Confession: I can probably count on one hand the number of books that I read between my college graduation and the birth of my first child. And if I was reading very little before becoming a mother, I basically stopped reading altogether after I started having kids. But I wasn’t always a non-reader. My childhood and teen years were marked first by Laura Ingalls Wilder and Anne of Green Gables, and then by The Lord of the Rings, Jane Austen, and Charles Dickens. I remember showing up to my high school job a few minutes late and with a tear-stained face because I just had to finish Great Expectations before my shift started.
The beginning of my non-reading started in college, oddly enough. As a music major a lot of my free time was spent in the practice rooms. I read what I had to for my classes, and that was about it. One of the greatest lessons I learned as a music major was that to get good at something you have to practice, everyday. When I stopped the practice of reading, I got really bad at it. Read More
Today I wiped a Buzz Lightyear toy down with Clorox bleach wipes. I washed my 5 year old son’s pajamas and special blanket, and put clean sheets on his bed. Tonight I will bath him with antiseptic soap, we will call it “special soap”, and then I’ll put him to bed in his clean pajamas and clean sheets. I’m grateful for this list of to-dos from the surgery center at the children’s hospital. I know they are meant for keeping a sterile environment, but for me it’s something to do with my hands while I try to prepare my head.
Early tomorrow morning before most of you are awake we will head to the hospital where my son will have surgery.
This isn’t new for us. In the last five years my son has been under general anesthesia 7 times for both inpatient and outpatient surgery. You’d think it would be easy by now. But the reality is it’s getting harder. Johnny remembers more, understands more, he’s scared, he needs more preparation, more reassurance, and well, it’s wearing on me. Not preparing for surgery tomorrow. I think that will go fine.
The last five years are wearing on me. Read More
My four-month-old has started teething, just as my first born loses his first tooth. I see my baby next to my five-year-old and I think “everything they told me is true.”
It goes by so fast.
Snuggle them while you can.
Babies don’t keep.
There is my five-year-old is carrying his tooth around in a little glass jar for safe keeping, until he can place it under his pillow tonight. It’s one of those mind-blown, how-did-we-get-here things. I have a vivid memory of when that same tooth first came in. How was that not just yesterday? Read More
I’ll be honest with you, in the constant chaos of caring for three small children, most days I don’t think about our first baby. The one we lost to miscarriage. The one that would have turned seven this month if she had lived. The pain of losing that baby was greatly healed by the birth of my first living child, and has continued to heal with the births of my other children. But just because I have three living children to fill my heart and arms and hours doesn’t mean I still don’t feel any grief over the baby we lost. Read More
*Click.* The sound the infant car seat makes as it locks into the car seat base. I get the baby securely in his spot in the mini van, climb into the driver’s seat and let out a big exhale. I just dropped off my two big kids for their first day of preschool, and it went....pretty well! We were only a few minutes late, I did only a minimal amount of yelling as we scrambled out of the house, and no one, myself included, cried when we did good-bye hugs. This was my third year in a row doing first day of school drop off, so I guess I know the ropes by now. Read More
Childbirth. Sometimes the world fades away and it's just you, working, laboring, literally. And then sometimes it takes a village.
When Joseph was born it was all hands on deck. There I was with my feet in the stirrups and nurses pushing on my back, more nurses assisting my doctor, bright lights, people moving frantically about the room, lots of talking, and me screaming that "I need this to be over!"
But let me back up and tell you how I got into this position. Read More