sorry all yahoo mamas... I'm cutting and pasting here because I don't feel like typing it all out again.
It's so nice to be home again. I had (and still have) a sinus infection the whole time we were gone. I think it has settled into my maxillary sinus (the cheekbone) because everytime I take a step I can feel it in my tooth. I really hope the tooth isn't involved because THAT would just be a huge hassle. I'm just starting to get my sense of taste back, but I still can't smell anything.
We stayed with Chris' gparents (his mom's side). They were really sweet but I am pretty sure they were ready for us to leave when we did.
They had an upstairs room for us, and though we were out of their way I'm sure us being there threw them for a bit of a loop (being old and set in their routines etc). I was really glad we went because now I can truly say (to everyone; the family out there, my parents, and anyone else telling us to come visit) that we are traveled out. I don't want to travel for a long time now. At least not before this babe is born and not for a while after.
Christmas day was "santa" galore. That's all that frickin' family can talk about!!! I finally made the comment that I thought it was ridiculous because is a lie and I'm not one that appreciates being lied to so why should I demonstrate to my children that sometimes it's okay. (the whole "be good for santa or you won't get any presents" theme). My mil sort of looked at me and was like, but it's tradition, and it's a legend. To which I replied, okay, then let's talk about the legend and the tradition... not the lie. Next year we'll be home so we can correct any misunderstandings on the whole Santa Claus/st. Nick theme.
Just about everything my kids got was plastic and required batteries. My SIL got them a melissa and doug ramp racer which is really nice. And of course, everything is MIC (sorry, Kavita, but the MIC thing has bugged me for far longer than it has been a bandwagon subject on MDC
My MIL's excuse was that she had already bought presents before we sent her our list (she always asks for one). Funny thing is, she asked for ours again because she lost it and "didn't know what to get them."
So our Christmas day was,
1)open a couple presents at the gp's house. Dh loved his new robe and felted mocs that I made him. Have early breakfast.
2)get dressed/ready and went to MIL's for brunch and gift exchanging with dh's brother (and SIL and nephew) and sister. FIL showed up for the whole of five minutes. MIL was upset that everyone kept "hanging out" in the rest of the house and not in the room she partially cleaned for "us." The rest of the house was, as usual, a clutter disaster. It takes all my wits to keep me (especially when I'm nesting ) from getting a box of contractor size garbage bags and filling them. Yeah, and try to keep the 2 two year olds and the 3 1/2 year old in one room for three hours! OH, and I got a few comments about how big I'm getting and how "is that all you do??? (get pregnant)"<Breathe, just breathe.>
3) drive over to the rich aunt's house to have hors d'oeuvre & drink for a few hours and then dinner and presents and pictures. Everyone had to ooo and ahh over what the interior designer had done in the past few months. <roll eyes>
Oh yeah, so when we got to the aunts' the first thing that met my ears was "what??? Are you pregnant AGAIN????? Then the aunts proceeded to apologetically pet my arm and call me crazy.
For having three.
<Just breathing is not working anymore.> Must duck and hide out with the kids. No one talked to me other than to say hi except my BIL here and there and my SIL (we always pair up at these family gatherings because they are a bit overwhelming) . Dh usually mingles and comes to check on me every so often but after the family pictures were taken, he got bombarded for adjustments. There was literally a line. I sat on the fireplace warming my butt, sipping my seltzer water with lime and after the second or third person I looked pleadingly in his direction. I was trying so hard to be calm and maintain my composure but my hormones were having a heyday in my head. He came over and I told him I needed to leave. I started getting a panic attack because I knew I was going to lose it in front of all these people. I tried to explain to him what was going on but ended up just having to get up and leave. A minute or two later he followed me out to the car and gave me the keys. My excuse (to the family) was that I wasn't feeling well and I needed to drive out to get better reception so I could call my family on my cell. I had my cry and then I was fine. The commercialism, the superficiality, all of it just did me in. They left us out of the polyanna this year, didn't ask for pics for the family calander, I could go on and on. It's like, we're only 4 1/2 hours away... no need to cut us off.
:The straw that broke the camel's back was seeing how dh was being treated. Not once in the 16ish months that we lived in that area did he get referrals for patients from any of his numerous family members... in either of the practices he worked in/ tried to start. They all treated him like some sub-par "couldn't make it into med school" drop out or something. He CHOSE chiropractic over med school. And has gotten treated like some misfit ever since. And yet, here they were, literally bombarding him to take care of them. It really pissed me off. None of them offered any sort of support or encouragement or anything when he lost his job, both times. None of them get "it" (meaning they are very medically minded and really don't care for themselves until something goes wrong). None of them supported us in any way... and the reason we'd moved there after school was to "be around family" and all that entails. Everyone kept making these comments about how we moved soooo far away or about pittsburgh (yeah, it's not as stuck up a region as philly but it's still a nice area) in general. And then the whole, you're pregnant and you really shouldn't be, what's your problem attitude. ugh.
All of it just got to me. I was thoroughly exhasted, from not sleeping, from being pg, from having this sinus infection, from traveling, from visiting... everything just came to a head. I spent about an hour and some change out in the car. My SIL came out and we had a good sister-sister talk. She hadn't realized how hard things have been for us, not just this year but basically always. I have more faith that this addition to our family is going to be easier than the the last two (transition wise). And I have more experience to draw on and have sought out my own support.
I had a bit of a pregnant rage/rant with her and she listened and hugged me and all was better because I felt validated and understood. By the time we went back in and had dinner, I was so light headed and exhausted. This trip did me in. I spent the rest of the evening darting around the mansion, hiding out in the playrooms and trying to rest and get away from the drunken noise. And my wasted MIL kept finding me, wanting to hug up on me and tell me how much she loved me/ us and then proceed to tell me (again) how miserable she was with dh's father and how she wanted him out etc etc etc. Fake tears. Ugh.
The good part of it all was the kids really did have fun seeing everyone, visiting and playing with their cousins. And Gabriel scored me some MAJOR "good mama" points. He is completely potty trained at this point. It just sort of happened on its own. I'm curious to see if it will last. The aunts were aghast when he went to the bathroom all by himself. They actually tried to block him from going in the bathroom and made him have a little drip accident because they didn't believe him when he said he wanted to use the potty. Apparently two year olds have no business in the bathroom, alone. (The one aunt has boys who potty trained at 4 and 3 1/2... the ones who would scream on the toilet for 45 minutes straight before they'd pop out a little turd and then freak about it.) Anyway, I so gloated when I just nonchalantly remarked, Yeah, um, if he SAYS he needs to use the potty, he NEEDS to use the potty, this with five adults staring in the bathroom as he struggled to get his pants down. They were incredulous. I finally had to tell them that he probably wasn't going to go if they kept staring.
And then later on when he went pooed in the potty! I gloated. Yes. I did. Because you all think I can't handle three???.... ugh.