The Fulcrum of Life, so far

June 24, 2016

Little man, at nine months old, has now spent more time out of the womb than in. We’ve covered so much ground in this little life that I wonder if he even remembers his life as a fish. I like to hope he likes his new life. There are things he certainly loves, like his brothers. 

At his checkup this week we found he has dropped twenty percentile points in both weight and height. Of course I remember his brothers both leveling out sometime between nine and twelve months, and since he’s such a busy baby and the only solid food of interest is paper, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. And yet I’m now monitoring him like crazy. He hates to be fed food, tolerates playing with it himself, but after gummin it around does he actually swallow? If he’s not eating soon we will be sent to a speech pathologist to rule out oral issues. I would have poopooed the suggestion but have seen the result of undiagnosed oral issues such as these. 

It’s been an anxious week for me. It has underscored the nagging worries I have had all along. I didn’t worry about the older two. Blinded a little by the naïveté and immortality of my own youth I effortlessly tuned out the voices of doom and mothered them instinctively and confidently. I’ve struggled all along to do that this time, but with the experience of age, the extra fatigue, and without my tribe, it has been so hard to keep those voices at bay. I really miss my earth mamas. 

This afternoon as I tried to be rational about things and remember how much or little the others were eating at nine months, I don’t remember food being a big part of our lives. I have always been quite casual with introducing solids. But what I remember vividly with all three (Red, Blue, and even Daytime Brother) was that nine months was very trying for me because of separation anxiety. 

But what if I had it all wrong? Little Man is rather attached but he does play with his brothers and I can certainly throw a diaper away without eliciting a three-alarm scream because there is always someone else nearby and the layout of our home is much more open. So far separation anxiety is not a big deal with him, but the food has been stressing me out. What if it wasn’t the separation anxiety in the others that made this age so difficult for me? What it is was my hormones? My endless fatigue? What if it never was the boys, and it was always me?

It’s so much easier to think I am the problem. That won’t keep me up at night with worry. I’ve been at this stage before, and I survived. I will survive again. 

And if in a couple of weeks he still can’t/won’t eat a cracker, then visiting a specialist to rule out (or fix) issues before they become problems won’t kill me (even if the deductible threatens to do just that.)


Fit Me This

June 22, 2016

Fitbit sent me an email today. 

Hey Heather, you might sleep better if you improve your workouts. 

I’m paraphrasing, obviously, but it  reminds me once again that Fitbit needs a Motherhood setting wherein rough nights are followed by an elimination of fitness goals for the day and naps and take out meals for the daily goals

Feelings. Nothing more than Feelings

June 14, 2016

Blue thinks that throwing food in the trash is less likely to offend me than telling me he prefers his quiche without broccoli. 

He doesn’t know me at all, I would have eaten it. It was delicious. 

Art as an Imperative 

June 9, 2016

 I offered him some iPad time and he requested a rain check because he just needed to paint bluebonnets. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about art as an imperative (there’s a blog post coming eventually) and am so happy to see it in my children. 

Creating Zion

June 5, 2016

Zion has been on my mind quite a bit lately.  We’ve been in the house for almost four years, so by this point we have developed layers of relationships with people (primarily those at church.) We have served with them, served them, been served by them. We meet at church, we meet professionally, we meet in social settings both formal and informal. The more we interact the more unified we are becoming. 

If you aren’t familiar with knitting (or crocheting which is my preferred method but a more awkward verb to use) it is the process of taking yarn and through twists and other manipulations, creating something that is sturdy, warm, and useful. The layers of our relationships knit us together in a similar fashion. 

When I think of Zion I don’t think of large marble edifices. To me Zion is much more like a warm sweater. It is a state of being where we have made space within our souls for each other.

This state of Zion which we create together is the perfect medium for our own refinement. That’s where we can practice all the virtues we seek to emulate. It’s easy to be compassionate with someone when you know their struggles. It’s easy to be patient with someone when you understand their history. It’s much easier to forgive someone if the trespass is not the only interaction you’ve had. 

For most of us, creating Zion requires us to go out of our comfort zones. We need to do the work, perform the service, be at the crossroads of life. We need to rejoice with the highs and mourn with the lows. We need to listen to each other and we need to share of ourselves. And when we do, we catch a glimpse of Heaven. 

Let’s Play A Game

June 1, 2016

Inspired by Sariah, I had Paul fill out a few questions while I was trying to get the baby to sleep last night.
What is something I always say?
I’m tired.
What makes me happy?

Spending quality time with family / spending quiet time by yourself.
What makes me sad?

When the boys don’t do things they should to their own detriment.
What was I like as a child?

Driven / inquisitive / obedient / shy (I didn’t know you but that sounds about right based on stories).
How tall am I?

5’4 (?)
What’s my favorite thing to do?

Sleep / plan things (though you might outwardly say something else you like to plan)
What do I do when you are not around?

Get frustrated that I’m not available to help.
If I become famous, what will it be for?

An act of selfless kindness in the midst of a traumatic situation.
What am I good at?

Everything you work at – Piano, writing, baking, planning, parenting.
What am I not good at?

Being patient with Blue (but that’s an unbelievably difficult thing to do).
What makes you proud of me?

Your initiative – from “camp mama” to knowing all of the cool places to go wherever we are – although you get frustrated you’re a doer and an optimist.*
What is my favorite food?

It really depends on mood – you have a lot of favorites.
What do we do together?

Talk, try to get the baby to sleep, share each other’s company.
How are you and I the same?

Both tired. We love the boys. I’m not as musical as you, but we’re both musical. You’re creative and I think I have some creativity.
Where is my favorite place to eat?

Home / Italy / Hawaii.
If I could go anywhere, where would it be?

Vancouver / Victoria?
Do you think you could live without me FOREVER?

If I had to – but it would be very sad and lonely.

How do I annoy you?

I love you and I like to hear you tell me about your day(s) and everything that’s going on – but sometimes I just don’t have much to say and I have a legitimate hearing disability and it frustrates me that you get so upset that I don’t remember everything or that I don’t talk much.
What is your favorite thing about me?

Your determination and intelligence. Physically, I love your smile.
*verbally he clarified that I act like an optimist but speak like a pessimist. I’ve spent a lot of time chewing that over, he’s absolutely right.