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One Year Old Birthday Parties…

6 Sep

Carson has A LOT of friends.  He is very popular.  (READ: We have a lot of friends with kids Carson’s age).  I used to dread kid birthday parties, but I have taken a total 180 on this, and now I thoroughly enjoy them.  That being said, I have taken a different approach to one-year-old gift giving.  As in, I do not do it.  I don’t really know what my friends think about this.  Here’s my thoughts on it–When I see a giant pile of gifts for a one-year-old, I don’t think I need to contribute to it.  What does a one-year-old TRULY NEED?  Not much, I can tell you that.  Also, a one-year-old is not going to know what I am bringing or not bringing to their party.  I am the first to admit that the one-year-old birthday party is primarily about the mother.  Not the father, or even the one-year-old.  It is about the mom.  I think it is a celebration that you made it through the crucial first year. 

Anyways, back to the gift-giving…What I have decided to do instead of traditional gift giving is give a donation to a charity that is a good fit for the one-year-old’s family.  I feel good about this decision.  At a recent birthday party I went to, I donated to Autism Speaks because I know that this is an important charity to this family.  The nice thing is that an e-card is delivered to the family saying a donation was made in the child’s name. 

As the kids get older, I will definitely give gifts.  But for now, I truly feel that rather than adding to a pile of gifts, donating to a charity is a better way to celebrate making it through one year with a happy, healthy child.  I’m curious to know what you think?

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How Do You Stop The Snowball?

10 Feb

Independent of all these snowstorms, there is a Texas-sized snowball rolling my way.  It is packed with a whole lot of anxiety, along with some fear, sadness, and guilt thrown in for good measure.  And I don’t know how to stop it.

While feel better about my work arrangements, and this is the best decision for us, it is still not my first decision.  And while the snowball is smaller than it was before the part-time decision, it is still HUGE and LOOMING.  I have a hard time admitting my vulnerability with this situation, but it is so all-encompassing that I have to. 

In 2 1/2 weeks, I will be dropping my son of at a virtual stranger’s house.  I don’t even think I need to elaborate on that situation to make it sound any worse, but I will.  He is not taking a bottle.  I am told that this happens.  I am told “We see this sometimes.  He will make it up with marathon feedings when he is back with you”.  Oh, I think, that doesn’t sound so bad.  “He won’t eat for seven hours?”, I ask.  They nod.  Huh.  “Will he be miserable?”, I ask.  “Yes, probably.”  OH.  So, he won’t starve, he will just be miserable for seven hours.  Ok, that doesn’t make me feel much better after all.

In my delusioned mind, my son was going to sleeping through the night when I went back to work.  I would be so well rested, it would be no problem.  Last night we had a rough night.  I was up from 12:30-2 a.m. and then Carson thought he might like to start his day at 5 a.m. instead of his usual 6:30-7:30.  At 5:30, the hubbs took Carson from me and ordered me back to bed, where I cried myself to sleep wondering how I would be able to have nights like this and then go to work for 7 a.m.

At this point, I feel lucky to be able to have a conversation with a grown-up and string together a few coherent sentences.  In two weeks, I am going to have to talk medical with people who are going to have to believe that I am, in fact, knowledgable and good at my job and not some tearful, blubbering fool.  I do not know how I am going to do it. 

My snowball is getting bigger and closer every day.

Closer And Closer…

8 Feb

Huh, time hasn’t stopped yet.  Apparently, as hard as I wish for this to happen, it doesn’t seem that it is possible.  I am now 20 days away from going back to work…and the closer I get, the faster the time goes.  Today I filled out the daycare paperwork.  Reality is definitely setting in. 

Back when I wrote I Just Want To Be A Mom I was still going back to work full-time, working 4 ten-hour days.  I had a lot of anxiety about that.  The good news, for those who don’t know, is that I am now going back part-time: 5 six-hour days for 30 hours (7-1 shift and 1-7 shift).  When we came to that decision, I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off me.  Going back to work didn’t seem like so much of an impossibility. 

So, I feel better about going back to work, but it still wouldn’t be my first choice.  I am three short weeks away from that day that seemed so far off.  My mother-in-law comments how much Carson loves me, how he watches me all the time.  I love that, I love being his whole world–but every time she says those things, my heart breaks a little thinking about being away from him.  I have seen every first FIRST so far.  I selfishly want ALL the firsts.  I don’t want to share those with anybody.

I am going to say something that 15 weeks ago never would have come out of my mouth: I am jealous of stay-at-home moms.  Insanely so.  I’m not a jealous person, and I do not think I have fully understood what jealousy was until now.  I hope that those moms understand how lucky they are.  I can’t believe how much I have changed in the last 15 weeks.  I am not the same person as I was.  I am a MOM.  Does it get any better than that?

73 years? I’d be 104.

26 Jan

Today, I went to my Grandma’s funeral.  She was 92 years old, and my Grandpa is 95.  They were married for 73 years.  I have never seen my Grandpa cry.  Today, he had giant tears rolling down his cheeks. 

Seventy-three years is literally a lifetime for some people.  Can you stop for a second to think about 73 years?  Think about all that has changed in 73 years–think of cars, phones, TVs, computers, wars, the economy…the list could go on and on.  Here are two people who have lived through more than I can get my head around.  Yet with all that change, they still woke up with each other every day.  Seventy-three years of change and there was always that one constant. 

My Grandpa was asked during this last week what he loved most about his wife, his constant.  His answer? “Everything.”  I love that answer, Everything.  Seventy-three years must leave you with too many things you love to choose just one. 

Carson bringing a smile to his Great Grandpa's face

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