Thursday, August 9, 2012

Mommy Confessions: Jenn

I am excited that Jenn, my dear friend has allowed me to piggy back on her idea of mommy questions. Jenn and I were on staff together at Burchfield Ministries (Texas Bible Institute, Discovery Camp) were we became friends and moms together. Some of my favorite memories of being a first time mom was when Jenn would bring her baby over and we would sit in my living room solving the world's issues together...ok maybe just our world! Ha  We our not in the same city or even same state but when I read her blog I feel like were are sitting on my couch again....enjoy!

My name is Jenn Garcia, my husband Lupe and I have been married 7 years. My daughters, Tenly (6) and Gianna (4), have given me the best title ever, “Mom”. I am originally from Florida, but moved to Texas after marrying the man of my dreams. After 5 years in Texas, we knew God was moving us to Florida for a new journey and of course we loved that we would be closer to my family.
I am a “Domestic Manager”, better known as “Stay at Home Mom”. I love discovering new things and organizing- I put the 2 together and am now writing 2 Blogs: Jenn: Mom's [NOT] Like Us"- a Blog for and about Moms, and “Hot Momma’s of Broward County”- a resource guide for everything “Mom” in South Florida.
In my spare time (HA!), I enjoy being involved with my church, my girl’s schools, reading, cleaning, crafting and cooking.

On your parenting journey, what was the most difficult part requiring a ton of patience?
Potty Training. I think I did a pretty good job, my girls were both potty trained at 2 years old, and I did it in about a week. But that was a week that completely revolved pee, poop, towels, laundry, scrubbing carpets, mopping floors- but we made it!

Are you a Scheduled or Non-Scheduled Mom? What are the benefits and downfalls to your choice?
When my girls were young, I was a very scheduled Mom- my babysitters were given a minute-by-minute detailed scheduled- seriously. As my girls were older, I think we have more of a plan of action. There are certain things that we have to accomplish, of course our meal and bed times are always at the same times.
I am a strong believer that children need, require, and benefit of predictability. They, like us, need to know what to expect and what is coming. It worked for me also, I was able to plan my day knowing when the kids to be hungry or tired. The downfalls of a wonderful schedule, is when you MUST go off of it- and believe me we did. I remember one of the first times I really experienced this. When Tenly was right at 2 and Gia about 5 months, we planned a trip to the zoo in Houston. We decided to stay at a hotel the night before. My girls never liked sleeping anywhere but in there own beds, so it did not go so well. Tenly finally fell asleep around 2am!

What is your biggest Mommy Pet-Peeve?
I have quite a few, but one of the biggest is probably lack of “follow through”. Parents must say what they mean and mean what they say, the first time, or else your word means nothing. It makes me crazy when parents can’t figure out why there kids aren’t listening to them, but you hear them constantly not following through with what they say- the kids are just doing what they have been trained to do.

Your funniest/most embarrassing “Mom/Child’ moment?
My funniest moment was probably when I was out bra shopping with Tenly. It was funny enough that I wrote a post in my blog about it, “Bra Shopping With My 5 yearold-Uncensored” 
My “girls” are not the easiest to fit, so it was taking my awhile to find a size 34DDD that was priced reasonably. My daughter Tenly kept saying extremely loud, “No, NO, NOO..” to all of the ugly fuller size bra’s. She was very frustrated that we could not find the pretty ones in my size. She loudly tells me (while the store is packed with people)” Mommy, none of these BOOBIES fit you, you are just too big for all of these BOOBIES and you must only get beautiful BOOBIES, not these!” Luckily, all of the other shoppers were very understanding and appreciative for the entertainment.

 Given the opportunity, what- if anything- would you do differently as a Mom?
Sometimes I think my expectations are too high with my girls. I have honestly tried to let messes “go”- and just can’t. I’m okay with them making a mess while playing, but it must be cleaned up by days end- I just can’t seem to wait until the following day. But, I’m like that with everything in my house, not just my kids.

Do you have a secret “Mommy Confession”- something that you did/do that you are willing to share?
This summer, I have begun babysitting a friend’s baby during the week. Therefore, we aren’t out and about quite as much. If we are staying home, and not really doing much outside- I let my girls stay in their jimmies all day if they want. Sometimes it bothers me, but I have just let it go!
Did the way you were parented shape that way that you parent your own children?
YES! My parents were wonderful examples on parenting. I am one of 4 children, my Mom stayed at home with us until we were older and my Dad is a Pastor. The one thing I remember was “the look”, my parents mastered “the look”. We began doing something inappropriate and their eyes would grow big, as their eyebrows shot up crinkling their foreheads and their lips pressed together firmly as they pulled down their chin- that was all it took to let us know if we continued our behavior a consequence was coming. My parents did not ask for respect but demanded it and would settle for nothing less. Sometimes I see things other kids do, and think to myself that when I was young- I didn’t even entertain ideas of doing things like that- my parents would of kicked our hind ends to China and back! But, my parents also had our backs and would fight for us- I remember that well.
I do have the same expectations for my children and also want to be sure that they also know that I will always fight for them.

What are your “non-negotiables” when it comes to your kids?
I will not negotiate on Respect and maintaining their “space” or taking care of their things. Disrespect to anyone is just not okay. I also do expect them to take care of their things and bedroom. Although I do think I go overboard on it, I think they need to be able to appreciate the “extras” they have in life. There are many who do not have the means to have toys, movies, bikes, puzzles, etc, so they need to be able to understand that having things is a privilege and they should not be allowed to take it for granted by not maintaining their “stuff”.
Another is eating at least one bite of everything on their plates.

What was your biggest fear when you found out you were going to be a Mom?
I deal with fear a lot, and most of it revolves around Type 1 Diabetes. I was very fearful of not being able to have children because that’s what doctors had told me.
Once I became pregnant, I was fearful of carrying the baby full term (sometimes research harms more than helps). I had 2 very difficult pregnancies, I was sick for 9 months straight and in and out of the hospital throughout both pregnancies- that caused a lot of fear, that turned into me increasing my faith.
I did/do deal with fear of them becoming a diabetic, because if they do it’s pretty much my fault. Another fear is of myself having a low blood sugar while the girls are with me and them having to handle it. I wrote about the time I finally had to have a discussion with them about what they had to do if that were to ever happen, “This Responsibility Is NOT Fair”
It’s something I still have difficulty thinking about; it makes me very angry that I even had to have that conversation.
One thing that you do for your kids- because you love them- but you absolutely dread it every time!?
MESSES! I already talked about that above, I hate a mess- but allow it to happen because I love my kids.

What is something you said you would NEVER do with/to your children that you have found yourself doing?
TV. I hate that my kids watch TV, Tenly never really watched it until she was 2. Gianna has always been around it because Tenly began watching it when she was a baby. I put limitations on it, but sometimes wish I could just get rid of it (although, I do enjoy it myself).

Your biggest Mommy “Aha” moment?
I quickly realized after bringing Tenly home from the hospital, that it was all about her and not even close to being about Lupe and I any more. It became very apparent how much the world revolved around all of my needs before having a baby, and now the entire universe seemed to revolve around a 6-pound baby girl. I t was a HUGE Aha moment.

Do you remember your first thought as you held/saw your child(ren) for the first time?
With Tenly the first thing I said was, “Is she out?” after they said yes I laid back and said, “Thank You Jesus”. I had been so sick and was just drained of everything. She was taken immediately to the NICU, and the rest of the day all I could think about is I couldn’t remember what she looked like and was begging them to let me see her. With Gianna, I remember thinking, “She’s healthy!” I was so excited that she was coming straight to me and did not have to be in the NICU.

Do you ever deal with “Mommy Guilt”? Why?
I deal with “Mommy Guilt” way too much! I am always overanalyzing if every move/decision I make is going to have a positive impact on my girls. I am working on this one…

Did you Breastfeed? Did you feel pressured to or not to?
I originally was not going to for pretty selfish reasons. My “girls” are not exactly small and I wanted to keep them “perky” for as long as possible, lol. I knew if I breastfed they would never be the same.
My Mom and Sister are huge advocates of breastfeeding and both encouraged me to do so. My sister, Tara has 5 girls and breastfed each one with ease. She was so good at it, she was asked to work as a consultant. I finally decided that it was about my children and not me, and I was going to do it. One thing about me, once I decide to do something I am going to do it- I do not cave easily.
With Tenly, I had some difficulty in the beginning (her mouth was to small and my boobs to big) and had to use a guard. Gianna had no issues whatsoever. And, I never dealt with any of the pain that so many endure- I guess I was very lucky.

What is the best piece of advice you could give to a new Mother?
Go with your gut! You are going to do a lot of things wrong, but you are going to do twice as many right. You learn through your mistakes and those mistakes do make you a better parent.
One of my biggest problems was always pursuing and presenting perfectionism. That pursuit is impossible to reach and it is exhausting. Instead, do everything you do the best you know how and in love. As long as your kids know you love them, they can look past all of the screw-ups.

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