Through Their Eyes

Children are always watching and listening, which can be both good and bad. Definitely bad if by chance you happen to whack your head really hard and accidentally let slip something you don’t want them to repeat and they, of course, repeat it.  Granted, they have pretty selective hearing, but I digress.  There are days when they surprise me by just how much they really pay attention to what’s around them and see things rather than just looking.  Some days it’s a very good reminder to myself to slow down and SEE because there’s a difference.  Unfortunately I haven’t been very good about it lately, either.  Perhaps our upcoming trip will be a good opportunity to change that.  I’ve also been having fun trying to help the kids learn how to use a camera.  Their hands are so little they sometimes have a hard time, though.  Haha!  Time for more practice!  In the meantime, I haven’t done a post with pictures by Enzo, though I do have a lot more to scan.

We all have our favorite seats on the couch.  This is the view from his.

Hey Dad (and messy kitchen/dinning area).  I kind of wish that wall was an actual wall rather than a banister so you don’t have to view the backside of everything and cords and whatnot.

Some day all too soon this bag is going to be filled with actual schoolwork rather than just fun little projects from preschool.  I admit that sometimes I worry about him going to Kindergarten this fall…. will it be too soon?  Is he ready?  Do all parents stress this much over these kinds of things or do I just have extreme anxiety when it comes to this sort of thing?  All the more reason to spend more time teaching myself to breath and let the worry go.  I’ve been too “busy” or too “tired” or too “insert excuse here” lately, and self care isn’t something you should put off or ignore.

One small step…

Enzo is officially registered for Kindergarten. I have very mixed feelings on this matter, which is weird to me because I never felt like I would be “that” mom. Both kids have been in day care since they were 6 weeks old, and the transition to preschool was never a big deal because we still dropped them off at the same place every day. Maybe that’s why the thought of him going to Kindergarten makes me feel like my heart is suddenly in a vise.  It should be exciting, I know, but I worry about my boy and this big step into the unknown.

I’ve always had some anxiety along with my depression, but postpartum depression and anxiety were worse because suddenly there were these tiny little creatures I had helped create and was supposed to take care of and all of these ridiculous thoughts and emotions going through my brain all. the. time. Long story short, it’s better now, but the anxiety is more bothersome to me now because I’m not worried about myself, instead I’m thinking of every worst case scenario that involves my children and there are times when it’s hard to breathe and I have to hold back tears because I am so fearful for them.

Overcoming my fears of the unknown and inability to protect them from everything is a work in progress. Out of the past my own fears, traumas, failures and hurts will suddenly appear and I’m reminded of those things I would do anything to protect my own children from. But I can’t. I know this, and yet it doesn’t make it any easier.

I know that I cannot live in fear because that isn’t living. My life would be vastly different had I lived in a protective bubble and yet I survived it all and perhaps am better for it. I think it’s really been within the past 6 months that I’ve started taking more chances and have tried to do things that challenge my fears and have overall tried to have more trust and faith that everything works out the way it should… and really, it does. For the longest time we didn’t want to switch the kids day care because that’s what they’d (we’d) known since they were tiny babies. The idea of changing and leaving their friends was just not something I wanted to deal with until we were left with no choice. The result?  The kids are doing great in their new environment and we should have probably made the switch sooner.  They don’t have any close friends, yet, but those will come.

As we get ready for our highly sensitive boy to enter Kindergarten I have to remind myself to breathe and trust that he’ll be fine. We just need to give him the proper tools and that means he needs to see me handle fear and change and adversity with strength and optimism. More than anything I want my kids to grow up to be strong and confident and caring.  So, when he steps on that school bus for the first time all by himself, I will put a smile on my face and cheer him on as he embarks on his own new adventure and I will trust that he’ll be okay.

Honest Parenting

I see a lot of posts by other bloggers with titles like “If we were to meet for coffee…” and think it would be fun to do one of those, but let’s face it… I think I’d rather meet for a big ole glass of wine to unwind from the chaos of everyday parenting. I’m not a SAHM, but parenting isn’t any easier when you work full-time.

So, let’s pretend the kids are in bed, and we’ve each got our feet up and are sipping a delicious glass of relaxation and chatting about our day/week.

I’d tell you…

  • This week has been one for the books.  The biggest upset being dealing with lice. It happens, I get it, but it is such a pain to deal with. Our dryer has been worked over time and we’ve had bags of stuff sitting outside in the cold.  After shelling out a bunch of money to get professionally treated (after not getting them all ourselves), I am crossing my fingers that we’ve contained it all.
  • This week we have lived through an array of tantrums courtesy of our 3 year old. The drama has been extra heavy around here lately. On Monday she melted down because she only wanted me to go to the living room with her (not her brother) and proceeded to lay down in the hallway with her hoodie (of all things) and weep and wail. I think we’ve entered the age of bad dreams too… almost every night she wakes up crying and gets really, really upset when I’m not there. Good thing I’m not giving up wine this year. Maybe I should really look into yoga this year for relaxation, however…
  • I am done with Tattling. So done. They bicker and pester each other and then tattle on each other relentlessly (especially Enzo).  I’m really trying to nip the Tattling in the bud because it is beyond frustrating.  Yeah, I saw what your sister did, I was standing RIGHT HERE. There are days when I miss the time when they couldn’t speak.

Don’t be fooled by their supposed closeness and adorability!!

Okay, it’s not always hard, but on the days when it is… well, you other moms know what I mean. I adore my kids, but it’s amazing to me how much you can simultaneously love someone so much and also be driven so crazy by them.

Preserve your memories… they’re all that’s left you.

Bonus points to those who recognize the lyrics in my blog post.

Some days I feel glued to my phone and pulled in a thousand directions.  Some days life feels chaotic and stressful and I feel like if I stop to think about it all I might crumble and fall apart. Then there are days when I turn the sound off my phone and set it aside and just… am.  Sometimes that means sitting quietly somewhere without even a book to distract me.  It’s amazing how many sounds a house can make if you really sit and listen.  With two kids, I’m not often alone in the house, but every Monday I work from home and when I’m finished, I try to take at least 15-20 minutes to just BE while I wait for Josh and the kids to get home.  Some days this means sitting quietly on the couch with my feet up and listening to Ziggy sleep (she occasionally snores) and the sounds of construction happening across the street as well as the random sounds that a house makes while watching dust specks in a ray of sun.

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It’s easy to take these moments when I’m on my own, but I’m slowly getting better at remembering to put my phone aside and to shove unwanted thoughts away for a few moments at a time. The other night at dinner I couldn’t get over how grown up Enzo seemed. I don’t recall what exactly everyone was talking about, but I felt a tug at my heart as I watched him. Do you ever have those moments where you’re talking to someone and want to commit every little detail to memory?  It was one of those. I wanted to remember the exact color of his hair and how in the sunlight you can see bits of gold. I wanted to remember the exact blue of his eyes and the mischievous way they sparkle. I wanted to capture his dimple and his smile and for a moment I wanted to just freeze time because every day he gets bigger and bigger and it seems like more and more I forget the tiny little things and I don’t want to forget Enzo at 4 when he still retains just a hint of babyness.

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Thank goodness Phoebe is still very much a toddler in so many ways, despite being almost 3 and pretty much a preschooler.  She’s still terribly attached to her nukie and insists on snuggles morning noon and night. Enzo was never a big snuggler and has always been more independent and wanting to do his own thing.  I love their differences and am still in awe that we created these tiny people.

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Time is indeed fleeting.

Why don’t we do this more often?

A couple of weeks ago, we decided to walk down to the river with the kiddos and do some fishing. Well, the boys fished. Phoebe can’t be trusted with a fishing pole yet, and I’m indifferent.  Plus, someone has to keep an eye on the munchkins to make sure no one falls in.  It’s about a 15-20 minute walk with the kids depending on the route we take. We probably could have ridden our bikes, but chose not to this time, and I can’t remember why. Old age is creeping in, apparently – I can’t remember anything lately.

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We met up with Josh’s sister Leah and her son Malcolm for a bit since they are close by. It was a beautiful day and the mosquitoes weren’t terrible yet.  Since these pictures there was major flooding, but I think even that has gone down now too.  See where Enzo’s standing?  The river covered this area completely and went almost to the road.  It tends to happen every year.

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The kids stayed interested in fishing for a little bit until we found another area where you could walk right into the river!  Phoebe wanted to splash, so I told the kids they could take their shoes and socks off to get their feet wet.  Well, about 5 minutes later Phoebe started pulling her pants and undies off informing me that she wanted to sit in the water, but (thankfully) didn’t want to get her clothes wet.  Ha ha!  Before long both kids had completely stripped and we scared off another mom and her older kids.  Heaven forbid small children be naked.  Yeah, yeah, I know there are creeps out there, but every now and then I like to encourage their innocence if I’m safely nearby.

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We snacked while the kids dried off and Josh kept fishing. Nothing was caught, but it was relaxing and a nice way to spend the afternoon.  Who knows, maybe we’ll do more of that this weekend… well, maybe. The mosquitoes are out in full force and Enzo and I tend to get eaten alive.  We’re off to the State Fair on Friday, though, so that should be a lot of fun and then Josh and I are going to see a special showing of The Neverending Story at the movie theater!  Woohoo!  Maybe I’ll actually have more to post about next week. 😉  Ha ha.