My daughter is a tween and I am struggling

I am struggling these days to come to the realization that my beautiful baby girl is no longer a baby… but a tween. 

Every now and then I get a glimpse of the little girl she once was. I am struggling to know when to come in and when to step back and let her find her way. 

I miss playing with her hair, putting them in cute little braided pigtails. I still ask if I can do her hair but I get “I got it mom” 

I just feel like I blinked and Mommy, became mom. 

She is still not a teenager, but yet I get the rolling of the eyes, the dragging feet and the big huge signs. 

She is not a little girl anymore, but sometimes she still loves to pretend and play with her LOL dolls on the rare occasion but they are mostly collecting dust on display. 

She no longer needs me like she used to, she doesn’t rely on me to tie her shoes or fix her shirt. 

During this new phase of life, she won’t need me for the little things but she will need me for the bigger things. 

The idea of her growing up scares me and changing scares the shit out of me. 

I remember the first time she crawled and the first time she walked, all her firsts I was there to help her along the way. Now when she accomplishes something or does a new first, I will still be there to cheer her on, she just won’t need my help like she used too. 

When I hear people say “Wow she is just like you” It makes me feel warm inside but yet a little scared. I was a wild child. So carefree. I let the world just take me in the wind. As much as I learnt my lessons along the way. I am scared for her. I want to do everything in my power to protect her from what life will bring her but yet I know I know I need to let go of the sails and let her take over. 

I am just not ready, I feel it is too soon. I remember like it was yesterday when they handed me this cute little chubby girl wrapped in a pink little blanket. 

For now she still waits for me to come in and kiss her goodnight, for now she still sits on the counter while I am making dinner, which was her telling me all her barbie names now she talks about what’s going on in the YouTube word and her live streams but I will take it. I will take in every single moment of it, because one day, that spot on the counter will be empty. 

Dear bullies, Thank you.

In our public school there weren’t the popular kids and the unpopular kids. It was a small town and everyone knew everyone. Everyone was invited to each other’s birthdays because our parents grew up with each other and honestly we were young and innocent and hate wasn’t even thought of. 

Once we made it to high school that is when it all changed. There were clicks. Everyone went into their little groups. Band kids, jocks, popular girls and computer people. I trotted into school like everything was going to be the same. I was wrong. 

The popular girls never bothered me, they stuck to themselves talking about all pretty and pink things. The ones who ended up bullying me were who I thought were my best friends. Right, I know plot twists. It all started because a boy liked me and not them. A boy of all things came between us. I never even thought twice about pursuing it, because your girls come first right? 

They came in like a force of nature. Pushing me down in the halls, writing bad things on my locker. Spreading outrageous lies about me. The thing is they knew all my secrets, they knew exactly what would hurt me the most. 

Your worst enemies are the ones that know you the best. 

I was holding myself together with duct tape and happy thoughts. I didn’t want to go to school, I would do my best to hide.. It was a terrible feeling. I felt sick, I would barely eat anything. I refused to talk to my parents about it because I figured they wouldn’t understand. 

No matter how hard I tried to understand why they were doing these things to me, it felt like I would never belong anywhere.  

But honestly I want to thank them, of course I will never forget the pain that they put me through, I will never forget the way they made me feel like I was shit on their shoe. 

People who put others down, are suffering from a battle that we just don’t see, they are going through something that they refuse to let anyone know and project it on other people, this taught me compassion. 

This taught me to love all walks of life, to treat others the way you want to be treated no matter how they treat you. 

This taught me to look beyond what they looked like and connect with their experiences in life, to stop and listen. 

This taught me to be strong, because no matter what comes at me now, I will know how to handle it. 

This has taught me to see the signs in my kids if they are being bullied. This has taught me to know how to speak to them about bullying. 

I am not thanking them for their behaviour and I am not giving them credit for my happiness, but that experience has taught me so much. 

I am thanking them because they showed me what not to be, they showed me that no matter what pain or suffering that I go through, I will use that to be more kind, to be more passionate to be more open and listen to others suffering. 

I chose to use the darkness that surrounded me and become a flower. I outgrew your words and your hate and became the person that I wanted to be.

Distant Memories

When I was younger I felt the days went by so slow. Sitting at my desk in school, watching the clock, tick tick tick. Waiting for the bell to ring, then booking it out of the school as fast as I could. 

Summertime, daydreaming when I am finally old enough to do all the things that only adults can do. Daydreaming  by my big willow tree on my farm. It was my favorite place to be. 

Now that I have kids, I want it to slow down. Life seems to be going 100 miles per hour. Like driving in the fast lane with no cars. Never in the slow lane. 

Just busy parenting, keeping the house in order and working. I find myself often just sitting and watching the kids play in the pool. Thinking “Where did the time go?, I swear it was just yesterday they were babies” 

I will be the first to admit that I struggle to stop and smell the roses. I will be in the middle of laundry or dishes and the kids ask to play “Let me just finish these” The dishes and laundry will be there later, your kids grow up so fast. 

A first birthday is so exciting, yet you mourn the fact that your baby is growing up. To be honest for me, it seems to be every birthday. Even with 4 kids you would think that I have learned by now, they do in fact have to grow up. Not stay babies forever, since my oldest is 11. 

The pain of childbirth and holding your new baby in your hands. 

Watching them take their first steps and eating solid foods for the first time. 

No sleep and sore nipples. 

Them exploring the amazing adventures the world has to offer. 

Becomes a distant memory. 

I know I cannot stop time. All we can do is soak it all in because one day, I will miss the house being a mess, I will be sitting in my living room missing the sounds of little feet running in and yelling “Mommy, look what I did” I will miss cutting the crust of the sandwiches. I will miss this. All of this. 

I am going to try my best to take it all in. When my son wants a random hug, I will get down to his level and give him a big hug and hold him there for a minute, even if he squirms. When they ask me to play, I will set down the laundry or dishes and go and play with them. 

Don’t get me wrong I am excited to watch them grow into amazing adults and see where life takes them. — To watch their little personalities grow to be big ones. To see their drive to get their dream jobs. 

I hear people say “Make these the best days of your life!” But I don’t want these to JUST be the best days, I don’t want to be sad when it’s all done and my best days are behind us. Instead I am going to make these days happy and fun and full of life. I want to continue to have the best days when they are older too and have kids themselves. 

I am going to continue to help my children have the best tools to be able to grow up and be respectful, caring adults. 

I am going to have more movie nights with all the fixings, popcorn, chips and candy. 

I am going to put my phone down and computer down and soak in the laughter. 

I am going to make more time for myself and my husband so that we have enough energy to keep up with them. 

I want to look back at these days and remember that I enjoyed every single moment of them being babies and small kids and teenagers. I don’t want to look back and regret that I didn’t put down my phone or laundry to look at what they were doing. 

I want to look back and know that everything I did, helped shape them to be amazing adults. 

Future for our kids

What kind of world do you want for our children?

Our children are our future and their kids as well and so on. 

I know personally, I want the world to be full of life. I want humans to respect the earth and everything that it gives us. 

I want them to grow up knowing that we did everything possible to give them the best ground to live on. The best place to raise their kids. 

But how do we do that, when people continue to disrespect it? Disrespecting nature, that has given us so much. 

Everything is changing around us. We are in the whole new world of staying in our houses and only supposed to go out when it’s really needed. There are no schools and we are trying to teach our kids ourselves. 

Now that there are less people going out, our nature is healing itself from everything that humans have done. Healing itself from pollution. We are seeing more animals come out of hiding because they feel safer. 

Have you ever just sat outside. Closed your eyes and just listened? Listened to the birds singing? Listened to the sounds of the trees blowing? It is such a beautiful sound. 

This is the Walmart plaza parking lot,  My husband does the grass cutting, he has to pick up around 80 gloves.
This is the Walmart plaza parking lot, My husband picked up around 80 gloves, he does the maintenance for this property.

But yet here are some people throwing their gloves everywhere on the ground because it is so easy for them to discard them wherever instead of finding a garbage can or bringing them home and putting them in the garbage. It is disgusting. You are teaching your kids to be disrespectful, to not care. Your kids watch EVERYTHING you do. You need to lead by example and show them to help the planet, not destroy it. 

Go out and do a garden with your children, pick up garbage around your house, in your backyard. Go outside and let them listen to the sounds of nature and ask them to name the things they hear. Talk about how to protect the land they live on. 

Studies have shown that patients in the hospital that can see nature, see trees are more likely to have less pain, and recover faster compared to the ones that don’t. After spending more time outside even an hour have shown 20% better memory performance and attention spans. Trees help us have clean air. Being outside studies have shown that anxiety and depression lowers. 

The thing is nature doesn’t need us to survive, we need nature to survive. The more we just throw our garbage around the less planet we have. Our kids’ future is in our hands. Not just for schooling, not just for teaching them how to cook and clean, but to teach them to respect everything and that includes Earth. 

Milestones

As I sit here on my back deck, soaking in the nice weather before this huge thunderstorm jumps in and wrecks the nice weather we have been having. 

Although we do need some rain. We just planted some grass seed in the back. Our yard seems to have a water draining issue, we fixed it, but now we need the grass to grow back! 

Anyways, I was scrolling through some mom facebook groups. I noticed A LOT of moms comparing their kids to other kids or asking when will my baby walk, or talk or sit up. 

I will say this. I am no expert but I have been a mom for 11 years and I have 4 kids. Let me tell you. NONE of them hit their milestones at the same time. NONE. They were all different, but they hit them. 

We need to stop comparing our kids with other kids. Everyone is different. It does not make you a crappy mom because little Stevie started walking later. It does not make your child better than other kids because they hit their milestones faster than others. 

Some babies are fast talkers before they walk and vice versa. Kids develop at their own pace. 

Do your best to stay off of Web MD because all of a sudden everyone in the house has a disease and it will just freak yourself out. 

If you honestly have concerns about your child, then call your doctor. Going on social media for your answers will more than likely just cause yourself to have a mini heart attack because Janets daughter is already playing the clarinet at 2 years old. 

Let your kids develop at their own pace. Do not try and rush them. Show them encouragement. Don’t show them you are upset because they aren’t hitting those milestones.  Keep telling them they can do it but support them when they cannot. 

We are their number one fans and that’s all they need.

Dear laundry,

I have noticed you are always here lurking in the shadows.

You tend to spread throughout the house. 

You are on the floor in the bedrooms.

You are on the floor in the living room. 

Sometimes, and I mean rarely do you actually make it to the basket. 

Sometimes you are clean and end up back in the laundry room. 

You are always losing your sock partner, it’s like you don’t even care.  

I feel like you are using me, to pick you up and clean you. You can’t even be bothered to change yourself to the drier. 

You pile up so quickly, I feel like I can’t breath! 

I feel suffocated! 

I constantly have to fold you and put you away. 

Sometimes I find you hanging halfway out the dresser.

So today I have decided that we are breaking up. 

I am going to enjoy this cup of coffee, while you lay throughout the house.

I’m going to pretend you are not here later and enjoy a glass of wine. 

I am not sorry, I don’t care about your feelings. You clearly don’t care about mine. 

I bid my farewell laundry.

 Today you do not exist! 

Bucket list

Let’s talk about bucket lists. 

Maybe you have one for you and the kids or a family bucket list, or even for you and your spouse or a personal bucket list. 

Lately with everything happening and everyone being home with not much to do, I have been thinking about a bucket list. Things that I want to cross off. 

We often let time just pass us by, and we tend to get stuck in a rut.  Seasons change and so do we. 

A bucket list helps us get motivated to get things done, that we have been longing to do, either we don’t have time to do it, or we forget we wanted to do it. 

Maybe you want to see all the waterfalls around the world, maybe you want to try all the poutine chip trucks in your area. Maybe you want to reorganize the whole house!

Taking inventory 

Think about all the things that you want or need in your life right now. Having closer relationships with family members or how about your want to do a big research on a topic that you are interested in or you want to get in shape. 

Think about what you are missing in your life that you truly want to go for. 

What do you really want to get done

Write down a list of things you want to get done around the house, maybe you want some more gardens, or maybe you want to tackle a room that you just have been neglecting. Think about long term goals and short term goals. 

Maybe it’s something personal like “reacting differently when the kids frustrate me” or maybe it’s about personal budgeting. I know I have a problem with “Send to cart” haha

I know, I want to paint the back deck and paint the laundry room! 

Planning your summer might be a little out of the question right now with everything in the air if we are even going to be able to do some of the things we want, but when writing down things that you want to happen after all this is over would work just as well! 

I was reading an awesome blog the other day “Bare foot five” her and her family made a “manafest it wall” Her and her family write down big things that they want, can be getting a trampoline to going on a trip and when they do the things or get the things that are on the wall they write down the date that they did them!! Such a neat idea! 

Bucket lists are amazing and fun, when you are able to cross things off, it makes you feel great! Great that you were able to accomplish those things!

Start making your list! Start feeling accomplished. Have fun! Decorate it. Use stickers! Whatever you want to do!

I would not change it for the world

Are those all your kids? Yes, Yes they are! 

I get this question often.  I get the looks,  the “wow I feel sorry for you” looks.
I get a complete stranger coming up to me saying “You must have your hands full” 

Yes, yes I do, but so is my heart. 

My days are longer, my laundry room is overflowing. 
Sometimes I am so stressed that I need to take a minute in the jeep. 

I would not change it for the world. 

Even when one kid is throwing a fit in one room, another kid is dumping Lego everywhere, another kid is opening all the cupboards and not closing them, and another kid is playing their music so loud I cannot even hear myself think.

I would not change it for the world. 

Of course, I could imagine a quiet place, for at least 24 hours. On a beach with some wine and a good book. I would miss them, I would miss the loud and I would find that couple with the loud kids at the pool and sit there instead because I love the crazy. I love my crazy.

I am so grateful for everything, I am grateful for the good days and the bad days. I am grateful for their smiles and their giggles and their freak outs. They are mine. They are my tiny little humans that I made in my body. I am grateful for the scar that I have because it shows me that I survived it. This scar is a reminder of them being so close to me that they could hear my heartbeat from the inside. 

I choose this over and over again. I would choose to hear their “I love you mom” I would choose their hugs, and kisses and cuddles. I would choose to fix their boo-boos and their broken hearts. I would choose when I put them to bed and they tell me what their favorite part of the day was. 

All those days where I am honestly at my wits end, I feel like nothing went right. I feel like my kids just had a rough day just like me. They were bored, they did not like the meal I made and freaked out. Then when I hear my kids tell my parents or my husband what their favorite parts of the day were… they were all the things that I thought went wrong but they loved. All those bad days were just that days because we have plenty of other days to enjoy. 

Yes, Yes my hands are full, but so is my heart. I would not change it for the world.