Define: Normal

02.02.10

They tell you that every child is different. This couldn’t be more true for my two kids. I’m not sure I would believe they were related based on personality alone, except for the fact that I personally birthed both of them and everyone tells me how much they both look like my husband. Like I didn’t already know THAT.

My son was a screamer, or a “spirited baby” as they call it. He was either asleep or screaming the first 4 months of his life. Unless, of course, he was around other people, and then he was a perfect angel. You had to spend about 4 hours with him to fully understand what he put us through. So, naturally, when we took him for his doctor’s appointments, they always marveled at how happy he was. We never knew when he was getting teeth or sick. But, as soon as we got in the car and a fire engine drove by with its sirens on, the screaming started. Or we’d go to a restaurant and someone at the table on the other side of the place was being serenaded with the birthday song du jour and the screaming would commence. I think calling him a sensitive baby was an understatement.

Now that he is older, he’s either hot or cold. He loves strangers or he’s scared to death of them. He’s cautious at the doctor’s office, but still apparently happy compared to other toddlers they encounter. He has a flirtatious smile and a contagious laugh. He’s still sensitive to the point that the pouty lip comes out when he gets embarrassed or reprimanded, but he is well worth those first few months of baby hell.

It's a good thing she's cute. Just sayin'.

Our daughter, on the other hand, was a sleeper. She was either eating or sleeping as a newborn. We had no idea that this was what “normal” babies did. It was amazing to say the least. Now that’s she’s a year old, she’s incredibly social everywhere we go. We still get comments about how happy and well-behaved she is. Every time we go to a restaurant, she wiggles out of the seat belt so she can turn around and face the tables around us. We’re obviously too boring for her.

And then I took her for her one-year well-check. As soon as we got in the exam room and the nurse looked at her, the screaming began. You can imagine what happened when the nurse tried to measure her (giant) head and when, god forbid, the doctor tried to listen to her heart and lungs (I guess they train them to be able to even with all the screaming?). I finally got it . This is the kind of baby they’d been comparing our son to for the past 2 years. This was “normal”.

I took her back to the doctor last week because she started getting up at night for hours at a time and had become more clingy than usual (which I didn’t even think was possible). I was sure we had an ear infection on our hands (you know, because that’s what Dr. Google told me it was). Wouldn’t you know, she’s just teething and reacting in a completely “normal” way.

I’m starting to like abnormal.

dear santa

01.16.10

I know you don’t get many letters after Christmas, but I figured I might as well send this now before I forget. This should also give you some extra time to prepare for next Christmas according to the following demands, er, I mean, suggestions.

Toys need to come with batteries. I mean, seriously, do you get kickbacks from the battery companies? I’m pretty sure we spent more on batteries this year than actual toys. At least give us that first set to get started, and if we’ve been REALLY good, maybe a lifetime supply.

When we came out Christmas morning, all of the stockings were on the floor because they were too heavy to hang on the hooks after being filled with all of the goodies you brought. All of the stockings but mine, that is. What’s up with that? I’m pretty sure I was really good last year. I think I only ignored my kids a few times and I served them vegetables at least twice. I’d appreciate a little more consideration next year.

My kids just love their new toys. But wouldn’t you know that the first thing they wanted to do when they came out to our living room was eat the cookies you left on the plate? We were nice enough to bake and decorate the cookies for you, and you didn’t even finish them? It’s not like you’re trying to maintain a slim figure or anything. It would be great if next year my kids were more excited about the toys we (“you”) spent too much money on instead of being distracted by leftover baked goods.

It’s really nice of you to bring such great presents to our kids, but this “some assembly required” stuff is a little annoying. Don’t you have elves for that? We don’t mind helping out a little, but spending 3 hours on Christmas Eve putting together a giant fire truck, only to find we’re missing that one crucial piece doesn’t put us in a very cheerful mood. Neither do those insanely loud sound effects. It’s called a volume control. Please add them to anything you drop off at our house in the future.

Sincerely,

Mommy

things I am thankful for

12.20.09

...............................those people that i love the mostest................................

  1. Naptime- I’m not sure there’s much need for an explanation on this one. Mommy time makes me a better Mommy.
  2. The internet- Between Facebook, Twitter, and Mommyblogs, I have every answer to every question I’ll ever need answered about parenting. There’s always a story out there that affirms that you are not doing everything wrong and that other moms have the same struggles that you do. Of course there are a few perfect parents out there who talk about the 5 servings of fruits and vegetables their kids get everyday (complete with pictures), and the creative art projects they do everyday with their kids, but we won’t talk about them.
  3. Mommy attachment- There’s something wonderful about seeing your baby’s excitement when she sees you. Even though you were only gone a few hours, she kicks her little legs and giggles at first sight of you. That feeling goes away after she refuses to let you put her down 2 hours later.
  4. My crock-pot- Do you realize how amazingly awesome it is to throw 4 ingredients into a crock-pot and have a delicious dinner 6 hours later? A dinner that everyone in your family will eat? If you don’t regularly use your crock-pot, you’re doing it wrong.
  5. My friends- They help me get the kids and groceries in the car when it’s pouring rain. They make sure my toddler doesn’t run off when I look away for a second. Best of all, they keep me from going crazy from no adult interaction and can empathize with every challenge and joy, no matter how big or small.
  6. Library story time and Sesame Street- I’m pretty sure everything my kids know came from one of these two places. Sometimes that makes me feel useless. Other times it’s a big relief. I’m hoping Sesame Street will advance with my children so that I never have to help them with their calculus homework.
  7. Grandmas- On those days when you’ve had enough whining or didn’t get enough sleep because of your newborn baby, Grandmas are there to rescue you. If you don’t have one living nearby, I suggest you reconcile that immediately.
  8. Husbands- I only have one, but I am thankful for all of the ones I know. After a long day of work, they are willing to crawl around the house or play airplane with the kids on the bed. They offer to get up with the baby at night or the kids in the morning to give you some extra sleep. Trust me, we need it.
  9. Showers- The second best time of day is taking a shower (naptime probably takes first). Why? Because this is the only time you are ever ALONE (yes, kids even follow you when you go to the bathroom).
  10. My kids growing up- This one may seem odd, since most people think their children are growing up too fast. While I do agree with this sentiment, I also think the more sleep, less crying, and fewer diapers at our house is most certainly a good thing.