This Stuff isn’t for the Faint of Heart

Yesterday marked the ending of the longest week of motherhood for me thus far. After eight months of being at home with our baby, I dipped my foot back into the working world. I accepted a job working for the newspaper in town and Monday was my first day.
After four days of being a “working mother”, I must share one of the things I have learned. The first thing I feel I must say is that single parents kick ass. I am not a single parent per say, but my husband lives in a different state. Therefore, it is just me getting up everyday at 5:00 a.m. The first thing I do is pump milk for my son. I must do this as soon as I wake up. If not, I will float away. Then, I get a shower and dry my hair. I wander to the kitchen and make a pot of decaf coffee (yes, I realize decaf coffee seems unnecessary at this point, but I suffered the withdrawals from caffeine when I first became pregnant and I do not wish to do that again). I quickly make my breakfast and inhale it. By this time, Cooper is usually waking up. I kiss him good morning, change his diaper and give him the allotted 30 minutes to drink his bottle (he needs some time to adjust in the morning). I then get him dressed and let him play while I finish getting ready. I have to repack his bag everyday. I have to make sure he has extra clothes, enough baby food, toys, pacifiers, ect. I pack myself some snacks (eating 5-6 small meals a day is tough to plan out while working). I change his diaper again. If I am lucky, he stays occupied in his carseat long enough to let me run around like a chicken with my head cut off while I gather up all our things (his bag, the breast pump, my coffee, my water, my snacks, my purse, anything that has to be mailed, my phone, oh wait…where is my phone? Okay, I found my phone). Then, I pile everything into the car and get in the driver’s seat. I am missing something. I know something is missing. What am I missing? Think Merrideth, think! THE BABY! I do not have the baby! I run inside the house and find him sitting in his carseat smiling and talking to himself in the living room. While we are still inside, I remember I haven’t given him his medicine for the day. I quickly give him said medicine and secure him in the car. By this time, I have 20 minutes to get him to the babysitter and get to work. I drop him off. I kiss him a million times between the door, handing him to the sitter and back to the door. Then, I get in the car and consider having a mental breakdown while I drive away. I do this knowing that he is happy as a lark inside, not giving me a second thought.
Single parents are the bee’s knees. This stuff isn’t for the faint of heart. I must say, if you are a single parent and you do this all the time, with multiple children, you have my respect. If you aren’t a single parent and you just happen to be the parent that gets the child (children) places on time, with a full stomach, brushed hair and matching clothes, you can be my hero too! Next week, I get to figure out how I can still fit time in to exercise.

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