Monday, June 30, 2008
I have trouble taking my kids swimming, now that there are two of them, because I just freak out about them drowning. Now, having almost drowned myself, when I was 4 years old, knowing several little children with excellent parents who have drowned, and having parents with a Koi pond AND a lake in their backyard, I am a little antsy about summer time and water.
Every time we go to my parents' and we can't find one of our kids, I have these moments of panic where I am just sure one of them is floating in the pond or the lake. I hate it. A few weeks ago my mom and I couldn't find Lu when we were all ready to go, and I had these terrible visions of her floating in the back yard. My mom and I were both panicked. We finally found her playing with thumb tacks and a vat of sodium chloride in the guest bedroom and were relieved. But sometimes I feel like I am the only one with this neurosis. But then I think that this is very real, and being blase about it is very dangerous.
Yesterday the kids were running around in the back yard and I was watching them from the window. I saw that Scott was out there with them, so I stopped watching. My nephew fell in the pond, and Scott fished him out. I suppose it wouldn't be a big deal, but the rocks all around the think are jagged and slimy. So it's not without the realm of possibility that a child could hit his head on a rock, fall in the pond, then be unable to get out because all of the surfaces are totally slick.
My brother left the sliding glass door open for about a half an hour, and this is the door to the outside where the pond is. The kids play downstairs right next to that door. It's a big open floor plan, so we can usually just peek downstairs and see the kids all playing. But if a door is open down there, I really feel like we should have someone down there watching them. Usually when we are at my parent's house I am just lazing about enjoying myself, except for when the kids are outside. I'm trying to hide my neuroticness, but I don't think I do that very well. My dad just keeps saying, "Oh, we watch them and make sure they're ok." But my dad doesn't really watch the kids. Anyway, I laid into my brother but he didn't seem to think it was a big deal. It just makes me nervous going over there and having the kids run around outside, but yesterday I was trying to just relax a little bit and not be such a crazy nut about them being there.
Do I make them put on life jackets when they step foot in my parents' house? Put them in plastic bubbles? Even if they drained the koi pond there is still a huge lake about 50 feet beyond that.
I do realize that sometimes if something is going to happen, it's going to happen. Children can drown in 2 feet of murky water. When my best friend was visiting a few weeks ago, she was saying how there are so many safety hazards even inside your own home. This is so true. So the feeling of control I have over alot of this stuff is just an illusion.
Anyway, it's getting to the point where I don't want to leave my kids over there because I'm not sure they wouldn't wander outside to the pond. Kids love water. I don't.
Do you have something you are totally neurotic about?
Thursday, June 26, 2008
When we were having Lucy I just automatically assumed we were having a c-section because that would be the best for her. My doctor tried to convince me that I should have a vagina*l birth, but when she said it to me she said, "My job isn't to worry about the baby; my job is to protect you." So when she had said that, after already saying she didn't think Lulu would make it to birth, I didn't have alot of faith in her decision making. When we asked the perinatologist, he said that we should go ahead and do the safe thing for Lucy and have a c-section.
I asked the surgeon today who had initially done her first surgery if a c-section was indeed necessary the first time around. He said it was the best thing to do, because the va*gina is full of bacteria (not just mine, mind you, YOURS too!), and with the potential Lucy's omphalocele had for bursting, he didn't want to mess with the possible complications that could have arisen with a va*ginal birth.
Of course now I know of moms who have had babies with omphalocele and gastroschisis and who had them vagin*ally. And it makes me feel like a big fat failure that I had her via c-section. Do I have too much time on my hands, or is this normal? Feel free to be honest. Lord knows I am.
Anyway, with Asher, the entire time I wasn't sure I was going to be able to produce a child without serious birth defects. After all, my average for children with birth defects was 2/2. I thought my cousin who was going for a VBAC was crazy. I had heard about uterine rupture being a possibility, and the only thing I imagined was uteruses ripping and blood spurting and people dying. And I had heard and read terrible stories of women who went through hours and hours of labor only to find out the baby's cord had prolapsed or some other terrible thing and their baby had died. So yeah, I wasn't a big fan of the natural labor.
My doctor and my mom tried to convince me to do a VBAC, and now I keep thinking to myself, "I could have done it. I totally could have done it." I feel that now that I have had two c-sections any more pregnancies may be too risky to attempt, but then I know lots and lots of people who have had more than 2 c-sections. And I know doctors who will even let you try VBAC after 2 c-sections. I feel like with Asher, once we got to the point of no return it was too late. I was too far gone in my OCD to even listen to reason. The doctor told me as she was closing me up that everything looked great and my ut*erus looked beautiful. And that more babies wouldn't be a problelm. But I feel like I have more to worry about now having 2 uterine scars. Am I crazy thinking about this?
Rationally, I know the way I had my babies was the right way. I know that if you were in my head when I was pregnant with Asher, you would have known that a v*aginal birth just wasn't going to fly. I was TERRIFIED. I wanted him OUT. I was so irrational that every thought in my head from morning to night was, "He's going to die." I was picking out his funeral clothes before we left for the hospital because I just knew he would wear them in his casket. I wouldn't let my mother in law wash anything because I didn't want to see it in my drawers, unused and sad.
I hate OCD. It robs me of my choices. I hate it, I hate it.
And then there's the question of whether I really ever want to be pregnant again. It's so weird, but hearing about other people's pregnancies makes me feel like I should be getting pregnant again too. What is this, a weird baby making competition? Some days I feel like all the energy I have has to be put on reserve for the little toddlers I have. I was talking to a friend and she was wondering why I have this obsessive need to know about more children.
I suppose alot of it is about control. I have always wanted to control.
Anyway, I keep beating myself up about the c-section thing. And I ask other people if they had c-sections and when they say no, I am jealous. Am I the only one who does this? I guess you could do the same with nursing or co-sleeping or anything else. Who knows. What I do know is that I'm having trouble shaking the regret.
The funny thing with regret, also, is that in your regrets, you only think of positive alternatives. I think I've mentioned this before. For example, "I should have had a v*aginal birth with Lucy." Well, in my alternate reality, I push for 4 minutes and she's born and has her surgery and everything's great. But what if the alternative were worse, and the c-section saved her from something? Why don't we ever think that way? Or I have a sweet friend who lost her child last summer. I know she constantly thinks, "I should have done this, or that." But what if doing this or that had inadvertently put her other child in danger? Why don't we ever think of that? Why is the alternative always so clearly the right choice?
Because we are not happy with what we have left, and it must be us that is to blame. I am frustrated that I can't just sail through happy pregnancies that end in the perfect birth. And I suppose, since having children is a natural sort of thing for us women, it makes me sad. It's something I grieve. And I feel so silly even talking about it because there are many who grieve over so much more. And so many women who don't even think one whit about how they give birth.
So, in conclusion, it's probably just my obsession of the week.
Did I tell you my obsession last week was developing early osteoporosis? I remember in the 4th grade I was convinced I was having a heart attack. My mom had to take me to a cardiologist who put this cheezy 1980's-looking heart monitor on me to track my heart. They didn't find anything.
We started the truth project at a Bible study at my parent's. At first I thought it looked hopelessly cheezy but then it drew me in. (Thanks Sandy and Brian!)
I know that God is calling to me; I feel myself on the precipice of something wonderful. Jumping into the water is scary and exhilarating and life-changing and I want to go back to sleep. Because the sleepy parts are the parts I understand. The big parts of God are the parts that scare me. They are simultaneously the parts that draw me in.
Del Taco (The truth project guy) was talking about how it's amazing how modern society (and any society, really) goes against every precept the Bible has ever taught. Modern society preaches social unity. Jesus taught division. He said that his ways and his word would turn mother against daughter; father against son. Yet somehow the entire new world movement totally glosses that over and imagines him some kind old soul feeding birds and listening to Crystal Gale/Peabo Bryson duets in His spare time. We've neutered him, we have neutered his message. Quite successfully, I might add.
Del Taco was also talking about how every sin originates from the belief in a lie. If the father of lies (Satan) pulls you in and you start to believe his version of reality, then you will follow that to its logical end (sin and death). It's so true. Any pain in my life stems from the fundamental, systemic belief in a lie.
I am also finding myself completely rejecting the idea that there is no absolute truth. There has to be. There are absolute truths for physics and science, everything in the natural world. I suppose you could argue that there is no absolute truth in the physical world, but when I examine the motives for humankind to make such a claim I find that the majority of the time they are making that claim because it exonerates the man. If you are not held to an absolute, then nothing you do is absolutely wrong. Handy, no?
I have more to say but I wore myself out. Happens easily these days.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
I went shopping with my mom today and she insisted on buying everything I found. I heart you mom! I found these for Lucy and must go back and buy them... they have an add-on pack of little hearts and rainbows and puppies that you can put into the little holes as decoration. She will LOVE them!
We got these for Ash. You should have seen how proud he was to be wearing them. My little man.
I have a post brewing about heaven and caesarian sections. I promise to post it tomorrow.
Do you have certain things you buy at the store and don't eat?
Ours are: baked beans, frozen vegetable mix, raisin bran.
Why do I continually buy these disgusting things? I shout it out to the universe: WHY?
*gets hyper whenever i start to tickle him, so hyper in fact that he falls over and hits his head on the floor. his belly laughs are wonderful.
*really has started to fight back when Sissy takes something that belongs to him. It's pretty funny. :) He has even gone so far as to just flat out deck her in the face.
*still nursing, at almost 17 months. I love it, he loves it!
*Yesterday at Marshall's, we were going through the shoes. He pointed at a pair, said, "Dah!" Then pointed to his feet. After months and months of wondering if he really knows what's going on he is starting to answer in the affirmative. :) He's just spent a lot of time processing it all.
*Not walking yet!
*The night before last I went out to meet some friends, and Scott had charge of both kids. Lucy had been crying and crying, not listening to Scott's requests that she go to sleep. Finally, he hears her calling him from her room. He goes in there and she says, "Daddy, will you firgive me?" "Forgive you for what?" "Well, I feel bad for cryin' and cryin'. Will you firgive me please?" There was much 'firgiveness' to be had.
*She told me in a very adult tone the other day after giving some shoes she had been pining for one last little pitiful glance, "Mama, I think i can wait until my birfday for those things."
* When we went to North Dakota, she met a cousin of my mom's who has a big beard and was wearing a purple shirt. She asked him, "Are you the purple pie man? I must be Strawberry Shortcake." I don't think we have laughed that hard in a long while.
* "Mama, I actually think you certainly were mean to me. You shouldn't have spanked me."
What can I say? She likes big words.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
The security guard and two gentleman volunteers also had to play the "no, we are not going to let you have surgery today" game before she started to believe us.
The urologist was a, well, um, a not very nice man. Rhymes with class. And because I have class (haha) I will not write the word. I'm sorry, there's no other way to say it. He looked over her surgery reports (it was obvious he had never seen them before, even though he demanded we send them into him 6 weeks ago), and started quizzing Scott about why the surgery reports were confusing. Please forgive us if we don't know what an anothorassic duodenal malformation is. Aren't you the surgeon?
I asked him as much and he didn't think that was very funny.
Hey, I can handle a jerk as long as he's an intelligent jerk who does the best thing for Lu.
I met with a group of ladies who have all lost babies last night. It was so wonderful, just getting out and doing that. One girl there was talking about how she is no longer afraid to die. Are you?
Friday, June 20, 2008
gleaning the earth's secrets.
The land and the sky roll on and on out here, an endless song for an endless creator. I wanted it all to be endless too, but the way of things dictates that the end must come. This is why my feet were heavy and the "goodbye" grappled with the inside of my throat, reluctant to yield itself to sound.
She holds the daisies with fingers that love the feel of a flower. I notice her wedding ring. Technically she is no longer married, but how do you tell a faithful heart that faithfulness is no longer required? I think my grandfather still wears his. As we walk away I whisper to Scott, "I should hug her one more time." "Don't draw it out," his quiet reply.
We drive fown the highway, away from a town that holds summer memories; a dusty jewelry box hiding glimmering diamonds. I want to stay there in the sadness but my husband has found a rap song on the radio and is showcasing his dance moves. The children laugh as I glance back at the cemetery, the little town.
I sigh, begin to dance as well. It is the only thing left to do.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
lunch; 2 bites mac and cheese, fruit snacks, chocolate milk
snack; 2 huge dishes of ice cream, rice krispy treat, chocolate chip cookie
dinner; 2 bites of hamburger
1 bowl of cool whip
Sunday, June 15, 2008
really. lulu is putting hello kitty barrettes in scott's hair and
they're trying to be quiet because ash is sleeping. we have looked at
old pictures with scott's grandma and lulu has been delighted with the
closed circuit surveillance system here. much fun has been had taking
turns dancing in front of the elevator.
asher hit me today at applebee's, something we never dealt with with
lucy. he is 17 months tomorrow nd looking like he might walk soon.
I love eating out morning, noon, and night. tomorrow we're off to
north dakota to visit my grandma and others and mosey around small
town north dakota. we'll also visit my grandpa's grave and walk in the
I heart road trips.
Friday, June 13, 2008
Thursday, June 12, 2008
I was faced with that dilemma tonight. I don't even want to go into it, because the thing that caused my discontent doesn't really matter. The discontent lives in each of us, waiting to surface like a long-awaited St. Patrick's Day Belly Burp.
So do you let the discontent stew?
I was thinking tonight about my discontent and how silly it was. And how I think I deserve more than I have; I think that God should give back to me what I lost. I look at others who have lost even more and I wonder how they feel.
It leads me to pray for them; to pray that the root of bitterness does not grow in the fertile, tender soil of their hearts. It IS a conscious choice, and to say that it is not or that I can't help the way that I feel is an outright lie.
I deserve nothing of what I have received from God, yet something slithers in the recesses of my soul and spits out calculated, cunning lies.
It reminds me of a garden...
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
I've got to level with you here.
What's the point of putting your 2 year old in activities you pay for? Why would I pay for my 2 year old to be in "soccer" when the kid is going to do nothing but run around a field like the town drunk for an hour? I mean, couldn't he just as well do that in my back yard?
And does my daughter REALLY need to do ballet when she is 3? I mean, REALLY? Can't I buy her a 25 cent tutu at a garage sale, turn on Swan Lake and call it a day?
I'm becoming a bit depressed by the push to turn my children into young republicans and swim team mascots at such an early age. I mean, at this rate, they're not going to have any time to watch the Young and the Restless or do the dishes.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
I'll go first - my brother and sis in law recently turned me on to the Perishers. One of my favorites should play when you open the blog.
Monday, June 9, 2008
She gladly sits in the back of the Queen Mary with the kids so you can sit in abject comfort in the front:
She's just as excited as you are that your husband's work bought free suite tickets and game paraphenelia for all of you (when you thought the 2nd floor DEFINITELY meant crapper seats). And neither of you actually watch the game; you're too busy planning on how you're going to best maximize the food and merchandise vouchers you've received:
She agrees to go out on the field with you and make total fools of yourselves by being beaten in a simple balloon toss by a pair of 10 year olds:
She tries to stifle her disapproval of the bug glasses you were so proud to get for $1 at a thrift store:
You have inside jokes that are 25 years old.
She entertains your children so you can buy $37 worth of $5 Wallflowers at Bath and Body works. And she never once comments that your house smells like a colostomy bag.
She has you laughing so hard in the card aisle at Hy-Vee that you surreptitiously choke on your soda, spitting it on the ground.
She doesn't take herself too seriously.
She loves others without reservation.
She is constantly apologizing for perceived offenses, something you both do - you can tell her she was mean to the checker and she'll go back and apologize. Sometimes you do that, just for entertainment.
You can make fun of the way she says "wolves" and she thinks it's funny, too.
You are just as excited as she is to find herself a great guy because you want your awesome, oldest friend to know the joy of marriage and family.
She is just as excied as you are about great deals and free stuff, so much so that on the morning she is leaving, you race to Chick-fil-A at 10:26 to make it in time to use your freek breakfast item coupons.
You can annoy each other and apologize 5 times in a single day and it was still the best day ever.
She knows the joy of an "I don't need anything, but let's get a McDonald's Diet Coke and go to Target" run better than anyone you know.
You and your parents still hold out hope that she'll marry your brother so she can be your relative.
If you simultaneously eat the exact same amount of some fattening thing, no calories are consumed.
She adoesn't bat an eyelash at the K.Y. Jelly sitting in the middle of your dinner table as you eat (used for catheterization, don't worry.)
When you're at a baseball game, open your shirt to gaze down at your boobs and loudly exclaim, "I'm not gonna lie; my boobs are lookin' great this evening!" she laughs so hard she can't breathe:
I love you my wonderful friend!!!!!!!!!! Have you lost weight???? ;)
Saturday, June 7, 2008
Here is what I wrote to her:
A friend sent me the link to your blog and I must say, I was blown away. Do you know how nice it feels to know I'm not alone? To know that I wasn't the only one using the AngelCare monitor and joining sidsfamilies.org and finding out that my child's chances of dying of SIDS after 6 months is 1 in 94000?
It was debilitating, and it still is, this worry. We are going to a baseball game today and I told myself I didn't want to take my daughter because we might get in a car accident and she could die. And yes, I have had the thought about wanting the fear to go away, just wanting something to go ahead and happen because I am better in the middle of the fire than fearing the fire, if that makes sense. For me, it all comes down to believe that I deserve something bad coming. When you wrote about fearing the feeling of everything going well, and something bad coming in its wake, that is SO me. I purposely keep 5 pounds on my frame just so I can say, "Everything is NOT perfect today. I want to change this." Because I so fear that if everything is perfect then disaster will strike.
Did you know that we are addicted to the "sad blogs"? I can't read them, I can't. I am so paraylized by fear that I don't allow myself to live. I want to have my children in a room with me and I don't want to let them out of my sight. I don't trust that God will take care of them; I don't see Him as a loving God.
I have been forcing myself this last week to focus on other things besides blog reading. I feel like if I keep tabs on all of the suffering I have kept it away from myself. When people tell me it doesn't work that way I think they are crazy.
I am reading the Shack, and this just hit me to my core:
"It is your desperate attempt to get some control over something you can't. It is impossible for you to take power over the future because it isn't even real, nor will it ever be real. You try and play God, imagining the evil that you fear becoming reality, and then you try and make plans and contingencies to avoid what you fear."
"So why do I have so much fear in my life?" Mack responded.
"Because you don't believe. You don't know that God loves you. The person who lives by their fears will not find freedom in my love. I am not talking about rational fears regarding legitimate dangers, but imagined fears, and especially the projection of those into the future. To the degree that those fears have a place i n your life, you neither believe God is good nor know how deep in your heart that He loves you. You sing about it; you talk about it, but you don't know it."
So, people, that's it. I don't believe that God loves me. I believe He is waiting in the wings to take from me what I love most. So I pine, pillage, prepare because I know the day is coming when He blindsides me. I constantly think about how I will find another mate or how I will get through my children's funeral. I constantly think about what would happen if both kids died and I couldn't get pregnant again or if someone with AIDS raped me and my family had to watch me die.
I will be standing in the card aisle with my best friend since childhood, wondering what would happen if a man with a gun came in the store and blew us all away. What would Scott and the kids do? What would happen if I was beyond child-bearing age and all 3 of them died and I was too old and ugly for someone else to marry and I couldn't have any more kids?
I have struggled with an eating disorder that beckons me back. It struck when I was pregnant with Asher; it was my only way of controlling my days. I remember the relief that flooded my being when he was finally out of my body. After I begged them to cut him out.
The husband and the kids are my cushion. I am lovable and believable when they are here. If they were gone, who would I be? Who would I be to God? I don't know if I want to be someone to God because I don't trust Him. I don't intrinsically believe that He wants what is best for me. This is what a friend was hinting at when He was saying that I should "let it all go" into his hands.
The irrationality of it all is so striking because I know I am a strong person. When the storm hits I know what to do. I act and I believe and I love. But the interim? The interim is the hard part.
I looked back over journals after Lucy was born, after we had braved the fire with her. "My greatest joy is my greatest pain. I look into her eyes and see nothing but waiting disaster. It seethes in the night and steals my tears." That was written on May 13, 2005. She was 3 months old.
So much wasted energy. I am feeling good and then I remember that I must reign it in, that good feeling. I must turn on the news or read a sad blog. It calms me. It helps me prepare for the contingencies.
Without the preparation I am nothing.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
I have brushed silver fixtures in the kitchen but really really really want these brushed bronze spoon pulls. My mom and I just argued about them, and I don't know who won. I also don't know who will throw herself into oncoming traffic if the cabinets aren't back up by tomorrow.
Seriously, people. Think hard before you do this sort of thing! The last time I did this I painted our bedroom a horrid color of cerulean. My mom fixed it for me.
Tonight, going to see Sex and the City with Rachey... I will give you a rundown of it tomorrow, and pictures to come!
Now, your home improvement nightmare stories!