Default Parent

It’s always mom. No matter how far we think we have come as a society or in our relationships, moms are always the default parent. We have all the answers. All the cures. We have whatever it takes to stop the tears. At least that seems to be what dads believe. Because we were the sole provider and home for nine months, everything that happens once they leave our bodies is still our domain too. It doesn’t matter if we make more or are the only provider. We women are always the default parent.

Or maybe it’s just me having this experience. Maybe I’m the only one feeling so alone sometimes and that I have to sacrifice twice as much. I wonder if there are any other mommies are feeling this way?

I’ve been up since 4 a.m. I’ve worked a super busy day and nursed a baby (and pumped at work) in between it all. Yet, it’s 11 p.m. and I’m the one sitting on the couch all alone waiting for the baby to go to sleep. And when he wakes up as soon as i put him in his crib and we begin our nightly dance of sleep/wake, I’m the one who gets to be the default parent all over again tomorrow…

Hey Pretty Mama

To all you lovely mamas out there that are still struggling with their self-esteem and post-baby bodies: give yourself a break. I read something the other day that put it all in prospective. It took you nine months to grow that baby and put on the weight. Give yourself just as much, if not more time, to take it off. You’re not hideous. You’re not gross. You’re not any of those other disparaging adjectives you say to yourself in your head, or even to others as a “joke.” You’re a giver of life. Embrace that! Rock your curves and wear your stretch marks, pudge, and possible c-section scar as badges of honor. There are lots of people who will never experience the miracle that is growing a person. Some don’t want to and some can’t. But that doesn’t make it any less miraculous. So if you immediately go back to your perfect pre-baby body after two days, cheers to you. And if it takes you two years of hard work and eating well just to get back to where you were, cheers to you too. Some of us are blessed with genetics and some of us are blessed with determination and drive, but all of us mums are blessed with beautiful human beings to show for it 🙂

Sleep is for the Weak

It has to be. You can’t commit your life to something as major as parenting and not be tough. The sleep deprivation is only a portion of the job. Not only do you have to be awake, you have to be alert and safe. There is a small, helpless person in your care. You can’t just blindly go through the motions.

I was never good at being sleep deprived but I am definitely finding out how tough I am, especially this week. So I sit here about to get ready for working, having been up since 4 a.m., not knowing when I’ll sleep again. But I also sit here holding a most precious gift 🙂

Things I Learned on Maternity Leave

~ I love the morning news. It makes me feel like an adult still connected to the world. The Today Show ftw!

~ I miss the show Scrubs. A lot.

~ It’s ok to spend all day in crappy clothes/pajamas. They will most likely be covered in drool, breast milk, formula, poop, and pee; some combination of some or all of the above.

~ Sleep is your most precious commodity, and you will barter with it like your like depends on it.

~ You need reminders for everything.

~ Sleep when your baby sleeps is a wonderful idea if you never want to get anything done. Sleep when your partner is watching your little one. It’s the most restful sleep you can get if you trust them 😉

~ Cherish every single second. Each day is the only time in their lives they will be that little 🙂

I love my son more than anything but SAH motherhood is not for me. These last few days I’ve started to go stir crazy. I need the routine of a job, combined with he unexpected occurrences of the workday. This transition will be tough, and I’ll miss my boys terribly, but I know that my husband will be a wonderful SAHD 🙂

Dilemma

So this mama has terrible seasonal allergies. What I’ve found over the past few days is that if I want to feel just ok, I have to stay completely indoors and use copious amounts of nose spray. If I can seal myself in I can, I can at least keep the symptoms at bay. So the dilemma arises in that I’m breastfeeding and pretty much any useful allergy medication that will help all of my symptoms will dry up my supply.

What’s a lady to do? Do I start plying myself with drugs to survive this season or do I tough it out for the sake of my supply? Only time will tell if these nose sprays can keep me alive but if not, I have a tough decision ahead. Fixing something so temporary at the expense of nursing seems like a waste. That’s how I feel today at least….

Teach a man to fish…

20/20 has me thinking…what’s really wrong with paying or incentivizing you kids for good grades? We pay them an allowance for chores. When they become adults, they will receive money in exchange for working. So would we really be teaching them a bad lesson?

Maybe I’m still too new at this but rewards for good grades doesn’t seem so crazy. My prospective could change of course, but I feel like teaching my son that hard work pays off in some form is a good lesson.

I wonder if I would have done better in school with specific incentives for good grades, etc? I feel like I would. My father was actually pretty good about giving goals to work toward. It was never anything major or ongoing, but if I saved a certain amount of money he might offset the cost of a stereo for example. It always worked too. If I wanted a disc man I had to save $50 of my own allowance money and he would match the other $50 to get me to the $100 I needed to purchase. I leaned the value of saving, hard work, and rewards all at the same time.

I can’t wait to instill a good work ethic in my little one(s). Where would any of us be without such important lessons?

On Trial

I feel like parenthood is just a constant series of trial and error. You will try to deliver “naturally” but a million variables can make that go right out the window. You can try breastfeeding but again, so many things can happen. Let’s try this formula, let’s try these diapers, let’s try this schedule. Do we ever really get it right or are there always more errors that successful attempts? Sure feels like it…