Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sharing Lessens Sadness

Just when things seem "normal" something comes up to shake our lives up a bit. This week it's been Johnathan being sick. He has been battling allergies for a couple of weeks, and this past weekend they got the best of him and he came down with a fever Sunday night. When I took him to his pediatrician Monday afternoon Johnathan was pretty hot feeling, coughing and hadn't been eating like he normally does. The doctor listened to his chest...for a long time...and decided we needed an x-ray to rule out pneumonia. *I started to freak out a bit...okay, a lot*

We headed over to the radiology dept to get the x-ray, and I had to leave poor Eli out, alone, in the hallway because he couldn't be close to the radiation...talk about a scary situation. Luckily Eli has a set of lungs on him and screamed the whole time, so at least I knew he was still out there and that no one was taking him. It was awful though. The x-ray came back, lungs looked okay, so we got some scripts for an oral steroid to help with the decreased breathing sounds in Johnathan's left lung and some antibiotics for the double ear infection that he had. Poor baby!

Anyways...I have been having a rough time with Johnathan being sick. I have been trying to pray, to not worry, to concentrate on what is true...but is really has been a battle...a spiritual battle I am sure, and the Devil wants to keep me in this place of being scared and not living in truth. Yesterday was a bad day. I cried uncontrollably for a large part of the morning and some more throughout the day. It was weird. I felt so oppressed by fear. It was scary. I felt so vulnerable and not in control...which is why maybe I have a hard time with trust...I like to be in control of things, but really, I am in control of very little and I need to leave everything in God's hands.

Yesterday I had a great conversation with my sister, Gail. After hearing my fears she prayed such a beautiful prayer for me, spoke God's truth and words of comfort. It helped. And I realized, as I often have before, that sharing my struggles lessens sadness, helps to ease fears and gives me truth to think about. I am so thankful for sweet people in my life who are willing to help me along when my days are less than perfect. *Thanks sweet Gaily, I love you!*

Today we went back to the doctor since Johnathan's cough has worsened. Our pediatrician (who I love, and have mentioned this fact numerous times!) looked Johnathan over and just smiled and said, "lungs sound good!" Phew, relief! But still, poor Monkey has an awful cough that has made him throw up and interferes with his (and the rest of the family's) sleep. So, he got a steroid shot to help his breathing/cough and will continue with the other meds until they are completed.

I am starting to feel better about Johnathan getting well...but...Eli now seems to be getting sick too. Aah! Congestion and starting with a little cough today, but not very frequent, no fever, so we'll see where it leads. I have been suctioning out his little nose like crazy, and I hope that I can ward off any real sickness.

I know that kids get sick. I know that it is common for kids to get sick frequently. I know that most of these little colds/viruses/etc. when caught & treated early aren't a huge threat...however, I still can't seem to calm down the stress levels that seem to rise to enormous proportions in me. Trust. I am learning it. But it is going to be an ongoing process, but, I suppose that is how it is supposed to be.

Here's to two little healthy guys soon...hopefully very soon, that would be nice!


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Things I Want to Remember

Going through life things happen and change so quickly that little incidents, major or minute, often get forgotten. Here are some things that have happened recently that I want to remember. Some sweet little happenings in our hive of a home!

-Yesterday Johnathan busted out of our bedroom closet where he had been hiding. He began to excitedly tell me about going to the park (which we were just about to do) and he totally forgot that he had taken a little sneak of Eli's pacifier, and it was still in his mouth! I asked him what was in his mouth, and he had the cutest look on his face like, "uh-oh, you caught me!" Johnathan has been without his own pacifier completely for about a month or so. I wonder how many times he has sneaked off to suck on Eli's paci?!!

-When Johnathan is calling for either Aaron or me (Dada or Mama) he will often get us mixed up and call us the wrong name, however, he corrects himself mid-name...for example, if he's calling for me and gets mixed up say "Da-ma" or calling for Aaron he'll say "Ma-da"...it's pretty cute!

-Johnathan is a puzzle genius! Seriously, the little dude loves puzzles and is amazing at working them. A few weeks ago I went to Target to get him some more board puzzles...just wooden jigsaw pieces on a plain board...and I bought him 3 new ones figuring it would take him at least a few days to figure them out. Wrong. He did them all super fast the first time he worked them. So, now we're up to regular jigsaw puzzles that you buy in a box and just work on the floor or on the table. He is excellent at those too! Such a little smartie pants!

And, so as to not leave little mister Eli out...

-Eli is our little roly-poly. He has been rolling over, both ways...front to back, back to front...for about a month now. One of his favorite things to do right now is to grab onto my arm when I'm changing him and wrestle it. It's so cute! He wraps his arms around my arm, pulls it close to him and rolls around. Precious!

Happy Weekend!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

My Little Fluffy Butt

I have started a new endeavor with my sweet lil' Eli...cloth diapers! (This was the exciting news I was talking about in a previous post!) We started switching over to cloth from disposable last week...at the encouragement from a friend here in CC who is the queen of cloth diapers! ;) So far I am loving it for several reasons:

1) Eli was starting to have lots of "blow-outs" with his disposable diapers which meant lots of outfits were getting poo all over them as well as whatever he was sitting on---yuck! We haven't had any blow-outs with the cloth...and believe me we've put them to the test (i.e. he had a major poop while jumping in his jumperoo and no mess outside of the diaper! Yay!)

2) It feels rewarding to sort of be more "natural" in the area of diapering...plus, it's way more "green" than throwing at least 6 or more diapers a day straight into the trash that eventually end up in some land fill somewhere rotting away for years and years . I'm not a tree hugger or anything, but it does feel good to be able to use something you don't just throw away.

3) They are super soft and comfy and they will grow with Eli as he gets bigger. The brand I bought is called rump.a.rooz, and they fit a newborn all the way up to 35 pounds by having several snaps on the front that adjust the diaper size. It's actually pretty cool! I bought them from my friend, Kyndal, aka the queen of cloth, from her baby boutique that she recently started up. It is nice to be able to support the endeavors of a sweet, stay at home mom. Kyndal is passionate about motherhood, and offers in her boutique several things that she enjoys using as a mommy to her sweet daughter.

4) And, maybe this should have been at the top of the list...they are super cute! There are several prints that are just totally adorable...my favorite that we have is the fire trucks print...and even the solid colors are pretty cute.

5) I actually like washing the diapers, and love how fresh and clean they smell when I'm getting them ready for Eli to use again.

6) Eli's little bum looks so cute and fluffy in his new diapers...he's my little fluffy butt!

Anyways, those are just a few reasons why I am enjoying cloth! Here are some pics of my precious cloth diaper baby!

Now isn't he just precious?!! Yeah, I think so too!!! Bye for now, y'all!


Saturday, October 16, 2010

Sometimes Happiness Still Feels So Foreign

Before Johnathan was born and early on in my pregnancy with him I remember driving home one day and feeling extremely happy...and it was an odd feeling. It felt strangely unnatural to feel happy. I suppose that after living 4 years with the pain and heartache of losing our first four children that living with sadness had become a way of life, and being sad had become normal. Maybe even comfortable. Happiness was a new feeling again, and believe it or not it has taken some time to get used to that feeling.

Sometimes happiness still feels so foreign...

Last night for example. Aaron and I had just prayed at the end of our day right before bed like we always do. And, like usual at the end of our prayers we said our "I Love Yous" to our Heaven babies..."We love you Gideon, Daniel, Angel Babies." We do this every night, but some nights it hits me just how much I miss them. Like last night. I couldn't help but break down and cry...the kind of cry where you feel the ache in your very soul. It was a familiar feeling. A feeling that I used to live with day in and day out almost constantly. And, now that we have Johnathan and Eli, sometimes that ache for my babies seems stronger because I now know what the happiness of having children feels like. I suppose the same is true for the happiness that I feel over the blessing of our Earth babies...both emotions are felt at the extreme.

As I sat there in the dark, tears coursing down my face, heart aching for the babies that I don't have with me, there were plenty of thoughts going through my mind. Like how it is such a paradox to feel such anguishing sadness at the loss of our first 4 children along with the joy of having our two precious sons here with us on earth. Talk about mixed emotions. Often when I see our two little guys interacting I catch a glimpse of what Heaven might be like. Gideon loving on his little brother, and Daniel's face lighting up with joy at the sight of his older brother. I miss that I don't get to see that, to experience the love I know they have for each other. I miss my babies, and I miss being able to see the wonderful big brothers that I know Gideon and Daniel would have been to Johnathan and Eli. And I miss our "Angel Babies" too...and I can't help but think that maybe they are boys as well...that seems to be our theme!

Aaron and I recently had a conversation about how we find it so hard to trust God to protect Johnathan and Eli. We know that is not guaranteed that just because you pray for Him to protect and preserve life that it will automatically happen. I can remember specifically praying really hard, probably the hardest I've ever prayed for God to save Gideon's life. To let him live and to let his precious life be a testimony to what God can do. I was so sure that would happen. I had such faith. But after Gideon's death, and the the death of Daniel and our two angels, that faith is having a hard time staying strong. It wavers. And fear often overtakes it. And I don't like it. Not one bit.

This past week Johnathan has been sick. Nothing big. Really just allergies on overdrive that are draining down his throat and making him cough. However, sometimes just the sound of him coughing is enough to almost send me into a panic attack. My heart literally starts pounding in my chest like its trying to jump out, and I feel a dark dread pour over me. Fear.

As the time neared for Johnathan's birth I thought that once we had him with us, alive and healthy, that all my previous fears and doubts would just disappear. Funny how you actually have to deal with stuff though, it doesn't just disappear. And I know that I still have a lot to work through. I am just now getting to the point, probably since the birth of Eli and seeing God's hand so distinctly through that, that I am able to give Him praise out loud. Honestly in the past it was hard to give God credit for the good things. I was just so angry that His plans for our first 4 children were not my own, and upset that he could let them and my dream of being a mommy die. Thankfully God is full of grace, and I know that He understands all that I felt and still feel and I have always known how much He loves me...even when I felt like He was a million miles away.

Sometimes happiness still feels so foreign. Sometimes the happiness that I do feel gets choked out by nightmares from the past. Grief is an ongoing process, and I am finding out just how much of it I still have left to deal with. However, in the meantime, I have two precious boys to love on and hold and kiss and cry over and two little ones that know me as Mommy. Oftentimes it is quite overwhelming. Oh, how I love those little guys. And oh how I miss my Heaven children.

I am learning that there is more to life than the pursuit of happiness, it's a wonderful feeling but hardly all that life is about. Ultimately I believe that we're here by God's grace, to give Him glory, to live for Christ, to share with others about His love for them...for all of us. And I know that someday I will see all of my precious children together. And that will be something far better than happiness.

Signing off for now,

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Life with Little Ones

Life with little ones sure isn't predictable, but it sure is fun. And, with two little (and very active) boys life is pretty tiring, but in a {mostly} good way. *wink*

Last night was one of those crazy nights that parents find themselves enduring when a sick child will not go to sleep. Johnathan came down with a cough a day or so ago, and yesterday we gave him a few doses of some cough suppressant to help him be able to sleep...backfire, big time! He refused his nap and then when it was bedtime he actually did sleep for a few hours only to get up at 2 am and want to play the rest of the whole night! Aah!!! Finally around 7 am we let him "get up" and he was all smiles and ran to get his favorite toys out in the living room. Luckily I went to bed fairly early last night (I am battling a cold myself) and got about 4 hours of sleep before Monkey decided it was party time. Poor Aaron though, he stayed up until 2 working on a presentation for work, and right when he was about to go to bed Johnathan got up! Such is life with little ones!

I realize that I haven't posted in a couple of weeks, maybe longer, but not for lack of things going on around here...actually, the opposite! We've been quite busy with our daily happenings, and here are a few pictures that will give you a glimpse into our last few weeks! Oh, and I have some exciting news to share soon...no, I'm not expecting another baby!...and I'll just give you a hint...it has to do with diapering Eli...sounds exciting, right?! Haha! Maybe not, but I am having fun trying out something new! I'll tell you about it soon!

Our two precious little guys...aren't they the cutest little brothers?!!

Eli, 4 months old. Johnathan, 2 1/2 years old
Eli is a finger sucker, and rarely takes a pacifier these days...and Johnathan is a finger poker and luckily hasn't poked out Eli's eyes yet! ;)

Johnathan went to a friend's birthday party and they had the cutest little petting farm there.

Johnathan loved all the little animals, especially this little chicken!

He was fairly gentle with the bunny rabbit...and only picked it up and threw it once! (Poor bunny!)

This little goat was too cute, and Johnathan had a good time feeding it.

I still fall in love with Johnathan's eye lashes every time I see them...aren't they gorgeous?!

Eli is a pro at his bouncer chair and makes that thing hop up and down like crazy!

Mmm, yummy fingers!

Eli also loves his jumperoo, and jumped so much this day that he tired himself out!

He is a bit short so I have to put a pillow under his jumper so he can have something to push off of to jump! Poor little shrimpy!

One Little Boy + Unlimited Dirt = A Good Time!

"Ta-da!" Very proud of his dirt creation!

Before I go, a quick baby update for Eli (mostly for my records)...at his 4 month check-up he was a little over 23 inches long and weighed in at 13 pounds, 1 ounce. Head circumference was 17. The doctor says that he's taking after me, and he is around the 5th percentile! Tiny little dude! Of course we must remember that he came out a bit shrimpy, so I'm not worried! He's gaining appropriately, he is just small!

Alrighty y'all, I'm out to go work on stuff around the house and to play with Monkey...maybe I can wear him out enough to get him to take a nap!