The part-time parent

Aug 25, 2014 by

I’m feeling defeated. I’m sitting here on the couch downstairs after trying to get my son to sleep for the last three hours. I’m now watching him on the monitor, sitting up, wide awake. He took a nice little nap around hour one-and-a-half, and then decided to wake up. I don’t know what else to do to get him to sleep. I suppose when it gets fully dark outside he’ll realize it’s nighttime and we can try again.

 

It’s like this at the end of every weekend. Every Sunday night I look forward to going back to work on Monday because I’m completely drained by a marathon bedtime routine on Sunday evening. I find myself longing for the routines of daycare for him, and work for me. At daycare he will eat, sleep and poop at regular intervals; a far cry, it seems, from our carefree, often routine-less weekends. Weekends spent as a family are fun, but we all seem to function better during the weekdays.

The view from my heart-shaped eyes

Aug 18, 2014 by

The view from my heart-shaped eyes

Do you have those moments when you look at your kid and you think, “I just have to take a picture of this very moment?”  One look at my iPhone and you’d see that happens quite often for me.

The other night I was putting Lenny to bed.  He had just nursed himself to sleep and I was able to transition him up onto my shoulder for one last snuggle.  His sweaty hair, pouty lips, his sweet, sleepy face…I just had to capture it.  I thought my husband would want to see how cute he looked at that exact moment in time.

After each click of the camera, I paused to look at the image on the screen.  No, that wasn’t what I saw.  Despite positioning my camera to try to depict my exact viewpoint, none of the pictures I took were quite right.

The labels we give our kids

Aug 11, 2014 by

Do you ever stop and think about the descriptors we assign to our kids on a daily basis?  The subtle messages we send them without realizing it? “Oh, he’s just shy,” we might say to a stranger who just approached our child in the store. Or, “she’s going to be a soccer player!” about a baby who likes to exercise her legs by kicking up a storm. And let’s not get started on the plethora of baby clothes out there with clever, if not inappropriate, sayings. Dressing my son in onesies or tee-shirts that describe him as “Tough Like Daddy” or give the warning “Lock Up Your Daughters!” gives my son a voice I’m not sure I ever want him to have.  And I bet few of us want our “Little Diva” or “Future Ladies Man” to become self-fulfilling prophecies, especially in their teenage years.

The Chair

Jul 28, 2014 by

There’s a chair in my living room which has a long history in my family. It’s been around for so many moments, moves and milestones for our family, we’ve given it a name—the Orange Chair.

The folklore of the Orange Chair goes like this. My parents, back when they were young, carefree, well-rested newlyweds, bought the chair as one of their first home purchases. The chair has endured spit-up from when my sister and I were babies, and likely lots of drool. I remember playing on the chair as a kid, sitting on its sturdy arms, jumping on its cushion. Years later, when my sister and I were going off to college and my parents were once again carefree and well-rested, the Orange Chair followed us to campus. It has been passed back and forth between me and my sister as we move from apartment to apartment, to finally our first homes. Today, it sits in my living room, a temporary home. Despite the memories it holds and its lasting faithfulness, I can’t say that orange is my favorite color or that it matches anything else in our house. We’ll find a home for it, even if it goes back to my parents’ house—my mom made me promise to not get rid of it.

My love/not-so-love-relationship with my post-partum body

Jul 21, 2014 by

I won’t call this a love/hate relationship, because there is no part of my body that I hate, but I wouldn’t always call us best friends, either.

Prior to having a baby, I’d say I had a pretty decent body image. I was embracing the new curves that came late in my twenties, which fleshed out even more while in culinary school. After being all elbows and knees in high school and college, I welcomed the opportunity to look a little more…womanly. My husband has an amazing habit of complementing me and making me feel confident in my body size and shape, so that helped a lot. I was comfortable with my personal style and wore what I liked but also what I thought might flatter my body type the most. Just like anyone else, I did what I could to minimize the muffin top, but didn’t give much thought to my body beyond that. That was it—I thought about my body, but was comfortable enough to not give it a second thought.

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