Is it Time for Baby Number 2?

I’m terrified and I can’t even describe to full effect how or why I’m terrified.   I actually found it difficult to sleep last night as my mind kept going on and on and on about the possibilities and what could or could not happen.   You see, I’ve contemplated having another baby.   I don’t know how seriously I’ve been contemplating it until last night when my husband asked if I would like to try to have another baby this year.    The question actually stemmed from us making sure that we could financially handle baby number two and how our insurance would impact the timing, the latter of which I’m well aware lies within the good Lord’s hands.

I can’t really tell you exactly how I feel.   I know that last night I was nervous at the thought of having another baby.   After all, we’re in our groove now with Davey.   Do I really want to start all over again with another one?   I’m pretty sure I do, but it’s almost like deciding when or how to pull off that band aid.   Do you do it fast and swift so that the pain is only brief, or do you slowly start doing it and then deal with the pain as it pulls off little threads of your skin?  To me, making the decision to have another baby is like the pulling off the band aid analogy.   I should just decide that now is the time I want to do it and just do it, right?

There are a lot of worries and fears I have.   I worry about if I can take care of two children.   Truthfully, I never thought I had it in me to take care of one.   Why test fate by trying to see if I can take care of two?   Questions keep swirling within my mind, some selfish and others are pretty legitimate.    On the selfish end, it goes back to my vanity.   I’m actually getting my body back to its pre-baby days.   My stomach is flattening back out, my muscles are toning back up, and I’m feeling all around good about myself and my appearance.   Do I want to give that up to have baby number two?   I know it’s selfish.

Another concern I’m having is whether I’ll lose my sanity.   I’m not a patient person.   Becoming a mother has forced me to start developing that virtue, and it’s still not mastered yet.   There are days, which you all know about, where I’ve literally wanted to run into my closet and lock the door and hide.   I can’t do that.   I can’t think that way.   I’m a mother, for crying out loud, and if I want to bring another one into this world, then I need to nip this in the bud.

Concern number three has to do with Davey and his feelings.   He’s been my life for the past 16 months.   Every decision I’ve made, every sacrifice I’ve taken, every road I’ve walked down, he has been the one and only catalyst.   He knows this and he knows that he is my world and that during the day, no one else comes before him.   Do I have enough of “me” to give to another child?   Do I have the ability to love two of them equally?   What if I don’t have enough love?   What if Davey starts feeling neglected?   I honestly think this fear is weighing on me more than anything else.

Today, I’ve spent a good portion of the day delving into these rampant thoughts and fears of mine.   To do it or not to do it?   I like the idea of a large family, seeing as how I’m an only child (although I haven’t always been).   I don’t have that ability of getting together with my siblings at Christmas or holidays or the weekends, just to catch up on things and let our kids play together.   It’s a luxury I always thought I would have, one that I took for granted.    I want Davey to have this.   I want him to have brothers and sisters that he can play with, that he can grow old with, that he can have when his father and I have left this world.   I want all of this, but can I really do it?

How about my readers out there?   What sort of fears did you have when you became pregnant with your second, third, fourth children and so on?    Do you have fears or concerns about having another baby even before you became pregnant?   I can’t imagine I’m the only one who is going through this.   I really need to just rip off that band aid, don’t I?

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Don’t Presume To Know My Life

I read an article that discussed the top 7 things to never say to a stay-at-home mom.   Most of them I nodded my head at and said, “So true, so true.” I even had a slight chuckle from time to time and sighed with content knowing that so many others were experiencing the same things as me.  

But there was one particular “faux pas” that really angers me every day.   I hear it from our friends, I see it in their eyes, in their snide comments, and it really has my blood boiling.   I don’t like for them to look at me differently or to look at my son differently and I don’t like feeling bad either.  

Let’s get one thing clear…just because I am a stay-at-home mom does NOT mean that my husband and I are rich.   We do not live paycheck to paycheck, but we also do not go out to fancy dinners, go to movies, and spend money on happy hours or new clothing.   We chose a lifestyle that meant we had to forego a lot of the little luxuries we had been privy to when I was a full time contributor to our monthly income.  

My choice to stay home meant that I had to resort to not being able to go grab lunch with the girls on a regular basis.   I don’t get the luxuries of my café mochas at Starbucks anymore (gift cards at Christmas are like the Holy Grail for me).   I buy the $1 bottle of chocolate syrup at Wal-Mart and mix it in with my coffee every morning in order to get the same effect (or at least close to it).   I haven’t bought myself a new piece of clothing in months.   I bought my first new pair of shoes in over 6 months just this past November, and I haven’t bought another pair since.   My husband and I eat in most every night, have date nights once a week in front of our television with Red Box movies and popcorn.   We ride our bikes together, walk together, and hike together, little things that do not cost any money from our pocket.   We’ve changed our lifestyle to accommodate this new lifestyle.

I feel like there’s this stamina that is associated with stay-at-home moms these days.   You have to be rich or well off to do it, and it’s a lie.   You have to be disciplined and willing to sacrifice your normal day-to-day comforts to do it.   I’m tired of people saying they could do the same thing if their husbands made as much as mine does.   And here’s the funny thing…my husband doesn’t make a ton of money.  He’s just smart with it, saves it, invests it, and refuses to buy ANYTHING on credit.  

My biggest adjustment has been that I now must rely on my husband for money, something that I haven’t had to do in nearly 20 years.   I’ve always had my own money and have always worked, even three jobs at once while I was in college.  I was not dependent on anyone else, but I’ve become dependent on my husband because I’ve chosen to be home with our son.   I’ve chosen to put my pride on the shelf and be the one to raise our child.  

I don’t judge others who are still working.   I don’t presume to know what their financial situations are like, nor do I gossip behind their backs about their lifestyles of choice.   So, why should I have to suffer through their jealousies and snide remarks, especially those working moms out buying new Kate Spade shoes, driving BMWs, and getting weakly pedicures while having their mimosas?   I gave that up to be home with my son because in the end my memories and time with him are worth more than a lifetime of tangible and materialistic possessions.

Pretty in Pink

I’ve had my first official bout with having to sterilize EVERYTHING in the house and I mean EVERYTHING.

Yesterday, Davey was diagnosed with pink eye in both of his eyes.   To say that I was a little disappointed and bummed is an understatement.   I was actually incredulous about the fact that he had contracted this.   This is part of the reason I don’t send him to daycare.  Those places are Petri dishes for every germ imaginable.   They’re worse than a breeding ground.   Apparently, it doesn’t matter, though, because if Davey is going to catch something, then there’s not a lot I can do to prevent that.  I can’t exactly sterilize the entire world, can I?   If I could, I can tell you where I would start, but that’s not exactly a blog for this site.  

The doctor told me that Davey is contagious for the first 24 hours, but that after that, since I would be putting drops in his eyes, then we should be in the clear.  I also have to immediately wash my hands each time I come in contact with Davey.   Such a shame, since one of the things I love most is to hug and kiss all over my baby.   I have to abstain from that at least for a while.   And since he was contagious for the first 24 hours, I had to come home and immediately start the dreaded sterilization process of everything in the house that his grubby little hands touch.   

I was actually alright with this; after all it is part of my motherly responsibilities.   Truthfully, I was looking forward to it, since I’m officially in my need to clean mode.   I assume you all read my blog about my new steam mop?   It’s quite the dandy.   Anyways, I stopped at Walgreens, picked up Lysol wipes, Lysol spray and Davey’s medication.   I came home, dropped up those eyes of his (which by the way is way worse than wrestling an alligator.   Who’d have thought putting drops in a baby’s eyes would prove to be so darn difficult?)  and then I got busy to cleaning.

What a daunting task this proved to be.   He has more books than I can possibly count and you know he has to pull EVERY ONE of them off the shelf.  He can’t just pick a few to look at.   Then there were all of his stuffed animals.   I whipped out my can of Lysol and I doused those babies good.   Finally, I made my way to his play room.   One look and I was completely deflated.    I put him to bed for his nap, then came back downstairs and for the next two hours I sterilized all of his toys.   This child has toys I didn’t even know he had.   Some of them I actually wonder if he pocketed from other people’s houses.   If any of you out there are missing any toys, my son likely has them.   There are way too many toys in this house. 

And did I not once write a blog where I stated I felt guilty for not buying enough gifts for Davey?   Well, let me tell you, those days of guilt have long since passed.    Guilty?  This Mama?   I don’t think so.   Every time I cleaned a toy it seemed like the playroom would purge itself and more would show up.   Davey should consider himself lucky.  

I didn’t even bother to clean each individual Mega Block he got for Christmas.   I took the bin upstairs to the guest bathroom, filled the tub with water and bleach and dumped those babies in.   I just pulled them out this morning, so hopefully all those little germy buggers are gone.   

On a side note, I’ve had zero sleep because I keep having nightmares about getting pink eye myself.   And pink is probably the most hideous color ever.   If I have a daughter one day, I’ll never dress her in pink.   This has forever traumatized me with the color.   Ha!

Dancing with my Mop (and Bruce, Kenny, and Billy)

I sent Davey off to be with my aunt for a good portion of the day on Thursday.   I needed some “me” time and she’s always more than willing to watch him.

To say that I was looking forward to this day just for quite some time is an understatement.   A HUGE understatement.   I’ve been counting the days since January 3rd.    So, what do I do with my “me” time you ask?   When the baby’s away…mommy will play!   And play I did!

I started out in my kitchen where I immediately got down to business with emptying out a dishwasher, loading it back up, washing pots and then that’s when I pulled out the mac daddy, the toy I’ve been waiting to use for over a week, my Christmas gift from my in-laws…my bright red STEAM MOP!!!!

This steam mop comes with a handheld unit, with three different attachments for cleaning countertops, a scrubbing brush to clean some dirt and grime, and even a grout tool!   Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!   I cranked up the music in the house, filled up the water tank, and I got down to business while Billy Joel belted out “Uptown Girl” in the background.   How fitting that song should be the one playing as I clean.   I felt like such an uptown girl myself, wink wink!

Of course, as I made my way upstairs my fun started to wane just a bit.   I’ve pretty much gotten used to having to clean up after my husband.   It can be pretty gross at times, after all he is a man.   And well, he doesn’t exactly clean up either.   He’s almost worse than our son.   But as I was cleaning up Davey’s bedroom and his bathroom, I started to daydream about what my life would be like in a few years.

There was a bit of apprehension on my side as I thought about having two men in the house and what that will mean to my kitchen and bathrooms.    Then my thoughts of despair immediately began to dissipate as I thought about the fact that I would soon have free labor to scrub toilets, take out the trash, dust the house, and empty the dishwasher.   That’s right!   I said it…FREE LABOR!   Muahahahaha!   And if I had a handlebar mustache, you can bet I’d be twirling it around between my fingers as I thought this.

Suddenly, Bruce Springsteen’s Dancing in the Dark came on the speakers (yes I was listening to 80s on 8) and all my thoughts went away as my only concern was dancing with my vacuum and keeping to ole Bruce’s beat.   I danced and I mopped.   I vacuumed and I danced.   I scrubbed and I shuffled to Kenny Loggins’ “Footloose”.

Aaahh…the joys of motherhood, the little things we find to help motivate us through the days

Hugs and The Manipulator

If there’s one thing I’ve learned as a mother, it’s that my child always has an angle.   That angle is usually self-serving (aren’t they all?), but I don’t believe the intent is anything other than that of a typical child…to satisfy his wants.

Davey has known the word “no” for quite some time.   I’m not really sure he’s managed to comprehend it’s meaning, at least not until about a month or so ago.   It used to be that before he would do something that he knew was “illegal”, he would look over his shoulder at his, give us his little devious grin, and slowly start into his unscrupulous act(s).   I suppose he thought his smile, being one of the most adorable things I’ve ever seen, would be a distraction and I wouldn’t see his leg slowly rising as he began to climb onto the hearth.   Truthfully, that did work once, but don’t worry.   I’m not quite so weak anymore!

These days my son has adopted a new routine especially since he has learned the word “no” means he’s not going to get what he wants.

The term “manipulator” usually has a pretty malevolent connotation attached to it.   People hear the word and they automatically assume that the person it is ascribed to is evil, loathsome, and just plain untrustworthy.   This is by no means my son and I don’t think he has malicious intent, but I must say he is becoming quite the master manipulator, or so he thinks, especially when he’s told “no”.

Just today, we sat in the floor and went through his animal flash cards.   He loves these things and immediately begins into what I’ve termed a penguin-esque sort of excitement.   Let me divert quickly and explain that.   For those of you who’ve never met Davey, we have started referring to him as our little penguin.   From as long as I can remember he has always flapped his arms and patted his legs with excitement.   It’s literally what a penguin would do, hence the penguin-esque excitement.

Back to the cards that he so treasures.   I’m not sure what the fascination is with these, but he loves to hold them, to flip them over and over in his hands, to turn them up and down.   He starts flapping his arms as soon as I walk over to the drawer where I keep them safely housed.  Recently, he’s started putting them in his mouth, chewing on the edges, and even bending the cards.   Needless to say, it’s frustrating for someone like me with an OCD personality.   I loathe his cards being bent and scarred.

Today I gave them to him one at a time.   I soon as I took one away he would reach for another.   Since I am trying to teach him about the animals (and all the necessary facts are printed on the back of the cards), I don’t want him to immediately hold them.   I tell him “no” and put my arm out.  At which point, he has started whining at me and then wrapping his arms around my neck.   At first I must admit I was deceived.   I thought to myself, “oh what a sweet little boy I have.   He just wants to give out hugs.”   That’s not exactly the case.   The hugs are his angle, his diversion, his attempt to take what I’ve told him he can’t have.   He actually let go of me with one arm today, and tried to reach around my back to grab the cards!  That little devil!

I’ll still take the hugs regardless as to what their intent may be, but it makes me chuckle to think that Davey actually believes that as long as he’s doling out the love, I’ll let him have whatever he wants.

Keep thinking that , kid!   You’re going to have a long and almost torturous life.

Beep, Beep, Beep, Beep…YEAH!

As Davey and I were walking outside this morning to climb into my husband’s truck, something caught our attention.  Given the size of this distraction, it wasn’t unusual to see why our attention was diverted.   And just because of what it was, we had to stand in the drive way and watch the procession.

It was a sight I hadn’t seen and it truly made me smile and melted my heart.   There were nine dump trucks slowly making their way down our street.   It almost looked like a parade and with Davey’s latest fascination with big trucks, tractors, and machines it was almost like a little gift for him.   But the little gift for him soon became a gift for me.

One by one the trucks came down the road (side note:  our neighborhood is still under development and more lots are selling, hence more houses are going up).   The lead truck saw us standing in our driveway and he rolled down his window and waved at Davey.   Davey smiled and waved back.   And then each truck afterwards did the same thing.   Davey’s eyes lit up with wonder and excitement.

Finally, the last truck pulled up the rear and obviously she (that’s right I said “she”.   Why can’t a woman be a dump truck drive???) saw what each one of her counterparts before her were doing.   So, when it came her turn, she rolled down the window and waved and then honked her horn at Davey.   It was a small gesture, but it made him jump up and down and laugh with excitement.

Our world and the people in it, the strangers and the friends alike, never cease to amaze me.   I’m sure all nine of these truck drivers have since forgotten what they did for my little boy this morning, but I didn’t.   As we backed out of the driveway, the trucks were sitting at the top of the hill, I suppose waiting for their turn to get onto the jobsite.   Davey looked out the window and pointed at them trying with all his might to say the word “truck” and at one point even attempting to mimic the horn of the last truck.

I’ve always said it’s the little things in life that count the most.   Today was no exception.

New Year’s Resolution? Working 9 to 5?

Like so many of you, we’ve enjoyed a break from the normal day-to-day routines thanks in no small part to the Christmas holidays.   Much like I said before, I’ve tried to treat Davey as if he were on a vacation as well and we broke from our normal routines and the curriculum I’m trying to keep him on as a stay-at-home mom.   Wednesday we began our New Year fresh, with fabulous goals, hopes, dreams, and a clean slate.   My husband went back to work and Davey and I began our new routine. 

A new year brings new promises to ourselves, resolutions that we can make a change in our life and the lives of others.   This time last year, I was starting back to work with the realization that I only needed to survive a few more weeks and then I would be home with my new little baby.   This year I’m beginning to wonder if I need to start re-working my resume, and it has zero to do with our finances or the state of this economy.   It has to do with my child, who’s hitting the terrible twos just a bit too early, leaving me with a longing for a 9-5 job. 

I’ve told my husband numerous times that he has the easy end of the deal.   Should he get frustrated with something at work, then he can get away from it.   He can take a walk, go get a coffee, get some fresh air, or basically shut his door and every asinine problem away at least for a little while.   Being a stay-at-home mom, we don’t get that luxury.   I can recall having customers yell at me on the phone before, tell me I was incompetent, dropping foul language on me, and while it may have been demeaning, it was all a piece of cake compared to what my child does to me. 

I listened to him scream on Wednesday.  I watched as I told him “no” and he would stomp his feet, ball up his fits, tilt back his head and then scream at the top of his lungs.  I listened to him terrorize our poor dog.   I dealt with a slap in the face, a literal one, which I didn’t exactly deal with very well.   I dealt with his temper tantrums at the fact that he was being told “no”.   He would climb on the fireplace and bang blocks on the gas stove, pull off the rubber protectors, try to tip over a plant stand, stick his fingers in the dogs ears, try to tear pages out of his books, and even try to climb up the kitchen counter to get to knives!   All of this in the span of one day, and this isn’t even cracking the surface with what he did including clawing my arm and bruising my leg.  What the heck is going on with my kid?

I literally called my husband and begged him to not work late on Wednesday.   I pleaded with him to just come home, to relieve me of my duties.   I even contemplated running away and told my husband that I might even go to the doctor to get myself sterilized because I don’t think I can handle another child.   Am I too old for this?   Did I wait too long to become a mom?   Or is it that the virtue of patience really did bypass me?   I have no clue, but I may seriously resolve to get a normal job in the New Year if this is how it keeps up.

Hip Hip Hooray for No More Christmas Vacation!

My husband was off a good bit during Christmas vacation.   He chose to take some time off, spend it with me and Davey, and to basically recharge his battery.   I blogged last week about how misery loves company and the fact that he hasn’t exactly been able to enjoy himself and completely relax while off.    Well, today it was back to the grindstone and honestly, I think both me and my husband were looking forward to it.

It’s great to have a partner in crime of sorts.    It means there is someone else who has your back.   It means that there is someone else to take over the some of the responsibilities so that for the first time you’re able to do something product.   It means that you can tag team your child, especially if he’s being a bit uncontrollably and unruly (something Davey is not).  Unfortunately, in this household it hasn’t exactly been that way.

Originally, I thought I could get caught up on some writing (which I did just not to the level I was hoping).   I thought I would get the house cleaned, but that didn’t happen.  I thought I would start de-Christmasing the house, but I fell short there.   I thought I would get started on reading a couple of books I had, but nope.   I thought I would get started painting the back porch.   I thought I would get a lot accomplished while my husband was home, but I actually ended up being further in the hole if that is at all possible.

My husband actually said to me that this past week and a half that he’s been off have been the most counter-productive of his entire life.   And who or what is to blame?    Me and him, but most certainly not Davey.

I got an iPad for Christmas and I’ve spent the better part of my free time playing on it.   My husband got a bunch of books for Christmas, so he’s been reading, something he hasn’t been able to do in months.   And then there was this ridiculously awesome marathon of probably one of the all time greatest television shows ever on…24!    So, basically we only left our recliners to play with Davey, put him to bed, feed him, go to the bathroom or get something to eat.   It’s ridiculous!

So, today, with my  husband at work and it just being me and Davey, I’ve created a list of things to get done this week (things I could have easily accomplished last week) and I’ve already managed to cross a few items off the list.

What is it with Christmas vacations and getting zero things accomplished?  Am I the only one?