Friday, April 29, 2011

The Realities of Parenting

Recently, I've started to look at my kid and think, "Who said you could grow up so fast?"

People can tell you all kinds of things about parenting - they grow up so fast, you'll never get any sleep, blah blah blah.  I knew most of these things, but you don't realize how much it affects your life until it actually happens.

When Naomi was first born, it was difficult for Michael and I.  I feel comfortable discussing that with the world because I think that it's important to communicate what really goes on "behind the scenes" of parenthood.  It's not all unicorns and rainbows, people.

Marriage becomes difficult.  All those conversations about how to raise a child are revisited, because once the kid gets here, opinions can change.  The amount of hormones that are in your system can cause Postpartum Depression (PPD), which I struggled with.  Even that topic is taboo, and it's taken over a year to feel more "normal".  There are days that you just want to say "Please, just stop f*cking crying", then feeling guilty that you thought about that regarding your beautiful, loving kid.

These are just a few realities of parenting.  We are learning something new every day.  The newest thing?  Trying to curb her stubbornness.  For a short time, we would tap her hand when she would feed the dog - but I realized that one of my big parenting "no-nos" is to use spanking, smacking, hitting, etc. to make a point.  Violence with anyone, especially children, is unacceptable in our house.  What continues to irk me, though, is that people say things like "You just wait!"  No, my mind is pretty much made up about this topic.  If a parent chooses to discipline in that way, fine - it's just not for us.  My sister helped remind me of that, and though it was hard to face that we were going down a path that we both wanted to avoid, change needed to be made.

That's another thing about parenting - it is important to recognize that mistakes are going to be made.  We can't change the past, but we can change the future.  I have to remind myself on a daily basis that I am human, and we've never done this before.  We are simply learning.

So, our marriage experienced some tough times, I dealt with PPD, and I struggle with being a parent every day.  That makes us human, and THAT, my friends, is the reality of parenting.  Now, Michael and I are stronger than ever, and I am so thankful to have such a strong partner in my husband and best friend.  I've overcome PPD, and I aim to make it less "taboo".  Soon, in my huge amount of time, I want to provide information via my blog about PPD.  And, I remind myself how freaking lucky I am to have a blessed and happy life, despite the daily challenges of parenthood.  It's so worth it.

My hope for my family is that we keep things in perspective, and continue to thank God that we have been so blessed.  Things may be hard sometimes, but Michael and Naomi make me strong.  :)

Naomi update: She is so darn stubborn - but is so cute about it, so I have to keep from laughing!  :)  Michael and I take turns trying to redirect her and giggle.  I sometimes I say things like, "Ok, come on drama" when she's having a meltdown.  When I don't give her the attention she wants when she is having said meltdown, she stops and goes back to playing.  She's such a ham!  She's almost walking by herself, and her hugs and kisses make my heart melt.  I am so lucky to be her Mom.

Friday, April 8, 2011

I will thwart you, food!

I'm not going to lie, I love food.  I love the way it tastes, I love making it, I love the way it makes me feel.

Well, maybe not that last part.

I have a problem with moderation, in pretty much all aspects of my life.  I'm a very "all or nothing" person.  This includes food.  I eat food when I'm experiencing an emotion, I eat food when I'm bored, I eat food to celebrate things.

Why am I being so open and honest about this?  It's because as much as I say "I'm going to work out!!", it lasts for 2.2 seconds, and then I go on a binge again.  Being vocal about my weight loss journey will **hopefully** assist with this.

I've become ashamed with how I look and feel.  I've noticed that people look at me differently now.  People look at me when I am eating.  People look at me if I am walking slower.  You may say "Megan, it's all in your head, you're not that bad".  Sure, it may be in my head, but yes, it is that bad.  I don't want to be that mother who can't play with her kid because she has an emotional connection to food.  I don't want to be the wife who would rather veg in front of the TV instead of going out for a healthy date.  I don't want to be the friend who always gets a ton of food, and eats it all without batting an eye.

I feel like I am concerning my friends and family with my weight gain, and I am now looking to do something about it - for real.  What am I doing?  What I should have been doing all along - eating right and being active. That's the right way to do it - not a lose-weight-quick fad.  How am I going to stay on track?  I am going to record what I eat, and stay under a certain calorie amount.  I'm going to be active, and I've signed up for a 5K in May.  Yeah, I'll probably walk the majority of it, but at least I am doing it.  

I am officially giving the world permission to keep me accountable - if you see me eating something unhealthy, ask me how my weight loss journey is going.  I won't get offended - if I want to continue to eat my Taco Bell, though, I should be able to vocalize what exactly I will be doing to work off the extra calories.

It's about good decisions, and getting healthy.  I am tired of feeling uncomfortable in my own skin, and not feeling like myself.  

So, be honest with me folks, as I work to thwart the monster that is food.  I will post updates when I can - I hope I can actually stick with it this time.