Community

Whether we see it or not we are all a part of various communities. It’s not a negative, and it should never be seen as separating one person from another. On the contrary it’s the glue that keeps a lot of us together. I happen to be a part of multiple communities in and around my city and I love it. Feeling close to people who get it, who understand what you are going through, it’s human nature. No one wants to be alone. They don’t yearn for that kind of life. Often times it’s just an unfortunate event that brings them to seclusion. It’s our job, the ones who do belong, to always make it a point to include others and go out of our way to be welcoming. Because that’s what community is all about.

The idea of community is to bring like minded individuals together and allow them the space needed to grow and flourish. We all need encouragement and support. When I embarked on the journey of motherhood I became a part of the mom community, we see each other at the grocery stores, sometimes dragging our screaming children behind us. We see each other out at restaurants trying to enjoy a meal that isn’t being cooked and cleaned up by you, and we smile, because we get it. We seek advice from one another because if anyone knows what you’re going through it’s another mom. And we’re always willing and ready to lend a helping hand and offer up what has worked for us.

Some of you may or may not know that I am also a part of a church community. And even though I have severely slacked in attending mass I know that if I needed them they would be there with open arms. Praying and sending love my way. We’re there for one another whether we see each other often or every once in a while. Because community is accepting each other, faults and all.

Another big community I happen to be a part of is the diabetes one. I may not meet up with other diabetics daily and discuss the craziness of this disease but I am always thinking of them. People I have met online and people I have met in person. We keep in touch and they are blessings to my life. They keep me motivated and striving for success. Their victories feel like mine and when they need a shoulder to cry on I’m there for them. Just like they’ve been there for me.

Community isn’t about segregation. It’s about finding people who have your back even if they don’t always agree with your choices. People who will stand with you when the going gets tough. Sometimes we just happen upon these communities, and sometimes they can save our lives. Community, to me, is one of the most important things you can have next to family. A solidarity, a trust, and a belief that when you’ve been knocked down or you’ve been beaten and bruised too many times, these people will be your support. They will always try to bring you back up. We should all want to be a part of something like this. Something so much bigger than us. I know I feel grateful every day for the moms, the diabetics, and the church communities I am involved with.

I couldn’t imagine it any other way.


Do you think community is important? Do you have a community or support system in your life, who are they? 

Playdate Expectations Vs. Reality.

Play Date

noun
noun: playdate
  1. a date and time set by parents for children to play together.
Actually it can be a little more then that. It can be an opportunity to meet and gather with other women like you who are tackling life as a stay-at-home-mom, or maybe you’re a work from home mom, whatever the case may be we get together joyfully while the kids play and gain the appropriate social skills needed to navigate through life. We vent or sometimes boast about our latest triumphs of motherhood. We chat about our newest must watch television obsessions, or what books we’re trying to read during naptime. Or maybe we sit in silence watching our children interact with like minded individuals while we sip our coffees and revel in the “alone” time.

Sounds like a slice of heaven, right? Well, I’m here to tell you some truths about play dates. I’ve been on three so far that didn’t consist of hanging out with a family member who may or may not have kids. So I’m kind of an expert. Here’s what I’ve experienced…


If you’re like me you’ve probably gone through the logistics of working out naps, and planning out nutritional lunches, before venturing out on your play date. If everything goes according to plan you will have a well rested, happy, toddler who is willing and ready to cooperate. Only things never go according to plan when dealing with the terrible twos so instead you get a screaming child, exhausted because he refused his nap earlier in the day, and literally wants nothing to do with you or that pile of yuck you call food. You might consider staying home at this point but the interaction with another adult who is not screaming for your attention seems nice.

 

Play dates in retrospect seem like bliss. You get out with other moms and get to be you for a brief moment. You get to have normal conversations about anything and everything so long as it doesn’t consist of poop or mickey mouse clubhouse, all while your little bundles of love and energy play and meet new kids. The reality is that it’s kind of a mad house. You have groups of kids who play well and groups of kids who want to rule that jungle gym. You are constantly watching, ducking, and weaving through the bodies of people to see where your child is. Did he fall? Is he crying in the corner? Is that him? No, oh there he is. He’s fine. You don’t get to chat long because your conversations are cut short by having to referee a dual that has somehow erupted in the middle of the play yard. It’s intense.

Let’s say you are able to rattle off a few anecdotes about life and the kids and all that fun stuff you soon realize that a meltdown is on the horizon. A full blown thrashing of oneself against any and everything is about to go down. Quickly you try to devise an escape route. How can I get out of this situation with as little trauma as possible. Only you’ve taken too long. Your brave little play yard hero has turned into a full blown villain and he’s wrecking havoc on everything. The other moms see the terror in your eyes. You try to regroup and confront the mad beast but the fangs are out. You try to pick him up for a quick and deliberate exit but he’s gone limp. It’s like every bone in his body has turned to slush and you look like you’re trying to pick up jello off the floor with chopsticks. Moms are watching now, some with a look of despair for what’s possibly in store for them, and others with a look of astonishment. Like they’ve never had to drag a child away from fun time while his 30 pound body suddenly feels like 600 pounds. You’re sweating and panting and wishing you’d never come out.

But then you get home, finally, and after a very quick change of pace and perhaps a nap for the both of you the fog has lifted and you realize that maybe it wasn’t so bad. You could probably do this again and with a little more preparation it might go even better. I say to you, good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favor.


Have you ever experienced a play date like this? Share in the comments. And as always don’t forget to wear that smile from ear to ear.

Mornings with me…

Here’s an episode of  mornings with the diabetic mommy.

My day starts out at 6:15 a.m when my daughter wakes me up from the deepest of slumbers by creepily breathing in my face and poking my cheek. She alerts me that her brother is now awake and requesting to go downstairs, he would also like milk and cereal. Okay, awesome. I sluggishly creep into the room. Sort of like a zombie only I don’t want brains, I want coffee, or more sleep. There staring up at me with the sweetest of eyes is my son screaming at me to pick him up. After retrieving him, his blanket, and whatever stuffed animal he begged for in the middle of the night, we make our way down the longest flight of stairs. They aren’t really but when you are carrying down a child that weighs more than a bag of potatoes and is also flailing about, it sure feels that way.

Once downstairs I finally have a second to check my blood sugar, make sure my dexcom is calibrated, if needed I correct…if not I go about my normal routine which is preparing my sons breakfast, taking my medicine for my thyroid and trying not to fall asleep mid walk.

Lately I have been attempting to exercise. It’s a cardio routine that is equivalent to walking a mile only it is in the middle of my living room. The same living room that just 5 minutes ago I set my son down in and now I am looking for him in a tornado of blocks, light sabers, and books. Tubs have been dumped and every toy is now spewed across the floor. My child is a magician obviously. I give him his food and he pretends to eat it but really he is sprinkling it around the room. I can only imagine he is stock piling it for later. In case he gets hungry between meals, I suppose.

As I maneuver around the area I turn on my workout dvd and begin “sweating it out” the extra sugar, the extra weight, the little bit of everything I don’t need hanging around. Then my daughter comes downstairs from getting ready for school. The two of them attempt to work out with me but really they are dancing around making  me laugh and lose concentration. I need to focus, I am in the zone. Before I know it the TV is being turned over to my son. We are now watching Sesame Street and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse until I want to punch myself in the face.

Leaving him for a second I get some water and check my sugar again. I’m dropping now so I suppose it’s time to make myself breakfast. Finally. Oh no, wait, it’s now time for my oldest to head out for school. I say my goodbyes, give her big kisses, and silently wish she didn’t have to leave. Suddenly I remember I have laundry to fold. My dexcom is starting to alarm but I look and it’s still in the 70’s. I’ll be fine. I fold the laundry and then check on my youngest. I sweep the kitchen and oh yeah, my sugar is dropping. Now it’s in the 30’s. Why do I do this to myself. I eat, quickly and without thinking. My son begs for some and I reluctantly share. He’s just too cute to say no to.

It’s now 10 a.m and I am left wondering where the morning has gone.

 

 

 

 

The Insecure Mom.

The other day I found myself questioning, yet again in my motherhood journey, whether I was a good mom or not. Some days I really feel like super mom getting everything done and feeling an overall productiveness wash over me, then there are times I feel like I’m still figuring things out, but in between all those moments what really goes through my mind is what the heck am I doing right now. If you are like me and carry the same kind of worry around your neck then I am here to share my epiphany. I am here to tell you it’s not you…it’s them. Our kids stink. Of course, I am completely joking. Well, sort of. What I mean to say is that you are amazing and these tiny little humans full of so much excitement, energy, and pure destructiveness are beautiful blessings that like to test our limits. We did it to our parents and these kids are now doing it to us.

It is the circle of life in the most perfect of ways.

They run on their own little schedules, they have their own little demands, and sometimes they have no idea what they want. And all of that is fine except when it leaves me feeling like I am doing this whole mom thing wrong.

Here is an example for you.

Lately my two year old has been taking the wheel on what he wants to eat and when. I am used to picky eaters and I am used to having to make different meals for the children in my life. What I am not used to is the refusal to eat. I’ll make a perfectly executed “kid friendly” meal that everyone can enjoy and my son will simply say no. I’ll make him things I know he likes and has eaten in the past and still I get a no. I’ve gotten to the point where I will literally give him just about anything so long as he is eating. Now, I do have my stipulations, I don’t do dessert as substitutes, and I will not buy fast food when I have created a delicious feast for the family. His foods of choice include; peanut butter sandwiches, cheese, peppers, and cereal. He accepts salad and applesauce on specific days…I am never sure when those days are though. He will also take pretzels and chicken. But even the chicken is a hit or miss entree.

Cue feelings of hopelessness as a mom. If I give him cereal for dinner am I doing him a disservice? If I settle and give him a peanut butter sandwich instead of the meal I’ve planned out am I stunting his pallet? These are actual things I think about. Most of my mom friends say that toddlers will not starve themselves, and I get that, but if he is refusing to eat and instead chanting for cookies what am I suppose to do?

You see my dilemma?

I try not to cave when he is crossing his arms and asking for cheese and crackers for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but I feel like if I don’t give it to him he will never eat again for the rest of his little life. Slightly dramatic, sure. That doesn’t change the fact that this little guy is making this mom feel like I’ve never done this whole parenting thing before.

My goals for this stubborn little man are to keep trying. Possibly be just as stubborn. And silently rejoice when he actually exclaims that the meal I have slaved over is, “Yum!” Scratch that. Openly rejoice when he likes what I feed him. Right? Right!

The thing is, motherhood, parenting, it’s all a learning process. Whether you are a first timer or this is your fourth baby. It’s a never ending opportunity to grow, explore, and sometimes compromise. What worked with the first, or second, may not work whatsoever with the next one. So if you find yourself feeling insecure about your decisions surrounding your babies just know that if you love them with every fiber of your being, if you are willing to sacrifice, if you are okay with sleepless nights, then you are doing this whole thing right and you are amazing. Advice I will try to carry with me, too.

Don’t forget to smile. The kids love smiles.

 

Who inspires you?

today-you-inspired-me

 

I remember being asked this question when I was younger. In school you’d have to write papers explaining in detail who inspired you and why. Sometimes I would pick authors and sometimes I would pick my sister or my mom. Truthfully, I was just picking people because I had to. I admired certain individuals because they had attributes I liked but to say they inspired me to be a better person, a better writer, a better anything, wasn’t usually the case. I feel as though the two are similar but also very different.

Then I had children of my own.

My daughter is now having to choose people in her life who inspire her and write little papers about them. It’s neat to see and read what she writes. Her thoughts come together so effortlessly when it’s something she’s passionate about. Her pieces are always well thought out and beautiful. In discussing her inspirations I got to thinking about who I would write about now, now that I am older, now that I have grown up in more ways than one, and you know who it came down to? My children.

Super cheesy, I know.

But it’s so undeniably true and real and wonderful.

Both of my children inspire me in so many ways every single day.

They inspire me to always be a dreamer, because no matter how old you get you are never too old to dream. They inspire me to make those dreams into reality, because hard work does indeed pay off and we are all allowed successes and victories at any stage in our life. They also inspire me to be present in each and every moment I am blessed with, because time is fleeting and we never know when our time will be up.

But most importantly they inspire me to love. To love with all of my heart and soul and without judgement, because love is not weighted by expectations or preconceived notions. Love is pure and it is perfect and it is for everyone.

Who inspires you?

Sleep when baby sleeps…

baby-mickey-mouse-sleeping-babymickmoon2

This is a very common phrase or piece of advice that is doled out to new parents, new moms, if we’re being specific. I heard it a lot during my first pregnancy, and again with my second one, however with my first I was actually able to sleep when she slept. She was the only one so all of my attention was on her. I solely focused on what she needed and even let my diabetes slip here and there. I ignored the laundry and the dishes. I vacuumed only so she wouldn’t get anything in her mouth she wasn’t supposed to. I literally did the bare minimum in house work and just enjoyed cuddling with her.

It was awesome.

With baby number two being a very rambunctious little guy and also having a very active seven year old now I don’t have many opportunities to “sleep when baby sleeps..” because when he is sleeping I am washing clothes and cleaning baby food stains out of the carpet and dealing with the aftermath of poo explosions, yes, those happen a lot. I am trying to give my oldest enough attention so she doesn’t feel neglected or feel any sort of animosity towards her little brother. I am trying to spend quality time with my husband. And this time around I am not allowing my diabetes to sit on the back burner. I’m busy being the secretary and planning meals.

There is so much more on my plate these days that when it comes to sleep it seems as though it is only something I can accomplish at night, once everyone is asleep, the house is semi picked up in case people stop by, laundry is done -because kids go through a lot more of it than you’d think- and I am just that exhausted. I can never sleep when baby sleeps during the day because there is always one thing after an other that needs my attention. So when I hear that piece of advice being thrown about…I cringe.

I’ll tell you the truth.

You can’t really sleep when baby sleeps unless you basically want to ignore the whole world. Occasionally it’s possible but those moments are few and far between. So no, don’t expect to sleep when baby sleeps. Instead of that incredibly played out advice I’ll say this, do try to relax whenever you can so that you can maintain your sanity. Always remember that eventually your to-do list will get done. Don’t be afraid to ask for help and never be afraid of letting the laundry go for a bit. As long as you’re happy, your family will be happy.

It’s going to be okay!

When life happens..

I’ve been away for awhile but I am hoping to be back at it now.

Did ya miss me?

With the birth of my son almost ten months ago a lot was going to be changing, myself, my family, life in general. Having another little one around plus trying to keep up with everything else that had already been in my life was kind of an obstacle for me. I nearly crumbled trying to get things, life, everything in order. I am a very organized person, to an extent, and the birth of my son, though joyous and exciting, brought about new scheduling, new dynamics, new routines.

I put a lot of my life on hold so I could try and figure things out. This blog was one of the pieces of me I had to set aside until I sorted the details out. Life isn’t perfect but it’s slowly getting there.

Updates on everything:

My oldest has started second grade and absolutely loves it. She thrives in the school setting. I adore that about her. I hated school when I was younger. My favorite subjects were reading and writing. Couldn’t I do that in the comforts of home? She’s made so many friends and has even gone to a few sleepovers. (That was harder on me then her, I’m sure!) Recently she discovered her love of Nancy Drew and though she still really wants to be a diabetic doctor she’d like to do side work as a detective. She amazes me everyday with her love and compassion. I am truly blessed. She’s also flourished as a big sister. I was worried she’d feel left out or kicked to the side once a new baby entered the picture but she’s been a wonderful helper and so loving towards this little guy. It’s beautiful.

My littlest bundle of love is going to be ten months on the fourth and I am in aw of everything he does. They grow up so fast and if I could slow time for even just a few minutes I would. He has three teeth, eats everything in sight, smiles whenever I walk into the room, has taken three steps unassisted, loves to torment the family cat, gives the sweetest hugs and kisses, and is so intrigued by the way things work. He’s so very different than the way my oldest was at the very same age. It’s just as incredible this second time around watching all his firsts. When I had my oldest I thought there was no possible way I could ever love someone as much as I loved her and then my son was born and I realized that my heart was split in two and I couldn’t imagine my life without these two kids. Again, feeling blessed.

My husband and I embarked on our own adventure aside from parenting. He was offered a better paying position with another company and so after working at his last job for almost eight years he said goodbye so that we could start another exciting chapter in our life. I quit my part time job at Target so that I could be home for/with the kids and so far things have been great. Slightly stressful at times but still awesome. It was nice getting out of the house every couple of days but I actually feel relieved, happy, about this change. Being home with the kids, focusing more on the home, and my own personal health, has been amazing. We’ve finally figured out a routine, that is sure to change again soon, but it works for us and that’s what really matters. At the end of the day I know we are exactly where we’re supposed to be.

Some of you may or may not know I also care for my brother who has mild MR. He’s older but at times can feel like my younger brother. When he first moved out here in 2012 we had no idea what we were getting into. It started out rough but I am so happy and proud of where we’ve come. Mostly how far he’s come along. Not so shy, has a gf, works and makes his own money. He is a completely different person from where he started so long ago. Sometimes we bump heads, sometimes I get frustrated but when I see how happy he is to feel like he is “normal” (whatever that means because none of us are actually normal, haha) it makes all the struggles we’ve had worth it.

Diabetes wise, I am still doing the MDI. It’s been sort of empowering. Yes, I am diabetic but I am not ashamed to “shoot up” in public. I am doing what I need to do to be healthy and haters gonna hate no matter what. Once in awhile I notice a look here and there but they don’t know any better. If they knew the everyday struggles of this disease I know they wouldn’t look so disturbed. One conversation at a time and soon enough everyone will be educated. I am feeling well, some days I get distracted by the kids and I’ll forget a shot here and there but other than that I have never felt better.

Overall life was hectic but I finally feel like we are getting somewhere. We are no longer stagnant and it’s glorious feeling like we have purpose again. Like I have purpose again. I am seeing the hard work of the past years finally paying off and the joy is overwhelming. So hopefully you’ll be seeing me around these parts more often.

I hope things are well with you mu friends. Smile big.

smile big