Keeping Up With The Joneses

I have read so many blogs and articles where mothers feel guilty for not being “super mom.” I know you should not look at some things a person does and wish you could do that because that same person might be looking at you and wishing they could do some of the things you do. I know¬†I should not do that, but I can’t help feeling the way I do. I was recently asked how I find any time to run at all much less six miles or more a day. It has been hard, but I’ve had to carefully schedule it. So I know some people do look at me, but if they only knew.

I feel bad for my friends when they are sick. I have mutual friends offer to bring over dinner and I feel worse because I did not offer to do that. Heck, I do not know what my family is having for dinner tonight! Then on top of that I have associates or people I don’t really know that well that are sick or having a tough time and these same friends offer to watch their kids or make them food. I feel like I am doing good watching my own two and again did I mention I do not know what we are eating for dinner tonight or any other night right now?

Part of me tells myself that I do not have to save the world. I do what I can. Maybe I send one friend a get well gift basket or gift card to cheer her up. I still do not know what to do about the associates. Another part me feels that I shouldn’t worry about them. I do not know them real well. Then another part of me feels like that isn’t very nice. I know of them and I know they need help. I should do something. Then I stress some more, my husband comes home, and we fight over what we are going to eat because neither of us knows what to cook.

Is that part of “keeping up with the Joneses?” I used to always think it was more about material things like cars and houses. Now I think it is anything you feel that another family has that is better than yours. That mom is so nice. She baked cupcakes instead of buying them for her son’s birthday. That mom took meals to five new moms last week. That mom made a meal for a friend of a friend just for the heck of it. I feel so selfish just cooking (if you can call it that) for my family.

Oh and then there is the development thing. I know my little ones were born a little early and I am supposed to see them as a month or so younger, but they do so well that it is hard for me to do that. I don’t want to push them to do things they are not ready to do. I want to enjoy them. I want to watch them grow at their own pace and level. I can’t help wonder if I am doing what I am supposed to be doing to get them there.

I am a first time mom and I feel so insecure. I know a lot of moms feel that way even if it isn’t her first time. I saw a kid the other day that is only a month older than mine and she already knows her 1, 2, 3s. Are my kids behind? We are just now getting to know where our nose and eyes are. Am I slacking, am I expecting too much, or am I comparing apples to oranges?

We have a program with the school district called Parents as Teachers. Our parent educator that comes out and sees us has never said anything bad. She always says the babies are right on track. Our pediatrician has also said that they are doing great. Why then do I look at these other kids doing stuff mine can’t yet do and wonder if I am doing something wrong?

I know I am not alone in any of these thoughts and feelings that I have. Like I said, if you search mommy sites and blogs you are going to find article on top of article about some mom not feeling good enough. So why do we do it? Why is this subject such a big deal and people constantly write about it? Well I think I sat down and started this because it felt good to get it off my chest. That and what one of my blogging friends said one time, “Blogging is much cheaper than therapy.”

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Looks Like Progress

I finally got a full week of training in last week. This week is looking pretty good as well. The babies even act like they want to go down and play in the basement in their little play area.

I think part of getting all my training runs in last week is that it snowed and we did not go anywhere. This week has been a little harder. I want the babies to go to their play dates because they learn a lot and have so much fun. So I have to schedule my running later in the day. I am just not a morning person.

I might have to try a few morning runs though. My long Saturday run was rough. I cut it short by a mile because the babies had enough of being in the basement. Baby Girl wanted to go back upstairs and Baby Boy just wanted to explore the rest of the basement. I might try to get the hubby to feed them breakfast and watch them for a bit while I run this Saturday. He isn’t a morning person either. I might be able to get him to do it if I tell him to bring them down to me after they are fed, changed, and dressed. That way they will not get bored so quick. I will help by having their clothes ready.

That is another thing. I think my husband is taking this more seriously especially since I paid to do a half marathon in April. There are not any marathons in the immediate area in May or June. The one I think I want to do in June is over an hour away and starts really early in the morning. I think I will have to stay the night there if I do it.

I mentioned that my husband was competitive, but I think he also does not understand doing things on your own. He was in track or cross-country running in high school. So he likes to run in groups. He asked who I was going to room with if I stay the night in the other town before the marathon. I told him I didn’t know anybody doing the run. He does not get that. The funny thing is that any run I have done with other people I ended up running alone anyway. We might meet up at the end and eat and drink together, but I am usually alone during the race. I don’t mind either. I don’t want to push too hard to keep up with someone way faster than me and I don’t want to feel bad for holding them back either. I also do not want to be held back, but that has hardly if ever happened since I am usually the slowest. So if I do that marathon by myself and he shows up with the babies later, I am super okay with that. I think we will have a good time at the end.

I might find someone who is running it, but if I don’t it won’t change my mind. I want to do a marathon soon. I need to do several before I take on the Goofy. I think I am also going to find a way to help out a few charities. I know a lot of people run to help their favorite charity. The most recent Runner’s World had an article with some recommendations for some apps that I am going to look into and see if I like them.

So all is well. My back doesn’t hurt as much since I stretch more. I do have a little pain in the back of my right knee. I’ll have to look up what that is all about and see what I can do before it gets worse.

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Yummy Buffalo Chicken

Now this isn’t a review or a paid thing. Everything expressed here is my own opinion. I am not sure how often or if I will ever make a post like this again, but I have got to tell ya about this great recipe.

I like super easy things to make. The cooking shows kind of make me mad in how they try to sell you how easy their dish is to make when they have someone do all the prep work for them. I HATE prep work. Chopping, measuring, pulling out all the ingredients, and the mess is the worst! I even look at Rachael Ray’s 30 minute meal stuff with a skeptical eye. Then I saw this super easy recipe.

I did not get my recipe from this particular link but this is almost exactly like the one I make. You can even put the chicken breasts in frozen. It is so awesome. Now I am not sure how many calories are in it. It probably won’t make any healthy runner’s diet list or anything but if you have problems thinking of something for dinner and want as little fuss as possible this is great.

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It is so yummy and did I mention easy to make? It is not for the itty bittys. I mean it is buffalo chicken after all. Mommy and Daddy like it. I can totally see us taking this to a Super Bowl party.

As a side note we did not go to any Super Bowl Party. We ended up babysitting for my sister-in-law. Maybe we will do that next year.

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Support Is A Good thing Ya Know

Okay. . . Sigh. I am not sure my husband really supports me in my little goal here. First let me tell you what kind of support I like to have. I have always been one to appreciate positive motivation. I don’t mean the people who only talk like it is all unicorns and rainbows. I mean the people that are honest and believe in you. The people that say, “You ran a 15 minute mile pace for three miles. That is great! I know you will only get better.”

Now what I don’t care for is the naysayers. I am not one to focus and train just to prove somebody wrong. When I tried to do Pike’s Peak Half Marathon back in 2005 I had a guy that I thought was my friend tell me point blank that I could not do it. He even laughed a little as he said it.

I was dating my husband when the above scene took place. I never recall my husband being negative or having doubts about my ability to do the race. I can’t remember if I mentioned the outcome in my other posts, but I made it to the last aid station. I was turned around due to weather and they canceled the rest of the race. I might post my write-up of that story here some time.

Anyway my husband was actually very nice and supportive during that whole time. He even gave me a little necklace that I had admired in a store a few days earlier. He said something along the lines of, “I know you didn’t get your medal, but I thought you might like this.” How sweet was that?

When I did my write-up of my experience I made sure to send a copy to my “friend.” He sent a very nice reply back to me. I may have made sure to send him a write-up of what happened, but he didn’t have much influence in my training or thoughts until after the race.

Now there was only one time when we were dating that I remember my husband being negative. It was New Years Eve and he said there was no way I was going to make a group run with our friends the next morning. I did, but I had already decided I was going to go. I packed my stuff and had it ready at his house. It was settled.

The reason I go on about this now is that it seems so painful to ask my husband to watch the babies while I go for a run. He gives me a laundry list of things he does not get to do which kind of makes me mad. He went cycling all through the summer the twins were born and all last summer. I mean he made the top ten riders to have gone to the most rides both years. Heck, I think he was even in the top five if not first or second! What I would like to happen is just for him to say something like, “Sure, Hon. I’ll watch the babies. Have a nice run. I love you.” That is it. No complaints or bickering.

I know some people would think that it was nice that he at least watches the babies but it just really sets me off when he complains so much. He has even pointed out that no matter what he says he still watches them. He basically says I should ignore him when he goes on like that. Several Wednesdays during the summer he would come home and say something like, “You don’t want to run tonight, do you? It is too hot/rainy/windy/etc. I can go for my bike ride, right?” He would say this with me dressed in full running gear standing right in front of him. I would get so mad especially when he had Monday, Thursday, and Saturday to ride. He would say that he wanted to do the Wednesday ride because it was the closest to our house. Wednesday is the only day my group runs together other than early Saturday morning when the babies eat breakfast.

I could not stand his comments so much that I bought him a bike rack for his car for an early Father’s Day present so he could go to his ride and I could take the babies on my group run. Our hand me down double jogging stroller does not fold up real well. I have to put it on our bike rack on our SUV to get to the group run. I kind of shot myself in the foot when I bought that other bike rack because I wasn’t always in the mood or had the time to get both babies ready (sunscreen, hat, diaper bag, etc), lug the bike rack around the garage to get it on the SUV, get the stroller down from the garage ceiling, put the stroller on the rack, drive there, get it off the rack, get the babies in it, run and then reverse everything to get back home. The days I did do all of that, I just told myself all that lifting and what not was good for me and just extra exercise.

I sometimes wonder if he thinks I won’t or cannot do this because he does not understand my motivation. He is motivated by competition or someone saying he can’t do something. He likes to prove people wrong a lot. Well, like I said, he was at least one of the top ten riders for the last two years.

My whole point is that I am just not 100% sure he is in this with me. There is the fact that he will watch the babies, but not without some choice words. He is so hard to ignore because he complains or criticizes so often. The man does not let anything go. If something is not perfect, he just HAS to say something. We have been to a marriage conference before and they said that you do NOT have to say everything out loud. He says he has to say something because how else will I learn. To me that is like having your neighbor with all the leaves in his back yard lean over your fence and complain about how long your grass is growing. Gee, thanks pal.

Maybe I do not have anything to complain about here. I know actions speak louder than words, but words have consequences too, right? Words can hurt especially when it comes from someone you thought was in your corner.

As a side note I had to edit this several times. After I was mad about something I would feverishly write about how horrible he is with specifics to the most recent fight. After I cooled off a bit I would then come back and delete a lot. I am sure some of you married folk can relate.

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