Tag Archives: family

A labour of love

I don’t know why they call it labour, you’re laying down through the whole thing, is an incredibly stupid thing to say to the woman who is in the throes of expelling your demon semen child, FYI.

Yesterday marked the 13th anniversary of the day I kicked my child out my womb, and I thought it would be fun to recall the hours leading up to her birth.  As voted by the people of twitter (FOLLOW ME!), a reenactment of her birth was a BAD idea. Funny, but bad.

Picture it: June 2nd, 1999.  It’s hot, I’m fat, swollen, due at any moment and still wearing platform heels.  Girlfriend looks good

So my mom and head to the OB for my final check up where I learn that effacement has begun (thinning of the cervix – hurrah for vag talk!), and I can expect the baby at any time now.  How do we celebrate?  We got to Brannigans.

To make a long story short, I had a pregnant cow on our waitress and demanded we be moved to another section because of a dispute over butter, and I still stand by it.  I didn’t ask her opinion, I just wanted butter for my fucking bread sticks.  THERE IS A LIVE HUMAN TRYING TO FIGHT IT’S WAY OUT OF MY VAGINA.  WHY CAN’T I JUST HAVE BUTTER?  The manager agreed.  Butter for everyone.

Needing groceries for the family bbq that night, we swung into Family Foods.  I’m quickly fading on the vine, walking while pregnant is exhausting. I convince my mom to grab a tub of Heavenly Hash ice cream which I started craving immediately (notable: at this point, I had never even TRIED it before), and then I toddle off to the benches in the mall area.  My back is getting sore, and I need to get off my feet.

10 minutes later, the dull ache in my back becomes more pronounced and I take the keys, get in the car and lay flat, desperate to get comfortable but to no avail.  Heels I’ve decided, were a poor life choice that day.

20 minutes later, I’m curled up in a lazy boy recliner about to shovel in my first delectable bite of heavenly hash when a wave of nausea washes over me.  Immediately soured by the thought of ice cream and distracted by my still aching back I announce I am taking a hot bath and that I think I’m getting the stomach flu.  The flu.

As I sit soaking I notice a copy of Reader’s Digest on the counter and reach over for it.  Oh look!  An article: What to expect when you’re expecting!  This will be great and informative, I think and I devour the story with intensity.  5 minutes later, I’m freaking out that I will be giving birth to a hairy, jaundiced cone head alien child and I don’t want to be pregnant any more.  BAD ARTICLE.  BAD.

Realizing that this bath is doing fucking nothing for my pain, but is making me wrinkly, and the porcelain surround is NOT COMFORTABLE AT ALL, I call a crane company to tow my fat ass out of the tub, get dressed and sprawl out on my parents bed.  I’ve now missed dinner, and the pain is getting worse.  I no longer have the stomach flu I cry.  It’s my appendix.  It’s going to burst.

At about 8:30, after watching me writhe in pain and physically lift off the bed, my mom gently whispers that maybe it’s time to go.  “Oh God,” I say.  “Do you really think it’s that bad?  Can they take out your appendix when you’re pregnant?”

“You’re in labor, Lisa” my mom says.  Right.  I knew that.  Sure.  Labor.

We load me, and nothing else into the car because I didn’t even know you should pack a bag because I’m 19 years old and that kind of shit is not something that comes up in conversation EVER. We just have to drop my aunt off Aunt off at my Nana’s and we are ER bound.  One hiccup.  My aunt stands around, yammering about I don’t know what, all I can hear is the “wohn wohn wohn” of the Peanuts teacher, and I tear my teeth off the arm rest long enough to yell “GET OUT OF THE MOTHER FUCKING CAR SHE WILL TALK TO YOU LATER!!

Sensing immediate danger, aunt oblivious slams the car door, and with me foaming at the mouth, we’re off.

The next few hours is a bit of a blur, I’m clearly in labor, 5 cm dilated and on display for every Tom, Dick and Harry to poke prod and inspect.  At one point, I even offered the dinner guy a look because hey! everyone else got to see!

Clearly, as the pain intensifies, I’m brought laughing gas and as I suck it back with enough intensity to such the chrome off a trailer hitch, I murmur to my mother that if I wasn’t in so much pain, it would be awesome.

Gas stops working, demerol is not enough it’s time to whip out the big guns.  EPIDURAL BABIES!  So I’m perched on the edge of the bed with a horse tranq sized needle posed at the base of my spine, and they give me the prerequisite warning of potential for paralysis and I say “I DON’T GIVE A LEFT NUT ABOUT PARALYSIS.  STAB ME” and they do.  And life is good.

Thanks to the God juice flowing through my bod, I sleep all night, and am gently woken at 6:30 to prep for delivery.

At 7:00AM I’m wheeled to the delivery room where I’m greeted by not my Dr.  A man I’ve never met is strapping on gloves and preparing to go elbow deep**.

I assume the position.  Mommys, you know which one.  In stirrups in your glory, getting ready to bare down.  Lawd.  At this point, the unknown Dr who is sitting on a stool between.my.knees. peeks out at me around my leg after seeing my surname and says, “Hey!  Are you related to Peter?  Our kids play hockey together!”

Instant mortification.  Peter is my uncle, and his friend now has an eagle eye view of my kidneys.

7:15 AM my baby is born and I will never go through any of that again. Ever.  She was then, as she is now: Perfect.

**TMI

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Raising a kid is part joy and part guerilla warfare

All I ever wanted was to provide my daughter with a stable, loving family.  I often feel as though I’ve failed in that regard until this weekend.  We had our Mother’s Day celebration on Saturday, and even though I woke up feeling sick as a dog, there was no damn way I was missing it.

We started the day with home-made waffles and turkey bacon, then headed down to the forks for more tandem bike fun.

Dogged determination and fear. This sums up everything it means to be a parent. (We went over a curb)

We shot around St. B, Whittier park and The Forks before settling in at The Current for lunch.  While sitting there, laughing about our buggy adventures she stopped and said “we are closer than most moms and daughters I think. I’m glad”, and that erased all doubt.  Regardless of what happens in our lives, I have been able to show that young woman that she is my everything and she knows it.  I wish I could have encapsulated the moment.  I hope she remembers it, I know I’ll never forget it.

Heredity determines our eye colour, but our environment is what lights them up. And hers sparkle. “Now look at me, I’m sparkling. A firework, a dancing flame”.

Her enthusiasm to try new things, her devout loyalty to her friends, her belief that she can make a difference and her stubborn iron will have me in awe.  I don’t always agree with her, but I respect her ability to make well-informed thought out choices.  I see glimpses of who she is going to be, and it leaves me marveling.

When we got home from The Forks I was presented with a life-sized home-made card, funky spider necklace, BEASTIE BOYS CD and this:

Can you dig it?

She knows me.  She saved, she called my mom to take her shopping and she went with a list.  I love that kid.  We rounded out the night with a 10:00 showing of Dark Shadows, and we took her friend (like a second child to me). We got shushed, and surprisingly, not thrown out of the theatre.

Nothing says mortifying mothers day like watching 2 12 year olds giggling awkwardly at a cheesy, thinly veiled blow job innuendo joke.  I ALMOST DIED.

At midnight, we dodged about a million man-eating June bugs in the parking lot, screeching like banshees and the day came to a close.

It was perfect from head to toe.

I am blessed.  With her, I have everything I need and more.

 


Wedding crashers and child abductions: How to have the perfect Saturday

First a quick #humblebrag (Yeah, I’m hash tagging on my blog, what of it, twitter?) I’m quickly reaching 20,000 views and I just want to thank you all for reading along!  But please, comment away!  I love hearing what other people have to say!

Today’s entry is going to be a hodge-podge of information, pictures and stories ranging from wedding crashing to child abduction.  Yeah, you read that right. CHILD ABDUCTION.  Now hold the phone, you can dial 9-1-if that makes you feel better but hold off on the final 1 until you hear MY SIDE.  (I was framed)

Saturday was a gorgeous day in the ‘peg, and me and the pre-teen headed down to the Goldeyes Open House.  Beautiful weather, free eats and men in baseball pants.  Really, what more do I need?  NOTHING.

So a quick aside, for those of you who love baseball, and want to support and AMAZING CAUSE (Pancreatic Cancer research) join us on July 9th! for Strike Out Pancreatic Cancer with the Goldeyes.

Tickets are $12/ea and in section D.  The view is something like this

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email pancanmb@gmail.com for your tickets!

So after the ball game, we wandered over to crash a wedding, and the conversation went something like this:

Me: Hi!  I’m here to crash the Strank wedding

Concierge: 2nd floor ballroom.  Have fun!

Apparently, I don’t look like trouble.

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So at this point, the pre-teen is like, “can we gooooooooooooooo?” Because like any good mother, I promised her a trip to the candy train (Sugar Mountain aka the Sugar Shack) at the Forks, and the sweets were SPEAKING TO HER.

We never made it.  Well, we did.  But not before stumbling across this piece of SHEER GENIUS.  Bee 2gether bikes

Naturally, we immediately commandeered one, and tore around the forks like a couple 3-year-old holy terrors.  Look how fierce.

That’s her driving face. She’s a wild woman, and I will never let her drive a car. ever. Even if it means sacrificing my face to rabid lemmings. It isn’t happening.

I’ve relinquished control, and have my first grey hairs to prove it. We nearly took a granny out at the knees. Terror

The rest of the day was spent playing video games, eating sprinkled ice cream (because I am 9 on the inside) chasing ghosts, watching bad moons rise and abducting children.  I’m still getting to that.

They are 12 and 13. Going on 5 and 25 simultaneously. Two of the most independent thinking girls I’ve met.

Sprinkles, like a boss. I’m 9 on the inside. GENTLEMEN, THIS COULD ALL BE YOURS.

running from a gaggle of angry geese. or more realistically, we’ve threatened to drive off leaving the other one behind. There’s only room for one of you, I yelled as I scampered to the car.

or what? rumor has it, you disappear.

Bad moon rising. Was a super moon on Saturday, though no cape in sight. You can’t tell, but that thing WAS HUGE. And way awesome.

So onto the child abduction. I  took the two nearly teenaged pukes to birds hill to get a better view of the moon (it hit its fullest at 10:35 CST).

I pull into the park and find a quiet patch of grass, shut off the lights and open the sunroof to get an optimal view of the glowing orb in the sky.  The girls get outta the car and lay the seats down so they can lay flat staring up and out.  We sit around for about 30 minutes, I’m listening to them laugh and talk freely, as if I don’t exist and we decide it’s time to take off.  One problem.  Hatch won’t open from the inside.

I get out, walk around to the back and open the door.  Just as the hatch comes up, the friend leaps out like a caged animal yelling “FREE AT LAST! SHE TOOK ME!” and books it down the darkened road.

Howling with laughter, and half hoping she gets eaten by wolves, I look around nervously for the police.  Safe for now.

By the way, anyone want to go to Chicken FUCKING Bingo?

Seriously. What is this? Chicken Shit Bingo? Anyone in Oakbank knows what’s what?

 

So that was Saturday.  I didn’t even get into my Sunday, with ginger badminton, toilet scrubbing in fashionable supermom gloves, wet cat barf in a heating vent or being bum rushed by labs.

It’s an exciting existence.  I KNOW YOU WANT TO BE PART OF IT.

 

 


Stop licking the carpet

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Being a parent is glamorous, and if you have pets and no kids you can totally relate.  If you have pets and kids, you’re my kind of crazy because that shit just gets wild.

Sticking with the life is unpredictable theme, I thought it would be fun to reminisce about all the glorious, soul enriching experiences that are to be had as (fur) parents.

I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up; I still don’t, but I know those fantasies looked nothing like the reality I now face.

It isn’t until a little furry or squirmy being relies on you for sustenance and existence that you fully grasp how incredible life is.

For example, it wasn’t until I had a dog that I ever even imagined that I would yell things like “STOP LICKING THE CARPET” or maybe “WE HAVE COMPANY!  LICK YOUR BALLS SOMEWHERE ELSE”.

There is the all-time crowd pleasing question of “Honey, are you farting or did the dog shit in the hall again?”

Then there’s the wild array of questions thrown at you when the kids finally learn to speak (silence IS golden.  Appreciate.)  You get to say things like, “No, snot is NOT a vegetable.  Yes, I know it’s green, it’s still NOT a vegetable” and “It only looks like chocolate.  Don’t taste it”.  If you’ve got boys, Jeebus help you, they’ll thunder out loud at the most inopportune time.  Like during silent reading time at the library.  Things like “MOMMY!  MY PENIS GETS BIGGER WHEN I PULL IT LIKE THIS!” and he WILL proceed to pull it, just like that.

You’ll sometimes feel as though you’ve dodged a bullet.  Your child, against all odds has never embarrassed you.  Never let your guard down, that’s when they strike.

Picture it, Christmas.  Holiday best attire, the finest china and all your uptight relatives gathered around the table.  You’re part way through asking Aunt Sara to pass the potatoes when you hear your little angel telling Grandma “MOMMY AND DADDY MAKE A LOT OF NOISE WHEN THEY GO TO BED AT NIGHT. WHAT DO YOU THINK THEY’RE DOING?” or if you’re really blessed “I SAW MOMMY AND DADDY WRESTLING NAKED!  IT LOOKED LIKE MOMMY WAS WINNING.  SHE WAS ON TOP”.  Please, Sarah.  PASS THE FUCKING POTATOES.

You learn to dress in black; or white depending upon what colour fur the dogs have, and what colour puke the kids have, you artistically arrange furniture and buy plants to place over the stains in the carpet, because try as you might purple-koolaid-puke-does-NOT-wash-out, you convince yourself that greasy-chic hair IS cutting edge, sleep is overrated, fashion is underrated and the various stains are just an organic new pattern.

When you have dogs and kids, it gets a little trickier.  You have to make sure that neither the child nor the dog eats the presents in the cat box, that the kid doesn’t eat the dog food, that the cat doesn’t eat the kid.  You will be sweeping, mopping, vacuuming, and sobbing on a daily basis.  There are boundaries.  The cat can go here, but not here, the dog isn’t allowed over there, and the kid must be secured in a bubble.

One day you’ll be half way to the vet and realize the kid is on the leash, the dog is in the baby carrier and the cat is driving the fucking car?

Welcome to adulthood.  Your future looks furry.


Make it count

They grow so fast, kids.  And you quickly realize the age they are now is the best age they’ve ever been.  They marvel, they question, they infuriate and they grow.  God, do they grow.

As they march into the ages of 11, 12 and 13 your life as a parent is rocked.  They may still hold your hand a time, but they are reaching with their other for freedom, for a world beyond you.  And you prepare to let go.

Cherish the little moments. Relish in every second they choose to spend with you, it won’t last; it never does.

If they rest their head on your shoulder while watching TV, breathe it in.  They will one day lift it, and your shoulder will never know it’s company again.

Life is busy, and we are selfish, thinking ‘tomorrow. we will spend time tomorrow.” When you put off your child to tomorrow, what they hear is ‘I’m not important enough”, and let me remind you tomorrow never comes.  We are promised nothing but this moment.  Make the most of it.

5 years from now, your friends will still text you, the Packers will still play on Sundays and the house work will still need to be tended to.  Your child though, will be an adult, one who was formed by the decisions you made and the actions you took.

Don’t just hear them.  Listen.  Don’t just look, but see.  They are Imageasking for more than your time, they’re asking if they are enough.

If you’re lucky, you’ve parented in a way that will give you the privilege of being a friend down the road, so do yourself a favor.

Turn off the game, put down your phone, tune out your technology and dial in to your child.  For one morning you will reach for their hand, and they will be gone.


Thru the Mixing Bowl: Adventures in the Kitchen

Forgive me, readers.  It’s been 15 days since my last post, and I am WELL OVERDUE for a Why I love Winnipeg post.  This is not it, but I do have something I want to share with you!

 

That cute blonde on the left is my insanely talented Bakeress sister-in-law.  Her kitchen concoctions have won praise from peons and pastry chefs alike, and she’s started a blog here documenting her newest kitchen creations.

Her (cup)cakery goodness are always moist and delicious and pack a mouthful of flavour, and who knows? She may send some your way one day soon!

Please go give her a visit and a follow, but perhaps grab a bib before heading over.

So I guess this IS a reason why I love Winnipeg.  It’s home to my very own Brynderella.


We’ll take a cup of kindness yet

Or on second thought, stuff the kindness.  A cup of coffee will work miracles.

So it starts.  Another year.  A blank canvas, full of promises and whispers of the masterpiece to come.  I’m not going to make any resolutions this year, I’m just going to attempt to be the best me possible.  It’s all anyone can ask of themselves.

Here I sit, famished at 11:30.  Can’t spoil my appetite, going to the in-laws for brunch.  At 1.  Gotta tell you, that’s moving into lupper territory, and I hope I can hold out until then.  The dog is looking mighty tasty, mighty tasty indeed.

Why can’t we just relax over the holidays?  It seems like it’s a constant battle between families, and their quest to find out which side we really love more.

Example.  Christmas Eve we hang with my extended family.  A few cousins, and a grandmother thrown in for good measure.  But it’s not enough.  Christmas morning sees us getting up and rushed so we can get to my moms for breakfast and gifts.

Well of course, in the name of fairness, we also need to squeeze his side in, so after brunch at mothers, we run off to let the dogs out, and go to chew that fat with his extended family.

But wait.  Not good enough.  Before we meet with the aunts and uncles, we pre-meet with his folks for an hour, and then drive in separate vehicles to the same destination for more festive frolicking.

New Years Day brunch has been a tradition in his family since I’ve been around, with big Grandpa E footing the bill.  This year, that ain’t happening, so we are just going over to have brunch (again 1 o’clock.  DYING HERE) with his immediate family.

Well hells bells.  Can’t let my parents feel left out.  Burgers at their place.  5ish.

Next year, I’m either auctioning my soul off to the highest bidder, or just sending a card and hightailing it to Mexico.

New years eve.  For my entire adult life, they’ve been anti-climactic.  I don’t know what my expectations are, really.  If maybe I feel there should be some cleanse of the soul as the clock strikes 12?  Every year, I set out to make the perfect plans, and every year, they come up short.

Last night was pretty stellar.  Good food, great friends and within walking distance.  No complaints.  We ate African yam and peanut soup, caesar salad, garlic cheese toast, jalapeno popper dip, shrimp, and toblerone fondue.

We drank wine, and beer and amaretto sours, and played wii with a 10-year-old, and sang nursery rhymes with a 2-year-old.  It lacked nothing.

Life.  All about the insignificant moments that stack up into something marvelous.

Cheers to you and yours.  Let’s do coffee, k?

Tell me all about your holidays.