Friday, September 28, 2007


Sometimes I just need a fucking break. To read a book in peace. To cry. To laugh. To sleep.

Sometimes I just need a chance to be me. To be Clara. Not Dave's wife or Dylan's mommy or Sasha's mommy or my parents' daughter.

Sometimes I just want to be defined as myslef. And then I wonder - Do I even know myself anymore? Do I know what I would do if I didn't have my family to take care of, my job to do? Who the hell am I? What are my interests? What do I like to do? I like to go to movies, museums, plays, concerts. I like to read, cook and go to happy hour with friends.

I don't remember the last time I did any of those things, with the exception of reading, for the just the pleasure of it. I think I need to figure out how to bring those things back to my life. Any ideas?

Monday, September 24, 2007

A parent's job

As parents it is our job to worry. Our job to take every little thing they do, or don't do, and examine it. Look at that action from every different angle and try to discern whether or not it's "normal." Whatever "normal" means.

There are times I worry about Dylan. Ask him a question and the answer may or may not make sense. It might be related to the question or it might be a verbalization of whatever is going on in his head at that moment. There are times he says things with perfect pronunciation that make perfect sense and sound so advanced for his age. Yet there are others that he babbles whatever is going on his head. I look at his peers and I see this is fairly normal.

There was a time, a few years ago, when I was worried. Dylan exhibited some early signs of Autism that were hard to ignore. Everything had to be sorted by color, by size, by shape, by type. Everything had to be just so. He was so particular from such an early age that it freaked me out. I would see that behavior and be scared of what it could mean. It meant nothing. Luckily, I know enough about Autism to know that socialization is really the biggest indicator of whether or not a child is on "the spectrum." Anyone who has met Dylan know he is very social. It was the one thing that put my mind at ease.

Today I worry that he won't be ready for kindergarten next year. That he still won't have the concentration it takes to sit still and listen. The comprehension to learn the things he needs to learn. Then I think about it. Why the hell am I worried about something that is in a year? What the hell is wrong with me that I don't see the progress he has made in the last year? I think back to swimming lessons last fall. He couldn't keep his head out of the water long enough to listen. He didn't yet have respect for the teacher/student relationship. This year he sits quietly and listens to the teacher. He focuses on what he is being taught and makes a real effort. He has come so far.

I am so confident that he will grow to be an intelligent, wonderful child who is creative and whimsical. That he will be compassionate and kind. I try to remain confident that he will be ready to make the leap into kindergarten next year. And you know what? If he isn't, does it really fucking matter? Does it matter if he goes to school at 6 rather than at 5? No, it doesn't. A dear friend went through kindergarten twice because his mother felt he wasn't ready to move on. Well, he proceeded to graduate from both undergrad and his MBA program something Cum Laude.

Then I look at what he is supposed to be able to accomplish at the end of kindergarten and he has 95% of it already mastered. I guess I really don't need to worry.

But I will, because that is my job.

Monday, September 17, 2007

A year ago

Today is one year since I found out I was pregnant. Since the little line on the stick finally turned a color after 5 months of blanks. One year since I found out that, once again, my life would be turned upside down in the most amazing way.

A year ago I was dealing with some of the same things I am dealing with now with one very significant difference - this year it's because of my amazing 4 month-old and last year it was because of the promise of a baby.

Exhaustion then = early pregnancy
Exhaustion now = a baby who doesn't sleep through the night yet

Sore breasts then = early pregnancy
Sore breasts now = breastfeeding

Poochy tummy then = early pregnancy
Poochy tummy now = 2 kids, 'nuf said

One year ago I was in disbelief that it was finally happening. I was scared about what the future would bring. I was hoping with all of my being that I would carry this pregnancy to term. That I would once again be lucky enough to have a healthy baby. I was nervous about how Dylan would react to a new little person in the house. I was scared about how I would deal with another baby. I was scared about how another baby would affect my marriage.

This year, I get to look at the beutiful little girl I gave birth to and be in awe of her. This year I get to hold my baby in my arms and squeeze her tight. This year, I get to look at my family and wonder if it might be complete rather than knowing it wasn't yet. This year I get to see my husband be an amazing father to another lucky child. This year I get to swell with pride as I watch the two most beautiful children I have ever seen interact with each other. This year I get to say, "Yes, it's great to have one of each." This year, the dream of being a mother to a son and a daughter is no longer a dream, it's reality.

And it's the most amazing reality I could imagine.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Another actual conversation

Dylan: Daddy, don't do that again or I will put you in time out.

Dave: Dylan, you can't put me in time out.

Dylan: Daddy, you go SIT IN THE CAR. The POLICE will come and TAKE YOU AWAY!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

6 years

This is what 6 years into being old and married looks like...

I suck at the self portrait but the smiles are real. During the last 6 years I have experienced some of the best, and worst, days of my life. There are times when things have been hard, but always worth it. In the last 6 years, I have never once regretted marrying the wonderful man by my side. I married the best man in the world for me and I wouldn't change it for anything.

I love you, Davey.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Can I get some wine with his wHining?

Dylan has been whining. It's driving me fucking nuts. He whines and cries about everything. The simplest request is a whine. We keep telling him to use his pretty voice and it works for a second. I haven't had the heart to just ignore him, but we're getting there.

He seems to be going through a little phase of being afraid and emotional about everything. If he doesn't want something he says it's scary or he's afraid. His eyes well up with tears at the drop of a hat. I'm not sure what's going on, but I think I have a pretty good idea.

The novelty of his sister has worn off.

Dylan was the center of our universe for over 4 years. A new little person has been on the scene for over 3 months now and I think it's starting to get a little old. She gets what she wants by crying so why shouldn't he? I imagine this is how the 4-year-old mind works.

It seems like the 4-year-old mind is in a strange place between toddler and kid. A little land where everything is the end of the world and you're not quite sure why. You know what you want and what you don't, but you're not quite sure why. You know the simple rules of right from wrong, but you aren't quite sure why one thing is right and the other is wrong.

The problem is that even if the 4-year-old mind asks why, it isn't quite mature enough to fully understand the answer.

As a parent, it's hard to look at the big kid standing in front of me and not to expect big kid behavior. Especially when the 4-year-old in question looks like he is 6. I have to constantly remind myself that he is still little. That he still needs snuggles and love and cuddles and his mommy to wipe away his tears. That he will always need those things.

But in the meantime, for the love of the mommy, please stop the whining.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007