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A Day in the Life of a Working Mom - Danya Gaye Lewis

Published:Saturday | June 20, 2015 | 6:00 AMTamara Bailey
Danya Lewis is a produce supervisor at Mega Mart, Mandeville and newly titled mother.
Lewis’ bundle of joy, Guri.
Lewis says she felt horrible for leaving her son but she knows she has to work.
Danya Lewis with her five month old baby boy, Guri, during a reading session.
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Green Pond, Manchester:

As a produce supervisor at one of the largest local chain of stores, Mega Mart, Danya Lewis thought that if she were able to conquer all the tasks that are required of her then she could conquer anything. But was she in for a surprise.

Since acquiring the new role of being a mommy, the sleepless nights have increased and the energy tank needed to deal with her heart in diapers has reached 'E' many days, but Lewis is living free of any regrets.

"I have been working for the past four years now so I have been able to adjust to working conditions and expecting the unexpected, but with just five months in the motherhood role... man, I tell you, it has been a challenge adjusting especially because I have a smarty pants on my hands," said a cheerful Lewis.

"I remember one of my hardest tasks was getting him to sleep out of my arms. I would cradle him and when I thought he was out, I would put him down; but as soon as his head touched the pillow, his eyes would open and a sly grin would come on his face. Remembering those days, I can't help but laugh, but back then when I was exhausted, it wasn't fun at all."

With three hours needed every morning to get ready, Lewis says she's definitely thinking of getting a car to make the experience less taxing.

"Five to 5:30, I prepare breakfast and put my stuff together for work. Six: baby wakes up; 6:15-6:30, I feed the baby; 6:30-7:15, shower and get ready for work; 7:15-7:30, I change the baby's clothes; 7:30-7:45, wait on the babysitter to arrive; 7:45-8:00, leave the house to get a taxi and around 8:20- 8:30, walk from the taxi park to work and, more often than not, I'm a little late ... ."

She added, "Travelling to work is very tedious. It takes 20 minutes to reach to work and the taxi service gets sticky at times. I definitely need a car to move around, and even a little adjustment in work times would be fabulous."

How Lewis transitioned from what she knew to this new role still baffles her, but she says, over time, things become easier.

"When I returned to work after maternity leave, I felt empty, sad and guilty because I don't know what could happen during my absence. I felt like crying. I called the sitter every minute to ask what he was doing, worse because he wasn't a 'bottle baby', I thought about him all day."

She continued, "Gradually, I adjusted by stop thinking hard about it. I just put it in the back of my brain that I have to work. I try to spend time with the baby before I leave for work and make overnight preparations for myself so that I can have time for him in the mornings, and it works."

Lewis says that as a mother, personal time is reduced significantly, but with proper time management skills and understanding of one's responsibility, a working mother, though challenging the tasks, can enjoy beautiful experiences.

"My 'me time' involves watching a little movie or listening to music when the baby is asleep," Lewis expressed with a laugh.

"Parenting isn't an easy thing and it's not for the weak-willed. It comes down to time management and understanding that kids are your responsibility (my

second job). It can be the most rewarding job you will ever have, especially if you are willing to put in the time and sacrifices that the job calls for, it should be taken seriously and, finally, if you're getting support, whether from friends or family, take it!"

familyandreligion@gleanerjm.com