A Mom in Grad School: How I Survived the 2nd Semester

So at the end of last semester I wrote a post about what really helped me be successful during my first semester of grad school.

Want to know what helped me finish my second semester?

Crying. A fair amount of crying

Okay, maybe it didn’t help me, but was more of a byproduct of this semester. This semester was nuuuuuts. Even with continuing what I was doing before and improving in the areas I wanted to, it was hard.

Right off the bat I knew this semester was going to be very busy and I worked to keep up. I was doing pretty well, but then five weeks into the semester my grandma died. Losing her was so hard. And then the ensuing family drama that came along with her death. I’ll spare you all the details, but it was rough.

And you better believe it affected my school work. Continue reading

After Maternity Leave: the Best Gear to Bring

A week ago was all about the working moms in my office!

On Tuesday I ran into a mom on her first day back from maternity leave. It’s her second child, but the first time she has left a newborn at home to go back to full-time work.

The next day at work I met a woman who is 39 weeks pregnant with her first and is planning to continue working after maternity leave ends.

And then I also talked daycare with woman at work who is 41, just had her first child in September, and has accrued a ton of sick time that has enabled her to have a very flexible extended maternity leave situation, but now needs to get serious about finding childcare.

It’s fascinating talking to moms in their different stages of working mom-hood because there are similarities we all share because we’re mothers, and there are differences due to our personal circumstances. And I want to learn from all the moms further along than me!

One of the common questions expecting moms and new moms getting ready to go back to work always ask is–What do I need?? We’ve had 9 months to prepare the house and car with all the baby gear, but what gear does a mom need when she goes back to work?

Here are the best things to bring back to work after #maternityleave

        This post contains affiliate links. That means at no extra cost to you, I make a small  commission on products ordered. Continue reading

How to Stay Motivated to Pursue Your Calling

So I totally had a different blog post planned for today, but I’m going to push that out until next week because I feel like maybe a lot of us need this reminder.

It’s no secret that I’m busy and it’s a love/hate relationship. I love the things I’m doing, but I cringe when people start off a conversation with me by saying, “I know you are so busy…” It feels like it’s supposed to be a compliment, but how do you respond to that? “Thanks…you’re busy too? Everyone who isn’t busy is a lazy butt?” I really don’t want to glorify busy. I love down time, and I’m doing all these things right now so that I have more opportunity to slow down in the near future. It’s not easy, it’s stressful, and I look forward to graduating in three more semesters so I can have some study-free evenings with my kids and Netflix and chill with my husband.

And I literally mean Netflix because I’ve seen like three movies since we had our first daughter and we have a lot of catching up to do.

Continue reading

How to Get Rid of Mom-Guilt with one word

Mom guilt is stupid.

Guilt alone isn’t a terrible thing. It helps us recognize that we’ve done wrong, because we feel wrong. That’s human and that’s healthy.

But that’s not what people mean when they use the term “mom guilt.” What they mean is a mixed up bag of gendered emotions, expectations, shortcomings, failures, stereotypes, and people-pleasing tendencies.

It’s shame for not being whatever picture-perfect image of a mother you have in your head. And every mother experiences it to varying degrees. No matter how much you love being a SAHM or a working mom or you have one kid or ten kids–we all know what it feels like to not feel good enough in our version of motherhood.

How to get rid of mom guilt. #workingmom #momlife Continue reading

My 2019 Phrase of the Year

I am a total dud on New Years. We were in bed at 10 p.m. and it was lovely.

When your kids are up at 5 more often than not, midnight is nothing special to stay up for.

But I do love New Years.

I love taking down Christmas and realizing that my home is 5x bigger than it felt like with the tree up. I love reflecting on the year and imagining what is coming up in the next. I love the feeling of a fresh start.

And I’ve just got a good feeling about 2019. I don’t know what it is, but I feel like we’re going to be moving forward with some of our plans and creating better habits for our future. A few things that I have in mind for this year are: Continue reading

A Mom in Grad School: What Really Helped the First Semester

I cried a little when I saw my grades from this semester.

Surprise, surprise, right?

It’s not like I haven’t had all A’s before. I did well in undergrad and would’ve gotten into grad school before if I had continued on the route that I had originally wanted.

But it was way different this time. Now I’m married with two kids and work full-time. We haven’t gone more than two weeks without someone in our house being sick. My daughter had another set of PE tubes put in, a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy, with an absolutely heinous recovery, and started play therapy to help with some resulting behavioral issues. We were at an awful daycare that stressed me out every day for five months until we could get into a wonderful new one. We flew out to Arizona for a wedding at a bad time in the semester. Some sleep regression for the baby and many sleepless nights for us. I was never on time for work.

It was crazy. With everything going on, I didn’t do my readings for probably the last three or four weeks of classes. And that Thanksgiving week flu really put me in a bind at the end of the semester. I turned my final paper in 5 minutes before it was due. But I loved what I was learning and felt like school helped me to stay somewhat grounded, even though it added more to my to-do list.

So when I saw that I ended up with an A in my hardest class, of course I cried. While I know that I could have done better and have some plans for improvement next semester, I’m pretty proud of myself. Here are a few things that helped me to have a successful first semester and what I’m going to work on for the next.

What helped me have a successful first semester of grad school as a #workingmom. Continue reading