So yesterday, after the indignity of storing my breast milk in the common work refrigerator, I was real paranoid about forgetting it in there. I pumped again shortly before I left, and I wanted to leave just a hair early since Mike had another one of those orientation sessions and had to leave early into the evening. I wanted us to be able to all eat together.
Thus, in my paranoia, I retrieved the milk from its place behind the yogurt and placed it with the new milk into my little cooler in my pump bag since I knew I would be leaving shortly. I then continued going through a ton of emails that had compiled while I was attending an in-house seminar all day, including an email relating to our requirement to take some evening and weekend hours for the upcoming spring semester. We all have to volunteer for a small number of undesirable shifts each semester, and we get compensatory time in exchange that we can use during the week. Usually, it's one or two shifts. This semester, it's suddenly four.
I thought I had read that wrong. Oh sigh. We have less and less librarians all the time due to retirement and people leaving for any number of reasons. And we haven't replaced anybody. I don't like working evenings, because then I can't see my kids before they go to bed. So I usually take a Sunday afternoon shift or two. Four seemed a lot more onerous, but what can one do? I quickly responded with one Sunday written in for me per month, to space them out a bit. The Sundays aren't bad because I still have all morning and then dinner home with my family. Our wonderful assistant wrote right back to me to say that 3 of those Sundays had already been spoken for.
Inside, I said a bad word. This happens EVERY semester. I'm super compulsive with my email, and yet the evening and weekend sheet goes around inevitably at a time when I'm not right on top of it for a few hours. So I called her right up and managed to finagle three Sundays (less desirable ones due to other weekend commitments) and one Saturday. I'm feeling pouty, but there's nothing I can do. It's part of my job, and this way I will at least get to take some Friday afternoons off to be with Mike and the kids in exchange.
So I was feeling flustered as 4 pm rolled around. I finished up a few more things, found that all the hot tea I'd drank meant that I had to make yet another run to the ladies room, and then bundled up and shut my computer down. I listened to a Catholic podcast as I made the trek out to the car, which at this university, is no small walk. Parking is a huge issue here, and although I have a staff parking tag and can generally get a spot (unless it's between 10 am and 3 pm; this is in contrast to the students who have a MUCH rougher go of it) it's not phenomenally close to the library. And when it's cold out, I walk through the indoor walkways which takes even longer but that way I'm not out in the wind. And that's another story; who on earth designed these walkways? There's no heat in them. They do cut the wind nicely, but in the heart of winter I have to actually brace myself to walk through them. THEY HAVE ICE ON THE INSIDE OF THE WINDOWS. This just seems like a bad plan to me.
So, finally, I arrive at my car. I have an automatic starter and got it going from the far side of the lot so that it could warm up for me. I grabbed my pump to get it into the passenger seat first, and wait. What's that?
My pump. Or rather, my lack of a pump. I had forgotten it, all the way back in my office.
Now I said a REALLY bad word, and I said it right out loud. Crankily, I spun around to find our assistant behind me looking concerned that something was really wrong with me. I assured her I was fine and hurried back to the library, where sure enough, my pump sat innocently next to my desk. I grabbed it and walked all the way back to my car and sped home, where Anne was sobbing for me to nurse her. I popped her into her high chair since we wanted to eat, but she was having none of it. She ate her bananas and squash, but squawked the whole time causing me to eat much more quickly than I would have liked.
After that, Mike left, so I nursed Anne and watched Tom & Jerry's Nutcracker with Hank. At 7 pm, both children were ready for bed, so I tucked them both in. Hank has been coughing, so I got out his penguin cool mist humidifier and set it all up for him. He coughed only a few times before going to sleep.
Until an hour or so later. Then, he coughed for an hour and a half. Around 10 pm, he finally fell asleep. Mike and I fell asleep shortly thereafter. Around 11 pm, Anne was up. I nursed her and got her back into her crib. She refused to go back to sleep, so we did another nursing session. Finally, she went to sleep in her crib, but by this time it was close to 1. Exhausted, I fell into bed.
By 5 am, I could hear Hank coughing again. And he coughed until 6:30, when we all got up. I found him curled under a blanket when I went to check on him.
"Honey, what hurts?"
"MY WHOLE BODY."
Thus, he's home from school today, and Anne is cranky and miserable. And poor Mike is home with both of them. I'm taking a half sick day to go home and relieve him after lunch.