The slide.

Last week I was the uppity up. Now I’m kinda on the down slide, but I’ll claw my way back up, don’t worry.

What’s this all about? Well, let’s talk about insecurity because I am just rife with it today. The prospect of meeting local moms for play dates this week is exciting and terrifying. I’ve never really felt like this before, like people won’t like me when they meet me. But when I think of moms, I don’t think of someone like me. I think of bake sales and clothes from Ann Taylor Loft and Talbots. Soccer moms. Moms who do lots of crafts. Moms who cook out of cookbooks and make gluten-free muffins for breakfast. I could go on, but these false images of what all of these moms are like (obviously false since I’m a mom and have friends who are moms who are nothing like this) are paralyzing me. What it really boils down to is good old fashioned low self-esteem. I’m still working in losing weight (I’ll be fighting that battle for the rest of my life); my skin has never been dryer (tell me how it’s possible to move from the desert to 20 minutes away from the ocean and haver DRYER skin??);  I have no new clothes and refuse to buy anymore until I’ve lost weight because if I could lose 20 lbs, I’d have a whole new wardrobe and I’m cheap; post partum hair loss is making a second appearance (not as bad as the first time, but still sucks); and to top it all off — I’m still nervous about this whole situation away from my friends and family and life that I loved.

I’m probably not making sense. That’s ok, this is just a brain dump. I need to get out of this rut. I have a play date on Thursday and maybe even one tomorrow. Chris was in a car accident last week, so we are down one car until we get the rental. He’s fine, thankfully.

Henry is awesome though, and for that I’m beyond grateful. For real. He’s such a sweet, fun, easy going boy. No complaints in the toddler department.

So let me wallow just a little longer and then get my shit together. Not to say there won’t be more wallowing. The goal is to get the wallowing down to weekly or monthly events instead of daily or hourly.

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Stepping back. Or to the side. I’m not sure.

A friend of mine posed a question on Facebook recently: When was the last time you got annoyed with anyone that wasn’t because of something they said on Facebook? I’m paraphrasing awfully. Her question was much more eloquent. But it rang true for me. I get SO ANNOYED by people I usually treasure by things they share, post, or do on Facebook. These things are starting to define these people for me, and who knows how many people think less of me from the BS I post on a daily basis (for the record, mostly Henry pics). But still! I got into a heated exchange with a girl that I have known since 2000, an ex college roommate. I love this girl and think the world of her. Then I post an article she doesn’t agree with, she kinda attacks the article, I attack her, and now a bitter taste is left in my mouth even though we hugged it out. Over what? A Facebook post? Ridiculous.

On a larger scale, I’ve had to hide the feeds of people I care about because everything EVERYTHING they post makes me roll my eyes. It isn’t their fault, it’s mine and my weird hang ups on different topics. In real life if these topics come up, we can discuss them, laugh about them, move on. On social media, it sits there and stares at you all day until more crap pushes it off your page. A cycle of never-ending stupid. I’ve lost friendships over misunderstandings on Facebook. Real, long-standing friendships. They see a picture and jump to wild conclusions and delete me and never talk to me again. Yes, this happened. So I’m taking a break. I doubt anyone will even notice, unless they read it here or wonder where their daily Henry pic has gone. And those who do notice will text me and we’ll talk and then I will re-activate it soon, and most will be none the wiser. Either way, I’m backing way off. Maybe I’ll have more time for blogging. Wouldn’t you be so lucky.

 

 

A little bit of whine in wine country.

I have written several posts since arriving in California, and I end up typing a looooong diatribe of nonsense and whining and I scrap it.

There is so much good in my life but I’m having a really hard time getting over the homesickness and worry. I think that’s just part of my personality. I will always and forever be worried about money and always and forever miss something and/or someone. Anxious and nostalgic, that sums me up. Sounds like a party to be around, right? I’m sure Chris just loves coming home to this mess every night (he’s very sweet to me).

I miss my mom. I miss my friends. I miss everything. I’m super lonely. But here’s the thing that’s been getting me lately: I’m INCREDIBLY SUPER DUPER LUCKY. I have a healthy, happy, funny, amazing toddler who is my world. I’m blessed enough that I get to stay home with him every day. Sure, money is tight. Like, stretched to the penny, but we make it work. What set off a panic attack tonight was getting health insurance for myself and Henry (Chris’s is 100% paid through his new job — again, grateful). But just looking in our already tight budget and trying to fit that extra necessary expense is stressful.

So anyway, this town is beautiful and I love it. I just need to put on my big girl panties and get out there and discover more of it. I’ll get on that after just a little more wallowing, ok?

In the meantime, here’s a little bit of what everyone comes here for, pics of the kid and other misc. I promise I’ll get back to normal soon.

BiscottiSharing some really great biscotti with chocolate mousse and hazelnut whipped cream with daddy. My inlaws took us to a great little italian place for Mother’s Day.

MD FlowersMother’s Day flowers. Our allergies have been going insane but they’re too pretty to throw away yet.

CarouselCan you see us? Henry looks unimpressed, but lemme tell you, the kid had a blast. There were very vocal protests when it was time to get off. This was at Pier 39 in San Francisco.

mmmm yeahYESSSSS!!!!

mom san franLunch with a view. I miss my mom.

Henry ThroneHenry on his new couch. Yes, his. We’re allowed to sit on it sometimes (like when he’s asleep).

Henry SlidingMy big boy. 

 

Getting closer.

We have an apartment. It’s in a little town called Petaluma. On one hand, I am so relieved we have a place to move into on April 29, even if it is tiny. It’s got a washer and dryer. I’d forgotten all about California and how most apartment complexes do not have a washer and dryer in unit. In LA, our apartment had a garage parking spot and a w/d. We thought we hit the jackpot! In ABQ, you just kinda expect it. And parking is never an issue here. So after a couple weeks of searching and finding larger places for the same price sans washer and dryer, we settled on the smaller place with them. There is no way in hell I’m dragging Henry to a laundromat. That’s my idea of hell.

Anyway, we leave on the 26th and embark on a fun little road trip with a toddler and a U-haul. My excitement level is negative 100, if you can’t tell. I know it’s going to be great eventually, but I’m still sad about the whole thing.

On Saturday, my husband and I got out of the house for a couple hours after Henry went to bed. My BFF Natalie had us over to her new house for food and games. We had so much fun, but I cried almost the whole way home because I’m gonna miss her so much. Gah, I’m crying now, so change of subject.

Henry had his 15 month well baby check last week and he screamed the entire time. Well, from the moment the nurse tried to take his temp and all the way through the shots. If you have a kid who loves his naps, don’t schedule things at nap time, k? But, regardless, he’s perfect and right on track. Also has some healthy lungs on him.

Henry will be up from his nap soon, so I’m gonna go to the bathroom in private while I still have a chance. Later.

Soul food.

Writing is so good for my soul, so I don’t know why I don’t do it anymore. I mean, I have lots of excuses, but they’re not really valid. I can make time. I really need to make time.

The other day I was feeling a lot of anxiety and frustration over a certain situation. I wanted to scream. Instead, I wrote an email to someone. No one will ever read this email, but boy did it feel great to get it out. I felt better almost instantly and since then I’ve barely thought about it. It was like I literally released it into the universe.

So even if it’s not blogging, I’m going to write more. With our situation so up in the air right now, writing will help me focus on what’s important and stay positive.

Henry also helps. Before I head to bed every night, I stop and take a picture of him sleeping. I’m forever grateful for this little boy.

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Hello, my name is Katy and I have an addiction.

I read an article about how Facebook makes people unhappy. I think it’s true. Sure, I have some hilarious, intelligent friends who make me laugh daily but I also spend a lot of time rolling my eyes. We also live in a day and age where it’s perfectly acceptable to “unfriend” people you’ve known for years as a way to let them know you’re pissed off. It’s a passive aggressive dream come true. That alone makes me sad and disappointed, so I figured it was time to take a break.

The one thing I really need is an extra dose positivity. My husband is still unemployed and where we will be living after February is up in the air. He has some great leads out there so I’m praying one works out.

Anyway. It lasted 12 hours. TWELVE HOURS! Restraint is obviously not my strong suit. After I put Henry to bed, I sat down and really needed to see what foods my friend ate that day or something. Sad.

But despite my obvious addiction, I’m going to try to stay off it when I’m at home with Henry. I think I already do pretty good at that, but I can do better. Also, I really want to finish a couple books I’ve started and I still have one season of Dexter left. Priorities, people.

henry readingHenry checked with his Ocean Buddies book and then told me, “yep, mom, you have problems.” (recycled Instagram pic taken during the great FB hiatus of 2014)

I know I’m not alone here. What is it about social media sites that makes it so difficult to disconnect? And which ones are you addicted to? I don’t do the Twitter, but I love FB and Instagram. Also Pinterest, but that’s different. Chime in.

 

Portable blogging.

I guess I am going to start writing blogs on the iPhone/iPad from now on. Otherwise, I might never blog again. With the exception of my new part-time job, I am never on a computer. And with a baby who can no longer sit in a bouncer without trying to escape and on the verge of crawling, it will get infinitely more difficult. Let’s see how this goes. Autocorrect, don’t you screw this up for me!

Henry is changing every day. It’s amazing. Babbling, scooting, acrobatics, eating A LOT, sleeping all the way through the night (8 pm – 6 am), sitting on his own pretty well, and just generally doing more stuff. I look at him in his high chair and think, “whoa. I have a baby.”

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Working a few hours a week and getting out of the house has done a world of good for my anxiety. I’m starting to feel like the old Katy again. It also helps that my hair is growing back quickly from that pesky postpartum hair loss episode. I’ve also lost 6 pounds in the past week from eating less sugar, mainly. But my cravings for anything sweet are KILLING me. Wish me strength.

There are the crappy days too, where I think I don’t know what the eff I’m doing. Today was one of those days. I decided to make Chris a nice dinner and after putting the boiled potatoes into the kitchenaid mixer and turning it on to make mashed potatoes, the potatoes went a-flying. All over the kitchen. Meltdown ensued. I’m laughing about it now, but I was not then. I had just fed Henry so he was fussing to get down (also turned out he had a full diaper) which didn’t help my nerves. Chris came home and calmed me down (he’s good at that) and the evening resumed as normal. But I wonder how moms with multiple children do it? How will I ever get a meal cooked or clean a room when we have another one? Anyway, my meatloaf came out great, so it worked out. I’ll get the hang of it by the time Henry’s in college, at least. Maybe.

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Trying to escape and getting side tracked by his toes.

Freedom Bombs (an Ode to Derek)

I’ve recently taken on a part-time gig at a good friend’s recently opened law firm. I go into the office a few hours a week and I work from home a few hours a week. It’s pretty great.

This friend of mine, Derek, is awesome. I’ve always been a huge fan of his and knew he would go far and be successful. In college, we were thick as thieves until he moved away for law school (I begged him to go to law school in ABQ; he eventually transferred back here). We did everything together. The most meaningful moments for me were just hanging out in his car, listening to music, or  making bizarre art in his basement. I once recorded a song at his house called “Freedom Bombs” (this was in 2004-2005 time frame). We still laugh about that. When I was a reporter/news editor for the Daily Lobo, he would come with me on assignments and take pictures. I covered politics and, during the 2004 presidential election, he stayed with me all night in the basement of city hall waiting for the results. One of my favorite memories is when I covered a story about an old war veteran who was running for congress. We went to his home to interview him and sat in his dark kitchen. The interview was great and the guy was really interesting. For the picture, he asked Derek to grab a machete that was on the wall. He wanted it in the photo. You can read the article here, but the photo is no longer online. Darnit. (Orlin Cole died in 2011. I’m glad I got to meet him and I have zero doubt he would have done a better job in congress than 99% of the slackers we’ve elected.)

Then there was the time we tried out for the Real World together (rejected). And the time his mom drove us up to Durango for the day (I love his mom, btw). And the time he went to play bass in the back of a head shop and I sat on a couch with a sketchy ass dude watching Mr. Ed on a black and white tv. Good times.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERADerek took this pic of me in Durango. Sometime in 2005.

We lost touch for the most part when I moved to LA. He was busy with law school and I was busy with work and cohabiting with my now husband. After we moved back here, we saw each other a few times. He came to my wedding. We met for a breakfast or two, but he was now a new, VERY busy rookie attorney and I was a newlywed. Crazily enough, he moved into our apartment complex about a year ago. I was pregnant and he felt an instant connection with my unborn baby. He’s now a doting Uncle Derek to Henry.

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So when he offered me some work, I couldn’t resist. It’s been great hanging out with him again. Nothing has changed. We still joke around. We still goof off. We spent most of my first day yesterday laughing. I might never get any work done. We’re no longer the carefree kids we used to be, but yet we’re the same. It’s very comforting.

I used to keep a pretty epic MySpace blog. Seriously, it was good. I was just going through it because I knew I had written a few about Derek and I came across one I wrote the day he moved to Boston for law school. Honestly, I didn’t know if I’d ever see him again, so I feel even more lucky to have him back in my life now. Enjoy:

Derek,

I just said goodbye to you on your front porch.  I tried not to cry in front of you because even though I am sad to see you leave, I am excited about your life and this great opportunity. Today when we picked up your rental truck, I could just feel the excitement you felt, and I was genuinely happy for you.

But as soon as I got in my car, I couldn’t help but start to cry.  I started to remember all the things that made you become my best friend. Derek and Katy are almost synonymous with each other. I rarely go anywhere without you by my side. I can’t see going into Burt’s without you, even though I know I will have to eventually if I want a social life.  But will it be the same?  Not even close.

Who else am I going to wander downtown with on a Saturday morning while hungover? Who else am I going to make modern art with while listening to Bright Eyes? Who else is going to make a cd with me and tell me I have a good voice while I’m screaming “freedom bombs” into the mic? Who else is going to have the same faith in me that you do?

You know what’s weird and something I never told you?  I knew as soon as I met you that we were going to be best friends.  Seriously. You were just so smart and political and amazing…there is a reason you are in my life. You have taught me and shown me things (literally) that I only imagined to be real before. I’m a better person because of you.

I cherished the last few months because I knew you’d be leaving.  We would be hanging out (like the 4th of July) and I would just think to myself that I wish that moment wouldn’t end because there would never be one like it again.  And I know, I know, it’s not like your dead or anything…but you are moving so far away, and we are grown ups now who have to face reality–things change. It is very likely that I may never see you again.  I hope that isn’t the case, but life has taught me this harsh lesson. I’ve said many goodbyes to people with promises of future reunions only to never see them again.

I’m so proud of you Derek, for everything. Your strength and determination are ones to be envied. You know how most people say they are going to do something but then never do?  Yeah, that’s not you.  You dream big and make it happen.  That is so cool to me.

This little letter has gone on long enough and you were never one for sap, so I’m going to end it with something I think you need to hear more in your life:  I love you and I will miss you.

You are the best person I know.

Love,  Katy

So. That sums it up.

If you’re curious as to how he became such a successful lawyer so quickly, you must watch this news video. It’s the best. He got A LOT of business from that interview. (Note: this was the lead story on the 10 o’clock local news. I heart New Mexico).

Updates and other things.

Wow. What a month it’s been.

Henry is almost 5 months old (!!!) and is changing every day. Here are some things he’s doing now:

  • Pulling himself up from reclined to sitting (not from flat on his back)
  • Sitting unassisted for a few seconds, but getting better!
  • Laughing a lot. He’s got a great sense of humor.
  • Staying awake for longer periods of time, and taking longer naps.
  • Holding his own bottle (still hasn’t completely mastered this yet either)
  • Entertaining himself for longer periods of time

After his immunizations last month, he was really clingy. The teething didn’t help either. Therefore, he would only nap either in my arms or next to me on the couch (with his legs touching my legs). He would also lay down and nap with me, which has been great. But I was being held hostage by a cute little drool monster, so I had to put an end to it. There are things mama needs to do! I put him down in his crib today for his afternoon nap and within 10 minutes, he was out. There were a few tears (which I soothed by rubbing his head) but other than that, easy. He slept almost 2 hours. I really hope he keeps that up. Bedtime is still easy peasy and he’s still sleeping 6-8 hour stretches before needing a feeding.

I feel like I’m finally hitting my stride with this parenthood thing. I feel more confident, I’m enjoying it a hell of a lot more, and I don’t stress out over the little things. I guess getting more sleep helps, but so does having an easy going baby who you can take in public without tantrums and crying fits and who is extremely predictable and easy to please. I said it. I have an easy baby. I was blessed.

henrymirrorCheap entertainment.

But, full disclosure, I’m feeling ok now, but I had severe anxiety attacks for a few weeks there. I would lay awake at night panicking over the future, the uncertainties, afraid to leave the house even at times…it was bad. But I’ve been working on it and I feel so much better lately. I’ve realized the best thing I can do for Henry is live life to the fullest and not worry about things I can’t control. I don’t want him to be afraid of the world or worry about little things because his mother is a lunatic. I’m gonna say the hormones did it to me.

I’ve loaded a bunch of vids onto our YouTube page. Check them out when you get bored. I tried to watch our wedding video again tonight but had to stop it. It makes me weepy!

Just venting. Moving on.

Maybe it’s just me, but I’m confused. Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of Facebook snark about people talking/posting pictures about/of their kids. I’m sure it was there before I had a kid of my own, but I must not have paid attention. Personally, I LOVE when people write about their babies and I LOVE LOVE LOVE when I get to see cute babies in my feed, rather than lame internet memes involving grumpy cats or uninformed political s***.  But when my friends post about their hobbies, their careers, their businesses, their families, whatever makes them happy – that’s what I like to see on Facebook. Take a picture of your damn salad. If you enjoyed it, then hell, good for you.

Now I know this snark isn’t aimed at me (and I’m sure most of it is just lighthearted ribbing), but I have to admit I take it a little personally. So, my life was ok to write about when I was bitching about Monday mornings or hailing the arrival of Fridays, but it’s lame to take a picture of my baby and post it? Because I’m pretty sure both things are a part of my life and that’s what we do on social media sites, right? We write about whatever we want, whatever is going on. Right now, for me, the most important and wonderful thing happening to me is Henry. Period. I’ve never been happier, more in love, more fulfilled, more inspired. Is that a bad thing? Should I run out and find another job to fulfill me and then it will be ok? Will I be cool again? Is that more respectable?

In my early 20’s, I had a friend ask me if I ever wanted to be a stay at home mom. I told her I wasn’t sure because I’m a feminist and women should have careers like men. I didn’t want to be barefoot and pregnant, spending my days changing diapers and sweeping floors. Then she told me something I have never forgotten: If a woman chooses to stay at home with her kids, if that’s her choice, is that not feminism? That we are lucky enough to be able to choose?

That empowered me when we made the difficult decision that I would take care of our kids. No one takes better care of her babies than their mothers and that’s what I intend to do. I’ve had a pretty good career so far, making decent salaries with good benefits, which is what made this a huge decision for our family. But, as of today, as of right this moment, I never felt an ounce of the happiness I feel seeing my baby grow, change, discover new things, and smile. And that’s my job now. The job I chose. It doesn’t come with a paycheck or a set of business cards, and apparently I’ve lost the respect of some people, but that’s ok. None of that matters. Henry matters.

And if any people on Facebook or Instagram hate looking at my baby, there is a handy unsubscribe feature and an even handier unfriend feature you can use. It won’t hurt my feelings. I use them both often.

You know what else is cool? I’ve always loved writing and wouldn’t you know it. Here I am. Writing.

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