Monday, December 19, 2011

How my toddler feels about food.

45 seconds of Austen's thought process regarding food. Also, you should know that Austen calls our dog (Izzy) by the name of my in-law's dog, Molly.:

O-M-G. I am hungry!
Can I have that? What's that? I want that. NOW.
Ya know, now that I have sucked on it...I don't love it.
I bet if I spit it out, Izzy will love it.
Peas? I love peas!
oooooh. Dis pea is hot!
Whooooooo. Whoooooooo. Two blows should cool it.
I had no choice but to spit those flaming balls of green out.
I would love a cheese stick.
Is that meat? Don't you know I hate meat?!
What are these green things?
Wheres my milk? All I want is milk.
I am not even hungry.
I want down.
I want up.
Fine, I will climb back up myself.
I bet the food would taste better if I was sitting in that chair.
No, this chair.
Daddy, can I have a bite?
Everything is better when Daddy eats it.
I will only eat raisins. Forever and Amen.

Austen rocking the mullet at mealtime.

Friday, December 2, 2011

oh yeah, I have a blog.

Zomg, guys. I swear I really want to make this blog into something but some days it just seems so daunting. The writing part I love--the making it pretty, trying like hell to get people to read it, and wondering how I come across parts--eh, not so much. So, I have come to peace with the fact that I will write when moved to do so and maybe 5 people will read it. Maybe 50. It doesn't change the words or their meaning to me and so I am okay with that.

Moving on...

I want to talk about judgment for a second. It is not fun. Being judged, judging, watching people get judged. It is all so draining. I am not one to normally get all up in arms about stuff, but I follow a blog called Heir to Blair
and totally respect and admire Beth Anne's blazing honesty and bravery. Sometimes I read people's blogs and I am all "they are better than life than me". When I read this blog, I feel like "man, I want to get coffee with that girl because she is legit". So, needless to say I was really bummed when I saw the reaction that her latest endeavor got. If you read the post you will see what I mean.

To attack someone simply for sharing with the world their honest to goodness struggles is baffling to me. And we aren't talking about earth-shattering stuff here, people. We are talking about naps! I felt the need to defend this person I have never met--simply because I admire her for baring her soul. If you take the time to investigate her site, you will see--she has probably helped SO many women by sharing her PPD story, just for starters.

After I commented on the Babble post, I was kind of mad at myself. By responding to ToddlerMama, had I just fueled her fire? Validated her bullying? Perhaps. But worse, I had cast my own judgment. What she said to and about Blair was uncalled for. But I don't know the shoes she wears or the day she's had. Now, I recognize that ToddlerMama is probably having a hard time right now. Maybe her marriage is failing, or her finances are in shambles, or she wants another baby so bad that she feels like she must hold this one even tighter. But her comments are unbelievable to me.Perhaps it would have been best to reach out to her privately, offering a chance to listen. In life, it is usually those who wear the the strongest armor who are the most deeply wounded.

So, when we judge the mom who doesn't pick her screaming toddler up off the floor, who writes a blog post about needing 2 hours of quiet time, who lashes out in the comments section--we just contribute to the vicious cycle of nonacceptance. I think that as mothers, we are called to reach a higher level of understanding and acceptance. We are raising a generation, and so we must strive to see what is not readily visible. We have to speak from a place of compassion and patience when at all possible. That means you too, ToddlerMama.

That being said, judgment is inevitable. Its a hair-trigger response to forge an opinion when we encounter things out in the world. However, I think what I am learning more and more (as a mother, at my job, particularly as a wife) is that there truly is an "A" for effort. If you can simply make it a priority to try to lead with a compassionate heart, then you will eventually see a fundamental change in your tendency to judge. While I may still see a parent doing something I disagree with and form a quick opinion, I now try to reason with myself as to what else is going on that I can't see.

I am no saint. That is very very clear. However, I hope and pray that by trying to be a little more forgiving in my judgments that the same will be done to me. So, when you see my toddler throwing herself on the pavement--please know that I am doing the very best I can. And that I am praying for a nap (sorry, ToddlerMama).