Sciencewomen

A Day in the Life: Year 2, Part 3

i-9dc84d4d9156dccb30d5f62466b4219a-swblocks.jpgWhere we left our heroine at the end of the last episode, she was on her way to pick Minnow up from daycare. Work day’s over right? Should be smooth sailing from here to midnight. Maybe, maybe not.

(Note to Lab Lemming: Don’t worry about the time to type up these posts. They were compiled from short emails I sent to myself throughout the day…this is lazy blogging.)

5:20 Arrive at daycare. Have the following conversation:

Teacher 1: So-and-so’s parents just had a baby boy.
Teacher 2: Yeah, and Tyler’s parents are having a girl.
Me: Tyler’s mom is pregnant? Seems like everyone in Minnow’s class has younger siblings here or on the way.
Teacher 1: (to Minnow) Better tell your momma and daddy to get busy.
Me (in my head, screaming): I’ve got an unemployed a husband, a job that’s never done even after 60 hour work weeks, and a marriage that’s still on somewhat shaky ground, the last thing I need is someone telling me it’s time to be pregnant again.
Me (out loud): Well, maybe once Minnow is weaned and potty-trained. For now it’s sort of unimaginable. I need my own body back for a while.
Teacher 1: She’s still nursing? Really? I knew someone who nursed their kid until he was 3. I couldn’t believe it when I found it…and he talked so well.

5:30 Escape classroom. Nurse minnow in front seat of car.
5:50 Arrive home. Play with Minnow and neighbor boy in front yard until it’s too dark and the kids are too whiny.
6:10 Nurse minnow.** Again. What does she think I have? 4 boobs? I gotta teach the kid to count.
6:20 I’m famished. Minnow refuses to eat. Instead she wants to turn all the light switches in the house off and on, feed her food to Princess Pup, climb in my lap…and nurse.
6:50 Minnow’s dinner has consisted of 2 apple wedges, 3 oz. of diluted apple juice, 1 saltine, 2 Kix, whipped cream, and breast milk. Greens, rice, and refusal of breast milk caused repeated meltdowns. Is this still the time change? Or is it that she was up so early this morning?
7:00 to 7:25 (not exaggerating) Minnow runs around naked between her two potties, insisting that she’s going to pee pee and not actually doing so. While on the potties we read Goodnight Moon, Brainy Baby, and Come over to my house. Minnow prefers her books upside down.
7:31 Complete meltdown as we attempt to get some jammies on her. Flailing limbs, screaming, the whole bit. Poor kid, she’s so tired. Nurse to calm down.
7:38 Jammies on. A bit of of quiet fun in the bedroom as Minnow tries to scale her dresser drawers in pursuit of the elusive box of wipes and diaper cream. She’s obsessed with wipes and cream.
7:42 Lights off. Singing, nursing, cuddling, pulling slippers off and on (“my turn”), drinking “wa-we” from a cup, etc. Someone is wide awake.
8:02 Minnow decides to read “The Gingerbread Man” to herself, upside down in the dark. Apparently the Gingerbread Man growls like a bear. But I can understand the confusion in the dark.
8:13 Minnow is on about her fifth time through the book. “Should the book go night night?” “No.” “Does Minnow want to go night night with her book?” “Yea.” I set her in her crib. “Night night mommy.” And she’s back to her book. No further sound is heard after I close the door.
8:15 I give a status update to Fish who’s on monitor duty for the next couple of hours. He’s playing computer games with the TV blaring behind his back.
8:30 I sit down at the computer to pay bills and work and end up updating this narrative instead.
8:45 Bills are paid, checkbooks balanced. We’re going to make it to the next payday without dipping into savings this time. Yay!
9:30 Go through afternoon of work email, send various paperwork to budget office who of course needs it ASAP but took 2 days to reply to my email about what they needed and when.
9:50 Reminded that I’m really het up about something right now. Spend most of next hour writing and reading blog posts and writing to politicians. I hope they listen. Unfortunately, this does not count as my InaDWriMo for the day.
10:45 Finally get to work on my paper revisions. Work steadily for next…hey, wait it’s midnight. I get to stop logging now. Does that mean my work is done? No? Oh.

work until 12:38 when Minnow wakes up hungry… and it begins again.

Oh, but don’t forget the sweetest part of the day. When I was rocking and cuddling with Minnow before bedtime, I asked “Can you say ‘I love you Mommy?’” And she actually said it, for the first time ever. “I wuv do Mommy.” Most beautiful words I’ve ever head.

**All nursing initiated by Minnow and ineffectively resisted by me.

Comments

  1. #1 Disgruntled Julie
    November 12, 2008

    Just an FYI, you used Minnow’s real name in there — you may want to go back and change it for privacy reasons.

  2. #2 estraven
    November 12, 2008

    Isn’t Minnow a bit young for potty-training? My daughter didn’t start until 30 months (and learned in a week), my twins started at 33 months and learned at 35 and 37. Still, you know her; she might well be ready.
    She’s willing to nurse so long, my kids stopped by themselves way earlier. I would be envious if you weren’t so exhausted.

    Oh, and my I say how impressed I am by your tenacity? I’m older than you, but I feel I should have you as role model.

  3. #3 Tinkering Theorist
    November 12, 2008

    You’re doing a great job! You say “still . . . somewhat shaky” and say that your checkbook balances as though your household’s troubles are improving. I really hope they are!

  4. #4 ScienceWoman
    November 12, 2008

    Julie – Thanks for the catch. Another reader pointed it out via email too. This pseud business is tricky work.

    estraven – She’s been interested in the potty since this summer. Some days she’s more consistent about using it than others. We’re hoping to have her out of diapers by the time she’s two, but for now we let her tell us when she needs to use the potty or we ask at certain key times of day, but we’re not pushing it quite yet.

    TT: Depends on the day. Trying not to derail the main gist of the post.

  5. #5 Kim
    November 12, 2008

    And she actually said it, for the first time ever. “I wuv do Mommy.”

    :) :) :)

  6. #6 Ewan
    November 12, 2008

    a marriage that’s still on somewhat shaky ground

    This sounds as though there may be some progress? If so – glad to hear it. And as ever, kudos on the heroism.

  7. #7 ScientistMother
    November 12, 2008

    I can’t wait to hear the “i wuv you mommy” yeah to you! you are amazing.

  8. #8 Becca
    November 12, 2008

    “8:02 Minnow decides to read “The Gingerbread Man” to herself, upside down in the dark. Apparently the Gingerbread Man growls like a bear. But I can understand the confusion in the dark.”
    This made me giggle!
    She sounds so ridiculously cute. At least the highlight bits.

  9. #9 KJ
    November 12, 2008

    I am sick of the “ready for another?” talk as well. We had our little one around the same time as several of our friends. Now, they are all pregnant with their second. Yes, I would love to have a second child, but I have other things to figure out first. Plus, I enjoy toddlerhood right now (believe it or not). I want some time to enjoy this stage without another baby screaming for attention. All in time. I wish people realized that second baby questions are rude.

  10. #10 Kate
    November 12, 2008

    You are doing such a wonderful job, ScienceWoman. Kudos to you and your family.

    And oh my goodness, Minnow is ADORABLE.

  11. #11 Art
    November 13, 2008

    To help keep some information out of my writing I use an automatic spell check and insert into the program a spelling that includes a clue to remind me not to include the term.

    In example: Instead of Mike Murphy, the name I’m try to keep out, I insert the spelling “Mxke Muxphy” as the correct spelling. When the spelling program highlights the correct spelling and insists on a wrong spelling with the X’s it reminds me not to use the name.

    It is pretty easy to insert these purposefully wrong spellings in most spell check programs.

  12. #12 JanusProfessor
    November 13, 2008

    You should nurse as long as you want! Forget what other people say. I am jealous that you can nurse at all ;)

    It sounds like there is some incremental progress with marriage and money. Good for you!

  13. #13 scicurious
    November 13, 2008

    You make me ashamed. And here I was thinking that my life was hard. I don’t know how parents manage on so little sleep! Do you live on caffeine?

    Second children questions are rude, but really, first children questions are rude as well. But yuo can hold the morla high ground and point out that, if you wait, there’s no way you’ll be trying to do two college tuitions at the same time!

    You’re a hero, Sciencewoman. We must hang out sometime. :)

  14. #14 Rebecca
    November 13, 2008

    Glad to know I’m not the only academic mother who is nursing a 2-year-old. Luckily for me, everyone knows I don’t plan to have a second until I actually finish my degree (it is hard enough with 1 kid!), so there aren’t too many questions…

    It is nice to hear how other people are managing.

  15. #15 goat mama
    November 13, 2008

    I love these posts and your ability to blend together all the wonderful Minnow highlights with all the other thoughts, achievements & exasperations we encounter each day as we plod through our personal & professional lives.
    However, as someone who went through a boatload of therapy & a disastrous marriage, I still get frustrated when I hear your stories of blythe comments from the daycare about your next baby. Since going through my own trials, I can better appreciate the complexity of other peoples personal lives. I know people mean well, but these overly simplified comments about something deeply personal drive me nuts. It also helps me to better realize how many times I used to say such things to others. Hopefully I’m getting better about this myself…

  16. #16 PhD Girld
    November 13, 2008

    I’m in awe of what your day looks like. I’m a second year PhD student in the social sciences and my partner and I have moved from the “maybe we’ll think about having kids some day” to the “we should think about having kids SOON” (well, I have at least). But I’m totally scared. I feel like I have little time as it is, but how can we manage a baby on top of everything else? That fact that you can juggle is reassuring, but the amount of juggling is scary.

  17. #17 ecogeofemme
    November 13, 2008

    I feel so bad for you that Minnow is not sleeping through the night. I bet things would be a lot easier if all three of you could get more sleep. Not that it helps you at all for me to say that…

    How sweet that Minnow can now tell you she loves you! And do all the other cute things she does.