A - Z Blogging Challenge, Part 3

Welcome to part 3 of my A - Z blogging challenge.





Every day I am using the letter of the day to talk about elements of being a (part-time) working mom. 




Naps (no)

Colin was never a good sleeper. I guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.  The first year or so I had to go for a stroller walk every day in order to get him to sleep. 


When given the choice he'd much rather sit and watch what's going on out there!


Then we tried the crib. Sometimes it worked. 


Other times… not so well.


Then he learned to get up and stand at the bars. He would sing and talk and call for us, for another story and another hug and another sip of water,…


At some point - of course - he figured out how to climb over the bars. Imagine the possibilities!

In June 2011 we removed the bars, and he had a regular bed from which he could get up and out as he pleased. And he did please!!! 



Of course not taking naps at nap time resulted in falling asleep between 5 and 6pm, no matter the location. 



Then he'd be awake for like 10 or 11pm.


I tried lots of tricks and methods. We talked to our regular pediatrician and we went to see a homeopath who gave us some globules. That night was perfect! The next? Nope.
One night when he kept coming out, we told him that he obviously didn't need a bed and removed everything except the frame. (I had read about this on a parenting platform. One desperate family reported great success after they did this.)


Without a word Colin grabbed his stuffed animals, threw in a couple of toys for good measure, lied down - and slept!


I'd love to tell you that from then on naps / bed time were working out. 


Sorry.


He'd still come out of his bed to see what I was doing ALL THE TIME. I desperately needed me-time. Either to work or play on Facebook network. Plus his eyes were sleepy and he was yawning so badly.

One particularly annoying day I said "OK, scr** your nap, put your shoes on" 

His eyes got wide, so did his smile. I buckled his car seat, and he got excited. 

"Where are we going, Mommy?" 

"To Mommy Rehab - that's a place where mothers go once they can't take it anymore because they are just too exhausted. There they get to sleep, read, write, paint, and somebody else is taking care of lunch and dinner and laundry."
"Can kids come, too?" 

"Nope, but they get to visit on weekends - will you be coming and visiting me?" 

While we were driving and talking about who might be looking after him while I was gone, he dozed off (naturally…) 

We ended up taking a nice walk in the  psychiatric hospital's garden, meeting a couple of donkeys and sheep, having some ice cream, and in the evening he told his Dad that Mommy took him to a nice place, but he still didn't want her to go there so he would try and stay in his room during nap time. 




I'd love to tell you that from then on naps / bed time were working out. 
Sorry.
He's now 6.5 years old. Bedtime is still no walk in the park.
  • What methods worked to get your little ones to go to and actually stay in bed?
  • Have you ever dreamed about going to Mommy rehab?

Leave me a comment, I love hearing from you!

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Overwhelmed (mostly OK, though)



I consider myself being OK most of the time. Sometimes I am on top of things (LOVE those moments!) and sometimes – well, once – I drove off at the gas station. With the nozzle still in the tank...

Disclaimer: This is not my car, and I didn't make it to the freeway ;-)

I will tell you about my top three overwhelmed working Mom moments when the appropriate letter is due:
P is for Parking Ticket
S is for Sickness
V is for Vomiting

In the meantime why don't you tell me one of yours?

If you are looking for tips on how to handle times when you feel overwhelmed, this is a helpful article: 5 things to do when you feel overwhelmed

Leave me a comment, I love to hear from you! Also check out my Faceboook page!

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Parking Ticket
(Overwhelmed Mom-ents, Part 1)

First off: when I say "parking ticket" I am not talking about the note you get for violating a traffic law. I'm simply referring to the piece of sturdy paper, the size of a credit card that you get when you enter a parking garage. Before exiting you need to insert in into a payment machine. Is there a better name for it?  *confused*


It was a rainy, busy Saturday afternoon. C was still very little. I remember because he was in his baby car seat that faced toward the trunk of the car and I couldn’t see him while driving.  

We were on our way out of the parking garage at the supermarket. Shopping had taken longer than planned and I needed to get him home and fed. 

There were a couple of cars ahead of us at the boom gate.  When it was my turn, my hand felt for the parking ticket where I always put it. It wasn’t there!! Huh? I was now using my eyes but they couldn’t find it either. I groped all of my pockets and started rummaging in my purse and wallet. The ticket was not here! 

The cars behind me started to honk, Colin was getting fussy, the car windows were fogging up from the humidity, and I was sweating. 


I got out of my car and approached the one behind me. I told the driver I couldn’t find my ticket, and if he gave me his, we could both get out if he followed me really tightly. He was polite enough not to say what he was thinking – that’s one crazy bitch – but declined. 

So I got back into my car and set it in reverse. The guy behind me did the same, and the next car and the next... Until I had enough room to escape the exit line and get back into the parking area. 

Remember it was Saturday, and parking spaces are scarce.  I unbuckled hungry Colin, and back up to the supermarket we went. The lady at customer service took pity in me. Usually a replacement ticket costs between 20 and 50 bucks, depending on the business. 

Instead she called the friendly maintenance guy who came down to the garage with us and opened the gate when it was our turn again. 

In the meantime poor baby C ran out of patience and screamed his head off. Time to race home!

  • Have you ever been stuck in a parking garage?




Quitting



Who doesn’t want to toss in the towel from time to time? 

My last time wasn’t long ago. 
According to Colin on Mondays there are „Plätzli“ for lunch. Plätzli are savory pancakes filled with either spinach, cheese, mushroom, etc.  We buy and store them frozen, so they are convenient, and I make them when I can’t be bothered to get to the store for groceries on Monday mornings.
One particular Monday I thought I’d give hubby a break from the Plätzli and made pasta instead. Everybody loves pasta. Colin loves pasta. 
Not on Monday he doesn’t. He was very clear about it that he was not happy as soon as he set foot in the kitchen. He was hungry, he was grumpy, he didn’t want to wash his hands, he complained some more when he saw there was broccoli and he didn’t appreciate my calling him an ungrateful brat. 
We also argued about iPad time.
By the time hubby arrived, I announced „you know what, I have had it. I quit!!! As of right after lunch I am not in charge of this household anymore!“
Hubby played along and asked C what he was going to do now.  Shrug. „Eat yogurt?“
When we were done with lunch I didn’t even load the dishwasher. Instead I made a list of chores that typically occur and handed it to Colin, then I went and put on my shoes. 
He followed me „where are you going?“ 
„Away. I can’t do this anymore. It’s just too hard. I am doing my best here, and all I get from you? Complaints? No thanks.“
„I’m sorry, Mommy. I won’t complain anymore. It’s just that Monday is Plätzli day, and I was looking forward to that all morning, and I was so disappointed...“

So we kissed and made up. 
THIS is what a perfect Monday looks like!
  • When was the last time you wanted to quit?
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Roberto

Late August / Early September 2009 the phone rang. It was Roberto. We were coworkers with Mövenpick, the company I worked for before their ice cream business unit was sold to Nestlé. After transferring most of the employees I had to lay myself off. (There’s a first for everything!)



Anyway, we chatted, and I told him how I didn’t miss the corporate world and how I enjoyed staying at home with baby C who was going to turn 1 soon.

„Hhhmmmm. I guess it’s not a good time to tell you about a job opportunity?“

Roberto was working for Swiss International Air Lines in the meantime.

He told me about a part-time job ad he saw on the intranet, 50% Human Resources Manager with excellent language skills in German, English and French, and immediately he thought it was perfect for me.
Sh**
He was right.

If I wanted to get back to work, this would be the exact kind of job (and environment) I would choose.

„Look, why don’t you apply, just to find out if they invite you for an interview at all. There are usually tons of CVs coming in, everybody wants to work for an airline, because, free flights! At least you can say you have tried, right? Why don’t I send you the job ad, and you just have a look at it, see how you like it.“

Clever.

He was right, though. There must be plenty of Mommies out there who were desperate for a job like this. 

I slept on it.

I knew I wasn’t going to apply just to „explore“. If I applied I’d want the job! And if I wanted the job I’d better zap up my resume and hand it in before all the others will!


The rest is history. Well, actually, you’ve read it. See „E is for Eva“! 
  • How about you? Do you have people looking out for you?
  • Have you ever done the right thing at a not so right time

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Sick Kid(s)
(Overwhelmed Mom-ents, Part 2)
  
About my 4th or 5th week at the airline... So still pretty new and eager not to confirm existing prejudices versus working Moms.

I was just back from lunch (man, did I enjoy having lunch with a grown-up colleague who didn’t need a bib or help with the food and no wiping!) when daycare called.

Colin was running a fever, and I was supposed to come and get him. 
  
WHAT, RIGHT NOW?
In an hour I had an interview scheduled with the CFO who was a busy man, and there was nobody who could take over for me! Eva, my wonderful boss had the afternoon off, and I was NOT going to call her.
  
What to do?
  
I could not pick him up, drive him to my parents’ and make it back in time.
I needed somebody closer... Somebody I trust and who might be at home.

Hmmm, his Godmother lives 20 minutes away. She’s a teacher and a mother of three and certainly not looking for more work, but I was desperate, so I called her.

She said she was sick herself, otherwise she’d be at school, but if I wasn’t worried about contamination I was welcome to take him to her for the afternoon.

Phew, saved!
This picture was taken on a later day.
You can tell they are not sick here!
On my way to pick him up after the interview, I stopped at the drug store to get stuff for both of them.

  • How do you handle sick kid vs work?
  • Is there anything WORSE than having to work when your baby is sick?

Leave me a comment below, I love to read what you have to say!

I'm looking forward to welcoming you back! I will launch a new post tomorrow starting with the letter T.


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There will only be four posts that are being updated as I go, with the most current letter on top so you don't have to scroll:



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