One bird, two nests.

Everyone knows that when your children grow up and leave home, the parents left behind may experience what many have termed, “empty nest syndrome”. For approximately 18 years, your children live under your roof and so much of your time and energy as a parent is spent watching over them, helping them, guiding them, teaching them, and so much more. Since my kids are still relatively little, I felt nothing in common with these Empty Nesters, nor did I really give that future phase of my life much consideration.

I had years and years before I would experience an empty nest.

Except I didn’t. No one warned me about the junior version of the Empty Nest: when all of your children are in school.

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The Boss

I have a really strange work environment. I’ve done a few jobs throughout my teen and adult life, and this one is by far the hardest, most complicated, and with the absolute worst pay.

My job demands that I start work really early, even if I had to work late into the night before. Usually I don’t even have time to shower or eat before the job begins. My job is partly in the service industry and my boss requires that I serve others before I take care of my own needs (can’t a girl just have a shower and a coffee before the day begins?).

The Boss can be really moody and even though I’ve been trained to assert myself and my authority, I still find myself bending to his demands and going back on my own decisions. A lot. I am constantly walking on egg shells so as not to upset him because to be frank, that’s not a road I want to go down if I don’t have to. Trying to talk him down from an “upset” can take ages and by the end, I’m sometimes more than a bit upset, too.

Oh! And this happens all the time: I’ll be working away at something (usually job-related and sometimes something FOR HIM) and The Boss demands that I stop instantly to help him do one of his jobs even if he is fully capable of doing it himself. Oftentimes, I’ll do what he asked me, and the moment I sit back down or keep doing other important work, he has me up again! And even though his hearing is perfect and English is his first language, I have to repeat myself a LOT and practically narrate and explain every single thing I do and every choice I make. Very, very often, The Boss will ask a question and even though I answer it assertively and succinctly, he will ask it again. And again. Trying to manipulate me into giving a different answer. Or he will argue with me that I’m wrong even though I’m not. It’s exhausting! And heaven forbid I show my exasperation or raise my voice or swear (because I *never* do that…especially not under my breath…or sometimes out loud…). That’s really frowned upon. Not just by The Boss but by everyone.

 

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A Different Kind of Baby Blues

Jellybean. Look at those rolls!


I always knew I wanted to be a mother. From the days of Cabbage Patch Dolls and onward, I tend to be a nurturer and knew I wanted my very own tiny Mels when I grew up. I figured I would have three since I am the youngest of three kids myself and loved having a “buffer” sibling if one of them couldn’t be at a family function.

When Hubby and I married we knew we wanted a baby right away. Five months later we got pregnant with Monkey and in December of that year he came earthside and turned us into a family of three. 

Most of my friends who had their first babies around the same time I did waited a little more or a little less than a year before trying to bake bun #2. I waited to feel that twinge of wanting a second, of feeling that we needed another child, but it didn’t come as fast as I thought. We even talked about stopping at one and just having Monkey. After all, we couldn’t ask for a better, cuter kiddo.

 

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Cleavage Sweat (I had you at “cleavage”, didn’t I?)

I thought it had been a few months since I last wrote. I was right…if by “a few” I actually meant “12”. Egads. Well, readers (and by “readers” I mean my friends and family and the few readers who clicked “I’m feeling lucky” on the Google home page and landed here by accident), I am long overdue for an update. I am hoping that by writing just an update today I’ll  get my writing mojo flowing again and will write on a more regular basis.

The last time I wrote I was heavily pregnant with Jellybean and was suffering from a pretty overwhelming dose of Mommy Guilt. At that time I had friends and family rallying and supporting me with encouraging comments like, “You’re a great Mom! Two kids will be no sweat!”,  “Of course you’ll love the baby as much as you love Monkey!”, “You were a kindergarten teacher. If you can manage 18 kids you can definitely manage two!” and “Three cheers for Mel!” followed by a rousing chorus of “Hip, hip, hooray!” by hoards of people at a local community event. Okay, that last one didn’t happen. But I’m sure it would have if I had simply been in the right place at the right time.

 

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The Second Time Around…

A second blog in just a few days – lucky you!

I had a fantastic coffee date this morning with a close friend whom I have really  missed while I was on holidays. It was wonderful to catch up, have our three-year-olds play quietly together, and snuggle her brand new baby. We got to talking about a topic that is currently a big deal to me and we agreed that it wasn’t something commonly discussed, so I thought I’d share my thoughts on the issue.

Today’s topic is having a second child and Mommy Guilt.

 

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Three Nights

Oh…my heart….

This isn’t really how I expected to feel this morning.

I have been looking forward to today for almost a whole year. Today begins the Canadian National Training Conference for my home-based business. Thousands of people are coming to Edmonton, a stone’s throw away from me, including people in my own Area and Nation and I am beyond thrilled. It is a weekend away to develop both personally and professionally. I’m rooming with some girls from my team and it is going to be great. (*Re-reading this section just now I noticed the distinct absence of exclamation marks…)

Except that I just dropped Monkey off at Lady’s house for daycare and I feel closer to tears than euphoria. I thought I would see him off and then come home, crank some tunes, and dance around while I pack. Instead, I’m sitting here with a weight on my chest and uncried tears burning the backs of my eyes.

 

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Okay, let’s be honest

I’ve gotta be doing some things right. Right?

Before I had Monkey, I didn’t give a lot of thought to how other people parented their children, other than to form thoughts like, “Oh what a great idea” or, of course, “I will NEVER do that” *cough, cough, If I’d only known…*

When Monkey was born I very quickly realized that I didn’t know a thing about being a Mommy. I trusted my intuition sometimes, asked for advice from fellow moms, and did a lot of reading. I always felt like I was just treading water, smiling on the surface but kicking like hell under the water just to stay afloat. I assumed that once Monkey reached the age of “x” I would feel confident in my parenting.

 

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One Days (Yes, plural)

Hello again! I just came across this in my “Draft” folder and realized it never got published. So to honour the mood I was in that day, it finally makes it into the bright light of public viewing and scrutiny. 
Voila!

And for you tonight, dear readers, a list of One Days.
You know, One days. As in, “one day I will do this….”
I make no promises as to the clarity or sensibility of this because I’m really tired but I was in the mood for writing so you get what you get tonight.

The A Type personality in me really like lists, so here is another one for you.

 

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Updating my OS (*update in progress*)

Whoa – it’s been almost 4 months since I’ve written! It isn’t that I have nothing to say (just ask anyone who knows me) but I often struggle with putting together a piece that is interesting, cathartic, and appropriate for all to read.

So here is tonight’s stream of consciousness…

I am an introspective person and I am constantly looking inward to examine my own thoughts, motives, and actions. This can often lead to unnecessary emotional pain (ask my Hubby how often I compare others’ actions to my own to see if I caused a situation or could have made it better or different. Do all women do this? And do all men just deal with a situation then move on and away from it? I often seem so trapped by thinking and talking myself in circles!). 
I am certain, though, that this also makes me a better person. I know a lot of people who are stagnant with themselves. That is to say that they are content. That’s alright, I guess. But if you think about it, my iPhone (and all devices) need constant upgrading. We get new vehicles every so often because we need change it up. Our address books need updating. We update our wardrobes. So why is it that we think the first version of ourselves, “Me 1.0” if you will, is alright as is? Don’t we need constant updates, too?

 

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