Monday, March 28, 2016

Monday Happiness and Week 18 Bump Update!

A day late on this, but Week 18 is here, and baby is the size of a sweet potato. I think these fruit and vegetable comparisons are a little BS. I've seen sweet potatoes smaller than avocados and bigger than my face. Either way, they say the little guy is over five inches long now.

Yesterday, I spent a lot of the day stuffing my face with sugary goodness. It seemed like the appropriate thing to do for Eric's birthday/Easter. Baby said so, okay?! 





We had a nice three-day weekend together, but now Monday is here, and I have a really bad case of the "I HATE YOUR GUTS, YOU SUCK SO BAD, MONDAY"s. Eric is back at work, and I am at home getting things done until I go back to work tomorrow. 

Instead of sitting here moping while I wait for my laundry, how about we infuse a little happiness into this Monday? Chondra Echert of Our Transient Life blog (some of you may recognize her name as a comic book author and the wife of Coheed frontman Claudio Sanchez) posted a "25 Things that Make Me Happy" post this morning to cheer up her Monday. It made me feel better just reading her list, so I figured it would only help to make my own. You should make one, too. Mondays are the perfect day to force yourself to think happy thoughts!

25 Things that Make Me Happy

1. Waking up next to Eric.

2. When Nym greets me with her favorite bone, tail wagging, when I walk in the door after a long day of work.

3. When Nym nudges my hand for more pets or pushes her head into my legs for snuggles. Basically, anything Nym does makes me happy. Unless it involves eating socks or retainers, or tearing her ACL...

4. Reading. Whether it's a book, magazine, or blog, reading is the only thing that can completely remove me from my world and relieve me of any stress or anxiety I might have.

5. Sitting outside in the sunshine.

6. Going for a boat ride, preferably with alcoholic beverages involved.

7. When one of my favorite songs comes on the radio exactly when I need it. Like when I was leaving the school on my last day of working there, and Highway to Hell by AC/DC came on. It was magical.

8. Seeing my family walk out of the terminal at the airport when they arrive in West Palm for a visit.

9. Hearing baby's heartbeat.

10. When Chloe grabs my hand and pulls me into another room to play or show me something.

11. Playing games with friends, because that's our nerdy idea of getting crazy on the weekend.

12. Eating a good meal outside on a nice day, at a restaurant or at home.

13. My mom's cooking.

14. Landing in Philly and seeing the city skyline as we drive back to NJ to greet our family.

15. When I spend time doing my makeup and hair, and I look in the mirror and feel like it actually looks GOOD.

16. Listening to the throwback albums of my youth front to back on long car rides and singing along at the top of my lungs. Deja Entendu and Tell All Your Friends, anyone?

17. Babbling along on my blog. I don't care who reads this. Writing is therapeutic.

18. Achieving goals.

19. Video chatting with our family.

20. Drinking a latte. The whole experience of going to a coffee shop and ordering a drink makes me feel cozy.

21. Reuniting with good friends after a long time apart.

22. DISNEY WORLD. Especially Magic Kingdom and Epcot on a nice day.

23. Exploring somewhere new.

24. Playing the piano and nailing a piece after not practicing it for a long time (probably too long...).

25. Pizza. Did you think this list would be complete without it?

Bump Update

How far along? 18 weeks. Almost halfway there!
Total weight gain: I will find out at my next doctor appointment on Friday, at my NEW doctor. I have high hopes for this practice.
Maternity clothes? Still none. I just feel so inbetween. Things fit, but they're snug and not flattering. I have some pudge on my hips, and obviously my belly, so I just feel... blah. I just want to pop a little more so I can feel good in clothing again. I feel fine naked. Haha.
Stretch marks? None yet! Just keeping up my moisturizing routine every day after my showers. I've been using regular lotion lately, which seems to be working just as well as a $15 tub of belly butter...
Sleep: Pretty terrible. My anxiety has been through the roof, and I'm just uncomfortable. I think I need a vacation, and a pregnancy pillow, and maybe a king size mattress hehehe.
Best moment this week: Yesterday was Eric's birthday and Easter! It sucks being away from family, especially when both of our families have big gatherings, but I tried to make it special for him. We had ice cream cake and played games with a few friends on Saturday night, and I made him an Easter basket and planned a little Easter Beer Hunt for yesterday morning. It's the adult version of an Easter Egg Hunt, didn't you know? He was surprised, and I was happy. We had a great day talking to our families and enjoying each other's company, which we are trying to not take for granted. We will miss these moments when we are sleep deprived and have a screaming infant in five months.
Miss anything? Definitely family more than ever. Also, sleep.
Movement: Still haven't noticed anything again, but I am going to make it a point to watch out for it now. I hope I will feel something this week.
Food cravings: No... I will randomly really wish I had something, but no particular craving that happens on a regular basis.
Anything making you queasy or sick: Peanut butter and chicken are the main offenders. The rest of the aversions are getting a little better.
Gender: Dude
Labor signs: No
Symptoms: Some cramps/stomach pain, headaches, sometimes nausea but not really often. I don't know. I've had it pretty easy this week. Yay! OH WAIT, I am STARVING. Like all the time. I want to eat ALL. THE. TIME.
Belly button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or moody most of the time: Definitely emotional this week, but I think happy in general. Just prone to mood swings. Then again, I've ALWAYS been prone to mood swings, so I don't really feel moodier than usual.
Looking forward to: My doctor appointment on Friday, and Nym's vet appointment on Saturday! I hope she has made good progress in her recovery. We've done the best we can to keep her calm and slow, but she's Nym. She's a silly, crazy baby. She stays off the steps and only goes out on her leash, and that's all we can really do.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Week 17 Bump Update

Baby is the size of an onion this week. Couldn't they think of a more appetizing food item?

Not much going on this week. Linny was here, and she left, and then I worked a lot. I've been having a kind of down past few days. I hate when visitors leave. It makes me feel lonely. I'm so far removed from living in the Jerz now that my mind wanders down dark, unsafe alleys of thought, like, "Was the winter really that bad? It's only four months of cold." Then, Eric looks at me like I am a lunatic, and reminds me that it fucking sucked. At least once a week since November, my Timehop has shown me statuses, tweets, and instagrams of the past, including things like "WHY THE FUCK IS IT SNOWING ON ST. PATRICK'S DAY" with me giving the middle finger to the camera while freezing my ass off with a snow shovel, or "I am booking a ticket to Florida RIGHT. NOW. AND NEVER COMING BACK," or "Why don't I live in Hawaii. WHYYYYY?"

I try not to take living here for granted, but when visitors leave, it takes me about a week to start seeing the palm trees and hibiscus flowers again.

How far along? 17 weeks!
Total weight gain: I have no clue, but my belly is definitely getting a little bigger.
Maternity clothes? None yet, but I went to the maternity store in the mall this week with Linny. Most of my shorts still fit me, I think because they are a little higher or lower waisted, but my jeans fall right at a spot in the middle of my belly. I've been wearing my "big" jeans that I saved when I had gained weight several years ago, but they are so baggy in the legs. So I tried on a pair of extra small petite jeans and shorts in the maternity store, which felt GREAT around my belly, but were still a little baggy in the tops of the thighs :( The lady said the other brand might fit me, as they are more tailored to exact sizes... which costs $225 per pair, no joke. Must be nice to be able to afford to spend that on a pair of jeans, let alone jeans that you will only wear for nine months. Guess I will be wearing sundresses all summer. UGH MY WORST FASHION NIGHTMARE. I hope I can find some black ones with skulls... jkjk sorry, Mom.
Stretch marks? None yet
Sleep: Not good, BUT my dream last night was AWESOME. I was at this small music festival thing in LA, and Taking Back Sunday was playing. There were all these girls that were trying to hook up with Adam Lazzara, but he's married with kids. Come on, you dumb hoes. So I asked if he would be willing to chat with me for a few minutes about being a musician, being in a band for a living, how it affects family life, etc. So we hung out for awhile and talked about all that, and he gave me advice, and everyone was jealous, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, he said he liked my purple hair (it was purple in my dream!). Then he gave me a hug and said we could be friends. The end. It was the best dream ever, besides the dream where I saw Queen performing with Freddie Mercury.
Best moment this week: Hanging out with Linny, video chatting with my family and Eric's, talking to Aunt Jen (even if half the conversation was about taxes. ADULTING!) I miss family :( Oh AND getting my hair done for the first time since I found out I was pregnant!
Miss anything? Just the usual. Family, alcohol.
Movement: I thought I felt him moving a week ago, but I haven't noticed anything since, so maybe I was just imagining things. I've been trying to pay attention at night when I am sitting still. They say you can start feeling movement at 16 weeks, but some people don't feel it until 20+.
Food cravings: Not really. Definitely wanting more sugary foods now though. GIVE ME ALLLLL THE BAKED GOODS.   
Anything making you queasy or sick: The usuals: strong sweet smells, peanut butter, and chicken, although I can sometimes eat chicken if it's breaded, fried, or I can't see or smell it (like in a quesadilla). If you put grilled chicken in front of me, I will punch you. I can now drink coffee again, which is good, because the doctor said a little caffeine would help with my headaches, and tea and soda sound gross to me. I'm only having one small latte a week if my headache is really bad, so don't freak out and tell me not to have too much caffeine.
Gender: Boy
Labor signs: No
Symptoms: Lots of the bad ones have lessened! Nauseous only if I come in to contact with aversions, headaches but not as often, not as exhausted as I was, boobs aren't really sore anymore, and acne is not as bad as it was. My hair is growing even MORE super fast than it already does, which is THE BEST THING EVER! The hairdresser said after a few more months and trims, I should have an even length and be well on my way to growing it out :)
Belly button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or moody most of the time: Happy, unless I'm hungry or tired.
Looking forward to: Eric's birthday, my first appointment at my new doctor, Nym's surgery follow up with xrays, and going home in April!

Monday, March 14, 2016

DISNEY, COHEED, and Quick Week 16 Bump Update!

Hi, I am 16 weeks pregnant, and my baby is the size of an AVOCADOOOOO.

Thinking about this milestone just makes me so.... 

HUNGRY. I want guacamole.

This past week was pretty emotional. It was my little buddy's first birthday on Wednesday. I will spare you the sappy details, but it felt like a big week for all of us there. But besides being an emotional mess, I have been feeling pretty good this week! I made an appointment at what is supposedly a great ob/gyn practice in the area, and they do all their bloodwork in office, so I won't be behind on anything. My appetite is increasing, even though my aversions are still around. But I can eat scrambled eggs now, so yay protein! I'm also getting some cravings, but nothing consistent. Just random cravings that I must have RIGHT NOW. My bump is getting a little bigger, but not much yet.

On Thursday, Linny got here! WE ALL WENT TO DISNEY FOR THE WEEKEND! We met up with Kelly and stayed in the Port Orleans French Quarter, which sold beignets and had a funny old man dressed in Mardi Gras clothes, so that was festive. Getting the bus to the parks was super convenient.


We happened to be there during the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival, which I HIGHLY RECOMMEND you go to if you are thinking about Epcot in the spring months. Every country in the World Showcase had a special stand with delicious food and drinks inspired by that country, much of which I could not enjoy due to my case of the pregnants. BUT it was still awesome, because the things I could have were incredible. VIOLET LEMONADE, PEOPLE. Maybe they'll make it an Epcot staple. Everything was basically only $5-$7, so you could sample a lot. The gardens were really done up, and there was even a butterfly garden room you could walk through!

We all took sweet pictures of our trip. They aren't fancy or edited, but my favorites from all of us are compiled here. :)




Linny snapped a sneaky photo of us holding hands, but it's cute, so it's here.

FROZEN. VIOLET. LEMONADE.
I want Peter Pan to be on top of my house.
The English Tea Gardens are by far my favorite in Epcot at any time of year. But I'm also slightly obsessed with England, so...
A gigantic macaron chocolat framboise in France, of course.
Cucumber tomato falafel tahini goodness I DON'T EVEN KNOW in Morocco.
Abu in Morocco.
Japanese bonsai garden. I love me some bonsai trees. 
The butterfly garden.
As time goes on, these will hatch, and a ton more butterflies will be flying around the garden by the end of the festival!
Okay, so on Friday night, Eric and I left Linny and Kelly to go to the Coheed show. This was my third time seeing them, but this time we were supposed to get to do a meet and greet before the show and hear a private song... only Eric thought we were supposed to be there an hour before the show, but really it was an hour before doors opened. We left kind of early anyway, and we drove so fucking fast and literally ran through Universal to get there in time, but with the traffic, we JUST missed it. It was pretty devastating, and Eric felt really, really bad. We were hoping to get something signed made out to Baby Mazz. 

BUT all was well in the end, because we still got to be there for the private song, had the best view I've ever had at a show (and still safely away from moshers and smoke), and the show was INCREDIBLE. I didn't think it could beat the show last year, where they did one of their best albums front to back and then some, but I think this was the best. First of all, one of the opening bands, I The Mighty, is great. If you like old screamo/pop punk-ish stuff like Thrice and Finch, you will probably like them. Check them out. I could've done without Silver Snakes and Glassjaw. Not my cup of tea. BUT COHEED PLAYED BASICALLY EVERY SINGLE ONE OF MY FAVORITE SONGS. The energy was insane, and Claudio's hair looked luscious.


And there was this hilarity:
"Cause nobody gives a fuck who you are" lolllll
So we left the show feeling on top of the world and really glad we made it there at all.

Saturday, we went to Magic Kingdom, which was magical as usual.

We had early breakfast reservations, so we got to walk down Main Street with basically NO ONE THERE!
Dumb crane, but you know. Still magical.


We had breakfast at Be Our Guest, which was INCREDIBLE. You should do it. We sat in the ballroom.

Pregnant lady's heaven. Am I right, or am I right?
"Try the grey stuff... it's delicious!" Shhhh, cupcakes for breakfast are fine in Disney. And every other day.

Having fun on one of my "pregnant lady" rides...
The Doormouse popped out to say hello.


Just Gaston. ;)
Hanging out in my... I mean Ariel's... castle.


Just doing some gardening while in line for Winnie the Pooh.



And then we drove home on Sunday, but not before we stopped at WAWA!

And Eric picked out this cute souvenir from our trip for baby:
BABY SIMBA! How cute. We can tell him how he went to Disney in Mommy's tummy!

So, that's all. This weekend made me think a lot about having a kid. Every time I saw parents, I kept thinking about how different life will be with a little dude. I had some internal mini-freakouts about not being able to just go to Disney whenever, or any trip, unless we find a sitter or pack a ton of stuff and bring him with us. But the flip side is that I think it will be fun to share the world with Baby Mazz, ESPECIALLY Disney. I saw a little boy and mom in matching Jack Skellington Mickey ears and shirts, and I knew it would all be okay. ;)

Sunday, March 6, 2016

15 Week Bump Update

Ello! Today I am 15 weeks pregnant, and I celebrated by sitting outside in my bathing suit ALL DAY. It was beautiful. Eric was brewing beer, Nym was relaxing, and I was listening to music and reading about astronaut Scott Kelly and Neil deGrasse Tyson. My pregnancy craving this past week has been SPACE. Jk, but really, my interest in it has been renewed by the news surrounding Kelly's return to Earth.

My view today.
I had a doctor appointment on Friday, which convinced me to definitely switch doctors. I am calling another practice first thing tomorrow morning.

At least I got to hear the baby's heartbeat. Right around 150. Baby is as big as a navel orange this week. :)


Bear with me and my flat butt, please. This is an exercise in self-love for me. I am trying to learn to appreciate my changing body. Also, bear with my floppy hair and grown-in roots. Now that I can sit for more than 30 minutes without running to the bathroom to hug the toilet, I am finally getting my hair cut and colored this week!

Besides that, it was a pretty typical week. Working with my little buddy has become increasingly difficult. He is a terror! The cutest terror I ever saw, but he's wild! Climbing everything, trying to get in to the covered outlets, MacGyvering out of his high chair (there's a massive throwback reference for ya!). He will be a year old this week, and I can't help but think about how much this nannying gig has changed my life. I have been with him since he was born. I used to be able to hold him in ONE HAND, and everyone knows my hands are practically baby hands themselves. He was not an easy baby, and he is not an easy one-year-old. I have learned a lot about motherhood this year, and I can honestly say that I never would have had the confidence to actually try to get pregnant if it wasn't for my work fam. Love em to death.

How far along? 15 weeks
Total weight gain: I gained 2 lbs. since my ultrasound a few weeks ago. Progress!
Maternity clothes? Still none, but I think I am going to try to get some new things this week. As of this past week, I am starting to get a little belly! My boobs don't look right in my tank tops, and nothing is laying right. I have an old pair of jeans that are too big that I always wear. They're comfy around my hips, but too baggy in the legs... I just look bloated, and I'm used to having a pretty flat stomach, so this is taking some getting used to.
Stretch marks? Still none
Sleep: Bad as usual. Last night I had a dream that I was trying to feed my baby, but he wouldn't eat. :( I wish I would have a good dream about him instead of crazy pregnancy dreams.
Best moment this week: Hearing baby's heartbeat at the doctor, and honestly, going to the bar last night with Eric hahaha. We went to The Brewhouse Gallery, which is an art gallery/bar combined. They were tapping a couple good beers, Funky Buddha Last Snow and Maple Bacon Coffee Porter. I was pretty bummed that I couldn't drink, but I liked looking at all the artwork and jewelry. And they have a ton of games there. We played Battleship, which I lost, but I kicked Eric's ass in Scrabble ;)
Miss anything? Family, clear skin, peanut butter even though it makes me want to barf, and just being my normal self. I definitely have more energy and feel less sick than before, but I am so thrown off by not being able to eat and drink my usual diet due to aversions/pregnancy restrictions. And I miss having a flat stomach. I knew this body change would be difficult for me, so I am prepared for these feelings. I think once I have a REAL bump, I will feel better, but this looking bloated thing is just making me feel kinda bad, even though I'm super excited.
Movement: Nothing yet
Food cravings: Bagels and cream cheese and Cheez-its (back on that bandwagon, but NOT WHITE CHEDDAR EW)
Anything making you queasy or sick: Peanut butter, meat, eggs, things that are too sweet. But some sweet things are okay now, like frozen yogurt.
Gender: Boy
Labor signs: No
Symptoms: Headaches, acne, aversions, wanting to nap every day of my life
Belly button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Happy or moody most of the time: I wouldn't say moody, but I would say my irritation threshold is lower than usual... haha
Looking forward to: Linny visiting next week and DISNEY!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Judgmental Moms

I didn't think I would have to write this post so early on in my pregnancy, but alas, here I am, writing about: JUDGMENTAL MOMS.

This isn't meant to offend anyone, but if it does offend you, then maybe you need to rethink your mindset.

I was talking to a friend today about a baby registry. I am guessing I will have to make one of these things, even though I hate attention/showers/blahblahblah. You know how I am. But I am asking all of the people I know who have recently had children for their advice on which registries are best, which items I NEED, and which items the interwebz tell you to get but you will never end up using.

Over the course of this conversation, the talk turned to how I am feeling and how I think I will feel after having the baby. The truth is that I am terrified, but I think everyone is terrified of having a baby, whether they want to admit it or not. I have no clue what to expect. I can take care of a baby five days a week for a year and still never know what it is like to be the one up at all hours of the night, running on empty for a month straight.

Or, I could know what that's like, but my child could be COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.

Which brought up a situation my friend was in shortly after having her child. She was at a birthday party for one of her friend's children, and while there, she was asked directly by the other moms if she was breastfeeding. She explained that she had tried it for a few months but had now switched to formula. The other moms then proceeded to SHAME HER FOR HER CHOICE, asking her if she had tried this and that, if she knew the benefits of breastfeeding, if she consulted certain people, etc. etc. My friend left the party feeling different emotions: 1. Slight guilt, even though she KNEW she was doing what was best in her situation, and 2. Anger that other moms (who she had JUST MET, by the way) would publicly and directly criticize her decision without knowing a single thing about her, her child, or her situation.

While I have only just shared my pregnancy with the world, I have already been asked how I am planning to raise my child. Will I have a natural birth? Will I breastfeed? Will I vaccinate? Where will the baby sleep? Will I let Nym near the baby? So many other questions... and I see comments and mommy message boards online, where mothers rip each other apart over their opinions on these matters.

I know these questions all come from a place of love, but people, I am 14 weeks pregnant! How can I know the answers to some of these questions? And honestly, how can I ever know the answer to these questions? I am not mad at anyone for asking. It just has got me thinking...

The truth is that I can plan for certain situations all I want, but until I am in the moment, I have no clue what will happen. I am not saying I don't do my research. Please. I am not stupid. I have been researching the pros and cons of these parenting decisions for the past ten years. That's what happens when you are a psychology major with a double minor in women's studies and anthropology, have a masters degree in counseling, and go on to work with children. This doesn't make me better prepared than any other parent-to-be... but I am willing to bet I have a slightly more unbiased, research-based view than a lot of people in my situation. I am well-informed about my decisions, and now, I am combining my knowledge with my personal feelings on parenting, based on my own childhood and my observations of different parenting styles. And let us not forget, there is another parent-to-be involved here. Eric does have a say in how he gets to raise his child, you know. It's not just about me. We need to be a team in agreement about these decisions.

Over the past ten years, I have also learned that my own mental health is important. That includes not putting excessive pressure on myself to live up to some sort of ideal. That includes doing what is best for ME, because I am 100% positive that if I feel horrible, bad about myself, or like I am losing my mind, it will NOT be what is healthiest for my baby, or my marriage. And if Eric and I aren't happy... well, how is that good for raising a child? It's not.

I can say I hope to have a natural birth, but no one can predict an emergency. And I certainly can't predict how I will cope with the pain, no matter how much I try to mentally prepare myself. You can list the benefits of breastfeeding all day to me, and it will not be worth it if, for some reason, it doesn't work out for me and I am beating myself up over the situation. Or if my child has digestive issues and health problems that make it necessary to formula feed. You can also list the benefits of formula feeding to me, but that doesn't mean I will give up on breastfeeding if it is going well for us. My child might not want to sleep through the night no matter what sleep method I try, and it will NOT be my fault. Some babies are colicky. Some don't adjust to sleeping for months, or ever, if he's like me. ;)

I guess what I am saying is that we are open-minded about everything, but we already know that someone out there, friend or not, will look down on us for our parenting decisions. And that makes us sad.

I know so many GOOD moms who love their children and would do anything for them, who tried so hard to live up to a certain expectation and ideal and felt absolutely terrible when they couldn't. They couldn't have the natural birth they wanted (literally couldn't), so they beat themselves up. They couldn't breastfeed and felt like failures. They felt ashamed for having postpartum depression and wouldn't ask for help. They have been judged for vaccinating their children. They have been told their child doesn't sleep well because they are "doing it wrong." "You should be putting him in the crib," "You should be putting him in your bed," "You should just let him cry it out," and, my personal favorite, "You need to relax." Really?!

To all of you who think you know what is best for someone else's child: You will never know what is best for someone else, because you are not in their situation. You can offer advice, but please keep in mind that there is a difference between offering WANTED advice and being pushy about your views. Trust me, I need all the help I can get. I welcome your input. But when help crosses over in to judging others for their choices-- or implying that they are ill-informed, haven't looked in to options, and are "parenting wrong"-- YOU are the one who is wrong.

Tell others what worked well for you, but understand that what works for them might be different, and that is OKAY.

Every child, parent, and family situation is different. If people are doing something differently than you, that does not mean they are WRONG. They are just doing it DIFFERENTLY. And please don't give me, "What if they are doing drugs around their kid, or abusing their kid, or neglecting him? What if they aren't plugging their outlets or leave suffocation risks in the crib? THAT IS WRONG!"... Obviously. We're all smart adults here. Do not nitpick the point I am trying to make.

And to go off on a slight tangent that is connected to this issue: Please, do not ask when someone is going to have a child. I hated it when people would ask when I am going to change my mind and have a kid. When I found out I was pregnant, I was pretty hesitant to tell ANYONE, because I didn't feel like hearing "TOLD YA SO!" Now, I am hearing "When is baby number two coming? Wink wink..." I can take the joke, but at some point, it will transition in to being a serious question. I'm not the type of person who is easily offended, and I think society gets way too easily offended these days. But having a child... It's such a personal choice. Let people do what they want. The more you pressure someone, the more it makes them want to say, "Fuck you. I'm never having a kid." On top of it, I do have reproductive issues, which I wasn't prepared to share with every person who ever asked when I was going to get pregnant. What was I supposed to say? "Well, my cervix is fucked up, so maybe never, even if I decide I want to." Talk about a downer... You have no idea if someone is going through a fertility struggle, or has had miscarriages. Maybe they have one child and wanted another, but it didn't work out. Maybe they have health problems. Maybe they just don't want more than one kid, or any kids at all. MAYBE THEY WANT TO BE A COOL AUNT FOREVER, OKAY?! They aren't heartless. They just don't think parenthood is right for them, now or ever.

Bottom line: Parents are just trying to do the best they can. I'm not even a parent yet, and I already know it's the hardest job in the world. That is why it took Eric and I so long to come around to the idea of being parents. Let's not make it even more difficult for each other, mmkay? Be supportive. That's the best thing you can do for a new parent. Or, you know, for another human being in general.