Misadventures of a 20-Something Mom: August 2013   

Monday, August 26, 2013

Making Sense of the New Me: Mommy Identity Crisis?

I was offered a job today. Not just any job though....the DREAM JOB. The pinnacle of everything I strived for during my 6+ years of post-secondary education. I was offered partnership in a fledgling, equine-assisted psychotherapy program. That might sound like a bunch of mumbo jumbo, but it essentially boils down to just using horses to help people; something that I have always been passionate about. So what did I do? I graciously thanked the kind man and then I turned him down.

With a toddler and another baby on the way, I'm just not in the position to accept a job right now. Any job. Even the dream job.

So, I turned down the job of my dreams. And it sucked. It quite literally felt like a punch to the gut. I saw everything I had worked so hard for in college, my passions, my dreams, dissipate right before my eyes. And it made me sad.

Well, it made me sad for a little while at least. Until I came to the realization that I have a new dream job, and fortunately for me, I'm already employed there. The job description is vast and the hours and duties are seemingly endless. Associated titles are numerous as well. I have been known to go by "chief purchasing officer," "activities coordinator," "master toddler interpreter," "president of waste management," and "head housekeeper." However, my favorite title is simply "mom."

I've been a mom for two completely, often, occasionally glorious years now and it still strikes me as odd sometimes. Odd that I am responsible for (almost) two other human beings. Odd that I am shaping their  past, present, and future. Odd that no one from the hospital ever realized the error in their ways and came to rescue my son from my clearly inept and clueless hands.

I'm 26 years old and until embarrassingly recently I was under the impression that El Nino was a South American terrorist organization that deviously altered weather patterns. I'm perpetually mispronouncing things (still have to remind myself that carafe rhymes with giraffe), I'm scared of the dark, I rely on my gps to get me out of my own neighborhood, and I have even been known to mess up EasyMac. Ya. That's me in a nut shell. I'm a hot mess.

And yet, somehow, someway, I was still entrusted with the care of these tiny human beings. Most days, I haven't the faintest idea of what I'm doing. I feel as though I am simply fumbling my way through this parenting business. Living, learning, and desperately trying to keep my kid(s) out of the emergency room. And today I realized, that this is my new DREAM JOB. Motherhood.

The place where sloppy kisses and toothy smiles abound. A place where there is never a shortage of tiny arms reaching upward to be held. Where baby blue eyes plead for one more story before bed and fuzzy, blond heads just beg to be kissed each night as we rock to sleep.

This is the place where I have found my new passion. My new zest for life.

This is truly the job of my dreams.

And while I constantly find myself questioning whether I am doing a good enough job, (i.e. Am I disciplining too much? Too little? Am I providing enough stimuli for their growing minds? Do I read enough books? Provide enough socialization opportunities? Will the occasional Happy Meal destine my child to a life of diabetes and obesity?) I am also sure that at least for now, this is where I am meant to be.

Where I was always meant to be.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Babymoon on the Bayfront!!!

While the terminology may be new, the concept of a "babymoon" has been around for ages. Simply put, its a chance for the mom and dad-to-be to have one last hoorah before the new baby arrives. It can be as adventurous or as relaxing as you choose. The important thing is just to get that alone time in with your spouse, because it will likely be a long while before you get to indulge in things like uninterrupted conversation or spontaneous spooning again!

That being said, "babymoons" are not just for first-time parents. In fact, they are almost more of a necessity for the experienced ones. The second or third time around, you know exactly what you and your spouse have gotten yourselves into! You can anticipate the sleepless nights and months of zombie-like exhaustion that will ensue once multiple children are underfoot. Therefore, taking some time out to focus on the relationship with your spouse, to reflect, and to recharge is imperative.

Fortunately for my husband and I, we stumbled upon the Bayfront Westcott House when we were planning our latest getaway. I knew that I wanted to spend our vacation in the comfort of a bed & breakfast and I have always adored St. Augustine, so the Bayfront Westcott House provided the perfect marriage of the two. To say that it is charming would be the understatement of the century. Every aspect of this B&B is absolute perfection!

The property itself is literally a stone's throw away from the Bay and is immaculately tended. There is a gorgeous courtyard, wraparound verandah, and a slew of room balconies overlooking the water. Regardless of the season, breakfast on the verandah is something that cannot be missed.

 The views are phenomenal and the food is absolutely to die for. They have a baked French toast dish that can only be described as every pregnant, scratch that, EVERY woman's fantasy. The Bayfront Westcott House's babymoon package also entitled us to breakfast in bed during our stay. They showered me with breakfast goodies, nonalcoholic mimosas, and delicious hot chocolate all in the comfort of my gorgeously decorated room. The package also included a 60-minute prenatal massage which ensured that I was one happy mama-to-be! It was as close to heaven as it gets when you're 6 months pregnant.

The property staff were beyond accommodating, and serious pushers of baked goods! Every time I turned around they had another fudgy brownie or fresh-baked cookie to offer me. The innkeepers also stocked our room with all sorts of preggo-friendly drinks and snacks so that I could satisfy my pregnancy cravings at all hours of the night. To make sure my hubbie didn't feel left out, they kept him happy with his very own "beer basket" and a nightly social hour with complimentary beer, wine, and hors d'oeuvres. 

As critical as I usually am about hotels and b&b's, I literally have nothing negative to say about this St Augustine bed and breakfast. It was easily the most beautiful property we have stayed at and our stay was both relaxing and rejuvenating. Certainly everything we needed it to be in order to prepare for our pending arrival! If you are considering a babymoon, or any vacation for that matter, this is the place to go! I highly recommend it :)