I know, you’re probably thinking that based on my sporadic posting that I’m going to tell you I’ve decided to stop blogging. Sorry, you’re not off the hook that easily, I have to have someone to share my
awesomeness gibberish with. Today marks one week of not breastfeeding. I left last Thursday for Chicago and then Georgia and was gone almost 5 days during which there was no frozen milk supply or any alternate to whole milk. Granted she’s 19 months old, so it’s not really a problem except she loves to nurse. Apparently not enough lately though, because unlike in January where I couldn’t make it without pumping while we were in Vegas, I had absolutely no problem in Savannah. Simply because there was no milk.
How do you explain this to a 19 month old who clings to you and yells “eat eat eat”? I thought each day would get better, but it seems each day is a little worse. It tears at your heart, I want to give in to the fact that I know she just appreciates the sheer comfort of it, but at the same time I know I’m just postponing the inevitable. So I redirect, offer attractive snacks at times and in amounts never before heard of, how about marshmallows, disgusting chemical filth I would probably not normally give you, sure you can have fistfuls, how about a sucker or cookie or here just lick the sugar from the bag. Anything to make you happy, since this is breaking my heart just a little bit. It’s made worse by knowing she’s probably going to be the baby forever and you want everything to last forever with the baby, really you just want to stop time and keep them little forever.
Except we can’t. From the minute they are born they are growing away from us, first they roll away, crawl away, walk away, eventually they make new friends and want to play with them, next they are off at school and we become less and less important until finally the day comes when they go out into the world on their own, away from us. Yet no matter where they go, there is a part of them that are always secure in our hearts and it aches a little as if a piece of us is missing, each time they grow away.
Now after all of the complaining about the challenges of nursing a breastfeeding toddler, I should celebrate. I mean really let’s review, I can drink more than an occasional glass of wine, take allergy medicine again, and I’ll never have to pull out that dreaded breast pump again. I should be pouring margaritas and toasting to the end of this era. Yet instead, I just feel sad.
Who wouldn’t want to give that face, whatever she desires!
Brecken to me: “Mama I’m freaking out” (please note he’s 3)
Me to Brecken: “Why are you freaking out?” (First time I’ve heard this phrase from him before)
Brecken to me: “I’m just freaking out”
Me to Brecken: “Oh, well you don’t have anything to freak out about, now let’s go inside the Y”
What the bloody H does a 3-year-old have to freak out about? I mean other than that he’s lost Percy again for the umpteenth time or the injustice of his bedtime or that we still make him take naps. Perhaps it’s the therapy he’s going to face later in life for having such an non-empathetic mother who ignored his tiny pleas that he was freaking out. Screw the college fund, I better start putting money in the therapy fund. Perhaps he heard it from one of us, not that we’ve been literally freaking out, but we’ve had a lot on our plate between two kids with colds and ear infections, making sure tubes were still in one child’s ears and getting ready for tubes in the other ones ears. There may have been some internal freaking out when they tested Pippa for strange and rare diseases as a result of her refusal to grow, but all came back normal and she’s apparently just stubborn or perhaps she’s freaking out she’ll be a giant someday and trying to stunt her growth by hiding in the microwave, who knows. On the other hand maybe we do freak out, sometimes.
“Sloooooow down, you have to stop” I gaze ahead at the perfect row of green lights, one right after the other. I glance back, “Why do I need to stop?” The response was a quick “There’s a stop sign” as he points to the green light we’re currently cruising through, followed by a “You HAVE to stop ,there’s traffic” as he points to the traffic on the other side of the divided highway. I try to explain they’re on the other side and not really affected by our starting or stopping, when it doesn’t seem to be making any sense I ignore his comments and keep going. Shortly thereafter, I enter the turn lane and slow down so that we can stop for the red light and then turn, “Go faster” he yells, “You have to go faster”.
This is what happens when your, only been 3 for like a minute year old, decides to become the tiniest backseat driver, with only a basic understanding of driving, namely we go slow or fast and sometimes these things called signs and lights tell us to stop. Nearly every outing results in this fabulous commentary now, at some point in the last few weeks he has become an expert on driving and little will deter him from sharing his opinions. If only he were still like his sister who still falls asleep in the car the majority of the time. And to think I used to like driving in the car and taking them places.
Phase 1: Valentines Day Before you Had Children-
You plan the entire night in d.e.t.a.i.l. and nothing will deter you. Your favorite restaurant doesn’t take reservations on Valentines Day, eh what’s a two-hour wait when you have nothing better to do. You go to your favorite italian restaurant, wearing a new outfit after having spent an afternoon admiring the flowers you received. You order whatever you like and stuff yourself silly while drinking copious amounts of wine and
watching gossiping about all the other people around you and what they’re doing. Then you head home to do unspeakable things that will launch you into the next phase of Valentines Day.
Phase 2: Valentines Day with a New Baby-
It’s okay, a new baby doesn’t have to change things. Maybe you don’t want to pay a babysitter while you sweat out the 2 hour wait at the bar for your favorite restaurant. Pshhh no biggy you can go to a restaurant that you enjoy that’s not your favorite. You make a reservation, hire a babysitter, skip a new outfit for yourself, outfit your new baby in something ridiculous that says something like Mommy’s Little Heart Throb and in a mildly panicky state you hand over your new baby to some teenager while you go out to enjoy an adult evening without the youngster. You spend the entire evening talking about your baby, rationalizing that it’s totally normal as is your irrational fright that the babysitter has somehow put him in the clothes washer and turned it on, how misguided were you trusting today’s youth, and eats a little faster. Then you go home, find relief that the not so misguided youth has actually kept your baby alive and put him to sleep so you proceed to do unspeakable things that will launch you into the next phase of Valentines Day.
Phase 3: Valentines Day with Multiple Children Under 3-
You’ve now rationalized that your husband’s recent sporting goods purchase is gift enough, chalk up the sweater you bought earlier in the week to your gift and consider major gifts done. You find yourself eating a heart-shaped pizza the day before Valentines Day with the kidlets in tow because you just have too much going on on the real day to get any kind of “special meal” in. You haul the kids to Barnes and Nobles to pick out Valentines Day gifts, where they are enamored with the train table and could care less about the books. You dash into the local candy store for your husbands favorite chocolate covered potato chips, buy your favorite candy as well and call the day done. You prop the candy up with the new pilates mat you bought him, which you would have bought him anyway and are good to go. You can cross Valentines Day off your never ending to do list and go back to getting things ready for a birthday part this weekend and all the other shit you have to do. New outfits for anyone? Hahaha, you just hope you made it through the day matching and with clothes that aren’t covered with stains, snot and food bits. If it’s a good day you’ve remembered the kids should wear red/pink, but really it was whatever you grabbed out of the drawer first that was seasonally appropriate.
Valentines Day Done.
Happy Valentines Day from My Cracked Pot to Yours!
and in case you need a last-minute e-card, here’s a few of my favorites
Happy Valentines Day
Grab. Squeeze. Pull Down. In very simple terms, that is how you hand milk a cow. It is also Pippa’s newest technique for either attempting to get more milk while nursing or purely for the entertainment value. I mean really she has to have something to do while she’s hanging out, doesn’t she? Don’t answer that! Perhaps it is the farming blood coming out in her, I’m not really sure. All I know is I used to complain about how pumping made me feel like I had more than I ever wanted in common with the popular milk breed, but this new little quirk of hers has that beat hands down. As if nursing a toddler that won’t wean doesn’t have its own particular set of challenges, see past complaints regarding gymnastics and circular kicks to the face, I’m now subjected to her not so pleasant grab and squeeze. Why does this bring me back to bad memories from college?If eventually I stop writing and start mooing, please stop me.
We’ve also hit that stage where you can tell people think it’s weird that we’re still nursing. If they were to ask, which no one does, the reasons are multiple. In fact I’ll tell you, maybe I’ll get a few less strange looks. They include the fact that she doesn’t sleep through the night and if I want her to sleep past 3 a.m. it’s a must, she’s pretty small for her age and not particularly fond of whole milk, so we’d like her to drink something, and if you were to get over your cultural biases it’s actually totally freaking normal, just not particularly convenient. This last point, combined with the fact that not everyone can nurse, is what I attribute to this country’s viewpoint on breastfeeding. We’re selfish as a country, we like ourselves and our freedoms and Mama’s who breastfeed give up even more of their time (think pumping, planning, nursing time) than those who use formula, time which is can be very valuable when you have little ones. This along with the fact that there is some strange stigma about a baby nursing as compared to someones boob hanging out of their dress, that makes us just nonsensical as a nation. Not that it keeps the creepers from staring at you in public, even when you’re covered up.
So the next time you see a Mama nursing, don’t stare or gawk, just know she’s doing it for reasons that must be pretty important to her and leave her the heck alone, and if the nursing one is a toddler then she really must have her reasons because I assure you no one nurses a toddler for funsies!
Ironically, last Thursday, I received an Honest Thank You from the Honest Company as they celebrated their one year anniversary. On Friday, however, I owed them a HUGE thank you, the kind I can never express enough, if I could hug them all I would. We tried the Honest Co. healing balm last summer after learning it worked well as butt paste for cloth diapers. It did and I was hooked. I signed up for the Honest Essentials pack and slowly began to switch out as many of cleaning/household products as I could each month. We’ve always tried to use non-toxic cleaners because of the littles but we had continued to use mainstream dishwasher detergent because the less toxic options we had found in the big box stores were either too ridiculously expensive or completely ineffective that it just didn’t work out. The Honest Company has dishwasher pods that we receive as part of our essentials pack each month and a few months ago we started to use these. THANK FREAKING GOD.
As a parent, or perhaps as a neurotic parent like me, you’re frequently running through paranoid situations in your head, anticipating all the horrible dangers in the world your children can get into. On Friday, one of these paranoid predictions came true. I was in the bathroom and putting some items way in the living room and had left Pippa(15m) in the playroom. She wasn’t gated in or anything, our house is small enough and loud enough you can generally hear the kids move around. However, I had the television on and it must have muffled her out. I found her sitting in the middle of the kitchen with the bag of dishwasher pods, a half eaten pod dangling from her mouth, with dishwashing powder everywhere. I PANICKED. I grabbed her and rushed to the sink, she promptly threw up a disturbing stream of soapy/powdery vomit and I frantically rinsed everything I could from her mouth and then her shirt. I then grabbed the dishwasher soap bag and read. It said if ingested drink water and call your physician. I grabbed a sippy and a straw since I knew the straw would entice her to drink, fed her as much water as I could and then tossed her into her high chair, buckled her in and grabbed the phone. All this felt like an eternity but probably took 2 minutes. After another 5 I got ahold of a nurse who gave me poison controls number and said she would check on us in a bit. I called poison control who took all of our information and put us on hold while she researched the product.
When she got back on the line, she said those wonderfully magic words that will stay with me for life, this product has low toxicity so she should be just fine! Visions of running to the emergency room, having her tiny stomach pumped were suddenly released and I could breathe. We had to monitor her for an hour to ensure she didn’t develop any sores on her mouth or vomit again but after that we could resume all normal activities. Both poison control and the nurse from our doctor’s office checked back with us to see how she was doing (which was fine, a million times better than myself). Relief felt, lesson learned. So THANK YOU, Honest Company for making a product that is safe for use on my dishes and not so bad if ingested, albeit I wouldn’t recommend it. But that’s what kids do, they get into stuff when we’re not looking (and in this case when we forget to lock the baby cabinet lock). It makes me all the more determined to continue to try to use products that are not only better for our bodies but safer in general should little hands find them. Have your little ones every ingested anything they shouldn’t have? What did you do?
What? Did I do something I wasn’t supposed to??????