Thursday, August 23, 2012

A Real Adult

Turning 30 has been the emotional roller coaster I expected.  Maybe expecting that brought it on?  In any case thirty seems like a really BIG number.  Three whole decades.  Growing up I always thought of adults as thirty year olds.  When I couldn't place an age on someone I could easily attach "thirty-something," which could encompass a good 20 year span.  Basically in my mind someone who looked responsible was therefore around thirty and was dubbed a "real adult".  Parents, teachers, business people all fit the bill.  So here I was at the doorway of "real adulthood" and I didn't feel ready for that title.  I wasn't ready to close the door on my twenties even though I haven't been acting like my young twenties self in quite some time.  In reality being married, owning a house and having a child all made me a real adult far before the clock struck 5:17am on August 18th.  This year I was already awake to ring in my birthday at the exact moment I was born.  I don't recall another birthday when I was already awake to receive my mom's text or call to wish me a happy birthday at the exact minute I was born.  This year she was just downstairs sleeping on the couch when I received my birthday text.  I can blame it on a new tooth, or another sleep regression, but we've been up pretty early for a couple of weeks now.  I guess that is what made me a true adult before the calendar officially said so.  Having to function on a few hours of sleep and realizing that you do function just fine makes you an adult.  The idea of sleeping until 8am sounds pretty appealing, but honestly that just isn't going to happen these days.  What time was I wide awake and ready for the day on our birthday overnight away from Becker?  Six o'clock sharp buddy!  He has trained my mind and body.

My mom spent the day with us as Mark had to work.  We walked to get bagels for breakfast with Becker and both dogs.  When Mark got home we had Champagne and cake.  Becker got to have cake for dinner and he was thrilled.  Of course, it was an applesauce, spice cake with flax meal so it had it's redeeming qualities and we took the frosting off of his piece.

Checking out the candle placement.

Cake for dinner.  Best thing ever.

When we cut the cake I realized the people around me each represented a decade in my life.  My mom represents my first ten years when a child is very attached to parents.  I represent my own adolescence when you go through all those challenges that mold the person you become.  Mark represents my twenties when we grew up together starting as what now seems like young kids and doing all the things that has made us adults and brings us to today as parents of Becker.  Becker is our future, the next ten years and beyond.  After following a friend's 365 photo project much of this year, I decided to start a project of my own.  I was going to wait until 2013 to get started, but decided to commemorate my 30th year and to build a family collage.  Now is as good a time as any and it will give me a glimpse of who we were at 30 when I turn 40.  Here is photo #1:

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Sleeping B

There is something about a sleeping baby.  I could stare at him for days when he sleeps.  So pure, so angelic, so peaceful.  I love the way his body melts into me as he relaxes and falls asleep.  And then as I leave his room it is bittersweet because now we are separated for many hours.  For so much of his life we have been one.  Together more than apart, but as he grows he needs me less and we spend more time as two.  It's wonderful how confident and able he is.  There were days when I couldn't wait for him to need me less, but now as it all unfolds, this reality of his growth makes me hold tight to the last thread of my baby.  He will always be my baby, but it's increasingly a falsity to call him that.  He is a toddler, a little boy all his own.  I understand now why my dad calls me "Baby" sometimes.  He will always have these images I am holding on to of me as a baby.

It’s very ironic to me that as a parent, specifically a mom, I am very ready for him to go to bed at night as we are both exhausted and many times he is beginning to unravel after a full day of activity.  I know he needs to get to sleep quickly before I miss my window.  It takes effort as we go through our routine and sometimes I am counting the minutes as we fall behind my hoped-for-point-of-slumber.  Once he is asleep I often just stare at his beauty, trying to ingrain every detail of his sleeping baby face and body in my mind.  His tiny hands, wispy hair and the way he holds his “baby”.  I feel triumphant that he is sleeping, so ready to have some “me” time, and then an hour passes and I miss him.  I want to go back and hold him again or just look at him.  If he was awake when I left, I feel guilty that I didn't stay in the room longer.  I am glad he is asleep, but I feel like I am missing out on time with him.  Time I can never get back as he seems to grow and change daily.  Every night before I go to bed I tip-toe into his room and check on him.  I observe the temperature in his room, cover him with a light blanket or adjust the volume on his wave sounds, and I stare.  Through the darkness I strain to see his face.  I shine my phone on him quickly to get a glimpse.  There are times I am amazed at where he has ended up in his crib.  Often times I snap a blurry photo on my phone before I leave risking waking him with the flash.  I just want to save these peaceful moments.  The last bit of babyhood.  He is all boy these days and I barely see the baby he once was.  I love everything he is becoming, but I wish I could freeze him as he is right now.  So much fun, so much wonder, so much love.  I have quite a little collection of sleeping Becker photos these days.  It never gets old.  I bring my photo back to show Mark and we got to bed. There is just something about a sleeping baby toddler. 

Saturday, August 4, 2012


B-Man has found a love for vacuums.  Before he could walk he was very fearful of the vacuum and I had to put him in the front carrier in order to vacuum.  Since it scared him I really didn't do it very much.  :-| Oops! When he started walking, Becker decided vacuums were absolutely awesome.  Right up there with the garbage truck on the awesomeness chart.  He started "helping" me vacuum and wanted to push it around himself.  At first it was too heavy for him and he could only hold it up for a few moments, but then he grew a little and now he can walk forward and backward while pushing the thing roaring along.  He also pushes his wooden toy alongside me when I vacuum, back and forth, back and forth, just like Mommy.  It's become his favorite activity and he asks to "a-cuum" daily.  If by chance I happen to say, "Wow, I really need to vacuum!" I turn around to see Becker pulling it out of the closet, unable to contain his excitement.  He just loves the vacuum.  So at 7am on Saturday morning we can be found vacuuming in our pajamas and B is delighted.

Later that particular Saturday on a simple trip to Target I was checking out frames when I heard Becker exclaim scream "A-CUUM!" from the seat of the cart.  At first I just continued browsing the frames because he does practice his words often, but then I see that despite my efforts to tighten that mesh string they call a seat belt as tight as I could around his little chest, he has turned around in the seat of the cart and is now on his knees facing the other direction arms thrust forward reaching and squealing toward a wall of, you guessed it, vacuums.  The vacuums are lined up on a wall clear across the store.   A walkway and an entire row of aisles separate us from the holy grail, but Becker had spotted them and that was that.  We were going to be visiting the vacuums next.  I whispered that we had to be really quiet if we wanted to see the vacuums and he quickly stopped squealing and we whispered together as we approached the wall.  He was actually quivering with excitement.  You would have thought I was in the toy aisle or a pet store with how he reacted.  I took him out of the cart and set him down and he walked down the aisle with his mouth wide open pointing and jumping up and down.  He was thrilled to see so many vacuums.

Mama, look at all these vacuums!

Ooh this one looks nice.
He pointed to the boxes and reached up high to the displays above him.  I lifted him up so he could see those better and he wanted to bring it down.  The term "display only" is really lost on a toddler.  Back down on the floor he continued repeating "a-cuum" loudly while almost panting.  A couple of people walked by and Becker tried to explain how amazing this experience was for him.  He pointed at the vacuums and looked up at the person, back and forth with a "can you believe this?!" look on his face.  I smiled and snapped some photos on my phone and quietly giggled as it was all pretty hilarious and adorable.
I've hit the jackpot!
Must have vacuum!
 When we got to the end of the row and saw vacuums similar to the one we own, I had to explain that we were not taking one of these home today and that we had a perfectly good vacuum at home.  A quick shriek of disappointment and we negotiated that he didn't have to sit in the dreaded cart seat for the walk to check-out.  He preferred to hang like the monkey he is off the handlebar.