Saturday, 28 January 2012

to religion or not to religion

Alas, I am about to sign the consent to teach Catholic religion to my son at his elementary school next year. Yes, you can call me a sell-out, or you can call me wise, both are correct.

But to be perfectly honest, I am completely sure of my decision. And this decision is based on two priorities: the desire that my children have a sense of community and belonging; and the important cultural heritage that Catholicism provides. How many nuances and references do I understand thanks to the religious instruction I received growing up? It's certainly given me an advantage, especially in snooty circles.

Now the important thing is they understand it's all bullsh**. That they understand the difference between spirituality and religion; that the two are not one and the same. They will be "allowed" to believe in "God", but they will have to truly understand that all the rituals/sacraments/rules/mythology are human constructions created to comfort humanity. They are allowed to choose to play the game, but they must understand it is a game.

Nam myoho renge kyo.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

childhood forgiveness

Had another lose-my-sh** moment this morning. Completely lost it on Sebastian. I started out patient, reasonable, explanatory, respectful. It soon became threatening, then a time-out, then a spanking on the bum, then a complete breakdown. I told him he could live with us until he's 18, then he's out of here. He can go find a new mommy. Basta, I'm done catering to this spoiled brat. Bla, bla, bla, bla. Then I left the house with Lucas as he cried for me to wait for him (even though I had been asking him for 20 minutes to put on his running shoes that he begged me to buy a few weeks back but that now he H*A*T*E*S and refuses to wear...).

I ALMOST told him I didn't love him anymore. Yup. I was that close. I held back, I have no idea, but somewhere in the back of my head I knew I couldn't do that.

We got to pre-school, and I was still feeling physically ill from all the anger and frustration mixed in with a wee bit of guilt, but still mostly fuming with frustration. I wanted not even to kiss him good-bye and "punish" him. There again, I did not give in to my basic, cruel, animal instincts. When we got into school, it was as if nothing had happened. He completely forgot. He was back to his usual shy, sweet, self, and covered me with kisses as I left.

Yeah, I know. Crazy, eh?

Tonight, when we were getting ready for bed, he randomly said, with a big smile on his face, that now he likes his shoes.

Go figure.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

my big, fat, pregnant body

I have, once again, gained too much weight during pregnancy. But this time, it isn't only because of overeating, but because I never move! I am always sitting, and have no time or place to actually move. The week that I was at ski week, where I snowshoed or moved every day, I didn't gain a gram. I got back to work, 1.5 kg in a week. There is little I can do about it. We are in the apartment, with no garden so I can't just take walks in circles. I have to drive the kids to school, drive to work, sit at my desk and work furiously (i.e., stressed) for a few hours, drive back to pick up the kids, and then go home. Hubby is up at the house all day every day.

I can't WAIT to do a spinning class again. To go anaerobic! To huff and puff and feel that runner's high after. To sleep well because I moved. To lose all these pregnancy reserves.

Unfortunately, I will be having a c-section, which makes me mostly immobile for at least 2 weeks, and unable to do any real exercise for at least a month.

Yuck yuck yuck.

scratch, scratch, itch, itch

Lucas every night scratches his eczema as a way to post-pone bedtime. He hasn't had an actual allergic outbreak in weeks. But he is carrying these terrible scars/scabs for months now. The ones that started soon after his last cortisone/antibiotics/antihistamine dose. Every time I think it's about to go away (after applying cortisone cream multiple times a day and hydrating him non-stop), bed time comes along. It is exasperating and driving both hubby and I completely bonkers. And I can't get a friggin appointment with another allergist pediatrician. Ugh.

He's supposed to outgrow it.

Yeah, but when? At what cost? Will I be able to sleep at any point before then? Will he be permanently scarred, literally?

Then I am told to give him small doses of parmesan to get his immune system used to it. Yeah, but if he's scratching without an outbreak, imagine what disaster could happen if I start this home-diagnosis. I want him all cleaned up before I start that.




pre-schooler anger

I have a 5-year-old teenager. Yup. Thought it was a phase, but I have a feeling phases don't last years... Unless it's adolescence!

Sebastian spends most of his days complaining, whining, crying, calling me mean, telling me to go away, and giving me dirty looks. The catalysts? Telling him it's bedtime, it's mealtime, it's time to go to school, it's time to go home, it's time to go out and play, it's Lucas's turn to choose the book first, Lucas won the race this time, no, it's not your turn again. The list goes on. I've tried all the tricks: countdown time (i.e., ten minutes to bedtime! the logic being that it doesn't just pop up on him out of nowhere!); choices (i.e., we are going to play outside today - do you want to take your bike or go for a walk by the lake? the logic being he's in control); reasoning with him (i.e., explaining WHY we have to eat, and sleep, and put our running shoes on the day they have gym at pre-K); setting alarms (i.e., "when the alarm goes off, it means we have to put our jackets on..." the logic being that he doesn't feel like mommy is controlling everything); routine (i.e., our days don't change that much on a daily basis, apparently children thrive on that). And it often ends up with my losing my sh** and doing precisely what my mother used to do: guilt him or shame him or force him with threats to do what he needs to do.

What is in store for me when the hormones start flowing?

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

stress and adrenaline, oh yeah!

I chose my job mostly because it is very stimulating and gives me a regular rush of adrenaline. I have a chronic case get-bored-quickitis) , and so I need a job that keeps me on my toes. The only problem is that I am now preggers, and that stuff ain't no good for baby!

With Sebastian, my water broke a month early probably due to intense stress (first year hazing in my new job, buying a house, moving, etc.). With Lucas, I spent most of the last trimester lounging at the lake. With Nicolas, I will have spent most of the second and third trimester working hard, taking care of two pre-schoolers, and dealing with the renovations on the house. Granted, I have a great work environment (I passed that toxic initiation from when I first started!), and I work part-time, and I can mostly do my job blind-folded...

BUT, I am really noticing the Braxton-Hicks contractions, my sensitivity to stress, and the flow of adrenaline through my body was almost palpable on departure day last October. I am entering into one of my busiest month of the year, as well as one of my last months of pregnancy.

And I need to stay calm.


Exactly. It's like telling the blind man to watch where he's going.

Apparently, stress and depression on pregnant women has a lasting effect on their babies in utero. In fact, doctors often think the damage of depression on the fetus far outweighs the potential side effects of anti-depressants. I am convinced that part of my high-strung, high-anxiety tendencies are due to the miserable time my mom had when preggers with me. It was aggravated by a messy divorce and lots of instability in early childhood, but it started in the womb.


Basically, I don't want to pump Nicolas with stress hormones and adrenaline just weeks before he's born. Who knows what nightmare of a colicky baby I'll end up with!


Breathe in, breathe out.... breathe in, breathe out....

the most awesomest blogpost!

WOWZA! I could have written the article myself that's how identical the author's feelings and thoughts are to my own!