Thursday, September 4, 2014

Five Things Not to Say to a Pregnant Lady

For the most part, people are super sweet when you're pregnant.  My co-workers are especially amazing and say the nicest things to me.  Things like, "You look great!"  "You don't even look pregnant until you turn around!" "You definitely are glowing" "Go home and put your feet up."  "Be sure to take time for yourself!" and my favorite, "Make sure Mason is rubbing your feet and giving you back rubs!"

But then, every once in awhile, I encounter someone who maybe missed the social skills lesson in Guidance class.  And I know it's just par for the course, but c'mon people... do you really think anyone wants to hear the following things?  (I've been told each of these things in the past two weeks-- all from total strangers!)

5.  You look really good.....for being SO pregnant.
  Thanks!  But can I be honest here?  You would be a great candidate for the Kathy Lee & Hoda makeover segment on the Today show. 

4.  Are you sure there aren't twins in there!?
  Um, yes.  

3.  Wow!  You've really.....blossomed!  and: Wow!  You've really grown!!
  What is this? 1900?  Blossomed?  Really? 

2.  You're due in three weeks?  You're so....tiny.  Is everything okay?
  Thank you for your concern.  According to my midwife, I'm measuring perfectly--down to the day to be precise.  But see that lady over there?  She thinks I'm having twins.  Why don't you take up your concern with her.  

1.  Wow.  You look like you're going to POP at any minute!
  Great to know.  In fact, I had just been wondering what I looked like-- you know, I haven't seen myself since getting knocked nine months ago.  And I barely noticed how huge this belly is--you know, it doesn't weigh a thing or cramp my style at all.  

I suppose these comments could be upsetting-- but they mostly just make me crinkle my eyebrows and cock my head and wonder, "What the......?"  And then I make a mental note of what not to say the next time I see a very pregnant lady at the checkout line in Target.

What We're Learning 9-2-14

This conversation from Tuesday:

(Logistics make it easy for Nicole to pick up C from preschool and drop him off at home-- where I can greet him.  So far, this is working great.  He's excited and eager to tell me about his day the minute he walks through the door. ---this excitement fades approximately three minutes later when he's immersed in something else---like playing dinosaurs--so I'm glad I have the opportunity to sieze it!)

Me:  Hey Buddy!  How was preschool?!

C:  Great.  We learned fire safety.  We did a fire drill.  Do you know what that is?

Me:  Nope.  Tell me what happens in a fire drill.

C:  Well, first of all, Miss Kruger will say, "Fire Drill! Blue line!" And then we line up on the blue line and we go outside where it's safety.  pause....   And it doesn't matter if we leave our backpacks in our lockers because they can get all burned up.  So we just leave 'em there for them to get all burned up.  And all the stuff inside can get burned up.  And we just only need to get us outside.  Because we can buy another backpack but you can't buy another kid.  Nope.  You can't buy another me, Mom."

Me:  Let's blame this next part on pregnancy hormones....cue the eye watering.....  You're right Charlie, we can never buy another you and that would be the saddest thing ever.

C:  Can I have a snack?

Preschool is off to a great start and so far, Charlie seems to enjoy it and remains excited about it.  Last night at dinner we learned about the door helpers (#1 and #2) and what the teacher helper does.  It's funny to me that these conversations are even interesting---living in elementary school world where I see kids do 'their jobs' everyday and don't think anything of it.  Really, how hard can it be to be 'paper passer'? But hearing it from the mouth of my babe is just so different.  He has a job!  He's a door holder!  Wow!  He's freaking awesome, right?   (Go ahead, roll your eyes... I will too when I read this post in a few years.)  

Friday, August 29, 2014


Wednesday, August 27 2014

Our milestone for the day:

Wow.  Somehow Mason and I are suddenly part of that club of people who post "first day of school" photos on their social media.  We have a magnet clip on our fridge reminding us of fall fundraisers and class contact information and when we're responsible for snack.  We'll be receiving information about signing up to organize holiday parties and volunteering for fall cleanup day-- all things that real moms and dads take care of but seem like a very grown up thing for me to do.  However, there's no turning back time-- it's real and it's here and honestly, I wouldn't have it any other way.  I love having a preschooler--As I've mentioned numerous time, each stage is my new favorite.

This morning, I surprised Charlie with a chocolate sprinkle donut because, well, that's the way we celebrate here in Spahnville.  (And truthfully, pregnant women should probably be eating more sprinkle donuts than the APA actually recommends.  So I bought two, just to be on the safe side.)

Thanks to some scheduling re-arranging (with a zillion doctor appointments this week), I was able to take Charlie to school for his first day.  Normally, his daycare provider will drop him off, but both Mason and I wanted to be there for the big send-off today.

Just after we snapped the photos, Mason pulled into the driveway.  "Daddy's here!" screeched Charlie as I was buckling him in.  He was so excited that Daddy came home to be part of the action and walk him up to the school building.  Mason mentioned that although Charlie was excited, his grip continued to tighten as they approached the school.  I lagged behind the two of them just enough to let that lump in my throat find a secure spot-- and I took in the scene.

Though his palms may have been sweaty as we walked to the school building, as soon as we arrived at the blacktop, we found Keira and all was right with the world.  These two stuck together like glue right up until it was time to go inside.  Even then, they clutched hands and walked in side by side.

Tommy and his bright green backpack walked right behind-- although he declined the photo opportunity.

And there they go.

I admit that I held back tears as I watched them walk through those doors.  It's so emotional but in such an exciting way.  I knew he was going to soar today-- I knew he was right where he needed to be.  He's ready for this step, he's growing up quickly-- but with enough little moments (both endearing and frustrating) to remind us all that he's still our little boy.

This year is going to be monumental for Charlie-- I can feel it.  School is just the beginning.  He's starting to understand letter sounds and has sounded out a few words while we read-- which thrills him to no end.  I'd be surprised if he's not reading bits and pieces in the next year.  He seems to love numbers and sequences and mathy type things and of course, his current obsession is dinosaurs which he continues to learn more about all the time.  Preschool has been on the horizon for weeks and he's so excited that it's finally here.  He's thrilled to play with the tools and paints and blocks in the future.  He's excited to learn about letters and numbers and animals and plants.  He doesn't seem convinced that he needs fifteen new friends-- but I think he'll get there.

For me, being involved in the school-world means I'm sometimes too aware of what is "coming next". I realize that we've officially stepped onto that continuous moving walkway of ranks and percentiles and peer-comparisons and there's really no turning back or hopping off.  We'll be kept abreast of his progress and be made aware of his challenges and we'll do our best to help him out whenever we can.  While I know he's a talented kid, I'm not naieve enough to think that we won't have our share of struggles and challenges.    I want him to understand how important school is and I want him to embrace learning.  I want him to try his hardest and work through challenging material-- weather that's putting together puzzles now or solving math problems with the alphabet in high school.

But more than anything, I want him to be a good person-- even at four years old.  I want him to use school as an opportunity to learn and still do good for others.  I want him to notice when others are hurting-- and then I want him to offer a hand to help.  I want him to respect others, even those who seem so hard to respect.  I want him to hold tight to that curiosity and ask questions and never settle for an answer that doesn't seem right.  (Unless he's asking his mother ten zillion questions about Ninja Turtles or Dinosaurs or how plants breathe CO2-- all of which I have a very limited supply of answers.) I want him to reach out-- to meet new people, to escape that comfort zone every once in awhile.  I want him to gain independence and confidence and grow into a person who is comfortable in their own skin.  I want him to be able to do this even when other kids laugh at him or tease him for being himself.  I want to shield him from so many of the experiences that I know he will encounter over the next few years-- the ones that are painful and hurtful and hard to understand--- but the ones that every child goes through and must experience at some point.  Of course, I know I cannot do this and somehow he'll navigate his school years like kids have done for years.  And preschool, is just the beginning.  Here's to a new chapter in our lives....


Monday, August 25, 2014

A Few of My Favorite Things...

Okay everyone, channel your inner Maria here.  Ready?  Here we go....

Taking a deep breath and going for long walks
Running through sprinklers and sitting for late talks
Hanging out pool-side and kids' water-wings
These are a few of my favorite things

Walking up stair-steps and sleeping a whole night
Being on my feet and still feeling all right
Lying in bed while the alarm clock rings,
These are a few of my favorite things

Swimming laps outside and taking long bike rides
Chasing my kiddo and discovering new slides
Soaking up summer and all that it brings,
These are a few of my favorite things...

When the pain flares
When the back aches
When I can't jump-stand-or sit...
I try to remember the babe on the way, and know it will be worth it.

And now, I think I'll go make some baby clothes from curtains.  Fo' realz.