Thursday, April 30, 2009

SAH vs. Career

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal: Clean my house before someone from church arrives with dinner.
Grievance: Big Love has to return to work while in great amounts of pain.
Celebration: Boy Love know the words to Billy Joel's "Piano Man". Not all, but the chorus, anyhow.

Whenever I read a book, watch a show, or spend any sort of time on the internet, I am surrounded by images of mothers with flourishing careers. I greatly admire their ability to do this, have children, and keep their houses in pristine condition, and I am a honestly pretty jealous. I understand that having small children causes many women's careers to take an elongated hiatus. I understand that having a career and children can take away valuable time from family life. I still feel myself envious of the woman who can juggle all these tasks, and still have time to dress like a million bucks, watch every soccer game and dance recital, and bake a chicken pot pie.

Who am I kidding? I know that there are very few women in the world who can do that. I just want to be able to have a career. Heck, I would even take a part-time dead end kind of thing. I just want to work. I have been working since I was 15, and this is the first time in my life since then that I haven't made money. I feel...well...worthless. Monetarily speaking. I feel like a leech, just living off the blood of another person who is capable of making money.

I, of course, have a career plan that I would like to begin someday. I have dreams, ways to get there, and the desire and motivation to do so. But for now I feel like I can't do anything. My family and friends have insisted that I am doing exactly what I should be doing right now. I am supposed to be a mother. Somehow, though, I don't feel like I am doing my part. I don't feel like being a stay-at-home mother is enough. I just want to be able to be a contributing member of society. Is that so much to ask? I consistently find myself on craigslist, perusing the ads for even the most demeaning of jobs, wishing desperately that I had them. Even 10 dollars and hour is still 10 dollars more than we had before, right? How long must I sit here, yearning for a job? A year? 5 years? In the meantime, will I have to resign myself to remaining where I am?

Please understand that I have the utmost respect for stay-at-home mothers. I now know how tough it can be to be a stay-at-home mom, and I understand how one can have a day completely pass you by without having any idea what transpired. If being a stay-at-home mother is what you are called to do, I applaud you for it and wish I was the same way. I just feel like God has planned something different for me. I love being a mother, and will continue to love being a mother for every day of my life. I love having children; cuddling with them, playing with them, teaching them and loving them. My children are amazing works of art, and I know that I have and will learn much about myself in watching them. I also feel, however, that I am called to be a working mother. Not being a working mother right now makes me feel like I am not fulfilling God's plans. This is something I shall continue to pray about; pray for either patience or opportunity.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Baby Chic

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal - Get to the Y for working out purposes
Grievance - Big Love went another night without sleeping.
Celebration - Watched Frost/Nixon. Amazing film.

There are so many times I catch myself peering at the plethora of tabloids and magazines while in line at the grocery store. I am immediately ashamed at my apparent desire to know the nitty gritty about the lives of celebrities. However, in the words of my mother, "how am I supposed to pray for Brad and Angelina if I don't know what is going on with them"? On the outside, I abhor it when people compare the lives of celebrities with the lives of the average Jane, but deep within myself I find an unusual obsession with the family lives of our pop culture heroes. I find it amusing, of course, to see pretty people gain weight (terrible, I know), and I find it upsetting when someone dies tragically and has is plastered all over the media, but I only truly pay attention when celebrities get pregnant and have babies.

So at this point, Brangelina have approximately 19 children under the age of 7, Jen is trying to get pregnant, and hundreds of other famous women are popping out babies like they pop diet pills. The trend, as I have casually observed, is to get pregnant after the age of 26. I have noticed this in the Main Street world, as well. Having children in the early 20's is out of style like last season's Jimmy Choos (meaning people that "don't know any better" are still doing it). What in our society has caused this to happen? As history has progressed, it seems that the "childbearing" age has become later and later in life. I mean, heavens, in the days of Shakespeare, women were having children as soon as they started their periods. Now, the age of starting a family is closer to 30. That is over twice the age of Shakespeare's women!

I don't exactly know how to feel about this. Perhaps I have a bit of a bias because I had my first at 22 (So far, of all the children born on both sides of my family, I have been the oldest to give birth). Perhaps I hear doctors and experts say that having children over the age of 35 means that there is a far greater margin for birth issues and childhood diseases and I get nervous for women in that situation. It is obviously none of my business. I am not in charge of when women want to have their babies, and I am not a doctor. But I am still curious. What is the draw to having children later in life?

Here is my uninformed and uninspired list of pros and cons of having children later in life:

- Women can focus on the development of their careers
- If married or in a serious realtionship, women can spend time building a relationship solely with their significant other without distraction of children.
- The ability to travel, move around, soul-search when they are younger
- Spending time building economic and financial stability
- Be able to go out, hang with friends, date casually, etc while younger

- The proverbial "nest" is emptied closer to age 50, as opposed to age 40
- As mentioned before, the older the mother, the higher the probability of issues in pregnancy and birth.
- Children end up interrupting the career that took so long to establish
- Grandchildren come closer to age 60, as opposed to age 50.

What needs to be added to these lists? Inform me. I am ever so curious. Then check out the new poll on the bottom of my page.

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Breast, or not The Breast?

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal: Send out birth announcements. Done.
Grievance: My house is a little bit atrocious, yet I have zero motivation to straighten. Cest la vie.
Celebration: I got a nap today! And I got to take that nap curled up with Baby Love.

Nothing is more enjoyable than a good nap. But there are other things about being not-pregnant that are also very enjoyable. Perhaps there are enough things to warrant making a list!

- The ability to sleep without waking up periodically in the middle of the night in severe pain
- Using the restroom once every few hours, not every few minutes
- Wear cuter clothes
- Having a glass of wine with dinner or a cocktail afterward
- One word. Sushi.
- Sitting in hot tubs
- Workouts to the point where I feel like I worked out
- Confidence in appearance skyrockets
- Not having to go to the doc and be put on a scale EVERY WEEK
- And of course the #1 thing, being able to have my Baby Love in my arms.

There is, however, one great disadvantage to the first months postpartum that was not an issue in pregnancy: breastfeeding.

Whenever I get a nap or a few hours rest in the night time, I wake up with the awful feeling in my breasts that can only mean one thing. Time for baby to eat. Now, of course, when I am ready to feed him, he is NOT ready to be fed. He is either sleeping (there is NO way I will wake him up from a dead sleep to eat like the nurses told me to. That is just craziness), buzzing happily away in his chair, or playing with Daddy.

So in the first few days of finding a breastfeeding routine, I had decided that I will pump 100% of the time and store milk in bottles for convenient feedings. This has been the most superb idea I have had in all of my born days. Now, I can empty myself whenever I feel I need to or whenever we are about to leave the house for an extended amount of time (no need to pack a pump, hooray!). Not only that, but Baby Love can be fed by any person at any time! He is getting very used to feeding from a bottle, which will be wonderful when he starts eating solid foods, and he is willing to take a feeding from anyone, including Boy Love or any grandparent coming to visit. This is where I pat myself on the back for making such a learned and wise decision regarding breastfeeding.

However, as my stash of frozen breast milk continues to grow in our tiny freezer, I keep finding myself reminiscing of a better day. A day when I didn't constantly have to keep tabs on the quantity of milk I am producing. I yearn for the times of yester-month where I didn't have to worry about soaking my bra pads, or keeping my nursing camis laundered, or the constant tenderness I feel at the drop of a hat. I long to be one bra size, not one size at 1:00 after I have finished emptying the tank, and another size at 4:00 when the reserves have come whooshing in again. I want to be able to go on a date with Big Love, order a cocktail (or two?) and not have to wait an hour (or two?) before I am able to pump again.

Don't get me wrong, I love the benefits of breastfeeding. I love that I am giving Baby Love what he needs. I love that I am using my breasts in the way that God has intended. I love that breast milk is free. And I REALLY love the extra 500 calories per day that I burn. However, I find breastfeeding to be time consuming, uncomfortable, and pretty aggravating. I get frustrated that I have to do it, and it makes me feel as if I am shooting unhappy juice into each bottle. So then begs the question: The Breast, or not The Breast?

I know that I could switch to formula at any given time. We have quite a stash of formula that we have received for free in the mail (thank you, Similac), and I would have zero issues using it up. However, after that is emptied, then comes the financial terrors of purchasing $25 cardboard cannisters of formula that will only last a week and a half. The amount of breast milk I ma pumping exceeds the amount he is eating, so I have been able to stash away quite a bit of the overkill in the freezer. As I peer into the growing supply, I have these happy delusions of being able to freeze enough to supplement feedings for as long as he needs, and I can stop pumping cold turkey while he continues to get his nutrients. When I mentioned this to Big Love, he was practical enough to inform me that I would have to pump hundreds and hundreds of ounces of milk to be able to accomplish this. That sounds even more depressing. I am imagining gallon jugs of frozen breast milk that we periodically thaw in the fridge, stashed right next to regular 2% cow milk, but with the label "Boob Juice" hand-written messily on the side with a Sharpie.

So what do I do? Do I stop breastfeeding because I don't like it? Do I continue to suffer through, because there really isn't a super good reason to quit? I need a solution, even if it one that I don't particularly care for.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

All I need is an awesome cape

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal: Paint toenails. It is hard to get excited about wearing summer shoes with toes that look like mine.
Grievance: Can't think of one for today...
Celebration: I have done SO many tasks! And it is only 1:30!

Every once in a while, when I am feeling quite proud of myself, I feel the need to tell everyone how amazing of a person I am. Today is one of those days. So if you would feel free to indulge me, I am about to be braggadocious.

This morning began with a promising start. As I turned over to wake up, I noticed that the clock read 9:23. I don't think I have slept until 9:23 in almost 3 years. Granted, I was up most of the night with Baby Love, but it was all worthwhile to be able to wake up mid-morning. Soon after Big Love went to work (he did NOT have a good night, and for that I am sorry), the boys and I started to get ready. Boy Love and I hopped in the shower while Baby Love slept. The moment we came out of the shower and I threw a towel around myself, the phone rings. It is a woman from church who is bringing dinner for our family! She says that she has to bring dinner over immediately. Normally that really doesn't matter, but at this point both Boy Love and I are wet and naked, Baby Love has awoken with an empty tummy and a newly filled diaper. The dishes are in a colorful array around the kitchen, and the remnants of a large handful of crumbled up goldfish crackers are scattered over the whole of our family room. Ack.

So I had 30 minutes to have my family in clean, fed, and in clothes, and my house straightened. Priority, of course, is clothing. I throw on some clean underwear, sweats and a tank top, and then proceed to chase a naked Boy Love through the house with a stern word, clean diaper, and the first set of clothing I could grab out of his drawers. After I have tackled him down, dressed him, and give him a small handful of goldfish (mistake?) I move on to Baby Love, who is fidgety but somewhat quiet. I throw him a couple of ounces of milk, burp him as I walk him to the changing table, and throw a new diaper on him. After I return him to his bouncy chair, I enlist the help of Boy Love to get all the small furniture off of the carpet and into the kitchen while I start the vacuum cleaner. I spend the next 10 minutes frantically cleaning the carpet, dodging a hysterically laughing toddler as he tries to chase the vacuum and throw himself in front of it. Furniture is returned to it's place (somewhat haphazardly), and I move on to the kitchen. I sweep quickly (one of the only great joys in having a teeny tiny kitchen), throw the dishes in the dishwasher, and wipe down the counters with my Clorox wipes. I contest that Clorox wipes are the greatest invention else that was a really good invention. After the kitchen is taken care of, my 30 minutes is up, so I try and calm myself down, wipe the sweat of my brow, and position myself in a place that looks like I wasn't just running about like a whirling dervish. I pose myself and Boy Love on the sofa and pull out a story book to read. I read the book, and there is still no knocking at my door. So I pull out another story book (I feel this is a very Mayberry Mother type of thing to do) and enhance the picture by holding Baby Love and feed him another couple of ounces as I read. It was a Kodak moment, to be sure. Unfortunately, it was unappreciated, for now an hour has passed, and no one has come to the door. I have given up on Mayberry Mother, and begin to complete more things that I know need to be done. So Baby's diaper gets changed once again, Boy's fingernails get trimmed, can of chicken gets put in marinade for lunch, and all of this happens as Boy Love takes the bottle of Febreze ("spray spray!") and goes to town on the sofa and chairs. By the time we are finished, the house looks great, lunch is on it's way, and I am officially the best mom ever. We may not have been posed on the couch once she arrived, but it didn't matter, because I was not embarrassed to open the door. I am very happy with myself.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Thin and Pretty

Daily specs:

Attainable Goal: Paint my toenails. Did not accomplish said goal.
Grievance: I discovered that Boy Love is capable of carrying (dragging) Baby Love around the house by his arms.
Celebration: I exercised at home for the first time post-delivery.

Short blog: Reason? I feel very much like I shall vomit all over myself and my poor little Mac.

I am very proud to say that this pregnancy has been a great motivation for me to exercise regularly. Once I quit water polo to become a thespian, exercising went the way of the dogs. As per usual for many thespians. There is just simply no time to exercise when you spend all hours of the day in the theatre. However, I now find myself on theatre hiatus which leaves me with no excuse to continue my lazy ways. I was pretty good at going to the Y regularly, and I am still excited about going to the Y again when I get the okay from my doc.

Until then, I am attempting to exercise at home. Also a good choice when I have two small ones that I have no interest in carting in and out of the car every day. I found a great work-out on the internet that I began today. At least, I think it is a great workout. My legs are all wobbly, which makes me think that I actually worked.

4-day rotating workout. Legs, abs, arms, chest/back. I want it to work. I yearn to be thin. Sure, healthy is good, too, but that is just a bonus. I want to be thin and pretty. At least I am aware that I am being very shallow.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Confessions of a Don't-Want-To-Shopaholic

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal - Go through wardrobe and take an honest look at what I am able/willing to wear.
Grievance - 2.5 hours of sleep.
Celebration - This morning, with the amount of tasks I have accomplished, I can be categorized as a super-mom.

There are few things more depressing than watching your body fall to pieces during pregnancy. Just when you think you cannot grow any larger, your feet, ankles, and calves become one unsightly pillar of flabby flesh. When you think you have put enough Palmer's Cocoa Butter on your stomach and thighs to drown a small horse, your skin erupts in neon pink jagged stripes that you are just certain will never disappear. You have a small collection of clothing purchased at Motherhood Maternity that, at the beginning of your pregnancy, was really cute/modest/long enough to go past your giant butt. However, now your breasts are too large to be contained by any shirt made by man, your torpedo tummy has made the length of your shirt barely long enough to cover the stretchy panel of fabric on your jeans, and your aformentioned stretch-marked skin takes away any chance of letting anything look good, no matter how cute it is.

Now that pregnancy is over, I am thrilled to say that I am motivated to get back into shape, and back into clothing. This morning, for the first time, I saw myself in the mirror and was able to see myself getting smaller. This, of course, was a great encouragement to my self-esteem. So today, my attainable goal is to go through my winter and summer clothes and do a bit of "spring wardrobe cleaning". I am one of those people who buys something at Target, or Walmart, or some other equally mediocre store, and wears that article of clothing until it is littered with holes, splattered with paint, or washed to the point where it no longer has any elasticity or shape whatsoever. Many of my clothes I have had since high school, others since college, and almost all of them were purchased for under 10 dollars.

So it is now time to re-evaluate my wardrobe. I have taken all of the advice given by Stacy and Clinton on "What Not to Wear", and I have the best intentions to get a solid set of clothes. They must fit effortlessly, have shape and structure, have appropriate prints and colours, and most importantly, be age appropriate. I am too old to shop in the juniors section. I keep having to tell myself this. Unfortunately, so many juniors clothes are totally adorable! No...stop. I can't think such things. I must grow up. I can look pretty and like an adult. I can find clothes that make my body look good, no matter how much weight or how many curves I have gained as a woman who has been the bearer of multiple children. A couple of parameters:
-I must always be able to wear a bra and not have the straps show.
-I must have shirts that do not allow my breasts to fall out.
-I must have pants/shorts that adequately cover my giant thighs.
-I must wear shoes that don't make me look like a ragamuffin. Bye bye, old comfy sneakers...
-I must never have midriff/lovehandles/lower back showing, no matter which way I bend.
-I must understand that I am NOT the same dress and pant size I was in high school.

I am going to go shopping with all of these things in mind.

Then there is the issue of shopping with two boys under 3. I have NO idea how to accomplish this. Should I take Boy Love to the Y for a couple hours? Do I hire a sitter? Do I put Boy Love in stroller and Baby Love in baby bjorn? Any alternative suggestions that don't require paying additional money or carrying my children?

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal - Finish birth announcements (glue insides together, stuff envelopes, adhere addresses and postage).
Grievance - Wednesdays cannot be longer.
Celebration - I made it to church tonight.

Wednesdays are my favourite days of the week. As a rule, Wednesdays are a bit of a drag for the average Joe. It isn't then beginning of the week, which can be attacked with a fresh-from-the-weekend fervor, and it isn't nearly as close to Friday as it should be. Wednesday is that lukewarm middle ground that leaves everyone wanting more. I love Wednesdays. It is the only day that Big Love has off of work.

Big Love has one of those jobs that keep him occupied at odd hours, for long-winded days, 6 days a week. While that kind of work sounds dreadful to me, he seems to truly love it. I applaud him for his desire, and for his amazing talent in his chosen field, and I am SO very glad he is able to do what he loves so much. Even though I am sure he would prefer to have more hours to himself, his family, and his nights of sleep, he is a trooper who never complains. And even though I would like to be able to see him more, his career is an amazing opportunity for him and for our family. I am able to stay at home with our kids while they are small, and perhaps have a small bearing on the child-rearing.

So his one day off is like Christmas for us. We do our usual lazy puttering around the house all morning, but on Wednesday it includes a big breakfast. After naptime, we then find something to do. Today we took a family trip to the grocery store. Our grocery store trip almost made it to my Celebration of the day, due to the fact that I thought it was so fun. Since Baby Love's arrival, I have only been able to make it to the store once on my own with the boys, and that effort took 2 hours and all of the life-juice out of me. Not so much today. We laughed, we cried, we shed blood, sweat and tears. Actually, we just laughed. It is an amazing thing to laugh on a grocery store trip. It makes the monotonous (and often frustrating) tasks so much more enjoyable. With a very active Boy Love in the basket of the shopping cart, trying to open/eat every package, or poke Baby Love's eyes, or spring from the confines of his rolling metal prison, having a friend there to laugh with you makes for a much more desirable shopping experience. I didn't even cry in the car on the way across the street to our apartment. Big Love has a truly amazing effect on my spirit. Like Exedrin. Or some other illicit drug equivalent to a happy pill that I am unaware of.

I am now at home, Boy Love in bed, Baby Love asleep in his moses basket, and Big Love and I are on our respective computers, taking turns playing our move on online Scrabble and exchanging smart-aleck comments to one another. This is the life. I have pleasantly sleeping children, a husband who mocks me, teases me, and loves me, and the ability to enjoy the precious moments we are able to share.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Job Moment

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal - Get through the day without vomiting.
Grievance - On a scale of 1 to 10, my headache is at about an 8.
Celebration - One of the worship team women from church brought us dinner, and she was nice enough to stay and talk to me. I love human interaction.

Today has been one of those days where I feel a bit like a present-day Job. That would be Job the Bible character, not job the "career". It seems a bit extravagant to say that my situation is reminiscent of Job's in any way, and now that I think about it, it is a little selfish to think that my problems are that big. Anyhow, my day has been quite unfortunate. There is no need to laundry-list my woes, for that just makes me more depressed and it stops you from reading. Instead, I shall turn them into blessings:

Lord, thank you for a toddler with a flair for dramatics. He will forever colour the lives of those around him.

Lord, thank you for blessing me with a brand new baby that I get to spend many hours of uninterrupted bonding time with in the middle of the night.

Lord, thank you for giving my family good health. And even if we were not in good health, thank you for giving us a reason to turn to You in times when we are physically lowest and weakest.

Lord, thank you for being there to clear our minds in the most dramatic or trying of situations. You are our Guide and our Guard.

Lord, thank you for blessing my husband with a job that allows me to stay home and be with our children.

Lord, thank you a lack of sleep, for when the restful times do come, they are most welcomed and we hit our REM cycle really fast.

Lord, thank you for my headache, for you have blessed me head. I am not headless.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Apartment Living

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal - Shave legs. Again. Apparently, that was unattainable yesterday.
Grievance - Boy Love's room is flooded again.
Celebration - My feet once again fit into my black ballet flats without spilling over the top. Perhaps my ankles will once again introduce themselves to society?

I have only been a mother of two for a very short time, but I am still appreciating the rare moments when both of my boys are sleeping. Unfortunately, naptime hours happens to coincide with the hours that the apartment maintenance makes house calls. As one who gets as much sleep as a mother of a newborn ever gets, I yearn for those naptime hours. Even with feedings, housework, and a quiet lunch, I still am able to get a decent little nap in when they sleep. Not so when there is maintenance to be done.

Our apartment is on top of a hill, which in theory is an excellent position to be in when those sudden rainshowers and thunderstorms hit our bright city. However, in execution, the position is far less desirable than we thought. While we are at the top of a hill, we are cleverly placed in a ditch, which quickly fills with water at any sign of precipitation. That, coupled with a giant crack in our foundation, leaves us wading in the soaked carpet of our back bedroom, aka Boy Love's room. After several rains, several phone calls to the office, and several fruitless attempts to suck the water out of the carpet, the apartment people are finally trying to address the bigger issues: the ditch and the foundation crack. Until this is done, our naptime hours are interrupted by a stream of phone calls and people coming in and out.

So I ask the office to phone me if work is going to be done, so I can make sure the back room is empty, the toys are picked up, and our nap is scheduled around the appointment for maximum quality sleep. And until today, I have turned away all service and maintenance people that are not preceded by a phone call. But after having a soaked carpet again all last night and today, it is time to let them in, phone call or not, no matter how much sleep we all lose.

So then begs the question: Is it a ridiculous request to continue to ask that the office calls before they send someone to pound on our door? I feel that this is a common courtesy, not just for service people, but for anyone visiting anyone else's private home. Since I have been turning people away, they have improved the amount of phone calls, but now that necessity has led me to let everyone in at any time, I feel the courtesy calls will stop. Every time someone comes through my door that has not let me know, I find myself trying to put away my milk-laden breasts mid-feeding, throw toys to the side for easy access to whatever room they need to attend to, or come to the door with my Baby Love's bare bottom covered in poo which I was attempting to clean up. On the other hand, it doesn't matter if social graces are used or not. They are here to fix one of my problems. I still need them to come in and fix. Do I insist on a phone call? Do I suck it up and learn to deal? Am I being selfish? Am I jsut playing the whistle-blower for social taboos?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sibling Rivalry

Daily Specs:

Attainable Goal: Shave my legs.
Greivance: Boy Love is constipated.
Celebration: I made a breakfast that consisted of more than cereal or toast.

In my blog posts, I will probably always begin with the Daily Specs. They include the following:
-My goal of the day. Always something completely attainable. Hopefully as the days go on, my goals will become more complicated.
-My greivance of the day. Reminiscent of Daily Low Point.
-My celebration of the day. Something to make me have greater confidence in my abilities as a mother.

As Baby Love sits cradled in my left arm, I tiptoe through the darkness of my Master Bedroom to the changing table. I don't want to wake up Big Love from the little bit of sleep that he gets, and I don't want to draw the kind of attention that will pry Boy Love's eyes from Handy Manny. I make it to the table with nary a sound from myself or the baby, and I begin to unwrap him from his cozy little swaddle. Unfortunately, babies dislike having their diapers change as a rule, and as soon as the morning air hits his little toes, Baby Love lets out a cry. A loaded sigh escapes my lips as Big Love turns over with a start and a muffled, "What's wrong..." and I hear the thundering pitter patter of toddler feet racing from the family room. The shrill "Mommy! Oh, no! Baby cry!" precedes Boy Love's Broadway entrance into the Master, and I know that all is about to go downhill. First comes the stampede across the carpet toward my unguarded legs. Next is the knee-buckling embrace that somehow ends up causing a minor boo-boo, and immediately needs a healing kiss. Then comes the "Hug! Hug Hug!" with wee little arms stretched upward. "Mommy is changing baby's pants right now, son. Wait just a moment then I'll be able to give you a hug." Next, the pregnant pause, followed by Boy Love's famous face-contortions and a piercing cry. Of course, the whole show is completely fake, but it is definately loud and dramatic, which has now permanently woken Big Love from his previously pleasant slumber. He does his best to console/love on/redirect attentions. However, now the phony tantrum is full blown, a virtual smorgasboard of emotion, including but not limited to crocodile tears, lying prostrate on the floor, stamping of feet, pounding of fists, and the ever-so-infrequent glance to see if he is getting the attention he is looking for. At this point, I have stopped trying to assure him that I will be able to hold him when I am finished, and I am not reacting whatsoever to his outburst. Not reacting on the outside, anyway.

In this first couple weeks of having Baby Love at home, sibling rivalry has been a big issue. I had expected as much for obvious reasons, not least of which is the intense clingy-ness (word?) of Boy Love. He has been exclusively Mommy's Little Boy for all of his young days, and when Big Love come into our lives, he had to transition to having another person share mom's affection. Now, with a newborn in the house, he has really been struggling. None of this is a surprise. It still does not tell me how to deal with it. I don't want Boy Love to feel as if he is being constantly criticized for his toddler-like behaviours, but I don't want to coddle him and give in to his every passing whim. Where is the line drawn? What does a mom do to show each child that they love them? I spend one-on-one time with both of my children individually. I love them both very much. How, then, do I show Boy Love that "I am especially fond of him" (to steal a line from The Shack)? I feel that he isn't getting that from me right now, no matter how hard I try. Thoughts? Ideas? Guidance?

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Welcome, all!

I always held those with blogs with the highest respect. Be it their willingness to share their secrets/struggles/successes, their ability to write a sentence that will capture the attention of even the most fair-weather of readers, or merely the motivation to keep it updated, the abilities of the blogger continues to amaze me. Why I have decided to join the flock is still beyond me. I don't know if I have anything to say that holds anyone's interest, and I know for sure that I hold no great insight into life's little episodes. I have no answers, no expertise, and no ability to form a sentence. All I have is a life that continues to teach me about who I am, was, and am becoming. Hopefully, someone out in cyber-land will be in the same boat as me.

A bit about me? Well...for right now I am a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a student of life, a mediocre artist, and most importantly, a lover of the Lord. My God has done amazing things in my life that continue to stupefy me. He has blessed me with an amazing family, who I will frequently refer to in my future posts. I have an amazing husband, henceforth referred to as "Big Love", a 2.5 year old son ("Boy Love"), and a brand new son born last week ("Baby Love"). I have a mother and father living in Oregon where I grew up. They have been happily married for almost 30 years (that is what I say when I can't remember the exact year they were married), and I plan on being just as happy as they are when I am married for that long. I have a little sister ("Cheetah") who is my best friend. She is currently serving her country overseas as a medic in the Army. I miss her somethin' fierce.

Apart from introducing those in my life who play the largest roles, I am going to let my future blogs speak for themselves. There is no reason at all to give you a timeline of my life, but it is dreadfully important that you are familiar with my family set-up. Family is what is most important to me besides my God. It also happens to be all I am focusing on at this point in my journey.

That brings me to my blog. Why would I need a blog? I find myself in a place that I have never expected to be, and I feel that a blog will help me sort through different feelings that, for lack of a better term, plague my mind and heart. I always saw myself as a career woman. I have wanted to bring the arts (fine and performing) into a church setting since I was in college. I figured that I would get married young, create a small stir in the church, start a career, then attempt having a family. Alas, God had different plans. After getting pregnant in college (Boy Love came swiftly after), my path made a really hard right-hand turn toward family. Now, I find myself married with two children, and hoping sometime to get a dog. I have been extremely stressed about being the mother of two children, and I have had to continually tell myself that I can do it. I figure, if women have been having multiple children since the beginning of time, why couldn't I? That brought me to the title of my blog "If Eve Can Do It..." (in reference to Adam's Eve). She had two boys...probably even more than that. And she didn't even have Diaper Genies, wipe warmers, or bouncy chairs to keep her kids comfortable. This should be a cinch for me. However, this is all very unfamiliar territory, and I long to have all the answers. Is that realistic? Of course not. But there is no harm in trying, right?

I would like this blog to be more of an open discussion between myself and all my friends. My posts can be a topic starter, but I would love to hear comments from all of you. All of you are in different points in your lives, and all opinions/comments/rants/encouragments/critiques are welcomed in my house. I will also try and keep a running poll on my page for more interactive fun. So please, comment. Let me know what you are thinking. Let me know that I am completely off-base, or that I am totally right on, dude. I want to be a better person.

Until my next post, I bid you all adieu.

Happy reading, and happy evening.