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Family: Completed

I felt the need to share this from my family blog. It’s one that’s very important to me (not so much sarcasm and jokes here, sorry!) but it’s pretty graphic and real when it comes to the bits of childbirth. And it’s crazy long. I hope you enjoy!

Grider Gossip

It’s terrible, really, that I haven’t posted in nearly a YEAR! Especially since we have a new baby in the family and all! So, in light of my lack of time I’m posting the birth story of our most recent addition to the family. I’ll try to get in photos later as well. This is a very personal journey for me and if you are bothered by private parts or “hospital things” I recommend you skip it. This story makes me feel empowered and amazing, so as you can imagine I adore it.
 
The story of my VBAC would not be complete without first understanding the story of my first birth, which was vastly different than this one. So here it is:
The Birth of Olivia Susan:
I’ve been putting off writing this in it’s entirety for 31 months now for several reasons: one is that it is really…

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Free Play

Does allowing your children to throw all of the bowls and dishes (they’re not breakable, chill out. Well, some are Pyrex. So they aren’t easily breakable, anyway) onto the kitchen floor and climb in and out of the kitchen cabinets count as free play?

 

Because it should.

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Mama isn’t allowed to get sick

So about 5 days ago I woke up with the familiar clogged nose, heavy head and sore throat that indicates I’ve got, yet again, another sinus infection. I get them a few times a year thanks to how badly I treated my body when I was younger (that’s a story for a completely different blog…)

My doctor’s one of those new wave people who won’t prescribe antibiotics for anything that might be viral for a minimum of a week. I get it, too many antibiotic prescriptions, creating the super bug, drug resistance, yadda yadda and I honestly agree with. I also know my body, however, and know that I need antibiotics and waiting the requisite seven to ten days to “see if the body clears the virus on it’s own” will simply result in bronchitis, as it does at least twice a year. So I did want any reasonable adult would do.

I lied.

Yup, I’m a terrible, horrible person. I’m also a mother of two small kids, who also nannies three other children, for whom childcare is a joke on the best of days and an impossibility most others. So when I managed to snag an awesome childcare trade for today (the day I had a follow up appointment with my doctor anyway) I went to see her and told her that my symptoms had started three days before they actually did. Look, I can’t come back again in two days — there’s just no way. Ain’t nobody got time fo’ that.

She she’s doing my exam (after already telling me she’d write me the prescription – SCORE!) and she looks in my throat, listens to my lungs (which sounds terrible, of course. I’ve got broken blood vessels around my eyes and nose from all the coughing) and lastly, checks my ears. As she does so, she makes the seemingly innocuous comment “I always check ears to feel like I’ve finished the exam, but it’s exceedingly rare to find problems with some one of your ag….” and she slowly stops speaking. “Oh. Well that’s unusual.”

Thinking I’ve got baby poop or some kind of leftover toddler snack crammed in my ear drum I say, “What is it?”

“You have a severe inner ear infection. Have you been dizzy?”

Only for the last five years, I think. Instead I say, “Yes.”

“Wow. You really need to take it easy. I’m going to write you for a stronger antibiotic.”

“Okay, Doc. Don’t forget I’m still breastfeeding.”

“Oh.”

….she pauses…

“Well in that case, it’ll probably be longer before you feel well but there’s only one antibiotic that I’m comfortable writing you, and it’s not as fast acting. And it’s not cheap.” (Sidenote: I have no health insurance, so of course this is the case.)

 

So it turns out that I am 31 years old and have a horrible ear infection. Of course, I still have to come home, take care of three children, clean my house, and quietly chuckle to myself about the instructions the doctor emphasized: eat really healthy, nap a lot, get some rest, drink a lot of fluids, enjoy some hot tea, and go to bed early. (I have a fleeting memory that these were all the things I enjoyed before I had children. 😉 )

 

Oh well. Time to call in the Daddy brigade.

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Eel

My daughter has an imaginary friend. His name is Eel. He is not, in fact, an eel. She very sternly reminds us of this on a regular basis. “Eel is NOT an eel, Mama. His name is just Eel.”

He does however, change shapes (sometimes he’s a bird, or a tiger, or a ghost pirate). And he shows up at the most inopportune times.

For example:

One evening I was cooking dinner in the kitchen, and Susan was helping me. Suddenly she announces she needs to poop. “Oh, bug, go potty. Hollar if you need anything.” (Poor choice of words on my part, of course).

She leaves and goes to the potty. (She’s been doing this for ages and it’s like 10 feet away from me so no, I didn’t send her off to injure herself or drown in the toilet because I wasn’t watching her, so chill).

After about 90 seconds I hear her screaming in the bathroom. This child is seriously yelling at the top of her lungs. I immediately drop the knife I’m using (almost cutting off a finger in the process – motherhood is a hazardous undertaking) and rush over to the bathroom. As I run over there I realize these are actual words she is yelling, not just screaming.

“EEL! TURN AROUND! I’M TRYING TO POOP! I NEED PRIVACY! STOP LOOKING AT ME! STOP LOOKING! NO! TURN AROUND! I NEED TO POOP! EEL! STOP IT! THAT’S NOT NICE! EEEEEEEEEEEEEL I’M TRYING TO POOOOOOOOP!”

This goes on for a solid 60 seconds with me standing outside of the bathroom alternating between blinding rage at the screaming that doesn’t even involve one of my actual children (it’d been one of those kind of days) and stifling hysterical laughter (I mean, after all, she’s flipping out because her imaginary friend that’s entirely fabricated from her own imagination, won’t give her privacy so she can poop. I mean, Susan has always been very private about her poop. Other people’s genitalia, running outside naked, asking her daddy about his penis, that’s all fine and dandy, but walk into the bathroom while she’s trying to drop a deuce – oh hell no.)

I am thisclose to yanking open the bathroom door and screaming at her to STFU. I, somehow, manage to take a deep breath and think about the positive parenting, hippy bull shit that I try to employ every day when dealing with the ridiculous, high strung, hyperactive, ball of emotions that is my three year old.

I knock on the door.

“WHAT?!”

“Honey, is there a problem?”

“Eel won’t turn around so I can poop.”

“Okay, I’m coming in.”

I slowly open the door and address the empty air in front of the toilet.

“Eel, I think you need to come out of the bathroom. Susan is having a difficult time using the toilet with an audience. Why don’t you come out here and wait with me until she is finished?” I extend my hand, again, to the THIN FUCKING AIR in front of the toilet.

“Mama, he’s over there.” pointing to the stool next to the sink. I redirect my attention.

“Okay, Eel. Let’s go. Susan will be done soon and then you guys can resume playing.”

……silence.

“Mama?” she pipes up in a very calm, quiet, rational voice.

“Yes, bug?”

“Eel can stay.”

“Oh, are you sure? It seemed like you were needing some privacy. Eel is welcome to stay with you but I’m going to need you to not scream at him while you’re trying to use the bathroom. Do you think you can do that?”

“Yes, Mama. Eel can stay.”

“Okay. Let me know if you have any other problems.”

“Thanks, Mama.”

 

I call that one a severe parenting win. However, it doesn’t change the fact that I had to escort a figment of my daughter’s imagination out of the bathroom so she could have some privacy while taking a dump.

 

Yup. This is my life. Good thing I love it.

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Tic Tac Toe

My husband recently had a hilarious conversation with our not quite four year old about playing tic-tac-toe. The transcript of that conversation is here:

Susan: “Dad, Will you play tic-tac-toe with me?” She has just discovered tic-tac-toe, you see.
“Absolutely, Bug.”
“Okay, but first I have to poop.”
“All right, I’ll wait.”
…waiting…
(from the bathroom) “Dad, you’re not playing without me, are you?”
“No, no. You can’t really play tic-tac-toe by yourself.”
“I play tic-tac-toe by myself.”
“Oh, really… do you win?

“Sometimes.”

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Twinkle, twinkle little….

Yes. Another penis post.

My three year old has decided that it’s fun to make up words to songs that she knows to be silly. It’s cute. Sometimes I think it’s unintentional, but no less hilarious. For example:

Row, row, row your boat

Gently down the stream

Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily

Life’s your butter dream

So this evening she decides to start singing “Twinkle, Twinkle little star”. Which apparently, goes something like this:

Twinkle twinkle

Twinkle twinkle

Twinkle twinkle little penis

HAHAHAHAHAHA

So she’s singing this song and surreptitiously goes into the kitchen where my husband is cooking dinner after working all day (yup, he’s amazing, be jealous) singling “Twinkle, twinkle little penis” over and over again. I’m playing on the floor with the baby in another room and can’t see the interaction.

Suddenly my husband announces: “No, you may NOT touch my penis.”

*sigh*

Apparently she needed visual aids?

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Kale is the New Crack

So we have a kitten. Or a meth head reincarnated in a kitten’s body. Actually, he’s not even a kitten anymore. He’s one, but there’s no sight of any sort of relaxing in his personality. This cat is seriously nuts. And I’ve owned a lot of cats. And worked with a lot of cats in my previous life as a veterinary technician. He’s bonkers.

I also can’t have any plants or herbs in the house or he acts as though I’ve delivered a new stash of primo blow just for him. It’s ridiculous the carnage I have discovered in my house upon forgetting to put my loose teas away (yes, I’m a crunchy hippie type, remember? I make my own tea. And various other things that herbs go in, and I don’t just mean cooking. I also mean things like diaper rash cream. That’s right. Herbs for your butt.)

So I wake up this morning and find my face covered in a fine dusting of small green particles. In my sleep addled phase I wonder if I’m turning into a reptile or have contracted some sort of weird disease during my sleep that’s causing my skin to roughen and slough off like a lizard’s. I try to drag myself up from the depths of my exhaustion (not a morning person, remember?) I look at my bed and there’s a destroyed green thing on my pillow, like some kind of tribal offering. Upon closer inspection I discover it is (what remains of) a stalk of kale. Kale? In my bed? At the ungodly hour of 6:30?!! (everything is worse at the ungodly hour. And pretty much every hour is ungodly before like 11am. And I’ve not seen the other side of 11am in almost five years. Again: not a morning person.)

Kale. What the hell?!!

So I get up, doing my best to clean as much of the pulverized leafy vegetable out of my sheets as I can (oh, and did I mention I had literally just changed and washed my sheets the night before for the first time in months?!! Yes. We are dirty people. Or it’s just that every night after I’ve spent the entire day cleaning house, caring for 2 to 5 children, wringing cloth diapers, feeding too many mouths (except my own, I might add) and generally running myself ragged around town that I either a) forget to change them or b) am just too damn tired to care).

Susan has wandered into my room at this point begging to watch the Kindle. I try to shake off as much of my sleepiness (without coffee — see previous post) as I can. Her younger sister, Kathryn, has had surgery less than a week before and in my stressed out, overwhelmed, tired ass haze I’ve relied far too heavily on screen time for my 3.5 year old. (We typically try to do 1/2 a week. This past week it’s been like 2-3 hours a day. Epic Mama fail). So I try to wake myself up and drag myself downstairs to engage my child in some sort of two way quality mama daughter time over breakfast before her sick, squalling infant sister wakes up. As I leave my master bedroom I see a trail of little green particles…and leaves, and stalks out the door.

What the fuck?

Yup. The entire route from the bedroom, down the hallway, down the stairs, through the living room and into the kitchen is a veritable massacre of kale. This cat had some seriously hate crime vibes going down on this healthy, chock full of vitamin K vegetable. I mean, seriously, there are green, smeared cat prints on the walls. And just in case your wondering, cat paws + kale = green stains that require entirely too much elbow grease to scrub out. For reals.

And in the middle of the living room is a big pile of green cat vomit, that reeks of partially digested kale. You can seriously see the stink lines and flies surrounding it. The damn cat couldn’t have bothered to vomit in the kitchen where it might have been easy to clean and not stained. Nope, right in the middle of our play area carpeted room. Awesome-sauce. I should also mention that the struggle in needing to subdue this awesome smoothie ingredient (how else do you sneak veggies into your kids without telling them they are having a milkshake?? Seriously. I do have SOME standards) the cat has wreaked havoc throughout the entire house. Toys, books, a lamp, all cluster fuckified throughout the entire house. There’s even evidence that he tried to break into the bathroom (claw marks and streaks–so maybe he did try to do the polite thing and vomit in the toilet bowl?). *sigh* This is why I should never bother cleaning my house ever again.

So, just another day in the life of me. Cleaning up green cat vomit, picking up the same toys I’ve literally put away less than twelve hours ago, and trying to amuse my kid without throwing the Kindle at her head just to shut her up. And I’ve only been awake for about 13 minutes. Happy Wednesday!