Archives for February 2011

Equally Shared Parenting

A few months ago I was attempt­ing to write a post for the Car­ni­val of Nat­ur­al Par­ent­ing.  The descrip­tion of the mon­th’s top­ic was:

Novem­ber 2010: What is Nat­ur­al Par­ent­ing?: Explore one con­cept from the nat­ur­al par­ent­ing phi­los­o­phy – why is it impor­tant to you/your fam­i­ly?

I knew right away what I want­ed to write about.  I was going to write about Equal­ly Shared Par­ent­ing.  So, I start­ed where every good writer starts.  I googled it.  I found the web­site for Marc and Amy Vachon’s book by the same name.  I start­ed writ­ing my post.  I wrote about how we share the child rais­ing, house work, recre­ation, and then I got to bread­win­ning.  We don’t share that.

Jason has a career that he enjoys.  He likes what he does.  He is good at it, and he wants to con­tin­ue to do it for some time.  I went to school for edu­ca­tion.  I have a dou­ble major in ele­men­tary and mid­dle school edu­ca­tion with areas of con­cen­tra­tion (sim­i­lar to minors) in math and his­to­ry.  I also have a mas­ters degree in spe­cial edu­ca­tion with the gen­er­al strate­gist cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.  I, unfor­tu­nate­ly, do not have a career that I enjoy and want to return to.

So, while as much as I like to think that we are prac­tic­ing equal­ly shared par­ent­ing, we are not.  Jason shares all the respon­si­bil­i­ty for the tasks around the house and with the kids, but I do not share any of the respon­si­bil­i­ty of bread­win­ning.  I could explain why we’ve cho­sen for it to be this way, but in the end it real­ly comes down to the fact that I don’t work.  Right now, I’m okay with not work­ing (for mon­ey), and even­tu­al­ly I hope to return to a career.  How­ev­er, shoul­der­ing all the respon­si­bil­i­ty for this area is a lot.

(As a side note, remind me in the future that my 5 year old can­not nap for more than 30 min­utes or he will be up at 9:45 just toss­ing and turn­ing in his bed.)

So, as I was try­ing to write that post, I real­ized that in the future Jason and I may very well prac­tice equal­ly shared par­ent­ing, we don’t right now.  Some days I’m okay with that, and some days I wish it was dif­fer­ent.  Some days I feel guilty about ask­ing him to share all the oth­er respon­si­bil­i­ties of our fam­i­ly but not shar­ing in the bread­win­ning.

I have some oth­er thoughts on careers, moth­er­hood, etc.  I may share some of them in the future, but until then I don’t have any­thing to neat­ly wrap up my thoughts on this.  I don’t have a great response ques­tion for any­one who might read this.  I guess I just thought I’d put this out there and see what hap­pens.

Mamavation Monday: Week 9

So, appar­ent­ly you can ask two health pro­fes­sion­als the same ques­tion and get two com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent answers.  I guess I should­n’t be sur­prised, but I’m still frus­trat­ed.  For quite some time, I’ve been expe­ri­enc­ing the effects of hav­ing a pinched nerve in my foot.  Some­times it feels like a nerve sen­sa­tion through my toes.  Some­times it feels like there’s a rock in my shoe.  For a long time, I took my slip­per off sev­er­al times a day try­ing to fig­ure out where the rock was.  It aches most of the time, and I can feel the ball of tis­sue where it’s inflamed when I stand on a hard floor in bare feet.  So, I saw a podi­a­trist and a chi­ro­prac­tor.

On my orthotics:

Podi­a­trist says:  They’re fine.  Wear them all the time.
Chi­ro­prac­tor says:  They increase the force on my joints 5–7 times.  They also only sup­port the main arch allow­ing the oth­er two to remain col­lapsed.   When they are in my shoes, they are like walk­ing on a board that flex­es only in one place.  She can make me new ones if I’m inter­est­ed.

On treat­ing it:

Podi­a­trist says:  Cor­ti­sone shot or surgery.  He also says since I’m 31 he won’t tell me not to exer­cise so go about my exer­cise rou­tine like I nor­mal­ly would.
Chi­ro­prac­tor says:  There are a few stretch­es that can be done.  Use biofreeze before and after any­thing that might inflame the area. She says avoid things that are high impact and be care­ful with every­thing else.

On whether it can be resolved with­out an inva­sive treat­ment:

Podi­a­trist says:  Prob­a­bly not.
Chi­ro­prac­tor says:  It’s pos­si­ble.  The body some­times does what it does, and while it’s not like­ly some­times it does hap­pen.


So, I’m chew­ing that on this week.  Also, I real­ized that in order to get to the gym 12 times this month, start­ing last Mon­day, I real­ized I need­ed to go to the gym sev­en out of the last eight days of Feb­ru­ary.  So, since Mon­day, I’ve been to the gym and done 45–60 min­utes of car­dio every day except Sat­ur­day.  I’ve got­ten my water and fruit and veg­etable intake most days.  I fig­ured last week would be a great week.  Right?  Appar­ent­ly not great.  Meh.  I’m hop­ing my body and mind sync up soon.

Jonas is almost five months old now (in just over a week).  When the oth­er boys were this age, I was already below my pre-preg­nan­cy weight.  I had friends who strug­gled to lose the weight.  I encour­aged them to get their lifestyles ready for when the weight was ready to come off.  I sup­port­ed them.  I remind­ed them their babies were still young.  I meant all the things I was say­ing, but it’s a lot hard­er to be on the oth­er side of that coin.

Over the past week, I have done some­where around 300 min­utes of car­dio.  I’ve also had plen­ty of water and made pret­ty decent food choic­es.

Pre­vi­ous loss:  8.2 lbs

This week’s loss:  .6 lb gain (Boo-urns!!!)

Total loss:  7.6 lbs

Stay­ing focused on water intake, eat­ing fruit and veg­eta­bles, and get­ting exer­cise.

Hi, Mom!” “Bye, Mom!”

That pic­ture is fin­gers wav­ing to me from under our bath­room door.

I remem­ber when I was younger, I used to do the same thing to my mom.  I used to won­der what she could pos­si­bly be doing in the bath­room with­out me!  Did­n’t she miss me?  Did­n’t she wish I could be in there with her, too?  What was the point of pri­va­cy any­way?

These mem­o­ries came flood­ing back to me the oth­er night.  I was in the show­er, and the two old­er boys were get­ting ready for bed.  First, Asa came in to get his tooth­brush.  Then, he left.  A cou­ple min­utes lat­er, he came back in to rinse it and put it away.  Then, he left.  Then, Kael came in to get his tooth­brush, and I have no idea what hap­pened next, but he came in and left five times.  Each time, he said, “Hi, Mom!”  “Bye, Mom!”  He was so hap­py to be greet­ing me both on his way in and out.  Just want­i­ng to let me know he was there in case I did­n’t know.

So sor­ry, Mom.  Very very sor­ry.

Mamavation Monday: Week 8

This week I learned a les­son.  What I’m doing is not to lose weight.  It’s to get healthy.  I need to do what I need to do, and even­tu­al­ly the results will come.  Weeks when I do well, I expect to lose weight.  Weeks when I don’t do as well, I don’t expect as much of a loss.  My body and my expec­ta­tions aren’t always on the same page though.  That’s why it’s so impor­tant to focus on the long term goal of being healthy vs. the imme­di­ate result of los­ing weight.

Last week­end, we were out of town.  We did­n’t eat like we nor­mal­ly do.  I also had *that* week of the month this week.  I expect­ed it to be a hold­ing pat­tern type of week.

Pre­vi­ous loss:  5.8 lbs

This week’s loss:  2.4 lbs

Total loss:  8.2 lbs

Who knew?

This week, I’ll be keep­ing up on the water and fruit and veg­etable intake.

Mamavation Monday: Week 7

Well, after feel­ing more than a lit­tle frus­trat­ed last week, I am feel­ing bet­ter as I write this post.  I can’t put my fin­ger on why I’m feel­ing bet­ter.  I think it might be a com­bi­na­tion of sev­er­al things.  A sup­port­ive friend, some advice from some­one I did­n’t even know, nicer weath­er, some decent results on the scale, and hav­ing a new book on the way.

Also, after talk­ing with Heather, my sup­port­ive friend, I made the deci­sion that in order to get past some of my strug­gles, I just need to do it.  I was telling her that since I live in a cold weath­er cli­mate (North Dako­ta), I some­times strug­gle to get my fruits, veg­eta­bles, and water intake to where they need to be.  Let me be hon­est with you.  When it’s cold out, I don’t want cold food.  Heather was great and sug­gest­ed some alter­na­tives, but in the end I decid­ed that was a big ol’ excuse for not doing what I should be doing.  Instead of mak­ing more work for myself, I’m just going to do it.  My goal for this week is 3 bot­tles of water every day (96 oz) and 5+ fruits and veg­eta­bles every day.  Hope­ful­ly since we’ve been expe­ri­enc­ing some nicer weath­er I’ll get off to a good start in this area and the week after won’t be too bad even if it’s cold­er.

My foot is still bug­ging me.  My knee is still bug­ging me.  While I’m tempt­ed to keep on exer­cis­ing with the foot thing just to get it dealt with, I think a bet­ter plan will be to do some­thing that is less impact (the Pilates), let my foot and knee heal up and start again at a slow­er pace when that hap­pens.  Until then, hope­ful­ly the bike and Pilates will become two of my great friends.

Thanks for the sup­port and com­ments!  Every one means a lot to me.

Oh, yeah, I almost for­got

Pre­vi­ous weeks’ weight loss:  5 lbs

This week:  .8 lbs

Total:  5.8 lbs