Friday, May 31, 2013

Car Seat Nap Phenomena

I recently read 11/22/63: A Novel by Stephen King.  I highly recommend it. Without giving too much away, the character travels back to 1963 to try and save President Kennedy and change the future as we know it.  

The book got me thinking about time travel and its possibilities.   Upon reading some articles, I think I have discovered the reason allowing your toddler to fall asleep in the car on the ride home has dire consequences.

It is science. 

It all comes down to Einstein's law of time travel.  Einstein stated that time is relative. It speeds up or slows down depending on how fast one thing is moving relative to something else. 

His idea was the closer someone comes to traveling at the speed of light (186,000 miles per second), the more time would appear to slow down for them from the perspective of someone who, in relation to them, is not moving.

For example, if you hold a clock on Earth and your friend gets in a rocket with a clock and goes nearly the speed of light (because as far as we know, nothing actually can go or exceed the speed of light), the clock on the rocket will move more slowly than yours on the ground.  This was proven in the 1970s using atomic clocks.

What the hell does this have to do with not allowing your child to fall asleep in the car?

Your child is like the clock and your car is the rocket.  

Time moves slower in motion.

Therefore, sleeping for one minute in a moving car is equal to sleeping 10 minutes in a crib.   A 15 minute nap on the way home equates to an hour and one half nap actually at the house. 

Otherwise known as a catastrophe.

Why doesn't time seem to move that slow for you in the car?   Well that is easy.   Einstein's theory of relativity also relies on mass.   An object that has more mass needs a bigger push than an object with less mass to gain speed.   

Therefore, your toddler needs less push than you do to go faster.   If the car is the push (or acceleration), theoretically, he is going faster than you in the same car.   If he is going faster than you, then his sense of time is slower than yours and 1 minute feels like 10 minutes to him.

Got it?

I call it the Car Seat Nap Phenomena.

Or a catastrophe should you be expecting to get home and put your child to bed for the night.

It is not going to happen.   You may say they have only been asleep for 15 minutes but they feel like they just had 1.5 hour refreshing nap and are ready to watch an all night marathon of Doc McStuffins.

Don't believe me?   Read what Stephen Hawkings says about time travel.

See, it is science.   It is a proven fact.

Consider your mind blown.

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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Poop-edo (aka Tubtanic)

Has there ever been a moment when you look at yourself and think "I am doing OK as a mom"?   I don't mean you think you know it all or it is a breeze.  Anyone who says they are doing things perfectly or doesn't think being a mom is hard scares me.    I personally think if you are not double guessing your decisions and wondering if you could be a better parent, you are doing it all wrong.   But sometimes, just sometimes, you do something and you just want to scream to the world "Bazinga! I got this!"

For me, that was last week.   My son started to poop in the tub -- again.   In case you are not aware, I have had the great joy of experiencing that not once, but several times.   I know parents who have never had it happen!  How I got the little boy with the bathtub fetish is beyond me.   

Clorox likes to call it the Poop-edo (aka Tubtanic).    I like to call it disgusting.  Exhausting to clean up.  And just a pain in my ass.

Poop once, shame on you.  Poop four times?  Mommy needs to start paying better attention.

That is why I say he started to poop in the tub.   He was playing with his Lightning McQueen squirty when he looked up.   I looked at him.   He looked at me.   I noticed it.   That little twitch in his right eye.  Most people would not have noticed it.  But I did.  He tried to look away and hide it, but it was too late.  I knew!

I screamed "Nooooooo!!!!!" and in less time that you can say "Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo", I lifted the toilet seat with one hand while lifting the baby out of the tub with the other.   Looking back, it was rather quick but at the time it felt like slow motion.

I guess my screams caught the attention of my husband and stepson because they ran into the bathroom.  No one loves a good poop more than a 7 year old boy.    They found me holding my son under his arm pits, his legs straddling the can.    As they came closer, we all looked down and stared at the turd floating.   

There was silence for a moment.

And then we all cheered.   We cheered for me.   We cheered for my little guy's first potty experience.  We cheered for parents everywhere that have had to clean up after a Poop-edo.   I was proud of myself.   I had been challenged and won!   I was going to be a decent mom!

The baby, however, was not cheering.   At first he looked at me like "well played, mom, well played"  But then he began to cry.  What a sore loser!

Bath time was over.

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Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Pacifiers, Fuzzy Socks, Allergies Trifecta

Regular readers of this blog know that I have a pacifier problem.   I keep 3-4 in baby boy's crib during the night to ensure they don't fall out and I am woken up at 3am by hysterical screaming.   Every night before I go to bed, I sneak in and make sure they are all still strategically placed for easy access.  I have even been known to sneak into his room in the middle of the night during a bathroom visit just to double check.  I know I am causing a huge problem for myself down the road but right now the full night's sleep is so worth it.

I have special socks for this.  Fuzzy socks.  4 or 5 pairs.  I keep them beside the bed, even in 90 degree weather.   I swear by the fuzzy socks.   They are about an inch thick and I personally think they change me into a Ninja.   When I sneak across the hall in the middle of the night, you can't hear anything.   No sweaty feet suction sounds across the wood floors.   No shuffling across the bedroom carpet.   I sometimes practice my Ninja moves in the hallway at midnight.  Just. Because. I. Can.

Last night I got ready for bed, put on my ninja socks and went to check on my son.   To my horror, I only saw two pacifiers.   I didn't see any on the floor so I assumed that he must be sleeping on at least one of them but I wasn't sure.   Then I saw one.   Teetering on the brink of falling behind the crib.   Just out of my grasp.   There was only one thing to do.   Yes, jump on the edge of the crib like it was the parallel bars and try and reach for it without falling in.

Let me digress for a moment.   I am currently suffering from allergies.  Bad allergies.   The only thing that seems to help is a certain allergy medicine that also leaves me a walking zombie.  So I have been suffering in not so silence the past few days.   One of the things I have been using to try and rid myself of this agony is a netting pot.   If you don't know what that is, Google it.   Basically, you use it to rinse your sinuses out.   You pour (or squeeze) a solution in one nostril and it comes out the other.  It really is a classy sight to see .   Dr. Oz swears by it.  Personally, it doesn't seem to be helping this go around but I continue to do it.   I find what comes out of my body fascinating.

Anyhow, I had just rinsed my sinuses out before trying my gymnastics routine on the crib.

The thing is, even if you blow your nose a lot after rinsing, there is still some solution up there.  Way up there.  But when you are hanging upside down in a crib, feet up in the air, trying to save a pacifier from falling into never never land -- things happen.   Gravity happens.

That is when I felt it.

I felt it coming out of my nose.

Correction.   Gushing out of my nose.

Onto my baby's head.

I just slimed my baby.

He didn't move and I was able to secure the pacifier.   For a moment, I thought about wiping him off.  But that would have been pushing my luck with waking him up and I once again picked sleep over doing what is probably right.

So, I left my baby sleeping in a puddle of my snot.

Yes.  Mother of the Year is in the house.

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Friday, May 17, 2013

My Kid's Room

Maybe I read too many Stephen King books, but kid's rooms are scary.   Sometimes when I am in my son's room I can actually feel the toys looking at me.  Especially that little toy telephone.  I swear his eyes move wherever I go.   Then there are the random beeps and music that go off when no one is there.  Or is there?

As I was laying on my back last night waiting for the little man to cut some Zs, I started double guessing my decorating scheme.   For those of you who do not know, my son's room is Dr. Seuss themed.   When I was preggo, I hand painted a mural on the wall.   I drew some of my favorite characters:  Horton, Lorax, Thing 1 & 2, Yertle the Turtle, Green Eggs and Ham, Sneetches and the Fishes.   I went a little over board.

But now, as I stand in the room, I feel like I have no privacy.  I swear those drawings talk to each other when no one is around and judge my mothering skills.   They know when I throw the pacifiers back in the crib without washing them.   They see when I skip the baby lotion after his bath because I don't feel like dealing with a grumpy baby.   They watch me sneak out of his room as soon as he closes his eyes.  And they judge.  I know they do.

And Thing 1 & 2?  Let's face it....creeeepy.  With that hair.  Those mischievous eyes.  Chills.

There is a reason I refuse to buy anything with a clown on it.   I swear his stuffed animals move around when I turn my head.   Balls seem to disappear into thin air and small toys that hurt like hell when you step on them jump out from nowhere.

How am I going to convince my son when he is 3 that there aren't monsters in his closet when I am not really sure myself?

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Thursday, May 16, 2013

Things I Said I Would Never Do

Well, it has been over a year now and I was thinking about all the things I said I would never do as a parent and I am already doing them.   Looking back, I was so judgmental of other parents!  I guess that is easy to be when you don't have a child yourself and aren't in the weeds with your comrades.   Now I just laugh at myself and wonder if I am already doing this the first year, what the hell am I going to let my child do by age 9?   Shoot a BB gun at the neighbor's cat just to get him outside and out of my hair?

For example...

I told myself that I was not going to give my child a pacifier.   I was not going to go down that road of dependency!  Then my newborn beautiful baby boy was rolled into my hospital room with a hospital issued paci in his pie hole.   Well, there went that idea.   I changed my tune and said he would only get it when he needed to sleep.  I convinced myself all the experts were right about babies needing to self-sooth.   That turned into popping it in on a car ride when we were 30 minutes past bottle time, being in the grocery store much longer than we should be, and that "witching hour" when he is crabby and sleepy but I would totally regret letting him go to bed that early.   Then came teething.   Now I shake my head as I make sure all four pacifiers are in his crib before bed so I don't have to worry about a 2am wake up call should one fall out.

I was not going to sit my child in front of the TV to keep him occupied.   Then came the lack of sleep and 6am Saturday mornings.    Now, I turn on the Octonauts and let him sit in front of the TV while eating his waffles and strawberries.   This way I can crawl into a ball on the couch and reminisce about the days I slept in until 9am and wasn't the least bit productive until noon on a Saturday.

I was not going to be a helicopter mom.   I wasn't going hover.   I was going to let my boy be a boy and learn his own lessons.   Yeah, well that lasted for about 10 seconds after he went on the move.  Ever since he started crawling my head has been on a swivel and my feet constantly in motion.     God forbid he electrocuted himself, fell in a toilet, choked on a lint ball or got trapped under a bookcase on my watch.  All I could think of were possible ways for him to die, and I decided the lessons could wait until he is over 30.

I was not going to be a short order cook.   My kids were going to eat what we eat.  No exceptions.   They were not going to grow up as picky eaters.   Then one day I looked around and realized I had toast, hotdogs, pasta, peas and cookies strewn across the kitchen counters in a frantic effort to get some calories in his little body.   The books say that kids won't starve themselves and eventually they will eat what you give them.  What they don't tell you is that they will wake up at 3am hungry wanting that banana they previously threw at you.   The mere thought of that would make me forego the 2 servings of vegetables and stuff his face with graham crackers if that is what it took.

On the subject of meals, I said that I was not going to feed my son processed food.   I did not want him digesting anything that was unnatural or not organic.   That was before I thought it through and realized that meant I would have to make almost everything.   That takes time.   That takes energy.  That takes motivation.  None of which I had after months of a screwed up sleep schedule.    Then there were the moments I would find the time, energy and motivation and he wouldn't eat what I made!   But mac-n-cheese, he would eat.   Processed Gerber's ravioli, he would devour.   There comes a time you just want to get him to eat (see above).   Now I try and convince myself that I ate Twinkies as a child and survived.  So will my son.

I said that I would still see all my friends.  Even those without kids.   It was a good intention but not reality.   Reality is that my childless friends want to go to the bar.  Hang out at the beach.   Stay out well after midnight and do things on a whim.    That is not my life anymore.   Not only does an outing take special planning and scheduling, but I am now supposed to be a responsible parent.   Even if I could keep my eyes open past midnight, it is not fun being the sober one.   Hanging out with my friends still gives me joy, but I realized watching my son hanging out with his friends in the middle of the day gives me more joy.

Middle of the day is the key word.   I never thought I would be going to bed by 9pm every night.  And honestly, I don't.   But I want too.   We are rarely out past 7pm.   Not only because I am exhausted most of the time, but because we are now on a 13 month old's schedule.  Being out after 7pm could result in the dreaded "fall asleep in the car" scenario.   That usually leads to waking up when we arrive home and taking hours to get him back to bed.   Hours I just don't have the appetite to spend fighting with my child.   So to make life easier for us all, you will find me home by 7pm.  Every. single. night.

Before I had my own child, I would roll my eyes at the parents that post one million pictures of their kids and seem consumed by them.  Look at Johnny eat an apple.   Look at Mary point at the sky.  Now I do that too.   Hell, I have this blog.  Enough said.

I am sure there are more things.  A lot more, but I am not ready to share them right now.  I am going to stop before I realize just how much bull crap I spewed before motherhood.  

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Monday, May 6, 2013

My Baby Bully

True story. 

My 7 year old stepson gets on the couch and tries to hide under the covers from his brother.  My 13 month old son.  My 13 month old son that bites and pinches.   Of course the little man just thinks it is a game and the more my stepson whimpers and covers himself, the more my baby tries to get under the blanket.

When it is evident that he can't hide under the blanket, my stepson moves under a table.  When he sees his brother crawling at him warp speed with the look of triumph in his eyes; he runs to his room and closes the door.

Like a Chucky doll in a scary movie, the baby crawls to the door and knocks.   Knock, knock!   Just like my husband taught him.   But good luck getting big brother to open the door this time.   He has locked himself in, scared shitless.

Yes.  My 13 month old bullies my 7 year old.

Sigh.  Why me?

No amount of time outs, saying no or hand slaps are getting him to stop.   He just laughs and laughs.  The more he laughs, the more I want to scream.

When I saw him hurting other kids over the weekend, I finally realized it was time to warn the daycare.

Too late.

Seems there have already been victims but his smiling face and infectious laughter makes it hard for them to take it seriously.   For some reason, they didn't feel the need to tell me.

Great.  Only 13 months old and he is already bucking the system with his looks.

I can't help but wonder if this is how Hannibal got started.

I don't mean for this to sound like I am taking it lightly.  I am not.

As I watched him climb into my lap tonight and hand me a book to read, I just kept thinking this isn't the same sweet boy that left a mark on another child today.   I am racking my brain about what I could have done or shouldn't have done that caused this.   Did he hear me fight with his dad and now thinks it is OK to get angry?   Did he take me literally when I used to tell him he was so cute I wanted to eat him?   Did I not kiss and hug him enough?   I am embarrassed by his actions and feel like a failure as mother.  I really do not know what else I can do.

The daycare's recommendation?  They told the story of a kid just like him that finally stopped.

Yep.  When his mother bit him back.

I see a salt shaker, tequila shot and my son's arm in my future.

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Granny Panties

Warning! This post may be a little TMI for some people. 

I am going to talk about granny panties.   OK.  Maybe not true granny panties, but close enough for me.  Stop reading if you do not want to know about my underwear. 

Final warning.

You are still reading....

I went to Vickie's Secrets this weekend to replenish my stock of underwear and I bought all....bikini style.  Ok.  It is not the high waisted, granny variety but it also wasn't the thongs I used to wear or trendy low cut boy shorts.    They were the average garden variety bikinis.  100% cotton no less.

Before I had my little guy, I owned one pair of this type of underwear.  One pair.   Then came labor.  Then came the unexpected C-section.   The C-section that left a cut exactly where the elastic band met my skin.  I couldn't wear them more than 10 seconds without wincing in pain.

When I was pregnant, I was stubborn and didn't listen when people told me that I might want to stock up on some comfortable underwear just for that possibility.  So, I wore my husband's boxer briefs until I could summon the energy to go to the store and buy some.   Let's be honest, they were a hell of lot nicer than those mambo jambo underwear the hospital sends you home with.

I wore them for over two weeks.  Yes, that means I wore my husband's underwear to my OBGYN check ups.  And no, at that point I didn't give a shit.  I was tired.  I was hormonal.  I was sore.

Finally, I made it to Wally World and bought a Hanes multi-pack.   I hadn't wore Hanes since I was 14.  But I was not going to spend $5 a pair at VS for underwear I planned to only wear a couple months.  Planned being the key word.  Fast forward 3 months later and I was still wearing them.   The same 6 pack.  Plus the one VS pair I previously owned.

I know what you are thinking.  That is just a week's worth.   Yes.   It was a laundry nightmare.

So, I went out and bought another pack.  Still Hanes.  Still thinking this was a temporary solution to my C-section problem.

But 13 months later, I was still wearing them.  It was time for me to be honest with myself.

I was in denial.  I wasn't going to stop, was I?   The C-section scar soreness passed several months ago and I was still hanging onto my Hanes.

Those Hanes were getting raggedy.   It was time to either go back to wearing my cute thongs and lacy cheekies or admit that I liked wearing full coverage underwear.

I said it to myself at first.  And then I said it out loud.  Full coverage underwear is freaking comfortable.

What the hell happened to me?

I will tell you what happened.  I got old and I had a child.

When I am exhausted and chasing around a 1 year old, the last thing I want to be doing is picking a wedgy or worried that my goods are showing when I bend over.   Although, I did worry what people would think when they saw Hanes on the elastic band. 

I want to feel comfortable.  Like wearing your favorite sweats.  I wanted my underwear to cover my ass.  I also needed standards.  That is what prompted me to finally break down and go to VS.   I figured if I was going to cross over to the dark side, I could at least have VS peeking out when I bent over.

As I paid, I felt a little part of my youth die.

But never fear, I won't throw away my old (but hardly used) thongs and cheekies.   At some point I might feel a little wild and crazy again.  Which I am sure is a relief to my husband.


Time to buy a "mom" one piece bathing suit.

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