Anyone familiar with toddlers pulling on their own hair? Nadia does it every night while drinking her bottle and while we rock before she falls asleep. I don’t know if she actually pulls out any hair, but she certainly tries. I googled it and got terrified…
This morning my mom’s club held a coffee get-together called “Empty Nester”. Basically a monthly event for moms only, since all over events welcome children. With my girls in daycare I, of course, took the opportunity to join in. And I’m so glad I did. The ladies were super welcoming, the chit-chat was enlightening, and the mocha was tasty. This is the third event this week I’ve attended with these ladies.
Problem though, although perhaps only a problem in my mind, is that I totally felt like an imposter. All of the other ladies present have children in school, some in pre-school, yes, but still. They know my story, they know Eric’s schedule and how I’m using daycare to save my sanity when he’s working so much. And yes, they welcomed me with open arms to the group. But then why do I feel so guilty? Why do I constantly feel like I should be doing something more productive with my time, being we are paying an arm and a leg for childcare?
Only one of the ladies present at the get-together this morning works outside the home. And from my understanding she’s very part-time and makes her own hours doing billing for a local pre-school. I chatted a bit with her about my feelings, about how I feel like I should be looking for a job, but also my fears of having a job and then always needing to take off, as I essentially parent alone. Eric would not be available when the girls are sick, for appointments in Iowa City, etc. And if I was working, I’d never see him, as our time together is currently limited to his days off every third week. I don’t want to be stuck working those days, do I?
Maybe my feelings stem from needing a larger purpose? I used to see my role as a stay-at-home mom. But how can I call myself such when my girls go to daycare? What is my role now? We hire cleaners for the house… and as my Christmas gift Eric set up a laundry service… So what do I do? Why do I still feel so busy and stressed? Is it true we all somehow just fill our time?
It’s moments like these I get crazy ideas. Ideas to change the course of my life, take on a new endeavor. So I requested information about a marriage and family services masters program at a local university. I’ve always been fascinated by psychology. I love reading self-help books, even if they don’t really pertain to me. Like books on marriage I find interesting, like how we pick mates, why some marriages prosper and others don’t… Just interesting. I think I could see myself as a marriage therapist. But then again, a few months ago I saw myself as a coffee shop owner.
Okay, only a few steps, and not the best video from daycare, but I’m still way excited!!!
Have you ever watch the show Married to Medicine on Bravo? Yeah… that and my life are as different as night and day? Black and white? Dead and alive? You get the idea.
All last week I thought Eric had clinic all next week, meaning he’d be commuting back and forth each day and have New Year’s Eve afternoon and New Year’s day off. Wrong. Apparently the holiday really did throw schedules off. He left this morning for another week of call.
In the true fashion of my life, we’d get our first snow storm when he’s away. The forecast called for 4 inches I think, but I got up as planned, dropped the girls at school and headed back home to shower. Kona had a grooming appointment at noon, but they called around 9am to see if I still wanted to bring her, due to the weather. It was really snowing already by 9:30am when I called them back, so I rescheduled her bath and nail grind for next week. I’d showered and put on make-up though (for once) so still wanted to run a few of my errands, including getting my new glasses adjusted. When a girl does her make-up, people should see it!
Side note: I probably never really went into detail about the exact location of our new home. Let’s just say it’s in a neighborhood, a small neighborhood, but off of an unpaved/gravel road about five minutes off the interstate. Needless to say, my street, and the streets it’s off of, don’t get plowed. I’m not sure if ever. We are outside the city limits, which is nice for less expensive property taxes… but, those taxes actually pay for useful things!
By 10am when I was driving into town I realized the roads, including the interstate, were shit. Snow covered and slick with semi trucks barreling by. No way was I running my errands and picking up the girls later. How would I ever get back home?? My new Honda Odyssey is not awesome in the snow, I learned. I so miss my all-wheel drive Infiniti SUV that Eric is now driving. Granted, it eats gas, but it goes anywhere and I always felt safe.
The girls and I were back home by 11am. Nadia fell asleep in the car and I managed to transfer her to bed, but she only napped 30 minutes the entire day until her bedtime at 6:45pm. Nora napped an hour and a half, but the day still felt incredibly long since Nora wasn’t in bed until almost 8pm. I had hopes of doing laundry, dishes, picking up the living room, going through the girls clothes and putting away the ones they’d outgrown, etc., but none of that happened. Those two tiny things wear me out! Nadia wants to be held every minute. No seriously. I set her down and she screams. The girls have a billion toys, no joke, but yet they just want to hang on me. Nora is addicted to her iPad, but wants to play games she is really too young for, so she’s constantly saying, ‘need help mommy’. Which yes, is cute, but…
I wish I could be that mommy that wants to hang out on the floor with the girls all day playing games and coloring…
I’ll admit, I was definitely on my phone today more than I wish I’d been, checking Facebook, reading comments on my blog, texting friends, reading emails… But it feels like my only lifeline to the outside world.
What is wrong with me that a day home with my girls makes me feel trapped?
Thinking about the next week here without Eric is quite depressing. I’m not great with entertaining the girls when I’m alone here with them. I tend to work on house stuff, like laundry and such, which leaves me constantly pushing them away, and feeling very guilty. The snow storm and below zero temps isn’t helping my feelings of being trapped either. I really don’t want to take them out in the cold and snow tomorrow, but staying home all day makes for a lot of hours to fill.
And to top off the day… the company we hired to plow our snow called. Apparently they didn’t realize how far ‘out’ we lived. They want to charge us $75 for each time they remove snow from our drive and sidewalk. Like what else?! I’m here alone with the girls, I’d prefer it be done for me, so I said okay, but that I’d let them know if I find another company that might have clients already in this area. One more thing to add to my to do list of worries. Oh, and the van needs to be fixed. Eric broke it Christmas Eve. Don’t even ask.
Nadia at 13 Months Adjusted. I’m hoping to post more about Christmas tomorrow!
Only a week until Christmas. I wish I could say I felt more prepared… But what do they say? If it weren’t for the last-minute, nothing would get done? Or something like that!
The girls are at daycare today. After I dropped them off and stopped for a latte at Starbucks and then to Sam’s Club for kleenex and toilet paper. Necessities people! Then Hy-Vee for a few groceries. I’m doing laundry now and waiting to see if the whole house humidifier I attempted to turn on is going to run… Time will tell.
The house is nice and quiet, and I wish I could say I was relaxed and enjoying the moment. But no, I have a billion things on my mind, wondering how everything will be accomplished in the 6 more days until Christmas Eve. Eric is on-call this week, so not back in town until Friday. Ugh. That doesn’t help matters. And next week should be his entire week off, but due to the holidays he is only off Saturday through Tuesday. It’s so hard without him here! Where is my time to listen to Christmas music, make cookies, and wrap presents???
I have most of my shopping done. Actually, it’s my girls that are left, as I have zero clue what to get them. They need nothing and I don’t want to spoil them with more toys. God knows they will receive enough from everyone else. We didn’t really do Santa last year, as Nora was too young, and she might even be too young this year to understand? We’ve mentioned Santa but it certainly hasn’t been a daily discussion here. I only have a few gifts for them, educational toys, so are all those gifts Santa gifts? What do they open from Eric and me? Why do I feel so lost when it comes to parenting and Christmas?? And I just remembered I forgot to do St. Nick gifts in their stockings in early December. Oops.
I better go update my to-do list so I don’t forget anything else!
Friday was Eric’s work Christmas party. He and his three other partners hosted at a bar/pizzeria in Cedar Falls. All his clinic staff, OR staff, and spouses were invited. I think we had a pretty good turnout, 75 people maybe… It was a fun night, but hard for Eric since he was on-call, so couldn’t drink, and did get called into the hospital once during dinner. And because he was on-call I had to drive back and forth from home alone. Thankfully my mom was free to watch the girls.
Saturday was Eric’s family Christmas. Well, sort of. The celebration with his grandparents and extended family was Saturday. The ‘normal’ get together with his immediate family wasn’t planned this year. For some obvious reasons. Eric and I decided he would go alone to his grandparents,, but that left me alone with the girls all day Saturday, with little sleep due to the Christmas party the previous evening. It was a long day since Nadia was awake at 6:45am!
Yesterday (Sunday) was Eric’s grandfather’s 90th birthday party in his hometown. This was the main reason why we didn’t all go Saturday, as all the same people were in attendance at the birthday party, therefore we didn’t want to drag the girls 2.5 hours each way in the car, two days in a row. Call me lazy, but I just wasn’t up for it. Oh, and I was puking Saturday night and woke with an AWFUL cold Sunday.
I think the girls had fun seeing their cousin and Eric’s cousin’s children at the party, but wow, it was a long day. There were many tears and meltdowns along the way! I know it meant a lot to Eric for all of us to go, so even though I felt really sick and icky, I made the best of the day, smiled and chatted with everyone. Well, except his mother who avoided me, but I guess that’s fine. Easier that way.
Still not potty trained… but maybe getting closer. She tends to ask to go right when we’re about to put her into bed, so hard to say whether she really has to go, or using it as a stall tactic. The little stinker.