Gray’s Anatomy

After reading some parenting articles that popped into my inbox via BabyCenter and WhatToExpect, I decided to use the proper words for body parts rather than cutesy nicknames that will save me from some embarrassment.

So when Nicky points at his particulars and asks me what it is I tell him it’s his penis (I feel dirty just writing it). He repeats the word after me like he’s been doing with new words for a while now.

I live in constant fear of him yelling it out in the middle of church.

It’s been over a week since the last time he asked. So this morning as I’m getting Nicky dressed he points at my waist and says, “mommy’s penis” I explain that only boys have them (so I’d appreciate he not tell people I have one).” Then, because this kid really knows how to hurt me he says, “mommy’s mustache.”

….

So I tell him that when a woman has a mustache we don’t say anything about it.

I don’t have one btw.

After getting dressed he wants to play with play dough. I pull out all the green play dough and start to roll it into a cylinder which yesterday, he was calling “capeeshes”. So I thought I was making a big capeesh for him and he yells out, “a big penis!”

Capeeshes

And now he’s asking me to make the play dough into a big penis.

When did my life get so inappropriate?

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Got milk?

I’m tall.  It’s taken me many, many years to get comfortable with being tall.  Short women seem to have it easy; they can find pants that are long enough, they can find cute shoes in their size, most men seem tall to them, etc. etc.

But there are times when being tall has it’s advantages and I’m not going to lie, most of them happen in the grocery store.  From the time I was a teen, I’ve learned to recognize that relieved look a shorter person would have when I started down an aisle.  As soon as I was close enough they’d ask me to get an item from the top shelf for them.  Or one close to the top but near the back of the shelf.

It’s been a while though, since I’ve used my height and arms for the good of myself or another in the grocery store.  So it was nice today, when I went shopping and came upon the milk.  All the milks I could see had an expiration date that wouldn’t get them through to the next time I needed to go to the store.  I almost decided to go without milk but then I noticed a rack of milk further back in the refrigerator.  If I stepped in just slightly, I would be able to reach a milk on the top shelf of that second rack.  So I did it! I got a milk with an expiration date that will get me through almost two weeks! I put the milk in my cart, feeling pretty good about my amazonian arms when I noticed an older gentlemen looking at me, it was clear he had just witnessed what I had done.  He asked if the date was better on those and I confirmed they were.  Then he asked if I would get him one too.  No problem!  I got him one and then we talked briefly about why this matters (neither of us use a lot of milk so it’s nice to have it last as long as possible).  I could tell he was awed by my ability and maybe by my refusal to accept the expiration date offered me.

This is my life now – changing diapers, medicating a cat, chasing a toddler, and fighting against the grocery man and his expiration dates…it’s a pretty good life.

 

Postpartum Body

Something I was not oblivious to with this pregnancy was the fact that your body doesn’t just spring back to the way it was before you got pregnant. I wasn’t necessarily oblivious last pregnancy either but I did think the weight would “melt away”…probably because people TOLD ME IT WOULD. 

A month after Stormy was born, my sweet, young nephew saw my belly and asked, “are you having another baby?”  …you can imagine how that made me feel. 

Sometimes I think it’s a miracle not EVERY woman suffers postpartum depression – the body change alone is enough to send me spiraling into depression, add to that honest children (oh and sleep derivation and adjusting hormones). But I digress. 

This time around, I gained less weight, but I still gained. Last Sunday my niece (who is about eye level with my gut) came into the room, stared at my stomach with wide, excited eyes and then suddenly her face fell a little and she said, “oh, I forgot that’s left over tummy”.  To which I said, “yes it is and I’ll be sure to point yours out to you when you have a kid.”  She’s five…and I have the maturity of a five year old. 

Awkward is my middle name 

I was driving along today and a random thought entered my mind as they are wont to do. It was a memory from a few months ago. Sister Missionaries from church, but a different ward) came by my house looking for people who spoke Spanish. They didn’t know I was a member of the church so I told them and then politely told them I didn’t know anyone in the neighborhood (at all, much less those who speak Spanish). It was hot outside so I offered them water and they asked if I had bottles, which I didn’t. After telling them so there was a long and awkward silence.  I felt bad because they didn’t want my water if it wasn’t in a bottle. They finally said goodbye and went on their way. I’ve thought about this interaction before and how bad I felt and because of them I keep bottled water in my fridge- just in case. However, today a thought occurred to me…that silence might have been where they were still hoping did water, while I assumed they didn’t want any of it wasn’t in a bottle. The awkward pause wasn’t them, it was me. 

Which got me thinking about another awkward situation many moons ago. I was at the movie theater with two friends. A group of teenage boys had taken the seats right next to us, I was the one right next to them. 

If you’ve ever been to a movie theater you know it gets dark. So we’re watching the movie and suddenly a twisler comes into view from my left where the boys are sitting. The twizzler hoovers in front of me until I finally reach my hand up and take it. I don’t remember if I said thank you or not but I don’t like twizzlers so I passed it down the line on my right. 

Several minutes pass and lo and behold another twizzler comes into view. I don’t know what to do, I already accepted the first so I feel I should just take another. This time I’m pretty sure I said thank you as I took it and passed it down again. 

After the movie I kind of avoided eye contact because I felt the whole encounter weird but they just got up and left. 

My friends asked what the deal with the twizzlers was and so I explained the story as you’ve just read it. As I was telling the story the thought occurred to me…what if they weren’t handing me a twizzler? What if the kid just had his arm on the armrest and the twizzler just got of hung in front of me. When I took it he thought how weird that was and so maybe the second one was on purpose to see if I would take it. Which I did. So while I was telling the story of this guy sharing his twizzlers he was telling the story of the awkward girl sitting next to him taking his food. 

Apparently it’s only after an awkward situation that I think maybe I’m the reason it was awkward. 

Adventures in Traveling

This past Saturday, Chewy and I went up to the temple in Maryland.  I drove on the way up and instead of taking I-95 we took 301…which is a bit longer.  If 95 is backed up, 301 is fantastic because ideally in the long run  you would get to your destination faster despite the longer mileage.  I’m not convinced that we achieved that on Saturday but that’s not why I’m posting.

Anyway, lately I’ve been getting these really bad headaches, I mean, want to throw up and die kind of headaches.  I think it’s because when I’m concentrating I clench my jaw and for three hours or so I had been doing that.  So I had the headache when we got to the temple and we were there about 2.5-3 hours.  When we left, Chewy offered to drive and I thought I should take him up on the offer.  But then I seriously felt every turn, every bump, and they all made me feel worse and worse.  I could barely make myself look at the GPS to help navigate.  I held off until we were actually on 301 and then Chewy pulled into a gas station and got me some Tylenol.  We found a place to eat quickly after that, thinking maybe hunger was also causing this.

I immediately went to the bathroom while Chewy ordered but it was one of those bathrooms where it only helps one person out at a time…lame.  The door was locked and I waited a while but felt sick standing.  I went back to sit with Chewy, then tried again.  Either someone was in there a long time or someone else had gone in while I was sitting.  So I went back to Chewy and I tried to eat but even the thought of my beloved french fries made me want to be sick.  I returned one more time.

I tried the handle and pushed…it didn’t budge.  Unbelievable – there weren’t that many people there how could it be that someone was constantly in there?  So I decided to push harder, maybe the door was just really heavy or something.  It worked!  The door opened and there was a woman….sitting on the toilet.

Have you seen The Office?  Season 6 Episode 15 (I googled it since I couldn’t find a clip) Pam and Jim go to visit a daycare -they arrive early so they look around.  Jim notices the cute little door for the bathroom and decides to open it (thinking no one would be in there because all the kids were somewhere else).  There’s a man sitting on the toilet, he waves his hands to ward off Jim entering but it’s too late, he’s been seen.

That was my experience, except change out the skinny white man for a heavier set black woman.  He waved Jim away, she waved me away.  I immediately looked at the floor, said, “sorry”, and closed the door.  I went up to Chewy and without sitting down, leaned in close and said, “someone’s in there, let’s go.”  He said, “okay, let me top off my drink.”  I picked mine up and my uneaten food and said, “I’m going to go outside, meet you at the car.”  I mean, I was the only woman in the place with a skirt on – there’s no way I could hope she wouldn’t recognize me as the woman who walked in on her going to the bathroom.  I waited until we were in the car to tell Chewy the real reason I wanted to rush out of the place…surprisingly, he didn’t really react one way or the other. I had kinda expected something from him.

Lock the doors people – they’re there for a reason.

Just so you know – I forced myself to sleep in the car and that somewhat helped but I remained sick for the rest of the day.  I’m doing fine now, thanks for asking.

On the Prowl

As we were eating dinner Saturday night, the cat (his Christian name is Attila but I usually call him “the cat”) came into the kitchen meowing. Then he gave a long, loud meow that didn’t sound like him it actually caused goosebumps to run up my arms.  I leaned over to see what was wrong and discovered he wasn’t meowing. Chewy and I exchanged looks of alarm, then I warily peeked out the window to see a grey and white cat sitting in front of my car, beckoning to us to either let him in or send our cat out. The meow itself had been creepy, add to it that the sun had already set and the cat was meowing at our side door, the one we use most.

Chewy started to freak out, saying the cat was evil and sinister and under no circumstance should I feed it (because the little girl inside of me wanted to keep the cat, even if it weirded me out a bit). We got Stormy ready for bed and I kept running back to the window to check on our little friend, who at this point looked as though he were dramatically laying across the driveway with a paw at his head.  At some point, Chewy had said his first thought was that a person was outside our house meowing, because it had been so loud and stressed.

I found myself being more scared than usual when I would hear a noise, like a light tapping against our back door, which currently has no steps leading up to it, or when I would look out a window, not certain if I would see the cat closer to the house or right up on the window…or worse, a person.  Chewy’s insane thoughts about the cat being evil and sinister had entered my mind and I realized for the first time that it might be scarier inside his mind than my own…and that’s saying a lot…I freak myself out all the time.  Even as I lay in bed Saturday night I would hear a creak in the hallway and my heart would race with the thought that somehow this cat had gotten into our home.

Sunday, when we returned home from dinner at my parents’ house, the cat was sitting on our side porch, staring at us as though he’d been waiting for our arrival.  Chewy was not happy – I promised I hadn’t fed him.  He “ran away” two feet and then stopped and watched us as we got out of the car.  That’s when I saw a bunny frozen in the grass.  I was torn, the cat was creepy but I needed to buy the bunny time to get away, the last thing I needed was for this cat to murder a bunny in front of Chewy.  Chewy’s main concern was keeping the cat away from us.  So we were at odds with each other, Chewy trying to scare the cat away and me trying to keep his attention on us.  Chewy won and the cat turned to run further into our backyard, the bunny bolted and then the cat went after it.  I made desperate noises trying to get the cat’s attention, and it worked! Though to Chewy’s relief it didn’t work so well that the cat actually came toward us.

When we got inside I ran to our room to look out the back window…just to make sure that cat hadn’t gotten the bunny.  He was sitting on our stage (I think it was supposed to be a gazebo) staring at me.  **Pardon the grass and mess, it’s been raining like crazy here and I hadn’t been able to mow for a long time**

I haven’t seen him today, though I went to the backyard to mow the lawn and I was genuinely scared that he would pop out from beneath the shed, or that I would turn around to find him watching me.  And yet – I’m kind of sad I didn’t see him.

Mommy brain 

Mommy brain was something I’d heard of long before I began to experience it. I figured it was a saying like, “senior moment” that explains away any airhead comment or moment of forgetfulness. And maybe it is just an expression to get away with those moments but I’ll tell you, it certainly feels like a real phenomenon!  

I can completely space on words I’ve never struggled with before, words as simple as “appointment” when I’m in the midst of trying to explain I’d like to schedule one. And then I feel the need to assert my intelligence, as hidden as it may seem to the person I’m communicating with (if they don’t know me- if they do I just let it go). 

Last night I was getting ready to leave the house and wanted Chewy’s opinion on whether or not my pants were getting saggy (good and bad, good because it means I’m losing weight, bad because I don’t want to buy new clothes AGAIN). 

I went into the room and said, “are the pants of my jeans saggy?”  

Chewy sat there with a look on his face but no answer. “What do you mean?”

Frustrated, “the pants of my jeans, are they loose?”

That look again. I was getting annoyed, was this a guy thing? Why did he not understand?

“You’re jeans look fine,” he finally said.  

I sighed, was that so hard? I thanked him and put on my shoes as an echo of our conversation reverberated in my mind…I realized what I had said. I confirmed my miscommunication with Chewy, who seemed relieved that I had caught it myself. 

I’d like to say this is the first or last time I’ve had moments like this but sadly I know there were many more before and many more to come. Probably even tonight or tomorrow. 

What are some of your mommy brain/senior moments?