It's true. No one tells you this, but once you have a baby you are officially a pack mule. Babies come with a lot of stuff, and when baby goes somewhere so does that stuff. Getting ready to go to the store or to someone's house is at least a 20 minute ordeal. There's a crazy long checklist involved in getting out the door.
Item One: Diaper bag
This one is essential! You can't forget it, it contains nearly all of baby's things. For us we have a "must have" and "would like to have" category for the bag. Must haves include diapers, wipes,bottle, formula, bottle of water (to mix w/formula), extra clothes (we have a drooly kid), changing pad, baby first aid kit (medicines and band aids)and pacifiers. The would like to haves include toys, teething ring, cereal, spoon, and extra headbands (yes I am that mom. Never thought I would be.) The other day we managed to forget a bottle when we dropped Sarah off at my in-laws causing an emergency run to Walgreen's. Oops. So in all actuality the diaper bag is really items one through like one hundred.
Item Two: The Carseat
We just recently made the transition of leaving the carrier in the car and only bringing Sarah inside. That is unless we have to go into a store, Sarah can't sit unsupported yet. So when we go to someone's house we just unstrap the little bit and bring her inside. Going to a store requires lugging my carrier plus its 13 + pound cargo inside. Yeah it gets heavy. Try adding grocery or shopping bags to that. Did I mention moms were also professional jugglers. Let's just hope it doesn't rain when you have to run to the store with the baby. That's a whole new dilemma.
Item Three: The Stroller
This stays in our car for the most part also. Although when it comes out we can just click the carseat into and throw the diaper bag in the bottom basket. Making my job as the pack mule much easier. I wish I had occasion to use this more often. It would make things easier. We usually only use this if we go to the mall or a walk outside. Since we are currently in an excessive heat advisory our evening walks have been taking place in the mall. Exercise and shopping in one hit!
The Remaining Items
The other things we bring with us vary depending on where we go. It could be the pack n play, the bumbo seat, the swing, the bouncy seat, and I used to bring my pump bag with me everywhere. Exclusively pumping for three months makes travelling light difficult. Any combination of these and the other three items and there you have it the overburdened, bag toting mama.
So it's easy to see how a mom can be equated to a pack mule. We get so loaded down with stuff. It's just not possible to grab the baby and go. Most days I can get out of the house in less than 10 minutes, because I always prepack my diaper bag. But then I do something like lose my shoes, keys, or sunglasses. Oh wait did I forget to mention all the things I need for me?