No H8 (…Or Wake The Hell Up, Ya’ll)

26 Mar

I’m known to be very vocal about what I believe in. I have breastfeeding stickers on the back of my car. I also have a sticker for the Human Rights Campaign, which pushes for equality in marriage for gay and lesbian couples. Which is what we’re gonna talk about!

Now, I’m not gay. I’m a perfectly happy, straight, married-with-kids woman, and I like it that way. However, I have friends and family who are gay. And I support them, and every single other gay, lesbian or transgendered person in this country.

Why you ask? Why, if I am a heterosexual do I fully and completely support equality for gay and lesbian couples? For the simple fact that love is love.

I’m an Atheist, so I do not have the bible to back my beliefs. Even if I weren’t an Atheist, doesn’t the bible preach love and acceptance? So why, as a race…not as gay, straight, white, black, Christian or Atheist…but as a race, can we not understand the simple premise of compassion and acceptance? Maybe not acceptance for gays and lesbians because they are gay (because I am not saying that everyone has to like marriage equality), but at the very least acceptance because they are people…just like you and me…like my husband and kids…and they deserve decency from fellow humans. They deserve to have the same rights as any other person in America has. They deserve to be able to fuck up their own marriage, just as we straight people can. (Har har har.)

Why is it my business what anyone else decides to do with their life? As Americans, are we really that scared? Are we really that petrified of someone doing something that we aren’t doing? That isn’t “normal”?

The premise behind banning gay marriage (or rather, not allowing it) is completely baffling to me. It really is. And maybe part of that is because I’m an Atheist…but I don’t understand how, as Americans…as the people who live in the “greatest country in the world”, who’s entire being came to be because we didn’t want to be oppressed! We did not want our lives being dictated by other peoples beliefs! How can we possibly stand by and watch as that is done to our own people?

So why now, in the year 2013, is it so hard for people to comprehend that it is not my choice if someone gets married? It is not your choice if someone gets married. It is not the Presidents, or Congresses choice if someone gets married.

My favorite analogy was floating around Facebook today, and it basically goes like this:

Your religion says you can’t watch Dr. Who on Sundays, that doesn’t mean you can outlaw Dr. Who on Sundays. It means that YOU cannot watch Dr. Who on Sundays. I can watch all the Dr. Who on Sunday as I damn well please.

The quote is not exact, but the meaning is there. This goes for…well…pretty much everything. Your religion doesn’t like motorcycles? You don’t try to outlaw motorcycles. Your religion doesn’t like beef stew on Thursdays? You don’t try to outlaw beef stew on Thursdays.

Does everyone get it yet? Let me put it this way: if you do not like gay marriage…because of your beliefs or just because you think it’s icky…you do not get to outlaw gay marriage. You do not get to control other people’s lives in that way. You don’t go into your grown son or daughters home and tell them what they can and can’t eat for dinner do you? No. Because that would be dumb. Because they’re fucking grown ups making grown up decisions.

I’ve also heard that allowing gays to get married will lead to an array of other things…one example being being able to get married to children. Yea. You read that right. Some dumb fucks think that being gay and getting married (read: two consenting adults making a life decision together) is the same thing as pedophilia. Please. Get a fucking grip. The two are in no way connected, not to mention, pedophilia is around whether you’re gay or straight. Will we try to stop straight people from getting married too in case pedophilia starts running rampant? Oh. It already happens?? Go fucking figure.

So please America. Wake the hell up. We are the land of the free and the home of the brave. Let two consenting adults get married, regardless of their gender and just leave it the hell alone. You don’t have to look at it, you don’t have to be friends with them…and you, in reality, have all the power. You pick who your friends are and who you are associated with. You want nothing to do with gay marriage? Absolutely fine. You stick with your anti-homosexual buddies and live your life.

And while you do that, I’ll be over here, with the cool kids. Being loving and accepting and supportive of other Americans who just wanna put a ring on it.

You Probably Aren’t Cut Out to be a Military Wife

22 Mar

I am 100% convinced that Army Wives….real, true Army Wives, are a special breed of woman. A lot of us are stay at home moms with 2+ kids…we get moved around every three years, away from our families and friends to start new lives. We deal with 6, 9, 12 month deployments with minimal interaction with our spouses. We hold down the fort and take care of the day to day bullshit.

There are Army wives who are certainly not cut out for military life. And those wives should probably rethink their choices about marrying a military man because they make the rest of us look bad.

If you think it’s okay to call your husbands boss and talk to him about any aspect of your husbands career you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. Would you like it if your husband called your boss to talk to them about your work performance? Or how you can better your career? No? Shocking. But some Army wives feel the need to call their husbands bosses and discuss their HUSBANDS career. Unacceptable ladies. If you have questions about your husbands career, ask your husband. And if HE has questions about his career, there is a number of people he can direct those questions to.

If you would call your husbands bosses and pull rank you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. You think “knowing” CPT so and so is gonna get your husband better treatment? Think again ladies! I’ve met and worked with a number of higher ranking military personnel. I also know my husbands bosses. I would NEVER dream of calling them and telling them that if they do x, y or z, I will call in the big guns. You know why? I’m not an asshole. My husband is perfectly capable of taking care of himself. I am also perfectly capable of taking care of myself and our three kids. And if I ever needed my husband to do something, I most certainly would not be calling his bosses and threatening them.

If you would pull rank with other soldiers and wives
you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. Look lady, I don’t care who your husband is. I don’t care who my husband is (though, my husband and I do joke about this…between ourselves…at home). You’re a civilian. You have NO power in the military system. None, zip, nada. I swear, I will hit the first wife who, in all seriousness, says “do you know who my husband is?”

If you’re cheating on your husband while he’s deployed/on TDY/in the field you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. Seriously. That’s just fucked up.

If you’re expecting a handout while your husband is deployed you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. The Army (and I would assume other branches as well) has a whole slew of things set up for spouses with deployed soldiers. You can get free daycare, you can get a shit ton of other help from the military and I’m pretty sure most of your friends would lend a hand if you really needed it. But if you think your special because your husband is deployed, think again. The number of times I’ve left my kids with a babysitter this deployment? Probably around 5. The number of times I’ve asked friends for help? Probably around the same. I can do everything I need to do. I don’t need a hand out. I don’t need someone to save me from the day in and day out. I certainly wish I could have 20 minutes to myself, but like hell do I take advantage of people. Grow up ladies. This is your life. If you can’t make it through a deployment by asking for something or expecting something during your husbands deployment, think again. And on that note, if your friends do help you out, BE APPRECIATIVE!!! Seriously. They are taking the time out of their lives to give you a hand. Don’t be an asshole about it.

And along those lines, if you can’t follow OPSEC while your husband is deployed you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. I see this shit all the time. “My husband is gonna be home in 15 days!” Or “my husband will be home on April 19th!” Or “3 weeks to go!” Stop. Just stop. This is a security issue. It may not seem that important to you. But it is. Chill yourself out and be vague. I’m excited my husband is coming home…I really, really am… but I’m not telling the entire world when he’s coming home.

If you live on base and you can’t stop when the flag is being raised or lowered you probably aren’t cut out to be a military wife. I hate this one. More times than I can count, the music starts playing and people (mostly wives) are going about their business. Yea, I know that sometimes, it doesn’t mesh with your schedule to have to stop and face the flag, or stop your car. Sometimes, the kids are crabby. Sometimes, you have to be somewhere. But you are on a military installation. Where they do that. Every day. At the same time…every. day. If you don’t like it, either don’t live on post or don’t be out of your house or on post at those times. Seriously. It’s a simple rule.

Look ladies, I know being a military wife isn’t all glamorous. I see more people talk about the wives as dependapotomouses than I care to. But it’s because the crazy women….the ones who do all this shit…stick out like sore thumbs. Those of us who have deployed spouses, who just go on with our day to day of raising our kids the best we can by ourselves, and dealing with things as they come are lumped in with the crazies who demand respect when there is no respect to be given, or expect a handout just because their husband is deployed.

We aren’t supposed to get involved in our husband careers. I’ve been an Army wife for 5 years and the only thing I’ve ever talked about with my husbands bosses has been jokingly talking about where they should try to get us stationed at next (for the record, I pushed for Washington). My husband is in the army. Not me. Not my parents. Not his parents. And yes, we are just following him in life…and we’re all okay with that. But my job….my job is not to be his babysitter and make sure he’s doing x,y or z. He’s been in the Army long enough to know what’s going on and who to talk to if he needs something. Not mine. And it will never be mine.

Deployments suck. Staff duty sucks. Piss tests at 4am suck. Husbands being gone for over 12 hours a day sucks. I get that. I get that taking care of your 3 kids 24/7 for months on end sucks. I get it. But we chose to get involved with this life…we didn’t have to get married to the Army, but we did anyway. And we should take pride in the fact that our husbands do what they do instead of trying to go over their heads and be bitch-holes. But it sucks for them too. My husband has missed more of my birthdays than he’s been here for. He missed everyone birthday during this deployment. He’s missed A LOT. They sacrifice too.

Just remember all this the next time you decide to be an idiot. It’ll save all of us good Army wives a lot of trouble.

Why I Hate Facebook

21 Mar

So yesterday in the shower, I was thinking about how Facebook is an amazing social networking site. Where else can I learn about fucking science, embrace my atheism, see birth and breastfeeding photos and learn about all the idiots in the world, all while keep in touch with all my friends and family on the mainland?!

But let me tell you something. I. Hate. Facebook. And let me tell you why…

I’m “that guy”. Being a stay at home mom with an iPhone gives me access to Facebook all.the.time. It’s my duty, as a bored SAHM to share every single little thing that happens during my day…from how my toddler is a poop cheerleader, to how many bruises my son gets in a day, to my oldest daughters Justin Bieber obsession. And I share all of it. It probably seems like I do nothing all day (which isn’t true, just for the record) because I over share. I can’t help it. A lot of that has to do with the fact that my husband is deployed and I can’t unload everything on him when he gets home from work. More of it is because all of our family is on the mainland and they miss our kids. Also, I know you all love hearing about my grocery shopping trips and why I hate taking all three kids. Hey, at least I’m saving you the details about my cramps and periods.

Plus, sometimes I think I’m kind of funny. If I’m not, just pretend I am. Thanks.

I’m an Instagram whore. honestly, I don’t care about Instagram itself. I don’t use the hashtags (they fall into the category of #whogivesafuck for me) and I don’t really care about what other people are posting. But I can take pictures and put them all in sepia and post them on Facebook. Even my food….EVEN MY FOOD!!! I post so many pictures, mostly of my kids…so if you’re tired of the kid pics, you have three options. 1- get over yourself. 2- hide my posts. 3- delete my ass as a friend. (Also, the last time I told someone this, I got defriended. Big loss for me *eyeroll*)

Facebook makes it impossible to stalk the people who don’t want to be stalked. there are a handful of people who I feel it would be in my best interest if I Facebook stalked them. Definitely not in a romantic “I wanna be your baby mama” way (I’m already someone’s baby mama, thank you) but in a “I really want to know what you’re up to so I can rest easy” kind of way. Facebook makes that too damn hard. (Also, this is hypocritical of me because I have all kinda of security on my Facebook. But whatever.)

the games… so there are two categories to this. The games I hate seeing notifications for or getting send invites for. That just takes up space. I stopped playing games on Facebook at FarmVille. Second, the games I see people playing and then decide to download on my phone, which end up being huge time wasters in real life.

the idiots There has been more than a dozen times where I just want to bash my head into the nearest wall because of how dumb the Internet is. And thy are EVERYWHERE!!!! The judgey mcjudgersons, the trololololols, just….all the idiots need their own Facebook.

But there are things I do like about Facebook…..

Like the fact that if I’m in an argument with someone or I don’t like their views I can just ignore their ass. I don’t even defriend them or block their posts (usually). I just don’t look and pretend it doesn’t get me 5 minutes away from throwing things. I can’t do that face to face! It would be rude.

I can also talk about what I’m passionate about, like gay marriage/rights, breastfeeding and generally not being an asshole. I can also share a shit ton of stuff and leave it for my friends to ponder. Which is cool.

I can track my kids. I love seeing how my kids have grown and what ridiculous shit they’ve done. So it’s also for my benefit that I overshare because I’m quite forgetful.

I can piss off my husband by leaving the most ridiculous shit on his wall possible. Plus, we’re a pretty badass couple.

I get to see what all my friends are up to. I miss a lot being in Hawaii and moving with the military. I don’t get to see my best friend or my parents or my Inlaws very often, plus, it’s really cool to see what everyone is doing! I truly love 99% of what’s posted by my family and friends.

it’s social networking, bitches. I learn and find out about some of the coolest shit via Facebook. I really do. I find badass blogs and awesome stores. It’s all pretty fucking awesome.

So if you’re my Facebook friend, I seriously apologize for being an oversharer. And the Instagram thing. Sorry about that. But that isn’t going to change. So I’m sorry about that too. Just deal with it though.

The Fish is Sleeping…And Other Lies I Tell My Kids

5 Mar

Out of all my parent friends, I don’t know a single one who doesn’t tell their kids a small little lie every once in awhile.

These are some of my favorites…

“The ________ is closed” — insert anything your kid wants to do that you don’t feel like doing right then. Beaches and parks are included in this for me. Trust me kiddos, I love going to the beach as much as anyone…but all three of you with one adult? I’m totally outnumbered.

“In a minute….” — it ends up generally being more than 5 but less than 10 minutes.

“The fish is sleeping” — because I don’t want to pick you up every 10 minutes to see the fucking fish.

“so-and-so is sad.” — used mostly with the dog…sometimes, I just need one minute to myself.

“If you do x, y or z, you’ll probably die” — slipping out of the bathtub while trying to climb out probably won’t kill you, but there will probably be a lot of blood involved…so just stop while you’re ahead kiddo.

“I forgot to _______” — usually takes place with the laundry and certain shirts that my 6 year old wants to wear. I don't actually forget, (okay, sometimes I do forget) I'm just really lazy.

I tell my kids the truth sometimes…for instance….

“Even though I’m laughing, I’m still mad” — My kids are assholes sometimes. True story. And sometimes they do shit that part of me is super pissed off about and part of me thinks is hilarious. So I start laughing because it is over the top ridiculous. But just because I’m laughing, doesn’t mean I’m not mad.

“I don’t care about Justin Bieber” — Reilly is obsessed with the guy. Never mind that he’s 12 fucking years older than she is. Never mind that he’s a pop star. My kid loves this dude. And because of her I know tons of useless JB facts. I don’t care!! I really really don’t!!

“Of course you can!” — if my kids really, really want to do something (that isn’t going to probably kill them) I’m all for it. You wanna play 12 instruments? Done! You want to play baseball/soccer/football/tennis/dodgeball? Abso-fucking-lutely! You want badass earrings and pink hair?! Let me find some! I love letting my kids express themselves in ways that probably won’t kill them.

“I love you!” — totally ending on a sappy note. I love all three of my kids. They are all hilarious and fun. They are quirky and pains in my ass. I don’t care what they do as they grow up as long as they are happy, healthy, caring and respectful. Being a parent has its ups and downs…every parent knows that. But holy hell I love my kids to bits.

Saying Goodbye

27 Aug

Last week, the kiddos and I drove daddy to the airport for the mainland. After about a month on the mainland, he’ll be heading off to Afghanistan until the beginning part of next year.

We found out a couple months ago that there was an opening on a deployment, and the husband volunteered. After asking me of course. I said yes. I know he’s been itching to deploy again for awhile now…and the extra money will help us pay off some debt. Both of those things are a plus. I was in denial about him leaving for quite some time…pretty much until a couple days before he left. We had an amazing send off with friends. I made sure that we spent a ton of time as a family and took loads of pictures. We even had family pictures taken finally.

Reilly took it the worst I think…she’s been through a deployment before, but she was so young that she hardly remembers it. She’s had daddy around for the majority of the last three years, and that’s hard to give up. We talked about it as soon as it was confirmed that he was going, and made sure to talk to her about it frequently. Bachman is much too young to understand, and Ophelia can kind of understand but not to the full extent. We’ve been trying and that’s all we can do right now. One day at a time.

As for me…of course I am sad that he’s gone. I miss him like crazy and he hasn’t even been gone for a week. I miss him laying next to me. I miss the help. I miss watching him with the kids. I just miss my husband being here.

But…there’s good news. I feel good about this deployment. I feel like I am in a much better spot than I was during my husband’s last deployment. Last time, we had been married for about 8 months and we had spent the better part of that 8 months apart. We hadn’t even known each other for two months when we got married, so it was crazy. I wasn’t in a good place, we’ll say. I actually ended up seeing a therapist for a couple of months. But…we’ve been through a lot since then. We’ve grown as individuals and as a couple. We’ve become more…grown up.

It won’t always be easy…and it certainly won’t always be fun. And yes, there will be tears shed and nights laying in bed worrying…but that comes with the territory. But I think that despite the fact that I’m away from my family and friends and I have more on my plate now than I did before, I’m a lot stronger than I was a couple years ago. Everything is better now.

My plan is to stay focused on myself and my kids. My mom is coming out for a visit, and so is my best friend. I cannot wait to see them both. I have an amazing group of supportive friends here as well. I am truly thankful for all of them.

We’ll make it through this deployment, like we have everything else, as a family. And we’ll be so awesome.

Taken by Kristen Kean Photography

Letters To My Kids: Pt. 1

10 Aug

My Little Bubba,

It doesn’t seem like 6 months ago you were a newborn…I wanted to say “tiny little guy”…but tiny you were not. Plopping into this world into your daddy’s waiting hands…how time has flown by. I remember your birth like it was yesterday, but at the same time, it seems like ages ago. You’ve grown and changed so much in such a short period of time that it seems impossible that you ever fit inside my tummy.

You want to try new things all the time…and its all been in the last month. You want to try all kinds of food…but apple sauce makes you mad for some reason. I can’t wait for the day when you can actually grab food off my plate and chow down. You’ve been so good at sitting up, but today, you didn’t even want that…you kept straightening your legs out any time I tried to put you on your butt. You want to do all of this stuff right now…and I applaud your go-getters attitude. It’s so quick. You’ll be crawling and walking and running and jumping before I can even blink! Your hair is getting so, so long. It’s right above your eyes and its so gorgeous. Your blue eyes can just melt hearts.

Your personality matches your devastating good looks. You are one of the happiest babies I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing. You are so playful and so funny at such a young age, its just amazing. Last night, you lay in bed with daddy and I and just played. You’d look at him and play with his face…then you’d come rushing back to mama for nursing and giggles. And you did it over and over again until you just fell asleep. Your sisters just adore playing with you…and you and Ophelia have this weird, special bond that I hope stays forever. You will be such a great little brother to both of them.

After having two little girls, having a little boy was terrifying. At least I thought it would be. But when I got pregnant with you, I just knew you were going to be a perfect little boy…even before the ultrasound…I called you bubba when you were still in my belly because I just knew. You have been such a blessing to our family. Your sisters love you so much…your daddy loves you so much…and you just absolutely complete my world. After I had Reilly, I never thought that I could possibly love any other baby as much as I loved her….but I had your sister….and then you….and with each baby, your heart just grows bigger, not smaller.
Your daddy and I will do our best to give you every opportunity in the world…and anything you could possibly need. I see great things in store for you, my little red headed bubba.

 

I love you.
Mama

6 months
21lbs 15oz
28.36″

Yes, Baby….No, Baby…

21 May

When I got pregnant with Ophelia, my husband wanted a boy something terrible. Of course he did. What man wouldn’t want a son?! Well, when we found out we were having another girl, he was excited, but of course he still wanted his little man. So after her birth, we discussed how many babies we would have to get a boy. We decided on four as our grand total. The initial plan was have a third baby…if it was a boy, we would stop and if it was a girl, we’d try one more time.

So we got pregnant with LBB. Deep down, from the very beginning of my pregnancy with him, I just knew he was a boy. I felt that he was a boy, so strongly in fact, that I would have been really devastated had it been a girl (eventually happy because in all honesty, it wouldn’t matter if we had 10 girls and no boys…I’d still love all my kids. Though I’m sure my poor husband would have run away.) But we got pregnant with a boy that time. So we both assumed we were done. Even going so far as to discuss more permanent birth control to make sure three was our stopping number.

I had LBB and within a couple weeks I wanted…you guessed it…more babies. Just one more. And I’m not sure how I feel about that. The day little man was born, I told my husband I was never having anymore babies, ever. No more babies. I told him the same thing when I was in labor with Ophelia. My babies keep getting bigger and keep coming faster, I can only imagine down the road I’d end up like this “lady” in this Monty Python sketch from The Meaning of Life (the part I’m referencing is about 0:20 seconds in, so you don’t have to watch it all. Unless you want to, it’s pretty hilarious):


There are days when I really, really want another baby. When I look at Reilly and Ophelia and baby Bachman and I see big kids (yes…even my three month old…who looks like he could be 6-7 months old). I don’t see babies. I know that it’s only a short period of time before LBB moves out of our bed and into his own room. Ophelia will be two in September. Roo just turned 6. Where did all that time go?? I love baby cuddles. I love nursing. I love hugs and kisses from my kids. I love watching them learn new things. I love their happy faces.  I love everything about them….

Except when they stress me out and Ophelia continually continually pushes a dining room chair into the kitchen and get into every.single.little.thing. When Roo misbehaves or back talks. And when Bachman cries and cries and cries….which doesn’t happen very often, but it does happen.

But then things like this happen:

Miss O

 

And this:

Roo

 

And this:

LBB

 

And how could I NOT want another one??

The husband, I think, is torn. I haven’t actually asked him if he is dead set on not having another one. I believe (again, not sure) that he just sees how hard it can be sometimes with two babies under 2. Roo can be a handful sometimes. They all can. I mean, he WAS the one who said when we were first together that he wanted 13 babies. ;)

I’m still unsure. I don’t know if I really want another baby or I just don’t like the idea of not being able to have anymore. Brad and I talked about it today and I told him I’d get back on birth control and we could wait and see how we feel later. Not to mention, its much easier for me to get on some kind of birth control instead of him going through all he has to go through for a more permanent solution…at least for now. So, the plan, right now anyway, is for me to find a birth control that works for Bachman and I (meaning, it doesn’t negatively impact me and doesn’t negatively impact the breastfeeding relationship I have with Bachman). I think we should just wait a couple years and see how we feel…maybe revisit the question around my 29th birthday. Brad wants to wait to see if he gets picked up for MSG (Master Sergeant) in four years.

I dunno. I think we’ll just see how it goes over the next year or two and go from there. Maybe in a year I’ll decide that I really DON’T want anymore kids and that three is just enough for me. I don’t necessarily like being pregnant. If we did have another baby, we would definitely be planning a home birth from the very beginning…the way my births have gone, they’ve been faster labors and babies have been bigger…so I can only imagine what another baby would do. I’m just so torn.

 

I’ll be sure to keep everyone updated on if we decide to go for it again. Let me make it through this baby first and we’ll see what’s in store. :)