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One and a Half

This toddler continues to surprise me every day. She is so aware. So alive.

And so full of tantrums.

To be honest, I don’t really know what’s normal or expected at this age. And I kinda like that. I worry sometimes that she’s behind on certain things, but then she goes and does something amazing and I stop worrying. She’s doing things on her own terms and in her own time. She was late to the walking party, but clearly that hasn’t stopped her from leaping right into running.

I keep thinking I should read more about this age and how to handle it. But between work and writing and, well, wrangling her, I don’t really have the time. And maybe that’s all for the best. I go with my gut instinct instead of anyone else’s rules and so far, that seems to be working.

Saying “no” to a toddler is hard, though. But the giggles and the laughter and the dancing make it easier. I know she’s just learning how to handle her disappointment/frustration. That takes time. Heck, many adults don’t know how to handle those.

I’m amazed at how easily she learns things. Music class just wrapped up and I thought she hadn’t learned anything from it, because she mostly just sat and watched. But then I started humming some of the songs and she started doing the dances and moves from the class – the same ones that she hadn’t bothered doing while there. So she’s watching. And learning. And I need to be more careful about what she learns from me.

She still doesn’t really have any words. She babbles. Occasionally I hear “kitty.” If she were Russian, she’d have “da” down pat. But she’s drawing with markers and picking up pen and paper and climbing with ease and trying to fold things so – I’m really not worried.

It also seems that we’ve decided on having another. I guess life is finally easy enough for me to look back on those first six months with some degree of fondness instead of just anxiety. I tell myself it’ll be easier the second time, because we’ll know what to expect. I tell myself that it will only be really, really hard for a few months – that time will pass.

I don’t know how we’ll fit two small children and a home office and two adults and two cats into a 800 square foot house, but… well, people used to live in much smaller spaces. We can make it work.

I don’t know how I’ll handle a newborn and a toddler while working from home and meeting deadlines and also navigating subsequent book releases, but, well. The chaos will keep my ego from getting too inflated.

I do know I want the liveliness two children will bring to our home. I want that family. I want Lady Jr to have a sibling and to not be the sole center of our universe. I want her to grow into an adult with a brother or sister who can talk to them about her fears/concerns/worries about her parents. Who can confirm that a Thing really happened in their childhood and wasn’t just a part of her imagination.

I am afraid that I will fail and that they’ll have a relationship like my brother and I. But I’m aware that fear is just that – a fear. And really, what’s the worst if that does happen? I learned a lot from my brother, even if things were more bloody than rosy. And even more daring – what if they have a good relationship? What if they’re friends? What if everything turns out all right?

What if we learn how to juggle our lives with two and we’re able to raise two niblets into two loving, caring, and empathetic human beings?

What if?

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Update on the Second Parent Adoption Interview

tl;dr It was fine!

I tried not to spend all weekend cleaning the house, but… well, it looks a lot better than it has in well over a year. Hah. It’s not that I don’t have the time to clean/organize, it’s just not been a priority, and since I used to invite people over as an impetus to clean and the last time someone’s been invited over was… well, I don’t even remember.

Basically, it was less of an imposition and more of a much-needed excuse to clean. And now I feel ready for spring.

But that’s cleaning, not interviewing. Two lovely social workers showed up at our door and then sat at our tiny table in our tiny house and asked us questions about our lives, our relationship, our families, etc. It was all fairly simple and felt a lot like they knew they were just going through the motions and there wasn’t really any problem here. In fact, one of them mentioned they’d done a few same-sex adoptions like this before and she’d try to be as efficient as possible.

Lady Jr only had a half day at daycare. We brought her home early so she could take a Real Nap. She’s just not been taking naps at daycare lately and when we pick her up, she’s an exhausted mess, so we figured it’d be easier to have her well-rested.

Which turned out to be an awesome idea because she was just so much fun during the interview. Playing with her toys and climbing into laps and putting on her sunglasses and then running from room to room. I felt like they got to see her as she really is, instead of, well, a hot mess.

So yeah, it was fine. Thanks to all your reassurances, I honestly didn’t worry too much about it. Dr Lady did well and neither of us are worried about the outcome. They said to expect a court date some time in May, and then after that not even the vice president himself will be able to separate Lady Jr from her moms.

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She’s Walking!

She started taking steps on her own 2-3 weeks ago and this weekend she started zooming around. She’s made it from one side of the room to the other, stopped, turned, and come back, so I think we can call it official:

We have a toddler!

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Love

I don’t blog as much now because mostly it would just be me talking about how much I love this baby.

But maybe that’s enough for a blog post.

Gods, I love this baby. More than I could ever imagine. I get all those cliches now, I really do. I love spending time with her and chasing her squealing around the house and holding her and helping her walk from one side of Target to the other and coming up with ridiculous games and tickling her feet and smelling her hair and plopping her down at daycare and shouting “you’re free!”

She’s a delight. A ridiculous, adorable, loving delight.

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A Year in Reflection: Photos

Oops I got excited and made a bunch of collages.

 

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The Next Room at Daycare

I’m a bit feverish, so it’s time to write an update!

Lady Jr started in the Infants 2 room at daycare this week. They move babies in there when they reach a certain level of mobility and there they stay until they’re two. It’s a small thing, but it’s made me realize our little baby is fast on her way to becoming a little toddler.

She got to eat big kid food, which is awesome because now we don’t have to send lunch every day. She also seemed a lot happier when she got home – it seems like she’s starting to actually play with other babies. And I’m sure now that the cacophony of crying newborns is gone, that helps too.

It’s only been two days of course, but they spent most of August transitioning her and even before that she’d been going over at the end of the day when all the infants had been picked up (we seem to be the only ones with a 9-6 schedule).

But it’s just another reminder that October is coming.

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Diary of a Strong Mom: Day 1

Bundled up Lady Jr in the running stroller and went for a run. Even though it was 45 degrees and windy, she seemed fine. I had a blast. This is the third time I’ve run with the stroller and it definitely has a learning curve.

I expected that pushing the stroller would tire me out, but this one (Thule Urban Glide, for those interested) rolls smooth as silk. In fact, perhaps too smoothly. I end up spending more energy keeping the stroller from getting too far ahead of me.

But I am learning. The first time, I ran for maybe 5min, mostly to let Lady Jr get used to the motion. The second time, 10min. Today: 24min. And at the end, I felt like I could keep going, if I really wanted. Next time I’ll try for 30min.

My goal with running – aside from just getting out and having fun – is to get back into 5k shape. We live near a park that has 5ks almost every weekend and I want to participate in one of those – with the stroller – before summer’s end.

For May in general, I’ve decided that my only goal is to get consistent again. So if I can run with Lady Jr at least once a week, and run in general twice a week, I’ll consider that goal met. Come June, I’ll take a look at the 5k schedule, pick one, and commit. I don’t care about PRs yet – just completion.

Anybody else run with a stroller? Tips? Stories? General love? ❤

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