Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Small Town Bound

I was raised in the hood because that’s where my dad’s family house was. The neighborhood went to shit around us. I went to sleep with the sound of bullets flying, and recognized a drug deal when it was happening right out in front of my house. My parents had about had it when a kid at my sister’s elementary school was caught with a baggie of coke. Then we moved to a small farming town because my parents wanted us to experience the safety and community of a small town.

We moved just in time for my 8th grade year. I vowed I would leave as soon as I turned 18. And I did, to go to college, but I keep going back. It’s a love-hate relationship, but it is home. My parents have since moved to another city but my sister and I keep going back whenever we get a chance. I’ve since then brought my new family out there and have submerged them as much as I can into my small town family.

FH and I have talked casually about moving there someday and with Older Boy about to start middle school we’ve decided we’d like to move there. I have an idea now about why my parents moved us there. Although it’s not the exact same reasons that my parents moved us.

Middle Boy and Older Boy have had a really hard time it seems. They’re really drawn in and seem to be big fish lost in a lake with little fishes. In other words, they do well in class and often get pushed aside so teachers can deal with the children who are not doing as hot. Also, they just closed two elementary schools in our town so their elementary school that already has large class sizes is getting an influx of new students.

We’ve asked Older Boy what he thought about moving to the small town and he was really excited. Older Boy asked for a tour of where all the schools were at. If he had been reluctant I think we might have reconsidered, but since he has a lot of enthusiasm and excitement I think we’re going to go for it.

We’re really hoping that being in a small community will help them to flourish as individuals … Especially with sports, new friends and a sense of security with the town. I’m genuinely hoping that they’ll feel the same way I do about the small town … that its home.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Being a Stepmom is Stressful

I had really hoped that maybe with time being a stepmom would be easier. As in, after time with the boys I wouldn’t feel quite as frustrated at times. But there are still some days it takes all the control I have not to pull my hair out, pack up the cat and baby and walk out the door.

It’s not even that I don’t like the boys. I love them very much. But I think there is a great amount of pressure I feel when it comes to raising them. I hear so much from my mother-in-law or other relatives on either FH or Jane’s sides about how worried everyone was for the boys’ well being.

I can’t imagine that everyone is exaggerating but I just can’t grasp how bad it was. Could it really have been that drastically bad? I guess it could have. But I just can’t grasp it.

I know that the boys have all blossomed into amazing individuals under my care. I know that they can only continue to grow and blossom more. But I feel like I can’t mess it up … Like if they turn out anything like their mother or worse then somewhere along the way I messed up in raising them.

I hear from both FH and Jane’s side this worry and concern from the past and receive a lot of praise and thanks for what I’ve done and what I’m continuing to do. (It’s really quite weird to have people thank me so often for being a mom to the boys. It’s nature to me, and it feels like I’ve gone up and beyond my expected duties the way they all thank me.) And it feels almost like there is a weight on my shoulder that I have to make these children successful. It is very overwhelming at times.

I know I can only take each of them so far. I can only instill my love, my values, my example and that they’ll have to take all those and create themselves from there. In the back of my head though sometimes I feel a whip and hear a voice that says if I don't give it 180% instead of just try my best that maybe I'm giving it my all. (I think that it all comes down to the fact that I am my own worst enemy as in I'm the hardest on myself.)

I honestly sometimes feel stressed trying to just be a mom to them. Now that I have a biological child of my own I’ve been able to sort things out. I feel a stress to make sure that I’m raising my own child the way I want to and to be the best mom I know how. But it’s just a different stress from raising someone else’s kids, even though they’re my kids too now.

Does that make sense? I’ve decided that I’m putting some money away (about $14) and I’m going to the Jelly Belly Factory out here to treat myself to six delicious squares of gourmet fudge. So good! And that is how I’m going to be good to me and try my best to relax and not stress out as much.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

My Exhausted Excitement

I don’t know how I manage some days. My days seem non-stop between being the Mom Taxi, the Mother of an infant, nursing her, making her homemade baby food, making dinners, making sure the kids do their stuff, nagging FH to make sure Jane sees the boys, and working a full time job on top of it. Oh yes, and being a cat lady. We must not forget Nasty Cat.

I have a real respect for single mothers. If I’m this exhausted and I have a spouse to help out I can’t imagine what it’s like to go at it alone. Although I think three kids and infant must be exhausting to anyone with a pulse.

In short – Baby J is teething. Those cute little nubs of tooth have made their way through the gums and are continuing to make my days something else.


Baby J is now mobile. By mobile I mean she is flying across the carpet. She went from face-planting it wobbly first movements to “smooth as butter” in a matter of four days. I told Nasty Cat he has better start running now because she’s going to catch up with him.

And now, I’m proud to present to you My Exhuasted Excitement: