February 28, 2011

Lucky to Have Her

When I was about 8 years old, I met my soul mate.  The person I will spend the rest of my life with.  No, I'm not talking about my husband.  Given our age difference, that would have been creepy.  I'm talking about my best friend, Mindy.  The two of us were unfortunate enough to have grown up in the same tiny "town".  The place is literally only 2 blocks long and sports only two buildings that aren't houses, the village hall and the crumbling post office.  She lived 3 houses down from me.  We had no choice but to be friends. 

In the last 20+ years, she has seen me at my absolute worst and she has witnessed my best.  She is the one person I can say anything to.  I never have to cover up or sugar coat anything with her.  At times, I have admitted things to her that I didn't want to admit to myself.  She still loves me.  She doesn't judge me.  She has stood by my side through he birth of 3 babies.  I have no doubt that we will grow old together.  I can't even imagine anything that could possibly ruin our friendship at this point. 

I often regret that I don't have more friends.  I don't have anybody who stops by for coffee or to meet for lunch.  I think I'm OK with that, though, because I have Mindy.  Our friendship is priceless.  Perhaps someday, I can talk her into moving closer so we can spend more time together!  Until then, I guess I'll just have to deal. 

Happy 31st Birthday, Mindy!

February 23, 2011

Georgia, Georgia, The Whole Day Through

The dynamics of my relationship with our youngest child have changed over the last couple weeks.  She has always been a daddy's girl and has always preferred him to me (except at bedtime).  Lately, though, she has pretty much attached herself to my side and rarely leaves.  It has gotten so bad that she won't even let her dad do things for her, like pour her juice, give her meals, help her down the stairs.  She has fallen down the stairs twice in the last couple months and is now afraid to walk down them, so guess who gets the joy of carrying her down the stairs whenever she needs.  That's right, yours truly gets to haul that girl wherever she needs to go. 
Yesterday, when she woke up from her nap, Steve went upstairs to get her and she cried so hard (because I didn't go) that she made herself sick.  The thing that gets me is this kind of crying.  She's not really throwing a fit because she's mad or not getting her way, she's throwing a fit because she's sad.  I mean, the way she cries is so filled with sadness that it kills me.  It's almost like she thinks I'm gone forever.  I know how to deal with temper tantrums, but this is something I've never dealt with before.  I don't know how to deal with it. 

I know that new babies affect kids differently.  I believe this is the result of expecting a new baby.  She loves the fact that there is a baby in my belly.  She puts her face to my stomach and says "hello, baby sister.  i love you".  When I say to Steve that my back hurts, George will rub it and say "it's OK, mom. I'll take care of you".  I don't think what we're dealing with is a jealousy issue.  I'm not sure what it is and am not sure if I'm handling it the right way or not. 

George is really so different from the other girls.  She has such a strong personality.  I don't want to change her.  I try to just go with whatever she's feeling and help her when I can.  The fact is, though, that I have 2 other children also who are starting to feel a little jilted, I think.  Also, I am 7 months pregnant.  It is getting difficult for me to cart her around.  How is she going to react when I actually have to be gone to have the baby?

February 22, 2011

Drop It Like It's Hot

Saturday, I took Corrina shopping.  We had a very good time together.  It was so nice to have her talk to me and not argue.  She didn't complain, she didn't whine, we laughed, we had fun.

 At some point in the day we were talking about music and she mentioned Snoop Dogg.  My response was "i don't think you should even know who Snoop Dogg is".  she's 7.  she told me that he sang some part of some song with some person (i really know nothing about top 40 music).  Yesterday, we were watching the Spongebob Square Pants movie on Nickelodeon (which I know is not exactly appropriate for children, but I'm not perfect).  Afterwards, Nick showed a video from their show/band (I really have no idea which. Both, maybe) Big Time Rush and it featured Snoop.

My question is, does nickelodeon really think that Snoop Dogg is appropriate for children?  I mean, Big Time Rush might be a show about teenagers, but I'm pretty sure that it's main audience consists of kids from 10 to 13.  I don't think actual teenagers really watch the show.  Yes, the Snoop in the BTR video was on his best behavior (despite spending most of the video on a couch surrounded by presumably underage girls) but should they be sparking an interest in this kind of artist?  Let's not forget that most kids in this age range have the Internet available to them at some point in the day.  Do you want your tween googling Snoop Dogg or downloading his music?  Perhaps someone should remind Nickelodeon that it was only 10 years ago that the man was making PORN!

Seriously, though, I've been known to enjoy some Snoop in my day.  I'm not going to lie.  I bought Doggystyle when it came out.  I was in the 8th grade.  I'm not super sure how this happened or why my mother would allow such a thing (maybe she thought I was older, maybe she didn't know, maybe she knew and I hid it), because let me say, there was nothing on that album that was appropriate for a 13 year old.  I also did get a big kick out of Snoop's tribute to Sookie Stackhouse on True Blood last summer (which happens to be one of my guilty pleasures).  I don't even blame him.  He's trying to make some money.  I think if I offered him money, he'd probably come to my birthday party and babysit the kiddos.  However, I think Nickelodeon and the people who make Big Time Rush probably should have thought this one through a little more. 

February 18, 2011

What's Ailing Me

Dear Husband and Children,

Just because this is my 4th pregnancy does not make me immune to or unlikely to experience the following:

Mood Swings (crankiness, irritability, extreme happiness, crying, depression, anxiety, paranoia, anger)
Back pain
Sensitivity to temperature change

Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.

February 17, 2011

My 100th Post

This is my 100th post...and i have nothing.  nothing important anyway.  i've been struggling with writing here lately.  i'm pretty sure there's nothing going on in my life that anyone cares about.  then, i decide that i don't care and here i am. 

but seriously, there's not a lot going on right now.  monday was valentine's day.  my husband took me to dinner over the weekend.  we don't go all out for the holiday around here.  we gave each of the girls a pad of drawing paper, a new box of crayons and a beaded bracelet with their name on it.  oh, and of course, a small box of chocolates.  we don't buy gifts for each other.  i don't see the point.  our anniversary was a month ago.  that's more important, isn't it? 

also, george has been occupying all of my time.  she won't let her dad do anything for her or with her.  it's all mom all the time.  it's starting to become a little tiring to all of us (especially the other girls).  so, tomorrow night, i'm taking kennedy out to dinner and maybe swimming or to a movie.  sunday, i'm taking corrina shopping. 

corrina and i especially need the time together.  the last time we had alone was when i took her to get her ears pierced.  it seems like all we do anymore is fight.  she really has quite the attitude for only being 7.  she did open up to me a little last night, though, for the first time in ages.  she told me that when she grows up, she wants to live in california so she can be on a tv show.  this is the first i've heard of this.  then she told me she wants to be on the show with the words.  she wants to wear pretty dresses and touch the letters so they light up.  it took everything i had not to laugh, but i managed to hold it in until she went to bed!  man, i'm a good mom.

February 11, 2011

So Sad About Us

We are so bad about doing things at the last minute.  I wish we were the kind of parents who started a project a month before the kids need it and make it look so awesome that our child will be the envy of the classroom.  What a dream, what a wonderful thought!  NO, that's not us, we are Mr. and Mrs. Night Before.  We scramble, we improvise, we make late night trips to Wal Mart. 

I was so proud of myself for having ordered Corrina's school valentines early and not running out to purchase whatever is left on the shelf of the local Walgreens (which usually have themes like Jem, Shaun Cassidy or Diff'rent Strokes), making our kid look like the biggest dork in school.  Not this year! No sir, I bought them ahead of time! 

Then Monday night, Corrina reminds me that she has to decorate a box to keep her valentines in.  CRAP!! I thought was doing so well, I thought I was ahead of the game.  Assuring her that we would have it done by Friday, I mentioned to Steve that I had forgotten.  Then he reminded me of last year...

Me:  poorly wrapping a Kleenex box (the contents of which are now just laying on the table) in shiny red paper

Corrina:  sticking ugly stickers and foam hearts on any part of the box that seems bare

Me:  We are not doing this next year.  Next year, we'll make an effort and it will be awesome!

Corrina:  this is the prettiest box ever!  I just know all the kids will gather around my desk to look at it!

Us:  uuuhhhh...of course they will, honey, it's beautiful.  at least the blind kids in your class will like it!  Now go to bed, it's midnight.

Well, of course, we didn't get much better about doing it the day before.  At least this year, it was still light outside and we had a plan!  It isn't great and it's still a product of last minute parenting, but she's proud of it and it's definitely an improvement over last year's monstrosity, if nothing else!

February 9, 2011

Oh, Hello! I Believe We've Met Before.

A couple weeks ago, i was asked a question by my dr.  it was a question that i have been asking myself and thought i knew the answer to.  lately, i've been reading so much about PPD to inform myself and try to keep it from happening again.  i've been analyzing everything leading up to and following the birth of my last 2 children.  the question is:  did i have any symptoms of depression or anxiety during my pregnancy?  the answer?  no.  i didn't. 

i've been reading about women with postpartum anxiety or women whose problems began while pregnant and knew for certain that i didn't fit in either of those categories.  meanwhile, i have been so busy trying to prevent a problem that i haven't noticed what's happening to me now. 

i seem to have looked over the fact that i am so high strung and can't relax or sit still.  i can't sleep.  i hate leaving my house.  it was almost impossible for me to do the grocery shopping last week without screaming at somebody or literally pulling my hair out.  i haven't noticed the fact that i imagine impossible situations (that end with someone being injured or dying) and seriously panic about them.  i can't watch my kids walk down the steps or take a baths because i keep playing potentially fatal scenes out in my head.  i hate driving.  i panic at intersections because i know someone is going to run the stoplight and hit me.  i haven't noticed that i've started losing interest in things i enjoy.  you may have noticed that even my posting here has become sparse.  my favorite activity is laying in bed, reading books or just staring out the window.  i do this until i need to get up and do laundry (our water bill has actually gone up $7 the last 2 months because of this) or clean up.  luckily, there's always a mess to clean or laundry to do in our house.  then i blame my husband or the kids because all i want to do is read and relax and they won't let me have 10 minutes to myself.

how did i miss this?  how have i overlooked the fact that i am miserable and losing it?  how can i say this hasn't happened before?  with my last 2 pregnancies (especially late in the pregnancy), everything was magnified.  every move, every bump, every pain, every twinge was something awful-a miscarriage or preterm labor.  i was always convinced (especially in the third trimester) that there was a slow leak in the amniotic sac and i just wasn't catching and surely i was killing the baby.  i couldn't sit still, i couldn't stand waiting for the baby.  how could i forget when i was pregnant with kennedy, sitting at home watching a show about UFOs on the history channel (this was my favorite thing to do on friday nights when corrina was asleep and steve was out) and a woman on the show told her story of alien abduction?  she wasn't abducted by aliens herself, her unborn baby was.  aliens came and took the baby from the womb.  the baby was just gone (though aliens did bring her back to visit several years later).  i was watching this and began to panic.  i actually called my best friend and asked "what do i do if aliens take my baby before she's born?".  it was laughed off like a joke, but laughter couldn't make my sense of panic go away.  it didn't help me sleep that night.  how have these things managed to get by me?  how have they gone unnoticed? 

i have been debating on whether or not i should automatically take some kind of drugs after the baby's born or if i should play it by ear.  i've decided to go ahead and start taking something now.  i can't go on this way and i know it will only get worse.  for the record, i do not now (nor have i ever) believed that aliens could really take my baby or me (or anyone else).  it just shows what kind of irrational thoughts can seem plausible and absolutely terrifying when you suffer from perinatal mood disorders.  i'm a little upset that i let myself get to this point.  i know that if you have suffered from any kind of severe mood disorder with a pregnancy, there's a 50-80% chance it will happen again.  i know this, but wasn't paying attention.

February 7, 2011

The Blizzard That Wasn't

What a LONG week it's been! Last Monday, we started preparing for a blizzard.  You know (or maybe you don't, depending on your location), the one that didn't happen.  Oh, we got some ice, sleet and snow, but thankfully, not the amount that we had been warned about.  Needless to say, we were stuck in the house for a couple days.  Even my husband got a day off of work. 

During that time, the power cord on my ancient laptop stopped working and I have been without Internet since last Wednesday.  Talk about feeling isolated!  Between that, the weather, and the pregnancy hormones, I've seriously been concerned about turning into Jack Torrence.  I'm just thankful there isn't an axe laying around the house.

So, who's ready for spring?  I swore I wouldn't complain about the weather this year, that I would accept that we have to get through winter (no matter what it brings) to enjoy the spring.  I can't take it anymore, though.  I need sunshine and some warm weather.  No amount of vitamin D seems to be helping.  I've also been putting more stock in the groundhog that anyone should.  Hopefully, we have warm weather ahead.  Especially for those who have had it much worse. 


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