Monster Trucks and Insomnia

Has anyone else been woken up in the middle of the night (especially during pregnancy when sleep is so hard to come by) of a monster voice (completely loud, scary and distorted)? Been forced to face your fears (toddler in tow) sneaking around the house (slightly terrified and not so slightly exhausted) just to find the source of this hellish sound? No? Doesn’t ring a bell? Hmm,
Well…
What if I tell you the source was a battery operated (freaking) toy!!! Maybe now you follow me??
I seriously looked everywhere- EVERYWHERE before I found it, tripping on boxes and random stuff (did I mention we are moving??) and stepped on my fair share of little Legos (ouch! Why will they be the last thing we pack?)
Guess where I found this Devils device?
In the completely natural, as well as logical, place for a black and orange toy truck…- in the shower!

That was my night last night, unable to fall back asleep, even if my princess (no way that was her nickname in the pitch black house where everyone else seemed to be sleeping just fine) eventually did. I laid their cursing my inability to relax my body enough to just slip away- and then- as usual the thoughts come. The scare that is pregnancy, the lack of control, the worry, the fear of history repeating itself- except this time way, way worse…

It had been kind of a weird week, it started with something really odd happening. I felt that I at least had to mention it to my nurse but like I told her the “story” was kinda hard to explain without the Lego cars and Duplo people (that is how I explained to mom over Skype and hubby after work).

I drove my kids to my son’s school as usual in the morning- kinda late- also as usual. When I park I see that someone is sitting in the car next to me, she appeared to be on her phone and without kids in the car- obviously she hadn’t been late. As I rush my 4 year old and his “why questions” out of the car armed with his latest art project, lunch boxes (snack AND lunch), going back to the front seat for the “lunch bunch ticket”, putting shoes back on (at least I didn’t forget them), I see in the corner of my eye that the mom in the next car puts her phone down and turns her car on. I am late so I attempt to catch her eye. Maintaining eye contact, assuming that we get each other I move my way into the tight space (remember I’m not exactly skinny mini nowadays…not that I ever was…but…just saying). She is in one of those ginormous SUVs (black and hard to distinguish from all the rest) sitting very high up. I judge that I can still get darling daughter out of her car seat (and in my arms) but I did NOT count on her starting to back out. I must say I have a split second to panic slightly- she sees us right? Again I think we are on the same page as I signal to her that I will move me and my son out of the way so that she can pull out. As I close the door on my girl I realize that the driver and I are not on the same page- AT ALL…

I push my (luckily very skinny) son flush against the car while I turn towards the huge car in the very tight space as she rapidly reverses-taking the corner- AND my stomach with some speed. I actually scream, flailing my arms for her stop as my big tummy pretty much gets smashed by the left front of her vehicle…

She does see my then- looking surprised and slightly confused…did she not see the whale with feet trying to safely get her kids to school on time?

She then tries to pull forward again, making it worse by squishing my baby bump yet again. I yell for her to stop and she comes to an abrupt halt- actually looking appropriately scared now.

I managed to squeeze myself (not easy people) as I push my son (who is completely fine by the way) back towards the back of my own car. As soon as my sore stomach, son and I have reached the back of our car she reversed again and speeds away…

I get my daughter and we speed away ourselves- by foot that is- towards class.

Hours later I can actually feel the pain. I google the heck out of what I had just experienced but I think google is even more confused than myself.

What the heck happened this morning??
I know however that baby is probably perfectly fine in her (his?)  cushiony cocoon- me- not so much.

Later on both my sister and my mom agree that baby should be okay but that I should ask the nurse just in case, that the mom driver probably sat up too high to see my huge belly…but why oh why did I not even take her license plate number…? (I guess that was the last thing on my mind…and anyways what would that help?!?)

The week continues with another urinary tract infection and I wouldn’t even be worried except during my last pregnancy  a UTI developed into a full blown kidney infection…which might have been what caused my water to break prematurely…so yeah- worried!
We had to stop by the pharmacy to pick up my prescription on the way back from my son’s school.

Both kids are in rare form. My daughter refuses the cart and decides to run around pushing everything off the shelves while my son is whiny and super loud- asking (yelling) for some cookies. I rather not hold my girl too much right now but the adorable toddler turned shoplifting maniac doesn’t give me much choice as she stuffs her clothes with chocolate and some random medication (wait are those…condoms?). Returning the stuff is challenging while holding the squirming animal, bending and lifting while simultaneously managing a preschooler who screams that I am leaving him and that I’m being a bad mama! (Pleasant isn’t he!?). As we stand in line (kind of- at least I am trying) to finally pick up the antibiotics I can both see and feel the stares. This man actually goes as far as asking the old guy in front of him “can you even stand these screaming kids?” I want to snap back but I’m all out of energy, besides they are both being REALLY annoying. Even the pharmacist promises several times that we are almost done with the transaction and that I absolutely don’t need a consultation on how to take these pills. Who is he trying to convince me or himself. As my son screams for me to stop pushing him when I simply try to steer him towards the automatic doors I see the mixed looks of pity, understanding and pure irritation. They are all probably looking at my huge belly, thinking I can’t even handle the two I already have!!

To round up my week- my big ultrasound followed by my regular obgyn check up imagedidn’t exactly go as expected…

 

Before the Alarm rings… (by a very TIRED mama)

My alarm rings for the first time at 6:15 in the morning- 6:15…and I hate it- therefore I have a second alarm set for 6:45 (which I totally snooze until 7). I have been doing this since I was old enough to set my own alarm clock and in the midst of hating (I mean really hating) mornings, it kind of works. I mean it DID work…
Enters: kids!
I know it’s the same for everyone (which doesn’t seem entirely true by the way) and isn’t that the price to pay for parenthood (so worth it…right!?) but I really freaking value my sleep- OKAY!???
Then you shouldn’t have been a mom you say! Okay, first of all: who are you? And how dare you? Second of all; I know, I know- you have a point (huge sigh) but I am (barely) functioning here and I’m doing (pretty) fine!!! So there!
Go to bed earlier they say, well; ever heard of toddler sleep regression? No? Then stop talking (judging) right now! Besides I have this little thing called a part time job- I might only be a professor online but they do actually expect me to deliver university worthy courses and that people, means actual work and putting in the hours in between poppy diapers, grocery runs and preschool pick-ups! This is by the way my very round about way to tell you all that “I AM TIRED” really, really tired! So even if I signed up for this gig, I still really hate mornings!! Got it!

So this is what happens now BEFORE the alarm rings- yes you read right- before!!!
There are two kids in our bed. Husband has left (fled) already- and before you feel sorry for his early mornings consider this A. He actually likes mornings- yup! I married a freak! And B. He doesn’t get to be part of our lovely morning routine AKA hell (slight exaggeration here I know but still pretty much true) so yes he escapes and no; no need to feel sorry for him.
So there I am TRYING to sleep, trying to get those extra precious moments of zzz time while I usually have random fingers in my ears (no not mine), up my nose (again, I swear not mine), a butt in my face as well as a sliver of bed left to “sleep” on because at least one open mouthed snoring kid has decided to sleep diagonally on the bed (like it’s perfectly normal).

Even before the kicking starts (picking up in speed as well as frequency and intensity) aiming at stomach and face mostly (and other vulnerable parts), the slow twitching of eye lashes start (oh yes, I can hear them) and then the slow excruciating whining (worse than any chalk on any blackboard…truly). The older one awakens first with the words “MAMA ITS NOT NIGHTTIME”, the volume alone… and the words…the dreaded, dreaded words! My LEAST favorite moment of any day! Then we have the eyes, the bright, wide open eyes (kill me now) and the bouncing body (shuddering), next sentence is a toss up between “look, the sun is up” or the yelling of “what happens next mama?” “what happens NEEEXXXT?” Straight into my ear!

I am a pretty good mom, I promise and I love being a mom, adore my kids etc. etc. but the mornings…

Okay, said kid is being so extremely loud that of course he wakes his sister up (the bouncing alone) and she always wakes up crying! (Let’s face it, I would too if it was appropriate!) I console her as tear turns to hysterical laughter at her oh so hilarious brother (oh how I don’t agree- but she is his biggest fan after all).

Then the jumping starts…

I usually try to grab another couple minutes of shut eye- insert more hysterical laughter here…for anyone who thought I was being serious…or successful…

Well, I “try”, that part is true…

So before the alarm rings, I have a 4 year old screaming his head off that it is in fact “not nighttime”, a crying/laughing/jumping toddler, am sore from all the kicks and oh so so tired. I still refuse to get out of bed (obviously) so while holding a hand around my squirmy girl’s ankle and trying to ignore my screaming boy, at least I try to still rest my head on my pillow (until said pillow get snatched away and suddenly involved in an impromptu pillow fight).

And then the alarm rings (loudly).

This is what happens between the first alarm and the second (because being the most stubborn person stuck in her ways, and did I mention “morning hater” I still refuse to get out of bed); I rescue someone from falling off the bed, I dry tears, I send someone to the restroom, I turn on cartoons, I find iPad, water, missing sock, teddies, dinosaurs (all from bed), I defend myself from kicks, slaps, hits, bites, licks…even sloppy kisses and violent hugs!
I yell at someone, tell someone that I am sorry for yelling, rescue one from the other and the the other one from the first one…yeah! I think you get the idea. All the while, I’m trying to snooze like I always have since being able to set my own alarm…well, those were the days…before kids!

And then the second alarm rings (loudly)

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Yes Sir! and old forgetful Mamas…

Of course it’s the cheery, “earthy” teacher and of course there is no lunch bunch- it’s FRIDAY!!

I’m mortified (I’ve never thrown on clothes so fast or waken my poor baby letting her tag along in pajamas and wet diaper) which I also tell the teacher as I run inside the now (almost) empty classroom. “I’m absolutely mortified”.

I did have a vision of my son getting sadder and sadder as his little friends left with their mommies one by one until he was all alone, abandoned and crying. That, however does not seem to be the case. Little man seems absolutely thrilled to be having some alone time with his loving teacher (probably nicer and a lot more patient than his mommy…and she would obviously have remembered him…obviously).

For heavens sake, I forgot my child, FORGOT!! I’m a horrible, horrible mom!

“Honey don’t be! You know these things happen”, looking like they most certainly DO NOT- not in her world (I’m feeling awful and ashamed and… Just horrible). “Just wait until you forget them when they are in high school” hmm, now, what does that even mean? Slightly confused I continue to apologize (which she lets me a serene smile on her “no make-up” face. “But we were having such a pleasant time weren’t we?” Turning to my son who smiles smugly “no lunch bunch today, it’s FRI- DAAAY mooom!!” Well, okay, hmm, could I be feeling any worse!?

I back out of the classroom hoping I’m looking remorseful enough, cranky toddler on my hip (who does not like being woken up roughly or rushed) and drag my son along. Performing a whole other walk of shame towards our car passing the perfect moms who are now (AFTER school) having perfects picnics with their perfect little offspring on the green grass, and the preschool office where the door is open and the director ask how I am? “Well” I respond “better now” as she chuckles, she is probably judging me too.
Not one of my finer mommy moments!

I take the kids to Subway and a little bit of shopping (for kids clothes only) to make (myself) everyone feel better. I still can’t let my son have a cookie before he finishes his sandwich however and when he brings up the “no lunch bunch” for the tenth time I have had enough. “I forgot, okay!? I didn’t know, this was the first Friday and I just didn’t KNOW” I can hear myself screaming and feel people starring at the mall food court. Well, I am being rather loud now, ain’t I, but I can’t seem to calm down so I only get louder “so there is no excuse for you NOT to eat your sandwich (which is just cheese-nothing else, not toasted) so just eat it or NO cookie- EVER!!!” I even stun myself and apparently my son, his reply being “Yes Sir!”

Gap kids has a sale for member only and I have calmed down as I make the honest promise to myself to be the “nicest mommy ever”… For the rest of the day. My little preschooler is being extra helpful (probably sensing an impending mommy mental break down) and runs around looking for his size “with a 4 on it”, then he looks for a 1 for the baby (no time to explain the whole month system). I even let him get some rather hideous buffalo socks! Before we pay he asks how old I am, with a grimace I half whisper “35”. “Why are you whispering mama?”
“Because mama is really old”,  he looks puzzled for a second then he announces that he will be right back. I see him from my place in line, scanning the racks of clothes, flipping the hangers, ready to abandon my place as soon as he wanders off but instead he comes skipping back handing me a dress in pink!

Size 3-5!

Perfect!

“Even old people need clothes mommy!”
Dang, isn’t he just adorable!!!

Put some sunshine into that sharing bag!

And then school starts! I’m always secretly hoping that our son will get a teacher who will understand him, how smart and witty and gentle and loving he is, but who also will have patience and understanding for his wild side and all that energy!

This year I think, I will be a better preschool parent! I will become more involved, sign up for more stuff, become social with the other mommies, suggest improvements for the school in general and classroom in particular, became a “teacher’s helper mom”, buy the school more supplies, volunteer  my time…yeah you get it!
But I will also have more time for my son, more patience, more energy, more love. I always go into these plans 100% (think daily schedules, pre-packed lunch boxes, researched themes to talk to your preschooler about and “at home after school lesson plans” as well as tons of planned after-school activities and age appropriate floor play time). However…midway through the first semester I somehow loose some of my enthusiasm (who am I kidding, midway through the first day…).

I do have another kid and even though I’m a mommy …I’m also human! (Who are these super moms??, no, really? And how do they do it!?)

Our first day back, the first mom I see is the mom who loudly called me “rude” last semester.
I always try to smile and say “hi” or “good morning” to the other mommies, especially if the kids are in the same class as my son (last year; turtles, this year; butterflies… “Why were we so much cooler last year mama!?”) but sometimes I feel like without even saying anything, I’m lost in translation. Combine my somewhat stiff and uptight Swedish blood (sorry, can’t help it, and I promise I’m way more outgoing than most Swedes still back home) with the fact that I’m not exactly a morning person (let’s tell it like it is, shall we!? I HATE mornings, I loath them, lucky me getting such a morning person of a son- thanks darling husband!) the result can be rather…misinterpreted. But I am trying I really am (and not only the first day but every day…hey we all have good and bad ones).

So a usual (“slightly” hectic morning, arriving “slightly” frazzled) morning last year I go to drop of my son (nursing monster in the baby carrier) and as I push him forward into the classroom after a kiss goodbye, I turn to leave. As the door opens (the bright green “turtle” door) a couple of mommies arrive on the opposite side presumably without seeing me. I hear the “class mom”, an extreme “goody goody”, “collector of money for gifts to teachers” EVERY holiday (valentines really?! Halloween? Did you know there is teacher’s appreciation day AND “teacher’s day”??! Doesn’t mean they don’t deserve the gifts….I love teachers…just saying..) “organic vegetable giver” and “volunteering her time to the school everyday mom” say rather loudly “he (indicating my son) is a sweet enough child despite his intensity (hmm) but the mom I think, seems very RUDE. I’m not sure how to proceed. It doesn’t feel good and I want to somehow defend myself but what I do instead is turn my heels and walk towards my car. I hope they saw me but seriously doubt it since they are so wrapped up in talking and saying bye to their kids. That one kind of stung! But since then I’ve been pondering if this super mom was right? Am I the “rude” mom. Is this affecting my son? I should definitely make more of a conscious effort to smile brighter, be more enthusiastic, ask more questions (loudly) and be more cheerful overall (take a page out of these mommies’ rule book).

It is so hard though to be like that when it so isn’t me. I don’t mean that I’m rude (or am I?) I’m just more reserved and one thing I refuse to be is fake. I’m nothing if I’m not honest (to a fault…almost transparent with my thoughts and feelings). Anyways, now this lady is trying to have me sign up for some harvest festival I’m almost certain I don’t want to become involved in (it’s for your son something inside me whispers…I almost tell it to shut up… No more guilt). I want to tell her loudly that “NO! I don’t meant to be RUDE but…” I really don’t have time for this. But maybe I should (guilty conscious)…
I probably spend way to much time with my Swedish friends and my son hangs out with their kids not his classmates. Well, add it to the list! And ever the polite person (not rude at all) I sign up for what seems least painful on her clip board!  Good job and mommy plus points (ignoring another voice screaming “coward!!”).

Now how do I get out of this??

His teacher seems really sweet- I mean REALLY sweet! (This will be a long school year indeed). She tweets (not the social media version) about love (peace and understanding) but most of all sharing and caring (I thought “sharing is caring”!?). She hugs me multiple times calling me sweetheart and my son darling (I think we are both slightly uncomfortable) as she squeezes his hand (quite compulsively). But the most important part of this year she lets me know is the SHARING BAG!

Last year, we brought toys and stuff from home in the (bright green turtle) sharing bag. My son loved bringing stuff to school and telling his little friends about it! That’s easy I got that down!

Except “you see this year, we will fill the bag with intuition, philosophies, love and feelings” Yikes!…”caring inventions” (please explain…and say it isn’t so!)

Simply mom; “Put some sunshine into that sharing bag!”

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I hasn’t even been a week of school and already manage to mess up big time…can you say “WORST MOM EVER”….

Huge Christmas Trees, Potato Tacos and a little bit of life insurance…

We’ve had a busy week after coming home from my sister’s (the heat alone makes everything harder). I asked my son if he missed her and to my surprise he continue to answer no repeatedly (even if he cried when we left). So I ask again and he yells “NO mama, stop asking, it’s too hard to talk about”!!
He also keeps talking abut her house, horse and dog and now he even has a pretend horse and a pretend dog named the same names!

We had to get our dog back, we had to stock up the fridge and pantry, we had play dates and soccer and swimming. On Monday, I had to go to school to hand in grades and return final exams and had to bring both kiddos along, which was interesting with all the questions my son asked EVERYONE and how little my baby girl wanted to hang out in the baby carrier.
I had to go all the way back to get the stroller- turns out she liked that even less!

I manage to get all the paperwork in and books returned with the school still standing (two years ago my son tugged a giant Christmas tree down in the main office while I was still a student hoping to graduate- fortunately no one was hurt- unfortunately the giant tree WITH lots of ornaments took down a desk, a couple of chairs and some paintings off of the walls as it went down- I wonder why they declined our offer to stay and help clean up…!??) and everyone in one piece!

Since everything went so well and since we were starving I decided to make the (very bad) decision that we would have lunch right there in Old Town at an actual restaurant. I don’t know about your kids but mine are certainly not what you would call well behaved at restaurants (or any place where sitting down quietly for an extended period of time is required) so I’m not sure what I was thinking? Wait, yes I do!
You will think I’m crazy…but knowing how much I like potatoes…and Mexican food maybe you would understand! They have these potato tacos that are seriously to die for. I went to this little place several times when I was pregnant with my daughter- it was always like “dinner for two…” Or “two or more sets of plastic ware to go…?) nop! Just for ONE, at least I could indicate my stomach then and blame my pregnancy. Now – not so much but I was really craving them and we were right there…so…

Of course it ended up a disaster, the rice, the salsa…the guacamole… in the water fountain (ehm, yes!) and two kids wilder than ever. It was “check please!” pretty much as soon as we had gotten the food- despite my preparation of “chips right away”, apple juice (any measures) and a brand new dinosaur coloring book…
At least I managed to scarf down one potato taco (hey, they are just not the same heated up).

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On Tuesday I had my appointment with the insurance lady that I have been trying to avoid for quit some time. It just didn’t feel like a very fun thing to do despite the needed end result of life insurance (besides she sounded super rude on the phone- maybe because it was slightly difficult to get me scheduled). There was talk of blood draws and running on the treadmill, urine samples and  blood pressure readings. I guess that is all fine- pretty much what we women do on a regular basis during pregnancy, am I right!? (Well maybe not the treadmill- which in my case was the elliptical we have at home). But this “check-up” seems so nerve-racking like a test you have to pass and it is for something so depressing and unthinkable as life insurance. Who wants to even think of that? Especially when you have young children. But I guess it’s a necessary evil.

So I did schedule with the rude nurse even if I did “white-lie” (also called “flat out lying”…but I did feel bad…at least a little bit, I never lie) telling her we wouldn’t be back from my sisters until today- trying to postpone the inevitable. For a while before, I was convinced they would run all the tests on me and find some incurable disease, I actually could physically feel the fear of having to leave my children. I know I’m being ridiculous and ungrateful and a worry wart but everything is just so good right now (and I am actually extremely grateful) which is always scary… (Am I the only one feeling this way?)

Days before the date I had come to terms with it- I swear I really had (it was something that wasn’t to be avoided and it’s good to get the reassurance that you are healthy and getting life-insurance is the mature, responsible thing to do). So at the time of the appointment I was feeling fine until…I wasn’t

Big tough mama thug…

Last week returning some stuff at Target (what is it with that store…? You go in for one thing or return a couple items only, and it lures you in with its magical powers and $200 later…) my kids were the least of my problems.

So I’m browsing, realizing that I MUST (urgently need really) some stuff like sparking water (a necessity), baby food pouches (always), little cute, sparkling headbands (well, you know…). My big kid is in the cart trying to hold on to the increasing number of items (I’m really not trying to cover him with household must-haves, baby essentials and crucial clothing items here… but am struggling) and baby in the cart seat.

As I’m strolling along, kids actually behaving (mostly due to the small placating toy and unhealthy snack item-hey I’m human!) my son decides he is dying for some “green stuff”. The green stuff are these dried (and probably fried…?) salted snap peas that he likes to munch on lately. Slightly excited he didn’t ask for candy or cookies (the dreaded “c-words” along with chips and chocolate) I head over to the produce section (because ironically that is where they keep them).

While I’m there I might as well get some apples (naturally) and some veggies for taco night (but of course) and hey, there is the dairy aisle and aren’t we almost out of yoghurt…and milk…? Most certainly milk (can’t be sure because nobody really drinks that stuff but hubby). I grab some stuff (watching my son disappear slowly- only his blond head popping up out of the growing merchandise mountain…it’s not that bad, besides I’m now in the healthy food section…what’s more important than that?) but have to stop my shopping dance in front of the “green stuff”. A Target employee is blocking them and some dried fruit (definitely better than candy) and some interesting looking bagels (so cute and wheat…pretty sure they’re wheat…at least they are sort of brownish looking…better take a closer look…

I’m on a roll here (trying not to impersonate the shopoholic but hey, this is good) so I inch closer to the guy working by the stuff I need and announce in a loud voice “I’m just going to steal some of these and a couple of those”…

As I reach over his arms (he is arranging the “green stuff”) he loudly clears his throat…
You seriously won’t believe what happens next…

The employee asks me why I said that I was going to steal multiple items (wait…what???). I’m so confused, why would he think that?

The target guy stops me as I’m about to back away (this man is clearly not sane…) and announces “that he isn’t comfortable with my statement “to steal” (I can barely remember saying that as it is a saying and I now suddenly wish I would have phrased it differently, very differently) as I unfortunately laugh (wait, is this the same as joking about bombs in airport security…its not, right!?)

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Apparently that was the wrong reaction (but come on!!! Really??) because he looks incredibly serious as he starts talking in his walker talkie thingy (yes this happened!). He tells me to stay put while he calls a manager. I hesitate as I stand with my overflowing cart and my two (now) whiny kids. I take a couple of steps towards him trying to explain that really “can I steal some of these” is really an expression and I never (honestly) meant to steal anything (I know my kid took something from the grocery store so you might be on this nutty guy’s side too… but seriously I didn’t see it AND we took it right back…remember!?). He puts his hands up in front of me (like I’m going to attack him or something…major eye roll…is this happening??) and tells me to please step back and to sit tight (maybe I should sit down too…to take him literally…) but I guess I feel kind of sorry for him at the same time as I’m too polite (and frankly feel a bit uneasy) so I  just stand there with my children at our local Target waiting for a manager because I said that I was going to steal…(only me…)…

Apparently when you are a mom you just FIX IT…

After dinner, on our way to the car there is an unfortunate round, artsy fountain looking thing with water basically shooting out from the ground…

Yes, you guessed it, I told my son “we are not playing in the water, we are going straight to the car” several times before walking by it. His little friend was allowed to play near the water and run for a little bit (it is then so difficult to deny your son to do the same but the other boy’s behavior at dinner was definitely better than my boy’s, so he had earned some run and play time). That is exactly what he did; he ran and he played. I stood firm in my decision however, that we were saying bye and going to the car.

My son had other plans (what else is new?). He let go of my hand as I struggled to hold on to the squirming baby (you know how babies get) and he went straight for the water!

He was soaked and laughing by the time I got ahold of him. I wasn’t…

Laughing that is, I was more like…boiling…

What now? It’s not like I wanted to be “that mom” yelling and screaming at my son in a public place (in front of my friend and her kid) while juggling the baby and also trying to hold on to his slippery body to keep him from running right back to the water. I felt it though, the anger…oh how I felt it. The cones, the dinner, the obvious disobedience! But I swallowed it trying to remember that he is just a little boy wanting to have fun and not understanding why the rules are there… for a reason. In my head I frantically yell, no TV, no iPad, no Legos, no freaking dinosaurs…no fun!! EVER again!

I look at the reason I said “no water” though right now.  There was obviously no way he could just innocently play NEAR the water, casually watching it like his friend. Nop, of course not (that would be so out of character!) Now he is blue lipped and shivering, “mommy, I’m cold…Shirt and pants please”…

Back to the bad mama title…I did not have a change of clothes with me for him (baby yes! Four year old, no!)

This was quite the dilemma for multiple reasons; he was literally wet all the way through his clothes and I didn’t even have a towel that he could sit on in his car seat. He hates getting his clothes wet and wants to change out of them immediately (I know so ironic, right?!…I certainly didn’t get him into this situation but apparently when you are a mom it doesn’t matter…you are still suppose to make it right- you still have to be there to FIX IT, and I have a sneaking suspicion that will not end any time soon). The other issue was that we had to pick up some groceries on the way back home (in desperate need of some yoghurt, water and wipes…I know, bad mama planning…but to be fair to, well me…their dad forgot some stuff at his last grocery trip, and baby now drinks these drinkable yoghurts too… bottom line being, we now have to buy more).

I’m pretty sure they won’t allow a wet and NAKED boy at the grocery store (in one of the fancy neighborhoods too…not that that matters, but you know…), even if he is four!

Luckily my ever so resourceful friend had an old change of clothes (size 3 t) for her son that she lets us borrow!

What would I have done without these clothes? Probably driven home with a naked little guy strapped into his car seat, no yoghurt at nighttime for my littlest and no wipes for baby’s next poopy diaper…

What happens at the store is not even funny and I’m don’t want your pity anyways…

Well, okay maybe I do…a little.

Just so you do get an understanding of why I finally snapped I will give you a sneak peak into my Thursday night (turning way later than I planned and ended up way passed bedtime). Let’s just say it involved a tower of apples getting knocked down with what seemed like hundreds of bright red apples rolling frantically in all different directions of the store (you don’t have to tell me, I KNOW this has happened before), someone chocked on a bread roll and managed to throw up, someone got bit, someone got pinched (in retaliation), someone stole (don’t worry the item was returned…along with my sanity)

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and someone had a nervous breakdown!

Well there you have it! That’s all folks!

Kid bullies, bare bottoms and broken lips…

Chaos erupts! My sister is calling to tell her nephew “happy birthday” so I put her on speaker (as he struggles to speak to her in Swedish) and I’m trying to overhear so I can “translate”. There are a couple of other kids in the indoor play area and one of them just doesn’t seem to be able to leave the baby alone. He pushes her and pinches her- she doesn’t cry (being used to her big brother) but seems distressed.

I try to be apart of my sister’s and son’s phone conversation while helping my daughter out but the other toddler does not make it easy. In these situations I always get confused (and a little upset), do I scold someone else’s child (he is being really rough with her and I already said “no, she doesn’t like that” multiple times nicely) or do you talk to the parents?
The mom is just standing there conveniently outside the heavy gate (so great and no “underage kid”- I’m not talking 21 here more like 8…10!? can open it) blatantly ignoring what is going on (even though I have tried to catch her eye…also several times.

I’m forced to remove my little girl from the situation which is not fair since she was having so much fun. She protests loudly (can you blame her…they had “real” books to chew on and lots of big boy toys!). My friend and I launch into a discussion about what you do when another kid is “bullying” (even though they are probably too young for that term) your own?

It is not like we have never been on the other end of this. Both our kids are headstrong and stubborn with at least in my son’s case a little “selfish” (what 3-4 year old child isn’t by the way) personality (me, me, me and mine). I have had my child hit someone, a grown-up, thank goodness (if you are said grown up still traumatized from the gymboree music class for 18 months olds a couple of years ago, I’m terribly sorry) with a big flashlight in the head, I have had him push a baby on the playground for “stealing” his toy, throw sand in someone’s eye because he wanted her toy etc. etc. But I pride myself in at least always always, interrupting, apologizing, sitting him down explaining what he did wrong, having him apologize and ultimately removing him from the situation.

I think my friend and I are on the same page at least until…

Smack!

Ok, my son is off the phone (now there did the cell go?) and on to..

Apparently throwing books on people, more specifically my friend’s sweet daughter. I hate seeing her cry, especially since it’s caused by MY son AND her lip is bleeding. Now this situation is definitely worse. It is so awkward and uncomfortable and sad and unnecessary (unfortunately it happens quite often). We are just lucky we are with friends and my friend is beyond understanding while her daughter is bleeding from her mouth. I apologize for my wild son of course but can’t help to add that I don’t think he meant it (and I don’t think he did, he would never want to hurt his “bestest girl”). His movements are just still so jerky and out of control.

Here comes the “we don’t throw” lecture, on my knees at his eye level. I can tell he is sad but I make him apologize and because he gets upset at me when he does wrong (oh the logic!) he throws another book. I have just about had it (the toddler pushing around my baby girl before seems like an angel in comparison).

I loudly and sternly announce that we are going to the car since he can’t behave. Too bad because we were having such a good time just moments earlier. I can tell he realizes throwing a second book was a bad move (well, good) and he apologizes to “his girl”.

The only problem remaining is the potty situation and as if my son knows that he can add some final drama before we call it a day… He promptly pulls his pants down before he even reaches the restroom (most of the people have left though which is a relief because I know all to well how people can get).

The door is wide open and his pants are around his ankles, trying to show his friend how it’s done! (Coming from a good place). Her lip seems (thankfully) better and she is over that and on to the next adventure of public restrooms. My son proudly announces “his number two” (which my friend confirms). Where am I you ask? Well I’m still inside of the heavy (kid proof) gate trying to find my phone, gather all of our belongings and my screaming baby.

I quickly realize that my son has pulled his pants back up directly after “pottying”, forgetting a step…

Now, where are those “free” wipes?

Blindfolded mama!

As we get driven to the airport by the driver my husband uses for work, I still don’t know where we are going. This make me feel slightly nervous and out of control but I’m trying to relax and enjoy the ride (I really am).

I’m squeezed in between my two kids. My little 8 months old hating her car seat and the car ride as much as ever, while my 3 year old is enjoying some cartoons (SpongeBob; whom I don’t exactly approve of) on the car’s backseat TV monitor trying to ignore his little sister’s wailing. Who are you to complain I think- you are feed and bathed and clothed and should be comfortable letting mommy take care of planning and worrying. Oh, the responsibilities! I just hope I packed everything and all the right things. Lots to pack and think of when you have little ones. I’m itching to just ask hubby exactly where we are going already…and where we are staying! And what we are doing!

He is doing the whole blind folding (which is sweet but is driving me nuts) and it’s quite difficult not seeing when two kids (especially the clingy little one) need you. As we sit by the gate, I have to trust the man I married completely (and I do but I am also getting impatient and increasingly claustrophobic). I eat blind, I nurse blind and I interact with my children- you guessed it blind! This seriously gives me a newfound respect for the vision impaired (how do they do it?) and as I silently pray for their strength, I secretly glance down from my tightly tied scarf and try to peak at something…anything. All I see is the ground though and people’s feet, oh and the stroller wheals and nearby bags.

Boarding is interesting, I’m of no help whatsoever. I almost feel sorry for darling husband. I’m not allowed to carry baby girl because what if I trip? She is not a big fan of that arrangement. Hubby has to get stroller tags and carry our carry-on luggage and put baby in the stroller while keeping an eye on our wild three year old. I don’t envy him. “Are we going on the plane now? Now? Now? Now daddy? What about now?” He is also running and somehow manages to harass a whole lot of people around him. Good for him that he is so cute, people almost always immediately forgive him (my husband has that same thing going for him). People around us are probably wondering about my scarf, or they get upset about my apparent lack of parent participation. I would so participate more if I had my sight, I promise! Some people I can hear asking my husband why I’m blindfolded (Nop, nothing kinky people…). He hates people approaching him, especially strangers with stupid questions but I hear him answering (not without pride) that he is surprising me with a trip to an unknown location (oh come on, tell me already!).

So we make it on the plane. Walking the aisle, I’m terrified of bumping into people, tripping falling or in general hurting myself and/or others, so husband graciously lets me take off the blindfold, only if I promise not to find out where we are going (taking it a little far- how am I supposed to do that?). I actually manage not to hear the pilot announcing our destination twice, as I’m breastfeeding baby- trying to keep the cover over her head (to no avail) while trying to stop my son from hitting us both with one of those lollipops (I know bad, very bad, sugar and all) on a spinning stick (genius invention!) and with toy dinosaurs (he is obsessed-with dinosaurs I mean, not hitting… although…). My main man looks over at me expectantly as I’m completely clueless.

Well the trip is short and surprisingly smooth as we land in … (Drumroll please!) Salt Lake City, Utah!

This is not our final destination though… and now the troubles start…

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For the love of…Snow

There is a ton of friction between darling husband and myself right before the trip. I know it’s ridiculous because this is supposed to be a welcome break from everyday life and we are supposed to be a team and a loving couple taking our lovely family on an amazing vacation. Unfortunately reality doesn’t always match up with how things are “supposed to be”.

A couple of days before, hubby tells us that we are going to “cold”. I secretly hoped for “warm” but am being extremely unfair since I have been dropping hints about missing Sweden, the seasons and especially the cold winter weather this time of year. Something is definitely missing for me when you celebrate Christmas without snow amongst the palm trees. So fine, cold it is!

The kid’s pediatrician isn’t exactly thrilled about the trip, the plane ride or the “cold” and insists on seeing them the day before AGAIN to check ears and baby’s lungs and urine (just in case). She is not convinced the antibiotics are working their magic because especially little girl’s ears still don’t look good. But what are we going to do? The trip is all booked and paid for. The Kid’s daddy says that “we will of course stay home if we are jeopardizing the kid’s health in anyway” but at the same time it’s seems a little extreme to cancel the whole entire surprise winter vacation because a couple of ear infections. We carry on, plan on going and hope for the best.

I frantically go out and get winter clothes for all of us (after willing my son to fit into last season’s snow suit-no such luck) despite the kids still being sick. They are both on second doses of antibiotics (responding well… luckily after an especially bad bout of diarrhea) fever-free and much better but I still feel bad dragging them to the mall. It’s also hard, trying on stuff alone with a baby and a preschooler. Planning (being a “natural born planner), organizing and finally packing for this vacation is no cake walk. Nothing about this does exactly feel “restful”.

It was supposed to be a wonderful surprise and I’m working on myself and my secret resentment about this trip feeling like MORE work, not less. I really want to have a great attitude, seem (and actually feel) thankful, stress free and happy. I can’t even imagine this being a relaxing trip though with two still sick kids, one being extremely wild three teal old and the other one a teething, nursing preemie. Traveling by plane with two kids under four- oh joy!

Finally the day before, I have time to get excited! It’s true, I can actually feel it. Yes, it’s hard work but this vacation is a welcomed break! We can do this. Snow around Christmas will be awesome after all. I am starting to get used to the idea. I love snow, and think about how much fun our son will have with it, and how many Christmassy things we will be able to do. Snow here we come! Bring on the sleigh rides, the snowmen and the snowball fights! This will be great! The kids will look so cute in their snow gear (nobody will be able to tell that I haven’t lost the baby weight under all that clothing) and maybe hubby and I will have the chance to re-connect by an after ski fire place with some yummy hot coco (not sure where the kids fit into that picture). All children love snow, I can’t wait to “introduce” them to it (baby’s first snow!) I’m really actually switching all ideas about warmer weather and am starting to really look forward to a white winter wonderland!

As I’m packing (in a way better mood now) my amazing husband hesitantly lets me know that…it is actually not currently snowing at this mystery location… Actually, there is no snow at all. And the weather forecast for the week shows temperatures in the mid-forties to fifties with absolutely no chance of snow. Terrific!!!

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