(For less wordless fun, make sure you are hovering over each picture!)
The other day we laid Baby Blueberry down in the pack and play which is serving as a make shift crib in our living room and MM came in the room, looked around and seemed to panic. “Where’s the baby?” he immediately wanted to know – which shows you how rarely she is not in our arms – this little girl is going to be spoiled rotten. We laughed it off and assured him she was right there and fine but at the same time, my heart swooned. He loves her and wants her around.
There’s a lot of love in our home right now. Our newest addition has been tugging at the heart strings of every member of our family. We’re all simultaneously over the moon for our little baby girl, each of us experiencing new love again. We’re also falling in love with each other a little more every day, as we experience this new chapter in our lives. I am so proud of MM and how he is adapting to his Big Brother status, watching him get a little bit older and more independent and helpful – he’s no longer just my little baby boy, he’s a big brother and takes this job very seriously- it’s bitter sweet, watching him grow up, but mostly sweet. Watching my husband beam with pride over his little baby girl, I can’t help but fall in love with him all over again – he’s such an incredible father, very attentive and involved. I couldn’t do this without him
And my grandmother has been the biggest help – playing with MM and helping to keep him in good humor, watching him while I was in the hospital and helping to make sure I rest, even if I don’t want to. We’ve also had this wonderful opportunity to bond and spend some quality time together like we haven’t been able to since I was living with her in high school. My grandmother helped raise me and it’s been so amazing to watch MM with her – he is very lucky to have this time with her and we are going to miss her a lot when she leaves.
And I’m doing pretty okay, too. I’m told by Dan and my grandmother that I look great, I’m healing well and look how wonderful I’m doing. And maybe they’re just saying that, but it’s still nice to hear. I feel great. We’re dead tired and not without our complaints, but we’re also deliriously happy and glowing with our “new love.”
Love Thursday is the brain child of Chookooloonks. Check out her post today for more thoughts on love, and the comments section for other people playing along.
BB (Baby Blueberry) was born Tuesday July 21, 2009 @ 8:39am. She weighed 7 pounds 15 ounces (maybe) and was 18 inches long (more on that maybe later). She’s absolutely perfect. I’m still all tired and in new mom / major surgery recovery mode, so the rest will have to wait, but for now…
This is Jean @ workingmomma247 – Jen’s favorite Texan. Jen wanted us to share our birth story or parenting advice of how to handle more than 1 small child. I bring you 13 mom of multiple kid survival assvice tips and formulas. You can cry on my shoulder or thank me later – which ever you prefer.
I’d love to tell you Jen, that having 2 will be a piece of cake, but that would give you the sunshine and ponies version and I don’t do sunshine and ponies.
For more Thursday 13 participants check out the new home of Thursday Thirteen!
Big thanks to Jean for her brutally honest advice and invaluable formulas for success – if your friends won’t tell you this stuff, who will, right? What guest posts do I have lined up for tomorrow? You’ll have to check back to find out…
I don’t think I understood what love was before him – what it truly meant and how powerful the emotion really was. It can be all consuming and blow you over like a leaf in the wind – but it can also just wash over you like a cool breeze, making all the crazy around you okay again. And this love – it doesn’t just go away. Even when they drive you bat shit crazy all day, whining and nagging as preschoolers seem wont to do – there are still these moments, always these moments that just erase the rest of it. It doesn’t matter because there is LOVE and it’s always there. I feel the same way about my husband, but romantic love is more complicated and harder to be sure of – it’s tough stuff and it’s just as rewarding but totally different, you know? This mother love just is – there is no doubt or learning curve – it just exists one day and you know it isn’t going anywhere. I still find it amazing that in two weeks I will be opening my heart to even more of this awesome stuff. It’s unreal.
…love thursday is the brain child of chookooloonks – read it, love it, read the comments to love some more…
The latest video episode at momversation, Why Isn’t Just Being a Mom Enough? talks about the labels we assign ourselves and the way people look at those labels. The whole “war” between working moms and stay at home moms is well known. Some of us envy the other side, even when we enjoy the few perks of our choices – we can’t help but see the lusher, greener grass surrounding the mothers who chose Choice B. Some of us passionately believe in the choices we’ve made and like a momma bear, we’ll defend that choice to the end. Some of us had no choice and will either be content with that or longingly wish to try the other side someday. But all of us should try to support each other more – because whether we work a 9 to 5, go to school, or stay home with our kids – we are all faced with a myriad of obstacles, stressors and als0 – fringe benefits.
I started working at the tender age of fourteen and although I just barely worked after college, I’ve seen enough of the workforce in the nine years or so that I did work, to know that it is not any better for me than staying home with my son. I have workaholic tendencies which I think would have been a big concern trying to balance the two aspects of a working mother’s life. And having grown up the child of a single father, I have a few reminders from my own childhood of the advantages that being a stay at home mom will bring my own children. I never got to do the girl scouts thing or even join any extracurriculars until I got my license. There was not always somebody home to ask how my day was, if I did my homework and to make sure I stayed out of trouble. And sure I turned out okay, but I want something more than that for my own children and also to experience those things myself. And I can afford to give them that – so why would I opt out?
And you know sometimes it gets mundane. Sometimes I shut down and we don’t go out as much as we should and I get bored of playing trucks and blocks and watching PBS shows – but that’s where you say, “It’s time to find the balance.” All lives need balance – and nobody should consider themselves just a anything, in my opinion. Society likes to define people by what they do and what their interests are but is anybody really so one dimensional that this can be 100% accurate. Is anybody out there just a secretary? Would my husband happily consider himself just an engineer – or even just a father and engineer, like has no other interests outside those two things? No – we are all more than that. We have hobbies and family lives, children or no, interests that extend past our occupation or family status.We need those other things to maintain a well balanced life.
Of course when people ask you what you do at a party or other social gathering, admittedly I think the working mothers of the world have an easier time of it – more things to mention means more chances to connect with the asker and find a common thread. We SAHMs can mention motherhood and we’ll either be given the “how lucky” or the blank stare or whathaveyou – and even though we have other interests that they might connect with, it’s not an easy thing to find in that all encompassing generic question. And how do you choose the one thing? Are you interested in politics or religion or writing or gardening? Maybe all of those things – but which one do you mention because they certainly won’t want a list as long as what you might put on your Facebook profile. Having a career on top of whatever else you are doing gives you an obvious go to – you’ve made a career out of this thing, thus it is given precedence. And you know, whatever – hopefully a few people will feel the need to chat you up longer than three seconds to figure out what you are about and the ones who don’t, well clearly it’s their loss. I think the biggest concern is not how others see us but how we see ourselves. It’s a way bigger deal if you consider yourself just a…
Sometimes, especially in the baby days, being a stay at home mom can feel like just a – just a poop cleaning, baby feeding, house cleaning, sleep deprived zombie. Sometimes our family lives get so hectic and all consuming that the idea of pursuing a hobby is laughable. Sometimes a career woman might feel so consumed in her job that she eats, sleeps and dreams floor plans or profit margins or some other thing and you sometimes have to step back and say, “What else did I honestly think about today?” It’s easy to get consumed in the things we are passionate about. That’s okay. Because it’s not permanent and we aren’t really just those things – they are just what we are focusing on for the sake of our survival and that of our families. Because at some point, life changes and new things will take precedence. Being the stay at home mother of a baby is nothing like being the stay at home mother of a toddler – and I’m guessing that the same will be true when I am the stay at home mother of multiples and as they get older and what about when they leave the nest? Will I never pursue a career? I don’t know. There are certainly jobs I would enjoy trying someday, later. And if our financial situation changed, I’d have to roll with those punches.
What hats you wear in your life and how you feel about those hats is an important thing to think about. Are you happy with the choices you’ve made? That can make a big difference in how you see other people seeing you and how much joy you can bring to your daily tasks. So, yes, make sure you are supporting all the other wonderful women in your lives (and the men, too!) but also make sure you are supporting yourself. Like Cynthia comments at the end of the video, own yourself and own what you do.
In college I killed a cactus. I have long assumed that I am probably lacking in the green thumb department, so I was just as surprised as anyone else when I suddenly had the urge to buy a house plant recently. Initially I was going to buy one of those clever hanging plants to display on my balcony, but my husband (love him) suggested I start with a smaller (read: cheaper) plant with the mind set that it would be wiser to kill an inexpensive plant first than a larger investment plant. It made sense – I took no offense to this idea because it’s true. I love that he knows me well enough to realize that this is both an important step for me, but also one that we should step into lightly, making baby steps. A month from now I may have lost all interest in house plants…
Then again, every time I look at this little plant, which we picked up at our local farmers market for just $3, I like it more and more. I bought it with a small amount of apprehension as I know nothing about plants and didn’t know if this one was “a good one” – or how much of a commitment caring for it would be. I wasn’t even sure it was my style. But I took a chance and I have to say I’m pretty smitten with it. I check in on it a couple times a day to make sure it’s handling this heat wave okay, checking for any dead petals or leaves that could be trimmed away. It’s remarkably easy on some levels, this caring for plants thing seems to involve a bit of common sense. Go figure.
In a lot of ways plants and babies are pretty similar. They require a certain amount of love and attention (though babies admittedly require more of it) to grow, but when you do it right the results are stunning. They are ever so delicate and at the same time, tougher than they look. It’s a balancing act. The care and nurturing of them is both new and daunting but also relatively obvious once you figure it out. Keep them alive and help them to flourish. Show them love and watch them grow. Marriage is similar I suppose. It would seem that I’ve entered yet another new relationship where a certain amount of commitment is required to keep it healthy. If that commitment is genuine and well kept up with, things should go well. I can remember looking at motherhood as it approached, hesitantly wondering if I was cut out for this – not having the slightest idea how to care for something so small. Looking at marriage was similar – would I be any good at this being a wife thing? I hope that my houseplant fares as well as my marriage and son have.
I’ve had a lot of new beginnings in the past few years. Several times now I have made commitments to new people, places and things – new ways of living. It’s been impossible at each point to know for certain that things will work out for the best, but that leap of faith has been rewarded each time. Look how far we’ve come. Wonderful husband, darling son, exciting new chapters in our lives together unfolding as we’ve left the comforts of our upbringings and branched out to this new home, this new place, this new life. Soon we’ll stretch ourselves further and become a family of four. There are apprehensions and fears, of course, but if history has shown anything, I’m thinking it will go well.
I cannot wait to meet the newest member of our family. I cannot wait to witness my heart filling to the brim again – to see her face and know my daughter, to learn the art of parenting a second time as I figure out this whole “mother of two” thing. And I wonder, after this, when I have conquered marriage, motherhood, moving, the mothering of two and the caring of my little flower – what new beginning will we reach for next? What will be the next chapter in our lives that will test us in ways we can’t yet imagine?
Beth at MOMFormation wrote a great piece yesterday about how we define / describe ourselves. According to a recent article in Newsweek, the most common word used to describe First Lady Michelle Obama is “classy,” which I think is unsurprising, despite her reputation as an incredible mother, she has created a life for herself worth descriptions beyond “mother.” It got Beth to thinking about how we (her readers and fellow moms) would define ourselves, or how the world would come to define us if we were placed in the public spotlight. She hasn’t answered the question yet herself, and I’ll confess I’m not sure where I’d know to begin.
I am incredibly proud of my role as a mother. It’s the most fulfilling thing I’ve done thus far, and at the moment I don’t think there is anything wrong with that – I’m young and this is now. But how will I feel later? I have no idea. I know mothers can struggle a lot with their identity outside of motherhood so I thought this would be an interesting discussion to pass along to you, my readers, in case you haven’t read Beth’s article.
How do you define yourself? What one word would you use to describe yourself? What word do you think others would use? What word would you like them to use?
I hope you are all having a fabulous Mother’s Day and weekend. We’ve had a busy weekend with the family, trying to enjoy every last minute with them while we can. In honor of Mother’s Day, I thought I’d list my ten favorite things about being a mother, idea snagged from the Graco blog.