We “Leveled Up” As Parents

Christmas came and went. Christmas really is completely different when you experience it through the eyes of your children.

Last year, our little girl was only a baby. She didn’t really understand what was going on. This year, with a toddler? So sweet.

We got our daughter a tricycle. My husband put it together in the garage and we put it next to the tree after she went to sleep on Christmas Eve.

Her face when we put her on it! I thought I would melt, she was so happy.

Of course, it has been pouring all yesterday and today, so we haven’t got to take her out on it since Christmas, but still…

It is adorable to watch her, but really reiterates how quickly she is growing up.

Just ignore me as a sob in the corner over my baby getting so big.

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My Toddler Climbs Stuff

Apparently I am raising a mini dare devil.

Yesterday morning, I was washing my face and suddenly………

THUD.

Silence.

“Wahhhhhhhhhh!”

I sprinted into her nursery, and there was my baby sprawled out on the floor.

She had tried to climb out of her crib. And succeeded. She just didn’t stick the landing.

After being cuddled and kissed and checked over a million times, she was fine. We are planning on dropping the crib to the lowest level today. I was nervous about it not being done yesterday, but we just didn’t have time. Thankfully, she did not attempt any overnight climbs.

Later that morning, she decided it was important to try to climb up onto her play kitchen when she was playing with her daddy. My toddler is very small, but the kitchen was not built to hold 20 pounds of toddler.

It tipped.

She fell.

She conked her head on the corner of the play refrigerator.

I was in the office and heard a loud wail from the living room. I went running in and there was already a huge goose egg forming on her head. The swelling subsided within an hour, but there is still a bruise.

That afternoon, she decided to try to climb up onto my exercise bike. She fell and scratched her face twice right on each side of her nose. No bleeding, but two big scratches.

The scratches and the cuts make her look like she got into a fight this weekend. I can only imagine what her daycare thinks, her coming in all banged up.

You would think that all of these accidents in one day would maybe teach her to stop climbing so recklessly.

You would be wrong. She scales things with abandon.

You might also think that we are doing a terrible job of supervising her.

You would also be wrong. I was literally sitting on the floor with her in my lap and within 3 seconds she had climbed onto the exercise bike pedal. Despite me reaching over to grab her, she managed to climb it and fall from it that quickly.

Girl is fearless.

Apparently, girl is also clumsy.

Another Work Conference

But not me. My husband.

He left this morning. He will be gone throughout the week.

We FaceTimed him just before bedtime and I could see that he was getting some idea of what I went through a few weeks back.

You don’t think it will be hard. It’s only a few days, after all. But she is growing up SO FAST. She is a full-fledged toddler now. She is just obsessed with running all over the house and trying to climb everything, all while chattering away.

Meanwhile, I will see pictures of her on “this day last year” and she was SOOOOO TINY.

So yes, it sucks to be away from her for even a handful of days since you don’t know how much she will have changed.

We are starting to teach her to swim, too. She loves being in the pool. I also am looking into some form of gymnastics class for her for fall.

I just want to make sure she has everything she needs. To be able to grow up knowing that she is capable of anything.

Uh oh. She just started crying. So for now I will make sure she knows that she can always snuggle with me when she has a bad dream.

I’m Being Pulled in a Million Directions

I have applied for seventeen different positions at this point. SEVENTEEN.

I have heard back from five.

Two were simply letting me know they would pass my information along to somebody else to look at when they could.

Two were contacting me hoping that I could learn an entire new content subject to teach and were, therefore, useless.

The last one did a sort of pre-interview. I guess they wanted to make sure I wasn’t a psycho before they passed my information along to a principal. So this one ends up in the first category after all.

Either way, not a ton of nibbles.

I have been talking to other people who have gone through similar situations. The general consensus on teachers leaving their school seems to be that now they must:

  • find a new job
  • go back to school
  • become a stay-at-home-parent
  • change careers entirely

I am trying to look at any and all options available. Too bad I don’t have many. Either way, I am starting to feel like I am trying to do too much at one time. Like I am spreading myself out more and more to try to cover more ground. I can’t be everywhere at once, but how else can I find a solution if I don’t look everywhere?

Obviously I am trying to find a new job. I scour the district job sites ALL THE TIME. Plenty of jobs available in subjects I don’t teach. New ones being added all the time. But not in anything I can teach.

I would love to go back to school, but we just can’t swing it financially. Having a baby costs so much money. I mean, really. Who could have thought that babies need health care, daycare, food, toys, diapers, clothes, and more? (In case you missed it, this was sarcasm. Obviously we knew that babies were expensive.) So much more. Me wanting to get a Master’s clearly takes a backseat to her vital needs.

Ideally, I would love to be a stay-at-home mom. But again, babies are expensive. I really wish this was an option for me. But when two teachers get married, they have signed an eternal pact to not ever have extra money and barely scrape by as it is… So taking one of those teacher’s salaries out of the picture (and the wallets) would definitely not work.

I am not qualified to do anything else. All I have ever done was worked in restaurants/bars, retail, or education. I am so over the food and hospitality industry. Same with retail. Honestly, I am wondering if I am also over education. Why am I not skilled in anything that people want to pay me for?

Gahhhhhhhh.

I have been looking into doing some freelance writing. Even just as a “side hustle” for now. If I can make enough in a month to pay for the diapers we use in that month, that would be a win. It would be preferable to do more, but small steps.

Just like my baby. Taking her tiny little steps, walking around.

I want to be enjoying all of these firsts, but I am freaking out over this small job problem.

She’s getting big so fast (metaphorically-speaking, since she is a tiny squirt in the 30 percentile size-wise). And while I’d love to have another, it isn’t likely, since… well… the money issue.

Money makes the world go around. But what they don’t tell you is that “around” is referring to the gerbil wheel you are running on.