Weighty Matters

I’ve been wringing my hands over a conundrum in the world of exercise and children: the gym day care.

Henry is at the single worst possible age to be let loose in a busy room. At eight and a half months old, he will find every small item and promptly stick it in his mouth (except he’s weirdly slow about it so I usually have time to dive/slide/run/body slam my way over and grab it. He also looks at me, like Baby Can Have Small Game Part?

No, baby. You can not have that.

Also, he pulls up on everything and everyone he can find, even very small children. And then said children run away, and he falls. The gym day care room has a cement floor. Not sure what planning brilliance went into that one, but it’s not even covered with those interlocking rubber floor pieces or anything.

It’s one room maybe 12 x 12. Ten year old boys run around practicing their kung fu kicks and if a crawler gets a knock to the head, well it seems the luck of the draw. They have no cap on the number of kids who can go, and even though I go in the evening at off times, there’s no guarantee there won’t be three crying babies to hold and ten rambunctious eight year old building a teetering tower out of something that will hurt when it falls down.

They have a policy of no chokeable items, but the big kids often bring in their homework, their crafts, their beading necklace sets, their assorted childhood flotsam and jetsam, and if a piece fell on the floor, and Henry put it in his mouth, what are the chances that at that exact moment the caretaker would be watching him closely?

Not good.

He rarely naps/stays in the stroller in there which is another strategy moms of the youngest babies use. This is actually a nice gym that’s not cheap ($60 a month) but the day care is free and since it’s kind of a clique-y place I feel like no one dares complain. Take it or leave it.

So I have a summer workout problem. Running is fine, I can just run at 7 p.m. when my husband gets home and then Anna has two weeks of summer camp so I can run with the jogging stroller then. Then there are lots of vacation days mixed in, and I can do a lot on the weekend, but but but but I need to go to my Monday 5 p.m. Elevated Training class or I will be unfit. It’s like such a must for me. I guess I could pay a babysitter once a week since this little period should be over relatively soon. Once he’s a good walker and out of the peak oral phase the day care will be okay. Maybe by the fall?

Blah. blahblahblah

I guess I can go lift weights at 7 p.m. by myself in the weight room, since I want to focus on gaining strength now anyway.

The weirdos come out at night.

But 7 p.m. is hectic. Dinner, bath, pajamas, family time. Plus I enjoy the time out break that divides up our long days. Without it I’m like killing time and entertaining kids and …. … … …. endless long days and then I’m tired and THEN I have to go work out when I’d rather eat dinner with my husband and kids. It’s not ideal.

But I know this time period is short. It just doesn’t feel like it when you’re in it.

Confessions of a Humblebragger

I’m guilty of the veiled Mommy brag as complaint.

Please consider my extenuating circumstances as you mete out your judgment.

Since my kids were born never sleeping, and my son never napping, and only seldom happy while stationery, I feel justified in distracting myself with any and all positives I can find.

He drew that right before he played a sonata on the piano.

When Henry was a newborn and I had to hold him all day and I wanted to run away hourly I soothed myself by focusing on his beautiful little face and perfection. At least I could dress him up and he could look spectacularly precious in the outfits he would puke on and cry in.

Now that he’s older and not sleeping or napping any better and in fact WORSE I need to find something else to think about, and so I think about and talk about his development.

He’s not winning any baby sleeping prizes? But damned if he isn’t going to walk at nine months. So when I Instagram a photo of him standing alone and then I humblebrag something like “Oh here we go again, guess he’s not happy crawling!” Or whatever stupid somesuch drivel that I type into my iPhone amidst whining and crying and then Anna crying because I said we were going to do something outside today and she “haaaates outside and wants to go to an inside mall” (WTF) and it’s 80 degrees and June and I’m sick and Henry’s sick so we can’t even hang out with friends and I’m so tired I punched a wall the other night (true story) and Henry will only sleep in my arms with a boob in his mouth and I CAN’T GET COMFORTABLE ON MY BACK I need to roll and toss but I can’t because it wakes him up and he’s cranky all day because he’s sick and it’s ONLY 9:47 AM and I don’t know how I will survive until my husband comes home at 7 PM and I CANT EVEN WORK OUT since there’s no more preschool so I can’t run with the jogging stroller and we can’t go to the gym and I was too tired to run last night (I can’t believe that- I’m still so mad) and I want to run away again.

Ah life is such a joy with young kids. You will miss these days. They’re so easy when they’re this young. GO EFF YOURSELF NEXT PERSON WHO SAYS THAT.

So don’t hate me when I post some precocious shit my three year old said or drew. I have nothing else, people. Leave me my advanced baby and my photo milestones. Let me humblebrag the day away.

It’s really hard to clean all my stainless steel appliances!

It’s so taxing being a stay at home mom who is financially secure enough to have an expensive gym membership (she can’t even use)!

I wish I wasn’t so damn smart because then I wouldn’t have so many good ideas I can’t do anything with because I’m holding a snotty baby from goddamn sundown to…the next sundown.

I live ten minutes from a beautiful ocean beach and lots to do, but my three year whines when I try to get her somewhere!

Do you feel bad for me yet?

Tough breaks

I do feel bad for myself. At least today. At least this week. Ask me again next and I’ll be penitent and grateful forever.

Splurging

The other day a friend mentioned she’d never gotten a professional massage. That it seemed insanely indulgent, spoiled rotten, a total unattainable dream. That got me to thinking, because see, I view massages as like completely necessary elements of health and wellness. I practically have an unalterable massage budget.

Yet, we drive one budget car for our whole family. We just don’t care about cars, really. Sure, if we had money to burn we’d get something lovely with leather seats, but until then it’s Hyundai Elantra 4 LYFE.

Yet, we spend way too much on eating out, since we like, um, delicious foodstuffs. We are really picky foodies.

Yet, I never, ever, ever, spend money on clothes for myself. That seems somehow decadent to me, to buy something that doesn’t come with a thrift store price tag or from Target or Marshall’s (maybe, for a splurge).

The other day, I bought myself some comfortable pajama shorts to sleep in. I couldn’t believe I was spending money on sleepwear. I don’t think I’ve done that in at least ten years. I usually wear whatever daytime clothes become unwearable in daytime, if they’re comfortable. I remember once as an older teenager, my mother would always buy me pajamas for Christmases and birthdays because she knew I was this weird ascetic teen who was so in my head and saving all my pennies for backpacking to Europe trips that I slept in cargo pants and even jeans.

While I’m not sleeping in jeans these days, I still find it uncomfortable to spend money on certain things and yet easy on other things. I’m lucky in that my husband shares my financial value system. Down the block from the first apartment we shared on Manhattan’s Upper West Side was a Tui Na Chinese massage place, open amazingly into the late weeknight hours. I mean, this place was like four buildings down from us. How could we resist an hour deep tissue massage along with our delicious take out or sushi dinner du jour?

I’ve had mysterious constant kind of muscle/myofascial pain for most of my adult life, so massages are a health must for me, especially as I train more. They can never, ever, ever be too much pressure for me and if I accidentally overpay for a fancy, spa massage with a practitioner lightly tickling my skin, I’m pissed. I need serious knot work, crazy death grip.

Everyone should get a massage, at least once. Maybe I’ll get that friend a gift certificate. So she’ll be forced to use it, and not spend the money on her kids, or whatever.

What do you consider verboten luxury and what do you “give” yourself?