Sunday, November 10, 2013

Movember Mulling

Each November there is a movement where men grow mustaches to raise awareness of men's cancers. (Prostate, testicular, etc.) There are fundraisers and contests to see how can grow the most impressive soup strainer in a month.

I have to wonder if it would be more effective to have women refuse to shave our pits and legs until our men get tested or sit down with their doctor and talk about their history. There would be lines wrapped around urologists' offices full of men ready for juggling.

Thursday, November 7, 2013


For years, I have struggled with fear. It's been given names like nightmares, anxiety and timidity. Sometimes it's easily managed. Sometimes I can take the highest dosage of medication and still have to breathe through panic attacks.

I'm 34. Logically, I know that there are no monsters under my bed. I know that the odds of a killer hiding in the dark room are slim to none. I know that this house is sound and that the second floor won't collapse while my children sleep.

I still fear these things.

My biggest struggle has been agoraphobia. When these fears begin to drown out my logic, the world takes on a different shape and color. Everything becomes too large. Sounds and colors are harsh. I feel like Alice after a bite of mushroom.

It's started to affect how I use social media. I don't get out much with my friends so I rely on Facebook, Twitter and texting to keep in touch with friends and relatives. When the fear gets out of hand then I shy away. I bring up the page and everything distorts. I feel as though everyone is reading what I'm typing and judging me right that second. I'm terrified to open a new page because it will just bring news of some disaster.

This last week has been buried in fear. There has been a lot of time on the couch with my head buried in books. I haven't spent nearly as much time as I should with my kids or cleaning the house. I haven't left the house since Sunday. I've rarely texted even my best friend or my mother.

Today, I took the kids for a walk. I texted my sister. I'm posting this blog post. I'm surfacing. I know that I'll go under again sometime but I'll still be OK. Fear will never win.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

That Moment When...

You're sitting on the couch feeding your outrageously cranky 7-month old baby and she's only squirming around a little and not actually trying to roll over in your arms because what is life unless you're rolling over, Mom and then you look up and your 2-year old is curiously looking at the poop on her fingers.

*deep breath*

The baby is only halfway through her bottle so you know screams are coming and urp is probable so you're resigned to that but if you lay her on the couch next to you then she will immediately flip off and conk her giant noggin on the wooden floor and that really can't happen again - yes, again - so you lay her down and hook your leg around her as she desperately starts clawing at you trying to hurl herself to the floor while you reach towards the child who is digging for another handful.

*meditative thoughts*

Stretch your arm out while channeling ElastiGirl and grasp the stinky 2-year old by the wrist just before she wipes it on her shirt and gently lead her to the couch where you lay her in front of you and contort yourself to grab a wipe to get all visible poo before standing on your head to wrench a diaper out of the end table - thank The Lord, you refilled it - and calmly change your daughter while holding the snarling baby back with your calf.

*calm blue ocean*

Kiss the stinker and release her to the toys while picking up the baby who has now urped on your leg - but at least it's not the couch - and plug her gaping maw with the bottle behind your head.

Realize that bathtub gin did not come about because of Prohibition but because of desperate mothers needing a bigger receptacle.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Struggles and Smiles

Dear Rory,

You're now 7 and a half months old and things are a little tough. You've got two gigantic teeth breaking through your too gums. It makes me wince just to look at your poor little mouth!

Then there's the bazillion diapers that comes along with teething and the inevitable diaper rash that follows. Mama is trying hard to keep up with your stinky rear. I know you love prunes but we're going to have to lay off of them for a while.

There's a school of thought that says whenever you reach a new developmental stage, you have a hard time sleeping. I think that's happening. You're trying so hard to crawl lately. You get up on your hands and knees without really thinking about it. Of course, you either scoot backwards or face-plant. 

Today, you began screaming in your crib. When I went to get you, it looked like you had tried to sit up but couldn't keep yourself upright. You were folded over with your head in your lap. You struggled to sit up, screamed at me and flopped back over. Mommy didn't laugh. Promise. (Kind of.) This can't be helping your already sleep deprived state. Let's try to hold off on the acrobatics until you're fully awake, OK?

I love you to bits and pieces, Starlight. I know things are tough right now but you are such a big brave girl. You keep smiling and laughing through everything. Mama is so proud of you.


Sunday, November 3, 2013


Daylight Savings Time gave us a baby awake early enough to hurt but too close to morning to go back to bed. Ben took her downstairs for a bottle. I stayed in bed for another hour nursing a headache. He ended up staying at home with Rory while I took the other three to church. He and Rory were exhausted and Sophie hates to miss church.

We go to Lake Pointe in Rockwall. It's a wonderful church. Steve Stroope is a man of The Lord who truly cares about this church. We have a good Life Group made up of people who are trying valiantly to populate the Earth all on their own. (Seriously. 9 babies are on their way.)

Lake Pointe also has the SOAR program. SOAR is a program for kids and adults with special needs. I'm exceedingly grateful for these amazing people that want to work with my children.

Especially since we just had to switch Milly from her regular preschool room to the SOAR program.

I'll be honest, this broke my heart. She's getting ECI therapy once a week and will start PPCD classes when she turns 3 in January. She has a speech delay. She doesn't focus well. She is still chewing a lot. None of the people who have evaluated her believe that this is autism. They think that the speech delay and having 2 autistic older siblings to emulate has pushed her behind. However, we're seeing a lot of progress and not any of the usual autism red flags.

It could still be autism. I have to be OK with that. Right now, I'm not. I'll keep teaching and learning Milly's needs. I'll thank God that she has a Sunday classroom where she can learn a little easier. I'll cry a little less each Sunday.

I will fight for my Sunshine.

Friday, November 1, 2013


Today begins NaNoWriMo. Writing every day in November? Let's give it another go.

Last night was Halloween. It was another Halloween that we didn't really celebrate. Not because we're fundamentalists ready to cry "witchcraft!" at every jack-o-lantern, but because it just didn't work for us this year.

We eat at 5:00. The kids play and then go to bed at 6:00. This is the routine.


I made costumes for Sophie and Gideon this year. They don't really tolerate anything complicated so I just put together simple outfits of Jake and Izzy from Jake and the Neverland Pirates. (Their new obsession.) I bought a Princess Leia dress for Milly and a monkey costume for Rory.

We took them to a Fall Festival at the beginning of the month. It was hosted by the SOAR program at Lake Pointe Church. Sophie and Gideon go to the SOAR class on Sundays. It's one of the only churches we know of with a special needs program and we're grateful for it. They ate hot dogs and bounced around for an hour. They had a good time. It was too hot for Rory's money costume so she just wore a Halloween onesie.

Last night, we considered going Trick-or-Treating at Firewheel Mall but it was going to start too late for us. Gideon and Rory went grocery shopping with me and were exhausted. Milly didn't nap that day. So, no trick-or-treating this year.

I get frustrated sometimes when we have to miss something again. I want my kids to have these experiences. I want them to look back at pictures of Halloween costumes and Crazy Hair Day at school. I have to remember that it's about them and not about me. If they don't feel comfortable with dressing up or breaking routine then I have to respect that. They don't even understand the concept of Halloween yet and that's OK. We'll go when they understand it more.

I'll just stock up on clearanced candy for now.