What Happens When Your Child Asks About Their Deceased Sibling?

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Most parents are concerned about emotional and physical development when it comes to their children – when’s the right time to talk about the birds and the bees? How to handle menstruation concerns? How to deal with male puberty?

Some parents take it a step further and try to map out their child’s financial future – will there be enough money for college? Do we have enough savings? Are they expected to stay inside the home past 18? Those are very important and sometimes, the talks come more fluid and naturally than expected.

But what happens when your child asks about their deceased sibling? Then what?

Last night, Bear was being his little rambunctious self late at night. He didn’t want to go to sleep and we accidentally overstimulated him so he was very wired. He kept pointing to the lights we have on our balcony and up to the sky. Naturally, I asked him if he saw his big brother Ethan and he responded with a simple question:

Where?

The innocent question knocked the wind out of me and to be honest, I’m still recovering from it. (I did tell Bear Ethan was one of the stars in the sky.)

You see, it’s been a discussion between Maks and I for the past several years on how to tell our children about their oldest brother who died in infancy, and why he’s included on our annual Christmas cards. I equate us talking about it and planning it out as the famous I Love Lucy labor episode – everything’s all planned and ready to go until it actually happens, then all hell breaks loose.

 

I’m fortunate that for now, Bear is too young to understand the concepts of life and death, Heaven and Earth, so on and so forth. Him being this young is only a temporary advantage. As anyone with children can tell you, they grow up fast and a lot can (and will) change right before you.

Right before Bear was born, we did purchase a book – Someone Came Before You. We barely got through it before we had to put it away. Maybe one day, I can finish reading the book without breaking into hysterics and I can explain to Bear that while he is our second child, he is just as loved and cherished as our first.

Mommy,Daddy, Ethan,Yoda
Our maternity shoot with Bear and Ethan Molly Bear.

So, let’s open it up for discussion…is there a way to talk to your child about death?

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Can’t Tell Me Nothing -Baby Review Edition

It’s funny when you become an expectant parent.*

There is just so….much…shit…to choose from. Really, there is.

And every company is like a drug dealer…’Hey baby…you know want this high chair. It’ll make you feel real good.’

So, today’s post is about the hits and misses of things we had purchased or used over the past two years. If I can save you a bit of heartache (and money!), I’ve done my job.

Let’s start off with the Misses:

Pacifiers

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Seriously, this kid has never used a pacifier in his life. Any picture of him with one in his mouth, he spit it out very shortly afterward. The pacifiers and the pacifier clips we bought were a complete Waste. Of. Money.

Pampers

My son and Pampers just never mixed. Despite being told by many that Pampers were better for boys, I have to disagree. My boy and his blowouts were legendary in Pampers. While he may occasionally leak in his Huggies, he has never had a blowout in them. I have to say no to Pampers. That also includes the wipes. I found the wipes were dry.

Swaddle wrap

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My kid is an anomaly. He’s never liked being swaddled. Even in the hospital, he would kick out of them (real talk!). So while we only purchased two, it was a waste of money.

Cloth diapers

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This is probably the only item on this list that’s both a hit and a miss. I went into great detail on my experiences with cloth (see To cloth diaper or nah? for a refresher). Now, I’m not saying cloth diapering was a waste of money and time. If anything, it’s actually saved us a ton of money (which is why this is also a hit). However, cloth diapering, like many things natural, takes up a lot of time and energy. From finding the right cloth diaper, to cleaning them (which also takes up a lot of time) to having the financial means to build a stash, you have to be full-blown committed to it. Don’t pursue cloth diapering because it’s the ‘in’ thing to do and all of the cool kids are doing it. There is nothing wrong with strictly using disposables. Do your research and decide if this is something you really want to pursue.

Pack n’ Play

Honestly, we used this more for storage than anything. It was actually donated to us by family and I’m really glad we never paid for it. I don’t think Bear even slept in it and he really was not a fan of being inside it at any given time. So for us, this was a no-go.

Baby Rocker

This isn’t the one that we received but we were donated one similar. Again, Bear didn’t care for it. He spent a couple of minutes in it before he had enough.


 

Now that we know what I hated, let’s talk about what I lurved

Huggies

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For some reason, my kid has taken a liking to Huggies. They hold a lot more and as a result, are also a bit more expensive. However, they do the job. I never had an issue with Huggies other than running out.

Boppy

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There are many breastfeeding pillows out on the market today. And it seems like there’s a new one debuting every year. Yet, Boppy has always held its own and remains one of the best ones to purchase. I never had any issues with my Boppy and it came in very handy during those first few months. Highly recommend.

Wipe Warmer

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Bear was born during the fall and even in the hospital, he didn’t take too kindly to cold water on his bum. Some think wipe warmers are a waste of money but for us, especially in the colder months, they’ve been right on time.

Aden + Anais Burping Cloths

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Now, this is a pricey brand. It doesn’t matter if you purchase them from Target, Amazon, or where ever, you’re going to be spending some money. However, this cloths are the business. I have wiped Bear’s mouth full of guacamole, mac n’ cheese, spaghetti, and these cloths are still white! Can’t beat that! Get them! It’ll change your life.

Portable Rocker

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This came in very handy when Bear was a newborn and even now when he’s a toddler. While we didn’t pay as much as it’s currently being advertised, we definitely can say we got our monies worth. If you have to get a rocker for your child, I suggest getting one that can convert to a toddler chair.

Sophie the Giraffe

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Now, Sophie is expensive. When we purchased her, she was a little under $20 and now I’m seeing her retail close to $30. She, however, works and is a saint when you kid starts teething.

Child restraint/Leash

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I have to admit, I love this product. I didn’t think I would but I honestly do. It gives Bear freedom and lets him explore his independence while we still have a firm grasp on him. As he’s becoming more and more independent and resisting the stroller, it’s definitely come in handy.

Cloth diapers

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Again, as I said before, cloth diapers did save us a ton of money and trust me, you feel that relief each time you do laundry. Cloth diapers also double as swim trunks so save your money to purchase special swim diapers!  Now, we live in an apartment so we don’t necessarily have to worry about a water bill. If we lived in a home, it might be a different story.

So, those are my hits and misses. If you’re expecting, wait until after the baby shower to shop for the big ticket items such as strollers, cribs, etc. You’ll be amazed how much people are willing to donate when they hear you’re about to have a baby. Many of our items (big ticket and small) were pure donations from friends, coworkers, and family.

My advice is a lot of baby items are space-consuming so ask yourself if it’s something you really need. Chances are, you don’t. The next post I will share some of my money-saving tips!

 

*Not currently pregnant but seeing what happens in life!

I Don’t Fuck With You

What happens when you’ve already moved on?

I had a friend, Ricci, who I was pretty close with. Years ago, she made a very bad decision and I strongly voiced my disapproval of. She was in a relationship with a married man and bragged about it. Not cool of you have a friend who’s married. She got mad that I told her off and didn’t support her relationship. I questioned what type of friend she was if she thought that shit was cool. That broke up our friendship.

Then Ethan happened.

Ethan, my first son, is a litmus test of my life for those who’ve known me a long time. I hate that I refer to him as such but I tend to divide my life into How Things Were and How They Are Now. A lot has changed for the better. A lot has changed for the worse. Ethan’s short life did define me but it also didn’t stop me from moving forward. Onward and upward.

When his death occurred, I had a lot of people show love and support. I had a lot of people keep their distance. Those who did keep their distance, I don’t communicate with anymore. If they didn’t support me at my worst, they don’t deserve to be around my best.

So that brings us to Ricci.

It wasn’t so much she didn’t say anything and honestly, I didn’t expect her to. It was the fact she stalked me that bothered me. She followed my pages. She found me on Instagram. She, all of a sudden, was interested in what me and M were doing.

Not a word from her. Not a ‘Hey, how’s it going?’ Not a, ‘I’m sorry for your loss.’ Nothing. But she stalked every. single. page I had. I subsequently blocked her and moved on. I had healing to do, not wondering why an ex-friend took so much joy in my misery.

Four years later, she reappeared.

She sent me a message while I was on a Facebook hiatus. I logged into to see who it was and was a little surprised it was from her. I haven’t read it yet because I need to process some things first. I don’t care who’s in her bed nowadays. I’m more upset that when she could’ve been a good friend and put all that bull behind us, she didn’t and chose another, rather creepy method.

You see, I used to hold grudges and I did for a long while. Nowadays, I simply don’t care. I think age and I just have more important shit to do than to worry about why I’m mad at someone plays a part in it.  The opposite of love isn’t hate but rather, apathy. I should note, however, just because I’m no longer angry at someone, it doesn’t mean everything is cool and copacetic between us. It just means I moved on and so should they.

I still haven’t decided if I’m going to read her message or completely disregard it. The fact she went out of her way to follow my husband on his Instagram account recently tells me she wants some sort of relationship again, even if it is from afar.

We’ll see.

So it’s been a long while.

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A really long time.

Like I think this blog was in blogging purgatory, not quite hell but far from heaven.

Anyhoo, I’m going to dust off this blog and restart it again. Instead of playing catch up, I’ll just start afresh. I’m going to talk about life with a rambunctious toddler, that SAHM thing I’m still getting used to (though I consider myself a WAHM), and my apprehension of going through another cerclage and c-section (not pregnant but will try again soon!)

I hope you all have been wonderful and great! xoxoxo

Filed Under WTF: I Love My Husband, But I Want to Cheat

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I’ve been pretty vocal on this blog about my marital issue. I say issue because honestly, it only is one, which is pretty good considering. We don’t really fight about money (kinda hard to fight about money when there is none), and we don’t let family conflict make a huge impact in our marriage.

So when I read this article, my only thought was WTF?

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For those to lazy to click on the link, a blogger posted that she loves her husband but she wants to cheat on him.

wordI know that had to be your reaction because it surely was mine.

Listen, sometimes M. drives me nuts. And I’m pretty sure I drive him nuts. We’re not perfect but we’re perfect for each other and at the end of the day, that’s all that matters. But am I going to consider cheating on him? Hell, no!

I don’t put myself in a position for that to occur. M. knows all of my male friends. He knows what I do online when he’s not at home and he knows who I talk to. I know all of his female friends. We don’t keep secrets like that from each other. Notice how I said, like that. I’m sure there are some things I don’t know and I know there are some things he doesn’t know. Do I need to know everything about my husband? Probably not and I’m sure he can say the same about me.

What in the hell is wrong with some people? Marriage is hard. It’s very hard work. It takes loyalty, love, and commitment. You have to be willing to accept the changes your partner is going through and love them no matter what. Not a lot of people can go through marriage and what it takes. I’ve been married almost five years and between having two miscarriages, burying our first son, going through a difficult (mentally) rainbow pregnancy, it’s been tough. But M. is the only one I want to be with.