Sunday, June 23, 2013

LLL's Mom of the Year

Ahhhh, for 40 minutes today I sat by the pool and read my book and then went for a dip...all by myself. It's funny, though, I missed Senior because I had no one to play games with in the pool. I'm reading The Awakening, and it gives me this nostalgic, childhood summer feeling. I keep daydreaming of going to live at the beach with J and not working and just doing arty things and taking naps and day drinking. I guess that is everyone's fantasy. And yes, I know what happens in the book and I suppose I needn't be so envious of Edna's lifestyle.

Last week was my first "cut back on pumping at work" week. I looked to the interwebs to get some advice for not pumping at work but still nursing. You know what I found? A few stories on La Leche League's website about working mothers who didn't pump at work. I'm like, oh good, I found what I'm looking for. Let's see...have your husband bring your baby to work? Get real, people! Seriously, that was the way that these three women avoided pumping at work. Why didn't I think of that?

I didn't really have an opinion about La Leche League, but now I do. Basically I now think anything they say has been discredited by this little bit of advice. So anyway, back to my first week of cutting back on pumping. No blocked ducts. At least one day of only one pumping. I can't really remember now, but one pumping per day was my goal. So I was successful at at least 20%. Friday Senior brought the baby to work and I avoided a second pumping by feeding the baby. Thanks, La Leche League! (It was Friday and I didn't have anything else to do.)

What else happened this weekend? Oh yeah, J fell off the bed while I was in the bathroom. I left him between two pillows WITH HIS DAD IN THE BED. I came out of the bathroom and Senior was standing on the other side of the bed, holding J and scolding me for leaving him unattended. One pillow was on the floor, and we suspect that J fell onto the pillow because he barely whimpered a few times and then he looked at me and smiled. Later in the day he rolled over onto a toy on the floor and screamed his head off. Maybe he's the next bungee-jumper in the family, like his mom. But anyway, I tell that story so that no one's surprised when I don't win mom of the year award for 2013.

I may or may not (ha!) have mentioned how I am not busy at work right now, so I hope I don't forget to drive straight to a hearing tomorrow morning. It will take 53 minutes, or an hour and 53 minutes, depending on traffic and construction. Awesome. Last week I went to a Phillies game and by leaving at 5:00 managed to make it in two and a half hours, which is only about two and half times as long as it's supposed to take. That made me not so sad to live in my crappy hometown where it takes me 12-15 minutes to get to work and that three-minute variation doesn't depend on traffic, but on how fast I drive.

Sigh. More about misadventures in parenting, my crappy hometown, and how I suck at my job later. I have a 10:15 computer curfew tonight, and true to form I am late. Ciao for now.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Declining Production

Oh hi. Me again.

J is eight months old now. I am so sick of pumping at work.

It distracts me from work (which, as we know, is not hard to do). My nips hurt. I haven't gotten my period yet and I want to try to get pregnant again soon. I only pumped once today at work, and I am having such conflicted feelings about it!

Maybe J needs milk. It's not that much longer, I should just stick it out. We're going on a few trips this summer and I should just be able to feed through those trips so I don't have to drag bottles around the country. That would only mean six more weeks. Totally doable. Sigh. I think I'm getting a blocked duct.

WHAT is the big deal? J eats lots of stuff now, and he's had formula once and it was fine. That was yesterday. I wanted to make sure I could stop pumping during the day before I actually did stop pumping during the day. The time I spend getting set up and cleaned up for/from pumping is worth more than the money we will spend on formula. I will still nurse before and after work and maybe during the day on weekends. Is that even possible, actually? Can I not nurse during the day weekdays, nurse during the day on weekends and still get my period? Because that would be ideal. I will nurse this kid until he's 10 if he wants to (kidding), but I am really ready to be done with it during the workday. Until now that I am trying to quit! Thoughts? Tips? Advice?

I will pump once a day for awhile (because I will have to) and see how that goes. Maybe that will be manageable and still allow me to be away from the baby for a day here and there without pumping and without getting too full. Because I have to admit, I would really like to get in a day of climbing. Not a dawn to dusk, ante-children kind of day. Just like 6-8 hours in a row. Fair enough?

So there's that. Then there is this little issue at work where...well...we don't have any. I am exaggerating. Less than I would like. This is a temporary issue, one can hope, but in the meantime my workload is going to decrease and the quality of the assignments is about to drop significantly. I have two files of my own. Two files. Then all the files I have been "seconding" my boss on--writing briefs, keeping tabs on, writing memos and filings for the court, calling adjusters and adversaries--are being reassigned so that everyone on the team has some work and no one gets let go. I don't know how long this can last. I am most junior in the group, so my work will become the suckiest. Aside from my two files I may only be summarizing transcripts and medical records. Those are the tasks I try my best to avoid doing, even though it is billable hours. It's work that my paralegal should get. I am good at writing briefs! I would just like to say for the record. Maybe I can fight for a share of the "good" work. But maybe there isn't enough to go around. Ugh.

So there is some writing on the wall. I believe I have some options. But I will have to get to work finding another spot for myself in the firm, or bringing in some new clients. It's not because of anything I did (I am told). But it is because of something someone else did, and it just stinks that I will suffer most. It also stinks that our rent is going up.

Why must our rent be going up? I hear because the vacancy rate is low where we live. How is that possible? I live in my crappy hometown! We've been looking for a house to rent, but they are all just OK. Actually this one updated farmhouse was really nice, but sooo small and had one closet in the whole house. So it's like why bother to up and move all your crap to save maybe $2000 for the year, when the cost and pain of moving is worth about $1500? But now I'm afraid I may lose my job and my rent is going up. (Oh hey, Mom and Dad. Your new third floor looks nice.)

It's funny how on Tuesday I was stressing out from my job because I have been decently busy and completely clueless on my two files, and two days later that has all changed. I am also going to take a moment to admit that a small part of me is kind of glad that I have an excuse for not billing enough time. I am obsessed with billing (like any other firm associate). Seriously, I leave work, no matter what time, thinking I should not be leaving work. Then I get home and J starts crying because I am back and I wish I'd left work earlier. And I wonder how the hell to do this, but the thing is, I keep doing it. And now that I might not be able to keep doing it, I realize that I do want to keep doing it.

So that is a good thing, I guess. Unless there were a decent severance package and I could hang out with my kid and bake things and start the climbing gym. That would be an awesome thing.