Let it go, let it go

IMG_2895Dixon can sing. He sings more than he talks. I think he’s partial to Mumford and Sons, “I will wait for you” but we’ve added “Let it Go” from Frozen to our impressive list of lyrical awesomeness.

He says Papa, Daddy (sounds more like Dadeeeee), Bubba and I poop. This week we added shoes to his ever present, Go. He talks a lot. He’s lightyears ahead of where Dexter was and it makes me feel bad that I did not push for help with Dexter sooner. Mom guilt. There is always some sort of mom guilt, isn’t there?

As a mother I never know what the right thing to do is. And everyone has their opinion. Everyone who loves your child, weighs in. They want what is best for them too. And then, if you’re like me, you have other children to compare too. So one may talk late but need no assistance while another should of had more help from day one.

Sometimes it feels like a losing battle.

I wonder too, sometimes, if the invitation of social media to my life and the lives of my children has grown the guilt monster. I know it’s grown Guilt’s friend, Doubt and through the years I have found my self sharing less and less because I don’t want the weigh in. People with good intentions, without inflection. They mean well but come across mean or hurtful… because well, interwebs (inside joke)

“Did someone suggest that because they think I am a bad mother? Do they think I am not spending enough time with this one or that one? Did I make the wrong choice?”

We have to learn to just let it go. I have to learn to let it go. I am thankful for the tiny sounds of Dixon, to remind me.

We can’t be right all the time. In years we will look back and questions our decisions I am sure. Was it right to move Devlynn across the country? Did I kill her social life? Maybe but she goes to schools that make the schools in Denver look like playtime. She has the fortunate opportunity to live in the history epicenter and her love of history flourishes here and just grows stronger. She may not have a gaggle of friends but she has other things instead.

All we can do is try and do our best, right? Learn from our mistakes. Walk away from the bad and try and start over with better, with different choices. And learn to forgive ourselves and let it go.

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Baseball season approaches again. My favorite sport of them all. Last year, I put too much pressure on myself and on my kids. I worried too much about something, that in scheme of things, won’t matter in time. This year, we’re taking a different approach. No travel teams. Just private lesson and rec. It’s Davis’ last year at the rec league and I’m not gonna ruin it by putting pressure on him or myself. It’s probably an unpopular decision but it’s the only one that works for my family. Letting go of the pressure. Let it go.

Baseball, lacrosse, Cub Scouts, well they should be fun. Yes, they’re work and they’ll teach our kids things but in the end, if they’re not enjoying it, they’re not taking away from it the important lessons we put them in these things, to learn. If there is anything I want my children to know, it is that you don’t have to be miserable. Find work that you love. Find people that you love to be around. Life doesn’t have to be full of misery. Not if you don’t want it to.

We have to learn to let the bullshit go. Let it go.

That’s my mantra this year.. hopefully, I can stick with it.

 

 

Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.

The bigs and the littles

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You should see the look on people’s faces when I first tell them that we have five children. While I believe large families are more and more common, there are still those people who think, “holy cow that is a lot of kids”. I sort of always giggle to myself and add a comment about being “those people”. They often press on with more questions and the top is generally what their ages are. People are often more shocked to hear the large range we have,

16

11

8

3

1

My oldest will graduate high school before my littlest even starts public school. She will probably have children of her own before the youngest two finish school themselves. And I could very well be a grandparent while still navigating the waters of elementary.

I have 18 more years of kids at home. Well 18, give or take.

Before I had Devlynn, the oldest, I swore I’d never marry. That I’d never have kids. I sat in the bathroom of our tiny, one bedroom apartment with that pregnancy test and my work apron in my hands, wiping the tears. I was scared to death. Unmarried and now setting sail on a sea that was far outside my comfort zone. I sort of denied the whole idea of it for a long time and continued to think nothing in my life would change once this little baby arrived. I continued to wait tables, play video games and act like a stupid kid and then, she was born and like that it all changed.

Except we thought she’d be the only one.

Some years later we added Davis and then Drew. Dexter and Dixon graced us a few years later and here we are, a family of seven.

I like my big family. There is always something to do. We have preschool and lacrosse and baseball and football and homework and dodgeball and playdates. They all have different interests and all talk about different things. They’re a great group of children. And I wouldn’t change anything about any of them.

However, as my daughter approaches the end of her school career I have found myself mourning the one on one time I feel like I may of lost with her, adding so many siblings, so spaced apart. I’ve missed a million roller coaster rides sitting on the sidelines with baby and while I am at every.single.game, I know I miss things because I have to protect the toddler from falling down the hill. And it works both ways. I go to far fewer story times because I am so busy with baseball or whatever and the babies are drug all over and I worry that the dragging is making them miss out on free range babying.

It’s the story of having the bigs and having the littles.

You find yourself wishing away the toddler years and praying the teen years slow down. It’s a stark and strange contrast in parenting such a broad range of ages. It’s going through all the good and all the bad all at once.

It also adds an element of weirdness to making adult friends. I have people I know from each child’s age but no one who gets the struggle and awesomeness of having it all at once. So while they relate to my pre-pubescent boy fun-ness, they don’t get that I am having to navigate it while dealing with teen angst and a baby who is teething so badly I want to jump off a cliff.

Large family, big gap. Lots of fun.

Yesterday I was talking to a friend about college and how I worry Devlynn and all she has to give up. And that I hope she doesn’t resent me for encouraging her to stay home and go to school. Not because I don’t think she’ll thrive in a big college far away, but because I want her to have less debt and not worry about working. But by encouraging her to stay home, I am also keeping her with the zoo family. And I worry if she’ll look back and regret being part of it.

There is a lot of guilt that goes with the bigs and the littles.

Parenting is hard enough and sometimes I feel like I have dealt myself a tough hand. I’d never change it. Never. Even when they upcharge me for Great wolf lodge and my Disney entry tickets cost more then your entire vacation. Love my bigs and my littles and every big and little thing that come with them.

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Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.

Happy New Year, blog-style

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Before the holiday some one hacked my blog. I couldn’t log in and the back up didn’t work and out of frustration, I  just decided to wipe the slate clean and so, here it is. A new start. A new blog. I am hoping to fill it with different things. Like most every year, I am hoping for a happy year. Instead of a sad. Only this year, I realize it’s only me who can make it happy.

Christmas was fun. I am not a Christmas person so to say it was fun is a big leap. We took Devlynn to NYC, we saw all the neat stuff in Philadelphia. We had a new Christmas Eve tradition. I have to share that video with you all.

We started our new year in Orlando, with the entire cast of Disney and it was awesome. I never in a million years thought I would be one of “those” Disney people but I am totally hooked. What they say is right, it is the most magical place on earth. It’s also the most crowded. I don’t think I have ever seen so many people in one place at one time. A bit of a struggle for introverted me but with a good plan, I think we did okay. Collectively, we had no idea it would be that busy. Looking back though, I don’t know why we would of thought otherwise. Every child in America is off school at the time we went, ha ha ha.

Still I wouldn’t change a thing.

We managed to ride all the “must dos”, I think. Pirates or the Caribbean, Haunted Mansion, It’s a Small World, Space Mountain. We rode Dumbo, the Barnstorm and the 7 Dwarfs. We we able to half the Epcot countries and saw Nemo and the beautiful aquariums there. The kids and dads got on the ride inside the Epcot ball. Dinosaur, the Lion King show and Everest made the list as well as the Bugs Life show, twice. We saw the safari animals and petted the goats and lambs. We were able to ride the water ride without getting too wet. We sang along with Anna and Elsa, trained to be Jedi, road with Rebels. I about peed my pants on the Tower or Terror and again on the Rockin’ Rollercoaster… and we had dinner with Mickey Mouse. MICKEY MOUSE! We were Space Rangers, swam with Ariel, we road the Speedway and we met a Level 3 (oh Stitch, how Sissy loves you). And I am probably forgetting things, oh wait I am! Splash Mountain, Dole Whips and Tom Sawyer! I cannot believe how much we got done in five days at the parks! There were fireworks too and so much food. It was the best trip. The best.

I honestly never thought I would get my whole family to Disneyworld. As a large family, the entry fee alone is daunting. Even for just a few days. My parents really made a dream of mine come true… I am so very thankful for the memories, even if it came with a new Disney addiction. I have already begun trying to think about how to get them all there again. It was one of the most fun things I’ve ever done. Seeing it through the eyes of bigs and littles. It was fun to be a kid again. It was fun to feel a little well, “normal”. We took our first real family vacation. We didn’t have to say no. I felt like a normal family.

Now, it’s 2016. We’re home. I’m back to being buried under laundry and work. Trying to have a changed outlook but it’s hard and I getting buried under rain clouds. But like every new year, it feels like there is an opportunity for change and new beginnings. I want to try to embrace that. Write more, worry less, create more, worry less. Be me and not ashamed of me. And stop worrying about it all.

New Year, new changes, new me.

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I took down my photography Facebook page. I will still continue to take my big accounts and the occasional small client but I think I’ve burned that candle almost too long. You can only keep a business of life support for so long, before you have to wish it well. I love my preschools but I just cannot keep with the other and so my focus will remain there. Preschools and the like. It’s nice to have those couple gigs a year. I hope to branch away from Fiverr at some point. It’s helped me realize I can do graphic work but it’s also taught me I am worth a lot more then I make. I just need to figure out my next turn on that path. And I want to craft more. Here especially. Because it’s fun to share. It’s fun.

So there it is. 2016. The best vacation ever. The typical New Year post.

 

 

 

Hi! I’m Gail, the voice behind Mimicking Motherhood. I started blogging after the birth of my 2nd child as a way to connect with far away family. Things have definitely changed since then. Now, mama to five, this is a place to help connect with other mothers, who feel like me.I love to make and write all while trying to figure out how to be myself in the world of anxiety and depression. Glad you stopped by.