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2-Hour Windows of a Nursing, Working Momma’s Day

I wasn’t expecting going back to work to be so hard to juggle. Getting out of the house (on time) is a HUGE feat now. Jumping into strategic conversations when my brain is in “need a nap mode” and guilt about not being with my baby are two dark shadows following me as I go about my day. I feel conflicted when taking pumping breaks at work, because I so badly just want to nurse her. I want my nanny to send me pictures of my baby all the time, but I don’t because it will just make me jealous.
 
These thoughts and feelings are funny to me, because when I was on maternity leave I craved doing anything other than the daily grind of diapers, nursing, and naps. But now that I’m back to work, I crave being home. Ah. 

It seems like my day is divided into two-hour chunks, each one full of demands and priorities to juggle.

2-hour windows of a nursing working mama mom day

5:00 – 7:00 a.m. 

I begrudgingly wake up, pump, get ready for the gym, and head to Next Level. I struggle through the workout, but I am making progress and the people at the gym are great support. Getting a workout in the morning is a huge energy boost for me and helps shape the day in a productive way. 

My husband and I have lost 40+ pounds and almost 40″ total together since we joined NLXF in January!

7:00 – 9:00 a.m. 

I shower, nurse, coffee, eat something, feed the baby breakfast, play for a minute or two, get myself ready, pack lunch, pack my pump bag, pack my work bag, give baby a million kisses, try not to forget anything, set something out for supper, and commute to Cedar Rapids. I’m not a morning person; this is a very rushed and easily distracted time. I couldn’t do this 2+ hour window every morning without my husband and nanny–they run my house. 

9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. 

Work, Meetings, Pump, Eat, Restroom, Water, Repeat. I’m very lucky to have an incredibly accommodating job and supportive colleagues that value balancing family demands and trust employees to do their work.  I can’t imagine going back to a job that wasn’t as understanding. There are many moms that are in that situation, and I applaud them for juggling an even tougher situation than me. I pray for all moms to have understanding employers, flexibility, and autonomy in their roles. 

5:00 – 7:00 p.m. 

Leaving work is hard. I want to always get just one more task done, but know that every second I spend there is less time I get to spend with my daughter before I put her to bed. Trying to get out sometime between 4:30 and 5:30 is my goal. Then I hop on 380 (I swear that commute gets longer every single day, between accidents and construction). I get home before six to quickly nurse the baby, play and enjoy some time with her, give her a bath (if we’re lucky), read books, and bed by 7 to 8 o’clock. 

Her early bedtime is such a limiting factor in terms of getting out of the house, especially when I’m already so crunched on that time-slot. It makes me miss my pre-baby social life. However, I’ll take the sleep over what we went through with the four-month regression. Definitely a trade off.

2-hour windows of a nursing working mama mom day

The 2 hour window I look forward to all day! I just can’t get enough of my girl.

7:00 – 9:00 p.m. 

I honestly have no idea what happens during this time . . . it literally flies by. Once she is down for the night I feel so bad and just want to grab her and snuggle. The above 2-hour window is full of rushing around and I hate that. I tend to rock and cuddle her longer than I probably should, which I know goes against everything you read about “putting the baby to bed drowsy,” but this is literally some of the only time I get to breathe. I love just adoring her sleeping peacefully on me and know this won’t last long. 

9:00 – 11:00 p.m. 

By this time, my gas tank is pretty empty. It’s typically a last ditch effort to try and get anything done. While I’d love to tackle a project of some sort that’s been lingering, it usually ends up being the usual suspects: laundry, dishes, and put things away, before we literally just pass out in our bed from pure exhaustion.

I wish there was a way to be more intentional with that time and just connect with my spouse. 

So that’s pretty much a snapshot of a typical MondayFriday day for me. What’s so hard is trying to get the day back on track when a wrench has been thrown in it. For instance, today I got in my car to head to work (I was already about 15 minutes behind) and my fuel light came on. I swung in to get gas, got to the interstate and realized all my pump parts were at home, so I had to turn around.

I’m doing the best I can to squeeze all I can out of every 2-hour window I have. Balancing shifting priorities, being flexible, and trying to organize what’s important have been crucial in this transition to back-to-work life. And most importantly, grace from others is much appreciated! (I’m hard enough on myself, just ask my husband). 

Soaking up any moment I can with my daughter!

What do you do that helps make your days smoother? Where do you find or should I say “make” time for things in your life?

 

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One Response to 2-Hour Windows of a Nursing, Working Momma’s Day

  1. Lydia July 7, 2017 at 2:39 pm #

    If nobody has told you lately, you’re amazing!! Many moms would put their fitness on back burner given all you’re balancing, but you’re not and that’s awesome. I can’t say I was so dedicated and motivated with a 9mo old baby. You’re doing great!! ❤️

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