Thursday, April 4, 2013

9: Don't Kid Yourself

When my first baby was born I had a fear of the pacifier. I thought that if I gave it to him he would continue to want it until he finally succumbed to peer pressure on his first night in a college dormitory. I restricted it's use to bedtime. As an infant he used it whenever he was going to fall asleep. Then it only appeared in his crib.

Unfortunately he never got the hang of retrieving it on his own and getting it back into his mouth. And because I like sleep -- sleep which is not interrupted by getting out of bed every half hour to put the damn thing back into his mouth -- he was quickly weened from the pacifier all together over a single night of wailing. All before he was 18 months old.

I believed that I had some control over his pacifier use. (And maybe I evidenced by the abrupt weening I forced on him.) I believed that if you don't want your child to want a pacifier, you just don't give them one. I believed that if you want your children to eat healthfully, you only give them healthy foods. I believed that if you want your children to only sleep in their own beds, you only put them in their beds and not in yours.

Well, I was kidding myself.

My second little angel is a pacifier hog. He LOVES his "ba". He likes it to sleep with, to wake up with, to drive in the car with, to hang around the house with. "I need my BAAAA!" he yells. Fortunately at 2-and-a-half he seems to be self-weening. He doesn't ask for it as often and can happily play for hours, ba-free. But it's still there...way past the point I am comfortable with.

Healthy meals is another area we have little control over. Introduce your child to french fries once and they become the preferred vegetable. And when your toddler wakes up in the middle of the night do you want to struggle for hours trying to get them back to sleep in their own beds, or will you give in to your own need to sleep and let them in your bed for the night?

I would like to now publicly apologize to every mother I quietly judged for giving her child chicken nuggets for dinner more often then not (or in our house, "macaroni and meatballs"). I'm sorry to the parents I judged for letting their 4 year old sleep in bed with them. And to the parents I shook my head at when I saw their preschooler walking around with a pacifier. I have become a parent. The one thing I do know now is that I know absolutely nothing.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

8: Daylight Saving Time

Did you survive pushing the clocks forward?

You wouldn't think that one measly hour would make all that big a difference in a life. One hour on one day. But let me start at the beginning...

The boys went to bed on Saturday night at their regular time, 7 PM. I was tired so I went to bed an hour earlier then usual. Then the boys slept a little late on Sunday. So with going to bed early and them sleeping in, I got some real.good.sleep. This time change thing is a piece of cake! I thought we lost an hour? How did I gain sleep??

Sleeping in was a mistake. Our whole day shifted...everything was late and then the sun was streaming in the windows when it was time to make dinner so I didn't even feel hungry never mind in the mood to prepare food. We eat in the dark, dang it!

Sunday night bedtime was a little rough. I was on high-anxiety because my 4-year-old had to get up for school the next day. Understandably, it just didn't feel like bedtime -- just like it didn't feel like breakfast time or nap time or dinner time -- so it took the boys longer to fall asleep. But we did it! We all fell asleep! And, seriously, with a toddler, that can be the accomplishment.

But here is where it really fell apart. My 6:40 AM alarm is set on my phone. My phone showed the correct, new time. BUT apparently there is a SECOND clock on the phone that runs the alarm. AND THAT CLOCK DIDN'T CHANGE. Wait, what? How can that be? So at 7:20 AM I woke up on my own, leaped out of bed, changed my clothes in an instant, and went into the boys room. Have you ever woken up a sound-asleep 4 year old? They don't care for it. I got him to semi-consciousness and then had to lift him up out of the bed and carry him into the kitchen to be dressed-while-crying and force-fed breakfast. Good morning sunshine! Happy Monday to yoooou!

He made it onto the bus, which was early just to annoy us further.

And if anyone knows how to change the alarm-clock-clock on my LG phone, please share.

Monday, March 11, 2013

7: Gratitude

 Up until now this blog has been a bit negative. I don't want it to be that way but I'm using this forum to get from feeling complete yuck to feeling joy again.

So ya'll have to suffer a bit with me and then, hopefully, at the end or maybe the middle we'll get to enjoy the mental-state equivalent of an ice cream sundae.

There is one life story that I have running in my head and it's the tragedy...the messed up relationships I had before I was married, the messy relationship I have with my husband, how hard motherhood is, how loosing a job and a house sucks, how moving back home has felt like being dragged back by the undertow of my history. (Moving back home is just bizarre. I'm sure there's a future blog post there.)

But I also have another story. This one starts with being born into a really wonderful family. My parents and my brother (my only sibling) are supportive, encouraging and funny. I can't say I never wanted for anything but I certainly never needed anything. I got a decent education (could have been better if I had only applied myself...or so I was told time and time again). I've always had friends (not a ton but always enough). I have been a good employee and a great times. I fulfilled a life dream and traveled to Ireland and France. And my greatest achievement by far are birthing two beautiful, healthy little boys. And that's just the highlight reel.

I think I need to replay the good skits more often and edit out out the blooper reel.

Do you have negative thoughts on your mind often? How do you tell them to shut it?