Several weeks ago Ashlee eloquently described a day in the life of a stay at home mama. Well, today it’s my turn…the day in the life of a working mom!
My day starts at 6:00 am (ahem 6:45). I am awoken by my iPhone alarm that never fails to scare the absolute living daylights out of me. I roll over (with my heart beating out of my chest due to alarm) to pick up my phone. As soon as my eyes go into focus I see that I have…between 10 and 15 emails. That doesn’t sound like a lot, but keep in mind I went to bed not too long ago…I’ll get to that later.
From there I head to the shower, but because I just checked my email and saw that I had at least one or two that require response, I’m a little anxious now and ready to jump start my day. I get out of the shower and lay down for a few more minutes. This time I check my calendar for the day. That’s always fun. Shoot, did I schedule time to pee?
Now I’m getting ready and it’s about 7:30ish. I normally hear this (0.02 seconds only) a few times while getting ready, but I have to ignore it because now I’m on super-drive to get to the office. While this is happening I manage to help Caroline get dressed and brush her teeth. Some days she ends up looking like this, but it’s fine. She’s just expressing herself. We whiz off to school and off to the office I go.
Between 8:15 and 8:30. I try my best to get to the office with a thirty minute buffer before my first meeting of the day. That’s when I do my best to tackle what I can of my inbox (a) , check out my to-do list (b) and make my first cup of tea or coffee (c). Depending on the day ahead will determine my kick-off beverage.
It’s likely 9 am about now and I’m running late connecting to the video chat. The next few hours of my day look a lot like this….GoTo Meeting is a most-frequently used site in my office. It’s great because you’re able to meet “in person” AND you can’t multitask. People can see you so ya gotta be focused.
I’ve probably attended one non-video meeting at this point and it’s lunch time. So, I’m either off to a working lunch (my favorite) OR I’m hitting up this guy….Yes…I have an account and I’m not ashamed. I actually really like (as in love!) Jimmy John’s!
The afternoon is a repeat of the morning between juggling meetings, the growing to-do list and more cups of caffeine. Depending on the flexibility of my day I will often spend the afternoon at a local coffee shop and enjoy one of these. Some days are especially fun because I get called to a media emergency and my planned day goes out the window. #boo
Now, it’s 5 something and I’m off to get Caroline. I usually pick her up and we either head to an extracurricular activity (gymnastics) or come home for dinner and outside playtime. I usually spend an hour to an hour and a half offline (no computer open) once I am home so that I can cook or sit and chat or clean up the mess that is my house.
Dinner is usually around 6:30 or 7:00 pm followed by bath and bedtime. Depending on the day I may opt-out of book time to catch up on a few more emails or prep documents for the following day and this is when I get to pour a glass of this guy…
My night normally wraps around 10-10:30 by closing the laptop and moving on to my tablet where I get to binge watch Dexter. I’m almost done with Season 5. Don’t tell me what happens.
My days are long and I don’t spend as much time with Caroline as I’d like, but I love my job. I love the organization I work for and I know that every hour I spend working (during work hours or after) is for the 15,000+ students we have walking through our halls that have the strong desire to succeed in college. I can’t imagine a better way to spend my days or my energy.
Working and juggling motherhood is hard, no doubt. Here are a few helpful tips to ensure you’re staying engaged.
- Try to keep technology free meals. When you have a job that creeps beyond the 8-5, it’s important to keep some time sacred. For us it’s meal time. Phones, computers, tablets, etc aren’t allowed at the table.
- Have date days/dates. I try to accommodate for my limited availability during the week with lots of availability on the weekends.
- Remember you’re a mom first. I have this conversation with myself quite a bit. Ten years from now I may have different job with a different company, but God willing, I’ll still be a mom. No matter what decisions I make I do what Caroline to feel that she is my #1 priority, because she is.