I Needed That

Wow!  I cannot believe how many moms, dads, grandmas, and grandpas, read my most recent post composed of foggy thoughts made clear one night around 4am.  I just thought a few people might read it and relate.  I had hoped I could just make somebody smile.  I had NO IDEA millions of people would come across my story.  So many mommys said, “I needed that”.  That they were up with a sick child, exhausted, or at their wit’s end.  That they are a single mother trying to play both parenting roles and unsure of themselves.  A stay-at-home dad.  Those who still need their mommys, and talk to them in Heaven.  That they were a grandma who just needed a memory of holding her 1st child while listening to broadcasts as The Bay of Pigs unfolded.  I think we all just need a little reassurance that we are not alone.  That we are doing the best we can.  That somewhere out there in the dark night, some other parent is up rocking their colicky baby.  The needs I spoke of in this post were the basic physical needs of young children.  And I know there are oh so many more.  Many more experiences and adventures to come in this journey of parenthood.  I can’t wait for the memory-making to unfold like the pages of a book.  I think I am only at about Chapter 3.  I pray there are 100.  Thank you for visiting my page.  Thank you for sharing your advice and tears.  Thank you.  I am honored.

What do I need?  Well, I often need a kick in the rear.  Or a glass of red wine.  I need the sunshine to come out (pretty rare here in Central Indiana these days).  I also need a maid, but I don’t think that is going to happen either.  I know for sure I need my mommy.  I need her to watch my baby so I can get out of the house or just to join me on a trip to the mall.  I need my dad to be a different male role model to my boys than my husband.  One that is full of train rides and trips to Steak N Shake.  I need my sister to pick up my oldest from pre-school and take him to her house to bake cupcakes.  Most of all I need my husband.  To be my boys’ “superhero”, and mine.  I have been a parent for just 4 and 1/2 short years.  I need wisdom.  From my mom, my mother-in-law, my cousins, friends, from you.

I am counting on my children needing me in their teen years.  Just as I needed my mom to stop me from leaving the house with ridiculous hair or take me to the dermatologist’s office for my acne.  I assume they will need their dad just like I needed mine to walk with me along the beach in Florida as a child, and to walk me down the aisle to my husband.  I am counting on my children needing their father to drive them to baseball practice, host insane wrestling matches, and to have talks with them that I cannot.

My children need their grandparents.  They need them to form those special and unique bonds that a child can only have with a grandma or grandpa.  I needed my grandpa. I needed him there to celebrate his 91st and final Christmas, because, even though we celebrated it in a wonderful assisted-living community instead of his cozy living room in Lafayette, IN, it just wouldn’t have been Christmas without him.

I know my children will need me in my “golden years”, just not in that same aching way they need me now.  I sure do need my parents now!  Probably more than ever.  Or maybe now I just realize it, and say thank you.  Something I am pretty sure my 16-year-old self didn’t do. Those of you who know me know I am only half-kidding about a wheelchair in an assisted-living facility.  The ones I know of are wonderful places full of loving and caring staff.  I will be the first to wheel myself down to happy hour if I am lucky enough to have my kids put me in one with a bar.

Being there for the people who need us.  Saying thank you to the people who are important in our lives.  Laughing together.  Having a beautiful memory that brings a tear.  God.  Love.  Isn’t that what it’s all about? It’s really pretty simple, even when it’s not.  Please remind me of that one day when I sit in my room at Shady Acres with plenty of free time.  I just pray that in my arms will be my great-grand baby.  And at the table next to me, a well-worn book, an empty baby bottle, and a glass of wine.  Red wine.

*** If you NEED something to laugh at, you can laugh at me, I don’t mind.  Here is a sneak peek at tomorrow’s post…***

The Baricade

There are 2 little superheroes in this picture.  Somewhere.

“Mommy, Somebody Needs You.”

by Megan Minneman Morton

Ever since we brought our new daughter home, her older brothers have been the first to tell me when she is crying, whimpering, or smelling a little suspicious.  “Somebody needs you,” they say.  I have no idea how this little saying started, but at first it sort of annoyed me.  I could be enjoying a quick shower… “Mommy, somebody needs you.  The baby is crying.”  Or, sitting down for a second, quite aware that the baby was beginning to stir from a nap…. “Mama, somebody needs you!”  Okay!  I get it already!  And not to mention that the newborn’s needs pale in comparison to the needs of 2 little boys.  Somebody always needs a snack, a band-aid, a different sock, ice cubes in their water, a NEW Paw Patrol, a stream of snot wiped, a hug, a story, a kiss.  Some days never seem to end, and the monotony of being “needed” can really take its toll. Then, it all started to hit me, they need ME.  Not anybody else.  Not a single other person in the whole world.  They need their Mommy.

The sooner I can accept that being Mommy means that I never go off the clock, the sooner I can find peace in this crazy stage of life.   That ‘Mommy’ is my duty, privilege and honor. I am ready to be there when somebody needs me, all day and all night.  Mommy means I just put the baby back down after her 4am feeding when a 3-year-old has a nightmare.  Mommy means I am surviving on coffee and toddler leftovers.  Mommy means my husband and I haven’t had a real conversation in weeks.  Mommy means I put their needs before my own, without a thought.  Mommy means that my body is full of aches and my heart is full of love.

I am sure there will come a day when no one needs me.  My babies will all be long gone and consumed with their own lives.  I may sit alone in some assisted living facility watching my body fade away.  No one will need me then.  I may even be a burden.  Sure, they will come visit, but my arms will no longer be their home.  My kisses no longer their cure.  There will be no more tiny boots to wipe the slush from or seat belts to be buckled.  I will have read my last bedtime story, 7 times in a row.  I will no longer enforce time outs.  There will be no more bags to pack and unpack or snack cups to fill.  I am sure my heart will yearn to hear those tiny voices calling out to me, “Mommy, somebody needs you!”

So for now, I find beauty in the peaceful 4am feedings in our cozy little nursery.  We are perched above the naked oak trees in our own lavender nest.  We watch the silent snow fall and a bunny scampering across its perfect white canvas.  It’s just me and my little baby, the neighborhood is dark and still.  We alone are up to watch the pale moon rise and the shadows dance along the nursery wall.  She and I are the only ones to hear the barn owl hooting in the distance.  We snuggle together under a blanket and I rock her back to sleep.  It’s 4am and I am exhausted and frustrated, but it’s okay, she needs me.  Just me.  And maybe, I need her too.  Because she makes me Mommy.  Some day she will sleep through the night.  Some day I will sit in my wheelchair, my arms empty, dreaming of those quiet nights in the nursery.  When she needed me and we were the only two people in the world.

Can I enjoy being needed?  Sometimes, sure, but often it is tiring.  Exhausting.  But, it isn’t meant to be enjoyed every moment.  It is a duty.  God made me their Mom.  It is a position I yearned for long before I would ever understand it.  Over a 3 day weekend my husband couldn’t believe how many times our boys kept saying, “Mommy.  Mommy.  Mommy”!  “Are they always like this?” he asked not able to hide his terror, and sympathy.  “Yep.  All day, everyday.  That’s my job.”  And I have to admit that it is the toughest job I have ever had.  In a previous life I was a restaurant manager for a high volume and very popular chain in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  A Saturday night at 7:30pm with the expo window overflowing with dishes, a 2 hour wait, and the electricity inexplicably going out has got nothing on a Tuesday, 5:00pm at the Morton house.  And let me tell ya, South Florida diners are some of the toughest to please.  But, they are a cake walk compared to sleep-deprived toddlers with low blood sugar.

Once upon a time, I had time.  For myself.  Now, my toe nails need some love.  My bra fits a little differently.  My curling iron might not even work anymore, I don’t know.  I can’t take a shower without an audience.  I’ve started using eye cream.  I don’t get carded any more.  My proof of motherhood.  Proof that somebody needs me.  That right now, somebody always needs me.  Like last night…

At 3am I hear the little footsteps entering my room.  I lay still, barely breathing.  Maybe he will retreat to his room.  Yeah right.

“Mommy.”

“Mommy.”  A little louder.

“Yes”.  I barely whisper.

He pauses, his giant eyes flashing in the dim light.

“I love you.”

And just like that, he is gone.  Scampered back to his room.  But, his words still hang in the cool night air.  If I could reach out and snatch them, I would grab his words and hug them to my chest.  His soft voice whispering the best sentence in the world.  I love you.  A smile curls across my lips and I slowly exhale, almost afraid to blow the memory away.  I drift back to sleep and let his words settle into my heart.

One day that little boy will be a big man.  There will no longer be any sweet words whispered to me in the wee hours.  Just the whir of the sound machine and the snoring husband.  I will sleep peacefully through the night, never a worry of a sick child or a crying baby.  It will be but a memory.  These years of being needed are exhausting, yet fleeting.  I have to stop dreaming of “one day” when things will be easier.  Because, the truth is, it may get easier, but it will never be better than today.  Today, when I am covered in toddler snot and spit up.  Today, when I savor those chubby little arms around my neck.  Today is perfect.  “One day” I will get pedicures and showers alone.  “One day” I will get myself back.  But, today I give myself away, and I am tired, and dirty and loved SO much, and I gotta go.  Somebody needs me.

SomebodyNeedsYou

Trying To Rest in My Nest

Hi.  I just had a baby.  A soft, perfect, 9 lb butterball of love.  A little girl!

I can’t say this is the best time of year to have a new baby.  A blizzard, some quirky cable, and 2 VERY stir crazy toddlers have made it…challenging.  But, I like a challenge.  So, for now I am just trying to rest in my nest, wrangle my toddlers, and bond with my new little girl.

I will be back posting soon, or kind of soon.  How about, I will be back posting sometime before the ground thaws when my brain works, kind of.

Welcome to our nest Sage Genevieve.

View More: http://bykatiedestry.pass.us/sagegenevieve

Om in the Home This Thanksgiving! A Guest Post.

So, it’s November 13 and now seems like a great time to…PANIC!!!  The holidays are coming!  The holidays are coming!  I have a To Do list 98 items long and I think this baby just might try to make an early appearance.  Needless to say, the annual festive meltdown is beginning.  Thankfully, there are people like Kendra Thornton to remind me that this time of year is truly about being thankful for our blessings and family.  And that I can always find a moment of peace through yoga.  Or at least through yoga breathing if my Santa Claus belly doesn’t allow me to hold my downward dog longer than 2 seconds!  Below, Kendra shares some of her insight regarding stress and the holidays.  A breath of fresh and tranquil air…

Om in the Home This Thanksgiving!
In my life, Thanksgiving has always been about gratitude and giving back. It is a celebration of the harvest and of community. This is why it is one of my favorite holidays. This gratitude is what pulls me even closer to my friends and family through the month of November!

Something else I am thankful for is yoga. It has played an enormous role in my life. Yoga is about the appreciation of yourself and of finding a deeper awareness within your body, mind and spirit. Being a mom of three kids and worrying about the upcoming holiday seasons, my life can get hectic! That is why I always try to get more yoga in my life around this time of year. I am already feeling overjoyed with giving thanks and I think it is a great time to de-stress and center on myself.

It is with this connection and understanding that I have decided to have a little fun by creating this piece!

Yoga Gratitude

What Yoga and the Pilgrims Have Taught Me

1. Unwavering Faith: The Pilgrims left everything behind for the uncertainty of a new world, with their sole purpose being for the opportunity to have religious freedom. This importance of faith is alive in yoga, which teaches me to remain grounded and stay true to my beliefs. As the mother of three children, I am so grateful for yoga because it allows me to seek peace and calmness as I reconnect with daily rediscover and myself, my faith.

2. The Journey towards Freedom: Giving up their homes was difficult enough, but the Pilgrim’s journey across the Atlantic from England to the New World was an additional uncertainty. Despite the dangers, 102 passengers boarded the Mayflower to take that chance. Traveling has been an important part of my life. When I worked with Orbitz I traveled frequently. What I found was that regardless of where I stayed, yoga was everywhere. On one trip, I stayed in a Orlando the hotel that offered sunrise classes for yoga on their rooftop. It was incredible.

3. Overcoming Fear: The first winter in the New World was horrendous. Half of the English settlers died from the poor living conditions and lack of nutrition. Trusting your body and overcoming fear is what yoga is about. I struggled to break certain poses; afraid I would fall or hurt myself. I learned to grow and succeed through practice and learning to listen to my body.

4. Community and Education: Native Americans in the New World were a source of education to the pilgrims. Squanto was an enormous benefit to the Pilgrims as he helped them to plan the correct crops, catch fish and hunt the local animals they needed for survival. This education helped the settlers to adapt to their new environment and learn how to survive. What I love about my yoga classes are the community spirit as everyone practices and learns together. The practice and instruction teach me something new about myself every day.

5. Gratitude: In 1621, thankful for the assistance which brought them such bounty, the Pilgrims shared their feast in a three-day celebration with the Pokanokets, Squanto’s tribe. This is today referred to as the first Thanksgiving. Yoga has taught me how to be grateful every day for everything in my life. It is not just about the practice on the mat.

Thanksgiving is about giving thanks and as we all know being moms, at many times in our lives we are always more than extremely giving in nature with our kids through love and encouragement. However, yoga has brought me a deep appreciation for life and love for myself. Take some time to center yourself this Thanksgiving and be the best mom, host and ‘giver’ you can to your company this season!

What do yoga and Thanksgiving mean to you?

Kendra Thornton is a mom of 3 living in Chicago.  She is working on getting ready for the upcoming holiday season and hopes to inspire readers through her former travels and tips from motherhood!

Kendra Thornton Picture

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Talk Like a Pirate Day = Free Toys and Donuts! Arg!

ARG! Me scullywags! If you have one of these….

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Or 2 of these….

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You have to get out today and celebrate International Talk Like a Pirate Day!  If you are in the Indianapolis area, Kits and Kaboodle in Carmel(146th and 31) will be celebrating from 10am-7pm.  Any kid, or adult for that matter, dressed as a pirate or speaking in pirate dialect will be able to choose a FREE treasure from the toy chest!  Additionally, Krispy Kreme will be giving a free donut to anyone who talks like Jack Sparrow.

Please note, this is “International” Talk Like a Pirate Day, so people all over the world will be throwing out “Matey” and “Ahoy” and starting sentences with “Me”.  This day is only once a year, so don’t miss out.

This is a great day to get some ideas from Pinterest.com for a head start on any Halloween costumes too.  Also, find more Talk Like a Pirate Day information here…www.talklikeapirate.com

One final hint from a 4 year old…if you close one eye while speaking in Pirate, you actually become a real pirate.  Give it a whirl.  Should be a big hit in the office today.