Tag Archives: mom blog orange county

How We Came To Be Parents

Standard

Watching people react to the news that we were pregnant was one of the most amusing things I’ve ever done. There were the criers, most notably my mom, sister and one of my best friends, all of which had been waiting for this day since Mr and I got married. There were the realists who said, in the kindest way possible, “why in the world did you allow yourself to get pregnant while being poor and living with your parents?” There were a few doomsdayers, who told us to enjoy our pre baby life while we can because everything would suck afterwards. And there were a few who were afraid I’d be a horrific pregnant person and possibly a crazy mother and therefore made mental notes to stay away from me until they were sure I’d be tolerable.

The most common reaction, however, was utter and complete shock. When we told our bible study group, their jaws literally dropped and they were all speechless for about 30 seconds. We were the couple that was never going to have biological kids. If we decided to have kids at all, we would adopt. I had zero desire to be pregnant and Mr was convinced that we would never be able to afford kids anyways. So that one year when 60% of our close friends had babies, we congratulated them, showered them with gifts, and smothered their babies with kisses, all while thinking “we are so glad that isn’t us.” So, at the end of the year when we announced that we were pregnant, its understandable that the most frequently asked question was “how did that happen?”

I usually answered that question with a funny quip like “well, we didn’t know you had to wear a condom EVERY time.” But, there’s a lot more to the story. I felt, and still feel, very strongly about adoption, specifically adopting out of the foster care system. My mom was raised by both a foster family and her birth father and I had several friends growing up who were in and out of the foster system, or who were adopted. Mr didn’t have a strong desire to be a parent at all (for the record he now loves being a dad and is fantastic with our son) but he supported my decision to adopt. We really did not think that we would ever have biological children.

As I began to think seriously about adoption, I wanted to make sure it was a desire that came from God and not myself.. I felt that God was telling me to go off the pill in 2012 and put our family planning in his hands. I talked it over with Mr and he supported my decision so I quit taking the pill. However, we were living with my parents at the time and had no concrete plans or the financial means to move out. I felt it would be irresponsible to practice zero birth control whatsoever, so we used family planning and condoms. Looking back, I realize this may have been a lack of faith. God asked me to put our family planning completely in his hands and that’s what I should have done. But God is gracious, and faith often comes in baby steps, so God worked with what I gave him. The whole year went by and then November rolled around. It was a crazy month where we just weren’t as careful as we had been, and on December 8th, we found out we were pregnant.

Looking back, everything worked out perfectly. That year was jam packed and we got to do lots of exciting things on our own and as a couple. Without knowing it, it was our last hurrah before parenthood. It left us satisfied with our newlywed, young adult life and ready (or somewhat ready) to move on to the next chapter. Living with my parents during pregnancy and during the Tot’s first few months of life turned out to be a huge blessing. It was so nice to have extra help and company during those rough months and to have my mother as an ever present source of guidance and encouragement. And after our time there, God used Joe’s dad to bless us with a home we could afford to buy. We certainly didn’t see that coming when I went off the pill. Plus, another set of friends had babies in 2013 and its been so cool to raise our kids together. I think that at this point, if I didn’t have a child, I would be getting the baby itch big time.

And what about adoption? We still feel strongly about it and are still planning to adopt in the future. I don’t think God gave us the Tot as a way to discourage us from adoption, but rather to prepare us. There is a reason why kids start out as babies that don’t understand things, can’t talk back and don’t remember. It’s because parents make A LOT of mistakes that first time around. A little baby will bounce back from those mistakes much easier than a 5 year old who has experienced emotional and physical trauma. I feel that since we have been raising our own biological child, we are much better equipped to deal with the challenges of raising an adopted child. Of course I’m sure we will continue to make a ton of mistakes with any future children. But hopefully next time we’ll make a fewer and we’ll be better at repairing the damage from the ones we do make.

 

 

Young House Crap

Standard

Have you ever read the blog Young House Love? It’s written by this husband and wife who started fixing up their home and blogging about it. Their blog got super popular, they wrote a book, its a like a whole thing. When Mr and I started working on our condo I had visions of our life being just like Young House Love. DIY is like crack to Mr, so he would organize all these projects and I would happily help him out, all while taking photos and blogging witty comments. Then we would become famous and our awesome blog would pay off our condo, so then we could rent it out and buy a bigger house and perform bigger DIY projects and everything would be magical and awesome.

Ya, that’s not happening.

As it turns out, I’m HORRIBLE with DIY projects. I mean, I’ve always known they weren’t my forte, but good grief do I suck. Part of the problem is that I have a blind minds eye. You know how some people can just look at a space and picture everything that should go there. I cannot. I see nothing with my minds eye, ever. This infuriates Mr to no end because it always doubles his workload. He can’t just say “hey what do you think of this?” He has to find a picture or draw it out, otherwise I just stare at him blankly and then ask if my post baby butt can still pull off these jeans. Or worse, I pretend like I know what he is talking about, agree to it, and then immediately hate it once it’s done.

Another issue is my tendency to create more work for Mr. For example, the other day I was hanging shelves in the bathroom but I put the anchors in the wrong place.We had to take them out and replace them, leaving two gaping holes in the wall that we will have to fill and paint over. I feel like that one greek god sentenced to eternally roll a giant rock up a hill. The projects are never ending.

Here are the holes I was telling you about. I would also like to point out that as soon as I got up to take this picture, my son started crying.

Here are the holes I was telling you about. I would also like to point out that as soon as I got up to take this picture, my son started crying.

Then there is the perpetual indecisiveness. I’m not usually an indecisive person but for some reason, making any sort of decision about our humble home takes me forever. It took 3 months to decide on a living room paint color. That’s more thought than I put into deciding what college to go to. And Mr is no help. He is one of those people that researches the death out of things. I think we’ve come to a decision on something and then he watches another YouTube video and gives me an entirely new option that wasn’t even on the table early. “But this might be better,” he says. Honestly, I don’t care. Even if our original decision is going to kill us all, we are sticking to it because I will loose what little mind I have left if you force to make yet another decision. JUST DO WHAT I SAY, MAN!

Of course what kind of parent would I be if I didn’t blame some of this on the kid, right? As I sit here blogging, he is happily playing with his toys. But if I were to get up and, heaven forbid, try organizing my room or the kitchen, he would start to pitch a fit. Apparently toys are only meant to be played with when mommy is within a two foot radius. Otherwise they become garbage. Plus, he just creates a lot of extra work. I have to feed him a million times a day, grocery shop to get the food to feed him a million times a day, work a full time job to pay for the food that feeds him a million times a day, change his diapers, read him stories, fight with him about naps, and wash his adorable little clothes. And after all that I’m supposed to muster up the energy to repaper the kitchen cupboards? No Thank You.

So, our life is nothing like Young House Love. It’s more like Young House Fall Asleep On The Couch When I should Be Washing The Windows. And yet, I honestly couldn’t be happier. We are homeowners! That’s incredible! And even though its been a slow process, we’ve actually made a lot of progress on the condo and we love everything we’ve done so far. More importantly, I get to build a home and life with my two favorite people.

And to show you that I’m not just full of cynicism and do have very positive feelings about the house, I will share photos of my favorite room in the house- the bathroom!

Hobby Lobby for the win!

I love these decorations. Hobby Lobby for the win!

grey and yellow bathroom

It took us FOREVER to find a vanity that we liked, that wasn’t huge and that fit the weird piping in the bathroom. It was worth the wait, we love it. And no, that white patch on the wall isn’t some sort of artistic statement. Mr had to patch the wall and we haven’t painted over it yet. Might as well wait till we do the holes

I don't know if you've ever searched for a grey and yellow shower curtain, but let me tell you, they are not easy to come by. I would have preferred a little more yellow but couldn't find one that I loved. I do like this one a lot, it looks nice and it will work until that magical day that I find the curtain of my dreams

I don’t know if you’ve ever searched for a grey and yellow shower curtain, but let me tell you, they are not easy to come by. I would have preferred a little more yellow but couldn’t find one that I loved. I do like this one a lot, it looks nice and it will work until that magical day that I find the curtain of my dreams