Wife Vs Mom

Wife life and mom life.

The juxtaposition of these two identities hasn’t been particularly graceful for me, as the two roles seem to be an either/or, oil/water situation.

As a childless wife, I dutifully fulfilled my responsibilities. I shaved my legs. I washed my hair (more) often. I put effort into my overall appearance, and Brian was my whole, entire world. His happiness was my utmost priority. I would like to highlight how I nobly bit the bullet and sometimes sat with him to watch basketball games…for at least a year. We enjoyed plenty of alone time together, fun dates with other couples, and I went out of my way to be friendly with wives who’s Pinterest recipe stories didn’t particularly jazz me, just so Brian’s friendships with the husbands continue uninterrupted.

Basically, I still doodling his name all over until we had babies.

Those babies pretty much clicked “select all” and “delete” on the previous entire paragraph.

Now, I wake up like sounding like the girl on The Grudge, but looking like the girl from The Ring:
IMG_4383
IMG_4379
IMG_4381

Literally, I woke up like this,
especially after nights like this.

Motherhood has made me speak 9 octaves higher. Three or four days a week, I only see Brian in passing, and one of us leaves while the other is still in bed. Do we count celebratory high fiving that kids are asleep as physical intimacy? (It’s a meaningful high five.) After mustering up enough energy for chasing two babies and our jobs, we are not especially inclined to make an effort to leave the house. Would I have to button my pants for that? I have a hard time keeping that all consuming mom part of me from spilling over to my husband, and find myself accidentally mothering Brian, who ACTUALLY already HAS a mom.

So, this is how it ends. This is how every girl turns into the wife she swears she’ll never be.

I have no real resolution for this, other than never adding optometry coverage to our insurance. A decline in Brian’s vision might serve him well in the mornings.

However. How. Ever. Aside from the physical attraction concept, there may be hope. I’m trying to figure out how marriage relationships evolve with kids, how to stay flexible, how to nurture a friendship at the basis of our relationship, and remain a unified front against this world, because I really, genuinely like my husband.

Brian should have known it would be all downhill when he dated a girl that preferred to apply makeup in the comfort of the bathroom sink. 6-9-2009 5-48-03 AM_0013

Continue Reading

Over the Clouds and Through The Terminal…

As mentioned in my last post, heart > logic.

I made a trip quick with tired kids, which sounds awful, but let me tell you why, Logic.

After living almost 15 years in one state, 4 in another, 6 in a different one, and 5 in another, there is one place that has remained a constant: Grandma’s house.

I LOVE my Grandma’s house. It’s the sound of a screen door. It’s loud noise from lots of cousins. It’s small town familiarity.

It’s freedom to run.
IMG_4250
IMG_4266

It’s a little gazebo.
IMG_4258

It’s wildflowers.
IMG_4261
IMG_4260

It’s the scent of the air.
IMG_4263

It’s a fawn in the summer.

(You bet I looked like a total city girl in a smaller town, walking around with my camera out like I’m on a safari.)
(You bet I looked like a total city girl in a smaller town, walking around with my camera out like I’m on a safari.)

It’s the prettiest courtyard.
IMG_4264

It’s someone who will always listen to pajama piano recitals.
IMG_4277IMG_4273IMG_4272

It’s morning dew and sparkly spiderwebs.
IMG_4257-1

It’s where I forever feel young, and looked after.
image

They say home is where the heart is, and my heart is always anchored by a doughnut box.

image

I had to get to Grandma’s house, and I’m so glad that I did.

The heart is always, always wiser than the brain.

Continue Reading

My Heart is Being a Real Charizard These Days

Sometimes, things that make sense in the heart are not reciprocated by the brain.

When feelings of “this is a good idea” are not agreed upon between the two, your brain and heart have to battle, like Pokemon. My brain has been losing heart vs brain sparring often, which I attribute to my frontal lobe still recovering from the couple of Bachelor in Paradise episodes I watched.

My little guys and I had an opportunity to make a quick, daddy-less trip, so while he is home working, we are spending a quick couple of days with family. That is cute, right? My brain highlighted the logistics of spending a 48 hour turn around working, unpacking, repacking, an anniversary, traveling without Brian, and traveling with kids who already suffer from beach vacation hangover.

I’ll give a point to my brain on that one.

Next post, we will give my heart a fair trial, but in the mean time, here are some pictures from last week.
IMG_3974IMG_3964IMG_3967

One of my favorite places.
One of my favorite places.

7 years. He has had limited bathroom counter space for 7 years.
7 years. He has had limited bathroom counter space for 7 years.
IMG_4038IMG_4044
The longer we have been married, the more I realize how truly lucky I got. I knew Brian was great when we were engaged, but I had no idea about the extent of his patience, daddy skills, and laundry abilities. Sidenote: he let me take a kiss selfie in a public place. Heart!
The longer we have been married, the more I realize how truly lucky I got. I knew Brian was great when we were engaged, but I had no idea about the extent of his patience, daddy skills, and laundry abilities. Sidenote: he let me take a kiss selfie in a public place. Heart!

PS I have never played Pokémon Go. My phone doesn’t have memory for that… I need all 7,000 pictures of my kids and Instagram screenshots. My Pokémon knowledge is from my GameBoy in 1998 and could be outdated.

Continue Reading

How Your Family Vacation Will Give You an Olympian Workout (But You Already Knew That)

You want to train like an Olympic athlete?

It doesn’t involve much gym time, but I can promise this: you will be sore, and you will be tired.

It is called “family vacation.”

IMG_3265

Total body workout includes:

1. Great cardio. Your cardio routine will begin as soon as your car is put in reverse backing out of the driveway. Run back into the house at least five times for forgotten items. Did you adjust the thermostat? Did you remember the iPad charger? Are you sure you locked the front door? Really sure? Way to go the extra mile and hurdle over the garage door sensor on your way back out the third time. I am convinced that traveling with a large family is how Bruce Jenner stayed in decathlon shape, back when his family was young, and back when he was a he.

2. When you’ve got ninos in the backseat, upper body is what your car’s co-pilot seat is all about. You’ll have the opportunity to stretch unused muscles and contort yourself while fishing for dropped items. It would be unfathomable to wait another 20 minutes until you stop at Jack in the Box to rescue that Paw Patrol figurine wedged in the seat crack between Graham crackers. It’s just like having Jillian Michaels yelling at you…for free!

You may have a seat belt rash on your neck from being nearly decapitated, but did I not promise you soreness?

Don't worryyyy, I didn't take this while driving.
Don’t worryyyy, I didn’t take this while driving.
Suction cup therapy, or front seat upper body workout on a roadtrip to Rio? I’ve seen his baby.
Suction cup therapy, or front seat upper body workout on a roadtrip to Rio? I’ve seen his baby.

3. Lower body. Unloading the car will provide you with ample squatting/ bending/lifting opportunities. If you’ve got a great workout support team like I do, they’ll hide necessities all over the car and keep you running back to get them, individually. Oh, wait. The wipes. Oh, and where’s his other shoe? Oh…the stinky diaper. Did we leave that in the trunk? Good looking out, team. At least when you arrive up the elevator for the third time, your family will switch up the USA chant for, “M-O-M! D-A-D!”

Just kidding, they won’t care, but they will point out that you dropped the iPhone charger in the parking lot, and they’re wondering when it’s time to eat.

4. Upper body, again. If there is a pool, and you have little kids, it will be assumed that you are a shot-put Olympian. You will launch all of your posterity, one at a time, “one mo’ time,” over and over. And one more time for a picture. It was blurry, though, so one more. Your arms may be on fire, but when it comes down to it, you’ll toss your kids a million times over for those laughs.
IMG_2481

5. Don’t overlook carbloading.

IMG_3986IMG_3984

Mama D's pink sauce in exchange for a one piece swimsuit.
Mama D’s pink sauce in exchange for a one piece swimsuit.
(Best we got.)
(Best we got.)

Continue Reading

Finishing My New Year’s Goals Before Next New Year

I went to college in Hawaii for a second, and I’ve been running on island time ever since.

That’s a cute way of putting a lei around the phrase, “I’m usually a little late. Mahalo!”

After college, punctuality became much more important to me, but my two little sweeties put the brakes on that really quickly. It’s a law of motherhood that just as we are walking out the door, someone will need a new diaper, or a Kleenex, or throws up, or is missing a shoe, or remembers he misplaced a red Popsicle somewhere in the house…

Anyway, for the next year, I’ll get there when I get there, and things will get done when they get done, or I’ll lose my mind.

So, here we are in August, and I’m still working on my New Year’s Goals

Peter Pan is first on my list of original Disney stories to read. Indulge me while I nerd out, okay?

There are two separate books (both by the same author, J M Barrie) that count as the “original” story—one contains the first ever mentioning of the character within an unrelated storyline, and the other is the classic Peter Pan story that elaborates on the characters created in the first book.

I want you to read the first one, “Little White Bird.” I love the humor. It’s dry and a little twisted, but still charming and whimsical. Doesn’t that sound perfectly British, dahhling?

I’m slipping into an accent just writing about it, dahhling.

Goodnight Mooning, minus a few pages that are stuck together with apple juice.
Goodnight Mooning, minus a few pages that are stuck together with apple juice.
Continue Reading

Cannon Ball

Wow! THANK YOU for all the kind feedback from my last post! I am grateful so for kind friends, whose little emails and texts gave me an extra boost of encouragement.

I don’t have a lot of talents, so I guess I can demonstrate the importance of proper semicolon placement. (My mom used to tell me I was a good listener—that’s how I know I’m not especially good at anything. That’s fine, though, I got married.)

If you just couldn’t get completely dressed today, have a mountain of laundry, can’t listen to Lion King one more time, and have vowed to choke yourself with Spongebob fruit snacks if you see another pair of Valentino Rockstud heels on Instagram, I’m talking to you. You are real, and you inspire me.

I’m writing for you.

IMG_3868

My little wrestling buddies and I hope to meet up with you here a couple times a week as you scroll through your phone in bed, or while you’re hiding from your family in your closet. Either way.

Continue Reading

I need you to push me into the deep end of the blog pool.

Alright, friends. Or, is it just Grandma reading this? (Hi, Grandma.)

I need to talk to you.

And then I need you to talk to me and answer my questions at the end.

I feel like that 8 year old that tells you every recess of 2nd grade that he is going to be an astronaut, and you’re like, “Yay, Jared R.! You’ll make it! Dream big!” even though you know, in twenty years, Jared R. is going to be a colonic hydrotherapist.

I’m worried I’m Jared R. I’ve been worried about being Jared R. for about two and a half years now.

…but, I think I’m going to do this. THIS. This blog thing. Sort of.

I am so hungry for a return to the literary world! About six months ago, I found myself digging out an old Hawthorne book to read a few of his stories before bed. If you know anything about Nathaniel Hawthorne, you know that’s a little unsettling. Talk about dark bedtime reading.

That’s when I knew: I’m in. I miss writing. I need to put down Hawthorne, and get my Jared on.

So, I looked into a master’s of literature program at my local university, and I was sold. After discussing it with Brian, I realized this is far from the ideal time of life to be going back to school. I work in an unrelated field, I have a one year old and two year old, and I’d have to take out student loans. There really is no monetary benefit to advancing my education, and I don’t think recreational schooling is an option in my life right now.

The alternative? Writing HERE. Regularly. Holding myself accountable. Stretching myself. Pushing myself. Making this my little “masters” project for the time being. Brian encouraged it, but I feel hesitant, like I’ve felt for years. But, the butterflies in my stomach tell me I have to push myself now, or kick myself later for shying away from something I love.

Listen, if I’m going to “blog,” and tell people about it, it’s important to ME that you know the following things:

My intent is not to be well known. My intent is to polish up my rusty writing, be consistent, and hopefully stumble upon a freelance opportunity, editorial work, or get future pieces published.

I’m not trying to convince you I’m pretty.

I am resistant to being a blogger. You know, a blogggggger. I feel like the universe will insist I eat macarons in my bed and wear Louboutins to Costco, and while my dozen or so fashion blogging friends are gorgeous make it look fabulous, it’s not authentic to my life right at this moment. I would love to dress up, and I’m definitely a girly, sparkly, lipsticky girl, but I already have a separate, energy intensive job. The days I have laying around with my babies in jammies, not caring how crazy my house looks are days I treasure. But you other bloggers? Giiiiit it, girls.

I feel super vulnerable and a little nervous, because this is personal. It’s my personal life and thoughts, not just clothes, or great deals, or recipes. This is my life. What the heck else am I going to write about?

Questions for you—

Do you think the “visual aid” part of social media (ie blogs) is weighed heavily in it’s success?

How do we collectively feel about posting photos of kids on a public platform?

Is this an okay idea?

Can I post just like, once or twice a week in lieu of an actual “homework assignment”?

Do you want me and Jared R. to wave to you from the moon?

Continue Reading