Monday, January 27, 2014

A snarky response to nonsense

So there's this:

Yikes.  Someone needs to chill the fuck out, huh?

Look, we're all entitled to our own opinions on any and everything in the world.  And we're free to share them as well ('Merica!) so if this Amy Glass person wants to write a blog post ripping into stay at home mom's that's cool.  She can do that.

Obviously I am in fact, a stay at home mom.  Since I am at stay at home mom I don't work outside the home, nor do I take care of myself.  In fact, I don't take care of myself, my children, or my husband.  Ohhhhhh wait, she means financially doesn't she?  Cause that's the ONLY way someone can POSSIBLY take care of themselves or others.  It can't mean physically, emotionally, spiritually, or in any other way that a stay at home mom might care for her family.  It only means bringing home the bacon - not frying it up to feed the family.  My making sure my children and husband are healthy and happy doesn't mean I'm taking care of them, in fact, according to Ms. Glass it means I'm actually doing nothing!

She is right.  I do nothing.  I sit on the couch and eat bon-bons all day laughing to myself at the clever "stay at home mom" ruse I've constructed and delighting in the fact that my husband fell for it.  Although really, what should I expect?  I just grabbed a random man off the street and convinced him to walk down the aisle with me and then knock me up.  Anyone can do it, there's nothing involved in maintaining a healthy marriage/relationship or getting pregnant.  It's not like I searched for someone who I have a deep meaningful connection with.  Hellz no! I just found some poor unsuspecting dude and convinced him to marry me.  People do it all the damn time!  We shouldn't bother celebrating happy occasions in someone's life because they're so common.  Screw weddings and births!  And hey, fuck birthdays too - you have one every year!  Why should we celebrate something that happens for millions of people literally every day??  Screw happiness and having a good time and celebrating the beginning of something - those are things REAL feminists don't believe in.  They apparently only believe in working your ass off and not having anyone to celebrate your life successes with.  Got it.

By staying at home to raise my children I'm apparently "staying in the box".  Ha! Little does she know how right she is!  I'm staying in the box all right - the box that is my home!  It was the easiest move really.  I'm so lazy and have no desire to actually DO anything so I chose to be a SAHM.  Caring for a 3.5 year old and a 2 year old is a piece of cake, and like I said, I really just lay on the couch all day.  I don't do laundry, or clean, or cook, or entertain my kids, or soothe them, or teach them, or run errands or any of the tasks that being a SAHM requires - because it requires none!  It requires no skills, no thought and no intelligence.  I could have a monkey in my house taking care of my family and the results would basically be the same.

In all seriousness, I consider myself a feminist in that I think men and women are in fact equal and CAN both do pretty much anything they want to do.  Since I'm a SAHM my opinion will obviously not matter to Ms. Glass, but again, I am entitled to have it ('Merica again!).  Women (and men) should be free to make whatever choices with their lives that they want.  If that means focusing on a career and getting fulfillment out of those successes that's great.  If that means marrying and having children and forgoing a career to stay at home and care for them the that's great too.

It's not about validating WHAT the choice is - it's about having the opportunity to MAKE the choice.  People make stupid ass decisions all the time, we shouldn't celebrate and applaud that.  We should celebrate and applaud the fact that the choice is ours to make.

And now if you'll excuse me, I have some unimportant and meaningless tasks to accomplish.  You know, just raising my kids.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Yet Another Reason I'm a Bad Parent

So there's this:

Long story short is that an appeals court in NJ ruled that leaving any child, of any age in a car alone for any amount of time is child abuse.


Stuff like this makes me crazy because it's so black and white and such an extreme overreaction.  Child abuse?  Really?  You're going to equate leaving a kid alone in a car for a matter of minutes with beating the shit out of them?  That's insane.

I routinely leave my almost 2 year old strapped in his car seat, with the car running alone for the 90 seconds it takes me to walk my 3 year old into preschool.

It's part of our routine now, he's used to it and knows I'm coming right back.  He usually sits in his seat with a book or a snack and is completely happy for those perilous 90 seconds.  The preschool is in a safe neighborhood, and the only other people around are other parents.  If I thought weather was a concern (which it's usually not since I just leave the car running), I'd take him with me.  I just feel he's 100% safe there and frankly it makes my life a hell of a lot easier.  My Little Guy doesn't want to leave the preschool room that My Big Guy is in and letting him go in there only to rip him away from those amazing new toys seconds later seems more cruel and more upsetting (tears! screams! fits!) than just letting him enjoy a snack and a book in his seat.  Everyone is happier this way - apparently that happiness is abuse.

In fact, my biggest concern is some jackass seeing My Little Guy in the car and calling the cops.  I'm not worried about him being kidnapped, or the car blowing up, or him freezing/overheating (again, the car is running) or whatever crazy ass thing these people think will happen if you leave a kid alone for 90 seconds.

Would I leave my kid strapped into an off car in the desert for half an hour in the parking lot of a Target?  Hell no!  That's stupid and dangerous.  I'm not a moron, and I love my kids and I wouldn't subject them to anything that I thought might cause them harm.

I'm his mom, and I know what's best for him and what's too dangerous.  I have decided that leaving him for 90 seconds in a climate controlled car is not dangerous.  That is my choice to make - not the cops, not a random passerby, not another parent.  Mine.

The link to the Free Range Kids site lists the statistics, which no one ever hears about.  More kids die from car accidents than from be left alone in a car.  Way more.  You know how many kids are kidnapped by a stranger each year?  About 50.  You know how many kids die left alone in a car?  About 40 (and as Lenore of FRK points out - those kids are forgotten in the car {sidenote: wtf is that?  What kind of awful dickwad forgets their kid is in the car?} not left alone for a couple of minutes).  Driving your kid around in your car is probably the most dangerous thing you can do with them (over 1500 kids under the age of 15 die a year in car accidents) but we all still do that and no one is call the authorities and reporting someone driving with their kid.  It's ridiculous.  I as the parent am the judge of what is safe or not for my child, not you.

Sunday, January 12, 2014


Things are finally settling back down after the insanity of the holidays.  To make things more fun we were on an alternating child weekly visit plan at our pediatrician between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Nothing makes the holidays more enjoyable than ear infections, croup, stomach viruses and toddler molars (toddler molars don't warrant a trip to the pediatrician, but they sure do make My Little Guy a miserable, drooly, gnawing mess).

Between the sicknesses (which also was passed on to my husband and I multiple times) and general Chicagoland winter (Hey high of -12, you were awesome!  So were you unending snow storm!) we hardly left the house all of December.

Winter is a challenge for me.  I've pretty introverted and all the cold and snow and awfulness really just fuels my natural inclination to stay inside and lock all the doors and never leave.  I have to remind myself to venture outside, even if all my instincts are telling me to stay in.  It turns out it's better for me AND the kids.

When we were in hibernation mode I found myself slipping in my parenting duties.  I developed a bad habit of turning on the tv and putting on a Bob the Builder/Thomas marathon for the kids almost every day.  I wasn't playing with them as much as before.  I (gasp!) even let my housewifely duties slip.  As much as I wanted to just stay inside and ignore the world it wasn't good for anyone.

This week really kicked me back into gear.  Well, the second half of the week.  Stupid record windchills closing preschool and preventing us from leave the house AGAIN on Monday.  We re-established our routine.  My Big Guy is back in school, My Little Guy and I are back to building The Island of Sodor during our alone time, I'm taking the kids out to run errands, we played in the rain the other day...  We got bundled up and went exploring our park while it was covered in snow, and tested out our sledding hill a couple times.  While I hate winter and snow and cold it does make it a little bit more acceptable to see my guys enjoying it so much.  We pulled our "sleigh" on the driveway and up and down the sidewalks.  We ventured into the backyard and filled our birdfeeder.  We explored the snow covered neighborhood and I hated it less than I thought I would.

That's pretty hard to hate.  I mean really, look at those two.

We're back to being real people again instead of lazy, hibernating, introverted jerks.  The kids are happier, and imagine my surprise when I realized I'm happier leaving the house.  My general instinct is still to hibernate, but at least now I realize that that's not good for anyone and I have to fight that instinct.

Parenting a learning experience.  Not only are you learning about your kids every day, but you're learning about yourself.  I never realized how really introverted I was until I became a parent.  It made a lot of things make more sense, and it helped me adjust the way I do things to make everyone happier (mommy NEEDS that hour or so of nap time to herself or no one will be happy in the evening).  I'm learning how to be the best person and mommy I can be every day.  Sure, I still suck some days and do a whole lot of nothing but even I am not perfect.  Everyone has crap days.  I just gotta remember to shake them off and not let them become our regular days.