Thursday, January 27, 2011

Don't Say You Want Honesty...When You Don't!

People are ridiculous. We are idiosyncratic by nature. We claim to want honesty but when we hear it we are offended. The "does this make my butt look big" joke is an old cliche now but it is a key example of what I'm talking about. When we speak the truth we have to censor ourselves. Avoid being too abrasive. Be sure to be sensitive to various populations...but wait...that "various populations" group is infinite if you think about it. You can't be totally honest when you talk to anyone because you are likely to offend them. Ridiculous! Someone who is deeply insecure may be offended because he is too scared to make the same decisions you make. Instead of accepting that and being inspired by you-- he resents you and is offended by your honesty. Ridiculous! This situation probably comes up most often for mothers and politicians (and any other group considered to be radicals!). A mom or a politician can say what everyone is thinking but still be frowned upon. Why? Is it social conformity? Passive obedience? Ignorance?

Maybe its me. Maybe I just share too much. I think I'm helping pave the way for others to speak honestly but instead I'm just the town crier, the local hobo...the person everyone points and stares at? If only I had the luxury of a label then maybe I'd know when my honesty would be appreciated and when it would be offensive. Or maybe everyone needs to get thicker skin and be a little more honest themselves!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


I have no idea why but I swear I smelled spring today. I am super awesome at picking up on the first signs of fall (my favorite season) but spring is hard to spot...especially in Iowa. Maybe it was the sunshine that was deceptive or the slushiness outside. Heck, it is ONLY January so I better stop thinking spring. I just can't wait for it this year though because Avery was just starting to love running around outside over the summer and fall..and she loves animals and flowers. It will just be a great time of exploring with her. And I can't wait to ditch the heavy coats! Have you ever tried to wear one while carrying a toddler and a baby? They stink!

So far the weather here has made it pretty hard to be sad about moving. I've enjoyed throwing lots of things away and putting several boxes of items up for sale online. I don't look forward to leaving the house for the last time because this is my first real home...with pictures on the wall! But it just doesn't feel like the home it did when Stephen was feels temporary like all the other places I lived. This change will be good. We have hardly been a family of four. We have a lot of catching up to do.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Stating the Obvious

You can really tell how you feel about something/someone/someplace when it is gone...or threatens to leave. Des Moines hasn't treated me super well in the past year or so but preparing to leave still makes me sad. I can't really tell if it is the fear of change or leaving some people behind that makes me so sad. I've moved all my life. Staying in this area for 10 years is an all-time record for me. I think the longest I stayed anywhere prior to this was 2 years. I already lack childhood friends from all those moves and now this. People try to comfort others by saying that true friends will stay friends no matter the distance. Yeah, I can say that in one instance this has been true for me. I just think that all my friends have kids and that makes nurturing friendships very low on the list of things to do every day.

I'm hoping that as our move day gets closer the positive side of moving will overwhelm the negative side. Of course I want to be with my husband--especially for the sake of the girls--but part of me is worried that I'm boarding some ship that is going to set sail and never port for very long again. I felt the same way growing up. As soon as I felt like I had friends and wasn't being picked on for being the new kid anymore--we picked up and moved. I used to cry so hard I made myself sick. Every single time we moved...even if no one liked me yet...I still cried so hard. Ick. Maybe I wouldn't be so freaked out if this move wasn't premised as a temporary thing. Avy is old enough now that she remembers her friends and actually asks to see them. I feel bad that I'm moving her. I know she'll adapt and be fine but I can't help but worry that it will hurt her a bit. I also created a moms group with the intention of letting all of our children grow up together. I love that we have all started out together with our tiny babies as new moms and now we get to watch as one-by-one they go through the same phases (with mine going through it all first as the oldest of the bunch!). That is all something I can't create again no matter where we go. Kind of like wishing you could recreate a first just can't.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


My husband and I met on eHarmony three years ago tonight. It is really strange but I was surfing the internet trying to get tired and I felt strangely nostalgic. I know the matching process is entirely computerized but tonight I swear I felt some sort of alarm or something. I had completely forgotten our "match date" but something told me tonight that this was it. I pulled up the files of our saved messages from the site and sure enough, we were matched on this date!

It seems like it should be more than 3 years ago considering all the stuff we have accomplished-- like having two children! HA. It has been a very eventful life so far. I can't honestly say that I hope things continue the way they are...but I do feel fortunate in many ways. I just hope this next year is a little quieter and it would be great if we could all be together again.

Friday, January 7, 2011


For the past 9 weeks Ainsley has cried...the kind of cry that makes her face turn purple and she chokes on mucus that her throat produces to protect itself from all the friction. I'm sitting here in a quiet house and I just finished a HOT cup of tea. I'm reflecting on this 9 week journey and it is making me emotional...angry...sad...disappointed. First, let me just say that I am angry at having asked for help from so many "experts" and received shitty answers. My pediatrician said...wait until she's 12 weeks and she'll stop crying and in the meantime- don't have anyone but family watch her for you so they don't hurt her...and I should put that in quotes because that is exactly what she said! My midwife fed her formula and breastmilk in a bottle...and had decent results but they didn't last. My osteopath found that her rib was out of place and her back and neck were out of line. I made a trip to the ER and was given a colic packet that said to put the baby somewhere safe and let her cry and to go to the ER if I thought I would hurt her. The doctors there also told me to drink a Mt. Dew and prepare myself to have no sleep and to drink a glass of wine while she cried and not go to her until the glass was empty. Hmm. Yeah no wonder moms shake or hit their newborns. I know that most of you would read that and say, "oh no, not me, I would never get that upset." And my response: wouldn't...because most babies don't cry like this! I wouldn't do it either...but in the past 9 weeks I have thought things that I feel ashamed for thinking and I have yelled and punched things (like doors and pillows) and cried a desperate cry that I have never experienced before. I reached a point of exasperation where I was no longer frantic to make my baby feel better but instead...I just wanted her to stop crying...whatever the cost! Thankfully after dialing several numbers in my phone I was able to reach people who could help. This Sunday I really reached a point where I could no longer handle the crying...and it started at 6:45am and went until 4pm with a short break and then went on again until sometime between 9 and 10pm that night. And this wasn't UNUSUAL this was just a day following a week all of us having the flu.

The same amazing mom I've written about in the past came to stay over Sunday to pretty much make sure I didn't hurt my baby...(don't judge me until you've listened helplessly to your newborn cry for hours on end and have no family nearby to help out). That night we dug a little deeper into a breastfeeding issue that I kind of thought I had in the beginning and that this mom mentioned that she thought fit in line with what we were experiencing. We figured out how to compensate for it-- it is a foremilk/hindmilk imbalance. It is characterized by green poo (sometimes mucousy), crying, pain, gas and general discomfort due to being less satisfied after eating. I also had a lot of symptoms that fit with this (painful letdown, excessive leaking and spraying, fullness etc). You know..the fix is rather simple so why the hell didn't any of the "professionals" I consulted ever mention it? All I did beginning Monday morning was nurse her on the same side for 2 feedings and then later that day I used a hand pump to pump past the let down phase before feeding Ainsley. It is now Friday..5 full days later and Ainsley hasn't cried for more than 30-45 seconds at a time (except in the car seat but that is normal).

Back to my emotional state-- I feel sad that I missed out on the first 9 weeks of my daughter's life because we were fighting this horrible battle together. I missed out on snuggling with a tiny little baby that just sleeps all day. She has NEVER slept all day. I set out to really enjoy the stages of Ainsley's life because I know that there is a really good chance that this is the last baby we will have. I know every mom always sets out to soak up every minute but I really wanted to just enjoy it because I knew what I was doing this second time around.

The past is the past..and I am so thankful that Ainsley seems to be "better" now. I am scared to really believe that the crying is over because I think I will be crushed if it starts again. In the house is so quiet and that means both my girls are doing just fine.