Wednesday, January 25, 2017

I am calling all of you out.

I have a bone to pick with every person out there that has had a baby and knows me. Yes, every single one of you. WHY DID YOU NOT TELL ME IT WAS GOING TO BE THIS HARD? WHY? WHY DIDN’T YOU WARN ME? It was an out of the frying pan and into the fire like feeling. Everyone told me how rewarding it was going to be, and how the love I would feel would overtake me and turn me all mushy and soft, but the other stuff was kept all hush hush.  

Like, how I would be paranoid and worried. All. Of. The. Time. That I would be taking pictures of baby poop so I could analyze it later and compare it to other baby poop. Diarrhea or not? And if it is diarrhea, what do I do? Do I call the pediatrician? Do I just storm into the doctor’s office demanding answers and antibiotics? Was it something I ate? Do I eliminate dairy? Or worse, chocolate?   

Or nursing. Don’t get me started. It’s beautiful, it’s natural, it’s the best thing for your baby, yada, yada, yada. The truth-it is hard. At least for me. I cannot even start to tell you the number of Internet searches I’ve conducted that revolve around nursing.

Then there’s the sleep. Oh precious precious sleep. Henry was a good sleeper. He was the sleeper that dreams are made of. We boasted of the seven plus straight hours we were getting at night when he was just a wee babe. Yes, all past tense. And let me let you in on a little secret, SLEEP IS IMPORTANT.

Those things are just the tip of the iceberg.

And the thing is, it’s not like I didn’t prepare. I prepared the heck out of this. I read books, blogs, and the five different baby apps on my phone. I researched every last item that was on my registry, making sure I had only the best. I made dozens of freezer meals and had the pantry stocked with high in protein foods to give me the instant energy I would need during the day (because that’s what all the blogs said, duh). I had hand sanitizers placed strategically around the house, because by golly this baby was not going to get sick ever. But, my socks were still knocked off.

And I am not whining, I promise. (Why does it always sound like I’m whining?) Remember when I talked about the struggle it was to bring little Henry to our family? And how in the end I knew that it was the right time, because waiting for him taught me all sorts of lessons that I am oh so glad I learned? Let me tell you the real reason why he joined our family later. Three years ago I probably could not have hacked this motherhood business. I had to be primed, polished, and want it so so bad, because otherwise I think I legitimately would not have been able to handle it. So to get through those hard days, I think back to when all I wanted was a baby, and how I prayed for a baby, and pinned all sorts of baby stuff to my secret Pinterest baby board, and planned out how we would announce our pregnancy, and decorate a nursery. Those feelings are still raw and real, which I am so grateful for, because it helps me appreciate everything, even the really hard things.

And so what’s the lesson here? Don’t lie to mothers to be? Possibly. Or, babies are hard but oh so worth it? Maybe. I am not even sure. But, I can say this, I don’t think I have ever been more terrified, exhausted, or happier in my entire life, which I guess really sums up what this motherhood business is all about. Until next time (and I’m not going to say when this “next time” will be, because that backfired last time ;)). Oh, and since Henry’s four month pictures are just so adorable, here you go. But let me be clear, these do not accurately represent what life is like in our home. My life is not all white sheets and perfect smiles; see the video for proof of that.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

The Good Old Days

It’s 2:18 in the afternoon and I just barely got around to brushing my teeth for the day. My kitchen is littered with the things I used to make myself lunch, because having to make myself lunch and clean it up just felt like too much. The screen saver for our Roku is playing, reminding me that I’ve probably watched too many episodes of Friends today, but hey, I’ve never seen the series, and I just don’t know if Ross and Rachel will ever get together.  I mean, they just have to, don’t they?! But, I feel like this post is a long time coming, so it’s about time I get it out for the world wide web to read (or like all the people who are mindlessly scrolling on their social media feeds avoiding real life, and see this, and go oh, that’ll take up a good solid 5 minutes, let’s read that. Thank you social media scrollers.)

I have entered three months of motherhood and wow. These last three months have been the longest and shortest months of my life. My days seem to take forever, but in a blink of an eye a week is gone. And I am going to try to write several posts about the feelings I’ve had and some of the things I am learning, but let’s start with a nice lighthearted topic: The things that are no longer okay now that I have a child.

1.     Slow drivers. All you slow drivers out there, do you not realize that I have a screaming baby in the car and he needs to get home RIGHT NOW. Like, can you at least go the speed limit. Wanna trade cars? If we did, I am sure you’d understand.
2.     Fast drivers. Chillax homies. Stop the tailgating. My baby just fell asleep, so I am going to milk this quiet time for as long as I can. You got a place to be? Practice patience, it’ll do you some good.
3.     Other screaming babies when I don’t have my baby. Listen yo. I’ve got one of those at home, I don’t need to hear yours. It’s my “me” time, and your child is making me feel guilty for getting out, and let’s be honest, only my baby has a cute cry, not yours.
4.     Judgmental people while my baby is screaming. He’s a baby folks! He cries. But listen, I had to get out of the house for my own sanity, and we need groceries because we need to eat. There are like 37 aisles in this store, go pick another one where my adorable little crying bundle of joy can’t be heard. Much thanks.
5.     Childless people who flaunt their childlessness. I was just there, and I feel really guilty saying this, but man, can you just keep your incredible adventures to yourself?  You just decided to pack up for the weekend and explore some unchartered territory all while posting these amazing pictures with the best captions ever, gee thanks for reminding me that my neighborhood walks are pretty much the boring-est.
6.     Families that should be on magazine covers. I get it, you guys have kids and ARE still cool. That’s pretty much the most unfair thing ever. You pick one. Kids and uncool or no kids and cool-make the choice and stick with it.
7.     The people in-between the above categories. I am sure there are things that are no longer okay about you too. Just give me some time to think about it.

But for real, if Katy Perry’s song "Hot and Cold" wasn’t about a bad relationship, you might think it’s about me. And here’s the thing, I was that person who would read blog posts complaining about kids and think, “well at least you have a baby, stop whining about it and yada yada yada…”Oh Cami. And I'm not whining about it now. Promise. I am just starting to see another side of things that maybe I didn't quite see before. 

So, the first lesson that has become even more glaringly apparent in my new months of motherhood is: you have no idea what anyone else is going through, so don’t hop to any really judgmental conclusions (like I typically do). I feel this the most in the car while I am either tailgating or being tailgated. Or, when I see an adoracute post of a childless couple that makes me feel guilty for having a cute baby, because maybe they want one and can't, or it makes me feel guilty for sometimes missing the life I was living before my cute baby arrived. Which brings me to my second lesson, enjoy what you have. Right. Now. Find joy in what is going on this very second of your life, because I guaran-dang-tee there’s some joy to be had. In honor of finishing The Office (I know, I am pretty impressive these days, finishing TV series and everything is hard work) I changed out my board to one of my favorite quotes from the season finale. 

I sometimes get stuck in that "good old day" setting, but for reals, every single day will become a good old day, and I want to so bad remember that in the exact moment, so they're not "good old days" but instead "good days"-heck maybe even great days. 

I feel sad it has taken little Henry to help me to better see these things, but I am so glad he's here to teach me, because you gotta learn them somehow. So here’s to hoping you can learn these from me now, instead of going through your own growth spurt of sorts. Until next week! (Assuming I'll post again next Tuesday, which is the plan, but let's be real, that probably won't happen;)).