With my first baby, I obsessed over pacifiers. It didn’t help that when Dylan was about 2 months old, some woman came up to me on the street and said, “I hope you are going to get rid of that.” She meant the pacifier. Not the baby.
Yo, people on random streets – we don’t care what you think!
Except I did.
I talked passionately about the pros and cons of pacifiers with anyone. I mean, why else did I get a graduate degree if not to prepare me for the rigorous debate over how infants soothe themselves?!
At 7 months old, I got rid of Dylan’s pacifier. We were done.
Next came Summer. Summer would not take a pacifier. Damn her.
Then the twins. Chase had mad reflux and a pacifier really calmed him down. Harlowe would take it too when she felt like it. But before a year, the pacifiers were gone. I had watched too many parents struggle to get their 3 and 4 year olds off the things. It’s a tough addiction. I didn’t want to go through it.
So before the twins’ first birthday, I threw every last pacifier in the trash. Except for one that I found in the pocket of a winter coat about a year later. I left it there. To this day, it reminds me of my babies when they were babies.
Then Cash came along. Now and then he’ll take a pacifier but he’s not super jazzed about them.
My relationship with the pacifier has gone from something I feared to something I respect. What I came to love about them is that you can take them away at some point. I was a thumb sucker as a kid and you can’t remove your thumb. At least not easily.
I found it very hard to quit sucking my thumb and didn’t want my kids dealing with that. I wanted them to live in a better America where they didn’t have to fear getting caught sucking their thumb at the bus stop.
But I guess Cash isn’t consulting me.
That kid loves his thumb.
mama bird notes:
Here’s what else I’ve been doing in lieu of unpacking. Did you know that very soon in Germany, new parents won’t have to pick a gender for their child? I weigh in on Lifetime Moms.
And have you liked The Mama Bird Diaries on Facebook? Click here and be happy.
Nursing makes you completely starving. You go from, “Hey, I feel good. It’s a nice day out. Is that a chipmunk? He’s a cute little guy” to “Get me food NOW before I am forced to eat that stupid furry dumb chipmunk.” It all happens very fast.
I was driving to Bed, Bath & Beyond for the 3rd time in a week. I had of course for the third time forgotten those giant size coupons but since it takes me about 20 minutes to get out of my gated community, there was no turning back.
As I made my way to B to the third power, I suddenly realized I was famished. There were no snacks in the car and I cursed myself for having it cleaned before leaving NY because there weren’t even some lingering goldfish I could scrape up from the ground. Cash was sleeping in his infant seat so I didn’t want to drag him out of the car and take the chance of waking the sleeping baby giant before I got to my destination.
But then I saw it – a Burger King drive thru! the last time I was at Burger King, it was 1989. I could only imagine that BK had embraced the health revolution and was now offering a delicious egg white breakfast sandwich with turkey bacon and low fat feta cheese.
I would be mistaken. Not one healthy option on the menu. Of course I didn’t know this until I went through the drive thru line where I refused to order anything because I wasn’t going to waste a bunch of fat calories on breakfast. And then I got stuck in the drive thru lane because there was nowhere to exit. I just sat there, trapped and hungry.
Of course, hunger quickly turns to rage and I mentally began preparing the long email I would send to those Burger King corporate big wigs about the importance of offering healthy options on their menu. Because obviously any girl who has an entire house to unpack plus those lingering thank you notes from a baby born 3 months ago, should spend time writing to a fast food joint about nutrition.
I made my Bed, Bath & Beyond run and on the way back, I had another vision of loveliness. A McDonald’s drive thru! I was pretty sure they had some kind of egg white delight McMuffin and I was very excited. I placed my order and was told…
“Breakfast is over ma’am. You have to order off the lunch menu.”
It was 10:36 a.m. Who the hell eats lunch at 10:30 in the morning?
I mean other than my first grader who seriously has to eat lunch at 10:30 am at her school. But hell, I’m not in first grade. I eat lunch when I want too! Except at McDonald’s apparently.
And at that point, I gave up. I pressed “home’ on my GPS and started driving. I became suspicious when I looked down and the driving time was 20 hours and 52 minutes. Yes, I was following directions back to New York.
As soon as I got home to my Florida address, I emailed Burger King about my breakfast dissatisfaction. I’m sure menu changes are imminent. Plus, next week they start serving the french fry burger so obviously we are on the same page.
Apparently my last post made some of you sad. I’m okay! I mean, I’ve done this before. Remember when I left Manhattan and I could hardly find the kids new preschool in the sea of Lululemon apparel and tennis skirts in the suburbs?! Just a few years later, I was wearing a tennis skirt too! And I survived my kids almost burning down the house and the dead raccoon in my yard that wasn’t “just sleeping a lot.”
And yes, I wore my shirt inside out one day this week and no one told me because I don’t have friends but I will survive this epic move too. I know we will be happy here. It’s just all so new right now.
This first week of school was rough for the girls, especially 8-year-old Dylan. She has been crying a lot and wakes up every morning to inform that she hates school.
I said to her this morning, “I’m so proud of you Dylan for getting through your first week of school! You are doing great.”
“You know what’s weird? When you breathe in through your nose sometimes, whatever was in your nose ends up in your mouth,” she responded.
“Yes, that can happen. Did you hear what I said, honey? I am so proud of you. I know school had been challenging. It’s going to get easier for you.”
“So sometimes when that stuff from my nose ends up in my mouth, I just swallow it. Because it was already in my body anyway. So what’s the difference?”
“That’s true honey. Okay. Good talk.”
Meanwhile, the twins just started preschool for the first time. They are attending a Jewish preschool and the Rabbi called to welcome me and my family which I thought was very nice. And then he said…
“So I was reading your blog. I see you’ve already breastfeed at the grocery store!”
Yes, I’ve now discussed breastfeeding while grocery shopping with a Rabbi.
I’m still in Florida. Because I live here now. My older girls are struggling a bit with the move. Dylan says the school smells like fish so I told her to just imagine she’s visiting an aquarium. Summer liked it the first day and now hates it.
They miss their friends. I miss my friends. I went to a preschool orientation and watched all the moms talking to each other and just willed myself not to cry.
At the end of the orientation, they showed us this tear jerker YouTube clip with this woman whose kids are all grown up and she is just so sad. Have you seen it? It’s poignant and touching but it’s so depressing. Basically she is very regretful because she never appreciated the ordinary days when her kids were young. I get the message and I’m sure I’ll miss my kids like mad when they go off to college or beauty school but I couldn’t help think this woman should pick up tennis or Bingo or some kind of fulfilling hobby. God, I hope I have a hobby when my kids leave me.
But there have been some uplifting moments. Like finding out there is a nail salon here in town that is also a bar. Because everyone knows a Chardonnay buzz is just what you need when you have a freshly painted, still wet pedicure.
And that’s not all. Because I found out a friend of ours in New York got pulled over for flossing his teeth while driving. And he got a ticket. FOR FLOSSING AND DRIVING.
And then another friend sent me this…
So that definitely helped.
Finally, I had this enormous accomplishment. I was in the grocery store with Rick, the twins and baby Cash, buying mountains of food to stock our new house. Cash was screaming like crazy. He was hungry. There was nowhere to nurse him. We had to get home to make dinner. So I put him in the Bjorn facing me and attempted to nurse him while I grocery shopped.
I have a friend in New York who used to do this trick with her baby but she’s super athletic and probably competes in Bjorn nursing competitions or something. But I had never attempted such a thing.
But you know what? It worked. I don’t know how. But it did.
I’m thinking that if I can nurse a baby while grocery shopping with my 3-year-old twins, I can probably do anything. Like maybe even adjust to life in Florida.
mama bird notes:
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I don’t watch a lot of reality TV, except for fashion shows like Project Runway. So when I was asked to review the new A&E show Modern Dads, I wasn’t sure it was my thing.
It features four Austin stay-at-home dads. And as I expected, they did not sew cocktail dresses out of whatever materials they could grab from a pet store in 15 minutes. But these dads are entertaining. Like I could imagine my husband hanging out with them. If he lived in Austin. And I didn’t make him go to his job.
What makes the show work is that these are a real life group of friends so their banter feels much more authentic than your typical reality show. It features Nathan (a new dad), Rick (a laid back guy with 4 kids, including twins), Sean (a quirky, funny step-dad) and Stone (a single dad and ladies’ man).
The show goes very light on the baby crying (THANK GOD) and focuses on Stone’s love life which is nice break from butt wiping and princess parties.
Of course, there are moments that did not feel real. Like Stone visiting the doctor to inquire about a vasectomy at the urging of his friends and the doctor asking if he wanted the vasectomy that very day. Yes, that day. I know in New York there is a mandatory 30 day waiting period after your initial consultation. But maybe in Texas, vasectomies are as easy as picking up a Big Mac.
And another scene featured two dads (Rick and Stone) grocery shopping together which seemed a little ridiculous and forced. The last time I went grocery shopping with friends, I was in college and the only things on my list were margarita mix and Doritos.
I really liked the editing in the show (it has a fun vibe) and that the producers aren’t trying to make the dads look like buffoons. They are actually competent at taking care of children which is a nice departure from the typical dad fare on television.
Here’s a clip…
Also – submit a photo of your best ‘dadget’ idea on the Modern Dads’ Facebook page and you could win a $1,000 gift card. A ‘dadget’ is any item you’ve created or modified to make parenting a bit easier.
Modern Dads premieres on A&E on Wednesday, August 21st. 10:30/9:30C.
Check out the premiere episode and try to guess which line made me laugh out loud. I’ll give you a hint. It’s a line by the quirky step dad. You can learn more about the show here.
This is a sponsored review. All ideas are my own. Pinky promise.