Category Archives: on struggles

Take THAT, apartment!!!

Over the past little while, I haven’t been on top of my “domestic duties”, so to speak. I know, this confession is shocking coming from me, huh? The one who actually believes in the 50s housewife mindset {to a degree, anyway}. But it’s true! I’ve been slacking, and then some! The soles of my slippers are caked in squished raisins – and that tells you about the cleanliness of my kitchen floor right there.

For the past week, I’ve been super lazy and tired. I think my iron is low – actually I know my iron is low. I don’t get nearly enough red meats, nor do I eat anything else high in iron. So I’ve been lazy, spending most of my afternoons doing nothing but cuddling up my baby boy and reading stories to him. During his nap time, I also nap…or have been, anyway. Our bedroom was a laundry war-zone, piles of dirty scattered about on the floor and baskets of clean stacked high to the ceiling. I was too lazy to fold the clean laundry, and thus didn’t have any baskets for the dirty laundry. Nor did I have any room in the baskets for more clean laundry so I couldn’t just toss it into the washer and dryer to get rid of it. No, that would mean that I would actually have to fold some of the clean clothes. I did manage to stay on top of the dishes, more or less. After all, we don’t have a dish washer and even at my most laziest moments I can’t stand having dirty dishes in my sink. So, go me for that at least!

Yeah, I’ve been the definition of lazy. Even my blogging indicates that, and that’s totally okay. We’re all entitled to moments {er, in my case, weeks} of laziness. I prefer to call it “weeks of rest”, thank you very much.

In any case, I’ve broken out of the fog spell and slapped myself upside the head. I am the one who does the majority of the cleaning {okay, all of it – although hubs does help me tidy up toys in the evening}, because I am the one that gets bothered most by mess and dirty things. I’ve mentioned thousands of times before that Matt does not see messes the way I see them. He’s blind to them. They don’t exist. The man will cook a fantastic dinner, but leave all of the dishes on the counter. I’m lucky if some of them make it into the sink. So, if I’m the only one who does all the majority of the cleaning, you can bet your socks that our apartment needed my love and attention. So this morning, I gave it just that.

A huge chore for me was the recycling under the sink. We have a little blue recycling bin that is supposed to be taken out to our big recycling bin outside when it gets full. However, our big recycling bin is currently buried under tons of snow, I’ve attempted to make Matt dig it out several times before but according to him “it’s frozen to the ground and if he tries to get it out the bottom will come out.” So, we technically don’t have the use of a big recycling bin. I keep forgetting to go to Walmart and pick up a new one {that will we store in Matt’s truck cab}, not to mention Matt missed recycling this week. {He claims it doesn’t matter, because he didn’t have anything to put all the recycling in anyway – since our big bin is, again, buried}. Trust me when I say that the recycling literally piled up to the point where you couldn’t even open the cupboard doors under the sink without tons of it falling out at you. And I kept leaving it, thinking that Matt would deal with it. Pfft, yeah right! Matt deal with a mess?!? Even with my constant bitching about it, it stayed under the sink. He kept saying “oh, I’ll put it all in bags and put it in the back of my truck for now”.

Guess what I did today? I put all of the recycling in bags and then brought it out to Matt’s truck and tossed it in the cab. Now, the cupboard under my sink looks exactly how it’s supposed to…like this:

And Matt’s truck cab is loaded up with bags full of recycling, waiting for the day when we finally get our asses to Walmart to buy a new big recycling bin. Which, if I have anything to do with it, will be happening very soon. I think it looks really trashy {snort, trash…get it!?} and I want that dealt with ASAP. While it brings me such joy to see Matt’s truck cab full of recycling, that joy is dampened by the facts that a) he doesn’t drive his truck during the winter so what kind of punishment is that anyway? and b) as I said, it’s totally trashy and I hate trashy.

So, yeah. That was a huge chore for me this morning. Plus I cleaned the entire kitchen and washed the floors {and picked all the squished raisins off my slippers}. Then I cleaned the bathroom and our bedroom. I’m catching up on laundry {nearly there!} and I’ve vacuumed the livingroom. Our apartment is slowly being restored to it’s original glory, and I love it!

I don’t know why I allow myself to get in lazy moods like that. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does the mood drags on and on and on. Seriously, weeks of laziness? What the hell, me?

I’m glad I finally gave our apartment some tender loving and care, since Matt would like to have his college friend, G, and G’s girlfriend over for a “fondue party” tomorrow night. I’m game because chocolate fondue is bomb! And yes, I know, I should have recruited his help because he wants to have the fondue party, but guess what? I’m sure I’ll be making him clean something in preparation for this “fondue party” – our apartment never stays clean for long!

When I say that Matt doesn’t see messes the way that I see them, I mean simply that. He doesn’t see them. If I tell him to clean something, he’ll do it. I know, the recycling was just him being super lazy and probably unable to see how or where we could store all that recycling without pissing off our landlords {he was thinking truck bed, I was thinking truck cab}.

The best thing about being a stay-at-home-mom is that I only have myself to report to. Matt is completely fine with messes. I, on the other hand, not so much. So the only person I piss off when I get lazy is myself. I don’t piss off any managers or bosses, and I don’t loose my job for slacking. So basically, I can be lazy and still “have a job”. It’s awesome. Plus when I’m feeling lazy and not wanting to clean, it just gives me even more time to read stories to Nolan and play with him. We’ve had tons of snuggles this week!

Oh and by the way, I found Nolan’s other snow boot…it was stuck in his snow pants. So Nolan didn’t actually lose it at all. Mom fail? Totally. Oh well, he doesn’t seem bothered by the misguided blame at all 😉

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QUITTER!

Sometimes, quitting things is good right? Like quitting smoking. They practically hand you an award if you quit smoking. Or if you quit drinking, you get one for that too.

I highly doubt I’ll get an award, or even a pat on the back, for quitting the gym though. In fact, I can already hear y’all now, trying to convince me not to. But…I just can’t do it.

I went to the gym today, and was all excited about it, then nearly got into a car accident on the way there. Although it wasn’t snowing when I left, the roads were absolute crap and there’s always one person {aka me} who doesn’t know how to drive in snow. Okay, so it wasn’t my fault. The person in front of me clearly had better snow tires and clearly wasn’t thinking about the possibility that I might not have amazing snow tires, so when they tromped on the break and I did too, I didn’t stop as quickly as I thought I would. Luckily, there was no collision. But my heart was still in my damn throat.

Have I mentioned winter driving, and snow, terrifies me?

Anyway. We arrived at the gym and I dropped Nolan off at the daycare, got my stuff in the locker, grabbed my water bottle and iPod and headed out to work out. Only…I couldn’t do it. I tried all of my machines and my body just was not cooperating. I tried over and over again for 20 minutes to make my body cooperate but it wouldn’t and I was frustrated. So I grabbed my stuff, my kid, and I left.

And I want to quit. I am going to quit.

It seems like every time I go, I get worse and worse at it.

I’m not quitting my get fit goal. I’m just going a different route. I’d much rather work out from home, and pay peanuts for peanut results. I’ll be putting all this money into a membership and I can grantee you I won’t be getting the results I want because my body doesn’t work that way. At all. If I buy work out videos and do them in my own home, at least I’ll be more comfortable and I won’t beat myself up if I can’t do something “the right way”.

So, in summary? I suck. And I’m okay with that. Because I don’t want to kill my body. I couldn’t even sit on the damn floor to play Megablocks with Nolan! I haven’t cleaned our apartment since I started working out, because I’ve been so sore and exhausted. It’s absolutely disgusting. Even when my friend Bruce visited, the apartment was not nearly as clean as it normally is for guests. Hells, it wasn’t even as clean as it normally is for us.

I’ll be quitting the gym and buying a couple of workout videos. Suggestions for workout videos are most definitely welcome.

So far, today has been crappy. There’s still time for it to redeem itself though.

I also didn’t go to Winners because now it’s snowing and the roads are a mess and I’m anxious. I really failed today.

Now, I need to go clean this disgustingly messy apartment.

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Halp? Peef?

Nolan is 21 months, which basically means he’s just 3 months short of his 2nd birthday. Normally, I have a wonderful, happy, bright child who never ceases to amaze me and make me smile. But lately…well, I’ve been having some difficulties with him.

Lately, Nolan’s been spending more and more time on {or at least near – try getting him to stay on it now} the “time out chair”. This is because, in the past four days, Nolan has become increasingly…violent. Only with me. Actually, mostly with me. Matt does get bitten from time to time. The pinching, biting, and slapping is on a whole new level – especially the pinching. Nolan now makes the same face when pinching me that he makes when squishing his food in his little hands. He smiles and then, using all the strength he can muster, he pinches…and it hurts. And lately? His target has been…my throat. He’s been pinching my throat. With force. When he does this I remove his fingers and tell him “we don’t pinch! that hurts!” then I give him a time out. He accepts his punishment {usually, sometimes he fights it} and we move on with our day…but it generally happens several times in a day.

This behavior is obviously completely unacceptable, but no matter what I do it continues to happen. Is this a stage, or should I actually be worried about this intent to cause harm? Or can a toddler even have “intent” to cause harm?

The rest of the time, he is that sweet, happy little child. He gives kisses and hugs and snuggles. But this biting/pinching/maiming me thing is getting old, fast. Have you experienced things like this with your toddler? What worked best?

I feel like I’m failing somehow, because I don’t know the answers to make this behavior stop for good.

I’m wondering if it could be that he’s bored. We interact with him all the time, we read books and build things using his {extremely large} collection of Megablocks. We play with all his other toys with him too. He plays with the little 3 year old girl I watch 4 days out of the week. Our outdoors time is sparse, yes, but only because by the time we get him bundled up and take him outside, he just doesn’t want any more to do with. He literally will put up a fight if we make him stay outside longer than 20 minutes.

So, yeah. I’m kinda at my wits end here folks, any suggestions are most welcome.

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The Orientation

So tonight, as I fretted earlier, I had my first orientation at the gym. It was all about learning how to use the cardio machines. Matt ended up staying home with Nolan, but I still left early so I could get a parking spot without any trouble. I arrived at the gym at 5pm – half an hour before the orientation. I went in and nervously waited about. It was nerve-wracking, I felt like everybody was staring at me {they weren’t}. I felt like I was “dressed wrong” {I was wearing my gray leggings, a blue thank top and a black shirt overtop with my dark gray hoodie}. I just felt…self conscious. Big surprise, right? So…I ended up hiding out in the change room, desperately texting my friend Sammi to see when she’d get there.

Only she told me her class was running late.

Insert panic attack.

I steadied myself out by taking a few deep breaths and saying I can do this over and over again. A couple of messages exchanged with Caitlin helped out too, as well as tweeting my anxiety away haha.

So, I stayed, and I went to the orientation and I learned how to use the machines. I even burned a whole 11 calories! WEEE!

I wanted to stay out and workout for a bit, but once I went to my locker {with the spiffy key lock Matt bought me guarding my valuables! I love that very thoughtful man} to text Sammi and see if she was coming or not, all the machines I wanted to use were already in use. After 5pm is the busy time of the night – everyone’s getting off work or out of school.

But the important thing is I went tonight. I was scared shitless, but I did it.

I’m going tomorrow too! I made a commitment to myself {and the gym} that I would go every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for sure. So after T gets picked up {around 10:30}, I will be going to the gym to get my workout on. I still don’t know if I’m bringing Nolan – normally on Friday’s I would because Matt is usually in school, but tomorrow he doesn’t have his classes because his teacher will be out-of-town. But Matt is going ice fishing with his friends, and he’s not sure if they’re leaving before noon or after. So we’ll see!

I’m also going to the gym on Saturday morning for another orientation – this one is for stretching! I’m pretty excited to learn how to stretch {properly}.

SWING!

When I came home tonight, I was so exhausted and I didn’t even do a proper workout! Matt and I got our little man into bed, then we both decided a nap was in serious order before Jersey Shore. I was so exhausted, it was pretty ridiculous. Then and again, I’ve had several late nights this week…staying up late, watching crappy TV with Matt or just reading blogs. I’ve got to put a stop to that!! I need to make sure my ass is in bed at 9pm on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. YES I AM TOTALLY BASING MY EARLY BEDTIMES ON THE TV SCHEDULE, SO SUE ME. I love watching Teen Mom 2 {Tuesday nights}, Greys Anatomy and Jersey Shore {Thursdays}. I think Much Music will start playing Vampire Diaries on Friday nights at 9…hopefully…so that I can still get to bed for 10 haha.

I know it’s pretty bad to plan your sleeping around the TV, but those are our “date shows”. Matt and I snuggle on the couch and enjoy a couple of hours of mindless reality or complex medical drama. 🙂

In addition to going to the gym today {!!!! so proud of myself haha}, I also recorded everything I ate on a piece of paper. I need to start an actual food journal, but for now this works. I had four monster sized glasses of water today, people! And I had a small snack or meal every 2 hours. I’m still not sure how to actually keep a food journal, but here’s what I have written down on my “food paper”:

7:30am – small glass of orange juice
8:30am – tea
9:00am – 1 piece of toast with peanut butter
9:20am – tall glass of water
9:30am – {another} tall glass of water
10:12am – a banana 🙂
10:30am – tall glass of water
11:30am – small bowl of alphagettis and a piece of bread with butter {bad, I know}
1:3opm – two granola bars
4:30pm – tall glass of water
4:40pm – homemade mac & cheese
9:00pm – handful of chips
9:20pm – milkshake with vanilla ice cream, vanilla yogurt, fruit and a spoonful of hot chocolate mix 😉

So yay! I sort of got a little naughty when I got home from the gym, I know. I should have eaten something right away but I was so exhausted I just crashed and when I woke up I was way too lazy to make anything so I grabbed the nearest thing to me – chips.

I’m still waiting to hear back from the trainer about my Personal Health Profile. Once they give me a better idea of what I should be eating for my weight loss/workout goals, I’ll be able to make a meal plan up that I can {hopefully} stick to. I’m going to cut the pasta down a bit in my diet. Usually, we eat pasta like 4 times a week {I know, I know}. I’m going to cut that number down too…one time a week. And that’s totally going to kill me, because I love pasta, but I’ll take it because I don’t want to have pasta completely gone from my life at this point 😦 haha.

Matt’s workout goals are totally opposite to mine. I want to lose some weight and tone up, and he wants to bulk up so his diet needs to have more carbs. Nolan also needs to put some weight on, so he’ll be sticking to a high-in-carbs diet too. Which means I’m going to have to eat more salads and fruits, and grilled chicken, while my boys get to have more fun. Lord help me! I am so bad at giving in to things.

But honestly? I am totally excited about this new chapter. I’m totally exhausted, yes, but I’m hoping it will be worth it and I’m hoping my body will adjust and I’ll have more energy to do things that I love.

I just wanted to say thanks for all the words of encouragement thus far! I don’t have a workout buddy yet {because I’m not sure about Sammi’s schedule vs mine}, but at least I have the Interwebz to keep me motivated 😉

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The Details

This morning, I woke up feeling heavy and groggy. All I wanted to do was pull the covers back up over my head and sleep for a few more hours. Obviously, when you have kids who are already awake, you can’t do that. By some miracle, I managed to drag my heavy, groggy ass out of bed and make it into the bathroom. As I went about my morning routine of teeth brushing, face washing, and hair/makeup, I started thinking about the day ahead of me…and going to the gym for that orientation after the girls’ get picked up. Suddenly, I started to feel panicky again. I started thinking about the little details – the drive, for one, is a panic-inducing aspect. It’s snowing – again – today, and finding parking at the hour of night I’m going is absolutely ridiculous. Trust me when I say I hate driving in the snow, and I hate searching all over for a damn parking space, and I hate parking. Then I started thinking about when I actually get into the gym, with Nolan. Panicked thoughts raced about my head a mile a minute.

Should I wear my workout clothes there, to elevate “change time”? I don’t even have proper workout clothes! I have black, crappy sweat pants that are literally flood pants and Matt’s t-shirts to pick from. I’m totally going to look like scrubby bum! Where am I even going to put my crap? I know they have lockers, but what if someone steals my keys, or phone, or something? Then what would I do!?

I actually had to grasp onto the bathroom sink to steady myself, as I was dizzy. I texted Matt with my locker dilemma and he said he leaves his stuff in the locker all the time without a lock. But I know he wears his shorts, and I know there are pockets in his shorts for the really important things like his wallet and his keys and his cell phone. I don’t have pockets in my crappy, flood pant sweats.

But, this is what I do. I freak out over tiny, insignificant details because at the time of {like, right now}, they really don’t feel insignificant. They feel like giant mountains that I can’t get past, even if you see them as ant hills, I am thinking: if someone steals my keys, how will Nolan and I get home? If someone steals my wallet, well then I’m super screwed because it holds all the important documents like my license and our health cards. If someone steals my phone then I’ll be screwed because I’ll have to either cancel my plan {which is expensive} or buy a new phone {which is expensive}. Both things are {expensive} not in our budget.

It’s bad enough that I’m already panicking about going because I have nobody to go with, but damnit self, can’t you give me us a break?!

Somehow, I need to overcome this. The only way I can think of overcoming it is by going tonight with no if’s and’s or but’s. My gym bag is already packed {although I don’t have a water bottle, I need to invest in one of those}, and I’ve at least solved the whole wallet-dilemma: I’m going to lock it in my glove box compartment in my car. Obviously, I can’t lock my keys in there and I really shouldn’t lock my cell phone because it would totally freeze, but at least I don’t have to worry about super important documents going missing from my wallet {because I really don’t have any money in there for anybody to steal. No credit cards, either!}

I was super pumped for Matt to download a bunch of new music so I could make a “workout playlist”, but he totally forgot and I can’t find my iPod anywhere 😦 I don’t think I’ll need it tonight, thankfully, because it’s an orientation so I’m sure I’ll need to pay attention.

But, anyway. Yeah, I’m going tonight, but I’m totally freakin’ the hell out over everything and anything. This would be so much easier if I had a work out buddy!!!

THIS JUST IN: I texted my friend Sammi, who I know has a gym membership because she tried to get me on board a million years ago, and…she’ll be there tonight as moral support! I know she’s already been through all the orientations, but she’ll go with me to elevate some of the stress I feel over the whole “new social interaction” thing! This makes everything so much easier, although I’m probably going to text her a thousand questions {like what I should wear, for one. Maybe I’ll wear leggings and a long sweater? Or is that too “dressy” for the gym!? I’m just not looking forward to wearing flood pants.} Now I’m excited, because Sammi is awesome and I’m less nervous about going 😀

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Damn Guilt

This year, in 2011, I am determined to change for the better. I am determined to stick to my resolutions and improve my follow through.

Last week, I signed up for a gym membership. Over the weekend, I questioned the sanity of that decision, and then decided to cancel my membership. I figured it would be no big deal – since I haven’t yet gone to the gym aside from signing up.

I had an appointment tonight with the friendly gentleman who signed me up to see if I could get out of it. I explained my concerns, my fear that we were biting off more than we could chew. I explained that the day care cost would just be too high, and if I waited for whenever Matt was home to watch Nolan, I’d barely make it to the gym at all. So, buddy hooked me up with an even better deal – free day care every time I go.

Um, hello! That’s pretty damn awesome! The guilt in my stomach over getting a gym membership subsided instantly. That would save us tons of money, and open up a lot of time for me to go.

It’s also given me tons of motivation, because in order to keep this deal I signed a promise that I would be at the gym at least three times a week. And now that the day care is free, I have no worries! My gym days will be Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. I only have the girls for a couple hours Monday night and Friday morning, leaving tons of hours left in the day to hit up the gym, and Wednesdays are my days off so I’m free basically all day anyway.

So, I went in with the intent of getting out of my membership and walked out with free day care and renewed motivation. I can do this, especially with the cost of day care no longer a stress.

I know that my chronic pain disorder was also a worry {and a reason for the cancellation} but when I talked to the guy he explained that I would not be doing heavy work outs at all. My goals are to just get in better shape and slowly build muscle. He explained that they help you learn how to start out slow by giving orientations.

Which I would have known, had I made it to any of the orientations I was supposed to go to 😉

So here are my orientations:

  • Thursday, January 27th – Cardio Orientation
  • Tuesday, February 1st – Fit Fix Orientation
  • Wednesday, February 2nd – Free Weight Orientation

As you can see {read?}, my first orientation is tomorrow, at 5:30. I’m going to head out basically as soon as the girls’ father picks them up {around 4-4:30ish}. I want to get a parking spot SOMEWHAT close to the gym, and I want to get Nolan settled and myself changed and “warmed up” for the Cardio Orientation. I’m completely nervous as hell…but I suppose everyone is when they start something new…right?!

I’m also waiting for a call from one of the personal trainers {I guess? I don’t know what they’re called} about my Personal Health Profile. In addition to those orientations and appointments, I’m going to force myself to go work out this Friday, and on Monday and Friday of next week – even if I just go and walk/run on the treadmill or whatever, I need to do it. I am determined to go every single Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I have to get into the swing of it now, especially if I want to keep the whole free day care deal 😉

And I know I tweeted about my anxiety level being sky high while in the gym. It was. It was also sky high while I desperately searched for a parking spot in the dark in the middle of a snow storm. But guess what? 2011 is supposed to be about breaking out of my shell, getting over myself {and my fears}, and trying new things. AND improving my follow through.

It’s not going to be easy, hell it’s going to be a challenge in a half for the first few weeks. I’m going to be sore and tired as all hell…but I’m going to feel better in the long run. And if I don’t, at least I’ll know that I did follow through and give it a fair shot. I can’t quit before I even begin.

So, I’m gonna do this. I just need someone to kick my ass DAILY and motivate the hell out of me. I need someone who won’t let me be lazy and make excuses. Who’s in?!?

I also need a personal assistant to remind me of these orientations and appointments…

And a damn gym buddy, so I’m not as scared/nervous/anxious about going.

P.S. I have another post up over at The Wifey Blogs called Six Months. It’s about my thoughts/views on everything six months in to this whole marriage gig. So please go check it out after you’re done here!  Thank you 🙂

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Young Motherhood vs. Not So Young Motherhood?

Someone once told me I would have more patience and be less emotional if I had waited to have children. This person {who will remain nameless} told me that I would be a better parent if I had waited until my 30s to have kids.

I think that’s a load of crap. I don’t think I’m going to be any more patient 9 years from now than I am today. I don’t think I’m going to be any less emotional, either. I have ALWAYS been emotional. I have ALWAYS worn my heart on my sleeve and never feared showing any emotion that I had. I have ALWAYS been sensitive and quick to go off – but I’ve also always been quick to calm down {after I’ve stomped my feet and pouted a lot}.

I don’t understand why people say that: you’d be a better parent if you had waited until your 30s. Women in their 30s make great moms. Do you agree with that? Mothers in your 30s, do YOU agree with that? I’m curious. I really do want to know if being 30 instantly makes you “SuperMom” just like that person said. I’m not saying that women in their 30s aren’t great moms, but why is 30 so different from 20?

Personally, I think at any age, we will make mistakes; both as parents and as people. I don’t think hitting the golden age of 30 will suddenly cure any bad decisions or fleeting moments of no patience. I honestly couldn’t tell you when the “right age” to become a parent is because I don’t think it matters.

I think that if you love your children, you’re doing a great job. If you feed them, clothe them, educate them and help them grow – you’re doing a good job. If you make them feel cherished and loved and safe, you’re doing a great job – regardless of age.

Young motherhood – young parenthood for that matter – gets such a shit review from the very small percentage of moms & dads who shrug off their responsibilities {much like that of Jenelle from Teen Mom 2} in order to “enjoy being a teen”. But what we don’t often hear about are the “older” mothers who do the exact same thing. That’s kind of a taboo subject though, in a way. The media is quick to portray young mothers as irresponsible, yet the mother who is in her 30s and displays the same behavior as those few young moms like Jenelle never gets any notice.

Why can’t it just be said that some women are irresponsible? Some women don’t make good parents? Not everyone makes a good mom. Not everyone is up to the 24/7 job of parenting. Not all those mothers are young moms though.

It sort of gets my hackles up when someone makes a comment about young mothers and then remembers that I am a young mother and says “well I didn’t mean ALL young mothers”, as if that makes it any less hurtful on this young mother. Its a generalization, a stereotype. Its like saying something completely racist and then following it up with “but not ALL of them”. It’s really just not cool on so many levels.

I’m really tired of being told that if I had waited until I was 30, I wouldn’t be this emotional or whatever other not so great personality trait. This is my personality, its here to stay – regardless of whether or not I’m 21 or 30. I’m also tired of hearing that my marriage is going to fail because “we’re young”.

Age doesn’t have all the answers.

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Filed under annoyances, bitchin' and moanin', challenges, figuring it out, growing up, I don't know, issues, just thoughts, linkage, mama musings, on struggles, on young motherhood, opinions, ranting, reflecting, the difficult, the random, this crazy train, tidbits, tough stuff, um what?, uncensored, what I'm feeling, writing