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Ever Wonder How Moms Do It All?

Mom of Anaiya (with another one on the way!), MD, MS, a medical oncologist specializing in GI cancers, with an "extracurricular" interest in cancer care in developing countries.

This schedule is assuming a 7:30-8 a.m. start. At least 1-2 days a week, I have to be in by 7 a.m., which means I need to have Anaiya at daycare by 6:30/7!

5:45-6 a.m.: Mom is up, Dad is out the door usually around 6:15. Mom showers, gets her stuff together. If Anaiya is up, she'll "bathe mama" (i.e., I'll take her in with me if dad is already gone).

6:15-6:30 a.m.: Anaiya wakes up. Diaper change.

6:30-7:15 a.m.: Anaiya eats breakfast and usually needs another diaper change. I get her ready and we're out the door between 7-7:30 to daycare so I can get to work by 7:30-8. Getting out the door is easier now without having to deal with packing the breast pump, but I still need to get together her lunch, my work bag, more diapers/extra clothes to bring to her school and occasional gym bag for me, as well!

8 a.m.–5:15/5:30 p.m.: At work. If I'm lucky, maybe a gym visit during the day once a week.

5:15-5:30 p.m.: Pick up Anaiya and head home.

6:00 p.m.: Dinner prep. If both my husband and I are home, one plays with Anaiya and one preps dinner. Or we'll occasionally take turns getting a workout in.

7-8 p.m.: Dinner as a family and playtime together between 6–9. We try to keep phones off, work off, etc. If someone is on-call, occasional pagers will go off and phone calls need to be made, but we try to protect these evening hours from being interrupted.

8-9 p.m.: Dad gives Anaiya a bath and I do the bedtime routine. A new ritual I've incorporated is that we'll think of all the good things that happened that day. I was inspired by my friend Rachel, who recently passed away and whom I'm working on setting up an endowment for at UCSF where I work.

9:00 p.m.: Anaiya is asleep by 9 and usually I'll pass out too these days. :) Once she's asleep, Mom or Dad prep lunches (including hers and ours) for the next day, put the coffee on for morning, catch up on work, work-charting, research, laundry, bills, etc.

Anaiya stays in crib until 12-1 a.m. and then wakes up. It's hard to put her back down in the crib so she ends up in our bed when one of us goes and gets her. Sleep-train fail but it allows us all more sleep. :) The goal is for Mom and Dad to be asleep between 11 and 12. Repeat!

Photo via Aparna Raj Parikh

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