Mom Guilt- We All Have It

This has to be my biggest struggle to date. I have self-confidence issues, I would be terrible at a diet because I like candy and ice cream too much, I have a hard time following through with a workout plan, my house is not perfect and my kids might look a mess because they like to dress themselves. The hardest thing for me to overcome is Mom Guilt. It is what is the underlying issue to all of the above mentioned “problems” in my daily life.

Self-confidence issues are a result of not putting myself first (or so I think). I have always been a giver – thinking of others before myself. That quality is great, as long as you take time to give yourself something back. If you are always focusing on others, you struggle to see what is good about yourself. You struggle to develop your talents and constantly compare your achievements to others.

Sticking to a diet means putting time in to plan, prepare and stick to a meal plan, a work out plan, and not making excuses – cue Mom Guilt and being a giver – we give so much to others that we rarely put any time to focus on our needs.

I wish my house was perfectly clean and I was able to stick to a cleaning routine, but again I feel that I should be giving attention to my kids and my husband – playing with them, taking care of them, helping to relieve their stress levels.

My kids get to choose their clothes, it is not a battle I want to fight, but it also fosters their independence and confidence in making their own choices. Mom guilt comes in when I drop my kids off at school and realize all the other children are wearing matching clothes and their hair is done (haha).

We all deal with mom guilt (dad guilt) all the time, every day. Our house did not get clean because we were playing with the kids. The house got clean, but now we feel guilty because we did not play with the kids. Mom and dad have a date night because we need it. Mom and dad should be there to tuck the kids in bed. I am still in my pajamas, but my kids are dressed to the nines. I got ready today and my daughter ate dinner in her pajamas. There is no way to win.

Today I went live on my Facebook page talking about the mega dose of mom guilt I had for taking a shower. I am a big believer on spending quality time with your kids. I try to avoid using the TV as a babysitter, but today I woke up in a terrible mood. I forced myself to spend time with the kids prior to my shower- playing cars, building Magnatile houses and coloring. After putting Elizabeth down I made the choice to take a shower. Momma need an attitude adjustment – aka time alone to relax and check something tangible off my daily to do list. So I put on the TV (it was at least an educational show) and took a little me time. The kids watched the show and built with Magnatiles for about an hour – and this momma got dressed, did my hair and makeup. It felt great!

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Carson’s Car House (and yes, that’s a purple pacifier in his hand…)

As soon as I got done though I was hit with some mom guilt. I should have woke up before the kids and got ready. I should have taken the shower during naptime. I should have blah, blah, blah…you know the drill. So many reasons how we could have done something different, better, etc.

I decided that it did not kill them to watch an hour of TV today. The saying “if momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy” is a true thing. In our house, I feel that my mood sets the tone of the home. Taking it upon myself to get in a better mood was what needed to happen today. I took the shower. I did my hair. I even put makeup on! And I am giving myself grace.

So this is me, giving you grace the next time you want to take a shower because you NEED it! You need to take time for yourself, even if it is only 10 minutes. Self-care is a big deal. I wrote a few different posts about self-care, the importance of self-care and different ways you can take some time for yourself. We must fill our cups before we can fill others – an empty cup has nothing to share.

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My little bucket heads aka my bucket (cup) fillers

You have my permission to leave the dishes in the sink and take a bubble bath while you read a good book. You have my permission to sleep in, just this once, because you want to. You have my permission to snuggle those babies a little bit longer and let the laundry sit in the dryer another day. We all need to take a step away from being a mommy, a wife, a whatever- and remember what it is like to be YOU.

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My little ghost baby (PS- my sweater is on sale right now!)

~xo~

The Coming of Stinky Pete!

It’s rare that a post gets me super excited to write, but this one has been a long time coming and it’s about my baby CARSON! I wrote about Paisley’s birth story a few months back (it too was WAY overdue) and it took me right back to those two wonderful days. I am just as excited to dive back in to my memories and share with you all Carson’s story!

Carson is our energetic and overly active son! He just turned 19 months and I am not sure he has slowed down since he figured out he could move. From the day he was born, he has been all boy. The kid loves dirt, balls, trucks and running around. We love this kid and cannot wait to watch him grow!

About 15 months after having Paisley, Brian and I made the decision to try for another child. Knowing that with Paisley it took us 8 months to conceive, we figured we would have some time. And we were right – it took us 6 months to get pregnant, only to find out that at 7 weeks we miscarried. Flash forward about another 2 months and bingo…prego eggo. Going to that first doctor’s appointment was nerve racking. Would we see the precious babes? Would we hear the heartbeat? I was so scared we were going to be disappointed again, but luckily we weren’t. Every doctor’s appointment after that was a little anxiety provoking for me – each time I was relieved to hear the heart beat and the good news.

Pregnancy with Paisley was totally different than Carson. With Paisley I craved all things salty, bloated to over a 50 pound weight gain, had carpel tunnel in my wrist the last trimester and swelled like a balloon daily. Carson on the other hand was not as rough on my body. Maybe it was the active toddler I had to chase around, or maybe it was my brain actually working right – I kept my weight gain to a healthier 40 pounds, didn’t swell as much, craved all things sugar and managed to get out and about a lot more. I was super sick with Carson during the first trimester, actually getting the flu shortly after finding out I was pregnant, but that sickness died down around 13 weeks. It’s funny how each pregnancy is so different! Shot below of my 3rd Trimester with Paisley (left) and Carson (right).

Anywho – enough with the pregnancy progression details – now it’s the good stuff. The actual lead up to the birth and there after!

If you guys read Paisley’s birth story, you know that we made a fatal mistake…we went to the hospital TWICE! #newparentfail This time with Carson, I didn’t want to go in until we knew for sure we’d be staying. It was a Sunday and the contractions were getting pretty bad – not bad enough that I couldn’t bare them, but progressively worse. We called Kelly and she came over to help watch Paisley as Brian and I went on a walk around the neighborhood, we were going to be sure that we didn’t have to go home. HA! After walking about an hour, we made it home and decided that Paisley should stay with family for the rest of the day. Contractions were getting more intense and closer together BUT we didn’t go in just yet. Brian and I went to lunch at Tanner’s down by the Plaza in Kansas City (the hospital we delivered at was 30 minutes from our house – Tanner’s was closer than home and we needed lunch, too!). I sat at the table and clocked the contractions, now they were getting to the point that I had to put my food down, take deep breaths and wait for them to subside. WE STILL DIDN’T GO IN!

After lunch, we decided more walking could only help, so we took a nice stroll around Loose Park. After this walk, contractions were minutes apart. We called the doctor and they told us to come in. The hospital was quiet. The nurse who checked us in said that we were the only patients in so far for the afternoon, which I think was a fantastic blessing. She checked my dialation and told me we were only at a 3 – my worst fear – we may have to go home! How dumb of us…and I felt really dumb because these contractions HURT! She had to have seen the look on our faces because she not only let us hang out in the triage room, she turned on the Royals game for our entertainment.

I’m pretty sure we sat in that triage room for the remainder of the game and even walked around the hospital for a bit before having the nurse check me again. This time I was progressing enough that she admitted us! It was now close to 6pm and Brian was hungry again! (He has this thing about needing to eat every time I’m delivering apparently!) I’m pretty sure he ordered Jimmy John’s once we go to the room, and it probably smelled so good! I got a popsicle or some ice chips probably…yum!

As he settled in with his dinner, I settled in with the birthing ball. We did what any couple would do while waiting on a baby to arrive…we watched Space Jam! After all, what better way to brainwash your eventual 6 foot plus son who’s dad hopes he likes basketball, then to give him an early dose of Space Jam!

As the nurse came in to do her usual check, she asked about an epidural. We told her we wanted to do this with the least amount of intervention as possible…apparently those words are not what you say to a L&D nurse. That means that they won’t check on you for hours and leave you to do your thing! Oops…for real. I made Brian go out and find one of them because the contractions were getting so strong and frequent that I needed to know how dialated I was. If I was only a 5 then let’s call the anesthesiologist, if I was further along I could probably do it again. When the nurse came in she apologized up and down for misunderstanding us, and we did the same! She was amazing. After she checked me this time she mentioned I was at a 6/7 on the way to the transition phase…the worst part of labor! Contractions get super frequent and intense.

This nurse was an angel though and told me about a little drug called Stadol…what a wonder it was! This little baby did the trick in getting me right through that transition phase – when I woke up from my foggy knock-out I was at a 9/10!

Stadol

By the time I reached a 10, it was right on the brink of turning from August 23rd (Tracy’s birthday) to August 24th (My grandma’s birthday). Multiple texts were received from all family members vowing their case for when Carson should be born! ha…if it were only that easy. This labor process felt so long, much longer than Paisley! We were in the triage room a little after 2pm and it wasn’t until 12:34am on August 24th, 2015 that Carson James Gettinger made his appearance…Grandma Marcia had won the birthday battle!

Carson hospital

He weighed in at 8 pounds and 12 ounces, and almost 23 inches in length. The doctor mentioned that he was “really long” and she was surprised at how all of him fit in my belly! Ever since that day, he has been an eating and growing machine. This kid didn’t sleep through the night until he was 11 months old…he was (and still is constantly hungry), eating every hour and half for a long time. At his last checkup, Carson was an inch taller than the 98th percentile for an 18 month old and in the 98th percentile for weight #bigbaby.

One last thing before I close this up and let you oooh and aaaah over all the pictures, many people have asked us about his nickname “Stinky Pete”. I have no idea where it came from, or how I managed to pull this crazy name out of my head. What I do know is that coming from a sleep deprived momma who is seeing all her friends babies sleeping peacefully through the night at “normal” times (i.e. 3 months, 4 months), one has to think of a cute and fun name to call him when he was woken up for the 3rd time hungry…hence the name Stinky Pete. I’m pretty sure he gets called Pete more times than his actual name…he may be confused one day about that. But Stinky Pete was the name dawned on him so that this momma and daddy would get a little laugh every time he woke up!

If you are still reading this, you are a trooper and deserve a good array of pictures. This kid sure is cute and is going to eat us out of house and home! Enjoy!

A Nice Little Reminder

Last night I received a text from one of my besties – and it literally made me tear up. It was the SWEETEST thing ever and just the right thing I needed to hear. The gist of it was that she was super impressed at my ability to have 3 babies (soon!) in 3 different states and not even blink an eye…..if she only knew! ha. But seriously…who sends these random messages to their girlfriends at just the right time?!? It was so needed and made me feel like all my doubts need to be pushed aside. So thanks lady (you know who you are!)

This got me thinking the about the last few months and if I have been working my best to improve myself. If you have kept up with my blog, you know that I’ve made a commitment to myself this year to stop comparing myself to others (BIG TASK…I know…ha) and to be my own person. Begin to discover who I truly am and what makes me feel special. I continue to get sucked back in to comparing myself to others (see this post, this one,  and this one if you need to see this recurring struggle happening in my life) – It’s a vicious cycle that I keep finding myself in – struggling to make it out.

But this text, just a simple 2 second thing that my girl sent me – just because she was thinking of me – got me back on track. As many of you know, I am currently pregnant with our 3rd kiddo…and I’m freaking out a bit. I find myself struggling daily to keep my cool with Paisley and Carson, only to realize I blew it…again…and the day starts over – me trying to stay calm and patient. Most days I feel pretty successful, but there are times where I think back to how my day went and feel ashamed. Ashamed at how I yelled again…ashamed at how I put myself first, rather than taking the 2 minutes to address their needs…ashamed at the satisfaction I feel when it is finally naptime!

I think to myself “how am I going to do this with 3 kids?” This is a daily struggle and concern. My feelings of inadequacy run deep – not just around raising children, but in most facets of my life. As much as I don’t like to admit (and as weird as it feels to say/write them down), this blog is actually helping me realize these negative thoughts and feelings I have about myself and my abilities. Just scrolling through these posts, you can see that I think about these things a lot. I tend to share them a lot too (a lot more than I had intended), but for whatever reason it makes me feel better. So they will continue.

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When I realize these self-doubts, I have to remember that they come from a dark place – the adversary is a tricky guy and he gets very good and getting in to our hearts and minds. This text I got last night is the reminder I needed – I Am Enough! I can do this. Someone out there thinks I am a wonderful mother and example. She has faith and trust in me that I can do this, that I am not alone. That I am strong. I’ve proven it time and time again – multiple moves, multiple children, multiple life changes – and I’ve done all of them! I grew stronger with each new step. I am becoming my own person and we as a family are continuing to grow closer and rely on each other. I am a mom to 2 (almost 3!) amazing and wonderful children. They are the reason I was placed on this Earth. To guide them, teach them, show them the way.

A little pep talk for myself this lovely Wednesday afternoon. Thanks for hanging with me throughout my self-discovery process. I promise not all posts will be this heavy, but just felt that this needed to be shared. It gets it off my chest – so if it only helps me, that is good enough for me!

The next time you feel the need to call or text a friend, please do! Act on that prompting. It may seem small to you, but it may be just what that friend needs to hear.

Happy Wednesday All!

~xo~