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What’s Going On?!

Since New Year’s Eve, we’ve had 3 tornadoes in the area and severe weather like I’ve never seen.  It’s scary to think how much devastation has hit our area.  Just take a look at the latest in Joplin.



There are so many ways to help:
1. Buy a T-shirt – Now I’m not a Mizzou fan (Go Illini!) but I’m considering buying this shirt.  
2. Donate to the Red Cross

Momentarily, we’re very lucky to gotten by with the little amount of damage that we’ve had.  It’s not over.  More to come tomorrow.  Let’s hope it’s not as bad as they are predicting.

My Little Boy is Getting So Big

Time got away from us last month so we weren’t able to get in to get his pictures taken.  We finally were able to make it in today and it was so much fun.  Turns out E loves the camera.  We took about 20 minutes of photos and I think there were 5 shots where he wasn’t smiling. 

We also got to enjoy our new hammock.  I think we could sit out there all day if the weather was right.  Now if I could just get him to fall asleep in there.

After all this, we finally got him to take a cat nap.  He’s not much for daytime sleeping but when we do get these brief moments of peace, I like to document it. Most kids love a pacifier, or a stuffed animal or blanket, E loves his burp clothes.  It’s pretty funny.

Starting All Over…Sleep Training 101

We had been doing sleep training with E for about the past month and half and was going so well until he got this latest ear infection.  I admit, I was probably a push over but couldn’t stand to hear him cry, even for a little bit because I didn’t know if it was his ears bothering him or not.  So I’d pick him up and he’d snuggle up on my shoulder.  Ever since, he’s lost everything he had figured out about going to sleep on his own.

The night before last I think we finally hit a breaking point.  He went down at 8:30 nursing – mistake 1 (I know).  Then woke up at 11:30 so I went and picked him up, changed his diaper and tried to dance with him to get him back to sleep.  When he continued to be fussy, I resorted to nursing again – mistake 2.  I brought him back to bed so I could nurse and at least relax a little.  After about 15 minutes, I seemed to be nodding off so I took him back to bed, laid him down and walked away.  Five minutes later he was crying again.  I debated letting him figure it out but I just couldn’t. Back into the room I went.  This time, I thought I’d just lay him down in bed with us briefly till he fell asleep then move him back to the crib – mistake 3.  Even that didn’t calm him down.  (Meanwhile, it’s now almost 1:00 and S has to get up at 4 for work).  So we got back out of bed and he nuzzled back up on my shoulder and fell asleep while I was standing up.  THEN, I’m thinking I’ll just lay down with him on me and we’ll both get a little sleep.  The second my butt hit the bed, he woke up and started crying.  This went on all night!! Finally, S moved to the couch and E and I took over the bed.  It wasn’t 10 minutes after I laid him down on S’s side that he finally fell asleep.  By the time 6:30 rolled around, I was exhausted and E was sound asleep, sprawled all over the bed. 

That’s when we realized that maybe we need to be revisiting our books and working on sleep habits again.  Not that I don’t love cuddling but my job requires that I be “on” all day, I don’t have the luxury of an afternoon nap. 

I’m not looking forward to the impending crying that’s bound to occur but it’s necessary for us to find some middle ground.  I keep hoping that he will just magically start sleeping through the night like he did when he was about 7 weeks old but I don’t see that happening.  So we’re starting over…*sigh*

Wanna Hear A Story?

Before this job, I was a traveling IT consultant and by traveling I mean that I was home on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.  The last project I was on put in Pittsburgh for over a year.  I was literally living out of the Renaissance Hotel there.  To put it in perspective, when I got married, the staff at the hotel got us a gift.  When I finally left, I got the sweetest card and hugs all around.  They were the best and I still think about all of them.  But within that trip, I hit a turning point.  There was one event that made me realize that maybe my time on the road should come to an end. 

Don’t ask me why I’m sharing this.  It just popped into my head and I thought I’d jot it down before I forgot it.  That’s the joy of blogs.

Let me set the scene..I work in downtown Pittsburgh.  My hotel is 2 blocks away from my office.  My other consultants and I would work together and live together similar to a college setting except we all had separate rooms.  We’d go from work, to the gym, to dinner and back to the hotel.  Occasionally, we’d venture out for the night and go to a game or discover a new part of town.  It really was a lot of fun but it came at the expense of my family. 

Anyway, one night after working late, we went for dinner, I had a glass of wine.  That’s it!  Went back to the hotel and back to my room.  I was scheduled to leave the next morning but thought I’d pack in the morning.  I was too tired.  I had my good night conversation with S and went to sleep.  When I woke up, I was in my pajamas, suitcase in tow, knocking on my own hotel room door from the hallway!!  I eventually woke because I was frustrated that no one was opening the door.  I had to go down to the lobby and get a new key.  When I finally got back in my room, I opened my suitcase to discover it was still empty and there was a broken glass on the floor.  It freaked me out and the staff so much that they posted someone outside my door the following week to make sure I didn’t wander off. 

It was then that made me realize that it was time to refocus my energies and put down some roots at home.  I’m so glad I did.  Two years later I have a beautiful baby boy and great little family.  I still miss my traveling past, the people I worked with and the people I met along the way but I’m in a better place now. 

An Assessment of Unintended Effects

In my pregnancy days, I worried a lot, too much, about whether or not I’d be able to return to my pre-baby weight and form.  I even started to give clothes away that were sizes that I thought I’d never fit into again.

During pregnancy, I stressed that I’d be over weight, sleep deprived and demotivated.  I really felt like a piece of me was going to just shrivel up and die.

What I realized this morning is that it might have been a bad idea to get rid of those clothes.  Because I am back to former self.  In fact, I’m a new improved version.  Physically, I’m actually thinner, which I’m thinking is a result of the breastfeeding.  My chest is bigger, which I know is a result of the breastfeeding.  Mentally, I’m more focused, because every second away from E has got to be worth it.  I’m not going to the gym anymore to just go through the motions.  I’m making it count.  Go big or go home (and play with my baby).  I’ve got a renewed sense of drive and a need for personal achievement as well as spirituality.  Something that I’m praying E adopts in his own life. And I’m just happier.  I love my husband but there’s something about coming home to a baby who gets so excited to see you that he might wet himself (which is entirely possible).

Am I tired?  Yep.  I have good days and bad days, just like any other mother but when you realize you get to go shopping again in your own closet, you get a little excited.  I’m getting to pull clothes out that haven’t seen the sun in two years and they are still fashionably acceptable.  It’s a win, win. 

Bottom line, life is good.

Stop Trying to Finding the Balance and Just Live

I don’t know about you but my weekend was full.  From the time I got off work on Friday night till just now as I climbed into bed.  I always feel like I’m in over drive and therefore E has to follow suite and I’m starting to wonder if it’s unfair to him.  I’ve been trying to read a few books (in the little free time I have) and both have me thinking.  When will it stop?

The first..”Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child“, a book that came highly recommended from some knowledgeable mothers, is making me realize that my desire for an active lifestyle might be happening at E’s expense.  This book does a good job at explaining his sleep-wake cycle and I’m able to read it just like the book.  Problem is that I’m not good at acting on it.  I see the signs, he’s tired but the gyms child care is only available smack dab on his nap time.  Tonight I’m feeling extremely guilty and am trying to figure out what to do.  Which brings me to my other book..

Balance is a Crock, Sleep is for the Weak”  Just the title alone makes me think probably even more so than the content of the book.  The content is a little quirky but the for me, there’s an underlying message.  As moms, we’re always try to achieve the unattainable “balance” and I don’t know about you but I that I beat myself up when I let something slip because I’m still living under this false expectation that I can be everything to everyone when really what I should be is:
1. A mom to a beautiful baby boy,
2. A wife to a husband that works hard and
3. A family member and then EVERYTHING ELSE.

It’s tough.  It is, I won’t be the first to tell you.  But I’m going to have to start just living, and quite reaching for something that can’t be reached.  Everyday, I’m going to wake up, assess the demands and decide what gets done and what doesn’t and try as I might to stick to it.

Something has got to give and it’s my job to decide what that is.  It’s my job to decide for me, for E and my family and to date, I’ve been selfish in trying to achieve “balance”.  My mantra from now on…”Just Live”.

What do you think?