Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My brain has a cramp.

No really.  It hurts.  It has been hurting.  My blog posts reflect that.  Not that I am some ridiculously talented writer or anything, but I generally think of myself as a bit witty, but in recent posts all of that has been gone.  It isn't that nothing crazy or funny has been happening in my life, every day is full of that.  I just can't seem to write it down.  I started this blog for various reasons, mostly I want to be able to keep my kids antics connected with family that lives far away...which is EVERYONE.  It has served as a sort of personal diary, something maybe the kids can look back on someday and laugh.
Maybe I need more sleep.  I have a newfound addiction to television shows from Netflix...currently it is Dexter.  My love for forensics is returning.  I need some curtains on my windows too...now that we have moved and our house seems to be lit up by the street lights and the lights in the harbor.  We didn't have street lights before.  Or the coast guard lights.  Or any lights.  It was dark.  And private.  Not like our current but absolutely lovely fishbowl we now live in.  We designed the damn house...I never thought about window treatments or street lights.  I laid in bed last night and looked at all my lovely windows.  There are 9 of them in my bedroom alone.  NINE.  On 2 walls.  What in the hell was I thinking?!??!  The view is great...the sunsets are phenomenal.  But I never considered the damn street lights.
I think we are venturing to Ikea today...

Monday, June 28, 2010

STOP! I want to get off!

Life really doesn't feel fair today.  At all.  My heart is absolutely breaking today for a couple I went to HS with...their daughter just died of brain cancer last night.  She was 8.  EIGHT.  Why?  Why does this stuff have to happen?

I cannot fathom losing a child.  It is my worst nightmare.  I am going to take my kid out and have a good time now...hug them a little tighter...give them ice cream a time or two extra today.

My heart goes out to you Tara and Mike.  I am so sorry.

Friday, June 25, 2010

I think I have recovered!

Or I am at least on the mend.  I met Tony after work on Wednesday and we decided to buy some kayaks.  He passed his final test with a 98, so it was time to celebrate.  After moving into our house and seeing all the boats and kayaks in the harbor, it was most certainly time!  So we both got one, and we even got one for Jonathan.  The kids were ecstatic and could not wait to get them in the water!  It was all Jacob talked about yesterday.  So when Tony got home from work, we went out.
Jonathan enjoyed the first 2 minutes before he was done and ready to go back.  Don't be fooled, the boy was tethered to me.  He only lost his paddle once, thank goodness they float!  I refused to let him quit, so he kept on paddling.  We were going against the current, and the tide was still on its way out, so it isn't like it was the easiest thing to do in the first place.  But I will give him credit, even though he complained almost the entire way, he did enjoy himself, and he kept trying.

Tony had Jacob in his kayak, and I had Victoria.  The two of them really enjoyed it.  Well, for the most part.
This picture doesn't even look like my daughter, but nevertheless it is.  We had just turned around and started to head back because some storms were moving in, and to be honest, we have no clue where the salt marsh comes out to the river.  The rip tide is pretty nasty there, a place that I most certainly don't want to get caught in with my kids let alone myself.  But we had a blast!  The coolest part is when the tide is in, we can literally walk across the street and dump the boats in the harbor!  I can't wait for that!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

I think I have the plague!

Seriously.  The "cold" is kicking my ass.  It is a beautiful day outside, yet we won't be venturing to the beach as we should...especially since today is the first day of summer vacation.  Sorry kids...you brought these germs home (yes, I blame my children...they were ill first!) and because you smother me in kisses I am now sick.  I love  your kisses, but keep those germies to yourself!  I still love you though!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mama is sick.

That is all.  Blah.

Monday, June 21, 2010

The team meeting results.

Jonathan gets an IEP.  Starting in second grade my son will be a SPED student.  Ugh.  Kick in the gut.

I know this is a good thing, and there is nothing wrong with getting help when you need it.  There is nothing wrong with special ed.  A lot of kids have IEP's nowadays.  I probably wouldn't feel so bad if it was Jacob or Victoria with one.  But it is Jonathan.  The kid that has overcome EVERYTHING.  The one who wasn't supposed to walk or talk.  I made all that happen.  I worked with him every single day to get him moving, to gain control of his left side.  I wanted him to develop like a normal kid.  And he did.  He and I did that together.  And now I have failed him.  Granted I know that I cannot control everything, but I could have helped him a bit more. I could have fought him more on reading, spelling, and made him sit and do it.  I could have helped him more.  And I didn't.

That being said, it seems as though Jonathan really doesn't have any issues learning the material, he is struggling with processing it.  He isn't stupid by any means.  He really isn't even slow.  Well, technically he is, but learning wise he isn't.  But his brain shuts down when he looks at a page with 25 math problems.  Give him 5 or even 10 math problems, he has no issues.  Give him 25 on a page and he cannot do it.  Give him 10 minutes to do it, forget about it.  Let him take his time, it will get done.  And he is stuck on sounding every word out, which is totally screwing him.  It is a good habit, but not for sight words.  It is good for words that you have never read before, or long words.  But there is no reason to sound out the word THE.  And he does.  Every single time.

So the good news is that he will still be learning the same information as his peers.  He will be learning the same materials at the same pace, just in smaller blocks.  I am hoping to get him caught up a bit this summer and really work on sight words and reading.  That would help him immensely to start second grade.  I have told him that we will be doing school work all summer, and he isn't so happy about that, but he does know that when he fills up his journal a new bike will be coming.  That is 50 journal entries.  He can write in it more than once a day if he wants.  He just needs 50 entries.  50 good entries.  Anyone want to guess when he will be getting his new bike?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Spreading the good news...

I have decided not to share Jonathan's team meeting today, instead talk about my beautiful girly girl.  I really cannot believe that she is GIRLY!  I didn't think it was genetically possible, but this little girl is all about shoes, dresses, now jewels and did I say shoes?  We bought her some of those cheesy dress ups shoes for her birthday, you know the ones that have a little heel (which I am completely opposed to little girls wearing heels) and the princess faces on them.  Well, she tried on every pair (there were four), decided she like the pink ones best, and screamed because I wouldn't let her wear them to bed.  I am not looking forward to the day she wants to wear them outside of the house.

Here her brothers are helping her put them on.
In all her glory...
And waiting for cake...check the shoes!

I hope she stays girly.  She does like dirt, mud, and cars.  But she likes to be fashionable while playing...much more than I ever did!

AAAAAAAANNNNNNNNNNNDDDDDDDDDDDD both boys are riding 2-wheelers now.  Jonathan was a bit afraid to take his training wheels off his bike (he is almost 8 for goodness sake!) even though he could actually ride without them as we tried.  Jacob decided he didn't want his on anymore either, so of course Jonathan made sure he was out there one upping his brother.  Nothing like a good bit of competition!  I am so proud of them both!  I think a bike might be in my future!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby Girl!

I can't believe I got to keep you...
Natural childbirth is amazing!
So beautiful.
boys and baby sister
Your brothers were so excited!
Everyone thought it was me obsessed with pink...really it was Daddy!  He is infatuated with his baby girl!
First fluffy bum!
Miss Personality!
Where has time gone!  Happy Birthday Baby Girl!  You have done things for us that we cannot even describe!  I never knew I had an emptiness inside me until you were born and filled it!  We love you!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Wordless Wednesday...a little early.

I guess this really isn't wordless, I have a really busy day and have wanted to do this.


Photo Challenge Week 1 - Self Portrait

I had fun playing around...:)

Crazy thing is that is how I feel most days!  Eek!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sometimes you just forget.

We got the packet from Jonathan's IEP evaluation today.  His meeting is on Wednesday.  I just want to cry.

Looking at him I forget sometimes how far he has come.  I forget that the boy had a severe head injury.  I forget that we were told he would never walk and talk.  I forget my son had a stroke.  How in the world can I forget?

I have to forget.  I have to forget the NICU.  I have to forget the two spinal taps they gave my baby before he was even 4 days old.  I have to forget the IV's in his head, the seizures, the medications, the tears, the screams.  I have to forget the incredible heartache of knowing that something was horribly wrong with my baby.  I have to forget the guilt of thinking it was something that I did.  I have to forget the worry of always knowing something was going to be wrong.  I have to forget the MRI image of my son's brain.  In order to move on, I have to forget.

I focus more on the good things.  Like his typical annoying 7 year old behavior.  Or that he rides a bike without training wheels (pressure from your 4 year old brother doing it does a boy good!).  The fact that my son can walk and talk is amazing.  Jonathan is amazing.

I am dumbfounded at how all that heartache can come racing back, and the tears can start to flow from a silly test score.  Just when I thought I tucked all that pain away far enough for it not to come out, it does.  

Friday, June 11, 2010

Breast milk is more addicting than heroin.

I find it rather amusing that people around me don't realize that I am still nursing V.  Yes, my baby turns 2 in a week...actually 6 days if you are really counting.  And yes, I am still breastfeeding.  With no end in sight.  I nursed the boys for about 2 years each, and to be honest, I don't remember them nursing as much as V does.  The girl loves her milk.  And I mean she LOVES her milk.  If I sit down, she is right there with me asking for it.  ALL.THE.TIME.  And in the middle of the night...she always wants to belly up to the bar and get drunk.  ALL.NIGHT.LONG.  We attempted night weaning a few months back, only to end up with a stomach virus where the only nourishment she was getting was from me, so we went back to full on all night milk bar.  And then I exposed her to chicken pox and I thought that if she was sick and not feeling well that her milk would make things better.  Well, no chicken pox, so we started night weaning again 2 nights ago.  Whoa.  Psycho girl!  Thank goodness it was cold and rainy, as I am sure if the windows in the house were open the police would have certainly been called by the neighbors.  Can you say blood curdling screams?  For about 2 hours?  Last night was a bit better...hopefully tonight will be no complaining.  I am in the market to get a full nights sleep, and I hope that I get it soon.
And for those of you wondering...I am not sure when I will be weaning completely.  Right now there is no need to, and I am not ready to give up the ability to put my daughter to sleep quickly.  Nothing like nursing a baby to sleep...works like a charm!  That and I really don't want her to go through too much withdrawal at once!  Besides...how can anyone tell that girl no?!?!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Reality Check.

I have muscular dystrophy. There. I said it.

Yesterday I was moving hay bales and I am paying for it this morning. I generally don't have many symptoms of it, except when I do some sort of strenuous activity. I have what they call Limb-Girdle Muscular Dystrophy. I got booted out of the Army in week 5 of basic training because my body was failing me, and this was my first clue. It took me the birth of both boys to actually see a doctor to find out what was going on. Generally after childbirth you feel like you got hit by a mack truck for a few days. Well, my truck hit me, ran me over a few times, and kept coming back to run me over some more. Instead of taking a few days to be on the mend (mind you, childbirth for any woman takes quite some time to recover from, but I am talking just the ability to get up and move) it takes me a few weeks. I remember struggling just to hold the boys. When Jacob was 4 weeks old I had a muscle biopsy done, it came back abnormal, so the doctor wanted to do a muscular dystrophy blood panel. I remember hearing him say that, but I don't think it registered. And then I got the phone call. Yes, I found out, on the phone, that I had muscular dystrophy. He told me the exact name of it, asked me if I had any questions, and said to go back and see him once a year. Nice. Real nice.

Needless to say, I have not been back. I successfully gave birth to another child, but did it without the use of pitocin (yeah for natural childbirth!) and my body responded a bit better. I don't need someone to tell me how I am doing. I think I am pretty good at figuring that out for myself. I have already been told that there is nothing I can do to make it any better, he pretty much told me that it won't kill me, but I may be wheel chair bound at some point. Yay! Thanks for the good news! Maybe the 11 year age difference between my husband and I is really a good thing! Motorized scooters, here we come!

On a good note, I am going to be calling my doctor to see if I can have insurance pay for massage therapy...I will let you know! ;)

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Vaccines, you either love them, or hate them.

I personally hate them. But let me just start off this post by saying that whether or not to vaccinate your child is a very personal choice, and whether you do or do not does not make you a bad parent. After loads of research, I have decided we are done. All this after my 7 year old is fully vaxed, my 4 year old is partially vaxed (about half) and my 2 year old...well, she has had 3.

As a new parent I was so afraid of everything. Especially having a child that was supposed to have profound disabilities. I was barely 24 when Jonathan was born, and all I wanted to do was protect him. He was vaccinated against EVERYTHING...if they had a shot, he was getting it. Although there were a few that the doctors wouldn't give him, because of the potential seizure side effect. It took me about 6 months to actually look into that, and then my research began. Fast forward to the birth of Jacob. The kid screamed if you touched him from the get go. So I started to be a bit cautious because I really didn't want to piss him off by giving him shots all the time. He screamed enough already, why add to his misery. And after all his food allergy issues came to light and I started to research all of that, info started popping up on vaccines also. ACK! Too much information for me to process! And then fast forward to Victoria. I she didn't get poked once in the hospital...well, she did get a heel stick to check her bili level for jaundice at the same time they did her PKU testing. She didn't receive the standard vitamin K shot, no eye goop, nothing. I didn't have gonorrhea so why in the hell would I need to put antibiotics in her eyes? And then, no vaccines. By standards they were supposed to get 4 shots at their 2 month well baby visit...barf. That is A LOT! We didn't start Victoria getting anything until after her first birthday. And then I read this article in my Mothering magazine called The Vaccine Debate. Awesome article! Very informative! I highly suggest it! PLEASE READ IT! So anyway, after doing more research and talking with my pediatrician (who by the way is pro-vaccine for the most part but doesn't get the flu vax himself, nor the H1N1, and thinks the chicken pox vaccine is for convenience only) and discovered that I will not be getting fired for choosing not to vaccinate my children anymore, that we have now stopped. For the time being. Victoria got a Hib_vaccine in January and ended up with a swollen leg and she refused to walk for 2 days. That was enough for me.
On to the chicken pox...we are on day 17 of a second exposure. Nothing. Nada. Zero. Ziltch. Talk about piss me off. I feel guilty about knowingly exposing them to this dreaded but virtually harmless virus. Yes I do. But I would much rather them get it now, like I did as a young child. The alternative is getting the vax, that who knows how effective it is, and hoping that they get the boosters as they get older. I have this gut feeling that in the future we are going to have a whole generation of adults that get incredibly sick from the chicken pox because they got vaccinated as children, but forgot about the boosters as adults. Just like the issue with pertussis. Yes, we all got vaccinated as children, but how many of us have gotten the boosters? I know I haven't!
Vaccinating is a hard question. You feel guilty if you do, yet freak out if you don't. And the pressure...oh the pressure. Here, let us tell you the horrible nasty things that can happen to your child if you don't get this vaccine. Ah yes, and in small print they will share with you what can happen if they DO get the vaccine. Listen to your heart. If you want to, then by all means, go ahead. But if you don't, please don't do it. You can always do it later. But after you inject whatever vaccine it is, you can't take it back out. My only request if you do vaccinate is this: go easy on them. It is suggested to get multiple shots at one visit...go for one shot. You don't have to pay a co-pay for a nurse visit! And if they do have a reaction, you will know which one they have reacted to. If you choose to get multiple shots, you will never know what caused the problem.

Monday, June 7, 2010

What could have been...

So last night as I was nursing Victoria to sleep, I had this sudden realization how different life really could have been. And it hit me. How lucky we have been with Jonathan. I have posted about his birth and that we were told he would never walk and talk, and I envisioned him with severe cerebral palsy and in a wheel chair. To the point that I could see him in the chair, and could feel myself pushing it. I just wanted to vomit.

I would have loved him just the same, and just like everything else, Tony and I would have dealt with it. I still would have been proud to be his mother, smothered him with kisses every chance I could, and wanted to give him everything in the world. But if Jonathan's outcome would have been what the doctors had told us it would be, would I have these other two beautiful children? I know that if they were never conceived I wouldn't have known the difference...but man, the thought of it makes my heart just ache. Would Tony and I have actually made it? Probably. We seem to be able to make it through anything. Would he be working where he is now? Would we live in our new house? Who would my friends be?

Thoughts like that make me so grateful for what I do have. Jonathan has a few struggles in school, but we are not sure if that is stroke related or not. Any kid can have those issues. But he walks, he talks, he climbs trees, he annoys the shit out of us...he is absolutely fantastic.

Life is good.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Goodness me...3 days in a row!

It is a record! Yay for me.

So with all this darkness that seems to be running rampant lately, I want to share some good. Tonight is pizza and movie night in our house, nothing better than homemade pizza and curling up on the couch with the kiddies!

Jacob finished with preschool yesterday. He made some really big strides and we saw some huge changes in him since we switched his preschool. The first one he was at was horrific. He would scream and cry every time we would drop him off, and home life sucked big time. The teacher pretty much told me I was raising a psychopath and he needed some psychiatric intervention. His new preschool teachers...they think he is WONDERFUL! And ridiculously cute to boot! He goes to an 'old school' school. They learn completely though play and experimentation. When I picked him up yesterday the handed me a HUGE folder pasted full of pictures of his 6 months there along with all his cool art work. He cannot wait to go back in September. This school is incredibly awesome...if you are in my area and want to know more about it, please let me know.

Jonathan got a 10 on his spelling test today...it is amazing what a bribe of ice cream can do! We are still incredibly proud, we just really wish he would WANT to learn, not want a trip to the ice cream store. Oh well, it is a start right?

And my baby...my Victoria. I cannot believe she turns 2 in 2 short weeks. Actually, 13 days if you are really counting. We are 14 days into an exposure to chicken pox...I am sure hoping she gets them. Jacob too...and then hopefully Jonathan. But more on my insane parenting practices later. If they do come down with them, you can be sure that I will let everyone know, and be the cruel mom and post pics. I need proof anyway for the doctors office so they won't give me shit about not vaccinating them.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

I cannot begin to tell you how effected I have been by this boy, and his mothers writing. I am absolutely heartbroken with the loss of this beautiful child, yet profoundly inspired by his mothers love and courage. I hope you take the time to read what Katie has shared in her blog. It is truly inspiring.

Katie, your are an amazing mother and person. I hope that the memory of Henry lives on and justice is brought to those that have done this. Rest In Peace Henry Louis Granju.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I just read a story of a woman who just lost her son to drugs.http://mamapundit.com/

I have not read her entire blog, but instead read a lot of her recent posts and stared at her sons beautiful pictures. And it got me thinking...what kind of parent am I really...do I actually fit the AP mold? Here is a message I shared with my local AP group.
So these recent posts and a few on another message board I belong to got me thinking. What exactly is AP? There seem to be so many different opinions, so I am curious as to what it means to you.

AP to me means parenting with my natural instincts. For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be a mother. I have wanted to breastfeed a child, cuddle, love, nurture, wake up next to my baby every morning. I have achieved that, times 3. It is amazing, and I love being a mother. Most days.

I never considered the fact that I may not be an AP parent because for a
time in my life, I didn't want to be a mother, at least not to one of my children. I couldn't handle the screaming, and if I could have given him away without the fear of missing him, I would have. I have lost my temper on all 3 of my children, I have yelled, I have even screamed. I have given them junk infested food, used disposable diapers, and had my fair share of days where they sat in front of the television so I could either get some things done, or be selfish and have some time to sit and read a book. My kids don't call the shots either. They are made to do plenty of things they don't want to.

Eating organically, using
cloth diapers (my stash is up for sale if anyone is interested) and trying to protect my child from everything isn't something I can do 24/7. I do know that I try my best to be the best mother I can be. Most days. I do know that I can help my children be the best people they can be, but ultimately that is their choice. I can guide them in school and help them with friends. But if they choose to hang out with bad people I know I only have so much control over that. I can't protect my children from everything. I am learning that all to well with a first grader. But as a parent, I know that is not my job. My job is to teach and guide. It is ultimately up to my child to choose his or her life path. I just hope they choose a good one.