I never wanted to have kids….until I did…and then I didn’t, and now I do.

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I just read a very touching post from Scary Mommy about what it’s like for woman who never wanted to have kids. The writer asked that more people like her shared their story, so here I am.

When I was 15, I KNEW I shouldn’t have kids. I was too selfish. All of that was true then, and I can’t really dispute it now.

When I was 17, I spent the summer babysitting my cousin’s newborn. I KNEW I NEEDED a baby! What could be more amazing than viewing the world through those brand new eyes? Every month became a gamble of whetther or not I took my birth control pills regularly and whether or not I was sexually active or in a relationship or happy or concerned when my period wasn’t there the moment I thought it should be.

When I was 19, I got pregnant. I still desperately wanted a baby, but I hadn’t exactly intended to make that dream a reality just yet. I had just recently gotten engaged, and the due date was inconveniently close to the wedding date we’d been eyeballing. We moved things up a few months and it was very exciting. Until 2 years later when I realized that was not the life I wanted and why in the hell are children allowed to make adult decisions?

But I already had a baby and that was a good thing because otherwise, I would have still been a child pretending to make adult decisions with no comprehension of their effects. That feeling persisted for a long time, and still happens from time to time even though I’m in my 30’s.

No matter what happened, my time with just one child was amazing. Of course there were tough moments, but it was amazing.

Then I found myself in a new relationship and it was pretty good and another baby seemed like the thing to seal the deal. So I “wanted” that one — our pregnancy was “intended” and while our relationship had rocky times, everything about baby #2 was great.

But then the rocky times turned into mountains and canyons and earthquakes and I had no idea what was going on. I wondered wtf was wrong with me/us for even having the kid(s) we had. And it was like a total shocker to me that I ended up pregnant with #3. He said he planned it; like it was a way to create order out of the chaos we were in. I vacillated between feeling like a complete idiot, like he had hammered another nail into the coffin that was our broken relationship, and like it was the best thing ever/a chance to do things right after everything had seemed so wrong.

Finally, a few months after being a mom of 3, I knew that no matter what, we were all in it together. So then it was just like, “Well three kids is nucking futz, four can’t be any crazier,” and just like that, we were expecting our fourth. He’s two now and I have never been more excited for the tubal ligation I have scheduled next month.

I still have no idea what I’m doing but I’m here. Every day is filled with moments when my heart is so full I think it will burst, and also with moments when I feel guilty for doing something I always knew I’d never be any good at. I don’t have anything wise or clever to say, but to anyone else who ever felt anything like this…or that…you’re not alone. And the world keeps spinning, so don’t let your worries stop you.

If the “Mommy Wars” Were Real: Part 2

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The Helicopter Mom vs. The Sanctimommy

Round 1:  Helicopter Mom’s kid had good intents, he was going to make the first move but trips over his own feet – Helicopter Mom probably should have been holding his hand. She immediately demands a restart. Sanctimommy counters with a self-serving statement about how she was so busy making sure her child knew how to strike the proper defensive stance, she didn’t realize the fight had even started, just like she hadn’t realized she hasn’t showered in over 48 hours or that low-rise jeans are no longer cool; seriously, her kid has just sucked the life right out of her!

Round 2:  Not to be outdone, Helicopter Mom appears to commiserate, talking about how hard it was to supervise every moment of her kid’s schooling, constantly intervening every time some idiot teacher didn’t recognize the genius her child was demonstrating – even if it was demonstrated through graffiti and expletives. Meanwhile, her child is tagging expletives on Sanctimommy’s minivan.

Sanctimommy climbs atop her pedestal, and begins to deliver a speech worthy of an Oscar acceptance. “I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for recognizing all of my hard work and dedication for the betterment of my children…” As Helicopter Mom’s eyes begin to glaze over, Sanctimommy surprises with a Diving Back Elbow Drop and pins Helicopter Mom to the mat.

Round 3:  The proudest moment of Helicopter Mom’s life occurs as her kid swoops in to save the day, delivering a Humble Pie to Sanctimommy’s face.

Sanctimommy is left speechless for the first time in her life and Helicopter Mom is declared the undisputed winner.

I am not a foodie.

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I don’t think I’ll make it a habit to share recipes here. I am not a foodie – I have four kids – ain’t nobody got time for that! <> (I won’t insert a meme here because I don’t want to deal with copyright issues, but you know what I mean, right?)

But I just made something delicious, and its taking all my self restraint not to eat it all gone and save some for the kids. If the kids like it as much as I do, then I’ll feel like I just hit the jackpot!

roasted chickpeas

So easy, so delicious.

All I did was open a can of chick peas (garbanzo beans), strain and rinse them, rub them dry with a dish cloth (a paper towel would work, but I dream of being zero waste so I opted for an option that wasn’t disposable *pats self on back*). I swished them around a bowl with a little olive oil, a spray of Bragg’s amino acids, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. Then I poured them on a baking sheet and put them in the oven. I preheated it to 420 (because I used to smoke pot and I liked it) but after about 15 minutes, I was worried they would overcook and I dialed it back to 350. Another 10 minutes and I was crunching away on a salty snack that I am only avoiding by typing this blog.

What else can I say about the deliciousness I just made? If I don’t talk some more about it, I won’t be able to let my kids try it because I will have eaten them all?!?! I will probably go to bed in the spirit of preserving this yummy snack for my children.

Peace.

P.S. Google “roasted chick peas” if you want a more seasoned foodies perspective on this snack…

If the “Mommy Wars” Were Real: Part 1

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The Crunchy Mama vs. The Tiger Mom

Round 1: Tiger Mom points out that her child is proficient in three languages, knows martial arts, and has already been accepted to two different Ivy League colleges….in the 5th grade.
Crunchy Mama counters with a lecture on the importance of non-violence and her scorn for all institutions.

Round 2: Crunchy Mama doesn’t leave a window of opportunity open, she slams that window shut and sprays some homemade vinegar cleaning spray on it so she can see an attack coming from a mile away!
Tiger Mom dips and bobs; while you think she’s attacking head on, her offspring execute strategic moves like in a game a chess. “Checkmate!” can be heard from miles away as they move in for the finishing move.

Round 3: Mommy and Me yoga pays off for Crunchy Mama; she assumes Mountain Pose while her Little moves into Downward Dog. Tiger Mom’s finishing moves are dodged, but she rebounds with her first born’s PhD in Alternative Dispute Resolution. This speaks to Crunchy Mama’s soul and the two become BFF’s 4 eva!

The Mom You Love to Hate vs. reality

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I woke up by my own volition around 7:15, 7:20 this morning. I could hear the quiet sounds of my children eating their well-balanced breakfast downstairs so I took my time having a quick stretch and a leisurely trip to the ladies room. I sauntered downstairs for a cup of fair-trade coffee and was greeted with my children’s beautiful, smiling faces. They each gave me a good morning salutation in turn, no interruptions at the breakfast table! I asked each one if they were ready for the day, and they of course told me their homework was completed and in their backpacks and they had already chosen a healthy snack for the day to bring to school. With a self-satisfied smile, I went back upstairs to get myself dressed.

I looked in the mirror in my en suite and recited my daily affirmation. I was feeling so self-assured, I almost didn’t bother putting on my make up but I was really excited to try the new organic mascara I had just purchased from a local artisan – I wouldn’t dream of buying some chemical-laden, plastic wrapped, mass-produced propaganda that has been transported thousands of miles in gas guzzling semis and required countless hours of minimum wage drudgery! I proceeded to do my daily oil pulling (do you have any idea how many chemicals are in your run of the mill toothpaste?) while I picked out the perfect outfit. It was a Monday so I wanted all cool colors to start the week off right.

By the time I returned downstairs, the children were all putting their shoes on and about to load into the minivan in alphabetical order. This was a bit challenging since the youngest hasn’t mastered his ABC’s yet (we’re looking into a tutor, but haven’t found anyone specializing in the under 2 set), fortunately, the older children were more than helpful, and they were very patient too! Keeping all of the artificial dyes out of their diet has made such a difference!

I dropped the big girls off at school and brought the little boys home for a day of educational activities and wholesome family fun.

***

I can’t even keep up this fantasy anymore! The story is total bullshit! Just imagine this every time you encounter one of “those” moms in the school pick up line or at story hour or wherever. Here is reality:

The baby woke up at 4:30 AM. I tried to argue with him, “It’s still dark outside, the sun is sleeping.” I tried to reason with him, “Your big sisters and brother and dad are all still sleeping, SHHHH!” I tried to give him another bottle of Wal-Mart brand Pediasure baby drink. I said “FUCK IT ALL” and carried him, running, into the minivan before he would wake up the rest of the house. I drove around aimless for a little while waiting for Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts to open up. I got some coffee and noticed he fell asleep. Sat in the driveway playing Candy Crush Saga on my phone for 30 minutes. Decided it was an acceptable time for the rest of the assholes in my house to wake up.

Stumble into the house and turn on Backyardigans. Listen to the kids upstairs that are awake but haven’t committed to coming downstairs yet. I holler up the stairs, “C’mon down.” Set up some cereal on the table. Various assorted chaos and catastrophes occur for the next 30-45 minutes. I angrily yell at everyone to get in the van or we’ll be late for school.

As the girls are getting out of the van in the drop-off loop, we realize my Kindergartner can’t find her backpack and my 5th grader forgot her homework. I’m holding up traffic for the other umpteen parents trying to drop off their kids while my daughters are on the brink of tears. I assure them I will find the missing items and bring them to the office as soon as I go home.

I take the boys to Denny’s for breakfast just because I can’t face my kitchen.

Two hours later, I find the backpack. I figure the day is half over and there’s not really any point anyway – maybe it will be a life lesson in responsibility?

16 time outs and 1 nap later, it’s time to get the girls from school. We sit in the car loop for 1/2 an hour; which is like 6 hours in baby time (he’s almost 20 months but still the baby). The girls get in the car and I try to review their day, but each of them, PLUS THE THREE YEAR OLD WHO DOESN’T EVEN GO TO SCHOOL, are all trying to tell me what happened at school that day at the same time! I holler, “SILENCE!!!” and then feel guilty inside for being a mean mom.

I can’t bear to share the rest of the day with you, I’m already counting down til “wine’o’clock” at this point.

Just realize that The Mom You Love to Hate doesn’t really exist, she’s counting down til “wine’o’clock” too 😉

Something’s Better Than Nothing…

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This is random and unfinished, but it’s been a while since I wrote something for myself, so here’s something.

———–

My dad died when I was 15.
My husband has been hoarding, destroying, or otherwise causing silverware to disappear.
These things are kind of alike.
I was at Wal-Mart recently and in a moment of magical memory, I actually remembered that for the last two weeks, despite having just unloaded a clean dishwasher, there were virtually no forks in our silverware drawer. This is weird because less than six months ago, I just reloaded all of our silverware. WTF, right? I have suspicions. But what would I gain from accusing my husband, or even (mock) innocently inquiring if he had any rogue silver stashed in his office? Would he dramatically say “Bwahaha! Yes! I have all the forks and you can’t have them!”? No. That’s ridiculous. That also would do little to solve the problem.
When I remember my dad’s last days, I don’t feel much anymore. I used to feel rage, sorrow, disappointment and blame toward myself and others. And what did I get out of it? NOT SHIT.
Much like the forks, it’s easier, more logical, to just accept the facts and move on. We had plenty of forks. Then we didn’t. So we got more forks. My dad was alive. Then he wasn’t. I was still alive. Raging at the injustice of my loss did nothing. Feeling inexplicable sorrow did nothing. Blaming myself for things that were beyond my capacity and control didn’t change the circumstances. Neither did blaming anyone else.
For a long time, I felt untethered. Like I had no anchor. A dad should be an anchor, right? But the days continued to pass. I wasn’t lost at sea, I was just making a series of bad decisions and using the excuse that I didn’t know any better because blah blah blah.

Yesterday was shitty so today we’re doing cat pictures. Go fuck yourself, yesterday.

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The 2 music videos at the end are awesome. I’d never seen/heard of them before and I don’t know why not, but am happy to have now!

The Bloggess

Question:  What’s the difference between kids during summer vacation and kittens at any time?

hunter bored

It’s not a riddle.  I just really want to know.

PS.  Yes, that is Hunter S. Thomcat when he was still Hunter S. Thomkitten.  He was very demanding.  He still is, but now when he flops down on my neck in the middle of the night it’s less of a sweet nuzzle and more like a ninja has karate-chopped my jugular.  And the ninja wants food.  And some snugglin’.  And he’s confused about why I won’t wake up because he doesn’t understand that cats and people are always in different time zones.

PPS.  Cat pictures and happy songs.  This is what I need today.  Maybe you do too.  So here are two that I’m listening too today.  You might hate them and that’s okay.  Feel free to share your favorite happy song or cat picture or whatever makes you smile in…

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