Friday, November 09, 2007

New Site

Hello everyone! I've been wanting to switch to wordpress for sometime, as it will allow me to moderate comments and actually respond to your comments via e-mail. My new site is The Distractable Mommy. Update your bookmarks, as I'll be phasing this blog out and eventually deleting it. Thanks!

Thursday, November 08, 2007


I haven't posted for some time because things have been a tad, oh what's the word, fuzzy? around here. Life in the past few weeks has been a roller coaster of highs and lows, and writing about it just seemed like the last thing on my mind. Two weeks ago, I gave up the ghost and quit breastfeeding. Colette was still having trouble with her digestive track, and I was growing ever more frustrated with no dairy and just the process of breastfeeding with two children under 2. We switched to soy formula, and almost immediately, we saw major improvements with Colette. She's sleeping better, her bowels have no more blood in them, and she's generally happier. I, on the other hand, have regained a tad bit of sanity (not that there was much to begin with). Forrest is now able to help feed Colette, and I'm able to take some time to myself a few days a week. Even though these things are wonderful, I must admit that it was very difficult to give up breastfeeding. When I switched Shepherd to formula at 7 months, I was ready. I needed my body back to myself. I was completely spent by the end of the day, and tired of removing myself from the room if he grew hungry to feed him. This time, however, I felt I was just getting the rhythm of breastfeeding down, and we were bonding. It was the 30 minutes after feeding that killed me, with her crying and then the dirty diapers that scared me. In the end, it was best for both of us to make the switch.

Along with that, there has been the ever increasing awareness that I haven't been able to focus as I should. Simple tasks take much longer than necessary to accomplish, and an ever growing anxiety takes over while doing such routine chores. Acknowledging this has been hard, and has spurred me to work hard on simplifying our lives and seeking help when help is needed. I have a hard time asking for help, as sometimes it feels as though I'm showing weakness. I could be alone in this, but more often than not, I find that our experiences as mothers are more alike than not. Don't get me wrong, I'm very well aware that asking for help is not weakness, and in fact shows courage and strength, but knowing that and living that out are two very different things. Often we as mothers compete with one another, and with that competition comes pretension. We fail to share with one another our weaknesses, and we miss out on the opportunity to understand that we are not alone in whatever we are going through. Our common experiences should compel us to unite, to band together, and help encourage one another through something. Blogging has helped me with that, but there are mothers out there who have no such outlet, nor do they have the close friendships with whom they feel safe to share. I am constantly reminding myself that I'm not alone in my struggles with motherhood, that it is normal to have to walk away for a minute to regain your composure, and that it is healthy to admit that sometimes, this identity as "mother" can be overwhelming and at times, feel more dutiful than joyful. There are days I daydream about working a desk job (if you knew me, you'd know that there's nothing more I hate than working a desk job) where I can get away from the kids. And I must own those moments as my own, and refuse to deny them what they are. Because more often than not, accompanying those moments are moments of clarity. Brief glimpses of why it was that we chose this path, why we chose to wreck our bodies with pregnancy and birth, why we chose to stay at home, or work outside the home, why we made this decision to become mothers in the first place. Those moments of clarity, though often short and unexpected, are like treasures to me. I live for those moments. When Shepherd snuggles into my neck before naptime and kisses me goodnight, or when Colette wakes me in the morning with a wide smile, it's more than enough to remind me that this, this, is why I chose this. If it were not hard, these moments of clarity would be lost to me, and I'm thankful for the hard times, if only because they teach me the importance of the moment.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Match Made in Heaven

My Pregnant Nun, originally uploaded by meandscreech.

Have I mentioned lately how much I love this man and his creative genius? We hosted a halloween party this past weekend. Adults only (!!!!), costumes, food, and did I mention, no kids?! Anyways... several days before the party we were trying to figure out costume ideas, and Forrest happened upon the idea of a Priest and pregnant nun. Needless to say, I wasn't too thrilled about dressing up as a pregnant lady. Something about going through two pregnancies makes pretending to be pregnant not so much fun. So my idea was to reverse the roles. I'd be the priest, and he the pregnant nun. Perfect!

The party was a blast. It was so much fun hanging out with our friends without distractions (i.e. toddlers!). Don't get me wrong, I love my kids dearly, but every now and then, it's a whole lot of fun to do something without them. Halfway through the evening, the guys challenged the girls to a game of Guesstures. They promised a smackdown, and boy oh boy, was it delivered... only, I don't thing the guys meant we'd beat the pants off of them. :)

The best costume there was our friends J & T (you may remember them from my labor story... they had a son the same day Colette was born). He came as an Energizer Battery, and she a container of salt. Together, they were "a salt and battery". Speaking of costumes, I need to get some pictures of Shepherd and Colette dressed up. Be on the lookout for those pictures...

Monday, October 22, 2007

At least we know how he feels about me...

Let's hope this isn't a true indication of Shepherd's feelings for his mother....

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sad Goodbyes

15 years ago, give or take a few months, I sat giddy as could be in the front seat of my parents Ford Taurus. We were on our way home, and cradled in the palms of my hands was this tiny orange ball of fluff. My brother and I promptly named him Garfield, after one of our favorite comic strips. Our golden retriever was so taken with him, that she'd attempt to nurse the cat, patiently waiting as the tiny powder puff attempted to tap the long dry wells. He was an outdoor/indoor cat who brought us wonderful little gifts such as yard moles and mice. He'd deposit them on our steps, proud of his days hunt. Other times, we'd find larger animals, squirrels and rabbits, much to my horror. I remember being so angry one time as he trotted across our front yard, baby rabbit in his jowls still kicking. When he wasn't outside, he was inside, curled up in the corner of the white chairs in the living room or on one of our laps. You could wake up on a cold winter's morning only to find Garfield had managed to take over your pillow, leaving you nothing but the cold hard mattress. He tolerated Maggie as a new addition to the family (our other golden retriever), and surprised us all by allowing Shepherd to occasionally pet him, even if it meant his tail was grabbed and pulled. He only smacked Shepherd once, and even then it was more warning than anything.

This morning, around 11, I drove Garfield to the vet. As I drove, I cried. I cried for the 12 year old girl in me, whose excitement had turned to sorrow, now... 15 years later. I cried for my brother, who couldn't be there to say goodbye. I cried for Shepherd, who would wake up from his nap at my parents and race around looking for the "TAT!!" But most of all, I cried for Garfield. He'd developed a sudden onset of Glaucoma, and was in significant pain. The only option was to remove his eye, a surgery that cost way too much for a cat as old as him. Not only so, but there was a suspected thyroid condition, and his veins were next to impossible to find. I sat there, holding him as the vet administered the medication, and as his breathing slowed, the tension he'd held from the pain let go. He quietly drifted asleep, no longer in pain. I don't know if another life exists for pets, and sometimes it seems quite silly to wish for such things. I'd like to believe that he's somewhere better... free from the pain. But if not, I pray he rests in peace, beneath the wisteria in our family's flower garden...

Goodbye Garfield... you were loved beyond measure and will be missed immensely.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Me: So tonight, we were walking and he kept shouting "BOOOOOO-BIE" from the front of the stroller.

Him: Great... we're raising a pervert.

Me: No, we're raising a boy.

Monday, October 08, 2007


A Half Smile, originally uploaded by meandscreech.

Things are still busy around here (when are they not?!) but we're settling into some sort of routine. Colette is more alert these days, and we have fun sitting in Shepherd's playroom and talking to her. Shepherd walks up and says "Hi baby!" and kisses her on the head. He jabbers on with her, and just this morning, asked "Baby play?" I know he can't wait until Colette is a tad older and able to run around and play with him. Until then, we have to keep him out of Colette's crib (he's figured out how to climb into the crib) and try to teach him not to pick her up (I turned my back the other day, to turn around and see him holding her, still strapped in to her swing, and pulling at her to "Hold it!" My poor daughter...

Colette is trying to smile more and more these days. She's a very serious little girl, taking everything in. From time to time, I'll look down during a diaper change, and she's grinning ear to ear at me. She has such a beautiful smile. She's also babbling and squealing more in effort to try to communicate. She sits in her bouncy seat while I try to fix dinner, and suddenly the room is filled with grunts and squeals. I look down at her and she's half smiling, and looking around. So observant!! She's also one tall glass of water. Even though she doesn't weigh 10 lbs yet (well, she might, but last time we were at the doctors she was 9 lbs. 3 oz and that was Monday a week ago), she's outgrown all of her newborn clothes. They were supposed to last until 12 lbs!!! She's just tall and nothing could button at the crotch. I imagined she'd be a tall girl by the size of her feet, but man alive! she's growing super fast!! So fast that every moment I have to hold her, to snuggle with her, to smell her hair... I take advantage of. I want to savor this, because it passes so quickly...