Friday, September 29, 2006

Life Changing

I ran across this poem/story on another blog that I randomly read. Often times I think about how much my life has changed since having children, but it's always more than I can explain. This is the first thing I've read about motherhood where I actually thought, "YES OH MY GOD YES THIS IS WHAT I"M TALKING ABOUT!!!!!!!!" Hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

We are sitting at lunch one day when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of starting a family.
"You think I should have a baby?"
"It will change your life," I say, carefully keeping my tone neutral.
"I know," she says, "no more sleeping in on weekends, no more spontaneous vacations..."

But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her. I want her to know what she will never learn in childbirth classes. Want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing will heal, but becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so profound that she will forever be vulnerable. I consider warning her that she will never again read a newspaper without asking, "What if that had been MY child?" That every plane crash, every house fire will haunt her. That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die.

I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a mama bear protecting her cub. That an urgent call of "Mom!" will cause her to drop a soufflé or her best crystal without a moment's hesitation. I feel that I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by motherhood. She might arrange for childcare, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think of her baby's sweet smell. She will have to use every ounce of discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.

I want my daughter to know that every day decisions will no longer be routine. That a five year old boy's desire to go to the men's room rather than the women's at McDonald's will become a major dilemma. Right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom. However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother.

Looking at my attractive daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself. That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. That she would give it all up in moment to save her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years - not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her child accomplish hers.

I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor. My daughter's relationship with her husband will change, but not in the way she thinks. I wish she could understand how much more you can love a man who is careful to powder the baby's bottom or who never hesitates to play with his child. I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.

I wish my daughter could sense the bond she will feel with women throughout history who have tried to stop war, prejudice and drunk driving in defense of children. I hope she will understand why I can think rationally about most issues, but become temporarily insane when I discuss the threat of nuclear war to my children's future. I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike. I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or cat for the first time. I want her to taste the joy that is so real it actually hurts.

My daughter's quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes.
"You'll never regret it," I finally say.
Then I reached across the table, squeezed my daughter's hand and offered a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings. This blessed gift ... that of being a Mother.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Single Parenthood

I swear to God, some days I know exactly how it feels to be a single parent and...IT SUCKS!! Wade is working soooo much lately and this was the second Sunday where he has been gone all day and night. I took Sydney to church after the service (Grace went with my godparents) to see the unveiling of our new Sunday School area and by the time we walked and walked and walked to see the new rooms my arm felt like it was going to fall off. It really was getting numb. You simply take for granted the, "here you go, honey" factor. There was NOONE to give her to and I couldn't put her down for a good 20 minutes. By the time we got to the car I wanted to close my eyes and the whole thing took just under an hour. Whew. The day was so damn long. Now I know some of you reading this are probably cursing and telling me to cry a f*cking river, but unless you have a spouse that is gone more than he is there, you have to feel the tiniest bit sorry for me. Sure, there are perks to be married to my husband. He is an incredible person. Very sweet, loving and (of course) hardworking. He brings me food home on a regular basis and has never said one negative thing about my lack of homemade food. And when I do cook he acts like it should be on the Deep Fork menu. So really, this is less about him as a person and more about how sucky it is to be the wife of an overacheiving maniac! So really, is there really any wonder why my kids go to bed so damn early?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Sorry it has taken me so long to put up a new post, but my week has been sooooo busy. As most of you know I started work this week. WEEEEEEE!! I was very worried last week just because I wasn't really sure exactly what I would be doing and then add to that my fear that I was doing the wrong thing (you know, the mommy guilt). But now that I have worked 2 days, my fears are all but gone. I LOOOVVVVEEE IT! I know, I'm weird, I'm making less per hour than my "nanny". Please don't do the math, it's embarrassing. But the work itself is exactly what I had hoped. My official title that I wear on the badge around my neck is "forensic interviewer" which I thought sounded pretty cool and also slightly intimidating because I've never actually been trained in interviewing, per se (although I've done more of it than almost anything). So anyway, blah, blah, blah...What I am doing specifically is working with the public defenders interviewing their clients and their parents before their preliminary hearing. I try to get as much information about them as to aid in their defense. Get it? Any-the-who the work is soooo interesting and frustrating all at the same time. Most of the kids I am working with are in the juvenile detention, which is basically kiddie jail, but once I am in the courtroom the lawyer puts me to work, meeting with the kids and their family members. Plus, I spend 90% of my day in court, which everyone knows is my FAVORITE thing.
I'm so tired though. The work is intense and by the time I get home my legs feel like they are going to fall off my body. Hopefully I'll get used to that soon. You will not find me complaining however. It's so refreshing to think that I am actually putting to good use my training and education! FINALLY! Okay, enough about all that!

The girls are fantastic and as far as I can tell haven't been affected by the slight change in the routine. Although, my first day of work Sydney kept saying, "BYE" to me at least 30 minutes before I left. True, it could be her crazy psychic ability, but I really think it's because I was dressed with shoes on as opposed to my robe and slippers. She's a weird one though. Oh, and she's on a break from that walking thing. Who-da-thought. Two steps and she's done. Grace is also doing well although she did get put in time out at ballet the other day for laughing. I'm sure it won't be the last time as I remember continually getting in trouble at school for too much talking AND my mom used to as well. She really doesn't stand a chance.

Have a great week.
I'm praying for you Merle.

Friday, September 15, 2006

The Leash

I know other people that I read have posted about this topic before, but I just have to add my two cents. The other day Sydney and I were at Gymboree for a little fun and afterwards were headed to City Bites for a little lunch and along the way we encountered a mom and her two kids. The little girl was about 3 and the little boy was 5. For some ungodly reason the little boy was forced to wear a leash. Now, when I first saw them, my immediate response was horror. And then, trying to be a better person, thought to myself, "who knows, maybe the little guy is a holy terror and had done something horrible in the past which would warrant a human leash." So, we happened to be heading in the same direction and I just listened. The little girl was running around like a bat out of hell with the mother continuously trying to reign her back to them. The little boy kept asking his mom, "WHHHYYY DO I HAVE TO WEAR THIS" and "MOMMMMMY LET ME GET OFFFFFFF." The mom continued to say (loudly), "No, so-and-so this is a far as you can go." Hmm. Perplexing. We all reached City Bites together and at this point was feeling really sorry for the little guy. He was obviously embarrassed (rightly so) and really didn't seem to be that wild and crazy. So I took the opportunity to ask his mom a few questions while we were all standing in line. "how old is he?" "He's 5." "Must have made you run after him a few times (laughing)." "No, I just don't trust him." "Oh." Are you kidding me? That was not the response I was expecting. It was so vague and almost paranoid that I couldn't even think of a comeback for that one.
What do you guys think? Isn't that peculiar? I mean I can almost understand the damn thing if they were walking up May Avenue, but Northpark Mall?!? It's the least busy mall and really, what could he have done? Stolen jewels from B.C. Clark?

Monday, September 11, 2006

One Giant Step for Mankind...

O.K.,it may not be that big of a deal, but the big girl actually took one step. And then sat down. It was last Saturday and Ashli witnessed it as well. It was such a teensy step that I had to ask her if it counted and if I should put it in the baby book. Of course I'm going to! Anyway, I got her to take 2 steps today at ballet so yay!!! for Sydney. She's actually contemplating the idea of joining the human race and walking on her hind legs!
Not a whole lot more to report except that my once obnoxious baby has turned back into the lovable creature that I used to know and adore. She has stopped screaming irrationally and crying unexpectedly and is a whole lot more fun than the past couple of weeks so yay!!! for Sydney.
Sure wish I could post some new and adorable pics of my little ballerina and my little walker (ha!) but I'm still waiting for the thingy to arrive in the mail, so until then...AufWiedersehen!

Friday, September 08, 2006

For some of you that are wondering the interview went grrrreat! I met with the public defender on Wednesday to talk about where they could use me and he came up with occasional part time work at the Juvenile Center on Classen and 57th. They seem to be having problems getting those kids to open up and talk about their lives. Imagine that. Most of these kids have been abused and/or neglected their entire lives and can't trust a flea. I don't know if I can make any head way, but surely I'm better suited than some underpaid lawyers. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure they are pretty good at what they do, but trying to get an adolescent to talk is hard under the best of circumstances. So we'll see. I'm supposed to call him back on Monday to find out the final word. Again, wish me luck. I have never worked with kids (except my own, who are on the opposite spectrum of abused/neglected) and from everyone I've talked to, they are by far the toughest population because they feel invincible and haven't fully grasped consequences. So there you go! I'm way excited to put my skills to use. Let's just hope I don't screw them up more!

Now onto the fireball, aka Sydney Robin. She's killing me. Jamie, help me out here. How old was Max when he went through that phase where all he did was cry/whine/grunt/moan? I remember asking you at the time what was wrong with him and you mentioned that he was going through a phase. And then I slightly remembered those random obnoxious phases that they go through. So anyway, she's definately going through something. It's like she is happy one minute playing and then she'll just be furious and start bawling/screaming. I know I need to practice patience but since I waited so long between kids I have competely forgotten all the little phases and quirks that go along with it. Blah. Blah. Blah. Boring fodder for all of you. I need to just get over it!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Labors of Labor Day

Let's all spell it together T-E-E-T-H-I-N-G. I have to admit, I would secretly scoff at the moms who complained about their children cutting teeth. I would think to myself, "oh, it can't be that bad" or "it's just an excuse for their babies being soooo grumpy." But people, I eat my words. And I rarely do that. This baby has never had so much saliva in her entire life. But, see, that's the good part. She is so utterly pissy that I can barely stand to be in the same room with her. Apart from her getting upset from everything to not being able to turn pages fast enough or the dog barely tapping her precious little shoulder, she can't eat. You people that know Sydney know this it the equivalent of me finding out that the DVR didn't tape Big Brother. This has sent her over the edge. If it has any texture to it, she bawls. I've had to feed her malt-o-meal for every meal the last 2 days. And this is very upsetting for the rest of the family as well. Gone are the days of semi-peaceful meals where my biggest issue was not being able to feed her fast enough. She just sits in her highchair and screams. Snacks for appeasement are gone for now. And I really feel sorry for her because I know it must really hurt. But she's KILLING ME!! a slow and very painful death. If you ever find out that you only have an hour to live, come to my house for that hour and I promise it will feel LIKE FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!

So unfortunately, our Labor Day sucked which pisses me off because Wade actually had 2 days off in a row (kinda) and they were spent running around trying to make the baby happy which was a goal unreachable...that is, until the sweet time of 7pm when I lay her down and just walk away. That was my favorite part of Labor Day. Sad, no?

How was your Labor Day? Was it filled with peaceful playing and laughing children?

Sunday, September 03, 2006

Lil help fellow bloggers

As you can see, I have this cute little slide thing on the top. How the hell do I get it to center? It looks like it's about to fall off the page. Brooke? Jamie? I know both of you probably know, so help me PLEASE! Also, while you are helping me, let me know how to change my template from the boring ole blogger templates. I know you can download other ones from the internet, but I don't know where to cut and paste on my template? Help? A little?

Friday, September 01, 2006

Life may be a changin'

Sorry to say that, no, I have not found the thingy and am decidedly blaming someone else for the loss. I have looked in all my favorite hiding spots to no avail. I am sorry Brooke, but I guess you'll have to truck your ass back to Oklahoma to see that baby. Or maybe Ashli will one day get a computer.

Annnnyway, it's time for this monotonous mother to make a change. And that is coming in the way of employment. Like a job. Yep, it's time to get my juices flowing again and enter the world of work. Call me crazy, but I actually have a higher education that I spent tons of money on, only for me to sit on my ass (ok, I'm usually on my feet, but you get what I'm saying) and let all those skills go to waste. I actually have an interview with someone next week were I will beg and plead him to hire me part-time...I will definitely give details next week if I get the job.

Are you wondering why I would do such a thing? I'll tell you, plain and simple: I'm bored out of my everylivingmind!!!!!!!!! I love my kids, but now that Grace has started school, I find my self slightly lonely. I asked myself what is so different about this year seeing that Grace went to full-time pre-k last year. And then it dawned on me: I don't have my mom to hang out with. She would always come over, hang out, make lunch or Syd and I would go over there for chatting. I've got to get out of this house and do something that I enjoy so I can then come home to my children and enjoy and appreciate them as well.

No, I don't know if it is the right decision. But if I don't see what's out there I feel like I will regret it down the line.

Wish me luck!
And Happy Labor Day weekend!