Tuesday, February 25, 2014

It Doesn't Matter What People Think of You

That little phrase that still rings true in my head....
Until I became a Mom.
I'll get back to that it a bit.
My Mom told me that when I was a little girl.  Probably about Kindergarten age, 5.
I remember it like yesterday.  The kids at school were teasing me, and I came home in tears...
Why were they teasing me you are wondering?  (Yes you are don't lie)
All kinds of things my name, my ears, my teeth, and who else knows.
I had uneven bangs (Mom used to cut them) totally put her on blast for that one.
You can check out her handy work here... (Love you Mom!!!)
Did I mention that ear?

I have a left ear that sticks out much like an animated Disney character who will remain nameless.
I had a chip in my front tooth like Jim Carrey from Dumb and Dumber until I was in 11 grade, and when I was 5 who knows, maybe they made fun of all the dresses my mom picked out for me to wear to school.
I liked them, but maybe they were a bit "old school" for that time.
Hard to believe in the 80's, but kids are mean so who knows.

My newborn picture...the one my husband says I look like an Ewok (yep he's a keeper)
So back to my story, I came home in tears upset about what happened at school and my Mother told me,
"It doesn't matter what other people think of you, it only matters what you think about you, and if you know in your heart that you are a good person, then that's all that matters."
She also told me that its whats inside that counts, not how much money you have, or how cool your clothes are, or how long your hair is.
Profound ay?
I thought so.
Armed with a new confidence, I remember going back to school the next day thinking, I will show them.
And when they started teasing me I told them: "It doesn't matter what you think of me, it only matters what I think" and stormed off.  Not sure what they said or did after that,
I don't even remember if the teasing stopped.
But I sure felt better.  I had peace.
I didn't let what they thought affect me or the way I was going to be.
And I think I grew into a pretty confident adult because of it.
I didn't ever wonder if I was beautiful, intelligent, or kind.
I knew I was.
Not in the conceited kind of way, but in the confident kind of way.
And that confidence helped me through some really tough times in my life.
Because no matter what happened I always knew those things about myself, without having the need for someone else to tell me, and because my Mom always told me these things as a little girl,
I grew to believe them.

3rd or 4th grade first T-ball photo 

Me here with my chipped tooth,  Prob about 11 years old.

Even through High School, lets just say I had some....interesting wardrobe choices.
I didn't care if  people thought I was weird, or goth, or poor, or dorky.
I really didn't.
I was happy with myself, and I loved me just the way I was, and I surrounded myself with those people who loved me like I did.
Me in 7th grade

Me in 9th grade

Me with my skinny eyebrows and fake tan....21 years old
Before I became a Mom I was pretty critical.  Of myself and yes, of others.
Always silently of course.
Silently judging.
Judging the mom trying to wrangle her 2 kids out of the car, into strollers, to get to the store.
I would notice her half brushed hair and mis-matched outfit.
I would wonder why she couldn't at least run a brush through her hair, and find a pair of matching socks.
Well little Miss Judgey Pants!!!
Judge and thou shalt be judged.  Or so it goes.
I wouldn't be one of those moms, no sir.
My hair will be perfectly coiffed, make up done, and never sweatpants in public, GOD NO!
So when I had my son, so it was.
It was a pretty tough act to keep up, and really annoying sometimes how I felt I couldn't leave the house,
looking any less than I was ready for a photoshoot.
I couldn't let people think I was that lazy mom, who couldn't manage to keep her child busy long enough to get dressed properly.
Yeah, that's what I thought people would think, because that's how I thought.
Shallow, yes.
Was I jerk, yes.
Fast forward
Now I have baby #2.
And a pretty colicky baby too.
Which made it IMPOSSIBLE to get the most mundane task completed.
I just never understood how moms would say: "I got to take a shower today".
Well I thought you are just not doing it right.  (in my most righteous, no children having self ) attitude.
Baby #2, my darling sweet little daughter Taylor.
Has changed my life in the best way possible.
She has brought a much needed balance to our family, and restored me to sanity.
The sanity that I don't have to be perfect, or even "appear" to be.
That I am still beautiful even though I left the house in an outfit I didn't want to be caught dead in,
with yesterdays makeup on, and un-brushed hair, pulled up into a knot on the top of my head.
I am still a good Mom, and  a good person, and a good wife despite not being able,
or not wanting to get ready in the morning.
Most days I forget to brush my teeth, and have been known to leave the house (on several occasions) in
pajamas I wore the night before.
Oh yeah, I did that.
Not even because the babes were outta control or anything, but because I was to exhausted to even care,
let alone change my clothes.
I literally woke up one day, and it just didn't matter anymore.
It didn't matter what people thought, or might think.
I don't cringe anymore when I leave the house looking like a hot mess, and then both my kids are screaming bloody murder in the checkout line, drawing even more attention to my hot mess-ness.
I could give 2 shits.
Its not so bad, pretty freeing actually.
I don't look at Moms the same way either.
Because I understand their struggle.
And maybe that Mom did want to brush their hair and find matching socks before she left the house,
but her crazy little ones were bouncing off the walls and wanted to play,
and what she wanted became second priority.
Yeah, I get that now.
Why am I sharing this?
Because I realize that I have been wrong, and now that I know this,
I am responsible for healing that part of me that is not pure, and not whole.
And admitting is the first step in any recovery.
So I needed to say out loud, who I am sometimes, and its not always nice.
But I am always working toward becoming a better person, a better mom, and wife.
And it doesn't always look good.
But its not a destination.
It is not something I will always be, or someday achieve.
Its a journey.
Thanks for letting me share the ride.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Happy 3rd Birthday to My Little Man

I have made it a tradition to write you a letter on your birthday each year, and one day I will give you all of these letters.  So here goes....

Dear 3 year old Logan,

I can't believe you are 3 already.  It seems like just yesterday we brought you home from the hospital.
We both said to each other out loud....  "Who let us leave the hospital with a kid?"  We had no idea what we are doing.  When we got you home we put you in all of your seats.  Your bouncy seat, your swing, your boppy, your basinet.  We weren't quite sure what to do with you, so we tried out all your new stuff.

Coming home from the hospital

Kinda funny, mostly sad but true story.... I only changed your clothes 3 times and gave you a bath but once in about 10 days when we brought you home.  I blame the nurses.  In all the classes I went to before you were born, they all kept harping..."don't give them baths everyday they don't need it".  So I didn't.  But probably 10 days was a bit too long.  You just slept and didn't really do much and you sure didn't get dirty, so how was I to know?  Well eventually Grandma came to save the day.  She said to bathe you every night, it wouldn't dry out your skin or your hair and it would start you getting used to a routine. So that's what we did.  I cleaned your face with a warm wash cloth and changed your clothes every morning, and gave you a bath and fresh jammies every night.  You came to expect these things.  Ever since, I have tried hard to keep to a routine and I think we have done pretty good.  You still nap from 12-3 everyday.  You go to bed every night at about 8, maybe a few cartoons later, but you eventually doze off.  You still have a bottle before bed, and your monkey & ni-nite.  (Thats what you call your pacifier)  But you wont have to put any of that on your college application I am sure.  You are almost potty trained, you just won't #2 in the potty.  But we are working on it.  We have come along way since those first few months we brought you home.  I have learned so much about you and who you are and what you like and what you don't like.  It has been nice to be able to stay home with you on several occasions when I wasn't working.  You looooove superhero anything and everything.  Everything you find is somehow a sword or a gun.  You love to climb on EVERYTHING, and jump off of it too.  You like to run and chase kids, and have them chase you.  You are not shy at all.  You go right up to kids and try to play with them, or point out when they are wearing any type of super hero shirt.  You have discovered candy this past year, and its your favorite....all kinds.  You have become the picky eater and will eat pasta every night for dinner if I let you.  But I worry. I worry all the time about everything.  I never think I am doing a good enough job.  I worry about your diet, if you are getting enough nutrients, so I got you a liquid multivitamin, and I sneak it in your juice.  Every morning you see me do it and say, "no meh-cins!". You think its medicine,  I tell you its vitamins and its good for you.  I worry that you watch too much tv.  But then I caught you one day, counting to 15 all by yourself, I guess Mickey taught you, so TV can't be that terrible.  I feel bad that you are not in school with your friends, so I try to take you out to fun places every week...the treehouse, giggles n hugs, the park, swimming, friends and family's houses to visit.  I do my very best to see that you are happy, healthy, and growing. It can be hard sometimes, because I am hard on myself.  But then I see you eat an entire plate of steamed carrots, you say "pwease" and "kank you", and your great big smile tells me....okay maybe, just maybe I am doing something right.

 One of our favorite things that you say right now is "nooooot yet".  And you call us Buddy, and Honey its hysterical.  You love your sister so much, and you kiss her everyday, you say good morning to her everyday, you pat her head and tell her "its okay baby", when she cries.  I hope you love her and look out for her like this for years to come.  It melts my heart when I see how much you love her.  You have also tried to wrestle her, pick her up, and bonk her on the head with your toys, but I am sure you are just anxious for her to be big enough to run around with you, and don't worry very soon she will be, and I will have to chase after the both of you!  I love you so much baby bird, I wish I could tell you with words how much love and happiness you have brought my heart.  I know that one day you will know just how much.

I love you


(You can read the letter from last year here----->To My Sweet 2 Year Old )