Making it rain- anxiety, not money.

I have been stressed lately, guys. As I’m sure you can imagine, not having your own house is stressful. No matter what you do or how good your living situation is, it isn’t your own house. We are looking at another 6 months and our house should be completed. It’s hard to live bare bones, with most your stuff in storage. It’s hard to have your life and friends and kid’s school one place, and you living in another.

The old anxiety trigger of money has been rearing it’s nasty head these past few weeks. According to my therapist, and she is always right, I like to live in the extremes. Extreme dieting, where its balls to the wall or I’ve fallen off the wagon. And in this case, the extreme of feeling like we have to save every fucking dollar we make to prepare for the new house, competing with the fact that we still have to live and that isn’t possible. We know where we need to be when we move and we are on track. Yet here I am, still feeling guilty for feeling the freedom of not having a mortgage currently. We aren’t freeloading at our current place so don’t look at me like that- we help out with bills but it still isn’t a mortgage. I felt guilty about our impromptu vacay to the Aquarium a few weeks ago. My internal dialogue goes something like this:

Anxiety me: but lady, you don’t have time to be going on vacation with this new house and the big mortgage coming up next year.

Rational me: but we still have to live right? We have to have fun and take a break from the hustle of our busy life.

Anxiety: you bought something on Amazon again. Tsk Tsk. You aren’t being responsible.

Rational me struggles with this part. In my head I go “well shit, maybe that bitch is right. Then I use Dading as my sounding board, the poor bastard.

It’s been a week, ya’ll. Everyone I talk to, including my therapist, tells me to chill the fuck out. That it will be ok, that we would never feel ready to take on a mortgage on a bigger house. And I hear that, because we thought we couldn’t afford our last house and it was fine. I feel so guilty, and like such a POS for buying anything, for going out when we said we weren’t going to go out at all to save money.

Life gets in the way of your best laid plans, I guess. I wish I could believe that we are on track and doing ok. And not to be freaked out about having a mortgage again next year when we close on this house.

When do I stop feeling like a reckless kid and start feeling like the responsible fucking adult that I am? Why am I so hard on myself? These are the things that have been weighing on my mind, and I am trying really hard to figure out how to believe in myself and us, and that things will be ok because we ARE responsible and doing what’s best for our family. #2020Goals maybe?

Even psychos (toddlers) can be taught empathy.

Toddlers are psychopaths. They have half your DNA and none of your humanity. That’s why being a parent is so fucking exhausting- you have to teach those little fuckers how to be a human being. I saw something on the internet once that went something like “kids are great, and maybe even the best, but they are learning to be human beings through trial and error.” Which basically sums it up.

Biggie is 5, so that’s 5 years of us teaching him manners, and feelings, and putting in the fucking work. And now I am happy to say we have an extremely well mannered and sweet little man who is only a dick to his little brother like 3 times a day on average. Speaking of the little one- he yells at you to stop it, and thinks slapping the shit out of you is playing. Also he tantrums whenever you tell him something he doesn’t want to hear- so let’s just call him a work in progress.

We’ve always drilled into them manners, and the meaning of family, and being nice. Within the last year or so we began teaching Biggie about not judging someone based on how they look. (The Greatest Showman gets like half the street cred for this). He knows we treat people based on who they are on the inside. It can be hard to give them diversity in life sometimes, but we try to give them experiences and interactions that show them all the color that the world can offer.

This year though, for me, it’s also about teaching them about protecting the environment and giving back. Dading and I had a charity softball tournament yesterday, and we did the Walk to End Alzheimer’s today. The kids did the walk with us, and I explained to Biggie in 5 year old terms what the walk represented. I told him how much money we raised and what it went to. I want the boys to grow up knowing what it means to get involved and give back. I told Biggie to take a water bottle to the officer that was directing traffic today. He knows not to litter because it’s bad for the environment AND someone else will have to pick it up, which isn’t cool. He knows plastic ends up in the ocean and hurts sea turtles. He knows about recycling.

Look, we aren’t perfect. I still use plastic straws at restaurants and forget my reusable bags at Publix. But they see us try, and they understand why. Raising kids is about so much more than trying not to kill them (it makes total sense why animals eat their young) and getting them to adulthood semi-successfully. I want them to grow up to be human fucking beings who believe that love is love and who a person is lives on the inside. That family watches out for each other. That GIVE YOUR BROTHER THE FUCKING TOY HE WAS PLAYING WITH DON’T BE A DICK.

And as I’m writing this next to Biggie, he just said to me “You know how much I love you? Double super much.” So yeah, pretty much crushing it at this parenting thing 😉

The Pandora’s box of family vacation.

So this past weekend we took a last minute trip to the Georgia Aquarium. We packed everyone up and left at the crack of dawn for the nearly 9 hour drive. Honestly, when you take car trips with kids tack on like an extra 2 hours for snacks, pee breaks and the baby blowing out the car with farts and faking you out thinking it’s a code brown.

The boys did great in the car, true story. They are good car travelers. They have that going for them, at least. When we got to the hotel that afternoon they were jacked from being cooped up in the car and the excitement of staying in a hotel which is a rare occasion. When it was time for bed, they were so excited at sleeping on the pull out couch that all we heard was fits of giggles and playing. Which is adorable- for like 5 minutes. There’s no way at least 2 neighbors on either side didn’t hear me unhinging my jaw at them. No one filed a noise complaint, probably out of pity.

This thriller non-fiction continues at 4:45 am, when Biggie woke up crying that he was thirsty. And again at 6am, same deal. He said his throat hurt. Then when we head down to the hotel lobby for breakfast, he proceeds to barf in the trash. He also feels hot as fuck. Dading makes a morning run to CVS to get Motrin. When I say run, I mean literally run. It’s downtown Atlanta people- you don’t drive if you value your sanity. Running was the faster option.

We finally make it to the Aquarium- which if you haven’t gone it’s a must. With or without offspring. If you think this story now has a happy ending, you haven’t been paying attention. Smalls is in full meltdown mode at the aquarium. Will he let anyone but me hold him? Fuck that. Does he stop screaming when I do pick him up? Bitch, please. I am in full mom stress sweat mode at this point. Literally sweating like climate change has just punched me in the face. We get hand stamped and head back to the hotel for lunch and a nap. After that back to the aquarium until they close. Annnnd back to baby meltdown mode until he gets food. The kid gives new meaning to the word “hangry.”

Once we get back to the hotel for the night the story takes a more sinister and smelly turn. Put baby on potty to poop, baby goes. Then Biggie goes. Before he can flush the baby is trying to shit on the hotel floor. Cue mom panic yelling. Biggie jumps off the potty, Smalls gets on. After that fiasco, and me checking the now sewer smelling room for any stray deposits, Biggie yells that Smalls is shitting on the floor in the bathroom. Put baby back on potty. End chapter.

Did we have an amazing family vacation? Absolutely. Would we do it again? In a heartbeat. Did we think about donating them to the aquarium? More than once. (I wonder if that would be considered tax deductible?) We were reminded that this is why we won’t take them to Disney for the foreseeable (or ever) future. In all, an amazing, stressful, super fun and chaotic car trip with two little kids. So fun that tonight they are with my parents so we can recover from it. 😉

The curious case of friendships in your 30’s.

There are memes all over the internet about how hard it is to make and keep friends in your thirties. They are so hysterical because they are so true. Everyone is working full time, raising monsters, going to school, paying off debt, being generally tired as FUCK, and no one has time for anything. I have been thinking about friendships lately. How mine have ebbed and flowed, and how much these new friendships have impacted my mental health.

As a mom, it is so important to have mom friends. I didn’t always subscribe to that logic, but I am a mega believer now. And not just mom friends- likeminded mom friends. Life is hard on us moms (and dads) in 2019. A lot of us, like Dading and I, are dual income families. Everyone hates on millennials but people- it’s hard out here for us, true story. Then we tacked on two boys and a puppy because fuck free time, right?

Downtime is the unicorn of parenting. I used to feel guilty about wanting to spend my time with only certain people, but therapy has made me understand that the support system other moms provide is so vital. I am at my best when I am spending time with my kids and my girlfriends who can be that village we all desperately need. Who totally gets it when plans get cancelled. Who gets you, the hot mess version and the boss version. Having friends you don’t have to explain yourself to because they are going through the same shit show you are. To those friends- thank you. You have helped me in more ways than you know and I am so thankful for you.

If we don’t have time for anything as 30 somethings- shouldn’t we make the time we have count, and spend it with the few people we actually like? These are deep thoughts for Monday, talk amongst yourselves.

World Mental Health Day.

If you have Twitter, you know that today is #WorldMentalHealthDay. 2 years ago, this day would have meant nothing to me. Today, it makes me pause and take stock. Accepting and embracing (sometimes unwillingly) the fact that I have anxiety has opened up more doors for me than I ever knew were closed.

In my job, I see the effects of mental illness and the hopelessness it can bring on a daily basis. Old me would have thought nothing of it. Wondered why everyone gets diagnosed with some disorder or another. Like can everyone really be bipolar and depressed? Now, I know better. I see now how devastating mental illness can be for a person. How improper diagnosis or inadequate medication can lead people to self medicate with drugs.

Learning to live with a mental illness, no matter how mild or severe, takes a fuck ton of work. You have to look at the deepest, darkest parts of yourself and accept that the person in the mirror might not be who you imagined they would be. And maybe the harder part- believing that you aren’t a failure for your struggle.

Take inventory of yourself today. If you have been putting off seeking help, go get it. Make the call, schedule the appointment. Tell someone you’re having a hard time. Admitting you need help doesn’t make you weak, it makes you strong. Everyone has shit they are dealing with, so know you aren’t alone. When you are honest with yourself, and living your truth, it makes you a better, more compassionate person. Don’t let your fear hold you back. You got this, now go get em tiger.

The parroting of parenting.

Think you’re ready for parenting? Repeat everything you say at least 4 times in an increasingly more annoyed tone until you don’t even give a fuck anymore. If that sounds good, parenting might be right for you. 90% of parenting is just repeating yourself over and over until you die inside. (More than you already are as a sleep deprived adult responsible for keeping little monsters alive).

Why do we have to repeat ourselves so much? I know I tend to rapid fire directives at the kids, so I try to slow down and give one instruction at a time. Does it help? Depends on the day. Does it make me homicidal? Abso-fucking-lutely. And don’t even get me started on the distraction of TV or iPad. The house could burn down around Biggie and if he’s on his iPad he wouldn’t even look up. I have caught the dog having an Iron Man action figure lunch on the carpet right in front of him and he was totally clueless. Listen dude, we give you the electronics so we, and you, can check out, but don’t you dare ignore me when I talk to you.

I know for a fact if I mentioned ice cream, or pizza, or something along those lines they would hear me. Or god forbid Dading and I even THINK about having a conversation- the needs and demands come out of the woodwork. So obviously it’s selective hearing.

One of my pet peeves in life is having to repeat myself…. so yeah. This is not where I thrive in the parenting department. Polly wants a glass of wine, not a cracker.

Momster.

I lost my SHIT on Biggie yesterday afternoon. He got a splinter in his toe at the park, a pain more excruciating than being eaten alive by a gator, if his reaction was any indication. When we got home and attempted to remove it, he went crazy. Blood curdling screaming, fighting and crying. This is why people get put under for surgery. I think what got me was the screaming. We had the boys birthday party the day before and I was tired, people. I was trying to get down for a nap with Biggie but this damn splinter was preventing that. I was so angry with him, and I said angry words and things I shouldn’t. I lost control of myself. We had to hold him down like a screaming banshee (literally what he was) and finally got it out. I was so white hot angry that he was carrying on about something so small.

After calming down, we talked. About how mommy’s and daddy’s lose their temper, and make mistakes. About how he was being very dramatic and making things difficult when we were trying to help him. About how he didn’t need to be scared because we would never hurt him or let anything happen to him. We explained what forgiveness was as the three of us snuggled in bed, and we forgave each other. And I cried. And I let him see me cry. I hope that by seeing that we make mistakes he will give himself the grace to make his own. And I want him to see us say we are sorry, too. When we woke up, the first thing he said was he was sorry for how he acted.

I was stuck between feeling like a shitty parent and forgiving myself for being human. It wasn’t the first time I had lost my temper, and lets be serious, it won’t be the last. Kids and cool heads don’t always mix. The amount of pressure on parents in today’s society is huge. We are expected to do it all, all the time. And kids I’m here to tell you, I don’t always measure up. And dammit that has to be ok because I am a human fucking being, and I am doing the best I can. I hope my kids see that, even when Momster rears her sleep deprived head.

All Time Low: me, not the band.

If I was to describe myself at this present time, I would not say I was doing well. I try to remind myself that our family has gone through a huge transition- we moved to another city, and are trying to establish new routines. There’s lots more commute time now, because the beasties still go to school in our old city.

I tell myself this, I tell myself to give it time, that new routines will be established. I should give myself the understanding that we are two full time working parents raising two toddlers. Is a 5 year old still a toddler? I’m going with it for the sake of this pity party for one.

Yet here I am, crying almost every night. Feeling so overwhelmed I don’t know what to do. By the end of the night there is no time or energy to spend with my ride or die, and I feel so lonely. I’m actually crying writing this. I’m stressed, ya’ll. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I could blame Keto, because we are back on the sauce (mostly, please keep me in your thoughts during this difficult time) and the amount of cooking I am doing reminds me why we ate out all the time.

I guess it’s everything. Lack of sleep, which is obviously the lot of every parent out there. It still sucks, and you never really get used to not being able to sleep BECAUSE IT ISN’T NATURAL CHILDREN ARE THE DEVIL.

Did I mention I had to get on the scale at the doctor the other day (nurse, you bitch) and I am the heaviest I think I have ever been. I’m putting this into the ethos because maybe some of you are struggling with weight like I do, and know that I get it. Hence the Keto. At this point I am giving up on exercise, because by the time I have time, I am too tired. Why don’t parents look like The Rock, with all the lifting and running around we do? I call bullshit.

So hello internet, here I am. Sleep deprived, lonely and stressed. What to do? Honestly, I don’t really know. Please send me your ideas, I am totally open to suggestions. I want to get back to feeling happy again, because we are on an adventure and I would like to enjoy the ride a little bit more.

Becoming a good person: a horror story.

I have been thinking lately how my attitude towards others and the planet as a whole has changed. I am more conscious about the environment and am currently trying to get my family as plastic free as humanely possible without losing even more of my sanity. I go out of my way to compliment a stranger, to help out a fellow mom.

Ya’ll, I have a love/hate relationship with people. I go from “hang out with me” to “fuck off leave me alone” like a beer pong ball. I love my kids but don’t like other people’s. And if you don’t use your blinker in traffic- holy shit I go bananas.

But it’s been my mission lately to spread love around as much as possible. To be nice to people (mostly). To be less judgy to other moms and help them out.

Why am I like this?! Who am I?! I really do blame my therapist for this. She’s corrupting me. I like the disgruntled me, we have a long standing relationship and you can’t make me break up with her!

I think getting control of my anxiety was the catalyst. But I think the bigger answer is that happier people spread happiness to others. We all know those people who are totally miserable, and they make you feel terrible just by being around them. I am not happy go lucky all the time, quite the opposite in fact. Between the hurricane, closing getting delayed on the sale of our house, and totally uprooting our family to move temporarily while we build our house- I have been stressed the fuck out. I cry a lot. I am short tempered and say nasty things to Dading out of frustration. But OVERALL, I am a happy person compared to where I was before I starting talking to someone about my mental health. And I think that’s why I have more patience for others, feel like I can invest the time in other people. Probably a big part of that is that I am learning WHERE to invest my time and WHO is worth that time, which keeps me from burning out.

Maybe it’s part of being in your 30’s? Maybe it’s because the world is full of people in power who are horrible, and it makes me feel like I have to resist the man, figuratively and literally. Or, more likely, it’s a combination of all of the above. All I know is that it’s kind of a nice feeling (don’t look at me, I feel dirty). I feel better about me when I make time for someone else who deserves it or needs it.

Be nice to someone who could use it. Guaranteed it makes you feel better about yourself, and have a little more faith in humanity. This does not apply to shitty drivers- I hope a pterodactyl peppers your windshield. Or telemarketers. It’s important to have standards.

Hurricanes are bullshit.

So I live in South Florida, any as some of you might not be aware, we only get one season- Hurricane Season. And we are in the thick of it. We spent all day yesterday boarding up the house that we only own until next Thursday. When I tell people that they laugh with disbelief. We close on the sale of this house on the 6th, so to say we’ve been stressed the fuck out is an understatement. Luckily for us, it looks like we are in the clear for this hurricane. (Dorian? Seriously? Who names these things?) And although I don’t want anyone to get hit with this storm (just stay in the ocean where you came from, bitch), I am grateful that our house is going to be ok.

For the past few days we’ve been out and about at various stores and restaurants, trying to get groceries before the storm and make sure we have what we need in case we lose power. I have made sure to tell every server and employee that I speak to to stay dry and be safe. I have checked on friends and family, making sure no one needs help and everyone is set to ride out the storm. (My therapist is making me into a nice person, and I don’t need that kind of negativity in my life.)

Hurricanes suck. It’s already as hot as satan’s anus here, without the power outages and general cluster fuckery that is a major storm. The least can we do is be civil to each other. It is honestly what has made this whole thing bearable. It’s amazing how something so small can make such a big difference.

Life hack: Just be nice. Don’t be a dick. It isn’t that hard.

And now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going back to being the disgruntled, internally 80 year old woman I normally am.

Stay safe and dry, guys 🙂