Mar 19 2014
Today my 1-year-old locked himself inside the car. It was my biggest mommy fail to date and one I could have easily avoided if I had been paying more attention.
Jared and I had just left our weekly Baby and Me class at the synagogue where my daughter attends preschool and where Jared will go next school year. I was situating him in his car seat when another mom pulled up and asked if I wanted to meet for lunch. I said sure and she drove away as I finished tightening Jared’s seatbelt.
I knew he had slipped the keys out of my hand as I was talking; I felt it happen. Still, it didn’t fully register. Until I shut his door and instinctively patted my right coat pocket to feel for the keys. I felt he emptiness and heard the click of the locking doors at the same time. Read the rest of this entry →
Mar 11 2014
My husband and I have been in our house for almost seven years now. After moving houses (all on the island, which has a dearth of year-round rentals) a total of seven times in our first two years here and resisting the accumulation of a whole lot of stuff (besides the necessities, including a complete menagerie of musical instruments), we’ve been able to relax, spread out and acquire.
We sort through things annually and donate to Goodwill or bring things to our town transfer station, which functions as an on-going free swap meet as well as a dump and recycling station. My husband, who genuinely fears and dreads clutter, will suddenly cave to impulses requiring him to get rid of a lot of mugs at once. But still, the stuff has piled up, in the basement and especially in the office/guest room that will become the baby’s room.
Suddenly, we had to make room for a whole other human being in our house. And she comes with her own stuff. Read the rest of this entry →
Feb 24 2014
Last week my partner and I wandered into a new cloth diaper store in our neighborhood. It has lots of cloth diapers, plastic covers, slings, and basically all the things you need if you’re planning to be a hippie parent. We were there to purchase dryer balls, but my partner started asking the woman who owns the store about various cloth diaper services in the city, and she looked at me. “Are you expecting?”
I had a brief moment of not knowing how to answer. At all. My mind went completely blank. Finally I regained the ability to speak. “Kind of. I’m not pregnant, but we’re being certified to be foster parents. So we’re hoping to have a baby sometime in the next few months, but we don’t really know when.”
“That’s great! Congratulations!” the woman said, looking as surprised as I felt. Read the rest of this entry →
Feb 10 2014
When you think of Hawaii, you think beautiful beaches, hula dancers, volcanoes, and– perhaps most importantly–ROMANCE!
There’s a reason the tropical islands are among the top honeymoon destinations year after year, right? Lying on the sand, snuggling up with the love of your life, watching a beautiful sunset while drinking your fourth Mai Tai–it is paradise.
But that’s not how it panned out when I went to Hawaii with my husband, my 13-month-old daughter, and my parents recently. Actually, “romantic” was the last adjective that came to mind. Somehow the getaway felt more like a business trip. Just as a business trip can include a gorgeous location, phenomenal people, and delicious food where you leave learning a bit more about yourself, a trip like this was–for me–more than a bit of work. Read the rest of this entry →
Jan 9 2014
The other day, my husband came home to find me standing in the closet with a blanket over my head, swaying from side to side. I hadn’t gone crazy, despite appearances to the contrary. I was rocking our 4-month-old son to sleep for his mid-day nap in the darkest environment I could create on a sunny day. I love that he’s a curious little boy, eager to explore the world with his eyes (and hands and mouth) but getting him to sleep for a day time nap when the sun brightens every room isn’t the easiest endeavor.
When he’s finally asleep, the last thing we want to do is risk waking him, especially at night, so a few weeks ago my husband and I decided to start brushing our teeth in the kitchen. Our bathroom is just too close to our bedroom, where he sleeps in a bassinet next to my side of the bed. We’ve also relocated half our wardrobe and pajamas to the guest room so that we can get dressed there and not in our bedroom.
As any new parent can probably appreciate, sleep has become the most precious commodity in our household and I’m pretty willing to make some wacky adjustments for the sake of everyone’s sleep. Friends had warned me that sleep was hard to come by after the arrival of kids, and while I believed them, I couldn’t really relate to it until I experienced it myself. Now I love to hear about the wacky adjustments that other parents make for their kids, both for tips and so I know I’m not the only one walking around with a blanket over my head. Read the rest of this entry →
Sep 16 2013
Now that my daughter is 10 months old…AH, WHEN DID THAT HAPPEN?!? (yes, yes, I understand that it was literally 10 months ago) it has really hit me that she’s been “out” longer than she was “in.”
When my husband and I found out I was pregnant, it took a little while for the reality of it all to set in. Sure, the pee sticks told me I was pregnant (yes… multiple sticks–I wanted to be sure), though I didn’t FEEL pregnant or LOOK pregnant. But I WAS pregnant. And the concept of there being a new roommate joining our home seemed forever away.
Week by week, Baby H (my married name is Heeren, my maiden and professional name is Glassberg; confusing, I know) grew from the size of a poppy seed to jicama to a honeydew. I was happy to give up alcohol, caffeine, sushi, soft cheeses, and my figure for this little avocado. Okay, let’s be honest…I wasn’t totally happy about it. There were days all I wanted to do was sit in my PJs drinking gallons upon gallons of Diet Coke to wash down a wheel of brie or two. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 6 2013
My intention after my daughter was born was to return to work four months later. My employer, however, had other plans and let me go while on maternity leave (citing downsizing…which yes, is apparently legal).
I never thought I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. Somewhere in the back of my head, I kept seeing the stay-at-home mom painted as an uninspired lady who ate bonbons all day. (I have never actually seen anyone eat a bonbon no less multiple bonbons.) You’re home with a baby who can’t walk or talk…what could you possibly be doing all day?
But now, eight months into it, I realize my job is getting a crazy, irrational human to eat, sleep, and not sit in her own excrement for prolonged periods of time… all while distracting her when she cries by being a complete doofus, singing or dancing, plus trying to teach her “no,” (while allowing her to explore her environment) to be gentle, wave, the difference between a red ball and a liger, balance, and to understand the English language. And when she naps, there are clothes to be laundered, fruits and veggies to be steamed and pureed, preschools to be researched, and writing that attempts to get done. I quickly learned that this is the hardest (and most rewarding) job I’ve ever had.
And I never realized just how much time I would spend literally staying within my home. Read the rest of this entry →
Aug 5 2013
As I watched other babies several months younger than my son cruise around rooms with ease while my Jared just sat and watched, I tried not to be that mom. You know, the one who compares what her baby can do against what others are doing. After all, Jared is my second child and I know better. Kinda.
At his 9-month well check, I told the pediatrician that he’s not trying to crawl yet. He said 10 percent of babies never crawl so as long as he’s sitting himself up and seeming interested in starting to stand, I had nothing to worry about. And that was my cue to officially worry, because Jared wasn’t doing those things either. Read the rest of this entry →
Jul 29 2013
I recently took my daughter to a gym class where they put out an assortment of instruments for the kids to play with. And my little 8-month-old teething machine put every last one of them in her mouth. As she gave each a slurp, a few of the moms made comments to their children, loud enough for me to hear, “No, no, we don’t put these toys in our mouth. They’re not clean.” And with the comments came the judgmental looks. You know the looks.
I had mixed feelings knowing that as the foot long string of drool extended from my child’s mouth that her slobber was the reason their children couldn’t fully enjoy the toys, but at the same time I was left wondering who these moms were to judge me for allowing my daughter to enjoy every mouthful of her maraca.
It felt like by them saying that the toys were not clean, they were implying that my child was not clean. I wanted to scream, “She’s clean! I bathe her! She smells like baby shampoo right now! Smell her head! Smell it!!!”
But I didn’t. Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 13 2013
I went to my first postnatal checkup wearing maternity pants that I didn’t realize were covered in spit up.
“Next time I see you, I will be sure to make sure that this doesn’t happen,” I said to the midwife.
Seven months later, due to some rather high doses of steroids, I am still in maternity pants. They are still almost always covered in spit up. Had I known I’d spend longer post-pregnancy in maternity pants than I spent during pregnancy, I definitely would have invested in more pants–particularly since they’re regularly soaked in foul-smelling regurgitated hypoallergenic formula. Read the rest of this entry →