when you mom's a turd

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Sometimes your mom is a turd.

And she sends you to your room because you have a lot of feelings, and sometimes those feelings are hard to put into words. So you get upset about what's for breakfast or stomp your feet or cry or you say you don't like something even though you do. And sometimes mom is counting to ten a million times over in her head and taking deep breath after deep breath because the only thing bigger than the pile of laundry in the house is the pile of feelings. And mom wants everyone to feel all the feelings because she knows that's best. But sometimes, she makes you take your pile to your room.

And then mom puts the baby down for a nap and sits in silence because she wishes she could do it all. So she goes to your room to apologize and ask for a hug. She thinks you're in your room reading, but then finds you asleep in your bed.

And she remembers that you woke up early, and it's hard to talk about how you feel when you're tired.

And she remembers that sometimes it's hard to get a word in when you have a baby brother that likes to yell and a big sister that has her own big feelings.

And she remembers that you're only five years old.

And she remembers that you're doing the best you can.

And she remembers that she's doing the best she can, too. Which means she'll act like a turd, but then she'll say sorry and try again.

a simple birth day gift

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

"Happy birthday!! Are you two?!"

By about the fifth time we had said, "Happy Birthday" I think he knew something special was going on.  "Bir-day!"

But, if we asked, "Is it your birthday?" He would respond with, "No!" "Are you two??" "Two? No...."

A few days before, I ordered a vanilla cake with buttercream frosting. That morning I picked up red and white balloons. And my mom took the older two kids out to pick up a gift for him while I got the chance to have a few hours with just the birthday boy.

We played (even though he asked for Sheh-sheh and Paw-po the whole time) and watched his favorite favorite show-- The Wiggles. And he let me hold him as watched. The best part was when he started falling asleep in my arms, and I remember thinking, "This is the best birth day present and its not even my birthday." So, I quickly grabbed my phone to take this shot before I took him down to bed. It ended up being the best part of the day because it reminded me of those early days when he needed me for so much and spent so many hours in my arms. It reminded me that no matter how old he is, I will always be a place for him to land.

teaching my daughter and sons to celebrate women

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Last week, the kids sat down and painted these pictures of women they look up to. Sof chose Amelia Earhart and Eleanor Roosevelt, and Pato chose Wilma Rudolph. A while ago, we purchased these We Brave Women flashcards, created by the talented Ashmae Hoiland, and they have been an amazing tool to teach the kids about some truly remarkable women-- many I didn't even know of myself. The women on these cards come from such a wide background-- there are activists, world leaders, athletes, writers, artists, scientists--women that have paved a path for my own daughter. 

If you told Sof that there was something she couldn't do because she's a girl, she'd look at you like you were crazy. Really and truly, I think that she thinks that there is nothing she can't do.  And just as amazing, her brother feels the same way. That both my daughter and sons know that girls can do anything is incredibly important to me.

Now, I know some people say, "Well, what about the boys?" And listen, I am on that team, too! I worry just as much about my sons. I hate that society will try to tell them what a "real man" is supposed to look or act like. What strong is supposed to look like. What feelings they're allowed to show or not show. But, I'm willing to wager that a boy or a man who supports girls and women and sees them as equals and knows they're capable and strong and smart as them are going to do just fine.

I feel like sometimes I get looks like "Oh,'ve talked to your kids about that?" Those looks are never mean, never negative. Just more of shock I think? We are pretty open with our kids about wide variety of topics, and it works for us. I'm not saying everyone should take the same approach as us-- I'm all for parents just doing what's best for their own children. And, we've approached this topic the same simple way. 

Hey, kids. Guess what? Did you know that not too long ago, in our country, women couldn't do a lot of things? 

What do you mean?

Important things! Like vote. Or own land. Or have certain jobs. Even today-- sometimes they have harder times getting jobs. Or getting paid the same amount. They sometimes get treated differently. Not always in nice ways. And did you know in some places, girls can't go to school? 

And then we talk about kindness, and respect, and go back and talk about women and their contributions. 

Want to know how many times my son has turned things around and felt sad or left out when we highlight women?

Zero. Not one time.

Because celebrating women and their achievements is not about putting down men. He's five years old, and he can recognize that already. Instead, he celebrates them right along with us. And this is one reason out of many that I look forward to seeing the man he grows up to be.

**We Brave Women flashcards can be purchased HERE.**

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