A Day in the Life: Year 2, Part 1

i-9dc84d4d9156dccb30d5f62466b4219a-swblocks.jpgLast September, I chronicled my journey through a fairly typical weekday as a first year assistant professor with an infant. The day started early and never really ended, so it took me three posts to tell the whole story (1, 2, 3). I always intended to revisit the project again, but it’s taken me 14 months to do so. Now I’m a second year assistant professor with an almost 2 year old and life seems only slightly less hectic. Below the fold, follow me as I get my day going. I’m going to spread this day out into multiple posts spanning most of the week, so you’ll have to keep coming back to catch up with me.

midnight – working on paper revisions for inadwrimo.
12:20 – shutting down the computer when minnow wakes up screaming. change in to jammies and bring her to bed with me.
12:30 – sudden small inspiration on the paper revision. Hope I can remember it in the morning.
early am hours – Minnow nurses once or twice but falls right back asleep.
5:15 – minnow is nursing again.
5:35 – minnow is nursing again and now the side of her jammies feel all wet. and so does the bed. damn. “Minnow, do you want to get a diaper change?” “Yea.”
5:45 – baby wiped down, diaper and jammies changed, back in bed avoiding the wet spot, hoping minnow will go back to sleep for an hour.
6:00-6:30 – it’s not working. She’s nursing and babbling and lying on her back kicking the bed and clapping – and, hey, where did that sticker come from?
6:30 – “Daddy, can you and Minnow go play in her room for a half hour so mommy can get some sleep?”
6:55 – They’re back. Time to get up, I guess.
7:15 – Minnow and I are out of the shower. She is refusing to put clothes on. Instead she wants to sit on her potty and read a book.
7:30 – A shirt has been forcefully added. But the prospect of wearing a jumper is being forcefully refused. It’s school picture day, but why would I possibly believe that the child who wouldn’t wear a halloween costume would be any less terrified, or obstinate, about new clothes? Silly me. Of course, now that the resistance has been raised, she won’t even put on normal pants.
7:40 – Breakfast and distractions are not helping the cause. Pants are added. Several cute cardigans are offered as “jackets,” which she normally loves but of course now refuses. Socks and shoes at least provoke a “my turn” and she’s dressed in something.
8:01 am. Out the door. Minnow with daddy to go to daycare. Mommy to work, via the drugstore for some meds and Starbucks for a venti Chai and an egg sandwich. Fiscally irresponsible, but I need the caffeine and the food.
8:39 am. In my office, take the meds, sit down at the computer to catch up on email (and blogs). Suddenly woozy. Is it the sleep deprivation, caffeine, the sick, or the meds? I don’t know but I hope it passes before lecture. Speaking of lecture, I better get ready for my 9:30 class.


  1. #1 soil mamma
    November 10, 2008

    ahhh, that schedule sounds so familiar.

    our self professed “big kid” still comes to our bed ~midnight and nurses on and off. if we’re lucky she’ll sleep till 6:30. She’s been waking to go potty in the early morning and just like early am diaper changes, it is so hard to get her to back to sleep. I’m sure you are aware of the “trick” but we switched to using diapers that are a size too large for night time. She is no where near the weight range called for, but they are more absorbant. This worked fine before she started potty training, now she wakes up to pee at odd hours (but still wears “night pants since she doesn’t always wake up).

    we also go through clothing battles. when she gets like that, we’ll just let her pick out her own clothes. She usually does pretty good, but sometimes ends up with funny outfits or wears her supergirl dress to school.

    I know it’s frustrating to deal with all these toddler things, but it is nice to know that someone else is dealing with it all too.

    hope you start to feel better as the day goes on.

  2. #2 ScienceWoman
    November 10, 2008

    Hi soil mamma,

    We too went up a size in diapers recently and I think it’s actually exasperating the bed wetting phenomenon. We moved up because the smaller diapers were starting to chafe where her legs meet her hips, even though we theoretically had 8 more pounds in that size range. But now we are at the very bottom of the bigger size, and I think they get shifted around as she squirms in the night and are loose enough that they don’t form a good seal.

  3. #3 soil mamma
    November 10, 2008

    oh the extra things us moms have to spend our time thinking about! have you tried the night pants?
    the 18-34 lb size range seems huge, but might work for you.

    I’m sure all your readers are loving this diaper discussion! 🙂

  4. #4 Kate
    November 10, 2008

    SW, I know you do disposables but you may want to consider investing in a few diaper covers that are Minnow’s size that you can put on over the disposable for the night. We do a disposable at night, and when she goes on bedwetting tears we add an outer diaper cover and it usually does the trick. I think Bummis have been our favorite lately, but we also use Prorap and Kushies and know folks who like Fuzzibuns.

    As for your day in the life post, I love it! And it does feel very familiar, even if La Dudarina is far younger.

  5. #5 Tinkering Theorist
    November 11, 2008

    I don’t know how you do such great work with so little sleep! I am a bit jealous that you seem much more excited about your science than me–I haven’t thought about it while trying to get to bed in a long time.
    Mine is younger than Minnow but still well past the age when he was “supposed” to sleep through the night. Why do they have to nurse constantly? His new plan is to scream at the top of his lungs whenever I unlatch him. He did this only 2 or 3 times last night, so I guess he’s doing better than Minnow. I think he’s mad because there is less milk now that he is down to 1 daytime nursing. Good luck–some day she will sleep through the night!

  6. #6 Dr. Isis
    November 11, 2008

    5:35 – minnow is nursing again and now the side of her jammies feel all wet. and so does the bed. damn. “Minnow, do you want to get a diaper change?” “Yea.”
    5:45 – baby wiped down, diaper and jammies changed, back in bed avoiding the wet spot, hoping minnow will go back to sleep for an hour.

    SW, this is exactly my life down to the part of “avoiding the wet spot” instead of changing the sheets in my sleep-deprived, delerious state. It saddens me that “avoiding the wet spot” means something totally different in my house than it did 2 years ago. If I don’t start getting more than 2 uninterrupted hours of sleep at a time, I am going to lose my mind.

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