Mama Had a Baby and Her Head Popped Off

Alright, so I am not actually a dandelion.

And my head has not actually popped off…….Yet!

But damn if it doesn’t feel like it is about to.

Growing up I always thought it was the baby’s head that popped off, but now I think the original version was probably referring to the mom.  I am almost 100% certain.  It makes way more sense.

Not that the ‘baby version’ we grew up with made much sense either.

In any event, I feel like my head might just…pop off.

This is supposed to be a time of year when we really slow down, pause, reflect, focus on the important things and people in our lives.

How is it possible that the reality is So. Ridiculously. Far. From. That?   Like, completely opposite.  Like, North Pole vs. South Pole.

I still have presents to buy.  We haven’t even purchased our Christmas tree yet, let alone started any decorating.  I purchased Christmas cards three weeks ago and haven’t sent them yet.  I have to clean, shop and cook for our holiday party.* I have to clean and cook for all of the family coming in on Christmas day. (Not that I am not excited that you are coming, if you read this, family.  Or, the three family members who read this blog, I should say.)   I just spent more than half of the day bringing my car out to Queens just so that they could tell me that it will cost three times the amount I was quoted in Manhattan.  So, then I obviously drove back to Manhattan.  I have several Stella & Dot shows coming up.  I really need to step up the advertising for www.seedstutoring.org. (See what I did there? Oh, so clever.)  My house looks like three college frat guys live here.  Oh, wait…they kind of do.

So, none of the above ‘stressors’ (really, red dotted line?  ‘stressors’ isn’t a word?  I coulda sworn…) have anything to do with having a baby.  And I totally quoted the dandelion song that would have you think that having a baby is what makes your head pop off.

Well, here is why.  Because on top of all of the stress that pours into our lives during the holidays, if you have kids there isn’t really any break from it all.   We have a pile two and a half feet high of magazines I need to catch up on.  No joke.  I’m considering taking up smoking just so I can at least get some smoke breaks…but then I’d have to earn an extra $50 a week.

I am bringing Carlitos to school and to The Little Gym.  I am nursing Xavi every 3-4 hours, feeding him in between and then three times a day trying to remember to feed Carlitos, too. (Kidding, kidding.)  (I would love to say that I do forget to feed myself at some point, but if you have seen me in person lately you know that isn’t true.  Put ‘weight’ on the list of ‘stressors.’)  Changing diapers.  Bringing Carlitos to the potty.  Changing clothes.  Putting down for naps.  Bedtime.  Middle of the night wakings for feedings, sickness, night terrors, thirst, or that woman who insists on YELLING about, well, nothing really, at 3:30 am beneath our sons’ window.

And obviously, because we live in the arctic of New York City and because we have a 3-year-old who is in a confined space with other 3-year-olds three times a week AND who feels the need to caress all walls, handrails and yes, sometimes even floors, as we walk through the subway, we live with a pretty consistent runny nose and cough.  All of us. Thanks, Carlitos darling.

All of that, plus probably another 78 things or so, are why my head feels like it just might pop off.

And then I remind myself that I am lucky to have every single one of those ‘stressors.’  (Sorry, I feel the need to keep putting it in quotes since my computer feels the need to keep underlining it in red.  I’m pretty sure I am right on this one and this silly computer is wrong.)  Yes, I am even lucky to have the three ‘frat guy wannabes’ living in my home.

Alright, alright, they are what I am most lucky to have.

Empty beer cans and dirty underwear and snot and all.  (I’ll let you guess which one is responsible for what.)

*Talk about being fortunate, I realized this winter that all four of us have at least two winter coats of some type.  I matched this realization with the knowledge that there are many people (including children) who do not have a winter coat at all.  That fact kind of makes me sick to my stomach.  Especially when I think of how cold I just was walking home from the subway with a knee-length hooded parka, scarf and boots.   There is no excuse for kids to experience this cold without any of those items to keep them warm.  So, our holiday party is also serving as a coat drive for New York Cares.  If you want to get a coat over to us to bring in with our donations, please contact me.  Or just consider donating locally.  Thank you.

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