Monthly Archives: October 2013

Mom Perspective

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Being a single mom is hard.  Obviously being a mom is rewarding and just about my favorite thing, EVER.  I struggle though.  I struggle with the fact that I feel like I’m really strict, and that I don’t have a lot of patience, or tolerate very much “bad” behavior.  And then I struggle with “well is she really being bad, or is she hurting or hungry or whatever, and I am missing something?”  And then I realize I probably underestimate her sometimes.  I don’t really have anyone I can confer with either in real time.  All decisions are all on me, and I’m doing the best I can… but it still makes me sad when I get on to her and she cries.  Even thinking of it now causes a huge lump in my throat.  I definitely broke down crying on the phone with George the other day about it after Aubree had a melt down in the store… and church… and at home.  That was a rough day.  I also felt like people were not being overly supportive, hence my blog yesterday.

I got go go hang out with him last night, dinner, movies, homework.  Yay!  He knew I was tired and still having a hard time about Aubree’s tantrums over the weekend.  In his thoughtfulness, he found a video for me.  He said a friend put it on Facebook and he saw it, but I kinda wonder if he didn’t search it out to make me feel better.  😉  Or maybe it really was put in his path so he could show it to me, I don’t know.  Either way, he had this ready for me when I got to his house last night.  (Mom’s get your tissues ready!)

http://www.faithit.com/moms-kids-video-confession-touching/

I bawled.  Everything those moms said is exactly what I’ve been thinking since Aubree started getting into things and sassily telling me “uh-uh!” when I tell her to get out of them.  I don’t know the circumstances of those moms.  Are they married?  Are they single?  Do they have one child or ten?  All I know is they’re moms and they’re having the same problems that I am having.  Oh my soul, what a relief, it’s not just me.  I’m not the only one who feels like I don’t spend enough time having fun with Aubree, or that I’m always getting on to her, or desperately trying to get things done and putting her off.  Those kids don’t immediately think of the times that their mom got on to them.  The first thing that comes into their little minds is that mom colors with them, or that they have days where they go to the mall and get their nails done, or that mom cooks REALLY good food.  Hopefully as Aubree goes about her day, she won’t think of me telling her to stop messing with whatever she was messing with at the time, but she’ll remember laying on my chest as I was laying in the floor trying to decide to put my shoes on and get moving.  I hope that’s what she thinks about.

Anyway, watch the video!  Absorb the perspective that our kids know we love them and that they don’t dwell on us disciplining them.  They think about us loving them unconditionally.  What a beautiful thing!!

“What did you do to that baby!?”

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I’m in a bad mood, and this seemed to kind of kick off the bad mood, partially, or maybe my anger is misdirected.  Either way, I’m a little miffed.  Also, this isn’t directed at anyone in particular, but if you have said something along these lines, maybe you should stop and consider how it’s making any poor frazzled mother feel.

All I did all weekend, it seems like, was get on to Aubree.  “AUBREE! Get out of that.”  “Aubree, don’t do that.”  “Aubree, stop whining, I’ll get your food in just a second.”  “Aubree, get out of the box.”  “Aubree, get away from the plug!”  “Aubree, why did you just start crying when you were laughin 2.5 seconds ago?!?!?!”  Seriously.  I could not make that kid happy to save my life this weekend.  Yes I know it’s not all about making her happy, but damn if she had been happy at some point, maybe I wouldn’t be so cranky today. I don’t like getting on to my kid.  I don’t like leaving her to throw tantrums in the middle of the floor.  But you know what??  When I walk off, she gets the point that her little fit isn’t working the way she wants it to.  So when well meaning people walk up to me and either try to 1) take her from me or 2) ask ME what I did to her, it gets under my skin just a little.  First, don’t try to rescue her.  I am trying to get her to understand that she can’t behave a certain way and validating her, just makes her realize she can go to someone else when she’s in trouble.  NO.  She either comes to me, or gets left in the floor to throw her fit.  (While I watch her like a hawk, trying to pretend I’m not watching… and also while my heart is breaking.) Secondly, asking what I did doesn’t help.  Someday she’ll be old enough to play on that.  “Mom did…”  No, mom did not.  Aubree did.  Aubree threw a fit, Aubree was in the box when she wasn’t supposed to, Aubree was pulling on the plugs, or in the kitchen while I was trying to cook, or pulling my hair, or yanking my glasses off my face.  I am teaching her NOW to take responsibility for herself because a whole bunch of people her age aren’t going to know how to do that because a whole bunch of people MY age don’t know how to do it.  Thank God my mom was a hard ass when I was growing up.

The best part of my disciplinary weekend was Aubree having a melt. down. in Sears.  She threw her cow, and then her binki when I wouldn’t give the cow back, so I took them both away.  And she proceeded to freak out.  Crying loud, trying to get out of her stroller, arching her back (pet. peeve!! of mine), and just generally being a brat.  Some women were standing behind me in line.  Normally people say “Aww poor baby….”  No!  Not poor baby!  Poor mama!  It’s not like I enjoy hearing her scream or see her face turn red! They looked at me with sympathy, and rather than letting them say “Poor baby” I explained what she had done and that I was holding the binki hostage.  You know what they said??  They said “Good for you, stay strong!”  I nearly cried right in the middle of the store.  So after a little bit longer with the crying, I got down on her level, and I told her if she’d be really good, and really still and really quiet, I’d give her the pacifier back.  I asked her if she’d be a good girl, and she nodded and sniffled and so I gave it back.  She was a perfect angel the rest of our outing.  Mom win, I think.

My point in all this is, I know people mean well… but I don’t need help.  I got it.  If I need help, I’ll ask.  Except I won’t… so it’s probably best to just leave me alone when my kid is melting down cause you’re likely to get “the look.”

 

Rules, Regulations and General Ridiculousness

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I’m trying to process through this one, I really am. I understand that most laws start for a reason. That somewhere there is a grain in them of why they had to be made. That doesn’t make me think what I encountered today is any less ridiculous.

Let me start by saying that some of this comes from my own detrimental pride. I know that. I hate that I have to have financial help in things for Aubree. I got off of WIC as soon as I could because of the stigma that I hold for it. So the fact that I’m still having to have help with her daycare weighs heavily on me.

Today I had to go sign some paperwork for her recertification, when I should have been home sleeping. I got sent home from work because apparently I didn’t look too good. I did get to crochet this morning and take a nap, but then I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to take care of paperwork, because where my daughter is concerned, I don’t mess around. Well I got there and they told me that they’d only qualified me for three months because now I was divorced and I had to go apply for child support. Well I had given them my divorce decree and I said that none was ordered. “Well we can’t go by the court order.” I’m sorry… WHAT?! You can’t go by a court order… I seriously thought they were joking. Nope, I have to go apply for child support. So I tried to call the attorney general’s office. That was impossible. They had about 500,000 menus you have to go through and no option to hit zero for a receptionist. Ridiculous. So I go in and tell them the story and they said that I’d have to apply but most likely they would open a case and then immediately close it. Does that not seem like… I don’t know, a waste of time and money?? It’s a waste of MY time that now I’m going to have to go BACK to CCS which pisses me off anyway! Fine… whatever, I’ll do your stupid paperwork. It just goes back to my issue about so many laws being cookie cutter type deals.

That is not really my issue. (How did you already know that!!) My real issue is why does everyone expect that Andrew will all the sudden just be super happy to pay for Aubree. He didn’t pay for anything while we were married, he couldn’t even hold a job. He couldn’t stay in school, all he wanted to do was play video games. He didn’t even care about me then. Then we we FINALLY got divorced he tried to demand that I would have to pay to support him. So obviously he doesn’t care about Aubree still since he’d be taking what money I do have. Why would anyone in their right mind thing that he would pay for her now!! He wouldn’t because he doesn’t care about anyone but himself.

I don’t need child support from him. I can support us. I’ll ask for the help I need to get Aubree what she needs even if it does hurt my pride because the simple fact of the matter is, she’s more important than my damned pride. She’s more important than ANYTHING, and since she was born, I have been the one supporting her and making sure she had everything she needed and I’ll be damned if I’m gonna someone who doesn’t even care horn in. I’ll do what you want, Texas, but I’m probably going to yell about it a little.

On the bright side, I get to hang out with Aubree tonight and she helped me crochet, and she’s been in a really good mood and we have cuddled a lot. The things I have to be thankful for have not escaped me. They just make me more motivated to be basically the best mom ever.

Aubree Update 19ish Months

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Is anyone up for an Aubree (“Aubee”) update?  I’m pretty convinced she’s a genius, but I’ve been convinced of that since she was born, and will probably be convinced of that until I die.  But what mother isn’t…. but mine is still the smartest.  (See what I did there?)  She is so funny, and her personality so shines.  She’s sweet, loving, kind, giving, ornery, stubborn, a little spoiled (abundantly loved!!), feisty, probably a little mischievous, I could go on and on.  She’s so cute when her little feet pitter patter across the floor when she’s running.  I can tell her to go give someone a hug and she might stop for a second, but then she’s off like a shot running to give them loves.  She’ll lean in and give me a kiss when I ask for “besos.”  Sometimes she’ll throw out her hand as if to say “Oh you!”  Which is just the cutest thing ever.  I’m pretty sure drama is in her future.  She gets so excited at meal time, exclaiming “Mommy, mommy, mommy MOMMY!” if I don’t get her food fast enough.  If she doesn’t like something she kindly takes it out of her mouth and places it directly into my hand.  (YUCK!!) If she gets mad, she throws her food/pacifier/cup onto the ground pretty defiantly.  We’re working on that, I’m not a fan of that game.  It’s one of the very few things about her that makes me REALLY mad.  She’s picking up new words all the time.  She might not say them consistently, but she imitates them pretty well.  She is doing really well at putting them together.  I’m not sure what milestones I should be marking right now because I kind of don’t want to.  I don’t want to compare her to other children.  I just want her to be her.  I feel like if she was really behind, I’d know.  I’d notice that.  She’s picking up new words all the time.  I can’t believe how big her vocabulary is getting.  The only sentence she’s really strung together, though, is “Hi Mama!”  I’ll take it though. Some of her favorite things are:  PUPPIES!!!!!!!!!!!! especially her puppy from Toys R Us that a friend of mine gave her, duckies, shoes (I’m shocked!!), books, Tangled, music of almost any kind, church, climbing up and down off the couch, pizza, grapes, mac n cheese, milk, sweet tea (shhhh don’t tell), Tang (yuck), remote controls, Mimi, Pop Pop, Papa, and her Aunt Kimmy, her sippy cup, her binki (binti), anything pasta, did I mention puppies?  That will send her into a tizzy for sure.  We’ve been working on “Touch nice,” a lot lately, and I find myself less frustrated with the fact that she puts her hands on my face.  I’m fine as long as she’s not grabbing my face, nose, lips, earrings or necklace.  I remember feeling like such a bad mother when I got frustrated at her for that.  Working with her in that area is paying off though.  She definitely thrives on praise and pays attention really well when she thinks she’ll get it.

 

That’s just a little update.  There’s so much more that could be said, but I kinda lost my train of thought.  Whoops!

Trial and Error

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So many of you are probably wondering how yesterday went.  Yesterday was my final hearing for my divorce.  I won, I’m free, but man it was rough.  I feel like the whole experience is just more proof that I have done the right thing.  It only lasted an hour, but it felt like it took a million years.  I’m not having  a hard time with the fact I’m divorced, I’m not even grieving the loss of my marriage.  I did that a long time ago.  I’ve already worked through that.  I am having a hard part with all the things that were said about me.  A federal inmate tried his hardest to make me look like a monster and there was really nothing I could do to defend myself.  I was accused of having anger issues, abusing my daughter physically and emotionally, I was called a liar and inconsistent, he told the judge that Aubree needed to be removed from MY care because I was a danger to her.  I am her mother… and he said I was a danger to her.  I know what he was doing, he wasn’t saying that to the judge, or my lawyer, or anyone else in that court room, he was saying it directly to me.  He wanted me specifically to hear all those awful things.  It was his last ditch effort to get me to stop.  He thought he could still intimidate me into stopping by calling me a horrible mother, he thought he could convince the judge of that.  He was playing on my insecurities, and trying to make me feel awful about myself….  And that just makes me so angry!  Why was a federal inmate allowed to make me look so bad and I wasn’t allowed to say one single word to defend myself.  Why was he allowed to call me a terrible mother when he knows ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about what mine and Aubree’s day to day is like!!!  Why was he allowed to go on and on and on about what a monster *I* was??  I’m the monster??  EXCUSE ME!!!!!!!  No.  I am a gainful member of society who works hard, protects my daughters, gets the bills paid and I live in the REAL world without relying on video games or illicit things to validate my life.  The part that bugs me the most was that strangers heard those lies about me, they don’t know me, and I am beginning to feel like divorces are nothing but he said/she said and in this case she didn’t say much of anything!!  The rational side of me understands that the judge is aware that Aubree is 19 months old and Andrew has been in prison for 20 months.  That pretty much means he has always relied on me to see her and all he’s basically ever been able to do is give her a bottle and hold her.  He doesn’t know anything about her since she became mobile, verbal and personality-fied.  But still, how dare he insinuate all those awful things about me and I had to just sit there and take it!  I’m still working through my feelings on this.

I’m pretty sure I became a true lady yesterday.  I didn’t rise to his bait, I didn’t yell, I didn’t even cry except once.  And I won.  I got my baby, I got my house, and I got my car, and he got virtually nothing.  All his stomping, yelling, threatening, name calling and just general emotional terrorism got him nowhere.  I am divorced, I’m the sole managing conservator of my baby, I get my house, my car and my debt (which suits me just fine), and I am free.  Finally.  How in the world did I survive this?  I don’t know, but I’m glad I did.  I’m glad to FINALLY be able to move forward.  It all boils down to God is good and gave me the strength to persevere.  I am thankful for that for sure!