31 December 2009

not for the faint of heart

1 January 2010.


An unmarked holiday on most calendars, but which is emblazoned on mine (at least mentally) each and every year it seems.


Here I am at the jumping off place. Looking down the barrel of an intensely loaded list of resolutions that has been growing exponentially with each passing day for the past couple of weeks...

Start a running program
Eat better
Take vitamins
Organize my house
Read my Bible
Pray more
Drink more water
Plan a budget
Keep a budget
Plan meals
Go to the grocery once a week

Every day it's something new that I didn't think of yesterday. Something I want to change and better about myself. Something that I want to stop hating about myself. Something that I know I can do but I'm not sure if I can do.

I know I'm taking a blog break, and I hate to be such a Debbie Downer in this once-in-a-blue-moon post, but today has been a hard day.

A day that started like every other day has for the past couple of weeks. With the Kiddo waking up at 0830 and beginning his reign of terror. And ending with a New Year's Eve party of sorts at my in-laws' house to which I wore very little makeup and where everyone was happy but me.

At the end of this long, sad day, it's hard for me to see anything but tears and spankings and time-outs and quiet times and harsh words and loud voices and a very frazzled mama.

And the only consolation I could find as I sat, crying, at his bedside while he slept is that he won't remember that I didn't used to be like this. And what a double-edged sword that is. He won't remember that so much changed so very quickly and I became this exhausted, impatient person that I am now. No, he won't remember... but I will.

And so, really... if the running plan falls through and I keep eating garbage and not drinking water. If I forget forever to take my vitamins and I run out of money every month due to my lack of planning. If I never ever fit into that stupid blue dress in my closet again. If my house still lies in shambles at this time next year...

What I really want out of 2010 is fewer nights where I lay in my bed wondering if I'm good enough. If the punishment was too severe. If it was really so important that he stop banging on that pan. If it really mattered if he climbed up in a chair to look at the pictures on the refrigerator.

If he knows how much his mama loves him.

What I really want out of 2010 is to live joyfully and light up my children's lives with happiness. I don't want to be angry and impatient. I don't want to yell and scream. I don't want to feel like I'm going to pull my hair out. I don't want to be so wasted and worn out by the end of the day that I can't stand the sight of my kids.

I just want to be better.

I want tomorrow to be a better day than today.

And every day after that to follow suit.


06 October 2009


It occurs to me on this rainy Tuesday that I have become somewhat of a delinquent blogger. It's not that I don't like the idea of updating and maintaining a blog, I honestly just refuse to take the time right now.

Taking time to blog would mean staying up unnecessarily late to do so or pretending that I have free time during the day. If I'm going to stay up unnecessarily late, I'd much rather be re-learning how to knit or teaching myself how to piece a quilt or just sitting and zoning out on a TV show for an hour or so. And I don't call free time "free time" during the day, I call it much-needed and much-cherished kid time. Because when I'm not doing the things that running a home a caring for a family demands of me, I'm enjoying playing and holding and rocking and teaching and hands-on loving my children much too much to sit down and stare at a computer for any significant amount of time.

So, while the idea of keeping up with a blog that people enjoy reading is nice and having a set-aside place where I can keep my creative juices flowing with the possibility of real live feedback has been great... I just have to be realistic and say it ain't gonna happen with any great frequency at this point in my life.

And so, while I have no plans to shut my blog down or anything highly dramatic that's going to show up in next weeks OK! magazine, I am officially acknowledging to all the 2, 3, or maybe 4 on a good day month that I'm not updating my blog as often and probably won't be making any new blogging habits anytime soon.

Because right now the only habits I'm successfully cultivating is brushing my teeth before bed and showering.



01 October 2009

2 Poetical Notions by Megan

Ode to Dryer

Oh, thou ancient dryer rusted
With thine heating coil now busted
This alone is my excuse
My laundry obligation is loosed
(At least for tomorrow)


Dryer, Revisited

Thou sittest askew in my laundry room
How could I have realized this impending doom?
Alas, a load of whites I must start
In anticipation of replacement parts.
The end.


03 September 2009

2 years in the rearview...

September 4... two years ago... at 7:20 PM... I met my little man.

I fell in love instantly because... well, just look at this face!

And then I blinked and this happened...

I didn't give him permission to fly in on all that growing business, but we were singing Happy Birthday to him just the same.

I decided to never blink again.

But I did... and now we're singing Happy Birthday to him again. And he's all grown up and painting rockets...

And feeding french fries to ducks...

And stealing my heart over and over again.

Happy birthday, dear one!
You may be Daddy's big boy, but you'll always be Mama's baby.


20 July 2009

lunch in 17 steps

1. I fixed my kid a Kid Cuisine lunch thing despite the salt and preservatives and grossness factor and blah blah blah. And no I didn't feel guilty about it.

OK, maybe a little...

2. I scraped the chocolate pudding out into a bowl because he naturally wanted to eat that/paint himself with it before eating the chicken nuggets, mac 'n' cheese, and corn (all of which happened to be the same color, by the way).

Nope, no guilt here.

3. I went on a mad hunt searching the cabinets for food for myself, having exhausted my own processed, over-salted, and flash-frozen food supply and finally settled on a grilled cheese.

4. I noticed that my child had eaten all of his macaroni 'n' cheese, two bites of his chicken nuggets, and none of his corn.

Me: "Is your chicken good, buddy?"

Kiddo: "No."

Me: "Do you want something else? Do you want a grilled cheese?"

Kiddo: "No. Unh?" (Interpretation: "No. I'm finished. I don't want a grilled cheese. Hand me that pudding.")

5. I continued to not feel guilty as he ate his pudding with star sprinkles.

6. I made myself a grilled cheese and stood in awe of the evenness of it's perfectly grilled golden goodness.

7. I got some pickles and some ketchup and a Diet Dr. Pepper, my vice for which I might need some professional intervention, and I sat down with my Gooseberry Patch catalog to eat and peruse.

8. Kiddo: [pointing to my plate] "Unnnhhh?"

Me: Do you want a grilled cheese?

Kiddo: Uh-huh!

9. I give him my grilled cheese and get up to make myself another one.

10. Kiddo: Bob, Larry? (Interpretation: "I want to watch Veggietales."

Me: "You've only taken one bite of your grilled cheese. Don't you want some more?"

Kiddo: "No."

Me: "If I turn on a movie in your room, will you take your grilled cheese and eat it in there?"

Kiddo: "No."

Me: "If I turn on a movie in the living room, will you take your grilled cheese and it in there?"

Kiddo: "No."

11. I grab the kiddo to rinse his hands in the sink, let him dry his hands with a paper towel, and send him on his way.

12. I go to turn my grilled cheese. Totally charred on the first side. Oh well, I'll eat it anyway.

13. The kiddo grabs my hand and starts grunting and pulling me away from the stove.

Me: "Not right now, I'm going to eat my lunch."

Kiddo: [whining, weeping, wailing, gnashing of teeth, etc.; no tears]

14. I go to get my grilled cheese, which is not done enough to be removed from the skillet and therefore folds up under itself.

Totally charred on one side, folded under itself on the other. I'll eat it anyway.

15. I sit down to eat as the kiddo continues his prolonged agony beside me and tries to climb into my chair.

Me: "No... if you want to sit down, you sit in your chair and eat your grilled cheese."

Kiddo: [continued drama as he climbs into his chair]

16. I eat my retarded grilled cheese as the kiddo eats some of his corn (with his fingers), the rest of his pudding (fingers and spoon), and some ketchup (spoon only).

17. The end.


17 July 2009

dressing for leprosy

In the spirit of it being Friday night, I thought I'd write an everything post.

I have just counted 16 bug bites on my legs. Yes, SIXTEEN. Mosquitos love me because I am sweet and precious. This is a trait that I have apparently passed onto my firstborn and the approximately 942 mosquitoes in our yard like using him as an appetizer before feasting on me. They like his ears and my ankles.

And I like it when they die.

Would getting a bat box be going too far?

So, yes, 16 mosquito bites. And I would assume that the general public is repulsed by the sight of me in shorts or a skirt except that I've started to realize that the general public is far too caught up in their own neuroses to notice that I'm a leper, which is convenient since I've heard that lepers aren't all that popular.

Which brings me to my next point...

That certainly makes things sound a lot more organized than they really are.

Anyway... my next point. I was at Dillard's a couple of days ago trying to find a dress that is A) long enough to cover my lesions, B) flattering on my 3-month-postpartum pudgy-and-not-springing-back-as-quickly-as-it-did-the-first-time body, C) not a solid color but not too busy, and D) not spaghetti strap or boudoir revealing. I'm not picky. I just a very vivid idea of the exact dress I want.

And it doesn't exist, but that's neither here nor there for now.

So, I happened upon a long dress with a nice pattern in subtle colors and while it did look like it would require some type of special undergarment, it didn't look like I would have to worry about the girls flying out if a kid or two decided to swing from the neckline. So, I was checking it out and trying to decide if I was ready for my first post-pregnancy trip to the fitting room when a small flock of college age girls wandered over to the area.

They were tan and ponytailed and were overusing the word like like a lot and I couldn't help but overhear their conversation as they were crowding around me.

"These dresses are pretty but they are like so long."

"Yah, why would anybody even like want to wear these... they do nothing for your legs."

"Yah, and your legs are like your best asset."

(they had clearly never seen my mosquito buffets)

"Oh, if you like one just do what I do... chop it off and like hem stitch it."

"I'm like totally sure I have no idea how to do that..."

And blah, like blah, blah blah...

They made me feel old and pasty and frumpy and... ugh. But as I walked away, I couldn't help but thinking of Tawanda. TAWANDA! Righter of wrongs!

"Face it girls, I'm older and I have more insurance."

Oh, and I didn't buy the dress. Because I'm so tight I squeak.



29 June 2009

let me straddle my old saddle

I have never been into stereotypes.

OK... maybe never is a strong word.  Let me rephrase.

When I was a stupid shallow high school punk I said things like, "I have like never been into stereotypes," but I like totally was.  Which one, you ask? Oh, all of them.

I wore the Gap bootcut button flies because that was the preppy thing to do.  I listened to the edgy rocky stoner music because that was the late-90s nouveau-hippie thing to do.  I let my hair lay on one shoulder, cocked my head to the side when I talked to guys, and did my darnedest to appear mysterious and sexy because that was the... I dunno... girl-who-was-popular-with-the-guys thing to do.

I'm relatively certain I could have substituted the word slutty for that dash-y adjective I just created.  Was I slutty? It's possible, unfortunately.  Which, by the way, isn't nearly as sad and tragic as the fact that I'm pretty sure I wanted to appear slutty.

Suffice it to say that I'm not proud of that piece of my history and have, at this point, reconciled that ridiculousness with the One before whom I'll one day stand in judgement, but that's neither here nor there in this particular post.

I guess, though, my favorite stereotype, or at least the one that was constantly a part of my repertoire, was the farm-y redneck-y one.

I wanted so badly for everyone to think I was cool (despite my "marching to my own beat" personal mantra).  Friendly with and admired by the girls, sought after by the boys.  And in my tiny rural private school, nearly everyone had some ties with a farm.  It was my all-access pass.

And the only stereotype-ish slot I could slide myself into with any legitimacy.

No, I didn't grow up ridin' and ropin' and I wasn't out milking the cows at 4 in the morning every day.  In my defense, though, the only horse my grandparents had on their farm during my growing-up years was a brown and white pony named Tony Bill who Noah rode off of the ark and they have beef not dairy cattle.  I have, however, seen a calf born and, more gruesome, banded (which seems like a perfect way to introduce gangrene or something equally uncomfortable to a calf's testicles).  I spent a good deal of my childhood playing in barn lofts.  I've set and stripped tobacco.  I hauled hay briefly once.  And I've been in cow manure up to my ankles.

And that, folks, is about the extent of it.

I said with any legitimacy not with a whole lot of legitimacy.

In the end, though, I think what really makes me feel like a farm kid at heart is the fact that I loved that lifestyle oh so very much.  Still do.  I love the smell of fresh cut hay warmed by the early summer sun.  I love the mustiness of a barn where many seasons of tobacco has hung to come into order.  I loved the old peafowl (who's since gone to that big roost in the sky by way of one very nasty Dalmatian named Lacey) calling from the barn roof.  I love sinking my toes into the just-plowed red clay behind my grandparents' house.  I could sit on my folks' patio for days just staring out across the rise and fall of the pastureland and smelling the oniony watermelon smell of freshly mown grass.

I remember sitting in my spot on that patio shortly before our wedding and thinking with a dull ache in my chest, "How on earth am I supposed to leave all this?"

Which brings me to today.  I'm homesick for space.  I love our house, but I'm tired of being subdivided.   I want to live somewhere where the fences are woven wire and not chain link.  I want land.  And I want animals on it.  I want to be woken up by the sound of a tractor somewhere nearby.  As a matter of fact, I think I would pay somebody to work my land if just once a year or so I could look out my window after dark and see the lights of a tractor making every effort to beat the rain.  I want my kids to be able to roam and learn to drive in the pasture as soon as they're feet will reach the pedals.  I want a real and valid reason to have a very large truck and a 4-wheeler.

I want cows mooing.

And a big ole garden to work in.

And boots for my feet.


And someday... some blessed day out there in my future, I shall have all these things.

Or if I can't have it all, I'd at least like a bigger yard.  And fewer, farther apart neighbors.  And maybe still the boots.

Just for good measure.


22 June 2009

not a sound from the pavement

I've been reading through some of my old journals that I started keeping (with no great regularity, mind you) in elementary school.  What struck me most about looking into the past is how little I remember.  I have to make a serious effort to dredge up any real memory of things so huge that I felt the need to write out highly dramatic accounts of them several years ago.

The conclusion I reached in reading my journals (other than I was a heathen and should have been ashamed of myself most days) is that my memory? It sucks.  A lot.

I've always been semi-aware that I have a bad memory for most things and I know for a fact that most of the stuff I learned in school I retained just long enough to pass the test, but I would have figured I would remember things about my own life.  Especially things that caused me to write things like, "My mind is lower than it's ever been..." and "This may well turn out to be the worst weekend of my life..."

I also made some reference to being a "mature, graceful 14 year old woman," but that's beside the point for now.

I can't believe I was ever that over the top and dramatic.  Reading stuff like that just makes me want to set myself on fire.

My memory is strongest when it comes to remembering what I wore on most important occasions (the first time I met the hubby... green and white Hawaiian print shorts and a spaghetti strap tank top) and some not-so-important occasions (hubby's first pre-op consultation before having his hernia repair... blue sailor-style pants and white henley).  Thank goodness for that ability of memory because it comes in handy loads of times.

So anyway... all the thought about my dwindling memory got me to wanting to remember and even trying to remember any random details I could dredge up about my childhood and young life.

Here's some stuff I came up with:

My mom used to sleep in a purple and white gingham nightgown.

When I was little and we would visit my great-grandmother (my paternal grandfather's mom, Grandma), I would always dash into her "formal living room" to feel of one particular pillow.  It had embroidered strawberries and vines on one side, but the other side was dark green velvet.  It felt amazing.  Also in that room was an antique secretary with old dolls in it.  They weren't for playing with, but she let me look at them from time to time.  The toys for playing with were in the closet in her den, which was actually meant to be a bedroom.  The closet had a sliding door and it always came off its track.  She also had some of those old metal Coca-Cola trays with pictures of smiling rosy-cheeked women on them.  Maybe they were supposed to be coasters.  I just realized I really want some of those...

One of my other great grandmothers (I was blessed to know 3) babysat me fairly often when I was little.  This was my paternal grandmother's mom, Granny.  She kept RC in her fridge and we would drink it with a splash of lemon juice from tiny little juice glasses.  She also always had mini Snickers.  I can remember which cabinet she kept them in.  It was kid-level.

I remember a science lesson about sound waves which inspired my dad to drive to my grandparent's down the road from us, stand in their driveway, and ring a cowbell.

These are the things I've come up with so far.  This remembering thing is a lot tougher than you'd think.

Senility should be a blast.

I'll be the most mature and graceful old lady in the nursing home.  Look out Bingo Night, here I come! Ask me what I wore to shuffleboard 3 weeks ago!


15 June 2009

never a dull moment

Well, I am happy to announce that today I made a major breakthrough in the mama-of-2-under-2 department.  That's right, folks... I went to grocery all by myself.  Well, except for both my kids.

Quick question... do all babies come standard with butt-in-chair radar or is it just the ones who live in my house? Even the kiddo, who is clearly no longer a baby since he now understands that passing gas is beyond hilarious, gets mad at me when I sit down.


So I managed to blaze a trail through Kroger with Kiddo in the cart, Bebe in the sling, and myself in a state of frenzied lunacy wondering if we could make it back home without one of them having a 4-alarm meltdown or a blowout diaper.  Or both.  It's been known to happen.

I'm pleased to report that all went well.  We even squeezed in a pit stop at Sonic for a Wacky Pack.  I only got a Diet Dr. Pepper since I decided I really am serious after all about getting back into my skinny clothes.  Sigh... Oh, and Bebe only screamed her alveoli out for about 3 minutes of the whole trip home.  She gets so mad when you stop the car that I'm afraid of even tapping the brakes usually, but the Kiddo was a gem at the grocery, so I thought he deserved something greasy.  And I was a gem too, so I deserved that Diet Dr. Pepper.


The real trick, as it turns out, is getting the groceries unloaded and put away.  The kiddo wasn't a problem.  He was starving and sat right down to eat.  Bebe was completely over being in her car seat, so she helped me bring in groceries.  I managed 3 bags per trip and was about to expire by the time I finished.

This is when the meltdown occurred.  It seems Bebe was also starving, so I had to take care of that while my frozen chicken puddled on the counter.

Nobody asked if I was starving (I was).  Nobody cared if I got to eat lunch (I didn't).  Oh well.  Actually, the kiddo did say, "Mama.  Mmguh, mmguh?" which translates roughly, "Ain'tchu gonna eat, woman?"  The answer was no, but I didn't know that yet.

After he finished his lunch and Bebe finished her lunch I did manage to get the perishables put away before Bebe was again dissatisfied.  Since I had to sit down with her anyway I decided it would be an excellent time for the Kiddo's nap.  So we all retired to his bed to watch some Baby Einstein.  After some tears and a few threats, both kids were asleep so I commenced to performing my usual nap time miracles and became an indiscernible blur racing through the house at the speed of sound accomplishing as much as possible before one kid woke up.  Or both at the same time.  Again, it's been known to happen.  A lot.

I dashed into my bathroom to pick up the clutter that always seems to materialize while I'm trying to get ready to go somewhere and as I leaned over to pick up a strand of beads that had found their way onto the other side of the toilet I noticed some funny spots on the floor.  That's when an unusual smell hit me.  So I  turned on the light only to confirm my suspicions that, yes, it was in fact puke.  Puke that had been there for a while.  Puke of which I had no knowledge until that very moment.

So, either the kiddo snuck off into my bathroom to have a little private upheaval or else it was the handiwork of some rogue upchucking bandit.  Some rogue upchucking bandit who happened to have had the same mid-morning snack as my firstborn.  Yuck.  He never came and told me anything unusual, I never smelled it on his breath, and there was no evidence of it on his clothes.  Pretty good for a 21 month old.  It was just mysteriously there in the bathroom floor.  

Anywho... you never wake up planning to clean mystery vomit off the floor, but as a mom you have to accept that it just may be in the cards for your day.  The only other thing I can say about it is kudos to him for barfing in a place where I wasn't likely to step in it.

So, cheers to a good and productive day.  Cheers to my first potentially difficult outing with both kids going off without a hitch.  Cheers to having at least one clean spot on my bathroom floor.  And cheers to typing almost the entirety of this blog post with one hand.  See? Having 2 small children is doing exponentially more for my patience than I could have ever imagined.


11 June 2009

yay for not walking like John Wayne

I had my final pregnancy-related doctor's appointment this morning and I don't know if I've ever expounded on this particular topic on this here blog, but I love my doctor and her staff oh so much.  I would actually almost look forward to going to the doctor and I would actually almost be sad that I won't see all those folks again until October.  Except for, ya know, stirrups and such.  Kinda puts a damper on seeing my buddies there when I have to disrobe.

I think the real reason they have you return to the doctor in 6 weeks is to help you remember that having a newborn and all of its attending difficulties is still way better than being pregnant.  They even had me come on a Thursday which is the day my doc sees all her OB patients, so as far as I could tell, I was the only non-pregnant woman in the waiting room.  Which was awesome.

I know from experience that people get this warm fuzzy look on their face when they see a pregnant woman.  Going to the mall at the end of both my pregnancies was a real pain because everybody looked at me either like they were either scared or like they were going to bust out the baby talk prematurely and start having a conversation with my bellybutton.  Well, in that waiting room today I had no warm fuzzy lookit-how-cute-dat-wittle-pwegnant-bewwy-is-yes-it-is feelings.  As a matter of fact I had the irresistible urge to jump up and down on the couch a la Tom Cruise and say "YOU'RE PREGNANT AND I'M NOT NA NA NA NA BOO BOO!"

I overheard one poor girl say she was awaiting a baby boy next month.  I couldn't decide if she walked more like John Wayne or a pack mule.  I sat back and listened as several soon-to-be moms fanned themselves and went on and on with the usual "How far along are you? Do you know what you're having? What hurts on you? This hurts on me..." conversation and gave one another a play by play of their latest ultrasound.  I sighed, content in the knowledge that I was cold and could actually cross my legs.

It's true that the outcome of a pregnancy makes all the misery of pregnancy worth it and it's amazing how distant a memory all the discomfort I endured is now.  It's almost like it never happened.

Key word: almost.

Having been pregnant for some portion of the last 4 years (please try not to gasp, it frightens the children) I feel safe in saying that I'm done for a while... if not forever.  I will not say "never" until either menopause or a fertility-altering procedure occurs, but for today "never" sounds pretty darn good.

I'm ready to get in shape and stay that way.  I want to run races and ride a bike over a mountain.  Maybe I'll take some classes and learn how to do something new.  I want to garden and take pictures and repaint my house.  Most of all... I'm ready to jump headlong into the coming years with the two dear ones I have and throw myself wholeheartedly into making those years the best and funnest ever.

And that's the plan for now.


10 June 2009

a bedtime story

My husband and I, by some miracle, have been blessed with 2 kids who are good sleepers.  I think that I slept well as a child when I finally chose to actually go to sleep.  I wasn't terribly old when my parents decided that I would just come to bed whenever I got sleepy and left me to my own devices, which included putting Barbies in all of my dad's shoes.  And as far as I know, my hubby's parents weren't exactly the scheduled go-to-bed-at-9-o'clock-on-the-dot kind of folks either.  So, the fact that both of our kids (so far) are at least semi-agreeable to the idea of having a bedtime routine and going to bed at a somewhat regular time every night is truly amazing.

I should interject here that we are not rigid conformists to any schedule whatsoever.  We are more what you'd call the fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants kind of parents.  I should also remind everybody (including myself) that the Bebe is a mere 5 weeks old and there is still plenty o'time for a rebellion.

And we're going to hope that the beginning of said rebellion did not in fact take place last night.

It all started when it was I and not her father who put her to bed.  I did everything exactly the way he does as near as I could tell, but it just wasn't the same.  The second part of the problem was the fact that her father was already asleep when we actually went to bed and he didn't wake up to snuggle up next to her, which she's also accustomed to.

The snuggling is something I cannot do because she smells me or senses me with her magical food source sixth baby sense or something, so unless I want her to eat every hour of the night instead of every hour minus maybe 2, I try to keep a safe distance.  I thought she was just going to wake up altogether when I laid her down, but with some gentle coaxing and a lot of pacifier reapplication, she drifted off soundly.  I, unfortunately, was not tired at that time, so I laid very still and read for a while.

I was feeling all proud of myself for putting my own kid to bed without actually nursing her to sleep AND getting some bedtime reading time in (something that never happened with the Kiddo until he was close to a year old).  But then I turned off the light and our night of calisthenics began.  Well, ok, I turned off the light and barely drifted off enough to be groggy and then she woke up.  For the next 3 hours or so she wavered between totally asleep and some state of semi-wakefulness which included a lot of wiggling, working her feet out of her sleeper, and grunting reminiscent of a warthog.  Needless to say it wasn't all that conducive to sleeping anywhere near her (although her daddy didn't seem to be having any trouble).

About 3 AM, and after trying to nurse her back to sleep numerous times, I decided it wasn't going to happen and just got up to give her a sleep aid bottle in hopes that a full-er tummy would help her sleep.  We made it back to bed about 3:30 since I got hooked on an episode of Roseanne and had to finish it.  By that time, I was wide awake and my husband had abandoned me to go sleep with our snugglier-than-I-am firstborn.  I managed to drift off eventually, blissfully certain that now that her tummy was comfortably full, she was zonked out we were good until mid-morning.  Also, the Kiddo had gotten up early the previous day and had only a short nap, so that was promising too.

So, naturally, the grunting routine re-ensued around 6-ish.

And the Kiddo came pitter pattering into my room around... 6-ish.

Which coincidentally is also the time my husband is about to walk out the door.

With an infant attached to me and, I might add, not pleased about still being in the bed, a toddler rubbing my ear/playing with my hair/running his hands all over my face and intermittently blocking my air supply, and my husband standing over me saying how much he wished he didn't have to leave but he had to so bye... it didn't take long for me to bolt upright, throw myself out of bed, and stomp into the kitchen.

And so at 6:30, I was sitting in the recliner trying to rock a baby back to sleep while being scaled and still having my ear rubbed by the Kiddo who was none too pleased himself about being awake.

Thus, I've already been up for going on 2 hours and am watching a segment on Sesame Street about how it's all right to cry and am seriously considering it.

Yes, we have 2 good sleepers, which I think makes it worse somehow when they don't sleep well than if they slept poorly all the time.

Bebe is asleep in her swing... and grunting.  Kiddo is sitting next to me... and rubbing my ear.  And I am awake... and wondering how I'm going to feel when I look at the clock a sweet forever from now and it's only 10 AM.

I think a trip to Mam-Ma's may just be in order...


20 May 2009

Welcome, Bebe!

We all know that I tend toward being a little longwinded extremely detailed in a good way.  And obviously the birth of my second child is probably something I could get carried away with, so I'm going to do my best to hold it to a minimum with as little actual medical terminology as possible.


Unless I change my mind.


On Tuesday, May 5 at 8:26, we welcomed a sweet little daughter to the world.  Yep... the Bebe is a girl.  Not that I was surprised since everybody and their brother (including a woman in Best Buy's restroom) had been telling me for approximately 7 and a half months that I was having a girl.  I'm glad everybody else in the world were such great prognosticators because I apparently have zero motherly intuition.

So, we arrived at the Labor & Delivery department of our local hospital a little after 5:30 AM so I could be prepped for a 7:30 c-section.  My doctor had instructed me to get there between 5 and 5:30, so in keeping with every other appointment I'd had during the pregnancy, I showed up a few minutes late.  My ever-punctual husband decided that going through town would be a smarter idea than taking the interstate since there would be no traffic at that time of day.  What he didn't count on was the fact that stoplights work on timers during the wee hours, so we sat at several of them... all alone... in the dark... no one else at any of the other lights.

For once it was his fault we were late.

I'm sure he would interject some well-thought-out (and probably accurate but nobody tell him I said that) argument at this point were this actual conversation and not my blog and therefore 100% governed (however creatively) me and me alone.

I'm already being longwinded... er, detailed.

So, we got to the hospital and after saying "I can't believe this is finally happening" about 443 times as we walked in we made it to L&D.  I don't remember my nurse's name, but pretty much the first words out of her mouth were, "Take off everything and put this on.  It opens in the back." To which I replied, "You aren't even gonna buy me a drink first?"

Next came the hook up of monitors, allowing me to hear the swoosh swoosh swoosh of my baby's heart for the final time.  Not that I was feeling really sentimental about it.  Because I wasn't at all.  I was ready.

Next came the smattering of fun questions like "Any history of mental illness?" "Do you use any recreational drugs?" and my personal favorite, "How much do you weigh?" That one's funny to me because these nurses who have been working in L&D for years honestly think that a full-term pregnant woman still looks at the scale.

During the inquisition, another woman came in and my nurse introduced her as who would be shaving me and putting in my Foley.  Now, since this wasn't my first rodeo I understood that by "Foley" she meant Satan-spawn little plastic tube that is a urinary catheter, but couldn't she have just said that? 

After the questioning was over the real fun began.  Nurse #2 came in and shaved me, which is not glamourous and employs one of those little buzzy beard trimmer things that tends to grab your hairs and run for the door.  The poor nurse apologized numerous times, but I reassured her that I'm tough and could deal with whatever I had to do since, well, I had to do it.  Her response to that was, "Well, how do you feel about catheters?" At least she didn't call it a Foley, but what kind of question is that.  How do I feel about catheters? I had only ever met one and is that really enough to base a whole opinion on?

Yes.  Yes it is.

I told her that I obviously wouldn't want to get one every day, but since I had to have one I figured I might as well just grin and bear it.  I can deal with even the most uncomfortable things as long as I know it's going to be over at some point.  She told me I had a good attitude which I was pretty sure should have entitled me to... something.  Maybe a big badge that said "This patient has a good attitude about catheters."

I should add that this same nurse, when actually administering the catheter, told me that the "trick" with catheters is to relax as much as possible and just get totally loose.  Her advice to help me do this was to imagine myself laying on the beach.  The advice didn't really help so much since it caused me to alternately think of the looks I would get if I were laying on the beach in that position and sand in extremely uncomfortable places.

She had barely finished up with the catheterization process when nurse #1 came in to put in my IV.  I had a major abdominal surgery looming in my future and I actually felt the blood drain from my face when she said the word IV... even though it's not really a word at all, just a 2-letter abbreviation.  Getting shots and having my blood drawn doesn't bother me, but getting an IV really almost makes me feel like puking.

Once that was finally done I actually had a few minutes to rest and let my blood pressure return to normal.  It was getting close to 7 AM and I knew all I had to wait for now was my epidural. Something else I was dreading big time.  Call me crazy, but having a ginormous needle scraped against my spinal cord makes me a little uneasy.

It was a little after 7 when the cRNA showed up complete with his little cart of doom and torture and the surgical tech gal who was wearing a floppy blue hat with frogs on it and referred to the catheter bag as my "purse." Again, at least she didn't call it a Foley.

As an aside here, I've been trying to figure out what the "c" in cRNA stands for.  RNA is registered nurse anesthetist, right? So what is the "c"? Certified? Who knows.  I think his name was Todd, but he referred to himself as "Sweet T" and sang Three Times a Lady to me. He reminded me of my husband's uncle which somehow didn't make having most of my bare behind exposed any more awkward.

After that was done, I was all set and ready to go.  I just had to wait for somebody to come wheel me away.

For effect, I should add this flattering picture my loving husband took:

This shot almost makes it seem like I endured some actual labor, but in reality I was just yawning.  Does anybody else yawn uncontrollably when they're nervous or is that just a me thing?

Pretty soon after getting the epidural, they wheeled me off to OR #10, the same room the Kiddo debuted in.  And it was every bit as cold and scary as I remembered it being.  I had a couple of minutes to look around before they strung up the drape and I noticed that they had the same stereo stuck in the wall that we have in the Pathfinder.  I've yet to figure out the purpose of a stereo in an operating room, but being the chatty gal I am I mentioned it to the floppy frog hat surgical tech gal who asked me if I had brought any CDs.  I wish I'd had the presence of mind to tell her to check my purse.

I didn't.

And the rest is pretty much history at this point.  I laid there in a state of drug-induced stupor.  At some point, they let my husband come in and I think he was afraid I was dead because every time I closed my eyes he would say, "Are you OK?" And after about 15 minutes, I heard my baby girl's first cries.

Then I spent an hour in recovery feeling good and coming out of an anesthetic fog.  And after 2 nights in probably the most uncomfortable bed in the universe, I got to come home and start doing laundry again.  I can't remember, by the way, if I actually did laundry on the day I came home or if I waited until the next day.

It was a very smooth surgical procedure and has been a textbook perfect recovery up to this point 2 weeks later.  I feel in no way like I had a baby or a surgery anytime in the recent past.  Best of all, I don't feel pregnant anymore! Yippee! I can now comfortably stand on one foot and I can talk on the phone while moving around my house without getting the slightest bit out of breath.  Best best of all, I have a very healthy sweet baby who is already growing and changing every day.

All of these are things I'm thankful for.  I prayed for these things the whole time I was pregnant.  I prayed for these things while I was on the operating table.  There's no way for me to appreciate God's goodness and there's no way I could ever say thank you enough for the things He's done for me in this situation and all the rest of my life.

In the end, all of the nervousness, the awkwardness, the discomfort, and so on and so forth... it was all worth it.  Every bit.  And here's why...


03 May 2009

running into the tower

I have a very small but very sweet thought on my mind tonight.

Life is just full to overflowing with troubles and hurts. We've been promised by Someone who sees it all that our days, from the time we're born until the time we die, are going to be full of those things. Happiness seems in so many instances to be overshadowed by the bittersweet... and this kind of downer blah-ness could go on and on. Especially since it's after midnight on Sunday night and I'm really tired but avoiding going to bed because I can't stay comfortable in one position for much longer than 45 minutes.

But that's not what I'm thinking about right now.

I'm thinking about a man who lived here and walked on this earth just like I do many, but many years ago. He didn't have much in the way of material possessions. He didn't even have a home of his own. Many people did everything they could to make him out to be a terrible person and some even hated him. His whole life was overshadowed with the awful cloud of a burden for the souls of all mankind. As his time on earth drew short, he wept - alone and scared - and asked God if there were any other way but the way he'd been handed.

But there was no other way.

And so he continued to carry his burden, and he carried it all the way to Calvary where he agonized - again, alone - and died under the penalty of my sin.

He died under the penalty of my sin so that I wouldn't have to. And as if that weren't enough, God's plan through him made a way that I could not only die in the safety of his love, but also live in it.

So yes, it's true that life is bitter. But, thanks to nothing more than God's love and mercy, sweet blessings just seem to fall down from heaven and pile up around me higher and higher until the ones on top start sliding down the sides making the pile even wider and bigger and taller all the time... every minute... of every day.

And it's true that sometimes I'm handed things that are hard to deal with and I have to say a lot of prayers and cry a lot of tears about some things. But I've never yet been handed anything I couldn't handle with the assistance of a mighty and oh-so-near God.

And sure, it seems like the clouds aren't far away from my sunshine a lot of times. But if it weren't for the clouds, could I really, truly appreciate the sunshine?

So, in the light of all this jumbled, scattered mess of thoughts, I finish with this:

I know I have no need to fear the things of this world and this life because I am God's (Isaish 43:1).

I'm human, though, so sometimes I get scared anyway. Thank God that he knows what I'm made of and understands (Psalm 103:14);

...and has furthermore forgiven me in all my unworthy filthiness and claims me oh-so intimately (Isaiah 49:16).

I know it's ok when I have to go crawling to him in a big crumpled heap and am so thankful that he's always there, for the smallest things and the biggest things (Philippians 4:6).

And it's a good feeling knowing that I have somewhere I can run for cover (Proverbs 18:10).


20 April 2009

cobbler breakthroughs

I just wanted to announce that I have had a breakthrough in the whole housewife/homemaker area today.  Or else not so much.

I had toyed with the idea of not making the kiddo take a nap today because it's really getting to be hassle in that he wants to lay there and goof off for an hour before going to sleep. And, well, since I never helped him understand the concept of going to sleep by yourself, I have to lay there and pretend to sleep while he goofs off for an hour. So I was thinking maybe it's time for the nap to go the way of the dinosaurs (at least on some days), but then I decided I wasn't ready to give up my hour and a half or so of selfish mom time, so I laid down with him anyway.  After making special efforts with repeated This Little Piggy-s as well as singing Rip van Winkle from 25 down to 16 years, he actually drifted off in under a half hour. Not bad.

So, then it was selfish mom time and my initial thought was a very familiar one: "I'll get a shower." Because what in the world is better than a quiet house and a shower not interrupted by a 19 month old attempting to break down a baby gate using a shopping cart/ball popper/tractor/big wheel as a battering ram

But this is when the breakthrough happened and I had my very first Betty Crocker-esque homemaker-y moment: "I think I'll get a shower, but first I'll just throw together a cobbler." What, I ask you, is more homemaker-y than a cobbler, after all? And what makes it even more homemaker-y is the fact that I actually thought the phrase, "I'll just throw together..." And furthermore, I let the cobbler encroach upon my selfish mom time.

Now, next question: Why?

Well, I had a can of peaches in my cabinet and, while Paula Deen's recipe called for what I'm thinking were home-canned or maybe even fresh peaches since it said to bring them to a boil with water and sugar before putting them in the cobbler, I was fairly certain that a can of Del Monte sliced peaches in heavy syrup would do the trick without that extra step. Oh, and for those of you who don't habla Espanol, "del monte" means "of the monte."

For another thing, I've found that pregnancy is a time of great justification.  Early on it's like, "I'm pregnant, I'm going to order the medium instead of the small." And then later it's like, "I'm pregnant, I'm going to have a third helping." But then when you get down to the last few weeks and you find yourself regularly thinking things like, "I can't possibly get any bigger," or "Surely I won't get any more stretch marks," but then you realize you can and you have and then you think, "I'm pregnant, and I think I'll just throw together a cobbler."

So, I threw together a cobbler.

I thought the casserole dish looked a little full and I couldn't remember if cobblers had a tendency to expand so I fortunately did have the forethought to put a cookie sheet on the rack below it just in case.  Good thing, too, because if I hadn't then all of what ran over would have ended up on the inside of my oven and not just what ran over the side of the cookie sheet.

The recipe said it should cook 30-45 minutes, so I set it for 30 since my oven tends to cook things faster than the recipe says.  But after 30 minutes, it still was pretty pale looking on top, so I set it for another 10 minutes.  After those 10 minutes it was still somewhat pale in the middle but was starting to look pretty brown around the edges so I thought I'd rather err on the side of caution than end up with a burnt cobbler.  Because a burnt cobbler in addition to having stuff run over and scorch on the inside of my oven was not something my pregnant emotions were prepared to deal with.

So I got it out of the oven and willed myself to let it stand for a while before diving in.  I managed to distract myself for, oh, maybe 2 and a half minutes and then I went to get myself a bowl.  My first thought other than, "This must be what we'll eat in Heaven," was "Is it supposed to be this soupy?" But I figured that it had enough butter in it to solidify at some point, either in the fridge or later in my arteries, so I made the executive decision to forego added oven time.

My next thought as I took the first bite was, "Is the crust supposed to be this chewy?" And then I decided that maybe it was a bad idea to forego the added oven time.  But, in the end, the answer to either "Is it supposed to be this soupy?" or "Is it supposed to be this chewy?" is "Eat it anyway," because it's cobbler and it wouldn't really matter if you were eating the peaches out of the can, drinking the batter out of the bowl, and eating the butter like a popsicle.  Cobbler is good and its goodness covers a multitude of sins.

So maybe I thwarted my own homemaker-y-ness by being pregnant and in a hurry to get that cobbler in my mouth.  And in doing so, I added a new level to pregnancy justification.

I'm pregnant, and I'm going to eat this whether it's done or not.


17 April 2009

not sorry

I've been thinking a lot here lately about stuff.  And when I say stuff I don't necessarily mean I've been thinking about a bunch of random here-and-theres.  I mean I've been thinking about material trappings and whatnots, how much we have and how much we actually need.

The Hubby has a good job that keeps us well provided for and comfortable, but things definitely get tight from time to time.  The biggest material thing I've been wishing for lately what with the arrival of Bebe very quickly approaching is a van.  Now, nobody need remind me that it was an amazingly short time ago when I said that you wouldn't catch me driving a van like ever and that I was going to be one of those cool SUV-driving moms.  But the prospect of a 3-foot wide door in which to load and unload my kids PLUS a whole extra seta for plunder PLUS a very large space in the very back for my new (and station wagon sized) double stroller... well, all of those things are getting more and more attractive to me.  And a DVD player doesn't sound too bad, either.

Regardless of all the minivan-ish goodness I can fathom, though, we just can't afford one right now.  And regardless of the rust and the ceiling liner falling down and the not-so-much-space issue and so on and so forth with the Pathfinder... well, it's paid for.  And I'm satisfied that we'll have it until we're forced to have it hauled away.

This week has been one of those particularly tight times.  You know, one of those weeks when I ask about going to the grocery and Hubby gets this uncomfortable look on his face and says, "Um, you'd better wait until Friday." I just want to say from the offset that no one should feel sorry for us, because our money issues are 100% self-inflicted and we both know that.  It's something we both know how to fix and something we work on from time to time, but we both still have a boatload of problems denying ourselves.  Stupid? Yes.  Immature? Definitely.

So, last night we went out with the in-laws (because they're generous and will foot the bill) and were admiring various vehicles in the parking lot of the restaurant as we left.  Later when we were driving home Hubby said, "I'm sorry I can't buy you a van... I'm sorry I can't buy you anything... I'm sorry I can't buy you groceries."  And the first thought that came to my mind was so odd and uncharacteristic that I know it couldn't have originated in me at all.

"I'm not sorry."

Yes, I'm sorry that we aren't good stewards of what God has given us and yes, I'm sorry for the poor example we're setting for the Kiddo.  I definitely want those things to change.  And maybe Hubby would have something to be stressed about if we really and truly could not afford to buy groceries, but the fact is we can afford to buy groceries.  Having to wait until Friday is not a tragedy and does not mean that we're going hungry.  Only being able to buy clothes for ourselves or our kids at certain times does not mean that we're cold and going around in rags.

The simple fact is that we are so blessed.  We own a great house in a nice neighborhood and have never been late on a payment.  We have 2 reliable vehicles.  We have nice furniture, we wash very few dishes by hand, and I've only hand-scrubbed about 3 articles of clothing since we've been married.  Even our station wagon stroller is evidence of how blessed we are because really, we bought the thing so I'll still be able to go to mall easily after Bebe gets here.

If we had only what we absolutely needed, we could easily live in a one-room teepee.  But look at what we do live in and how every nook and cranny is filled with stuff.

And so I'm not sorry, my dear, that you can't buy me a minivan.  I'm not sorry that there a few things here and there that we can't have or do right now.  I'm not sorry that it seems like there is never any extra left over at the end of the month because you I know what is there during the month takes care of what we need.  I'm not sorry that circumstances force us to deny ourselves sometimes since we seem to have such trouble doing it alone.

I'm not sorry.

Oh, and I'm married to the best and sweetest man in the universe.  But nobody tell him I said that.


14 April 2009

(Not So) Wordless Wednesday

I decided to share with the world a timeline of me and my awesomeness.  Ok, not really.  I just thought that since I hadn't done a (Not So) Wordless Wednesday in a while that these would make a nice switch from pictures of the kiddo.  Besides, I felt like going through a bunch of old pictures and I picked out my favorites to share and comment about.  Enjoy!

This is me and my sister I'm guessing not too long after I made my debut given the hospital gown.  Either that or they had more stringent wardrobe rules in hospitals 23 years ago.

I think I was a couple months old in this shot.  I don't know where this was taken, but that faux fur lump I'm leaning on is fabulous.

And here I am a couple years down the road having a charming tea party with my football player width shoulder ruffles and 2 Cabbage Patch dolls whom I christened "Canna" and "Day." I just brought these guys?/girls? home with me from my parents' so the kiddo could play with them.  They are every bit as bald and every bit as naked as they were in this picture.  Hey, also if you look closely you can see I had on white knee socks and black patent leather shoes.  Oh so stylish!

This would be "Hayes Beach" and it consisted of the lawn chair you see there which was on of those made of plastic tubing (you know, the kind that your legs stick to and that leave a strange stripey pattern on your butt), a kiddy pool, an oscillating sprinkler, and my dad in blue jean cutoffs.  Oh, and apparently me in a yellow terri cloth bikini.  The plantation-esque place you can see in the upper left hand corner of the shot is my grandparent's house.

I'm guessing I was about 3 or 4 here, posing with my parents.  My mom looks thrilled and given my dad's awkward pose and how I'm looking at him, I'm guessing he set the timer on the camera and sprinted to get into position.

I think this one got out of order and should probably be back with the tea party picture, but I'm going to leave it here because it's too much trouble to move it.  This is one of my all-time favorite little kid pictures of myself mostly because of the bruises all over my knees.  I was such a delicate flower.

Christmas morning and new dress-up clothes.  And that's a box fan sitting next to my rocking chair.  Not so sure why that was necessary in December.

I think that this is one of the first of many trips to a traveling photographer who set up at Castner Knotts once or twice a year.  I think his name was Greg Montgomery and he was loud and probably obnoxious and he told me I was beautiful and played with my hair and I can't really remember now if it seemed inappropriate, but I'm guessing my mom probably would have decked him if it had.  Anyway, I loved having my pictures made and getting to visit with Greg.  My mom made the jumper I'm wearing in this shot.

Here's my dad and me either right before or after my sister's wedding.  I would have been 6 years old.  I have no idea what face I was making, but at least my little flower wreath head thingy was cute.  I wore pink sponge rollers to achieve the poof you can see there.  My hair does not poof without a lot of encouragement.  My grandmother made my dress and all the bridesmaid's dresses as well.  They were all that color and our shoes were dyed to match perfectly.

Here's another Greg Montgomery Castner Knotts shot.  Does anybody remember Castner Knotts? I assume it was a "chain" department store and wasn't just here in my town.  I'm thinking I was 7 or 8 here and I have to say my hair was stunning.  I wish it was still that long and soft and kid-like.  I don't know how my mom got it to stay in those long spiral-y curls.

Ok, fast forward about 10 years.  I don't know where all the in between pictures are, but I probably wouldn't include them anyway because... well, that was middle school... and I had a very extended awkward phase.  And several bad haircuts.  And this way we can just totally ignore the fact that I had a chubby stage.  So, here I am in 2002 and I would have just turned 17.  This was smack dab in the middle of mine and the hubby's pre-dating flirting period.  he took this picture of me in his green Jimmy.  That thing in my hand is a pirouette coffee stirrer thingy and not any kind of tobacco product.  We had just left a Thanksgiving church service.  This is one of his favorite pictures ever of me.  I think I look kind of like Casper with red hair.

I think this was sometime during the early part of my senior year of high school.  This was taken in my room and look how teeny-tiny I was.  I don't really like myself that teeny-tiny.  I think we were about to go to Wednesday night service.  Check out all that junk in my closet.

This is one of my senior pictures.  Probably one of the most photogenic couple of hours of my life.  And I don't think my hair looked that good ever before or after then.  Interestingly, we also took some outdoor pics around a pond and I stepped on a frog with no shoes on.  I mean I had no shoes on.  The frog might have, but I didn't feel any when I stepped on him.
Here's a shot taken in hubby's room at his parents' house.  He moved back in with them briefly before he bought the house we live in now.  I guess I was 18-ish here.  I see the edge of a classic Nintendo controller in my hand, so I must have been playing Tetris.  That's pretty much all I did when I was over there.

Fast forward a couple of years :-) Actually maybe not a couple... I was 19 when we got married.

This was taken my last day as Kindergarten teacher at my alma mater.  I think I was just barely 20 years old.

Sometime not too long after that modeling the outfit I was planning to wear to our church's Christmas program (maybe?).  

I was about to head to a career/life celebration for my old principal.  It was the closest thing to a high school reunion I've ever been to so far, so I was (for whatever reason) way concerned with how I looked.  Hubby was so impressed he took a picture.  I made some kind of weird cheesy muggy face and posed awkwardly.  Meanwhile, those white shoes make me think of Cousin Eddie on Christmas Vacation.

Riding on the luggage caddy during one of our many trips to Gatlinburg, TN.  Having a kid changes everything, man... we used to go multiple times a year and now we haven't been in nearly 2 years.  Oh well... I guess that's what retirement's for.

Awww... here I am pregnant with the kiddo.  This was when I was still at the cute stage and before I reached scary swollen hippopotamus ankles stage.

Another preggo shot with my best friend April.  This was more toward the hippopotamus ankles stage (7 months-ish) She and I hosted a personal shower/sleepover for a mutual friend and this was shortly before we went out for a while.  My chins and I were the unfortunate (and uncool) ones who got to trail along, panting, behind several more energetic and thinner young ladies while thinking about how much my feet hurt.

Because everybody needs a Facebook/Myspace picture...
This was several months after the kiddo was born and my face had returned to normal.

Here's my sweet little family in March '08.
And here's the most recent picture I'm willing to post.  This was when I was just barely pregnant with Bebe.  Have I ever mentioned that I had just started a running regimen shortly before finding out I was pregnant? I didn't realize how buff I was getting (ha).  Seriously, though, my tininess in this picture makes me depressed.  This was also before I had the unfortunate idea of getting bangs cut... which also makes me depressed.  Someday I'll be normal again.

And so there's a picture timeline of me.  And this took extraordinarily longer than I ever expected so it's nearly 1 AM and I still haven't done my Bible reading.  And my butt is asleep.


11 April 2009

late and probably off topic

First of all, why am I up at 12:52 AM on Easter morning when I have to be up for Sunrise Service in something like 4 hours?

Waiting for my nails to dry, of course.

Next of all, it seems that the rest of the blogging world is writing inspired-sounding posts about Jesus and the empty tomb and all the other amazing things associated with this holiday in various poetic ways.  And, although I have had these things on my mind more this year than probably ever before during this season, that's not what I'm going to write about briefly (we'll see) tonight.


OK, I thought better of it and deleted most of this post because it was a little too soapbox-y and angry sounding.  I left the good parts, though, so it may sound a little disjointed and odd, but this is how I wanted to leave it.  Alrighty then.

But anyway... my fingernail polish is dry and I should probably settle down and meditate on better things than this before going to sleep.

Like, for instance... the fact that that tomb is empty.  And that so many years ago, Jesus set the standard of resurrection that I will someday follow.  At which point and for the rest of eternity, I'll finally, at long last, be able to thank Him properly for what He did for me at Calvary.

And those things are a lot better to think about than pretty much every thing else.


07 April 2009

on the passage of time and foot pain

After all of this madhouse rush rush rush can't wait to have this baby and get it over with business, I nearly had a panic attack today when I looked at my "Countdown to Baby" thing on my other computer and saw that it said 28 days.  Because I'm relatively certain that it was maybe 2 days ago that it seemed to be stuck in the 50-ish days range.  So, of course, being the person that I am, I promptly set my focus upon making a list.  In less than a month's time, I have an alarming number of things to launder/clean/sanitize and probably an even more alarming amount of stuff to buy.  Especially considering the fact that we've been going to the doctor a lot these days and the hubby seems to keep forgetting to take the Flex Spending card with him.

Which brings me to another topic...

Hubby is home, by doctor's orders, until Monday.  Why, you ask? Because he has a sinus infection in his foot.


I'm not joking.

He has some kind of ergonomic pesto fentibular tendonitis in the arch of his foot and I promise I'm not making light of it, I just know it has a long technical-sounding name that I can't remember at the moment.  And besides I have no room whatsoever to poke fun at his medical freakish-ness since I'm apparently the only woman in the known universe (or at least known to
 my seasoned vet ultrasound tech) who actually ultrasounds better when my bladder is not about to erupt Old Faithful style.  We both have our own fun little medical anomalies.  

So, whatever this foot issue is actually means that there's a spot in this particular tendon that is highly prone to inflammation.  He sprained his ankle badly while he was in college and for some reason went to the campus health center, where the doctor's will diagnose you with a case of strep throat or pregnancy, instead of a real doctor who might have actually not have been confused by his complete lack of a red throat or a uterus.  Regardless, his foot hasn't been exactly right ever since then.  The first big flare up he had with it occurred less than a week before our wedding.  His father (who is more competent than the campus docs, but still no MD) diagnosed his problem as "the gout" from having eaten barbecue.


Again, not joking.

A couple of other times, he's caused a flare up by climbing ladders or something else that puts pressure directly on the arch of his foot, but the most recent flare ups (this one included) have been more mysterious.  Last July, after having had an incisional hernia repair surgery, his foot started hurting to the point that he barely noticed the 6 or 7 inch incision down his belly.  We thought that he had injured it while trying to reposition himself in bed by pushing with his bad
foot on the bedrail.  Finally, an orthopaedic doc came to check him out and informed him that actually, when a person has an area of their body that is prone to inflammation, any type of trauma or stress throughout your body can sort of "settle" to that area.

And so, in the case of this foot flare up, a really bad sinus infection ended up "settling" in his foot and causing the issues he's dealing with now.  He went to our family doc this past Thursday to get meds for the sinus thing and he went back again today to get meds for his foot issue.  And, the doctor told him to stay off work until Monday.

Which brings me back around to the original topic.  I think the reason I spazzed out when I saw that "28 days" on my countdown was because I was really thinking, "28 days?!?!? And I can't even count this week!" Because whenever Hubby is home and for whatever reason, I totally shut down and go into vacation mode.

So, by the time the holiday weekend is over and he goes back to work on Monday, I'll have
 more like... ummm... 20-ish days to go.  And that is really terrifying.  That's almost down to teen numbers.  And since I know I'm not going to get much of anything done this week due to Hubby's unplanned "vacation," that leaves me a WHOLE lot less time to actually get my list of stuff accomplished.

So part of the time I'm moaning and groaning about how slooooooowly time is moving and how I'm never going to have this baby and now some other times I'm worrying about how time is going too fast and I'm not going to have enough time to get everything done that needs to be done before the baby gets here.  Oh, and the rest of the time when I'm doing practically
 anything (brushing my teeth, doing laundry, reading, just sitting doing nothing and piddling on the computer, cuddling my son...) I'm dreading the fact that pretty soon I'm going to have time to do NOTHING (at least not without being interrupted often or having a baby attached to me, literally).

In the end, what I'm doing is spending way too much time worrying about, whining about, and dreading everything and not nearly enough time enjoying the time I have left in what could very well be my last pregnancy as well as what time I have left to make special for just my big boy by himself.

And in my heart of hearts I know that the things I want to get done will eventually get done and even if those things don't get done, they'll still be here waiting for me, new baby or no new baby.  And I doubt when I arrive home with my new bundle that I'll be super concerned if the
 floors didn't get vacuumed promptly before leaving for the hospital.  And even more deeply I know that time does not actually move slowly at all and that the new baby who I imagine will probably look something like this...

will, after I turn around maybe twice, will suddenly look more like this...

But enough of that bittersweet stuff...

In the end, I know I just need to get over thinking about the passage of time and get on with enjoying all of it... even being big as a barn, laundry, and foot sinus infections.


03 April 2009

a category all his own

God has blessed me with a good husband.  Probably... no, definitely a lot better than I deserve, but don't anybody tell him I said that.

This July will mark 10, count 'em 10, years since he and I first met.  Way on back in the day when he was 18 and just out of high school and I was just a wee lass of 13 and fresh out of 7th grade.  Before you start looking up laws on unlawful interaction with a minor, let me clarify that we didn't start dating then or anytime soon.  I had previously met his cousin whom a friend and I had deemed "hot." My friend was interested in him, so since that interest was already taken, my curiosity was peaked by hot-guy's cousin... even though he was 5 years older than me and my friend had assured me that he was most definitely not in the same "category" as his hot-guy cousin.

And I should just interject here that I am oh-so-glad hubby was not in the same category as his hot-guy cousin since, however hot he may have been, one of my first questions about him was still, "Are you sure he's not gay?" That was his category.

P.S. He's not, by the way.  And that isn't his category anymore, thank goodness, since he's added a bit of depth to his character.


So, upon meeting the hubby back then when he could be nothing more to me than an alluring and not-attainable about-to-be-college guy, I soon realized that even if he wasn't in his cousin's hot-guy-although-sorda-queer-looking category, he was a really genuinely nice guy and we became fast friends.  And when I say really genuinely nice, I mean like the kind of really genuinely nice that was rare 10 years ago and is now headed for extinction.

So, for the next... umm... lemme add it up... 3 1/2-ish years we continued our friendship and were actually fairly close friends but never anything more.  He came to my baptism shortly after we met and went to lunch at Pizza Hut with my family afterward (with hot-guy cousin in tow, I might add).  We saw each other at church functions and often found ourselves hanging out with the same groups of friends.  He showed up at my parents' house at least once to get computer help from my dad.  We even went on date-like excursions (not really), just the two of us, to visit someone in a hospital in another town an hour away.

By the way, there might actually be something in one of those unlawful-interaction-with-a-minor laws about crossing state lines with an underage girl in your vehicle if you happen to be over 18, which he was.

We also went to Fuddruckers.

Meanwhile, my dating standards were getting lower... and lower... and embarrassingly lower with every.single.guy I had anything to do with.

It wasn't until the end of 2002 that we started spending a lot more one-on-one time together.  We talked a lot on instant messenger and I flirted with him a lot but not so much because I was definitely interested in him, but more because, well, that's just the way I operated.  It was also during this time that he uttered the magical line of, "Tell Curtis to sniff your butt for me." Long story.  Involving the fact that my dog always nosed him in the rear.  He also jumped up into his lap once for the sole purpose of belching in his face.  Anyway... regardless of all the time we were spending together, I still claimed to not be interested in becoming involved with him.  As a matter of fact, I have documented evidence in one of my journals where I actually wrote the words "of all the guys I know, Hubby is the only one I could never see myself with."

Ah, the irony to be sitting on the couch very obviously pregnant by and listening to the snoring of the one you could never see yourself with.

Finally, one night he invited me over to his parents' house for supper and as we sat in his dad's study watching the ever-so-romantic movie choice of Austin Powers (don't remember which one), he reached over and took my hand.  Not what most would consider an overt statement, but for him it was the equivalent of standing in my yard, boom box raised overhead a la John Cusack.

Thus began our crazy, up-and-down, back-and-forth story.  And the plummeting status of my dating standards took a sharp upward turn.

Things have never been perfect for us or anything even approaching perfection.  In fact, we've had some pretty darn rough spots during our dating, engagement, and short marriage, but I've never wondered even in the bitterest of times if he loved me or not or if maybe today he wouldn't come home to me.  There's never been a time, even when we've been upset with each other, when he wouldn't take me in his arms and try to make everything all better.

In this day and age of disposable marriage, I know that ours is not.

And that is definitely a blessing.