Empathy

For as challenging as Maya can be these days, she also has a real empathetic side — and is really in-tune to how people around her are feeling.

“Mommy are you sad?” “Are you fwus-ta-wated with Benny?” “Mommy, are you not happy with me?”

I try to keep it real; tell her when I’m upset and why. Usually she knows; I pretty much wear my heart on my sleeve.

And every so often, she shows a glimmer of her “younger” self … her empathetic self. Continue reading “Empathy”

game changer

When you’re pregnant with your first, everyone tells you how much your life will change with a baby — and of course they’re right; it most certainly does. In ways we can expect (sleepless nights; your time isn’t your own until bedtime and then you just want to sleep anyway; you’ll never shower in peace again) — and ways we can’t truly grasp til your baby arrives (discovering love like you’ve never known; feeling like you’d throw yourself in front of a bus if it meant saving this little life).

For nearly three awesome years, our world had been centered around our sweet Maya and the little family we had built. Then I got pregnant with Ben and — as I’d expressed here — I knew another baby would shake things up and worried how I’d be able to not only love someone else as much as I loved Maya … but also give as much love and attention to her as I wanted. Continue reading “game changer”

Unpredictability

I’m a planner. A Type A organizer. I don’t just do things on a whim (except impulse purchases … that’s the exception!). I like to know what’s happening when, and hate not being in control of a situation.

Which is why having a totally unpredictable newborn is driving me bonkers.

There, I said it. Having a newborn is HARD.  Continue reading “Unpredictability”

Letting Go

Part of parenthood means giving up control and letting go: never losing sight of our children, but loosening our instinctive grip. It’s daunting and exhilarating at the same time, but it’s a necessary component of being a mom or a dad.

Recently, Maya experienced her first amusement park-type ride — a Ferris Wheel — at Luis’s company picnic (which is really a full-blown carnival complete with a mobile petting zoo including kangaroos, monkeys, a baby zebra …., lots of blow-up rides, games, food booths, and even some real rides … it’s insane!).

As soon as we arrived, she couldn’t take her little eyes off the kiddie Ferris Wheel. We thought we’d ease into it by letting her try going through the big caterpillar tunnel — on ground level —  but after taking off her shoes and waiting in line 10 minutes, and asking us every 30 seconds if it was her turn yet, she got to the entrance … and backed out. I tried gently coaxing her but she wasn’t having any of it. I didn’t want to traumatize her, so I let it be, figuring she’s only two … there will be plenty of other opportunities to push her. Continue reading “Letting Go”

“I Not Listening”

It’s a good thing she is cute because sometimes two really IS terrible.

“I not listening!” Oh yes. That’s what she told me tonight as she climbed back down the stairs after I told her it was bed-time.

As though it was a joke.

She had been testing me all night, and this was the icing on the cake. Wordlessly, I scooped her up — over-tired and thrashing her chubby hands and legs — and got her ready for bed … sans story. Oh yes, I went there. I kissed her and tucked her in, turned off the light and walked out. Continue reading ““I Not Listening””

Being Us

Parenthood is amazing–don’t get me wrong.

But one of the hardest thing about becoming parents is that, naturally, your married life –and identity as a couple — changes.

Lots has been written about women becoming moms and men becoming dads, but aside from marriage counseling-type books (that assume there is a problem), there isn’t a ton out there explaining the how and why things change … and how we can work to ensure our marriage doesn’t take a backseat to parenthood. Continue reading “Being Us”