Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Loosing my Marbles

Hubby and I are preparing to set out on our romantic adventure.  We are leaving the kids with my mom and sister for almost a week as we head to the Bahamas.

I am a giant ball of conflicting emotions.

My poor hubby has had his head bitten off so many times already, by the monster that he is supposed to be going on a romantic trip with and I am sure he has rethought our trip numerous times in the past few days.

It is a wonderfully romantic idea, this traveling without kids thing, but what I was not prepared for is how much of a basket case it has made me.

I am so torn between feeling like a terrible person for leaving my children for a week and feeling excited that I get to leave my children for a week.  Of course it doesn't help that Little A has known about our trip the whole time and now that it is getting so close she asks about it a handful of times everyday and always ends with asking why she cannot come along.

Our dialogue the other day went something like this:

A: Mom I really really love you.

Me: I really really love you too sweetie. To the moon and back.

A: Then why aren't I going to the Bahamas with you?

I mean really?!?  She is only 2.5 years old. Where does that even come from?
And like that doesn't break my heart enough, that was not the last time she talked like that.

I think the worst guilt I am feeling though is leaving the E man behind. He is only just over one and has rarely ever been without me. He has been going through a phase lately where he screams when I leave the room, even if he is with his dad and was happily playing, if he notices my absence, he looses it.

With little A we can explain it a bit and talk about how many sleeps we will be gone for (which I will also be counting down I am sure), but with E, there is no explaining it to him, basically his mommy and daddy will just be gone and that will be much harder for him to deal with.

To help the kids get through the craziness, my mom has graciously allowed us to control her life even more by coming down to stay at our house while we are away. (It also is great that my sister, brother-in-law and their little man are still around to help out too. It will help to add more familiar faces to the mix). Originally the plan was for the kids to go up and stay with my parents at their place. But about halfway through the summer hubby talked about cancelling the trip because of concerns of them being away from our house and in an unbabyproofed environment.  Mom, being amazing, worked things out and was able to come to our place, saving us from cancelling (but also inflicting worsening guilt and emotions because of not cancelling).

The day that we booked our trip, my stomach was in knots like I haven't felt before. There was knots the day I got married, because of the idea of a few hundred sets of eyes on me. But that was nithing compared to how I have felt about this trip since booking it. There is a bond between a mother and her kids like nothing else in the world and I have always felt horrible about being away from my kids.

Of course there are times where I am loosing my sanity and all I need is a moment to myself to be a real person outside of them where I can think and process (and use the bathroom in peace). But most often when I am away from my kids, they are sleeping. Even when I leave them home with Hubby, they are often sleeping.(this has changed a bit over the last few months now that E man is mobile and not nursing)
This was our last big trip together...4 years ago

Since booking our trip, which took a lot for me to actually click the 'enter'  key, I have been trying to become okay with the whole idea of leaving them behind.  What I keep telling myself is this:

-The kids  will be fine, they are in great hands and are in their own home and beds.

-The kids will have lots of fun, it's such a special treat to have Grandma here for a week.

-Hubby and I need this. We need time to just be us again without distractions. Time to get to know each other better again. Things always get in the way, jobs, kids, family, there are always a million distractions to keep us from really connecting how we should.

-I need this. To be a better mom and wife, I need to actually relax a little and allow my kids some space and myself some space to just be.

So as I sit here with everything ready and my stomach renching and my mind trying to avoid thinking of all the horrible things that could go wrong (which is where my mind naturally goes, one extreme to the next) my friend just messaged me. She wanted to tell me she is excited for hubby and I and how great this will be for us. How she totally knows how I am feeling in this moment, but how excited she is for how I will feel when it is done. That it will feel amazing to miss our kids so much, to get to soak in their hugs when we get home, and it will be a blessing for our marriage to have those memories of who we are together.

"You are a healthier family unit when your marriage is kept healthy"

So, dear friends, please pray for me and my hubby as we work on our marriage. Pray that I don't loose my mind tomorrow and that I actually get on the plane. Also please pray for our kids and that they are safe and barely notice we are gone.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 
Philippians 4:6

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all. 
2 Thessalonians 3:16

Casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. 
1 Peter 5:7

Blessings and talk to you in a week!

Monday, 19 August 2013

Walking in Peace

A few weeks ago I had the blessing of leaving my children with a babysitter while Hubby was at work. I rarely ever do it but that day was special.  It was the day that I got to see our baby for the first time.  

I have already had the joy of hearing the cute little peanuts heart beat which has been a good strong 160 every time I have been to the doctor. But there is something about seeing the ultrasound that is so special.  

I love it.  I am usually able to just look at the screen and know exactly what it is I am looking at before the technician says anything. Hubby on the other hand just sees black and white dots and blurs and even with explanation still struggles to see it. 

The day of the ultrasound I had the E man sleeping and Little A was waiting for the sitter to come and play with her.  I hurried out to the clinic with my bladder screaming with every movement. Of course I get there and have to wait about ten more minutes of agony trying to keep my bladder from emptying itself all over their waiting room. ( For those that are unaware, your bladder needs to be very full for ultrasounds in the early months) 

Finally I get up on the little table bed thing and excitedly wait to see the little peanut. 
This is the little one. 

For the first, well, what felt like five minutes, the little one didn't move at all.  Its little heart is still too small to see pumping on the screen. It was quite nerve racking since I have been through bad ultrasounds like that before.  But finally baby moved and my eyes filled with tears. Little one was kicking and rolling and moving all over the place, it was beautiful. 

The tech (who is actually a Doctor too) continued to show me the important things, like arms, legs and its expected birth date. Baby is expected to arrive sometime around the 13th of February. 

After having a wonderful time seeing all of the wonderful parts of our little peanut he taped a clip of the  heartbeat.  There is something about that sound that gets me every time I have heard it (even after having two kids).  

Along with getting to see all of the wonderful little parts of our growing peanut, early ultrasounds can also bring the blessing or curse of knowledge.  

See, because of the scan I now know that baby is healthy and the right size for where it should be. I know that its heart is beating strong and that it is moving and squirming just like it should be. I know that my placenta looks like it is attached well.
But, I also know that I have two bleeds/clots  ( Subchorionic Hematomas) on either side of my placenta. I also know that my placenta is low and to the front which is why it can be hard to find a heartbeat when the doctor is using dopler and that I have an increased risk of Placenta Previa. 

Depending on the doctor, my new discoveries about my pregnancy could lead to taking it easy and not doing any lifting or could go as far as full bed rest. I was advised to take it easy, not lift, run, fall or be intimate until I could speak to my usual doctor and have another ultrasound to make sure things are not getting worse. 

News like this, three years ago, would have sent me into a tailspin. 

Don't get me wrong, it did rattle me a little. And as I left the ultrasound and hurried to empty my painful bladder, I struggled to hold back tears as I fought with feeling bad for myself. 

At first, my inner thoughts were strictly focused on myself and how unfair it is that I cannot just have a normal pregnancy.  Seriously, I have been pregnant 6 times and every time something went wrong.  How stupid is that?! Why can I not just be one of those lucky women who has easy pregnancies and just gets to waltz through it without pain or complications.  

Then I stopped my pity party and heard God's still small voice trying to cut through the din. The voice that I had been ignoring while I felt sorry for myself and angry with Him. 

He reminded me that He cares for this baby more than I know.  That He is the only one in control of what will happen here.  He is putting my baby together in my womb and nothing I do or say will change His plan for how this will go.   He reminded me that He is the God of HOPE and my hope can only be in Him. 

 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Romans 15:13

I did rest and take it easy but still had to continue with my normal life. Because really with two children under 3 there is no real taking it easy.  But I know that my hope is not in my own capabilities because there is nothing saying that what I do or do not do will change anything. And because I have hope in something so much greater, the God of the universe. 

So I am choosing to walk in peace. I know that at all times we all walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we all go through hardship and pain, trials and tribulations. But we must hold onto the truth that no evil can overcome us because we walk with the Lord. He is in us and we are in Him and there is no safer place to be. 

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.

He makes me lie down in green pastures,

he leads me beside quiet waters,

he refreshes my soul.

He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk

    through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
Surely your goodness and love will follow me

    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord

Psalm 23

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Update and Sharing My Heart

Wow have I missed this.  It has been so long since I have been able to have a moment to myself to think and reflect and listen to God let alone to write any of it down.

Things in our lives have been pretty insane this summer. We spent three weeks living with my Mother and Father in Law at their acreage while Hubby helped to build a giant shop for them to enjoy.  The kids and I had a great time visiting with Hubbies family and mine and exploring some exciting things around their town. 

While we were away my sister and brother in law ( and their little baby boy) were house sitting and since our return they have been living with us.  My b.i.l. is hard at work trying to renovate their new home so that they can move in sometime soon.  They still have a lot of work to do as he is both working on the home and working his full time job at our church. 

We have really enjoyed having them around the house with us and so far it has been wonderful. My kids adore them and their little guy and every day when my kids wake up they are so excited to go and see their aunt and uncle and cousin. E man adores the little guy and gives him big wet kisses all over his tiny bald head whenever he sees him.  We rarely hear E call the little guy buy his name, most of the time he just says "muah" like he is giving a kiss. 

Between the time we arrived home and now the kids and I also spent a week out at the lake. We went to a Deaf and Hard of Hearing Family camp at the camp my family has been involved with for years.  I had a few friends that were really confused by my excitement about taking the kids out there for Deaf camp since none of my family is Deaf or Hard of Hearing. 

I have grown up involved in the Deaf community my entire life. My dad was a sign language interpreter for a living but as I have explained before ( Found Here) , it was his gifting. More than fifteen years ago my dad started a camp for Deaf youth but where we are from there was little connection between the deaf community across the province and there were only a few youth that were able to attend. The first year there were 4 teens. As the years went on the camp grew but was still very small. They decided to open it up to Deaf and Hard of Hearing families and they offer signing classes to help the family members of those who are deaf to learn and practice sign.  

When little A was only 6 months old I took her out to the camp and she would just sit and stare at the people signing around her. She soaked it all in and was signing up a storm before we left.   Her first words were very quick to come as she was learning to sign before the camp, but while we were there she signed her first string of words. She signed "more dog".   (Just in case you didn't know, the language development guides say that between 18-24 months children should be putting 2 words into a statement like that,   she blows my mind with how smart she is) 

I have a strong belief that sign helps a child's development.  I have seen it proven time and time again.  There is a family at the camp whom I have known my entire life. Both parents are Deaf, all three of their children are hearing. Their oldest son, Luke, is absolutely brilliant.  He was signing fluently and was able to order food for his parents at restaurants before he was 1 year old.  At 2 he sat at the camp on the beach with my dad and looked at him and said, " Wow! Thats a huge responsibility."  "What is?" responds my dad. "God has to hold all of that water over there off of the sand, that is a huge responsibility."

Sign Language is something that I feel very strongly about. I have actually had many people tell me that I am going to do damage to my children by signing with them,  to which I laugh and say, have you seen my daughter?  Little A had over 300 words in her vocabulary at just over one year old.  Things that she couldn't sign she would speak and things she couldn't speak she would sign, and some words she signed and spoke.  Now at two and half she counts, talks about opposites, and is beginning to spell. She rarely ever had temper tantrums out of frustration as a toddler (only because she wasn't getting what she had asked for)

Anyway, we had a wonderful time. It was neat to watch little A this time around because she was somewhat shy with her signing to people but on her own or with the family she signed up a storm. E man was hilarious at the camp also. He wasn't seeming to be picking up that many signs while we were there but he was talking almost constantly, he is now trying to copy everything we say and is talking a lot more. Funny thing was, once we got home, E man has been signing twice as much as he used to and has been using signs we didn't think he knew. Turns out he was just soaking it all in.

Signing is something that I feel can help to give our kids the best we can offer.  Infants learn to use their hands for gestures far before their mouths can even form the sounds. Why not help them communicate with their hands and stimulate their brains early on and see what amazing things it opens up for them.
If you want to take a peak and see the resources that we used with out kids you can check out the Signing Times website  or  Baby Signing Time site. ( or .ca for those that are Canadian

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Rachel & the Tree Schoolers

This is an amazing opportunity to provide our children with highly educational, multifaceted programming.

Our kids deserve better than the garbage they have on tv right now.  
Check it out.