Today is one of those days..

The one where you feeling like you’re going to lose your mind and drive off a cliff somewhere because every time you try to accomplish something, someone acts like their dying (yes, the toddler.) So far today, I have gotten up, cleaned poop, got dressed, nursed both children, ate three bananas for breakfast, took them to the playground (got kind of lost on the way there because I never go to this one) for a play date, came home to a husband who was like OH MAN WHERE DID YOU GO I WANTED TO WALK TOGETHER, made everyone food, prepped meals, and was mostly yelled at because the toddler (again) needed milk RIGHT NOW.

I need to meditate. So, now that the children are asleep…here I am trying to find some kind of peace and maybe some mothers who relate to just re-validate that I am NOT the only one going bat shit crazy here…

I love my children. They are amazing, intelligent, hilarious, beautiful, tiny little people. I enjoy them most days and some days, I think “oh..man…” but, I love them. I love them more than the days are long, more than the skies are blue, more than I love Stabucks coffee (and that is a lot.) Being a mother is the most amazing and precious gift the universe has given me and sometimes I might not be the best i can be but, I do appreciate it.

So any other moms out there thinking they might die today.. Let’s sit together, turn up the music, and laugh for a while? We need it sometimes…Maybe add a glass of wine to that too, ay?

Advertisements

Triggers: How to recognize them and move on.

I have lately found myself getting more upset and becoming less understanding/gentle with my toddler now that she can really express herself and it’s taken me a while to realize that it is because of triggers… I have decided that I really need to name these triggers and see exactly why it is I am triggered by them so that I can stop myself ahead of time from saying things or doing things that I eventually regret.

  1. Being yelled at – When Aubrey is screaming at me to do something for her. This makes my blood boil. I just hate being yelled at and I’m going to say that it’s from my childhood *my dad was a huge yeller amongst other things* but this is not an excuse. My father does not have the power to yell at me anymore. He has no control over my life. My daughter isn’t yelling at me, she is just trying to communicate and maybe if I would stop what I am doing and get to her level and just listen she wouldn’t feel the need to be so overwhelmingly loud.
  2. Whining & crying – I feel like this being a trigger for me is horrible. I completely understand what it is like to be told to stop whining or stop crying and I should never want my daughter to feel the way that makes you feel. For some reason both of these things just drive me crazy and I really just need to get over it and instead figure out what the problem is… I have been reading a lot about how I should deal with my daughter’s intense emotions and I have been looking to this for help and also this to just remind me how I need to just calmly take action instead of reacting and making things so much worse…(just an FYI, we don’t believe in crying it out and that isn’t what she is talking about in this article – she is saying they thought she needed to CIO but really it was meant as a “giving space” technique.)
  3. Not listening – This is something I am really just getting over. I realize that she cannot really listen and that I need to stop expecting anything from her. Some days I am lazy and tired and would just really love for her to be able to play independently without climbing up on the counter, taking the vegan parmesan and dumping it all over the floor…but she needs to be supervised instead of me sitting on the couch and not knowing what she is up to and I need to realize that her doing that thing even though she was told not to, is not something she can grasp yet. For the most part that I can deal with…where I usually lose it though is when I am saying, “Aubrey, please stop climbing on me because you’re really hurting me by doing that” and she looks at me and laughs. I know it is silly for me to become ridiculously angry over that because obviously she is just trying to play but IT HURTS! Having to remove myself from the situation when I may be nursing her brother or not feeling well is just extremely annoying for me & also I think I take it a little personally, like “why are you wanting to hurt me?” which is even sillier because she isn’t! I know she isn’t! She just wants to play and is finding any way to get my attention so she can connect with me and here I am freaking out about it.

Now that I have determined (in writing) my triggers and why they are triggering and how I can deal with them, I need to put it to practice. I feel like this is the hardest part but I am going to take some basic things that will help me calm down and do them whenever I feel overwhelmed with emotion due to these triggers and hopefully with a lot of practice it will become more natural for me. Here are some things to do before speaking to your child while dealing with triggers:

  • Take a deep breath
  • Remove yourself from the situation for a minute to re-group
  • Remove everyone from the situation – Sometimes just taking a break and running around outside or going for a walk really fixes everything!
  • Dance party. Just stop and turn on some music and get you and your toddler or baby moving!
  • Find a mantra and make it YOUR mantra. Something loving and supportive you can say to yourself to remind yourself that you can do it and you and your child will be happier if you do.
  • STOP what you’re doing and just sit and listen.

I hope you guys can use this to help you out too. Being a parent is hard but we can all improve and find ways to make it more fun and less stressful. Let’s all find our zen together, ay? 🙂

Husband & Wife Time.

Being in a happy place in your marriage while being an attachment parent is hard! It is a lot of work with a tiny amount of “free” time. I say this as I’m nursing our son back to sleep since he woke up right as we were putting on a movie….it is rough to say the least. Sometimes I don’t want to get out of bed and watch that episode of TV and cuddle up on the couch…because I’m exhausted! Then when I don’t, I miss my husband like crazy.

At one point though I think he felt like he wasn’t a priority in my life and I won’t lie, I don’t think I was putting enough effort into our marriage for him to be a big priority at that point. I was just focused on our daughter, on sleeping, on exercising… It’s so easy to get caught up in motherhood and forget about yourself and the side of you who desperately needs your spouse. I think we were in a fairly crappy place at that point and I just hadn’t realized it and I’m not sure how I didn’t..

I did realize it though and now we are happier than ever, I feel. We spend more time together, we communicate better, we are more of a “team” than before and it has become easier because we are both willing to put the work in and make each other top priorities. When the kids go to bed, we are together. We are not on our phones, we are not on our computers, we are not focusing that small end of the day amount of energy on anything else but each other.

We play, we laugh, we watch TV, we eat together, we clean up and we go to bed together. Sometimes there may be some interruptions where I have to go back into the family bed and nurse our children back to sleep but it’s not for long usually and then we just continue on with our night. When we go to bed we sleep upstairs in our bed and usually I can sleep with him there for half of the night before having to move back into the family bed. I never used to sleep with my husband. I was just too tired and lazy and I think that us sleeping together is a huge thing that we absolutely need. I need to sleep next to him for some portion of the night. It just makes me feel like we’re still connected and renews it after a long day where maybe we hadn’t seen each other much. I always feel weird when I don’t get to see him much like something is missing and it really makes me sad but crawling into bed with him is just so comforting and kind of washes away the parts of my day that were not the best.

Being an attachment parent will never become less work. You are always going to be “on call” when it comes to your children and their needs and emotions but everyone needs to find balance. Your spouse…and yourself matter. I know that I get caught up in what the kids need, what the kids are saying, what the kids want to do but we need to stop and also remember that our spouses are here too and they matter. I’m constantly trying to make sure that everyone is feeling like they are a priority and I feel like after 2.5 years and two children later, my spouse is finally feeling like they are all equals in my world and that makes me pretty happy. 🙂

How do you guys make time for your spouses while practicing attachment parenting? Has it been hard for you?

Identity crisis? what?

So, I’ve kind of been going through a lot of things lately. I mean, not just recently but I’m going to say since I’ve had Oliver it has just been rough… It’s not his fault but my brain has just been in such a rough and negative space and I’ve really just not been myself…honestly, I’ve just started realizing how totally un-myself I have been. I had taken having two children really poorly. Aubrey has been neglected, Oliver has been neglected, I have been neglected, even my husband has been neglected at one point or another and it seems like just now it is finally getting better. I had decided I wanted to get more involved and make some friends and kind of get out there because I was just feeling lonely? I guess? If even that is the right word; I’m not sure…

Anyways, I have made some great friends and they have been a good thing and a bad thing for me. This isn’t to hurt anyones feelings or really put anything on them or against them but it is mostly for me to get it out there and kind of situate really how I feel…I think the friendship scene might not be for me. I’m not sure that I can deal with anyone else’s baggage or negative energy when I am in constant battle with my own.

I had lunch with a friend who I hadn’t really connected with in a long time and when I was there it was like she put my entire life into perspective because she is the mom I used to be/dream to be again. I have lost my footing and I have become a mom that I really don’t want to be and it was something that hit me so strongly that everything in my life just finally came directly in front of my face and I thought “what am I doing?” I have a tendency to go with the flow in a very extreme way and this doesn’t mean I give up everything I believe in but it does mean I may sway here and there and it makes me so disappointed in myself and especially because in some ways I think it has severely damaged my relationship with Aubrey.

So…I guess to get to my title here, I think I’m having (or was having) an identity crisis but I’m done. I’m over it. It’s time for me to get back to me and what I really want to do and what I really believe in. Some people might not understand, believe in, care to be around me, etc but I am okay with that now. I am and have always been that attachment/gentle parenting, cloth diapering, extended breastfeeding, vegan, baby wearing, freak of nature. I am going to let my kid run in target. I am going to let her jump off furniture, I’m not going to shame her, I’m not going to make her share, I’m not going to force her to do things she doesn’t want to do and I’m going to go back to really respecting her and how she feels. I will not apologize for her behavior or her inconvenience towards others or for her teaching children things there parents didn’t want them to know or any other things that society has kind of made me feel like I should be doing. It’s not because I have anything against the people I’m friends with it’s purely because I can’t. Since making friends I have been more tense than I have since leaving my abusive home as a child.

I need to re-bond with my children. I need to re-ground myself with my own energy. I need to hit a restart button and maybe one day there will be a time where I can have friends and I can be strong in my ways and maybe people will accept them or maybe they won’t and I will learn to be okay in myself and myself alone but that isn’t today so I’m going to take a step back and be with my children as myself until I can be everything I am in front of the world even if I am criticized.

I’m sorry to anyone who has gotten close to me and may feel like I don’t care about them but I can say that it is the opposite. I think you are wonderful mothers and wonderful people and I love everyone (including your children) and I’m not saying we can never hang out or never be friends…I’m just saying I’m going to hang back. I’m going to be less involved and really just take a breather. If you need me, I’m here. If you think of me, let me know. If you want to come over, come over. I just need it to be less right now.

Beating.

My heart skips a beat when our lips touch so intensely.

When you hold me so close I can barely breathe. 

This is what our love used to be like… 

Now, it’s slowly coming back to life

with each day the fire in your eyes grows &

I can feel your love for me through your finger tips once more.

Finally our love has become a flame again

Full of beauty and passion…

I hope this time we can keep it alive until the end<3.

Hidden Angel.

She plays, tries to dream, laughs for a moment, works hard to give all she can…She gives. Everything she has she passes down to each of her little sunflowers; they’re her life, her breath, she loves to watch them grow and play and helps guide their decisions from day to day but she’s lonely. Love that she has never found, for a man who could help her carry her load, instead taken granted of, no one noticing how angelically placed she is, a hidden angel. Though her path is dark and scenic, her little sunflowers follow her through and through, look up to her face of tears and only see the smiles she gives to each of them. She gives her everything to everyone, whole heartily, not expecting anything in return and yet no one sees what it means. She waits in her sunflower field for someone to come and love her gifts as much as she does, and love her as well. Instead they don’t understand how she feels, how the guilt engulfs her, how she never feels good enough, how she wants to take care of everyone, when all she needs is someone to want to take care of her. She looks down on all of the blessings she has but she still sees the empty piece that’s missing, the one thing she’s looking for and can’t find. Though, she knows darkness and can’t believe in happy ever after anymore she wonders why can’t she? Why can’t it happen for her? She wants to believe there is a prince charming that will come by and push through her stubborn mind and rescue her. Save her from thinking she doesn’t deserve happy ever after or that she’s unworthy. Though her sunflowers smile up at her and tell her she’s beautiful and how they love her, she’s still waiting, trying to believe in fairy tales. Maybe Jaded and a little twisted, but her sunflowers stand by her side seeing nothing but perfection.

Our love for you never changes. Happy or sad, broken or whole, you’re our hidden angel guiding and protecting us each and every day. Even though we don’t always show it, we never take you for granted, loving you and thanking you for everything you’ve done for us. We love you, don’t forget it. We’ll make it through.

[To my amazing mother. I love you more than words could ever come close to expressing. This is an old piece but I wanted to share it again. This piece is definitely not perfect but it came from a time when things were not perfect.]

Another Rough Night…

We decided last minute that we would kind of give the “gentle sleep training” method a go.. I nursed Aubrey and put her in her room with the baby gate up saying, you can play or go to bed. She was fine to play for a while but then she wanted more milk. I said, you can have more milk in the morning and she was okay the first time… After that she screamed and cried to come out. I laid on the floor holding her hand for what seemed like forever. I don’t know how parents let their babies CIO. I mean, I was comforting her the whole time, validating her feelings, letting her know I loved her but that she couldn’t come out and had to go to sleep and it was like torture for me and my husband. I honestly am not sure what else to do though because I can’t nurse her ALL NIGHT and I can’t drive her to sleep every night either. We did the same thing tonight and currently I am sitting in the hallway by her room with music playing and typing this out. She cries and she asks to come out… It’s so miserable. Sometimes she stops and looks like she’s going to pass out but then she just starts crying again. I don’t know if this is the right thing for us or what but I’m at a loss as of what I should do if not this.

I have been trying REALLY hard to wear her out throughout the day. Yesterday we were at the pool from 1:15p.m. to 5:30p.m.! Today we were at the pool from 4p.m. until 6:30p.m… We also did grocery shopping today and a bunch of stuff in the kitchen. I want to be as gentle with her as a possibly can and this is so hard. I never thought I’d have a baby who didn’t like sleeping… 😦

P.S. I just want to note that Aubrey is 28 months old. She is not a baby who doesn’t understand what sleep is or anything like that.. She is fully aware that we are doing all of this so that she can sleep in her bed and so mommy can sleep too.