I have this problem where even when I know that doing something is in my best interest, I resist it. I dig my heels in real deep and stomp my feet and have the most epic (figurative) adult temper tantrum.
Then time passes and I’m cursing my past self for not doing the thing that would make life so much easier for my current self. It happens in the morning when I’m mad at myself for not closing Instagram and going to sleep earlier (sometimes Insta-stories are better than TV, y’all!), when I don’t take my contacts out before bed, and on and on.
Clearly, adulting isn’t my strong suit.
The past few weeks, maybe months, I’ve kinda slacked over the weekend. We’ve had plenty of activities keeping up busy but when at home, I spent a little too much time doing lots of nothing. Doing a little bit of nothing is no big deal but I was doing too much nothing.
At first, I was blaming on football season and all the solo parenting that happens this time of year. But the truth is I was just being stubborn.
Then Monday would come and I’d be overwhelmed and stressed when doing a few things to prepare for the week could have alleviated so much of my strife.
So this past Sunday, I put my big girl pants on and made an effort to get ahead before the week started. In the below video you’ll see me do a brain dump to get all my to-dos out of my head and onto paper, get my meal plan set for the week, tackle one thing at a time and lots of meal prep. Lots and lots of meal prep!
What kind of things do you like to accomplish over the weekend so that you can start the week on a good foot?
Generally speaking, I find very little difference in the lives of working moms versus stay-at-home moms. We have to feed kids, provide clean clothes, be sure they are at all the activities, try to have the house in order and maybe sometimes even clean, etc.
That being said, there are challenges unique to moms who work outside the home. And I’m afraid when some working mamas see a product called the “Ultimate Homemaking Bundle” they’ll assume that it’s not made for them. That it was created only for stay-at-home moms. So I scrolled through the Product List of the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle 2017 and highlighted a few of the eBooks, eCourses, workbooks & printables that I thought spoke to the struggles of homemaking as a working mama.
The first and probably most obvious is the course, “Stretched Too Thin: 10 Days to Overcoming the Hustle and Thriving as a Working Mom” by Jessica Turner of The Mom Creative. This course (valued at $39.00) includes 10 videos, one per day, that addresses topics such “Establishing Work Boundaries”, “Loving Your Spouse Intentionally” and “Practicing Self-Care”. One awesome perk I didn’t realize came with this course is an additional set of bonuses including 3 more eBooks and a make-ahead lunch meal plan. I’m eager to get started on this course as soon as tomorrow!
Additional resources I thought could be especially helpful for working moms:
21 Days to a More Disciplined Life by Crystal Paine
Your Morning Manual: A Guide & Workbook for Resetting & Maximizing Your Mornings by Emily Bredeson
What’s 4 Dinner Challenge Meal Planning eCourse by Erin Odom and Holly Dvorak
Making Big Life Changes Together: Pursuing Your Dreams as a Couple by Haley Stewart
Boundaries and Margins Webinar by Saren Loosli
Command Center 101: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Command Center that WORKS for Your Family by Meredith LeRoy
The Paperless Home: How to Use Evernote to Organize Your Life by Abby Lawson
Busy Mom’s Make-Ahead Breakfast Cookbook by Carrie Willard
Delicious Dinners in Under an Hour by Mique Provost
30 Days, 30 Ways for Mothers to Take Care of Themselves by Angela Henderson
Mama’s Best Self: Where Frazzled Mamas Find Peace by Amanda Rueter
and any of resources in the Work+Life Balance category:
And I’ll be honest, I highlighted a bunch more but scaled back so the list wouldn’t be overwhelming!
So to my working mama friends, don’t feel like there’s nothing for you in this Ultimate Homemaking Bundle – they’ve got you covered!!
But don’t wait – the clock is ticking and it won’t be available much longer!!
Pumping isn’t fun. But if you’re a working mom who wants to feed her baby breast milk, you just gotta suck it up and do it. (Pun intended a little) And if you’re an exclusively pumping mama, let me just say right now that I think you are a ROCK.STAR!!!! That level of commitment amazes me!!
For lots of pumping mamas, Baby’s first birthday is our ultimate goal. At that point, whole milk can enter the picture, solid food provides lot of the nutritional needs and we still have mornings, nights and weekends to provide breast milk straight from the tap.
A couple days ago, I was chatting with a coworker via IM and she was teasing me because it had taken me awhile to respond to her initial message. I had been in the Mother’s Room pumping and had told her so. Her response was “You’re still doing that?” and it got me to thinking the generally accepted idea that even if you keep nursing past one year, pumping always ends at the first birthday.
With Brooke, who was always fed a mix of formula and breast milk, I opted to stop pumping shortly after her first birthday. I replaced formula with whole milk and the amount of breast milk I was able to offer just didn’t make a big enough dent to be worth it.
However, when Leah turned 1 in June, I didn’t feel a need to stop pumping. And today, at 15 months and counting, I’m still pumping and don’t really have an ending time in mind. Here’s why:
If It Ain’t Broke Don’t Fix It
This has always somewhat of a mantra for me when it comes to parenting and approaching milestones. Whether it is breastfeeding, potty training, moving out of rear-facing or harnessed car seats, I don’t feel a need to rush it. What we’ve got going right now is working so I don’t see the benefit to changing things.
I’m sure Keith would love to stop washing bottles at night and it would probably be slightly easier for daycare but other than that, there’s no real hardship associated with continued pumping that prompts me to stop.
If I Was Home, She Would Be Getting That Breast Milk
If I wasn’t working, I imagine we’d have one or two nursing sessions during the day in addition to the morning and nighttime ones we currently share. My view is that pumping and sending expressed milk to daycare was a substitute for nursing while we were apart during her first year and nothing fundamentally changed about that after her first birthday. Breast milk is still extremely beneficial for toddlers and I am happy to do what I can to get that nutrition to her every day.
I Kinda Like My Pumping Sessions
I recognize that I’m very blessed to have the pumping situation that I do. My company has designated “Mother’s Rooms” in every location I’ve ever been in. It is equipped with counter, sink, mini-fridge and chair. One of the Houston offices I worked in was super tricked out with a radio, table full of magazines and even a foot warmer/massager. My managers have never batted an eye at my need to be away from my desk to pump. So that time for me is an opportunity to step away from my computer and enjoy some Mama-Time. I read or watch Hulu on the Kindle, catch up on social media, jot down lists or even just close my eyes and mediate to the lovely hum of the pump.
I worked very hard to get to this point and still be nursing and pumping at 15 months. When my output rapidly decreased at around the 6 or 7 month mark, I tried everything – adding pumping sessions (up to 5x/day), fenugreek, blessed thistle, oatmeal, more water and when none of those worked, I eventually started taking domperidone which helped immensely. In fact, I am still taking the domperidone to maintain the supply I have now.
So I realize that it’s not always easy to “just keep going” and hope that any mamas who have the desire to keep going are able for as long as they wish.
Did you pump breast milk for your child(ren)? When did you stop? What was your experience like?