give. the. kids. a. break.

 

So he has his days– he cries for no reason and refuses to sit on the toilet and occasionally stomps his feet and uses his devil-voice when things aren’t going his way (you know what I’m talking about, the one where you think for a second he might be possessed… that one). Maybe this is the definition of a bad kid to someone. I know that 2 years ago, I might have felt the same. But it’s just not true. People put too much criticism and judgement on kids (and their parents) based on how they act 5-10% of the time.

Since I used to be one of those people who saw a screaming kid at the store and thought “what a brat” I am going to elaborate on why this is TOTALLY bogus and why my perspective has completely changed. First of all, kids are learning. They don’t come out tha womb knowing all of their manners believe it or not, and I bet you you were once that screaming kid at the store until you learned otherwise. They literally don’t know how to control their emotions or how to react to them. Once kids start to understand things more, like what “no” means, it can be especially hard for them to react in an appropriate manner. Imagine how it makes you feel to be told no. You feel shut down, and maybe a little sad or frustrated, but you continue on with your life and get over it because you know better than to scream and cry and flail your arms. Give these kids a BREAK. They are learning how to be respectful, emotionally stable adults one tantrum at a time. (And if they aren’t respectful emotionally stable adults when they grow up, I am making a bold prediction that they were not given the opportunity to throw tantrums and were rather never told no, and therefore never learned.) I was one of those people judging you and your kids throwing fits in the store, and honestly probably still would be if I never had a child. What a joke it is to go into parenting thinking you won’t ever have the kid that throws a fit at the store! LOL It’s just not realistic y’all.

This post got sidetracked and was supposed to be about how GREAT J is despite his 10% of yucky behavior. Sometimes I want to pull my hair out and bang my head against the wall when J cries over every little thing and wants me to hold him all day, but then something magical happens. He gives me kisses and hugs in public, or he holds my hand in his sleep. He giggles until he toots or vise versa. I try to gently sneak my arm out from under his neck after he falls asleep and as soon as I move, he lays on my chest on hugs me tight so I am unable to leave. He lays in my lap and watches Shrek, without squirming for ten minutes straight. Even watching him learn new things, like where his belly-button is and where the ice cream is at make my day a little brighter. Little moments like this just make me so happy and thankful to be a mom to the most kind-hearted boy I’ve ever known.

Earlier I was talking to my mom about one of these little moments that make my heart stop and tears roll. She said:”That’s how you know you’re doing parenting right. When they know how kiss and hug and love.” And she’s right. Teaching my Little how to love is the most important thing he will learn in his life. Everyday I pray that I don’t mess up this parenting thing, as I’m sure a lot of parents do, but today was one of the first days in months that I felt confident in my parenting.

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The POSITIVES of Being a Single Mom

Hey y’all!

It’s been a minute since I posted on the blog and it’s mostly because I just haven’t had the time or energy. Why didn’t anybody warn me how tiring being a parent is?? (Kidding. Everyone did.) but really. I didn’t take all of those warnings from my parents and friends and everyone else seriously. I never expected to wake up with a single goal: to shower today. And go to sleep unshowered and too tired to utilize my “free time” (the time after Jakson falls asleep) to accomplish my pathetic goal. It’s crazy y’all- it almost makes me wish DB (deadbeat, douche bag, dad of baby, etc) had stuck around and helped out instead of leaving me to explore parenting and adulthood all alone. ALMOST.

Despite the ridiculous situations I find myself in, like the one described above (which is a regular thing, btw.) there are some advantages to being a single mom.

For one, I can guarantee that Jakson will be kind and respectful when he grows up. I can raise him how I want and teach him values that I find important. Some things my ex and I just didn’t agree on, like same sex couples, for example. He thought it was a sin to be gay and that they were all bad people and a blah blah blah. I was SO shocked to hear him say this for the first time after knowing him for years, and wondered why we had never talked about it before. In my opinion, people’s sexual orientation does not define their character or sins any more than their race and gender do. Although Jakson will be able to make his own mind up about topics like this once he is old enough, I’d like for him to inherit my open mindedness. And since I’m his only parent I can raise him and teach him the way I think is best 🙂

Another disagreement we had was about how we would introduce him to sports and activities when he got older. I suggested we let him decide what he wanted to do, and sign him up for a variety of sports & activities so he can find what he’s interested in. This was not DB’s plan at all. He was very firm about the sport Jaks said was to play (which is the same sport he played and his dad before him played) and said that he WOULD push Jakson to do well in it. I can kind of understand wanting to pass on the legacy or whatever, but here’s where I had a problem: I have been to a sporting event with his family before. It was DB’s 10 year old cousin’s football game. The kid wasn’t athletic, and carried a little extra weight around with him. But instead of being encouraging and proud of him regardless, I sat in disbelief as their entire family spoke poorly of him and voiced their disappointment. The thought of the same thing happening to Jakson made my blood boil, and as you might have guessed, an argument was born.

I could keep going for days about all of the ridiculous fights we had about Jakson’s future and it’s crazy because they all happened within the 1-month stretch of time that he was actually around and made some efforts to be a dad. It was hard for me to compromise on some of the parenting techniques DB wanted to use, because by the time he came around Jakson was already 6 months old and I had done it on my own up until then. I was reluctant to let him come in and change everything that I had worked so hard for.

But the point is, it’s over now. The fighting and arguments were all for nothing because now, I am able to raise Jakson however I want. Though being a single mom is tough and at times trying, I wouldn’t have it the other way. I’m happy with my life and the people in it. And I am confident that my son will be a sweet, caring, non-judgmental human being. EMBRACE being a single mom and make the best of the special bond it creates between your child and you. 💕

To end this short post, here are five other ways I have found to appreciate being a single mom, instead of feeling envious of those happy families you see on social media (because let’s be honest, IT’S HARD sometimes.) :

  1. Jakson’s existence gives me the motivation I need to work hard and succeed on my own.
  2. I feel accomplished and proud to know that I alone raised such an amazing human
  3. I dont have to do laundry / cook / clean up after anyone but Jaks and I (score)
  4. I get to cuddle Jakson in bed with me every night! (double score)
  5. I love Jakson more than ANYONE in the world, and I know he feels the same way about me. Our bond is indescribable and exclusive to only us.

To single moms everywhere: YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Remember the positives and pat yourselves on the back for being such strong and independent women. If you’d like, share what you are most thankful for being a single mom in the comments below! Happy Monday to you and yours!

xx Jordan

Toothless no more

Teething babies are hard.

We are pushing through the last week or so (hopefully) before my little Toothless the Dragon gets 8 teeth all at once! I can already see two popping through just barely, and the outlines of the other six underneath his swollen gums. My poor sweet boy has just wanted to nurse constantly, which makes me a little discouraged and also grateful. Reason being, we had finally cut the nursing down to 2-3 times a day at nap and bed times, and now he is always wanting to nurse and will barely take food. I am grateful, though, that I am able to soothe and feed him alternatively; I don’t know what these last couple weeks would have looked like if he hadn’t been able to nurse…… actually, I do. And a hungry baby in pain and with no way to help him doesn’t sound fun, my friends.

In a couple weeks we are going to a beauty and the beast symphony and I am so excited to see what Jaks thinks of it! Will he be scared? Will he dance? Will he like seeing the other kids dressed up? I don’t think I’ll dress him up (because even if I did it wouldn’t last- I can barely keep his shoes on him) but my good friend Judith bought him a Mickey Mouse ears hat with his name stitched on the back, so I will probably put that on him. 

Stay tuned for pictures of the symphony and especially for Jakson’s NEW TEETH!!! Happy Friday y’all 🙂 

P.S. We went to Freddy’s for ice cream- best date I’ve ever been on. I got out of the house AND it made his gummies feel good. Win-win 🍦

New Eyes

 I’d like to document a few things that have happened since we made our move to Colorado. First of all, Jakson has gotten out of the house significantly more than he did when we were back in Idaho. He sees other babies, we go grocery shopping, we go to Barnes & Noble and play with the train table (which by the way is quickly becoming one of my favorite places to meet new babies for jaks and new mamas for me) and overall we are just happier. 

Although its been a bit of a struggle adjusting to our new lifestyle and being away from the home that we rarely ever left, it’s a good change and a necessary one. I am so impressed by the progress Jakson has made being social with others! I swear he is growing up right before my eyes and every time I blink he’s doing something new. For example, a few days ago we had some people over and instead of being shy and clinging to my leg like a sloth, he crawled away from me to play with them, and didn’t even look back until 20 minutes later!!! This might not seem like a huge milestone to some, but Jakson has always been extremely shy so this is a serious miracle. Another great thing that happened is Jaks took his first solo bath last week, and has taken them alone ever since. Baths have always been a special bonding time between the two of us, and it makes me a little sad to see him growing too big for it… But also proud of him for being so brave and finding new independence. Another milestone to note is that he has started standing on his own for long periods of time (and attempting to lift the heaviest object he can find… *eyeroll* Boys amiright?) It will not be long now before he is waddling around keeping me even more busy. 

On another note, an unexpected change since arriving is not having a phone. My phone has been pretty rough for a while and the last straw was it falling out of my hoodie pocket and onto the tile floor. This paralyzed the touch screen, so I can see all of the notifications but can’t unlock it or use it. This has honestly been one of the best things that has happened since our move. I never realized how much I used it until it was gone, and now that it’s gone it’s such a relief and a breath of fresh air. Some of the changes I have had to adjust to without a phone are:

  • No communication with people, outside of the occasional use of my sister’s phone to talk to my mom. This ones obvious but has been surprisingly great. I haven’t had contact with anyone from Idaho and it feels good to leave it behind, completely. 
  • No social media. I’ll be honest, I was addicted to social media, though I never would have admitted it. I would wake up in the middle of the night and scroll through Instagram and get headaches the next morning. I love that I can focus on my life and my child and not see what everyone else is doing.
  • I can’t occasionally stalk my exes social media. Doesn’t need explanation, everyone does it. Moving on. 
  • I have started reading more. I was always using my lack of time as an excuse for not reading anymore, but all along I was wasting my time on my phone. Who woulda thought? 
  • I can’t use recipes from pinterest. So I have had to wing it and actually learn how to cook on my own. 
  • Also, I’m a lot more creative and confident as a parent without searching for ideas on pinterest about keeping jaks entertained and how to discipline and whatever else.
  • I haven’t had navigation to find my way around this unfamiliar city. Although I have lived here before, I was too young to pay attention to the roads.This one has been tough, but has forced me to pay attention to where I’m going and not rely on Siri for help.
  • I use my camera a lot more.
  • Jaks and I have more quality time, which is making me a better parent and helps me understand him.
  • We go outside a lot more! This is also mostly due to the weather but everyone needs to go outside more.

Some of these seem silly but I’m just being honest. My life has changed dramatically because of a phone??? I encourage everyone to go a week without your phone. I mean turned off and hidden by someone you can trust until the week is over. Since going without, I see how cliche and staged everyones lives are on social media. Why do we all want the same designer crib? Same color walls? Same hairdo and clothes and eyebrows? Same pictures with our babies? My favorite pictures to look back on are not the ones I staged to be instagram worthy. They’re the ones that were unplanned. In 20 years we’re all going to have these pictures of our staged lives instead of memories that are real. I personally no longer care to have a nice phone or even a smart phone, and am planning on getting rid of my social media entirely. I just feel better and happier without it. 

Anyways,  there’s the end of my liberating experience of going without a phone (how embarrassing) but hopefully someone can relate? I’m going to use this time to read my new fav book Outlander. If you’ve never seen the show, watch it. I don’t know if I would understand the book quite as well without watching the show first. But reading it is like watching the show again with deleted scenes- its the best! 

Hope everyone is having a lovely Monday! 💓

XO, J