It’s the end of the day at the end of a long week. A very long week. We started our 1-year-old daughter with a new caregiver this week and it went … less than well.

As she struggled to cope with separation from mama, transition to a new location with new people, an ongoing cold, teething and exhaustion from a long weekend of family obligations that kept her out far too late every night, I struggled to cope with how to help her from afar.

That may be the hardest part of the working mom thing, being unable to be there for your little ones when that’s all they really want. So she cried for me, and in between conference calls and deadlines, I texted the caregiver.

Try putting her shoes on; she loves her shoes.

We weaned from the bottle, but if it gets her to stop screaming, give her a bottle.

Walks, she loves walks. Take her outdoors.

Take her outdoors.

It’s not just a tip for babes. Sometimes mamas need it too.

So at the end of this long day at the end of this long week, I ask my daughter if she wants to go outside with Mama. Her face lights up.

Gravel road

We’re uniquely positioned in a rural community where just a few houses down from ours, the road turns to gravel and goes on for several miles, winding along a river, with woods, ponds, streams and farm fields on either side.

We stop and pick some clover buds, then a piece of honeysuckle – it’s the scent of my childhood, and I want it to be hers too.

baby-jogging-stroller-at-the-end-of-the-day

As we traverse the miles, I relax; she relaxes. We wash away the chaos and struggle of the week and take deep breaths of fresh air. She needs this; I need this.

Walks, she loves walks. Take her outdoors. Indeed, I think she gets it from me.

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