Outtakes

So, I didn’t really want a post about Tucker’s birthday to end up being all about me. Tucker is actually a super sweet baby (his first month I have long since forgiven him for). I super love him, and as far as babies go, he’s pretty easy. Today he sat in a high chair while I lunched with friends for an hour. With Buck and Bo this was unheard of.

But I did say more on that later about a couple of things, and the one thing I do want to tell you is the truth about this year.

It has been hard. Probably the hardest that we have faced as parents, or just as a couple.

I remember specifically telling someone my thoughts on three (Beeb, if you’re reading– this was you) pre-Tucker: Two babies is already chaos. What’s one more?

Oh, so foolish. When your oldest baby is not quite four when your youngest baby is born, one more means your chaos breeds chaos. It means that not only will your baby inevitably soak you in spit up on the way out the door, but that while you are changing your clothes and the baby’s clothes, one or both of your other children will manage to take off his or her shoes (the only ones that fit) and lose one or both of them. Or poop his pants.

Or that while you are nursing, your two big kids will get in a battle royale and you will be powerless to stop them. I mean, you’ll scream anyway, but it will be ineffective and then you will be hoarse and they’ll still be tearing each other’s eyeballs out.

Don’t even get me started on the nap situation. I spend most of nap time getting two out of the three of them to sleep. I don’t even care which two most of the time. Bo is my good sleeper, so I lay with him and read him books, and I’m usually asleep before he is on any given afternoon. The rest of them? They’re on their own. Sleep, don’t sleep. Just do it quietly and don’t wake up my Bobo or MOMMY WILL USE HER ANGRY VOICE.

It’s nuts. It’s never ending. It’s constant stimulation, constant vigilance, constant everything. Because there are JUST SO MANY OF THEM.

On particularly crazy days, I actually talk to myself while I attend to my tasks in a frenzy: There’s only one of me. There’s only one of me. There’s only one of me.

I know that there are people in this world who have had more children in less time and also, I don’t know, worked at jobs, or smiled at their husbands, or like, showered regularly.

But I am not one of them.

And I’m not telling you this so that you will comment about what a great mother I am, or how precious my children are, or whatever some such.

I’m telling you this because you see a 10th of my life on facebook or instagram, and I don’t want it to be the best 10th or the worst 10th, because those are equally annoying in my humble opinion. I just want to you know the truth.

I love my children fiercely. Our life is not hard by most of the world’s standards. We are blessed beyond measure to have each other, our house, our health.

But it’s still a struggle every day.

And just so we’re clear, I take a lot of impressively bad pictures.

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Also, Mary Bullock’s hair is rarely brushed, and let’s just say, it’s a good thing this first set of teeth is meant to be temporary. I think God designed them specifically so that weary mothers could sometimes slack on this, the most MISERABLE of all MISERIES, because they’ll fall out eventually anyway, right?

But they did all survive the year, and I even managed to potty train Bo on top of ensuring their survival. Most of the time we had dinners, too.

And they know their parents love them.

And that’s the truth.

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This is about Tucker

Really, I swear. But I have to start with a story about Lee.

So you know when Lee and I first met we were not fans of each other, right? And when I say we were not fans of each other, I mean he was not a fan of me.

I know you’re thinking to yourself: WHO IS NOT A FAN OF SUZ? But believe me, such people exist. And Lee was once one of them.

So I set about finding out how to make him a fan of me. That was back when I cared if people liked me– a habit of which, in my old age, I have now mostly divested myself.

Turns out, there was a secret*. Once I knew the secret, we were instant friends.

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See? This is us, 1997. Plaid was in then, I promise. Hawaiian shirts were never in.

Anyway, the secret* was that Lee needs to be loved up to. These are not my words. I’m just repeating what I was told. I wasn’t sure quite what that meant, but the next time I saw him, I probably greeted him with something like Hiiiiii, LeeeeeEEeee! instead of my generic Hey, what’s up clown? And a friendship was born. The rest you already know about.

So anyway, back to Tucker.

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I spent most of his first few months wondering if I had the crankiest baby on Earth. Especially after Bo, who would laugh at anything in that sweet way he has, where first he’s laughing, and then you’re laughing because he’s laughing, and then he’s laughing more because you’re laughing and then suddenly Mommy’s crying because she loves his laugh and– well, you know. It happens.

But Tucker. He smiled a little starting around six weeks, but it was ambiguous enough to make you think that maybe it was still gas. And then around four months I could wiggle his little toes up near his lips and he would sort of giggle, but it was short lived and honestly sort of hard to get super excited about.

And then I noticed: he reserves his biggest smiles– the big, dimply smiles– for old ladies in grocery stores. You know the ones. They lean over his carseat and say Look at you! Aren’t you a precious one! Yes you are! I want to take you home with me! Yes I do! Oh look at those eyes! I could eat you up!

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And Tucker would take it all in with the biggest grin on his face. Even with a paci in his mouth you could see his ginormous dimples and know: he needs to be loved up to.

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So I’ve written that down in my little book in my head of Tucker knowledge. The rest we’re still figuring out.

*Now, ladies. Do not attempt to use this knowledge against me. He is taken taken taken. That goes for Tucker, too, grocery store ladies and girl babies!

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Yes, I am blogging from my hospital bed. Tucker is having his bilirubin levels checked, Lee is at home with the big kids, and there is nothing on TV. And who can really sleep in a hospital bed anyway?

Plus, I wanted to share some better [and not sideways camera phone] pictures of New Baby, whom we now call Tucker.

This might be my new favorite picture of all time.

Bucky and Bo came up late last night to meet the baby. We debated whether or not a trip to the hospital at 8 o’clock was smart, but we were so glad they came. Buck was the happiest big sister ever.

Bo ripped off Tucker’s hat, ran all over the room, tried to feed the baby animal crackers, touched everything remotely medical and beeping, and then capped off the show by running face first into the door and falling flat on his back.

You know, the usual.¬† At least he didn’t break anymore teeth.

Thank you for all of your sweet messages! We can’t wait to introduce you all to the latest member of our circus.

HUGS!

Suz