Fly High Owver!… but Hold My Hand.

You know what was fun today? Oliver wanting to wear his Batman cape with his firetruck pjs and Spider-Man shoes. Oliver, er… I mean, “soo-reeul Owver,” (sounds like cereal, but is meant to be superhero) which is what he wants to be called lately, was so thrilled when he noticed the wind blowing his cape.

When we stopped by Jhavonn’s work to pick up something  and say hello during lunch. I was okay that he ran around saying hello to everyone, making sure his cape flew and they saw. It makes folks smile and, thankfully, nobody ever seems to mind. “We love happy noises,” one person said (this is one of many reasons why his workplace is awesome). I was also okay when he decided right then was a good time to stop and lay down in the middle of the cafeteria.

But when we went to Winn-Dixie and Sooreeul Owver thought that sooreeuls didn’t need to hold their mamas hand and be cautious while walking through the parking lot, Sooreeul Owver learned what it meant to lose a battle to Sooreeul Mama. No amount of convincing would prove to him that superheroes were cautious and listened to their mommies. Thankfully, seeing a buggy helped him calm down… because even sooreeuls can’t resist those.

Now my little superhero is napping… and despite the tinge of fear from earlier, I really wish he’d wake up so we could make that cape fly again.

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Where Has the Time Gone?

I’m not entirely sure. All I know is that, unfortunately, I know myself too well. I knew I would procrastinate and put off writing. Granted, I had a newborn who turned into a little wiggly squish, but I’m not sure that’s the best excuse.

Nowadays, that newborn turned squish is 2.5. TWO and a HALF. What? I don’t even know.

Life is easier in regards to hopping on my phone or computer, but it’s harder when it comes to changing clothes and showering.

Balance, amiright?

Now that he’s talking and we can have conversations together, it has made for some awesome stories. Stories that I’ve been sharing on my facebook page. Stories that have prompted several people over the months to encourage me to write  a blog.

Bless them. They have no idea how lazy I am. BUT, I figure, as one friend suggested, I could always copy and paste what I put on there. Plus, the benefit of putting it here is that I may be able to find it all easier when I want to reflect.

I hope this goes the way I want it to. I hope I can pick this back up and type out some stories and thoughts… at least until Amelia arrives.

Oh, yea. We’re having a girl now. 🙂

Nobody Tells You Pt. 2…

Instead of adding to the previous “Nobody Tells You” post and making it longer than what is enjoyable, I thought I’d do a Part 2. It’s probably a bit absurd, but there’s just so much we aren’t told! 😉

  • Your baby will peel
    I knew a good chunk of info before I got pregnant. When I became pregnant, I read an even bigger chunk of info. But nothing and no one prepared me for the fact that my baby would peel a couple of weeks after he got home. It terrified me, then I realized it was normal (after an intense search on Google and Baby Center, of course!). Once I realized it was normal, my mind was set at a rocky ease. Partly because my baby was peeling like a reptile, but partly because I have this thing with peeling things. I didn’t peel him, of course! Gosh. Chill out. Anyway, just let your little fella or gal peel. Add some lotion if it makes you feel better, but you have to remember… they’ve been in a wet place for a very long time. It’s gonna happen once they get out! They have a lot of things to shed! Skin (obviously) and hair… in case you didn’t know.
  • Babies mean travel.
    We were pretty lucky. In the beginning everyone wanted to come to us. Well, I take that back. That’s kind of terrifying when you’ve slept a grand total of about 6 hours in 3 days and haven’t touched a bit of housework. Of coooourse everyone wants to come visit THEN. It’s when you start getting more sleep and find a way to do housework that everyone suddenly expects you to see them. Oh, how I miss the days of “Noo, really! You shouldn’t have to go out. Let me come to you!” And in the excitement of seeing if I could actually take care of our little guy in public, I would always (practically) beg to meet them somewhere. It always failed and they came over, which I know really did me awesome favors in the process. I miss those awesome favors.
  • Any story about a child being sick, hurt, abused, handicapped, lost, happy, getting a trip to Disney world etc., will practically bring you to your knees.
    Okay, so I kind of heard about this one before hand. But I didn’t realize it would be absolutely and completely true. I’m not kidding about the happy or DW part. It could be a happy story you’re hearing about, but the fact that it includes kids will instantly remind you of your own and immediately cause you to think of your own child in the position of the other child. I wonder how long my personal cry fest will last… anybody know that one?
  • Your baby’s legs/limbs will jerk.
    I was convinced he was about to lose the use of his legs. Maybe he had a pinched nerve? Maybe I bent his legs the wrong way and now they were stuck that way? Oh… they stopped jerking. After a quick Google search I found that it was normal. Their muscles and nerves are working themselves out. It happens when they start to “uncurl,” so to say and the only time I should’ve been concerned was if they didn’t stop… at all. Which they did! So, all is well. His legs only did that for a few weeks here and there.
  • Buttons are not your friend.
    Again, this is one of those things I already knew, but apparently those who make baby clothes don’t. We have a few outfits that have ACTUAL buttons. Not snaps, not velcro… BUTTONS. First off, I hardly like buttoning my own clothes. It’s tedious and there are often too many buttons. So, why would I want to button the clothes of a tiny, squirming, rolly-polly baby? Yea. I wouldn’t.
  • Drooling doesn’t come with birth.
    Okay, this may sound stupid. No. I know it does, but just hear me out. I was prepared for drool. I’ve seen babies drool that sweet goo all over the place before. But when our chunker was born, there was no drool… and I didn’t think about it. 2 months later he has spit everywhere and keeps choking on it. I’m convinced he’s sick or that something is terribly wrong, when it dawns on me… he’s finally drooling. I had forgotten all about the drool. The drool comes later.
  • Your child will become an alligator.
    With mobility comes what I call “the gator roll.” While your child won’t technically become an alligator, you’ll think you have one. Ever since baby O realized he could roll over, we’ve had difficulty changing diapers. The difficulty has risen as he’s perfected his rolling technique, and he would be proud to let everyone know that it requires 2, sometimes 3 people to change his diapers. We all shake in fear when we know he has a poop diaper. We know there’s a chance everything in a 3 ft radius may need to be changed.
  • Your epidural site may throb.
    To each her own. If you didn’t get one or don’t want one, kudos. I, on the other hand, knew I was getting one and if I could’ve ordered it and had it hiding in my purse, just to make sure I could get it as fast as possible, I would have. Despite researching and learning about it during a childbirth class, I had no idea I would have something similar to a back spasm as a result. Will this deter me from getting one in the future? Uh. Negative. As jolting as they are (and I do mean that my body would sort of jerk around a little bit), the spasms subsided after a few months. They were never frequent to begin with, and now I’m surprised if I have them once a month.

    I took a long break between the last two points and the rest above it, so the last two points may seem a little disjointed. I think I’ll bring on a Pt 3 in another few months as baby O gets older. 🙂

“You Gainin’ Weight, Kristen.”

Her: “Kristeeeen! My friend!”
Me: “Hey! What’s up?” -smiles-
Her: “Come here! Let me give you a hug!”

I feel reluctant and instantly tense up…

We hug.

And I know what’s about to come.

Her: “You gainin’ weight.”
Me: “Yes. Yes I am.” -smiles-
Her: “It’s okay, though.”
Me: “Yea, well, since you say it’s okay…”
Her: “I still love you.”
Me: “Ha. Really.”
Her: “Yea. You’re just thick now!”
Me: “I was thick before.” -smiles-
-another girl chimes in- “Seriously. I wish I had your hips. I have no hips at all.”
Me: “I like my hips. So, thanks.” 
Her: “It’s okay!”
Me: “I know it’s okay. I’m not upset about it. I just can’t believe you said that to me. Why in the hell would you think that’s okay to say? I birthed a baby. A child came out of my body and you’re going to comment on my weight.”
Her: “Kristeeeen! I don’t mean it like that! You know I’m just gonna tell you my opinion. That’s why you love me!”
Me: “Yes, but I didn’t ask for your opinion. And if you weren’t drunk right now, you and I would have a very big problem.”
Her: “Ughhhh. I didn’t mean it like that. Y’all, tell her I didn’t mean it like that!”

That’s just a sample from a conversation I had a few nights ago as I left a restaurant and headed to my car. I was shocked at first, and immediately thought to be offended when the weight remark came. Then I decided I didn’t care. It’s no secret that I’ve gained weight, and I’ve gained weight since I had O. The thing that’s changed, aside from my body, is my mindset. I will not be defined by my weight.

I have new stretchmarks, that have little to do with carrying O and more to do with what happens when you have more time to sit still at home with an appetite that comes with breastfeeding. I also have a few more rolls. A bit of a double, if not triple chin depending on how my head is tilted. I jiggle a little more all over, and I’m sure I’ve mentioned just how loose my belly is in a previous post. If that’s hard to understand, think of an athlete keeping his or her appetite after he or she no longer plays. Sometimes your body just soaks it all up. Sometimes breastfeeding doesn’t make you lose weight.

And who the hell cares? I didn’t decide to breastfeed my kid in the hopes of losing weight. I decided to breastfeed my kid in the hopes that he’d put on a healthy weight, have a great immune system, and be healthier. I knew there was a chance weight could be lost, and if that happened, then it’d be a nice bonus. But it didn’t. So… so what?

To focus back on that conversation, it was started by a friend who is, indeed, very outspoken. I am too. I can appreciate an outspoken, opinionated individual.

However, I think there’s a fine line between those two amazing qualities. And on the other side of that line is rudeness.

Most of the time, it takes a lot to offend me. Sometimes, it takes very little. I don’t know if I’ve ever been called flat out fat to myself. If I have, then I don’t remember. I have had people mention my curves or call me thick. I’ve had people mention my bones and call me skinny.

But what bothered me most about that night was the fact that I felt the need to suck my stomach in before my friend walked up. And I’m almost ashamed to admit that. I’m 28 years old. I’d say about 18 of those years I’ve been sucking in. It’s a knee jerk reaction. A habit. And it’s something I’ll keep doing even after I type this. My definition of sucking in may be different than others. I’ve always sort of “tensed” my stomach. I don’t actually “suck” it in to the point of having a hard time breathing… if that makes sense. But yes, I do like to achieve the look of having my stomach appear a little smoother than it really is when I’m wearing certain outfits. So, I tense it from time to time.

That night I really sucked in, though. And I’m a bit embarrassed by it. I’m embarrassed because I felt the need to. That I have allowed myself to be friends with someone who makes me feel as though I need to suck in. I hate I didn’t have to confidence, if even for a split second, to let my belly hang. I hate how I felt when I knew I was about to suck in, then when I did suck in, and then how I felt immediately after.

I felt like I’d betrayed my beliefs. The beliefs I have on this blog, the beliefs I share with my friends. The world I’m trying to build and create for my kid(s). But that can’t be true, can it? After all, I’m a pretty open person. I’ve never made it a secret that I have struggles. That I lack confidence in some areas. So why the embarrassment? Why make the situation any more difficult for myself?

I’m not sure. I guess this is what it means to grow. I guess this is what it means to change.

Confidence isn’t born over night. Neither is strength, or bravery. Not even cowardice. Many things are not like light switches. It takes time to get from the point you are at, to the point you’re headed to. And I think that’s where I am right now.

I’m very close to the point I’m headed to. I’m very confident and I’m close to the level of confidence I’m striving for. I know I will get there.

It’s important to remember the struggles necessary to get us to the goals we hope to achieve. It’s okay that I sucked in. It’s okay that I felt embarrassed of myself. It’s okay that I was angry with myself. It’s okay that I wanted to feel pain at her words, and it’s okay that I decided I didn’t. Because the most important thing is to learn from all of this. Soak it up and mold it into what I want it to become.

Strength. Power. Courage. Bravery. Femininity. Happiness. Selflessness. Confidence.

So I’ve put on some pounds.

So what.

I think I gained a lot more from that encounter than she did.

(Note: The picture for this post is a closeup of my face. That’s only because I have no recent pictures of only myself; not because I’m embarrassed to post a full body pic. Most of my pictures contain baby O, and trust me, y’all don’t want me taking a close up tonight just for this post. 😉 )

Just Because It Jiggles Doesn’t Mean It’s A Boob

I’ve posted before about my securities and insecurities regarding my body and weight.

While I continue to struggle (and succeed!) at accomplishing the goals I set for myself, I’m never able to forget the hilarity that comes with having a “mom body,” as I’ve taken to calling it over the years.

As with any mother who breastfeeds, you often find yourself selecting shirts based upon how easy it is to nurse in them. I don’t know about you, but this gives me about 5 comfortable shirts to work with. The rest of the time I throw on a t-shirt and hike it up around my neck when it’s time to nurse.

I’m a size medium when it comes to t-shirts (XL when it comes to anything pretty, stretchy, with sleeves, etc). Well, I was. And I can’t seem to wrap my mind around the fact that mediums aren’t really made for me anymore.

Take this morning for example. I grabbed a shirt from the bottom of my drawer. It’s actually one of Jhavonn’s shirts, a shirt neither of us wear often. I hold it up and think, “Huh! This looks huge. Thank goodness. It should be easy to pull up to nurse later.” Two seconds later I’m trying to squeeze it on. I put it over my head, get my arms through, and work and work and wooooork its way down over my boobs, then my belly. I tug in all the right places to make sure it “fits” just right.

Now, you might say that I should just grab a bigger shirt. But I’m telling you, there aren’t that many. I didn’t run out and buy larges and XLs just because I got pregnant and knew I’d breastfeed. These shirts fit… okay. Not great, but they fit. And by golly, as long as I can get them over the mound that is my enormous breasts, I’ll keep wearing them. You might see a little belly jiggle (because the lower part of my stomach is still very loose), but so what. I’ve seen worse things while at the grocery store, and at least my t-shirt is covering all of my torso, am I right?

The mention of a jiggly belly brings me to my second and final topic in this post.

To put all of this in perspective for me, reminding me how necessary it is to have a jiggly, stretched out belly (it stretched and held a HUMAN!), is my little boy. Not only am I constantly reminded of the importance my stomach, muscles and skin held for those 9 months, but I’m also shown how hilarious this process of change can be.

Baby O has taken to trying to nurse my stomach. Sure, he tries to nurse my arm too when it comes near his mouth and he’s hungry, but there’s something so funny about trying to nurse my belly.

As he lays across my lap playing, or changing positions, he’ll dip too far and start sucking and snorting all over my belly. He smells the milk in my breasts, no doubt, and he knows the feeling is right (it’s jiggly, after all!), so he has the hardest time trying to figure out why he can’t find the nipple. I’d record it and post it if I didn’t think I’d get thrown off of social networks for fully exposing my breast(s).

Sometimes, he'll curl up in a fetal position while he nurses. Reminds me of when he was a newborn. :)

Sometimes, he’ll curl up in a fetal position while he nurses. Reminds me of when he was a newborn. 🙂

And I tell you what, the kid is super fast in his search. He zooms across my belly with an intense speed. You’d think he hadn’t fed all day long. Pushing up with his arms, he flies across my belly, sometimes settling at my belly button, probably assuming my nipple went into hiding. With some difficulty I finally pry his hoover-like suction away from my stomach and guide him to whichever breast is next, and he goes to town, not missing a beat.

Babies know what they want when they want it. How amazing are they?! I love it. And even though parts of my body confuse him when he’s ravenous, I still love that I’m jiggly in places that make him comfortable. Because once he finds the breast, he molds himself to those soft areas and uses me like a pillow. It’s a comfort I’ve always wanted to experience.

How can I not find a way to love that? Jiggles and all.

Jiggles sound like giggles when you think about it.

Jiggles sound like giggles when you think about it.

Frustration Leads To Loving You More

IMG_0448[1]Being on the move is one thing. It’s exciting. Thrilling! Every inch toward a piece of his own independence is milestone worthy, and we have dozens of pictures, even though he’s never gone very far at all. Well, unless he’s in his walker. That’s a completely different story.

With his arms held high, as if he’s wading through water, he soars across the hardwood floors like there’s nothing stopping him… except for a lack of balance and solid footing.

He’s only seven months old and he’s so big already. I guess I blinked one too many times, because this doesn’t even seem like a possibility. It really feels like I had him just a few weeks ago. It’s nuts!

He’s so busy. Wanting to play with everything he sees, but especially everything EXCEPT for what I hand him. He only plays for his toys for a short while, until he sees something in my hand. Then it needs to be in his hand too, of course. And he gets so frustrated when it doesn’t happen. I’ve never seen a baby convinced he’s bigger than he really is. I thought this stage would come later!
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This evening (I actually wrote this a couple of days ago) he was very clingy. So, very clingy. And I’m not entirely sure why. I think he may be getting another tooth (his third), but regardless, his cilnginess was pretty intense tonight. He didn’t want anyone but me. I’ve read that separation anxiety starts around 6 months. Well, it hit us full force about a week ago. I often can’t leave his sight.

It’s incredibly sweet. And incredibly tiring. When I walk by him while he’s walking around in his walker, he’ll reach out for my leg, grabbing my pants with his little vise-like grip, and he’ll draw my knee to him so he can kiss it and bite it. I often swing him up into my arms an blow a raspberry on his cheek or neck, or give him giggly kisses. He’s my sweet boy and I love him. But, like I said, it’s very tiring. After hours of him wanting to be sitting on my lap or hip, I grow tired. When I try to put him in his walker, he pulls his legs up. I try to lay him in his crib or on the pallet for belly/crawling time, and he immediately looks up at me to whine. I try to hand him off and he leans towards me whining. It’s exhausting to have someone attached to you all day. A little someone who isn’t strong enough to piggy back ride or even hold on to you themselves.IMG_0218[1]

Sometimes I think about taking a vacation. Maybe going to a spa. Even an hour getting a mani-pedi. Or what if I went to a bookstore or coffee shop and just had some time to myself? Better yet, I could take his dad or grammy up on their offer to keep him while I go out. But I can’t. I’d never have peace of mind. I would worry. I would miss him. I would want to breastfeed him.

So, in the middle of my frustration, when I’m wondering where his dad is, where his grammy is, where the walker is, etc., I stop and think… this little guy wants me. Right now, he ONLY wants me. He loves me unconditionally and is wondering why I won’t pick him up right now. And that’s all he wants. My love. My attention. My breast. My hugs. My kisses. My lap. Me.

And so I stop what I’m doing. I take a deep breath. I swoop him up in my arms, lay flat on my back and we play. He stands on me, he jumps on me, he drools on me, and we have the biggest giggle fest we’ve had in days. I don’t have to do anything but kiss his cheek for him to let out shriek after shriek of giggles and laughs. I laugh with him and soak up that moment, because tomorrow he may cling to his dad, and I’ll wish I had all of these kisses from a sweet little baby just learning how to give them.IMG_0440[1]

Because, again. Tomorrow, he might want to give them to someone else.

It can be so frustrating. But it’s also beyond amazing. And despite how much patience I lose, I gain so much more in return.

As Usual, You Aren’t Doing Anything to Prevent Breast Cancer

Every year there’s a new fad on Facebook regarding Breast Cancer Awareness. Whether it’s about bras, winning the lottery, a trip, or something else gasp-worthy, the point is to gain awareness for breast cancer.

And I get it. I really do. There are fads all over Facebook. It makes us feel better about ourselves to “like” a picture of an emaciated kid, because if we “like” it, then we’re showing that we don’t think it’s right for the kid to go hungry. If we “share” a picture of a beaten animal, then we’re telling the world that we refuse to sit back and let animals get beaten.

If we tell everyone the color of our bra in a Facebook status, we want people to ask us why, so we can tell them, “It’s for Breast Cancer Awareness.”

It slips the minds of people that none of these things help. And yes, I’m guilty of it too. I used to do this and sometimes I still do. It’s something I’ve tried to stop. I’ve come to realize that sharing or “liking” a picture or article on Facebook does hardly anything for the cause being promoted. Awareness is great, but what helps more is devoting time, money, and items to whatever cause you’re for or passionate about.

We’ve become lazy. We’ve become lazy and desensitized. We’re able to show our support for whatever topic it is and keep on scrolling. As long as our friends know we’re for or against something, then all is well. And we just scroll along like nothing ever happened. What did “liking” that picture do for those directly affected by it?

Not a damn thing. They’re still starving. They’re still dying. They’re still homeless. They’re still poor. They still need Jesus. They still need education. They still need freedom. They still need to be vindicated. They still need justice.

We’ve become lazy. It’s important to realize that sitting on our butts, “liking” and sharing pictures won’t get the job done. It may spark interest in someone and get them off the couch to make something happen, but it won’t do that for everyone.

It’s time that we get out and do something. And that’s something I’ve tried to incorporate into my life. I don’t talk about it. I don’t pat myself on the  back on social media websites. I do things quietly, because my personal belief is that doing good doesn’t need to be praised. You should do it because you truly feel it needs to be done. Not so others can think you’re wonderful. Therefore, I rarely even let my closest friends know what I do something for others outside of my family.

When you’re doing for others, it isn’t about you. Again. It. Isn’t. About. You.

Why is that so hard for people to understand?

That brings me to the main reason for this post.

I have seen the new fad on Facebook. Women have taken it upon themselves to post pictures, or “selfies,” of themselves without makeup. This is somehow supposed to show their support for Breast Cancer Awareness. Once a picture has been posted, they’re supposed to tag their girl friends, so those friends can do the same.

I think this is one of the most disgusting ways to “support” any form of cancer awareness.

Forget the fact that society has major issues with no-makeup selfies when it comes to celebrities or even us normal folks. We have an unhealthy obsession with all of that anyway.

But let’s think for a second what this is actually doing. Under almost every no-makeup picture I’ve seen are comments complimenting and praising the individuals.

Isn’t that counterproductive? Or… something?

I can’t help but wonder if any of these people have seen a cancer patient. Have any of them seen a person without their hair? Their eyebrows? Meat on their bones? Their bodies swollen as a result of treatment? Have they seen them throwing up, bundled in blankets, and crying because of the pain and agony they’re going through? Have they seen the mastectomy scars? Have they seen women feel they’ve lost their womanhood because of breast cancer? And this goes for any and all forms of cancer.

Cancer isn’t beautiful. Cancer isn’t an excuse for you to post pictures of yourself without makeup so your friends can praise you for YOUR bravery and pay you compliments.

It is absolutely SHAMEFUL for people to post pictures of themselves being HEALTHY, in an attempt to show us how “bare” and how “natural” they are. What is the point?!

WHAT. IS. THE. POINT?!

I wonder if any of them would go up to a cancer patient without their makeup and say, “Look what I’ve done to help your cause. I’m going makeup free today!” Can you imagine anyone doing that? Can you IMAGINE how it could potentially make the cancer patient feel?

What about the survivors? How would they feel about this?

I would NEVER want someone to come up to me without makeup and ask me to praise them for it.

It’s time for us to stop praising ourselves and patting ourselves on the back for the good we THINK we’re doing. And start actually DOING GOOD. Stop being selfish. If you want to be open about the good you’re doing, do it in a way that inspires others to do the same. Encourage others to participate with you. Make it a group effort.

But please, don’t make this about you.

I realize this technically doesn’t go in line with my parenting theme. But when my kids look back on this, I want it to be a lesson for them. I want them to always think of others before themselves. I want them to  be passionate and compassionate. I want them to be self aware and know how their actions may affect those around them. I want them to be helpful and encouraging. I want them to be the example.

I Hope I Remember This When You’re Bigger

I just read a post from one of my favorite blogs (http://www.beyondmoi.com/an-open-letter-to-anyone-that-has-waited-for-my-family-when-we-were-late/ because I don’t know how to do funky link stuff) in which they wrote an open letter apologizing to those they’ve kept waiting as a result of their family running behind. In the post was all sorts of reasons why a family would be running late. A little kid, who had just eaten, but was suddenly hungry again. A toddler who just discovered how amazing the sun looks coming through the tree branches as she put her shoes on. A baby who suddenly needed a diaper change.

They gave the kid who was hungry a snack. They let the toddler take her time putting her shoes on, so she could discover something new and amazing. They changed the baby, so she wouldn’t have to sit in her poop for fifteen minutes. And before you roll your eyes, wondering how big of a deal the poop situation is, would YOU want to sit in it?

I think it’s easy to forget what it’s like to be a child. The fascination we found with so many things. The excitement in discovering something new. The sense of pride we had when we were able to accomplish something that seemed so big. Now those things seem so small.

And I don’t want to forget that. I don’t want to forget what it felt like to tie my shoes for the first time. How I tried and tried to get the laces right by practicing on the laces from my mom’s nightgown. She was so patient with me and let me try over and over.
Or when I finally decided I should wash my hair on my own for the first time. I was probably 4 years old. I got it all in my eyes. It burned so bad, but I had done it. I had also left a lot of shampoo and conditioner in my hair, but Mom didn’t make me wash it out or scold me. A little extra shampoo and conditioner never hurt anybody.

Such tiny accomplishments, but still accomplishments.

And if we don’t take the time and have patience with our kids, then what will they have? What do we WANT them to have?
Memories full of rushed outings, fussing parents, and moments of upset because they didn’t get to watch the rolly polly make it off the sidewalk? No. We want them to have memories full of discovery, excitement, amazement and wonder. We need to slow down. As one of my favorite bloggers said, we need to slow our walk to match theirs.

We need to take our time. See life through the eyes of a child again and see the wonder.

Our little guy is about to be 6 months and even now it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when trying to leave the house. I’m often in a whirlwind trying to get everything ready for “just in case.” Still, I always take my time putting him in his car seat, kissing him as I put him in it. I talk goofy and make him smile as I guide each strap over his shoulder. And then I talk to him as I put him in the car, often kissing him again before closing the door.

It’s the little things. The little things I don’t want to forget. One day he’ll be able to give me a kiss or a hug back, and I don’t want him to feel that I’m ever too rushed to receive either of those.

I know we’ll be rushing out the door to make it to a place on time, but I hope I remember to have those small moments with him, and remember just how important they are.

Sleeping and hanging on to his Sophie.

Sleeping and hanging on to his Sophie.

Continue reading

I Left a Puddle in the Bed

Were you ever one of those unfortunate kids who had a dream you were going to the bathroom, only to wake up and realize you were going in the bed?

Oh, um… yea… that never happened to me either. Hm..

Well, anyway. This isn’t about that. However, I did wake up to a nice big puddle in the bed last night.

I heard Baby O whining, woke up, and realized there was a massive wet spot in the bed. I’ve never been patted down by anyone, but I received a massive pat down from my self last night. I was patting my face, my nose, my mouth, my stomach, under my boobs (who am I kidding, they sweat like crazy), my nipples. Everywhere. EVERYTHING was dry but that spot on the bed.

Several thoughts ran through my head at once, which is quite impressive, since it was about 5:45am.

Did I drool? Gosh, that’s a massive drool spot. Wait, it’s not on my pillow. I must’ve peed. Omg, did I freakin’ pee? No, it’s too high. Ew, am I sweating? I do sweat a lot. I must’ve sweat… but why is it a puddle of sweat about the size of a football? Omg. I leaked. My boobs peed in the bed. I just fed the bed my goods!

Anyone who breastfeeds realizes just how important and golden those “goods” are. And you certainly don’t want to leak them all out and waste them in your stinkin’ bed, sopping them up with a towel!

Luckily I’m a bottomless tap, because Baby O didn’t have any trouble feasting during the night. And luckily I didn’t drown him with my puddles either.

I’m Not Weighing Myself Again

As women, we grow up learning all about pregnancy. We watch the bellies of our moms, aunts, sisters, and friends grow and grow and grow. We see them sick. We see them tired. We see their ankles swell.

Pregnancy is a time of massive one-uppers. It shouldn’t be a contest, but it is. Everyone wants to tell of what they gained and lost. They compare everything.

If your ankles swelled, then I bet you didn’t hear of the girl whose ankles AND feet swelled. If you couldn’t stand the smell of wings, another girl couldn’t stand the smell of the whole chicken. If you puked for the last 6 hours, another girl swears she puked for 12 hours. If you only gained 10 pounds, another girls swears she lost 10. And it all might be true! But it’s still a competition.

Why is it a competition?

For the most part, we all go through the same things. There’s the morning sickness, the swollen ankles, the back aches, the breakouts, the food aversions, the shrinking clothes, the cravings, and the weight gain.

The weight gain.

Why is that even mentioned? Why do women feel the need to compare weight with other women while pregnant?

Having battled an eating disorder about 10 some-odd years ago, pregnancy weight gain was always on my mind. I was nervous about it. I worried about “blowing up” and never getting my figure back. While I was pregnant I was very conscious of what I ate, but I never denied myself. I would reign in some control when I felt it was necessary, but for the most part, I did what I wanted.

I can’t tell you how many times I was asked, “How much weight have you gained?” while I was pregnant. Have we ever thought of how inappropriate that is? To be fair, I’m guilty of doing it before I got pregnant. It never really bothered me during pregnancy, because I was able to proudly explain, “I lost in the beginning, so I’m still gaining that back,” or towards the end of my pregnancy, “I’ve only gained 30 pounds!”

J feeling for Baby O

J feeling for Baby O

I was proud of that. I was proud that you couldn’t always tell I was pregnant from behind or that I was mostly belly. That’s the type of pregnant body I always wanted to have. Because to me, that meant I would be “normal” afterward. But in a way, I hate that I felt the need to justify my body by “Oh, I’ve lost this amount, so being such and such is okay.” I shouldn’t have had to tell anyone my weight. I shouldn’t have been asked. And it shouldn’t have been on my mind. I should’ve been okay knowing that whatever my body became during and after pregnancy was normal. I hate that I ever thought any different.

In the beginning, I lost 26 of those 30 pounds in about 2 weeks after giving birth. I didn’t tell anyone that I lost it because I had the baby blues and couldn’t eat. Or that I noticed some of the weight creeping back onto my body over the next few weeks and months. I was proud and then embarrassed. I started feeling like I’d let myself down.

It’s now been almost 5 months to the day and I don’t know how much I weigh. I just know that I’m a bit pudgier than I was pre-O.

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And you know what? I’m tired of worrying about it. I am happy. I’m happy with where I am. I’m happy with my family. I’m happy with my body. And I’m okay with whatever changes it has left to make.

Our kids have to grow up with enough on their shoulders without feeling like they made mommy gain weight on top of it. Our daughters have enough to focus on without worrying over their pregnancy weight gain when their older.

Having a baby didn’t make me gain weight.

It made me gain selflessness. It made me gain love. I gained the ability to be spontaneous. To making unintelligible sounds for hours. And enjoy it! To laugh at things nobody else finds funny. It made me gain patience. It made me gain strength. Stretch marks. Confidence. Unconditional love.

I’m not worried about the weight I haven’t lost.

Because I lost my selfishness. My need to constantly plan out every minute of an outing. My patience… sometimes. 😉 My need to impulse buy. My boring days.

Those are the gains and losses I care about. I’m not weighing myself again. Not for the purpose of focusing on baby weight. My body changed a great deal. My hips are a little wider. My stomach is quite a bit more loose. I have tiger stripes running all across the bottom of my stomach. There’s also a few new ones on my hips to join the ones from my teenage years.

My body is a beautiful thing. It did something amazing by creating another human being. It’s exactly where it needs to be right now. Healthy. Happy. And focusing on nourishing Baby O’s body. Not worried about the numbers on a scale.

Happy baby during boob time!

Happy baby during boob time!