Friday, July 29, 2011

This Thing Called Parenting & Girls Night Out

So it may come as no surprise to many of you that everything I thought I knew about parenting is pretty much thrown out the window.  Yes, there are lots of things I've learned in my years of being a nanny and teaching school that definitely get applied to the way I parent and yet no one could have prepared me for what it really was like.  You see, in the years of nannying and teaching and even the countless times I took care of my neices and nephews and thought up all kinds of fun stuff to do with them, there always came a time when they returned to the ones who "parented" them.  But now?  Now, I am that parent.  With these precious souls there is no returning them to the ones who parent them, because it's me.  Well, me and the man I could not do this without. Seriously, I have no idea how single moms do it.

Speaking of "the man"...last weekend we decided to put the kids in respite.  The agency we are with says we can do that once a month.  We thought it would be best to try and not use it especially while they are still adjusting, but after a crazy week we went ahead with plans.  It was definitely the right choice.  The kids missed us and we talked to them every night assuring them we would pick them up on Sunday.  My man and I enjoyed just lounging around, sleeping in, going out to eat and just making sure we were still on the same page on all kinds of stuff.  Friday night we went to Ichiban, a Japanese Steak House, for dinner.  I got sushi for an appetizer and we enjoyed a lovely meal with fun entertainment too!  Saturday night we met our friends at AppleBees at 10:00!  Normally we would be in bed by that time but hey, why not live it up!  Such a fun refreshing weekend we had.  And it was good to see the kids again!

It used to annoy me when Moms would complain and get frustrated with their kids especially when they had a hard time getting pregnant or having kids.  To be honest, it still kinda annoys me and yet, I am definitely a little more sympathetic towards mothers in general!  I feel it is important to spend time with your children and I do not want to put them at a sitter too often, even if it is Ma-Ma, but sometimes we as mothers just need a break.  I am fast realizing how refreshing even an hour of alone time can be.  Yes, I know that we just jumped right into parenting without the 9 month prep but it is the role we chose, and the ministry we feel called too so we (I) need to "suck it up" and realize that my time of being alone and having things the way I like it is over.  Notice all the "I's" in this paragraph.  Motherhood brings out the selfish side of me.  I am realizing more and more how hard it is to lay aside the things that "I" want to do and tend to the needs of my children, even if there are lots of other things that seem more important at the time.

Yesterday, I was supposed to have a root canal done so my dear Mom came and picked up my children.  My appointment was pretty early in the morning and I would've had to wake them up to take them down.  And while I'm at it, can I just say that I pretty much have the most amazing mom ever?  She comes up every Tuesday and hangs out with them while I work at the auction and is always ready and willing to help in whatever way she can.  These kids of mine have stolen her heart and she is an amazing Ma-Ma!  Anway, back to the root canal.  It never happened!  After my consultation the Dr. said she would suggest pulling the tooth because it is cracked and a root canal wouldn't take care of the problem.  My dentist won't be impressed, but that is definitely what I am going to do.  The tooth is in the bottom in the back and no body will notice if I get it pulled.  I would 10 times rather be knocked out and get it pulled than do through the trauma of a root canal.  So after my root canal that didn't happen I came home and got some things taken care of.  Mom said the kids were fine and having fun so I took advantage of the alone time and did some shopping.  One of my stops was a Christian Book Store.  I realized the other day that in about every stage of life I have been in, I have read books relating to it.  Like when I was teaching, I read books on teaching, when I was single, I read books on how to deal with that.  The same with dating and then marriage.  Suddenly it dawned on me that I possessed not one book about parenting.  So I bought a few books that seemed to be filled with tips and advice for mothers.  Ahhh well now, that should make it all better! (yeah right). Would love to have you guys tell me the best book on parenting you've read!  I know that parenting foster kids is different in a way, but alot of things are still the same.

Last night I went with a group of ladies to this darling cafe to celebrate a birthday.  This particular group of ladies is not made up of friends that I grew up with but when we get together it has that comfy feel.  You know, the kind of feeling that you can open your mouth and say anything and you won't get judged?  Yeah, that one.  There is no better kind of friend, I am convinced.
The ever famous tomatoe pie was actually quite good although I was quite happy with my Turkey Panini.  Some of us gals who wanted to try the Tomatoe Pie but weren't quite brave enough to have it as our meal, bought a piece to share.  It really was yummy.  So was the cupcake I had for dessert!!!

I find these evenings even more refreshing now that I am a mother myself.  It was nice to sit with other mothers and share frustrations and tips and advice.  Not all of the group were mothers but everyone participated in the lively conversation.  A few of us are also foster/adoptive mothers so it was good to get that perspective as well. 

After last evening, I decided I needed to be much more consistent in things.  When I say "No", that's exactly what it means.  It's been quite an exhuasting day to say the least.  I think Miss A had at least 15-20 time outs.  Mostly for saying things like "I'm not listening" and "No" when she was told she was not allowed to have candy or watch a movie etc.  I promptly put her in time out without a warning each and every time.  It was exhausting and draining and I told Brad it takes more energy to remain calm than it does to just deal with stuff like I would want to!  By the end of the day though, it was amazing how they started listening right away without complaining.  Hopefully tomorrow and the next day I can stick with it and give these kids the security they need.  There is such security in boundries and guidelines and kids thrive in that. 

Well, this post has been long enough and it's time to join my hubby in bed.  This was written in the course of the day so there are probably plenty of errors!  I have so much I want to blog about and it's so frustrating that I can't blog about all the memories we are making with our kids.  It kinda makes me want to yell at the big bad caseworker person and say "FINE, I JUST WON'T BLOG THEN" (as if they care if I blog or not!).  In reality our caseworker is very sweet and when I think about how it probably is protecting the kids I can't help but comply.  Maybe someday when we can really call them our own, I'll catch you up on their history with us in pics!  For now, it's good-night...