Friday, April 3, 2009


Katie got me started. I apologize in advance for the whiney tone.

This is what one day in the life of this working mother is like:

My son slept all last evening instead of all night. He was up for good before 5am. I had to change an extra gooey diaper when I should've been running out the door, packing a large laptop, purse, and lunch (no longer trusting the cafeteria after 2 recent and icky salad bar experiences)

I have a TON of real work to do. Instead, I spent 2 hours on the phone with the help [less] desk doing a software install for something I requested in early January. At my biweekly meeting with my boss, we discussed my upcoming review and lack of design support. He said, "Not much I can do about it now, you should've mentioned it a couple of weeks ago." I said, "I did". He said, "Not loudly enough." Then he said my husband better be taking me out on dates, I could ignore the rest of the religion, but weekly dates were a commandment from God.

After this, I headed across the street to visit the coffee guy that comes in Fridays for a knock-off frapuccino. It's a poor imitation, but he's a nice guy and it saved me the hassle of driving one town over. Also saved me $2.

At lunch, I read a NYT article by a Judith Warner who proclaimed the heresy that breastfeeding had no measurable benefits and wouldn't it be great if breast pumps were oneday banned!? The point was supposed to be that there's too much pressure on working mothers and we should all lighten up and band together to get more family leave. It also stated that her husband curled up his nose when he saw the bags of milk in the freezer and didn't want to have sex with her [ever again] because the pumping stretched her nipples out so far. Yes, there's too much pressure and we should get more family leave. However, the scientific verdict is pretty much out in favor of breastfeeding (several IQ points, superior nutrition, bonding, weight loss, less asthma, better immunity, and extremely low risk of melamine contamination) and despite its drawbacks, I am grateful for my pump. I also point out that a little nipple stretching is nothing compared to the stretching of labor and delivery. Here's the real rub in this article--we all spend 12 months panicky about how we're going to squeeze in multiple daily trips to the milking station, fulfill our workplace obligations and get home in time to see our child awake. Now there's an article from a journalist who is supposed to be on our side and instead throws another guilt trip on women for having gone to soo much effort to do it all when we could've been happily shaking up manufactured milkshakes for our babes.

In the afternoon, I returned a bunch of phone calls. One of these was answered by a lovely computerized female voice who asked me to type in the name of the person I was calling. My first attempt, I tried to use the keypad like I was texting (repeating the 6 three times to get to the n)--gibberish in, gibberish out. Second try I spelled Jensen with and "o", and the computerized voice offered me 2 people I wasn't interested in speaking to. Third time, I am sure I spelled it correctly, and I was offered nothing.

I spent the next couple of hours investigating who had totally blown my project budget, finding the person (who I have never even met) and getting incredibly unsatisfying responses to my questioning of just who was he, and what had he done for the 3.5 weeks he charged my program exclusively. About this point, someone commented on how I remained calm and collected all the time (Thanks, Betsy).

Then I got called into a stupid meeting to discuss an issue that had been resolved 3 months ago. I ended by saying, "I'll resend the email you received 12/18 from the person who has been managing that particular issue for 15 years so that you can copy it into the documentation. Oh, how many people would you like me to cc: and ask to reply all that they concur", hanging up, and muttering, "Jackass". I have several similar meetings each week with this same person.

In short this was a totally wasted workday.

I came home and Jackson threw open the front door and said, "Hi-ee!" Then he gave me a big hug and said, "Ahh mahmahm." I watched him (a delight after a 4 hour nap this afternoon) eat a whole watermelon. Well, actually, 2 macaronis off the floor (ewww, dropped them at lunch, mental note to invite the beagle in the scavange the floors more frequently), 3/4 banana, 25 mini mozzarella balls, bowl of sunchips, 1/2 cup (yes 1/2 cup) of peanut butter, 1/2 cup fruit cocktail, and nibbles from my soft taco. I'm sure I'll pay the penalty tomorrow morning. At least I didn't give him any raisins or prunes.

He took a brief pretend nap on the second stair with ducky who tickles his nose. Then he climbed the heaters to get to the window sills and look out. I changed a diaper (with raisins), helped him brush his 11 teeth (at 20 teeth, will he be chewing up the dried fruit? How about 16? The last month of poorly slept nights indicates we may have 16 soon). Jackson bounced on the giant exercise ball while I read about Harry the Dirty Dog and hoped the ball was wedged sufficiently into the corner so as not to topple over. Then I read Goodnight Moon (mostly from memory so Jack could turn several pages at a time back and forth) followed by Eyore, Be Happy. Then Jackson didn't want to go to bed, so I told him to call me back in when he was ready to sleep and turned out the light. Suddenly, he was ready for bed. I kissed him and 3 stuffed animals goodnight, then took my leave. Jackson followed and spent the next 1/2 hour with his chin leaning on the gate shouting, "Mamahmahhhm" After a while I started shouting back, "Jack Jahck Jaaaahck". I think he's sleeping now, but I hesitate to check incase he's not.

It rained today and is set to rain all weekend and all next weekend.

After posting this, I'm off to spend "datenight" doing the work I needed to do in the office today.


  1. Sorry you had such a crappy day! Your little guy is cute! Glad to see that things are well with you and Jason. Take care and I hope your weekend is better than today! By the way, were you in Utah in February at Rooster's for dinner on a Sunday night?

  2. What a crappy day! Those are the days when all I want is a tall Chai and a long bath (and those are the days when I usually don't get either!) I hope your weekend gets better, even with rain.

  3. Have you ever read "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day"? Maybe you should move to Australia....
    You are an AMAZING mother, by the way. :) At least all days aren't like that, right? And at least you have a super little boy to come home to.

  4. Oh, my. Thanks for venting. I believe it helps. I just got back from an actual night "out" with real people and it felt so good. I look back on the days when I was working full time, and I can't remember how I did it, yet I'm so glad I did and I'm so glad you do. Keep it up! I'm not sure I understand why your boss(?) said you need a date night. Did he really say that? The nerve!

    I am ready for sunshine too. Try buying real flowers for yourself (like from the grocery store). It just made my weekend. ha ha

  5. Jason speaking: I have ALWAYS thought my wife is HOT! Motherhood be damned.

  6. Ugh, what a day. I have no tolerance for idiots and it sounds like you have to put up with several at work.

    You're right, working moms don't need another reason to feel guilty.

  7. That judith warner thing...AHEM. don't get me started.

    sorry for your day. take care.

  8. Ok, I just read the Judith Warner piece and now I need to vent about THAT.