Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Asking for it

Did you ever have those days where you just felt like your children were asking for it? The last two days have been like that for me. But I must back up to Saturday for it all to make sense. Maybe even farther than that. Ever since my pregnancy with Alaina (#2), I have had problems with my back. It's usually my sciatic nerve. Two weeks ago my back went out and it took me about 5 or 6 days until I was feeling pretty much as good as new. Well, last Saturday it went out again! I had just gotten Charlotte out of bed and took her out to the living to play. I was sitting her down when it just went. I had to go down to my knees. Thankfully it wasn't as severe as I have had before where I was reduced to crawling around for a few days. I waited till the pain had subsided, and then stood up and hobbled out to the kitchen where my husband was pouring our coffee. He looked at me and just shook his head, and followed me back to our room where I laid down and just wanted to cry. The pain in the back is bad enough, but when you have three children, four and under, it just makes you want to hide under the covers and never come out. My children are normal, which means they fight over toys, and go to far rooms in the house where I can't see what they are doing, and they get into stuff. With a bad back, it just means my reaction time so much slower, and my patience is quite a bit more thin. Fast forward to yesterday. Mornings are my hardest because I am so stiff from lying down all night. I got up and made my way to the couch where my heating pad is and laid on it till my muscles were warmed up and I could stretch a little. The girls got up and I attempted to make breakfast and get them dressed. I knew the house need a good cleaning because I hadn't gotten much done the week before because of my back, so I called my mother in law and sister in law to come help me out. I poured cleaner in the bathroom sinks and tubs and toilets and then went to lay down again. I realized as I lay down that Charlotte is missing. So I go back the hall and find her up to her elbows in toilet water! I firmly tell her no, wipe her off, and shut the bathroom door. I bring her back out to the living room and lay down again. Ten minutes later I hear commotion back near the bedrooms again. I go back and this time find all three in my bathroom. Charlotte again in the toilet, and Larissa has the toilet brush waving it around and splashing water all over. Charlotte then starts rubbing her eyes and crying because it burns. So I tell the older two to go their room and take Charlotte, clean her up, and put her down for a nap. I discipline the older two because they knew better and hobble out to the sofa....again. My family shows up and I just start crying because I am feeling totally overwhelmed. They take the older two outside and hang out my laundry and clean my house. Which was awesome. But my older two continued to get into trouble. They climbed into our pickup truck and found some gum. Alaina came in the house with a huge wad of gum she was chomping on. And they also got into their grandma's car, which they got in trouble for by grandma. The expression on Alaina's face was priceless. She couldn't believe Grandma would discipline her! Loved that. And then what took the cake was lunchtime. I was putting food on the girls' plates so it would be cooled. I had finished Larissa's and moved around the table to do Alaina's when Charlotte crawled over, stood up, and pulled Larissa's plate down to the floor. Spilling mashed potatoes, corn, sauerkraut and pork all over the place. As quickly as she could, Charlotte stuffed food in her mouth ( I do feed my children, Charlotte just thinks she needs to eat all the time), so I didn't have as much to clean up, but still, it was just the icing on the cake.
So this morning I get up, not feeling quite as bad as yesterday, and we start our morning. The older two go out to play as I finish cleaning up and I see they are in the pickup yet again. So I bring them in, we deal with it, and move on. I put Charlotte down for a nap and come out into the kitchen and see the children's cough medicine I had on the counter is gone and the girls have it outside where they dumped it all over the porch! Now, I am slightly upset. Cough medicine is plenty expensive. So we again have to deal with it. I've read in books that you will have days where it seems like your children are just asking for it all the time. I believe the last few days would fall into that category. The books also assure us worn out parents that this will cease, but days like these make me feel like it will not come soon enough. How hard it is to find the patience to deal with the childishness, deliberate disobedience and curiosity of the age. It makes it even more apparent that the more I try to take on myself, the more I fail. It's only through the Lord's strength and supernatural patience and love that a parent can make it. I don't know any other way.

Sunday, April 27, 2008


April is a popular month for birthdays. Our third child's birthday is the beginning of the month, and our first, Larissa, is the end of the month. In fact, her birthday is tomorrow, the 28th. Four years old. Wow, the time just goes so fast. I thought I would write about her birth as well since I did Charlotte's. Alaina's will have to wait until October. Lets see.....four years ago tonight, my labor started. Larissa is the only one that I experienced back labor with. Thank goodness! That is exhausting in itself, and then you have the contractions to deal with as well. I was up most of the night with back labor. I sat in the tub off and on, scared to death of what was to come. This was my first baby, and we were having her at home, so as you can imagine, all kinds of possibilities were playing in my mind. I don't think it matters where you have your babies, I think most mothers go through a time when they are scared or unsure of what will or could happen. Eight the next morning my contractions started to be five minutes apart. So we called our midwife, and she arrived about ten. I labored all day. And it was quite intense. My poor husband pushed against my knees everytime I had a contraction to counteract the back labor I was experiencing. I think he was as tired as I was the next day! Finally, at seven, Stephanie checked me and I was a ten, so she broke my water, and I got into my beloved birthing tub to start the last phase. I pushed for an hour and twenty minutes. I was so exhausted till Larissa arrived. One side effect to my being in labor is that I throw up anything with sugar in it. So I cannot eat or drink anything but water. This drains your energy levels considerably, so by the time she arrived, I was exhausted. But there is no feeling to describe holding your first baby ever. The miracle of birth is one that I will never understand or be able to find the words to express. It is just amazing and breathtaking. We named our firstborn Larissa, which means happy and cheerful. Which she is most of the time. She is the only whose name we agreed on from the beginning. For some reason we have a problem finding girls names that we both like, and we only have girls! Go figure. But I just remember after the midwives got me settled and Larissa dressed and weighed, they put her in bed with me and the three of us, now a family, just laid there. Nate and I just staring at her, and Larissa just sleeping peacefully away. Our lives were never going to be the same again.

Monday, April 7, 2008


Tonight is the eve of my third child's birth. I thought maybe I would write about her birth. Tomorrow she will one. Hardly seems like it's already a year ago that she would have been born. Charlotte Elizabeth, I must say is one of the best surprises God ever gave me. We had been planning on having a little more space between number two and three, but the Lord had other plans. I thought it might be fun to memorialize her birth because it was an unusual experience. I guess all births are. My firstborn because she was my first, Alaina because her daddy delivered her, and Charlotte because I went into false labor twice before actually delivering. It wouldn't have been so bad except that we have our babies at home, and both times my wonderful midwives had to make the hour trek out here for nothing. Plus, my due date was to be around the end of March, and Charlotte didn't come until the 8th of April. You want to be careful when talking to an overdue pregnant woman!!!
But yes, Saturday evening the 7th I started having contactions. My mom was already here because the baby was supposed to have come two weeks earlier. When I mentioned that I was having consistent contractions and that I thought maybe she should take the girls down to my mother-in-law's for the night, I remember my mom looking at me and asking, "Are you sure?" Oh, I hoped it was for real! False labor really plays on your emotions. So she took the girls and left. Nate and I went for a walk to encourage my labor along. My midwives showed up around 9 p.m., and the waiting game began. I labored all night until about 5:30 a.m. the next morning. Finally, my contractions were coming on top of each other, and I decided to get into my birthing tub, which in my opinion, is the best thing ever. It's full of hot water, and just relaxes me like nothing else. (Well, as relaxed as you can be when you are in pain!) At 6:00 a.m. Stephanie, my midwife checked me and I was a nine. I got back in the tub, felt the burn, and knew it wouldn't be long. At 6:10 a.m. Charlotte Elizabeth was brought into the world. She came out into the water, her eyes wide open, and she spread her arms and legs out like she was going to swim to me. It was the coolest thing ever. My midwife suggested videoing our next birth. (But I don't think so. I don't think I could watch it.)
Her name is special too. I found the name Charlotte in a baby name book, and it means "Woman of the Lord." Now, I liked that because she was definitely the Lord's plan. Not that all babies aren't, but we weren't in on this plan, so it felt very fitting for her name. And in a way, it was as if the Lord was affirming her name because our baby girl was born on Sunday. Not just any Sunday, but Easter Sunday last year. I just love that. And she has been the sweetest, happiest, most even tempered baby. The Lord has definitely blessed us with her, even when we weren't expecting it. But isn't that just like Him? He always knows best.

One of those days

Did you ever have one of those days that just started off bad, and you wished you could start all over? I had one of those last Friday. You see, I have this passion about reading. If I am in a good book, I cannot put it down, and I totally zone out everything and everyone around me. It drives my husband crazy. He can be talking to me and I totally have not heard a word he has said. This is especially dangerous to do when the children are awake.
Friday morning I got up, fed Charlotte and decided to read while the older two slept. They eventually got up and came out to the living room. They played in there for a while and then suddenly it got quiet. Now, in my subconscious I was aware that they had left the room, but I was in a good spot in my book and decided they couldn't get into too much trouble.
A few minutes later, I heard the water running in the bathroom. Irritated, because I had to stop reading, I put down my book and went back to investigate. Turns out, my daughters got a hold of my white out and thought it was lipstick. It was on their face and all over their hands and arms. Believe me, white out does not come out easily. I got pretty upset with them, and then realized, you know, I have no one to blame but myself. I should have been the adult, and put my book away when the older two got up, but no, I just had to read one more chapter, which turned into another, and then another.
This is one area that I do struggle in. I sometimes have a hard time stopping what I want to do and doing what my children want to do. Now, I do agree that children do need to learn to wait and that the world doesn't revolve around them, however, this specific circumstance was totally me being selfish. And I've learned my lesson. And I don't believe my girls want their mommy scrubbing their skin until it's red either, trying to get the stuff off! So hopefully, there will be on more white out incidents!