Monday, January 31, 2011
Yes. I said elbow. For those of you who don't remember (and well - that would be most of you. I don't believe I ever posted it on my blog but I know that Dakota did.) back in November of 2007, I fell while at my sister's house. When I slipped, I put my hands out in front of me to catch myself and ended up with a possible elbow fracture. Which I did nothing about.
After about a week or so, it was much better and it went on to rarely bother me. It would ache every now and again but nothing that I couldn't tolerate easily enough (and considering the pain I have on a 24 hour a day basis, it was more of an inconvenience than anything).
The last few weeks though the pain has become pretty bad. I think I must have injured it doing something (like lifting something that was too heavy. *whistling innocently* What? I never do that!) because it is painful every minute of the day. I need to remember to baby it for a few days and see if that eases it. I did google "fractured elbow head" and it turns out that it is rarely put in a cast anyway so I don't feel too bad for not following up on it. After all, I had a 2 year old and a 5 year old to care for at the time. I was busy.
In the meantime, I'm just going to say "It hurts!" and whine a bit. And you are the lucky ones I get to whine to because well...the kids just don't care. :)
I bought the CD and popped it in to listen and......it's the "friendly" version which I'm not all that thrilled about. I like the power of the "un-friendly" version. It's more real...raw...powerful.
If you are interested, pop on over to Pink's website and scroll down a bit and read and watch.
And may the people in our lives always know they are F**king Perfect just the way they are." Especially those we love.
Except...if you are someone like me, with very little gripping ability, incredibly sore finger joints and numb finger tips, this is darn near impossible and usually involves a few non-child friendly words on my part. I've taken to stabbing through it and then ripping it apart as best I can. It's an ordeal no matter what.
Now....if you go to Safeway and buy the exact same product for a little bit more money, it has a fancy plastic ring pull thing which is easy as 1-2-3 to remove.
Seriously? This is the cutback Coffee Mate chooses to make when selling their products to discount grocers? Really? Does it save them *that* much money?
I mean, on some level I get it but come on. I can't afford the time nor the money to go to different stores to buy different products based on their ease of opening (while spending more money). I keep telling Kelton that he is going to have to get really good at opening things for me. :)
Rant over. :)
Friday, January 28, 2011
Thursday, January 27, 2011
Blogging, for me, is like a counseling session when I need it. I can dump all my "stuff" here and leave it. How someone else picks it up and reads whatever they want into it isn't my responsibility. Usually, I can dump and run. Dump stuff, get it out and move on with being a good parent to my amazing kids as I work to find my way. I find it very therapeutic but, how "someone" chooses to add tones and whatnot into it is not my responsibility.
I've been trying to figure out how to get that across and then, today, I read Hollywood Farm Girl's blog (Tammy who used to be married to Melissa Etheridge and who is no longer and instead a single parent to twins with no support from her former partner) and I saw exactly what I needed.
Reflection of Yourself
I think her posting is perfect.
A Typical American Life.
I've gotten used to sneaking in a greatly needed hour nap in the afternoon and for the second day in a row now, I can't nap. As in, I can close my eyes but sleep is nowhere near happening. Usually I have been out cold as soon as I closed my eyes.
Before the past year or so, the only time I ever napped was when I was pregnant or sick. Napping just isn't in my DNA. The past year though, napping is what has helped keep my sanity intact. I am not a good nighttime sleeper so a mid-afternoon nap helped get me through. It was my "reward" for getting everything done I need to get done (job hunting, chores, Kaylen, etc). It might also, just maybe, been a sign of anemia. Now that I am downing fruits and veggies by the gallon (especially spinach which is loaded with iron)I find I have more energy than I have in a long, long time.
It's nice but I will say that after my very busy morning of applying for jobs, cleaning the house and going to the school, I was looking forward to an hour of sleep on my cozy couch in a sun patch.
So if you are lacking energy, I highly recommend green smoothies.
Today I managed to get a lot accomplished already. I've done the regular morning stuff of making beds, getting kids ready and off to school but I've also ran the dishwasher, I'm on my second load of laundry, I've vacuumed the couches and the carpeted floors and swept and mopped the kitchen floor. And all but the vacuuming of the floors was done before the school bus arrived.
Wait! Did I just say school bus? Oh yes I did! For the second day in a row Kaylen and Kelton rode the bus to school. And for the second day in a row, they will be riding it home.
Now this is BIG. HUGE. GINORMOUS! Yesterday was the first day since that fateful first week of school that Kaylen rode the bus home from school. AND SHE LIKED IT! It is now her decision to ride it home "every day" fro now on. OMG! I can't believe it! You have no idea what a huge thing this is for her and for me. I am so proud of her!!!!
Kaylen isn't ready to give up the 12-15 minutes at lunch recess where I am there but considering the strides she made yesterday and today? I'm totally fine with that. She took the lead and decided what she was ready for and I am ok with the fact that she isn't ready to not see me half way through the day for a few minutes. Sure - it's a pain in the rear to interrupt job hunting at 11:00 to run over to the school for a few minutes but the rewards are clearly worth it!
AND she gave up her red cushion for her carpet spot in her classroom. She came home Tuesday and just casually mentioned that she gave it back to the school counselor because she "doesn't need it anymore". I cannot believe we are FINALLY in this place. She is doing it - and I could not be more proud of her.
I know a lot of people can't possible understand the challenges she has had to overcome and that's ok. Be grateful that your child doesn't have the issues that Kaylen has had to deal with. Be grateful that this stuff comes easily for your children or grandchildren. But for me? I am very proud of my daughter and honestly, proud of me for helping her navigate her issues and fears to help her become the self-assured school girl she is now.
What an awesome week. Yay Kaylen!!!
Life is good.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Then it was diapers, and toys and clothes followed by which food to start them on and how to introduce new foods. Then there were finger foods and playdoh and painting. Books to read, walks to take and manners to teach.
And then, for me, it was starting over from point A while still continuing on with child #1.
Those days felt endless. But now....now I'm looking at one baby turning six and the other turning nine. Definitely no longer babies but the learning curve is still there, still intense. The decisions over plastic or glass bottles seem so easy in comparison to the decisions to be made now.
And I am well aware this is just the tip of the iceberg. I cringe when people say "It doesn't get easier, you know." Yes, I can see that....but can you at least pretend for those of us with kids younger than yours?
Life. The only thing constant is change.
And yet. And yet I want it different. I want someone to call on the many applications I submit each week. I want someone to say "I see potential and I'm willing to take a risk on you." But nope.
Yes, I have tons of things to be grateful for....and I am, believe me. I know it could be worse and I am very thankful it isn't. I'm healthy (enough) to be able to live my life, my kids are fantastic and amazing and healthy, no one in my family is dealing with a horrible disease. I have people who support me in many various ways.
So why do I have this overwhelming feeling to run for the hills? Fight or flight and I'm tired of fighting. I guess that's what it is.
I need a break (which, yes, I know is ironic considering I don't have a job), a weekend at the beach, time with friends to just be silly and laugh....or cry. Whichever. I need a break from the stress and the worry of how this is all going to turn out.
Because this life? Not really turning out the way I dreamed it would.
Friday, January 21, 2011
Kaylen freaks out. Usually, she convinces me she is sick and gets me to let her stay home before I clue in to the sub issue but I was determined she would go today and face her fear. She tried hard to get out of it with "My tummy hurts so much!" and "I think I'm going to throw up." but I wasn't biting. I gave words of support and kept her moving towards leaving for school. It's moments like these that make me feel like I have stress zits popping up and that I should buy stock in adult acne treatments. It's stressful to remain calm while trying to mentally navigate all the scenarios which might take place and how I will handle each and every one.
When we walked into the office, we saw her regular teacher who waved to her from the conference room and said "Remember, Kaylen. I'm right here all day." That seemed to help. We walked over to her room and introduced ourselves to the sub. As Kaylen put her things away I spoke quietly to the sub to ask if she has been alerted to Kaylen's issue. Thankfully, she had been.
While Kaylen settled in I quickly said my goodbye and was on my way. I really think she will do fine though I am prepared for a meltdown at lunch. I'm working on my game plan for keeping her at school for the rest of the day. Hopefully, my stress will be for nothing and it will go well. I hope so. I want her to know she CAN do this!
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Their voices are loud.....I wish I had a good pair of headphones to plug into my MP3 player so I could listen to music instead of "Kelton - please go brush your teeth and put on your pajamas!" over and over. It's not that they don't listen to her - they don't listen to anyone when it comes to settling down and getting ready for bed. :)
Can someone please tell me when they can be quiet and calm all evening but then, as bedtime approaches they spin wildly out of control? Ugh.
It's a good thing they are cute. :) :) :)
It shook me but I tried not to show it and instead said "Yes you will, silly girl!" But I have to say, my heart dropped because she tends to bring up these off the wall things about past lives, another family, etc.
My mind flipped through memories of the past with her...before she started talking about angels and drowning and living in a pink room with angels taking care of her. Before the days where she talks about the ceremony and party we will have when she is dead. Back to the days when she was small and would dress up in costume jewelry and laugh at her silly reflection.
To memories of her pulling up for the first time in her crib (which she didn't sleep in but did enjoy hanging out to play in), learning to walk.....all those amazing moments when it feels like life is stretched out endlessly in front instead of being confronted with thoughts of "What does she know that I don't?"
This little girl certainly keeps me on my toes.
I wish I could keep the kids at the age they are right now. They are growing and changing so fast that I don't feel like I can even blink for fear I will miss it. I told Kaylen this morning that I wanted to keep her little and she looked at me and very seriously said "You can't, Mom. It won't work."
*sigh* Oh I know, baby girl. I know.
Sunday, January 16, 2011
So what has them in there together right now? Bath foam, paint, crayons and a Winnie the Pooh color set.
I found a long-lost bag in the garage last week while I was cleaning and reorganizing which was clearly meant to be Christmas gifts from about 3 years ago. In years gone by, we always got the kids bath stuff for their stockings and Dakota must have picked up things on an outing and the bag slipped down behind some bins. I'm saying Dakota because I don't remember buying the items (and I really think I would have remembered the PlayDoh robot kit and the Winnie the Pooh coloring set). Come to think of it though, there was only one set of things which meant it was either from Kaylen's first Christmas (when she wouldn't have gotten those things) or prior to Kaylen. I can't imagine we wouldn't have gotten two of each of the crayons, paint and foam if Kaylen had been old enough to use them. Wow. That's a mind bender. Interesting.
Anyway - the kids were so excited, since it's been over a year since they had things like these for the tub, and have been eager to play with everything. Except they would only remember when it was bedtime and there was no way I was going to let them stay up another hour past bedtime to play in the tub. Kelton remembered about 30 minutes ago so quick as a flash, we had everything opened and they were up to their armpits in fun.
It's kind of nice for this mommy to hear them playing together in the tub like they used to....it brings memories of their babyhoods flooding back.
Saturday, January 15, 2011
I made them "breakfast for dinner" and then they settled in to watch Veggie Tales. I know a lot of people really like Veggie Tales but from the very first one I ever saw I have not been a fan. The truth is, I'd rather have a colon cleanse than have to sit through one of their shows.
No, really. It's true. Yes, the messages are timeless but I could not find it more annoying if I tried. I'm talking, nails on chalk board annoying. So while they watch I am tooling around the 'net catching up on blogs and Facebook.
I know. You are all so incredibly jealous of my life. :)
Friday, January 14, 2011
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
The kids headed back to school today. Kaylen is crabby and cranky so I'm not convinced she is 100% but she has a play date and skate night tonight that she absolutely does not want to miss. She doesn't have a fever and her throat isn't terrible looking so I let her go to school. She had a complete and utter meltdown over what I packed for lunch today (which is always a great way to start a day for me) but I stood firm and told her she could eat it or not. Kelton, being the big brother, ran into the kitchen and slipped a yogurt tube into her lunch. I love that he was trying to help but dang it. How will I get them to eat what I give them when they both try to save each other from big bad mommy? *sigh* I guess I should just be happy they love each other so much.
On a sad note, Kaylen's friend, Sam, is moving away this weekend. It is sudden and for a good reason for their family (better job for his dad) but both she and I are very sad to be losing our new friends. She cried a while yesterday when I told her but hopefully we will be able to stop in and see them on our next trip North.
The snow that we had been promised for a week never materialized yesterday and I have to say, I'm incredibly disappointed. Weather people? The next time there is a chance, keep it to yourself. Let us be surprised. Please?!
I guess I should go work on something productive even though I would rather just surf the web and read whatever the links lead me to.....weather, news, things to do, diet pill warnings, facebook....whatever. But alas, even though I don't really want to, I need to be responsible.
Here's hoping for a good day.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
And art time (with my dad overseeing them).
The next day the kids had hot tub time before we left Uncle James' house to spend New Years with my sister and the cousins.
Aunt Lannon is always good for arts and crafts time. Uncle James and Aunt Cara brought the gingerbread men decoration kit.
On the way home the next day, the kids and I took a side trip to the cemetery.
This is my mom.....
My maternal grandfather.....
Then we went to the other side of the cemetery and visited my paternal side....I completely neglected taking a photo of my grandparents (and my plot next to theirs) but I did get my grandmother's brother and parents.....
Next up was a trip past the house I lived in with I first met Dakota. We lived there together for about a year and a half before we bought our first house.
This is a pile of kitties on my bed. Zip, the kitten, is in the middle. He is growing FAST!
And that pretty much ends the tour of Casey's phone photos. :) Fun, right?
I noticed Kelton wasn't yet awake. Not his usual M.O. Hmmmmm. When he finally did wake up, he crawled into my bed and he too started saying his throat hurt. I looked and yet - red. Not as bad as Kaylen's but his tonsils are inflamed.
I called the school attendance line and then left a message at the eye doctor. All at 6:45am.
Now we are all sitting in the living room. I have a fire going in the fireplace, Kelton is playing Kirby Epic Yard on the Wii, Kaylen is playing dolls and I am...well....I guess you can figure out what I'm doing. :)
We are supposed to get snow later which we are all hoping against hope for. It won't last long so you can be sure that, sick or not, we are all going out to play in it when/if it finally arrives.
Until then, it's a low key day around here. I'll do this and that and maybe look into a web site called appetitesuppressantsoverthecounter.com. It's always worth a look-see to find out what is out there. Oh - and of course I will hit the regular job sites though I doubt there will be much new up since I was cruising through them until about 9:30 last night.
And who knows, maybe I'll take the time to upload photos from my phone and share them. There are some cute ones from Christmas.
Monday, January 10, 2011
This is a hit to my self-esteem like you would never believe. Yeah yeah, I know all the lines of "It's the economy." "Hang in there. The right job will come along.", etc. They don't help. I'm a good bet for a job. I'd be a great employee. There is nothing I can't learn and master. I'm intelligent. I'm punctual and responsible. I'm worth the risk. But when I am up against hundreds of people applying for the same positions, how can I make myself stand out? The biggest strike against me is my time out of the workforce. I know this hurts my chances, but it's the truth and there is nothing I can do to change that gap. I need someone who will see the value in what I have been doing for the past 8 years.
Part of me is angry that I decided to stay at home with my babies (walking away from an amazing, and well paid, position) and yet, I know it was the best I could have given my children. I know that they are the people they are today because I stayed home. I guess it's safe to say I am mixed on that decision. I loved that I was able to raise my babies but it sure is biting me right now.
Is it any wonder that, after three hours of being on the job hunt, I am exhausted? Trying to sell myself to a perspective employee is hard work.
Sunday, January 09, 2011
Inside. As in not outside.
It made me giddy to drive my car and park it inside the garage.
It was so weird to look out my front window this morning and not see my car. Parking in a garage...what a novel concept. :)
I gave up my parking spot six years ago this month when we moved all the infant equipment into the house (to prepare for Kaylen's birth) and tons of Kelton's 2 year old toys into a make-shift play area in the garage. It was necessary at the time and then...slowly but surely, the garage became a storage unit for.....well....everything. But now? Now I can park in my garage. YES YES YES!!!
And as if this weekend wasn't great enough, I went out and about with Cande and one of the places she had to go was a consignment store. I found the cutest jacket and purse all for under $20. I may not have won the Mega Millions Lottery but I struck gold this weekend!
Saturday, January 08, 2011
Once the big things are out of there, I can bag up outgrown toys, etc and take them to Goodwill. The Christmas bins need to go back into the attic.
It's going to be a long day but I hope it won't suck up all the hours. No, I don't have any cigar auctions to attend but
I would love to take a trip to the bookstore with a gift card I received. Mostly though, I want some down time. Find a movie on NetFlix stream and just kick back.
And on that note, guess I better jump in the shower and get this day going. Have a good Saturday, everyone!
We talked about *everything*....well, maybe not everything. I don't think paternity testing came up. :)
After we were caught up and talked out, I popped in the movie Charlie St. Cloud. Have you seen it? During the movie I kept thinking "This is sooooo not as good as I wanted it to be." and when it was over we both looked at each other and said "Wow. That was depressing."
The hour was late so Cande headed home and I headed to bed. I didn't sleep very well - awake a lot - but it did give me time for thinking and I have to say, the movie really had some inconsistencies. Like why couldn't Charlie touch Sam but he could touch Tess? Is there really an "in-between" state? Where was Sam during all the hours of the day and night he wasn't with Charlie?
Overall, it wasn't a great movie but it did give me some things to think about in a weird, twisty way. Not even close to as mind-bending as The Lake House though so don't get your hopes up. I wanted it to be really awesome but, as I have discovered, I really need to lower my expectations.
At least the company was awesome. :)
Friday, January 07, 2011
She had a couple tearful moments at recess but nothing out of the ordinary these days and then the recess person came up to fill me in on what had happened in the morning. It was that person who had stopped the kids. Kaylen just listened and didn't react. I explained what I had told them to do and she said that now that she knows, she will let her go through (she knew before since she was one of the people assigned to Kaylen for second recess when she started doing that one alone. I don't know what happened today but whatever. It happened. It's over.)
Kaylen still didn't say anything about it so I just moved the conversation to something else. She happily went back to class at the end of recess so I'm going to assume she is doing fine. I'll know for sure next week when I attempt to send her without me again.
So now I am home and taking up the job search yet again. I found a couple healthcare it jobs which I'm not really qualified for so hopefully I will find a few that I *am* qualified for.
Just sign me up for inpatient rehab centers please because I swear this is going to do me in. I feel like I let her down and that I'm a terrible mother.
I'm trying, people. I'm trying so hard.
I instructed Kelton to take Kaylen through the office to her room because she was adamant that she didn't want to wait outside in the cold alone. Going to her room from inside the school is something she and I do regularly. I honestly didn't think it would be a big deal considering everyone at the school knows her issues and how hard I am working with her. But..........when the kids entered the building they were told to go back outside and wait by the classroom door. Kelton explained what he had been told to do but whoever was talking with them insisted. Kaylen lost it. Just then, Kaylen's teacher walked by (Thank goodness!) and she took over. Needless to say, Kaylen was a wreck.
Two steps forward, fifteen steps back.
I feel like I'm been sucker punched. All my work to get her there alone was in vain because if you think she will do this again without me, you are wrong.
And her teacher let me know there will be a sub on Tuesday. Oh joy. That will go over like a brick....especially after today.
She was not all that thrilled but she did it. We had to pinky swear that I would be at recess about 40 times and the hugs and kisses were many but she took a deep breath and climbed up the bus steps.
I am so proud of her. It's been a long haul to get us where we are.
So here I am...hoping like heck Kelton followed my directions to get her to where she needed to go. Not only is this a big step for her, it's a big step for me. I have to trust she will get there and be ok. I do not take this for granted. When you have a child like Kaylen, you can't take anything for granted - each and every day is filled with obstacles, challenges and successes that most people don't have to deal with. This is a HUGE step for all three of us because Kelton has been deeply affected by all of this, too.
It's now time to link into my network cable and get busy job hunting. I have three hours to make good use of before I need to be at the school. It feels weird to not be going back and forth this morning but it's also nice. And bonus: I had time for two cups of coffee this morning. Go me!
Thursday, January 06, 2011
And no, Chris, I don't dress her and haven't since she was just under two. Her sensory issues made it all but impossible so she has been dressing herself for years.
And now....the outfit!
I'm not sure what term would accurately describe her style. I'm not real sure what hip hop clothing looks like but maybe that is one term that could be used? I don't know. Yesterday she wore very colorful stripped with flowers tights with a green and blue dress with leaves on it. Just writing it out does not give you the proper vision but trust me....it was something else.
My daughter is an independent thinker, that's for sure. Maybe she will be a fashion designer when she is older. :)
Wednesday, January 05, 2011
It worked well.
Slowly, she stopped needing Fuzzy and today, she looked at her shelf behind her teacher's desk and said "I don't think I need Fuzzy here anymore. Will you take him home for me?"
My heart skipped beats. My breathing increased but I tried to hold steady and not yell out "YES YES YES!!!" I calmly said, "Sure. I'll take him home this morning." She handed him over and went on her way.
I could have cried tears of joy. She has come so far in three months. I'm still there for lunch recess but that's it. She is slowly working her way to riding the bus to school twice a week (usually with me meeting her there but this week, on Friday, the plan is I will not meet her there and instead will just see her at recess). Finally, ever so slowly, she is emerging from her shell and becoming the little girl I've always known her to be. Independent, amazing and self-assured.
I'm so grateful to have been able to help her all these months. I honestly believe my ability to be there to help her take each step has been a huge blessing to her...and to me. My daughter is getting ready to take on the world - just as I always knew she would.
Go Kaylen! I am so, so proud of you!!!
(Thank you, Dakota and Vicki. I know this would have been impossible without your support and understanding and I am very grateful to you both for helping Kaylen get what she needed to be able to succeed.)
Tuesday, January 04, 2011
The friendships I thought would last a lifetime, did not. And that is ok. The club and the people were there when I needed them for the kids. I had playgroups and every Tuesday there was a group-wide get together. It was great in the early years and I honestly don't know what I would have done without the people from those days.
Thanks for the memories, MC, both the great and the not-so (because even the not-so great moments taught me things). Thanks for being there when I had my babies and needed the support of other new moms but...as with most things, there comes a time of letting go.
This is me, letting go.
Monday, January 03, 2011
...to spend time taking care of me instead of everyone but me.
...to learn to trust again.
...to remind myself that I *am* worth it...I am worth the effort to get to know and understand.
...to put myself at the head of the list.
...to find peace.
...to do more things for myself just because I'm worth it.
...to find at least one thing to be happy about each and every day.
...to spend time alone. A lot of time alone.
...to build a great life for the kids and me.
...to stop letting others opinions of me get the best of me.
...to learn to tame my anxiety and stress level.
...to spend more time with friends.
...to laugh more and cry less.
...to be the best mother possible to my children but not at the expense of losing myself again.
...to find who I am, what I want and what I need.
...to be true to myself and trust that it will all work out as it should.
...to let go of the hurt, betrayal and heartbreak and move forward happily and without regrets.