Sunday, November 14, 2010

Time flies when you're having fun!

Seriously!? 7 months?! Wow, where did the time go? I can't believe that I had a baby 7 months ago. I can't believe I haven't written on this blog in over a month, and even more I can't believe that I ever thought that there was a remote possibility that I would have enough time to write on my blog once a week.. silly me!

We've been so busy running here and there, doing this and that, playing with new friends and going to all sorts of classes and playdates.. I have sadly neglected my blog..

As time is slipping through my very busy hands, I have witnessed the miraculous growth of my daughter from lump of crying, pooping, eating nothingness to the babbling, 'da-da-da-da-ing', smiley, walking in her walker happy baby girl!

I cannot believe that I have made it 7 months exclusively breastfeeding.. I tried to give her a few solids here and there at about 6 months much to her chagrin.. She's a true breast milk baby. Only now is she even a little more interested in eating 'real' food, but not so much, and I am shocked that I am completely OK with that.

As time marches on, I am becoming more and more acclimated to being a semi-stay at home mommy. Juggling work, the baby, and all things in between have made me a more well rounded person.. What's even cooler is that people are starting to ask me baby/parenting questions.. Not that by any means am I an expert, nor do have I have all the right answers, or even any answers at all.. Actually, so much of what I do is instinct and based on my gut feelings, that that is the way I advise most people.

As per the request of a few people I knew who are expecting or plan to be expecting soon, I have decided to being doing reviews of products and things I am trying.. I am going to be exploring everything from a possible switch to cloth diapers, incorporating a few techniques of 'baby led weaning' into our food introduction, using as many natural products as possible, and trying all sorts of stuff in my adventures... If nothing else, this blog will be entertaining in a few years when I want something to look back on to remember all of these funny moments. :0)

Feel free to join me in my quest to figure out this whole mommy thing, and please by all means suggestions are welcome for things that have made your/your moms/sisters/cousins lives as a mommy easier.

I promise many more entertaining, witty and of nothing else silly blogs to come!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Just shy of half a year...

6 months have almost passed me by and with each moment..each passing second..each glance..each giggle..each tear..each and every smile has brought more joy to my life, and has made me fall deeper in love with my daughter.
If I were to write here a letter today (first of many, I am sure) this is what I would hope to say:
If the past few months have taught me anything, it is that I have many wishes for you, my love.
There will be many challenges in your life, and you will be faced with happiness and pain, and love and hurt.
I wish you the ability to have grace under fire.
I wish you to be able to look people in the face and smile when they put you down, or muster up a ' have a good day' when someone yells at you for no reason..
And to agree to disagree when faced with the ignorance of themany people you will meet, even if what they say seems to insane, ridiculous or otherwise stupid.
I hope you have many friends, people who you can share joy with, dream with, laugh with and cry with.
I wish you a speedy recovery when you have your heart broken for the first time. I hope you are able to look at the person who broke it, hold back the hurt while holding your head high and wish them well, wish them peace and most of all wish them love. Remember always that you reap what you sow.
I strongly encourage you to stand up for what you beleive in. No matter who opposes you, or who feels differently (even me).
Trust your instincts and often go with your first impressions, they will be your best guide.
I hope that you are able to show compassion and respect for those people whose beliefs are different than yours and especially those who you disagree with.
I pray that the first time a friend hurts or betrays you, you look deep into your heart and are able to forgive them.
I hope you always keep an open mind and an open heart.
Love big, smile often and live your life to the fullest.
I have faced many challenges in my life, and you my sweet baby girl are my reward.
You have become the answer to all of my questions- You are my heart.
I love you- Always and forever- Lots and lots.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Not-so supermarket...

I used to LOVE to go food shopping! It was a small frame of time where I would get to get away from everyone and everything and buy food. It may sound trivial and small, but I also have a HUGE passion for cooking- so the way a musician loves to go to a music store and tinker on a new guitar, or an artist walks into a craft store and gets a little batty over all of the crafty possibilities, to me the grocery store was much the same way. Each isle contained an ingredient that I loved or one I've been dying to try-- and combined with a few other ingredients and a little imagination some of the most wonderful things would come about. My heart would beat just a little faster each time I would enter the florescent-ly light warehouse of wonderment, my head buzzing with delight over the possibilities. Cooking is the way I relax, cooking is my stress relief, cooking is just my thing. It's my outlet for creativity and anxiety-- In other words, cooking is my drug, and the grocery store my dealer.

That was until I had a shopping partner.. No, I am not talking about Andre who has been banned from coming with me until further notice based upon the fact that he treats the grocery store like a rogue military operation... Get in, cause a lot of damage and get out as quickly as possible sticking only to the task (grocery list) at hand. He never quite understood my lackadaisical way of shopping; not quite comprehending my need to read labels for nutritional value and ingredients, cruising up and down each isle to look for new arrivals and using my list as only a guideline, not a map of the quickest route in and out of the store.

No-no.. I am talking about my little daughter. I understand and fully comprehend that at her age of just barely 5 months that she may not particularly enjoy the supermarket.. I get it. She's not quite at the point where you can stick her in cart with a stringed box of animal crackers and expect her to sit quietly like my mom did with me and many moms did with their children before that, but I also didn't think I was signing on for leaving my cart in the 4th isle to run outside to the parking lot to calm her down as apparently my child has a serious issue with the idea of Ronzoni pasta.

There was a time in my life PBI (Pre-baby Isabel) that I would be sauntering up and down the isle of Stop and Shop at about 2-3 miles per hour enjoying the sights and smells, imagining myself as a chef or a restaurant owner finally having a chance to feed people my healthy and delicious recipies.. Changing the average Joe's opinion of beans and asparagus forever when 'WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA'! I am snapped back into reality-- the one where I work in a medical office and cook only for hobby and my husbands sustenance by a screaming child and a worn and tired looking woman trying desperately to get her food shopping done while attempting to calm her child, hold a pacifier in it's mouth, read a shopping list and push the cart all at the same time. All around her would be older, more wiser looking women giving her the knowing 'don't worry, I've been there and it gets better' look.. And then there's me, shooting her the (not intentionally, but because I cannot control my facial expressions) look that says

'seriously, lady? you don't have husband or life partner or a baby daddy to leave that kid with so it doesn't ruin my Zen moment?' Ok, I know that sounds mean and horrible, but I had no idea. I wasn't aware of the physical exhaustion and desperation that having a kid can give you, and not to mention how going to the store just to get the basics can be an all day affair.. and how the second that your baby begins to whimper you move that much faster in hopes that by the time your baby has an all out meltdown, you've at least made it to the register. I am pretty sure all of the mommies I have ever given 'the look' to have all gotten together and wished and hoped and prayed that one day I would suffer their misery..

.... And it worked! I get it and I am sorry.. Consider this my formal apology. I promise for now on, if I shoot anyone any looks in the store it will be only those looks of camaraderie-- A look of knowing and understanding that you, like me are just trying to buy some milk and eggs and cereal (like you'd actually have the time to eat it, ha!) without feeling completely embarrassed and flustered by your child that is now screaming so hard your afraid someone is going to think you've stolen them, because if you were it's 'real' mom there is no way you wouldn't be able to comfort them at least enough to calm them down a little.

So, while I have tried to work it out that I leave the baby with Andre so I can go food shopping, and I don't 'miss out' on a food shopping adventure, I often stop mid-store when I hear a baby giggle, coo or even cry to realize that I miss her so much more than I thought I would and I have resorted to taking her with me strapped to my chest and maybe this way she will learn to love shopping as much as her mommy.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mission: Discovery

Fingers, lots and lots of sloppy-wet slimy fingers! Sucking on her fingers is my daughters newest favorite thing to do.. Teething toys, chewing blankets, soft-squishy books a-plenty, and yet fingers, both mine and hers are the best things she can find to put into her mouth. The day Isabel discovered her fingers is apparently just the beginning of things she would find and figure out in the next few weeks. She has been learning in leaps and bounds and watching her discover how to roll from her back to her belly, hold her toes, how to hug and also begin to entertain herself makes me think about all the things I am learning by just being around her. Who knew that being a mommy would be this whole new world of learning and revelation.

When I used to work at my VERY busy full-time job, multi-tasking was my middle name... I could help a patient check-in, answer the phone, get films, make an appointment and talk to a doctor, all while smiling like it was second nature. It never phased me that I was doing so much at the same time, because I had been trained to do these things over the course of 7 years.

I really wish there was the same kind of training for mommy-hood, because this is a whole new breed of multi-tasking and from what I am learning it only gets more involved the older she gets.

In my journey so far I have discovered the art of breastfeeding and reading/eating/typing/answering the phone.. I have also figured out how to bathe myself and the baby at the same time, and I have all but mastered the fine art of napping/nodding off while she feeds at 1am while cradling her in my arms and keeping the glider going just enough to keep her in a semi-sleepy state.

I have also discovered that despite popular belief, I can go a day without a shower.. Granted this was NOT my idea, and if I had it my way I would never go a day un-showered or my legs unshaven, however out of necessity I have realized that (much to my chagrin) sometimes the days just doesn't work out the way I had planned and I just never got a chance to jump into the shower.. I have also discovered Febreeze, body sprays, tinted moisturizer, leave-in conditioner and downy wrinkle release-- All due to the fact that I have discovered that I no longer have time the way I used to, or the way I INSISTED I still would once I gave birth.

I have also discovered a new found sense of patience and calm at times when I need it.. Like when the baby is crying for no good reason, when she inevitably poops right through all of her clothes and up her back the second I leave the house and I am on any sort of time constraint, or when I come home from a long day of taking care of and entertaining the baby, carting her to my parents to be watched while I fight traffic to get to work for five hours, count down the minutes until I can go home to see her again, and walk into my house to a sink full of dishes, a full clean dishwasher, and a husband playing x-box...

I have also discovered how amazing it is to watch someone discover things for the first time. How her eyes widened when she figured out that each time she hits the brightly colored round things on her excersaucer it will greet her with a 'moo', a 'meow' a 'quack' or a 'roar'.. How she realized that if she slams her hands into the tub water it will make a silly slapping noise and make the water splash into mommy's face. How she's learned that if she snuggles just right, mommy will hate to put her down and she will get cuddle time just a little longer.

I have realized that there is so much in my life that I am thankful for that I am no longer spending time on or getting hung up on things that don't enrich my life and make it better.

I have realized that there is so much more discovery in my future. I discover more each day that I love her a little more than I did yesterday. I have seen the unearthing of what fatherhood can do to a guy who kept most of his big emotions under wraps, and I can recall why I married him and discover that I love him more as a father than I ever thought I could .

I love the fact that my husband and I get to go on an adventure everyday... Hand in hand, I will walk alongside my family discovering this new world-- Watching my daughter as her senses are heightened by new smells, tastes, sights and sounds. Watching my husbands chest swell with pride with each of her accomplishments...and me, loving each moment that I get to share with them as a mother, a wife and part of this beautiful family.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Hips don't lie..

Time is not being kind to me, my friends. When people tell you that your body will never be the same after a baby, do yourself a HUGE favor and don't poo-poo it under the assumption that you're young and bounce back easily, because before you know it 30 creeps up really fast and the inevitable aging only feels/looks worse with bags under your eyes and under-maintained (see- frizzy and unmanageable) tresses.

Listen loud and clear anyone who happens to be reading this.. YOU WILL NEVER BE THE SAME AGAIN.. Even if you think you look the same, or perhaps even fit into your size 4 jeans a few weeks postpartum, you will never be the same again.

After having a baby, you'll hear many people say 'aren't you glad to have your body back to yourself again?'.. This my friends is a lie, because even if you are not at the beck and call of a hungry baby lookin' for a quick boobie fix (i.e. you are breastfeeding, which I HIGHLY recommend by the way), I am pretty sure at no point in your adulthood did having control of your own body include vomiting, slobbering or peeing or pooping on yourself at an point, but having a baby makes all of those things happen, often and without a second thought.

So, yes while there is no longer a little person high-jacking your uterus, kicking you in the ribs, and making it hard to stomach just about anything, suddenly you have a little person who is pretty much a cute ball of mush just full of bodily fluids that they cannot wait to share with you, get onto your clothes, down your shirt or in your hair.

Ok, picture this..Not only am I overtired for lack of any sleep at all and weepy from all the fabulous hormones surging about my overworked body, I have my first big event coming up today..Meaning me, Isabel and my husband are going out for one of the first times that's not to the pediatricians office.. I think to myself, 'dammit come hell or high water you I will look like the mommy whose got it together', just like the ones on TV that pushed a baby out with no drugs, three pushes and a few little squeaks of discomfort and then strolled gallantly out of the hospital with baby in arms, at a glorious size 2, perfect makeup and glowing postpartum skin.. So, off to my closet I go with my hopes and head held high, I fling open the doors and gaze at all of the clothes I haven't so much as glanced at, not to mention attempted to even put on in over 4 months..

'Hello, friends' I mutter as I pull out my most comfy pair of jeans, the ones that were a little baggier on my pre-baby figure but because the scale hasn't come all the way back down again, I'm pretty sure I am not ready for my skinny jeans just yet. Along with my super non-maternity jeans (yay), I grabbed my first post-baby non maternity, non-baby doll, non-tie backed shirt to put on and I victoriously tore my clothes off and began my adventure as hip-stylish new mommy!

Wait, what?! I can't.. I mean, I can, but I can't clothes them all the way.. hop hop hoping around my bedroom, I think "I am getting these freakin' jeans on my body if it's the last things I..'

CRASH, BANG, BOOM! My husband runs hurriedly to the bedroom door to find me on the floor with the jeans stuck around my ankles, the shirt shoved over and barely covering my extremely large new breasts and my faced covered in tears, lots and lots of tears.. He calmly explains to me that he thinks it's gonna take a little longer for me to get back to my pre-baby clothes, and to give myself a break, but also nicely reminds me that we need to hit the road asap in order to be remotely on time, and we still have to dress the baby and get her in her car seat which is an ordeal in and of itself.
Defeated, I reach backed into my closet and not even half-heartedly and grab what I thought was a cute maternity skirt and a t-shirt out, I layer it over my nude-colored maternity bra (good for quick boob access for nursing, although not in the least bit attractive) and granny panties (the kind that do not dig into my new and oh-so pretty c-section incision scar), and slip a pair of flip-flops onto my un-pedicured toes. I glance at myself in the mirror and sigh, 'this is not what I had envisioned, but it'll have to do'. I smooth my hair, run gloss over my lips and make my way to the babies room to get her dressed.

Upon entering her room, I am once again amazed at the amount of clothing this kid has.. A montage of pink, flowers and frilly polka-dotted dresses, leggings and onesies... My eyes widen with just a mere glance at all of the bows, barrettes and headbands. And right then I glance over to my husband, who now has my little girl in just a diaper lying on her changing table arms flailing and making silly-gurgle noises, and my heart skipped a beat.

I am suddenly reminded why I look the way I do. My breasts are swollen to nourish and feed my daughter. My hips have widened to accommodate her safe exit (although that path remains untraveled) and my belly increased in size in order to keep her safe while her little body was developing into the most beautiful and precious gift that I could have ever asked for.

So, now four months later I am feeling better about myself, although not completely back to the old me. In a way I am glad for this. In these passed few months I have learned that pregnancy and motherhood are pretty amazing, and something I would never want taken away from me.

With each passing day I tell myself that no, these hips do not lie-- I had a baby. But I no longer scrutinize each flaw or criticize myself for not fitting into all my pre-baby duds. I look to the scar from my c-section, the stretch marks and the spit-up as badges of honor, and the outcome is a beautiful and happy baby girl.

And while I never pictured myself as a cargo-pant, tank-top kinda mom, I am pretty sure she doesn't mind.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The ties that bind..

Family. Love 'em, or leave 'em. Everyone has some sort of love/hate relationship with their family, whether they want to admit it or not. My family is a wide variety mix of personalities, quirks, tempers, and idiosyncrasies and attitudes.

This past weekend, my family proved to me that despite all the garbage and nonsense that goes on within a family, the strongest bond between anyone is that of family. Whether by blood or by marriage, by birth or by introduction, the strongest relationship most people ever know is that of their family. And I am not just speaking of the mother-father-sister-brother kind of family. I am talking also about the friends who will calm you down and remind you to look at the big picture instead of ruining something awesome over something essentially silly.. The person who will come to your rescue in the middle of the night because you made a bad judgment call by leaving the bar with that guy. The people who lend you money and don't expect it back.. The people who love you unconditionally no matter what color your hair is, how many tattoos you have, or what music you choose to listen to.. The people who will watch your baby on a moments notice, or help out your husband with gift ideas when he thinks a vacuum will do for a birthday gift for you.

I have at one point or another fought with each member of my family. I have bitched and complained about something they did, didn't do, or were supposed to do.. I have cried with each member of my family, and leaned on each one of them. I have yelled at or expressed my opposition to each member of my family, and expressed joy for each of their accomplishments.

This past weekend, as my family joined my husband and I in officially welcoming my baby to the world and to our family, I was reminded of how important family is.. Without them, our party would have never have been so special. Without them, our little family would never be complete. With each passing day, my family helps me out whether it being a piece of advice, a moment to listen to my fears about mommy-hood, or a pair of hands to watch the baby when I need to go to work.

Through all the ins and outs and ups and downs, come hell or high water my family is always there. I promise through the good and the bad, I will always be there for them too. Many families have problems and disputes. Many families have fights and claim to hate each other from time to time..

Personally, I like to view my family like a Monet painting.. If you stand real close and scrutinize each aspect, it just looks like a big mess.. A sloppy mix of colors and dots.. But when you take a moment to step back and look at the big picture you see smiling faces, happiness and memories being created with each passing moment.. And to me, that's a true work of art.

Thank you to all who made this past weekend possible. On behalf of Isabel, Andre and myself, we love you all.. xoxoxoxoxoxo

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I used to be 'cool'

No really, I did.. I know it's laughable now, but I used to be pretty awesome. I used to be able to stay up past 930 without yawing every ten seconds. I used to be able to drink as much or as little as I wanted, when the only worry I had was how I was getting home, and not how much alcohol was leeching into my breast milk. I used to play roller derby, and shop and get mani-pedis without a second thought.. I used to subscribe to in-style, Marie Claire and vogue, and use them as inspiration when getting dressed, or how to do that 'neat thing Drew Barrymore did with her eyeliner'...

Now, I am only up past 930 because I am pretty sure my night job (that I really only work at for benefits.. how responsible) would frown upon my sleeping at my desk, although I am perfecting taking little naps with my eyes open.. My favorite drink is coffee- warm, happily caffeinated coffee which not only wakes me up, but gives me the little jump start I need to get through my day without dragging too much ass..

My idea of a cocktail? The one I am allotted after just having nursed the baby, but never anymore than that because the responsible mommy side in me has researched and re-researched the probable effects of alcohol in breast milk, and just the idea that I could cause a sluggish respiratory rate in my child would make me sit up various times throughout the night to check her breathing, and to be totally honest I do not need to lose anymore sleep.

My physical activity regimen consists of lifting a baby car-seat carrier, walking with the baby in the baby Bjorn, lifting strollers in and out of the trunk and dancing and rocking the baby to sleep, and once in a while I can get a change to throw her into the jogging stroller and take a quick (and i do mean quick) jog around the neighborhood as long as the sun conditions (babies can't be in the sun, and she can't stand having the sun in her face) and wind conditions are favorable..

My beauty secrets is that there aren't any anymore.. Tinted moisturizer, a little powder, and blush.. SOMETIMES, if she's not crying or fussing too much I'll even get a chance to put on a little mascara and maybe even some eyeline.. wooooo! And the clothes.. I don't shop, and if I do it's for her which I find SOOO thrilling because frankly, girl clothes are amazing and fun to shop for, so as long as I can shop for her and dress her like a little mini-me, i'm pretty cool with that.

So between my non- beauty, exercise and going out routine, and after the cooking and the cleaning.. later in the night time when I get home from work, I get to see my little girl again. After about 5 hours or so of working and being away from her, I come home and scoop her up- I I change her diaper, I put her in her jammies, and cuddle and kiss her. I bring her into my room, and I lay her on my lap and get ready to feed her. She latches on, she makes her little yum-yum noises and for just a second she looks up at me.. In her milk-drunk state will open her pretty little eyes, and smile at me.. A smile that melts my heart, and makes me remember that there is only one person whose opinion really matters.. One person who loves me for who I am, makeup or none, dressed up or dressed down, hair a little frizzy or straight..

...And she thinks I am pretty cool.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Three Lives....

It used to be the one of the biggest decisions I had to make on a regular basis was whether I wanted red or white wine while I leisurely made dinner for the night.. Being a working wife was pretty simple, I worked and cooked, we shared the cleaning and the laundry and came and went as the breeze blew us..

Now things have changed dramatically.. Don't get me wrong. Isabel is the single best thing that has ever happened, but I am still a novice at juggling. I thought I had this whole baby thing down.. feed, play, change, rock, cuddle, wash, and repeat as necessary with many many kisses in between.. It took some times to figure out where to fit in eating, showering, cleaning and cooking in the middle of the baby's busy schedule that she regularly sets for me.

And within two to three months, I am able to feed the baby, while eating and petting the cat all at once. I have mastered running up and down the basement stairs getting laundry done, and boiling water for pasta all while she sleeps or play and preferably with little to no whining or crying on either of our parts-easy peasy.

And all of a sudden the world turns upside down and I have to go back to work. Granted I am working evenings, so while I am SO lucky to be able to stay home and enjoy her during the day I am now faced with the daunting task of being the little wifey, the happy mommy and the ever-efficient and perky employee. Somehow I am expected to get all of the household chores done, take care of the baby and be ready with breast-milk bottles in hand in time to drop the baby off to my sisters to be at work by 5pm with a smile on my face.. Which is fine with me as long as I don't have to take care of all of those other pesky chores like eating and showering.

How the hell do people do this? I understand that I am only into my 2nd week of working mommy-dom, but for goodness sake this is hard! Turn on mommy mode, turn off mommy mode, turn on wife mode, turn off wife mode, turn on work mode, turn off work mode, all while trying to deny any feelings of sadness or stress that I have because I am trying so hard to fit into the 'perfect mommy' mold.

I am trying to hard to keep my baby happy and healthy- I am trying to make my household run efficiently and happily, I am trying to keep my marriage afloat and I am trying to keep it all together, and somehow everyday it all seems like just when I get a handle on one thing something else is falling apart. For each task I concur, I feel like something else suffers. I understand that in this day and age, many couples have to work to make ends meet, and for many this means day care and babysitters. I am very fortunate to have a family that is willing to watch my little lady for a few hours before my husband comes home, which makes me feel good about knowing she is being cared for to the best of their ability and nurtured by people who really love her. Some days I find it harder to leave her than others, however again I am lucky to have people who care about her general well-being taking care of her..

Does this ever get easier? Will I ever get to be the ring master of this three-ring circus, or am I doomed just to be a clumsy clown? Does having children, a marriage and a job in this day and age always mean that something or someone will suffer?

I wish I had a better way to end this, however the baby is napping and I need to eat something before she wakes up.. Until next time- :-)

Monday, June 28, 2010

I have a lot to say, and so few people to talk to.. ( an introduction)

So, I am a new mommy... Well, just shy of three months a new mommy anyway. My wonderful, amazing, beautiful daughter was born on April 8, 2010.

The only thing I have ever wanted from my life is to be an awesome mom. I am loving every minute of this mommy thing-- the bonding, the clothes, the kisses, the smiles! It's all so fulfilling and great, just like I thought it would be. It's also stressful, complicated, worrisome and at some points completely overwhelming.. Which is why I am writing this blog. I don't even care if no one reads this, for me it's just a place to write and get out of my head and onto paper (so to speak) all of my thoughts and ideas and worries and rants.

Throughout pregnancy (which for me was a loooong time, because my darling daughter was 2 weeks late) all you hear is 'when you have the baby, we will do ______ together' and ' we can't wait for baby so-and-so to be born, so our babies can play, and we can talk/get lunch/go walking/etc'.. Where are all of you people?! Granted, I don't have a lot of people around me with three month olds.. All but one of my girlfriends have no kids, and the one that does has a son who is almost 2 and has a busier schedule than Donald Trump on a good day.. My other kid-less friends either work during the day, have their own crap to worry about or are too far away and too kidless to understand why going out for a drink would require way more effort than I have energy to put into...

I also have this enormous family, with tons of kids all of which as well are older and/or busier than my tiny baby girl.. Yes, I have hung out with my sister and her kids, who are 2 boys ( 2 1/2 and 1 year olds)-- however she's had way more time to get this mom thing down pat, and is able to feed, dress and have her kids on the road before I have even had a chance to eat breakfast in the morning. I am often too busy nursing/washing/changing the baby which still takes me way longer than I think it should, however I still have no idea how. So, I often feel bad that I cannot be out on the road at 9am like she and the other seasoned moms are unless I go hungry and unwashed, because she's already on her way, and by the time I am ready, her kids are ready for their PM nap- so sometimes it's easier to bow out gracefully or just be late...

Where's my husband in all of this? Working of course.. Far, far away-- Ok, it's only an hour or so away, however he takes the train to avoid sitting in traffic and so he can continue his studies in order to (hopefully) get a better job and I will be able to quit my part-time gig and stay home. So, while he's busy at work paying people and crunch numbers in Roslyn Heights, he seems a zillion miles away when I feel I really need to talk to him or share a worry.

Anywhere, where was I? Oh, yea-- so often times I will realize at the end of the day other than a few texts, random phone calls and facebook posts, I have only spoken to my three month old, my cat and the myself for the entire 11 hours my husband has been gone. You forget while being pregnant that people still go to work when you are home with your baby.. And also that other people's lives to not revolve around you and your child's with the exception of perhaps our significant others from time-to-time..

Don't get me wrong, I LOVE being a semi-stay-at-home mommy.. It's the most amazing thing to see my baby learn new things from day-to-day, however why is it that when people call me and ask me if I need anything, or when I happen to have someone on the phone I have no needs or questions to ask-- However, at 3am in the middle of a feeding or at 1pm in the middle of other kids nap/snack/reading times is usually when something will come up, and it's too late or not a good time to annoy other people with my incessant new mommy concerns/questions.

Fact is, I am still getting the hang of this stuff, but who isn't? What mom or dad out there isn't constantly second guessing themselves and each and every decision you make throughout your day when it comes to the concerns of your children?

So, the one thing I have learned is that as a new parent, old parent, single parent, parent of an only child or several children is that you never get to a point where you think you know all of the answers. The one thing that I am not alone about in all of this parenting stuff is that I will never be 100% sure about anything ever again other than the fact that I want nothing more than the best for my child. I also know that there is no such thing as a perfect parent. Not me, not my friends, not my sister and not my mom. I also know that they know that, and having realized that little piece of information makes me a part of a group of people bigger than I could've ever imagined, and that makes me feel just a little less lonely.

40+5 (originally posted 3/31/2010)

I suppose if there was any time to be reflective, now is probably as good a time as any.. I am over 40 weeks pregnant, and for those of you keeping track, that means that the baby TECHNICALLY should have been here 5 days ago...Although, I am pretty sure whatever she's using to track the time that has passed inside my warm, comfy womb isn't following the same time guidelines as I am. In other words, she has her own agenda.

So, here I am out of work.. Sitting, waiting, and contemplating the question that I am sure every mom-in-waiting asks themselves at this point.. "What the hell are you waiting for?".

The room is set up all pink and yellow and clean...The clothes, towels, sheets and socks have all been washed in super baby-friendly detergent sworn not to irritate my newborns skin. The Fridge and freezer are stocked and packed with 'family-friendly' meals ready for an in-between breastfeeding heat up in the Microwave or oven when the food that everyone is waiting to cook for me and my new family runs out. The grandparents are all here, waiting with baited breath and arguing over who gets to see the baby when. My husband has been on 'alert' like a freedom fighter for 2 weeks now ready to jet from Roslyn back to Rocky Point at the first sign of rogue water leakage or consistent contractions..

And here I sit.. BORED OUT OF MY EVER LOVING MIND... Fielding 150 phone calls, text messages and Facebook wall messages a day from well meaning people about the impending arrival of my (apparently) shy baby girl....Waiting.

At this time, many people have offered their input and advice about my upcoming foray into parenthood.. How many times have how many people told me to 'get a lot of sleep now while I still can'? Really? How many of you slept for like 16 hours at a time PRIOR to the births of your children, and after the baby is born were able to say "I guess it's time to use one of those banked sleep hours, I am SO tired.. Thank goodness that I stored up all those extras"'? Just curious.

Recently, Andre set up our TV to do a slideshow of all of our pictures when it's been idle for a while.. So yesterday I sat and watched it for a bit.. I noticed how quickly and effortlessly the pictures flashed up on the screen, and were there and gone in a matter of a few seconds, but just long enough for me to wonder if I have done everything up until this point that I feel I should have.

Random pictures fly by of us at a bar or at a party, a few sober but more not... Andre playing a show with Space Robot Scientists, and more recently Yes Sensei. Pictures of my family, friends and the love of my life dancing like fools at my wedding. Pictures of my nieces and nephews decorating Christmas cookies and Easter Eggs. Andre Djing at the bar I used to work at. A friend come and gone. Me, with a bunch of rowdy girls clad in short skirts and knee socks, with roller skates slung over our shoulders only thinking about the whether the next 20 minutes will score us enough points to FINALLY win a bout. Pictures of my husband and I kissing in the various locales that we have ventured to together in our 10 year courtship. Me, with a glass of wine in one hand and a close friends' arm around me, smiling widely and a minimum of 25 pounds lighter not knowing that less than a year later I would be awaiting the arrival of the most life changing event I will probably ever come to know.

Looking back and seeing what my life has been, and looking down at my ever-so-round belly (currently jumping every few seconds because someone I can't wait to know has the hiccups) I have realized that there is honestly no other place I'd rather be than here right now. I am truly beyond excited to start my own family and begin my own traditions. I realize that I will never again be able to experience the birth of my first child, and it brings tears to my eyes..

I sit up confidently and declare.. I am ready. I am scared and terrified, but I am a willing participant and I am ready. I think.