Thursday, September 30, 2010

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll


I truly love all things Alice in Wonderland. Disney's version...great. Tim Burton's...loved it. But I'm not sure if those have ruined me in terms of Carroll's actual writing. It was short, which was appreciated. It was fun and whimsical at times, but mostly confusing and a bit wordy. I did like it because I do love the story. But I think I like it better when it's laid out for me and I don't have to think! Worth a read though since it is Alice in Wonderland after all.

Monday, September 27, 2010

I'm On Kidz!


Kidz is a blog about our kids, our special needs kids. I love how Tara, the creator of the blog, put it...Kidz is about our kids, but just a little bit different. It's a community where we share, learn from each other, and hopefully motivate and encourage one another. We share ideas and tips -- laugh together, cheer each other on, and cry with one another when the world of special needs seems to cheat us -- sometimes from the very lives of our children.

I'm honored to be a part of the Kidz Krew -- a group of caregivers (right now all mothers and a grandmother) who will be regularly writing for the blog.

If you know of anyone who may need a little lifting up or a reminder of how sweet life truly is -- or someone who may be seeking some answers -- it's a great forum for all.

The Hunger Games -- by Suzanne Collins


I'm not sure I can add much more to this than what has already been said. A lot of people have been reading and loving this, so I thought I'd just go on ahead and read. I did like it. In fact, I really liked it. At first, the story seemed so unoriginal that I thought I had read it before. I'm not trying to be critical here, because remember, I like the book. It had a very gladiator feel to it -- something I couldn't quite place until I talked with my mother-in-law. Fight to the death. It's a game for others to watch. It also reminded me of Shirley Jackson's short story "The Lottery." (Just as horrible but fascinating. I love that short story and used to teach it.) It is actually so similar I wonder if it sparked this story for the author. Truly, the first few chapters I kept thinking, "Have I read this before?" However, the characters were unique and the writing moved along so easily and perfectly that I just kept reading and reading. I became quite invested in Rue and, I admit, shed a tear. Quite a moving scene is played out during the games.

But there was a point that I got a little annoyed with Katniss. I'm not sure if it's young adult literature that's starting to get to me...but it's the concept of the extremely naive girl. "Does he like me? Really? I had no clue." hmmm She's not as bad as Bella in Twilight, but Twilight just may have ruined me for a bit on the naive girl thing. The story itself is a bit disturbing...but very compelling and I feel the need to know what happens next. Catching Fire may have to wait until I finish my current book, but it will get read indeed.

Hemp Powder

Good morning world. It's Monday morning, 5:30am. Who's blogging at 5:30am? I am, but only because Samantha is awake, so I'm awake...but I refuse to go into her room until at least 6am. She's been on this waking-up-at-4am spell, and we're done. So, she's going to have to moan and whine until I decide she can come out. And then there's no falling back asleep on the couch. So, to keep her from falling asleep on the couch, I have to stay awake...and that means I'm already preparing her breakfast and blogging. I've got to wake up here. Yes. The duties of a mother are endless.
So, let me share another new discovery.
I was reading a book (yes, reading...still not finished because I left it in Michigan and am awaiting it's promised return) called The China Study. This book was extremely insightful and made me think a lot about my animal protein intake. Now, I'm not about to tell you all to go vegan, but it was very interesting the 20+ years of research indicating animal protein in many serious illnesses. You can't help but be stunned about it and then stop and reconsider how much you, yourself, are eating...and what that may mean to your health. (oooo Samantha's mad now...she really wants out)


Let me say this first. Back when Sammy was but a wee lass, I was told she was "failure to thrive." She was tiny. Always has been. So, I was told to bulk up. Cream. Butter. More cream. Something about that never sat right with me. I'm not saying it's wrong for everyone out there and their babies, but I thought...isn't there a better way to give her added calories and fat without clogging her arteries at 1.5 years old? So, I did a lot of avocado. At this time in the morning, I can't think of anything else I did, but I remember I didn't give her a butter stick and tell her to have at it. I've always been inclined to think about what plants (fruits, vegetables, and grains) we can use for better health (not that I'm a shining example of health mind you. I love a good steak!).
The China Study. I'm not to the point where I'm giving up meat or animal products...I just can't do that. But based on the research, he does suggest a vegan lifestyle. I'm not a vegan. BUT, I am looking at other plant sources for protein. There is a lot of plant based proteins out there that are really good for you and don't have any saturated fat. So, why not try?

Recently I stumbed across this.

So, I bought it. And when you open the bag, it looks like this...
which is not what I was expecting. I'm not sure why I didn't expect this. It is a plant after all. But I tried it. I threw some of it into a smoothie for some instant protein. Well, I wasn't the biggest fan. It's not bad, and I could acquire a taste for it, I'm just not sure if I want to. It's pretty strong. It reminded me of 6th grade when I, along with everyone else, started making hemp necklaces. There was a distinct grainy smell to it. The taste of hemp powder is like taking that necklace and chewing on it.
But the benefits to hemp powder are tremendous. Read for yourself.
"Even though it’s a plant, hemp is, unexpectedly, a complete protein. It consists of all twenty known amino acids, including those ten that are designated as essential for human health. Just to get our terminology right, a protein is considered complete when it not only contains the ten essential amino acids, but when those amino acids are in the correct quantity and proportion for the body to utilize them. So, in terms of complete protein, hemp is up there with the best. But, it doesn’t just end there. Hemp also contains the essential fatty acids needed for good health in the perfect balance – that is one of Omega 3 to each three of Omega 6. And, if that wasn’t enough, the insoluble fiber content of hemp organic protein powder works to keep your blood sugar level stable, as well as ensuring that your bowel movements are regular. If you look on the ingredient label, you’ll see that all the carb content is fiber, making it perfect for a low carb diet."
A healthnut and an avid whey protein drinker took a 2 month challenge. He used it for 2 months in replacement from his whey protein and found that, though it wasn't as tasty, the benefits were surprising. Even though it wasn't an animal based protein, it didn't negatively affect his gym workout and muscle mass, (this guy is a body builder and is concerned about those muscles of his), he felt healthier, and encourages others to try it. You can read about it here.
Will I use this often? Not sure. But I do add a few scoops to Sammy's oatmeal. The taste really isn't that bad and is covered up anyway with a little brown sugar. It starts her morning off with some good healthy protein. It makes me feel good providing a good start to her day. I still add it to my smoothies, just not as much as I did before. It's not cheap stuff, but you don't use as much as you would with other protein powders -- I'm assuming because there aren't any fillers and sweetners. I don't know. Anyway. It's a really good healthy option, and I'm glad I stumbled across it.
Now, Samantha is sufficiently very angry at me for not coming in to get her. Amazingly, Callie is still asleep. And the oatmeal, laced with hemp, is done. I'm signing off.
Have a great day!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Creation v. Procreation

Admittedly, this may seem a little disjointed, but I have these thoughts that I really want to get down...and hopefully they make a little sense.

It's not easy creating a family -- no matter how you do it.

I've heard a lot of people tell me how much easier adoption would be for them. Having been through pregnancy, I can understand that to some degree. It's an emotional roller coaster at times. Let's face it, pregnancy for a lot of women isn't 100% glorious. It's amazing. It's incredible. And to be a part of that miracle...it really is a blessing and life-changing. But it's also really hard. I'd say, for nearly all women who have gone through this process, there is some degree of discomfort, whether it's sickness, aches, pains...and let us not forget labor and delivery. There is a reason it's called labor. It's hard work, indeed. And when that is over, a new baby is delivered...and that mother also receives a bit of deliverance!

I've heard a lot of people tell me how much easier it would be to have a biological child and not have to go through the adoption process. Having been through that (and currently going through it again), I also understand this. It, too, is an emotional roller coaster at times.
Adoption is an enormous blessing in the lives of many involved in each placement. Lives are transformed. It's a miraculous process, adoption. One day, you are praying for a child, wondering when it will happen, wondering if it will ever happen... The next day, you get a phone call. And possibly, such was our case with Callie, within days a beautiful baby is placed in your arms and you're her mommy. It's a bit surreal and quite magical. But I would never say it's the "easy way out" in terms of creating a family. Sometimes, you just feel like you have no control.

It's a strange feeling to hope for a baby that someone else is carrying. While we were waiting for Callie, not knowing what each day would bring -- if anything, I remember thinking of all those birthmothers out there who selflessly say, "I'm doing this for my child." Everyday Marcus and I prayed for birthparents throughout the world. I remember, some days, thinking about them and just crying. And then, when a baby is placed in your arms...she's just yours? Just like that? It's so surreal. For me, I was filled with so much love. It was actually startling how deeply I felt upon first meeting and holding Callie. I received, what I believe, was immediate confirmation that Heavenly Father had been involved in this process and she, indeed, was the little baby girl who was supposed to be my daughter all along. It was an intense experience for me. It was strange though, partly because I was not expecting to feel anything really. So, that was my experience, but for some it can be...maybe uncomfortable is the word...until they actually bond with that baby. They don't quite feel like this baby is theirs. Things feel foreign perhaps, and strange. And that makes them feel a certain amount of guilt. Not surprisingly, that doesn't sound too different than some of my friends who have struggled with post-partum depression.

Is there an easy way to create a family? No. No matter how those children get to your home, it takes faith, hope, and tears. (Usually in equal parts.) But we must know the bitter to know the sweet right?

I've been thinking about this a lot right now because I feel surrounded by people who are pregnant or adopting. The truth is, when we want a family, aren't we all willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to create that family? And I've decided that the creation of a family starts once a baby is born and in the home in which its spirit is supposed to be. I'm not talking about the act of procreating...but the acts responsible for creating a family. Creating a home. Creating and forming futures.

I think we too often we focus on the procreation part. I've had many conversations with friends and even strangers about the woes of pregnancy ~ but also about the woes of not being pregnant. It's so hard when you want a baby, but you can't seem to make that work. It's confusing, especially if you are a woman of faith, to try to understand why you just can't seem to get pregnant when all you want is to have a family. For some, this can become an obsession. I know women who are so consumed with having a biological child, consumed with procreation, that they forget that they have a divine gift to create...not just procreate.

On the other hand, I've had one way discussions (because I usually don't say much during these "discussions" -- I just try to be sympathetic knowing they don't really mean what they are saying) about how they just wish they could adopt instead of being pregnant. "Oh Jenny, you're so lucky. No stretchmarks...no morning sickness. You did it the right way."

Let's be a little more careful with what we declare, shall we? Even though I may smile when people make those comments, it can irritate me depending on how sympathetic I'm feeling...because they don't know what they are really saying. To me, it's making light of something that, though it has blessed my life immensely and we will do it again and again (hopefully), I don't find easy...and I'm not sure how many people would choose the adoption process over the biological one. When people say these things, I think stuff like...What about our birthmother who does have the stretchmarks but no longer has that baby? She has a lot of healing to go through. And what about the waiting and prayers and emotional and spiritual stretching I've had to do for this baby? It may not be physically visible, but there's been a lot of stretching on my part...a lot of faith and hope stretched to the limit at times.

But you know what? When things seem to not be going so well, in my own definition of that anyway, regarding adoption, I selfishly allow myself to think, "if only I could just get pregnant...that would be so much easier." Plus, even though I was sick a lot, I remember liking pregnancy -- sure feeling Samantha move was a bit science-fiction-esque, but remarkable. And so I think this sometimes. I know it's not easy being pregnant, and I know that's not my Heavenly Father's plan for us, but still...I've been known to think it it would be easier than adoption. Hypocritical? Yeah. I doubt my friends who have had miscarriage after miscarriage would say pregnancy was easy. Or my friends who have gone through IVF in order to have their children would say that the pregnancy process was easy.

It just always seems so easy to do it the other way -- the way you're currently NOT doing it, doesn't it? Unfortunately, what is really easy is to get so wrapped up in our own situations that we forget that no one has it easy. But, I do forget. And I think I want it the other way...the "easier" way. But then I look over at Samantha, and I remember....and I look at Callie, and I remember. I remember my fabulously, and perfectly, written plan.

Our Father's plan, no matter which plan that may be, is always better. We aren't here to have a "perfect" life. We're here to transform our natural selves and our lives into perfected ones...to become more like Him. To increase our faith. To follow His example. It won't be painless. It won't be easy. But His plan is better -- for me. And really, I'm happy. And I feel blessed. And I feel like I really wouldn't be happier any other way. Right now, I really feel like I wouldn't be.

I'm grateful that my Father's plan for me involves creating a family here on Earth. Over the years, as we've started our family and first entered the world of special needs, and then entered the world of adoption, I've tried to complain less -- stop looking over other people's fences -- and just follow the Lord's path for me. The better I do that, the happier I am. I have a lot to work on, but today I can say I'm really happy...and I sure love my girls (and of course Marcus), and can't wait for baby #3 (if we E V E R get approved [more details on that later])!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Congratulations to My Man

A big hefty congratulations is in order for my man.

A few weeks ago, Marcus took the EPPP (Exam for Professional Practice in Psychology). This test dictates whether Marcus can be licensed or not. This test dictates if he can get a job or not. This test is a BIG test. It has a pretty high fail rate I've read and it's just a beast. A BEAST I tell you. So, when Marcus studied for 6 hours a day, it was some serious studyin' he was doing. He was especially worried after hearing about a colleague who didn't pass it.

We've been waiting for the results. And waiting.

Yesterday, Marcus got his results. He needed a 500 to pass. And this boy didn't just pass, but he got a 728. (He missed roughly 15 questions.) This is after not passing several of the practice tests. Now, he wouldn't want me to announce his score, but I'm pretty proud of him and how his hard work paid off. The score doesn't really matter to anyone. No one will ever care what he got. It won't matter for his future employment. All people will need to know is that the state board clears him as eligible to work as a psychologist. But still, I think he's one pretty impressive guy. And he's mine. That makes me happy.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What To Do About Your Brain-Injured Child by Glenn Doman


I finished this book a couple weeks ago, but just got my little personal "review" up. I decided to post it on Sammy's blog though because I really read this book for her and all those little kids out there like her. I loved this book and highly recommend it to anyone. If you have a "special needs" someone in your life, then maybe bump it up on your priority list. You can read the review here if you want.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Callie Gets It

Tonight, before dinner, I asked Callie if she wanted to say the prayer or if she wanted me to. The little conversation went something like this:

Me: Callie, do you want to say the prayer, or do you want me to say it?

Callie: How 'bout Sammy?

Me: No Callie. Do you want to say it, or do you want me to say it?

Callie: How 'bout Sammy say it?

Me: Callie, Sammy can't say the prayer. She can't talk.

Callie: Sammy can talk.

Me: No Callie. I'm sorry sweetie. She can't.

Callie: Sammy talk today.

Me: Really?

Callie: In therapy.

Me: Yeah?

Callie: Yes Mommy. Sammy say, "I go I go I go I go."


Oh the grin on Callie's face was priceless. She knew she was right. There really is something magical in children. They get it. They see things more clearly. Of course Sammy can talk. She says "I go" all the time. And I'm really convinced that she says other things...yet I gave the blanket statement that she can't talk. Thanks Callie for reminding me of Sammy's abilities, and reminding me of her potential. You're one special girl Callie Green.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Kidz

There are a few people that I've recently connected with in the special needs world. I feel so fortunate to call them my friends. I've grown so much from their examples and faith. I met Tara awhile ago. She is an amazing mother. She also has a blog called Kidz -- a community for special needs parents. I am honored that she posted an article I wrote -- to be a voice among these great women that I'm continually learning from....

I've been thinking a lot about expectations I have, or don't have, for Samantha. I recognize that she is a gem of a girl. I do. And I believe it. But I have also recently discovered that I put limits on her because she has this thing called microcephaly, and because others have lower expectations for her. They have dictated my own expectations for her. I didn't fully realize this until about a month ago, and when I did discover this, I was so angry with myself. And I didn't understand how I, as her mother, who has been her advocate from the beginning, had limited her. Had set a cap on her progress. My expectations weren't as high as they should have been. And, like I said, I didn't realize this until I recently started to believe she had the potential to achieve more than I had been thinking...and then I realized..."why hadn't I believed this before?" I began a journey of trying to figure it out. And then I wrote about it. You can read about it here.

Everything has changed for me as I've changed my expectations for Samantha...and then I started to think...what if I did that in every area of my life? hmm Food for thought.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

I Gotta Feeling

I was working on Callie's hair today after her bath. She was just about done (my first attempt at cornrows with her...yikes...but in all honesty, not too bad) and was really wiggly. Then, this came on. Not only was it Backyardigans so it got her attention, but she loved their song. Thank you Backyardigans. We finished the hair while giggling together! Check out their sweet dance moves!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Drummer Girl

video
Callie,

You crack me up. I love your musicality and you, my girl, are quite great in general. Thanks for the free concert (almost nightly).

Love,
Dr. Mommy

(Because that's what you've been calling me lately)

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Monday, September 13, 2010

Justin's Honey Almond Butter


Eureka! I've recently made a new discovery. One that I'm quite happy about. Yes. Justin's Honey Almond Butter. Now, I recently saw this on a blog and was reminded of it's sheer goodness.

A few months ago, I switched Samantha and Callie from peanut butter to almond butter. It's a bit pricier, but I think it's worth it. We still have peanut butter, but I opt for almond butter over the peanuts if I have a chance. I'm, personally, not a huge almond fan, so all the more reason to get my children into almonds before they're old enough to realize I don't eat them.

After Samantha's therapy, I usually head over to the nearby Whole Foods to pick up a few items that I can't find in other stores. I went down the aisle and saw Justin's Almond Butter. It was on sale and cheaper than the others. I decided to buy it. I mean, really, what's one almond butter compared to the others? I'm all about price.

When we got home, I busted out the crackers and dove into the almond butter. I hadn't realized it, but I bought the Honey Almond version. I thought to myself that I should try it out...see if I can't make some changes too. I spread it on a cracker, and holy moly. I loved this stuff. Maybe it's the honey in it, but I really like it, and now, when it's on sale, I get a few of them (because at regular price it's too much for me.) HoWeVeR, I just saw that on NaturalGrocers.com you can get it for $5.79! Woa! That's a great price. At Whole Foods they sold it in smaller "trial sized" packages for $1. Maybe it'll be worth a try. Check it out. It's my new favorite discovery! And, I happen to love the plain white label. Love it.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Why It's Good to Have a Working Man....Prt 1

Tonight when Marcus came home, we ate dinner together. I didn't have a horrible day, but I still needed a break. So, after we ate, I told him I needed to go to the gym. Before I left, he was on the ground, wrestling with the girls and I could hear Samantha's giggles and Callie's screams of delight.

It's good to have a working man who is just working 9-5...well, in our case who is workin' 9am-8:30pm on Mondays, 9am-6:30pm Tuesday - Thursdays... and has nothing to think about when he gets home than being with his family. No more stress of job searching. Just being present with the kids while Mommy takes a break. Nice.

Obsessed Much?

Yeah...I am. I'm obsessed with Meaghan Smith. I can't get enough. Yesterday I had an emotional morning. I wrote a little bit about it on Li'l Samsquatch.

After a rough start to the day, I got a cd in the mail from my deary old friend, Marci. Marse, you're a babe, because listening to this changed my day. I had Ms. Smith's music blaring loud and I was singing along as I made rakott krumpli. My upside down day turned out to be fabulous. Thanks Marse, and thanks Meaghan Smith. I'm a fan!

Below is a video of her singing "Heartbroken" live. I love her. Love this song, and look at how cute she is! Love love love.




Cool video bio she has on her website.



Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Work, Work, Work

Yesterday Marcus started work. Wahoo! That's right ladies and gentlemen. My husband is a workin' man now. A few months ago he was hired as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Kaiser Permamente, to start in September. This week he's doing all the orientation stuff, but the fun part is that a pay check will come with his name on it again. What a great feeling!

3 Cheers for Marcus!

I, also, have started working again. Last school year I was tutoring and that was good extra money. I say "extra," but let's be honest, nothing we earned was extra. All went to good use for basic bills. And, I've started up again, this school year already busier than last. I'm excited, but I also worry about juggling it all. I'm still trying to figure out if it's a blessing, or if I need to scale back. I guess we'll see how it goes and how much it will effect my family. It's hard, though, when you know you need the money for this or that. We recently bought 2 cars (post to come on that one), we still have to pay the insurance on one and the tax on the other, I want to get Samantha in this intensive therapy in Utah, and then all the other living life stuff. Well, we'll see.

For now, I remain grateful. Grateful for work and grateful for a place to live. I hope I remain grateful when Marcus gets home at 8pm and I've had to cook, clean up, gets kids ready for bed, get kids in bed...ya know, living like grown-ups again. It'll be a change, that's for sure, but I'm excited.

Again, 3 cheers for Marcus!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Sundays with Callie


Ready to mix! But in these first two pictures, though Callie is darling, it's Sammy in the background that I find so funny...Sammy ready with her drumstick.

And now Sammy is chewing her drumstick. oops.



I'll have to make her a kids' size apron. This was a bit long, but she loved it. Thanks Grammy for letting us borrow that.


Gorgeous.


Concentrating quite heavily on her drawing.

That shine? Hair/scalp conditioner.


All cleaned up.

side note: yes, my kids do generally wear clothing. perhaps at home they aren't fully clothed, but when Callie plays with water outside...well, we get "nearly clothed" on those days.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Purpose of Life

Today was a great day. Other than being tired, it was great. And even then, because I was tired Marcus said, "Jenny, how about this? How about you go and lay down for awhile and I'll watch Sammy?" Well, how about it handsome hunk? That sounds great to me! So, while Callie was napping, I too jumped in the sack and fell asleep, almost instantaneously...and didn't move for about 2 hours. I woke up with a numb right arm, but it was a great li'l slumber...with dreams even. Who knew that Marcus had an older sister that I didn't know about? Amazing what dreams can reveal.

But later, I hung out a lot with Callie. We baked. We danced. We sung B-I-N-G-O and other fun songs. We ate popsicles. We drew and colored. It was a nice day. And then, after she got into her hair stuff and spread it all over her hair...and face....I quickly threw her in the bathtub. (The hair goop is for dry scalp and has menthol in it. She should be breathing just fine tonight!) As she was playing in the bubbles, she decided to make me some "soup." I was appreciative of that. How thoughtful is my little girl? And it hit me...why she's here. And not just here with us, in this family...but why she's here on earth.

I've never asked myself the 3 questions: Where do I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? Mainly, because I feel like I have those answers. I've been taught from an early age that I come from a Heavenly home -- a pre-mortal existence -- to come to earth to gain a mortal body, to be tested, and then, hopefully, if my faith and obedience are sufficient, to return back to my Heavenly Father. The older I've gotten (and I'm only 30), that answer hasn't become more complex. It has always remained the same.

But today, for a moment, I thought about how pointless it all would seem if I didn't know the purpose. If I didn't know the plan. I thought about the millions of people who just live life and suffer trials without knowing why. I thought about how absurd and absolutely frightening it would be to just be born and then die...to nothing. (If that really was the case, really, where would we come from?) There was Callie, playing and giggling and calling me Dr. Mommy {she's been on a real doctor kick lately}, and how perfectly delightful she was and then I thought about what it would be like to not understand the purpose of it all.

Why we need to try our best to be good people?
Why we have children?
Why do we do anything that we do regarding education, family, relationships, etc?

And then I thought about Samantha and how heartbroken I'd be if I didn't have the blessed perspective of understanding that there is more to life than "life." That, even though it certainly doesn't make circumstances and situations easy, because I know why we're here and where we hope to go...I can begin to make sense of something that would seem so cruel and senseless if it weren't for that knowledge. Why have an innocent child be born with a condition that greatly impedes her ability to function in society? To be born with such a deficit? To struggle, quite literally, during her waking moments...to communicate, move....What is the purpose in that? If it weren't for what I know, I'm not sure I'd ever be able to move beyond those questions, and I could see how easy it is to become bitter and calloused. I can imagine all levels of pain, frustration, sadness, anxiety, anger ~ all those real feelings that I have felt ~ would be greatly intensified if I didn't understand that not only is there purpose to all things, but it's real...and that purpose to try to become more like our Savior, to be full of love, compassion, charity.

In that relatively short moment that I sat with Callie, my happiness, my joy, and my gratitude greatly increased.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Hang in there....

"Hang in there, many of life's failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up." -Thomas Edison

I found this quote today and really liked it. Though I don't feel like right now I'm just trying to hang on...I do certainly feel that way from time to time. If I can remember this during those times, perhaps I'll be motivated to not only "hang on," but also fight a little harder too.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Motherhood

See this sweet angelic face? Yeah, well, this morning I wasn't feeling like she was such a little angel. As much as I love her, she was no angel.


This morning, motherhood happened. I woke up this morning at 3:45am. That's early, I'd say, even if you consider yourself an early-riser...and I don't...consider myself an early-riser/morning person. So, it was early. Sammy woke up and before she could cry long enough to wake up Callie, I ran in and got her. We cuddled on the couch and she squirmed for an hour. I was soooo tired. I got frustrated and decided that I was just going to lay her on the couch and let her cry. She didn't. She fell asleep as soon as I laid her down. humph! If that's all she wanted...was to be left alone...why the heck did she wake me up at 3:45am!?

Anyway. 15 minutes later, as I was hoping to fall asleep, I got a phone call. I didn't answer it because at 5am I assumed the call was a mistake, until I heard that the caller left a voice mail. So I listened, and was immediately wide awake. A friend of mine asked me to call her back immediately. Her voice was shaky and I was very concerned.

No need to be concerned folks. Because, motherhood was happening again: My good friend had just received a call that THEY WERE GOING TO HAVE A BABY! Yes! They had to fly out as soon as they could to Michigan to pick up their new baby boy. Wow! They were excited, overwhelmed, excited, overwhelmed...I immediately started making phone calls ~ because you know in Michigan they are 3 hours ahead ~ and arranged a place for them to stay, all the hospital information I could help them with, etc. (And then Samantha woke up for good at 6:15am...yes, I'm tired.)

I've been talking with them as they have been in Michigan a little bit, and had to restrain myself from calling them when I knew they were leaving the hospital. I can wait for her call tomorrow...I think.This has been a fun day for me. About 3 years ago I talked with my friend about adoption. We started talking one day at church, and boom...we were buds. We went on walks, talked and talked and talked. She asked me a lot of questions about Samantha, and a lot about adoption. It was something they were considering. She told me about her family, about her life...and we just became good friends. Over the past few years, we've stayed in touch. And today, we have come to the end of the adoption...or is it the beginning? A little of both.

Today I remember becoming a mother for a second time; I remember getting that phone call and telling us we had a baby waiting for us in Michigan. I remember feeling so excited, and then getting really light headed and feeling so overwhelmed. I'm so glad this friend of mine and I had connected years ago...our adoption stories are so similar, it's really interesting.A few months ago, my friend was considering if adoption was really the right path and if they should pursue in-vitro. When discussing it with her caseworker, the caseworker asked, "Is this about becoming a mother, or is this about having a biological child?" As she drove home, she knew it was about becoming a mother...and that all that peace she had felt about adoption being what was right for them was real.

Since she told me this, I've thought about it a lot. So many people have told me that they don't think they could love a baby that wasn't their own. I feign sympathy, because I get it, but I also really don't. I mean, really don't. I mean... really? I think those people who feel that way would be surprised how much love oozes from them when that baby cries for you...or when that toddler bumps their head and only wants mommy {YOU}, or jumps up and down in excitement when "DADDY" comes home {YOU}. There's a lot of love you feel. They are yours and you're theirs. And if that is the case, that you can't love a child that "isn't you're own," what is it really about...becoming a mother or father, or seeing a child that looks like you? It's interesting to think about. It's something I hadn't thought about that way before. I do, certainly, understand the desire to be pregnant and to go through that process. It is a miracle to bring life to this world, and I really do understand the desire to become parents from that side. 100%. But luckily, for those who are unable...or those who just have a different path laid out for them...I'm sure glad that adoption is an option. It's a darn good one.
I am so grateful to be a mom...and I feel blessed to have experienced becoming a mother in 2 very different ways. But, even if my 2 little girls came to me differently, I feel the same binding love that attach us to each other towards both of them. Motherhood is amazing and incredible, full of lay-your-life-down-for-your-kid kind of love no matter where your baby bundle comes from. I'm pretty sure it's just a part of being a mom.

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