baby blythe

d + r = baby b


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How to Score a Breast Pump for FREE

When I was pregnant, someone told me to check with my insurance company to see if it provided breast pumps. I was skeptical, and I figured I’d just have to shell out the $200-$300 needed for a quality pump. However, I did some research on the Affordable Care Act and realized that it was quite possible to get a free pump.  The process was kind of annoying, but it was definitely worth the trouble, because in the end,  I did not pay a single penny for my breast pump.

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I started out by calling my insurance company. The first thing they told me was that I had to wait until January 1, 2013. This wasn’t a huge deal to me, because Porter was due on Christmas Eve (born on December 28th) and I knew that most likely I wouldn’t need the pump right away. The second thing I was told was that I COULD get a breast pump for free, but they would only provide a manual pump, which would not really be worth the trouble of getting (in my opinion). Sure, free is free, but I doubted a manual pump was going to cut it. I knew I was going to need a high powered electric (double) pump when I returned to work. I asked the woman on the phone a few more questions and she said it was up to my employer and what specific insurance plan my employer selected. Some policies agreed to provide manual pumps and some agreed to provide electric pumps. I was bummed and thought I was out of luck.

However, I did not give up. The woman I talked to did not seem entirely confident in the answer she gave me, so I doubted whether or not I should accept her answer. I waited a few days and then called again, in hopes of speaking to a different person.  The second woman I spoke with looked up my policy and then told me there was no way for me to to know prior to January 1 if I would get a pump or not. Basically–according to her– it was up to my employer and it would depend on what insurance policy they chose to renew at the start of the calendar year. She said I could call back after January 1 to inquire. I was a bit annoyed. I knew that when January 1 arrived that I would have others things—um, like a baby–to worry about.

I almost decided to forget about the whole thing, but I contacted the woman in charge of our benefits for my school district. I told her about the two previous encounters I had and I asked her if she had any contact people at the insurance company who could give her a firm answer.  She said she’d look into it and get back to me.

She emailed me the next day and told me that yes, I could get a breast pump, and not just any breast pump, but a double electric pump. I would have to wait until after January 1, though, and I also needed to get the pump from a medical supplier (in my insurance network). She also instructed me to get a prescription for the breast pump from my OBGYN.  The prescription would serve as proof that I really needed it. I did some homework and called all the medical suppliers in my area and found one that carried the type of pump I wanted (most of the medical suppliers didn’t even have ANY breast pumps, let alone the type I was interested in.)

Porter was born, and a few days later I managed to shower and put yoga pants on and went to the medical supplier with my prescription in hand. I imagined I’d walk out of there with a brand new breast pump, but it seems I had more hoop to jump through.  When my doctor wrote the prescription, it was before Porter was born. The prescription literally said “Patient is pregnant. May require breast pump.” I gave the medical supplier my prescription.

The woman said, “Oh, you’re still pregnant? You’re pregnant now?”

Despite the fact that my belly did still look a little pregnant-like, I couldn’t help but to feel a little offended. Maybe I shouldn’t have worn my MATERNITY yoga pants, I thought to myself. I looked down at Porter in his car seat and looked back at the woman. “No, I’m not pregnant now. I already had the baby.”

“But it says ‘patient is pregnant.’ ”

“Well, she wrote it when I WAS pregnant.” I thought this was obvious.

I didn’t understand why this was such a big deal, but I could tell this was going to be a problem.  She called someone (I think it was someone from the claim department of my insurance company) and then told me that she couldn’t give me the breast pump because of the way the prescription was written.  She then said she would call my OBGYN and verify my need for the breast pump even though I wasn’t still pregnant. I thought having the baby right there with me was proof enough, but I guess not. Maybe she thought I borrowed someone else’s baby in order to snag a breast pump, but why someone would want a breast pump unless she really needed one is beyond me. She sent me on my way and said she would call me when she knew something. Again, I was a little annoyed.

The next day she called me back and said that my OBGYN verified the prescription. She then had to make another call back to the claim department, but she finally told me that I could come back in to pick up the breast pump.  The following day I returned to the medical supplier and picked up my breast pump. I was pumped (no pun intended) to have finally figured all this out, and I guess my persistence paid off.

The pump I received is a double electric pump. It has plenty of power, gets the job done, and  is almost identical to the Medela Pump In Style, except the bag that I have isn’t quite as fancy as the Pump In Style. [By the way, why is it called the “Pump In Style”? I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to pump one’s boobs stylishly.]

So, long story short, if you’re pregnant and you plan on using a breast pump, check with your insurance before purchasing one. While my experience was a tad tedious and cumbersome, a friend of mine (whom I work with, so she has the same insurance) had absolutely zero problems when she went through the process a few months after I did.

On a similar note, if you don’t have insurance or if your insurance doesn’t provide a pump, I personally do not think there is a problem with borrowing a pump from a friend or family member. I know this isn’t recommended and supposedly it voids the warranty, but if you purchase separate parts for the pump and do not use the original parts, I don’t see why this would be a problem. Obviously this is a personal decision, but I thought I’d throw my two cents in there.

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Moonlit Drive (This sounds romantic, but it’s not)

Last night was by far the worst night we’ve had with Porter. Ever. Even his worst night as a newborn was nothing compared to what we experienced last night.

We were visiting my sister in Indianapolis, so we were away from home. We’ve taken a few short trips away from home before and we hadn’t experienced any problems.  While on these trips, Porter didn’t seem to mind and didn’t have a difficult time adjusting to a new place.  With his rock-n-play and his sound machine, putting him to bed had never been a problem while we were away. This was our second night staying at her place, and he had done fine the previous night. I had no problems putting him to bed on Thursday night and he slept through the night beautifully.

Friday night was an entirely different story.

I went up to bed around 10 p.m. and I noticed that Porter was awake. He wasn’t crying, but he would make a noise every now and then. I figured he would fall back to sleep, so I got in bed and tried to fall asleep myself.  He started fussing, so I reached out to rock his rock-n-play, as this usually puts him back to sleep. Soon his fussiness turned into a loud cry, so I figured he was probably wet and/or hungry. I changed his diaper (which was wet, but not overly so) and fed him (despite the fact that he had been fed 3 hours earlier.) He seemed content, so I put him back down, and he was quiet for about thirty minutes.  Suddenly, he starting crying screaming, so I picked him up and paced the room while I rubbed his back. This calmed him down, but every time I tried to put him back down, he would immediately start crying. This wasn’t his normal cry, either.  His cries and screams were unlike any I had ever heard before that night. Thus, I walked and bounced him for about an hour.  I felt helpless as I pondered this weird behavior; 99% of the time he sleeps through the night without waking.

Around midnight David came up to go to bed. When David came in, I was changing Porter’s diaper again, which I knew wasn’t the problem, but I figured it wouldn’t hurt. The screaming didn’t stop. Then, I continued to walk and bounce him, but at this point, Porter wasn’t pacified by my pacing and bouncing. I knew he wasn’t hungry, but I tried feeding him again. David tried walking with him, but that didn’t help either. He wasn’t gassy; he wasn’t wet/poopy; he wasn’t hungry. He was tired, but he would not sleep. NOTHING in our arsenal of tricks that had worked countless times before was helping.

I literally started playing scenarios in my head. I imagined having to call the emergency number at our pediatrician’s office, despite being three hours away.

“Hi, Doctor. We’re having problems with Porter.”

“What seems to be the problem?”

“Um, he won’t sleep and he won’t stop crying.”

“Welcome to parenthood.” Click.

We felt helpless before, but after an hour and a half of his screaming, we really felt helpless now. David and I stared at each other in the dark and spoke to each other without words. “What are we going to do?”  My eyes filled with tears and my heart literally hurt from the agony I was feeling.

David finally spoke. “Let’s go for a drive.” These were the exact words I was thinking, yet hadn’t said.

I read somewhere that you should never use a car/driving in order to try to get a baby to fall asleep. I don’t remember the reasoning, but it probably had something to do with teaching babies to soothe themselves. However, at 1:30 in the morning, I didn’t care about following this random bit of parenting advice.

As we walked out the door, my sister asked “How long has it been since he’s been this way at night?”

“Never. He’s never been like this.”

So we packed Porter in his car seat and started to drive around nearby neighborhoods surrounding my sister’s condo.

About a half hour later, Porter had been quiet for awhile, so we assumed that he was asleep. We drove back to my sister’s, pulled in the driveway, and said a mental prayer before getting out of the car. I opened up the door, and sure enough, our sweet little boy was peacefully asleep. With much care and precision, we took the car seat out of the car, walked through the front door, climbed the steps, and tip-toed back into the bedroom.  We didn’t even think about trying to retrieve him from his car seat, and despite the fact that there are probably numerous parenting articles that warn parents not to let their babies sleep in their car seats for long periods of time, we did it anyway.

I awoke at every minuscule movement or sound and held my breath until I was convinced that Porter wasn’t going to wake up. Thankfully, Porter slept for the rest of the night.

This morning Porter was his usual self, bright-eyed and smiley, and he showed no memory of last night’s events. Upon retrieving him from his car seat, I stuck my finger in his mouth, which has been a practice of mine for several weeks now.  I let out a deep sigh that I didn’t even realize I had been holding in.  Our midnight mystery had been solved.  Just below the surface, barely detectable but definitely there, was the white tip of Porter’s first tooth poking through his gums.


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Mommy and Baby Books

I’ve read a lot of “mommy” books, some of which I don’t care to recommend, because they were just average or just like another book I had already read. I decided to choose my top 6 and give my thoughts on each.

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Do Chocolate Lovers Have Sweeter Babies? by Jena Pincott

All pregnant women should read this book WHILE pregnant. I have no idea why, but I found this book to be extremely fascinating. It has a lot of science and medical terminology, but it doesn’t read like a medical journal or anything like that. It’s been awhile since I read this (a year-ish), but I remember LOVING the section on gender. Since we did not find out the sex of Porter ahead of time, I really enjoyed reading about the different theories on gender. I loaned my copy out and I’ve recommended it to several people. Many of those people have come back and told me how much they loved this book, too!

Why Have Kids? By Jessica Valenti

This book could probably be viewed as controversial to many–because there are a lot of touchy/taboo subjects–but I found it to be such a refreshing read. The author discusses many “truths” and “lies” about parenting/motherhood. One of the sections I appreciated the most was a section detailing her views on breastfeeding and formula feeding. I 100% agree with her opinion on the matter: “It’s more important that your child is happy and nurtured than that they’re fed with breast milk.”  I would 100% recommend this book to any parent, but especially mothers. (To my English teacher friends, I have no idea how to properly cite a quote from a book read on a Kindle. While I could probably look this up, I’m not writing this to impress anyone, so please forgive my lack of MLA in-text citations.)

The Milk Memos by Cate Colburn Smith and Andrea Serrette

I would only recommend this book to women who a) are breastfeeding or are planning to breastfeed and b) who have to work outside of the home. This book is basically a collection of journals that some women wrote to one another while pumping at work. It was almost like a secret society of sorts, but the women wrote honestly about the struggles of working + breastfeeding. A good friend bought this for me within a few days of Porter being born and I read this during night time feedings.  If I’m being honest with myself, I admit that my first several weeks of breastfeeding were terrible not great, and I was close to quitting several times. This book provided me with a lot of comfort. It also helped me to mentally prepare for going back to work, even though I knew it was several weeks away.

Sparkly Green Earrings: Catching the Light at Every Turn by Melanie Shankle

I really enjoyed this book. Shankle’s writing is so friendly and I could relate to so many sections of her book. I would recommend this to women who already have kids, though (and not people who are just pregnant without other children.) While this is of course a personal preference, I do not think I would have enjoyed the book as much if I would have read it prior to having Porter. I would not have been able to relate. I loved her description of the emotions that motherhood provides: “Even if we’ve dreamed of having babies of our own, there is nothing that prepares us for the way that moment cracks open our hearts and pours in the type of pure love we never knew existed. A love that isn’t about us but is just about wanting to love and protect this little, helpless person who will emit all manner of bodily fluids on us if given half the chance. You can’t fathom it until you experience it.” I couldn’t have explained it any better!

I was a Really Good Mom Before I had Kids by Trisha Ashworth and Amy Nobile

I read this book within my first few weeks of motherhood, and I found it to be extremely comforting and funny. Even though I was a brand new mom, I could relate to many of the anecdotes detailed in the book, and I ended up recommending it to many friends (in fact, two friends had recommended it to me!) I loved this book’s honesty: “When you’re a mother, nobody’s saying, ‘You’re doing a great job; you’re so great; what initiative, mopping up that vomit!'”

I Just Want to Pee Alone (multiple authors)

This book is a collection of short essays about motherhood, each written by a different woman.  This book had me in tears–not sappy, I just watched The Notebook tears, but ohmygodthisisfreakinghilarious tears. Within the first few pages, I was laughing out loud uncontrollably. I will say that some of the authors were naturally funnier than others, but I really did enjoy the entire book. It’s quick (it could be read in a day’s time) and it is sure to brighten anyone’s day. Many of the essays had to do with older children, so it gave me a lot to look forward to, too.

For my other moms/parents out there: What other books should I read and add to my “mommy/baby” book list?

Also, if there’s a topic you’d like me to write a post about, please leave your idea in the comments section!


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A letter to Porter

Dear Porter,

I don’t know how many times a day I look at you in awe and disbelief. Even though I’ve been your mommy for over 6 months now, I still can’t believe that you are my child and that I entirely deserve you.  Your personality is really starting to show and shine. You laugh and smile all the time. My favorite smiles are the ones that you direct at me. How lucky am I receive such a gift multiple times a day? I love you so much my heart hurts.

You’re growing and changing every day, as evidenced by the bins we’ve already filled with too small baby clothes. I often wish my memory came equipped with a video camera so I could replay every moment of the past 6 months whenever I wished. Gone are the days when you would sleep in my arms (or sleep anywhere for that matter) and I wish I could rewind time to have you sleep in my arms again. Every once in awhile you’ll fall asleep after eating, and I let myself sit and enjoy you until you wake up.

You are finding your voice, and it’s adorable. I mimic your babbles and sounds and you stop to stare at me in awe, surprised that I can make the same sounds that you can. You love buzzing your lips, and even when you have sweet potatoes in your mouth, you don’t know that the consequence of doing so will result in sweet potatoes all over me (or maybe you do, and that’s why you do it.) You’re eating solids, and have eaten avocado and sweet potatoes so far. Neither experience has gone amazingly well, but you’re still trying to figure out what the heck you’re suppose to do. You’ll get the hang of it. I can’t wait to learn what your favorite foods will be.

You love things that turn and spin, and you’re an expert at moving your wrist back and forth to make things move at the speed you’d like them to.

I wonder what you’ll do with those hands someday. Whether you are a scientist, a teacher, a musician, a salesman, an accountant, or a job of some other field, I know you’ll do amazing things.  I believe this because you amaze me every day.

I don’t know how many times I have counted your tiny toes. If I could, I’d count all your eyelashes, too.

Instead of trying to fold the laundry or check my email, I often sneak in to watch you while you nap. You look so peaceful and happy, and my heart can’t help but to swell with joy. I wonder what you dream about.

I never tire of holding you. When I’m with friends and family and people reach out to take you from my arms, it hurts my heart a little bit. I know I should share you with everyone around me, but I am selfish and want you all to myself. After all, you grew inside me for 9 months and whenever you’re not in my arms, I feel incomplete.

Sometimes a feeling passes over me in which I believe that it’s impossible for anyone else to possibly know how much I love you, but then I realize that I’m wrong. Every mother, every parent has been there and understands.

As you grow into the boy and finally into the man you will become, I wonder what you’ll be like. Will you love seafood like your daddy and be afraid of storms like me? Will you open car doors for the women in your life like your daddy (I hope you do) and enjoy getting lost in a book like me?

The past 6 months have gone so fast, and when I see parents with newborns at church or the drugstore, I often warn them with the same warning I’ve received countless times: “They grow up so fast!” I know you’ll be walking, going to kindergarten, getting your first girlfriend, going to prom, and graduating high school in no time.  Until then, I’ll ignore the toys all over the floor and the mountains of laundry you produce in order to try to savor every moment in between. I don’t want to miss anything.

Love, Mommy


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Expectations and Mommy Guilt: A Rant of Sorts

Disclaimer: This post contains my opinion on a number of topics, some of which may be controversial to some. You’ve been warned.

Every mom knows what I’m talking about when I use the phrase “mommy guilt.” It’s real and it’s debilitating.

I’m reading a book right now that a good friend recommended to me [there will be a post soon about that book and other mommy/parenting books!] and it has really got me thinking about the expectations that society has for modern mothers and how those expectations have changed over the past few decades.

Social media and our modern world, while fantastic in so many ways, has made mothers feel inadequate and incapable. For instance, society expects ALL women to breastfeed. If a woman chooses to or cannot breastfeed her child, she is thought to be hurting her child and her baby won’t be as smart or as healthy as his/her breastfed peers. Likewise, society sends the message that if you think you “can’t” breastfeed, you’re just not trying hard enough. Similarly, women are sent the message that if they do not make their own [organic] baby food, they are also doing a disservice to their babies. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read things along the lines of “I make all my own baby food. That way I know EXACTLY what’s in it. I don’t want my baby eating store bought food. Ick!” Are all the foods you eat made from scratch? Mine sure as heck aren’t. I love Kraft macaroni and cheese too much.

To some, this may sound a little hypocritical, because I am breastfeeding, and I do hope to be able to make Porter’s baby food. However, I do not think that formula fed babies are inferior to breastfed babies, and if I am not able to make all of Porter’s food and I have to buy some of it at the store, I’m not going to think the world is ending.

So…women are expected to breastfeed. Women are expected to cook and prepare all their own baby food. And on top of this, women are expected to have enough hours in the day to always have a clean “Pinterest worthy” home, cook a nutritious and delicious meal for the rest of the family, shower and look put together every day, come up with educational and stimulating activities for their babies/children to do throughout the day, etc. etc.

Even without all of these expectations, just being a mom (by itself) is hard enough.

Don’t get me wrong: I love it when my home is clean. I’d like to have dinner ready and prepared every night by the time David gets home, and I enjoy being clean and showered just as much as the next gal, but does it happen every day? Nope. Not. Even. Close.  Some days the only thing I “accomplished” was being a mom to my beautiful son.

I mean, I try to shower every day, but sometimes I put my pajamas back on. Some days I put my hair up in a bun, put yoga pants on, and if Porter spits up on me, instead of changing, I just rub it in. Some days I’m convinced that if I were to run into Stacy and Clinton from What Not To Wear at Target or the drugstore that they’d ambush me.

Another thing a lot of moms feel guilty about: working outside of the home.

Being on maternity leave was amazing. I loved spending so much time with Porter, and it was fun getting to know this new little person and learn about his personality and the person he was going to become. When I had to return back to work when he was eleven weeks old, I felt like I was going to miss out on a lot, and guess what? I did. However, I do not think I am a bad mom because I went back to work. Do I feel like a bad mom sometimes? Sure. Did I/Do I have feelings like Porter was going to forget who I was? Yes. But I try to remind myself every day that I’m STILL A GOOD MOM. And now it’s summer and I’m home with him until school starts again in the fall. I am so thankful that I have this “extra” time with him that a lot working moms don’t have. Will I feel guilty when I go back in the fall? Probably, but I’ll still consider myself to be a good mom, even if I have to remind myself of that at times.

On top of all this, every mother wonders if she’s “doing it right.” Yes, it’s correct that there is not one right way to raise and parent a child, but that doesn’t stop women (and I’m guilty of this) of questioning every thing they are doing. I have found myself Googling things like “How many naps should my [blank] month old be taking a day?” “What time should my [blank] month old be going to bed?” “Is the cry it out method cruel?” “My baby hasn’t pooped in two days.” etc. etc. Yes, the internet is great, but what did moms do before the internet? They trusted their instincts and their doctors. I have a really hard time NOT Googling my questions and concerns, and I try to just do whatever I feel is right, but sometimes it’s hard not to doubt every little thing. Because let’s face it, like every other mom, I want to make the “right” decisions and do what’s best for my son.

Do men feel these same pressures as fathers? While I don’t know for sure, I don’t think they do.

Being a mom is tough, but please don’t get me wrong. I am NOT complaining about motherhood/being a mom. I LOVE being a mom, and I’m thankful that God gave me the opportunity to be a mom. It provides me with so much joy and fulfillment. My heart is so full of love for Porter–love I didn’t know I was capable of feeling.  Yet…I still feel these pressures, and I think it’s okay to admit that.

So, society: forgive me. I haven’t even started putting together Porter’s “baby book,” there are dishes in the sink, my son went to bed with pureed avocado on his forehead, and my husband is going to be home in twenty minutes and I have no plans for dinner.


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Being a working mom…

Being a working mom is….well, tough. Don’t get me wrong, staying at home with a baby all day is work, too, but being a working mom is totally different (not necessarily harder, but different.)

I returned back to work on March 18, and now that I’ve been a working mom for a month and a half, I think I can confidently say that there are not enough minutes in my day to do everything I need to do. A day in my life goes something like this:

4:26 a.m.: Wake up! I’m one of those weird people who doesn’t like to set her alarm on a standard time. When I tell people what time I wake up in the morning, people say, “Oh my gosh. HOW do you do that?” When you have a baby, you just do what you got to do. That’s all there is to it. I pump in the morning instead of nursing Porter, because he is a SLOW eater. People kept telling me “Oh, he’ll get faster! You’ll eventually be able to feed him in 10 minutes!” This never really happened for Porter. Yes, sometimes he eats in 20, but other times he takes 45 minutes to eat. If I were to nurse him in the mornings, I’d have to wake up even EARLIER.

4:30 a.m.: Shower

4:47 a.m: Get dressed and stumble into the kitchen to make some coffee (Sometimes when I’m feeling extra motivated the night before I’ll have it ready to go so all I have to do is press the button. Sometimes before I go to bed, I’ll ask David to do this for me.)

4:50-5:30: Blow dry hair, get ready, get clothes ready (but I don’t get dressed yet, because that’s the LAST thing I do before walking out the door), etc.

5:30-5:40: Get breast pump parts ready to go, make breakfast, get all set up at the kitchen table to pump/eat

5:45-6:10: Pump while eating breakfast. Sometimes I check my personal email or get on Pinterest/Facebook.

*Usually Porter wakes up between 6:00-6:30, depending. If he wakes up while I’m still pumping, Daddy gets him and changes him. If he wakes up after I’m done pumping, I’ll get him and change him.

6:10-6:15: Get Porter’s bottle ready, put breast pump bottles in the fridge, finish putting my lunch together (Usually David will start feeding Porter his bottle during this time.)

6:15-6:25ish: Porter hugs and kisses (if he’s done eating). Otherwise, I go brush my teeth and get dressed

6:25-6:30ish: Porter hugs and kisses while hoping he doesn’t spit up on my work clothes

6:25-6:40ish: Gather purse, lunch, work bag, breast pump bag and walk out the door (I am SO lucky that David drops Porter off at the sitter each morning. If I had to do it, my day would be even crazier. Our sitter does not allow kids to be dropped off prior to 7 a.m., and if I were to do it, I wouldn’t get to school until after 7:15, which isn’t okay.)

6:40-6:50ish: Arrive at school. Students usually start walking in my room between 7:00-7:10, so this doesn’t give me much time to get situated.

6:45-7:35: Get ready for the day’s classes/lessons, make copies, help students, go to meetings, talk with colleagues (this varies depending on the day.)

7:40-11ish: Teach my butt off

11:00-11:30: Lock myself in my classroom to pump/eat lunch and maybe go to the bathroom if I’m lucky

11:30-2:45: Teach my butt off

2:45-3:00: Clean up room, write on the board for the next day, organize papers, put grades in, etc.

3:00: Leave school and go pick up Porter

3:30-4:00ish: Arrive home from picking Porter up and try to juggle my purse, work bag, breast pump bag, diaper bag, and car seat while walking in the door. Usually Maggie runs out the door and runs into me as soon as the door is opened. (The time we get home varies. Occasionally David’s mom will watch him, and when she does, I don’t home until 4:00.)

4:00ish: Put on sweatpants (yay!), change Porter and feed him

4:30-6:00ish: Play with/hold Porter (He cries if I put him down at any time.) During this time I also find a few minutes to put my breast milk from the day in the fridge and put my lunch dishes/utensils in the dishwasher. Every other day I also put diapers in the wash.

6:00ish-6:30ish (depending): Witness a complete meltdown whenever Porter gets tired. If it’s bath night, he gets a bath around this time. I try to time it before the meltdown.

6:00ish-6:30ish (depending): feed Porter and put him down

6:30-700: Try to figure out what the heck we’re going to eat for dinner. If David’s home, this is usually his job. In the fall/winter when David works longer hours due to the busy season, he doesn’t get home until after 8:30. In the spring/summer, he gets home between 6:30-7:00.

7:00-7:20: Eat dinner, watch tv for a few minutes

7:30-8:30: Clean (and by clean I mean clean up dinner, put dog toys in the basket, unload the dishwasher, and take out the trash…very rarely does this mean ACTUAL cleaning. My house is usually a disaster, but I do try to vacuum at least every other day due the Maggie hair), bag breast milk from the day, make lunch for the next day, grade papers, answer emails, do/fold laundry, get work clothes ready for the next day, get ready for bed, etc. Every other day I assemble diapers, too. If David’s home he does help me. 🙂 Sometimes I do have a bit of time to check out Pinterest, Facebook, or Instagram. Some nights I try to run/work out. If I do that, then I shower, and the rest of the evening gets pushed back a little. There are some days when David gets home earlier (between 4:00-5:00) and sometimes I try to squeeze in a run then.

8:30-9:00: Get in bed. I TRY to get in bed by 9:00 each night, because I do like to read before going to sleep.

8:30-9:30 (depending): Read

It takes me awhile to fall asleep at night, but I’d say that MOST nights I’m asleep by 10 p.m.

Yes, it’s a crazy life, and weekends are jam packed with trying to get everything else done that can’t be done during the busy week, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. That being said, I cannot imagine doing all this with 2+ children!

Is it hard being a mom? Yes. Is it hard being a stay at home mom? Yes. Is it hard being a working mom? Yes. But I’m not complaining by any means, and as cliche as it sounds, it IS all worth it. I know one day when my youngest child leaves for college and I have “an empty nest,” I’ll yearn for these “crazy” days and want them back.


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Disclaimer: I’m a new mom

We’ve had a lot of visitors in the last three weeks. For the first two weeks I don’t think we had a single day when NO ONE came over, and many days we had multiple visitors in one day.  While things are starting to slow down A LITTLE, we are still having quite a few visitors. While I love visitors–and the meals they bring–I feel like I need to have a giant sign in my yard or on my front door that displays the following list of disclaimers.

1) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. My house is not clean. There are balls of Maggie hair all over the floor and piles of laundry (some folded some not) on the sectional in the living room. The tv stand has a layer of dust, and there are approximately 37 burp cloths in sight. There are dishes by the sink,  the dishwasher needs to be emptied, and there are probably breast pump parts sitting on the counter. Oh, and if you go in the bedroom, the bed is most definitely not made.

2) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. I may or may not have showered today, but I put on deodorant and brushed my teeth. Probably.

3) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. I may be wearing the same outfit/shirt that I wore yesterday. This one already has spit up on it; I thought it’d be easier than putting a clean shirt on that he will just spit up on again. If you’re lucky, I may still even be in my pajamas.

4) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. Be careful as to not walk in the grass as you walk up to the house. The yard is full of Maggie poop. We can’t be bothered to pooper-scoop any time soon. My apologies. You may also want to be careful, even if you don’t step foot on the grass. I’m pretty sure there is a turd on the sidewalk, too.

5) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. It’s the middle of January and we still have Christmas decorations up, including the Christmas tree. We’ll get around to it…eventually.

6) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom (which means I don’t know what I’m doing.) Please do not judge me on how I dress/burp/hold/swaddle/change/carry my baby. I’m learning.

7) Disclaimer: I’m a new mom. I am sleep deprived. This means when I speak, I may or may not make sense. Please smile and nod and act like I do. (Side note: I cannot tell you how many times I have used the word “eat/ate” instead of “feed/fed.” This may not seem like a big deal, but when you form a sentence and say “I need to eat him” or “I ate him an hour ago” you can see how this mistake makes me sound like a crazy person.  I don’t even know that I am doing this until David points it out to me. There is something seriously wrong with me.