Taking on Motherhood with Multiple Roles: Interview with Mom Michelle Munroe

For the month of May, I want to feature 31 women who continue to touch my life through their kindness, friendship, humor, passion, and determination. Each of these women have some great secrets as they open their doors and let me into their "mommy world". Their stories bring us back to the realization that we all go through struggles, make mistakes, and sometimes need to "fake it until we make it" as parents. Join us as we celebrate these mothers throughout the month of May.

Welcome to day 16 of Bulldog’s Mommy Blog Project! Today we get to feature the hard working and studious Michelle Munroe. Before we learn more about how this mom manages to power through doubles and night shifts at the hospital, further her education, and still spend time with her kids, let’s share the parent tip of the day.

Parenting Tip of the Day: Sleep when you can. We all know that lack of sleep causes stress, mood swings, irrational thoughts, and less patience. Often we are awakened by our children or they don't seem to sleep through the night. We end up sleep deprived and a little wacky. Before children, I was against napping, now I am pro mid-day snoozing. Research indicates that 20 min power naps can  help you remain balanced. If you have a napping kid, take that time to get a little snooze. If you are at work, you might want to just snooze in your car. Find a place where you could take a power nap to get re-energized. Set an alarm and get some rest. Your body and mind will thank you.

For more info or tips click on our website: Parent Coaching.

I met Michelle through a mutual friend when I was pregnant. I was stressed out about childcare, working, and finishing up school. She quickly put me at ease and gave me some awesome tricks to manage it all. Michelle does not sugar coat it and tells you how to make it work and how she manages. She reminds me of Meredith Grey from Grey's Anatomy. She is real, dry sense of humor, supportive, loyal, compassionate, and has the ability to make you feel normal. Her kids stories can bring you to stitches.

Please welcome the ambitious, focused, and multi-taking mom Michelle Munroe to our Mommy Blog Project!

Michelle Luke Monroe- with kids

Name: Michelle Munroe
Location: Chicago, Illinois
Mommy Title: Multi-Role and Multi-Tasker Mommy
Favorite Social Media Site: Facebook
Mommy Status: Married
Number of kids: 2
Age: 4 year old and 20 month old
Gender: boy and a girl

Walk me through a day in your household.
Well with my work schedule, my days vary. Here is a little more background of what I do so you can understand how my days can be so different. I have been a nurse for almost 12 years. I am both an Oncology Nurse and an Emergency Nurse. I work a 12 hour overnight shifts in the ER and 1 day shiftin an outpatient oncology clinic. I am currently in the Adult Nurse Practitioner Masters Program at North Park University, so I have school on top of that. I am looking forward to graduating in December 2015.

With that said, typically, my days can look like this:
I have the kids do an activity or set them up with the tv while I and take a quick nap. I try to then fit in as much quality time as I can with them. Then I go to work from 6:45pm- 8am. I do 12 hours overnight and then one-day shift. Fitting in as much time as I can with my kids is important. My days can vary and I have to account for my studies in school, so figuring out how to multitask and make the most of my free moments so important to me.

Michelle Luke Monroe

What is your favorite room in the house and why? 
It’s both the kitchen and the dining room. It’s an open space were we can all be together. I often use the kitchen to study and do homework. While I’m studying, I’m trying to load the dishes, eat, and anything else I can fit in…multitasking! The kids are running around or in the playroom right off the kitchen. It’s a great space and I can get so much done.

What is your favorite time of the day with your kids?
It’s in the morning before lunch. Our family gets to have some quality time together then.

What is a unique family tradition?
Every holiday we do our rounds and we visit both sides of the family. We love getting to see everyone and it is a special time for us as a family.

What do you do when you are overwhelmed?
I try to distract myself with my phone by looking at random things; it’s my way of separating myself from the issue momentarily. I go onto Facebook and look at pictures to distract myself.

What is the best “uh-oh” story?
When I found out I was pregnant with my daughter, I had just started in the ER, was working the nightshift, and started school all at the same time. I was very busy! I really procrastinated getting ready for my daughters arrival. I got up in the middle of the night to pee, when I was done I started walking back to my bed and my water broke. I was 37 weeks pregnant! I literally said “uh oh!” and momentarily hoped that the water meant that I had just needed to pee some more.

Which celebrity mom is most like you and why?
I’m like the character Meredith Grey (actress Ellen Pompeo) from Grey’s Anatomy. Not because my husband or I have a high profile jobs, but because sometimes working weekends, nights, and odd hours, we need to shuffle the kids around and find out who can watch them or pick them up from daycare. Lots of times we end up at events or places at the very last minute. Both of our jobs are not flexible with arriving late or leaving early, so this can impact our family life.

Ellen Pomeo Michelle Munroe

What is your favorite website or blog?
I love Red Tricycle. It's a great website for things to do in the neighborhood and activity ideas.

What advice would you give your younger self?
Travel as much as you can before having kids, and remember to have fun.

What is your go to outfit?
Skinny jeans, UGGs, and a sweatshirt.

What is something you are pretending to know about but have no clue?
Not sure, I know a lot about random things in life: I know about 401k, pensions, mortgages, and jury duty. I am usually open and straightforward if I don't know something. I’ll just tell anyone asking that I have no clue!

What have you learned from your kids?
Every day spent with them is a gift. I’ve learned to put aside housework, school, work, and rest! The excitement of going to lunch, hanging out with buddies, going to the park, museums, or just hanging out outside means so much to my kids. They grow up so fast: I am grateful to be able to spend days off with them before they are school aged. Just remember: your kids won't know if the house is a little messier or if you get “B” rather than “A” brand of food. They just need time to be spent with them. And, of course, coffee helps during those times you need to get by with less sleep!

If you could ask the universe one question what would it be?
Is there a way to not be tired all the time?

What is the looming task on your to do list?
We still need to unpack our boxes from when we moved a year ago!

Closing thoughts, mantra, or advice:
Kids grow up fast, so enjoy it! Also, don’t compare yourself to other people. You know what is best for your family and kids.

I would like to thank Michelle for sharing her strengths as a mother and having the determination to pursue her degree with two small children at her side. She is an inspiration and a demonstration of perseverance. Michelle understands the need for family time, and works to make the most of these moments with her own children. 

Until Next Time...
Kortney Peagram
Be Strong*Be Brave*Be a Bulldog

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