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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Stick Together

I had a really encouraging talk with a fellow mom the other night.

Sometimes as moms you can feel really, really alone. Not in a physical sense, but in an emotional sense - if that makes sense. Being a parent is hard. It's emotionally exhausting as well as physically taxing; especially with toddlers.

Talking with other moms can be helpful and really lift your spirits when you are feeling alone.

During this conversation, we shared some stories of crazy things our kids have done and how sometimes other parents just don't "get it." Maybe they aren't a muddlesome mother? I find that hard to believe, but I guess some moms have it together more than others...I'm just not one of them, let's be realistic here.

So while having this time of sharing with this friend, it made me realize (even more) how important it is to have other moms and parents in your life that understand you or can at least relate to things you go through as a mom.

Every child develops at a different rate. Every child has their own unique personality. Finding parents who you mesh with is vital when needing support. That's not to say you need a clone of someone who executes the same parenting skills as you or has a child that's even exactly the same age. You just need someone a little understanding that when your child decides to strip naked during a playdate, that it's probably not because you reside in a nudist colony, but that your child is a free spirit who is uninhibited that you are constantly correcting that they must keep their clothes on when not at home.

Kids are often uncontrollable. They do things and say things that embarrass us and have us running from stores and restaurants hoping that there was no one in there that you actually knew. The problem is, we care too much about what others think instead of being confident in our parenting style.

I have friends that are very lenient in their parenting style and I have friends that are extremely strict and disciplined with their kids. I don't judge, because they are doing what works for them.

This morning I took my youngest to the grocery story to pick up a few things while his brother was at school. Every time we go in this store, we get a cookie at the bakery (even when it's only 9 o'clock in the morning).

I was going over this in my mind and how it may look to those around me that my almost 2-year-old was eating a sugar cookie this early, when the most adorable elderly lady whizzed by on her electric cart and came screeching to a stop in front of me.

"Well, look at him enjoying that cookie," she smiled and said.

"Um, yeah. It's only 9 in the morning, but, yeah, you know," I sheepishly replied (there I went again caring about what others think).

"Oh pish posh (yes she said that). I had 7 of these (meaning children), and I know exactly what it's like," she scolded me.

She laughed. I laughed. We gave each other that knowing look.

Stick together. Whether you run into a feisty old lady at the grocery store who gets it, or have coffee with a friend that gets it, find at least one other mom who will laugh and cry with you on this roller coaster of a ride. It really does help; and sometimes, it gets you through the week.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Screaming and Blowouts

The holidays have passed, we're in a new year, Valentine's Day is over and we're back from vacation in sunny FL.

That pretty much sums up our life in the last few months.

We've had plenty of muddled moments that I was just too lazy busy to write about.

The muddled times just don't get to me (as much) anymore. I sort of embrace them. For instance, on the way home from FL, Oliver decided to scream for the last 30 minutes of the plane flight.

Two things:

  1. I was glad this didn't happen on the way to FL when I was flying solo with both boys.
  2. If this had been my first child, I would have been a wreck.
I was completely relaxed about the whole situation. There was nothing I could do about it. For those who have/had kids, I knew they would, hopefully, understand. For those who didn't have children, it was a good life lesson for them :-)

When you're a parent, muddles happen. As hard as you try to prevent them, as much as you try to prepare, muddles will occur - sometimes without warning.

Case in point.

Evan goes to Occupation Therapy on Fridays to help with his fine motor skills, among other things. Oliver and I usually wait in the lobby and play with the toys out there while Evan attends his session. And then the thing that I think we all have experience at one point or another happens: A BLOWOUT.

But wait; blowouts are only supposed to happen with infants. Right?

Au contraire, my friend. It can happen with 20 month old children as well.

I politely asked the secretary where I could change Oliver, and she directed me to one of the therapy rooms because it had a rug. Oh how I wished there wasn't a rug.

We made our way back, I laid Oliver on the carpet and opened up the diaper to see the damage. Unfortunately when I laid him down, it squished up the back and out the sides of the diaper; and ALL OVER the carpet; and his shirt; and his pants; and his socks.

On top of that, I had closed the therapy room, so after I had attempted to clean up what I could with the last 10 wipes I had and opened up the door, the smell wafted into the hallway.

With Oliver in a clean diaper (and nothing else), he toddled after me as I sought out a garbage bag to place the mess in. Then I told the secretary of my predicament, to which she grimaced and replied, "Oh, that's OK. We work with kids, so it's expected."

So after Evan's session was over, I put Oliver in his winter coat and rushed him to the car.

Embarrassing? Yes. But after 2 kids, this incident has taught me to ALWAYS bring a change of clothes with. It doesn't matter the age, it's always smart to bring an extra change of clothes.

With ever muddle that comes my way, I have decided to simply take a life lesson away from it. Whether it be practical or amusing. There is always something to learn.