Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Get Your Kicks...At 3:56 am.

If this post seems more ridiculous than usual you can blame it on my daughter.  No really.  She's not even here yet and I have already been strategically placing the blame on her.  You see, I haven't gotten "good" sleep in five days.  Now pre-kid(s), I would have been fine with this.  You know, not going out until 10 (that's p.m., folks) and not coming home until god knows when.  Then you get like five hours of sleep and you're good to go.  That shit doesn't fly anymore.  My bedtime is roughly 9pm and anything after that should be highly applauded.  I need to sleep until about 7:00am to feel as if I got enough rest.  That is TEN HOURS of sleep per night.  Yes I know, my adjusted age is roughly 93, but my ass is tired.  Needless to say, chasing Child 1.0 around with my new body  shape (see: Round) is reallllly hard.  It's noteworthy that bending over to pick something up results in me panting.  With roughly two-and-a-half months left, I am not quite sure how I am going to survive.  Pregnancy #1 was easier overall because I didn't have a house to clean, meals to cook (and shop for), a child to parent, socks to find the match of, etc.  Boo hoo me, right? 

Now that we are in the home stretch of final pregnancy #2, I am supposed to be doing what are called kick counts.  My OB says to make a note of ten kicks within a two hour span.  When I was told this, I laughed.  TEN!?  I can get ten kicks of of Baby 2.0 in roughly fifteen seconds, every fifteen seconds.  Not only is Baby 2.0 breech, but this lady loves to dance on my pancreas, or whatever fucking body part she is currently tap dancing on.  Sometimes she throws jazz hands in there, and I truly feel as if she is using my rib cage as a ladder (or stripper pole).  It's glorious.  And by glorious I mean painful and awkward.  Lately she has been interfering with my sleep habits because she is on the schedule that I used to be on pre-kids (see above).  She gets moving at about 11 and DOESN'T STOP.  So no matter how I am laying in bed, she decides it's not going to work.  By luck, I am an incredibly light sleeper so this equates to no sleep.  You try sleeping with a snoring husband and the star of Riverdance in your uterus---I dare you.  To add to the aweomeness, because she is starting to pork up, she is putting all kinds of extra pressure on my nerves that have had a three-year break from dancing babies; hence resulting in: LEG CRAMPS!  Oh, except it's not just in my legs.  It's in my feet, ankles, toes, hips---everywhere.  They are so strong and painful that it is actually sore the next day (and the day after).  So imagine that you finally get to sleep, only to be rudely awakened by the sharp, stabbing pain of death the muscles in your body catching ablaze.

Dancing babies, leg cramps, and getting up to piss every two hours not only makes for a long, terrible night, but it also means your day is going to suck.  My eyes twitch like a crack addict and I am pretty sure my demeanor screams "ASSHOLE."  My house is a mess and is starting to smell like a pirate ship (because I know what that smells like...).  I'm pretty sure if it wasn't for the simple pleasure in life (you know, like the fact the Keurig can make a cup of coffee in seconds)(oh, and Nutella), I'd be curled up in the fetal position under the dining room table (the only "small" space I can fit in). 

All anger and "woe is me" aside, knowing that my wee-one will be here soon enough is pretty damn exciting.  Somehow, my hubby and I made a pretty awesome kid so I know Baby 2.0 will continue to bring all the joy that Child 1.0 has already set the precedent for.  Plus, after the baby shower that was just thrown for us, she'll be dressed so damn awesome that I won't even be able to complain about her eating every two hours and making my pirate ship smell like an orangutan exhibit.  I loves me some babies.  Just not being pregnant.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Approach with Caution

Typically I try to speak to Child 1.0 in language that he will continue to understand past babyhood.  I was never a babytalker who used terms that made no fucking sense.  Everyone uses that ridiculous ass voice to talk to babies but avid babytalkers use that voice and say things like, "Does dee wittle baby want a wittle yum yummy?"  Niiiice.  It's a match made in babyland hell and I go batty when I hear it especially when the baby is 48 months old.  I've read a lot of shit from the literary/educator perspective about how important it is to talk to your baby and that babies do pick up on language faster when you use that crazy pitch in your voice but that using proper vocabulary is equally important.  That's not to say that Child 1.0 doesn't say that he has to go "pee-pee" (because if my three year old said he had to urinate---well, I just wouldn't be fine with it...).  So it's safe to say I've been a pretty straight shooter with Child 1.0, aside from my annoying ass voice.  I've always wanted him to know the real words of things, and that evolved into me wanting him to know how shit really goes down.  That's not to say that I lay the burdens of life on him (START SAVING FOR TAXES!), but I try and make things as easily understandable, within reason, as I can.   

Recently, Adam and I were flipping through a magazine and he saw an ad that displayed this gorgeous aquarium.  He told me that he wanted some fish (because having a puppy and a sister on the way ain't enough).  I reminded him that last year we had an aquarium that had lots of fish, but now it's put away until he is old enough to clean out the tank by himself (because that shit STINKS).  He asked me, "What happened to the fish?"


I tried to see how easy I could make this.  First, I reminded him that the tank is down in the garage and we'd get more fish another time.  Nope, that wasn't good enough.  "But where are the fish?"  "Well, they were done living here and went somewhere else."  All truth. 

"Did you give them to Nana?" "Err, um.  No.  I put them in the toilet and flushed them down in the water."  There.  Fine.  I said it.  I waited for a tortured reaction...

"So they're dead."


I stared at him blankly for a minute.  How much of that did he understand?  How much of death does he get?  How much of death can you get when you are three?  I have used the word dead before in conversations with him (like why I'm throwing all my plants away, why the leaves fall from the trees, what happened to that guy on the last episode of Dexter), but it was never a conversation that we had.  It was never really defined to him.  It was clear that he knew the fish weren't at someone's house or back at the pet store, but it really unnerved me that he knew that they were dead.  Is my son's youth gone?!?!!

I had no choice but to try and talk to him about it.  I asked him to tell me how he knew that the fish were, um, as he said it, dead.  Luckily, he is NOT three-going-on-fourteen because he said, "The fishes can't swim in the POOP!!!" <insert his uproarious laughter> (On second thought, maybe that answer IS him going on to fourteen...)

I went with it.  It damn sure wasn't the time to talk about death within the same month that we talked about god.  Too heavy.  I'm too hormonal.  He's too young.  That night I wondered if he is so ahead of his age because I never used baby terms with him.  I reflected on my own skillz (or lack thereof) and wondered what his response might have been had I actually told him that the "wittle fishies went to go play with Nemo" or something.  I rely heavily on the thought that I want him to be extremely imaginative and love playing with toys (see: ACTUAL TOYS---not video games, electronic devices, etc.) because he will have plenty of time to do that other shit later (see also: why we don't watch tv---different story).  But the best thing I did?  I quit beating myself up over it.  He is, without a doubt, a toddler.  Just because he can sing and name all the Beatles songs and loves Spirit of the Radio, he is still a toddler...just one that thinks that the fish actually lived to see the poop in the toilet pipes.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Being Prepared for Being Unprepared

The best thing I learned to do as a parent (within my realm of 3.5 years as a parent) is to be prepared to be completely, utterly unprepared for everything.  Don't waste your time trying to be prepared for every little thing because it will NOT happen the way you planned it.  I went into the journey of Child 1.0 entering school accepting that school was going to make him a bit different.  He was going to learn behaviors of other children that would probably go against how he has been raised, he was going to learn new words, new sass, new everything.  It is my role as a parent to establish how we (as a family) react to all these new things and how we can make these learning experiences.  Sure, the other boys may do Exhibit A, but it is a better choice to do Exhibit B instead.  Things were coming along pretty nicely until yesterday he dropped a bomb on me that I was NOT prepared for.

Let me set this up first:
Child 1.0's class says the Pledge of Allegiance at the start of class everyday.  Adam loves songs and chants and had that bad boy memorized within the first week.  It has worked its way into our bedtime routine and even in the car.  Yesterday we were driving and without notice he asks me, "What is god?"


I asked him what he meant and he referred to the exact phrase of The Pledge where that word pops up.  Holy shit (no pun intended).  How come he couldn't ask hubby?  Nevermind, that probably wouldn't have gone well either. We have made the decision as parents to raise Child 1.0 with no religious influence either way.  As an Atheist who chose to be such AFTER completing the Catholic Sacraments, I did not know what to tell him that would be appropriate for someone his age.  I made up my mind two weeks after my Confirmation that this wasn't the right for me.  My dad is also an Atheist and my mom is Catholic.  Growing up with my dad, when I was interested in going to church (in 2nd grade), he let me go with my friend's family.  He never told me what he believed or questioned my intentions, he supported me either way.  He funded my church adventures and never once said anything that made me change my mind.  I recall the moment my faith disappeared and it was only then that we had a long talk about it.  

Now my answer to his question was vague enough to suit his needs for now (granted, he is 3), but I know that it will come up again, probably after he returns to school on Tuesday and tells all the other kids.  My answer was wholehearted and sincere because I had NOT planned for what I would say---quite frankly, because I didn't think that kind of shit was going to come up for a few more years.  He just so happened to discover that word because he didn't recognize it and it was the shortest one he could repeat (it's great hearing a three year old say "allegiance", "republic", and "United States of America").  

In the past month, I've had to parent-through things that we've never really experienced yet: sharing with 22 kids (check), not talking during announcements (check), pushing/shoving (check and check), girl parts/boy parts (OMFG check), profanities (SHIT! CHECK!), and now we can add religion to this list.  

Good Parenting is hard.

Note: After our conversation, I googled the topic to see how others in our position have faced the topic and found a really interesting essay that I want to share for those interested.  If you're not, don't click the link.  It's that simple.  Not a debate.  STFU.  Essay is 'hurrr.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Le Peep Show

Girlfrans already got a ton of clothes...thank you to all of my fellow mommy friends :)
There is something completely refreshing about having a baby girl on the way.  Maybe it has something to do with the ridiculous amounts of manliness I have to put up with daily, because you know, I am currently the only female in the hizzouse.  My hubby, Child 1.0, and Dex all act like "typical" men.  If "typical" means nasty, smelly, gross men.  I welcome the idea of having a girly girl, wrapped in tulle and lace, even if she decides to go all tomboy once she learns to dress herself.  Fine.  But while I can still have some say, it will be ribbons and bows bitches.  So I fell in love with the idea of decorating Jbaby's room.  I scoured the internet for countless hours, looking at so many different shades of pink that I thought my eyes were going to bleed.  I subscribed to all the Rich Folk baby catalogs, so I could mooch off of their design ideas.  I drew out various layouts, did lots of mapping, and wasted a lot of time meandering in stores that I had no business being in.  Finally, shit started coming together.  I developed a sense of what I liked and didn't like, and I thoroughly took my time getting things prepared.  Contrary to how I decorated our home (threw shit together as quick as I could and hoped for the best), I took a ton of time on this and I cannot even explain how much I love this room.  I even became all sorts of crafty and made a majority of the stuff in the room.  I love it.  Seriously.  Hell, even Child 1.0 loves Jbaby's room.  I don't friggin' blame him.  It's awesome.  It's not completely done yet, there are a few more mechanical-type tasks that hubby needs to complete before The Big Reveal, but I have to share some tidbits of this room.  It's that freaking awesome and I am that freaking proud.  I shall not disclose what these items are, but some might be pretty damn obvious.
Handmade.  Booyah.
This was originally black and my big pregnant ass painted it.  In yo' face!
My BFF taught me how to make these for roughly $4.00 before I spent $60 on etsy.  Thank god for talented friends.
The end result of my first-ever sewing machine experience

The big splurge in the room

This piece has become one of my favorite things in the room.  I mean, le duh...
One of the things I really appreciate in Jbaby's room is that there really is no theme.  I pretty much backed myself into a corner with Child 1.0's room because I did a specific theme and then had very little to work with.  Animals.  Rainforest/jungle animals.  Now I am sure there are tons of people who could have done it right, but my ass had no decorating skillz and everything was matchy-matchy and LAME.  I look back and want to kick my own ass for having such a fugly room that he seriously grew out of in like three minutes.  Oops.  Looking at the pictures now ('cuz I'm like, all mad fierce decorator and shit), I see so many things that I should have done differently.  Everything in the room matched, including the paint on the walls.  Ugh.  In Jbaby's room, I just went crazy with looking for feminine, elegant looking prints that were the opposite of washed out (kids, see: VIVID).  Go big or go home.  Or go Tropical Punch, Fuchsia, and Pink Cadillac.  I wanted clean lines and different girly patterns that Jbaby can grow with.  I mixed brights with pales, polka dots with paisleys, water and oil, and just about everything I could and it LOOKS AWESOME.

Once hubby finishes smacking on the final touches, I shall present the finished project.  Until then, I am trekking the internet for ideas to do Child 1.0's room.  Because I can't leave him out on this redecorating extravaganza.