Tag Archives: motherhood

little victories.

I just got done reading this article about who Supermom is (it’s click bait, certainly, so I’m sure you can figure it out). And, as a mom, of course it resonated with me.

I think the reason there is so much pressure put on moms (on dads, too, but to a lesser degree) is that there really is a lot at stake. I mean, you’re shaping a human being. The decisions you make each day have a direct effect on the person entrusted in your care and will inevitably contribute to conversations had in a comfy chair in a therapist’s office years later.

In the day-to-day of motherhood, each day brings with it the little failures — the tantrums, the times you lose your patience and raise your voice, the times your kid wakes up in his crib before you and, when you finally hear him, it’s after a poopsplosion, etc. And because the stakes are so high, it’s easy to focus in on those little failures and deduce that you’re doing a really horrible job.

Yayyyyy… :\

But just like in everything, the fact is that sometimes you nail it, and sometimes you don’t. So why not focus on the times you nail it?

As our weekend is winding down, I gotta say *brushes shoulders off* this weekend, we nailed it.

That is, we are currently celebrating a few small victories in our house. Notably:

  • Dax’s lunch was comprised COMPLETELY of vegetables yesterday. And he asked for more! (So what if it was just cucumbers? Baby steps.)
  • He now understands reasoning, so instead of completely freaking out and throwing the dinner I make him, he allows me to bribe him to eat his dinner with things like animal crackers and marshmallows. It’s not perfect, but I’d rather him have a belly full of real food and marshmallows than going hungry like he had been.
  • He has learned how to actually kiss. And I would venture to say that there are few things better than the feeling of little tiny toddler lips on your cheek. Ugh. So perfect!

So yeah. It’s been a good one. :)

3 Comments

Filed under life, motherhood

my own strength.

The thing about being a parent that no one can prepare you for is the huge gap between what you believe you are capable of, and what you actually are capable of. And that gap is sizable, I might add.

I never thought I would be able to handle the exhaustion of the colicky newborn days. I thought for sure that I would crack. Alas, I am still standing.

I never thought I would be able to breastfeed very long. I thought that maybe I would be able to nurse for six months or so, but here I am, miles away from weaning, well past Dax’s second birthday.

The terrible twos began sometime around his first birthday. And we’re knee deep in them and still getting through each day.

And tonight, he pooped in the bath and I didn’t throw up.

I didn’t know my own strength. It’s a miracle, people.

2 Comments

Filed under life

some daxisms.

10411184_10105172437685263_7080185216981088035_n

My son Dax is awesome. Here are some great things he says sometimes and what they mean.

“No Mama do it.”

Translates to: “Mama, please don’t do the thing that you are currently doing.”

“Dax hold it.”

Translates to: “Please give me some item whose name I can’t verbalize yet, but I fully expect you to figure it out.”

“Mama’s lolos.”

Translates to: “Look! Mama is eating noodles!”

“Mama pray Why.”

Translates to: “Mama, please pray for Super WHY!”

“Mama run; Mama gitchoo.”

Translates to: “Mama, please run so that I can get you.”

“No ews mouth!”

Translates to: “Please do not wipe away the snot that is dribbling from my nose and into my mouth.”

“Dada kiss Mama.”

Translates to: “Dada, kiss mama.”

“Strawbess? Yergurt? And?”

Translates to: “I would like to eat strawberries and yogurt.”

“No yes share!”

Translates to: “I will not share, even though you just told me, ‘Yes, share.'”

2 Comments

Filed under personal

bad guys.

I can’t remember how young I was when I learned that there are “bad guys” out there, but it was pretty early. I remember being not older than maybe 5 or so, and my cousin (two years younger than me) and i were at Disney and in line for Splash Mountain and I remember a man, probably a dad, in his thirties or forties, letting my cousin and I go ahead of him (probably because he couldn’t see our family watching and thought we might be alone). And I distinctly remember panicking and telling my cousin that this man was going to steal us away and kill us, so I grabbed my cousin’s hand and dragged him to the front of the line so we could evade danger.

This afternoon, Dax and I were sitting on the floor watching some LEGO Marvel superhero show on Netflix (he really wanted to see Hulk and this was all that was available). He knew who most all the heroes were — Spider-Man, Iron Man, Thor, and OF COURSE Hulk — but these good guys were doing battle (in the sky!) with a bunch of enemies I didn’t recognize. But I tried to explain to Dax who they were anyway.

“Those are bad guys,” I said.

“Bad guys,” he repeated.

“Yep, Hulk is fighting the bad guys. Don’t worry. Hulk will win.”

A few minutes later, Dax got up from my lap and went out onto the lanai.

“Bad guys, sky,” he said, pointing to the horizon.

“Oh no, Bubs, there aren’t any bad guys in the sky for REAL. That was just pretend.”

“Bad guys, sky,” he said again.

And then I felt my stomach drop. Because I’d just lied to my son. It wasn’t even half a day ago I was in my car hearing the latest reports of the Islamic State and comments from Pakistani leaders who are disappointed with Malala Yousafzai’s awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize because she is no more than just a “useless girl” and feeling overwhelmed with the number of bad guys in the world.

But there are heroes, too. There are good people, too, and I hope that I am providing enough examples for my son so that when he is old enough to realize the bleak state of the world, he won’t be nearly as cynical as I am.

5 Comments

Filed under personal

rescheduled.

When you are getting ready to have kids, everyone around you (both those who have and have not had children yet) love to shower you with things — diapers (yay!), blankets, cute outfits your baby will likely wear once or twice before outgrowing them, hand-me-downs (more yay), and, of course, advice.

I got all kinds of advice when I was pregnant with and newly mothering Dax:

  • sleep when he sleeps (lol really why is this even advice, it’s so ridiculous)
  • breastfeed
  • formula-feed
  • cloth diapers are best
  • disposable diapers are best
  • swaddling always calms babies down
  • don’t give him a pacifier
  • please give him a pacifier

…and so on and so forth.

Some of it worked for us (shout out, pacifiers). A lot of it didn’t. But we did find that one of the most helpful suggestions was to try and get Dax on an eat-play-sleep schedule. It took a little while but by the end of my maternity leave (when Dax was 8 weeks old) he was sleeping “through the night” (meaning only waking once or twice to nurse and then falling immediately back to sleep) and napping through the day and we were all happy and sane-ish and loving life.

Thing is, since we chose to breastfeed, the schedule we implemented has always involved me. And since he has yet to wean, I’m still a pretty integral part to nap times and bedtime. But since he turned two and started school Tuesdays and Thursdays, we’ve all kind of had to live with a pretty irregular day-to-day schedule. Sometimes I can be there to nurse him, sometimes I can’t. Don’t worry, though — on days I can’t he does great. (Basically, if Mama’s in the house, nursing needs to happen OR ELSE. But if she’s not, it’s cool.)

Mondays are days I usually can’t be there. Dan works from home and I leave the house before Dax wakes up and come home after he has gone to bed. So on my way home from work tonight I swung by my friend’s house and had her touch up my latest dye-job. (Red, guys!) But being that she was rushed and I was also rushed, she sent me home with the dye still in my hair and the cape still around my neck and instructed me to wash it the second I got home.

When I walked through the door I expected to see Dax’s door closed and hear the soothing sounds of the white noise machine telling me he was fast asleep in his crib. But nope. Instead I found him wide awake in his Spider-Man jammies all ready for bed and ALL READY FOR MAMA TO DO BEDTIME, YAY!

Mama with her goopy head of hair dye. Mama who couldn’t do ANYTHING AT ALL, much less snuggle a toddler, until she got in the shower and all the color was washed out of her hair.

I’m sure you can imagine how well that went over. But Dan just told me to go on into the shower and he would handle it. I washed my hair as I heard Dax cry for me in the other room.

When I got out of the shower pushing 10PM, Dan said to me, “So I got Dax to calm down. But only because I told him you would go in to his room once you got done…you know, if you could.”

This frustrated me because it was already so late, and he should be going to school tomorrow so he should be getting up early, and me going into his room would only make him excited to nurse and snuggle and keep him awake longer. My head was telling me, “Just let him get over it. He’ll fall asleep and be fine.”

But my gut said, “Nah. Just see if he’s still awake. What’s one night pushing bedtime back? Even if it IS till 9:30?”

So I went in anyway. And sure enough, there he was, quiet as a mouse but awake and waiting for me. He sat up when he saw me.

“Mama milk!”

So I pulled him out of the crib and we snuggled and nursed and I rubbed his back and smelled his freshly-washed head. And after a little while I looked down at him and said, “Bubs, it’s time for night night. Can we do one more milk then night night?”

I braced myself for a tantrum but instead, he popped up off my chest and said, “One more milk! Night night!” And he nursed one more time, and then said, “Night night!” And laid down on my chest.

Then I placed him in his crib, gave him his TWO pacifiers (wasn’t kidding about that shout out), his plush Spider-Man and plush Elmo, and put his blankie over him. I bent down to kiss him and said, “Night night, Bubs. Love you.”

Then I walked to the door of his room and just as my finger tips were about to reach the handle I heard what made it all worth it:

“Love Mama.”

2 Comments

Filed under baby love

precious moments.

Ten years ago, when I had just graduated high school and moved into my dorm at Florida State, there was a new social networking site that had been created specifically for college students called “The Facebook.” I vividly remember a group of my fellow FSU freshmen and I rallying together to get “The Facebook” to add fsu.edu email addresses to its approved network of students.

Once we finally got on “The Facebook” (feels so weird calling it by its first name) life was never the same. All of a sudden, we could now live out all of our college experience not just in real time, but also on the internet for everyone else to see/comment on/like/validate.

That’s right — validate.

If your roommate told you she’s started dating someone, you would ask, “Well, is it Facebook official yet?” implying that her relationship wasn’t “real” until it was made public on Facebook. Similarly, if you got a new job, you would count down the minutes till you could get on your profile and update it to inform your friends of your latest career endeavor.

It’s as if those of us who have been conditioned to do life with things like Facebook and Instagram have replaced the old adage, “If a tree falls in a forest and no one’s around to hear it, does it make a sound?” with a new one:

“If it isn’t on social media, did it really happen?”

(I am just realizing that I’ve written this before. But whatever.)

I guess it goes without saying that this way of life — blurring the lines between the internet and real life to a confusing degree — can cause some serious issues. For me, those issues have manifested themselves in a few ways: becoming envious of the lives of my friends appear to have based on their posts, getting offended and upset at things people post on Facebook to the point of ruining my in-real-life days, offending/upsetting others with my own posts, and (most notably for this post) struggling with what to post and what to keep private.

There are certain things I experience that are so special to me that I have to fight the urge to post them. One example I can think of right off the top of my head is those moments in the morning when Dan and I are awake, laying in bed, before Dax wakes up. Another example is all the sweet moments I have when nursing Dax — private for obvious reasons. And just this morning — the inspiration for this post — Dax ran up to a sleeping (and, therefore inappropriately dressed) Dan, poked him and said, “Dada, waffles, please.”

Because those moments are so precious to me, I want them to be “real”, and because I am part of the Facebook generation I have to remind myself that, even if they never see the light of social media, they are no less real than the pregnancy announcements and relationship statuses that are currently populating my newsfeed.

In recent months, the idea of removing myself from Facebook has been extremely appealing if, for no other reason, it allows me to get a handle again on the preciousness of all moments of my life, regardless of their publicity. (Though if I did ditch Facebook, I would have to find a viable alternative place to post pictures of my son lest the rest of my family have my head.)

Does anyone else have this struggle?

4 Comments

Filed under life, personal

what matters.

Being that Sundays are the start of my week (yay ministry!) Fridays are the start of my weekend. I like to try and do all the chores that have gone unnoticed throughout the busyness of the week on Fridays so that Saturdays can be reserved for fun things.

Being that I’ve been nursing a sick child back to health, this week’s chores have not just slipped under the radar; they’ve multiplied. Frustrated by the state of my house, I was scrubbing my kitchen counters with more vigor and anger than I usually do. Over the scratchy sounds of the scrub brush on our plastic-y countertops, I heard a tiny voice in the other room.

“Mama, puzzle.”

“Be right there, bud.”

“Mama, help.”

“In a minute, love. Just gotta finish cleaning this kitchen.”

“Mama, puzzle?”

And then I stopped and thought to myself.

In ten years, am I going to wish I spent more time keeping my house clean? Or am I going to desperately wish I just had one more afternoon with my two-year-old and a puzzle on a not-so vacuumed floor?

So I dropped the scrub brush and headed into the other room to find my boy.

“Do you wanna do this puzzle with Mama?”

“YEAH!” he shouted as he plopped his diaper-padded butt down on the floor with a squish.

Oh my heart. My heart, my heart, my heart.

IMG_8624

3 Comments

Filed under life, motherhood