Just a first time mom writing about the randomness of life and how being mom is full of laughter, tears, fears and happiness. Living it out one gray hair at a time.

Monthly Archives: February 2014

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For about 13 years now, I have been suffering from anxiety. It started when I was about 20 years old. My aunt, whom I was very close to, was going through major depression and medical/mental health issues. At that time, I took on the role of contacting facilities, speaking (and often arguing) with doctors and generally trying to find the best car possible that I could find for her with the government ran insurance that she had. I was also taking some college courses at the time. Needless to say, my plate was a little more than full. 

I remember sitting in English class. A warm flush came over me and suddenly this intense panic and fear took over my entire body, soon followed by a fainting feeling. I remember sitting there at my desk, silently trying to calm myself. After a few minutes, the feeling diminished and I was able to collect myself enough to go to the teacher and excuse myself from class. Walking down the flight of stairs from my classroom was terrifying, for fear that I may pass out and fall down them. When I finally got to my car, I sat there, for what seemed like hours, but in reality was just minutes. What was going on with me? I drove home, when looking back now probably wasn’t the best of ideas. Still living with my parents at the time, I kept this event quietly to myself. I felt that they would probably think I was over exaggerating, and it just wasn’t something I wanted to deal with. 

During the middle of that night, I woke up from a deep sleep, feeling as if I was being choked by something. I sat straight up in bed, gasping for air, becoming more and more terrified by the second. In all honesty, I truly felt as if I was going to die. At this point, I told my parents, whom were understanding but also a little confused about the entire situation. For the next seven nights, I was awoken the same way, sometimes more than once. Unsure as to what exactly was going on, I went to the doctors. He looked me over, check my heart (I was having palpitations as well) and came to the conclusion that I was having panic attacks, which was an anxiety disorder.

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My body could no longer handle the stress it was enduring and it basically was fighting back. You bastard of a body! Since I was unable to control these random attacks that felt like attacks of death, I was placed on medication.

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At first I was a little ashamed to be taking meds. I didn’t want to admit that I had this issue. I’m not really sure why. Maybe because society sees it as a weakness or a mental disease. I learned to accept it, and slowly decreased the number of attacks I was having. It’s been 13 years and I still suffer from them from time to time, not nearly as severe as when they first started happening, but equally as annoying. It honestly depends on what is going on in my life and how much my body is willing to handle.

So, what’s the point of this post?

Don’t be afraid or ashamed as to what is going on with yourself. It’s not a sign of weakness to admit you need help sometimes and there is no shame in taking medications if you need to. 

No one is a super hero, although sometimes we like to think of ourselves that way. Not everything can be done on your own, and that’s perfectly okay.

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Being a new mom if full of fears. Fears for your child, new fears for yourself. Today, while skimming through my Facebook feed, I was faced with my greatest fear of all.

A high school alumni, that I was fellow classmates with since middle school, had passed away on February 11th from breast cancer. She leaves behind a three year old daughter and a one year old son. Tears streamed down my face. It’s sad to hear about someone you once knew way back when and their untimely death ( my Class hasn’t had the best of luck with such things), and what’s even sadder is that her two young children are to grow up without their mom. Life just doesn’t seem fair sometimes, and this is what terrifies me the most. My greatest fear is to leave my child while she is still young. Seeing this post on my Facebook just heightens this fear.

Not that I plan on dropping dead in the middle of this post, but I am just reminded that we are never promised tomorrow. Too often do we forget this until we are reminded by startling and saddened news. After being reminded of how short and precious life truly is, I vow to hug my daughter a little tighter, hold her hand a little longer, play with her more often, listen closer and tell her I love her more and more each day.

 

If you have time, please check out Ramona’s Memorial page. They are trying to raise an education fund for her two children. 

Remember to tell your loved ones how much they mean to you everyday. And ladies PLEASE get those boobies checked!!!!


This past Saturday, in the wee hours of the morning, my husband’s grandmother passed away peacefully in her sleep at her home. She had been in the hospital for a few weeks and the time limit given by the doctors wasn’t very long. She wanted to go home, she wanted to be comfortable. 

She was a really sweet woman and she lived to the ripe old age of 91, just celebrating her 91st birthday this past December. My daughter loved her and would randomly ask how Grandma Virginia was doing. I haven’t told her yet. She is only four and just the thought of anything dealing with this subject matter terrifies her, which is understandable. It terrifies me and I’m 33. At four, she is able to grasp the concept of it and how frightening the unknown can be. My husband and I are not really sure how to go about telling her. We decided not to have her go to the funeral because, in all honesty, it would be devastating for her. Once that little brain starts thinking and analyses the whole situation it will lead to nights of crying and nightmares, which has happened before. 

I lost my grandmother (Nanie) when I was 26, about a month before my wedding. She was never able to meet my daughter or see me get married for that matter. She was like a second mother to me. I saw her nearly every day. When she passed, that first Christmas without her was the worst. I remember picking my husband’s grandmother up at her home that Christmas Eve to take her to my in-laws house for dinner. Sitting there in the back seat was tough for me and it listening to her tell her stories on the drive made me think so much of my Nanie and it took every ounce of me to hold back my tears. I remember feeling jealous of my husband. I know, very very selfish of me. It’s something I should have never felt, but I couldn’t help it. It took a little time, but I realized, my husband’s grandmother was mine now too. So, I was just as fortunate as he was to still have a grandmother figure around.

The day Grandma Virginia met my daughter and held her in her arms was very special to me.

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Em was only about a month and a half when grandma met her. Looking at this pic makes me want to cry. My daughter is very fortunate to have had the chance to know her great grandmother and be old enough now to be able to remember her throughout her life. Not a lot of us are able to say that. 

So in honor of my grandmother, I just wanted to share a few pictures. 

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December 2012

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December 2013

Rest in Peace sweet Grandma Virginia. You will be truly missed.


So Michele and Mel at Ketchup With Us had a great idea. Set a timer for 10 minutes and write whatever comes to mind. Alrighty, challenge excepted (even though it wasn’t expected of us, but sounds fun to me). And go….

So I am sitting in the bathroom while typing this, no you sick minded people, not doing that. My daughter is sitting in the bathtub playing with her Little Mermaid toys. So I decided to take this time to write and possibly pick my child’s brain about school. Like I’ve said before, school seems to be a secret society for only the cool kids at her preschool. (And I just got squirted, along with the laptop, with water by that damn Flounder toy. Screw you fish!) Where was I, oh yes, secret society. Talking with the parents at school, while we are all huddled outside the classroom door waiting patiently to round up our kids, I found out that none of the children talk about school. The conversations usually go like this:

How was school?

Ok

What did you learn today?

I don’t remember.

Did you learn any numbers?

Nope.

How about letters from the alphabet?

Nope. I played in the sandbox though!

Um, ok. Sounds fun. What stories did you listen to?

Really mom? I don’t know. Can’t remember.

 

Really, this type of conversation can go on for days (or at least it feels like days while I am trying to pry out information). What cracks me up is when this girl starts talking about the boys she plays with at school. I make sure I wait to ask any of those questions until hubs gets home. The thought of boys and our baby girl brings out some type of Super Dad in my husband that I personally find hilarious. Trust me, this girly doesn’t need her daddy’s help against the boys. I have a feeling she can take care of herself quite well when the time comes. She is one tough little cookie. Totally didn’t get that from me. I’m the silent, shy type; very introverted. Em on the other hand, she will start up random conversations in line at the grocery store with people. My complete opposite, the social butterfly. I needed some help opening my wings, this little sucker jumped right out of the cocoon, wings spread wide open and flew straight out into the uncharted, open skies. To be quite honest, I am a little jealous of that. Even now I am shy and often wait for people to start up a conversation with me before I talk. Stick me in a room of people I don’t know and I will be the coward in the corner sipping my wine and observing everyone’s move. Em, on the other hand, center of attention. She amazes me every time I look at her. What this girl will be capable of in the future is going to be nothing more than astounding. With a social butterfly, the sky is the limit.

And my 10 minutes is up. Whew! (wiping brow) 


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I LOVE watching the Olympics. The opening ceremonies, the athleticism, the pride you feel for you country, it is all amazing. Somehow, my child avoided all the opening ceremony stuff (I thought she would enjoy watching it, but she was bored), so I wanted to at least try to get her to watch some of the competitions.

First up: Slope Style

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This is amazing to watch. How they can just seamlessly fly in the air and do all those cool tricks is just unbelievable. I thought, yeah, this kid will LOVE to watch this. Not so much. She watched a little and moved on to more “important” things, like playing with her dolls. Hmm…ok, so slope style isn’t her cup of tea. Moving on.

Next: Cross Country Skiing

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Ok, I kind of already knew the results of this one. To be completely honest, I get a little bored after a fashion watching this. She held on for a whole 30 seconds before moving on to something different. Imagination Mover dance party anyone?

And now for something completely different (My Monty Python quote for today): Men’s Ice Skating

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I thought for sure she would be interested in this. She LOVES to dance and this is sort of dancing, on ice. She sat with me and the men’s programs were on. (Before Yevgeny Plushenko bowed out of the competition, which was quite sad) My child sat on the couch watching the men warm up and the first comment to come out of her little mouth,

“Mom, these are guys, right?”

“Yes”

“Why are they wearing sparkles? That dude is more sparkly than the girls.”

Haha…not really much I can say about that. It is kind of true. She did watch a few of the men skate before she darted off to her room to take care of, what I’m assuming, more important matters. At least I got her to watch a few performances.

On to the next: Skeleton

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How these athletes do this, I have no idea. This looks absolutely terrifying. I almost want to watch it through my fingers. The speed these people can go down the hill. I would need a new spandex outfit after that. This has to interest the child, at least scare the crap out of her. In her words,

” That looks easy. Penguins do that.”

Mini-comedian, smart ass. This is true, I’ve seen penguins slide down snowy hills like this and dive into the water. Well played child.

Is there anything that will impress this child? She is only four, so it’s possible she just isn’t ready for this kind of excitement. Someday, someday. Until then, I enjoy listening to her little comments.


I can safely bet that a majority of you have played with PlayDoh as a kid.

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How can you blame us, right? It’s fun to play with and the possibilities of what you can make are endless. A great imagination builder.

Does anyone out there remember Gak?

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Nickelodeon was a major participator of this “wonderful” creation. I was never really a fan of it, it just felt gross. My younger brother, on the other hand, LOVED this stuff. It was gross, slimey, could stretch it forever and you could make fart noises with it.

My mom was never a fan of either item, and with reluctance, let us play with them. I never really understood why she disliked it so much, she still does to this day. However, once I had a child of my own, I completely understand her hatred for these “toys”.

First, let’s start off with my love/hate relationship with PlayDoh. Yes, it is fun to create things with. Yes, it keeps your child quiet long enough for you to finish chores around the house. Yes, it can be a great sensory learning tool for your child. However, with a young child who doesn’t like to clean up after herself, the dough quickly hardens and I am left with empty canisters. True, it is partially my fault for not “training” my child to pick up her mess. It’s not like I haven’t tried and in all honesty I use to pick up the stuff and put it away, but like most parents of head strong children, you give up and let them learn from their mistakes. “You don’t clean up the PlayDoh, it gets ruined and I throw it away.” My husband and I refuse to by her more, but the dang grandparents….COME ON!!!!! I call my mom out all the time on it saying, “You hated this stuff when I was a kid and you don’t even like it now. Why the hell do you keep buying it for her?” My mother’s response, “Because I don’t have to deal with it.” Well played mother, well played.

My main issue I have with the PlahDoh is the mess it leaves behind, on my carpet. My house consists of half carpet and half hardwood. Where my daughter plays with this stuff is in the dinning room, where there is carpet. I don’t have a playroom, which would make my life a little easier, and I don’t really want her playing with PlayDoh in her room (I can only imagine the places I would find it). After she is done playing, the amounts of small, crumbed pieces of PlayDoh is remarkable. Ever go to the beach and come home to find sand in every crevice possible and wonder how it got there and why there is so much of it? Yeah, that’s how I feel about the minuscule pieces of PlayDoh on my carpet. How can one 2oz canister of PlayDoh create such of a mess? It baffles me. I fear I may soon kill my vacuum cleaner from using it so often to pick up the messes left behind. And don’t even get me started on some of the “maker” toys you can buy for this stuff. I have a review of my own coming for one of these PlayDoh maker toys, stay tuned.

My next issue, which is just a hate/hate relationship, Gak. Like I said before, I remember this stuff from the 90’s. My brother had neon green (which I guess you could say is it’s true, identifiable color). Needless to say, with my mom, this stuff didn’t last long in the house and I can completely understand why. This stuff sucks!!!!! It stains carpets, furniture, clothing, you name it. It can be broken into the smallest of small pieces, making it easier to stain surfaces because you don’t see it at first and by the time you do, it’s too late. To me, this stuff just feels gross. It reminds me of really gross, thick, mucus snot (I apologize for the visual). The only reason my kid has this disgusting invention is because “Santa” brought her Doggie Doo for Christmas. You can read all about my blog post of that toy here… Games Sure Have Changed Not one of the greatest toy decisions ever made.

She sure looks happy, right?

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Poor Cinderella never stood a chance. Princesses everywhere are cringing right now and possibly hiding in an underground shelter. I don’t blame them. After this attack, Cinderella just won’t be the same.

Speaking as a parent, messy toys are just a pain in the butt, but for the kids the messier the better. Trust me, when my daughter has kids (oh dear God, just the thought) believe you me, her kids will have wagon loads of this stuff. It’s what grandparents are for, right?


In my last post I talked about how my child’s teacher told me that my 4 year old wasn’t ready for academics. How she didn’t test very well and wasn’t able to focus. Today, what I learned made me extremely angry and I can fully understand why the teacher feels my daughter doesn’t “test well”.

I received a phone call from the school saying that my daughter was itching like crazy and that they went down to the classroom to check on her. Supposedly she had a rash on her arms, stomach and cheeks and they wanted to know if I had changed detergents which could have caused the rash and itching. Concerned, I drove down to the school to get a look for myself. I figured it was probably the new clothes I bought her for picture day, but always better to be safe than sorry. Thankfully, the rash seemed to disappear before I was able to get there.

When the director of the school let me into the classroom, the teacher said that Emily was currently being tested. I looked around the classroom very confused. How can a child that is easily distracted, you say can’t focus, be tested when she is sitting at a table with the teacher while there are kids playing loudly right behind her, balls bouncing around, kids sitting right next to her eating and coloring? No wonder she doesn’t “test well.” 

Deep breaths mama bear…

Maybe it’s just me, but wouldn’t it make more sense to isolate the child to test them? Especially a child that seems to be distracted easily (which she is, she’s kinda like a cat) and has a hard time focusing. The frustration and anger I feel right now is unbelievable. To me, it’s like they are setting her up for failure. I’m sure it’s unintentional, but still. There is a room off to the side where their classroom supplies are. Wouldn’t it be possible to take 2 chairs into that room to test, or better yet, the numerous amounts of other rooms that aren’t being used? I am just completely baffled right now as to what I saw. I am also very thankful that I was able to see it, just by chance. 

I feel that the parent/teacher conference is going to be VERY interesting, to say the least. 



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