Tag Archives: parents

One Decade Down

2 Sep

When we told Nia we’d be celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary today, she accurately and adorably pointed out, “Your marriage is older than me!” Sure, it’s not as old as others but I still think our years have a lot of stories to tell.

  • We were separated more than we were together during the first three years of our marriage but we made it work. I was a loner in Savannah while the Army had Andrew on months of training in California, an overseas mission in Kosovo and a war in Iraq. Even when we were at the same address, our job schedules kept us apart. He spoiled me by chauffeuring me 40+ miles for my weekend producing job, just so we could spend more time.
  • The time apart in the military also meant we’d be apart for Nia’s birth. It was too much for both of us and Andrew decided a civilian life was best for our family life. I know that decision was so very difficult – I’ve always felt he was born to lead and he was such an awesome soldier – I am forever grateful.
  • From Army Captain to Best Buy Sales Manager, career number two kept Andrew close to us but still wasn’t ideal for him or us. Career number three was. So much so, baby number two came into our lives.
  • Nate’s birth was so special for both of us because we got to experience it together. We didn’t find out what we were having. We both wanted it that way. (We found out with Nia because we wanted to make sure he knew while at war – just in case.) Nate’s birth had complications and an emergency c-section was necessary. Andrew didn’t waver and I will never forget the moment we shared when the doctor told us everything was ok and that we were having a boy.
  • Soon after we became a family of four, the third career offered Andrew a promotion and a relocation. This change meant I could be a stay-at-home mom while he brought home the bacon. It was wonderful until it came to an end with a layoff. It may sound odd but this is probably one of my most cherished times together. Who would think a layoff would bring such happiness? Sure, we were concerned but we both looked at it as an opportunity and a chance to spend some quality family time together. We encouraged each other as we both looked for jobs and never took ourselves too seriously. We loved to watch the movie “Fun with Dick and Jane” – quoting it and seeing the hilariously sad reality in it. (Never getting any ideas, of course.)
  • After only a few weeks of unemployment, we both found great jobs (career four for Andrew, two for me) but it meant a big adjustment to our family. Nate would now need to go to daycare again. Nia would need to go to after school. We conquered this together and continue to work hard at it.

There are so many other challenges and adventures we’ve experienced together but through it all we’ve taught each other so much. How to take better care of one another. How to be a team. How to best deal with my paranoia and worrying issues. How to not fight because there are crumbs on the counter, empty cups around the house or other quirks. How to try to be a parent.

I know the coming years are going to continue to try us and to teach us. With Andrew as my partner, best friend, favorite and love, I can’t wait. Besides, I figure he’s stuck with me for another five or six decades. Then, we’ll really be older than Nia.

It Takes a Village and All That

17 Jun

Warning: This post is all about me venting. No sunshine or happiness here. Nope. Just complaining.

If you’re still reading, let me start my soapboxing by saying, I understand no one is perfect. We all make mistakes, have temporary lapses in judgment, forget things – sure, I know that  – from personal experience. What I’m having a hard time understanding is intentional situations involving parents not paying proper attention to their children in public. Not correcting their behavior when needed. Not making sure their little ones are safe.

One situation involved our family outing to a college baseball game. The game was great. It was the rowdy, unwatched crowd of young children that encircled our fam that raised my anxiety level.

They fought with each other. They hit us from time to time. They stared and even pushed on Nia and Nate as they enjoyed their dinner of stadium food. They ran into other members of the audience around us. They almost fell through the railing. They wandered away from their parents without being noticed for minutes. In fact, the 3-year-old stood next to me for so long, you might have thought he was my child. (If not for my look of concern aimed at the child’s parent who was sitting a section away from us.)

Another situation starred a child in the  middle of the street. The main street to our neighborhood. A busy street. There he was, sitting on a skateboard. He was one house away from that main entrance, where drivers come around the bend at a good clip. I stopped and then drove by the child with dramatic caution as he waited for me to pass. The mom? Oh, she was in the garage. The child immediately went right back to the danger zone after I passed. The mom? Well, she stayed in the garage. I was so tempted to turn around and ask her why she thinks that’s ok. Why is it ok to let your 4/5-year-old play in the middle of a busy street? The way the world works sometimes, it wouldn’t surprise me if that mom sues the driver who hits her child – and wins.

I guess my main thing with all this is, I don’t know what’s ok anymore. Is it ok for me to correct a stranger’s child? Should I confront parents I see doing something that could endanger their child? Is it my place? Also, when it comes down to it, I guess I’m pretty territorial to my own. I have two precious sweeties of my own, thanks. I’m really trying to make sure they grow up safely and responsibly.

Upchuck Sucks

1 Mar

There is no pretty way to share this.  If you have a weak stomach or just don’t feel like reading about this subject, I understand if you skip this post.  I really wouldn’t want to read it either but misery loves company and all of that so here it is.

Since being a mom, I have heard, “Mommy, I threw up on myself” maybe four times.  Each time, I heard the voice before I saw the helpless child.  Each time, my brain had a few seconds to imagine the worst and, luckily for all involved, it wasn’t so badThat is, until tonight.

Man, was she covered.  Well, more like caked. Ech.  There she stood, frozen, arms out, pasted in clumps of chunk. She wasn’t even the worst of it.  The bed, the tent on her bed, her beloved stuffed creatures (including her precious doggy Andrew sent her from Iraq when she was a baby), all of her special blankeys and her Barbie she fondly calls “Hannah Montana.”  Poor Barbie/Hannah.  She was really caught in the cross fire.  There probably was an outline on the bed where she was because she took the brunt of it.

Are you still with me?

I just find it so amazing what we all are capable of as parents.  From the stomach-turning throw up situations like tonight to the horrifying time they sampled poop as a snack (what, that hasn’t happened to you?), what prepared us for this?  I find it incredible that we go into parent-mode and take care of business.  I mean, really?  Andrew will get sick at just the thought of throw up (he probably did just by reading this – if he did read it that is) and he took all of her sheets off of her bed.  I touched vomit.  Lots of it.  With my bare hands.

We just do what we have to do I guess.  If we don’t who will right?  It’s not like I can say, “Nope.  I’m not going to fix that right now.”  I’m proud to say my hands smell like bleach, Nia is clean and sleeping in a fresh bed and I only threw away her p.j. shirt and pillow.  (If we were made of money the sheets would likely be trashed too.)

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