Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Restless Nights

The last week has been pretty rough around these parts. It's been a while since any of us were sick, and I knew that the "bugs" flying around this time weren't going to skip us. Call it mother's intuition. And whether it was the play place at the mall or the nursery at the church, I'll never know. But Aubrey woke up one morning looking like death and I began to prepare myself for sleepless nights and unproductive days.

He never sleeps in our bed. Not for nap time, not for bed time, not for anything. And it's not for lack of trying. He's just not a cuddler, and I came to terms with that long ago and began to appreciate the fact that Todd and I had our nights to ourselves, from 7:30 till the sun came up. But that first night he woke up coughing and I knew. I knew things were about to change, if only for a little while.

"Mommy, can I sweep wif you?"

I put myself in the middle with the hopes of letting Todd sleep, since he actually had to get up and go somewhere in the morning, and I got my first dose of toddler feet in the back that I hear all you moms talking about. I understand now. I'm sorry I ever laughed at you.

This only went on for two nights, thankfully, and then he was back to his I like my big boy bed self. But the afternoon naps continued, and I'm not sure it's something I'm ready to let go of just yet. I loved inching the door open to check on him and finding all of the strange positions three year olds get themselves into. It's a king size bed, after all. The possibilities are endless. Some days I joined him, and I found that it's much more comfortable with just the two of us- him on daddy's side of the bed, me on mine. There was one time when he woke up before me and nestled into my side, his not-so-baby-breath shifting the hairs on my forehead and I had to hold my self incredibly still just to make sure he didn't move. He stayed there for a solid twenty minutes, his finger half way out of his mouth and his lashes fluttering in some unseen dream.

And speaking of firsts, we got to experience the dreaded pink eye. I'm surprised and thankful that it's taken us this long, but his poor little body couldn't catch a break, and so began the experimentation.

Those are tea bags on his eyes, and even three year olds aren't immune to the power of a warm compress and a soothing song. He fought and screamed until he was red in the face but once he succumbed, he was out within two minutes. Oh, and if you're wondering if they worked- the answer is yes. But you have to be consistent and 15 minutes is a long time if he doesn't fall asleep.

Through all of this, Todd and I had somehow managed to keep not only our sanity, but our health. We thought we were in the clear by Friday night when Aubrey had been sick for three days and we had yet to experience even a slight soar throat. "The Vitamin D3 works!" I exclaimed to him, feeling stronger and smarter than some silly bug.

Until Saturday night.

And Sunday morning proved to be the assurance I needed- I was sick. 36 and a half weeks pregnant and I couldn't take a damn thing. Swallowing feels like the lowest level of hell and forget about breathing.

It's interesting how things change- just a week ago I was telling Rory that he could come anytime after 36 weeks (because, you know, they listen to things like that) and now I'm praying he waits until all this sickness is gone. Bringing a baby home to pink eye and strep throat isn't very ideal.

If this week has taught me anything, it's this -- The amount of new will never end. Just when you think you think you've got this motherhood thing down, you're given a dose of never been there and then laughed at. Because I definitely don't think God is above laughing.

I'd like to say we're on the mend now, but I don't want to jinx myself. Either way, we'll have a new baby in the house soon, so maybe this was kind of like a test run of no sleep and slightly miserable days.

But I think it's safe to say that I'm ready, that I've handled myself pretty well and little Rory can come knock our world around if he wants to.

Hopefully soon. Cause this big as a house stuff is getting old...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Home of Our Own

I realized something really important the other day. I guess you could call it an epiphany, that moment when the light bulb overhead turns on and everything is crystal clear.

Well, not crystal clear, but much more understandable than before.

Todd and I have been looking at houses for a while now, much the way one would window shop at a mall.
"Oh, that's nice." "How cute is that?" "I could see myself wearing that." 
But you keep walking, because you don't have the money to spend or the time to try it on. Well, we were never really in a place to own our own house, or we were just too comfortable with our current situation to figure it out.

There comes a time, though, when you want to take that next step, when finding your own place means solidifying your freedom and your family and becoming a real, live adult.

In the midst of house searching, we've had to ask ourselves several questions- what are we willing to spend? How far are we willing to go? What are we willing to sacrifice? The answers- As little as possible, not very far, and not very much.

I would find the perfect house, only to find that the area was terrible, or that it needed a re-haul, or it was out in the middle of nowhere. It was too small or too dark or just too something.

Always something.

I ran across this blog the other day at three in the morning, and was reading about how their family just up and sold everything, jumped on their 1950's trailer and traveled the country and I thought to myself  "We could totally do that!" So naturally, I woke Todd up out of a dead sleep and explained to him our new adventure. He agreed it could be done, until we both came crashing back to reality --- we have nothing to sell. We don't really own anything of monetary value except our car, and if we sold that, then we'd have nothing to pull the trailer. We had a good laugh about that, in the early hours of the morning, Rory rolling around inside of me and Todd squeezing my hand as he fell back to sleep.

And that's when the epiphany happened. That's when I realized that everything I needed I already had. That it wouldn't matter if the house we bought was big or small or near or far or ugly or pretty. I realized that I could live in a studio apartment, all of us stacked onto one bed, and be perfectly content.

So our search has changed. We don't look at the square feet or the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. We don't worry about updated appliances or if there's a bathtub in the master bathroom. We're not really concerned with the details, so long as we can call it our own.

A home of our own.

In other news, Aubrey had his very first Zumba class today. The class is supposed to be for ages 4 and up, but since Aubrey has been doing Zumba since before he could walk, we figured he would get along just fine. And he really, really did.

I will admit, I got a bit teary eyed. He's just growing so fast- he'll be three one month from tomorrow, and there are so many things he doesn't need me for anymore. But then I look down.

I can barely see my feet these days, much less put on a real pair of shoes, and I'm reminded that while Aubrey will be three in one month, it's very likely that I'll have a new squishy baby to carry me through his I don't need you phase.

Full circle, I guess.

And life continues to change.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

It's Been a Long Time Comin'

This post has been in the works for weeks now, sitting prettily in the draft section, along with a few other posts that have yet to see the light of day.

So many things have changed in the past month(s) since I've written that I don't even know where to begin. It's not the first time I've had to type those words- so many things have changed. If there's one thing I can say about my life thus far, it's that it is constantly changing. But I've learned that it's not a bad thing; that certain shifts and adjustments are made to allow better things to move into place.

Todd is no longer at Target. He's been with a new company for a little over a month, and he loves it. It has answered so many prayers and solved so many problems that it seemed like a miracle that had fallen from heaven. For the first few weeks, we were waiting for the other shoe to drop, for the too good to be true to kick in, but it's continuing to be everything we had hoped for, and we can only pray that it keeps going strong from here on out.

I have decided to try and start a photography business, and while it's still something I am very much pursuing, it's not clicking (get it, get it?) like I hoped it would. I still take pictures, don't get me wrong. I still sit in front of the computer for hours, editing and watching YouTube videos about how to do certain things, but it's hard to find people who want your services when they don't know you from Adam.

As far as baby news, there is none. I'm still pregnant, and it's still going extremely well. So well that I've already picked a name for our (one day) third baby. I've been able to enjoy this pregnancy so much that I can't imagine not doing it again. If you had asked me how many kids I wanted after Aubrey was born, I would have told you one. As in, the one I already had. Now I imagine a house full of curly-haired, brown-eyed kids and all of the blankets I could sew, and I can't wait until the time comes to have another. 

It's funny how things in life just click. How one day everything can be going so horribly wrong you think the sky might fall and crush you to bits, and the next day it's as if someone came in and hand painted a rainbow over your cloudy day. Or how, just when you think you can't take anymore, and you decide to let go and let God, everything goes back to standing right side up and you can see the end of the line much clearer than before. I've learned to just wipe my hands of my worries and sit back and watch. It's not like I don't stress or wonder how things might work out. It's not that I'm prefect and so is my family. I just got tired of being tired. I got fed up with standing on my tip-toes trying to see over the hurdles in my way. 

Now I focus on the things I enjoy- taking pictures, sewing, exploring with my little love. I've accepted the fact that my best friends are Todd and Aubrey and the days of the week are Laundry Day, Vacuum Day, Bathroom Day, Room Day, etc, etc. I don't care about who's going where or why I didn't get invited. I've learned that buying a steam cleaner and using it for the first time is almost as exciting as finding that perfect pair of jeans, and I'm more than okay with that. 

My life has changed, and it's taken me this long to to accept that. It's been a long time comin', but better late than never, right?

Oh, and here are some pictures I took the other day, just because.

Our man-eater being man-handled.. Ironic.