Monday, October 28, 2013

Oh baby!

So this entry was written about 2 months ago and I have been waiting to post for obvious reasons.

So there was this...                                        
Then there was this....
                                                                                             And then finally this...
We weren't officially trying, we were talking about trying. But then again, we weren't preventing. I'm still trying to wrap my head around the fact that I'm going to be a mom of 3 (dear God don't let this be twins) without having a glass of wine to dull the fear. And hubby? Well he's in that weird "Can I get you anything?" phase. He actually tried to help me off the couch the other night! I'm like "Save it for about 7 months when I will really need your help!" Although, like most men, I'm sure by that point he'll be totally over the "helping me" phase. They can only maintain that level of helpfulness for a certain time you know.
It's cute though.... He actually brought me flowers that night! It was the third (maybe fourth but that's a big maybe) time in our 7 year marriage that he's brought me flowers. He brings beer home a lot but never flowers! He's picking out colors for the nursery and talking about names. I'm staring at my sad empty wine glass like I'm in mourning. It's really not far enough along to be doing anything- except not drinking. See, by kid number three I can tell you the exact date of conception. It's's the only time in the last month that we had sex!! (Who has time with two demanding jobs and two demanding toddlers?!)
I guess I assumed it would take longer. Who knew that I could get knocked up simply by sleeping next to my husband without a dog (or a child) in between us. I think the hardest part is knowing what I'm in for. I mean I'm excited (reallllllly excited) for the baby and expanding our family and all the wonderful parts of "The Plan" that are falling into place. But geez.....the little plus pops up on that test and I can feel my pants get tighter. I imagine the aches and pains and sleepless nights. And I remember the post partum. I'm more afraid of the 6 weeks after the baby than of anything else.
Pregnancy? Got it- it's uncomfortable but I can do it. Labor? Check! Done it twice already, I can handle it. Delivering? Not a problem- by the third one I think all I'll have to do is sneeze and the baby will shoot out. But post partum? Oh dear God. Awful, just awful. What's the saying? "If you've been through it no explanation is necessary. If you haven't no explanation is possible."
But post partum or we go. Baby number three. If I can just get that voice out of my head that keeps repeating "You truly must be crazy" then I think we'll be fine.


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Anatomy 101

It's important to have the discussion beforehand about how you will handle questions regarding anatomy. This prevents you from being caught unprepared and having to answer "on the fly"- which of course exponentially increases your chances of saying something stupid.
Case in point....

DC was born when RJ was just 2 years old. So of course there were lots of questions regarding breastfeeding (she still refers to my boobs as "baby food"). However, the questions were not the greatest source of concern. RJ realized that while I was nursing the baby I was basically incapacitated and found that this was an excellent time to get into mischief. One particular afternoon as I was feeding DC she snuck into the bathroom while Hubs was in the shower. He was enjoying a few moments of silence under the water when he opened his eyes to see a wide-eyed 2 year old staring directly at his....well, you know. Eventually she came out and silently sat next to me on the couch while David hurriedly finished his shower. I guess he felt like they needed to have a conversation to discuss the encounter and shortly after he came out in just a towel and sat down next to her.
"Baby, come here. Let's have a little talk," he began.
She blankly stared at him.
"What you have are little lady parts....."
She nodded in agreement.
I was sitting there nervously waiting to see where this was leading.
"And what Daddy has......."
He paused searching for the words
"Are Big Ole Man parts," he proudly finished.

My jaw hit the floor and I was too speechless to even disagree. I just decided to let this go hoping that her 2 year old little brain would just pass over this moment without any retention.

Fast forward a month when I was bathing DC and RJ was "helping me".
"Mommy, can I bathe his legs?" she asked sweetly.
"Of course baby, use the washcloth."
"I wanna bath his BIG OLE MAN PARTS!!!!" She exclaimed excitedly.

At this point I thought we had reached the epitome of failure at the "birds and the bees" talk. I could only imagine what she was saying at preschool. But could be worse! One of my friends failed to come up with a name for her son's big ole man parts and somehow at 3 years old he began referring to it as his "wang". I first heard him say this at church!!! This prompted our conversation regarding referring to our gender specific body parts. We decided to keep "lady parts" but change the male version to "peepee". I thought the subject was settled and there would be no more inappropriate (or just plain weird) situations regarding the issue.

Well, last week we were almost ready for school and I asked hubby to put DC on the potty while I ran upstairs to grab their shoes. I was gone all of 5 minutes- which was apparently just long enough. When I returned all 3 of them were in the bathroom together and both kids were yelling "PENIS!! PENIS!! PENIS!!" at the top of their lungs.
"Hey Babe, I taught them the correct terminology" hubs proudly proclaimed smiling at me.
I just stood there in silence my mouth agape.
"PENIS PENIS PENIS PENIS PENIS!!!!" they yelled louder.
I just shook my head giving him the "you should've known better" look and put their shoes on. The whole way to school they chorused together "PENIS PENIS PENIS PENIS PENIS!" This was clearly out of my hands- I'll have to thank him later.

When I dropped them off I told the teachers that I would be out of town that day and here was my husband's cell number if they had any issues during the day.


Monday, October 21, 2013

A special "BUDDY"

Yesterday, our family did something for the first time.  We attended our area "Buddy Walk" to raise awareness for Down Syndrome.  Until recently we weren't tuned into the event and honestly, it just wasn't on our radar.  But 7 weeks ago, one of my best friends gave birth to her second child.  We were all excited as our youngest children would be 6 weeks apart.  We've done a lot together over the last 6 years so being pregnant and having children together is not really that unusual.  She had come when baby K was 2 days old to visit us in the hospital so Big Daddy and I went to the hospital in September when her second child was born.  We were so excited to meet our new "nephew" as we call each other "Aunt Z or Uncle A" and vice versa.  We got off the elevator in Labor and Delivery and realized they were walking in front of us.  Being the goofballs we are, we started calling out to them and making lame jokes.  But the moment they turned around, we knew something was wrong.  Both of them had been crying.  So we went to her room and learned that the baby had just been admitted to special care-an experience we both shared with our first born children.  My heart broke for her in that moment.  I felt a sense of guilt that we had finally gotten the delivery and experience we wanted with baby K-free of special care and now she was not getting that.  But it was the words she went on through many tears and sobs to tell us....... "they think he has Downs Syndrome".  I'm pretty sure my heart was broken in that moment.  All I could do was hold her and cry.  There were lots of tears in that room at that moment.  I was sad, not because he has Downs, but because I knew that their lives are forever changed and they will have a long and windy road ahead of them.  In that small moment, our lives were forever changed.

Big Daddy and I have had a lot of tough conversations over the past 7 weeks-questioning why God does the things he does-especially to "good people".  SK prays nightly for "baby L to feel better and thank you God for taking him out of Aunt M's tummy and thank you God for baby L".  In some way, I feel like she knows something we haven't said because she's said it all on her own since he was born.  So yesterday, our group of friends made a decision to support Baby L and do the Buddy Walk.  Can I just tell you, what an amazing experience that was-(minus my wimpy 3 year old complaining her legs were tired the whole time).  Baby L even won "youngest buddy"!!  But while we were on the trail, SK and I had a conversation that I wasn't sure what to say:

SK: "mom why are we walking for baby L?"
me: "because God made him really really special".
SK: "why?"
Me: "welllllll... I think he thought Aunt M and Uncle B were really good parents and he wanted to use them to be great parents to baby L.  He has really special plans for them."
SK: "so God made baby L really special?"
me: "yes baby.  Really Really special-and we get to make sure he knows that for the rest of his life."
SK: "that's cool mom.  Baby L is my best friend and I love him".

And so it hit me.  For 7 weeks, we have all struggled with comprehending a diagnosis that has changed us.  But as I reflect on the Buddy Walk and the ways that God has used Baby L to change us for the better, I find myself thanking God for this amazing gift instead of being angry.   Baby L will never know a day when he doesn't not know he is loved and cherished by us.  Our kids will be better because they will never know a day that baby L is "different"-he is their friend and they will stick by him no matter what.  They will stick up for him and they will let others know how awesome he is-in fact, I'm pretty sure they started yesterday.  I'm pretty sure our kids are teaching us adults a pretty valuable lesson-they (and we do too) love him for who he is...Baby L. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Lion

So it was hubs' birthday the other week. Now what this means to me is that I have to pull together a Texas Hold 'Em tournament. This involves hours of pouring over Pinterest for the best party foods, shopping for poker night accessories and decorations, tracking down all his somewhat transient friends, grocery shopping and cooking. We also take a trip to Annapolis every year for his birthday to go to he US Sailboat show. So I also must book flights, hotels and a rental car. I am also tasked with finding a place to farm out the kids during both the party AND the long weekend in Annapolis (this involves begging, pleading, and quite a bit of creativity to get every moment covered). I must do all this while holding down my full time job....that's right my actual real job that I get paid to do. Needless to say this is a bit of an overwhelming time for me.

I was feeling like superwoman having accomplished all of this and it was the morning of the party when I suddenly realized we hadn't gotten Daddy a birthday gift. Oops.

Now I live in a small town so our options are pretty limited as far as shopping goes. By limited I mean it came down to Food Lion, Dollar General and Rite Aid as our choices. I was on a time schedule with food preparation and kid deliveries so we didn't have time to go anywhere else! Rite Aid won out as our choice as I had to fill a prescription too (hey- killing two birds with one stone right?).

I told the kids they could pick out anything they wanted to give Daddy for his birthday. Well it didn't take long for RJ to find the "perfect" present. This is what she came up with...

 Honestly, it probably was the best option....aside from a home pregnancy test or pack of Nicorette. We got the hideous thing home and wrapped it up in a festive birthday bag (complete with matching tissue paper) and sat it on the dining room table to wait till Daddy came home. The kids spent the rest of the day hovering around the dining room table in gleeful anticipation. We decided to give Daddy his gift at his birthday brunch at Cracker Barrel on Sunday.

So there we were at Cracker Barrel on a Sunday- which if you are from the South you know just how freaking crowded this can be- with my parents and the kids enjoying some birthday pancakes. RJ could barely contain herself and squealed with delight when it was time to give Daddy his gift. She ran around the table grabbed the gift bag and climbed in his lap her eyes shining with excitement as he began digging though the tissue paper.

I wish I had snapped a picture of his face when he pulled the monstrosity out of the bag (or of my mother's face). RJ immediately blurts out "DADDY WE PICKED IT OUT JUST FOR YOU BUT YOU CAN SHARE IT WITH ME AND LET ME SLEEP WITH IT!"

And that is exactly how it goes down now. She calls it "Lion" and carries it around like a doll baby. Oh, and sleeps with it. Every night. Wrapped it her arms. Snuggled to her cheek.


Hubs told me later it was by far the weirdest birthday gift he has ever received.


Monday, October 7, 2013


Last week, baby K was in a funk. My usually great sleeper went to waking up once a night to every 30-45 minutes.  The internet was full of suggestions of what baby K was going through- a “wonder week”, “growth spurt”, and the “45 minute intruder”.  Alas I must not be alone-but I didn’t really care for the reason, I just wanted it to stop.  After three days, we were all exhausted-especially since big Daddy and I are back at work.  In my desperation for sleep, I was trying everything.  One of the gifts I received at a baby shower was a “sleep sheep” that plays nature sounds.  One evening I tried the rain sound thinking, “this will never work” and low and behold it worked!  It seemed to calm my fussy baby!  Praise the Lord!

So back to last Wed night.  After three nights of no sleep and everyone at maximum exhaustion, I finally got baby K to fall asleep after 45 minutes of rocking, feeding,  and bouncing.  I laid her down, covered her up and looked around for the sheep.  It was nowhere to be found.  NO WHERE.  I called out to big sister and politely asked her where the sheep was because she is notorious for taking her sister’s things.  Her reply, “I don’t know.”  Again, in a little deeper voice, “where is the sheep…you were playing with it this morning when I went to work”.  Her reply, “ummmmmmm…I don’t know.”  Now, as baby K is all out screaming in her bed, I feel panic start to set in.  I went on a mission.  I went upstairs, downstairs, looking through drawers, bins, containers, you name it-there was literally nothing unturned in my house.  This time, I said in a deep voice, “if you don’t find your sister’s sheep, we are going to have a SERIOUS problem”.  At this point, I think I was on the verge of losing my mind.  I could feel myself close to tears and panic was completely set in. I even texted the nanny looking for the sheep.  Baby K is screaming mad in the background and of course my efforts to put her to sleep are now futile.  This time, much more sternly and practically screaming, “SK, WHAT DID YOU DO WITH YOUR SISTER’S SHEEP??”  Through tears, she kept saying, “I’m sorry mommy, I don’t know!  I can’t find it”.  Finally, big Daddy to the rescue-he went toy by toy in the toy box and found the lost sheep.  HALL-E-LU-JAH!  He looked at me as I was teary eyed and politely said, “I guess it’s a good thing I came home early because there might have been a crime scene here over a sheep”.  And it hit me.  I’m a clinical social worker and I’ve always read about postpartum and how it can cause psychosis.  I found myself thinking I had truly danced with the edge of insanity over a freakin’ sheep.  I kept telling myself, really, a sheep???  Call it sleep deprivation or the crazy postpartum hormones, but I understood why some women go crazy.  I needed baby K to calmly go to sleep or just to sleep at all.   After calming down, I explained to SK the importance of not touching her sister’s things and I walked away feeling like as a mom I somehow failed my girls.  I like to keep myself in check but tonight, I was insane.  I lost my wits, my cool, my ability to reason-all over a noise making toy.  I felt a sense of mom failure and imperfection.  But in the end, it’s okay.  It’s okay that I lost my mind temporarily because I didn’t do anything harmful.  I am imperfect and it’s not the last time I will lose my mind as a mom.  I was thankful for a husband who quietly reassured me that I was a good mom even if I went Bat Sheep crazy that night.  Oh, and if you want, go get you a Sleep Sheep for your baby….they work wonders for a sleepy baby-just don’t lose it. 


Saturday, October 5, 2013

Mommy's nite out

Once a month I have a women's group meeting at my church. It is about an hour and a half long and on these nights my husband has to come home from work early and do dinner, baths and bedtime with the kids.

So I'm gone for maybe 15 minutes when I start receiving text messages from the hubs. The first is just a picture, no message.

At this point I'm still engaged in the discussion at my meeting but I'm weighing whether or not I should politely excuse myself and step into the hallway to call home. I decide that he would call if things were out of control and that it is probably safe to stay put.

About 20 minutes later I get another text.



This picture comes with a message that says "And then he threw up all over the floor. Too much running around after dinner."


The meeting is starting to wrap up so I figure this too can wait. The kids were already asleep when I got home but I was assured that they were fine. Then the hubs informs me that "I cleaned as best I could but couldn't get it all so I decided to let it dry because it should clean better after it's dried".


Next there was a quick reeducation regarding stains, spills and cleaning techniques.

The next morning when I went to get DC out of bed I open the door to his room to see about 15 paper towels neatly laid out over the vomit stain. DC (who can barely speak a coherent word) stands up in his crib, points at the mess and says "It happens Mommy".

"Yes buddy, it does."