Reflections on my first week back at work…
1. I miss my baby girl. That goes without saying. However, I survived my first week away from her. We both made it, and each day it got a little easier. I mean, sort of.
2. Man alive, packing for a newborn and a nursing mom each morning is like packing to go to Europe. I’ve got a check list for both of us, and I think between the two of us, there are at least five bags a day, plus a bouncy seat and car seat that travels with her. Each day has gotten easier – the first night it took me an hour to pack, and now it takes us about 10 minutes.
3. Pumping at work is a bit of an adventure. It’s like having one of those “if they only knew what was going on behind this closed door” moments. Frankly, it’s strange. But I’ve started to get my system down… thanks to a hands-free pump I don’t miss a beat with work, other than a very elaborate set up-tear down if you know what I mean. The strangest place I’ve had to pump so far was in a patient room in the ER after an event.
4. Speaking of pumping (man, this is turning into a women’s only blog, huh?), I’ve been trying to go to the gym on my way home from work (Mr. Right picks up Wrenn so I have a window of time before they get home), but it’s been blazing hot in Texas and I’ve been afraid to leave that precious milk in my car, even if it is in a cooler. And so, every night I carry my little cooler with me into the gym and leave it next to whatever machine I’m doing cardio on. Again, it’s one of those “if they only knew what was in this bag” moments.
I guess motherhood is full of secret “if they only knew” moments. Like, “If they only knew there’s dried spit-up on this shirt” or “If they only knew that I was covered in poop 30 minutes ago” or “If they only knew that I haven’t washed my hair in three days” or “If they only knew I’ve been awake since 3:30 this morning.” On second thought… I bet they do know. Whoever they is.
5. I really missed my coworkers. It was so fun to get to see them after 10 weeks. I work with some really great people.
6. I had 4,500 emails waiting for me when I returned. A week later and I’m down to just 2,000. In my defense, I didn’t have access to emails the first two days I was back, so technically I’ve plowed through 2,500 in just four days. I’m a machine.
7. Mr. Right called me Friday afternoon to tell me that he had bought me a 90-minute deep tissue massage for that evening. Like seriously, he’s the best husband ever. What a perfect way to end your first “week” (as in, two days) back at work.
8. While I was getting my massage, my masseuse told me, “I wish there were more people like your husband in this world. I agree, Ms. Masseuse. I agree. He’s obviously a client of hers too – he’s actually won over everyone who works there. I’m a proud wife.
9. I’m thankful for family who have watched Baby Girl while I worked. My sister, my mother-in-law, and Mr. Right have each take turns keeping her. And they send me pictures like this, which make it easier to make it through the day… (Wrenn with her cousin, who adores her. And do you recognize the quilt I made him? That vintage reproduction fabric is some of my favorite I’ve ever worked with.)
For the record: cute babies + my quilts = me very, very happy.
9. Yeah… not sleeping so much. Wrenn had a growth spurt that coincided with my first two days back and woke up several times during the night, and then this week I’ve had two mornings where I woke up at 3:30 and 4:00 a.m. and never went back to sleep. That makes for a long day. As I wrote on Facebook the other day, I’m making it thanks to a little bit of coffee and a lot of denial. I can’t complain when she only wakes up once a night, I just need to learn how to go back to sleep even when I only have 45 minutes before my alarm goes off for the day.
10. The best feeling in the whole world is when I wake Wrenn up in the morning, and she looks up at me with this big smile, like she’s saying “Oh hi mama – I’m so glad to see you!” I get the same smile when I see her after work. Oh my goodness, how it makes me melt.
One week down and we’ve all survived. I think we’re going to make it.
By the way – thanks to everyone who left the sweet comments on my last post. I realize I’m not the first – or last – girl to be a working mama, and it helps to have friends who have walked that road before me, and stay-at-home friends who have offered to fill in whenever we get in a bind. I am truly a very blessed girl – thank you.
I’m so excited to announce the winner of the Be Still print give-away.
Congrats Kelly! Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your address and I’ll drop your print in the mail. For anyone else who wants their own copy, it’s available in my shop as an instant download here. That means you could have it in your hands TONIGHT. What a great reminder to all of us to “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among all the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10
PS–I’m very VERY close to getting my 30,000th hit THIS YEAR on the blog. When that happens, expect another give-away. Tell your friends and maybe it will happen even sooner!