Babies Don’t Keep

I saw this today on another blog and it really resonated with me. It’s true and man, it hurts a little.

 

Ben is 6 months old already. Can you even believe that? I sure can’t. Nate is growing like a crazy little weed and man, it’s just flying.

I try to play trains with excitement and color and shape play doh and do the toddler games but it’s boring after a while and I’m so very-very tired. Oh, man, so tired it hurts but even so, I will never get today back. Ever. So I will play trains and walk laps around the train table until I drop if that’s what he wants because sadly,babies don’t keep.

When Ben is up in the middle of the night with teething pain and just wants me to hold him while he sucks on my shirt I will hold him close and smell him and relish in his weight and remember that this is fleeting.  And be glad and then so very sad because damnit, babies don’t keep.

The last quarter

The season is telling me that another year is winding down. This year has had its own theme, family. My word for the year is/was nurture and I think I’ve done and am doing a pretty good job keeping it in mind while taking care of myself and of those who live under this roof. I looked over my list of ideas for the year and it too is coming along okay though there are things there that were not accomplished and wont be, such as an overnight away with Mike. That was a pipe-dream anyway considering pregnancy and then nursing. Next year though, for sure, most likely in NYC.  
Anyway, as the season change and my feet are cold I’m thinking of small things to do to help me stick with my word and enjoy what is left.

Read 3 books. I’m currently reading The Help and have The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and a Jen Lancaster book I can’t remember the name of (with the leopard slippers on the cover, something about being Lazy) on my nightstand. I will read them all. Not a lofty goal but one that will keep my laptop closed in the evenings which is a good thing.

Read my magazines when they come. I have this habit of flipping through it first, tossing the inserts and folding down the pages of what to read and what to cook and then not getting back to them and they end up in the recycling bin. I need to read them on the first pass.

Keep my nails painted because it makes me happy.

Finish losing the baby weight. I’m doing well, making steady progress now I should be done by Christmas.

Find a new workout routine. I do better when I have some sort of program to follow rather than just hopping on the treadmill.

Make mulled cider.

Watch TV- y’all, I don’t watch any TV anymore. I’m either doing house work or on the computer at night. I miss curling up under my blanket on the couch and allowing myself to relax and be entertained.

Take a bath once per week. I LOVE to take baths but never do.  (maybe even get a bath rack so I can read in the tub)

Make Christmas gifts for my nieces and nephews I really want to do this I must make the time. Each kid will get the same thing but it will be personalized, it wont be that hard just time-consuming. Me and my sewing machine. Another thing that makes me happy.

One day per week do exactly what Nate wants to do, be it play trains at home or go to the Zoo,anything he wants that’s reasonable.

Research holiday crafts to do with Nate. The kid loves to make stuff and I love us working together.

Experiment with some new vegetables. When my sisters were here they made parsnips and a cauliflower puree and I loved them both. I always make the same things and only steamed;asparagus, broccoli, green beans. Variety will be good.

It feels good to see this, to make promises to myself and to help prioritize my time. I spend way to much time with my blog roll and not enough enriching my life. Time I could be spending doing things in real life, not just from behind the glow of my laptop. Granted, I love the glow, I just need to cut back some.

How are you doing, are you taking care of you?

The weather is here, wish you were beautiful.

Isn’t that awful?  And so damn funny? I saw a guy wearing a shirt that read that recently and it’s all I can think of since we got here yesterday. The weather is amazeballz, seriously. It is just perfect. Today has been so wonderful. Lunch with a view, the beach, a lighthouse, fudge and salt water taffy. Now I have to iron my dress for dinner. I get to wear a dress!  But here are a few shots of the trip so far.

It’s not sucking, not at all. Tomorrow is Spa Day! And the bridal luncheon and then the wedding. Someone pinch me.

The wrong kind of big day

So, my best friend has cancer. The kind of cancer that will change her as a person, a woman, and her whole existence. Not that hers is special or that others don’t experience these changes as well. It’s just that she is young, the same age as me, actually. 33. She is a remarkable person, remarkable. She is single, no kids, a high school english teacher, water polo and swimming coach and the athletic director. She rescues dogs and hell, even people, she’s always with a roommate. Cancer is not for her.

We met at a slumber party in 5th grade. We went to separate elementary schools but lived just blocks away from each other, which is pretty common in the city. We were fast friends, and then family.  Her mom was as good as mine and vice versa. Most things in life change over the years, we have been through it all and are still together. Separated by miles but together.

Today, well, right now as I type this she is in surgery having her entire reproductive system removed as well as a few lymph nodes. She will have a round of chemo, too, but not for a few weeks. 

Last week she chopped off her ‘fro- her signature look. She’s always had this hair, big and bold and natural. That hair is as much her as anything and it’s gone. When I saw the photo I broke, finally. I cried and cried and cried.  I sent her an e-mail. You fuck cancer right in the ear- no one takes your hair! She laughed, nervously responding that it’s getting a little to real.

She is strong, I know she will beat it. No question in my mind.

I just hope she’s doing better than I am today.  I know she’s not.

Not enough

My cousin had a post on Facebook this morning which stirred up some feelings for me. Not new ones which you know if you’ve been reading me for a while.

 I have carried a child within my body. I have nourished and comforted a baby upon my chest. My body is not perfect, but when I look in the mirror I am happy because I see a mother, and there is no greater honor or blessing. Make this your status if you’re proud to be a mother

Now, let me start with yes, I am proud of my body.  I am blessed that it served me so well, creating and carrying two healthy and thriving boys. I am blessed with the ability to breast feed for as long as I desire. 

But this is crap to me. Not the ability to create human life but to shake off my appearance and push aside how I really wish to look.  To shrug my shoulders and say “Ehh, its good enough IM A MOM!”  FTN!  I am a Mom and while I am one who is struggling within my head right now, I have no desire to be looked at as a mother.  “She looks good for a Mom.”  No.  I will look good, period.  Why do people say that?  It’s a backhanded compliment, no?  I am a woman; “Mother” is one of my hats, not my identity.

I won’t stop trying to be healthy, physically or mentally.  I won’t ever be less than I can be just because I am a Mom.  I will do the opposite, I will strive to be my absolute best because I am a Mother, because I deserve it but most of all, because my children deserve it, too.

End Rant.

Holding on with both hands

It’s happening again. The black hole I’ve seen before, the one where I am suck in this fresh hell and there is no way out. No vision of the after, just today, just this exhaustion and this downward spiral that I can’t see past.

It’s not as bad as before but is that because I know what to call it this time, because there’s no denial? Or is it really not as bad, I don’t know but it’s not pretty. I’m barely treading water regardless. It’s just hard right now.  One if not both of them always need something, always, 24 hours a day.  Then there’s the other one, the one that works his ass off and needs clean socks and dinner when he gets home.  He rarely has both on the same day and often he comes home to a mess of a house, a wife and a toddler who is naked from the waist down and a screaming infant. I swear I’m doing my absolute best which my be part of why it is so heartbreaking when I come up so horribly short. So very short.

I’m told to let the house get dirty, stop cooking, and basically stop being myself. I don’t know how to stop, this is what I do. I clean, i cook, I cut and paste and just keep going because it’s all I can do. I get dressed and put on makeup and we get out of the house and do the things that we love and it helps for a while but eventually we get home and that weight is on my chest again.

There are so many open offers of help, to just bring the kids over so I can nap or if I need something from the store. All honest and well meaning but I can’t drop off a kid who may crap his pants and a baby who you can’t put down. So I keep them no matter how little sleep there was the night before.

I know that this wont last, that more sleep will come, that I will lose the weight, that Nate will stop having accidents but today it’s my life. Today I feel hopeless so I will keep going until it passes.

It started out so well

It was the second really hard night this week. The kind where the baby eats and you put him in the crib and tip-toe out of the room, collapse into bed, take a deep breath and Whaaaa! Rinse, repeat for 3 hours before you finally say F it and take him to the basement to sleep on your chest in hopes of a little rest, it’s 4 am and at 6 your husband will be down to workout and wake you and the baby will want to eat again and by the time he’s done the big kid will be up wanting to watch that damned “racing dog” show for the 43987 time with juice on his picnic blanket and probably pancakes, too. because pancakes is exactly what you’ re up for.

Wait, this isn’t meshing well with the title.  It started out so well considering I’ve not slept well.  I got the both kids fed dressed and ready to go, I forgot to eat but that’s been happening a lot in the morning. We are out of the house at 9:15, not bad.  I had a gift card burning a hole in my pocket so we did a little shopping and the kids were perfect, I felt good being out of the house thought it turns out I not only didn’t eat but I also forgot to brush my teeth. But still a score since we were out and I found exactly what I wanted plus scored a huge bonus on a garden stool for 75% off.

We were home by 11 and we all had lunch and I got out some stuff to work on so the house quickly became a hot mess. I wanted to do some hole filling and touch up painting in the kitchen and hang the new pieces I had just picked up. I put Nate down, nursed the parana again and tried to get to work but then it hit.  That brick wall that somehow finds you, no forward motion needed.

I grabbed the bird and headed up to take a nap but it turned out Nate wasnt very tired so I slept for about 40 minutes which somehow made it worse. Like a little nap tease, hahah- not so fast. Get up, your house is a mess and the big kid wants, wants, wants, now!now!NOW!  I’m like a zombie but without the energy to keep my arms out in front of me or to lock my knees. But I keep moving forward, filling juice cups and nursing and holy crap I’m so tired and not feeling really well and wait, did I eat yet today?  So I get out the trail mix, dump it on the counter and pick out the M&M’s becuase thats a good idea.

So, yeah- today is hard and the thing is, I’m not in a bad mood I’m just worn the heck out- I’m hoping to all sorts of things that tonight I get a little more sleep. And, that my husband doesn’t run when he gets home and see’s that I’ve swept up a broken cup with chex mix into a pile and never got around to the dust pan part of the job.

I’m just up to my ass in reality around here is all I’m saying.

So now what?

You guys, I don’t know what to do. That sounds dire doesn’t it? It’s not, It’s about this space right here, my blog. I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve gone pretty silent in the past few months; from posting a few times a week to once every two or so. I can’t put my finger on why that is though. Sure I’m pregnant which is its own bag of tricks and rasing a strong-willed toddler which is another but outside of that, I don’t know. I just feel like I’ve sort of fallen out of love with sharing right now. Actually I told my sister that I wonder if it’s because I’m “better”. You know how artists and comedians say that they have to suffer to some degree to produce work? That they can’t be happy or they run out of material?  I sort of feel that way, that I’m well enough that I don’t need to express myself here the way that I once did. The funny thing is I still want to share it all but because I don’t need it as a from a therapy anymore time often passes and so does the topic. In a way this is fantastic, yay me, and all that but then it’s awful. I want to be here, I still love to share and love you all who take time to read and chat with me. And yet I’m not here.

So, help me out a bit, will you? What do YOU want from this space? Is there things you would like to hear about or questions you have about what is going on with me these days? Ask or advise away, maybe you can help inspire a comeback.  I don’t really want to live on Twitter alone.

Don’t ask until January

I’ve been wondering where to go next with this whole  having a baby gig.  What to write about how to capture my excitement, disbelief, fear, feral illness.  And I don’t know, really.  The truth is, I’m sick.  Like, all the time sick, like NO I am not better “now” please stop asking.

I HATE to complain when I am pregnant.  Being pregnant is a gift, it’s a miracle and I don’t take this blessing lightly (ha! fat joke) so I suck it up and do what I can to go on about life.   Which is what I’ve been doing since about 4. 5 weeks when this bs 24/7 crap reared its ugly head.   It was like this with Nate, too, and you know what I did?  I kept my head down, went to work, got through the day and waited for it to pass.  I’m really trying to do the same thing now.  It sucks, for sure.  I mean, I’m not getting much done around the house, I’ve not purchased one single gift for Mike and there are a thousand things I’d love to do but my body just isn’t on the same page right now.  I’m trying to respect that.  I’m napping several times a week and eating as healthy as I can.  I get the laundry done, take the dog out, change a few diapers and that’s it.  It’s boring and a tad depressing but it is what it is.

I just wish Mike would let me be.  I sigh and groan and moan and burp all the time, each time a tiny mummer leaves my lips he asks me if I’m okay.  I say I’m fine because how many times per day can you listen to “No!” “BARF GOAWAY!” “YOUDIDTHISTOME!”  “go ahead, drink that coffee in front of me” “DONOTCOOKTUNAHELPER!”  So, yeah.  It’s hard but it’s not supposed to be easy and I can accept that.  I’m 9 weeks 4 days and with Nate it let up significantly around week 10 and was gone by 12.  If it’s gone by 12 I can deal with that. 3 more weeks will not kill me, but your tuna helper will.

In happier news, I had my first ultrasound today both Mike and Nate were with me.  When the baby came on the screen Nate smiled and pointed, “bubbles” it was amazing.   You go to your first ultrasound feeling like death warmed over, you KNOW you’re pregnant but there is a part of your brain that wont allow you to accept the pregnancy for all of the “what ifs” in the early weeks.
And then, then, the little olive pops up on the screen and its heart is beating and it has arms and legs and it’s little head is cocked ever so slightly as if it’s seeing you for the first time too.  And then you admit it, accept it, love it.  A baby.  Oh, wow, a baby!

The only time I have recurring dreams is when I’m pregnant and this time around Joel McHale is in almost everyone but also, twin girls, my twin girls.  My first due date was my Grandpa’s birthday of July 18th.  Grandpa died when Nate was about 8 weeks old, before he got to meet him.  Grandpa was a twin.  My due date is now officially July 15th and there is just one little olive, and oh, my word, not only is it so cute, I think it’s a she.

Thankful: Family

I would imagine most of us are thankful for this today.  Whether you’re all together at the same table loving every minute or you got stuck sitting next to your Aunts new creepy boyfriend and are trying not to stab him in the hand with your fork, or, maybe your alone today.   Regardless, the holidays mean family to me.  Family is a very large umbrella, like, a golf umbrella, where your actual family and your created family all reside.  Even if the thought of them all being in the same room makes you hit the sauce and feel like your universes are about to collide.  Anyway..

Today we are in Tampa at my Dad’s dining table with my s-Mom Sue and the three of us.  I’ve been looking forward to this trip for a few months since I haven’t seen Dad since last Thanksgiving which means that Nate is a whole new kid since our last visit.   I am thankful that we are able to travel, that my Dad has a home that can accommodate us and that I have such a wonderful relationship with him.  No matter how much time has passed when we are together it’s as if it has only been a week. I am thankful for the few days we will have to spend here and that I can watch my Dad and my boy at Sea World and witness my Dad in his role of Grandpa, a hat he wears quite well.

Another reason I’ve been so looking forward to this trip is to tell my family in person, that in July, we will be welcoming another member. We’re pregnant. Today I am thankful for family!

Happy Thanksgiving!