Monday, November 29, 2010

A good list to have

Things NOT to do when trying to sell your house:

1. Believe it will sell quickly

2. Move into a tiny apartment with you 4 children because your house will surely sell fast if there are no children in it.

3. Pay lots of money to stage the house because it will make you hundreds of thousands of dollars more than you paid for the house. No really.

4. Pack lightly, like you were going on a vacation, because you'll only be in the apartment for 2 months max.

5. Don't bring the hand-me-downs for the baby because surely you'll have your stuff back in 2 months.

6. Put every decision and choice on hold because you'll be moving into your 'real house' soon and can do it then.

7. Continue to remember that every day you are in the apartment you are at LEAST 35 days from moving because that's how long it would take MINIMUM to get to closing if you got an offer on your house today.

8. Delay potty training your children until you are in your new house because you don't want them having accidents on the rental furniture or carpets.

9. Choose an apartment that is in the middle of a steep hill and the middle of nowhere so that any time you choose to walk your baby anywhere it involves an arse kicking climb and nothing to look forward to at the end.

10. Bother to even look at houses to buy since you can't buy them.

Please lord. Please sell my house and let me move into a real home. Please?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

slacker Sunday photo

Would you really mind if he were laughing AT you?

"Women" - B

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Mommy dreams

When I imagined myself a stay at home mom years ago it wasn't nuthin' like this.

Back at the (now I see I was young as hell) age of 31 when I suddenly wanted to have babies (after declaring to anyone who'd listen that it was never happening) I knew it was all I wanted to do. I was in between jobs anyway and I had such trouble finding my next occupation because there was this voice in my head that would interrupt every line of thinking saying "BUT I JUST WANT TO HAVE BABIES.'

And it would pause for a moment and then say, even louder.

"N. O. W."

Mind you I didn't even have a stinking boyfriend. That year I was back in the internet dating pool and was enduring the four seasons of weird boyfriends: too thin, too fat, too short and just plain ugly. Lest you think I am a mean old beeyotch, I really am not kidding. At the time I tended to date anyone who liked me first, so when it came to internet dating I didn't have to reach very high. Any man who approached me in a non whore like manner was in. You wanted to talk and walk on beaches and love someone forever? In. You're not married? In. You have a pulse and all of your appendages, even better!

So in the midst of this lack of choosiness I got to experience a wide range of the human male. And as I'm typing this I'm pretty sure my husband has turned off his computer and gone to sit in a dark room. Ah well. Blogging isn't for the weak of heart.

While I was dating the last one (just plain ugly) I started watching those TLC shows about birthin' babies. Oh good god, I got sucked in and all teary and sobby and when a close friend went and got pregnant on me and then showered me with all her pregnancy hormones it was all over for me I guess. I got the bug. I wanted to be pregnant. I hadn't thought through most of the rest of it, I just wanted to be pregnant. That's why I blame it on her hormones. I haven't ever and don't really like babies. Although my own seem to be above reproach, but that is now, not then. So it wasn't so much that I wanted babies as that I wanted to be pregnant and I was certain that if they would just pop out already 9 years of age I'd be fine.

Fast forward to the present, invitro assisted million children I possess and you'll see that I was ill prepared for stay at home motherhood. I was sure while I had the triplets gestating that I'd handle it myself. Heck I had cared for 400 plus sick animals all by myself on a daily basis, why not 3 kids?

Well, strangely enough it didn't work out that way. I am dependent upon not only my mother in law to come 5 days a week to my home, but also 2 nannies who cover 6 mornings a week. I've never admitted to anyone online how much nanny time I have, and the truth is that before I got myself all pregnant again I was weaning off of them and down to 3 days a week, but that pregnancy stuff isn't for the weak of spirit and apparently I suck at it so much I went right back to 6 days of help. And I haven't quit them yet despite my best of intentions. I mean to take my children back for whole days at a time other than Sunday. I really do. I just can't get it together. The very idea of managing the triplets and the baby 24 hours a day gives me palpitations.

And as I sit here on the cusp of a 4 day holiday with no nannies I start to hyperventilate. I surely never thought I'd dread 4 days of 24 hour childcare on my shoulders. I thought that I and motherhood would form a close bond. That I would thrive under the stresses and challenges of this new "calling" of mine just like I had every other job in the past. That I would sit at the end of the day and be happy that I was a full time working at home mom. That I would never wonder what the hell I was thinking.

What the hell was I thinking?

This mother stuff works for some ladies, and I don't think the solution is for me to get a job because I still think I want to do this, but I somehow have to make myself do it. When we get out of this ridiculous "temporary but is turning into a long term hell" apartment and into our forever house I do intend to take charge again. I am just terrified that I'm going to fail I suppose. That, when faced with fewer breaks and more face time with each child on a daily basis I might just turn into a superbly bad mom. I might figure out I'm no good at this. And I suck at being bad at something even more than I suck at anything else in this world.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The boring mommy blogger

A blog I read regularly wrote today about something completely different (doppelgangers, a typical thoughtful blog of his) but in the midst mentioned a friend who had become a mommy and then become boring and so he had drifted away from their friendship. He has mentioned parents becoming boring before and way back when I started my blog and found his, he used to read my blog, perhaps for about 5 minutes until he decided that I, too, was a boring mommy blogger. I think he enjoyed several of my non parental blog entries but then became disappointed as the majority of my posts were parental in nature. His rejection felt personal back then and still does now, almost 2 years later. I was certain I wasn't a boring mommy blogger.

But his criticism, which appears regularly in his blog posts, of boring mommy blogs really keeps me on edge. Knowing that for some reason my second pregnancy took the humor out of me far more than my first, I have worried over this blog a lot. I haven't been regularly funny, like in the old days, for a long time. I only have one commenter anymore (thanks The Mother) although I know many people still read. But do they not comment because they are disappointed in me too? I am disappointed in any case, I am a funny person. I started this blog to be funny about my crazy life with triplets and a crazy mom. My life is full of hilarious stupidity.

But, today as I read this other blog I wanted to tell this dude something: people evolve. His blog recently has  been more morose and serious. He has also lost some of his sense of humor, and I think the reason was revealed in a recent post about some sort of health crisis he is enduring. Or rather he's evolving as well, into a serious, contemplative writer rather than a silly, funny writer. Sure he and I both have our moments of brilliant hilarity, but they are fewer and farther between than they used to be. Does that make either blog boring? Well, I'm certain that he has lost fewer readers than I but no has had the guts to complain to me directly so I can only guess. It all depends on what you read blogs for. Triplet mom friends of mine still derive something from my honesty. Friends or readers who have crazy moms might. Or people with 9 month old babies. Who knows.

I guess I fret, as usual, about whether I am pleasing the masses. I know there are better blogs and when I have time to really write every day and concentrate on it I am sure mine will show it. For right now, this is what I do. I write when I get inspired. I write the best I can and I try to find the humor in it when I can. Thanks for reading.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

slacker Sunday photo

Eating the sprinkles is much more fun than decorating with them

Once you get the angry face it's pretty much all over for you

Friday, November 19, 2010

A sucker born every minute

I'm being taken for a fool. By a 9 month old. Everyone thinks I'm some old pro at this child rearing stuff simply because I have three older kids. Well let me disabuse you of that notion. Three at once not only is not the same as one baby at a time but it has the power to erase the memory of rearing said children mere days afterwards.

In other words I have no idea how to raise a kid. Still.

This baby has been a lot of fun because I've had the luxury of, well, babying him. So I rock him to sleep. You can't do that with three babies and it's such a great moment. At the end of the day I'd sit down and sigh with relief that the day was ending as I rocked and sang until he relaxed into my arms. It took 10, 15, max 20 minutes. Not a problem really.

This week? It's been taking 35-60 minutes. He sits and babbles and laughs and looks around and wiggles and then gets almost to sleep and then, pop! Awake again. Or he falls asleep and I lay him down and bam! Awake again. Wednesday night it took the whole hour, with three lay downs before the last one stuck. NOT. OK.

Like I have nothing better to do than fight with an infant over whether he's going to sleep or not? And this is happening with all the naps too. So 3-4 times a day I'm going to fight over whether a child sleeps now or later? I THINK NOT.

So now I have to figure out how to disabuse him of the notion that he has as much time as he wants to fall asleep. Or I have to start drugging him. Because when I hit the 30 minute mark, that cute, relaxing, loving moment with my son who can bring tears to my eyes just by laying there with his eyes closed snoring a little bit? Not so hot. I get mad. I have to leave the room sometimes I'm so mad.

Go. To. Effing. Sleep. Child.

I'm not a cry it out person, so that's not on the table, but I'm most confused about how to even get him to start falling asleep NOT in my arms. I imagine I'm going to spend a lot of hours hunched over a crib patting and rubbing and shushing a baby who wants to play instead. Or I lay him in there and wait an hour for him to get mad and cry himself to sleep while I run in and out soothing him on occasion. That's going to suck too. But the question is how long will it take? I have barely the stamina to let him cry for 5 minutes right now since he's also awakening at 5am or earlier and insisting on being paid attention to right. now. I need more sleep to handle a problem such as this.

Always the loop. I have a problem to fix that is causing me lack of sleep but in order to fix that problem I need more sleep so I can do the mean mommy routine. I'm just stumped, though, on how to even begin. I feel stupid asking for parenting advice but I'm at a loss. It's in his best interest to cut it out because once I'm fed up I'll make him do it. I did it with the triplets, or so it seems, because their butts go to sleep on their own just fine.

I just need a little more sleep. And a little less sucker tendencies. But he's so cuuuuuuuuute.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Times gone by

Well I wasn't planning on posting but then an old friend got in touch (Hi Jeanne, would you like some exposure?) and that led to me Facebook friending her and then I got all started thinking about friends from that era of my life (1990-94ish) and so I friended another friend who then linked me to other friends and so on and so forth so that through the magic of Facebook I am suddenly sitting back at Valley Mill Camp in the 90s.

Whew. What a time. There I was 18+ pretending to be a grown up, acting as a counsellor to impressionable young women. My first group of campers were 11-13 and I was way more scared than they on day one. Would they think I was cool? Would they like me? It was worse than high school. Thankfully, by the magic of just being a college student I started out with a large helping of assumed coolness and things went pretty smoothly. I remember a few of those first campers, I guess like teachers remember their students, but not all of them. Genna (Jenna?) and Eileen are names I remember. Narda and Hilary stayed at camp for years after, becoming counsellors alongside me and friends of a sort. But I had no preconceived notions of their futures. They were so interestingly different all of them. I wanted the best for them and experienced my first parental feelings I think, having to wipe away tears when they would do fantastic at the horse riding show.

Funny enough though, I was certain I never wanted to have children. I liked teenagers, hated babies and just thought it would never happen that my mind would change about the subject. I knew that part of the reason was that I was terrified I'd be like my mother to any children I might have. It didn't occur to me that right there at camp I was demonstrating otherwise. I was certain it was inevitable. It wasn't until years later that my therapist put the major reason into words for me: I had already raised a child.

My mother was obviously never capable of being a mom to me. She was the most important child in our family. Her insomnia ruled the house in the mornings, her depressions and highs determined how the day went and we all adjusted our selves and our lives around her needs. Every time we were about to depart on a family trip I counseled her out of her belief that it was a mistake to go. Every time she felt a distant relative had offended her I talked her through it. Present giving was about what she wanted us to like or what she might have wanted to receive at our age, not about what we really wanted. And there was no way to say you didn't want what she had given you, the rejection might kill her.

Somehow there was an unspoken rule that her psyche was so delicate we all had to tiptoe around her. So why would I feel parented in that situation? I was the parent, dad was oblivious, and only my brother and I grew up I guess. I always was a little older than my years. The death of my brother and the total deterioration of my mother sealed that deal.

So, I look on these women today who were children back then with me and am so proud, amazed and slightly self satisfied that perhaps I had a hand in who they've become. My proudest moment that first summer was when one of my kids called the other one "gay" and the second kid parroted back what I had been saying all summer "gay is not an insult." I hope that stuck. The next summer I learned from the kids to lighten up. I had been sticking the rules so hard down their throats that they told the boss I didn't like them. How horrifying. I loved them! So I learned some of the balancing act a parent has to do between rules and loving enough to let some rules slide. From my friend Jeanne, who started out as a peer but ended up as the boss lady the last two summers, I learned the value of not giving a crap what anyone thinks of you, whether it be on the improv stage (she is the best drama teacher ever) or on the dance floor. And years later, when she was my bridesmaid, we boogied down together without a care.

A lot of these lessons were not learned immediately, rather they percolated for years. Now I can see some of them becoming part of me and I hope that means that I taught those girls a thing or two also. Now I'm faced with the reality that 4 human beings are stuck with me for years, not just a summer, and I will determine a great deal of what they believe and who they become. I hope to heck they grow up wanting to parent because they want to be like me. I can only hope that they look back on my mothering with a laugh about the mistakes I made and a positive feeling about how I made them feel about themselves. Because I think they're neat as heck and thank God I decided to become a mother after all. Lord knows the world needs a few more people with my sarcastic sense of humor around.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mommy's weekend away!

Oh I'm finally learning. I've been waiting all year for this weekend and I almost gave it up. After coming home from terrible trip number 2 I almost decided to hibernate. I thought I was cursed. I know, I know, part of it was bringing an infant along and this weekend is decidedly no infants allowed but I just felt like I never wanted to leave home alone.

But I'm doing it. In 36 hours my ass is leaving town. I'm going scrapbooking. I'm going to nap, eat good food, read books and/or magazines, listen to music, watch movies and scrap the hell outta some baby pictures.

Heaven. Cursed? I hope not. But this time I'll be a 2 hour drive from home. I can cut out early if it sucks but I've done this before, it would be hard pressed to suck.

I am so excited that I decided to go. Daddy is less so. For the first time I'm leaving him with 4 children, not just the three he's grown accustomed to caring for alone. The youngest, who has spent all week convincing me I've created some kind of monster who refuses to go to sleep in a reasonable amount of time, is all his. Bwah ha ha ha ha!

I wish him the best of luck with the kid. I have repeated to myself again and again that the kid will be fine without me for 2 nights and 2 days. I'm used to leaving the triplets, they're pretty big, so I don't worry about them having a disrupted routine really. But the baby has had a night alone with grandma twice. Never two. Never no mommy for 48 hours. It's about time I guess, the big lug.

So I take a deep breath and drive away. It is for my sanity. I hope to return fresh and ready to mother, blog, Christmas shop and give a crap again. Later!