Archive for the ‘brain dump’ Category

Motherhood Has Made Me Gross and Weird- September 28, 2015

Monday, September 28th, 2015

Before I became a mother I found gross things gross. I wasn’t squeamish about too much, but I was repulsed by the repulsive as most normal people are. During birthing class with my first child I couldn’t stand the childbirth videos that showed the mother kissing the baby with afterbirth all over it. I thought, “Ugh! Come on! Let the nurse do her job and clean that up before you put your mouth on it!”

Then I birthed a baby of my own and kissed her fresh and wet without hesitation. I’m quite certain the cord was still attached when my lips met her shiny forehead. I didn’t know it then, but that was the beginning of lowering my grossness threshold. Poop on onesies and smeared boogers naturally became a part of parenthood along with car seats and knowledge of Disney Junior programming. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a firm believer in showering and good grooming, but yucky stuff has just became less of a big deal. Drop a cracker? 5 second rule. Baby poop on your elbow? Wash it off and move on.

Last week something I did made me realize how bad it has become. My son got his cast off. After nearly four weeks in what we dubbed the “Hulk arm,” a technician used a scary saw to cut off the his green cast. I held him and held my breath as the saw went through the plaster, or whatever material casts are made of these days. I didn’t breathe not only because I wanted to hold still enough that my baby didn’t get cut, but also because I didn’t want to inhale the scent of rancid toddler cast. You can imagine how icky that thing was. Keeping a child under age 2 clean is a task in and of itself, but a toddler in a cast?! The bread bag on his arm in the bathtub only went so far. His cast got moisture and grit in any number of crevices at his wrist and elbow. Poor little guy. I cringed at the open blisters and sores that had made spots on his skin raw. I hated seeing the atrophy at his wrist. In my opinion his arm still looked a little crooked, but I’m not an orthopedic, so I don’t know any more about bones than what a game of “Operation” taught me. (The charley horse is the toughest to remove. No, it’s not the wishbone. Don’t start that argument with me.) The tech threw the cast in the trash.

Wait, he didn’t even ask me if I wanted to keep it. Do people keep casts? I feel like people keep those little baby casts when babies have crooked feet, right? My sister kept her cast when she broke her foot in middle school. Wait. All her friends had signed it, though. Come to think of it, I thought that it was kind of gross that that thing sat in a plastic bag in her closet. Ew. Right. I don’t need the cast. That’s gross. The tech left us to wait as he got a lighter and washable brace for my son’s arm.

That’s when things got strange. The little guy was entertained by my phone as I wandered over to the trash can and peered in. There it was. That tiny green cast. I thought about how his arm would never be that tiny again and how one day I’d forget he was ever that small. Sappy, yes. Not that unusual though. I’m his mother, of course I feel sentimental about odd things, but what I did next was over the top.

I picked the damn thing up out of the trash and held it. Then, making sure no one was looking, I kissed it goodbye. I KISSED IT! I pulled a piece of garbage out of the can and TOUCHED IT WITH MY MOUTH! What was wrong with me?! It’s trash! Granted, the cast was on the top of the trash in relatively innocuous looking wastebasket, but it’s garbage nonetheless. It stinks! I stood in a doctors office with my son, cuddling medical waste.

I came to my senses and put it back in the waste basket before going to checkout at the front desk. I was like, “Heh, heh. So funny. I heard people keep old casts. So gross, right!?” The receptionist replied, “Oh, we have people keep them all the time. It’s not unusual.” Validation. That’s all I needed. Validation for my gross need to keep that thing. I requested the staff retrieve it from the trash for me. They wrapped it up and brought it out. I gratefully tucked it in the stroller and got out of there before they could identify me as the freak I am.

Motherhood has made me so weird and so, so gross.




Two Target Trips- August 6, 2015

Thursday, August 6th, 2015

I explained on Instagram and Facebook that I had a truly extraordinary weekly pilgrimage to Target yesterday. Not once did I say “No! Don’t touch that!” “No, not today.” “Maybe for your birthday.” “Stay with me!” or “Keep your hands in the cart!”

target alone

Yep. It was the mother of all Target trips. I was a mother, ALONE. Sans children. By myself. It was everything I thought it could be. I perused clearance sports bras and snagged some of my favorite coffee creamer from the grocery section without anyone whining about how cold it is near large refrigerators. Thank God for grandparents being willing to watch them.

Last week’s Target pilgrimage was the exact opposite. These are some exact phrases I used on this trip: “Stop hanging on the cart!” “Oh wow! That IS a different Doc McStuffins than yours.” “No, we’re not buying toys today.” “You will NOT get chocolate milk if I have to tell you again!” “Stop throwing things out of the cart!” “You already had a snack!” “We’re almost done, Buddy.”

As I dragged my weary babes and full cart to the checkout I started unloading. I looked over at my 4-year-old perusing the candy by the register like they were clearance sports bras. That’s when I saw her snatch a chocolate bar, break it in half and put it back. In an instant she did again! She was ridiculously fast with her greedy little preschool hands. I grabbed her wrist, shocked at her behavior.



I was so freakin’ mad with this child! I made her apologize to the clerk through tears. I bought the three mangled chocolate bars. She sobbed all the way home as I threatened to take away every toy she ever owned. I questioned everything I knew about parenting as I texted my husband to tell him what she had done so he could also wonder if we needed an overpriced psychologist to assess this behavior.

I have a confession about each of these Target trips:

  1. On my solo shopping trip I may have glanced down the toy aisle, missing them a little.
  2. On my shopping trip with the candy incident I was a little excited I had to buy the Rolos. I ate the hell out of those Rolos.

Nightly Routine- April 20, 2015

Monday, April 20th, 2015

For years my husband has marveled at my bedtime routine, wondering what on earth could take me so long to get ready for bed. Exasperated he says, “No one on earth takes so long to get ready to go to sleep! What are you doing?!”

It’s true. I would think most women take longer than their male significant others to go to bed. For mothers of little ones, it’s an unending string of tasks adding to another hour of sleep we won’t get.

bed routine edited

This is exactly what I did the other night and not far from my nightly routine:

  • Announce to husband, “I’m going to bed.”
  • Kiss him
  • Check locks on back door, garage door and front door
  • Unlock one door to let the dog out
  • Put rogue sippy cup in the dishwasher
  • Add remaining dishes in the sink and start the dishwasher
  • Remember that laundry needs to go in the dryer, start dryer
  • Turn off lights, but leave a few on so we won’t get robbed and I won’t trip when I wake up with a crying baby
  • Head upstairs with an armful of shoes, a hairbrush, toys and bag of stuff I bought at Target that was all sitting on the stairs
  • Check to make sure each child is breathing and still sleeping
  • Notice one child has kicked off her covers
  • Tuck her in without waking her
  • Go into bathroom and turn on faucet to warm the water
  • Pee
  • Turn off now warmed water to go back downstairs to let the dog back in
  • Go back upstairs
  • Remove eye makeup with baby wipes because I no longer buy actual eye makeup remover
  • Toss the empty wipes package
  • Wash face
  • Apply zit stuff
  • Apply moisturizer (Although, I have a new skin care routine coming soon! Stay tuned! I digress…)
  • Pee again
  • Remember I need my Neti Pot because of spring seasonal allergies
  • Take Neti Pot downstairs to sanitize it in the microwave
  • While it’s in the microwave, notice I haven’t packed the preschool class snack in the “Snack Basket”
  • Load the basket
  • Find the weekly take-home preschool bag with the frog painted on it to put with the basket so we won’t forget it
  • Realize it’s in the car
  • Look for shoes
  • Don’t find shoes
  • Screw it and don’t get the bag with the frog painted on it
  • Get the Neti Pot out of the microwave and wipe up the water that spouted out of it during sanitation
  • Can’t find paper towels so I just leave the water in the microwave
  • Announce to husband that now “I’m really going to bed.”
  • Go back upstairs
  • Wash face
  • Realize I still have black smudges of eye makeup on my face
  • Look for wipes that are gone
  • Lick my finger and wipe under my eye
  • Remember I have a date with my husband later this week and decide to try an old dress on
  • Try on shoes with it too
  • Try on a different dress
  • Put pajamas on
  • Use Neti Pot
  • Change pajamas after getting saline from the Neti Pot on them
  • Go downstairs and get water to take medicine
  • Listen to husband say, “I thought you were going to bed!”
  • Assure him that I am
  • Take medicine
  • Brush teeth
  • Pee one more time
  • Look for charger
  • Plug in phone
  • Check on kids one more time
  • Lay in bed and look at Twitter until my husband comes in and asks me why I’m still not asleep
  • Reply by saying, “I was doing stuff!”

Husband’s bedtime routine:

  • Comes upstairs
  • Brushes teeth
  • Gets in bed

Mom ID- March 27, 2015

Friday, March 27th, 2015

Even moms get carded

Yesterday evening I went to Walmart for a few things. Let me first say I’m not a Walmart regular, but I needed some things cheap, so I wanted to do a quick in and out. Even for someone like me who typically doesn’t mind busy store crowds, Walmart can be a different beast. Fast. Let’s get this done. I did not expect the holdup I got.

Greyson requested some beer. I steered my big blue cart down America’s biggest retailer’s coldest aisle to find my husband a six-pack. I also grabbed my seasonal favorite, Samuel Adams Cold Snap. I wanted my own brew to enjoy during the NCAA tournament. I stacked the beer in the cart with diapers, some things for Easter Baskets and store brand Clorox wipes. I found two lanes of the store’s 25 actually open. A young woman waved me to her line.

She began pulling my items off the conveyor belt. She got to the beer and said, “Do you have ID?” I paused and almost looked around for a second. Was she talking to me? I laughed and gave the obligatory, corny 30-something response to this. “Wow! You made my day.” I reached for my purse. Then I stopped. “Oh! No, I’m so sorry. I’ve lost my drivers license. I’ve ordered a new one.”

This is all true, but the clerk still eyed me suspiciously. She said, “You look really young. I can’t sell you this. ” I gaped at her in disbelief. Was this happening? I smiled and said, “Um, I’m 33. 34 is fast approaching.” She said, “Yeah. No. Sorry.”

I laughed before delivering this diatribe:

“Okay. I was born in 1981, early in the Reagan administration. I remember where I was when the O.J. Simpson verdict came down. Anyone who was sitting in their civics classroom when that happened is old enough to buy a six pack. I was young, but I even have vague memories of the Challenger explosion. I had New Kids On The Block t-shirts and saw ‘Wayne’s World’ and ‘Jerry McGuire’ in the theater. I graduated high school in 1999 and college in 2003, before the economic downturn. I more closely identify with Gen X than Millennials, but don’t believe I’m either, really. It’s called being stuck between generations.”

She looked around hesitantly. Possibly because I’m a crazy person who delivers speeches at the checkout. I continued.

“I have two kids.”

She stared at me and looked down at the beer. Oh, right. 19 year-olds can have kids too. I’m sure a lot of them buy diapers at Walmart. That wasn’t helping my argument.

“My husband is 40!”

She said, “Ma’m I can’t sell you this without ID.” There was no way this was really happening. I said, “Do you really think I look 20 or under?” She said, “I can get a manager, but it’s store policy.”

I laughed and told her it was fine. I looked in the mirror when I got in the car. I wasn’t wearing any makeup. Maybe that’s why I looked younger? I decided to take it as a complement. I told my husband what a hot, young wife he had as I sent him out to buy his own beer.

I had picked a fine craft brew for him. What did he come home with? Coors Light and Mike’s Hard Lemonade. What is he? A 19-year-old girl? No, but his wife sure looks like she is!


Parenting In Spring- March 9, 2015

Monday, March 9th, 2015

Oh, sweet sunshine! I’m not one to complain about winter. I love Christmas, scarves, warm drinks and snow days. But, this year? This winter? This many snow days? No thank you. I’m done. Sunday was the first warm day. I had to get out. I had to get at least a mini-workout in. I went out for a quick jog with Henry in the stroller. I had to Instagram it to prove the exercise happened and to brag to IG followers up north that the afternoon’s temperatures were in the 65 to 70 degree range.

ig stroller

It was during this jaunt that my parenting came into question. Twice.

The warm breeze blew on my face as I picked up the pace. No cars were on our quiet wooded street. I heard birds. Henry said some version of “Woof!” whenever he heard a dog bark. It was sweet and lovely. I was energized as my heart rate went up. That’s when I got a text from a friend to finalize our dinner plans. I stopped in the street to answer her. Again, no cars were around.

As I prepared to hit “send” I saw some neighbors coming up the hill. It was a couple in their early sixties walking in the warmth together. I briefly smiled at this pair of graying Baby Boomers before glancing back at my phone. They were the only others I’d seen out. I heard the man say, “Don’t text in the middle of the road!”


I looked up. I was still trying to type my message. In my mind I thought, “Uh, mind your own business, Pops.” Instead I chuckled nervously, “Yeah, not my best parenting move. Ha!” I rolled my eyes and rolled my baby out of the middle of the road. He said, “You can stand in the middle of the road and text alone, but not with your baby!”

What?! Seriously?! I croaked out more nervous chuckles. Was this guy trying to be funny?

This is the intersection where this went down.

This is the intersection where this went down. Dangerous, right? 

I was thinking they may have felt they stepped on my toes by telling me what to do so they came over to admire my babe and be a little more neighborly. They smiled and told me how cute Henry was. That’s when the woman scolded me said, “He’s not wearing any shoes!” I politely smiled and explained how he fights me when it’s time to put on his shoes and since it’s such a lovely day, I thought going barefoot in the stroller would be fine.

Good God, people! Really?! Don’t you think if I had heard a car on our very quiet street I would have moved? Was it the safest thing in the world to stop there? No, probably not. But, no one was in danger and it certainly didn’t warrant comment. Then the shoe thing on top of it? Am I wrong to be rubbed the wrong way by this? I wanted to shout, “Yep! I’m that neighbor. I’m a reckless 21st century mother who’s more preoccupied with her phone than her child. I love the thrill of pushing my kid out of the road at the last second. I hope a car comes speeding by! Screw shoes! You should keep an eye on me and my neglected kids!”

Excuse me while I go inside like it’s winter so I don’t have to see the neighbors.