Welcome to Kira's Blog

Welcome to My Blog

Life with young children can be challenging, but with the support and advice of friends, we can feel empowered and thankful for the blessing of being a Mom.

My musings are those of a self-proclaimed attachment-parenting Tiger mom, who juggles full-time mommying with a small (but growing!) baby-related business. I hope some of my thoughts help you
Enjoy your day, Enjoy your night, and Enjoy your kids!!!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Most Horrible Feeling

Many of us moms experience highs and lows of parenting. The highs: smiles, adorable phrases, warm sense of pride in developing new skills and new friendships. The lows: tantrums, homework, "normal" or "special" behavior/development issues, sleep-deprivation. For the most part, we encounter similar challenges and find familiar voices among friends and neighbors.

But some challenges are different. Being told "your child has cancer" is different.

Usually I blog about the "normal" challenges that we all face. Today, I share a different voice.

You see: today, my son heads to Boston for his 7th intervention to rid him of aggressive, horrible tumors that would have killed him if we hadn't found them in time 2+ years ago. Today, I said goodbye to him, despite his tearful plea not to go, because he knows what awaits: needles, foreign rooms, pain.

And today I so badly BADLY wanted to keep him safe at home.

Most of you don't know that feeling. Most of you are lucky not to give your child over to doctors who promise to do their best, while your child cries from fear.

When he is headed for the hospital, I always have the same feeling: I want to grab him and run away. I want to keep him safe. Desperately. Oh, so desperately wanting to keep him as far from the hospital as possible. But where to? Where can I take him to be safe from these tumors? There is nowhere to go. It is the ultimate feeling of defeat.

"He has cancer." "Are you sure? Could it be something else?" "No. We are sure."

Most of you don't know what it's like to awaken in the morning to the piercing reality that your baby, your joy, may not live through the next month or season. I cannot possibly express in words this worst-feeling-ever. The pit in my stomach. The rage in my mind. The weighty feeling throughout my body - like it will take a crane to pull me out of bed.

I have imagined his funeral so many times in my head. I have imagined how I will break the news to his siblings, and how we will get by with his memory.

"Think positive - things will work out!" "God is good - you are only given what you can handle in life." People who have never felt this worst-feeling-ever have no idea how empty these things sound to me. There is no "think positive" when you wake up in horror of what will be. And as for getting what I can handle? I'm not so sure I'm handling it, and I'm pretty sure this is why divorce rates are high among parents of children with cancer. No - some of us just can't handle it. Our other children suffer. Our marriages suffer. We are barely functional as a friend or employee.

And even now that things are better - now that he's not fighting for his life like before... the reality is that we have been through hell and are not back yet. We still have to go to the hospitals and scans. We still are never sure if the tumor will suddenly appear by his heart or lungs or spine or other "vital structure"... we still want to grab him and run away.

It's the most horrible feeling.

Most of my blogs are about universal truths or ideas about Mommying. In contrast with the others, I hope this one sounds completely foreign to my readers.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Conversations with my Sister: Making Tough Choices

My sister heads back to work, after a nice, long leave of a year to be with her adorable baby girl. It's thrilling, exciting, and also awful at the same time.

She is so happy about her new job.

And she's devastated about leaving her daughter.

I find myself jealous that she is forging on with her career, making a nice living, feeling professional and respected. Meanwhile, I'm stuck with laundry, dirty dishes, stained clothing, and the occasional diaper that's leaked through.

And then she tells me how difficult it is to leave her daughter. What if she doesn't do well at daycare? Should she look for a nanny instead, at twice the price? What if the daycare isn't as great as it seemed? What if her daughter doesn't sleep well or doesn't eat enough?

... and then I'm not so jealous of my sister. I look to my side and see my tots playing and giggling together, so full of joy. I can swoop down for a hug and kiss whenever I want. I can play and sing with them all day. I never miss a new word or a new tooth budding.

I wish I could build a career for myself, something respectful and helpful to others. And yet I want to be with my kids all-the-time. My sister wishes the same.

We have tough choices. I've blogged about it before, but it's worth repeating: whoever said "you can have it all" was clearly not a modern mommy. There are constant sacrifices, and we are always looking over our shoulders, keeping tabs of the other mom who seems to juggle her world better. But we never know what is in her heart, what tears she sheds at night and what challenges she faces.

Let's be there to support each other and make the most of those tough choices that really, truly we all have to live with.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Selfish-Brat Mom

Generally I think we Moms can do a better job of supporting each other.

But there are some Moms who are beyond my comprehension: those Selfish-Brat Moms who think the world revolves around them (and maybe their kids).

I encountered such a mom this week while teaching with Tuney Tots. She was so incredibly self-centered, she spat curses at the librarian who was politely asking her to follow the library rules (no lollipops during class, for example). It started me thinking - maybe we can learn from such moms - learn how NOT to behave, in public or in private. Here are some tips:

Rules of the Selfish-Brat Mom: a brief introduction:

1. Remember that the world revolves around you. If you want something, that's the most important thing right now, immediately. This holds true also of your kids: if you need them to do something, you will coerce, manipulate, threaten, or punish in order to get your way - even if it's something ridiculous to expect (like your 2 year old putting himself to bed each night).

2. Assume your kids have done no wrong. Ever. If accused that your child hit another child, shrug it off and ask "can you prove it?"

3. Rules are made to be bent. School policies aren't so important, or carpool lanes. Modes of conduct will follow whatever you think *should* be, rather than what other parents have agreed are best for the community. For example: at the local synagogue or church, your child may eat whatever he wants, wander off wherever he wants, talk loudly during the services, etc.

4. Take breaks as often as possible. Hire nannies, send off to daycare, and coerce family into taking care of your kids as much as possible - weekdays, weekends, holidays, or whenEVER. You shouldn't have to work - you did enough just carrying the fetus for 9+ months, right?

5. Scheduling works around your needs, not your kids. This is true of any therapy services, school programs, nap times, etc. For example, if your child needs speech therapy, make sure it doesn't conflict with your weekly manicure, massage, and lunch out with the girls! (The therapist will have to work around all those things, after all). Your child will learn to sleep when its convenient for you, or just crash from exhaustion after being schlepped around. That's ok - quality sleep for kids is overrated.

6. Love can be bought. If your kid is acting needy, clingy, or whiney, buy her a new toy and tell her to go play, since her behavior is downright annoying. If you can't get to a toy quickly, a candy or ice cream should do the trick. Then, you can get back to your texting.

7. When in doubt, blame someone else. You can't possibly be at fault.

Sound familiar? Sadly, many moms fit the bill. Some moms allow their kids to terrorize others and don't care (it's *just too hard to discipline them or teach them appropriate behavior*). Some moms are checked-out on their phones and tablets all-the-time, leaving their kids to fend for themselves at much too-young an age. It's a sad state of affairs, my friends. Sad sad.

***Please share your anecdotes of interactions with Selfish-Brat Moms in my "Comments" section!***