets with inserts.
-If tomorrow is Friday and therefore daycare day, get Truman's bag ready to go: 6 diapers, wet bag, and two extra outfits just in case.
-See, isn't this list for nighttime insane? I have a headache just reading it.
All of that is done. Time to return emails, chill on the couch with Nate or maybe just call it a night a few minutes early. It's usually hard to keep my eyes open by now.
Brush teeth, change into jammies, wash face and hit the hay. Try to complete a prayer to God thanking Him for the day before I fall asleep, only sometimes making it to 'Amen' without snoring away.
1:00 or 2:00 or 3:00 am:
Truman wakes and is hungry. Forget trying to soothe him back to sleep in his crib without offering the boob. That is a good way to cause World War 3 around these parts. Take Truman into bed with me and nurse in sidelying. Can't tell you for how long since we both fall asleep pretty easily. If he woke closer to the 1 am mark, he might start to squawk in bed with me again at 3 or 4 for another round of boobage. Again, nursing in sidelying means I can stay asleep during the whole thing. More sleep = good when my alarm is about to go off again.
Alarm goes off and we start all over again. How many days until the weekend???
So that's it, a typical day for us in a nutshell. Not exactly MTV-esque but it's my life right now and I can't complain. Life as a working mom is much more hectic than I expected and it seems like there's never enough hours in a day to get it all done. But my Wednesdays off and weekends are THAT much more special when the other days are so packed. I know that time passes in a blink of an eye and my biggest challenge has to be staying in the moment and being present. I'm sure I'm not alone on that one! And with that, I'm off to stare at my baby a little while longer. Life is crazy but it's good. :)