I Don't Know How She Does It film graphicAfter searching unsuccessfully on Netflix for something entertaining, I happened upon Sarah Jessica Parker’s I Don’t Know How She Does It All (since I’ve been on bed rest/crutches for the past week, I felt overdue for a good film).

It turned out to be a funny heartfelt film that hit home in more ways that I even want to admit.  It’s a total chick flick, but I think husbands should be forced to watch it just to remind themselves of how hard we working parents (and that really does include so-called stay-at-home parents!) truly work to juggle it all. Here’s the trailer…

I hope you’ll watch this film, if only to get my inside-joke reflections, plus it truly is funny and heartfelt. 🙂

I’ve always told myself that I enjoy being a working mother, and for the most part I wouldn’t be lying. My kids thrived in all-day child care, even when I wished we didn’t have to leave the house by 7 a.m. and get home around 6 p.m. (both in the dark!) We had plenty of healthy family rhythms, and Hubby eventually learned that he did in fact need to share in dinner duty if he wanted to eat (or have an overly stressed spouse).

Our Big Guy is learning lately in literacy class about identifying your in personal narrative, and this film really brought back some repressed mommy moments:

  • The List – truthfully now I even more lists now that I’m working from home, but the ever-present-always-increasing list has been my key to sanity (and self-imposed stress) for as long as I’ve been called Mommy. I could really relate when the husband teased about never getting to “baking lasagna” at the bottom of the list. As I was starting my maternity leave I dubbed mine as my “Wish List,” knowing that I simply wouldn’t get everything done before baby arrived, even with taking a two weeks “off” before the due date. As I went into labor my essential shopping list included supplies for making homemade ice cream and making play-dough for pre-k supply list…yes, I did have a big back-to-school shopping list on top of my getting-ready-for-a-homebirth list.
  • Mommy Wardrobe Malfunctions – Aside from permanently encrusted kid-smegma, I was always leery of leaving my nursing bra unstrapped or leaking through my nipple pads. Yet, my “most embarrassing moment” came when I breast pumping on a quick break at home between meetings in the field, and I somehow went to front door while I was still hand pumping only to surprise the mailman! I remember feeling very professional looking that day, but I don’t think that’s the impression I left…I’m just glad it wasn’t a co-worker!
  • Dreaded Lice – Head lice never comes at a happy moment. Our first case came at the hardest of times…so hard I’ve only shared the story with family until now. We were in the midst of preparing for my mother-in-law to visit from the east coast (we wish she could visit more often, but with the exception of this rare summer visit, she’s only come out west for our wedding and the kids’ birth). So, getting head lice news just before her arrival was horrifying. To make matters exponentially worse, with all the family stress, Hubby ended up making the poor choice of caring a flailing toddler up to his room only to “drop him on the floor” where he ended up with a small rug burn. This was enough to alert protective services, which ensued my “most mortifying mommy moment” of having to defend our parenting through an intensive “investigation”…the whole time regretting that I had opted to give our Big Guy his first buzz cut.
  • “All Those Kids” – I’m not sure why, but I was surprised by how much people reacted to me announcing that I was pregnant with my third child, or now my response to “Is this your first?” I’ve had sooo many people chuckle and say, “Well, are you going to call it good at 3 or just keep having more babies?!”
  • Milk Mania – I know her kids were past nursing, but I was kind of surprised that they didn’t add in some witty line about pumping milk at work. This was certainly the biggest challenge in the early stages of being a working mom. I was lucky to be close enough to nurse my babes during lunch breaks, but I still pumped the rest of the time. My Big Guy was such a big eater that I was always just a few freezer bags away from needing to use formula, and I was so headstrong that I woke up in the middle of the night to pump for the next day even when he was sleeping through the night. I told you, mania.

So even though I was a regular reader of Working Mother, and still identify as one, I am perpetually glad to creating my own career path. I’d rather “Lean Back” during this time in my family’s life than bulldoze through motherhood with an I-can-do-it-all attitude.


@Darcy’s Utopia – Creating Utopia Together