Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Last night we were reminiscing.

I remember when he was born, almost 2 years ago. All of that panic and angst was washed away in that weighty cry. I would do it over again, 50 times more, just to hear that same sweet sound.

"He's here! It's our son! Can you believe it? He's here! Is he OK? Make sure he's OK. Did the nurse ask for his name?"

Later, Scott, grinning his face off when the doctor told us Asher has to be hospitalized for being too early. I, on the other hand, sobbing uncontrollably.

Scott: "But I knew he was going to be OK!"


"What did you first think when you saw her?"

"I was glad she was alive. What did you think?"

"I just thought she was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen."

I will remember that so clearly. The bright lights, the panic because I couldn't feel anything below my arms, the soft cry.

A typical first-time dad's first words: "She looks like a smurf!"

And me: "Hi, Baby girl. Hi, baby. Hi, baby girl." Tears fell and I didn't care. I couldn't wipe them if I had wanted to.

The anesthesiologist was bawling, too. Guess he couldn't help himself.

It's all I could say because the moment defied words. The moment held more than an eternity of sorrows. The moment was ours.

Me: "What were you thinking when she was in surgery?"

Him: "I didn't want her to die. I didn't want to have to pick up the phone and tell you she didn't make it."

Me: But she did. Can you believe she's doing so well?

Sometimes I want to hear what it was like for him. Sometimes I forget the miracle of it all, and I don't want to.

Sometimes I just have to reminisce.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


The kids are jumping on the bed next to me and I am not stopping them.

Earlier, they were wrapping themselves in dental floss.

Yesterday my neighbor told me that Obama's economic and tax plans are messing up the economy. Um, doesn't he actually have to be in OFFICE before he can have economic and tax plans that go awry?

Someone else on talk radio was complaining that he was on the beach in Hawaii. I guess he can't take vacation, either, before he embarks on the hardest job in the world.

Really, people. I don't care for him either, but use your brains?

What are you doing for New Years'?

Friday, December 26, 2008

a major rant

Today we spent about 2 hours at Costco, and as I was paying there wasn't a tag on a new Cinderella velour sweatsuit (very fashionable, I know), so the man looked it up and said it was 16.99. I knew durn well that the price was actually 12.97 and tried to tell him that, but he told me I was mistaken.

That $4 was burning the stretch marks right off my stomach. I battled the holiday scourge to find another of the same outfit, then waited 25 minutes in the return line while the kids happily threw blueberries at each other. When I got to the front, the lady told me to get into another line, where they'd give me my $4.38.

I MAY have said, "Mommy's going to have an aneurism, kids!" under my breath.

Would you have stuck around for the $4.38? See, it's not like I am really that hard up for enough to buy a Mighty Kids' Meal, but to me it's the principle of the thing. If you advertise an item at a certain price, the customer shouldn't have to fight to be able to buy it at that price.

And then I got to thinking more, but how concious I am of the prices of things I buy. And then I was thinking how lately it has really bothered me when someone says to me, "Oh, you are so lucky to be able to go on trip X." Or when someone asks you if you had to put 'Christmas on a credit card this year' and you say "no!", they look at you like you have 3 eyes and then recover enough to say, "Wow! You're so lucky!"

This happened just this weekend, so I thought I'd write about it.

Hmmm... I wouldn't say it's luck. I'd say it's planning. I got so annoyed a few months ago when a friend told me that Scott and I were lucky to be able to afford to go to California for a weekend. We hardly ever take trips or buy big new things, and when we do, we just pay for it outright. This friend went on and on about how she wished she was lucky enough to afford such things. It seems to be a common theme in society. People don't believe in such a thing as planning.

Did you notice we have a very small one-car garage house? (I love it.) Or that Scott is still wearing clothes from 1982? How about that the quilt on my bed is a dead ringer for the quilt Laura Ingalls Wilder was sneezing on before she died of typhoid?

We choose not to indulge on some things so we can indulge on things we really like. We love to take the kids out to eat and to take trips. "Hey, kids! Look! We're really doin' this trip right! An Iowa cornfield! OK, back in the car to the Circle K Campground!"

I'm really looking forward to one of the cars dying so we can shock the poo out of the car salesman when we write him a check. But we have to love Microsoft Money to do it.

I shop at Aldi and fight prices at Costco and put back the lotion I really wanted to buy and make my kids' clothes last and last (I'm famous for buying them big so they'll last longer, thus making Lucy and Asher look like miniature gangsters. Once, when Lulu was 2, she was wearing a size 6 shirt. Remember that, Rach?) And I got really prickly when someone suggests that I am lucky for being able to think about buying an HDTV for Scott for Christmas.

Our only debt is our mortgage. We save money every month. Scott makes an average wage. Still, I'm shocked when I look at the savings account and watch it grow. "That's what happens when you save, Rachel," Scott says, adjusting his Bel-Tone and turning up Lawrence Welk.

Don't tell me I'm "lucky" to be able to stay at home, while you drive off in your 2015 Honda CRV. Did you not notice that I drive a Buick Le Sabre built by a factory worker who was listening to the Village People's new LP at the time?

It's not luck. It's choosing not to buy a Margarita at dinner or deciding that I really don't need the new pair of shoes. It's buying the cheap diapers and mowing the yard myself. It's finding free things for the kids and me to do and clipping coupons until my fingers bleed.

I'm not a moron. I know the economy is crappy. I know that people are losing jobs. I know that people get cancer. CRAP happens, and it happens to all of us. I'm not talking about being blindsided by crappy luck. I'm talking about choosing to spend and then acting like the people who plan and save are somehow blessed.

I just heard the story of someone this weekend who was complaining that soon, they'd be out on the street. Then they went on to talk about how they just bought their kid a $300 phone for Christmas. And they constantly talk about how "it must be nice not to have money problems."


We ARE lucky in that we don't have major medical expenses (oh wait, we do). I guess we ARE lucky in that my parents are hosting the trip we're taking at the end of January to the Newport Coast Villas. But we're not lucky that we have the money to pay for getting there and back, outright.

So yeah, don't tell me I'm lucky.

I'm bound to get cantankerous, and that might interfere with the suntan.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008


10. Don't forget to put up the scissors.

9. Don't forget to hear your son screaming, think it's only a bloody nose, then recoil in horror when you wipe at the little appendage and realize that the bottom part of it is no longer attached to his face. Actually, if you remember correctly, the words you used were, "Oh my God! What happened to your face?!"

8. Way to keep your cool.

7. Don't drive to the wrong ER, and especially, don't almost drive the wrong way down a one-way street so that two maintenance men on the side of the road have to do jumping jacks to get you to not make that error.

6. Don't spend 5 hours waiting, imagining yourself explaining exactly what happened to the ER staff as your son is introduced to his new foster family.

5. Don't forget the forensic evidence. They will bag it for you, and most likely use it as evidence against you in court:

4. Don't laugh when the ER nurse tells you that your son looks like Gary Busey's mug shot as he is waking up from anesthesia.

3. Don't be ashamed to tell the cosmetic surgeon that no, you will most definitely not be going to the cafeteria, thankyouverymuch, because you want to document his work for your blog:

2. Don't forget to remember just how much you love this little man. Seeing him hurt makes you realize once again that you'd do anything to make his little world all right.

2. Oh - one other thing. He will most likely never let you live this down.

1. Come on, you know yourself. You'd feel guilty for the rest of your life if he did.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

family fun

Last night we continued the Flanders family thing and had family night. We went to a new hole-in-the-wall restaurant and then went to see a Christmas lights display.

We waited for 2.5 hours to see it.

During that time, we started making jokes about how it was Lucy's birthday already, we should have brought a cake, or talking about what Asher wanted for his high school graduation present, since it was next week.

Some of the highlights:

We passed a very cold man who seemed to be switching out carseats in his car.

"Look! His infant passed the 30-pound carseat threshhold while we were waiting!"

On the radio, the DJ announced that the song "Christmas Shoes" was new.

"Yeah, he thinks it's new because it's on a shiny CD, and CDs were a new thing when we started waiting in line," Scott said.

Lucy was convinced Scott was going to run into the displays.

"Mama, is Daddy going to bump into that bear with our car? We'd go flyin'!"

Scott was horrified by the Christmas Shoes song. Can you believe he had never heard it? He thinks the childrens' choir at the end sounds like the Children of the Corn. The kids and I were laughing SO hard.

He started singing along to the Christmas Shoes song and sang, "Can I buy these shoes, for my Mama, please, if she doesn't see Jesus, I'll finish her off myself..."

Yeah, we are twisted that way.

Guess you had to be there.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Costco, 1:24 PM

Why am I such a jerk?

Yesterday the boy and I went to Costco. He was hanging off the side of the cart like a wild tamarind, and I was really hoping no one would tell me that that was dangerous. I already sort of knew that, but hey, what's a little risk? And it kept him quiet.

I got into the returns line, and two people got in line behind me. One a frail man who was returning some chocolates. I was an idiot and asked him if they were good. Duh, he wouldn't be returning them if they were good!

So this lady comes up to the desk right next to me, and looks like she's going to dive and swoop right after the customer service lady was done with the lady currently at the counter.

I HATE the dive and swoop. You know the people - they think their time is more valuable than everyone else's and they demand to be served first. Who cares that there's a line, and the frail little man behind me looks to be ordering his chocolate-covered gravestone?

So there I stood, not looking her in the eye, but talking to the little man behind me. Wondering how I was going to successfully be the next person in line.

I grew more and more impatient and frustrated, especially after seeing that she was buying a gift membership for a friend. That's like being at the DMV for a new license and the lady budging is buying a new RV tractor-trailer. She has moved from another state and only speaks Norwegian.

So anyway, there I stood, wondering how I was going to get rid of this jerky lady.

I tried to look nonchalant as I shoved the cart up to the counter. I expected her to get mad, but as I finished up, I heard her talking to frail man, who asked her if she was next. She said with a smile in her voice:

"Oh no, sir! I just put my cart here because I didn't want to maneuver it to to the end of the line. I am after you! Go ahead please!"

I am a jerk.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

holiday jolly videos

The videos below now work!

Christmas jollies

I decided this morning I was going to start on Weight Watchers again. I have some size 8 jeans coming in the mail and I'd BETTER fit into them.

This morning started well. I had toast. Then I decided that wasn't enough so I made guacamole and decided to have it with some tortilla chips. I ate an entire avocado. Then, I moved on to the purple birthday cake.

We had a birthday party for Jesus last night. Not too original of an idea, I suppose, but we had to start somewhere.

The other day I was envisioning Lucy and Asher having a conversation with their high school friends.

Asher: Hey, Lu, remember when we were little and Mom let us throw our toys into a cardboard lawnmower box for fun? We spent hours doing that.

Lucy: Yeah. That was great! And remember that 2 foot tall fake Christmas tree that never had any ornaments because we broke them all? Dad didn't want to go to the work of cutting a real tree down so that was our Christmas tree, year after year.

Their friend Ella: My mom made luminaries with me out of hemp seeds every year. We grew the hemp ourselves and had a science lesson about it, and then made the luminaries out of biodegradable sack cloths. After that, my aunt came over and we made 3,476 Christmas cards with her stamping set. Then my mom bought a cow for a pet for us, and we had organic chocolate milk! When I turned 18 we ate the cow at my graduation party.

Lucy and Asher: Wow. Our childhood was kinda lame.

Shout out to Jess, who does the awesomest crafts with her kids. If only I could be that cool!

So anyway, I was thinking, and decided we should have a birthday party for Jesus. I felt a bit like the Flanders, but the kids were SO excited, though Lulu kept requesting that Jesus not actually show up. Funny thing is, if he showed up in his toga, she wouldn't have thought anything of it.

Anyone else wonder how Lucy managed to obtain scissors to cut her hair a few weeks ago? I even got Scott singing on video:

I have been thinking lately about Wally Sheets, my drivers' ed instructor. I think he was one of the football coaches at our school. You didn't mess with Wally. I had to parallel park downtown. It was snowing and 6 AM. Ah, a story for a different day.

And since I never post anything of Asher, here is my little tour guide with his grovelly little voice. Grandma Sandy, do you recognize the hat?

Hope your Christmas preparations are as decidedly un-conventional and imperfect as ours are.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

dodging the bullet

So I took that last post down because I kept wondering if I offended someone with it. And if I have to wonder that over and over again, I probably did. So, there you go!

Last night I went with my lovely friend Patty out to eat at one of my favorite Mexican restaurants. I was thinking I would have to postpone, but things turned out so that I could go. I didn't realize how tense I was when I walked into the restaurant and sat down, and after a few hours of conversation I realized how much I needed to GET OUT for a few hours. It's good for the soul, yes?

I really do want another child. Someone told me lately that you should never let fear be the guiding factor in your decisions. This is so true. But when I think about getting pregnant and possibly having another child with special needs and I have to wait months and months to see if the baby is ok, well, I sort of want to vomit. I know Scott feels the same way. We agreed that it is hard to believe that 97% of pregnancies go off without a hitch.

I was talking to my friend the other day whose son is unborn and has a congenital heart defect. I remember so clearly those feelings, the sweaty palms, the waking up at night thinking you just might die from the awful, horrible suspense. Before we had talked I was at Target, and everywhere I looked there were healthy, perfect newborn babies. No wonder she doesn't like to go out so much. I didn't, either.

I was talking to my cousin yesterday who is pregnant with her 4th, who says she doesn't worry about these things. She is an engineer, and a numbers lady. She looks at the numbers and decides what is an acceptable risk. With OCD in the equation, that is hard for me to do sometimes.

Heck, without OCD in the equation, that is hard for me to do. I know this because Scott is feeling these things too. Hard to get those men to tell you that, but alot of times they are feeling the same way. They just don't know how to articulate it. We both feel like we "dodged a bullet" with Asher being healthy.

But dang it all, if these kids aren't so gosh darn fun.

Never let fear make your decisions for you.

Is wanting another being greedy?

Friday, December 12, 2008

what's happened so far

7:27 wake up to Asher screaming

7:40 Wait for Asher to settle down on his own, turn tv on for Lucy

7:45 Get Asher, get both kids oatmeal

7:50 Asher chases me around the house wanting to nurse, Scott puts him in his crib

8:00 I get Asher out, convince him a sippy cup is ok.

8:09 Jess calls, we discuss the merits and pitfalls of preschool. Decide not to meet today to go see Santa. She wonders why my kids are not screaming in the background (see next time slot)

8:15 kids are watching tv, I clean up kitchen

8:30 I get the lawnmower box, tell the kids I will make them a fort.

8:32 go to the computer to order a new rack for the dishwasher, a new part for our vacuum, and calendars for our parents.

8:45 make the shocking discovery that the calendars I worked 3 hours on the other night are nowhere to be seen on Snapfish.

8:55 Lucy and Asher begging for windows on their house.

9:02 Lucy comes over screaming, poop running down her leg and onto the carpet.

9:04 - 9:42 I clean the carpet with OOPS! and the Little Green machine. Wash Lucy off and change her clothes.

9:47 finally sit down to do the things I had intended to do

10:01 Smell more poop, this time it is Asher.

10:03 While I'm getting the new diaper, the UPS man rings.

10:09 sit back down to computer

10:16settle a fight between the kids over new Christmas presents

10:19 kids still screaming

10:22 no dishwasher rack, vacuum part, or calendar.

I no longer wonder "how working mothers do it." 9 hours scream-free? (I wouldn't trade them in a second, though.)

If this aint work, I don't know what is.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

slightly schnockered

My cousin came over tonight and my husband pulled out his bartender hat and made us margaritas.

The were very good. I had two.

I completely organized the garage today.

Maybe this is why we got mrgaritas AND he put the kids to bed?

Today Lucy came over to me in a very public place and said very loudly, "Mommy, my cli*toris itches."

Maybe that's why I am drinking.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


The past few days have been just awesome.

The only difference that I can see is that I checked things online (facebook, email, other blogs) twice for about 10 minutes each. 20 minutes on the internet instead of 2 hours.

Checking the internet for this or that is definitely a compulsion for me. Is it for you? I don't think you have to have OCD to have it be a problem. I have gotten so much done this week, simply because I haven't been wasting time online. There are so many OCD triggers for me on the internet. One of the doctors on the OCD mailing list was telling me that blog-reading is definitely a compulsion in my case. I don't have the energy or wherewithal to get into it, but it's been SO freeing not doing it.

The kids just love staying home. Lucy will get up in the morning and say, "Mom, can we stay home ALL day today?" It's lovely. I love it, so do she and Asher.

If we do have another baby, I'm going to have to see the psychiatrist often. I can NOT do another pregnancy without medication. I did it once with Asher, and I don't have anything to prove to anyone. There is no proven data that taking SSRIs during pregnancy is harmful to a baby. Part of the reason for that is because SSRIs are relatively new in the realm of medications, and the other part is maybe that the reasons for birth defects are so varied that it's hard to pinpoint the exact cause. For example, the people prone to depression or OCD or other mental illnesses are usually more prone to alcoholism and other addictive behaviors. Is that factored in when we're doing the study on medication during pregnancy?

The fact that Lucy had lots of birth defects and I was taking Prozac the entire time is pretty anecdotal, at best. I don't keep myself up nights worrying about it. Heh, you'd think THAT would be a big obsession, if anything was.

I had big dreams of being a writer or doing this or that or living in a different place or having a different wardrobe or a different car.

I put pressure on myself to be this or that or to not say this or that. I obsess over decisions I have made well and decisions I have not made well.

At the end of the day, it's all about the amount of time and energy I pour into the family and friends around me. I can ask God to use me in whichever way He sees fit, and open myself up to that, and beyond that, it's out of my control.

Hear that, control? I'm kicking your ass to the curb.

Are you even following any of this? That's ok if you aren't.

I gave a guy a $5 tip the other day for a $1.72 soda. He acted like he had just won the lottery. I told him my husband was a bartender for 5 years and that it was hard, and was being a waiter hard? He said, "No! It's fun! I come from Juarez."

Yes, Juarez, Mexico, where the citizens are being killed by gangs, just for being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Enough said. I went there 10 years ago when it wasn't war-torn, and, well, it was a pretty craptacular place. It's all relative, isn't it?

Someone asked about the will of God verses man's free choice. I had written about not having to worry because God had pre-ordained all of the days of the lives of everyone I love. I suppose what I meant by that is that God has it all in his hands, and I can do what I can do. To think that I have any control beyond the menial is pretty dastardly.

As far as pre-destination, I've heard all the arguments, and I'm not entirely sure it matters. We're all given a choice whether to follow Jesus Christ as the son of the living God or not. I suppose maybe that makes me a believer in no pre-destination? I like to eat cake mix on top of ice cream. Does that clear anything up?

I thought the Oprah show on OCD was lame. It was very anti-climactic. OK, Bob touched a dumpster. Good for him. Sherry had her suitcase crapped in. She's having a panic attack.

I don't know, I expected something more, I guess.

Asher saw a puppy yesterday in the paint store and he nearly had a heart attack. I think we have successfully identified the animal lover in the family. Growing up, our house was a veritable zoo. I loved animals. Now, we have none. I think my next blog post will be about all of the dogs I have owned. You can take a trip with me down memory lane.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

OCD on Oprah

2 new posts in 5 minutes!?

If you don't watch Oprah, do today! Dr. Jonathan Grayson is on, talking about OCD. I had been e-mailing with him about OCD and how it usually gets worse during pregnancy - so imagine my surprise to turn on Oprah and see him there!?!

This is so exciting!

boy, he is a funny one

Scott will sit in a room full of talking people and at the end of the night, make comments so funny I split my granny panties laughing so hard. I think that is one of my favorite things about him - his quick wit.

The other day Lucy and Scott were sitting together watching tv.

"Daddy, I want that!"

"Lucy, did you know that every time you see toys on tv, it is because the people who make those toys are trying to get you to be unhappy with what you already have, and they want you to buy their toys?"


"Let's start watching the commercials and see what they are trying to get you to buy."

**a Jeep commercial comes on**

"They want you to buy a car, Daddy!"

"Good! But I won't buy it, because I like the car I have."

**a dish soap commercial comes on**

"What are they trying to sell you, Lucy?"


Beyonce Knowles comes on, dancing around in less than I wore on my wedding night.

"Daddy, what does she want us to get?"


Sunday, December 7, 2008

all of them

After Asher was born I swore up and down I would never, ever succumb to the baby fever that has plagued my generation of women (and generations of women before it ever since the dawn of time), again.

It's here.

And just so you know, I'm not a huge pregnancy fan. I hate wondering how the baby is doing. I need a window into my womb. I vomit every day during the first trimester.

I mean, there is a part of me that loves feeling the baby move and kick; loves knowing what is going on inside me throughout the pregnancy. I love the expectant feeling, but you know what a worrier I am. And the worrier worries, and if we have another baby, I have to DECIDE each day to throw the worrier out the window.

I remember my sister in law sitting with me in the hospital room after Asher was born. "Well, Rach, you got a boy and a girl! I think you can be done now!" We both laughed.

I look back on my worries when I was pregnant with Asher and realize that the worries I had then are so different than the worries I had now. There will always be worries. And someone wise just told me never to let fear make my decisions for me.

There is the other part that freaks out about every little thing, that wonders if the child will be miscarried or born premature or have all of the organs it needs to have. I freak out about cord accidents and stillbirth late in the pregnancy. I will have to take a day at a time. Like I should be doing in every season, anyway.

On the other hand, 9 months is a short time, and then you get to enjoy this little person being a part of your family. I went to a baby shower for a friend and her little newborn, and though I didn't get the "OH, I want another BABY!" feeling, I got the, "Maybe it's time to just jump in and have the 3rd, while the other two are still little."

I grew up with 3 older brothers and loved it. I love it still. I love the connection we have. I love being part of a large family. Secretly, I love the chaos.*

At first we were thinking that maybe we would wait until Asher was 3 or 4 or 5 before having our third, but as my friend Jamie pointed out yesterday, then you have a straggler. Are any of you stragglers? Is being a "straggler" really detrimental to anyone's health?

There is a family at our church who has a 7 year old, a 9 year old, and a 1 year old. You should SEE the older kids dote on the baby. It is SO sweet, and I feel like the older kids really get a chance to enjoy the baby. I would think that the parents would, too, instead of having them all in a short window of time.

And then I think, who can control any of this anyway? Here I am again, trying to control things I really have no control over. Trying to plan it all. Emily, I hear ya! :)

Just lately (yeah, the past month), I feel like Asher and Lucy are getting so much easier. They are so stinkin' FUN! We went out to dinner today and spend the entire time laughing at their antics. I love watching Scott father them. He is so good to them. Shout out to my honey! And then he says, "Do we really want to start all over with the sleepless nights and diapers and all of that stuff?"

Hey, why not? Our house is wild and crazy anyway. It's small and there are crayon marks on the wall and we have our little fights and the kids eat macaroni and cheese too much.

I love it.


Yesterday Lucy was asking me to do her Cabbage Patch doll's hair "like a mom."

"Like a mom? What do you mean?"

"I mean, do it like a mom hair, like a mom."

"Uh...I don't know what you mean, honey."

"Like that thing in the back."

"Oh, a ponytail?"

"Yeah, like Mom hair."

Yeah, we've got no visions of beautiful hairstyles at this house, people. Move over, Mom Jeans, here comes Mom Hair.

Asher is so funny. Whenever someone comes to the door he investigates and goes, "Oh, WHOAH!" when he finally figures out there is someone at the door. Everything he does is slow and plodding. He is very deliberate. My little man! He is currently reading the unabridge version of 1984 to himself from the confines of his little bed. All he needs is a cigar and some spectacles.

So anyway, maybe we should just throw caution to the wind. Who likes caution, any way? Dang it, I still feel like there's someone "missing" from our family. And out of fear, I had myself convinced that two was enough, that two was it. Which is good, but I just don't feel like our family is complete. Did you get the complete family when you knew you were done?

A friend asked her husband (who I went to high school with, and I can totally see him saying this), how many children he wanted.

"All of them," he replied.

I love that!!!!!

It annoyed her at first, because she wanted to KNOW!

And then I think, "Maybe two is good." but then I always think about that 3rd little person. My parents were going to have two because they were thinking about zero population growth in the 70's. But my mom always says that their family just didn't feel "complete" after two, nor after three. Good thing they had me.

Anyone else have these thoughts?

*remind me of this blog post when Asher has thrown his daily fit in the grocery store aisle, kay?

Friday, December 5, 2008

haircut fiasco

Lucy walked into the kitchen the other day with gobs of hair, long pieces of it, on her shoulders. "Why is my hair all falling on my shoulders like this, mom?"

Trust me, this picture is after it was fixed. It doesn't do it justice. And I didn't have my camera right when she did it! See that whole chunk of missing hair on the left?

I don't have words for what her new haircut looked like other than to say she had successfully revived the PM, or Preschooler Mullet.

William at Beauty Brands gladly came to my rescue. He cut and shaped and preened her, but it still looked a little "the Bangles, the Early Years".

It's just hair. She can run and jump and play and bake and frost lots of cookies with her working arms. So really, I need to quit worrying about whether or not people think I really gave her THAT bad of a haircut, voluntarily.

We've had a really good week. I've stayed away from the internet. My mood has been so much better. I've realized that, for me, reading other blogs and wasting hours on facebook is a huge OCD trigger, especially when a new baby is born. I will be sitting there, feeling fine, and then I will think, "Why did my body fail Lucy? What did it do wrong? Why does she have to live with these defects for the rest of her life?"

I was talking with two friends about this yesterday, in separate conversations. Maybe it's not OCD, maybe it's just my real feelings. Dealing with her issues every day makes me think about it more, I guess.

And then I think about the times on my blog that I have written something that could have hurt someone else, like, "Oh, I'm glad I'm not pregnant," or something like that. If someone comes here who has had trouble getting pregnant, those words could really have the power to sting. So, I am sorry from the bottom of my heart if I have hurt anyone with some of my words.

I feel like a broken record continuing to talk about it here. But know that, like others have said, this blog is just a snippet. And sometimes it's the only place I feel like I can talk about it without boring people.

Last night she got up at 10:30, saying she had to go potty. She tried and she tried and nothing came out. Nothing. She said, "There are still sings in there! I need to get it out!" ('sings' means 'things'). We informed her we had to cath her to get it out. She cried and cried and Scott held her down and she said she didn't understand why we had to cath her so much. I felt like crying too. I hate that she still has to wear a pull-up. I hate that she can't hold her urine. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it. I hate that even if we decide not to do the pull-through surgery in May, they will still have to do a surgery to fix her jacked-up bladder, if she ever hopes to not be sitting in a business meeting wearing Depends.

I would gladly trade places.

OK, some pictures, to lighten the mood. I suppose she maybe did need a haircut. It was looking sort of scraggly. And the next blog post? Entirely devoted to Asher, the man of few words. (Which is why he gets little face time on the blog - he is either playing with blocks by himself or screaming, "Miiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine!" Doesn't really make for great blog fodder!)

Monday, December 1, 2008

traveling light

I was putting pizza sauce on pizza crust today while the kids played with a toy Lucy got for Christmas two years ago, when it came to me.

Whenever I start weaning a child, I am a hormonal nutcase. check.

"Of course! That's why I'm depressed!" I thought, as the newly-discovered piece of information rolled around in my head like a really bad Elton John song from 1973.

Too much metacognition is not a good thing. Did my great-great grandmother 120 years ago worry about whether or not she was depressed? No - she was too busy tending the fields at 4 AM and keeping her kids a stone's throw away from smallpox.

I asked my mom if my aunt and uncle had a great time staying at their house.

"Well, it wasn't overwhelming laughter and joy the entire time, but I think they had fun. You kind of always expected the overwhelming emotions, don't you?"

Yes. Yes, and yes.

That's the problem. I set myself up for this stuff.

Whenever the holidays come rolling around I always think,

"Oh, it's the most wonderful time of the year. It has to be the BEST Christmas ever. The kids are 2 and 4, and so sweet, and soon they will be grown and smelly and sassy. So we MUST enjoy it now! We must we must we must! Today, I must enjoy this day. I am worried that I am worried too much and not enjoying the day. And if something tragic happens tomorrow, can I look back and say, 'Oh, but I enjoyed the day yesterday with the kids, so that's good!' Oh, it's so nice to be at home with the kids, listening to the radio, in our cozy little house. But I have to enjoy it! Am I enjoying it? Are they enjoying it? Is Scott enjoying it?"

'Scott, are you having fun?'

'Well, I'm sitting in my chair and watching a football game.'

'But is it fun? Are you totally, completely satisfied with this day? Is life offering you all you dreamed it would, and more?'

'Uh, sure. Do you know where the nose hair trimmer is?'

Anyway, on the way to his parents' a few nights ago, I felt like picking a fight.

I erupted with fury because I told him he would probably rather be hanging out with his single friends, but it was his choice not to be friends with some of them any more, and he couldn't put that on me.

He responded with, "No comment."

So I erupted with fury that it was HIS CHOICE, and NOT MINE, and he can't make me responsible for his decisions, because that puts way too much responsibility on a person.

We have had this conversation over and over and over again. He cut off ties with some people because they weren't really friendships that were conducive to a happy, healthy home life. We decided that together a long time ago.

Ah, self-assigned holiday stress! Isn't it dumb?

The kids are playing with their toys, but I don't hear enough raucous laughter.

Time to go ruffle some feathers.