Normalcy…

“The kids need some sort of normalcy. So that is why they need to go to school” This Is what I keep hearing… Okay cool, I get it, I honestly do. 

What kids see as a normal school year… school trips, seeing friends, hugging their friends that they haven’t seen in forever, hugging their teachers that they haven’t seen in forever, fun recesses, pizza days, milk days… a normal school year right? 

That’s not what’s going to happen when they go back this fall.  

What they are going to get is… 

No school trips… they can’t gather in groups to go on a fun trip somewhere and learn… it is not safe. It would be too much for the teachers to make sure no one touches anything, everyone washes their hands, not to mention the bus ride there?

No backpacks… Some schools are telling parents their kids are not allowed to wear backpacks, but lunch boxes are okay… so please enlighten me on how they are supposed to bring homework home? Or library books? Or projects back to school… you are telling me my kids will have to lug all this by hand? Including their lunch box? 

No normal recess… Some schools are making little circles for your kid to sit in and play outside… that means they have to stay in this circle alone… no playgrounds because it would be too much to clean… no playing with friends because you have to say 6 feet apart. 

Wearing a mask… This alone is not ‘normal’ I am not saying that people shouldn’t wear a mask, yes safety first… but can you honestly tell me that a child is going to want to wear a mask on their face all day?? Some schools say they can take the mask off in class? Okay, but doesn’t that defeat the purpose they are still around a teacher and other students? Can you honestly say that a kindergartner is going to wear this mask all day? Oh, you have to teach them that wearing a mask is important, well we have to teach them that picking their nose is bad but oh there is little jimmy digging for gold when no one is looking. 

No pizza or milk days… Yes, I get it, this one is a luxury, but some kids thrive for these days, these little incentives helps kids want to be at school. These little incentives kids get excited about. 

Bullies or the kids who think they are funny… What about the kids that don’t like teachers? Or bullies… what if a kid gets mad at the teacher and spits or coughs obnoxiously at them because they don’t want to listen? What about the bullies that will spit and cough and push or steal other people’s masks because they just don’t like your kid? Send them to the office? Well have you seen the office, it’s a tiny little space there is only so much space you can send a kid to wait for their parents to come and get them. 

No hugging or touching… No hugging has been a rule since the dawn of time for schools, but your child hasn’t seen their favourite teacher or their best friend and god knows how long, you’re telling me that they are not going to want to hug them? “Omg Stacy I haven’t seen you in forever!” *big hug* nope, not allowed that… No touchy. 

Cleaning… There has been back and forth with this one… one day it was closing every Wednesday so they can do a big clean, then its kids have to go back to school 5 days a week and they will have to clean at night… then it’s the kids and teachers have to clean… because that sounds safe to me and not like the teachers don’t have enough to do. 

And that’s is me just hitting a few things… These things are not normal. The kids will not have a normal school year. I get that some parents cannot afford to not to go work… I get that. But please stop telling me that kids need some normalcy and put going back to school on that list because I promise you it will NOT be normal for them… it will cause them 10 times more stress then you think.  

Do I have all the answers to make sure everyone is happy with that choice in how schools will be? No. 

Can I help you make the choice to if you should allow your kids back to school? No. Every family is different, you make the choice what sees fit for your family.

Is there one option better than the other? No. You are damned if you do and damned if you don’t. Sending your kids to school you are possibly sending your kids into an unsafe environment, keeping your kids home they are not getting the socialization, but even if you do send them I doubt socialization would happen anyways.  

Parenting right now, in this pandemic is a dumpster fire. There seems to be no right choices on how to do things. There is no parenting book on “How to raise your kids in a pandemic” We are all losing our minds here and brains are hurting, from overthinking our overthinking, trying to figure out the best plan for our kids. There seems to not be enough wine or coffee to fix things.

Just breathe. We can get through this.

When this is over — Taking things for granted.

While sitting alone this morning drinking my coffee, the kids were still sleeping. 

I had a thought. Thought of things that I have taken for granted since COVID 19 has started. 

Thoughts of things that I honestly never thought about because they were normal everyday things. That I never would have thought would be so important. The importance of everyday life things. 

A hug. I am not a very huggy person. I am more of a bro tap on the back and away we go, but when I finally got to hug my dad, or my brother and mom. That hug felt like I haven’t seen them in years. That hug was so important. 

A conversation with neighbors. I am socially awkward. To have a conversation with someone is scary to me. My words get jumbled together and I get all weird and forget how to talk. There is something about going into your backyard or going into your front yard and seeing the street full of people, full of life. Puts a smile on my face. When everyone was inside and not coming out the street was empty. It was quiet and lonely. I may not be besties with my neighbors but just knowing they are there it’s comforting. 

Walking into a store to grab something quick.  The lines are so long now, not to mention having to wear masks and gloves. Having to be careful not to touch your face. Just walking into the store has become a whole day thing depending on the lines. 

Normal doctors check-up. My son recently had a doctor’s appointment. This appointment was done over the phone. It was really weird. I have never experienced it before. The doctor simply had to go off from what I was saying. Wasn’t able to check him, herself. I am sure that is difficult for her as well. The doctor’s appointments for my son are crucial. I want to know that I am doing okay with helping him, I want to know that he is doing okay. The reassurance over the phone is just not the same. 

The school rush in the mornings.  I used to dread these mornings. Rushing around like a chicken with its head cut off. 4 lunches. I miss it though. I miss driving the kids in the car and blaring the music and singing. I miss seeing the kids excited for their friends. I miss hearing all about their day when I pick them up. The mornings are intense but everything else makes it all worth it. 

Coffee with a friend. There is nothing better when having a coffee with a friend. You get to talk about your shit storm of life. You get to talk about what you want in the future IN PERSON. Not through text messages or phone calls. You get to laugh and celebrate your life with them. Having those few hours with your friends helps you get through life, helps you get through your day. 

When this is all over I hope we have learned some lessons. I hope that we end up being who we wanted to be and who we hoped to be. 

Everyone has come together. We have proved when shit hits the fan, we can work through it. My hope is that we keep this. My hope is that the world realizes that the way we were doing things was not the right way. Every person for themselves. Coming together, working together. It’s important. 

I’m a okay mom and I am okay with that.

The standards of how a mother is supposed to be, act, what she is supposed to do, how much is she supposed to do are fucking high and I am done. 

Lately, I have been getting bombarded with all these outrageous expectations from people, these expectations are so high, that it would be like high jumping over the CN Tower without getting the point stuck in your ass. Not going to happen. 

I want to know why do we have to be so ‘Perfect’ Why can’t we just be a okay mom. That okay mom still gets the job done. Yeah maybe we aren’t baking the perfect cake with fondant roses, but the kids are happy, healthy, clothed and bellies are super full. Why can’t that be enough? Why can’t we ever be enough? 

If COVID has taught me anything, that it is okay to not have your shit together. That pile of shit is YOUR shit. Not grandmas, not your moms, not Sindy from up the street. It’s your shit. So however you want to deal with that stinky pile of shit, do it at your own pace. 

Potty training it’s fucking hard. Trying to figure out the cues of when they need to go, setting timers, wondering why everything is wet… did he seriously pee on the new toilet paper roll? If your little man wants to go pee on a tree then the scary porcelain monster, let him. Honestly in my book that’s a damn win! Potty training is not an overnight thing, you cannot snap your fingers like Thanos and make all your potty training woos vanish like dust. It takes time and it also has to do with your child.

So your child hasn’t conquered online learning, that is okay. Us parents were just thrown into the role of being a teacher. Let’s be honest here, a child’s home was not meant to be their school as well, trying to get them to sit down for more than 5 seconds is a damn chore on its own. If you can get them to do 1 math sheet or write their name on paper 5 times. YOU are winning. 

Okay, so you totally forgot to change your laundry over, throw that laundry in the dryer with 17 bounce sheets and away you go. The laundry will always be there, it is like that clingy boyfriend in high school that is just lurking in every corner. If you want to put up your feet and read that book you have been putting off and drink some wine. Girl doo it! That laundry will still be waiting for you to write that love letter back. 

Dishes, dishes, dishes. I used to get mad when men “let the dishes soak” but now that I am a mom and the kids for some reason, they have to get a new plate or cup for every piece of food they ever eat. I swear one half of the peanut butter sandwich goes on one plate, the other half on another. Then we have grapes on a brand new plate and so on. For every sip, they have to get a new cup, and oh man DO NOT give your toddler a colour they don’t want. I let them sit for a bit. Because you know why… fuck it! 

I am done. 

My kids are kind (not so much to their siblings WWF up in here). My kids know their manours, (Sometimes they only say it when they really want something) but they know them. My kids are thriving in school (they might not be the next rocket scientist yet) but they are doing okay and that is all I should ask of them. Is for them to do their best. The more we put pressure on them the more they push away. I want my kids to enjoy learning. 

I am done caring what other people think. I know, I am doing okay.  The kids are not going to remember how much laundry you did, or when you did the dishes. They are not going to remember that one day you swept the dirt under the rug. They are going to remember who was there always and that was YOU. 

So say it with me, I AM DONE. 

I am done listening to everyone tell me how I am supposed to be. 

I am done listening to everyone tell me how I am supposed to do everything. 

I am done caring what people think of me. Rock that hot mess mama all the way to town. 

I am done. 

Yes, some people are not going to like it. They are going to bitch. Let them. Once you start to not give a shit. That is when you can breathe.

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. 

My kids turned into slobs, during quarantine.

I am tired of it.

My house looks like a party that I wasn’t invited to. It is always a giant mess. No matter how much I pick up, sweep, clean. 

I have always taught my kids to be respectful and clean up after yourselves. I have always taught them responsibility is key. 

But somehow that went right out the window since they have been home due to Covid 19. 

Every single day I am repeating myself constantly to pick up your wrappers, to put your dishes in the sink or dishwasher, pick up your toys. I sound like a damn broken record. 

At this point I don’t even know why I fold their laundry, because I go into their rooms and it looks like a bunch of monkeys went in rummaging through their dressers. 

I yell “If you don’t pick up these legos, I’m just going to vacuum them up!” 

Which they don’t and then I vacuum them up and honestly I don’t even think they notice. 

I have put their toys in the toy jail and I am pretty sure they are collecting dust they haven’t even noticed or care. 

Yelling “I am bored!” well I have a list of lovely things you can do! Now all of a sudden nobodies bored. 

Soon they are going to be completely out of toys and I bet you 100% they are going to somehow make a mess with 3 toys. 

I am hoping and I am praying that when this is all over or one day when they are older they will start picking up after themselves because I will not be going to their houses and cleaning… I keep repeating to myself because I have a feeling it is going to drive me up the wall if their house is a mess. 

I will continue to tell them to clean up, I will continue to tell them to respect your things… hoping one day they will get it.

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!