1. Miracle Blankets
Throughout my pregnancy, I had heard from other new moms about this blanket, that truly worked miracles they claimed. Supposedly it was a swaddle that was unbreakable. Moms claimed that their babies slept hours longer at night when they used this blanket. I was not so convinced it would work for us. However after weeks and weeks of not sleeping longer than 2-3 hrs per stretch, I decided to give it a shot. I did a little research and was very disappointed to find out that these blankets sold for $30 a piece! Yikes!! I found my first Miracle Blanket on Craigslist. I tried it out on Reece the first night. It probably would've worked okay, but Randy continued to wake up ALL. NIGHT. LONG. The next day I decided I had to go big or go home. I found a second blanket on ebay. I counted down the hours until that thing arrived. I vividly remember watching out the window for the mailman to arrive. In my tired haze, I would perch myself next to the window. I felt like a crack head waiting for the crack to arrive. Nervously pacing my living room....
Alas, the blanket arrives!! My husband really thought I was crazy for putting so much faith into a blanket. "This is not just a blanket honey...", I told him the first night. "This blanket is going to change our live."
As it turns out, the blanket did in fact work. Randy and I refered to them as the "baby straight jackets". Every night, we snuggly secured the Big Beasties into their straight jackets. Almost immediately, they started sleeping 4hrs per stretch. Thank you Miracle Blanket. To all of you new parents out there, get one ASAP.
Obviously, I gave up smoking during the pregnancy. I really thought that I would not start again after the babies were born. When the boys were about 3 weeks old, I told Randy I was going to run to Blockbuster. Before I left, I snuck a cigarette from his pack. Of coarse as any good closet smoker would do, I grabbed lotion, gum and body spray as well. (I didn't want him to know that I smoked.) As I lit the cigarette, I was hoping it would taste really crappy. Nope. It was heaven. From that day on, I plotted when I could have my next cigarette, undetected. Smoking in secret turned into only smoking at night and then only with coffee and at night blah blah blah. Smoking was my escape. I would go outside, away the Big Beasties and just sit and smoke. It was my break. One cold wintery day, the Big Beasties were being extra beasty. Lots and lots of crying and whining. It was about 5:30, Randy wouldn't be home for 2 more hours. I was about to lose it when I got an idea. I put on my shoes and ran 10ft to the neighbors. I knocked on the door and asked them to bum a smoke. Of coarse they gave me one and asked if I wanted to come in. "No, " I replied, "the boys are at home." I they looked a bit shocked, but they could probably see the despair on my face. "What are they doing?" they asked. "Screaming their heads off," I told them. We went over and smoked on my porch. When we were done, my neighbor and I went inside only to find both boys fast asleep. (I was probably outside less than five minutes.) I remember this so clearly. It really saved me that day. Honestly, I was about to go nuts. Smoking was my out. Judge all you want..I did what I had to do. Ted and Lisa, thanks for saving me that day. I'm sure Randy and Reece thank you as well..
A quick follow up: I quit smoking over 4 months ago. This time for good!
3. Vincent Jackson
For those of you who don't know, this is Vincent Jackson. He is a wide receiver for the San Diego Chargers. Though he doesn't know it, he too is responsible for saving my sanity. He was on my Fantasy Football team. With all of the stress on our lives, Randy and I lived for Sundays. We watched football from the time we woke up in the morning until we fell asleep at night. We started counting down to Sunday on Monday morning. Fantasy Football, made Sundays that much sweeter. V Jack was my star. Sunday after Sunday he came through for me. I ended up winning the Super Bowl of our league.
The point of this post, is that little things can pull you through. For me it was Miracle Blankets, cigarettes and V Jack. What gets you through your dark days?
(Disclaimer: I would also like to add that we couldn't have made it through without our wonderful families. They too were our angels. Secondly, I never smoked around the boys, and no I never neglected them. I love them more than anything else in the world, even if they are beasty.)