Tuesday, 01 January 2013
Every year I draw a list of resolutions - things I want to change about myself. Things I want to do differently. This year, goodbye list. I'm going to work on BALANCE. Balance in my work life, balance in my active (non-exercising) life, balance being a mom, balance being a wife.
2012 was all about indulging, no boundaries. With struggling with two kids, a job and a husband, I was doing a poor job trying to find balance in my life. Too many times I would pour my heart and soul in my work, only to be burnt out a couple weeks later. Or like this past Christmas season indulge in so many treats that my waistline suffered. What I need is balance in my life...
I've scribbled the word "balance" everywhere I could, to remind myself constantly of my need for balance. Looking forward to the end of 2013. Curious if I'll re-read what I wrote here to see if I have indeed kept with this one resolution for 2013.
Friday, 17 August 2012
My friend's daughter is turning four later this year and she's been telling me all the changes that'll occur when she turns four. It's actually quite endearing as when she turns four she will stop sucking her fingers when she goes to bed, start washing dishes... and maybe even start driving.
It got me thinking.... four is a magic number. It's when your child is no longer a baby but an actual bonafide child. At four they can pretty much do the bare necessities to survive - feed themselves with a fork, dress themselves, pick out their own clothes, potty trained, speak, write. It's that turning point where they are no longer reliant on their parents for survival. They start having opinions and thinking logically. They have likes, dislikes, and favorites and they can verbalize it.
My kids are almost 5 months and 2.5 yrs. It has been a whirlwind journey and the only proof that its gone by so fast is the fact that my oldest is 2.5 years old. There are days where it feels like life goes by so slow, and yet, it's been 2.5 years. There are days I can't wait for him to grown up.... dressing himself, wipe himself, feed himself... but then, I get sad thinking about him turning 4. My little boy, the one I celebrated all the big milestones (flipping, crawling, eating solids, walking, talking, running, potty) with the happy dance, will no longer ask for his mommy to kiss boo-boos, share secrets, and hold hands. Secretly I'm hoping time stops when he turns 3 years and 11 months old :)
Dearest L1, grow up, but don't grow up too fast. Love, mommy
Thursday, 19 July 2012
My last week home alone with the kids and inside I'm jumping for joy, breathing a sigh of relief and counting the hours I get to wear grown up clothes, think grown up things and have grown up conversations. I'm looking forward to having a moment to myself, eating at a normal pace and not scanning the playground for whatever mischief my son will get into.
I have a new found respect for SAHMs. The ability to go day and night non-stop. Don't get me started about my respect for single moms of multiple kids. They are able to manage their kids and still put dinner on the table. I can't count the number of days we've eaten eggs for dinner because I didn't get a chance to cook... let alone clean, grocery shopping, etc and all on a budget. Seriously, all of that is overwhelming. These past 4 months have been non-stop, so many things have gone by the wayside - my poor garden looks like a jungle and my desk is piled with craft projects I have yet to finish.
What is it that makes one mother a great SAHM and another like me? Is it how we ourselves were raised? I did have a working mom growing up, who was available every day after 4:30pm and on the weekends. Would I be more enclined to be a SAHM if my mother stayed at home? Even so, my mom had help when we were growing up - someone came and cleaned/washed/cooked for us. A lot of time a SAHM is all those things with no help! SAHMs... you have my utmost respect. What you do is the work of 3 women... and those that do it well..... you completely deserve a medal. As for me, after 4 months... i'm quitting and taking the easy road and I can't wait.
Tuesday, 05 June 2012
At the end of March, our family of three expanded to include a baby girl, our baby girl L2. A baby girl that completely changed our plans 7 months ago, when we found out we were 12 weeks pregnant! When I had our son L1, I cherished every moment, both the good and the bad. I guess that's a part of being a first time mom. How little I remember what it's like to have a newborn. I had to relearn everything.... holding a wobbly head baby, breastfeeding, tiny diapers, sleepless nights.... but the second time around it's a little different. You're more relaxed, you don't jolt at the first peep, you let the kid cry, you take that extra time to shower and don't feel as guilty when you leave the kid on the floor to play by themselves for a long time. Then again, you wish for time to speed up... I'm pushing her to sleep longer earlier than I did with L1. I'm counting the days when she can sit up on her own rather than living in the moment like I did with L1. It also helps that I have an eager 2 year old who keeps me on my toes. Sometimes I feel bad, because I don't give L2 the same amount of attention as a gave my firstborn, but that's the curse of a second child. Don't even get me started on the comparisons. It's so weird how all of a sudden your firstborn transforms into an ideal child because you forget the hardships you had in the midst of dealing with a crying secondborn. Not to mention, I have to stop myself from comparing the two... in all aspects L1 always wins!
I wonder how that'll affect her. I wonder if she'll be a little less attached than L1 or a little more independent because she's forced to. I do know, she'll be spoiled beyond all measure as I watch Matt dote on her hand and foot and get excited when she flashes a smile his way. Matt and I decided that two is enough - a decision driven by lack of sleep and the thought of doing it again, not to mention awful pregnancies.
I can't wait to see what she'll be like. I constantly wonder if she'll look like her brother or if she'll be an avid reader like him. I pray that she won't be so girly I can't handle her and not too tomboy-y that she refuses to wear a dress.
Here's to a family of four - barely surviving and hoping it gets easier.
Friday, 09 March 2012
I just finished reading "battle hymn of a tiger mom." A very interesting read that made me reflect on my own upbringing and the cultural differences being brought up a Korean American. My upbringing was atypical. My parents were brought up Korean, but became pretty Americanized. Unlike the book, my mom was a pseduo tiger mom. Yes, I did start the piano at the age of 5 and was put in the spot light at an early age performing at various competitions. We were idyllic children, no talking back, full respect, I mean IDEAL! But unlike the typical tiger mom, my mom enrolled us in everything possible. Her goal was to make sure we tried EVERYTHING. I'm talking swim classes, tennis, singing, soccer, softball, dance, ice skating. She was a hybrid tiger-soccer mom, shuttling us from lesson to lesson. But like the tiger mom, no sleep overs, no girlfriend trips to the mall, no make up, no dances, no phone calls from friends, nothing that will distract us from our studies. Summers were not times to hang out at the pool, but time to learn the next level of math so that we're always 2 grades ahead. I think we were the youngest kids at SAT prep. And then, like the book.... REBELLION! With the start of my teens, I vetoed everything. I remember fighting back, asking my mom to just let me be... to give me independence. I'd envy my friends parents who gave them their freedom while I felt my parents were swallowing mine.
But now.... now as a parent. I completely understand what they did and why. Reading the book, reflecting back, I know why tiger moms (and pseduo tiger moms) are the way they are. Reading the fights in the book were like reliving mine teenage fights. And yet, thinking about how I want to raise my children, I look back at my mom's methods and see that I too want to make sure my kids experience everything, are given the every possible opportunities and pushed to their full potential. But I have to keep in mind, that I am married. Raising a child with a husband who spent his youthful summers basking in the sun, playing stick ball with friends, going to countless sleep overs, and never taking a single lesson. I hope, somewhere, between the two of us, there will be a good balance on raising our kids. Getting the push and opportunities they need, but allowing them the freedoms to grow up.