|Speaking of young, look at this AMAZING photo I found of Dan from his younger years. Maybe older is just better for everyone!!|
Turns out, old love (shall we call it something better? "Growing love"? "Love in progression"? Barf barf barf. I'm not a cheesy person.) is wwaaaayyyy better than young love. The old and tired and boring thing I was scared of has kinda come true, and it's been for the best. I don't think I realized it as much at the time, but that first year was rough. We disagreed on everything. We still do, but it doesn't bother me anymore. I used to have to Make. A. Point. It was the Principle Of The Thing! Baloney. We had some dramatic fights. I still feel the urge to fight, because unfortunately I'm a hot-tempered type (Dan, on the other hand, is super mellow and everyone likes him better) but now I'm just too tired. My exhaustion has saved me from myself on many occasions. And it's better that way. Plus, while the young love stage was really fun, there wasn't really much skin in the game. Seeing your husband take care of you while you are sick and pregnant four times in 7 years makes you love him so much more. I loved him when we were just starting out, but I feel like he has shown his love to me in a greater measure through his sacrifices these past several years.
|Already with the disrespect from this one. The other kids got to him early.|
One of my other fears is being a more experienced mom. Perhaps this goes along with the aforementioned fear. I guess I just fear getting old. I've had several friends pregnant at the same time as me this go around, but most of them were having their first child. There's just something different about that first time. It's super tough, but it's a little magical. It's just you and your growing baby. There are no bigger children to take care of while you are sick and while they are constantly fighting, making messes, etc. You think about how you want to parent, the kind of mother you want to be. You might get to spend a lot of time and money on a nursery. You get fussed over at a shower. It's different. I looked at those moms while I was pregnant with Beck, and they always looked so shiny and pretty and new. They had that glow thing people always talk about. I didn't have glow; I had sweat. From carrying a tantrum-ing two year old on TOP of my 8 month prego belly, all the while herding two cats named June and Gwen from place to place in the hot, humid sunshine whilst wearing the same stretched maternity clothes that had seen me through four pregnancies.
Good thing I'm not a whiner or you might really get an earful.
It was at one such outing that another mom approached me at the park the other day, about a week before I had Beck. She was a beautiful, shiny mom with one 17-month old child. I was there with my crew and a friend and her crew. She asked me about all of my kids and then asked if she could ask me a question, because I'm such an "experienced mom".
I could tell that "experienced" meant something so different for her and for me. In her mind, I was experienced because I have four kids. In my mind, ANYONE can have four kids; it doesn't make you good at raising them. In her mind, I must know the tricks of the trade. In my mind, I know absolutely nothing except that with each new kid my standards have continued to slide in a downward fashion. She then told me she wanted my advice. I braced myself. She disclosed to me that her 17-month old had never had any non-homemade food before and that they were flying across the world in a couple of days to see her Greek grandparents (I want to go to Greece so bad), and did I have any thoughts on good, healthy, organic snacks for the plane ride?
No. No I did not.
Luckily, my friend Chrissy was there was me, and she's very good about that sort of thing and had lots of suggestions.
I managed to keep my thoughts to myself, which were--I feed my kids whatever they want pretty much whenever they want and ESPECIALLY on a plane ride. Chocolate chips off the floor? Sure. If you're not crying, I'm not crying!!
Maybe I'll still cry a little. Pass the chocolate chips.
All this to say,--my irrational fears have turned out to be . . . well, irrational. I'm so glad I'm on my fourth kid and not my first. Even though I don't have the high standards I used to have and wish I still did a lot of the time. Yes, it's harder with all of the other crazy kids running around. Yes, I'm tired and getting up in the middle of the night is SO hard for me. Way harder now that I have done it this many times.
I am also not freaking out about every little noise Beck makes. I'm not super concerned that Harris has turned into a sociopath because I know it's a phase. I have enjoyed seeing June and Gwen love on Beck and have loved watching them put his pacifier back in his mouth ("suckifier" according to June and "suck-thumb" according to my thumb-sucker, Gwen).
|SO MUCH CRAFT TIME THIS SUMMER. It's been good, but the clean-up is brutal.|
Also, I was super scared of having a newborn baby at the start of the summer. Because everyone is home. And you know what? It's been great. I decided NOT to listen to the school and kept June home from summer school because I didn't want to have to rush her out the door early in the morning. And for once, I feel like I made the right decision! It's been a very chill summer. Lots of playing outside and inside and some tv watching and some movie watching, and it's actually been good. I don't want my life to be like this forever, but I definitely want it to be like this for now.
|Painting nails after baths on Saturday night.|
And this morning's church photos:
I tried to do something cool with Gwen's hair. Unfortunately, she still has tons of short pieces from she gave herself a cut earlier in the year. I'm hoping those bad boys are tamed by the time school starts in September.
I had June sleep in wet braids so that her hair would be crinkly. It's a go-to for me because I still have never curled my girls' hair with a curling iron. This seems easier and still produces some wave.
Harris refused to take a real photo, so this is as good as it gets. What a pill. I love you, my little pill!