Monday, October 15, 2012

Before I was a Mom...

I have a confession to make. I was a much better mother before I ever had children. I knew how to potty train children in a week because I read about some crazy method online. I was NEVER, EVER, under ANY circumstances going to use the DVD player to babysit my children while I did what ever it was mothers who did that kind of thing did. I would never "let myself go" or drop the kids off at school in my pajamas. I was already planning trips to the park and the wonderful friends I would make and the peaceful playdates we would share.

Man, I WISH I had become that mom. If I could say I'm not guilty of breaking half of the above mentioned "nevers".... no, just one... then I would be a "better" mom than I am today. Truth time: I'm so glad I didn't turn out to be that mom. It would mean the Stepford Wives are real!

But in the interest of confessions and getting to know you, here are a list of my becoming a parent Before and Afters.

1. Before: I always made sure my face was put on and my clothes matched before leaving the house.

    After: I have learned that setting the bar really low is the way to go. That way, when you slap on a little eyeliner and mascara, people notice and tell you how nice you look. As for the clothing matching thing. I have to admit, there have been a couple times that, when I got to the store, looked down and drove right back home because I realized I was moments away from ending up on the website People of Walmart. And we all know that friends don't let friends show up on the PoW website. (Speaking of which, where was my husband with the warning, anyway?)

2. Before: I will host playdates with fresh baked treats and witty conversation.
    After: Ha. Good luck getting invited to my house. The place is always a wreck and as for the treats, well they are fresh baked... from Kroger. And witty conversation... just save that until your kids are all in school and you can meet up with friends and feel pitty for the ones you've just left behind.

3. Before: I will never wear PJs to drop off.

    After: Um, hello, if I'm willing to go into a store in unacceptable outfits, what makes you think I'm concerned with what I wear in my car? Another confession moment: There was one day I was in my PJs and Kidlet #1 told me I needed to talk to his teacher immediately. Of course, not thinking of myself,  but only his academic success, I walked into his hallway only to find out it was nothing big and a note was coming home that day. On the bright side, I did remember to put on shoes before leaving the house... and a bra.

4. Before: I will never use the DVD Player as a babysitter.

    After: HA! I kept this one. Because we have Netflix. Heck, my children realized there was a special "kids" section on the page before I did. Which was irritating when Dear Husband and wanted a stay-in date and all we could find were episodes of Caillou and Power Rangers.

5. Before: Legos are great toys that inspire creativity and help develop fine motor skills.

    After: Legos are the weapon of the devil. Don't believe me? Come walk across my living room in the dark on any day... if you dare.

6. Before: Potty training will be a breeze and we'll have it done in 7 days.

    After: Okay, it took a lot longer than 7 days, but I took the, "Eh, I've never seen a healthy 16-year-old kid wearing a diaper" approach, so it was low pressure. I think I should get partial points for this one.

7. Before: Our sex life won't take a plunge after kids. After all, they have to go to bed, right?

    After: Sure, they go to bed... in MY bed... sleeping sideways... with their foot in my nose... while their head is snuggled in the crook of Dear Husband's arm. Um, hello... eight months of carrying Kidlet#1 around and eight and a half with Kidlet #2... surely that deserves shoving your boney elbow in Dear Husband's spleen once in a while.

8. Before: When Dear Husband and I brought Kidlet #1 home, we would stare at him adoringly and have romantic heart to hearts while I fed the precious product of our love.

    After: The Lord was looking out for my 3 am, snoring like he was sawing logs Dear Husband by making sure I didn't have an ice pick under my mattress during those solo feedings.

9. Before: Postpartum happens, but with time you can get through it.

    After: Baby Blues happen and you can get through THAT with time. Postpartum is a whole other beast that required 6 months of anti-depressants to get my hormones under control and 2 years until I was able to put aside the guilt of how I felt toward my amazing Kidlet #2. (And yes, the fanmance between Tom Cruise and I ended when he went after Brooke Shields... I was ready to tell him EXACTLY what he could do with his vitamins.)

10. Before: I waited until I was 30 to have a baby, so I will be rational and sane all the time.

     After: My mommy mantra after two weeks with Kidlet #1 was, "Crackheads have babies all the time and they survive." (Don't turn on my ladies... it was two weeks with a premie. I completely get this one.)

11. Before: I knew what love was.

     After: I knew what having your heart walking around outside your body felt like.

And those are the Mayor's observations about early childhood. It's nothing like I imagined it would be. It's so much more! Feel free to share your Before and After epiphany in the comments section and remember, Kidletville isn't a destination. It's a journey and the road is paved in  wrong side up legos.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Just the Facts, Please.

If you are checking this blog out for the first time, I suppose you might be a little curious about who I am. And if you aren't you have two choices: read this post anyway or skip it.

But if you are one of the few who would like to know more about me, here are the facts.

I live in Indiana with Kidlet #1, a seven year old boy who loves swimming and dusting (I have no idea where he got that talent) and Kidlet #2, a five year old boy who loves not having to clean (totally know which side of the DNA that trait came from) and asking a million questions a day. (Not an exaggeration... much.) I've been married for almost nine years to my awesome husband. We're currently in negotiations about how I will refer to him on this blog, so for now, he will simply be Dear Husband. Not original, I know, but it will have to do until terms can be reached.

In addition to the human members of our family, we have one feline friend, named Agent C. And yes, that is her real name. Originally, when we got her, she was named Tootsie Roll, but we were knee deep in Phineas and Ferb and there was no way I was having a pet named after a candy. Hence Agent C... or "CAT" when she's being especially naughty.

From the outside looking in, we are your typical 1950's family. Dad goes to work. Mom stays home. Kids go to school. Cat uses the liter box. It's all very Norman Rockwell. But come inside and you find it's not that simple. Dear Husband is a Hospice nurse, I am an aspiring young adult writer who would rather chug coffee and pound a keyboard than clean the windows. The kids are perhaps the most normal, expect that Kidlet #2 likes to sleep under his mattress and Kidlet #1 is rarely in clothes, so strike the normal part. Agent C is actually a nervous cat who rips her fur out if I'm gone for more than two days but she has skills we can't deny, like catching snakes and bats... IN THE HOUSE.

Did I mention my father lives with us? Why yes. Yes he does.

And now you have met the residents of Kidletville. It's not quite the Addam's Family, but we're working on it. We hope you enjoy your visit. And if you see the Mayor, feel free to buy her a cup of coffee. She could probably use it!

Not ANOTHER Blog on Parenting

Yes. I have done it. I have started a blog on parenting.

Why? Great question. I like lists, so I'll list it out for you.

1. Because my mom said I should and I have learned to always listen to my mother.
2. I have two amazingly talented children who are more often than not using their powers for semi-evil activities and I need to document their deeds, just in case.
3. I love writing.
4. I want to become part of a community of moms who are willing to put their lives out there so you realize you're not alone.

I think that's the shortest list I've ever written in a blog.

Next question? What was that? What makes me think my parenting blog will be any different than someone else's? That's easy. In fact, I can sum it up in one word. "Filter". What makes the world unique is the way we filter what we experience. So what's my filter? Satire. I speak fluent sarcasm, but rarely with the venom you see on TV. (Though when provoked, I can sling the comebacks with the best of them.)

So, I guess what I'm saying is I'm about to unleash my wicked sense of humor on the world, using my children, husband and occasionally my friends as fodder. The intent is NOT to embarrass those closest to me. Far from it. My hope is to add my humble spin on the ever changing landscape of parenting and share some laughs along the way!

So sit back, grab a cup of the warm beverage of your choosing and enjoy your visit to Kidletville. Remember, you're just visiting. But I'm the Mayor.