The Hart Home│9 Days…

Where we began…our little house by the ocean.

One of my goals for myself when I was in college was that I wanted to own my own home by the time I was 30. I also wanted to live at least a year completely by myself before I got married. Ultimately, both things came to be in my life. I lived a life as a single girl in my apartment in Bordentown, NJ for a year before I bought my first house at the shore a year later and made a huge commitment to my husband who at that time was only my boyfriend by moving in together.

Our engagement photos.Asbury Park, NJ 11/2016

Our home here always felt transitory for me. It is an hour away from my job, from my side of the family and from most of my friends. We bought it as a foreclosure with the idea that we would live here and build a life together before ultimately selling it. I was ready to sell it once we got engaged, but ultimately, we wound up staying three years into our marriage and two kids later.

Our Wedding Day. 11/2017

It worked out in the end for us though and I am so incredibly excited to be moving into our forever home in just 9 days. However, I am sad that we are leaving our little house by the ocean. We moved in here just as a boyfriend and a girlfriend when I was just starting my first PhD classes and from that, we got our first dog, then another dog, and then we got engaged. Then, we were married, and before we knew it Logan was here, I was graduating with my PhD and then, we had Rory. This is the home of our beginnings and as eager as I have been to leave it for our much nicer home in South Jersey, there is part of me that will miss this little house that we fixed up from the ground up.

Welcome Logan! Summer 2018

We’re leaving it now as a family of four with our tiny zoo. I am sad to see this chapter of our lives ending because in so many ways it felt like it just started. However, we’re trading in our life here to start a new one with a much easier commute for me and much more room for our boys…and who knows what kinds of surprises our new home will bring us. It is also exciting.

Hello Rory! Summer 2020.

The next 9 days will be bittersweet.

Our forever home.

Are Moms and Dads that Different?

My son has reached a point in his development where he knows that I leave in the morning and he does not like it. He has the most heartbreaking yet oddly adorable cry face too which just means he knows how to pull it out to get me to cave in .1 seconds.

He needs me to hold him. All the time. From the moment I get home at night, I am holding him and carrying him around with everything that I do. This was much easier when he was smaller and less mobile and therefore, easily wearable and between that and my body heat, would spend much of his time napping. Now, not so much.

This morning I was running late for work because my son had woken up and immediately wanted to nurse. I have IMMENSE guilt when I turn him down from nursing, so I will always nurse him when he asks for it. He nurses and then once he’s more awake he wants to cuddle and be held, only I REALLY have to pee and shower and get ready to go. I attempt to put him into his pack and play which is just explosive tears the moment he realizes that he’s headed for it.

Quickly, I hold onto him and run to the bathroom. And yes, I pee while I am holding him and he’s happy and chatting as he plays with my necklace. It is 100% true: you lose all privacy once you become a mom and as a mom, your kid will be in the bathroom with you.

Enter my husband.

He just starts shaking his head when it finds us there and takes our son from me.

“We have to get on the same page,” he tells me. I roll my eyes. My mom never let us cry needlessly or for anything when we were my son’s age. You can not spoil someone with love. You can spoil them with things, but that’s something for when he’s older to be worried about.

“Why do you think he’s so different and calm when I’m home? He’s secure. He knows I will be there when he cries.” Then my husband rolls his eyes.

“You’re going to turn him into a mama’s boy.”

And here’s where I zing him good. “Well, apple…tree.” I wink. My husband is further not amused. “And, he’s already a mama’s boy. He’s making little mmm and momom sounds when he cries now because he knows I will be there. We’re working on the official, mama.”

“Go to work.”

The irony in all of it though is that while I am teaching today, our son will be sitting on the couch with my husband as my husband does work for school and my son watches wrestling or cartoons and takes his nap. Then I’ll be home and we’ll switch to Murder, She Wrote and Little House on the Prairie and we’ll sit cuddling and sharing my evening yogurt that he has become obsessed with and the night will go on.

As different as moms and dads are, I think they’re also a lot more alike than they are different. Moms just have more patience and are more open to giving up personal freedoms such as peeing without a small audience.