Wednesday, September 05, 2007

A Day in the Life, part 3

The end. Or is it the beginning? We pick up as I'm on my way home from work...

5:03: Get in car, call Annie.

5:15: Make it out of parking garage.

5:25: Make it off campus. (I am so not making this up, just ask Annie.) Total distance = less than 1/2 mile from garage.

5:45: Make it the remaining six miles home. Average speed from office to home = 10 mph.

6:15: Start bedtime routine. Get Minnow in bath. Remember that I need to take a photo for Minnow’s Project 365 blog. (A suspicious number of recent photos have been taken at bathtime or on the way out the door in the morning.) Get Minnow into jammies, read “Is your Mama a Llama?” and start “Blueberries for Sal” before she crashes. Nurse her, burp her, tuck her stuffed dog into the crib and turn on womb sounds, walk around and sing to her until she fusses. Assure her that my breasts are still there and available to her. Burp her. Walk around and sing to her until she fusses. Repeat steps 2 and 3. Finally she falls asleep.

7:15: Thank goodness she’s asleep. I’m starving. Pick up house until dinner’s ready.

7:30: Ham and spinach for dinner. Fish and I both discuss how tired we are and how our weekend plans to go to the mountains have been sabotaged by a fencing contractor. L

7:45: Wash and fill bottles for tomorrow.

8:00: Go upstairs to home office. Quickly blog. Then get back to lecture writing.

9:30: Contemplate how amazingly long she’s been asleep. Contemplate thirst.

9:50: Decide that in just 10 more minutes, I’ll stop working and actually go get that glass of water I’m craving.

9:55: Minnow wakes up. Wants Mommy. I nurse her and go to bed without my water. Dang.

10:40: Minnow wakes up and fusses. Pacifier soothes her.

11:15: Minnow wakes up and fusses. I nurse her to sleep.

12:05: Minnow wakes up and fusses. I don’t remember how I got her back to sleep.

2:00: Minnow wakes up and stays awake. I move to rocking chair where she nurses and then sleeps restlessly in my arms, waking several times to fuss, but not wanting to nurse.

3:45: Realizing that I’ve been dozing, my arm is numb, and Minnow is temporarily asleep, I carry her back to bed.

4:05: Minnow wakes up. I make Fish take her until 4:45.

And another day begins.



  • The extraordinary night fussiness (even by Minnow’s standards) was determined, in retrospect, to be the result of teething. This was our first experience with it.
  • Getting off campus is flipping ridiculous. Other faculty say, "just leave at 6," but if I do that I won't be home before bedtime. And then there are the people that say "leave at 4." That might be an option if I thought I'd get any work done at home while she's awake, but I know I won't.
  • I've been trying to get two solid hours of work in during the evening to compensate for short(er) days on campus. It makes me feel less stressed about work to know I'll have time in the evening, but it doesn't leave a lot of time for Fish or housework, much less downtime.
I'm glad my readers have been finding this series interesting. I actually found it to be enlightening as well. I may revisit this idea next semester or in 6 months and see how different my life is then.


estraven said...

Your account of the night with Minnow is incredible. It kind of reminds me of C#3 at the same age, especially the "fuss but don't nurse" part.
I am impressed by how much work you manage to do in the day despite not sleeping the night.

On the other hand, the only reason I didn't die of envy at the thought of pumping 5oz in one short 40-minutes session is that my nursing, and especially pumping, days are way back in my past.

Amy said...

Hi I just recently found your blog. Its great to read about another fellow mother scientist. I am finishing up my post-doc and had a baby 10 months ago. I am contemplating life and the direction I want my future career to go in. I enjoy reading your 'day in the life' account because it sounds so much like my life!

One thing you may want to do to save time pumping at work is to skip the microwave sterilization. Unless Minnow has an underlying medical problem, its not necessary to sterilize the pump equipment after every single use. I would wash out the equipment after every use and take it all home at the end of the week to sterilize over the weekend. It may save you a few minutes by skipping this step! I am no longer pumping at work but remember the days of pumping 3x and hardly getting any work done!

Good luck!

I'd like to hear more about your new faculty position, like how much teaching vs research you have to do.

Anonymous said...

wow. all I can say & think is 'wow'. I simply can't imagine balancing all of this. Aren't you exhausted? This is pure evidence that ScienceWoman= SuperWoman. When do you get to stop & savor the fact that you've finally achieved your dream?

PhD Mom said...

For teething try Hyland's teething tablets they worked like a charm for my little ones.

For the traffic, I would agree with the leave @ 4 types. Your children are only young for a while. This won't last forever and you don't deserve to be in traffic to go 8 miles in 45 minutes (hmmm...sounds like my life when I was in Boston). Just go home earlier and enjoy your family.

Anonymous said...

i would suggest hylands teething gel, it is better for babies with allergies since the tablets have trace dairy.

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