How Can He be Graduating…. He was Born Yesterday??

Stop the clock… I’m not ready!

Make no mistake, I’ve been there and done that twice, but I’m still not remotely prepared for my youngest son to graduate high school in a few weeks. In fact, I’ve been in emotional denial his entire senior year.

Letting go is something I apparently suck at.

Rewind to yesterday.

This newborn baby boy was nuzzled into moms bosom for the better part of his first month, simply because he would not be put down. Seriously, he was like a new adorable appendage. The only sleep Mama Bear got was in the recliner holding him.

He stuck like velcro the entire first year and was affectionately nicknamed velcro baby.

Then I awakened one morning and POOF… my clingy baby had morphed into a toddler on a full-blown quest for autonomy – walking, talking and getting into mischief.

Shortly thereafter, at the tender age of four, my adventure seeking tike began nursery school, and never looked back. He was so proud to be in school. The cherry of this sweet milestone was the procession of miniature graduates parading across stage wearing white cardboard hats adorned with floppy powder blue yarn tassels. Mommy bliss.

Then I woke the following morning, and POOF… my preschooler was now in elementary school and had learned to ride a two-wheeler, bat a ball, tie his shoes and open his own milk carton. There was great anticipation for special school events like picture day, the spring concert, Cub Scouts and field trips.

These were happy and exciting times.

When the sun rose on what seemed like the very next day, POOF… This now pubescent boy was spreading his wings. He went to junior high dances, parties and hung out at the skating rink. He began ditching his bike helmet in the shrubs, because being cool trumped being safe. My man apprentice also started wearing name brand clothing and smelling of Axe body spray.

Good bye to hugs, kisses and holding hands in public.

Time passed and what seemed something like a week later, POOF… somehow this rapidly growing boy was now in high school – earning his varsity letter in sports, getting a drivers license, taking the SAT’s, applying to college, going to the prom and landing his first part-time job.

The little boy now towered over me and I could fit my shoes inside his. I was constantly mistaking his voice for my husbands.

He became a bottomless pit who could consume an entire box of cereal or pizza in a single sitting.

Then one morning before he drove himself to school he said,

“Mom, my senior picture is due for the yearbook on Monday.”

Me – nooooooooo!!!! You were just in kindergarten LAST Monday – how can this be happening?

When I awakened a few months later, he was officially a senior. The final hurrah. Senior recognition night, the final homecoming, class trip and the last dance… the senior ball. Graduation announcements and party invitations started rolling in.

“Mom, tomorrow is the last day to get measured for cap and gown. I need to pay my deposit.”

Me – noooooooo!!! You were just in first grade last Tuesday – how can this be happening?

A couple weeks later the senior yearbook materialized on the kitchen table… The Class of 2015.

It’s time.

When his name is called, he will stroll across the stage – hand extended to proudly accept his diploma, and a sweet era will drift into a cloud of the coveted past tense.

Childhood will be no more.

I know my son is ready to embark on this exciting new journey. He is ambitious, bright and virtuous.

He will do great and I am proud.

I bubble with happiness and sadness simultaneously.

It’s time.

Time to let go.

He was just born last Thursday – a healthy 7 pounds 9 ounces, which feels nothing like 18 years gone by – how can this be happening?

Time really does fly.

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Gina Fenton is an obstetrical RN, blogger, wife, mom of four and self-appointed advocate for special needs and mental health. She writes the over-the-top humor blog Extreme Mom for sanity preservation and her own entertainment. Gina lives in Upstate N.Y. with her family, two dogs and ThatGoddamnedCat. Her adventurous everyday tales can be found on Extrememom.net. Her writing has been featured on popular sites like Mamapedia, Bonbon Break, BlogHer, Project Underblog and Mamalode.

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Job Title – Mother Extraordinaire. No Experience Necessary

Job Title – Mother
Experience – None necessary.
Duties – Caretaker, nurse, cook, housekeeper, educator, disciplinarian, therapist, security guard, events planner, dot. dot. dot.

*Note- Candidate must possess flexibility similar to the human pretzel lady at the circus, as the above description is subject to change without notice.

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Let’s face it, kids keep a running tally in their minds of every chore or good deed they’ve ever done – to be used as leverage when they’re campaigning for something.

They all do it.

For shits and giggles, lets closely examine a mothers job description.

In fact, let’s be completely outrageous and pretend the level of acknowledgement bestowed upon her on Mothers Day depends on it.

JOB DESCRIPTION – short version

Incubate alien life for 10 months (40 weeks = 280 days = 10 months) which is likely to cause nausea, vomiting, indigestion, strained and sprained muscles, back pain, hemorrhoids, constipation and weight gain.

This is the EASY part.

Deliver alien offspring – don’t worry, if you can’t manage to push the melon sized package through your peep hole sized opening, because the valiant obstetrician will just cut it out for you.

And quit whining – you have a baby to take care of. This is no longer about you.

First five years at a glance- feed, bathe, dispose of stinky waste products, ensure minions get enough rest or they’ll morph into rabid Gremlins and eat you alive. And oh yeah – keep those adorable little buggers out of harms way.

It’s all on you Mamacita, you’ve been enlisted for a 24/7 special ops assignment that will stretch into the better part of two decades.

Believe it or not, it doesn’t get much better than this. This is the tender era of hopes, dreams and endless cuddles. Embrace it with both hands – these sunny days are numbered.

Ages 5 – 12 The fruit of your loins are becoming more independent. Add education, socialization and extra curricular activities to the above basic needs list and you have a pretty accurate picture of your new job description.

At this critical point you’ll be forced to re-evaluate and adjust goals accordingly. You’ll be comparing your initial expectations set out of sheer blissful ignorance versus the reality of your child’s actual development.

This can be a bitter pill to swallow. A colossal bummer even, as most parents have a certain ideal vision of how they’d imagined their child to be.

Newsflash – Special needs and unique circumstances happen.

If you haven’t read the incredibly witty poem Welcome to Holland written by a parent faced with a special needs child, pause here and take a moment.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Welcome_to_Holland#External_links

Ages 12 – 18 The slow painful transition to young adult. The good news is that your brood is now independent in hygiene, dressing and feeding themselves. Although some days this may be highly disputed. Your role becomes supportive- in addition to holding the gavel as wise counsel and disciplinarian, you’re their primary source for nourishment, clean clothes and transportation.

You perfect the art of eating on the run, prioritizing laundry into emergency loads like towels and underwear versus the rest, and that bucket in the laundry room once designated for potty accidents is replaced with a black caldron for panties caught in the red tide.

It’s important to state here that installing an aerosol form of Xanax in your home would not be overkill.

As your child nears the date of their high school graduation you learn to thank God every single day for the little things-

My kid is NOT…

*on drugs
*pregnant with innocent life
*incarcerated
*fighting for his life in the ICU
*runaway or lost
*suicidal
*DEAD

For some, these simple things are suddenly enough. Thoughts of college and it’s importance in the big scheme of things may be shuffled to the back burner.

Again you pause to re-evaluate your once naive parental expectations versus the reality of raising actual free-thinking creatures with intricate brain wiring and complex chemistry.

Ages 18+ The struggle for independence. For a few, the transition is relatively smooth. The honor students and those gifted with superior athletic or artistic talent may not miss a beat diving into this exciting next chapter. For others, it’s the beginning of a long painful journey through a dense cloudy tunnel filled with uncertainty.

You are the parental rock that keeps them focused, encouraged and grounded.

It’s important to remember that a person in crisis cannot always see the forrest through the trees. The stress of chronic crisis often leads to tunnel vision. Life is a game of survival.

That said, common afflictions like chronic anxiety and depression amongst other mental illnesses and special needs blow a dense fog into an already hazy and uncertain forrest. It’s not uncommon for the afflicted to become self absorbed.

Most moms with a special child or situation knowingly waive any hope or expectation of being lifted onto the sacred Mom pedestal every Mother’s Day, simply because it’s not in the cards… and it never was.

The rearing of special offspring requires a delicate yet potent combination of unconditional love, dedication, endurance and often times complete selflessness.

It’s the nature of the beast.

You were given this hand in life because the powers that be – knew you were up to the challenge; you were carefully chosen to participate as a member of the Parental Special Forces.

That’s like regular parenting, except with the grit of a Marine and stamina of a Navy Seal.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the special moms most deserving of exceptional recognition – who are also the least likely to receive it.

Hats off to you… the few and the proud.

May the sun shine on your face today and always.

You’re loved and appreciated more than you will ever know.

It’s Mother’s Day… Dammit

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As Supreme Ruler of the Kingdom, I hereby proclaim that Mother’s Day be celebrated the entire weekend this year… and forever.

It’s been a rough one, that’s why.

No way is one lousy day of cleaning up your own shit and being on excellent behavior gonna cut it, girls and boys.

Not this year, my precious offspring.

Extreme mom is going completely proactive this Mother’s Day to guarantee that it doesn’t SUCK.

You have been hereby enlisted… as a GIVER.

Therefore, specific TO DO lists will be distributed to each of my brood.

We’re gonna get it right this time.

Here we go.

Mother’s Day… Take 21!!

(The number is accurate. No. Shit.)

ACTION!!!

Here’s a preview of my short list of demands:

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*You will bathe the dogs with excellent smelling shampoo, then scrub the entire bathroom including the tub.

YES, this does need to be spelled out.

The powder room and pets shall smell like a fresh meadow.

*Clean my car- that was incidentally trashed by YOU.

You shall vacuum the resident floor rubble and debris that you dragged in, clean all dog slobber off the windows, dispose of dead insect carcasses from the dashboard and remove sticky goo from the cup holders.

Again, sparkly clean.

•Vacuum both sets of stairs in the house and do not attempt to make a new family member out of the pet hair.

NO, I wouldn’t mention this if history hadn’t dictated already that it’s was absolutely necessary.

Plus, we already have our limit of dependents.

Use care not to clog the vacuum. I’m tired of performing a colonoscopy on the Dyson every single time I attempt to turn it on.

This is a proactive exercise, because unfortunately some things do have to be spelled out.

Remember, this is only my short list.

*grin*

Had my children had the foresight to say… toast me a lousy poptart, scribble HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY on a sheet of paper or pluck me a few daffodils from my own garden, I wouldn’t have been forced to make these heinous demands.

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I shall also, hereby be completely EXEMPT from partaking in any of the following on Mother’s Day weekend, which absolutely includes Friday and Saturday… from this year until the end of time.

I shall not cook or touch unprepared food.

I shall not go to the grocery store.

I shall not do laundry.

I shall be exempt from driving you anywhere.

I shall not do dishes… or even look at them.

I shall not answer questions or engage in conversations beginning with:

Will you?

Can I?

I need…

I’m hungry…

I’m borrrrrrred…

It’s not fair…

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Things that YOU can do for me:

Pretend to be unmiserable.

Make me coffee

Do not complain… about anything.

Most importantly, do this shit WITHOUT being told or reminded.

Anyone breaking the rules of Mother’s Day Weekend will be exiled to the back yard and forced to live in a tent.

I know my expectations are ridiculously high this year.



A girl can dream…



NOTE- This post was from 2013 and my children failed miserably that year.

That’s entirely different post.

You’re not alone fellow moms.

I, and almost everyone who’s not your kids, appreciate the Hell out of you.

Rock on, mamacita’s!! The world as we know it would come to a screeching halt without you.

Word.

Too sexy for my…


Just pretend my dog’s paw is actually Vanna White’s pointer arm and we’re playing…


How many things are WRONG with these underwear that I found in my drawer and don’t recognize?


They’re boy cut and probably belong to one of my kids friends.


Whatever.


You never know what’s going to show up in the wash.


Firstly, and most excruciating is the ATOMIC WEDGIE.


Thanks, I’ll pass.


And, no way in hell will I wear a thong. Ever.


You probably knew that.


If you want to be sexy, just cut through the BS and get naked.


Secondly, they’re cut so LOW, they accentuate your muffin top, which I like to refer to as a cupcake with extra fluffy frosting and sprinkles.



This only looks good on Santa Clause and the late John Candy.


Thirdly, the seam goes right down the super-sensitive middle.


The word NO rhythms with TOE, as in the desert animal with a hump.


Not attractive or comfortable.


Fourthly, the tag says Daisy Fuentes. I despise her from the days she hosted AFV (America’s Funniest Video’s – a FAMILY show) wearing stripper, pole-dancing, unfamily-friendly fashions. Also, she’s dumber than my dog (who’s dumber than a goldfish) and NOT remotely funny.


On a closing note- yes sire, that is indeed my olive green tile bathroom floor. I have a tub to match. Be very very jealous.


If I ever find a 70’s rotary phone or refrigerator in that color, I know exactly where I’m going to put it.


Let it be said, that the COMFORT of one’s underwear can make or break a person’s day, so chose wisely.


I call them underwear and not panties, because I’m way sexy like that.


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Christmas is in DECEMBER dammit

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Where I come from we get something like three-ish months of summer, which equates to MAYBE a meager 30 days of warm sunny weather- picnics, watermelon, fireflies, swimming and sandy flip flops.
 
In short, we have ONE summer month and… the REST of the year.
 
Eleven months of the grey season, which includes but is not limited to rain, drizzle, snow, ice and every other possible form of precipitation currently known to man.
 
 
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 So yes, when people (lets call them psycho-holiday enthusiasts) try to contaminate our sacred sunny month with Christmas pollution we tend to get a bit crabby.
 
 

Justifiably crabby.

  
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I for one, happen to be a solar powered individual.
 
 
I get my energy from the sun and my reserves happen to be dangerously low these days.
 

The makers of Prozac can only do so much.

 
They’re like, “You’ve reached your limit lady… our hands are tied.”
 

“Go get some mood enhancing sunshine.”

 
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And, so I do what I can. I soak in every single moment of summer.
 
The problem with winter-related holiday nonsense (no, I will not say the C word again) is that it’s like kryptonite for us who reside in the grey area.
 
The mere mention of the dark side during our sacred sunny sabbatical is enough to boot us out of our happy place clear into the fiery pits of hell, except in OUR hell, it’s snowing.
 
 
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Resisting winter is a northern defense mechanism that’s been etched in our brains since the ice age.

 
To top it off, we broke records for cold AND snow in 2013.
 
I think we did. It felt like it anyway.
 
That’s my story and I’m sticking with it.
 
It sucked Frosty’s longest hardest icicle if you get my drift, then to top it off, we shattered all previously set rainfall records.
 
It felt like it anyway… the record breaking part.
 
 We did, however experience actual flooding.
 
Also, we made the big time meaning we were featured on The Weather Channel.
 

 It was definitely a How-many-Yeti’s-can-you-fit-on-Noah’s-ark? kinda year.

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 Nobody really cares what the answer is.

The point is- when Yeti’s and Noah’s ark are mentioned in the same sentence you’re clearly fucked and there’s not a damned thing you can do.
 

Mother Nature is one moody bitch.

 
As a result, my people (those of us who reside in the grey area of CNY) have morphed into foul-weather warriors who’ve proven again and again that we can tough that shit out.
 
However, uninvited winter holiday hoopla in July tends to drive some of us right. over. the. edge.
 
For the publics safety we’ve established guidelines called…
 

The Northern Survivalist’s STRICT Winter Holiday Timeline.

 
Halloween– the fright fest officially begins Sept 30, although mums and pumpkins may be put out any time after Labor Day. (Note- generous leeway given, because I happen to be a mum fan)
 
 
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Thanksgiving shall occupy the time period between Halloween and the C holiday.
 
 
 
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The C holiday– not one bell shall jingle or hallway be decked prior to the conclusion of turkey day feasting.
 
This means the dishes are washed, dried and put away. Also, the turkey carcass is gone. I freaking hate the turkey-beast carcass with ever fiber of my being.
 
I would rather get a root canal than harvest meat from the leftover turkey any day of the week.
 
Make that two root canals and a pap smear.
 
(I threw that thing in there about the dishes, because I don’t care for the C holiday and I’m trying to keep it away as long as possible. Scrubbing a zillion dishes gives me a little breather)
 

Let’s call this- living in the goddamned moment.

 
Quit racing around like blind mice on meth preparing for the next three-ring circus that’s six months away.
 

Relax.

 

Breeeeeathe.

 
If you must shop or bake cookies in July, that’s your business. Just keep that premature holiday pollution off my facebook.
 
Also, I’ll be happy to taste your cookies.
 
I’m generous like that.
 
I may be a holiday bitch, but I’m an excellent taster of cookies.
 
Unfortunately, there’s nothing we can do about greedy in-your-face retail peddlers who prematurely puke holiday what-nots throughout the land.
 
Winter holiday whatchamafuks will start polluting stores in August.
 
It’s the devils way.
 
Not only do I look the other way. (and say bad words) I also refuse to buy anything.
 
They’re not getting one premature cent from me until The Northern Survivalist’s Strict Winter Holiday Timeline says it’s time.
 
When I wander into Home Depot on August 15th in search of charcoal briquettes and get blindsided by a 12 foot blow-up of Frosty-the-freaking-unwelcome-snowman, I will breathe fire.
 
 This actually works out, because then I dutifully scoop Frosty up in a plastic cup and have something to chase my chocolate vodka with.
 

Hence, the only acceptable snowman in August is the one you drink.

Cheers…

 
 
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Dumb Shit my Son Says… When I’m Teaching Him to Drive

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Dumb Shit my Son Says… When I’m teaching him to drive.

 

“Stop being a backseat driver.”
Umm.. wait.

 

It’s clearly spelled out in the responsible LICENSED adult manual.

 

Nag, nag and nag some more- from the FRONT seat where you’re within striking distance of the minion student.

 

And, don’t forget your jumbo fly swatter. (Dollar Tree $1)

 

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“I did too look.” (did not)

 

“Speed bumps are dumb.”

 

Yeah, maybe if you’re trying to thread a needle or balance a cauldron of meatballs on your head while driving??!!

 

“I knew I could make it.”

 

Knew= making ASSumptions and making ASSumptions= dead.

 

If you die I will kick your ass.

 

Yes, I will.

 

I’ll jump right through the portal to the spirit world and kick your ghostly ass.

 

Be very afraid.

 

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Mom’s are allowed EVERYWHERE including but not limited to the men’s room, locker room, school bus and afterlife.

 

“I’m only going the speed limit.”

 

There are times you should NOT go the speed limit, like say there’s three-legged kitten parade or senior citizen wheelchair race, a baby highway crawl-a-thon or just maybe THAT chicken is trying to cross the road.

 

WHY? Nobody actually cares why.

 

Get over that shit. Chickens are dumb. (and tasty)

 

That reference has outstayed it’s welcome, so please if you see that chicken crossing the road… run it down for Gods sake and end this charade once and for all.

 

Unless, of course, you’re an arrogant 16 year old with a learners permit.

 

Then your copilot mom gets to do it, as this will release some of her pent up tension and potentially save your life.

 

Win. Win.

 

We’re having chicken for dinner… again??

 

Let’s make something perfectly clear.

 

If you have a LEARNING permit to drive, assume you do NOT have the right of way.

 

Ever.

 

You’re a highway minion.

 

Strike that.

 

You’re a flea on a highway minions butt.

 

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Behave yourself.

 

You’re a danger to yourself and others.

 

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Plus, you frighten the rest of us.

 

Class dismissed.

 

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The Gazillion Concept

Sometimes anything greater than one seems like the equivalent to a gazillion.

I call it the Gazillion Concept.

Perfect Examples…

Loads of Laundry.

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Times you get up at night to let the dog out.

The number of instances in one week your kids miss the damned bus.

Pounds you need to lose.

Kids at a sleepover, in the same room, in a car, at the same table or simply on the same planet.

Mosquito bites.

Calories in anything chocolate or fried.

Miles over the speed limit when you’re teaching your pedal heavy 16 year old to drive.

Drops of pee your boys leave on the toilet seat.

Dog hairs on your black pants.

Dollar profit margin Hollister is swindling you for.

Teenaged girls.

Minutes until you get home when you have to pee.

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Degrees below zero in the winter.

Days left in your pregnancy.

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Hairs you missed while shaving your legs.

Days until your next period when you’re waiting for it.

Hours in a sleepless night.

Drops of puke expelled by kids and pets on the carpet at 3am.

Time after the first five minutes on the treadmill.

Grains of rice when it accidentally spills.

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Days until vacation, retirement or the end of a work day.

Minutes you’re forced to listen to any given Justin Beiber song.

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Summary- ANYTHING greater than one = equals a gazillion under the right circumstances.

The Gazillion Concept.

Seems logical.