Finding Time for Me {Liberating Working Moms}

I thought I’d carved out last night for ‘me time’. The plan was for Jason to spend yesterday & today relaxing after his last day Wed & before he starts a new job Monday. And since he’d be off work, he could pick up & handle Zach & Lucy for a few hours Thurs evening so I could have a after work girl’s night with coworker friends.

Instead, he has pneumonia & spent the day at various doctor’s offices & the night in bed while I wrangled Zach & Lucy. Thankfully, the babies were great.

But that still leaves me questioning, when’s my time?

I’m six months into being a working mom & almost ten months into being a parent, & I feel like I have it kind of down. Of course, when Lucy &/or Zach are sick or teething, a wrench is thrown into the mix & I’m thrown off my “I got this” game. But those days aside, I’m fairly confident that I’m doing a good job balancing work & motherhood.

What I’m realizing I haven’t been doing such a great job keeping up is sometimes me. My one hour of pumping each work day {broke into three sessions} is my only ‘me time.’ It’s sometimes the only time during the whole week when I can sit down uninterrupted by work & personal phone calls, work & personal emails, coworkers, my husband &/or my babies. That hour a day is just me & my book or kindle or silly games on my cell. And yes, I happen to be attached to a machine pumping milk out of my breasts during this time which might tell you how chaotic my life is; that being hooked up to a pump is what I consider one of the most relaxing parts of my day.

I’m over at Liberating Working Moms today talking more about ‘me time’ & what I’m going to do once I stop pumping & lose that hour of ‘me time’ a day. From comments already & my social post, I know it gets easier & better. But I’d love you to jump over to LWM & tell me what you do for yourself.

Happy Times

I realize a few of my recent posts on motherhood {the sick, the social, the juggling} have had a negative nancy side. But life is good. The babies are at such a fun age {9 month posts to come soon}!

We had a great weekend. My parents came down Friday night. Lucy & Zach had their first playdate {where they could actually play & interact} when my friend Holly stopped by with her almost 4 & 18 month old daughters. It was a blast seeing the four of them interacting & playing with our toys. I enjoyed catching up with Holly & am hoping we can do it again soon.

They left as the SNOW was really coming down. Mom & I decided to wrap up the babies in warm layers topped with fuzzy bear suits & tiny mittens & let them play outside for a bit. There was more time getting us all dressed than there was spent outside. Also, pretty sure there were more cameras brought out than there were people. Four cell phones & my DSLR. But we captured flakes on Zach’s long lashes & Lucy tearing off her mitten to better crawl in the white stuff. Plus one of the better shots of the four of us in a while. It was awesome.

IMG_20130216_115525 IMG_20130216_115537

The rest of Saturday & Sunday was spent cooking {Lemon bars & banana bread & artichoke mushroom chicken}, trying on dresses {yay for refitting into cute ones!}, packing, making bottles, & playing & hugging Lucy & Zach.

Matching crabby pjs!

Matching crabby pjs!

Also throw in grocery shopping & a Target trip where 1 return & going to buy face wash somehow relays into spending $35 on candy, sippy cups & baby snacks.

I spent just about 48 hours away from Lucy & Zach on my work trip. I met some new work friends, reconnected with coworker friends & rediscovered that I do enjoy having a few glasses of chilled wine & cold beer {alcohol gets warm when it takes hours to drink in between baby wrangling}.

IMG_20130218_104826

130a Mon closing down club fifth season. 🙂

 

I also remembered I like the ability to wear fun necklaces & having the time to apply eye shadow. I missed the babies; I showed off pictures more times than I can count. I also discovered I would not want to exclusively pump. My boobs thank me for that realization.

On Being Social

Before babies, my life was a mix of plans & spontaneity.

I looked forward to my monthly bunco night, book clubs, sorority alum meetings & dinner club, & small group Bible studies all on the calendar. I threw into the mix ladies nights, coworker happy hours & random, last minute dinner dates with the husband. I had the time & open schedule for walks with friends or alone with my ipod after work & on weekends. I jumped in the car on a whim for pedicures & haircuts & highlights.

As my pregnant belly got bigger, I began to scale back on the plans. Because I was too tired & I knew I wouldn’t & couldn’t keep up that schedule for the future. And I was right.

On a typical week, my calendar is blank. But my schedule is packed: babies, work, daycare pickup, traffic home, babies, cook/clean/laundry/diapers, bed.

I know this is the life of all new mothers, especially working mothers of multiples whose husband’s work late. And I love my children. I’m so glad they are in my life.

But I’m going to be honest & say that I miss my ladies nights {Jason getting home at 730+ doesn’t allow for me to make many}. I miss my coworker times {I pump through all my breaks & eat lunches at my desk making up sick time now, so even though I’m in the same building 40 hours a week, I rarely see my work friends}. I miss the quiet time for myself for reading, shopping & just generally having time to be lazy.

This isn’t a cry for help. I’m slowly getting back on my social heels. I’m relearning what it means now to be social: cramming in weekday lunch dates with friends; bringing a baby or two to meet friends for coffee on a Sunday afternoon; finding it relaxing to be able to grocery shop alone on a Saturday. I’m so thankful that I have time to read while pumping & my book club is a very baby friendly group.

I know that as they get older, as the days get lighter & warmer, we’ll be able to be more active out of the house. I’m looking forward to us being social as a family: walks together at the lakes this summer, early weekend dinners out; being invited to friends’ kiddos’ birthday parties.

And since I’m confessing, I’ll let y’all know I’m counting the days until my first overnight work trip {13 if you wanna keep up}. My parents are coming to help as babysitters; it’s only 1.5 hours away & for one or maybe two nights. But I’ll get to sleep in & not be woken up at night & enjoy adult conversation as well as a few adult beverages.

I’ve learned all my new social plans are made with a *. With a RSVP’d maybe. Because the babies come first. And I know this is okay. This is my new {maybe not so social} life.

How did/do you deal with the lifestyle change that came with parenthood? Were you able to seamlessly continue life the same with a baby in tow? For non-multiples moms, have you noticed a difference when a second baby was born?

Sick of all the Sickness

I vented some working mom frustration on having sick kiddos on Liberating Working Moms today.

So far in January, between Lucy, Zach, my husband & I, we’ve had bad colds {negative for flu & RSV} along with pink eye, then RSV for both babies & double ear infections for Lucy while my husband had the flu & then a {thankfully only} 24 hour stomach bug.

Out of the 21 working days in January, I’ve worked 12 full days. Twelve y’all. That’s almost less than half.

Join me over on LWM to read the rest of Sick of the Sick.

And as a quick update, we went back to the pediatrican’s office {again} this morning for them to recheck Lucy’s ears. And they were infections free!!!!!

Happy Momma’s Break Day

Oh MLK. Thank you for your dream & for my work believing as I do that you’re worthy of a holiday. Thank you too that our daycare remained open.

Before the RSV diagnosis of last week {also see why I’ve been blog MIA} & husband’s bout of flu at.the.same.time, I had lofty plans for today. To do all the things! Shop! Sleep! Read! Blog from my laptop instead of cell! Catch up on photo editing! Cook & bake & make baby food!

The the sickness came {back} to our house leaving me single parenting two sick babies with the help of my Dad & the my mom. And my doing everything possible to stay well. So today, even though the babies are just starting to feel better, we packed them up at 10a & dropped them at already paid for care. I raced home {after splurging on CFA & stopping for bananas}, to pump & then nap. Nap without an ear out for crying babies & half an eye open watching the monitor. It was an hour & a half of glorious.

Then, because I still wanted to do all things, I ate, pumped again, baked pumpkin muffins & made avocado & banana purées. I didn’t really shop {I don’t really count online right?!} or get to read more of the hilarious Jen Lancaster’s new book & my DVR is still full. But that’s okay. I got my {much needed} break.

And I’m on my way to pick up L & Z on their 8 months old day a few hours early having heard from their teacher that they were fussy & crying most of the day. I’m feeling a bit renewed. My patient momma tank a bit more full. Ready to see how the evening goes & {never thought I’d say this} looking forward to getting back to work tomorrow.

Ever taken a Momma break day for yourself?