It's Friday, which means another amazing mom is sharing her story of a time when she felt a bit like a hot mess. This week we're hearing from Joanna, who just returned to work after being home on maternity leave with her second baby. When I read Joanna's submission, I literally laughed out loud. Although in her defense, I believe that forgetting your pump at home does constitute an emergency call... But that's just me. Thanks Jo for your honesty and your willingness to share your crazy #momfail day with us. You are a rockstar!
5 ways to #MOMFAIL at going back to work
I think I averaged around three #momfail moments per day with one kid, but after having my second kid in February 2017, I now have double the opportunities to fulfill said #fail quotas. Challenge accepted!
Last week, I went back to work full-time as a marketing/PR professional at a university outside of Boston. My older son was born three months early, so my maternity leave memory lens was a thick filter of hospital visits, pumping, and fear. But this time around was just the opposite. Thankfully, I birthed a full-term, healthy boy and even though I was your usual sleep deprived, not showered new mom – I actually enjoyed the majority of our time together. This made me extra sad to go back to work.
But the day came and, in typical over-planful, over-anticipated, Joanna fashion, I fretted, I prepared, and I got things in order (shout out to my incredible mom for helping me do this the last two days of my leave!). I was determined to have a smooth transition back. HA! Silly me! This is in fact, impossible, which, as a veteran mom, I should have known! The 24 hours leading up to my arrival at my work desk were in fact, one #MOMFAIL after the next. Here are a few examples.
I slammed my finger in the car door. And not the oops-I-grazed-the-edge kind of slam. The I-have-to-use-my-other-hand-to-open-the-door-off-my-finger-because-it’s-so-in-there kind of slam. Just before my last leisurely maternity leave daycare pick-up of my 3 year-old where I would be able to wear my baby and have both hands free to wrangle the toddler, I decided I would bring all the baby’s things to the infant room at the center so my husband would have no room to forget things the following day at drop off. However, after getting the baby in the car, I forgot one thing in the house, so I opened all the car windows (just like I do for the dog, #momoftheyear!), and figured I’d just run back in super fast to get it while the baby was waiting for me. [Insert hard slam here.]
My son had the biggest spit up to date all over my pants. I had picked out the cutest work outfit I could muster while still making sure it was pump accessible and nipple-concealing, and boom…after our final feeding session he decides to have a giant spit-splosion all over my pants and himself...so I promptly changed his clothes and wiped copious amounts of water on my pants (because F that, I’m not changing this cute outfit).
I forgot my actual pump. I spent so much time writing lists of what to remember, posting them on the doors, and packing all the pumping parts, bra, water bottles, food, etc., I forgot the actual pump itself. Thankfully I remembered said pump when I was only 7 minutes from home which only made me 16 minutes late to work.
I accidentally dialed 911 from my desk. Thanks fat, bruised finger. This caused the campus police to make a mandatory trip to my office even though I called to say I fat-finger dialed them by complete accident while trying to dial out to call my daycare and make sure my baby was still alive without me to smell his head all day. You have to dial 9 to get an external number so I was trying to dial 9 – 1 – 978…easy mistake, right?! They were nice about it. Phew.
I opened the car door on my toddler’s face. While trying to navigate holding a heavy car seat with a baby and dealing with a cranky 3 year old who insists on helping me open the car door for the baby, I over-eagerly tried to help him and hit him in the face with the door. Me and my car are so not friends right now. Thankfully, he was somehow unscathed because toddlers are actually made of rubber, and I had goldfish to distract him immediately.
On an up note, my coworkers were unbelievably welcoming and understanding and while I was actually at work, I pumped enough milk, had wonderful adult conversation, and didn’t spill salad dressing on my pants that were already hiding spit up. The moral of the story is: #MOMFAILS are going to happen but if you focus on the other things going on AROUND the fails, maybe you are actually netting a #MOMWIN kind of day.
If you'd like to share your honest and funny stories about when motherhood was less than perfect, we'd love to feature you! Email your submission to email@example.com, Subject: momfail.