Boy or Girl?

We find out in a week, or so we hope. I'm anxious/excited/nervous. Everyone of course asks if we're hoping for one or the other sex. We honestly would be delighted with either, but we have both been feeling it's a girl from the get go. We shall see! I'm a little more nervous about the thought of having a girl. Boys are fun and crazy and wacky and wild and pretty predictable - very straightforward. A little chaotic and tiring to raise one in the beginning (the physical versus emotional differences between girls and boys Boo's age always astound me) but then there's later... when I'm a little more scared of raising a girl through her pre-teen, teenage and college years. It really does seem like the old addage that boys are harder to raise now, easier to raise later, and girls are easier to raise now, but harder to raise later, seems true about 80% of the time.

I've admittedly never been one of those women who has always dreamed of having a daughter, although I know I would absolutely love to raise a daughter as much as I would a son. I'm just a little more apprehensive about my own abilities as well as the other pressures and issues involved with raising a girl to be a strong, independent, confident woman. And then there's the shopping issue: I don't think my wallet or my impulses can withstand the amount of super adorable girl schtuff out there - not the frilly cutesy bows and crap mind you, but all the other soft, sweet, adorable designs for girls. I find we are bad with impulse buying for our son as it is!

All that said, my husband and I still think it's a girl, and we'd be overjoyed if it is. I'm giddy with excitement and am just itching to see this baby inside of me, whether a he or a she.


random ramblings

We find out the sex of the baby next week! Can't wait. Hopefully baby will cooperate and we'll really get to find out. No fun filling up the bladder to be poked and prodded only to not have the baby cooperate. Boo was very cooperative during his ultrasound. He was all: here are my boy parts! Check them out! We also have a photo of him giving us a "rock on" gesture.

Boo is going to be an awesome big brother. He's really taking responsibility with his toys and his stuffed animals lately. He tucks them in, reads to them, gives them kisses, feeds them, has entire conversations with Bear, Giraffe, Elmo and Nemo. He was all excited about hearing the baby's heartbeat "on the radio" again when we went in this week for our monthly appointment.

Work is busy. Very busy. A good, great, happy but a little chaotic busy. I have too many ideas and not enough time (or personnel) to make things happen as quickly as I want them too.

Lots of pregnant mamas around these parts these days! There is a small group of us, some first time and some second and third time mamas-to-be, that is going to be meeting on a regular basis. It's so fun to be talking preggo talk with mamas again. So many of my friends tell me stories of how their second pregnancies went by so fast that they hardly had time to think about the baby. I am the opposite and am a bit giddily obssessed about this new baby that is about to enter our family. Since this will likely be our last child, and my last pregnancy, I want to embrace every minute of it. I love being pregnant, love it love it love it. Even with its aches and pains and weird side effects.

One of the sweetest PDX mamas I have met recently blogged about other people's brats. The other night we were out and one mama got upset at a girl who took a toy away from her son, and she commented on what do you do when you don't know the kid's parents. She was pretty appalled, and I think I nodded sympathetically, but I neglected to tell her that earlier I had seen her own son steal toys twice from my son while my son was playing with them. I also watched as another boy took trains away from my son, watched my son have a little scream, but then proceed to find other toys to play with. I was pretty proud of him for moving on.

Kids don't know how to play - they learn through trial and error, and while we can help guide them through consistent and firm warnings, explanations and such, ultimately it is they who decide their actions and adjust accordingly. While I will intervene if there's a kid who just bullies my kid and others incessantly (or if my kid keeps taking toys from others), I am now learning the fine art of allowing my son to learn how to share and play nicely and how to stick up for himself...by himself. The latter part I don't worry about - if he's pushed, you bet he will push back (he's my kid, after all). If the bully's mom isn't paying attention, usually one loud "I know that he hit (pushed) you honey, but hitting (pushing) back isn't right just because he did it to you first" - usually brings about the embarassed mom out of her state of obliviousness. I would hope that if my son was the bully and I missed it, someone would say something to me. Usually if he's in full tantrum mode, we just leave.

But we've all been there. We don't have a million eyes all around our head, and we're human. So when my friend was going on about this girl who took the toy away from her son, I just had to sit quietly, knowing that she had no clue that her own son had been the toy-stealer for quite some time at the train table that night.


Big Brother

This weekend, Boo brought us to tears. Out of nowhere, he walked up to my belly, looked at it and said very clearly and confidently:

"Hi baby! I'm your big brother. I love you, baby!"

Then he kissed my belly.

Papa A and I just looked at each other with pure shock/love/joy/amazement/happiness. Boo is so ready to be a big brother. He's going to be a great one.


Two is a fun age

I love this age that Boo is at. He just says and does things all day long that crack me up or just amuse me.

"Come on people, let's go!" - when waiting in traffic.

"All right! Come on peeps! Let's go home" - when either in the store or in the car going home

"Oh no...Be careful, mommy/daddy!" - anytime we brake anything short of very slowly.

"Oh no...Oh boy..." - when he drops something or something goes wrong

"Oh my goodness"... similar to oh boy, but this one is usually followed by him shaking his head in dismay.

"CATS! They're funny. Cats are funny" - this comes out of nowhere, really, and is followed by a throwback of his head and a giggle fit. Side note: he also thinks every small dog he sees is a kitty cat. The other day at the park a man was walking a small dog by us and Boo looks up and squeals excitedly "oooh look, mama! A kitty cat! Small kitty cat..." The man did not look amused. That's what you get for not getting a real dog, sir :)

"How YOU doin?" - he says that to women mainly, in the same tone that Joey said it on Friends. We're in trouble.

Whenever we leave a store, or anywhere for that matter, he is big on telling everyone "Bye bye! See you soon! Have a good day!" What a polite boy.

Boo is REALLY big on hugs and kisses right now. He'll just look at us and say "I want to kiss mommy/daddy" and he'll plant a big one on us. He gives kisses all day long. It's very cute. He kisses his Bear and he also gives our dog kisses. Bear is his best pal, next to our dog. He talks to Bear like he's real, and bosses him around a little, telling him what to do and what not to do. Oh yes, he's ready to be Big Brother :)

He is also really big on telling us that he loves us. It will come out of nowhere, like the kisses: "I love you mommy/daddy!" Aww... we love this age.


What a Wonderful World...?

When I was younger, just hearing the words to John Lennon's "Imagine" made me pause, reflect and cry inside. Thinking about the lyrics today has the same effect, and everytime something horrible happens in the world, his voice and those words, those perfect imperfect words, echo in the record player in my head (yes, I said record player).

North Korea just performed a nuclear test (reports still unconfirmed as I write this). Lettuce was just linked today to cases of E-coli, in addition to spinach links. Last week three disturbing deadly school schootings across America. Dubya is still in office. Each day we lose more and more Americans and innocent Iraqi civilians in a war that is sparking more terror in the world. Corporations have all gone to shit, and so has our beloved Earth. It's a mad, mad world, and since having children, I realize that I no longer think of how these crises affect me but how it will alter their lives in the future. What can we do today to make sure they have a future?

In high school, I met a couple who decided not to have children because they couldn't bear the thought of bringing a child into such a horror wrought world. When people talk of easier yesteryears, I think they have their blinders on and are slipping into amnesia mode. There were no easy yesteryears. Every generation has its crises, its wars, its seemingly incurable illnesses, its flawed and failed leaders. I do not believe the times in which we live are any more difficult than when I was a child, or when my mother was a child, or when my great-grandmother was a child. The issues merely morph into other, more modern issues, and humanity once again must decide how to handle, how to cope, how to persevere and move forward for the good of humanity.

I admit that sometimes I lay awake at night and cry just thinking about the world events of the day. I've been called a hard ass and a tough cookie, but I am pretty much a sissy when it comes to these things. Sometimes the amount of pain and suffering I see happening all around us hurts so very god damn fucking much and sometimes what hurts more is knowing that it will not take one person, but millions, and it will not take one year, but lifetimes, before thorough effective change can happen. And by then, there will be other crises for the world to face.

On a daily basis I have come to make peace with the fact that our world, our leaders, and we - ourselves - are permanently flawed. I face each day knowing I have no idea what the day will hold, knowing that I can't protect my son and my husband and my friends and family as I wish I could. I live each day just trying to do good, to bring good into the lives of others, and appreciating all of the good that others have done for me and my family. I have shitty days, but no matter what, my problems in life in general aren't as big as the problems of the world, so I live each day taking time to regret, be sad for, and be pissed off about the little things that happen in my own life...but then at the end of each day, I just let go. Who gives a shit if I was late on a car payment or totally made an ass of myself at a conference or fed my child too many Goldfish that day when somewhere in the world a mother lost a child, and somewhere else in the world a family lost their home and all of their belongings, and somewhere else in the world a family is praying for a drop of rain so they will have water again. Perspective.

Still, deep inside I ridiculously wish for a day when all is right in the world. When every single living breathing human on earth can co-exist peacefully with the environment and other creatures. For one day, when there are no murders, no natural disasters, no accidents, no lies, no malice, no evil entities in power, no bruised knees, no prejudices, no judgments, and no frowns. Just one day. I pray that my children are alive to see that day. I dream that they are stewards of the hope and positive action that will steer the world toward that day. That they will be one of the millions who decide to band together and make that day happen. I hope that they grow up understanding that the world is flawed, but that each day holds value, truth and happiness, and most of all, purpose.