Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Date night!!!!

We're very fortunate to have a great support system of friends and family willing to take our kids. Tonight the two older guys are sleeping over at grandma/grandpa's place aka Parental Units. They were kind enough to take them because Dearest has an uber early in the morning meeting and then an appointment, and instead of leaving me with three in the morning (the hardest part of the day IMO) they are taking the guys and bringing them to the museum. Anyhow, long story short, we are down to one, so we immediately think DATE NIGHT.

We found ourselves in a parking lot drinking Starbucks quoting lines from Disney's Cars and burping a baby overlooking the 401. Once upon a time, we'd be over a candlelit dinner, in an ancient building with amazing character, eating amazing food, downtown Toronto and being doted on by our server, talking about very adult things like the election, current events, work. Wait...that was a few months ago! I was still pregnant, I couldn't drink!! So now I'm wondering when I get to go back to the 5th Grill (BTW, which I highly recommend for date night if you can pawn...errr find loving people to take your beautiful children.) I'm wondering when we get to enjoy that again. I want to have candlelight, I want to have conversation, I want crab cakes! It dawned on me that I'm going to miss Dearest for the next three years. I think it's dawning on him too.

That said, while we were in the parking lot, we were laughing, we joked about our predicament, we challenged each other about who could quote Mater more. We kissed our baby, who tried to take off Dearests finger, which I then laughed about, enjoyed our latte, prayed to the sleep gods that we'd get a few more moments and talked about work. We were going to go cruising when the bubble burst. I might not be pregnant, but my bladder still thinks I am. So our romance is limited to parking lots and potty breaks. Such is life post child number three, you make the best with what you have, and we're pretty lucky in this regard, we have a heck of a lot to make the best with.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Hi, my name is Joy and I'm a SAHM Control Freak

My midwives have told me to rest. They've forbade me from child care (other than Baby D) cooking, cleaning, laundry, basically, anything other than bathing and the fine art of pillow arranging. They've made this clear to Dearest and for the most part, he's been a Draconian in enforcing this. I know you're all saying "Go with it! WTH is wrong with you? Enjoy!" Don't get me wrong, I'm all caught up on my games (the midwives are very sympathetic to those with Farmville addictions thankfully) but my house is not being run my way and the post partum hormones are trying to take over and heightening this lack of my style of order.

I have always been a big advocate of letting dad do things his way, particularly with child care and interaction. So long as the kids are intact, it's all good. I've always pooh poohed those moms who couldn't just let their hubbies be, but I think deep down inside, I'm one of them. Just like how alcohol lowers your inhibitions to make you go dancing, drunk calling or God knows what else, my hormones are releasing my inner control freak.

I actually started crying yesterday because the kitchen was too messy, distraught, I could barely eat. Today, I wanted to jump through the window because Dearest wasn't driving the way I wanted him to. Although jumping over a giant bump in the road, that urge to kill was completely justifiable as no amount of seat cushion could protect me from that a few days post baby delivery. I'm sneaking folding some clothes and putting them away. I employed my oldest to help me so if I were caught, and I was, I could blame it on him...and I did. Five is not too young to take a fall for mommy. I am losing my MIND not cooking, I can't sneak a dinner, and it's not that Dearest is serving frozen pizzas, it's good food, but it's not my food.

Everyone who knows me that I have a problem not doing anything for extended periods of time. I'm not a freaky can't sit still type, but if there is a job at home that needs to be done, I'm not happy until it's finished. It's true that shortly after giving birth, I was looking at the three bags of laundry that had accumulated during the process and couldn't relax until Dearest had started it. Vacations need to have down time and exploration time. I would go nuts camping and doing the same routine day in and out. Okay, maybe I am freaky. Oh God, I just discovered one of the kids released a balloon in my foyer and there is no way to get it down without taking one's life in their hands or waiting for the helium. I'm terrified of heights, so I'm going to bet you that before the helium is out, I'm going to be duct taping some broom sticks together to get it to a place where I can move it.

Okay, so hormones have removed my filter, except instead of swearing, being goofy or a number of other foibles one might have if they were drunk, I'm just experiencing a crisis of being too anal.

So reality check time. I have a great Dearest, slightly insane children, but a 5 year old who will put away laundry. A barely week old who like his brothers will nap like a champion and if all I have to suffer is not having things exactly my way, I need my head examined, right? And as a fix for my apparent addiction to control, I will fold a pile of laundry while sitting on my bed, surrounded by pillows and put them in the hamper for someone else to put away.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Note to Self

Trying to psyche people out about the arrival of your baby can backfire. Well, backfire isn't a great term since I got an 8lb 10oz bundle of unbelievable cuteness  (if I do say so myself) in the end, but the path to get that bundle, isn't a lot of fun. I apologize for the million types, rambling, run on sentences...yanno, birth.

Anyhow, if you're not one of my forced friends reading this, I delivered Desmond this morning, making last night's post very relevant. I felt the first pangs of labour at around 5:15am, but having been fooled before, I decided to take the wait and see approach. At around 6am, I knew it was the real deal and told Dearest to rouse inlaws and kids from bed, Baby D was on his way. We called the doula at around 6:30, thankfully she lives down the street. The midwife didn't get called til about 7, and by that time I have the lovely experience of back labour, something I don't recommend. Nothing really worked short of standing and holding onto the door, but that gets old very fast first thing in the morning. In retrospect, I should have known something was up, I had a great freaking sleep last night. My body was prepping me for the brutal task ahead. Anyhow, we called the midwife, she got started on her way, and of course, great big traffic jam. However by 8, she arrived with her secondary. She checked me to see how dialated I was and that was when I knew I was having a homebirth.

Well there wasn't much choice in the matter, which made my decision all the more easier. You simply don't up and go to the hospital that easily at 8cms, not that you'd get any relief anyhow. If the midwife had have said I was at 3-4cms, I think I would have gone and gotten an epidural, but I was not moving from my beautiful bed.

So 8am, and he was born at 8:39am, so you can imagine how that 40 minutes went. Thankfully, fast and furious. The midwives ripping everything out of their bags at lightning speed, Dearest and my awesome doula finding every blanket and towel in the house, and me dreaming of vasectomies and hanging up my uterus. Thankfully that awesome moment of pushing came and while I felt completely in control of what was going to happen to me in terms of being handled by my awesome caregivers, my body and I were having words until the pushing point came. I remember yelling/screaming, everyone assures me that it was just some primitive gutteral noise that still has me sucking Halls because my throat feels like I've been trying to swallow a microplane. However it felt soooo much better to be pushing and if I was going to have any say in this, 40 weeks was coming to an end pronto!

Anyhow, it didn't feel long before Baby D was born and gave the world a look at what a cute little fella he is. I survived with a small tear, and for all my bravery and gusto during labour, I nearly shit myself when it came to put in the ONE stitch and had to be held down my my doula and Dearest...seriously. I guess when you're done, you're done.

Shortly after, I was cuddling and nursing Baby D, who pooped on me, TWICE! He;s risking a nickname he wouldn't want me to repeat to future girlfriends.After lunch, because we were done so early, (Thank you, by the way Baby D, your timing was absolutely perfect, you're well on your way to a puppy) my monkeys came to visit their brother and sang him a tune of happy birthday. They're so freaking cute when they're not swinging from the chandeliers.

Would I recommend homebirth? For me, yes! thankfully my births are fast and furious, because I don't have the will for a long one. My two previous kids have broken me, and I'm low risk. I loved staying in my nice peaceful house, I love the fact that other than running to the washroom, my washroom, I don't have to move anywhere. There's no place like home. My birth was managed in that we were well taken care of, but not controlled. I pushed on my own accord save for a brief moment to allow some necessary stretching to happen. We're warm, cozy and comfortable...well as comfortable as one can be with a stitch where no stitches should ever go...and yes, I'm going to moan about that for days, you've been duly warned. Baby D is awesome, healthy, cute, nursing well, sleeping, cuddling, all those sweet newborn things. My MIL asked if we were taking him to the hospital, but everything has already been done, in our home and he will be visited tomorrow by our midwife for further spoilage and checking up, but by my Mommy Spidey Sense, he's just in great as shape as the two big ones, even a little more peaceful. The Parental Units have the two big guys for the night, which is making this a wonderfully peaceful night at home. I would do it again... if I were to have another baby, which at this moment, other than adoption, the answer is emphatically NO! Maybe in a few years, or five I might forget back labour.

For anyone else, it's a call you have to make, ultimately as a mom 3x over, my one piece of standing advice regarding birth is to be flexible (no pun intended). Babies and bodies have their agendas and you might be able to coax them to follow the party line, but you never know. If you're interested though, definitely look it up, get a midwife who supports you. Hire a doula...cannot stress enough! Get Dearest on board, he was reluctant, but was a champion when push came to shove (yuk yuk) and even brought up tea and snacks when it was all said and done. For me, it was a great experience and I am very very very thankful I did it. I'm still in awe that I could do it and very happy that I'm in my fortress of solitude with my baby and dearest.

The downside, well, a mountain of laundry, but that's Dearest's problem. Midwives have forbid me from doing any housework for a week. I'm crushed...really.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Gone Birthin'

Ha! Made you look! Well, if you're actually someone new and not just one of my friends I force to read my blog, I'm due with child number 3 tomorrow. Baby D, as I've come to call him is feeling pretty big and it's been a long, really uncomfortable pregnancy. I'm not one of those women who loves being pregnant. I hate throwing up, I hate the pressure in my belly and nether regions, the waddling, the extra weight yada, yada, yada.

Anyhow, it seems like the whole motherhood competition begins during pregnancy. Whether you drink caffeine, eat sushi, have brie, exercise, don't exercise you name it. The actual birth is a huge point of discussion and point of contention for the mommy wars and who is the most holy in the quest to be that perfect parent. Pain management seems to be part of the grail. Get some and you're less of a mother because of the myriad of reasons. There is fact behind some of the reasons, but somehow it's morphed into a value judgment about how much you love your child, how much you trust your body, how much you are woman, hear you roar!

With Mr. N, I went into the hospital, had a lovely epidural, felt no pain, the birth was a little hairy as his heart rate was taking serious dips and stops, but with the help of a vaccuum we got him out quickly enough that he was the healthy bouncing baby boy we were hoping for. Afterward though, my back felt like it was smashed with a sledgehammer and I felt like hell during my recovery because of it. My back has never been a happy back, so the decision to stick a giant needle in my spine is not made lightly.

Mr. A, I went into labour with no sort of warm up. No  progression of contractions just 0-3000000000kp/h in the middle of a snowstorm and before I knew it I was in hard labour. I crawled up to the nurses desk begging for an epidural stat! Thankfully because of the bad weather, I didn't have to wait, but the anesthesiologist walked in with some hemp pouch bag, socks and sandals on and when she was done trying to find that magic spot that would deliver pain relief, her answer was "Good enough." Note to everyone,  do not trust anyone who is putting a needle in your spine who wears socks and sandals. So, the rest of the labour progressed with me feeling a lot of pain and hoping that anesthesiologist dies a horrible death. Probably something I should be ashamed of, I'm still not! But after Mr. A, I bounced back a lot more quickly. My back felt way better and I was ready to go.

So up comes this labour, and I'm still undecided. Who knows, maybe I'll be going so fast that choice will not be mine to make. But I straddle the middle of people who think au naturel is the only way to go, and people who think I'm nuts for even considering any alternative. I'm not firmly settled on either side of the coin, I just want to hit the ground running with my healthy baby. Let me be the first to say, at the first sign of trouble, I'll be comandeering the OR and demanding them to take my baby out as I was with Mr. N. And to give you an idea of what that means to me, I'm terrified of surgery of any sort. I need to be drugged just to get a filling. That said, I like the idea of feeling as good as I did when I had Mr. A. I also like the idea of being able to move around, I like not having all the junk that goes along with the epidural.

I'm confident my body can deliver this baby,women do that every day, I've done it, twice! But I'm definitely not a fan of pain. I think I can manage it to some degree, however the pragmatic Capricorn Joy says "Are you f*cking crazy? You know it hurts like a mofo and no amount of Kumbaya's is going to spare you." So unfortunately, like a lot of big decisions, there is no 100% one way or the other. I'm not married to either idea, and frankly, in a way I wish I were, black and white can be so much easier.

So what to do? I guess in the end, I'm going to have to go in with the best of intentions and realize that as a third time mother, I have earned the right to honour my body. I go in with the knowledge knowing I have and can survive a birth without pain intervention, but at the same time, if my broken and bruised body is yelling for help, I should listen to her too. Like every mother though, I have to have the courage to listen to my instincts. When wishing me luck or sending me vibes, please aim them towards that thought. :)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Saturday Mornings

Ahhhh, the weekend. Nothing more promising than a Saturday morning. Friday nights are cool too, but you're usually so tired and winding down from the rest of the week that morning is the last thing on your mind. Plus, lucky me, I have a great group of gal pals who get together every Friday night and a husband who completely supports it...he crashes shortly after the kids go down. But enough about him! Me!!!

So I was lying in bed, thinking about our new Saturday morning ritual, which is, pretending to still be asleep. It will start at about 6:30-7am, when I start hearing a bit of chatter coming from the boys room. They work hard to stay quiet and their door is closed, so I can usually doze off. But soon enough the big guy is up using the washroom. Little brother follows and they have an animated discussion about the poop the big guy has created and hand washing. They go back in the room. This time they're playing marble maze, I can't get back to sleep, but I'm not leaving the bed until they drag me out kicking and screaming. Then they get bored of course and you hear the pitter patter....HA! Thumpity thump of two sets of preschooler legs. They slow down and "quietly" peek in our room, where we're both lying, pretending to sleep. Big sigh! They head off to another room. DH and I look at each other in terror wondering how much more time we have until we're caught.

At this point, I start mentally calculating how much it would cost to have an escape route leading directly from our bedroom to downstairs. A fireman's pole would be perfect. That way, we can bypass the kids and go directly for the coffee. We might even have half a cup if we're quiet enough before they detect our absence. My contractor might think I'm nuts, but who knows, he's a father of two, he likes his coffee, he might think I'm brilliant. I certainly do.

Dearest quietly asks me how I slept, which is code for "Are you getting up now?" Why he asks, I don't know, because if mommy is up and the kids are awake, daddy better get up if he knows what's good for him. Being a man who's been married for 11 years, he's smart enough to do this. I guess he's just hoping for the two days a year (Father's Day and his Birthday) where he gets to sleep in at my expense. At this point, we can manage quiet conversation, because the kids figure all bets are off, they let us sleep in 20 minutes and now they're going to be as noisy and possible. I figure we have about 5 more minutes before they start squabbling over something. So we plot out our day, recap last night and have the only adult conversation til nap time in about 5 minutes. We're getting pretty good at it too.

Diatribe for a second. Do you know what I blame this on actually? The demise of Saturday morning cartoons. There used to be a time where kids would get up at 6am and quietly run to the TV, grab their breakfasts that their smart parents laid out for them and watch until noon if the parents let them. But nowadays, those cartoons have all been sucked away to make room for infomercials. Screw you infomercials! I'm never buying your crap no matter how sparkly, shiny or pseudo witty your hosts are because you've cheated me out of hours of sleep, years if you count my kids and the millions of Saturdays times three boys.

So back to us hiding in our beds, now we hear the determined stride of two little boys laden with toys towards our room. Dearest looks pained, like he's going to cry, I'm not too far behind, I'm not sure why he's complaining, he went to bed at 8, my gal pals keep me up til midnight at least (notice the lack of responsibility taking). Well, we know it's inevitable, and like a condemned person, we open our eyes, pull the duvet down past our heads and welcome our little monkeys, who climb aboard.

As much as I would love to sleep (and I'll be singing a different tune when Baby D arrives...eventually) you can't help but feel a bit flattered for the enthusiasm these two guys meet you with in the morning. No one else in the world is as happy to see you. They come to show us their toys, make sure Monty T-Rex who has been assigned night duty to protect mommy and daddy has done his job. They tuck mommy in, make sure baby is nice and warm, give kisses, hugs and cuddles. The perspective moment is clear, we're a family, with two-soon to be three crazy boys and as much as the sleep is nice, this is nicer. It's not going to be too long before we have to yell at them at 1pm to get out of bed to spend time with them, the last thing they'd want to do, so I should enjoy this while it lasts.

However all good things come to an end. The perspective moment is broken when they start squabbling over a toy and start using daddy as a launch pad. Daddy bravely submits, he's always been a morning person. I slip out of bed under the guise of using the loo, leaving Dearest to the two crazy beasts he's created and will be stuck under for the next 20 minutes and quietly pad downstairs for that first coffee of the day.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesdays???

WTH is that? Something in blog land that has people creating posts without words??? Now that I'm starting to get a hang of this thing, I can't stop. I've never been quiet, never! It's not in my nature, it makes me ill, sick, in pain, I'm limping around like a lame horse...Okay, a little melodramatic, but I don't cope well with being quiet.

There are times where I have to be quiet. Not in the sense "The kids are sleeping and I'm on ultra silent mode so as not to make a ping on their sonar." That I'm fairly good at, after 7:30pm, in fact I crave it. It's keeping my mouth shut when I have something to say, being diplomatic, being well behaved, being, like, mature or like, something.

Recently, as in last night I've had my back up about something. Someone committed a cardinal sin in the book of Joy and messed with my family. My first reaction was to go all Michael Corleone on them, but Dearest restrained me...by that I mean, he sat on me, as much as possible. Really, I love him, but he can be such a stick in the mud some times.

But there are many times where I have to keep my mouth shut. Dearest has some mad skills doing that, I don't know how, since I tend to shoot from the hip. Although I have to say as I get older, I am getting a little more adept at biting my tongue. That said, there are days where the Joy in College alter ego is jumping around inside the cage I've locked her in begging to be set free. She was so uncompromising, so free, she proudly wore shirts she designed "You say Bitch like it's a bad thing!" or "I like being angry". I now have a new alter ego called "Uppity Joy". I love reclaiming that word BTW. Anyhow, she's a bit more diplomatic and often reserves her rants and rage for political items...which tends to scare a lot of her more genteel friends, but since they're true friends, they put up with me.

That said, it's not always so bad being diplomatic. Especially as a parent. There are millions of times where I'd like to yell at someone who is not parenting in a way I deem fit. However humility and experience has taught me that snapshots into people's parenting careers are usually poor ways to judge the parenting. Who hasn't said something grumpy to their child in a grocery store, or carried a toddler out on their shoulder like a sack of potatoes after a long hot day at the zoo? I wouldn't want someone to look at my less than stellar moments and assume that I was a lousy parent in need of a talking to, so the Golden Rule has helped steer my diplomacy.

I've also learned too that old adage about catching more flies with honey...or an open bottle of maple syrup as the fruit flies threatning to take over my home are demonstrating. People generally are a lot more receptive to your ideas if you approach them nicely. I've done it a few times, when a nice spell comes over me, once every solar eclipse and it works! Much to my surprise!

That said though, sometimes people really need a verbal ass whooping and I can't dish it out because I have to be good. I also recognize that it will serve no good purpose other than making me feel better, a purpose I fully support by the way, but alas, I have to think of others too, the great self sacrificing me.

I guess in the end though with a healthy dose of perspective, I'm lucky. I'm a woman of colour who lives in a country where she can call the leader of said country a Doofus (he IS!) and not fear any reprecussions. Not terribly long ago, my ancestors would have been whooped for even so much as a cheeky look, let alone talking back or being uppity. I can talk back, be uppity, yell, shout, scream. I can wear...or attempt to wear my old college t-shirts (Yes I saved them!). I have a pretty good range of what I can say and what is protected and I am thankful for that, and if that means sometimes I need to bite my tongue to keep a situation uncomplicated, not judge someone or open up doors of communication, it's a small price to pay. So I don't know how well I can adhere to Wordless Wednesdays, but, I'll choose my words carefully. Deal?

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Men in heels...Sexay!

Well, this post is a shout out to hubby and some great men and women. Tonight, my dearest came home limping and complaining about his feet. He also came home with a shoe box that looked far too feminine even for my tastes. In it were a pair of red shiny pumps, which he used to race several men at a kick off of a very new, but very worthwhile and hilarious fundraiser Walk a Mile in Her Shoes for the White Ribbon Campaign. I gave him the thumbs up and gave him the "poor bunny" look, and then secretly snickered behind his back...I'm a good wife, not a PERFECT wife.

That said, the subject of violence against women isn't a funny one. It's one that is notoriously hard to call attention to. No one really wants to acknowledge it and it takes a great deal of strength and determination for women to come out and speak against it. Earlier this month, the police chief of Belleville Cory McMulllan came to the table to bright to light the crimes against her in her home at the hands of her husband. In doing so, she has served as a powerful beacon for everyone to shout out that this isn't a problem reserved for a certain class, type, race or creed of person. It's not something that is isolated in the wilds of some remote nation, nor is it reserved for people of a certain religion.

Bear with me, I'm about to do math. 1 in 4 Canadian women is a victim of gender based violence. That's 25% of say 17 million women, which is 4 million, 250 thousand, a million short of the population of the GTA. That's a hell of a lot of women, but we don't hear much on the issue do we? It's swept under the rug because it's a dirty little secret, women feel ashamed, unsupported and abusers sure as heck aren't going to talk about it, even though our criminal justice system is not exactly tough on these guys.

My dearest hubby got involved in the campaign because of me. A nasty piece of work for a father and an abusive boyfriend as I slowly opened up to DH over the years has made me one of those women. However in the 17 years we've been together, the bad dreams, the fears, the anxiety have slowly ebbed away and I'm the cheeky piece of work I am today. EVERY man knows and cares about a woman who has been a victim, even if he doesn't know who.

DH has kept up his work and has been working with the WRC since the mid 90s. He's committed to raising money, and spreading the word about violence against women and men's responsibility to participate in efforts to end it. Through education, supplying resources, outreach and insane stunts, which will one day see dearest in the hospital with a broken ankle, they have done amazing work from being a small grassroots organization, to one that sees the Executive Director flying off to amazing places to spread awareness, the team working hard to spread the word to young men and women, boys and girls in schools and the board trying to get as many men on the ground, in heels raising funds for all of this to happen. Sorry, giant run on sentence!

Last year was the first event, it did amazingly well, and this year needs to be better. God willing it will be warmer, since I nearly died last year, despite the heckling. Dearest needs more heckle...uh supporters. Actually, Dearest needs more men to walk with him to diffuse the target on his back. And for that, I call upon my friends, family, associates, partners in crime and people who owe me (you know who you are!) Get your man out in heels, don't have one? You've got to have a friend, coworker, brother, father, someone who is willing to strap on a pair. Since DH has graduated, he is no longer in the cute mary jane mules I got for him, but an unholy pair of red patent leather, but you can start your guy off in something easier...or if you're tired of him leaving his socks on the floor, payback!

That said, it's a great cause, it's a great time and it's a great way to bring awareness to a serious issue and drive home the message that there are indeed men do care about women being abused, but there needs to be more.

Check it out! September 30th, 12pm, Dundas Square. Register here!

Dearest has laid down the gauntlet and challenges people to raise more than he does this year.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Boy oh boy oh boy!

Some of you might know that I'm due in a few days for baby number three. Some of you might know that baby number 3 is a not so little boy. At each measuring the midwives say, like they're on a farm evaluating a tractor or a steer, "Yep, this one is going to be a big'un. I'd be surprised if he were less than 10 pounds" Really? REALLY? You know what? Just lie to me! Anyhow, I digress, since this is supposed to be about boys. Beware, if you don't like gender stereotyping, you're not going to like this post. That said, I'm a week away from delivering my third child, so I dare you to say anything!

When I found out I was pregnant with number three, I immediately checked every gender folklore site on the Internet. Every one of them. Yep, from the back of beyond, all of them. I got my hopes up that number three would be that girl I was waiting for. I do love my boys, but I'm outnumbered, and I had visions of tutus and pink and cute little toys and outfits. Gender stereotyping be damned, I was having a girl and she was going to wear pink dammit! She was also going to be my fierce little feminist, she would have a black belt by the time she was 12, she would be mouthy, wise and all things every tough and beautiful woman should be, just like her mommy. *g* Well, I went to the ultrasound and my little Elizabeth/Victoria turned out to be a little Desmond. I looked, I checked, I verified. I left the room feeling "Oh well, so long as he's healthy" got into the car thinking "It's not the end of the world, you can always have more kids." Started driving down the street and next thing I knew I was bawling my eyes out. DH called home eventually, terrified of the results and caught his pregnant hormonal wife blubbering on about wedding dresses and pedicures, coffee and girl time and figured we were having another boy. Bravely he came home that night.

I learned a lot about gender disappointment over the next few weeks and admit that I was in a weepy frame of mind. Part of me was ashamed that I wasn't happy. How many people would kill to be able to have one boy, let alone three? I was surprised myself at how hard a time I was having coming to terms with it. Even though it's normal and lots of people deal with it, it still felt like something I should just get over. It didn't help in the little while after, every time someone asked if I knew what I was having and I replied boy, they would say something to the effect of pity or that I was about to experience the biggest disaster since the sinking of the Titanic.

One day, I was sitting in our family room with DH and my two little nuts running around. Me and DH went there to try and hide and have an adult conversation, but they sniffed us out as quickly as bloodhounds do their quarry. As we sat mourning the violence and brutal demise of our conversation, I watched my two guys, laughing and bouncing, making up silly games, never sitting still for a minute, but finding pure joy in just about everything and I suddenly came to terms with having another boy.

There is just something special about them. If I had to describe little boys as an animal, a puppy is the first thing that comes to mind. Silly, clumsy, quick to fall, but quick to get up. Ready to learn, eager to please, takes delight in EVERYTHING. Not always the creature who makes the sanest choices right off the bat, but they adapt. Pretty much set on perma-happy, ready to devour anything tasty...and not so appetizing. Bounding to see you, quick with hugs and kisses, bringing you treats, whether it means a half dead frog or a posey of dandelions, proud of their bounty.

Yes there are times, like once in the lobby of our school, where three moms and 6 boys between us watched as they bounced off the walls, you feel like you need a support group. One mom pronounced it loudly in the lobby that day. Maybe we do, but then again, we all have developed a sense of humour that I think you only can with boys...Quite frankly, it's a sick sense of humour, but it gets us through the day. I mean, when you have to deal with your child running around with underwear on his head, bringing you every item in the house in his mouth, barking like a dog and wearing your shoes, you get a little warped and don't even get me started on older boys and teenage boys.

Soon those teen years will be upon me and I'll be broke from feeding and housing my three boys and their friends I'm sure. I'll ask them how their days went and I'll get a couple of grunts and get interrogated on where the nearest stash of snacks are (note to self, find better hiding spot for my stash). What's left of the money after feeding them will be spent on helping them go to post secondary. I know an insane amount of mothers who have boys university age and up, and most of them have chosen to spread their wings and fly to somewhere far, far away. I watch them struggle with the thought of their little boys who once made them mud pies go off in search of adventures and girls, I try to comfort them the best I can, but I don't know if it makes a dent, only time will I imagine. 

It's not that girls don't do any of these things, but us gals, we usually do something considerate, like you know, call, check in, see how old mom is doing? We'll often see if mom wants to go for coffee or shopping, or something! Boys, they seem content to go their way and while they do check in, the reaching out work is usually left for us, much like the laundry.

Unfortunately for my guys, their mother is an excellent outreach worker. They can be in the middle of the Gobi desert and I'll find a way to get to them, just to see how they're doing, remind them what time Thanksgiving dinner is at and that attendence is mandatory. :) In the meantime, I've embraced the silliness, the madness, the never ending noise and crazy games they come up with. The bouquets of dandelions will be pressed and the mud pies stored somewhere (OUTSIDE!) carefully. I'll listen to their wonderful song that they made up titled "I gotta boogie!" repeated over, and over and over again...those are the only lyrics. They're already laughing at their bodily functions and have a morbid curiosity of watching poop swirl down the toilet bowl. That said, I am looking forward to meeting boy number three and seeing how he adds to the madness. I'll embrace being the Queen of this kingdom and watch episodes of Malcolm in the Middle in horror. I'll run screaming to wine night with my girlfriends every week, and treat myself to regular hair treatments, pedicures and anything girly. I'll try not to blame my husband too much when the going gets rough, but just to remind him that I do mourn the common sense God or nature has bestowed upon us with an XX chromosone, I'm also planning on getting myself a girl poodle and dying it pink!

Monday, August 9, 2010


I'm so not a regular blog type gal, I realize this and am just going to accept myself for who I am. Maybe I'll be more compelled to blog and ramble with the arrival of newest and youngest, which should be any day...God willing!

I've been thinking a lot about joining a mommy/baby group again. I didn't have a lot of time for one when my second arrived as I already had a toddler under my heels and many of the groups cater to one age group, but now with both boys off to Montessori, I'm feeling like I can start anew. Coffee dates, little playdates, mommy and me yoga, chatting with groups of new moms....full stop!

I'm going to step out on a limb and generalize a bit, my full apologies, but I remember being a new mom, trying to find my way in the world, making friends, trying to determine what "kind" of mom I was. There are so many different categories, I was so confused, so worried, so stressed and even a little sad. Five years later, I realize that all that stress was for nothing. I was/am a cafeteria parent. I pick and choose what works. Some of my parenting falls under this label, other parts, might fall under another label. But really, other than finding a forum that might support that type of parenting, it's meant little to me in my day to day.

I wish I could give all new parents a heads up, because I see so many drawing lines in the sand based on what type of parent they decide they are. I can remember one playdate where moms with little guys barely 6 months old proudly state what kind of parent they are and I was sitting there confused and wondering if I had missed a class or something because I hadn't even heard of these terms til now. I ran home, very upset and turned to Google, which made me even more upset because I wasn't a type of parent.

Nearly five years later, two children later and one more on the way, I guess my type of parenting would be "Defensive parenting!" "Us vs. The Pint Sized Crowd" "Madly trying to type as my 2.5 year old is trying to convince me to go out in the rain!" In retrospect, none of those labels mattered. They still don't. New parents, I'm telling you, 5 years down the road, when your child is happily bringing you every weed in the garden as a present, whether you wore him 24/7 or not when he was 6 months old will mean little.

I think my best piece of advice to parents is to be loving, be available (except when blogging *g*) and follow your gut. Almost every parenting decision we've made based on our instincts has been a good one. It's there for a reason and doesn't usually let you down. If you're programmed like most parents to want the best for your child, it won't usually lead you down a wrong path and have confidence in your decisions. There are so many styles of parenting and everyone wants to be convinced that they're doing the right thing. Some may be overzealous in their approach and how they view other approaches. Have enough faith in yourself to know that you're doing what is best for your family and if you stray once in a while from being that perfect parent, forgive yourself, you're human and even with the best of intentions, us parents get tired, cranky and just plain fed up. Avoid the parenting rat race, it's every bit as draining and the work one and in the end, it pretty much ends up in the same wash. :)