Saturday, April 04, 2009

Brain Dump

First off, before I get into the post, Happy Birthday Michelle!!!  See, I remembered!

***Warning: This is going to be a very random post full of brain dumps and other drivel.  If you're scared to take a peak into my brain, it is perfectly acceptable to go running screaming to some other safer blog.  Try my brother's it's funnier than mine.***

Ok, now that the disclaimer is out of the way, I can get a few things off my mind and into writing.  But, first things first.  Isn't my boy totally adorable?  Hasn't he gotten way too big way too quickly?  I was hoping to get pictures outside this month, but the weather conspired against us.  Oh well, there's always May...

I think I'll save the work drama for the end.  It'll be the easiest to write about.

I've had rants and thoughts bumping about in my brain about several different things the last few months but just haven't had the time, energy or attention span to do anything about it.  Here's hoping I can finally get a lot of this onto "paper" so to say.
The one minor rant I have is about the love/hate relationship I have with my library.  I love that it's within walking distance.  I love that it's free.  I love that I can check my book due dates and reserve books all online and even reserve books online.  Sounds wonderful right?  Well, not so wonderful.  The selection in my library is laughable.  Maybe it's because the library where I spent most of my time growing up was huge compared to this one and was packed with books.  I think even my little library in Annville where I went to school has more books that what my library here has.  It's a beautiful new building.  (It's less than 10 years old, but more than 5.)  The organization leaves a bit to be desired.  Yes, they use the traditional Dewey Decimal system for the non fiction and alphabetize by author for fiction, but the two sections seem jumbled together.  And practically half the shelves are empty!  I haven't been able to find the periodicals yet and the reference section in the kids section at my old library was bigger than the reference section here.  So, it's a love hate relationship.  I wish I had all the perks of the online access and all that and the in-person selection of my old library.  Not much to ask really.  But, I guess the only solution would be to move back to Chester County.  (Even though PA is wonderful in the fact that since I have a card to a PA library system already, I can check books out at any library in PA that I go to.  I was so thrilled when they did that back when I was in Jr. High.)

The other thing that has been bugging me for... oh... most of the past year... is mommy websites.  I'm not talking about mommy blogs.  I actually read a couple of people that I don't even know and enjoy them.  No, I'm talking about places like Baby Center (the chat rooms), or Kelly Mom or any of the others that I have stumbled across, glanced at and run away from in disgust or anger.  There are some out there that seem to think the working mom (and yes, I'll use that term and not to say that mom's who are able to stay home with their kids don't work... I know they do!)  are scum of the earth, can't be good mommas and "could stay home if they really want to".  Well, I really want to, but can't.  No, I'm not a single mom.  Yes, my husband works.  But... I earn twice what he does.  Simple, unadulterated fact.  99 times out of 100 if you ask me if I'm OK with that, I say "heck yeah!".  Gak is happy doing what he does.  His job allows him to take care of our son in the mornings and still provide for the family.  Every once in a while though, I do wish he earned $100,000 a year and we'd be set.  But then reality kicks in and know that's not who Gak is or ever will be.  That's not who I want him to be either.  
They also all seem to be die-hard if you don't breastfeed you aren't a good momma and are actually causing harm to your child.  Now, I do breastfeed Boo.  I enjoy it for the most part.  I'm really beginning to hate the pump, but that's a whole other post.  If I wasn't able to or if things were different, I'd use formula.  I'd do whatever it takes to raise a healthy, happy kiddo.  If you can't/won't/don't breastfeed, that's OK too.  And what I don't get is why the adamant breast feeders are so adamant about not weaning your kid to anything until they're two or older.  While if I was a SAHM, or one who worked part time, I might consider this, I seriously doubt that'll be the case for me and Boo.  I'm not going to stop breastfeeding him on June 1st just because it's hist birthday, but I am going to start introducing him to drinking cow's milk instead.  He may take to it like a fish to water, or it may be 6 months or more before it's acceptable to him.  He'll let me know.
The few sites that do have "support" for working mom's assume that either I'm a high paid executive type with my own office, very supportive boss and lots of female coworkers of child bearing age who all are having babies or that I work in a retail type environment and don't breastfeed.  Well, I'm a cube-dwelling, well paid woman who is one of a dozen woman (max) total out of a 70-80 person office with only passing support from upper management and no privacy to speak of who does breastfeed her baby.  I'm also one of three women of child bearing age and the only one who has, or will have, a child in the near future.  One of the other two doesn't plan on having any of her own and the other is a 22-ish girl who I'm not sure if she even has a stable date, let alone plans for kids.  So, it's just me.  Fighting the fight all by myself to get support and understanding.  And a little privacy when I can.
I've tried looking for information about traveling mommas who breastfeed and how they handle traveling without their kids.  I'd love to know another mom with a child under the age of 5 who has to travel for work.  I'd love to know I'm not alone, that it can be done and what others do to survive.  I haven't had to travel for work yet, but I will.  The mere thought of it makes me ill.  All it makes me want to do is hug my boy that much closer and never let him, or his daddy, go.  There's all kinds of information out there about traveling with your baby.  But almost none about traveling without him.  Or, I'm guessing that they think if you travel without your baby you're a bad momma and that you don't breastfeed.  Look, I have enough trouble with guilt about being a bad momma already, I don't need others making me feel that way too.  I know in my heart I'm not a bad momma.  The look of pure joy that Boo gets on his face when I go to pick him up tells me I'm not a bad momma at all.

I do have som reassurances though.  Abi and I got to talking about kids a bit while she was here last weekend.  She said point blank "I'm not strong enough to do what you do; I don't know how you do it".  And she's right, I have no idea how I do it.  I just do what I've got to do to make sure that everyone, Gak, Boo and me, are as happy, healthy and provided for as I can.  Is it enough? Most would probably say yes, but I never will.  I can always make more time for Gak, be more involved with Boo, clean better around the house, cook (and eat) more nutritious meals... the list goes on and on.  I don't want to be "Super Mom", but I have to be.  My mom also said she has no idea how single mom's do it, because it's hard enough with two parents (and a gramma) these days.  She's right.  I don't know what I'd do without her some days.  I don't call on her often with baby issues, but I know she's there.  I try very hard not to take advantage of her watching Boo on Monday's, even though she volunteered before he was even born.  But without her support, emotional and otherwise, it would be just that much harder.
And, above all, I have Gak.  That man is way more forgiving and patient with me than he ever should have to be.  I will admit, I haven't been the best to him.  Nothing major, but lots of little things.  I don't make enough time for him, intimate or otherwise.  I don't support him enough in the things he's interested in.  I gripe and grouse for no reason just because I can't/don't gripe and grouse and the people or things that really are putting me in the bad moods.  I really, really, really must do better for him.  I must make time for him more than I have.

Well, the rest of the drivel that's floating around in my brain must wait.  I'm impressed if you've made it this far.  I have enough time to give a quick spell check before Boo will start complaining that he's awake and no one is paying attention to him.   We're going to the Nature Center later today for a pot-luck dinner for Lynne's 20th anniversary there.

Peace to all and may you have somewhere to dump the brain goo.


Jon said...

I have no idea how you do it all but I will say you are one of my heroes. High praise from a little brother to say the least.

Don't comprimise who you are or what matters most to you and everything else will work out.

Addey said...

Little brother my foot. You may be my younger brother, but it's been a loooong time, like since you were 4, that you acted like my little brother.

Right now I'd love to say my boys matter the most and the rest can go hang... but... I've got to be a little realistic in this economic environment... (that and I'm too chicken to try and change jobs...)