Returning to… well, not “normal”.

The babymoon filled with tortilla chips* and ice cream** is over.

I won’t say that we’ve returned to “normal”, though that is what I was initially thinking…  “Wow!  We’re approaching normal!”  There is no “normal”.  And, upon further reflection, it was like thinking, “Hey, baby!  You’ve upset our family’s routine!  You rascal!  How could you do that??  You’ve DISTURBED things!!”  And, truly, I don’t think that.

But on the other hand, I have been working to re-establish a new flow to our family.

I wrote this to a friend yesterday, who probably instantly regretted asking me how I was doing:

But, just to be real, yesterday SUCKED. It was the worst mothering day in a solid year, if not more. Frankly, Jean cries a lot. That isn’t bad, theoretically. I was telling my kids that Ethan cried a lot, and he turned out just fine. Some babies are just… needier than others, and I am happy to provide that extra comfort, extra soothing, more careful… care. But, OTOH, it means a lot of time in my room with the door shut, nursing (not that I always nurse behind closed doors), soothing, trying to help Jean sleep… and then my children are like Lord of the Flies out there, unattended, giving into sin nature, selfishness, unkindness, sneakiness, bullying… Ugh. I kind of flipped out yesterday. For a valuable 45 min of time when Jean was napping, I sat the five down and we went over Colossians 3:12-17. We talked. I lectured. We prayed. But did things improve? No. I had to spank***. I called Martin. And today hasn’t been much better…. But, I’m trying. Played Bethel YouTube worship videos for four hours straight in the main living area of our home, both to worship and sing, and to just invite the Holy Spirit in our day. And I have nipped everything in the bud, as much as possible.

There would be days like these in the past and I would think that I have totally failed as a mother. The good news is that I feel like it’s a temporary failure from which we all need to recover. I need to pull the reins in on my kids after letting things coast, slide, for too long. And they need to be loving and to obey.

So, see?  There’s no normal.

But, this morning represented a step in the right direction:  For the first time in Jean’s six weeks and two days of life, I made myself a “real” breakfast.  Granted, I absolutely gulped it down, so as to eat it hot, in case Jean awoke.  But, it was:  Three eggs, tomato slices, avocado slices, a cup of raw milk, and coffee.  YUM.  The first week of Jean’s life, I ate like a queen, because my hubby fixed my breakfast, and delivered it to me in bed.  The time since then has been altogether spotty:  A hastily eaten bowl of cereal (and I don’t even eat cereal!), a protein bar, a hastily-eaten pear, occasionally asking one of my boys to fix me eggs…  Or, more likely, me looking at the clock at 11:00 a.m. and thinking, “Crap.  I haven’t eaten anything yet today.”

Speaking of food…  While I absolutely, 100% agree with the thought that post-partum mothers should not give in to an appearance-centered culture that pressures us, “How are you going to lose that baby weight???”****  I also know that I’m carrying 12 extra pounds from the pregnancy — not much, I know! — and

  1. It’s crazy how much even just 12 pounds can make your clothes NOT fit.  Even tee shirts.
  2. I know that most of that wouldn’t be there had I not daily indulged in food I shouldn’t be eating in the first place:  like the aforementioned tortilla chips, ice cream, and cereal.
  3. I just feel better when I’m trim, when I don’t to have to select clothes that hides one sloshy part or another.*****

So, unless I want to purchase a whole new wardrobe — which WOULD be nice, but

  1. Where would the money come from to do that?
  2. More importantly, where would the TIME come to do that??

I need to lose at least some of that weight.

Hence, the subtraction of the carb-laden foods, and the triumphant reemergence of healthier food…

So worth it...  the tears, the "disruption", the extra weight...  So amazingly worth it.

So worth it… the tears, the “disruption”, the extra weight… So amazingly worth it.


*Organic, from Costco.  I love those chips!!

**Ben & Jerry’s Karamel Sutra.  It was a lot easier to resist when I had to purchase it for $5/pint from the grocery store or wait for a coupon.  In the last year, pre-baby, I probably indulged twice.  But, since we discovered that the regular price at Walmart is $2.88/pint, and I got my hubby hooked on that particular flavor, it’s been MUCH harder to resist.  “Babe!” he grins, coming in the door with a bag from Walmart, “I got you some ice cream!”  Hahaha!!

***I probably just lost a good 10% of my readers right there.  “SHE SPANKS???” Um, yes.  On occasion.  I can’t remember the last time I had spanked anyone, prior to Tuesday;  a couple of months, at least.  It’s not my go-to discipline;  it’s my last-resort discipline.

****And if you haven’t read Sarah Bessey’s fabulous post on the Duchess of Cambridge’s post-partum hospital appearance, you should.  Absolutely, you should.

*****And we’re not talking “skinny” here.  I’m at 150 lbs now, and my goal is 140.  Pre-baby, it was 138 lbs.

About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 11, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I very casually lead a very large group of homeschooling families in the Phoenix area. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on August 8, 2013, in Babies, Budget, Clean Eating, Clothes, Cooking/Baking/Food/Recipes, Get Fit!, Health, Motherhood, Music, Parenting, Shopping, The Dear Hubby, The Kids, Worship. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.

  1. Karen, you really are amazing! Seriously….thank you for your honesty! Motherhood is a tricky and sometimes slippery road. Each new stage brings new, erh, challenges I am finding. Just when I think I have something figured out, wham…there it all goes. If there is ever anything I can do for you, please let me know!

  2. Rhonda Hollingsworth

    First, let me say that I’m new to your blog. I found it while researching non-verbal disorder. After 1 minute I was hooked! Second, I love this post! You are so transparent and honest, just what we moms need to read. Blessings to you and your lovely family.

    • Welcome, Rhonda! I’m glad you found me. Do you have an NLD child? Mine is now 14. We’ve been through a lot — some posted here, some not. 🙂

      • Rhonda Hollingsworth

        Yes, my 16 year old was diagnosed with non-verbal disorder and math disorder. She wants to graduate “on time” – she’s in 11th grade – but is behind grade level in a couple of her classes, math and English. She knows it may take her longer to graduate than her peers.

  3. You are an awesome mother, wife, and worship leader and I approve your post 100% ! Love you ! 🙂

    • Juanita! Your comment made me laugh because you’re so sweet… but you’ve never been present when I’ve led worship!! I love it that you say, in faith, that I am an awesome worship leader. 😀

  4. OK, I totally feel like I could have written this post! I was just bemoaning the fact that there is no normal around here. I feel like everything is super chaotic all the time. I’ve only been out like twice since Tegshee was born. And he’s four weeks old today. And that was like a big to-do. At some point I have to get back to running my life in a semi-normal fashion.

    It’s a huge deal these days if we just get chores done and maybe a bit of reading or math. It’s crazy.

    Tegshee is only happy when I’m holding him or wearing him in the sling. So….yeah. Not a ton of stuff getting done. It’s almost September and I haven’t even ordered my books for the new school year!

    I guess, as the saying goes, misery loves company, because your post totally made me feel better.

    • You can just say you’re lying in. On purpose. 😉

      This is THE MOST DISORGANIZED I have ever been, approaching a school year. Ethan’s school is figured out (but not started — he’s actually still finishing his math from last year, which, if I had been more on top of things, would have been done 6 weeks ago). Grant is half figured-out (for the first time for any of my children, he’s going to do “real” school — granted, it’s an online charter school and he’ll work at home. But, he’ll be accountable to someone else, school-work-wise, not me… I need him to be able to work independently this year, and that was what we decided upon. I’ve already filled out 12 pages of online app, and now have 6+ pages of written app to do, and the bureaucracy of it all is making me wanna pull my hair out.) The youngest three children — Wes (7th grade), Audrey (2nd grade), and Fiala (K) — I have no idea. I have adequate curric for them, but I’m thinking about doing a more unschooling approach with them, something I’ve never done before.

      If it wasn’t for everyone doing their chores, the house would be a disaster. My “realm” has been cooking and laundry, and really, only the laundry is getting done… We’ve eaten out more since Jean has been born than we have since our home was being remodeled and we had no kitchen. I feel like I’m being crazy-irresponsible. Ugh.

      BUT…. If there’s any failure, it’s temporary. 🙂 We’ll emerge. No one will be permanently damaged. It’ll be all right. For us, and for your family, as well.

  5. It’s the coffee. Bet you ten bucks it’s the coffee making her cry. But I know you are adamant about drinking it….I’ve seen so many fussy babies whose Moms drink caffeine.

    • I don’t know about “adamant”. But I do enjoy coffee. I generally drink two mugs of half-caff daily. I did have ONE day when she was up crying for several hours in the middle of the night, and the next morning, my husband asked me, “That venti cup of coffee you had with your sister, yesterday at 4:00. Was it decaf?” And I was like, “DOH!! Rookie mistake.” Hahaha! Totally forgot. So, I’m not 100% w/o coffee, but it’s pretty slim… I could be that, I suppose.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: