Things I Didn’t Expect with My Second Child

Please note that these points reflect my personal life experiences and feelings. I do not expect others to agree with or relate to them.

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Things I Didn’t Expect with My Second Child…

  • That I would love and want to punch my husband in the face, simultaneously.
  • That I would need a 13 gallon trashcan in every room in the house.
  •  That I would put my inside-dog, of 14 years, outside. (reasonably, of course) Edit: She’s back in the house. I’m a softy on Mondays.
  •  That I would need 4 filing cabinets to organize all the clutter.
  • That I would never actually get to organize any of that clutter.
  • That I would buy all the necessary safety equipment and never get around to installing it. (anchors for dressers, etc.)
  • That I would activate the “5 second rule” in the nastiest of places.
  • That I would mourn all the personal time I used to spend with my first child.
  • That breastfeeding would actually work with this one.
  • That I would let my toddler play in public without matching socks. Or a matching outfit. Or combed hair. Crap.
  • That I would long to wear “regular clothes” and then hate them the whole time I wore them.
  • That I could judge what kind of day it was going to be based on: 1) what yoga pants I wore (aka were clean); 2) how well my toddler ate breakfast (if he ate at all); and 3) if my husband were going to come home for lunch.
  • If I need to leave the house at 9, I need to start leaving the house at 8 in order to be on time.
  • That I would so much look forward to the day I could drink a cold beer and then not be able to finish it because it wasn’t as good as I remembered.
  • Being happy that the drink wasn’t as good as I remembered!
  • That saying No to an authority figure would be much easier.
  • That I would never be able to clarify to people that want to help that I need help with the toddler, not the new baby.
  • That I could judge how long its been since I mopped my floors by how the house smells.
  • That I would give up a lot of battles that I used to think were worthy. (the short forks and the long forks no longer have separate slots in the silverware drawer.)
  • That my carpet would need to be shampooed every three months.
  • That I could wash every dirty item in the house and still have a laundry room full of dirty clothes the next day.
  • That I would give my husband “vacation days” to do what he pleases, only for him to come home complaining for three days, afterwards.
  • That every person in the house would get new clothes every 6 months and I wouldn’t get new clothes ever.
  • That answering a phone call depends on if we’re in the car with or without a screaming baby or if my toddler is in possession of it to watch Mickey Mouse.
  • That I would hum Elmo and Mickey Mouse in the only place I get to be alone – the shower.
  • That I would become the neighbor that hates the other neighbors for making enough noise to potentially wake the babies.
  • That I have zero patience for people that whine and don’t have any children. Because their drama filled life is sooooo hard. (insert rolling eyes)
  • That I would buy organic items at the grocery store and then stop by McDonald’s on the way home.
  • That I would care less what another mom thinks of me. Her struggle is hers and my struggle is mine. Period.
  • That I would LOVE being a stay-at-home mom. (I’ve had a job since I was 15. It was a HUGE adjustment for me.)
  • That the idea of taking a vacation and having to leave the kids makes it not worth taking the vacation. (I tried it once for 10 days. It was terrible.)
  • That I would compromise my beliefs about toddlers and technology to not have to watch the same cartoon 500 times in a row, myself.
  • That I would actually enjoy the tough moments of being a mother to two littles, because I know the time with their seasons is fleeting. ( I don’t mind having to get up at 3 a.m. to nurse the baby…she’s my last one.)
  • That I wouldn’t care about losing the baby weight.
  • That recovery from the second childbirth would be more difficult.
  • That having kids at Christmas is way more fun than being a kid at Christmas.
  • That the only day of the week I would have patience for anyone would be on Mondays. If you need to talk to me call on a Monday. Otherwise, wait until the next Monday.
  • That I would finally lose a lot of my politeness and start treating people how they treat me. Its kind of like being treated like step-family but being expected to act like real family. Nada. Not any more.
  • That my husband would tell me, in public, that my blog name was all wrong. He thinks I am no where near a mediocre mom. 🙂 I digress.

Love,

Your Mediocre Mom

An Open Letter to the All-Boy Mom

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An Open Letter to the All-Boy Mom

Dear Mom,

I have a son. So I understand part the joy of raising boys. I also have a daughter, so there will always be something that separates our parenting experiences.  I fully understand and respect that you and I will never share the same ‘trusted’ advice when it comes to parenting our families. You have a house full of men to raise. I may have one or more men to raise, too, but things just aren’t the same when you throw in a bundle of estrogen. I have seen some of you long for a daughter. I have also seen some of you find relief in not having one. I understand both.

My son was born first. When the 21 week ultrasound arrived for my daughter I was an emotional mess. I wanted a daughter so badly but had prepared and convinced my heart that being an all-boy mom actually suited me better. It actually does, in my tom-boy opinion. So to say my husband and I were excited about having a girl is an understatement. And once the excitement subsided we were scared to death. A girl?! I mean, I’m a girl….I know what we’re capable of! I fear the replica of myself walking around in toddler estrogen form. Eeek!

But there are some things that you need to hear from me, er us. Us non-all-boy-moms….we need you! You are the ultimate super mom, the superhero that withstands more than we imagine, the mom that laughs when we complain about our son (singular) getting pee on the floor, the mom that rolls her eyes at the mysteries of our only son’s questionable laundry….you are THAT mom! You make us look like weenies. You make us look unappreciative and often humble us when we complain of parenting boys.  And for good reason! But…we need you. In a really bad way. In a really important way. Your job as an all-boy mom surpasses all others.

You see, you are raising husbands for our daughters. You are the voice he will hear when they have their first fight with our daughter. You are the only way he will know how to do things, and he will use it to compare against our daughter’s worth. So we need you! We need you to raise them to get dirty. They will need that carefree-ness to put up with the tightwad-ness we call being a woman. If you are always scorning them for getting dirty they will lose the ability to find humor in accidental messes. And we all know there will be a lot of those.  We need you to teach them how to be a man’s man, but with a soft heart. Our daughters will have their own sense of independence but they’ll also need the strength that comes from having a good man in their corner. But he must also be gentle enough to sit and comfort her when needed, instead of walking out and leaving her to cry alone. We need you to let them feel the rush of competition, no matter how you choose to provide it. He doesn’t have to be an athlete, but our daughters will need someone that knows sticking through the fight and struggle is worth the win.

I promise to raise a daughter to be supportive to your son. I will teach her how to have respect for him…and even you. I will show her how to put her crazy aside and actually communicate with him. And yes, I will also teach her all the domestic skills that my mother taught me…laundry, ironing, cooking, cleaning, gardening, etc. But I need you to teach your sons how not to take advantage of someone that does those things. That starts with you. It would be even better if you also taught them how to do those things, but I know that’s a stretch. My point is, there is no other mother as precious to us as the all-boy mom.  You have a hard job. A very respectable, precious, important job.

Just know that I pray for you every night. I pray for your boys and I pray for my own job raising a future wife. Our complaints, needs, and jobs look differently….but the love for our children does not. Let that be what binds us as we trail along this journey. Hail to the all-boy mom!!

Love,

Your Mediocre Mom

I Am a Terrible Mother, to You.

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Son,

I am so sorry. I mean it. I am so very sorry. I tried to ask how it was going to go. I tried to ask how it was going to work out; how to make it work out. I am failing you. I was worried this very thing was going to happen. I was assured by other mothers that it wouldn’t and that things would naturally work themselves out.

I don’t feel like they are.

Before your sister was born, I was worried that I wouldn’t be enough for you. I was so worried that your sweet little face would be forced to stare at me from across the room….lonely, and unable to tell me. I was so worried that you would be crying and need me, and I would be tending to the many newborn needs of your sister, unable to be there for you. I cried at night, sometimes in regret, thinking about what I had done to you, by having your sister. Would you understand? Would you instinctively know? Would you allow me the grace to be distant from you, during this time?

I prayed so very hard.

Please, God, don’t let him become lonely at my expense. Please, God, don’t let him ever think I love him any less. Please, God, let me still be his 100% mommy, during this transition. Please, God, give me the ability to do all this without hurting his heart. Please, God, please!

And I failed…..

There are times you fall and cry and need me….and I am in the middle of nursing your sister. You run to me in tears and I try so hard to pick you up, to comfort you, but there isn’t room in my lap, at the moment. The look on your face breaks my heart. I cry everyday because I cannot be there for you, like before. Every. Single. Day. Sometimes you see my crying and you softly say to me, “Momma.” It melts me. Because I think you know. I think you know I am sad about our relationship. I think you are also sad about it. You love your sister so much. You are constantly trying to give her kisses.

But sometimes you get angry.

Sometimes you are too rough with her on purpose. Sometimes you hit her. And I am ashamed to say, you receive too many spankings, for it. Sometimes I feel like all I do is yell at you, tell you No!, and spank you. And on those days I cry the most. I am trying so hard to raise you not to be a brat. I want you to have manners and respect and with that comes tough love…..but right now, in this season- in this transition- I want nothing more than to scoop you up and love you hard. Love you so hard that you would never question my love for you again. Love you so hard that our hearts sync the way they used to during our snuggle time. Love you so hard that you fully understand there will never be anyone to replace you….ever.

But right now I can’t.

Right now I am struggling. Right now I mourn you. Right now I am trying so hard and failing. Right now is just as hard on me as it is you. Right now I am a terrible mother to you. And I am so sorry. I can’t express how sorry I am. And I want nothing more than for our relationship to be what it used to be. Please tell me it will be. Please tell me you are okay. Please show me you understand how much I love you. Please! No one can affirm that to my heart but you. No one can assure me enough that it will all work out, but you. But you can’t, can you? Of course not. You’re almost two. I know you won’t remember this stage….scratch that…I pray you won’t remember this stage. I pray even harder that it doesn’t affect your heart, in the future. Please know how very much I love you. Please do.

Will you forgive me? Can you forgive me? Please, God, let him forgive me.

Love,

Your Mediocre Mom