Thursday, January 31, 2013


Every woman who is fortunate enough to have children will have a different experience with motherhood. Every child is different, every mom, every dad. I know this. But, out of all the parents and kids I have met, I have realized that we are much more similar than we think. Most first time moms go through high anxiety levels, and pass that anxiety onto their oldest. A lot of dads are the "fun" parent while mom is juggling discipline, preparedness, the schedule, and nurturing all at once. All kids possess tiny quirks that make them purely adorable and hilarious. I am so thankful that I can relate to other moms, even women I've just met, so closely. It makes me feel very connected in a role that can become very lonely day to day. I've commented many times to friends that I am not sure I could have survived being a stay-at-home mom in a world prior to technology in the palm of my hand. I can google any question I have, I can post pictures of my kids in an instant for distant relatives, and, most importantly, I can stay connected with friends who are, more than likely, having the exact kind of day I'm having. We're all in it together. Motherhood. Here's what it means to me:

Motherhood is having to go to the bathroom so badly but holding it because your toddler just exclaimed that he has to go potty.

Motherhood is cutting the tiniest fruits, even a blueberry, into halves or even quarters.

Motherhood is getting your child juice. And then a vitamin. And then his banana. And then some more cereal. And then some more milk. And then some more juice.... before you've ever even taken a bite of your breakfast, just to have him look at you and say, "Mama, you need to eat!"

Motherhood is going from a dead sleep to running upstairs as fast as you can when your child yells, "Potty!" in the middle of the night.

Motherhood is completely ignoring the signs stating the weight limit on jungle gyms to climb to the top and rescue your kid who is too afraid to come down the slide.

Motherhood is feeling guilty for having a messy house when you're playing and feeling guilty for neglecting your kids when you're cleaning.

Motherhood is holding your hands out for your baby to throw up into because there isn't a bucket handy.

Motherhood is not being able to relax at all until you know the kids are asleep at nap time.

Motherhood is never using the bathroom alone again.

Motherhood is translating every word, sound, grunt, sign, or bit of body language to people who don't spend all day with your kids. Sometimes even to their own father.

Motherhood is examining the contents of even the worst diapers to see if your child should stop eating a newly introduced food.

Motherhood is thinking that being out until 7pm is late.

Motherhood is finding sentimental value in every old shoe, scribbled on paper, favorite type of cookie, frequently read book, and most-watched shows that your children had, did, or had anything to do with.

Motherhood is proudly cheering them on at every milestone while sobbing on the inside because your baby is growing too fast.

Motherhood is praying your child starts feeling better but secretly loving that all they want is Mom when they're sick.

Motherhood is putting clean sheets on the beds in the morning just to have both kids wet them during nap that same day.

Motherhood is (sometimes) feeling unappreciated. But, also knowing that, to your kids, you're the prettiest, funniest, woman with the best singing voice and a kiss for every boo boo.

Motherhood is wearing yoga pants so often that when you actually shower, get dressed, and brush your hair (nothing special) your toddler exclaims, "Mommy, you look so pretty!"

Motherhood is counting down the minutes until bed time just to be reminded that the real peace comes when your infant falls asleep in your arms. If that moment never ended you'd be content.

Motherhood is the most important thing I will ever do with my life. It's frustrating, guilt-ridden, trying, tiring, hilarious, messy, loud, silly, never-ending. I am, in no way, the best mother. So far from perfect. But, I don't think I do (or have done) anything better than being a mom. I truly feel like I have found my purpose in life and cannot picture myself doing anything else with my time - at least for now.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


I think this is the first time I have ever written down New Year's resolutions. Be forewarned, this does not mean the following list is significant. So special it had to be documented before it was reduced to a fleeting thought. Probably not. Until now, I didn't have a forum to purge everything I am thinking. I suppose I had a diary at some point. Obviously it was not very important to me since I cannot definitively vouch for its existence. But, now I have this blog. And, even though these are not revelations people haven't already had, I am listing them. Maybe to help me remember what my resolutions are! Maybe as proof that I did reflect on the past year and strive to make changes. So, here they are, in no particular order... my New Year's Resolutions.

#7). Eat better. I know, I know. I'm already annoyed too. This could be anyone's list. Notice I didn't say "diet" though. I hate that word. Makes me feel like I'm being punished and like I cannot have dessert if I want it. Eating better isn't really a resolution for me. It's pretty much my daily mantra. I know I need to eat better; who doesn't? And, truthfully, I do eat plenty of healthy foods. #7 serves more as a reminder that I do NOT need to eat more than one cupcake in a sitting... or in a day, for that matter.

This container of cupcakes was on my lap today; I only ate two of the three.

#6). Set appointments. Doctors, dentist... hell, even hair appointments. I'm terrible at this. I need to start with having all of my current ailments checked out. That includes getting the weird grey patch on on my face looked at by a dermatologist. It's only been worrying me for a couple months now. See? I'm the worst. Regular check-ups would be next on the list. Why do I put them off? I know it's important to maintain my health by catching any potential issue early on. But, I cannot seem to make myself make the appointments. I'm not afraid, I'm just lazy. It needs to stop. Yes, that includes hair appointments. It's not like I have any style I need to maintain, so even a haircut every six months would do the job. I can do this!

Besides, who wouldn't want to take Batman to the dentist every six months? 

#5). Use more sign language with Damien. I started sign language with Kendan at about four months old and didn't stop. I was relentless. He was stringing several words together like a sentence, and adding the sign for "please" at the end of requests, before he ever spoke a real word. Kendan had about 20 signs in his repertoire at one point. It was so cool. He still uses a few signs occasionally; usually when his mouth is full and he wants "more" of something or to express that he's "all done" eating. And he has recalled many more signs as I've started communicating to Damien with sign language. But, it's not nearly as often as I did with Kendan. I guess I always assumed my second child would use sign language as well... forgetting all of the work I put into my first child's success. Time to brush up and bust it out. Watch out, Damien.

I'll have to learn the sign for "necklace". 

#4). Wake up earlier. I love being a Stay at Home Mom. My kids wake up at 8am... and so do I! It's glorious. But, it has to stop. Why? A lot of reasons. Ideally, I'd like to be showered and dressed with my bed made and coffee going by the time my kids wake up. I did this for a couple weeks when I was potty training Kendan to make sure I was prepared for the day and wouldn't need to leave his side. And the truth is, it was awesome! I felt ready, I was more productive, and running errands was way less of a task if I was already dressed. I also really enjoy the time in the house to myself, when it's quiet and everyone is still asleep. I can smell pumpkin coffee brewing, leisurely open the blinds to slowly wake up our home before the cries of my children do the job for me. Maybe turn on a morning show; it'll be the last time the TV is mine for the rest of the day. The possibilities are endless.

#3). Sleep more. I realize that this is in direct conflict with the previously listed resolution. But, I need more sleep. I am not fully functional on too few hours of sleep. Not only do the simplest tasks seem daunting when I'm tired but, I am not pleasant to be around. My fuse is short, my temper flares, and everyone suffers. I do not like who I am when exhausted. When I amm well-rested, not much bothers me. When I am lacking sleep, BREATHING makes my skin crawl. But, again, I really would like to wake up earlier. And, I'm a terrible napper. Which leaves only to go to bed earlier. This may be my last blog post since I usually only write them at ungodly hours (it's 1am right now). It's been nice having you as a reader but, this is probably the end.

Hopefully Kendan will remember this mom and not the cranky mom!

#2). Hang out with my husband. This is straight forward. I would like to go to dinner with my husband. Even if it is also with friends, that's ok. But, call a babysitter occasionally and just hang out with my husband, my friend. Even if I only do it three times this year it'll be more than we did last year.

And get more pictures of just me and my husband... or just pictures where you can see his face.

#1). Live presently. This is all encompassing for me. Live more presently... at all times. I have two amazing children and a husband who fill me up every day. I plead with myself to not forget amazing moment after amazing moment. But, I forget. It's human nature. And, that's ok. But, if I stop what I am doing and just be I will be so much better for it. My family will be so much better for it. Stop worrying about forgetting the moment lest I ruin it because all I can remember is "I didn't want to forget that... whatever it was". Don't reach for the camera when my children do something mind-blowingly adorable. Just enjoy it. Laugh at it. Hold them tight and tell them, for the millionth time, how much I love them through clenched teeth and tear-filled eyes. Sit and cuddle with Kendan through a whole show and stop thinking about all the stuff I could accomplish while he's entertained. Play. Not in between tasks in the kitchen. In the play room, full-on, even if only for ten minutes. Remember that each day really may be the last day I get to spend with my family. The last time I tell them, "good night". The last time I can make them smile, or feel good or happy or loved... or remember me positively. Stop taking life for granted. I think when I said this list was in no particular order I lied. Because, this one is #1. If I forget to do everything else on this list, fine. This is the one that counts. This is what will make 2013 matter.

Happy New Year to all our friends and family!