Is this it? Maybe…

I apologize that I haven’t written a post in over a week. Here is an update on what’s been going on with me. For the past month I have been struggling on what to do with this blog. I started this little website, 7 months ago, partly because I thought other women would be able to relate to some of the less glamorous parts of being a wife and a mom. This blog was my way of letting other women know it’s not always going to be rainbows and butterflies. Sometimes it sucks – and that’s ok. It doesn’t mean we aren’t happy or that we are failing in some way. It means we are honest. This blog has been so therapeutic for me and I’m so glad I started it. However, I’m at a bit of a crossroads right now.

The other reason I started this blog was because I thought other women may want a place to share their stories – the funny, the annoying, and the ridiculous things that happen to them on a daily basis. That part of my vision didn’t really take off. For the most part, I have been the single voice of this blog, and while that’s perfectly fine, it was never my intention. Its become very time consuming coming up with numerous posts each week, and while at first I was enjoying it, all of a sudden, it’s starting to feel like a bit of a chore.

I just moved, my son’s no longer napping, I’m trying to get pregnant, and I’m studying to take my GRE’s. The idea of sitting down to write my posts at night has become a daunting task – and I know it shouldn’t be that way. It’s just that I’m so energized by where I’m at right now and I want to explore my new life and all it has to offer. I used to write my posts while my son napped, but that is two (sometimes three) hours that is now gone – this abrupt change in his routine has become a real pain in my ass to say the least!

So the question I’ve been asking myself and my closest friends is, “What now? Do I shut this thing down? Take a break? Keep going?” [Read more...]

Playdates aren’t always playful!

I’ve been holding onto this story for months! I have wanted to share this with all of you so badly, but I was afraid to because I didn’t know if this mama read my blog and I didn’t want to have an awkward run in with her if she did. Now that I’ve moved, I’m feeling a little braver, so here goes.

A few months ago I went on a playdate from hell. It was exactly like those horrible blind dates, where you instantly know it’s not going to work out, but you have to stay through the disastrous dinner (and maybe dessert) anyway. First playdates feel a ton like first dates, don’t they? You don’t really know the other mom or child that well. On the surface, it seems like you may have a lot in common, but until you have that first playdate, you can’t be sure. And now, it’s not just you who needs to mesh. Your freaking kids have to hit it off too. Talk about pressure!

There was a mom that I kept running into everywhere I went. We were in the same library class, ran into each other at the park, and even saw each other at the grocery store. Our kids were close in age and after a few smiles and hellos, we exchanged numbers. She invited me over to her house and I accepted.

Whenever I go to someone’s house, I like to bring something. It’s so hard because when you don’t know the person, you don’t know what they like (or what they let their kids eat). I decided to bring a snack for the kids – those organic letter cookies that all the kids usually enjoy at the other playdates I’ve been on. When we got to her house, I handed her the cookies and told her I brought a snack for the kiddos. She looked at me and said, “Oh, I already gave my son a snack before you came. Didn’t your son eat snack already?” Ummm, my son eats all day. And since food is usually a central part of the playdates I have been on in the past, I was guessing my child was going to want a snack in the two hours we would be at her house. Awkward! I’ll get back to this snack thing in a bit.

The first toy my son set his eyes on was a car in the foyer. The mom’s jaw set as she said, “Oh, we aren’t playing with that today. We are only playing with toys in the living room. The car is in here for a reason.” Ummm, okay. I ripped my son’s hands off the car and distracted him with a Mr. Potato Head in a really cool Mr. Potato Head case that I saw in the living room. I asked her if he could play with it. Her response was, “Oh, I guess. It’s just really hard to put the pieces back in the case.” So was that a yes or a no? It’s in the designated acceptable toy area. Awkward! My son played with it for a few minutes and then asked for his snack. I asked her if it was ok if he had a snack and where he should sit. She showed me a kids table and I sat him down. As my son was eating the cookies, I was sitting on the floor next to him, frantically trying to catch each crumb. I instantly sensed that this was not a house to make a mess in. While I was busy catching cookie crumbs, she was busy putting the Mr. Potato Head back in the box. My son asked if he could still play with it, but she didn’t stop putting it away. I guess playtime with that particular toy was over. Once my son was finished eating, I surveyed the table, chair and floor, making sure I picked up every last crumb. I thought I had them all and breathed a sigh of relief. As I walked away, she immediately came over and picked up a crumb and threw it out. Sh-t, I must have missed one! Awkward! [Read more...]

Maybe they’re onto something!

I recently had dinner with two friends who were born in countries other than the United States. They shared with me something very interesting about their view on becoming a new mom – a view that we definitely do not share here in the United States. Their cultures believe that new moms need to rest and heal from the strain of pregnancy and child birth. They are both from different countries, but their experience was the same – after they had their babies, for the first month, other than maybe breast feeding, and cuddling with the baby to bond, they didn’t do much else. They recuperated, while their families came in and did everything else.

My initial thought was, “What?!? That’s crazy. I wanted to take care of my baby – not have someone else do it.” And then I had another conversation – this time with a friend who just became a new mom. She’s hormonal, she’s exhausted, she’s in pain from delivering her child, and she’s stressed because she doesn’t know what the hell she’s doing (sound familiar?). Talking to her brought me right back to that place. I remember all too well feeling all of those things. Becoming a mom is freaking hard!

I started thinking about how I had postpartum anxiety and how many people suffer from that, along with postpartum depression after having a baby. Maybe my two friends from different countries are onto something. Maybe new moms do need time to heal – maybe if we had that time, postpartum issues would be less prevalent. I’m not saying families need to come in and do everything – I’m not saying that at all. I’m just saying that many new moms are struggling and we need to do something – at the very least, a conversation is in order. [Read more...]

Bye bye binky!

It has finally happened!!! We are a binky free house! I don’t want to jinx this or anything, and maybe I’m speaking too soon, but it was so much easier than I thought. Famous last words, right? Here’s how it all went down…

Last week, a good friend of mine had a baby. I innocently showed the pictures to my son and here is how the conversation went down:
My son: Mama, the baby doesn’t have a binky.
Me: Do you think she needs to have a binky?
My son: Yes! Baby can’t sleep without a binky.
Me (lightbulb going off in my head): Hmmm….well since you are a big boy now, and you have binkys, do you think you can give the baby your binkies?
My son: Yes! Baby can have my binkies.

Ok, so that was easy – the decision had been made. I was guessing though that this would be easier said than done. Throughout the week, we kept talking about how he was going to send his binkies to the new baby. He even watched Elmo’s Bye Bye Binkie episode a few times – the song is super catchy! Still, the whole thing seemed too abstract. It’s one thing to talk about giving up the binky and another to actually do it.

On Sunday, the night before the big binky send off, my son informed me that he would like a pillow in exchange for his binkies. I was so on it. Instead of making my life easier and just giving him one of ours, I searched for hours for a toddler pillow. Sunday night was a big fail – I didn’t find one anywhere. Then a friend informed me that Pottery Barn Kids sold them. I went there Monday and searched the whole damn store. I didn’t see the toddler pillows anywhere. I was just about to throw in the towel when a sales person saw my distress and asked me if she could help me find something. “YES,” I exclaimed. “I need a toddler pillow for my son who is giving up his binky – TODAY! I promised him a pillow and I am running out of time. Nap time is in an hour! HELP!!” She informed me that the toddler pillows weren’t kept on the floor, but in the stock room upstairs (ummm, why?!?). She ran up to get me one and I was on my way home with the goods. Phew! [Read more...]

Addicted to technology

I have a problem. I’ve been in denial for too long and I just need to come clean. The first step is admitting it to myself (and all of you). My name is Secretn0 and I am addicted to technology. There – I said it.

I didn’t intend for this to happen. In fact, I fought getting a smart phone for years. People made fun of me and my old school flip phone, but I simply refused to upgrade. Why do I need access to my email and the internet 24 hours a day? I have a computer at home for those things. When I am out and about, I don’t need to be surfing the web or responding to emails. I’m not that important – it can wait.

And then it happened. My cell phone contract was up and when I renewed they offered me a free smartphone. I caved. That same Christmas I received an iPad. At first, I didn’t use the savvy technology much. I wasn’t used to it. Over time though, something changed. I started relying on it more and more. It has gotten so bad recently that I can’t even sit at a red light without checking my phone for something – a text, a call, facebook, the weather – it doesn’t matter. And if I am at home, my iPad is never more than an arms reach away. I used to have to go into the room where the desktop computer was, turn it on, sign on to the internet, and then look up what I wanted. Just the thought of doing all that usually deterred me. Now with my iPad so close and so convenient, I find things to look up constantly – and I don’t have to leave my bed or my couch to do it.

A friend of mine recently quit Facebook and when I asked her why, she explained that it was interfering in her ability to be present in her life. She said that she would be sitting at her son’s football games, scrolling through her newsfeed instead of watching him play, or talking with the other moms. It got me to thinking. [Read more...]

Dear new mom

Yesterday one of my best friends had her first baby. This post is for her and for all the other new moms out there.

Dear new mom,

You just gave birth to a baby. A baby that will now rely on you for absolutely everything. Holy shit, right? It’s more than a little overwhelming. Not to mention, your body just went through something completely horrific (I don’t care what anyone says – pushing a baby through that little hole down below is not freaking natural; having surgery to get the baby out is no walk in the park either so either way, your body has been used and abused!). You are a ball of hormones, your body hurts, you are sleep deprived and you are embarking on the most important and life altering journey of your life- motherhood. Welcome to the insanity :-).

Whatever you are feeling right now at this moment is completely normal. You may be on a baby high or you may be having major baby blues. If you are on a high right now – cherish this special moment. At some point, the high will go away. Don’t worry – it will come back. It’s just that nothing stays perfect forever. It’s inevitable that at some point, things will get a little ugly. You’ll get through it.

If you are at a low point right now, the same thing applies to you – thankfully, it won’t last forever. I’m going to say that again, because if you are feeling low right now you need to hear it:

This feeling won’t last forever!

When my son was 6 weeks old, and I hit my low, I seriously thought it was never going to go away. That I was destined to be a mess of a mom forever. That wasn’t the case (thank God), and it won’t be the case for you. Trust me! Motherhood is filled with amazing highs and shitty lows. At some point, we all will go through this bumpy roller coaster of emotions. Nobody gets through motherhood unscathed. I like to think I got my chaos out of the way early and that maybe I will be spared in his teenage years (probably not, but wishful thinking people!).

Here is my biggest piece of advice for you new mamas: accept help – from anyone. Seriously, if the mailman offers to do a load of laundry for you, say yes! You have enough going on, just trying to figure out how to be someone’s mom. I’m going to warn you right now – you can’t do it all by yourself. You will run out of adrenaline and find yourself laying on the floor crying and trying not to pass out if you try (sound familiar?). In the beginning, let someone bring you food (or order out for a bit). If someone comes over and offers to feed or change the baby so you can shower or eat something, say yes! If your husband offers to take one of the middle of the night feedings, smile and nod your head! [Read more...]

Seeking new friends – perfect moms with perfect kids, need not apply

As you all know, I recently just moved. In a few weeks, my husband will be starting his new job and I will be home with my son. As a stay at home mom, it is vital to my sanity that I find other stay at home mom friends. Otherwise I would spend all day every day talking only to my two and a half year old. Some moms are cool with that, but I’m not ashamed to admit that I need more. I need other moms to talk with and bitch with. I need other moms to laugh with – often times at our own kids!

Here is what I don’t need. I don’t need “perfect moms” who have “perfect kids.” If you have been reading my blog for more than a minute, you know that I am a hot mess. It works for me. I have no problem admitting that my child is not perfect. I think he is freaking fantastic and I love him as much as anyone can possibly love another – but I can admit that sometimes he can be a real pain in the ass. I can’t subject him or myself to a mom or a child who does everything right all of the time. It’s just not natural!

When I was living in Massachusetts, I was invited to a playgroup. One of the moms I had never met before, walked in and her first words were, “I’m sorry I’m late. My son was being an asshole.” I fell in love with her right then and there. She had me at asshole. Some of you may be appalled that this mother would use such a word to describe her son. [Read more...]

The Simple Things

Right now my son is napping and I am sitting outside on my porch writing this post. This is the first time I have ever been able to quietly enjoy a summer day while my son is asleep. Until a few days ago, I have always lived in apartments, so I was stuck inside like a caged animal while my son slept. Not today, my friends. Today, I am basking in the sun with the baby monitor (and a glass of wine) perched next to me. It’s the simple things.

I even have a snack that I made in the kitchen after I put him down. This may not seem like a big deal to you, but when I first had my son, we lived in a 1 bedroom apartment in NYC. We converted the dining room into my son’s room, except we never put up any walls. Big mistake! My son’s room connected to both the kitchen and the living room. For the first 18 months of his life, whenever he was napping, or asleep for the night, the kitchen was off limits. I used to be held hostage in my bedroom or else risk waking him and experiencing his baby wrath. Today, I am finishing my snack and then going back in the kitchen for seconds. It’s the simple things.

Last week when we moved into our new home, I was trying to get my son to leave the driveway and go into the backyard to play. He adamantly refused. I could not understand what his deal was. We have a huge fenced in backyard. I thought he would take one step into it and never want to leave. I asked him why he didn’t want to go into the backyard and he explained to me that he wanted to play outside. He kept repeating it over and over that he wanted to stay and play outside. It finally hit me. My two and a half year old didn’t understand that the backyard WAS outside. He’s only ever played outside at parks and in our apartment’s parking lot. He has never been able to run free while mommy sits back and watches. It’s the simple things. [Read more...]

There’s no place like home

Ten years ago, I moved away from the city that I grew up in. I was a bright eyed, young adult who was so excited to embark on an adventure. I had no idea what the adventure would be and I didn’t care. I was just excited for the possibilities.

In the decade that I’ve been gone, I started a new career, got married, moved a few times and had a baby – and that’s just the abridged version. I’ve made new friends, spent quality time with old friends, tried new things and learned a lot about who I am and who I want to be. I certainly got what I wanted out of my original move – its been one hell of an adventure!

Now I’m going back home.

Some might look at this move as an ending to my story. Adventure complete. I don’t see it that way at all. I will be looking at my old hometown through a very different lens than the one I looked through as a teenager and young adult. My priorities have changed as have my interests. Not to mention, the city itself has changed a bit too. I will have a lot of exploring to do – and this time I get to do it with my husband and my son.

I can’t wait!

In the last ten years, I have lived in two of the most amazing and exciting cities. I had the time of my life. Now I’m ready to have some new adventures in a familiar place with familiar faces. I’m ready to go home.

They say there’s no place like it!

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Onwards and upwards

Today is our last day before we move. I am going to try to balance the running around and tying up loose ends craziness with some last day enjoyment by visiting some of our favorite people and places.

Tomorrow we will be starting a new adventure, which means I will have an entirely new city and state to cause havoc in. I will of course be blogging all about it. To ensure that you don’t miss any of my “inappropriate” moments as a mom, friend, woman and wife, make sure you subscribe to my blog. That way all new posts will be sent directly to your email.

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