Saturday, February 7

Day 2-ish In Mexico. The Discovery Of Nonstop Food, The Ocean, and That I Have A Lot To Learn.

The morning after we arrived was glorious! I was rested and when I woke up I actually forgot where I was for a moment. I opened up my sliding door to our room (which we shared with children) and this was our view. It was humid and our clothes felt a little damp. It was strange but wonderful. 

The birds were singing and I loved seeing all the beautiful shades of green everywhere. We got dressed and headed to breakfast. 

The first morning we ate at the buffet was overwhelming in almost every way possible. One of the reasons I picked the resort that was all inclusive was so I wouldn't have to cook, although the idea was to be easier for me, allowing me more of a "true" vacation I can't even begin to tell you how dangerous an "all you can eat" can be for children.

Even though we had a long talk about healthy food choices, I am sure its no surprise that the plates my kids made were more junk than anything of substance. The amount of waste at the tables was horrifying and I couldn't help but wonder what the staff must think of it all.  

 The children's chocolate intake the first morning would shock even Willy Wonka.
There was so much food it reminded me of old church potlucks. Lots and lots but when you get closer much of it is unrecognizable and not very nice. There were some good and smart food choices but they were not always out front and didn't catch the kids eye.

When breakfast was over and we finished practicing our Spanish (my bilingual children picked up Spanish super easy and I loved listing to them talk with the women who were restaurant staff and were so kind to the kids) we headed down to the beach.

To get down to the ocean you walk down a ramp beside an infinity pool with a swim up bar filled with drunk and loud people. The pool was lined with recliner chairs and there was an astounding amount of tie dyed clothing on almost every body moving and or passed out on said chairs. The other thing that caught my attention was the rows and rows of women holding copies of 50 Shades Of Grey. When we finally got to the sand the line of separation between grotesque over consumption and heart breaking poverty and hardship was quite literally a thin rope about 5 meters in.

Walking past the lines of people offering brackets and necklaces, was a challenge but once I said "no thank you" roughly 100 times,  we finally got to the water.

I was so excited to see the Ocean and get my feet in. I wanted to experience the Ocean through the kids eyes and capture this moment. It was sensational listening to them squeal when the waves would come up.  The sand was soft,  beautiful and the kind you dream about!

When we had been down at the water for a few minutes I saw how bothersome Nora's hair was going to be for me in and out of the water this much. So when Josephine came over and offered to put her hair in braids I jumped on the offer.

It took her less than 10 minutes to do this. AMAZING!!!

While she braided I asked her how far away she lived, and she told me that she takes a bus every morning to work for an hour and a half (one way) for $1.50. She said the taxi is only 15 minutes but it costs $10.

I struggled to barter when I was there. Although I wanted my kids to learn how and see why it was important, I myself spent a healthy amount on tips and over paying for these braided for the bargain price of 30$. Don't lecture me...I know I know.

It was around this time that the realization of how hard blending 2 families can be and is. I mean, I knew it wasn't going to be easy... but I say this without hesitation...blending is the hardest GD thing I have EVER done.
When I was younger I had a step mother. I wasn't very close with her or my Bio father, they had 2 kids of their own and Dawson and  I would only see them for a few weeks every summer.  That was not much time to try and develop any sort of lasting relationships which is one of the many reasons I wanted to go on this trip together.

But trying to blend and figure out how to be a step mother all at the same time is challenging. I fear the Evil Step Mother persona as much as I fear heights. I am still trying to figure out the kids I personally brought into this world..I sure as hell have no idea about other peoples kids. I suck at this and...if I am being honest, found myself crying in the bathroom more than once. It was also during this time I found not having wifi exceptionally difficult because I had no way to contact my friends to ask how to handle situations.

Hats off to all you step parents. Please teach me your ways. You are a grossly under-appreciated group of people.

After the ocean, we returned to non stop food and found ourselves collapsed in bed and unconscious by 9 pm.


I am grateful for the special little touches that we would get daily. One was the towel animals we found on our beds every morning after breakfast when the ladies would clean our rooms. The children loved them (especially Seth). The last night we were there this table was set up displaying all of them. I was taking a picture and I over heard a woman say, "I haven't gotten a single one on my bed" I respond by saying, "leave a tip and then you'll get one" She snorted and said "I have better things to do with my money".

Nice lady, real nice.

I am grateful for how well I slept while away. Every day was started right and I felt refreshed. 

I am grateful for R. (My ex husbands partner) You are a wonderful step mother to my children and I am sorry I didn't realize how hard you have worked to develop a great relationship with the kids. They speak very fondly of you and I want you to know that your efforts have not gone unnoticed. I hope to one day be as good at this as you are. 
Also, I am grateful for Jason who seems so good at this too.