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2nd Month

  • Maybe Metaphors Are Lost On You?

    Reading and writing is good and stuff.  It important.  I care much reading nice.

    I spend a shit ton of my life writing and reading, so of course, theoretically I want The Munch to share these passions.  But reading children’s books is as boring as sitting on the toilet without your phone, and I desperately fear the day Munch starts writing about me… because boy am I in for it.

    But of course I have to prioritize The Munch’s education over my own selfish needs of wanting to avoid crappy kids books, and my desperate attempts to censor my child from exposing me like I have her.   Ahhhhh parenting.  The sacrifices we make!So I read The Munch books everyday, and then I read them again and again until she memorizes them and feels somewhat in control of her existence.

    Of course not all kid-books are torturous.  There are classics like Madeline, Pippi Longstockings, Peter Rabbit, and The Runaway Bunny.  Even though some of my favorites have demented values and a slightly skewed moral compass, I still appreciate the tangible effort and artistry that is put into the illustrations.

    But what drives me crazy about most modern kid-books is the computer-generated art that goes along with it.  If the book is beautiful, and someone took the time to hand draw each page as if it mattered, then I can truly honor it.  But when its some shitty story about some shitty talking peanut with shitty ass pictures I pretty much want to throw up in my hands.

    I crave some sort of stimulation when reading to The Munch, so when the stories and art blow cock I want to blow my brains out.

    So the other day I was searching through my shelves and saw a book called “I Haiku you” that was a gift from her babysitter.  I figured that would at least be somewhat intellectually titillating.  But even though I found the book to be quite poetic, I realized that toddlers don’t really understand metaphor.

    Toni: “your rainbow colors

    come out to play when it pours-

    chase the gray away”

    Munch: “But I can’t see it chase the gray away!”

    Toni: “Well, it’s not exactly chasing the gray away.  Its just that when the kids draw a rainbow it makes the rainy day seem less gray.”

    Munch: “Oh.”

    Toni: “Here, I will read another…

    what are the chances

    maybe one in a million?

    what luck I found you

    Munch: “But I can’t see one in a million!”

    Toni: “Munch you can’t take this so literally, one in a million is an expression and she is talking about the 4 leaf clover she found.”

    Munch: “But what are the chances? What are they?”

    Toni: “It’s also an expression.”

    Munch: “But I can’t see what are the chances?”

    Okay, fine. So maybe I get why kid-books usually try and keep shit simple.

    “Mamma I can’t see love letters in the tummy!!!!!”


  • My Child is a Shaman

    We all have an inner voice.  Mine perhaps is more outer than most, but my belly button is an innie so it all evens out.  Unless you have hyper-conditioned your mind to speak only affirmations, chances are your internal dialogue is quite critical.  Mine is telling me, “that was a stupid sentence, and you are always wordy, and write too many run-ons, and your skin is looking grey, and your hair is stringy, and there you go with those run-on sentences again you big poopy face dumb-dumb.”

    Some people are more sadistic to themselves then others.  Self-abuse is never okay because it can make you go blind, or grow hair on your palms.  At least that is what I was told.  I have a friend who is a lovely talented angel from another dimension of perfection, but she is always ripping herself apart – which is gross and makes stains.  The story she tells herself of her life does not honor her ability or accomplishments.

    Today she was lying on my bathroom floor, going down a spiral of negativity, and feeling really down.

    Toni: “Munch, should we go check on Bridget to see if she is okay?”

    Munch: “Okay… Mamma she is on the floor!”

    Toni: “I know Munch!”

    Munch: “Is she okay? Is she feeling sick?”

    Toni: “Yes Munch, she is feeling sick.”

    Munch: “She is sooo sick and she is on the floor?  What’s the matter with her?”

    Toni: “I don’t know Munch… what do you think she is sick with?”

    Munch: “Ummmm I think she is sick in her mouth.”

    Isn’t that so insightful?  I have never complained about my mouth being sick, and really don’t think The Munch was reenacting some ailment she has witnessed.  She came up with that out of her own intuition.  And I think she is completely right.  We too often tell ourselves that we aren’t good enough.  The inner-dialogue harshly condemns more than it expresses positivity and self-love.

    The Munch is a wise sage.  A shaman if you will… because maybe we are all a little sick in our mouths.

    (Look! Munch did our make-up! Don’ we look amazing!?”



    March 22, 2013 • 2nd Month, Baby Brain, Mommy Mind, Musings, Talking and Not Talking • Views: 618

  • 1st Trip Without the Baby

    For the __ weeks that my baby has been alive, I have yet to go anywhere without her. Since I am exclusively breastfeeding, and I can’t leave my tits behind, I really can’t go that far anyway… and to be honest, it never really occurred to me.

    Until one day…

    My mom and I were sitting around chit chatting about a dietary cleanse she was about to start.

    “I really want to start my fast today Toni, but I need lemons to make lemon water, and I don’t have any. I really don’t feel like going to the store…”

    I have to admit I was only half listening because I was too busy spacing out staring at my sleeping baby, wondering if I was awake or asleep.

    “Uh huh….”

    “Maybe you want to go to Shaw’s for me? I can watch the baby while you go?” Whoa! Now I am listening… this is a revolutionary idea!

    “Do you think she will be okay?”

    “Don’t be ridiculous Toni! Of course she will be okay! Now bunny off and get me at least a dozen lemons. Make sure they’re organic.”

    I decided not to over think the moment. Adrenaline was pumping through my veins like I had just jumped out of a plane. It was a mix of total fear, and complete excitement. I was going somewhere. By myself! I am going to Shaw’s!!! (Okay… not that adventurous I know…)

    So I jumped in the car, and immediately started speeding. No reason to do that at all. I just did. Then I turned on the radio, and cranked it up so loud it was almost uncomfortable. I felt so strange. Like a shadow of my old self, for behind the veil of my mania I was still wondering what was going on with the baby. I felt the giddiness of freedom, yet there was a background noise like static reminding me of my bundle of responsibility at home.

    I realized, at that moment, with “Teenage Wasteland” penetrating my ears, that I was no longer an individual. I am someone’s mom now. I am a possessive noun.

    When I got to Shaws’s an emptiness started to overtake me as I looked for lemons. I felt misrepresented. Like nobody at Shaw’s knew the real me because they had no idea I was a mom. They just thought I was some chick buying a disturbing amount of citrus.

    As I drove home, I tried to enjoy my time, but then I started to feel that she was hungry. A nagging pull in my gut that would not go away reminding me how there was this baby that needed me to eat. Knowing that, pretty much dampened my ability to enjoy the drive, because I felt in such a hurry to get back to her.

    So the moral of the story is that although I am fully aware that there I am more than just my baby’s mother… I still feel being her mom is the most important thing about me right now.

    January 20, 2011 • 1st time for everything, 2nd Month, Mommy Mind • Views: 307

  • Sleeping with Baby

    Sleeping with the baby is a controversial topic. There are legitimate concerns regarding the safety of the baby. I can’t speak to those with any authority, and of course think the safety of your baby is TOP PRIORITY.

    I happen to be a really light sleeper. I also have a big bed, and have chosen to sleep with my baby. It makes waking up at night much easier, because she is right there, and I can just breast feeder her side-lying.

    If you want to sleep near your baby but are nervous about bringing them into your bed I would look into Co-Sleepers. They are like a temporary crib that parks right next to your bed and basically serves as an extension of your bed. That way you have all the convenience of having your baby near you, but you do not have to stress about their safety!

    Here is a good place to find potential co-sleepers

    January 20, 2011 • 2nd Month, Baby Gear, Baby Products, Sleeping • Views: 627

  • Body After Baby

    Being pregnant and giving birth will definitely expose you to the intensity of what your body can experience and still remain intact. I still cannot believe I neither imploded while being pregnant, or exploded while giving birth. When you think about what your body has gone through it is seriously remarkable.

    Think about it…. You grew a human, inside your body, then that grown human came out of your body, and then you feed it with milk that is produced in your body. I mean that is crazy town! Your body is amazing! Your body is a magician that can make something out of nothing. 9 months there was not this person, and then you made them be!

    Considering how seriously rad that is, it sucks how new mommies start to worry about the extra poundage on their beautiful bodies. There is a pressure that is totally reinforced by the media about the expectation of the female body after birth. Think of all those magazine covers dedicated to how stars “lost their baby weight.” What a bummer to stress about weight, rather than having the time to relish in the glory that you just baked a being in your belly.

    At the same time, I know that feeling like you have gained weight doesn’t always feel good to you.. who lives in your body. You knew your body as one way, and then it is different. And there is no dieting or starving yourself after having a baby, especially if you are breastfeeding. You need all the energy you can to take care of that baby!

    My suggestion of is to take time to appreciate your body and the fact that you had this miraculous experience. Really love yourself for all you have accomplished.

    Then realize that all that you eat directly affects your baby. No longer are you the only person that has to deal with the consequences of your diet choices. If you are breastfeeding everything you eat goes to your baby. I think that really helps to motivate healthy choices. Too much sugar will make it hard for the baby to sleep. Same with caffeine. Too much dairy will give your baby gas… etc… Think about how the best thing for your baby is to eat lots of veggies and grains because that is good for them!

    If you are not breastfeeding, your baby still needs a healthy mom! The better you eat, the more energy you have, the better you will sleep, the more you can be there for you baby.

    So think of your baby as motivation for just being healthy and taking care of yourself. Don’t obsess about calories. Think how the better your diet is, the happier you will be, and the healthier your baby will be.

    January 20, 2011 • 2nd Month, Mommy Body, Mommy Mind • Views: 293

  • Breast Infections

    If there are two words that you never want to hear strung together in a sentence… its breast and infection. The visual of that alone is enough to put me in a state of convulsive horror. However, surprisingly enough, a breast infection is not the visual catastrophe as the phrase may imply, but rather an infection inside your breast. In short, it is a clogged milk duct. Still gross sounding non the less.

    How do I know all this about breast infections you may ask? Yes… you guessed it… I had one.

    If you do not take care of them immediately, most often a doctor will put you on antibiotics. I called my doula Sage when I got mine, who told me I had 24 hours to try and get better on my own before I should go see a doctor. So this is what I did to get rid of it, and lucky for me, I was able to heal with natural remedies.

    1) The second you know you have one ACT IMMEDIATELY. For me, I felt super tired, had a headache, and felt feverish. I maybe would have assumed I was sick, except for the soreness on the side of my boob close to my armpit. That tenderness made me know it was a breast infection.
    2) Get organic purple cabbage and put it in your bra. Yes. Do it. Something about the cabbage helps. I swear.
    3) Have the baby nurse on the infected side. (Remember… it is not really an infection… but a clogged duct. The baby can suck it out. Kinda like a kidney stone that needs to pass. You should point the baby’s chin towards where it is sore. So for me, that meant doing the football hold.
    4) NURSE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE (May be a little tender, but do it. The baby will help you work it out!
    5) APPLY HEAT! Either by taken baths, showers, or a heating pad. Or all 3.
    6) Massage the sore spot (especially after you have heated it)
    7) Take vitamin C
    8) Drink massive amounts of orange juice (more vitamin C)
    9) Drink INSANE amounts of water. Like so much water that you wish you wore a diaper you will be peeing so much. (Helps flush it out and hydrate you).
    10) Take Echinacea pills (as much as the dose will let you in a day.
    11) Drink Echinacea tea (one cup every 2 hours).
    12) Eat oranges

    I swear on everything holy that these above things worked for me. But YOU HAVE TO DO ALL OF THEM! Send someone out to get you anything you don’t have! You need to do everything! I know, maybe it seems like a lot, but it really helped me. I was better in about 12 hours.

    January 20, 2011 • 2nd Month, Breast Feeding, Mommy Body • Views: 325

  • Wash Behind Your Ears

    I am lying in the sun with the baby. Life seems pretty good. She is having a great time looking at the leaves, and I am reading a very important article in Star Magazine. She starts to make cute little baby noises and I look at her. She is rolling to her side, and I see something behind her ears.

    “What is behind your ears Wiggles?” I crouch down, take a look, and am suddenly overcome with the horror/intrigue I felt when I first saw “The Jersey Shore.” I timidly take my finger and touch.

    “Oh my God.” The unthinkable. I am a horrible mother. I have never washed behind my baby’s ears. The irony of the cliché starts seeping into my sense of self as I am forced to digest what I have done. My baby has 7 weeks of crust built up behind her ear. That is 7 weeks of drool, vomit, dust, dirt, and whatever else may have collected. I cannot believe I never thought to investigate back there.

    I immediately run her upstairs to the bath. Swirling in self-rage I toss the baby into the tub and get to work freeing her from this bondage of ear crust. As I work away the layers week by week she gives an inquisitive look and I feel like her eyes are laughing at me. Mocking me.

    Okay fine. Maybe she doesn’t give a flying fuck in a rolling doughnut about the back of her ears. But the simple fact that every mom knows to tell their children “don’t forget to wash behind your ears” makes me feel like I should kick my own ass.

    January 18, 2011 • 2nd Month, Baby Body, Parenting • Views: 1448

  • Exercize With Baby

    After being pregnant, I think every woman thinks about their body before they got knocked up. It is hard not remember what it was like before… but at the same time, your life has changed so much, and you do not have the freedom you once had to exercize. Now you have someone else’s naps, poos, and eating to prioritize.

    There is also the question of childcare. Who is going to watch the baby while you try to get your work out on? Or motivation? When you are tired as hell, who has the energy?

    My suggestion is to coordinate an exorcize regime that you can do at home with the baby. That way, it is easy for you to tend to the baby’s needs, but you can still move your body around and start to feel like yourself again.

    I had a yoga practice before the baby, so that is what I started to do. Lucky for me, all you need for yoga is room enough for a mat. I lay the baby right next to me on a blanket, and giver her time to kick and punch the air while I get my yoga on. When she gets tired from her kicky-kicky punch time, she actually likes to watch what I am doing.

    Of course, this is not an uninterrupted yoga session for me. I have to be prepared mentally to stop and feed her, change her, give her a cuddle, or swaddle her up to nap her. Sometimes I get to finish what I wanted to do, sometimes I don’t. You just have to be flexible about what you expect to accomplish. I think the main point is just doing something and getting as much done as you can.

    If you feel too tired. No worries. You can just be really gentle on yourself. Or, there is always tomorrow. I think the more relaxed you can be about it, the more you will actually make the effort. I found that by integrating exercizing with my baby, I was able to do something for myself, while still being there for her.

    January 14, 2011 • 2nd Month, Mommy Body, Mommy Mind • Views: 289

  • Bathing With Baby

    I find taking a bath with the baby to be seriously fun. They way I do it, is rest her on my thighs so she is facing me, and my legs are like a baby shelf. I then take a face cloth, and squeeze water over her providing a little waterfall effect for her. It is a really nice time to spend together because babies adore the bath, and you are pretty much guaranteed they are going to be in a good mood. I do it right before getting her ready for bed because the warm water makes her sleepy.

    I have to warn you, bathing with the baby does come with some risk… and I will tell the truth… it comes at a cost. It happened to me, my friends… it happened to me.

    So there I was… listening to soothing music, low lights setting a calm mood, lavender scented candles burning, staring in my baby’s pretty eyes. And there she was… lightly patting the water with her little hand, taking deep breaths as she began to get tired, and staring into my eyes. It was such a moment. It seemed so beautiful. So serene. Almost spiritual. It was as if she was looking into the depths of my soul… seeing my very essence with her penetrating gaze. The intensity of her focus made me feel like our hearts were speaking. And then… it happened. She pooed. In the bath. With me in it.

    “So that is what the contemplative stare was all about.”

    As the water began to transform into a sea of baby shit, I was in quite a bind. I didn’t want to freak out and traumatize her. After all… she normally just shits when she has to. No questions asked. But I have to admit, as I thought about poo seeping into the crevasses of my body, I started to feel a bit horrified. So I stood up. Now the poo water only up to my shins, as I held my shit-covered baby. Now what? I don’t want to put her down, because she is coated in shit, and then I would get shit on her towel. Fuck.

    I stood there dripping with shit water until I had an idea. That idea was to get rid of the poop water. Brilliant… I know. Where do I come up with this stuff? I immersed my hand into the cesspool, and unplugged the bath. Since I was unwilling to put my shit covered feet on the floor to get another towel, I just stood there. Waiting. Waiting for the bath to train, and the poo to disappear.

    Once the bath drained, I then took the showerhead and rinsed us off like elephants, and did my best to wash the inside of the bath. Now what? We weren’t in the bath that long and we were having fun. So I drew another bath, because it is still well worth the risk.

    January 14, 2011 • 2nd Month, Baby Body • Views: 339