Friday, June 28, 2013

You know you are a mom when.....

One of the other mommy bloggers I follow was collecting feedback from moms on how they know they are a mom.  The Honest Mommy was looking for witty examples of the crazy things that happen to moms that you know would never occur if you were childless and fancy free.

Although her post was to be for laughs, it got me to thinking.   When did I feel like a mom?  This may be a controversial post and some may look down on me, but it is also an honest post.

I didn't feel like a mom the moment my son was born.  I didn't get that mother duckling, bursting emotional "I would die for you" feeling when they handed him to me.  If I am honest, it was more of a "what the f*ck do I do with this?!" feeling.

I told myself I was exhausted from 12 hours of labor, overwhelmed by all the hospital antics and I just don't do well with change.   I told myself I would feel like a mother soon.

I didn't.

I read somewhere that this is common with C-sections.   The hormones, or whatever, that are normally released during a vaginal delivery are not released during the surgical procedure.   Maybe it is just the fact, when giving a vaginal birth, you are just so damn glad for it to be over the elation is bursting from your every seam.   In the meantime, in the operating room, I felt nothing from the waist down.   If they gave me a bowl of ice cream and played the Real Housewives on the ceiling, it would have been like an ordinary day laying on the couch for me.

Don't get me wrong.  I love my son more than anything.  Eventually he started to grow and so did my feelings towards him.   They grew exponentially.  It was like my feelings were catching up for lost time.  It took almost a year.  But it happened.

In the beginning, I felt like a "provider" not a mommy.   He just laid there but somehow needed me 24 hours a day.  Feedings, rockings, diaper changes.   It was overwhelming.  I often referred to myself as the nanny, cook and maid.  Perhaps it was just the baby blues or postpartum depression -- who knows?

I really don't know the exact day I really felt like a mom.  Just one day I realized I felt like one.  And it was a really good feeling!

Alrighty then...enough seriousness!   Here are five items from my "you know you are a mom when" list:

  1. You buy children's music CDs for the car and then realize you have been listening to one for 15 minutes....alone.
  2. You have 500+ pictures of your kid on your cell phone and not one selfie, doing the duck face.
  3. You make your plans around snack time, lunch time, nap time, dinner time, bath time and bed time because God forbid you get off schedule and ruin the entire day for everyone.
  4. You used to put on make up and cute shorts to go to the grocery store.  Now you are lucky to slather on some moisturizer and find clean yoga pants before heading out.  Plus, you don't care because you are just so damn happy to have time alone.
  5. You have made macaroni and cheese more in the past month than you did your entire life before kids.
There are more but I need material for future posts.  When do you feel like a mom?

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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Baby Genius

Yesterday was little man's 15 month checkup.   Is it just me or are children's exam rooms twice as small as normal doctor offices?  I know they are little people but adults do bring them in.  Kids don't just walk in themselves, slap the insurance card on the counter and ask for a shot of penicillin.   And considering many parents have to bring the entire brood in when one child is sick, I would think they would be built bigger.   Anyhow, I digress.

We proceeded to answer all the same questions we do every time.   No, we don't smoke.  Yes, we have smoke detectors in the home.  No, we don't have a pool.  Yes, he sleeps in his own crib.  No, the new car seat does not face backwards.  Yes, I know the recommendation now is until 2 years old and I am a horrible mother who doesn't care that my son may get hurt in an accident because it is more convenient for him to face forward so I no longer slam his head into the roof of my car getting him in and out.   

Hmmm...I seem a little defensive.  Hostile even.  Don't judge me.

Then she asked a question that stumped me and the hubby. 

"Does he touch his nose, ear, eyes, mouth, etc. when you ask him too?"

Ummmmm.   Are we supposed to be asking him too?   Great!  Now, not only am I the mom with the prematurely installed forward facing car seat, but I am also the mom who is going to raise a kid that doesn't know where his eyes are.   Sheepishly, we both admitted we never asked but we would start.

So, of course the first thing we do when my son gets home from daycare is ask "Baby L!  Where is your nose??!"

And know what?!

He touched his nose immediately.

Me and the hubby suddenly got silent and stared at each other.   Amazed.  Proud. 

Just to be sure it wasn't a fluke, we asked again.  "Baby L!  Where is your nose??!"

He did it again.

And a third time.

Whoo hoo! We have a baby genius!   We were not going to raise a child that needs to wear a helmet when he goes outside.

Then we asked him where his ears are.  He touched his nose.

We asked him where is eyes are.  He touched his nose.

We asked him where is mouth is.  He touched his nose.

Oh.

So to end on a high note, we asked him where his nose was again.

That is when we realized he just didn't touch it.  He was sticking his finger up it.    We realized that we have been telling him to stop picking his nose a lot lately.   Hence, why he know where his nose is.

Ummmmmm......baby genius?  Nevermind.  Just kidding.


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Monday, June 24, 2013

Frenemies

Meet my frenemies:  Lightning McQueen and Chick Hicks.

 
 
I don't know if I love them or I hate them.  They flip.  They spin around.  They go fast, fast, fast!
 
My little boy loves them.   If he could, he would play with them all. day. long.
 
The thing is, he is only 15 months old.   He doesn't quite have the strength, dexterity or reasoning to make them work properly.   So, who gets called to the rescue? 
 
Yes.  Me. Maaaa Maaaa!
 
For hours.   And hours.   Of torture fun!
 
That is why I hate them.   That, and just look at Chick Hicks' eyes.   He always looks pissed at me. 
 
But I also love them.   They are often my saving grace.  
 
"Where are your cars??!!" can turn a potential meltdown into a cause for excitement as he scurries into the living room looking for them.
 
  • He wants his pacifier during a non-nap time?  --- "Where are your cars??!!"  --- tantrum averted.
  • He can't eat the cat's food?  --- "Where are your cars??!!"  --- tantrum averted.
  • He can't rearrange all the furniture in the house?   --- "Where are your cars??!!"  --- tantrum averted.
  • Not allowed to climb into the toilet?  --- "Where are your cars??!!"  --- tantrum averted.
 
You get the picture.
 
Unfortunately, that phrase is often followed with him bringing me the cars or demanding that I sit on the floor with him -- making whatever I was trying to get done, impossible.
 
Which is why sometimes, just sometimes, I think about letting him eat the cat food.
 
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Friday, June 21, 2013

The Game of Daycare Parking

Since the daycare would not let me write a letter to parents like I wanted, I have had to take matters into my own hands.   Dropping off and picking up my son at daycare has become like a game.  A game mixed with strategy and luck.   A game that challenges me every day and I welcome that challenge.

Basically, as I round the corner to the daycare I have approximately 30 seconds to determine where I am going to park.   Some days it is relatively easy if one of the three lanes are open for prime pull-through opportunities.  Others?  Not so much.  Some days, there are ass clowns hogging up all three lanes and I only have 30 seconds to decide which one looks less douche inhabited.   

Based on past parking experience, proven science and a little mommy intuition; I have had a relatively high success rate.  For example:

  • The father in a suit driving like a maniac in the parking lot, almost jumping out before the car stops?  Yes.  Park behind him.  He apparently has a business meeting to get to.   If he could, he would just slow the car down and throw the kid through a window.
  • The mom in her velour jogging suit with coffee in hand, slowly walking to the side of the car to open the kid's door?  Avoid.  She has no sense of urgency and obviously no where to be.  She may even sit down and enjoy that cup of Joe with her kid once they get inside.
  • The parent trying to get two or more kids out of the car at once, looking frazzled and on the brink of a nervous breakdown?  That can be iffy.  She could go either way.  She could get so pissed that the moment they cross the threshold, she shoves them through and then runs for the door.  Or she could lose her bearings once inside, accidentally walk into a broom closet and then refuse to come out since it is the first peace and quiet she has had all week.
  • People who leave the car running?  Yes.  Choose them.  But it is often hard to determine that when driving up, so I pay attention once I get out.  I try and remember the makes and models and use that to my advantage later on.
  • Out of state tags?  Don't bother.  That is Grandma or Aunt Susie visiting and wanting to experience the daycare process.   She doesn't understand the rules.  She doesn't even know where she is going and often relies on a 4 year old to tell her.  As we speak, the kids are probably showing her all their art work on the wall and the playground.

The other day, however, I made a mistake.   I came around the corner and saw a minivan in the front spot, closest to the door.    This is one of those either way scenarios since I didn't have a chance to see the family dynamics beforehand.   The person could have gone in some time ago and would be out any minute.  Or they could be an ass clown.   This time, I pulled up behind the ass clown.  As another ass clown pulled behind me.  And beside me.

It was like the song "Fins" by Jimmy Buffet.  But instead of sharks it was ass clowns on all sides of me.

I picked up my son, got in the car and sat (no exaggeration) almost 10 more minutes before the owner of the car in front of me finally came out.   In the meantime, the owner of the car behind me was no where to be found so I couldn't back up and the car beside me was a freaken trailer (which would have been a no-no if I could have written the parental letter).  I couldn't go around them either.

My exaggerated sighs, rolling eyes and irritated face had no effect on the perpetrator.  That is because when you are an ass clown that takes 15 plus minutes to pick up your kids, you know better than to look back at the cars you are blocking in.   You might get the bird.  Or worse.

This made me think.  When I pulled up, Blake Shelton's "Boys 'Round Here" was coming on.  When I got back in, it was ending.  Thank goodness.  That song is dumb as hell.   But my point is that the song is approximately 3:50 minutes long.   I did my business in less than four minutes.  Is it unreasonable to ask others to do theirs in about the same amount of time?

I think that should be a rule.  People must get back to their cars before the next song comes on.  Sort of like those Justin Beiber toothbrushes that make sure you brush the right amount of time.  If you do not get back in time, you are grounded from using the drive through lanes.  You must park in the parking lot until you have perfected the drop off/pick up dash time limit.   The daycare can even play music outside of the building to help everyone out.

I am brilliant!  I am going to talk to the daycare manager when she gets back from vacation.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Therapeutic Thursday

I am dubbing today Therapeutic Thursday.  I am going to list 5 mommy confessions I am going to make public.   Hopefully, you don't judge me too much.   If you do, you obviously do not have children.  Or you do have children and are on some good medication.

  1. I sometimes go the bathroom, not because I really have to go, but I need time alone.  I don't lift the toilet seat.  I sit down on it, sometimes with my iPad, and just take 5 minutes to myself.
  2. I have hidden some of the son's favorite toys temporarily just because I am tired of playing with them with him.   Mommy needs variety.
  3. I once was so tired and discombobulated that I didn't buckle my kid in his car seat and drove 30 minutes home on the Interstate.  When I got home and discovered it, I panic and cried about all the things that "could have happened" until I mentally slapped myself out of it. 
  4. Some days for dinner, as long as I see my son has eaten all his fruits and vegetables at daycare, I just make mac-n-cheese for him and cereal for me.   And we are both happy as can be.   Who am I kidding.  I sometimes do that even if he hasn't had any vegetables all day.
  5. I sometimes let my son stay in a dirty diaper longer than he probably should because I know I am going to be giving him a bath soon and don't want to waste a diaper.

Whew! Got that off my chest.  Judging me yet?

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Monday, June 17, 2013

Father's Day Debacle

Father's Day was yesterday and I admit I am not as good at planning as my husband is when it comes to holidays.   And I use the word holiday loosely in this instance. It doesn't help that Father's Day is two weeks after our wedding anniversary and his birthday.  By now, my creative juices and gift giving ideas are usually depleted.

Not to mention that I am bitter about the fact my husband travels a lot for work and I am mom and dad 50% of the time but I don't get a present.   Not even half a present.

Don't get me wrong, I have a wonderful husband and he is a fantastic father; but this blog does have "whine" in the title.   And well, I was frustrated that on a day that I should have been able to rest up for another week of being both mom and dad, I had to turn the chore of being lazy over to him. 

I was not excited about the day.

First of all, the little man decided to wake up at 5:45am that Sunday.   What the hell?   I seriously thought about making my husband get up but flashbacks of me sleeping in on Mother's Day made me feel guilty and I begrudgingly climbed out of bed.  

Then the day went down hill....

The baby refused to nap.   Correction.  He refused to nap unless I was holding him.  

Then I regretted my bright idea of an afternoon of miniature golf and batting cages when it got up to 90 degrees with 99% humidity by 11am.    The baby was as red as a tomato and obviously suffering from heat stroke as he was giggling uncontrollably about absolutely nothing.   Everyone was sweating, thirsty and overall miserable.   I only realized several hours later that I was walking around with boob and butt sweat stains in public.

We stopped at Chili's for lunch where the baby felt the need to throw everything he touched.  Crayons.  Toy cars.  Food.   Of course still giggling with heat induced delight.  The waitress almost stepped on Lightning McQueen and went sliding down the aisle like a bad cartoon.   I ended up with macaroni and cheese in my hair.

Then he pooped.

And refused to let me change him in the restroom.    The little guy clung to me like glue.   Ooey gooey, smelly glue.   His screams could be heard outside and some little girls came in just to see what the ruckus was about - their eyes wide when they saw us.   I was holding a half naked baby while most of the contents of the diaper bag was spilled on the floor and toy cars were being thrown at the bathroom stalls.   Embarrassed and frustrated, I dragged the unchanged boy to the car where we all rode home holding our noses.

Once home, I tried to keep a smile on my face and take care of the kids while my husband rested.  But I just couldn't do it.   My headache was getting larger and my patience smaller.  Finally, I decided to surprise my husband with the best Father's Day gift EVER!   An hour of quality time with his boys while I napped.  Like how I did that?

But I couldn't nap.   If I wasn't concerned about the shrieking screams coming from the other side of the door, I was playing "name that toy".  I will take the Little People School Bus song for 1000, Alex.   I fell asleep 10 minutes before my alarm went off, letting me know it was time to get up and start dinner.

The dinner that required the grill.   The grill that was on the screened lanai.   The screen that lets rain in.   The rain that was 5 minutes away from pouring down.  

Already on edge and numb from the day, I didn't notice right away that my 14 month pulled my pants down, showing my underwear.   Fortunately, it was the new Victoria's Secret underwear I recently blogged about and not a hole ridden post maternity pair.   Unfortunately, my stepson was standing directly behind me and really didn't want to see his stepmom moon him. I don't know which one of us was more embarrassed.

Then, the older child cried because the one year old was picking on him.   The one year old cried because his Lightning McQueen car went under the couch.  The older child cried because my husband wouldn't let him cheat at the PS3.  The one year old cried because I wouldn't let him stuff 6 crackers in his mouth at once.   The older child cried because we asked him to try the pork.  The one year old cried because the cat ran away.

I would like to say bedtime went smoothly.  It didn't.  The baby handed me all his pacifiers.  He only wanted one in the crib.   Then he wanted them all.  Then he wanted one.  Then he wanted them all.  You get the picture. 

At some point I cracked.   I told my husband that Father's Day was officially over in my book and I hid in the bathroom with my iPad until I knew it was safe to come out again.

Thank God I only feel obligated to do this one time a year!

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Friday, June 14, 2013

New Mommy Friends

I keep telling my husband that I need more mommy friends.  I don't want a bunch of them or any real commitment.  That is a lot of time and work  And I am lazy.  But I need to know more women that have children my son's age so he can have play dates and actually have something in common to talk to the mom's about.  

I take walks around the neighborhood and stop by the play ground.   I say hi to other moms and make silly faces at their kids in hopes of making a connection.   While we may have a short, courteous conversations; it never moves past that.  I never walk away with a phone number.

I started thinking about how I used to make friends and realized I am not really that good at it.  I am an introvert and somewhat closed off.  Hell, I have been neighbors with some people for 8 years and don't even know their name.  In the meantime, I have friends that walk into a room and know the blood type of everyone within 15 minutes.  Then I realized most people make me want to stick a pencil in my eye after talking to them for 10 minutes.  

Don't get me wrong.  I have friends.  I have wonderful friends.  Those of them reading this may wonder if I am envisioning stuffing them into a trunk when they speak.  Don't worry.  I don't.  I swear.  Really.

I started thinking about how I have made friends in the past.  I guess like everyone else makes friends.  You attend enough social gatherings with people that they become acquaintances.   Then you figure out the ones you can stand being around.   After enough encounters, you become Facebook friends where you can stalk their every move.   You can figure out what they are all about.  Who they know.  What they like.  What they don't like.  If they are crazy.  If they are normal. You then decide if you want to forge a real friendship and move it beyond cyberspace.

No?  That's not how you make friends?

Yeah.  Me either.

Anyhow, I decided to put together a list of five things that annoy me when trying to make mommy friends. 

  1. Don't dress like you just walked out Vogue magazine.   If your diaper bag is Louis Vuitton, your eyes are perfectly smoky shadowed and you smell like Coco Channel; we are not going to be friends.   My self esteem cannot take it.    I need to be friends with someone that drops their kids off at daycare in sweats.  And not Kim Kardashian matching velour separates.  I mean old, holy Gap sweat pants with a tee shirt you got free somewhere.  I want to feel comfortable around you, not like a homeless guy.
  2. I just met you.  I don't want to hear about your period, your sex life, your bowel movements or all your skeletons.   I am sure when we become close friends, this stuff will come up.  Hell, bowel movements came up at dinner the other night with an old friend.  But when you tell me this stuff the first 10 minutes of knowing you?  Creepy.
  3. Don't be that Pinterest mom.  If you cut all your child's food into cute shapes, every memory has been perfectly scrapbooked and you make your own laundry detergent; we are not going to be friends.   OK.  We might be friends as long as you don't incessantly talk about it.   I am lucky if I feed my kid more than processed mac-n-cheese for dinner and remember to buy detergent, much less make it.  All my baby's memorabilia is stuffed in a Rubbermaid box.  I already feel guilty.   I don't need the reminder.
  4. I am sure your kid is great.  And smart.  We all like to be a Bragger Mcbraggington at times.  But if all you do is tell me how advanced your child is and try to one up me on everything?  Nope.  Not going be friends.   In fact, you will be lucky if you leave the playground without sand in your mouth.
  5. I already have drama in my life.  A lot of it at times.  I don't need to hear about yours or for you to bring me into your drama.   Oh! I love gossip as much as the next gal. You want to vent that your mother-in-law still talks baby talk to your husband?  or you want to tell me your neighbor walks around naked with the blinds open?  Sure.   But if you want to tell me you are sleeping with the yard boy or ask me to hide the shoes you shop lifted?  Not cool. 

Yeah....no wonder I am having trouble making mommy friends. 


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Monday, June 3, 2013

Deep Thoughts

My little guy came down with pink eye last week.  He didn't seem to notice and was fine after 2 days of medicine.   Me, on the other hand, was not so lucky.

I caught it.

I noticed.

And I am still suffering the effects of it 7 days later.

The biggest issue I have with it?  Having to wear my glasses 24 hours a day.   In public.

I hate my glasses.   I always have.   And I have been re-living all my 6th grade angst for a week now.  Or maybe it was 7th grade.   It was too traumatic to remember all of the details.   But I remember sitting in the Intermediate school building second story classroom, looking out the window.  I already had frizzy curly hair and glasses and had just found out I needed braces too.   What the hell?   I was turning into an after school special about a mousy girl with no self esteem who throws herself off the football bleachers.

I remember wanting to look like Jenny* with her straight blond hair and blue eyes.   All the boys liked her.   And I remember having the biggest crush on David* (the class "cool guy") but he never even noticed I was around unless he needed to borrow some wide ruled loose leaf paper.

*The names have been changed to protect the not so innocent.

I thought Jenny with the perfect hair and eyes had the perfect life.   The perfect friends, the perfect family, the perfect existence.  The fact that the David's of the world were fawning over her proved  that my feelings regarding her perfection were legitimate.   Several years later Jenny's parents divorced, she became a young single mom and I think she now struggles with illness in her family.  I realized that perfect on the outside doesn't equate to a perfect life.  And David?  He is an overweight alcoholic with no education or aspirations.  20/20 hindsight revealed that I was lucky that he didn't want more from me than school supplies.

But you couldn't tell this to the 6th grade (or 7th grade) me.

Fortunately, my parents allowed me to get contacts and spared me the agony of looking like a complete stereotypical geek.  Since then I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have worn my glasses in public.  Until now.

I used to tell myself if I had a daughter I would remember how I felt and make sure she didn't feel the same way about herself.

Then I had a son and I realized that I don't have a freaking clue about anything he is going to go through in life.  I know how to be a hot mess girl but nothing about boys.

I know what it is like to have 1,000 emotions about a pair of shoes.  I don't know what it is to just have three:  mad, happy and sad.

I know what it is like to want to talk out my feelings, the meaning of life and making a mountain out of every mole hill.  I don't know what it is like to just want to eat, poop and run around or that crying usually just means one of those isn't happening.

I can do Barbies, make-up, Sweet Valley High books, dresses and pierced ears.   Legos, matchbox cars, Batman, dump trucks and sports?  Not so much.

I can explain menstruation and how to take care of a vajayjay.  Explaining how to hold his pee pee while going to the bathroom and why he wakes up with it pointing North, will not be so easy.

I know what it is like to be disappointed that David will never ask me out. I don't know what it is like to have to work up the nerve to ask a Jenny out and get rejected.

I know what it is like to wish the ball game would just end already.  I don't know what it is like to sit on the bench wishing the coach would just put you in.

But I know how to love.

And hug.

And listen.

In the end, I suppose feelings are feelings no matter the sex and I will muddle through this parenting a boy thing one day at a time.

And maybe if I am lucky, my son will give the frizzy haired girl with glasses and a book in her a hand a second glance.

Yeah.  I know. Wearing my glasses for a week has affected me more than it should have.  Writing this blog is cheaper than therapy.


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