Monica Bielanko
A chronicle since 2005 of my marriage & move to Brooklyn in my twenties; becoming a mother in my thirties; moving to Pennsylvania and learning to amicably coparent after divorce in my forties while living 3 doors down from my ex-husband in a small country town.
That's What She Said
You can also find Monica's writing here:
Search The Girl Who
« Mark Of The Baby | Main | In Which I Dip My Toe In The Murky Co-Sleeping Waters »
Monday
Mar072011

Who Am I?

Hey! HEEEEEY! How are you? Me, I'm okay! I've got a kid on my lap and another one watching that sonofabitching Dora The Explorer who I am deeply indebted to but still. If I have to hear that song again I am going to flip out. Except I probably won't. Most likely I will smile and sing along whenever Violet looks at me but inside I will be hating Dora like a motherfucker and wanting to bitch slap her all the way back to the Big Forest or wherever she just came from with that infernal monkey.

I'm super bummed. Usually at this juncture I would've inundated you with pictures of my sweet Henry but I'll be damned if the photo program I use suddenly got stingier than a pregnant woman with french fries. Now the program has a tantrum whenever I open it up. Which, incidentally, is probably a good thing for y'all though or I'd have exhausted you with all eight million photos we've taken thus far.

The induction, labor, delivery... the whole thing was great and I'll try and write it up this weekend. For now, I need other favors. I really do.

Today is day one of Mom Alone On The Homefront. Serge went back to work today so here I am. The stitches are healing up, the shock of having two (TWO!) children is wearing off and here I am, trying not to become the woman who looks forward to the afternoon because that's when Dr. Phil and Oprah are on.

A dude I work with whose wife transitioned from being a journalist to stay-at-home mom said she tries to plan one activity every day, whether it's going to the park or one of those sing and dance classes for toddlers. You know the ones where the parents participate as well, dancing and singing like idiots, all for the benefit of the toddlers who mostly run around the room, so half the time it's just the parents holding hands in a circle and singing? I went to one of those Friday. Serge did too. When the teacher asked us to join hands and she started singing hello to everyone I couldn't help but look at Serge and snicker out of embarrassment. But Serge was all business. There he is in his newsboy cap, flannel shirt and Vans skater shoes, singing "It's time to put the toys away!" and I'm snickering like like a sixth grader at the maturation clinic where they talk about menstruation and boobies.

Maybe Serge's exemplary behavior had something to do with the teacher, "Miss Sarah", being a smoking hot blond. Later I commented on her hotness and Serge said he'd totally hit that. I wondered aloud if he'd call her Miss Sarah while he "hit that" and he said of course, that's part of the allure. I signed up for the class, but alas, Parent Of The Year Serge has to work so his exposure to Miss Sarah will be limited. Shame, that.

Toddler classes, breast feeding, activities planner; I am totally all mommed up. What do you do, man? It's what you gotta do, I guess. But can you guys stage an intervention or something if I start talking about how smart I think Violet is and how advanced she is for her age?

All the kid talk is killing me! Let's talk about Charlie Sheen and his Goddesses! Do you think he's winning? Oh, you're burned out on Charlie Sheen? Let's just talk about sex and drugs and rock & roll and all things inappropriate for young ears. Where's the craziest place you had sex? Me? In the bathroom of a restaurant/bar. In a stall. Shut up! It was clean. Kind of. And yes, it was with Serge. Your turn.

And don't forget, I really need any words of advice you have for stay-at-home-moms. I'm looking at two months of maternity leave here, perhaps longer, depending on certain decisions that have yet to be made... So help a sister out! Craziest place you had sex AND advice for the next two months of my life. Help me compile a survival guide for the stay at home mom, particularly one with two (TWO!) kids. And I may take you up on one or two of your craziest sex spots too.

These comments could get interesting.

Reader Comments (30)

In the janitor's closet. In the basement of a church. During a wedding reception. With my husband


that is so embarrassing, but obviously not embarrassing enough to keep me from telling you

heee

that is all

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAmyLynn

I do not have kids BUT the moms I know all tend to pour a glass of wine when the hubby gets home from work. Maybe that can be your daily activity? Hehe. I always see stay at home moms out walking together and I always think: Gee, how nice for them. A time to chit chat and get a little circulation flowing. That would be my choice activity.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrachelgab

In the Pacific ocean, in front of a lot of surfers waiting for a wave. Yes, it was with my husband. No, I don't think anyone noticed.

Dude, I would not be planning one activity per day unless it was "shower" or "dry my hair properly." One activity per week would knock me out and I wouldn't even start doing that for a few months.

I think the way to survive the time is allowing big sibling to hang out at Grandma's more and seriously sleeping when the baby sleeps since I didn't do that the first time around. For some reason I got it in my head that I needed to do the laundry and make dinner for my husband and now I realize he can do all of that and more all on his own!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertherobynnest

the dressing room at nordstrom. my husband reminds me of that day every time we're in a dressing room.

sahm advice: if you do only one thing for yourself a day, i would recommend it be getting yourself dressed. they can suck the life out of us so we might as well look good while they're doing it :). oh, and if there's time for more, go for a walk.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenteremily

don't be so damned anti-social and have your friend Meg visit. you can sit back and laugh as she gets fatter and fatter (is that a word). We don't have to talk about you-know-where. Also, I have Scarlett in a slew of classes to fill the day. I made the mistake of taking Brian to one where the moms were singing and waving their hands. He turned to me and asked if this is what stay-at-home moms really do. For the record, I don't.

Call me...I'll entertain you and Scarlett and Violet can sing Dora together.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMeg

this is going to sound totally crazy, but in a hog barn....it was dark and we had no idea that there were actual animals in the barn, but yes in a hog barn...standing up of course!!!! it was at a music festival and we were working the parking gate and there was a barn nearby..some people got to park for free!
i'd just go with the flow and if you feel up to it, head out to the park or a fun place that you like to go. maybe a playdate with a friend once a week. i wouldn't plan too much, i'd just let it happen.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterbrooke

I guess I have something in common with commenter AmyLynn--also in a closet, during a wedding reception, with my husband. Only not in a church, but an Elks Lodge frequented by smelly old men. The ridiculous amount of booze I was drinking that night made it seem like a good idea at the time. Now it kind of grosses me out when I think about it!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterheather

My husband and I had a bit of a wild stretch right after we met where we'd try to find odd places. The craziest is a tie between an airplane bathroom (yeah, mile-high club!) which was NOT very comfortable OR very discreet, or the janitor's closet, that DIDN'T HAVE A DOORKNOB or lock in the main lobby of the Sheraton hotel downtown during intermission at one of those "Jazz at the Sheraton" concerts. Ha!

As for stay-at-home-mom activities... I'm kid-less so far, so I can't help you there. But, being in a similar situation as you and Serge work/career wise, I am anxious to see how the two of you balance everything and all of that stuff! I need the advice myself! :)

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

Bonneville Golf course - under a tree off of the 16th fairway, I think? And another time, in a sandbox - yeah, I know, ewwww - on a playground at some campground in Oregon. It was dark and late and no kiddos got the souls burned by witnessing said act. Oh, yeah, and one time, on the way back from Wendover, we pulled over to the side of the road and went at it. Good times indeed. Thanks for the walk down memory lane... sigh.... I think a trip to Wendover in the near future sounds like a good idea...

As far as SAHM suggestions above, they all sound great - and I've always been a fan of "mommy sleeps when baby sleeps." And if you can get Violet to sleep at the same time, then BONUS!

"Salty Nut Cafe."
And, not only were we getting busy, but we got kicked out of the Salty Nut for all that busy-ness.

I thought the name was a tad bit humorous.

Girl, just take it an hour at a time. Take time to pamper yourself daily. Keeping mama happy keeps everyone else happy.

If all else fails, smack the crap out of Dora.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJudi

My husband and I have done the deed anywhere other than home or a hotel room, haha, boring!!

Today is also my first day at home with two kids - husband is back to work today! I'm sure I'll get into some sort of routine eventually, but for now...if I manage to have a shower and remember to feed the older kid breakfast/lunch/dinner, then it's a good day. Later on, if I manage to throw in a walk or a chore, then it will be an amazing day!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSunny

Oh gawd...why is this the post that I feel compelled to comment on?

Craziest place, as in location: under a sail boat on the beach. Sand in my crotch for days...

Craziest place, as in physically: my butt. It went something like this:

Me: Sure, taking 2500 shots of Jager sounds like a great idea!
Hubs: Wanna get it on?
Me: Duh! Hey...stick it in my butt!
Hubs: OKAY!
Me: !!!*$&#%*#*@AGGHHHH*$&#%*#*!!!

I couldn't poop right for a week. (Note to self: Jager shots = bad idea).

SAHM advice: Do we sound like people who are responsible enough to have children?

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKC

I want to see 12 million photos of Henry!

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKate

In a bathroom stall at The Oyster Bar. Yeah, you've been there. Two women walked in while we were doing it, but they were preoccupied with talking about their dates.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterM

in the road-

Planning activities is not a bad idea at all so long as you don't make a religion out of it. The thing is to under promise and over deliver.Give yourself some wiggle room to disappoint people without giving them room to lay a huge guilt trip on you. Over structuring electives is drudgery. You could have a family jot book. for ideas. My mom used to say "someday" and we eventually learned that word probably meant 'never' but at least it gave us more hope than the N word for the time being. But at least if the kid or parent writes it down, it's more...tangible. And then someday...when someone wants to do something, and it's right there in the book.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGina

A public pool. A sweet, innocent family of four was having their lunch at the patio table not 15 feet from where my too-old-for-me-but-way-popular-so-it-was-okay boyfriend pulled the crotch of my one-piece to the side while I was hanging on him in the water, my legs wrapped around his waist innocently until I'd realized what was, um, up? I'm pretty sure the lifeguard AND the dad figured out what was happening pretty quickly, but the boy was pretty quick himself and we were apart and swimming in the opposite direction before anyone could raise more than an eyebrow, much less an alarm.

I have no advice for being a stay-at-home-mom...I'm reading your words and trying to decide if motherhood is my bag - you're the most honest/real/scary/sincere voice I've heard on the subject, and I read a lot of Mommy blogs. I'm waiting to see how this whole thing turns out for you before I decide if I can handle it. :)

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterNatalie

Well, I lost my virginity at the top of the slide on a playground. TRUE STORY. (It was nighttime, in the summertime, so no danger of corrupting any kids but me).

I actually agree with the "one activity a day" SAHM-plan. The activity can be Go For a Walk or Get Our Free Cookie at the Store! But something to get everyone dressed and rallied around getting out of the house was crucial for my sanity in those first weeks. I think we had one actual Scheduled Activity a week. For us, a simple change of scenery saved many a crappy day. That, and my man cooked dinner for us. Every night. Awesome.

Have fun figuring it out and YES PLEASE ONE MILLION PHOTOS.

March 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterA.

Craziest place? Private library on a leather couch in Vienna Austria. I don't even know who owned the building!

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLiz S.

Craziest place? Just the backseat of a car. Not too crazy :) Er, except that the car was at the time located in the parking lot of a power company that had just screwed over my husband (then boyfriend). We had no idea how to retaliate other than just paying off their ridiculous bill and then driving to their office late at night and having sex in their parking lot.

As for SAHM advice... yeah, planning goes a long way. I'd look around at library and bookstore story times, have a nice list of parks, indoor playgrounds, etc and then put together a *rough* weekly schedule. Also, carry enough food with you that it could either be snack or lunch, so if you want to stay someplace longer than planned it'll work out. I'm trying to remember the first 2 months with 2 kids... my older one was 4 though so that makes a difference and he helped me out a lot. I will say the best thing for me was having the baby in a sling. Hey, you're already dipping your toes in the crunchy waters, why stop now? :-P I used a ring sling, easy on easy off, and that way I had my hands free for the big guy AND I had the baby snuggled up all happy and safe at the same time. Gave me a ton more mobility, especially since I didn't need a stroller if we were going to the park. If you want a cheapo sling, just get about 5 yards of any stretchy fabric, cut in half lengthwise, and follow the instructions on the Moby sling website. Hours of hilarity will ensue as you attempt to correctly position your baby :) But when you do finally "get it" he'll be all snug and warm and you'll have two free hands and the ability to run after a toddler. Good luck!

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

Ok. In a phonebox, but I was kind - there were 3 boxes, and we were in the middle one - so lots free should folk have needed them at about 1am on a Sunday night somewhere in NottingHill, London. Same night we climbed over a wall and had sex in nursery school's garden or something like that. Bet the security guard checking over those CCTV cameras had a chuckle come Monday. Oh and a train toilet. No so glam eh? And small.

I hear you on the 'enough about kids already' thang - so here is my tip to remain sane as a Mum: GET OUT! Yes, get out every day - for a coffee, to a cinema that does 'scream club' where you can take your babies along too, to a bad sing a long in a park with a friend who will also piss herself at such dire activities, to babino latino lambada classes (yes these hideous things exist), for a walk, for lunch - and try to do as much as poss with like minded mates who just happen to be mothers. Oh - in the evening mix a measure of elderflower cordial with 2 measures of gin over ice, stir for 1 minute, sieve off from the ice and serve in a martini glass. Mama's little helper. Fab

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercrummymummy

Outside... with my hands on the hood of me and my fiancé’s car (with my fiancé of course) Very exhilarating!!

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

On a boat in the middle of a very busy lake, broad daylight. And a paraglider went overhead.

And Charlie Sheen is TOTALLY winning the bat-shit-crazy-train-wreck of the year contest, and I can't get enough of him and his goddess(es).

Advice? Get someone, anyone, to come spend a couple of hours every single week, with the kids so that you can get out of the house to preserve your sanity.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkate

Most recently: quick threesome in the ocean during a moonlit skinny dip. Less exciting when you consider that I'm in a permanent threesome. :-)

College era: chapel of a dorm.

High school era: rocket slide at a park while a little league went on 50 feet away. That's right, I'm Klassy.

I have four kids and have never done the singing class deal, btw.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSassy Molassy

On the lawn of my husbands old high school. He took me back to see where he went to school and i guess i wanted to feel like a cheerleader.

I'm not a mom yet, but i would say remember to keep time for yourself. Even if it's just 20 minutes going to the store alone. Just somewhere you don't have to be mommy or wifey.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commentercharity

umm pretty sure the hubby and I did it while in the hospital before prepping for me to have my gallbladder removed the next day lol :)

As for the stay at home advice plan one activity a week to start just to get out as the weeks go by add another activity, try to get in a shower and dress in different clothes every day even if its sweats and a tee, soon enough taking both of them out by yourself will not seem so overwhelming just do what you have to do , and if anyone offers any help take it :)

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

In a parking garage (outside of the car) with my then boyfriend who is my now husband... I think we think it makes it better if we married them..right?

I've stayed home with my son for a year and my advice is...and its boring but so good I swear. Straighten up the living room/kitchen main living areas before you go to bed. Even if your really tired. I fix the pillows, throw all the toys in their cubbies and wipe off the counters. We're not talking deep cleaning here, just a quick run through. When I get up in the morning and its all nice I seem to have a much more productive day. Trust me, do it for a week. Totally works.

Oh and don't stress when the kid pulls everything out at like 7am.

March 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterColey

I am proud of you even thinking about "IT" so soon after giving birth. Was it giving, or a 'performance'?

My wife, at 3 weeks post birth of our second, was pouring it on so heavy, I was, against my nature, the voice of reason, No, honey, we have to wait 6 weeks. What if we break something or you get an infection? She said, Can't you put it in the back?..." So, like KC above, but without the assistance of flammable substances. Never asked for that again, well, not until last Sunday night... but that's another story. Strange mix of hormones while the female body recovers. Other than that, I suppose the strangest place might have been in a hammock in the backyard with visiting family in the house 20 feet away, or on a pile of unwashed laundry. She gets so turned on when I do the laundry, or any chores.

I think you have already hit on a good, reality inducing activity. Writing. Keeping us up to date on your progress, and maybe working on that book-outline-proposal your agent could sell for you. Other than that, enjoy the recoup time. You have earned it. Take a shower in the morning, but heck, just hang out and enjoy the down-time.

And you mentioned Charley Sheen? If I see one more interview with that nut! I have taken to watching my AppleTV to avoid the broadcast media feeding frenzy.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSouthernMan

In the woods in the rain while the kids were in the tent bouncing around on the air mattress.

My best advice is to not isolate yourself. Find some friends who have kids around your kids' ages and hang out. Drink coffee, sit around in parks, go on hikes, let the dogs run, and know that whatever you're going through, you're not alone.

I stayed at home with my kids for years and it was extremely difficult at times, but now they are both in school full time and I'm a snowboard bum at a local resort with summers off. The time while they were babies passed by so quickly that while I wished I was working (a lot of the time) I'll never regret my decision to stay home now that the time has passed.

March 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAngie

Hey Monica! I'm kind of a new reader catching up on your posts! This one cracked me up. I thought we were the only parents who secretly, explicitly referred to Dora as "That motherfucking hooch". :)

As for the craziest spot: A campground bathhouse. Classy, no? It was very clean but also very dirty... ha!

As for the SAHM deal. I'm a mom of 4 who voluntarily left the workforce to stay at home with my two youngest children (The top two are school agers). My long term advice - be very confident in which ever decision you make - there will be many opinionated people on both sides of the argument, but ultimately it's SO personal. There are definite pro's and cons to both and no one can mirror your family's situation.

Short term advice - Take a shower daily. I'm not kidding. It seems like common sense, but when you are home with wee ones, and an infant, it's easy to chose sleep over shower. Then one day turns into two, and the next thing you know you're like Oh, for fuck sakes, really? I also make a point to consume some wine each evening, too.... ; )

Good Luck! I love reading about your family.

March 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

Craziest place....top of a fire tower at a state park....standing up, looking out at the mountains. It was pretty cool. Doing it in the ocean is way overrated. As is up the doop shoot, even with copious amounts of Jaeger/Jose Cuervo/Merlot/Fat Tire coursing through one's bloodstream. I was horny as hell after the birth of my second child, "hit it" two weeks post birth. Enough of the sex stories though.

I was a SAHM mom with my two, who were 16 months apart. Just getting out once a day, even just for a walk around the block was nice, plus I second the vote for showering and fixing up. A quick run to the library is nice, and I also liked making a simple picnic and taking it to the park when the weather warmed up. I slept when they slept, and it seemed to work out OK. Good luck and keep us updated. Love your blog!

March 12, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKimbob

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>