Category Archives: Thoughts and Thangs

Living Outside of the Societal Box

Around 33, I decided my life wasn’t working for me. It wasn’t working for me for many reasons. Reasons that I created and reasons that I had no control over. To be frank it boils down to one simple fact; I do not fit into societal constructs.

What are social constructs? In a nutshell, it is what society expects from you and your life choices. This is an easy read for those interested in learning more about social constructionism.

https://www.revolvy.com/page/Social-constructionism

When did I realize my life had taken a hard left turn when it was supposed to veer right? I literally woke up one day and didn’t recognize my life. Everything I had worked so hard for was so far in the past in felt like it might have actually been someone else’s life. When I looked at the pictures carefully placed on the wall in frames picked out special as a part of the ‘new house’ d√©cor, I felt nothing. It was like looking at the sweet memories of someone else’s family.

I had been a part of every detail and every decision in this life we had built. So why couldn’t see myself anywhere in it?

Let’s take a step back…

Similar to most women, I eventually wanted to start a family. Similar to most women, I can also remember a time that I never wanted kids.

When I was 28, I wasn’t at the phase where I wanted kids yet. However, I was at a pivotal point in my adult life. When you choose the military as a career, it will eventually end. There is only so far to climb and age does matter when it comes to military service. So if you choose to make it a life career out of it, it will end in retirement. At 28, I had to decide to negotiate new sea duty orders (deployable) and stay on that track to retirement or get out. I chose to get out and finish graduate school with high hopes of a career in the psychology field. Oh, also I got married. Again.

Fast forward 18 months and my 11-year career as a photo-journalist is over. I have finished graduate school but have no prospects for work in the field of psychology in the state we picked to move to. I am now waiting tables to make friends since we picked a state we knew 0 humans in and all I can think about having a baby.

This was the beginning of me trying to live a life I am not designed for.

Soon I pregnant with Charlotte and babysitting for extra money. I played a stay-at-home mom and wife for 3 years. For three years I woke up living someone else’s dream because I decided that is what I wanted and what was best. I went to bed every night telling myself that the feelings I was feeling were normal and would go away over time.

Holy shit I wish I had had a therapist at that point in my life.

It wasn’t until the end of last year that I started feeling like myself again. Once I stopped trying to fit into the mold society has made for me I feel free again.

I am a different kind of wife, different kind of mother and different kind woman. At the end of the day I try to help others; not hurt them. I have made the mistake in the past with being too open about my life and all that it encompasses and I have lost connections. It can be uncomfortable for those who do fit nicely into social constructs. I often think to myself that life would be much easier if I could just “go with the flow.”

At 33 I started asking myself what is more important, fitting in or feeling complete?

My choices make some people uncomfortable, and that is ok. It has to be ok, because I am no longer willing to sacrifice my comfortability for yours. So if you feel like-minded, wondering why you feel like a fish out of water, try living outside societal norms. Be yourself; as long as yourself is not a serial killer ūüėČ

 

 

 

 

 

 

Getting back out there… where have I been?

You guys, these past couple years have been nothing less than a shit show. Life came a knockin’ and it brought some gifts. Good, bad, really bad and finally exhausted and defeated decisions have been made as a result.

Since¬† 2016 my revolving door consisted of starting jobs, quitting¬† jobs, starting a business, taking a break from that business to start and quit those jobs, trying new mental health treatments (some that worked and some that didn’t), moving out, moving back in, and a medical diagnosis that hit us out of no where.

Throughout this journey I have inadvertently invited people to judge me and to have an opinion about my life. I have distanced myself from family as I tend to do during down times, and I have managed to trim the access weight from my ‘friends’ list.

Ages 33-35 have been a blur of constant motion, trying to find a balance in my life all while watching everything I have worked for start to fade into the background. I was fading into the background of my own life. I was living this life in this body on autopilot for so long that I finally just lost my shit. I literally could not breathe; I was suffocating in this life I said I wanted. And I was freaking tired of being a big ol’ hypocrite.

It’s like after the newness wore off of motherhood I felt completely empty. I think becoming a mom was the last big accomplishment I experienced and I am one of those humans who needs to continue to grow, to learn, to set and meet goals other than new Pinterest projects, to feel important outside the house, to help people I don’t share DNA or a last name with… and I need to do all of those things on a regular basis. That is just who I am; and I have to accept that about myself and stop trying to fit into box not designed for me.

I remember I would lay awake at night and listen to my daughter breathe and in the same breath feel complete joy and complete ambivalence.  I started to feel ambivalent about motherhood, about marriage and about what was expected of me. That excitement and zest for life I felt as a photographer in the Navy, as a new civilian finding a spot for herself, as a graduate student, as a new wife setting up her home in a new state, as a new mom, it was all GONE.

Now, I don’t want to disappoint you, but I am not going to get deeper into details on this post. Even though I yearn to connect with others, tell my story and feel the weight lift off my shoulders as I usually do after a brutally honest piece of writing, there is healing happening here. There will be a time, but it not now.

But back to my disappearance from my writing; I may have continued to write every now and then but my heart left this blog somewhere around January 2017 when I was in full force life dismantle.

I was also deep into the vicious cycle of comparing myself to other women, which is like pouring acid on the feels part of your brain. I KNOW, I KNOW… I am like the spokesperson for telling people to STOP COMPARING YOURSELF TO OTHERS.¬† But dammit if it isn’t second nature to the female gender. We have to seriously work very hard to rewire this out of our normal thinking process. We see someone dressed like a human at drop-off the day we don’t even have shoes on and there it is, we start comparing ourselves to the mom who appears to have it all together. And maybe they do, but that has nothing do with you and what you are doing in your life.

I let so many things get into my head the last couple years but I also fought for myself. You know, none of asked to be here, and sometimes our inner dialogue doesn’t match the dialogue happening around us. There are a couple things I know to be true in this situation; you can change your inner dialogue to mimic the dialogue around you or you can follow your inner dialogue and try and change the dialogue around you.

Now that I started choosing the second version I am finding my way back. Changes are in the works and I am leaning into those changes in the most positive way I can. I have always found writing to be therapeutic, to be a way to connect with people, to tell my truth while hopefully inspiring others and to leave a legacy. So here I am I am, yammering away for entertainment.

 

XXX-Jen

 

Accepting Who You Are

Sounds easy enough, to ‘accept ourselves’. Most people understand the concept of personality traits and can describe themselves and the people they know. Outgoing, loving, dependable, smart, troubled, unpredictable, rude, manipulative…

People can be tricky, though. We have a way of showing the world what we want and feeling a different way inside. We naturally have the ability to change ourselves and we evolve over time. Think about it, were you the same person 10 years ago?

Some people use their personality traits (honest, blunt, bold) to say whatever pops in their heads. No filter or empathy for feelings.

We¬†can explain our behavior by saying¬†things like, ‘It’s just who I am or it’s just what I do.” But the truth is when we say those things it’s usually a farce. Understanding yourself completely takes a lot of time and a lot of work.

Your Brain 

What people either forget or fail to understand is that there is an¬†abundance of external and internal factors that¬†alter your natural brain neuropathy. (This doesn’t always have to be a negative thing, either) Examples of external factors¬†are physical trauma, sexual trauma, and abuse in general. Examples of internal factors could be illegal or legal drugs, eating disorders, and mental illness.

I have been an emotional person my whole life, however, I have  gotten progressively more emotional over the years. My own brain neuropathy was altered from external and internal circumstances that were out of my control, within my control and situations I was exposed to due to my own reckless behavior.

I remember in early elementary school a teacher told me that I wore my heart on my sleeve while another teacher told my I was missing the filter from my brain to my mouth. I have always said things that I immediately regret saying, still till this day. I have also cried at the drop of the hat, despite my best efforts. If I get really mad, I cry. If I get overwhelmed, I ugly cry.

It was a huge problem I had while I was in the military. When I got in trouble, which was not very often because people with anxiety would rather die than be in trouble, I would either cry immediately or as soon as I was alone. Puffy eyes always gave me away though and mortification would set in with self-hate pulling up the rear.

The motivation to become a strong woman who took no shit became my identity. I worked really hard to develop a back-bone and to be seen as a strong team member and not a weak female.  But to be clear, I was not winning first place or an Oscar, not even on my best day.

I am just emotional. To the core. I cry often, I smile often, I laugh often, I yell often, I am angry often and I am loving often. Maybe all in one day. It has taken me my lifetime to understand what being me means. Life has changed who was going to be, and has molded together the lady that you see today. I need a little outside help, and it takes a village to keep me moving at the speed I prefer, but I accept that.

As far as that filter problem, I am still working on it. I still say awkward things.

 

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My love/hate relationship with the month of February

A few years ago, the title would have just read, “my favorite month¬†is February” followed by all the reasons under the sun that made me love the month of February.

I still love the month very much, but now the month comes with a dark cloud of remembrance for me.

I love celebrating birthdays, ask any of my close friends and family. I find excitement and pride in finding the perfect gift for someone’s birthday. I like to listen closely to clues, I try to remember what they appreciated while we were out shopping and¬†I would say I retain information well.

As you can imagine, I also love celebrating my birthday. Which happens to fall close to February; my birthday is in March.

I believe my early love of my birthday started when I was single digits. I don’t have a lot of good memories with my mom, but I do have a fair amount of great memories of my birthday celebrations with her. Let’s just say, she went big, or she went home… this taught me early to value birthdays and that making someone feel special on their birthday makes you feel good too.¬†PSA: My love language involves gifts and acts of appreciation. Mixed in with some positive chatter about how beneficial, beautiful, talented, creative, thoughtful and loving I am… blah blah blah.

Anyways, after lots of money and time invested thinking about it, in my heart I believe she always tried to do really cool things for my birthdays like the dirty dancing themed birthday party I had and another one that involved marijuana and a s√©ance because¬†the rest of the year she was pretty¬†“hands-off”.¬†She fumbled through parenting because she was very busy fumbling through her life with no real support or means of getting any. She was broken early on and spent a good amount of time doing things that kept her on a path that didn’t lead to anything positive. For the most part of her life. Once she learned how to stop getting¬†in her own way, it was too late.¬†¬†Despite the relationship I had with her as a youth,¬† and the 11 years we had no contact, we managed to¬†create and nurture a new relationship.

She was diagnosed with stage 4 small cell lung cancer in 2008 I think and at this time I was still  active duty and received a red cross message and had to go. I bought her a beautiful peach Italian jewelry box as a gift to give her. Even though our parting terms probably would alleviate me of the responsibility of a gift. But it was engrained early that it makes people feel good and that makes you feel good. So after 11 years of no contact at all, I fly from Italy back to Texas with this jewelry box. She had a necklace waiting for me.  We spent time together and decided to move on and spend the remaining years together, in each others lives.

She became my best friend. She loved the man I picked as my partner. She walked me down the aisle and attended my bachelorette party. She loved her birthday too, and it was February 23rd. I miss her and I miss celebrating the hell out of her birthday because it always made her happy for months, no matter how sick she was at the time. I have those gifts now, and my daughter plays with them and they live on in her room. She never got to meet Charlotte. She was holding on past the 6-month sentence, but once she knew the pregnancy with Charlotte was healthy she passed soon after.

She would have been 53, but she would tell you 45.

February 23rd¬†also happens to be my favorite aunt and uncle’s birthdays. She is the glue to our family and Adrian and I grew up pretty much like brother and sister.

The last reason I love this month is that my favorite holiday is Valentines Day. Go ahead, roll your eyes, I love this hallmark holiday. I  love being doted on, I love being taken out, I love receiving gifts as you already read. The date I knew Chris was the one was Valentines Day. He got the fucking memo and I was taken care of.

So, you can see the love/hate relationship I now have and will always have with this month. One minute I am thinking of my momma crying into my chocolates and another minute I am sobbing in a bubble bath full of new bath products. Poor Chris. I think he knew it was going to be an emotional roller coaster this month and planned ahead because he has received 4 boxes in 1 week from stores he does not shop at.

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The Awkward Shit that Happens to ‘Mature’ Moms at Target

The other day, while shopping at Target, I was a party to an awkward situation. I say a party to because those teenage girls could have been just as mortified as I was while browsing the 5 for 20 underwear bins. I doubt it. I am sure it was more along the lines of embarrassment. For me, that is.

Insult to injury, I had just arrived at Target and had made a quick bee-line to the lady’s section because I had my daughter in tow and everyone knows you do your most important shopping first. Because toddlers. An embarrassing side note to this horrific event is that I have not bought underwear since I bought the lovely package of underwear I rocked through out my pregnancy and post-pregnancy. I have been in need for quite some time and the husband reminded me of that while I was getting dressed. So it needed to be taken care of.

I am browsing the options when I overhear girly chatter the next aisle over. “Oh my god, I love these! I have these in black too!”

“Oh I know, these are so cute!”

I was pretty impressed by the selections as well, so I am nodding along in a agreement. Then I turn the corner and realize I was smiling and nodding along to teenage girls discussing the thongs they like. What. The. Fuck. I am looking to buy¬†the same thongs that a fifteen-year-old girl is wearing and imagining my husband’s reaction to my pretty¬†new¬†panties that don’t have¬†chunky waist bands. Nice. So naturally I put everything back, and did all my other shopping and came back when the coast was clear. Like any other 30-something mom would do.

That got me thinking. This is not first awkward situation that has occurred at Target or related to Target since I became a mom. It can’t just be my luck either, I am pretty sure these exact situations are occurring around the world to other moms. Even as I type this!

Check all that apply:

1. Showing up to do some shopping wearing last year’s must haves.

2. Having the same article of clothing on as a one of the Target mannequins. And winning the ‘Who Wore it Worst’ award.

3. Showing up to something wearing the¬†same thing as another mom. Yup, my daughter’s first birthday. You know who you are!

4. Nursing your wee one in one of the¬†changing rooms¬†and overhearing something you probably weren’t supposed to. I know all about what you did at that party young lady!

5. My favorite, the underwear situation. Which ultimately opened my eyes to the fact that my sweet little girl might one day be a teenager shopping for thongs, at Target, with her friends. Gross.

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7 Things I Miss about my Pre-Baby Life

 

Let’s just jump right into it! Because, free time is an oddity. Which starts us off:

1. Free time. I remember once upon a time I complained, quite frequently, about being bored. What the fuck was wrong with me. I could have written like 1,500 post, gotten like 500 pedicures, or read at least 100 books (I am a slow reader who often has to read 1 page 10 times because I got sidetracked).

2. Having unscheduled sex with my husband. It still happens on occasion, but mostly we have to schedule “date nights.” Which in parent speak, means I need a tune-up.

3. Cussing like the goddamn Sailor I was. I still have quite the fowl mouth, but I have made progress. I miss letting those words fly out of my mouth was such speed and velocity that anyone in a 15-foot vicinity could catch my drift. I am tired of going pee-pee or poo-poo. I want to take a shit and I want to be able to describe the level at which I need to pee, like a fucking race horse.

4. Sunday brunch. Yes I know that Sunday brunch still happens all around the world and that I could go, but the days of endless mimosas followed by lazy naps are long gone. At least for the foreseeable future. Now when we do brunch, there is no endless mimosas due to breastfeeding and having to drive precious cargo. There is no sitting and gossiping about the weekend’s drama with friends over greasy food and booze. There is however chasing a toddler, getting embarrassed when the tantrums start and shoving food in as fast as possible so we can GO! Naps are also replaced with a hectic ride home because brunch is over right around the time that the nap time emotional meltdowns start. So yea, no more brunch.

5. Not being addicted to coffee. I am coffee’s bitch and I don’t even remember my life without it. But I do remember a time when I could skip that second cup and not have a strong desire to run away by 9 a.m. I remember a time when 3 p.m rolled around and I didn’t have a splitting headache caused¬†from caffeine withdrawal because somehow I was too busy to even remember to make it. How do you adult without coffee? I have no idea, but I think I used to do it.

6. Being able to finish a movie in one sitting. In the 17-months since my daughter was born, I have yet to finish a whole movie in one sitting. I will get caught up doing something else, or I will fall asleep. Every. Damn. Time. So yea, the desired effect was not achieved when trying to watch 5o Shades of Gray.

7. Getting everything knocked out in one shower. You know, being able to shave you entire leg, both of them, both armpits, any other areas, wash/condition hair, wash you face… a real shower. On a Tuesday! Now, that was the goddamn life.

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Girls: Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice?

When I was pregnant, I joked that I was having a girl because only a girl would cause this much drama. I was referring to my all day morning sickness. My hunch was correct and unfortunately the drama continued well into my second trimester.

Charlotte and Bug

I am not very ‘girly’ by nature. I would surely be classified as a tomboy growing up. I think I pretty much wore t-shirts, jeans and flip-flops or boots until I was like 23 years-old. I wear minimal make-up and choose comfort over fashion. I do enjoy the few staples of nice jewelry I am fortunate to have and I do have a love for shoes. I have lots of shoes and probably equal amounts between heels and flats. I do like to dress up, but even then my choice in clothes¬†are on the side of comfortable and what I feel looks flattering on me.

Wind
She does not like things on her hands.

I have a theory of how I got here. My mom loved make-up, nails, fashionable clothes and jewelry. And hairspray. In elementary school, I have memories of her putting rubber bands in my sweater sleeves to keep them from rolling up, or down. or at all. I had my first perm before I was 12 and probably started getting acrylic nails around the same time. Every little girl wants to do what her mommy does, so I am sure I was pumped to be getting all the glam done and excited when I get a complete set of Mary Kay face care products for my 12th birthday. I think I eventually started feeling like it was a chore and not fun anymore.

I didn’t want to do that to my daughter. Also, my love of psychology encouraged me to see how nature versus nurture played out here. I wanted to watch her personally emerge and let her decide what kinds of things she enjoyed. The opposite of my childhood.

 

I made it pretty clear that while I liked pink, I did not want a ton of it and would prefer gender neutral colors. Of course I still got mountains of pink because people think pink when shopping for baby girls. But overall, we managed to keep her in pretty gender neutral colors and had bought the same kind of toys. She was confused for boy almost every time we left the house, even with bows and burettes in hair. The fashion popular for little girls here in South Carolina is very different from what I like.

Shocking to most, we have yet to include a tutu to her wardrobe.

Love Her
She loves pigtails. And skirts.

Those days may be behind us though. She tried on a tutu during a play date the other day and lit up like a Christmas tree. She loves her skirts and she loves bright colors. She has also learned to do a cute little twirl when she is wearing something she really likes.

Wind 2
And she loves bugs and dirt.

She sits down for me to do her hair, mostly, and runs to the nearest mirror in daddy’s room to see her hair and then promptly show her daddy. My heart melts every freakin’ time.

Sweet Charlotte
Sweet Charlotte
with all my sass
with all my sass
Just kidding mommy, here is your lens cap.
Just kidding mommy, here is your lens cap.

She also loves to be outside playing, doesn’t mind getting dirty and likes to build forts and ‘work-out’ with mommy. Even with all the gray outfits and gender neutral toys, our little princess emerged on her own.

Baby 2

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Things they don’t teach you in parenting class

When the glitter wears off of your first-born and you have had real-time to assess the situation, facing reality can be ugly. I have to say I considered myself well prepared for motherhood, I mean about as ready as anyone can be. I was 32, had hands-on experience with my sisters when they were babies since we have a 17 and 15 year age difference, I attended every recommended class and read all the damn books and articles I could get my chubby pregnant hands on.

Once the dust settled though, you realize that there are some pretty big chunks missing from those parenting classes. Maybe because some of it falls into the category of common sense and perhaps because some of it is situational. I can’t be sure. But I suspect an updating might be in order.

Maybe it’s me, but¬†I think¬†we could have skipped the diaper practice and perhaps skimmed over lopsided tits¬†or how a onsie can be correctly removed when cleaning a massive blowout instead of how¬†many men in the class can correctly put a diaper on an unrealistic doll under pressure for a fun size Snickers. I am sure a large percentage of the class, predominantly those with breast, know how to change a diaper and am positive they can teach it to their partner if for some reason they cannot figure it out on their own throughout the course of that child’s life.

Here is a quick list of things I sure wish we discussed in at least one of the classes or countless appointments I attended.

1. There is no “getting your old body back.” Once you have grown a human being in your body it is forever changed. Your hormones may go back to normal and you may even get back down to the same weight,¬†but your body is not the same on inside after you carry a baby and it won’t look the same on the outside. I apparently sacrificed my ass and now get migraines.

2. If you breastfeed, your tits will be lopsided at some point. Well maybe I shouldn’t generalize. If your normal breast size on the smaller size, your tits will be lopsided at some point. Everyone has a champion milk producer. Mine is my right, and by the end of the day poor leftie just looks defeated. And tired. The poor thing.

3. Sex is different after kids, and I am not just referring to the fact that it is mostly hurried sex.

4. Everyone is an expert, except you. You already know you will receive an unnerving amount of unsolicited advice. And mostly you don’t mind, some you actually appreciate receiving. But mostly the tone you receive is that they are the expert because they produced life before you and no matter what you think you know or learned in school doesn’t really measure up. Once you accept this, you can move on.

5. Kids have personalities and everything you thought you knew before hand is pretty much null and void. Unless you are some sort of medium or something, you are meeting your kid for the first time in the delivery room. Sometimes your parenting plan doesn’t work out. I would dare say most of the time. At the minimum, you can expect to make some alterations to your parenting plan. Daily alterations. Sometimes hourly.

6. Sometimes pumping milk is a challenge. I can sit there for an hour with my premium grade Modela pump and get mere ounces will my friend pumps bottle full. I am quite sure there is an explanation for this phenomena but I failed to hear it in any class or follow-up doctor’s appointments, and as a new mom I was unaware that maybe I should ask.

7. Surrounding yourself with a mom village is so important in those first years. Having babies means more time home and more time at home means less time with friends and family so slipping into a depression or feeling lonely in common. It is pretty well accepted that being a mom is the hardest job you will have, so having like-minded moms you can lean on is oh so important.

8. Educating yourself is important. Times have changed, advances have been made and information is more available than ever. I am baffled by parents who do not use the tools available to them. I am most certainly not saying “google” everything, but knowledge is power in every other avenue in our life, why do we not include parenting? Go to websites, books and local groups should be included in the information packet you get during your hospital discharge.

9. Onsies fold down from the shoulders. You may know this. I did not. If you don’t, you’re welcome.

 

What Holidays Mean After Kids

it I realize that some small kids are just gems when they are out in public. They are quiet, responsive and respectful of people. Some small kids can go grocery shopping without crying or losing a shoe. And most kids can make it through the check-out line without screaming bloody murder when the cashier says hello or makes eye contact for too long.

Well, after 15 months I have come to the conclusion that I don’t have that kid.

No, my sweet daughter is very particular with how she spends her time outside the house. If she is not having fun doing whatever it is we need to do, then she is over it in about 15 minutes.

So, she is not a huge fan of shopping or eating out and she sure as hell does not have time for anything outside the house after 7 pm.

But, like most new parents we try every time. Every damn time.

I have started finding it a little amusing when people ask me what our big plans are for the holiday weekend or asking what we did after the fact. Because reality is, we have taken our first-born to something fun on every holiday¬†and it has¬†bombed in some way every time. The only time we considered ¬†it a “success” was Easter, and she cried all the way home because she was exhausted.

So in normal fashion, we dressed in our festive attire and found something family friendly to do on the Fourth of July. On Saturday we had a big breakfast together, then I toted her around the grocery store, followed by¬†the pool and then finally to a festival with¬†activities for kids. She hated it all except the grocery store and that was because she rode around in the kid’s car shopping cart. I am unclear as to why I have never used that damn cart before. Or as to why they only have 3.

We were at the festival¬†for about 40 minutes before calling it quits. It took longer to drive there and park. During that time we walked around the grounds with her pointing at everything, dancing, singing, trying to get her to run around, trying to get her to eat either french fries, ice cream or her favorite food, yogurt. Nothing worked for her, she was not getting jazzed about anything.¬†Part of me didn’t¬†blame her either. It was hot, loud and not much she could really get into.
Fourth of July

 

We ran into another couple with the same attitude about celebrating the holiday with a toddler during our brief attempts to eat. Coincidentally we found ourselves walking to our prospective cars at the same time.

I suppose we keep trying because we think it will enrich her childhood somehow. And maybe a little part of us still¬†thinks¬†‘it could be fun.’

July Fourth with Dad

So that is how my holiday weekend pretty much went.

Breaking News: Step-parents Matter

I think one of the most challenging¬†things someone can do is to take on the responsibilities of someone else’s child. Becoming a step-parent is a big deal, and should be treated as such. I mean, I don’t think I am alone in thinking that. Having a child of your own is a big decision and responsibility, so taking on the responsibility of a child that is not your own is definitely a big deal.

Kids are hard, and often¬†the ones we share DNA with are¬†a challenge to handle. So I can only imagine what it must be like to handle a step-child. Add on factors such as rocky relationships between biological parents, distance between parents, difference in parenting styles among parents, siblings… I mean the list can go on.

Blended families are a dime a dozen now; the Brady Bunch is no long a novelty. So people are faced with the decision to not only get married, but to become a step-parent pretty frequently in today’s society. I don’t feel like it is really ‘taboo’ to get divorced and remarried. I joke about starter marriages all the time. As a matter of fact, I am a member of that club, since 2003. Or 2002, I forget now. I was a baby bride.

Anyway, my point is this. Getting remarried often means blended family. Children are hard to hide, so a potential spouse has to know that children are a part of the package. So why are there still step-parents that are ass hats? If you hate the prospective spouses kids, why would you take them on to be your own? If you can’t handle all the kid(s), have issues with the kid(s), or just don’t want the added responsibility, why go forth?

The relationship parents have with their kids is important; this is not breaking news. Step-parents are important and the relationship they have with their step-children matters. Not to go too far off on a rant, the rocky relationships I have had with my own step-parents has greatly impacted who I am today.  

I just don’t understand it, to put it simply. I just don’t understand committing to someone who has a child or children and being a terrible step-parent to them as if they don’t matter. I know there has to be a period of adjustment, so I can see how it isn’t rainbows and butterflies right off the bat. But a continuously shitty step-parent with zero desire the work on it is something I can’t get on board with, or understand for that matter.

Why commit to that person. Is it with the assumption that you won’t really have much interaction with the step-child so it doesn’t really matter? Unless they are 17 going on 18 and moving out, I don’t see who that is valid thinking.

I just believe that all kids matter and how you treat them greatly impacts who they become.

Is this one of those ‘walk a mile in my shoe’ type things?