Saturday, August 30, 2008

God's Perfect Food

If God Almighty came to you and said, “I myself have designed a special food that will strengthen your baby’s body and develop his brain, which will comfort him and cheer his heart, and lay the foundation for his lifetime health and well-being. I have given this food into your keeping; I have placed it in your body; it is my loving provision for your child”—who would reply, “No thanks, no divine gifts, I’d rather give him a can of Similac”?

This is a favorite quote of mine from an article entitled "Milk of Kindness" by Juli Loesch Wiley.

The wonders of what He has created for us never cease to amaze me. I am especially at awe, even having done this before, at the joys of the nursing relationship He has in store for me and each one of my children. Is there anything more precious than the look of contentment on a newborn's face as he drinks in the nourishing liquid that has been created uniquely for him?

What does breastfeeding do besides provide the perfect food for your baby? It teaches them that the world is good. They learn that they have power - the power to elicit a response, and that their needs can be met in a loving relationship with one person. Babies are born expecting to be breastfed. There is no other way they have to learn that they are important, that the strange new world they are in is good, and that they will be taken care of always.

Does breastmilk have other benefits? You bet. Each mother makes a unique milk destined for her child. (This is not to say that her milk could not or should not nourish another child. In the lineage of what is best to feed your baby, someone else's milk comes in 3rd after your own milk (1), your pumped milk (2), and before formula (4).) Her milk changes and adjusts to her baby's ever expanding needs. It is something that a commercially made formula could never mimic nor even come close to resembling.

When a child is sick, his mother's milk will adjust, giving him more antibodies to put him on the path to wellness faster. Mother's milk has other healing properties as well. It will cure pink eye, help a cut heal faster, and soothe diaper rash.

Aside from the scientific and spiritual qualities of breastfeeding as the more endearing qualities. Nothing can fully explain the bond between nursling and nourisher. Knowing that you can fulfill the every-need (hee, hee, I made up a new word) of your infant is satisfying to say the least. It is an accomplishment that makes you stand up tall at the title of Mother.

Other things I love about nursing:

Milky breath of my baby
Non-stinky diapers
The "milk-drunk" face
Watching baby suckle the air in his sleep
Suckle-swallow sound of my nursling eating in the dark
Waking up to little grunts asking, "Please may I have some?"
Staring into my nursling's eyes as he stares into mine

I am so thankful to God for the awesome grace and blessing to be able to nurse a child again. It is one of my favorite parts of motherhood. It is a special relationship that only I can have with my children, that no one else can duplicate. It is The Way It Was Meant To Be.

As the Psalmist (22:9) says: "It is thou, God, who took me from the womb, And kept me safe upon my mother’s breasts." And so, entrusted to me by God, I shall, too, keep my child safe upon my breast.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

My Dear Baby

Before you were even born, He knew you and loved you. Before your conception even took place, He knew who you would be and how important your life would be.

We also knew you and dreamed of you from the moment we met. Your journey to us was a long awaited for miracle that we prayed for, hoped for, and thought of everyday. Trials of when and if you might come plagued us. Some days, as the wait seemed to go on forever, we even lost sight of our hope.

We imagined you'd be along sooner than you were. But you came right when you should have. His timing in bringing you to us was perfect, just as your little body was perfect in every way when you arrived.

When news of your arrival came, we were overjoyed with happiness. Finally, a sign that you would be in our arms one day. Hearing your heartbeat for the first time brought tears to my eyes. And feeling your first movements was pure bliss, making me laugh out loud with excitement.

Your early weeks in my womb were accompanied by nausea and fatigue, but it was a battle worth waging with a conclusion worth fighting for. As you grew and crowded my body I imagined with joy what it would be like to finally hold you in my arms.

My labor with you was long and drawn out. You took your time figuring just the right hour to enter this world. It was a stormy, rainy Friday afternoon when you finally took the last leap from water baby in my belly to breathing baby in my arms.

I will never forget pulling you up from my womb and looking into your eyes for the first time. They were wide open, taking in all there was to see, seeking deep into my own eyes to cement the connection we had started so long ago when you first began to grow inside me. Just thinking about it now makes me cry at the wonderful memory I was so blessed to be given by you.

Every moment we have shared together has been wonderful. Nursing and nourishing you has been the most fulfilling role as mother I could ever have hoped for. Watching you learn and grow takes my breath away. Your laughter could brighten even the darkest day, and your sweet little voice is the most precious thing I have ever heard.

Keep being who you are. Grow up you will. One day soon you may not even need me anymore. I will cherish the years we have spent so close together, nursing, sleeping, walking, crawling, snuggling. You are the most cherished gift He could have given us.

Happy Birthday Sweet Girl. I love you.


Saturday, August 23, 2008


The curious ways of postpartum hormones. I am aching, aching I tell you, for my 2 year old.

She is my baby girl. I feel like I have gone and ruined her world. She looks at me. She wants me to hold her. She wants to be my entire world. And I want to be her entire world. But, that is not the way it is.

I have a little(r) one. One who needs me for everything. She does not understand. And neither do I.

I found myself lying in bed, crying because I missed her. She didn't want me. She was mad at me. She cannot believe that there is someone else in her space. Sometimes, when the space is open, she wants it. Other times, she shuns my efforts to cuddle.

How do I find balance? Where is the middle ground? I know she is reacting in a conventionally "normal" way - but it still doesn't feel right.

I know she will mature. I know she will be OK. I know she will understand that the Little Man isn't going anywhere and it's OK. I know that she will not always need me and will find other ways to be comforted.

Who will comfort me?


Friday, August 22, 2008

Got Milk?

I do. A whole bunch of it. And my Little Man is just eating it up.

It seems the demons of sleep deprivation are still at it. No, I'm not here to complain to anyone about the "normal" sort of sleep deprivation most new mamas and papas have. My new dude is giving me plenty of time to sleep. He sleeps a couple of 2-3 stretches each day (and night!), which is more than either of my previous two babes have.

No, my problem is still that I cannot sleep. He's asleep and I'm laying there with my mind racing. Maybe I just need to write a list. Maybe I'm just really excited. And maybe I am losing my mind. At any rate, sleep isn't really happening. Hopefully, it will all work out.

Wanna hear about something else I got besides Milk?

Asteroids. Yep, you heard me. Asteroids.

Think pushing. Think Tucks Medicated Pads. Now think of the location in your body one would jump to if I said the biblical word for donkey.

You got it. Asteroid.

Why? Why do I refer to them this way you ask?

Location. Number one.

And next - because they both erupt into a fiery hell when exposed to the atmosphere.

You know, I thought with my previous two births that I experienced hemorrhoids. Nope. Those were just little tags of skin that took care of themselves and were occasionally a pain (in the ass, hee hee) when trying to decide if one was done pooping.

I now have something alive down there. It burns. It itches. It makes you think you have a piece of poo still hanging out of your butt when you're sure you're done. It's (they are) huge. My husband says, "Welcome to getting old." Yeah. Thanks old dude. Now I whilst sit here and steam while my nether regions are being lit on fire and swelling.

So I have decided my best bet is to invest heavily in witch hazel and find a donut.


Thursday, August 21, 2008

Daddy's Little Man

Proud Papa.

Big sister helping hold the "babes", as she calls him. I swear, if I don't have a blanket near him, she gets one, finds us, and insists we put it around him. Too cute.

Do I have to say anything here?

Two days old - best face shot yet. He finally decided to open his eyes.

Sweet mama nursing photo. This was in bed this afternoon. I love the little, tiny baby head and the great big mama boob. Hee hee.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Thanks be to God....

I am not pregnant anymore. :)

We welcomed our new Little Man yesterday morning 10:45AM, at home and in the water.

He is a small but plump 7 lbs. 4 oz. with big hands and feet.

We have many to thank.....

God for the wonderful blessing he has bestowed on our marriage.

Our doula for the wonderful care given to Mama and family (and the great pictures!!).

My friend K. for lending us the awesome birth tub.

The midwives at MBC who provided superb prenatal, intrapartum, and postpartum care to Mom, baby, and family (they even did the laundry after the birth - I LOVE MIDWIVES!!)

My dearest friend C. - who came with groceries, supported me during birth, watched over my kids, cooked food ALL DAY after the birth while Mom, Dad, and Baby slept, fed me, kept me hydrated, and over all helped keep the sanity around here all day. YOU are AWESOME, and I love you.

Pictures to come soon. He's darn cute.


Friday, August 15, 2008

On Fathers and Sons

Today my boys had some manly fun. Almost as manly as, say, having a crane in your front yard (my dear friend L.), but a little more scaled down. My dear husband bought the boys some Air-Soft Guns. His little Wobbers had played with some of the "big kids" from our homeschool group a few months ago and has been absolutely begging to get some ever since then. Dad finally decided it was time to buy and play - so buy the did yesterday and play today they did.

As manly as the playing was, it was not without tears. The Flower and I went grocery shopping (ask me again later how much energy that sucked out of me) while the boys put on their war faces and geared up for an afternoon of manhood. As I was on my way back from the store, I received a phone call from my husband.

"He is such a cry-baby."

Apparently, somehow, Wobbers thought that this whole "airsoft" thing meant one could not possibly get hurt. "But it didn't hurt when I played with Sheila's kids." Really dude? I remember you telling me it hurt, but you didn't want them to know. So when Dad shot the little pellets at him it hurt. I didn't really believe at the time that he was crying as much as his dad told me he was.

When I got home I experienced the true agony this boy was in.

"Waaawaaawaaahaaahaaawaaawaaa!!!!!!!!! Ohhhhhh, waaawaaawaaawaaahaaaa!!!"

Are you crying or laughing was all I could think.

You'd think he had been hit in the face with a brick. It was hilarious. Wadidya think? You'd be shooting each other with cotton balls? It is a gun. Duh. It's gonna hurt a little. Wear some padding silly. Or even just a sweatshirt.

"Ohhhhh, waaawaawaaaawaaa!!!! He shot me in the nuuuuuuuuutssssssss!!"

Wear a cup.

"He's got a better gun than me!!! Waaaaahaaaawaaaawaaaawoah!"

At this point I am trying my best to keep a straight face. Please, don't get me wrong. I am a compassionate mama. I love my kids and would never, ever wish them harm. But this little guy has been begging to get these guns all summer. It's all he's talked about since we went to the pool party in June where he played with the big kids. Every week, "When can I get an airsoft gun?" "Have I been good enough to get an airsoft gun?" "If I get all my school work done, does that mean I can get an airsoft gun?" "Can you call Sheila so I can go play airsoft guns with her kids?" "You know, if I had my own airsoft gun I could take it to Sheila's to play." On and on and on. And now that we have said "play" firearms, now he's crying.

And it so isn't worth crying over. He doesn't realize of course that his dad is trained as an officer, not to mention the years and years of hunting experience he has, and is a very good shot. It's not that his gun is "better" than my Wob's gun.......his experience is greater. He thinks before he shoots. Poor little Wobbs just fires away.

In the course of all things manly, I am sure he will get better. And even with the crying he was still begging my dear husband to play another round even after Dad said it was time to call it quits. This makes me think it must not really be that bad.

I, myself, do not find the prospect of being shot with a little itty bitty bb-pellety thingie a "good time" - but they have the Y chromosome. It kills brain cells ya know.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Did you even know there was such a place? They have some darn neat, and darn inspiring videos at this website.

This morning (hey, I know it's 2:20pm, but I've only been up for 2 hours, so it's morning) I feel compelled to share a video that was posted on another wonderful blog that I saw/read a couple of months ago. She also pulled it from someone else's blog - so should you feel the need to pass it on, please do.

I will warn you, this video produced real tears for me. And it doesn't water down the evil deeds we encounter in life at all, so just watch it first before you let your kids watch it to make sure you approve. But it is inspiring (did I already use that word today?) to say the least. And it will remind you of the wonderful Love He has for you everyday - even when you think He's left you.

Get a kleenex.....


This is Your Brain On......

No sleep, pregnancy, and stress.

It's fried, like an egg. Eggs. Eggs sound good. Hmmm....maybe later.

Today I visited my midwife. My midwife. There are 3 midwives that work at her clinic. The last two visits I had were not with her. It was so, so nice to see her today. Part of this, of course, is that she really knows me well since she was my midwife through my last pregnancy. The clinic is hers and she's hired a few new midwives to help out with her constantly expanding client base (because she's so darn wonderful!).

Being that she knows me so well, she can tell when something isn't quite right or when maybe I'm not taking as good care of myself as I should be. Today was that day. My blood pressures up, just a little, nothing horribly bad, and I admitted to not eating as well as I should be (even though I KNOW BETTER, really, I am someone who really knows better than to eat crappy when pregnant), and I am still not sleeping well. And I have no energy. And I'm 38 weeks that's probably why. Right? All women who are this pregnant are this tired and unable to care for their families. Right? Uh-huh? Oh, not really? Oh, I shouldn't be feeling this bad? It's not just because I have a toddler, and big kids, and a big, big family? And I'm pregnant? Oh. I thought that was why.

Nope. It's not normal. It's normal to be uncomfortable. It's normal to be a little less energetic than usual. When she asked my why I couldn't cook meals, I told her the truth. I thought, originally, that it was just because of my hands. But they feel a little better. I still can't cook. I don't have the energy to stand at the stove long enough even to boil water. Heck, I can't even sit on the floor and play with my kids for more than 3-4 minutes without having to get up and lay down on the couch.

She said the last woman who told her she couldn't cook or play with her kids ended up having hypothyroidism. So, she asked if we could check my thyroid function. Of course, you may check any blood work you would like to because I trust you with my life. So we're checking my thyroid and we're checking for thyroid antibodies, since I may possibly have this type of hypothyroidism. These tests may or may not identify a problem. While the thought of actually be diagnosed with something is daunting, and the thought of taking medication even more intimidating, part of me is kind of hopeful that a diagnosis will come back. Just. So. I. Know. I'm. Not. Crazy.

It makes you feel crazy when you feel something is wrong with you, but have no explanation as to why or what it might be. I've just been feeling awful about not being able to play with the kids, not being able to do laundry, and especially not being able to cook meals. I love to provide good food for my family, recipes they love. I like to cook. I hate eating out all the time. But I have no energy.

So, well wait and see. I will get a phone call if the tests come back out of normal range. And I have another appointment to see her on Monday. Again, so soon! Yippi! I really like going in to see my midwife. Aside from the fact that it's always nice to see someone who genuinely cares about YOU. Yup, me. She cares what happens to ME.

It's a big deal for us adults who never really were parented or mothered as children. My parents didn't do a very good job in their vocation, try as they might. They were too busy dealing with their own problems (and vices). My father passed away a few years ago. And my mother is getting better now that I'm older (much better), but I still missed out on most of those happy "I love you and care about you more than anything" kind of moments. (More on that stuff later, another day, another season, in another post. Just not up for getting into that while pregnant.) So for me, having someone care about me and what happens to me means a lot. (Thanks, A.!)

Also, as most women 38 weeks into their pregnancy will tell you, I'd like the baby to come out now. Anytime would be fine with me. Actually, anytime now would be GREAT. But, I know this baby will come when it's good and ready. Hey Baby - Are you ready yet?! I am ready whenever you are. Really.

Oh, and I had a dream last night that I had twins. Unexpected twins. I know this will not happen in real life, as I am just the right size for one baby and way too small for two. But, in my dream after my husband caught our 9 lb. baby girl, because my midwife and doula weren't here yet, I told him I felt something else. He asked, "Oh is the placenta coming so soon?" - which he would NEVER say in real life. And I said, "Nope. Placentas don't feel like babies." Then I proceeded to push out a 6.5 lb little girl. We named the big girl Barbara, which is really weird. That's his mother's name and we would never, ever name our baby Barbara. We named the little girl Emily. Don't know where that came from either, although I do have a friend named Emily who I have visited twice this week after a long hiatus. There we are sitting with our 3 little girls, the Petite Flower, Barbara, and Emily. I still have both cords attached to the babies while we wait for my midwife and doula to arrive. Very strange dream - thought you'd like to know.

I do hope the labor happens soon, and that all involved parties are able to arrive before delivery. Still, the prospect of my hubby catching our babe is pretty cool.


Monday, August 11, 2008

Better Today

We are well into the school day at this point. What works and what doesn't? Is it really that hard? No, actually, it's not.

Keeping a boy on track is by far a trial from God Himself, but I am up to the challenge. It is a never ending battle of "Keep you head looking at your work, and for Pete's sake, sit up and stop trying to lie down." The many, many excuses have branched out today: "I wasn't being distracted Mama, I was itching." "I'm so thirsty! Why can't I get a glass of water?" "It is a sentence: A pirate flag!" Um, no dude. That's like saying "A house." is a sentence.

But still, we are doing better today than we have been. We are at the beginning of Week 5, and hopefully we will make it through. The joyous thing about this week is I have suspended all "regular" religion studies, meaning our textbook pages, etc., for a week of fun-filled studies of Our Lady and the Assumption. Friday, of course, is the Solemnity of the Assumption. We will be going to the noon hour Mass, which will be presided over by our Bishop. It's so nice to hear him speak. It will be a wonderful celebration and finale to our coloring pages, bookmark project, and crosswords about Our Lady that we are doing this week.

It's amazing to me the way that He works out the smallest and largest of details in my life to make sure everything runs just the way it should. Yesterday, I was worried about getting the school week started on time since we have numerous appointments going on this week, two in the afternoon alone today (midwife and then my husband has a Christian Men's Group he attends). Not to mention the laundry I have allowed to pile up all week and all the "new to me" diapers that need washing in our special soap (so as to remove all residue and soap build up their previous owners may have unknowingly left behind - my babies have super sensitive skin).

Normally, I would be completely sad and miserable to wake up and find myself late for an appointment with my midwife, as I cherish all the time I get to spend with her. This morning, however, it was truly a blessing in disguise. When I called to reschedule my appointment I was told that it actually worked out better that way since they have a woman in labor there right now. Missing the appointment leaves me free to start (and hopefully finish) the laundry and personally supervise school work for the day, instead of having to leave it in the hands of my 8 year old and his big sisters while I am away.

Nifty. His plans are always better than mine. Still, I forget that on a regular basis. Going with the flow instead of fighting it has proven to be simpler and more graceful today than ever.

Now, if I can just get my smart little man to say, "It was a pirate flag." instead of "A pirate flag." everything will be just fine.


Saturday, August 9, 2008

School, School Go Away, Come Again Another Day

This appears to be my 8 year old's mantra these days.

We began school about 3 weeks ago. He is miserable. I, apparently, have concocted some kind of medieval torture device and have sentenced him to hours upon hours of painful misery and woe every day. How heinous of me.

He, in turn, is giving me hell. The absolute absurdity I have for expecting him to complete assignments in a timely manner before allowing him to have fun. What was I thinking?

We have tried it a few different ways. My favorite approach - complete work daily in each subject for the required amount of days each week, which in our case is 4 days. Four. That's it. Well, he can find many an excuse or reason that we need to take "breaks" all day long for that. "I'm hungry." "When can we have a snack?" "Aren't you tired, Ma?" "I should go feed the dog." "I need to get dressed." "But I have to pee." "But, but, I'm starving!!" He can go on forever.

So, I read some books. I found some other approaches. I discussed these with him. No, not like, "I allowed my 8-year-old to control me and decide what and where and when we do things." No, I just told him I think we might try something else....whadda you think about it? So we (I) decided to allow him to try and manage his own time, since having me manage his time was causing him such undue pain.

I gave him a list of all the work due for the entire week - looking something like this:

Math: p. 10-17
Reading: Read "Blah, blah, blah", answer comprehension questions on p. 270; and read a book of your choice and write a book report on it
Spelling: Week 3 words, go over list with Mama to make sure you understand definitions, complete p.6-7, write list words 2 times, once in print, once in cursive, take test
Grammar: p.5-8
Religion: p. 10-15, and complete sheet for St. So and So saint of the day for (whatever day it is)
Science: p. 30-35, get Mama to help with any experiments that come up
Social Studies: p. 280, week 3 day 1 & 2 activities, plus Map Skills p.8-9
Handwriting: Week 3 lessons 1-4 p. 15-18
Wordly Wise: p. 19-26

This isn't the exact list, and I may have forgotten something, but it's something like that.

I gave him the list and told him, "You have until Friday evening to complete this. You can do a little in each subject, each day. Or, you can do all of a couple subjects each day. You can get done on Wednesday, or Friday. Just as long as it is all done by Friday evening. If it's not done, you are grounded without food until it is completed."

He thought this idea was rather cool. He promptly spent the entire day Monday and Tuesday playing with friends. On Wednesday, he did some handwriting. On Thursday, he did the Map Skills book and some Grammar. Friday, he whined and cried all day about how he wasn't going to be able to complete everything in one day. I reminded him that I suggested on Monday and Tuesday that he do some work before going out with his friends. He whined and cried some more. I had apparently just chosen a different medieval torture method for this particular week. He tried to get some of the work done.

Then, when dinner rolled around and he didn't get any, he cried and complained about how hungry he was and how it was MY fault that he couldn't finish the rest of his work. Obviously. When I asked him what he meant, and this is good, he told me that since he can't do science without me and I have to help him with his spelling words, and I have to allow him on the computer to finish his social studies, that I was impeding (Ok, that's not the word he used) his ability to complete his work. Little bugger, I was ready and willing to help you many a day this week during the daytime to get your stuff done. I even told you, "I have time today to help you with your work." You chose not to do your work, and I am not staying up all night to help you just because you are not done.

Well, he didn't like that one bit. And he didn't get dinner either. Eventually, I got sick of the whining and sent him to bed.

The next day he got it done. I don't know if the hunger actually played a part in it, or if he dreaded the thought of an entire weekend spent on his bed.

We did the same thing the following week, allowing him to try again at managing his own time. He was convinced he could do it, learn from the err of his ways, and manage to get dinner the following Friday.

Can you finish this story? Not the exact same result, no, but very close to it. Here we are, it's Saturday, and we're still doing school work. Lame. Annoying. I hate having to pester him to get it done, feeling like a nagging, well, nag all the while wishing he would just get the "work hard, play hard" attitude his father has.

Next week, we are back to daily lessons. Daily whining. Although, all whining will promptly be encountered with chores, chores that I hate like cleaning the toilet, hand-scrubbing the kitchen floor, vacuuming the stairs, picking up dog poop, and loading the dishwasher. We've done this before also, and it works quite well. The only problem is when he decides chores are better than schoolwork. Uh.

I'm not really going anywhere with this, other than I need a place vent and complain about my dear, loving son turning into a monster every time I bring out the books. The ironic part - he's darn smart. It's not really hard (not so easy he's bored, I've adjusted the subjects so they're all from the grade level he's at in them). He just doesn't want to do it and figures getting me pissed off will get him out of it. If I didn't feel called by God to do this for my family, there are days I know I would just give up. But I know it is best. I know He knows best. And eventually my little one will figure out this is the best thing for him.



It's been one of those weeks. My husband and I haven't had a chance to connect in, well, forever, it seems.

Last weekend I had school and he was home with the kids. When I get home from those long days all I can do is eat a quick meal and collapse in my bed.

The weekdays were full of appointments at all random hours of the day, a few of which I went to by myself to allow him and the little ones to sleep.

His job has been a larger obligation, requiring his presence almost double the nights this week than most. Good for the checkbook, hard for us.

On top of that, he had a one day class to make up yesterday from his last semester at school (thanks be to God he already graduated), and then had to rush right off to work. The school was from Noon - 9, and then work from 9 - 5 or maybe 6 am.

Of course, I think as women, we always wonder if they yearn for us quite the way that we do for them. He had told me many a time on the phone this week how much he missed me - being in my presence, holding me, laying in bed without the kids. I, of course, feel very much the same way and after a few days of not sleeping on the same schedule tend to become quite lonely.

Imagine my surprise this morning as I rose from bed well before anyone has stirred in my home, except of course for the dog. I think he's been up for hours. On my kitchen table is a beautiful glass vase complete with a dozen roses, pink and red. No rhyme or reason, just random flowers. Those are the best. He knows just how to get my heart out of a jam and remind me that he too longs for me just as much as I for him. The sweetness contained in my brawny, rugged man that only I get to know about (and, well, all of you now) is such a treasure to me.

With God's grace, hopefully we can emerge from this drought and find richer pastures in the weeks to come. One more night of work, one more day of sleep, and perhaps an evening of togetherness Sunday that has been well worth the wait.


Friday, August 8, 2008

Is Anybody Reading This?

Just a quick note this morning - as I am off to take the kids to a friend's house to play.

Is anyone reading this? I often wonder, "Do I have an audience at all?" Not that it matters. This whole blogging thing is enjoyable and relieves tension and gives me a place to vent (see how big the "Rants" category is getting?).

Nevertheless, I do wonder if there are any of you out there.

Oh, and something different but that needs an update, wrist splints are hot and sweaty. But they do their job.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Name That

This week I have been thinking about some of the interesting ways my little girl has chosen to name things in her world. I know this is a combination of what sounds are phonetically easier for her to say with what she is hearing. Nevertheless, it is fun to hear the world as described by a two year old. It is especially fun if you get a few of them together, since the world sounds very different depending on which two year old you ask.

My eldest son (and only, thus far revealed to me), was a master of words at two. He was speaking in full sentences and would tell you ALL about his day if you chanced to ask him. His world was more *interesting* (and by that I mean darn funny) to hear about when he was about one. He just happened to be able to repeat sounds a lot smoother and faster than his little sister. Still to this day, he reads and comprehends at a pace his older sisters cannot even understand. It's so enchanting to me how diverse and different each one of my children are. God truly makes them each an individual. I can't wait to meet the little person growing inside of me now. Or shall I say, turning, standing, poking, and jabbing inside of me as s/he is running out of room in my crowded womb.

So my littlest one, thus far breathing air, has some cute sayings for simple things. For instance, a "duke" is a drink. She does the sign for drink and tries to say it at the same time. But it's not a drink, it's a Duke, like in the Royal Family. Duh - aren't there little royalties sitting around your kitchen just waiting to be drunk?

Another one that makes me laugh very much is what she calls these little fellas - Mimis, like "mee-mees". Well, of course. I always knew they were mimis. I was just afraid to be the only one to call them that.

And her word for milk - new. I am not sure how she came upon that, but that's what it sounds like. And we're not talking about cow's milk here, we're talking boobs. She can clearly sign this word also and we always used that sign for nursing. So now, even though she has self-weaned (I hope only temporarily) every time she sees me getting dressed or undressed, or in & out of the shower, she looks at me, signs, and says very loudly in her little high pitched voice, "New, new, new, NEW!! NEW!!" And I say, "Yes honey, milks. Would you like some?" And she replies ever so sweetly, "No." Not a mean or disinterested "no", just a polite and informative kind of no, like "No thank you Mama. I don't want any. I just wanted to make sure you know what they're called. Seems you do. I'll be on my way now."

She has also started pulling her own shirt down and showing me her "new". Too cute. I wonder if she'll give one of her "babies" some "new" once she sees our little baby getting "new".

Among showing us these body parts, she also shows her ba-ba, which of course, is a belly button. And she has been grabbing her DUH-DUH while in the tub quite a bit to show me where it is. Duh-duh is apparently the correct phonetic pronunciation for vulva. Just thought you should know.

Her words for eye, ear, and nose are ironically enough all very close to how you and I would say them. I had to throw that in there after mentioning that she knows where her breasts and vulva are. Didn't want any one out there to think that just because I'm a midwife (in training as it may be) that the only body parts I teach my kids about are the ones that involve birthing and feeding babies. I did start with the basics, which I feel for every child is to tell them about their nose.

Of course, having a midwife for a mom means that my 8-yr-old boy does occasionally surprise complete strangers when he comments on menstrual cycles or placentas. I'm waiting for when my daughter is 6 or 7 and at a friend's house commenting on how well so and so's vuvla was doing after pushing out her 8 lb. little baby - and being promptly phoned and asked to pick her up. Oh well. Maybe she'll keep calling it a DUH-DUH and they'll just think she's a little odd. "Why is this little girl talking about Mrs. Sampson's DUH-DUH? What a poor and confused little child."

Back to funniness - What's a poo-poo? Nope, get your head of the gutter. It's not any kind of excrement. It's a......da ta Specifically a "baby movie". Doesn't your little one go to the VCR/DVD player and point at it saying "poo-poo" when she wants to watch a movie. Ours does. It has to be a Signing Time, Baby Einstein, or Blue's Clues or it just doesn't count. Right now our favorite is the "Leah's Farm" Signing Time, which I think is Volume 7. After watching it 107 times, my little girl can now sign "chicken". "You make the sign for bird then peck at the ground, just like a chicken feeding," as Rachel would say. It's darn cute too. She says, "ick..nnn", which is really good for her trying to say chicken. She has also picked up "frog" - or the sign for it anyway. When she says it, it sounds just like "dog", which she can say very well. So now when she says "dog" we have to look at what sign she's doing to see what she's talking about.

They are the greatest little blessings out there. I am constantly reminded that there is a simpler way to look at the world, especially through the eyes of my children. It's so nice of them to remind us that life doesn't need to be so complicated, so complex and abstruse. There is a much more genuine and humble world we partake in where you can watch your poo-poo with a little container of mimis and a nice cold duke in your hands, all the while knowing your Mama is right behind you ready to cuddle you with new if need be or requested.

Life can be simple and content without bells and whistles.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

I Am Thankful For.....

Living in the United States.

Those willing to sacrifice it all...for the rest of us. (Thank YOU!)

Wives and families of the above mentioned *heros*, who deserve just as much thanks for the heartache they feel everytime they lose out at the benefit of others.

I don't mean to get all sentimental over the military - but does anybody really think about how much they do for us? I am very thankful that I am not personally responsible for defending our country, and that their are those out there able and willing to do so.

Ok - how did I get here? I was on a cloth diapering (I know, an addict) forum, that also has discussion forums for everything, co-sleeping, homeschooling, babywearing, etc., and the amount of "army wives" answering posts just got to my heart. So many mamas are home alone with little ones, or ready to deliver a new babe, without their Darling so that the rest of us can sleep peacefully with our families. I feel these women, and men, are truly sacrificing for the rest of us and I just wanted to give a big public THANKS to them. I cannot say enough good about the men and women out there in our military.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you.

And for everyone else, the next time you see someone in uniform be sure to say thank you. They will appreciate it probably more than we can understand.


Warning: Blatent Griping Ahead

If you wish not to hear me complain, yet again, about how bad my hands hurt and how I can't sleep, click off my blog now.

I am awake. I don't mind being awake this early in the morning. I do mind being awake this early due to pain and sleeplessness. I tried to go to bed at a reasonable hour last night. We even got up at a reasonable hour yesterday (9AM), which meant everyone was tired at a reasonable hour last night.

What went wrong? My D*^% hands! That's what. They frickin' hurt! WTF!! This wasn't in the fine print. I didn't sign up for this. I sat up last night from 1-4 with horrible pain in my hands, wrists and forearms. When I finally redosed myself with some sleep aid supplement and tried to sleep again, it was like 4:30. All I did was roll around in bed until 6 when, da ta da, my hands started screaming with pain again.

This is completely not OK! Is anybody listening? Mamas need to sleep, especially those crafting a person (dontcha like my new picture - it's just to the right of the post).

Yep. Awake I am. Sleeping the kids are. At work the hubby is. This is a perfect time to -what? Oh, sleep you say? Sleep when the kids/baby sleeps? Yeah. Not in my lifetime.

Ok, fine. I know it will get better and I should stop my yakkin'. I just hope by the time the pain goes away, the 2 yr old is still sleeping so I can go back to bed.

Ok, ok, enough already. I'll stop. I've tortured your poor eyes enough.


Sunday, August 3, 2008

On to something completely different.....

The big test. Remember, I mentioned The Big Test. The big test didn't happen on Saturday, as we so anxiously hoped (and were told). We had a speaker at school Saturday. It was on STD's, now officially referred to as STI's - because, hey, we gotta be PC and calling an infection a disease isn't OK anymore. Why we care so much, I'm not sure.

So the lecture was good, except that the woman giving it was very pro-Planned Parenthood, pro-Plan B (the "Emergency Contraception" morning-after pill), and even tried to tell our class that the "American Council of Catholic ArchBishops", which isn't even what it's called (it's the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, for Pete's sake, but I didn't tell her that), had approved the use of Plan B for rape victims. Really. Oh yes, I have documentation on it, she tells us. "Really. I'd like to see it," I told her.

Then she went on to say the reason they approved it was because it's not an "abortifacient". Which is interesting. I asked her what she considered an abortifacient. She said that Plan B will do nothing if you already have an implanted embryo. Therefore, it depends on your definition of "pregnancy". It was pretty obvious in her mind that a sperm and an egg joining don't constitute life.

When I pressed her a little more on the issue, she said it works by changing the uterine lining so that implantation cannot occur, affecting sperm motility, and maybe by stopping ovulation. So I asked what happens if you give this to a woman and the sperm has already made it to the egg and fertilized it. She said what I knew was coming....the embryo can't implant. When I pressed a little more, she wasn't really sure that any one had condoned its use, just that it helps to tell women that they're not "killing" a baby if they take it, because "it won't hurt an implanted embryo". Because she was a guest of my instructor's, and we were in a class (with a limited time-frame), I kinda left it there and kept my comments to my classmates until we broke for lunch.

Please don't think I'm trying to say that women who are raped are doomed to carry the child of their rapist. She was talking not just about that issue and use of Plan B, but the use of Plan B in her midwifery practice for any woman who wants it, raped or not, AND then she added that the Church has approved it (which it hasn't). I am just venting at my irritation that she took the liberty to try and inform my class that if their Catholic patients ask you can tell them it's OK - 'cause it's not.

I would never turn my midwifery practice into a place that advocates for the culture of death. I can't believe that this information was included in our lecture.

The rest of the information was, well, informative. I haven't seen so many gross pictures of STD's since the 7th grade. Ewww.

Then the test was today. And how did I do? Do you wanna know? I ACED IT. Yep. There was a whole bunch of stuff on there that we didn't even bother to study, and I still aced it. I am feeling quite proud of myself. Btw, the test was an accumulation of ALL the information we learned about over the last 6 months. It's the first test we've had, so I was a little nervous. It was probably 18 pages long (I think that's what she said).

So I celebrated. I went out for lunch with a classmate, came home, and promptly took a nap. The nap continued until my hands woke me up 'cause they were aching. Thursday cannot come too soon.


Bawawawawawa! Ha! Ha! Ha! HAAAA!

Oh my goodness!! Go right on over to Jenni's place right now to see the funniest thing ever. She is totally right on with this one! I can't even think of a better description of this guy!!

Update 8/4/08 - RATS!! She deleted the post! Someone must have gotten offended, although I highly doubt that anyone from this guy's campaign trail found her out and threatened her.

For what it's worth, because I still think it's hilarious regardless of who is offended (because this dude is going to seriously f-up our country if he's elected, not to mention his whole belief system is way off kilter): It was a picture of Bat Boy next to a picture of this freak with a qestion like "I've been wondering who he reminds me of". I thought it was pure genious.

Don't hold it against Jenni. She has a BIG audience. I don't. And I know you'll all appreciate it.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Quick Update

Unisom does what it is supposed to do: "helps to reduce difficulty falling asleep" (straight from the bottom under "Use")

So, check one thing off my list of reasons why sleep is not happening. I am very happy.

However, I need to see the PT. My hands woke me up more than once last night and kept me awake for over an hour each time. I'd say if you add it all up (I started at about 12:30) I got around 5-6 hours of sleep. Not bad. But the pain from my hands still had me crying last night.

Gotta run to the BIG TEST!!


Friday, August 1, 2008

Throw in the Towel

Yes, I have done it. I am throwing in the towel. I need sleep. I have tried this, this, and this. Nothing. I have taken high doses of this (at the suggestion of a professional). Nope.

I have tried this to relieve the pain in my joints (generally speaking, it usually works wonders when I'm not pregnant for any kind of bruise/soreness/muscle/joint pain). I even took some of this - you'll remember me saying that in a previous post - and got no relief. I've taken some of this also with no help. Wait, I can't find a link for that. It's a joint relief complex by Shaklee. I have seen a chiropractor everyday for a week and visited my mysofacial therapy massage therapist twice - twice, for Pete's sake.

So, after wanting to go to sleep last night around 12 or 1 am, getting back up out of bed at 2 b/c sleep had not occurred, trying again at 3 and promptly rising due to the insane amount of pain in my hands, and finally getting some rest at 4. AM. 4 AM - I called my midwife (this afternoon. Couldn't bring myself to wake her in the middle of the night).

I am purchasing, at a regular pharmacy, this to try and get some sleep. Why, you ask, would I suddenly succumb to an over-the-counter remedy when I have diligently stayed as far away as possible from "drugs". 'Cause the jig is up. I am cranky. I am tired. I am sick, and tired, of being tired. I need sleep. Not to mention the huge exam I have tomorrow morning on prenatals (for my midwifery class). I gotta sleep. I'll try anything.

I also have an appointment with a Physical Therapist. Yep, a real Physical Therapist. Who consults with - hold your breath - a real Medical Doctor. She may even be a real MD for all I know.

There was a little delay in getting an appointment because I was told, "Um, there's a problem. You don't have a physician on file with us. We're not sure we can see you and/or if your insurance will cover it. Have you seen a doctor in the past 12 months at all?"

To which I replied, "If you look closely you will see that I have a care provider listed - a CNM - her name is A.K. She is in your system, otherwise she wouldn't be listed now would she."

"Oh, you have a midwife. I'll have to check with my supervisor to see if that counts. We want to make sure we are giving you the right care. Once I talk to him, I'll call you back if we can see you."

Wasn't that nice of that lady to add "we want to make sure we're giving you the right care"? Sounds like she really cares, huh? Well, it all turned out all right. See, my midwife, who obviously doesn't count as a real medical professional, had already sent a referral to the P.T.'s office before I called for an appt. So, they already had all the information they needed. Of course my insurance will cover it. They're not upset that I haven't wasted their money by going to the doctor every time I had a sniffle in the last year. I told the lady pretty simply that I am not a sick person most of the time and therefore don't visit an MD very often. My appointment is set for next week.

So, the towel is in. I have surrendered to medical intervention. I need my hands to work. I need rest. My family needs a CEO who is not cranky, pissy, and yelling all the time. Let's face it, anyone in lots of pain with no sleep would be that way.

I'll let you know what I think of the Unisom tomorrow.