I have a bit of a rant for you tonight.
You’ve probably seen the silly “Rules for Dating my Daughter” lists floating around the interwebs over the years. “I’ve got a shovel and a big back yard,” etc. I don’t think I ever paid much attention to them. I might have laughed or given a hearty “you know it!” including a sassy head swivel that hasn’t actually been cool since the mid-nineties when I learned it from “In Living Color.” A new-to-me version showed up on my Facebook wall today. (Can we talk later about how Facebook makes me feel stabby lately and if I see one more ‘Like if you love Jesus. Scroll down if you love the Devil’ post I might develop a nervous tic. Don’t tell me what to do. The other day I saw a picture I thought was cute and I almost clicked the Like button but then I noticed the big “Like if it’s cute” text on the photo and I was all “YOU CAN’T MAKE ME!”)
That’s probably part of why this new version of the dating rules list affected me so strongly today. The other part is harder for me to admit. I have always chaffed when people shook their heads, smiled and patronizingly suggested, “You’ll understand when you have kids someday.” I still don’t totally buy that thought process all the time but here I am having a freaking different reaction to something partly because I’m a mom now. A mom to a little boy.
This is what a friend of mine shared today.
I want to be clear that I’m not passing judgement on my friend. I see why she shared it and why she thought it was funny. I see more than just the easy humor in the list, though. I see a lot of crazy with a dash of misogyny thrown in. Maybe it’s funny to read, but how scary would it be to actually have someone tell you “I know how to avoid jail?” Or to be dating a guy whose mom keeps telling you that she can make you go away and that your opinion doesn’t matter? It’s funny in the way “Everybody Loves Raymond” made people laugh but they would have been miserable to live with some of those relationships in real life.
I couldn’t get it off my mind as got Samuel down for bed tonight. I absolutely do not want my relationship with his future girlfriends to look like that and I definitely would not want to be giving that type of example for him to follow. So here are MY rules for anyone wanting to date Samuel someday. I’m assuming this list is aimed at Junior High and High School girls since I find the thought of a mother having these kinds of rules for a grown man to be creepy and bizarre.
NON-CRAZY RULES FOR DATING MY SON
- While he lives at home with us, our son will be required to work within a basic budget to give some, save some and spend some of whatever money he earns. If he wants to use his spending money to shower you with gifts, that’s up to him. If he runs out of money to buy his clothes and pay for his hobbies, that’s his problem. Sometimes budgeting is a hard lesson to learn. But, if he’s anything like his father or me he’s probably going to be a cheap one. So get ready to be on the receiving end of flowers he picked in a field on the way to your house instead of a dozen roses.
- If you show up to my house and I hear my son judging you or any other girl based on what you are wearing, then he won’t be going anywhere because he’ll be at home writing an essay about how words like “slut” and “whore” and “looking like a stripper” contribute to a culture of rape and explaining why we don’t use them in our home.
- If I see any “sexts” on his phone (coming or going), you will both find yourselves sitting on my couch having a conversation with my husband and me AND your parents that I’m pretty sure you will find extraordinarily embarrassing. Also, phones will get taken away. And if you are under 18 and you send a nudy picture, it’s child porn. No. Really.
- Understand that if I don’t like you it doesn’t matter. I’m not the one dating you.
- Understand that I could make you leave our house, but I know that I can not be with my son every second of every day monitoring who he interacts with and I wouldn’t want to be. So, no, I will not try to ‘make you go away.’
- My son is not a “Mama’s boy.” He’s a young man with a healthy, respectful relationship with his mother. That’s a good thing for you. It means he’s been raised to treat women nicely and has someone to make sure he doesn’t buy you something ugly for Christmas. You’re opinion on what kind of relationship he has with other people absolutely matters. How he interacts with other people tells you what kind of man he will become. You do not need a ring on your finger to give your opinion value!
- You are not in charge of anyone but yourself and it will cause you nothing but heartache if you try to change other people. If my son isn’t the guy for you, that’s ok. It doesn’t reflect poorly on either one of you. Find a guy you don’t need to see as a project.
- He is a gentleman. His father and I taught him that. He will treat every girl and woman he meets as a lady because they all deserve it. If he behaves otherwise, don’t you put up with it!
- I’m not going to threaten you with thinly veiled suggestions of violence. That’s insane. If a grown-ass woman threatens you or even implies a threat, go immediately to your parents, a trusted adult or a teacher and let them know.
- Do not fake your way to any type of relationship. No one will end up happy. Who you are is enough. My son has grown up in a home that deeply values authenticity, so I hope he is able to tell when people are being fake so that he can avoid them. You are a little young to be worried about trying to get a ring on your finger but, if you do end up married to my son, you will be one lucky woman to get a man who respects women and to have a mother-in-law as cool as I am.
I can barely wrap my brain around the fact that I have been a mom for half a year.
He has grown so much!
He’s been too busy getting better at keeping his balance and trying to sit up to remember that he knows how to roll from his tummy back to his back.
When he’s playing on his back he rolls over every single time, but then he is really upset to find himself there. He tries to roll back over a few times but he has forgotten what to do with the arm he’s trying to roll over and it gets in the way so he gets frustrated and just screams until someone rolls him over. Little stinker.
No teeth yet, but he has his fingers in his mouth chewing almost constantly. Apparently that is a habit I also had as baby.
He has really taken notice of Luna and Tonks this month. He stares at them whenever they’re in the room and laughs at them. When he was tiny, he hated for Luna to lick his feet and now he loves it. Tonks even lets him pet her, which is pretty surprising!
One of the best things lately is that he is learning to play and is really showing a strong interest in his toys. Sometimes he gets really excited when I pull out a toy that’s been in the diaper bag and out of sight for a little while.
We haven’t had his 6 month well-baby check up yet but I weighed him on the Wii Fit and he weighs 17lbs now!
In 3 days Samuel will be 6 months old. So here is his 5-month-old update. We had a very busy September with lots of traveling so I got very behind on editing his photos. It didn’t help that I took 111 photos so it took me a while to go through them.
What, you may ask, did Samuel do between his fourth and fifth months? Good question!
During the month of August Samuel rolled over on his own from back to tummy and tummy to back.
Here he is in his Gingiber Bunny Onesie. Thanks, Stacie!
He also searched very hard for his toes.
And he FOUND his toes. Yummy. My kid’s a genius
He also bounced up and down in his bouncing horse instead of just swaying side to side.
Finally, Samuel has grown out of some of his 3-6 month outfits.
That’s what happens when you gain 2 pounds in a month and grow to 16 pounds!
He wouldn’t stop loving on his bunny long enough for me to get a good comparison shot.He wouldn’t stop loving on his bunny long enough for me to get a good comparison shot.
Samuel is 4 months (and 2 weeks) old!
He did lots of growing and learning this month. How chubby does he look in this one?
His Granny (my mom) and Nanny (my mom’s cousin) came to visit for a few days and had wonderful time cuddling and spoiling him. They also got to hear his first big belly laugh. He hasn’t done it again since but it sure was cute!
Samuel also perfected his raspberry skills for Granny. The moment you put him on his changing table he sticks out his tongue and blows as hard as he can. Sometimes he just vibrates his little lips but he’s pretty proud of his technique.
He’s also very proud of his “standing up on Mama or Dada’s lap holding their hands” skills.
He is so close to rolling over from his back to his stomach that I always expect to find him on his tummy when I come back into the room where he’s playing on his back in his little gym.
Samuel had a big growth spurt this month. He planted himself on my boobs and camped there for a week or two. He would eat every hour all day long and then crash hard and sleep 8 or 9 hours at night. The extra sleep was good but, let me tell ya, this Mama was in a lot of pain after 9 hours of no nursing following the day’s marathon feedings. Don’t be deluded into thinking I got the same 8 or 9 hours of sleep he did either. Since I sat on the couch with him most of the day I had a ton of stuff to try to get done the minute he went to sleep. I did watch a whole lot of Dr. Who, so I can’t complain. The fruits of his efforts showed at his 4 month check-up where he weighed in at 14lbs and measured 25.5 inches long!
He is growing so fast!
I’m a little behind on posting Samuel’s monthly baby photo shoot, but I DID take take the photos in time for his 3 month “Birthday.”
I keep telling Daniel that I can’t believe we’ve had Samuel home for three months (Three and a half now, actually.) He just keeps growing and growing. I feel like a broken record because I say that every month and, DUH, of course he keeps growing or we’d be worried. But it’s still hard to wrap my sleep-deprived, hormonal brain around.
He his smiling very freely now and has the sweetest little chuckle. It’s not a full on baby belly laugh yet, but he gives us a little “heh heh” that is so funny.
I don’t know how much he weighs right now, but he started wearing his 3-6 month clothes at about a month ago. He officially does not fit into any of the sweet, tiny things he wore when he came home. We’re about to have change him up to the next size in his cloth diapers, too. I still need to add to our diaper stash because we don’t quite have enough of the bigger size.
I broke my dairy fast the day before my birthday last month and the crazy poo did not return so we think he either doesn’t have a dairy intolerance or it’s minimal. So I’m back on dairy and trying to be mindful of not gorging on it, just in case.
He still takes his baby Zantac twice a day and it seems to really help with his reflux pain, but he does still get a bad belly ache sometimes which makes him scream so loud and high pitched that I think I black out a little.
Still nursing like a trooper. I’m so grateful breastfeeding is working out for us.
TEETHING! The little stinker has started to drool like crazy, gnaw on his hands and, occasionally, bite my nipples really hard. I do not approve.
He sure is sweet!
Do you sit in meetings and wish for a boss who demands unfettered access your boobs, sleeps while you are at work and screams until you pay attention to them every time you try to eat your lunch? Do you already have a boss like that, but you’d like to enjoy all of these benefits from the comfort of your own home where you cry from happiness if you get to take a shower before 2pm? Then Stay-at-Home Mom is the job for you! Perks include a seemingly bi-polar little blob of cute that will melt your heart by smiling and cooing at you and, literally 0.5 seconds later, will scream at a decibel so loud and high pitched that your ears ring and your vision blurs. You may also suddenly find yourself free to stop by Bacon and Beer night at your neighborhood pub at the unheard-of hour of 4pm before all the bacon runs out, baby and husband in-tow so you can enjoy a half-pint of the beer (you’ll feel like a Hobbit) with the lowest alcohol content because you are still paranoid that your baby will want to eat again before your obligatory 2 hours after a drink are up.
Blogging in my favorite pub with my baby in my lap. And it’s MY JOB. (The baby part, not the blogging part.) Stay-at-home mom is the coolest job I’ve had so far!
I recently turned in my notice and then my laptop and keys at my old job so I am now officially a stay-at-home mom. The transition from working non-parent to stay-at-home mom technically started once we brought Samuel home, I guess. Still, making it official is definitely kind of trippy. This little guy got here and I just couldn’t imagine being away from him all day 5 days a week if I could help it. I’m so blessed to have a husband who agrees that it’s more important for Samuel to be at home than for us to have the extras that two incomes provide so we are now rocking one income, 1950’s style. Except, instead of vacuuming in heels and pearls, I watch JJ Abrams shows on Netflix when Samuel nurses. I’m a totally cheap-o-rama and we haven’t always had two incomes anyway, so that helps it not be too freaky of a transition in that respect.
Who could resist this face, anyway? Best looking boss I’ve ever had, for sure.
Yes, we sure do! We Heart Daddy so much that I finally got around to making celebration bunting like I say I’m going to do for every holiday but never do.
Samuel photo collage for Daddy’s desk (once we get his home office space set up), card with a special gift (3 month subscription to Daniel’s online Lord of the Rings game: he usually plays the free version) and a new bib for Samuel made by Mama. “My Daddy outgeeks your Daddy by a Yottabyte.” Apparently that’s a lot. If that is even a real unit of measurement. I’m not certain it wasn’t just made up by other geeks.
My guys at Vintage Fellowship on Father’s Day.
I was so proud to share my birthday with Daniel’s very first Father’s Day this year! What better birthday present could I ask for than these handsome fellows making up my little family? But I’ll still take the gift certificate for a massage that they gave me and the many many crab legs I got to eat for my birthday dinner 🙂 I am so blessed.