Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Two Minutes

My two year old daughter’s sounding cry these days is “two minutes.”

“Nora, let’s get PJs on!”
“Two minutes, Mama!”


“Nora, we’ll go to the park in five minutes.”
“Two minutes, Dada?”

She has no idea how long two minutes lasts. She solely understands that two minutes is some time in the future. Not now.

Her concept of time has me thinking about my two minutes with her and her brother. We have an amount of time with our littles that is extremely limited in the grand scheme of life. Our mundane minutes will turn into their memories and I’ve often thought about the few things I hope they remember.

I hope they remember the laughter.
We laugh through the good and bad. We laugh because Weston insists upon carrying around a fake corn cob all day, and Nora calls him “Peto” when he acts like a dog! We laugh to keep ourselves from crying when the night blurs into day, and things go terribly wrong (cue mishaps like accidentally biting a kid’s finger, poop on the floor, etc.).

And, they were heard. 
Even though our kiddos are still little, we work hard to recognize their emotions. Nora gets frustrated easily and lashes out. Weston is more sensitive and sometimes cries when Nora cries. I hope they remember their feelings being acknowledged. I hope even when we disagree, today and in all the years to come, they remember being heard.

That they are loved.

I hope when they think back to their childhood and these early years, they remember the love. I hope they remember sprinting into our arms and how much our faces light up when we see them. I hope they remember lying with us when they didn’t feel good, and at least some fragments of our family adventures.

What do you hope your littles remember from their childhood?

A version of this post previously appeared at St. Luke's Birth Care Center.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Mom Olympics

With the Olympic Games kicking off this week, it got me thinking about the idea of a “Mom Olympics.” We all deserve a medal for merely getting through the days. Some days are certainly worth a gold while others barely deserve a bronze! But, there are some events that would be entertaining to see play out in an Olympic format. I’ve outlined a few of these events below!

Event #1: The Diaper Sprint
You know this one, get one diaper off while simultaneously adjusting the new one so your little darling doesn’t have a chance to relieve him or herself all over!

Event #2: The Bedroom Sneak
This one is no joke in our house! How can babies sleep in their stroller while planes are overhead and yet wake up to the slightest door creak? You deserve a medal every time you slither out of the room without the baby alarm sounding!

Event #3: Toddler Translating
I’m positive that my toddler often sounds like this to the average person… “Fadiblyabentruepeese?!” to which I always know she is requesting to go on a family adventure…please! Toddler translating at its best!

Event #4: Simultaneous Napping
Want to know how I’m able to find the time to type these words right now? Simultaneous naps! They don’t happen often. They are so rare when they do occur I sometimes get overly excited, and can’t decide what to do with my time. Then, the next thing I know, someone is awake again and all I did was get lost in the Facebook abyss. Seize your 20 minutes, mamas!

Event #5: Pumping and ­­­_____
Insert every awkward place you’ve ever pumped in the above blank and give yourself a medal. Breastfeeding is hard and is made even more difficult when you have to find time to pump in between all the other Mom Olympic Events!

Event #6: Wine Dance
A glass of wine at the end of the day is often the reward for completing so many monumental events. The real challenge is determining how many glasses is too many glasses to remain productive the following day!

Event #7: The Family Photo Session
I like a good candid photo that shows "real life." But, for two seconds can real life not include the baby barfing on himself while his sister plugs his nose? When you capture all members of the family looking at the camera, it's time to reward yourself!

Worthy of at least a bronze, yes?

What events have I missed? And, what event would you medal in? Admittedly, I might have the wine dance down! 

A version of this post previously at Today Parents.

Monday, August 1, 2016

You Could Have Told Me

Hey little bud with that toothy grin that makes my heart beat differently than it did ten months ago! Yeah, you, with that perfect baby body and the sweetest cuddles. You there. You could have warned me.

You could have given me a gentle nudge while you hiccuped in my belly. A nudge that told me these last ten months were going to redefine the word hard!

You could have told me the fear I felt when your sister didn't cry out for me in the middle of the night any longer would be trumped by the fear I felt when you were sick and cried out in misery.

You could have told me my heart would swell with love for you more quickly than your sister's and it would simultaneously ache while I watched hers catch up.

You could have warned me that I wouldn't sleep for ten months straight. That I’d curse the woman I was before I met you – the woman who seemed to know it all about how to make a baby feel secure enough to sleep!

Frankly, you could have told me you'd be the catalyst for me to call everything I thought I knew into question... how to be a working mom, an effective wife and partner, and a nurturing parent.

You could have warned me, bud, but I know I wouldn't have listened. Instead, as you have grown ounce by ounce, I have grown in patience and understanding. In the process of completing our family, you've helped complete me. My mind is more open and judgment comes slower now. I’m not perfect, but I’m thankful.

You are a rare gift, Weston – the rainbow in the middle of the rain. And, I’m thankful for all the love, lessons and laughter you’ve brought to our lives.

A version of this post previously appeared at St. Luke's Birth Care Center.
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