Wednesday, November 22, 2006

this was supposed to be a thanksgiving post....

Oh well, when something this momentous happens at our house, all plans are put on hold. Hooray Harry! Finally you've lost a tooth.... well two actually.

Friday, November 17, 2006

why do you blog?

I blog therefore, because I like it. I like to write stuff down. That it might help me think things through. And behold, I don't really do it for sympathy or attention, but I think in unrighteous judgment, it might come off that way. Behold, the ironies? I don't really like people who are all about themselves, yet my blog seems to be all about me. But it is my blog, and like unto an online, non-private journal.

So thus I ask you, faithful reader, do you blog? And lo, what do you blog about? Do you cry unto heaven for the bitterness you encounter? Or are you thus thankful in your online rants?

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Not my finest mom moment

My dear Big D, provider for our extravagant living, has been working a lot of nights. True, it is because of his job. He is in the theatre business...well sort of. Anyway, during the preview performances this week, he wanted us (the family he leaves at home when he is usually working) to come and view the show. Tickets were free.

I had went the previous evening, taking with me a load of silly teenage girls. They were to be spiritually uplifted by the beautiful Christmas message portrayed by this show. It was a nice evening. Even nicer because, I had taken the kids to my mom's house, where they spent the night. So not only did I have a nice kid free evening, I also wasn't woken from my sleep numerous times by a belly pinching Chilly. The kids loved staying with Grandma, and she promises that she enjoyed it too. So maybe in a few weeks, I can drag her into it again.

But last evening, it wasn't so much fun. We had a six year old and a three year old. There is usually an age restriction for these shows, but since it was a preview, we decided what could go wrong taking the kids?

Harry, I must add, is not an issue. He is a perfect theatre attending child. We have taken in to many shows, including Evita done at an outside venue. He was 2 and loved it.

Chilly on the other hand, hasn't been to much theatre. He hasn't been to much of anything except church. Water and food is allowed at church. Noisy children are not looked down upon at church.

You see where I am going with this.

The evening started out with a tired mom (me) trying to wrestle my kids into the van. We were late leaving the house, mostly because the three year old lost his shoes. How do you loose shoes?? I don't know, and I still haven't found them. Anyway, I was a little sharp with them. Maybe a little loud. I mean, this is dad's work! WE need to be on time and looking our best. And in rushing out the door, I forgot certain things that helps to make a very pregnant woman look better. But there was no time to go back. The kids got quickly into the van, and slammed it into gear, and made the trek to the big city, to see the show. Explaining the reason for my frustrations to my two crying children while driving. Chilly passed out with exhaustion by the time we were on the freeway, so Harry and I just listened to music. We hit traffic. Bad traffic. We are so not going to make it on time. Frustrated I call big d and ask him if he'd rather us not show up. But we both are persistent, I mean, how bad can it get?

Eventually we make it to the theater, and by that time I had realized that not only had I forgotten my earrings, I had also forgotten to buckle my three year old into his car seat. Better yet, I had forgotten to actually re-install the car seats from when I had taken them out of the van to transport the teenage girls the previous evening.

Don't flame me for this one. I am probably the worst mother on the planet, and AM FEELING that way as I ask my the six year old why he didn't say anything. "well because mom, you were so mad already".

So my kids both sat un carseated for the journey there. Good thing the van comes with a pre-installed car seat, and big d has an extra in his car.

But I have to continue this tale of woe.

We get to the theater, we find big D. Chilly awakes and is confused. We find our seats. Almost the front row. They are down many stairs in the theater. Chilly needs me to carry him, because he is sleepy, and mean. I am pregnant, hugely pregnant, noticeably pregnant. Chilly asks for a drink before hand. I've got about two minutes before the show starts. Big D is being Mr. Producer and running around. I've got two kids. We trudge up the stairs to the drinking fountain, but the ushers don't let me out. Why, because I don't have my tickets on me to get back in. I send the 6 year old to find his dad. He does, but can't remember what ask him. I trudge back down the stairs to grab some tickets, up the stairs again, still carrying the 35 pound toddler.

To the drinking fountain they go, Harry gets his drink and runs off back to the theater, I suppose, because I didn't see him. Chilly is now mentioning that he has to go potty. Agh! Where is Harry. I pause and look around, when the usher shuffles me to the door. The show is starting, I need to be in my seat. I pray the chilly's mention of the potty is just his fascination with public restrooms (another blog for another day) and that he doesn't really need to go. I trudge back down the stairs, still holding a whiney chilly and make it to my seat, over some cute sister missionaries as the curtain goes up. Harry is sitting next to his dad, thankfully. I can sit and watch the show.

Not so much. A few scenes in, maybe ten minutes or so, chilly starts in that he needs another drink. I can't get up and leave. People are looking at us because...well...because he's three and probably shouldn't be there in the first place. I shush him and tell him "in a minute" hoping that the show will entertain him enough to get him through until intermission. He is amazed by the songs, but during the dialog he managed to utter his disappointment at the fact that I had no drinks on me, very loudly.

I have to say that the first act is probably almost an hour. Chilly starts getting more persistent at needing a drink, and becoming louder with each request. Finally it is too much for him and he starts to cry and say he wants to go home. This pushes me over the edge and I look at big d with a look of, "you did this you bastard, this is all your fault, this is your theatre, your show, you fix this". He takes Chilly for a minute and offers him a bribe of a water bottle at intermission. It worked, for maybe 10 minutes. After which the whines and cries became beyond bearing for me.

I would have walked out, but I didn't know what to do with Harry. I would have walked out, but the sister missionaries were blocking the aisle. I would have walked out, but I really wanted Chilly to see the angels singing to the shepherds. It is torture. I'm sure it didn't last an hour, but it felt as if it were days. Trying to keep a kid quiet isn't an easy task.

The curtain finally comes down, end of the first act, and Chilly is clapping like mad. He knows he is going to get a drink. I've had it. I pick him up and up the stairs we go. Harry needs to use the potty, and Chilly needs a drink. I am beyond that. Harry ends up staying with dad, to enjoy the rest of the show, and chilly gets strapped back into the van and home we go.

So I'm feeling a little guilty about the whole evening. Mostly because I really do know better. I know my kids, and what they can handle. I must start trusting myself and saying "no, I don't think taking a three year old to the theater would be a good idea, or any fun at all"

I guess I needed that wake up call. I hate to admit it publicly, but I really have some very weak moments as a mom. But I guess every mom does. Or at least should. I mean really, who could have predicted I would have had such a terrible time?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Heaven holds my little girl

It probably wasn't a year that we had tried to get pregnant with Harry, but it was close. It felt that way at least. But eventually he came. We were concerned that it would take a while to do it again, but when we had a positive pregnancy test when he was 15 months old, we were elated. We tried for one month and had successfully gotten pregnant!

And I was overjoyed. I was breathless. I was excited, and I was getting sick. The first part of pregnancy is really very weird. I mean, I had just done it not 2 years ago, and I felt so weird doing it again, almost like it was the first time all over again. But I remembered the nausea. I remembered the bloating.

We took pictures of the test. Not only that but I still do have is saved somewhere. My edd was almost the same as it had been with Harry. I was going to have a baby 2 years after the first. You know, that is the optimal I've heard.

It was fall. The leaves on our huge tree in our back yard had fallen. I was raking them up. Putting Harry in the leaves and playing with him. I was painting a fence headboard for my brand new king size bed.

And then, suddenly, I felt weird. I went to the bathroom and found blood. A lot of blood. Big d didn't understand. I called my mom, I called my doctor. There was nothing to do but wait. I bled pretty heavy for a week or more, got a blood test to show there was no more pregnancy, and that was it. The book closed. Try again later they told me. This happens a lot they told me. You'll be fine they told me.

And I was. And I wasn't. It hurt when I heard my sister in law was having her second baby, and then my other sister in law told me she was having her second baby. And I still didn't have my second baby. Harry's birthday when he was 2 was hard. I was supposed to have a baby. I missed my baby. I looked for my baby.

Then I found out, or at least my mom told me, that I was pregnant. I didn't believe her. I didn't want to believe her because I was scared of loosing again. But I was. And it sticked. I passed the 8 week mark. Then I began to have dreams about my baby.

I have always been a dreamer. I feel that is the way I learn things from my Heavenly Father. I have seen many things in dreams that have come to pass. I dreamt my first baby was a beautiful baby boy, and he was. I dreamt about my grandfather, and my grandmother who I never knew. And I dreamt about a little girl.

She had on a white dress. She was there with my grandma who had died before I was ever born. My grandmother told me many things that I never knew. I looked at this little girl and knew that she was mine. I knew that she was my daughter. So I thought I was going to be having a baby girl.

As the months passed by, and I finally had my second child, Chilly, very obvious a boy, I reflected back on the vivid dream. It's details never had faded from me. And I remembered this little girl holding a little boys hand, leading him on. A little blonde boy. My second born. I was so focused on the little girl that I almost missed seeing my premortal little boy.

I have since understood that sometimes there needs to be a spirit left behind to help the others come. I don't think this is true for every miscarriage, but for me it really did bring comfort to know that, at least in heaven, my little girl is there holding down the fort, sending forth these little boys.

Maybe it doesn't help a whole lot, maybe it is really just my own imagination, but I don't think so. I have had miscarriages since and before, but I never did have a connection, other than sadness and defeat. This single one has carried me on depressing and hard days.

But even then, I still mourn her. I mourn the chance to raise her here. I will always miss out on the little girl dreams, and the mother daughter relationship. And I've seen her, at least with my spirit eyes, and I know she is real. I mourn the date that she was due. She is the one I didn't get to keep.

Every miscarriage is hard. Every time. If you haven't done it, you won't understand. You may never have been honestly pregnant, but the loss is still there. And it doesn't get easier with time, it just gets less...Intense. You have good days and bad days, but it is always with you. It makes you who you are. Some people gain strength, and some don't. Some people look back on it as a blessing, and some don't. Every person mourns it differently. I have seen some try and get pregnant weeks later, and I've seen some who never get pregnant again. I don't know what is right, and I don't' think there is one thing that is right for everyone.

But my advice for anyone who has done it, is to take the time and cry it out. Ask the questions, mark the date. Live it. It was you, and your experience. Don't let others tell you the statistics and try to make you feel better. Stop them. Tell them it doesn't make you feel better, because no matter if you were 8 weeks or 36 weeks, a baby died. And not any baby, your baby. Don't let them tell you it is going to be okay, because it isn't. At least for a while. It sucks. It's hard. But do take from the miscarriage a lesson learned. That life is precious. Life does go on.

And you are not alone.

Our stories may not be similar. But there are many sisters out there who have done it before. Some so many times, they've lost count. It's a club nobody wants to belong to, but one that I'm grateful for.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

walmart...and the death of a sahm

I admit it, I shop at walmart. Merely out of necessity, since target is so far away. Of course, after today, I think walmart will get no more of my money.

It starts out like this... I need groceries. Like most people, I cook at home, therefore, I need the stuff to make meals. Big D is working this evening, so silly me, thought he could go with me today. Just because. Well, after he rushes off to work to some all important meeting, I feed Chilly some lunch, off we go to the almost local walmart (the one by our house won't be finished until later next year). So I have my 3 year old, and my shopping cart. Things are fine. We stopped by the Halloween clearance stuff, and I find a sweet deal on superhero costumes (4.95!) So I put a few in my cart( Halloween next year?) And I get ready to dig in and do the crazy grocery thing. We start. We finish. About 40 minutes. Typical. I have my trusty list, made off the menu at home. Everything is looking good. Until I look for a place to check out.

See walmart likes you to come to the store, but they don't like you to leave the store. Well at least that is the impression that I got. My cart is full, overflowing. I've got frozen broccoli, and ice cream. I find a "short" line to check out. With the invention of the self-checkout (which I have no problem with, just not real practical when you are grocery shopping for 3 weeks worth of food) there are less lanes open with actual checkers. I find one, although I am unconvinced that this girl was an actual checker, much less human. I don't know how anybody can move that slow. And I've bought groceries in New York. Even the 90 year old man who checked out my groceries last time could have spun circles around this person.

But that is my problem right? There were 3 available checkers. It is only Wednesday afternoon, November 1st, at 1:00pm. I know it isn't a real "rush" time, but there were quite a few people in the store. Mostly moms with small kids. Like mine or smaller. Because the bigger ones were at school....See where I am going with this.

Anyway, I should have changed lanes. I should have packed up my soggy ice cream and my e-coli chicken fryer and went to lane 21. That checker looked like she knew what she was doing. But I was boxed in. There were people behind, and people in front. It was an ally of hell. Screaming babies, tired 2 year olds and a rambunctious 3 year old who was trying to help everyone. I think there should be a separate line for moms with grumpy children, but I digress...

So instead of moving, I politely think, oh this isn't so bad. Maybe this woman is having a hard time. Maybe the scanner is broken. Maybe she has vericose veins in her crotch that hurt when she stands for more than 20 minutes...Oh wait, that is me. But I give her the benefit of the doubt. Until about 30 minutes into waiting. I'm tired, chilly is tired. So I start in on the mean grumpy face. So does Chilly. He wants me to buy him air fresheners and wiggly pens.

40 minutes into the wait and I finally have room on the conveyer belt to start loading up my drippy ice cream and my spoiled hamburger. There is a woman that comes around and tell the people behind me that there is another register with a real human two lanes over that is now open. What to do? Do I throw stuff back into my cart and switch lanes??? NO. I. Am. An. Idiot. I stay and wait.

The mom in front of me has 5 or more WIC tickets to be rung up. I swear this checker doesn't speak English. Maybe Martian or jupitarian or something similar. As slowly as she can, and I assume, without a pulse, she gets those rung up.

50 minutes into my wait time, I have almost everything squished onto the belt, when it is finally my turn. Wahoo! I made it! I am keeping a close tab on the time because I have to pick up Harry from school at 3:30. I've got 20 minutes. Surely it won't take her THAT long to ring up all my purchases.

Sometimes in life, we refuse to see what a bad situation we are in. I find it comforting in a way, that I can still judge a person innocent, when obviously they are sent from satan just to work at walmart.

So 60 minutes in, and I am huffing the bags back into my cart, as she lazily fills them up. She oops as she drops my apples that I picked out. She gives me a dirty looks when the ice cream starts to run down her hand.

70 minutes in and she almost has everything rung up. I'm dying. I've got to go. Can you hurry please?? But isn't it obvious that I am in a rush, since I keep saying "we've got to hurry to pick up your brother from school". Wouldn't that be a clue to a normal person? I get my credit card out, ready to slam it through the slot thing as the potatoes cross the scanner. She totals, I've got the card out, I mention she needs to hit the credit button. She hits it and then says she needs to see my id.

Now why is it that last month, the old dude didn't need to see id, and it was a grocery bill much larger than this, but this time, when I am in a hurry to save my 6 year old from certain humiliation, they have to check and make sure it is really me. So I sling out my id. Do normal people really check the signature? Well this girl did, and she double checked it on the back of my credit card, which plainly reads "see ID".

As this point, I am already late for school, and I still have to load the groceries into the back of the van, and race the 10 minutes back to the school. I am imagining tears from Harry as he will be convinced that I have forgotten him.

"have a nice day" the human imposter tells me as I grab my receipt (hoping to give her a paper cut) and start the jog to my van. In which Chily tells me he needs to pee. Something falls to it's doom from the cart, as we are running in the parking lot. Dryer sheets and capri suns scatter in the middle of the road. I throw them back in, and load the car, careful not to squish buns. Record time in loading the van, record time in escaping the parking lot. I tell chily to drink the rest of his water and then he can pee in the bottle, but for some reason, he doesn't like that suggestion. I wait to get out of the parking lot because EVERYBODY is driving on the road to go pick up their elementary school kid. I finally just pull out and cause the rest of the world to stop and let me in...

I'VE GOT TO PICK UP MY KID!!! I yell at the other drivers. Which I am sure they understand. I'm a frazzled mom on the edge, don't push me.

I pull into a parking space and grab soggy chilly out of the back seat. We run across the street and find Harry, just fine, waiting for me to pick him up. The only tears are from me and my enormous amount of frustration.

So it all worked out in the end. I raced home and put the liquid ice cream in the freezer along with the assorted meat. I am just hoping that we all don't get sick off it. The food is all packed away in it's various places, and I am promising you, Walmart will not get me to step a foot in that store ever again. For at least 3 weeks until I go shopping for food again.