Privacy, Please

February 20, 2011

Today, as I was nude and sitting on the toilet, getting ready to take a shower, the door BURST open. This happens every, single time I’m in the bathroom so I didn’t even blink. This time, however, instead of setting up Thomas tracks and settling in for the long haul, the Bub just said, “Mama, I’m going to be very brave and let you poop and take a shower all by yourself.”
Glory be! Pooping with the door closed? This is a luxury usually reserved for the workday. And showering, drying off and primping all by myself? I was so excited I shaved my legs.
After thinking about this (I had private time for thinking!) I realized that now that Bub goes to the potty by himself, he has realized the need for privacy and is willing to offer it to me, too. Happy Valentine’s Day Mama! Best. Gift. Ever.


Oedipus Rex

January 27, 2011

“Mommy, let’s pretend I’ve already had my dream tonight! I dreamed that we got married. Now we have to kiss!”
I cannot pretend that I am not charmed by my son’s oedipal stage. I mean, no one has ever loved me this much. My name, Mama, is on his lips from the second he awakes to the second he falls asleep. He wants to eat meals sitting on my lap. And he will do anything to get my attention, including crying and hitting me. See? What passion.
I do feel a little guilty for what my husband suffers. It’s hard to be the least favored nation. And, it’s hard on me because my husband isn’t allowed to help very often if I am there. I have to do the whole, endless bedtime routine. I can’t run any errands by myself.
And, Bub’s and my relationship can be complicated. When he’s mad at me, a few times every day, he’s REALLY mad. The flip side of love and all that… Cutting his waffle wrong is a huge betrayal that leads to at least fifteen minutes of tears and rebukes and “I don’t love you anymore”s or “You’re not my best friend anymore”s. He actually does save the drama for his mama.
Even with all that, I am cherishing this time. The hugs and kisses and cuddles. The undying love (and hate!). I’ll never be this much of my son’s life again. I’ll never get to hold him while he sleeps and smell his head. It’s not his baby smell anymore–he smells like soap and sleepy sweat. One day he’ll stop proposing and telling me that I’m beautiful. So I’ll put up with his sometimes irritating constant demands. Heck, I’ll even encourage him!


January 12, 2011

I haven’t blogged in a year! Really!? Probably because nothing really has changed. The Bub is still a crappy sleeper, we’re still fighting “fighting”, he’s not completely potty trained and his tantrums are increasing. Want to know what’s going on in my life? Just read over 2009.
I’m hoping for big changes in 2011 though, so I’m making some resolutions. First? Write more. It does help work out issues and give my mind some clarity and it also keeps my brain nimble. Second, I want to be a better wife. We’ve been so focused on raising the Bub that we’ve forgotten about each other. Even if the man is constantly on my nerves, I’m going to choke in my sarcastic comments and just try an be a good, loving and romantic partner. Third, I’m going to start working out again. Like I used to. Running and lifting and exercising more than ten minutes a day. I know all the hype about “ten minutes a day”, but it’s not true! I’m a flabby mess.
I also want to get caught up at work and keep fixing up the house, but that has to happen resolutions or not.
Maybe I haven’t blogged because I’ve just been standing still? Or maybe it’s more like trudging through the days. Hopefully writing about day to day life will let me realize all the amazing and rewarding things that happen, that I’ve moved through without noticing for the past year.

Pew Pew

January 19, 2010

Through no fault of my own, my kid is becoming violent.  I mean, he doesn’t hit anyone, but he plays violently.  He makes guns out of everything, and if you take them away he just points his fingers and says, “I have two guns!”.  All his toys clash and fight.  And, he puts on epic martial arts battles in the living room–solo.

We have tried and tried not to let him see violent shows, or have violent toys, but there doesn’t seem to be a practical way out of this.  I was making pancakes when something on TV ended, and a show called “Rollbots” started.  He was enchanted and I had to make a decision right then and there.  I decided to let him watch, and we would talk all about it.  About how it wasn’t real.  And how real people never hit and fight (well, the real people we know!).  And how if something is scary it’s OK to say it’s scary and to turn it off.

Well, he was fine.  He wasn’t scared and he went about the rest of his day playing with his cars.  I talked to preschool about it, so that they would look out for him play fighting (which they do for all the kids anyway), but honestly, ALL the little boys play guns and fighting.  I’m sure they have to tell them to stop a million times a day.

So, we made a controversial parenting decision.  We let him watch “Rollbots” occasionally.  And a bit of “Ninja Turtles” and “Spider-Man”.  We got him a few action figures.  And we talk about it all the time.  We talk about good guys and bad guys.  We talk about pretending and reality.  We talk about hurting and playing.  And so far it seems to be working.  He got what he wanted–a few big boy toys and a few hours of watching big boy shows.  And you know what?  Nothing happened.  He still plays cars.  He’d still rather watch “Max and Ruby” (the most sickly sweet cloying kid’s show ever) than most anything.  But he also can hold his own a bit with the bigger kids at preschool.

I wish that my little golden baby angel would never point his finger at me and say “Pew Pew!” (That’s his gun noise.)  I can barely reconcile his big, baby head making a mean face while he bashes plastic dinosaurs together.  My heart hurts when he says that he’s Green Goblin and I’m Spider-Man and I have to get him, all the while punching the air.

But this stuff exists, and in his world it’s a big part of every day.  Spider-Man, Transformers, Batman–they are everywhere.  So the only thing I could think of is to meet it head on and just let him know that Mommy doesn’t like to play fighting and that Mommy doesn’t allow “Pew Pews”.  Maybe I’m just taking the easy way out, or maybe I was just tired of watching “Max and Ruby”, but even at three he has to navigate our world.  As long as we limit the Ninja Turtles (and all his screen time) to very small doses, I think that we are only going to help him grow.  At least, that’s what I’m telling myself as yet another battle between dinosaurs and Batman rages on in the living room.


November 23, 2009

This seems to be the first year Bub is really understanding about Christmas. He’s truly excited about the lights and decorations, and, of course, the presents. I’m trying to get him excited about giving, also, and at almost three he really does seem almost as interested in making things for other people as he is about getting some new toys.
He is also sort of getting it about Santa. Not a lot about the logistics of the sleigh, the reindeer, the around the world in one night stuff–but the presents parts are becoming crystal clear.
So my husband started the whole thing about how only the GOOD kids get presents. Every time the Bub was awful this weekend, husband told him Santa was watching. And when we were at our wit’s end and the Bub was running around naked after bathtime (which often leads to him peeing on something…) husband said that Santa wasn’t bringing any presents–only rocks.
Rocks! The Bub wants rocks. He wants them now! When are his rocks coming? When is Santa bringing all the rocks!? He cannot wait to get his rocks. He’ll be super naughty and then he’ll get LOTS OF ROCKS! Yay!
I hate Christmas.


October 23, 2009

The Bub is seeing spiders everywhere.  Sometimes they are fuzz, or pet hair, or a mark on the wall, but occasionally it’s a real bug.  This has turned me into a cat on a hot tin roof.  Several times a day he will yell “Spider!” and point.  Then I have to deal with whatever it is.  Sometimes he says, “Spider on you!” God I hate “Spider on you!”.  So far it’s always been lint, but YOU NEVER KNOW!

It’s fall, and there are actually some pretty huge spiders in the house.  Twice, one has fallen from the shower curtain into the bathtub during bathtime.  I try to stay calm as I’m scooping it out of the water and dumping it into the toilet.  And I tell him it’s just a fluffy or a fuzzy.  But I’m so freaked out by them!!

Worst of all, we take them outside (if not drowned) so that the boy will learn compassion.  So I have to scoop up the thing with a broom and dustpan and carry it around while my heart is racing and I’m praying it won’t “get on me” (the biggest spider sin!).   My husband thought I was exaggerating, until he heard the cry of “Spider!” and it turned out to be the biggest one yet!  Silver dollar sized, if you count the legs and you do.  He started hyperventilating and I just gave up on compassion and sprayed the crap out of it with bug spray.  Then I carried the corpse outside.  “It’s just a fluffy, Bub!”

They’re 2 they’re 4 they’re 6 they’re 8

September 10, 2009

Of all the stuff that my toddler likes, the one thing I really cannot tolerate is Thomas the Tank Engine. He’s my Barney. I’d rather watch the dead air filled repetition of Dora, or the inexplicable plotlines of Little Einsteins, than suffer through the whining and nagging of those little bitches in Tidmouth Sheds.
Every episode is the same. The owner of the railroad, Sir Toppem Hatt, asks one of the engines to DO THEIR FREAKIN’ JOB and pull something to somewhere. The engine NEVER WANTS TO. Then, for the next fifteen minutes, the engine does the job and complains the WHOLE ENTIRE TIME. Finis.
Even the beauty and very Englishness of the Island of Sodor cannot make up for this. Because, and I cannot stress this enough, this IS EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENS EVERY DAY AT MY JOB!
I suppose that Thomas is just preparing my kid for life. Guess what honey? When you grow up you will go to a job and everyone there will complain about performing this job. Even if it’s exactly what they went to school to do. Even if they applied and interviewed and worked their way into their position. Even if they tell everyone that they love their work. It doesn’t matter. When their Toppem Hatt assigns them a project all they will do is whine. When you are 2, this is hilarious. When you are 42, this makes you stabby.
Worst of all, I don’t see this love of “Nomas” ending soon. We have all the trains (second-hand thank god) and shirts and pajamas and now he wants a “Nomas” cake for his birthday. We’ve ridden the life-sized Thomas train. We go to ToyRUs Thomas days. And on and on…
But yesterday, he watched Scooby Doo. He talked about it for hours. (Him: “Mama! The Monster chased Scooby!” Me: “I think I’ve seen that one!”). So maybe he’s ready for real big kid cartoons! I can’t wait. Thundercats! Ho!


September 3, 2009

Nope. Not *those* birthers. I mean the ladies who think that there is only one way to give birth in these modern times. Be it in a plastic wading pool in your kitchen, a scheduled c-section, sitting on a bouncy ball, music on, music off, candles lit, by yourself, surrounded by everyone you know, with a doula, epidural, no epidural, TV on, TV off, recorded for posterity, oh hell no cameras until after you shower, baby stays in the room, nurses give you a break, and on and on and on it seems that everyone has an opinion and a STRONG opinion.
Well, I am just going to toss this out there. That maybe, just maybe, the things you do for the 40 weeks before that day, and the things you do for the rest of your freakin’ life after that day, are a little more important than: that one day.
But I don’t give a crap about weddings, anniversaries or birthdays either, as long as I get good presents and cake. Oh! Two things that were also there when I gave birth!
Just do what you want as long as it’s safe, and let other people do what they want, and STFU about it. badmood

Jack Johnson

August 20, 2009

Ages ago an aquaintance said that their favorite artist of all time was Jack Johnson. I really slagged him for it. Not so much for taste–but just that it didn’t seem like Jack had done enough to be an all-time fave. The response was, “What’s better than relaxing on the beach, with beers and a small fire listening to JJ?” *Cue gales of laughter*
Over time, and for no apparent reason, this has become one of the little touchstones of my marriage. You know, the little jokes that you have with your partner that only you guys think are funny. Any question about “what’s your favorite” will get “Jack Johnson” as an answer. Or, “What could be better…” Or something about “chillaxing”.
Of course, I really hadn’t listened to a lot of Jack Johnson. But we got the Curious George CD when our son was born and I admit, I played it a few times during those long, long days of maternity leave, stuck with a baby I really didn’t know what to do with, stressed out that I wasn’t stimulating his mind with a variety of songs. (I KNOW! I was nuts.) It was pleasant enough, but I can’t say I listened too closely. I was sleep deprived and and anxious.
The other night my throat was too sore from strep to sing my boy to sleep, so I asked him if he wanted me to play a CD. He, of course, had to look at all his music and pick. He picked the “monkey music”.
The next night, he asked for monkey music again. I turned it on and he kept pointing at the CD player and saying “broken”. It was working fine–not broken. It was totally a wtf moment. And, since he’s two, he started to cry.
FINALLY, I remembered that track 2 is a song CALLED “Broken”. So I played it.
He stood up in his crib and put his arms out for a hug. I picked him up and we swayed. He moved in for the big snuggle and said, “This is mama’s song. I like this music.”
Me too bub. It’s my favorite.

Swing, Set, Match

August 6, 2009

Eighty seven unlabeled pieces of wood.  Countless nuts, bolts and screws.  (Only) three trips to the hardware store.  (Only) two fights.  Three weeks of working on it.  And we now have a swingset in the backyard.

We took evenings after bedtime to label all the wood and sort the screws.  We read the instructions beforehand.  We took a day off, after several rain delays, and got most of it done.  Then I took a few hours off to finish by myself.  We broke two drill bits.  We lost parts in the grass.  We cursed, alot.

It’s truly riduculous the amount of stress this caused.  I was dreaming about the swingset.  I still am.  Every creak, every gust of wind and I’m sure it’s coming down.  And that little place where it doesn’t quite touch the low spot on the ground?  It’s killing me.  I have got to dump some dirt there.  And should I poly it?  Two different paint department guys said to let it weather for a year–but I don’t want it to “weather”.  I want it PERFECT.

But, all that really matters is that is it perfect to my son.  He adores his “lellow” slide and his “wings”.  He talks constantly about being “pushted” and going “higher, higher”.  He looks out the window at it, and eats snacks sitting on it, and cries when it’s time to come in for supper.

I totally get to kill the dog if he pees on it, right?