Saturday, November 29, 2008

Ima weirdo

Should you be on What Not to Wear if you look longingly at the clothes of a candidate and wish that you had them??

Monday, November 24, 2008

I love Spongebob so much that

I should marry him. Oh wait, I'm already married. Well, anyway, I love him. I love him!

Wait, no really, I love Ashley. Yes, it's really Ashley and her amazing kids that I love.

I had to make a quick trip to my mom's yesterday and had a H-E-hockey stick-hockey stick of a trip there. Jaden was not feeling the car. I finally, lulled him to sleep about 30 miles and a stop after beginning our trip. I sang Jesus loves me, Jesus loves the little children and This little light of mine over and over until he finally stopped crying long enough to go to sleep.

On the way home, no amount of Jesus songs were working. We stopped in Winfield and picked up some ibuprofen. I know his throat was sore already and by the time we got to Winfield, he was hoarse. We walked around the store a while and as soon as he saw the truck, he started crying again. I had to get home anyway. Just as I hit K15, I thought, "come on, I have to have some kid music in here somewhere. Please, please, please let me find some kid music somewhere!!" I looked and low and behold, Ashley's kiddos left their Spongebob CD in my truck yet again. (insert the angels singing Hallelujah)

Jaden loves Spongebob's voice. I don't know what it is. As soon as he heard his voice, he was quiet the rest of the way home. So, no matter how I ever felt about Spongebob before, he will always bring endearing thoughts to my heart now. He soothed my baby boy for almost 45 minutes! Something even I couldn't do!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I'm a Hippie

I don't know why I watch those baby stories on TLC. I don't know why.

OK, so she had gastric bypass and needed a c-section because of it. OK. I'll accept that. But after the baby is born, the baby is laid on the bed and the dad is there with a camera in her face, talking *about* her. The baby is screaming. I'm sitting here talking to the TV saying, "would someone pick that baby up??" "Don't talk about her. Talk *to* her!"

Scene breaks and they bring the baby (healthy baby) to the mom in a different room. The mom has had time to put more make-up on and fix her hair. She looks very nice as they hand her her baby for the first time and she doesn't seem at all disappointed that she is one of the last people to meet her own baby.

That is so irritating to me!

In fairness, she seems to be a great mom. She seems to have done a great job with her older son, but that birth experience is irritating to me!


Complete different note:

Want to hear a conversation in our house last night?

J: Have you heard about that drawing they're having here in Wichita right now?
M: No.
J: There are about 20 different places around the city where you can sign up to win $10,000 for Christmas presents.
M: Ah, that'd be cool.
J: Yeah, you should go sign up. The catch though is that you have to buy everything the day before Christmas.
M: Oh, I could do that!
J: Yeah, everyone would get electronics.
M: Ha! From China! (said disgustingly)
J: Yes, from China. (said matter-of-factly)
M: I just want cloth pads, wool hats for everyone and some wooden stacking cups for Jaden.
J: Wooden what?
M: Stacking cups.
J: Oh

Ha! Sometimes we can be so different! :)


And on to something else.

Yesterday, I got an email from a friend that I used to journal with. Right before Jaden was born, I posted my birth plan on my journal and she had lots of questions. She was genuinely interested. She is married but they aren't having babies just yet. From then on, she went on a mission to learn more about pregnancy and birth. Within a short amount of time, she was working on getting certified to be a doula and yesterday she emailed me to let me know that she has decided to become a midwife. How awesome is that! I know that lots of people have played their role in it, but I honored that some of her first searching came about because of me.

Then last week, an Army wife emailed me asking about cloth diapers. She expecting twins. Last night, I finally sat down and sent her a long email with a bunch of stuff and we've been emailing today. She is excited about cloth diapering, at least, part time and breastfeeding. I also got her excited about making her own laundry soap.

Justin thought it was funny that I was brainwashing people into my hippie ways. haha!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Mama Josie

Jaden has gotten mobile lately. He's not full-out crawling, but he is getting around.

Yesterday, as he succeeded at getting ahold of Josie, our golden retriever, I remembered when they first met and it brought tears to my eyes.

Josie is a very needy dog. When I was pregnant, she followed me around very closely and was so attached to me. She is Justin's dog and I'm not a huge fan of indoor dogs, so it was especially strange that she was so attached to me.

We brought Jaden home at 9pm the night after he was born. He was crying when we walked through the door. The cat freaked and Josie got really excited about the cat and confused about the crying. I was instantly terrified of the cat being anywhere near the baby, but somehow, I knew that Josie was going to be ok.

When we settled in to bed that night, Jaden cried for 6 hours straight. I couldn't do anything all night long to console him. Our bedroom was in the basement then and we had our door closed so that we wouldn't keep the whole house up. We had to let Josie in with us because she was going crazy outside the door. That dog paced the floor all night. She barked a couple of times, but all I had to do was assure her that it was ok and she would stop barking, but she continued to whine and pace all night. She never tried to hurt him. She was just very concerned. Back and forth around the bed, whining and pacing. She was so worried about him.

During those early weeks of colic, she would often go to him when he was crying. She was so attentive. Even though I was concerned that she would be jealous, she never was. She always kept her distance, but was close enough by to make sure everything was ok.

I'm still not a huge fan of indoor dogs, but she'll always have a special place in my heart just because of that first night home and how concerned she was for the new baby.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Something Happened

Nothing got easier last night. Then, out of the blue, something happened.

After I got Jaden down at a little after, I think it was actually closer to 11, but who counting? I stayed up watching A&E, I think. I dozed in the recliner and decided to turn the monitor on and just sleep in the recliner until he woke up at 12:30, as usual. I tossed and could not get comfortable enough to really sleep in the recliner, so I went upstairs to bed at 12:30, expecting to have Jaden wake as soon as I slipped into bed and got merely three seconds away from true sleep.

Then I woke up, startled, at 3:30am. I went immediately to check on the boy. He was turned sideways, the blanket that he lays on was not even close to him and his top blanket was piled at the same end too, but the boy was snoozing away. I stood, debating. Do I go ahead and get him up while I'm here and feed him because I had seen him stir right as I walking in, so I knew he was going to wake and probably as soon as I slipped into bed and was merely three seconds away from true sleep? Or do I chance it and go back to sleep? Justin told me recently that I'm a risk-taker. I suppose so. I risked it and went back to bed. I woke at 4am. Nothing. When Justin came to kiss me goodbye at 5am, I asked him to check on Jaden. He was still laying in the same position...asleep. Seriously? It's been more than 6 hours!!! STRAIGHT!

I think it was around 5:30am when he woke to eat and back to sleep, then up for good at 6:30am.

I feel better today. Partly, I believe, because of the extra sleep (I know, I didn't really get the extra sleep, but I didn't get the stress of the crying baby either so it counts as extra sleep) and partly because I'm reading a book called The Fussy Baby Book - Parenting Your High Need Child from Birth to Age Five by William Sears and Martha Sears. It's validating. I'm beginning to understand Jaden more and I'm beginning to understand my stress more. I'm seeing that I'm what Dr. Sears calls a highly motivated mother. You might say that's good. He doesn't think it's the best way to be. Basically, it means that I try to be supermom. My house has to be clean, my meals have to be planned and done, I have to be on top of everything, while still being the most excellent wife and mother. Having a high needs baby and trying to fit him into that lifestyle is difficult on everyone. I can see what he's saying. I'm not done with the book, so I'm not sure yet how to deal with it. Honestly, I'm not necessarily willing to let any of that go. It's good to be validated though and to realize that this is real and not just me being terrible at life. Oh and partly, I'm sure to prayer and God being in control.

I am thinking though that maybe every day or every other day, I need to take 30 minutes, go find a quiet place away from everyone, while Justin takes over and knit or read or something. I think that might help. We shall see.

Now, I need to go fold some laundry and get the house ready for someone to come look at tomorrow...and give that smelly dog a bath! Hopefully, Jaden will sleep. :)

Monday, November 17, 2008


I feel like I'm half a minute from burnout.

I'm tired.

Yes, Justin helps, but I'm his helpmate - not the other way around.

It's been 6 months now and I'm just getting exhausted. I have a high-needs baby that doesn't feel that sleeping for any decent amount of time at night is important. He has been going to sleep at around 10pm, then I finally wind down and get in bed around 11pm. He wakes around 12:30am. Then he will give me 2-3 hours of sleep, but after that, he's up every hour and up for the day at 6am. He takes his first nap at around 7:30am, just in time for me to wake up Migc and Kristen to start getting ready for school. He does sleep some throughout the day, but I have things to do. There is always so much to do. No matter how clean the house is at 3:30pm every day, by 9pm, it isn't clean any more. That's not Migc and Kristen or Justin's fault. It's a combination of everyone, including myself. When the baby starts fussing, I tend to drop what I'm doing and leave it right there. Dinner gets picked up, but there is always one or two things remaining for later. It's just never, ever ending. I do laundry every day. There is always tons of laundry still to do and even more to actually get put away.

I'm getting burned out.

I do get breaks here and there. Justin will take Jaden, but there is always something else for me to be doing or it's for a 5 minute break so that I can get away from the fussing. Sometimes my mom will give me a couple of hours to go do something and that is nice. I'm just feeling it right now.

I want someone else to plan and execute breakfast, lunch and dinner for a whole day. I want someone else to change him, feed him, diaper him, bathe him and keep him from fussing for a whole day. OK, even a few, guilt-free hours would suffice. That's it. I feel guilty. I know he is fussing. I'm out thinking that I need to hurry home because he's fussing and I'm certain my mom needs a break and I'm afraid to leave him with anyone else because he will certainly be fussy and they will think I'm a horrible mother because I have such a high-need baby. Though I know, I know, it's not my fault, yada yada. I'm still certain others look at me and whisper that it's something that I'm doing or not doing. OK, I'm really venting now. Truth is, I'm just tired, worn out and teetering that ever fragile line of burnout.

I miss Migc and Kristen. I don't feel like I ever get to be in the moment with them. I'm always juggling what they are doing/saying with tending to Jaden. They don't seem to mind at all, but I do. Jaden gets me all day with just the two of us. I read, pray, eat, wake up, put to sleep, everything with Jaden in tow most of the time...or I'm off to grab him quickly if he isn't with me - rarely actually in the moment with them.

*sigh* He's awake and crying through the monitor. I will press on, as we mommas always do, but today, I have to press on a little more and push straight through that threat of burnout. You won't catch me!!!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Surviving the Dreaded Nursing Strike

Monday night at about 8:30, Jaden decided he did not want to nurse anymore - at all. I freaked! He was up all night Monday night, screaming and crawling away from me. He managed to sleep from 1am to 3am and that was about it.

Finally, at about 4:30am, I took some frozen breastmilk out of the freezer and gave him a bottle. He took it and drank about 3 ozs then latched on to me for a few minutes. Then he slept from about 5:30 to 9am. When he woke up, he wouldn't nurse still. He wouldn't take a bottle either. He refused any attempts at anything.

I got on the computer to call a LeLeche League leader, which I've never had to do, and found that they were having a meeting at 10am across town. It was 9:55am. I threw on some clothes and a bandanna and sped over there, at my wits end. I was starting to turn into an emotional wreck and I didn't know what to do. I was terrified that he'd never nurse again! I talked with a couple of ladies there and really didn't learn anything that would help, except a phone number.

I honestly didn't think there was something wrong with him physically. He just wasn't showing any signs of ear infection or anything like that. I was given the phone number of a nurse that is a LeLeche League leader and has 8 daughters of her own. I called her and she suggested I get him in to the doctor to check for an ear infection, then she talked to me about a bunch of other stuff that was happening that could have caused it and offered some suggestions.

We came home and took a bath, hoping to encourage nursing. Nothing. I took him to the doctor at 1pm. He still hadn't eaten/drank anything at all since about 5am. He has a sore throat. His ears are fine, but he is congested and it's draining into his throat and it's sore. I got him some Infant Tylenol and some baby food, which we hadn't done yet and I really hadn't planned on doing. (I do solids a little differently.) I gave him the Tylenol.

When Justin got home, he ate up those sweet potatoes like he hadn't eaten in 10 hours. Oh wait, it had been 10 hours by that point. We suctioned out his nose really well, then we laid, talking, in Kristen's room and out of the blue, he latched on. (Enter sounds of the angels singing "Hallelujah!")

He slept and several hours later, refused to nurse again. We gave him some milk in a dropper. He wouldn't take the bottle and it had been recommended that if we wanted him back to the breast, not to use the bottle right now anyway. He took some. Enough to know that he had gotten something in his tummy.

During this entire ordeal, Justin and I were stressed and worn out and so concerned! When will he eat again? How will he eat again? At what point do you worry about dehydration? He's only peeing a tiny bit and it smells so strong. Etc. It was heartbreaking and torturous to see him looking at my breast, screaming and turning away. Then doing the same thing at the sight of anything else too. I read that people do this for 3 days. I read that some babies never return. I heard from the doctor that it can be very slow moving back to the breast. I heard from the LLL leader that it will take patience and gentle but persistent encouragement.

At about 9:30pm last night, he latched on just like normal and he made me cry and his daddy very happy. I slept with him on the couch last night, so that Justin could get some sleep and so that he could have access to nurse on demand all night long. He did amazing! I gave him more Tylenol at 1:20am and he nursed pretty much the rest of the night. He's back to normal this morning and trying to make up for what he missed yesterday.

I cannot tell you how happy that makes me. It's crazy that it actually makes me tear up just thinking about it. If possible, I actually feel closer to him than I did before. I'm so thankful that God brought us through it, and that he's working his way back to normal. He did seem to lose a little weight yesterday, but the doctor told me that before it was over, he would probably lose a few pounds and we may have avoided that, and that makes me happy!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Email Sent to Justin Today - Wise Words

Veterans Day, 2008

In 1948, Gen. Omar Bradley said, “Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living.” The day was November 11, Veterans Day.

Bradley had emerged from WWII as a highly decorated field commander. His military career stretched over 38 years – through WWI, WWII, and the Korean War.

It may seem odd that a man who spent his life dedicated to the business of war would speak so wistfully of peace. But who is better qualified than one who had seen more than his share of war? Bradley understood that wars are fought to attain peace, and that it was difficult to achieve. He had seen the worst of humanity during his military life, but he had seen the best as well – the courage, the optimism, and the selflessness needed to fight wars, and to end them.

I pray the day will come when we finally discover the secret to sustaining peace, when our service men and women are charged with guarding peace instead of chasing it. Until that day, I am grateful there are those who are willing to join the pursuit, willing to defend our freedoms, willing to become known forever as veterans.

To those of you who are veterans, I thank you.

Jeff Turner

Sunday, November 9, 2008

One of Those Moments

During worship this morning, for whatever reason, my thoughts turned toward this recent election. And it crossed my mind, I want to see the glory of God! Part of me, the selfish, arrogant, prideful part of me does the whole "let's see what you get". And I had moved from that somewhat and was starting to come to terms with the fact that he will be my President. But this morning in church was so much different. It was clearly, "God, I want to see Your glory manifest in his presidency".

Then my awesome and amazing Pastor began his sermon on changing our attitudes. He didn't drum this one up for this Sunday. In fact, he's been preaching out of Malachi for weeks now and this was the next sermon. In a small portion of his message, he talked about the elections and about his own disappointment Wednesday morning. What he kept saying though was "God is still on the throne". He is right! God IS still on the throne! Whether or not I agree or will agree with his views or his actions, he will still be my President. I am still instructed in scripture to pray for him. I pledge allegiance to the United States of America - no matter who the President is.

It was a good and incredibly timely message for me. Before I left for church this morning, I yearned to hear God, and I heard God today. For that, I am thankful!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Just Par for the Course

I bought this book of coupons (how do you pronounce that? it is a running argument in our house) for the kids. When they do something that exhibits exemplary behavior, I reward them randomly with a coupon. So far they've gotten things like a trip to a museum of your choice, chocolate chips on anything you chose, an extra one of something that you've been told enough of, etc. Tonight, Migc used his birthday cake complete with birthday candles coupon. So we had birthday cake! We even sang him happy birthday. It was fun!

I also made 8 meals tonight. I'm part of a group of moms in the Wichita area and some of us are doing a meal co-op. So, I made 8 sloppy joe casseroles and tomorrow, I will take them and get 8 different meals from 8 different people. That's kind of exciting to me!

Did I mention that Justin is off playing Army boy? So, yes, I made 8 meals, plus a birthday cake and icing (I made my own). That doesn't even include the normal "duties" of running a household alone. Things like breaking up fights, washing diapers, and putting on a complete 3-ring circus for the little man. You'd think I'd be asleep right now, but sleep doesn't come that easy at times like this.

Overall, it's been a good day. I let go of my journal today. It wasn't a good ridance, but it was time. It was a fabalous 3 1/2 years, but I see some things in me changing and it was time to move on. I'm actually enjoying it over here. Right now especially, since few know about this yet, I'm enjoying talking to myself. And, I'm excited about sharing the simple things - the things that make my day, my life.

What is that?

Jaden has started this new thing. His laugh is this raspy thing. I think he makes himself hoarse, or at least he sounds like it. He does it all of the time, but mostly if I'm around. If I leave or am in a different part of the house for a while, he won't do it. As soon as I return, he starts it up again. Sometimes I wonder if I draw out the worst in him. :)

You have to see it.

Oh man, Jaden just went to sleep in his sling, so I put him in his crib. He immediately woke back up. So I nursed him back to sleep, like usual, but he, again, woke back up. When I tried to nurse him again, he started crying, so I held him up on my shoulder. I cannot tell you how long it has been since he has gone to sleep that way. It was so amazing. With his head against my cheek and his hair tickling my nose. And the smell! I love the smell of my children. It was one of those awesome Mommy Moments.

Pro-Life Does Not Mean Anti-War

Wanna hear what gets me fired up? Compare abortion with the war in Iraq, and tell me that Obama is going to bring troops home. That will get me fired up.

Current causalities in Iraq since 3/2003= 4191
Current abortion rates in USA = approx 3700 per day

I know the Iraq numbers do not include Iraqis killed (terrorist nor innocent) and it doesn't include the rate of suicides when the soldiers return home. Even if you included those numbers, I'm quite sure that you wouldn't come anywhere near 3700 PER DAY.

First of all, I know that Obama likes to play this magician act where he makes sure that your eyes are focused over here so that you aren't paying attention over there, but seriously, he's not saying he's bringing anyone home. Yep, he says he's going to pull them out of Iraq, but he says he's sending them to Afghanistan. That's not bringing them home.

Then, let's talk about life. You say "hey, they can't be pro-life if they support the war." Really? Are you sure? Seriously! I think just the absolute opposite. We could sit on our fancies and not do a damn thing, while they bring that hatred here - on our soil - let's have 9/11 over and over and over again. In our town square. You think it's ok that Saddam Hussein fried fellow Iraqis? I watched parts of a documentary last week, probably on the History Channel, that talked in depth about what he was doing over there. He was testing on them. He was testing his chemical warfare. Sometimes it worked. Sometimes it didn't. When it worked the way they wanted it to, it left entire villages of people dead or severely burned. He didn't intend to only use those same chemicals on his fellow Iraqis.

So, you're telling me that because it's over there, we should ignore it and save ourselves. That argument doesn't hold up - even if you stretched it.

Now, you could argue - what about Darfur? Yeah, I can argue that too! Darfur wouldn't politically advance us, so we don't meddle too much. Shame on us! Seriously, I mean that! But that is not to disqualify the life of Iraqis.

And, soldiers are trained to avoid the innocent. In fact, many have died erring on the side of caution, but that is what they are trained to do. They are not trained to find the innocent and suck them out of their mother's womb.

How do you compare 3700 deaths per day to 4191 deaths in more than 5 years? That doesn't even mention the lives that have been saved by those men fighting over there so that you are safe.

Don't compare my husband to those that choose to support mother's killing their babies. He saved you. The others would be fine if your mother had killed you.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Beginning of Quiet Moments

I've been watching Fox News all night, beholding my future and the future of my children. I'm watching Barak Hussein Obama become the next President of the United States of America, wishing that Colin Powell had been the first black man to be President. I won't go into my misgivings, but I will tell you that just one minute ago, when the crowd erupted, I cried.

Maybe I will go into my feelings a bit more. I cry initially because I feel strongly, deeply that he is the wrong man. Then, I begin to cry realizing what this means for my children. A black man is President. To me, that is bigger than a woman becoming President. I honestly don't know that it will help race relations for the future. I almost feel as if he further divides us, but either way, it is remarkable. I pray ... for our future.

Unrelated to this, I'm on my second cup of tea and am feeling quite settled. Quite content. I've turned my focus lately. I'm taking better care of my home and it feels relaxing to walk around a clean, cozy home. I'm turning off the computer more, and gazing into books and the eyes of my children. I've broadened to social horizons and actually get out to spend time with new friends. I'm investing in others and myself. If only my youngest child were not quite so fussy, my life would be full of patient, quiet moments. But of course, he breaks those moments up with screaming. Even the quiet of the night, is broken up with screaming. He is his father's child.

I leave you with the highlight of the otherwise grueling day that yesterday held.