Not A Mama Butterfly

Motherhood is daunting! This month especially for me. I have been flooded with such soppy, joyful, heartache these last couple of weeks. Like an ugly, mascara smearing, snot dripping, air gulping, lumps in my throat, puffy eyed sob fest!!! Never have I ever experienced so much emotion in my life! Motherhood is responsible for this concauction of feelings and emotions….

It started with me and Rory returning from our trip to Arizona. (Which was a BEAUTIFUL adventure by the way) But I knew what would be waiting for me when I returned… See, since I knew of his sweet existence he has always been so close to me, especially at night. Literally from the belly to a bassinet 6 1/2 inches from where I lay my head. Even while in Arizona, he slept RIGHT next to me in his own little bed. This is just what I preferred. Well… when he and I returned I knew it was time for him to sleep in his crib in his nursery. A beautiful, cozy little room right across from Matt and I’s bedroom, just a few feet away. I thought this might be an easy transition….. maybe. WRONG! I starred at a little empty bassinet by my side of the bed and cried…. and then cried some more.  I was drowning in memories of swaddling him snuggly and laying his sweet little body down in a safe little bed so close to me night after night. He was so close to me I could hear his little breaths and snorts during the night and his little whimpers when he wanted to eat. He was the first smile I would see everyday for 6 months.

 The first week in his crib was rough! Rough on my heart and on my nights sleep (Ha! What nights sleep?!) I was having nightmares and anxiety of him being in his own room. In fact the second night he slept in his nursery I snapped a little. My husband was only doing what he is trained to do in his line of work and it was relayed on me. He is trained being a firefighter, no matter the situation or outcome you stay calm. Well, we were watching Rory on the monitor, adjusting to his new bed, when he started to cry. He was rolling and reaching and inching around his new space, fussing. With all that wiggling he was doing he bumped his head on the crib. My reaction? “You get your butt moving to that little baby as quickly as possible and you cuddle that little guy!” Maybe my composure was a little frantic and panicked, so my husband caught my hand and said,”wait.” He was trying to prevent me from going to him in a frantic and emotional state of panic. I TOTALLY understand where he was coming from now. Buuuuut during the time, in that moment though… I saw red! I was on a very instinctual mission to kiss on my crying little bear and I felt prevented from doing so. So yes, I snapped. My husband definitely did not deserve to be snapped at… but it definitely happened. Thankfully later in the evening we discussed the situation. Both fully understanding each others reaction. My defense was, “Ya don’t stop a Mama Bear from going to their cub!” I am honestly a little afraid… if it had been anyone else beside my husband stopping me… I don’t know what I would have done but probably wouldn’t have been good. This is why I very much accociate myself with being a, “Mama Bear.” After all, it’s not called, “Mama Butterfly” and I’m not! There is nothing delicate or dainty about being a mother to me. You don’t have to be a bull in a china shop, you can very much be tactful and gentle, but a Mama Bears love is solid and fierce and of course protective. Over the last 6 months I feel as though I have developed this confidence that I never possessed in my life before Rory…he is most definitely my little bear and I would go to the ends of the earth for him! As for now though, I am still just adjusting to him not sleeping in our room anymore…. his bassinet still stays… but I  have been using it to hold clean unfolded laundry…..

Into The Wild Arizona

Adventures of Mama Bear and Little Bear in Arizona! We are missing Papa Bear incredibly!! We are bundled up, staying warm and preparing for a snow storm soon! We got Nana and Papa, Great MiMi and PaPa Doc, we got aunties and dozens of cousins! We are so loved!

Gettin’To Know You

Gettin’ to know you,Gettin’ to know all about you

Gettin’ to know you,

Putting it my way but nicely.

You are precisely,

My cup of tea!

Gettin’ to know you,

Gettin’ to feel free and easy.

When I am with you,

Gettin’ to to know what to say.

Haven’t you noticed,

Suddenly I ‘m bright and breezy,

Because of all the beautiful and new

Things I’m learning about you

Day by day!

Anyway, now THAT song will be stuck in my head for the remainder of the day. It is definitely my daily thought on my now, 6 month old son! He is BEAUTIFUL! I LOVE getting to know him! All about him!! I want you to know him too… So here it goes.

 His joyful smile and laugh is infectious and his energy level is already that of a five year old boy I feel. His blue eyes twinkle and crinkle when you make him smile…. which isn’t hard to do. His hands are are ever so….. not gentle when he wants to touch your face, but the thought behind the not so gentle tugs and grabs is heart melting. His words are loud and precious…. and needing a baby interpreter, but that doesn’t stop him from constantly communicating. He already has a “lovey” a little soft squared tiger that he cuddles, smells and chews to send him off to la-la land. It also makes quite the toy when he can’t sleep and he swings it like a slow moving helicopter above his head. He will have what your having, when it comes to your breakfast, lunch and dinner. His mouth waters with each bite you take…..not because he actually wants to eat it… but because his mouth has become the eager explorer and distinguisher of ALL things!! Until it is in his mouth….. he will wonder the endless possibilities of, “WHAT ON EARTH IS THAT?!” His head sports some fluffy and wirey hairs that are at least an inch long. I have become obsessed with this glorious fluff!! The smell, the feel and just the sight of his duck fluff sends me over the moon! He already has the suave and debonair side smile that of a charming gentleman. This smile can also be interpreted as a mischievous one! He is most definitely a morning person… and when I mean morning… I mean 1a.m 2a.m and 3 and 4a.m. These wee morning meetings we share, though, most tiring are also dear because I know my little beloved will not always crave those cuddles and late night babblings. Bath time is always an adventure as he is learning “cause and effect.” He wonders, “Hmm if I donkey kick my foot down…. it makes a splash… and I like it!!!!!” Diaper changes…they exceed adventure level, they are only for those that are up for the challenge! As he now is quite the roller, he finds the opportune moment (right when you take the diaper off) to roll on to his belly and expose those bare little peaches! He has become quite the actor too as he has learned to do a little fake cough, which is most always followed with a proud smile that states, “Did-did-did ya hear that?!? Did you hear what I just did?!” He has a great love and fascination with lights and music! He is a major devotee of dancing, not just any kind of dancing….. the dancing that makes mommy and daddy look completely ridiculous! Rory is my cup of tea indeed! A beautifully, scrumptious, sugary delightfully happy cup of tea!!! 

These pictures best describe my little beloved!

Happy Birthday Love!

Yesterday was my sweethearts birthday! The big 30! Hard to believe I have been with him since he was just barely out of his teens at the age of 21. Time goes by too fast! 

We celebrated by enjoying a nice cool salty breeze in Sarasota. Rory LOVED the views….. but not a big fan of getting his toes wet in ocean water… he protested a little. Here are some pictures of our beautiful day celebrating my husbands birthday!

The Resurrected Coffee Mug and the Heart I Hold Dear

The day started with me picturing a coffee mug outside. Not just any coffee mug… one of my favorite coffee mugs. It was a dull painted pottery like grey and blue coffee mug that stated “wild woman” on the front. It was just a simple yard sale mug, but I loved it’s simplicity and its boldness! I was picturing this coffee mug outside because I carelessly left it on a ledge outside in the back yard after enjoying a cup of coffee. That day I had glanced and it several times each time I passed our kitchen window and each time I thought, “Abby! Your crazy! Get that mug before it breaks! You love that mug!” Of course each time I thought that this special mug would fall to its doom, I also thought, “It’s fine” or “I will get it in a minute.” It wasn’t until later that afternoon while I was sitting on the couch with Rory, I hear, “Hey honey? I got to tell you something.” It was my husbands voice coming from the back porch. I cringed a little as I pictured my mug again in my head. My husband walks up to me and in a disappointed sad voice he said, “Baby, I accidentally broke your mug.” In complete frustration and denial I asked frantically, “Which mug?!” Of course I already had a pretty good idea which mug it was. “The one with wild woman on it” He replied so sweetly. In that moment my world came crashing down! Never would I drink coffee from that mug again! Never would I ever see it again on our kitchen shelf!! It was gone forever! I let out a big dramatic breath and all I could say was, “ohh noo!” My sweet husband was so quick to spit out solutions to make me feel better. I just brushed off everything he suggested feeling a little sorry for myself. This pity party lasted for maybe three minutes ( three minutes too long) before I pulled myself together and came to my senses. “Good grief Abby, it’s a freakin coffee mug!! You have a dozen other favorites on the shelf!!!” Feeling a little silly with my initial reaction to my mug breaking, I went to find my husband. He was on the back porch, with super glue, gluing my mug back together!! Some of the mug pieces were inch size chunks, others were so tiny they almost could pass through the eye of the needle. There my big, strong, manly, burly, husband was glueing the pieces together. (Mind you, my husband just had hand surgery two weeks ago and his hand is still wrapped up. Still being the hero he is, he was gently and carefully putting mug shards together.) I rubbed his back, kissed his cheek and laughed a little. “Sweetie, it was my fault! I left the mug outside! You don’t have to do that!” I said. He just looked at me with sad eyes and said, “but I feel so bad, you loved this mug.” Now in my head I’m thinking, “Abby! You big jerk!! Ya had to react like a five year old who’s balloon was just popped!!” I tried to get Matt to just forget the mug, I didn’t expect him to fix it and that it wasn’t a big deal. Still, being the sweet and determined man he is, he accomplished what he wanted to do. He actually fixed my mug!! Like, no joke, no leaks, it’s all fixed!!! He literally resurrected my coffee mug!!  If this doesn’t tell you what kind of man my husband is I don’t know what will! Well wait… I have another story.

My husband is a fireman. (This explains his drive to help, protect and fix things) Through his job he makes many sacrifices…one of the many sacrifices being family time. We both knew this was going to be the case when he became a fireman. However it still stings a little when you know you will be working a 24, possibly a 48 hour shift around your favorite holiday as well as your baby boys first Christmas. In this being the case for us this year, my husband bought a plane ticket for me to be in Arizona, my home, for Christmas with Rory. This is a very special Christmas as all four of my sisters, their husbands and their kids will also be traveling to Arizona so we can all be together with my parents. I can’t tell you the last time we were all together. The traveling expenses can be very costly for everybody and just overall stressful but we are all looking forward to all being together. Because I can honestly say, I don’t know when it will happen again.

 I can barely type this part without crying… but I wish I could truly express how much this trip means to me, solely by how much my husband has worked and sacrificed to make this trip possible for me! He has such a selfless heart and I hold it so dear! I believe this man truly was hand picked by God for me. He is one of my biggest answered prayers. I love you so much Matthew! Needless to say, despite me and Rory being away for the holidays….. we have started the Christmas music early in our little household this year. Just for my sweetheart!

Sweet Powder Sugared Face and the Real Necessities

So I did it!…..Kinda. In the process really…. of getting off Facebook. Yep! Shuttin’her down. It has been an embarrassingly difficult transition. More so because I have nine years worth of pictures I have treasured and shared and now they sit stiff and frozen on a social media site. I feel like I have been stacking  fragile precious valuables on a high unstable shelf for years! In all reality I should have had all my pictures printed as I took them and put them in a book that is made to be opened all the time to reminisce…. but I didn’t do that…So my Facebook still stands until all my pictures are all safe and are within my reach! 

I got off Facebook because I didn’t like the way it made me feel everytime I logged in. It was a habit… addiction that’s cons out weighed the pros. Each time I signed in I felt like I was fighting to keep my own happiness. My mind became a battlefield for: anger, jealousy and sadness and it was a coin toss on which emotion would win that day. Overall, Facebook was robbing me of my joy, and it was robbing me often. What’s worse is I was making excuses to allow this to continuously happen. Well, not anymore. I am on a mission to protect my happiness to the best of my ability! However, as my Facebook page is still very much “alive” right now, I will probably use it one more last time to post this blog. 

Since I have written off Facebook as a necessity in my life…I have been more invested in the real nesessities. The indispensable moments and loves in my life. Like today, my husband and I went to stroll the local down town market together, with our amazing son happily strapped to my chest. We walked in the morning sunshine and relaxed in the breeze. We enjoyed an amazing breakfast treat together, coffee and beignets smothered in powdered sugar. As we were enjoying ourselves in the shade, Matt was catching up with a close friend of his, while I continued to enjoy…. let’s be honest, stuffing my face.  In doing so Matt laughs and points to our sweet little boy (still happily strapped to my chest) who happens to now have powered sugar on his head and it’s sprinkled on his cheeks from me thoroughly enjoying my treat over him. I laughed as his big blue eyes just gazed up at my face not even caring that his mom sprinkled left overs on his face. In that moment I thought, “This is it!! This is a true necessity! This sweet powder sugared face!!” In these moments my heart is full and there is no need for anything else!!! 

To Infinity and Bey-HOLD IT RIGHT THERE! 

My Dad is visiting from Arizona this week to go out fishing with Matt and to meet his 10th grand baby, Rory. Him being here has just alleviated all stress and worry and has given me a sense of home. That sweet familiarity I miss so much!

Well last night  I was packing snacks for my Dad and Matts fishing trip last night and as I was doing so I thought …”Wow… This bites!!” Then I grumble to myself and with very envious green eyes I think, “I want to do this all the time! How fortunate all YOU you’s are out there! Yes you! How sweet it must be! …. To always have family near to continue to share life with.” I feel like when I was surrounded by family back in Arizona I may have taken advantage of always having family close. The family dinners, the silly and meaningful conversations, the constant encouragement, the daily hugs, even the unwanted time from time advice….. I MISS it all! 

It certainly was a challenge when Matt and I moved to Florida away from family, more specifically for me because I was still very much in the nest before we moved. But it’s a daily thump on the heart now that I have this boy that is perfect in my eyes, and though he will always have his mom and dad…. I want more for him. I want the village for my kiddo! I want the comical crazy aunts that rile Rory up before bedtime. I want the uncles who all have something unique to teach. I want the stories only a Papa can give. I want him to have the cookies a nana makes that mama is rubbish at making. I want him to play with all the many cousins he has, I want him to rough house with them and learn from them. I want him to have what I grew up with! Selfishly and maybe a little childish of me I also want that family for myself now more than ever! Especially now that I am new mom. The encouragement, the daily dose of hugs, the loving knowledge and reassurement. The peacefulness that only comes from a mom, that extra special push that comes from a Dad and the sweet comical relief you can only get from siblings. I wish I had it again…and I’m jealous of those that still do.

Hold up though…. If I feel this way why did Matt and I move so far away? Let me reassure you that we were not the Buzz Light Years, we might look like, “two infinity and beyond-ing” enthusiastically away from everything and everyone. No, no, it wasn’t like that, so don’t go there. Matt and I are not only getting by here in Florida, we are working hard together to continue thriving and growing!! Matt and I have made wonderful life long friends, Matt has his dream career that has allowed me to stay home so I can raise our son! Oh ya, and that! We have a SON! A beautiful healthy happy boy!! These are the things we wanted in Arizona… But it was just not meant to be there despite all our efforts to make it so. At one point Matt and I were both working 3 jobs just so we could share a home and pay the bills, and forget about even THINKING about starting a family because paying for a box of diapers was not in the budget. Matt was working as a wild land fireman… Don’t get me started on how much that sucked. He was also working as a ranch hand and a bouncer. I was working at a dance studio, a dentist office and I was nannying. We scrimped and saved so we could make a better life for ourselves in Florida. NOT to be confused with leaving family behind so we could live in a beach house off the coast and relish in margaritas and frivolously live life together. 

Aside from my steamy pile of jibber jabber, it’s still hard to be so far away. Matt and I are so so fortunate that we do get letters, care boxes, sweet special visits here and there from our families …..But I still get jealous. 

Late Night Thoughts of a New Mom

Let me start with saying, “you were right!” You were right mom, dad and sisters. You were right co-workers and acquaintances and friends, heck you were right complete stranger at the grocery store. You told me that breast feeding is hard and your going to want to quit sometimes. You warned me that sleep is very limited. You advised me to not blink because they grow up too quickly. You promised those mama instincts will come and that I will know what to do. You told me I could sleep through a thunderstorm but any slight snort he makes three rooms down I will hear it. You told me it is all worth it! You, were right.

Rory, I felt the first warning of your arrival at 4a.m. June 17th. It was an uncomfortable sensation that I had never felt before. However I was able to sleep soundly without a worry. Before the morning sun peeked through my window I felt the sensation again. This was around 7a.m. See Rory, your dad was not with me that morning. He was on shift at the fire station. Of course, I couldn’t keep him away once I informed him that you, little boy were coming. Your Dad came home with a big smile and a handful of groceries. Your dad brought me my favorite things to eat and drink in preparation of you.  I think your Dad was so excited, he didn’t want to wait any longer to meet you. So, to get you ready, your dad and I walked two miles, hoping to speed up the process. That surely did it. Those uncomfortable sensations became more and more frequent and more and more painful. All afternoon your dad stayed by my side and comforted me through the shocking aches that were leaving me breathless. The aches that would bring you right to my arms! Evening came and it was finally time! To leave for the hospital that is,  we still would have to wait eleven more hours for you. The wait was well worth it! Rory, you were born June 18th at 6:22 a.m. You were born the day before Father’s Day! I could try and explain the feeling I had when they first placed you in my arms…. But there are no words. I feel like anyway I could try to describe it, it would only cheapen the whole experience. It is just a moment I will forever treasure with your dad!

Little boy, there are so many emotions that come with being your mom. Being a mom is a power that I know at times I will have to learn to control. What I mean is, your mama whips out the mits! Just like a mama bear I am ready to wipe out any possible threat! These so called, “threats” might not seem like a threat to anyone else, harmless words or gestures perhaps. However a very primitive feeling surges through my entire body and I am ready to fight! I am telling you little man, this mom business holds a lot of power!! Don’t worry though little boy, your mom will learn to control it. I promise I won’t be one of those moms screaming at your basketball coach for slight differences in opinion. Ok maybe not promise, but I will try my hardest!

Little lightening bug I have been dreaming about you for as long as I can remember, and I look at you now and I am consumed with both joy and heartache. I already know you have so much to offer the world and so much to offer in all the relationships you will make in your life. I also know that you will go through trials and struggles in your life, some that will be sprung on you unexpectedly and some that you will bring on yourself. Just know baby, that you will never ever be alone (even on the days you wish you were.) You will always be loved!! And you will always be my Rory.