disclaimer: not every day looks like the one below! some days -- like today -- i end up eating a freezer-burned bagel for dinner and skipping my workout. but this is my general blueprint of what things are like lately.
anywhere from 5:45 - 7:00 [but usually around 6:00] -- annabel wakes up. she is my alarm clock most days! this is a pretty major change from 2 months ago when i would get up at 5:00 or earlier, either to feed a hungry baby or to attempt to pump/work out before she emerged from dreamland. why the change? it got frustrating trying to pump/start running, only to have her wake up moments later. the evening became a much more predictable time. and well -- i got tired.
she eats [nurses] as soon as she wakes up [meal #1], and then we head to the kitchen where i prepare my breakfast. she is still content to hang out in her bouncer while i eat, as long as i talk to her and provide some sort of entertainment. if she's up on the early side, we sneak in some playtime before i have to get down to morning routine business.
from this AM. today was an early one . . .
7:15 pump #1 -- and then i have to start thinking about prep to get out the door. i shower [if i hadn't the night before], grab pump parts/lunch, and prep a's bottles. if there's time, i even unload the dishwasher so i don't have to later. now that i'm used to this routine, it doesn't take quite as long as it did a couple of months ago. but it's still tedious!
8:15 [earlier on clinic days, sometimes a little later on lab days] we're out the door. if she ate super early, i give her a 5-10 minute 'top-off' nursing session before we leave.
8:25 day care drop off. this process is also streamlined compared to in the past -- i'm a day care mommy veteran now. thankfully, i still love the caregivers in a's room and have been really happy with her experience there thus far. the only thing that bothers me is that i wish she'd nap better there, but that's a story for a different day.
side note: though this is about my day, i'll note that annabel takes 3 x 5 oz bottles in day care -- usually spaced every three hours, so around 9:30, 12:30, and 3:30, for meals #2, #3, and #4. her naps are all over the place, and some days are really lame [20 minutes -- does that even count!?].
around 9:00 [earlier on clinic days] i arrive at work. this part hasn't changed much, although it was quite a busy august/september in terms of running experiments. october i'll be back on the wards, which will be another experience altogether.
12:00 pump #2 + lunch. as i write this, i wish i could space this closer to pump #1. but this is generally how things work out.
12:45 back to work . . .
4:00 pump #3. then back to work, but just usually to wrap things up/prep for the next day
5:00 head to daycare. i'm usually suffering from a significant case of annabel withdrawal by this point and i have to stop myself from speeding too much down the durham freeway [seriously] to get to her.
5:20 happy moment! we are reunited. we drive home [5 minutes]. this often happens:
day care is tiring.
[she usually wakes up within a few minutes of getting in the door]
it is absolutely amazing to me how good she is at taking food with a spoon after just a week's practice. honestly, sometimes it's hard to give her enough fast enough to please her, and she isn't even that messy somehow! so far, she's had:
-- rice cereal [with breastmilk]
-- sweet potatoes [from a jar]
-- butternut squash purée [that i made, thinned with a little bmilk]
6:15 bathtime. she continues to love this ritual, and therefore so do i. followed by pajamas/sleep sack, lotion and a book [if she'll tolerate it -- which usually she won't]
6:30 nurse to sleep [meal #5, not counting her solids]. she typically stirs a bit when i transfer her to the crib, but then passes out
i actually just tiptoed into her room and took this shot.
blurry but i wasn't going to risk waking her up with the flash again!
7:00 the baby-free portion of the evening begins. lately, i've been going straight to my planned workout to just get it done [except for tonight, because i'm tired and slacking, as i mentioned above]. afterwards, i shower and start to load the dishwasher with the bottles/pump parts that accumulated in my bags from the day.
and then -- it's time to make or heat up dinner. i've been trying to plan dinners so that on nights that i run, i don't have much to do -- lots of leftovers and frozen pizzas and the like. on rest days [or quick shred workout days], i'll throw together something pretty easy, in the 20 minute range. if josh is home, he will often help with this while i'm finishing running [or afterwards with me]. oh, and lately i've been enjoying some wine or beer while i cook. it's sort of a bribe to get me to do it, but whatever works, right? and after going nearly a year without [i was too paranoid to drink much those first few months when i never knew when a would eat], it feels kind of nice and special.
last week. long run on monday was labor day -- not my usual pattern.
[more on workout/meal/week planning on another post. i have more to say here!]
8:30ish dinner and clean up.
9:00 crash on couch time -- or i'll blog! often josh and i find something to watch together, but pickings have been slim lately. i'm psyched for the return of glee and modern family.
9:45 pump #4.
10:15ish to bed. but really i need to start expediting things a bit in the evening and getting there earlier.
1:00 [or midnight, or 2:00] whimpering -- never all out crying. i go to nurse her [meal #6] and she is typically up for 20 minutes, max. she eats and then i put her back down with her paci, and she is very good about falling asleep.
so there you have it -- the above is a pretty IDEAL day. a is definitely more predictable than she was a few months ago, but there are still nights when she wakes up twice. last night, for example, she was up at 12:30 and again at 5:15 and really never made it back to sleep again, which is probably why i feel pretty much like a mess right now.
still my all?
yes. i may not sound as glowingly ecstatic about things as i did two months ago when i was just thrilled that i could SURVIVE back at work, but . . . i still really like the current balance. i really enjoy my time with a, who is getting more fun by the day -- and i also like working. it makes our weekends so special and i have to say that picking her up is always a highlight of my day!
if anything could be better [though i know it could be MUUUUUCH worse!], i do long for sleep a little. i don't think i've had one completely uninterrupted night of slumber yet, and i get jealous when i hear about babies who go from 7 - 7 on a regular basis. still, i think there's hope, especially as a's intake of solid foods increases.
oh, and though i really like breastfeeding, i could do without the (*$&@# pump. but things are looking good for my goal of exclusive breast milk until 6 months, and after that i'll reassess and see where things are.