Destined To Be A Dad

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As I sit here thinking about Father’s Day I cannot, or maybe chose not to think hard about the hurt I still feel about my own dad being gone. I chose to think about another amazing man and father, my husband.

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The man that I have been blessed with for 16 years now. This is the father I want to talk about. He has spent his entire life never knowing his father. In fact to this day he doesn’t know who his father is. His mother decided not only to keep him in the dark, she decided that the man didn’t need to know she was having his child. And just like that, with her selfish decision (because she didn’t want to share him with the father) my husband grew up without a father. And that loss was quietly present as he found out he was going to be a Dad.

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When we got pregnant (yes I say we because I sure didn’t fertilize my own eggs) he was so nervous. He was worried that because he never had  a father as an example,  He wouldn’t know how to be one. His excitement grew with every doctors visit, every ultrasound photo, every little beat we heard of our son’s tiny little heart. He would bombard the doctors with questions about every little thing, making sure he had all bases covered. He had sympathy morning sickness, and even gained more than my 15lbs, somewhere near 20-25lbs. He read and spoke to my belly, hoping our son would recognize it after he was born. Because I was a high risk pregnancy I had to go to the doctor a lot, he wanted to be with me every time.

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And then our son was born. This wonderful man sat by my side as the doctor had to cut my son out of me after the anesthesiologist left the OR before making sure I was numb enough. My husband sat there holding my hand and was so scared he would lose the woman he loves more than anything and the son he was so eager to hold. When the doctor told us our son’s heart rate was at a dangerously low rate, he held my hand as I looked at him and told him to take care of our son if I passed. When I nearly broke his hand as the pain reached a level I never knew before. I looked at him as tears fell from my face and the look was one I will never forget. It was filled with fear, love and pride. When he finally delivered our boy the doctor raised him up to let us see him.  My husband was so happy, laughing as our son peed right in the doctor’s face. The love I saw in this man was so beautiful. I knew right then that this man who was so afraid he wouldn’t know how to be a dad, was going to be the best dad ever.

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The first time he picked our son up he  after he had changed his very first diaper ever, our son peed all the way down his shirt. He didn’t blink an eye. He smiled at this tiny little being in his arms with such adoration. I felt as though my heart could almost explode with love at seeing the man I love so much, holding the son we had prayed for.

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All of his fears about him potentially not being a good father was for not. He realized not only did our son love for him to hold him, but even in the earliest of days our son responded to his daddy’s voice.  He would turn his little head trying his best to find his daddy. Their bond was the most beautiful thing I have ever had the privilege to witness. My husband was and is amazingly a hands on kind of dad. He would come home every evening and take over the care of our son for a few hours, just so I could lie down and rest awhile. No kid or wife could ask for more love or care.

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This wonderful goofy, kind and beautiful man has been by my side through major medical events. And never once has he flinched in his complete devotion to me and to our son. He is not perfect and has never claimed to be. But he is good hearted, funny, stubborn, watches WAY too much baseball and is a complete nerd…just like me. He will do without (as we both feel we should) so that our son can have whatever he needs.

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About 4 years ago I had to have major surgery. And was in the hospital for 29 days, he was by my side the entire time, because he knows my fear of hospitals. Because of how good of a man he is, his work gave him paid leave so he wouldn’t be so stressed. They knew there would be bills rolling in and him would not be able to pay them. That is the kind of love and loyalty he inspires. That is that kind of husband, dad and mate. And the man I am so thankful that our son and I are truly blessed to have in our lives.

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He is the kind of dad that when our son wanted to play tee ball, but didn’t want to be away from us, he stepped up and volunteered us to be coaches. We shared that experience every summer until 3 years ago when he got into the little league bracket. The joy this man of mine has when watching our boy play baseball is second to none. He paces saying he would be a better coach. That makes it somewhat hilarious to watch him. He looks at our boy out on the field and at the plate with almost child like happiness.

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This man who was so afraid that he wouldn’t know how to be a Dad, is by far one of the greatest dads I have ever seen.

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Fatherhood came to him seemingly easy. He was made to be a father. His kind heart and love a blessing that makes him a great husband and dad.

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This dad is the most loving person I have ever met. He is there for us through thick and thin. He loves being a Dad, especially to a son like ours, who is so mature and intelligent. This man is simply the best thing in both our son and my lives.

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We have been through Hell and back, lost our way there for a while. But we found it again and we three are a lot stronger for it.

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Thirteen years of fatherhood now and he has never changed, our son is so blessed to have this man as a father. My husband tells me I am the reason he is a good dad, he says he has always watched me and learned what he needs to be as a parent. But I know without a doubt that even if I had passed on that OR table, he would have been every thing  our child needed. He is quietly strong and he would give his life to save our son, without blinking.

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This is the father I have the honor of celebrating this father’s day. And I cannot think of a better one.

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The Day My Husband Gave Me The Plague

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It started off as most things do, innocently. The gentle smile in his hazel eyes. His hand holding mine, as he watched tv and I read my book. After a while he got sleepy, he leaned in for a soft, sweet kiss and said “goodnight baby I love you”. And off he fell into a deep, dreamless sleep.
I got comfy and he threw his arm across my waist. A few hours later, I woke from my long 1 hour nap with a headache so bad I actually reach up and felt around to make sure I didn’t get hit with something. I took a couple Tylenol and finally dozed off. Then the alarm went off and I got my tired butt up and got ready to take the hubs to work and the kid to school.

And then it hit. Nausea so bad water was welling up in my  mouth, head splitting and some sort of black magic curse of pain in my stomach. But naive me brushed it off and we set out on our way. Chatting about nonsense and having a chuckle or two. I dropped them both off in their proper places. None too soon! as by now there was enough pain in my GI track that it felt like the gods had came down from Olympus and were doing full on battle with one another! Holy hell! Hurry up I thought to myself. Wtf is this douche in front of me riding his breaks? Didn’t the mofo know how my gut was now in the last battle and any time now I could be like Mt Vesuvius!?! Move your ass, you old fart!!
Finally I pass him and am full on Daytona 500ing it toward home when the woman in front of me decides to stop….AT A YELLOW LIGHT! Bitch you aren’t new, stop on red, haul ass on yellow! Finally the light changes and granny move at speed of a snail. I rush past her, broke about 3 laws as i peeled out. Don’t these dick heads know the insane look of a woman having to hold her ass cheeks so tight if she farted it would either whistle or shart her pants? Good God man move it, move it, move it!!! Finally I see my house! Thank you sweet baby Jesus! Fly up the drive, throw open the door, trip over the dog…little bastard … And finally get to the bathroom! Hallelujah fucking choir is what I was hearing in my head!
Then when I finally could drag myself, sweating, white as snow, stomach empty I fall onto the bed and text the husband….
Me: Hey i am home and btw you are a complete bastard.
Him: why you say that baby?
Me: oh idk. Maybe because you gave me your fucking plague and I pulled a ass cheek muscle trying not to pee out my ass, while my intestines reenacted the Alamo!!!!
Him:(laughing his ass off) I’m sorry babe did you make it?
:evil:Did I make it? You are a total wanker! And I hope you shit yourself!

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Son I Owe You a Apology

OMG MOM I’M SO FAT!! As he looked in the mirror at his own reflection.

Do you think about it? When you are in the dressing room of a new store that sizes their clothing differently? When the jeans size you usually wear don’t fit therefore making you frustrated? The sadness is an almost physical blow, causing self loathing and hate of your body. When you as a parent, a friend, a auntie or uncle look in the mirror and instead of seeing the awesome person you are all you see is the negative? Your mind, with the inner dialogue of frustration, anger turn emotionally abusive and yet you do it? You allow yourself to talk to yourself with poison tongue! You look in the mirror with loathing. Not caring that you are your child’s hero. That you are the one person that they look to as an example of what’s good and what’s bad. When nothing that you accomplish seem to matter as much as the fact you’ve went up a size?

I know this because of something that happened a couple months ago. I took my son to the doctor because he was broken out with a rash. The doctor asked him to take his shirt off. When the doctor stepped out for a moment my son, then 12, looked at his reflection in the mirror on the wall. He then turned to me and said “OMG mom look how fat I am!”.  He said this 3 or 4 times and was pinching his skin in disgust. I looked at him and was shocked! This child has to sit down, lean over and pooch out his stomach just to gather enough skin to pinch. I got up and went to him and hugged him. “Baby boy you are NOT fat!!! Please stop saying negative crap like that about yourself! You are perfect just how you are!”

This kid is my everything. The person I love most in this world, and there he was standing, looking at himself with hatred. I hugged him again and said,” son I don’t want you talking to yourself that way! That is not healthy. You are not fat at all. I don’t know why you would say that. Have kids at school been mean?”.

And then I was even more shocked when he turned to me and said “mom you do it all the time! You have my whole life, even when you were skinny. You have never said anything else when you look at yourself, but ugh I’m too fat. But to me you’ve always been perfect and beautiful. You’re my mom.”

HOLY CRAP! This child has learned many things from me, and I won’t lie and say they are all good, they’re not. But this is one thing that was never my intention of teaching my child.
I ignorantly assumed he wouldn’t be like me because he is a boy.

To be honest I have never thought negative body image would affect boys/men. Not at all. My father, brothers, uncles, not my past boyfriends… Non of them ever seemed to give a one thought to how they looked. Even my son’s father has never been into how he is built. Therefore I was ill equipped of knowledge that my own issues  was setting such a horrible example. How about you, are you or were you being the examples that you hope your children will be?

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You Are What You Wear?

My son, husband and I where in the neighborhood doughnut shop, noshing on copious amounts of coffee and doughnuts. When in walks a woman, wearing about as much as Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman. It was so provocative, that everyone in the shop couldn’t help but to stare. She had a football jersey (no bra) that barely covered her chest, a pair of booty shorts (that were a few sizes smaller than she should wear) and a pair of platform sandals. She couldn’t help but to attract attention. But was it the kind she wanted? I’m not sure, and I sure hope not.

Ladies, we need to talk. As a woman, a wife, a mother, a daughter a auntie and a friend I cannot help but to be sad when I see you dressing like you rent yourself by the hour.

Not just wearing sexy dresses, shoes, shorts, etc. But when you wear dresses so short your gyno can do a pelvic exam without you changing …your dress is much too short.

If by chance you are wearing short shorts, and 3 or 4 inches of you butt crack is hanging out, and people can see whether you have waxed, tell if you are full on 70s porn bush ….your shorts are too flipping short.

If by chance you are wearing a shirt that is so tight, can tell not only that you are braless, but we can count your ribs, imperfections, every little bump on your areola…your shirt is way to freaking tight.

If by chance you are wearing low rise jeans, that ride so low the person behind you can tell if you are commando, have a hairy butt crack and if you have wiped good enough…your pants are too low.

Don’t get me wrong I don’t care what you wear at clubs, adult functions, in your own bedroom. But when you come to little league games, Chuckle Cheese, the zoo, schools, or anywhere else that children frequent. Have some respect for yourself! Have some respect for others! Be a better example to young girls (and boys) who see how you dress and carry yourself.

Whether you know it or not the way you dress is the first impression you give others about you. It may not be fair, hell it may hurt and you may get mad. But there is a fine line between sexy and slutty…. It is up to you to decide.

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Service, sacrifice and Determination

I was maybe 10 or so years old when my great uncle came to visit my grandma. She had fixed this huge spread of food….including chicken feet. I was absolutely grossed out. And in the dramatic way that only kids have, I announced, loudly, that “THERE IS NO WAY I AM EATING THAT! I WOULD RATHER DIE OF STARVATION”.
My uncle reached over and got my hand and said the saddest thing I had ever heard. ” little girl you have no idea what you will find yourself eating when you get hungry enough!”.

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And after dinner he came out on my grandma’s porch and sat beside me and shared his story.
My uncle was a ww2 POW or prisoner of war. He was captured and put in a bamboo hell. Nothing to shield them from the elements and rarely, rarely ever fed them. They got so hungry they would catch and eat whatever they could reach around them. They actually looked forward to the rats that came at night to bite them or see if their was anything to eat. These amazing men stayed alive for years by eating bugs, rats, snakes and any other thing. They were true hero’s, the people kids should look up to. Not these ridiculous celebrities or sports stars.
These men not only served our country, they survived hell. And I couldn’t be more proud, honored and humbled by their sacrifice and service.
To all of you that have served our country in the armed forces…  Thank you and May God bless you for all your days!

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Moms United = Unstoppable

I was sitting and reading, while my son then 9, played at the local park. When a mother came up and sat down very hard beside of me. “How can you be all calm over here when you got kids playing? Ain’t you afraid they will get hurt or do something they shouldn’t?  Or are you one of them parents that just let your kids do whatever they want?”

I cannot lie I was pissed off at how crass and confrontational she was. She didn’t know me. She didn’t know my son. Nor did she know what kind of parent I was. Yet here she sat judging a complete stranger.

Now to those who know me well know it takes a Hell of a lot to make me angry. Normally I let people’s opinions not stick to me, I let it slide off, like water off a duck’s back. But you bring my child into anything, especially when you don’t know who we are…well let’s just say it doesn’t roll off nearly as well.

I see all kinds of different parenting. And unless you are
Abusing your children, I don’t care how you parent them. (Now I’m talking physically, mentally or sexually abusing your kid. Not this new day bullshit that parents who allow their kids to have some time to explore, to play without it being structured, to be more than a foot away from them get in trouble for, thanks to parents who do not approve, calling the authorities.) Claiming the parents are being negligent, abusive or uncaring for allowing their children to have freedom of self confidence, independent thinking and learning.

What I am saying is, it doesn’t matter what way other parents raise their children. Even when they are vastly different than the way you do. Not one parent is a perfect parent. Yet there always seems to be someone that thinks they are better than any other parent.
I know I sure as hell am not even close to being perfect. Some days I’ll admit on being the less than crappy parent. Sometimes I am an amazing parent. But never am I the perfect parent and never will be. And I don’t try to be. I give my son my very best…and some days the best is well below par if I am being honest.

My parental goal always is simple… To be a loving, happy and the best parent I can be, that day. Sometimes I have to break it down to the hour while dealing with health issues…but my son knows I love him unconditionally and will always.

Social media and media in general have amped those differences in moms. And we have allowed them too! I have zero animosity against you if you bottle feed your babies. I have nothing against you if you breast feed your babies. Know why? Because both of these methods feed your children! Co sleep, cry it out, vax/no vax,  as long as you love your children and raise them into compassionate caring children and adults that is what matters! These differences do not make anyone wrong, it just means we parent differently. We need to lift each other up. Not just us moms, but parent’s in general . We moms need to encourage these amazing dads too. There are so many of them that take just as good care of their children as moms do. So when dads are spending time with their kids why do people assume the care is less than stellar? I know many amazing dads, my husband is one of them. And yet stereotypes have run rampant that moms are much better parents than their male counterparts.

The biggest thing we all need to learn is simple… Agree to disagree on certain things, but stop believing your way is the only way. Life is too short to waste it arguing and being unkind and judgmental. If only  we would come together for the greater good… Teaching and being good examples for our children.

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Three Years, Seems Like Yesterday

May 17, 2012
I just pulled out of the hospital to run home and shower, when my cell phone rang. It was my sister telling me that our dad had just taken his last breath. My dad who was always my best friend, would loved me unconditionally, who took care of both me and my son after my c-section, the man that taught me to love reading as much as air, my partner in the love of a good western, silly jokes and journaling. My dad who answered the phone EVERY TIME I called with “how are you feeling today baby girl” … Gone.

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Taken after 3 years of horrible health. In those 3 years he was in a major accident and nearly died, had to have a pace maker put in after a few too many heart attacks, kidneys shut down after dye was used in the heart cath they did, then he got the diagnosis of cancer. We knew there was a chance that he had only a matter of time. But he had beaten so many things, deep down I think we thought he would surely be the one that could beat it. But he didn’t.
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My heart still hurts as though it happened just yesterday. The hurt is still so raw for my son that he never wants to talk about him. You see my delivery of my son was a horrible one. One that I would do over a billion times for my son. The anesthesiologist walked out right after he did the epidural…to go get a cup of coffee, downstairs. As soon as the doctor made the first cut I felt it. And then my son’s heartbeat dropped and then disappeared and I told them to save him no matter what it cost me. So the recovery was not nearly as easy as I had hoped.

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But my dad took care of him and I. He bonded with my dad before he and I did. Even in deaths door my dad could sense my son coming down the hospital hall toward his room…without ever having heard him. When I was in the hospital when my lung collapsed, my son stayed with them and my dad would get him out of bed, help him get ready for school and fix his breakfast.

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My son, husband and I miss him more than ever. My dad took my husband under his wing and was the only dad he ever has had. When my dad passed it hurt him as though he was his real dad. My dad loved him. I remember the first time I took him to meet my parents, my dad’s first question was “do you have a job?” when Rand answered him with a yes and dad then told him he would “allow” him to date me.
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I miss his quirky sense of humor, his intelligence, his hugs. They say time will heal the hurt, but it doesn’t. Not in the least. But it gives you the time to go on with life and not be drowned in the grief. But late at night, when the world is quite, when everyone but me is asleep, the pain and heartache rushes in and nearly takes my breath.

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Daddy I miss you a little more lately than usual. Our boy is growing up and I wish you could see him. You would be so proud of the young man he is becoming. Thank you for never giving up on me, or allowing me to give up on myself. I love you for loving me  and never giving up on me.

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