It all started with a public breakdown. We are talking FULL ON, both hands in my face sobbing! Before I set the scene for THAT pretty little episode; you got to know the events that led up to this very public & manic incident. You’re most likely going to laugh when you find out what the straw was that broke the camel’s back. Thinking about it after some serious hibernation under my blankets with a box of tissue… I can see the humor in it. But first, let’s backtrack!
Deciding to move to a brand new state! Yayyyy for new adventure!! Oh, it’s been an adventure all right.
Stress number one? Coming from a VERY tight-knit family… & having to tell them that you’re moving, & not just one town away. I won’t elaborate on this. I’m assuming if you’re from a close family you can understand my pain. I love love L-O-V-E my family very much & it was possibly one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make. It was as hard on them as it was on me. BTW, thank God for facetime <3
Stress number two? Trying to explain to your three year old that he won’t see his two cousins, grandmas, grandpas, aunts, uncles, etc unless there was a plane ride involved. Basically there was some serious bribery made up of hot chocolate & jumping in puddles. You gotta do what you gotta do man. Mommin’ can be cutthroat sometimes.
Stress number three? It’s official, we’re moving! That means getting our house in good enough shape to put on the market. We didn’t have THAT much stress here, thank heavens. It was the perfect calm before the shit storm. Our house was on the market 1.5 days before it S O L D. We now have 30 days to pack up life as we know it & GTFO.
Stress number four? We have a 30 day escrow but can’t move sooner than we had planned, which means we are going to be “homeless” for one week before the actual move up to the PNW. We weren’t homeless at all; my lovely in-laws let us stay with them. More on that transitional time later.
Stress number five? Purging. Purging takes on a whole new meaning when you’re deciding to move your junk drawer across states. I threw my hands up with A LOT of our stuff with a “fuuuck it” attitude. I didn’t want to take anything we didn’t absolutely need. Moving states is EXPENSIVE as F << That’s a whole factor alllllll by itself.
Stress number six? Packing up our toddlers room in front of his eyes :( It wasn’t JUST packing up our son's room. It was packing all the things he had known since the day we brought him home from the hospital. Not only that, I decided to throw a curve ball into the situation to make things REALLY fun. His room was still a nursery & we decided that it if we were moving, that it’d be a good time to transition him into a big boy room! It probably wasn’t my smartest move. Albeit he NEVER spent a night in his nursery, it was just his playroom. Go ahead, judge me on co-sleeping. One by one we sold his crib, dresser, bookshelf etc…. & I think he was starting to get worried. Caleb then started picking up all of his toys, blankets, clothes etc, & asking if I was selling them. HEARTBREAKING. My heart had sunk to my feet. I know that I’ve bought all new stuff for his new big boy room, but he’s three, he just won’t understand until he sees it.
Stress number seven? Moving truck or POD??!! Let me describe our situation so you can fully see where I’m coming from. The only certainties we knew were:
1) we ARE definitely moving to Seattle
2) my husband’s job was solid (phew)
3) we didn’t have a home we were moving into right away
4) my aunt was letting us stay at her (furnished) beautiful unoccupied home in Snoqualmie, WA
5) we wanted time to look into neighborhoods & school districts once we were settled
6) we had unrealistic expectation we’d find a home with a snap of our fingers!
And that is how we came to the agreement on going with a POD, because they were able to store it until we found a home! We only packed “necessities”, which if you’re a woman; you understand is 1/3 of your home hahaha!
Stress number eight? Packing. I’m assuming everyone can relate to how stressful the reality of packing is. Selling, packing, & buying a home make it on the very TOP of my stress list.
Stress number nine? The last few days before having to be out of our home… were THE worst (with a toddler). By this time our whole life as we knew it was packed neatly into a POD & it was time to transition to my in-laws house for that one week before we made the big move. Late into the night we were deep cleaning, patching holes in walls, painting baseboards & magic erasing crayon marks off our walls. We cleaned until nearly 2am for three straight nights, with NO furniture in our home, WITH a three year old. Caleb was a trooper until he just couldn’t take it anymore. He was crying, he was tired, & he was telling me he “just wanted to go to sleep”. All I could tell him was that we were almost done cleaning & then we’d go back to my in-laws to sleep! He didn’t understand, but he’d calmed down. I continued cleaning & noticed he wasn’t behind me anymore. I went to search for him in each room, until I found him, balled up & sleeping on the floor where our bed USED to lie. So many emotions :(:( So many thoughts ran through my head. Were we doing the right thing? Will Caleb be ok? Will he hate us later for this move? What are we doing?! Am I a terrible fucking mom?????? The image of his tiny little self just sleeping there is very much burned into my brain.
Stress number ten? Transition week! Staying at my in-laws for that one week was brutal. Caleb kept crying & repeating that he wanted to go home (when on any other day he LOVED my in-laws house… but his schedule was THROWN, bad). I tried explaining that there was nothing left in our home & that a nice new family had bought it! I tried reassuring him that after a weird week, we’d be starting our new life in WA & establishing a new home! That was one rough ass week, guys. I felt like the world’s worst mom. I felt like I didn’t know if it was the right decision anymore, even though I could feel in my bones that WA is where we should be!
Stress number eleven? We made it to Seattle, now it’s house hunting time. I don’t have to tell you guys how stressful buying a home is in a desirable area, with a good public school system, with low crime & safety… on a regular ol’ family’s income! I’m a stay at home mom. We make sacrifices so that I could raise Caleb in these crucial years before school starts. Once he goes to school I will definitely be going back to work. My husband is a damn saint & works harder than anyone I know—he is truly something special. Aaaaanyways! Just like living in SD, we realized we will probably end up about 35-40 minutes out of Seattle proper, which was completely fine. Side note about SAHM mom life vs working mom life. Both are fucking hard… but I literally give MAJOR kudos to all the working moms who have 9-5 jobs & then come straight home to clock in for mom life & allllll the duties that accompany it! MAJOR, major kudos… women are tough as shit. You go Momma!!
Stress number twelve? Pre-approvals, lender ring around the rosie, & trying to figure out what we can comfortably afford. I would think that most everyone FEEEEELS me on this?! I’m assuming the general consensus would be that most people worry about money, but if you don’t, good for you! I don’t know about you guys… but this shit EATS. ME. UP. I like to basically worry myself silly until I have a manic episode in public ;) Luckily my hubby is as cool as a mother-fuckin’ cucumber. He keeps me grounded (most days).
Stress number thirteen? The fucking uncertainty of it all! Where will we end up? Will there be a good public school close by? Is there a grocery store within a couple miles? Will Caleb adapt well? How will I make new friends? What if people don’t like us?! I could go on with the “what ifs”. It’s just the uncertainty that can be a bit overwhelming at times. It’s finding new places to eat, new parks, new malls, new car service store, new bank, new license, new registration, new salon, new brow place etc. May seem petty… but shit adds up dating back to first having to break the news to your family that we were moving! My tipping point was just around the corner…
Stress number fourteen? Having to get on a plane in less than one month. I haven’t been on a plane in about a year & a half. The last time I was on a plane I held up ALL the passengers boarding the plane (lined up on the bridge), stopped the plane on the tarmac, & had flight attendants & pilots surrounding me asking if I was staying on or getting off?! It was a fucking DISASTER… & that’s a whole other story on its own. ANXIETY is real, & it’s a REAL bitch. If you want more insight into my anxiety, you just let me know. YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I got some stories for you.
Stress number fifteen? Remember my latest post on the kale, white beam + fennel salad? If you read it, you will recall that while I was photographing this dish, Caleb got behind my wood backdrop & it landed smack on my head/face & gave me two goose-eggs. Well… bad news… I now have a very permanent & visible bump on ONE side of my nose :( Let’s see what else we can add to my story.
So it’s been a pretty rough week! A lot of back & forth with trying to buy & bid on homes, along with all the shenanigans that go with that. Caleb got sick & developed a high fever, which made me realize I haven’t even looked into a new pediatrician for him. Mom of the year :( I spent ALL of yesterday in bed cuddling a sick baby that now I’ve gone completely stir crazy. I’ve been so stressed for the past two months (since^^^^ all of the 15 reasons), that my hair is literally falling out left & right. I made chocolate cookies last night, which most of you women know, is code for I had a lovely friend visit me ;) PMS is serrrrrrrious when two months’ worth of stress is accompanying “it”…which brings me to the very fateful day of the hands in face sobbing!
You have to promise there will be NO judgment on why I cried after trying to explain the events leading up to today. PROMISE?! Ok, here goes. My new permanent bump on my nose from the backdrop falling on my face had added to my tipping point. I was feeling particularly ugly & I badly needed to get my brows waxed. As most of you ladies know, we ALL have the same person we’ve been going to for years. It’s a very personal thing & moving put a REAL cramp in my style. Well I just couldn’t take it anymore. After 3 weeks of being here & procrastinating with crippling anxiety, I decided to just show up to the Brow Bar to get my brows done! I had never been, but have heard great things. I packed Caleb in the car & we went! I was wearing sweatpants, no makeup, & had a GIANT red Gatorade stain on my shirt from trying to keep my sick baby hydrated. PS his fever was gone today (I’m not THAT terrible of a mom). I’m not even going to get into how fucking real my gray hair is right now; not even going there, can’t even think about it. Anyways, so I show up & ask to get my brows done… & the lady does the, “ohhhhh do you have an appointment??”. I respond, “ OMG I’m sorry no I don’t”, & she continues to tell me that she is all booked & that it’s a good idea to make an appointment, especially with a **she points to my toddler standing beside me**. At that exact moment, ALL the stress hit me like a ton of fucking bricks. I had an episode just like Caleb, where I absolutely couldn’t take ANYMORE. I felt SO incompetent & small. It got to me & I started to cry (not hands in face yet). She obviously noticed & asked me if I could make it in to see her tomorrow. She was so lovely & trying to be helpful… but unfortunately, I couldn’t utter one word with how upset I was.
The store sat on a huge hill. As I walk out of the store with tears streaming down my face… I see a woman walking quickly up the hill. This mom had a child strapped to her back WHILE pushing a double-wide stroller with two more children UP the hill. It seems so dumb, but I’m sure you moms can relate… you start comparing yourself. I felt like I’d been mom & woman failing for the last two months. I took one look at her & cupped my hands to my face, & sobbed. I cried all the way across 3 crosswalks & two stop signs. Yup, in front of cars, & I didn’t give a shit. I spent the next 3 hours in bed having a pity party. I want to make you aware that I don’t have my shit together a lot of the time. I cry. I compare myself. I degrade myself. I think I’m not good enough. But you know what?? I know I’m not alone. I want to burst the social media reality of your life having to be perfect all the time. There are good days & bad days for us all. If it’s a good one, I’ll tell you. If it’s a bad one, I’m here writing to you about it. I want to hear your guys’ stories as well <3 THE GOOD, THE BAD, & THE UGLY.
…If you’re wondering how the move has been on Caleb… he fucking L-O-V-E-S it. He is handling it like a damn CHAMP!! He won’t stop telling me how much he loves Seattle, hiking, & all the water/boats! To answer my own question: I didn’t fail him. This is where we were meant to be :) Yes, he is loving his hot chocolate! We’ve yet to run into puddles since the weather has been so damn nice—but I know there’ll be plenty of time for that!
PS From the bottom of my freaking heart, THANK YOU to everyone who took the time to reach out to me yesterday. I am beyond tickled & blown away by the amount of love & support I continue to receive. All I can say is that I am one DAMN LUCKY woman to have you guys <3
Being a mom is hard, I know I can so relate to your post. Trying to succeed and balance being a great mom, being good at my job, wife, daughter, and so many other expectations We add to ourselves... it’s nice to hear we are all just trying to do our best but sometimes a good cry is necessary! ??
It is incredibly HARD! But I know that we all worry & are our own worst critics. We got THIS :)
You're a rockstar! You may question your momma skills but with being your neighbor the last few years and witnessing what an amazing little man you have raised there is nothing to question! Thank you for all the truth it is nice to see reality and not just the happy times! We miss you guys! I think your move might if been hardest of all on Brighton haha? she asks about Caleb daily and asks if we can drive to visit you guys! Hope everything is starting to calm down and you can start to really enjoy your new home! PS I could really use some of those chocolate cookies right about now!??
Ahhhh Brandi that is is incredibly sweet! Thank you SO SO much for saying. It is quite easy to question ourselves & doubt. A lot of the time it does get the better of me... but I'm working on it. Awwwwww Brighton <3 Caleb thinks every blonde girl here is Brighton :( then it gets awkward hahaha. Well when you guys DO come this way, she knows who to call ;) PS I'm going to post those cookies soon--sooooooo easy & good oh man!
Hope you’re having a better week. I feel ya on the mom business. I’m still getting used to all this and some days I just want to cry because I have no idea what I am doing. On a different note; I have tons of friends up there that can show you around! All the places you are hoping to find and people you need to get settled (ie—waxing and hair for starters
So you can feel human again). Just let me know. My two best friends are up there, and they are always willing to help someone new out....especially if you need a girls night. Granted they will be older than you, but they are wonderful company. Xoxoxox
You rock Mama!!! Anyone would have lost it after that list of stressors. It could have been a doctor appt as easily as eyebrows. The last straw is the last, situation be damned. You are stronger than you know, keep up the great work ❤️
It could have been a doctors appt--that actually makes me feel 10x better! I got out of bed today so I think I'm recovering from the eyebrow incident haha! <3
Team!!! Girlllll I lose my shit and break down crying just because Aunt Flow came to freaking visit!! If I had half the stresses you did on top of that I probably would've freaked the fcuk out too!! Haha.
Truth is you're a super freakin trooper!! You're a great mom and this will probably be the most difficult part of your whole move -- the transition and all the stresses and anxieties that come with it. But I KNOW after the dust settles, you will build a beautiful life in the PNW for you, Sam and Caleb. Because that's what you do. And it will be amazing. And you will be SO happy you did it. Caleb will adjust and you'll all make friends cause that cute face and personality of his will attract everyone!! And then people will start to get to know you and Sam and be like daaamnn these people are cool as hell! And all your stresses and anxieties (okay maybe not ALL -- but you know what I mean) will melt away. Just give it time, a few cocktails, and like 10 batches of those effing cookies. You'll be new again. ;)
Don't you EVER compare yourself to other moms or anyone else!! You are one of the strongest people I know! You have a lot to be proud of--I mean who the hell else do I know that can cut hair, do makeup really well, bake and cook like nobody's business, have amazing styling in your outfits, home and in your photography!! And your blog! It's real, funny, and raw. And everything else you freaking do?! I mean seriously...STFU. You're the shit!! When you start to forget that or start to doubt yourself, remember all that.
Your blog makes me laugh and I'm sure that it strikes a chord with actual moms who go through the same anxieties, stresses, and insecurities. So be proud!! And try to regroup.... with all the ice cream, cookies and vodka your heart and tummy can contain. I LOVE YOU!!! I'm probably gonna go make chocolate cookies now (thanks for making me crave shit). <3
TEEEEEEAM!! Seriously, you made me cry!!! I would have never dreamed those words up about me... but you did. I need to recognize myself for exactly THAT. It's easy to see my faults, but dangit, I've got great ones too. I just need to learn a little self-love. Not only did I eat 9 cookies in under a 12 hour span--I drank & I ate nearly 2 gallons of mint chip hahaha. Sometimes you just gotta give in, especially when Aunt Flow comes. Which btw I freaking died laughing when I read that hahaha. I can just hear you saying it!! Why do women get stuck with this crap?! ;) I literally can't thank you ENOUGH for those words. I will NEVER forget them, & when I'm feeling shitty again, I'll reread it. Love you team <3
You got this girl just keep yo head up and keep chugging. Miss you guys!!!!
Awww thanks Ralph :) Definitely chugging along! Trying anyways haha!
That was well written. You are doing an amazing job mama.
:) Thank you so much, Michael!!
Another beautifully-written piece. I hear you, I feel you. When I find myself in that corner, I try to count my blessings. It (usually!) helps. And don’t forget how much you’re loved by so many. Things will get easier and better. I promise. xo
Thank you Moggie!! I have many many blessings to count, I absolutely need to remember this! I am insanely lucky for the support system I have!