Thursday, February 23, 2012

Back to Basics

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to get caught up with one of my favorite cousins - who told me that she subscribed to this blog back when I was "just" posting gratitude lists, as a reminder to be more grateful in her own life...which reminded ME that I have completely gotten out of the habit of doing daily/weekly/even monthly lists!

So, to get back to basics, today's post is all about gratitude! My life is pretty awesome (even when I am struggling with morning sickness...all day...), and doing a gratitude list is a great way to pause and take stock of that. It also encourages me to go through my day looking for reasons to be grateful, which is a fun way to travel through a day.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being pregnant - I've always wanted to be a mom, and even though I don't feel so hot right this second, I know it's a HUGE blessing to be able to experience this, with a man that I love so much.
- A pending visit from a very dear friend this weekend - she always lifts my spirits and we always have fun together! I can't wait!
- Modern medicine - S has the flu (YUCK!), but I don't have to get it because my doctor called us in a prescription for him to feel better, and for me to avoid getting it at all!
- Red Diamond Salsa - I have been looking for YEARS for a salsa that I could buy at the grocery store to replace a kind that went off the market (that was my favorite), and I have been craving good salsa like crazy.
- Washer/Dryer in the house - I have, at least, 7 loads to do today and it would suck to have to tote it somewhere else to get it down. I am not looking forward to washing and folding it all - but at least, I don't have to travel to do it!

Dear God, thanks for the nudge to get back to being grateful. I know that life is good - and that if I open my eyes, there are blessings all around. Please be with M and M's family after the loss of his father. Please grant healing to B and S, who are struggling with bad backs. Please help my beloved S recuperate from the flu. Keep a watchful eye on all of my friends and family - keep them safe and comforted, and show me how I can be of service to them, if You so choose. Amen.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

How to end a pregnancy meltdown - FAST!

Yesterday, pregnancy hormones got the best of me. I swear I was possessed by an alien or something. I literally just didn't feel like myself - words were coming out of my mouth that didn't sound like me, tears were coming out of my eyes for no reason. It was BIZARRE! Poor S...he bore the brunt of it.

Here's the breakdown of my breakdown:

J: (walking into S's home office to see if he's done working for the day) You almost done? What are we having for dinner?

S: Whatever you want. I'll be done in a little bit. (changing the subject) So, tomorrow's Valentine's Day, right? And we aren't doing presents for each other, right?

J: (smiling) That's right! Just cards - no presents. Our trip to Vegas is going to be our present to each other.

S: (looking relieved) OK, great. Just cards and tokens of affection.

{needle scratching across the record}

J: Tokens of affection?? What does that mean? Tokens of affection means you bought a present!! (panic setting in) We said no presents!!

S: Not a present. Just a little something to show you I love you.

J: (hysteria setting in) But I love you, and I didn't get you a present, and now you won't think I love you, because we said no presents, and I wanted to stick to that so you wouldn't be mad at me, and now, I am the worst wife ever because I didn't get a you a Valentine's Day present, and it's our first married Valentine's Day together, and I thought that's what I was supposed to do, but I should have known that didn't really mean nothing, and now, I don't have anything for you except the cards I got you, and that isn't enough to show you how much I love you, and I am sorry that you got stuck with such a bad wife, and now, you are stuck with me forever, and I know you are sorry that you ever married me.

{S sitting in stunned silence as the tears flow from my ugly face and snot begins to form which I gracefully wipe off with shirt sleeve}

J: You need to take them back. I want us to be even, and I can't go get you something now, because you'll know when I got it, and I was going to even make you something, but I've been so tired and sick from being pregnant that I haven't had the energy, but I do really love you and wanted to do something for you, other than just a card, but we were trying to save money for our trip, and I wanted to be a good wife by sticking to our budget.

S: Baby, baby - you need to calm down. Come here. It's ok. (attempt at a hug)

J: It's not ok. It'll never BE ok. You are going to leave me because I am a bad wife, and I am going to miss you so much. You are the best thing that ever happened to me, and I am doing a terrible job of showing you....

S: Sweetheart, it's ok. It's just a little something. Nothing big. I swear. It's not a big deal. Nothing to get upset about.

J: (realizing she's gotten S's shirt wet with tears...and probably snot) I can't help it. How little? If it's anything, it's more than what I did!

S: Just a little something.

J: How little? What is it?

S: You really want me to tell you?

J: Yes! I want to know how much I suck for not getting YOU anything.

S: OK - just some flowers, and a balloon ...and some chocolate.

J: (Brightening) Chocolate? I like chocolate....

{Meltdown over...}

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Best parenting advice I've gotten so far - and it's from a GUY!

Ever since I started to tell people that we are expecting, we have been inundated with parenting advice - some of it good, some of it...well, a little militant. I know that everyone has the best of intentions, so I have been taking it in stride, trying to remember that I may need their experiences some day.

So far, however, the best advice I have gotten was from my friend, Keith - read below:

It's so awesome being a parent, although it really does change your life in so many ways that you can't even fathom beforehand.

The one piece of advice I will give is this — everyone will get all up in your grill with their own parenting advice... this worked for me, that doesn't work, that will give your baby the Ebola virus so never do it, this is the only way to get your baby to [insert verb here], etc. Everyone has their own (sometimes very strong opinions) about what works and what doesn't, but every baby is different and responds differently to everything. What works for one person may not work for another. Just take in everything so you have options to try when things happen, but don't be intimidated when other parents declare their solution is the be-all and end-all of solutions and you better take it to heart — because it's nice to know it works for one baby in case the advice someone else gave you doesn't pan out and you need to try something new, but it might not be the solution you need. For example, during Max's first few months, the only way we could always assuredly get to him to fall asleep was when I held him and rocked him to sleep while playing rock music — anything with a good amount of electric guitar in it was soothing to him. I seriously doubt that would work for the majority of other parents, but it was a surefire method for us.

Also, my wife says that the first week is pretty smooth because babies tend to sleep a lot after they get home from the hospital so you get lulled into a false sense of security and think "this is easy, I don't know why everyone says it's so hard." Then the next few weeks kick in and they wake up every 2 hours and need to be fed and need constant attention, and you enter what my wife refers to as "the Dark Times" when you feel like you made a mistake and what did you get yourself into and this is the most horrible experience ever and you're SO TIRED all the time. That too shall pass eventually, but it's always good to have other moms around who are going through the same thing as you so you can commiserate and also so you have someone to text at 4am when your kid's awake.

That's my $0.02, for what it's worth. But it's such a great thing to have a little one, and I'm so happy for you & Steven! I can't even begin to tell you how much I love it when Max comes home from daycare and breaks into a huge smile when he sees me... that is truly the best part of my day.

I am so lucky to have smart, sweet men in my life that are willing to share!

So, do you agree with Keith - or not so much?