October BabyVote Cutest Baby Competition

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Hello, friends! As most of you who follow me on Twitter or Tumblr have seen, I entered my little boy, Liam, in this month’s BabyVote Cutest Baby Competition. It is one of the largest baby competitions on the internet, and they do a new contest monthly. Each month, there is a nice cash prize for the winner, and it seems to be getting bigger each month. Out of the tens of thousands of entries, I’ve managed to get my handsome, little guy into the top 300, thanks to my amazing friends and family who have been voting for him. Unfortunately, the only way that you can vote is through a Facebook account, but if you have one, you can vote for your favorite entry once per day, but you can also spent points (which you earn each time you log in to vote) on additional votes of various amounts. You can also purchase large amounts of points, to purchase larger amounts of votes, to really help!

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Today, for the next 12 hours or so, all of the points packages are 50% off! You can spend just $4.98 and get a total of 130 votes! There are also cheaper packages!

If Liam makes it into the top 20, he then goes on to the finals, where people will vote again for their favorites. The winner takes home the cast prize (which is at $608.20 this very second). If we win this cash prize, it would be incredible. We would be able to give Liam an amazing first Christmas and birthday, and any extra can go into his savings account. Thank you so much to everyone who has been voting and sharing our entry around various social media platforms, it means so much to us! We have a looong way to go before we reach the top 20, but I think we can get there!

If you don’t have the ability to help, that is okay! You can help me get 1,000 points for Liam just by entering your cutie into the contest by clicking on my referral link HERE. It is completely free, and it is fun!

We only have 14 days left, so every vote helps!

Thank you all so much!

Jan, Kyle, and Liam

Little Milestones 8-9 Months

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Hello, friends! My little munchkin is now into his 8th month here on this planet, so I thought it would be a good time to update you on all of his latest milestones!

If you haven’t read my “Little Milestones 7-8 Months” post, you can click HERE!

So first, a couple stats on my kiddo:

As of today, Liam is 8 months, 1 week, and 5 days old! He hasn’t had a wellness check up since his 6 month shots, so I’m not entirely sure about his current height and weight, but he is now wearing mostly 12m clothes, with some larger 9m sizes, and size 4 diapers. He also wears a size 5 shoe on his giant baby feet! Tall and skinny still! I am just guessing here, but I feel like he’s around 26-27 inches, and maybe 22-24 pounds. Something like that, maybe? I could be waaay off, haha!

And, no, he has no teeth yet!

He eats 3 meals a day, and drinks 4 bottles of formula (26-30 oz. a day). For breakfast, he generally eats around 4 tbs. of oatmeal, mixed with 2 oz. of a fruit or vegetable, as well as some Cheerios if he still has room. Lunch is almost always a 4 oz. jar of fruit, with Cheerios/toast/smashed fruit on the side. Dinner is always a 4 oz. of a jar vegetables, with either toast or a different, chopped vegetable on the side.

I haven’t introduced too many new our exciting finger foods, and still haven’t introduced any meats. Peas and green beans continue to be favorite finger foods, but he also enjoys black beans, hummus, salt-less pretzel pieces, raw tomato pieces, rotini pasta, and toasted whole wheat bread. And Cheerios, obviously. Since I’ve recently gone meat and dairy-free, I want to try to get some different, healthy finger foods for him to try, that I can eat as well. I really want to look up tofu recipes, but tofu is scary. We’ll see! I have also started adding spices to his foods, such as cinnamon, nutmeg, and garlic powder. So far, no allergic reactions to anything we have tried, although, I’ve noticed that green beans make him pretty gassy. Not uncomfortably so, but gassy. Green beans make everyone gassy though, don’t they? I think it is a green bean thing.

And I suppose that’s it when it comes to food.

Just like my last post, I will include charts! I pulled both of these charts from the BabyCentre UK site, which is my favorite website for all my baby questions and needs. And, yes, I do like the UK site more than the US site.

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Here is the 8 month development chart, and if you scroll down, you can find the 9 and 10 month charts as well. The first column contains Achieved Skills (things that most babies at this age can do). The second column contains Emerging Skills (things that half of babies at this age can do). The third column contains Advanced Skills (things that few babies at this age can do).

I’m very proud to say that Liam has mastered everything on this list, aside from two things, which we are working on. He does reach for items, but hasn’t really gotten the hang of pointing, at least not with one finger. He kind of points? But it is probably just him reaching. He also doesn’t really say “dada” still. He is very fluent in “mama”, but has only said “dada” on a handful of occasions. Kyle isn’t home very often, but whenever he is, I try to push the “dada” talk, but so far it hasn’t improved too much.

He completely mastered crawling over a month ago, and is still getting into EVERYTHING. He is now able to pull himself into standing position (which he was able to do at 7 months, if you recall), and is also able to stand on his own if he lets go. He can almost stand himself up from crawling position, without holding into anything, but his core and balance aren’t quite there yet. He also jumps and bounces very well, and is able to sit and kneel himself back down from standing. He just recently starting being able to slowly cruise while holding onto his crib or play yard, but he hasn’t been as daring when it comes to holding onto the couch. So proud of this!

His fine motor skills are developing nicely from where they were at before. We took his doctor’s advice from his 6 month exam and started giving him his finger foods at 6.5 months with each meal, if only just to help with his pincher grasp, and it has definitely improved. He still prefers to rake, mostly because he likes to squeeze and smash his food in his fists, but he is definitely able to pick up his Cheerio’s with his thumb and pointer fingers. He has also gotten a lot better at getting his food to his mouth, but still hasn’t grasped the concept of letting it go so he can eat it, and ends up just sucking on his in his fingers. He eats probably 2-5 Cheerio’s/beans/peas/etc. himself during meals, sometimes more, and the rest I have to give to him. I also recently started giving him a spoon to play with during meals, because he was always trying to grab at the one I was feeding him with (which resulted in huge messes), so now he has started showing an interest in trying to feed himself with a spoon. Sometimes, I mash a pea or a bean onto his spoon, so he can see it and try to aim for his mouth. We’re getting there!

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I’ve already covered a few of these from the previous chart that Liam has learned already, but he also has been banging things for quite a while now, but more recently starting dropping and throwing his toys out out of his crib or play yard. He also throws and drops food while sitting in his high chair (my kitchen looks like a graveyard for Cheerio’s every day, seriously). He doesn’t sit still long enough for me to really play games with him when we are on the floor, other than peek-a-boo, which he likes, but sometimes we roll a ball back and forth! He likes to hit it with his hands and crawl after it. We actually haven’t tried the pat-a-cake game, even though the song is on his Scout toy, so we’ll have to try that when he is in his high chair!

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Just for fun, I wanted to post the 10 month chart as well. Liam recently started waving by opening and closing his fingers, so every time I put him down in his crib, or pick him up from his crib, I try to wave to him. He doesn’t do it on command, like if you’re saying hello or goodbye to him, but he can do the motion of waving! And he has gotten excellent at babbling and talking, and it sometimes sounds like he is forming real words! I swear, it sounds like he is sassing me on occasion!

We transitioned Liam to a sippy cup with handles at 6 months, and he has been using one ever since. He holds it and drinks from it on his own, both while sitting in his high chair and lying down, but we are still using the nipple lid, as opposed to a spout lid, because he refused a spout. We tried again recently to switch, but he was not happy. I have tried giving him sips from cups, we even bought him tiny, colorful drinking cups to use, but more spills out than gets in his mouth usually. We’re getting there though!

I’ve reeeally been trying to stop using so many cutesy nicknames, and have started trying to just call him by his own name (though I slip and use a silly nickname sometimes, because come on), to get him used to hearing it, so that he responds more. So far, nothing. However, he does respond to the word “no”. Kind of. If we are sitting on the floor, and he crawls over to my DVD shelves or tries to crawl under my computer desk, I sternly tell him, “No.” and he stops and looks over his shoulder at me. It actually makes him laugh! I have to repeat it several times sometimes, but he does listen! I’ve been trying to say the word “no” while picking him up and moving him away from where he isn’t supposed to be, so that he knows to associate the word with me taking him away from it, and it seems to be working.

And just a quick little bit about his sleeping habits, Liam has been sleeping through the night since he was around 2 months old. When he isn’t going through a sleep regression stage, he generally sleeps for about 11-12 hour stretches, only waking up once or twice in the middle of the night if he has a bad dream, or bumps his crib, etc. We moved his bedtime forward an hour, from 8pm to 7pm, after noticing that he seemed overly tired and cranky when we tried to put him down. It worked beautifully, and he still doesn’t wake up until around 7:30-8am. He is also still taking 2 naps a day, ranging from 45 minutes to 1.5 hours each, depending on how busy a day we’ve had. He just got out of his 8 month sleep regression phase, which luckily only lasted a few days, because it was so awful! We were both so tired and cranky that week. Now, he’s kind of teetering on being back in his separation anxiety phase, and has been having little fits whenever bedtime rolls around, but it looks like that may only last a few days as well.

This kid, such a freaking champ!

So there you have it! We have his 9 month shots coming up this month, so I will probably write in a more accurate height and weight in an edit, and let you know what his doctors say about his development. I just wanted to give you a good idea of where he is at right now!

Thanks for reading!

Jan

Dream Journal 10/1/15

Future/present age.

I was walking into a large, futuristic gym, with glass ceilings and chrome everywhere. I was with my son, who was about a year old, and this girl who apparently was my best friend. She was nearly half a foot taller than me, blonde, and was ridiculously pretty. Definitely don’t know her in real life.

We walked into the gym and talked to the man at the front desk about a membership. He gave us a tour, and I dropped my son off at the in-gym daycare center, which looked like a mini amusement park, and then we went to discuss prices. Apparently, this gym was $200 a month, and I was able to afford it, so my friend and I signed up and got two free t-shirts out of it.

Then we were being walked to the CEO’s office, because she interviews all the new members. The hallway was long, dark, and resembled the halls of my deceased grandmother’s apartment complex building that she used to live in. It was drastically different than the rest of the building.

The CEO was a very attractive, older woman, and she stood to shake our hands. She was really nice and asked us about our personal lives and my son, and I noticed that over her shoulder, there was a huge wall of monitors, watching over the various sections of the massive gym complex.

She lead us out of her office and down some stairs, and then we were in a field, completely with gym equipment. The treadmills, weights, etc. were all scattered around the field, and were being used by other gym folks.

My friend took off her clothes, to reveal that she was wearing a bikini, and started running on one of the treadmills. In a bikini. I went into a small shed/cabin, which was massive on the inside, and found a huge, empty pool. I got in the pool and started doing laps.

And I swam and swam and swam.

And then I woke up.

Dream Journal 9/30/15

Present day/present age.

I was the new manager in a huge store, which looked eerily similar to a Super Target, only it was two stories, and was so much cooler.

I was sitting in the coffee shop inside the store, waiting for my drink, and I was watching the young barista be really rude to everyone waitng in the line. She was shouting and cussing, and no one was reacting or doing anything about it. I didn’t want to do anything about it, since no one knew who I was apparently, so I just got my coffee and walked around the store.

I was drinking my coffee on this obscenely large esclator, when someone bumped into me, spilling my coffee all over my khaki pants. The coffee stain was unrealistically massive, and I got really angry because he didn’t even apologize to me.

I got off the escalator and approached an employee, telling him that there was a spill on the escalator, and he told me to, “Fuck off.” I just stared at him for a minute and walked away.

Then I was sitting in the break room, watching a weird, coloring movie on a big-screen TV on the wall, when a guy sat next to me and started talking to me. I told him who I was and that I was everyone’s new boss, and he got really angry and walked out. Then my walkie went off and someone announced that there was a food fight happening in the grocery section.

When I got there, the barista from before was holding a really big bowl filled with some kind of batter or sauce or something, and she was just throwing it at everyone, but they were all laughing. There was a pedestal next to me with another bowl, and when I went to pick it up, everyone looked at me, and the guy from the break room started screaming for everyone to run, and they all ran from me. I didn’t know why.

I put the bowl down and went back to the break room, but I was stopped by a customer who was complaining about the coffee spill on the escalator, which had now turned into a stream of coffee just flowing down the steps. I told the woman that I was a manager and  that I would have someone clean it, and she just walked away. I went to go find someone to clean the spill, but the store was completely empty, even all the customers were gone.

Then I walked back into the break room to see if I could find anyone, and the guy from before was in there kissing another employee, and they looked at me angrily when I went in and left the room together, so I sat and watched the movie I was watching before and ate a bowl of pretzels and popcorn that was sitting on the table.

I could hear someone singing a weird song over the walkie, and people were starting to come back into the break room.

And then I woke up.

Dream Journal 9/29/15

I woke up in the middle of the night and went to the fridge to get some milk, but my milk wasn’t there. I looked around and saw the carton sitting on the table, and I got upset because that meant Kyle drank it all. I drink soy milk, but he drinks regular milk, so I was upset because he still had his own milk. I picked up the carton to throw it away and realized that it was still half-full. I opened it and for some reason, even though it had only been sitting out for a little while, it was completely curdled, which was… weird.

I threw it away and went into Kyle’s room and started yelling at him, and I punched him and told him we had to go and get milk right now because I was thirsty. Mama needs her soy milk.

So we went to the store and stood in the parking lot arguing, but not about the milk. We were arguing about about some guy in a  blue car who was riding us all the way to the store, and Kyle had gotten angry and flipped him off, and I got scared because the guy seemed crazy. So we were arguing about road rage and stuff.

Then we were in the store, and the sun was shining outside now, and Liam was sitting in the cart looking around, and we were doing real grocery sopping. I picked up a bag of apples, Kyle cracked a joke about something stupid, and I took one of the apples out and threw it at him. The apple missed him, and hit a random woman. The apple hit her in the head, but she didn’t even notice and kept walking, like it had hit a cement wall. We just stood there staring for a while until she was gone.

All we bought were apples and around 500 cans of soup… no milk. Then we went to a RedBox machine that was outside the front doors, which was broken and smoking, but the screen still worked, and we got two really awful sounding horror films to watch. As we were walking away the RedBox machine caught on fire, and no one seemed to notice.

Then we were back in our apartment, and it was dark out, and we all went to bed, but I couldn’t sleep because I could hear a dog barking, or two dogs fighting or something.

And then I woke up.


Sinking Ships

** EDIT: Last month, the individual I wrote about reached out to me via Facebook to apologize for her actions and words. Apparently, she was simply following the lead of two individuals, who I once considered friends, who were talking about me, my son, and my parenting publicly, behind my back. We have since reconciled our differences, and have moved on. Thank you, to everyone who came to my defense in the days following this incident. And to those of you who maliciously and ignorantly attacked me and spread lies about me on social media, you should be ashamed of yourselves. **
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I honestly can not even begin to wrap my head around the ridiculous drama that I witnessed on Twitter today, and I sincerely apologize to anyone who had to witness such ignorance and maliciousness in their timelines, but here is what happened in my little corner of the internet.

Today was… interesting, for lack of a more creative word. It started out normal, for the most part. Li and I finished watching Hercules (we started yesterday but never got to finish), then moved on to The Hunchback of Notre Dame. We’ve been on a bit of a Disney kick recently. We had Cheerios and applesauce for breakfast, and leftover rotini for lunch. But suddenly, I became aware of some not-so-nice tweets that I was seeing splattered across my Twitter timeline from several sources. I didn’t know what, or who, had caused this random shitstorm of judgment, or who they were all talking about, but decided not to get involved. Until I saw someone responding to a tweet that vaguely sounded like it could have been written about me… you know, if the person who originally posted it had been horribly misinformed. Or psychotic. Or something.

That’s when I posted a few sub-tweets of my own, calling out the bitchiness going on on Twitter, and urging people to be nicer. Yeah, didn’t help. Instead, it got me put on a few peoples’ blocked lists. Good job, Jan! If they hate you, that means you’re doing something right! Right?

So, this morning, I noticed that Li’s last can of formula only had enough for maybe the rest of today, and randomly tweeted about it, because that’s what I do. I tweet things. Now, this was not really a problem, since Kyle would be home from work tonight and we could get some more then (since as most of you know, we only have one car, and I don’t drive). We also have plenty of baby cereal and baby food to keep any little tummy rumblings away. Once again, not a big deal at all. At least, I thought so. Apparently I was mistaken about my own situation though. Who knew?

So there I was, skimming through my timeline, reading tweets from people who I once considered my “friends”, that were horribly judgmental and passive aggressive things about people who are in not-so-fortunate situations. I guessed who a few of them were talking about, although I didn’t agree with that they were saying. Some were even posting hypocritical things about how people complaining on social media is annoying… even though I had seen them do it themselves countless times. But, hey, what would I know? Maybe that’s just how it works. Not all of it was necessarily directed towards me/someone in an eerily similar situation to me, just towards a few random people that they felt compelled to judge for various reasons. Some were even comparing their own lives to that of those they know nothing about, and judging them for how they deal with the situations they’ve been dealt with. And let me tell you, I can not stand people who compare their past problems, with those that someone else is facing today. Saying things like, “I dealt with ___, so you shouldn’t be whining about ___.” or, “Get a job if you don’t have money!” Neither of which is helpful, or supportive to anyone. Just mean.

But back to my situation. It was brought to my attention that a random woman on Twitter (who I did not follow, and who did not follow me), had tweeted to me, and someone responded, which I saw. Apparently I had her blocked from something in the past, which I don’t remember anything about. Looking at what happened today, this is not surprising in the slightest. I looked at her profile to see what she had said, and was honestly appalled. Or shocked? I don’t really know what I felt. This random woman publicly talked about my parenting, and said that she felt “terrible” for my son, after assuming that several things that I tweeted were about her. Well, they weren’t. As I said before, and as I said to her, I didn’t know her. I didn’t follow her. The tweets I posted were directed to the handful of “friends”, who have now been removed from my life, who I witnessed posting all the vile and judgment within them. But, for some reason, this girl who does not follow me, was watching my tweets, and thought my tweets revolved around her, and responded negatively to them. She called me a bad mother, and took SCREENSHOTS of my tweets, posting them on her own Twitter. That gave me a good laugh. And creeped me out. Apparently she also had a problem with people who ask for help with money on social media to help with their unfortunate situations, and did not like how someone was trying to raise money so that we could get a vehicle. Who knows who she was talking about, I just couldn’t tell because of the abundance of sub-tweeting, and lack of actually mentioning people in the tweets. I don’t see how it was any of her business anyway, but ya know, whatever.

Did I already mention that she didn’t even follow me but was keeping track of my tweets?

Creepy. Seriously.

You know, everyone deals with their shit differently. Some of us are more vocal about our struggles than others on social media, but we all bitch and moan about something at some point. But just because I share certain parts of my life on social media, that does not mean you know 100% of the details, and get to judge accordingly. Most of the time, when I tweet, it is about something great happening, or something terrible. You don’t always know all the middle part that lead to either. But despite knowing none of the details, she took a screenshot of two of my tweets, one complaining about the dirty dishes, the other talking about being almost out of formula. And based off of those two things, she got it into her head that I neglect my son, and do not take care of him. Aside from being really creepy, this was also irksome. I’m not exaggerating either, guys, those were her words. She said I NEGLECT my kid.

There were also other postings (by this individual and a few others) about people who don’t sacrifice enough, or anything, in order to take care of their children. Because they somehow got a hold of these peoples’ financial information, I assume, and know exactly how much they spend on their kids. Now, I don’t know if any of those tweets were directed at me, but for the record, I’ve had the same off-brand phone for over 2 years, which has been out of minutes for almost 2 months. I play no games that require membership fees, don’t have cable, haven’t bought any clothing items for myself in over 6 months, haven’t gotten a haircut in even longer, and eat frozen meals and other horrible things that don’t cost a lot of money, just so that I can make sure that my son gets clothes, diapers, toys, and good food. And he does.

BUT NEGLECT NEGLECT NEGLECT, YOU GUYS.

Despite my trying to correct her and let her know that she was very much mistaken, she had nothing new to add to the conversation, and just kept publicly repeating that I need to take care of my child, and that she felt terrible for him because I’m such a bad mom. Blah blah blah, broken record. And when she felt backed into a corner, because she must have realized by now that her overwhelming ignorance was making her look ridiculous, she got defensive and acted like a victim, pretending to know about my situation, and trying to say that she had been there and that I should get help, etc. I don’t know what her problem was, or why she felt the need to single me out, but it was getting annoying.

I couldn’t even get mad at the situation, because… honestly? What? WHAT? How did she even get to that point of calling me a bad parent based off of ONE tweet that had absolutely nothing to do with my parenting? It was just so ridiculous! Anyone who has known me for longer than 5 minutes knows that I love my son with all my heart. I post pictures of him constantly, where he is always smiling and playing. I’m a stay-at-home mom and spend every second with my baby. We eat all of our meals together, play together, sleep together (sometimes), watch movies together, go for walks to play at the park every other day, and he even sits on my lap and watches YouTube with me.

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This was taken just this morning and uploaded to Twitter, but apparently she missed that one. Li and I have been watching Hannah Hart’s “My Drunk Kitchen” episodes on YouTube lately, and this morning we sat at my computer and watched together while snacking on Cheerios, and it was funny! He kept waving his marker at Hannah and Connor and laughing. He also really seems to like PewDiePie (more than I do actually, haha), as well as Dan and Phil. My kid has good taste!  This is so weird to me, guys, because I’ve never had to defend my parenting to anyone because, once again, what?!

I have an intelligent, happy, well-fed baby boy. He is above average in height and weight, and is further along in his development than most babies his age. How do I know this? Because ever since the start of my pregnancy, and ever since he was born, I have done nothing but read and research on how to take care of my little guy properly. But most of you already know that, since I talk about all of his wonderful milestones and discoveries all the time! I’m a good mom, and I know that. The only person I have to prove that to is my son, and judging by the permanent smile attached to his face, he knows it as well.

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Maybe you should stop judging people for things you know NOTHING about, things you yourself took out of context and manipulated. If I post a tweet saying, “Huh, Liam is almost out of formula.” That PROBABLY doesn’t mean that I can not afford to feed my child, or that he is starving. It also does not mean that I am a bad mother who can’t take care of my child, or needs help. It actually probably just means his fucking can of formula is almost empty, and I need to go buy some more. That’s it. You do not get to call me a bad mother, because you clearly know nothing about me. If I post that I am “broke”, it doesn’t mean that we are living in the dark, starving, and freezing to death. It means that I wish we had extra spending money to spend on things for us, since (surprise!), all of our money goes towards taking care of our child.

So you can go ahead and judge away about things you clearly know nothing about, or you can worry about fixing your shitty attitude about people, and figure out why you feel the need to judge others so harshly, and to manipulate the situation to make yourself seem like the bleeding heart victim. Like turning around, after causing all the drama, and try to play it off like you were just trying to get me help or something? Yeah. I don’t need help. I never said I needed help. We’re doing great! But thanks for your… concern?

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Today, I learned that loving your child unconditionally means nothing, because if you post a tweet about almost being out of formula, you are a neglectful, terrible parent. Who knew? I also learned that I need to keep better company, because I’ve apparently been surrounding myself with assholes. You shouldn’t consider someone a friend based solely on the fact that you have one or two things in common, because they may turn out to be a crappy human being. But, I fixed that, and can continue on with my life with all of the numerous people who showed me support and shared kind words with me during this unnecessary, somewhat hilarious, harassment.

Moral of the story: Never let someone else’s ignorance get you down. You never know, they might just be trying to help. But, more likely than not, they’re probably just a manipulative, rude person.

Out with the toxicity, in with the positivity!

I can not believe I even had to write this all out, since 99.99% of you know how much I love my son, but thanks for reading anyway and for laughing at this whole situation with me!

Much love,

Jan

Dream Journal 9/25/15

My son has been going through an awful sleep regression phase the last couple weeks, and the last two nights have been particularly awful. I got around 3.5 hours of sleep last night, but I managed to crash on the couch this morning while he was napping, and I actually remember the dream I was having before he woke me up. Again.
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Present age/dystopian future.

I was living alone in a dystopian wasteland of a city, where it is always dark outside, and there are clouds of pollution and dust in the air, blocking out the sun.

It was nighttime, and I was creeping around a large, empty shopping center. I broke into a boarded up drug store, similar to a Walgreens or CVS, which was completely deserted. I had a large backpack, and I hastily ran through the aisles, shoving various necessities into my bag. Tampons, hair dye, toilet paper, cereal, chocolate, etc.

Then I was in a park, sitting on a bench, eating Captain Crunch out of the box. Suddenly, the sound of a warning alarm filled the air, and I grabbed my backpack and sprinted toward a large apartment complex on the other end of the park. In the distance, I could see others running toward the various, abandoned buildings scattered about the city. The ones that were still standing, that is.

I passed by a little girl, around 7 years old, sitting beneath a tree crying, and I kept running. I ended up turning back to grab her, tossing her over my shoulder, as I neared the apartment complex that I claimed as my own.

I carried the young girl up to the top floor, because there was no power anywhere in the city. She had passed out on my shoulder, either from exhaustion or fear, but she woke up when I opened the door to the apartment that I had turned into a penthouse bunker. I set her down on the floor, and she immediately crawled away, hiding behind a large crate in the corner. I just shrugged and walked into the next room to put away my supplies. If she wanted to leave, she could.

Outside the walls of my little fortress, I could hear the alarms come to an end, and I quickly closed and locked the doors to the cupboards, then braced myself.

There was a loud explosion outside, followed by a blinding light, and the whole building shook. It lasted only a few seconds. After it was over, I went and inspected the other rooms to make sure that nothing bad been broken. The little girl was gone, and the front door was open. I shrugged and locked it. She never came back.

I had a tiny generator, that somehow still worked, and I used it to watching Breaking Bad on Netflix, which was still mysteriously working as well. I was also drinking red wine from a decorative goblet.
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It was a different day, and I was back in the park near the building that I lived in. There was a cherry blossom tree in the middle of the park, and people were crowded around it, placing offerings beneath it. That tree was basically the only living tree in the city, and the only colorful thing left. I don’t know if the rest of the world was as apocalyptic as the city I was in, but I imagine it was, since we were all still there.

The little girl was in the park by the tree, and there was a woman with her, but I don’t think it was her mother.

There were really large birds flying in the sky, they almost looked like pterodactyls, and they were SO loud.

And then I woke up.