- I’ve been trying to get back in the swing of things on the Gowen home front. It’s almost like my brother was right about the hospital waiting room being the Twilight Zone. I certainly felt like I was returning from an alternate reality last night. The absolute blackness on the highway at midnight only added to my exhaustion. Bailey took some time to be convinced to fall asleep for the night. I longed to stay awake with my sweetheart and tell him the excitement of my day, but the rhythmic motion of rocking the baby lulled me away as well.
- Chloe had not stayed awake as long as the rest of us. So she was understandably ready to roll this morning. Oh how I had missed my little tornado yesterday! She apparently missed me too. She greeted me this morning as I sat on the commode by saying, “I can’t stand it any longer. Take off your boobie so I can have it. I haven’t played with it in days and days!” No, you didn’t misread that, and yes, it’s a direct quote. Bailey has napped a lot, allowing Chloe and I time together. It apparently isn’t enough, though. Even as I sit here rocking Bailey to sleep in another room, Chloe keeps coming to the doorway screaming “watch me!” As she dances to Dora. Every time, I say “Shhh… Good job” and she screams back “oh thank you, thank you!” It’s a wonder the baby ever naps at all.
- Earlier I watched old episodes of Downton Abbey, with a sleeping Chloe on my lap. There was a part where a young maid said to a lady of the house, “You all are raised that way, to believe that every dream you have is within your grasp to be accomplished. We are not taught to believe that.” It made me think about how opinions on that differ between a believer and non-believer. If your faith is rooted solely in your own abilities, it may be quite easy to believe you can’t do something or that your dreams cannot be accomplished. But when you place your hope and trust in a Loving Father God, He gives you the strength, endurance, know-how, and confidence to see your dreams realized. When we rely on our own devices, we are almost like a lower class, incapable of achieving greatness for lack of resources. But as a child of God, we have been bestowed a great inheritance, that once realized and claimed, makes us capable of obtaining many great dreams and achieving many great heights.
That is all 🙂
- It’s a boy! My baby sister had a baby. I feel so many emotions right now. I held her when she was a baby, and it seems almost strange to me that she is now having her own. Before we could see her, they sent a video of her holding little Jaxon. Her profile looked exactly like my Momma. I pictured Momma holding her 21 years earlier and I almost fell apart.
- We were at the hospital about 12 hours. It made for a long day. I had Bailey. I was proud she did so well, but nursing all day on the calories derived from a bag of Doritos and Reese’s cups left me drained. I don’t know what people did in waiting rooms before smart phones. We all took turns sharing one charger. Thankfully my Dad didn’t electrocute himself using his pocket knife to remove the child proof device from the outlet. My brother said a hospital waiting room is like the Twilight Zone. After watching 13 hrs of The Weather Channel, I have to agree. I saw a proud new, young daddy in there. I smiled as he told someone on his phone, “Sorry dude. I gotta go. I got a baby to take care of now.”
- When I walked into the delivery room, I was surprised to see my baby sister had been replaced by a woman. Her countenance had somehow changed. Her eyes showed a wisdom that had not been there before. I cried as I put my arms around her neck. “I’m so proud of you.” I said, pointing at her son, “Look what you did!” Already sounding like a Mom, she told me calmly, “Don’t cry.”
That is all 🙂
- There are challenges to anything you do. If the benefit is greater than the challenge, you go with it. If the pros outweigh the cons, you proceed. Such is deciding to breastfeed your child, for me. As I sit here and allow two vacuum type devices to grab my breast and yank my nipples back and forth; I think on my baby’s face. Only a woman can put herself through such a thing. Imagine feeling akin to a dairy cow. Nothing is more delightful than being away from your baby while you work and becoming so busy that your breasts fill with milk to the point that you fear a needle stick would make them pop like a balloon. Insert sarcasm here.
- When I lay in bed last night, all I could long for was sleep. Conditions weren’t favorable though. I had my infant daughter suction cup attached to my right breast (she had missed me terribly and needed Mommy’s flesh pacifier). My other daughter was cuddled in my left arm with her hand on my left breast. She still sees my breast as a security blanket in times of fear or when she’s exhausted. My poor husband sat in the corner looking sad, no doubt wondering if it would ever be his turn again.
- I started these facts with saying when the good is better than the bad, you go with it. That is breastfeeding for me. It is challenging. It’s not always easy. I sometimes feel confined or chained to my baby. I can’t really diet. I still have to watch what medicines I take. The thing is, when I can look down on the angelic face of my baby, when I see her little fingers curl around my shirt, when I realize I am giving life and nourishment to my baby, when I experience the beautiful bond between us, and when she smiles back up at me; it is then that I know I wouldn’t have it any other way.
That is all 🙂
- This morning as I was getting ready, I had a moment of good ole nostalgia. I flashed back to my teenage days of trying to sneak into the house past curfew. All the tiptoeing I did this morning brought it to mind. I had 4 people asleep in 1400 sq ft of space, so I was going from here to there, shutting doors, walking softly, and trying to mask loud noises of getting ready for work. I’m not sure which was scarier, waking a baby now, or waking my Dad back then. No disasters this morning; unlike as a teen when I turned my headlights off coming down the driveway and drove onto a metal culvert, splitting my tire in the process. It was definitely worse waking my Dad that time.
- On Monday, I shared my plan to cut down on carbohydrates in my diet. You may not believe it, but this here Cookie Monster has adhered all week to no carbs. It seemed to work fine all week at home when I could make eggs and sausage for breakfast. Fast forward to today. 2 pm rolls around and I still hadn’t eaten. I felt dizzy, weak, tired, and my milk supply when I pumped was down. Finally ate a late lunch of meat and veggies, but I still had a headache and generally felt like garbage. Walk onto any nursing unit break room and you will likely find a box of donuts. That’s right. I fell off the wagon and it felt good!
- Being a Nurse is always about helping people, giving care and compassion, and offering emotional and/or spiritual support. Often, as a Nurse, you can become so busy with the physical wellness, that the emotional and spiritual wellness are easily overlooked. Today I was super busy with the physical aspect of a patient. Family was present at the bedside and quite emotional. I felt God urging me to pray for them. So I silently did. But I still felt the urging. I asked them if I could pray with them and they agreed. After I finished and again before they left, the family thanked me for giving them spiritual support at the right time, just when they needed it. It felt good to encompass all aspects of my profession and life as a Christian. It made the carb withdrawal seem not as important after all.
That is all 🙂
- I’m sure most of you are familiar with Murphy’s Law. It basically states: Anything that can go wrong, will go wrong. For example, if you get a flat tire; it’s going to be in a remote location, raining, and you’ll be wearing your best, yet least functional shoes. Nothing shows off Murphy’s Law better than parenthood. If you want to sleep in, as I did this morning, your children will wake early, and nine times out of ten, earlier than usual. This morning I felt sure I could coax the little ones back to sleep if I cuddled them next to me, one on each side. Bailey (swaddled in pink and resembling a frantic caterpillar) was grunting and rooting my shoulder in search of more milk. Chloe was jabbering to my left with requests to watch Dora in the living room. I told her she could watch it in the bed and even put in on in a vain attempt to gain a precious few more minutes. Ever tried to sleep through a Spanish rendition of twinkle, twinkle?
- Bailey turned 2 months old today. I gave her a bath and put on a cute outfit. I was thinking photo shoot! Once I got her all set up, Chloe crowded into the shoot in true jealous fashion. I took some of them both to make her feel special too (like Chloe’s entire existence isn’t a photo shoot already). Then Bailey really started grinning. So I started clicking away with joy. Then I discovered the root of her smiles. On her white onsie I spotted a liquid brown spot spreading up to her nipple line. Photo shoot complete. Back in the bath and a new outfit. I laughed. This is a perfect example of parenting at its best under Murphy’s Law conditions.
- Yesterday I had something that was concerning me. To be quite honest, I was worried. I couldn’t see how it could work out really. I prayed about it. I spoke to my husband about it. I decided after I spoke with Ben, to just let it go and have faith that God would work it out. You all know this is something this control freak struggles with. Today I discovered it was taken care of. There’s no explanation that can logically explain why it turned out like it did, but miraculously, it did. God is faithful to right all wrongs. Remember when I’ve said He has our best interests at heart? I still believe it to be so. That being said, I suppose you could say I don’t really put much stock in ole Murphy’s Law after all. But, dang, kids will sure try to prove that theory true!!
That is all 🙂
- For those of you shock factor seekers out there, I encourage you to try out babysitting a two year old. Much of what comes out of there mouth will surprise you, amuse you, and possibly leave you wondering, “where did they get that?” I suppose, though, that the shock factor could go for any child. For example, I certainly didn’t expect the baby just now to spit up right down my cleavage. And I was definitely awed when my 9 year old step-daughter cleaned her room without being told and then said to me, “You looked like you had your hands full. So I thought that might help.” Wow. But I think these talking toddlers really surprise us because we don’t expect half of what they say to come out of their mouth, especially at such a young age.
- Sometimes they catch you off guard and you have no idea where they get their material. This morning while watching one of her favorite shows, the character made a joke and Chloe said, “Ha. That’s a good one.” Or this morning when I woke up she wanted me to pick her up, but I had to go to the bathroom first. Trying to teach a lesson, I said, “Mommy has to go pee in the potty because she doesn’t wear a diaper. I wear panties and pee in the potty cause I’m a big girl!” She replied quite indignantly “You’re not a big girl!! You’re Mommy!!” Or when we’re brushing her teeth and she wants to do it. I say “Let me do it first.” And she replies, “I wanna do it first too!” Or when she bumped her head and I told her we were out of band aids, she coyly said, “A Popsicle would make it feel better.” It’s all day, every day, nonstop entertainment.
- Other times, you know exactly where they got it from. You. Chloe has taken to consistently telling me when I complete a task, “Good job. Good job Mommy.” I suppose I should be grateful for the much needed motivation. So pleased she can return the favor. She has also started using nonsense words a lot. There’s tons of them. Pooka, too-too, bumka. This morning I realized she only says them when being corrected. Well, that happens a lot! She also says them with force behind them. Then it occurred to me that since she’s gotten older and able to understand and repeat, I’ve worked to filter my language. If I drop something or burn dinner I will bust out with some made up word instead of using a curse word. So apparently, my kid is using bad words, but only she and I know it. Ahh. My little mimic.
That is all 🙂
- My sister sent me a text earlier today that had a video of my little Chloe, and I do mean little. The video showed a bald little baby who could not crawl or walk. She was sitting on the floor at my brother’s house, bouncing up and down to an old record. Yes, I said record. My Mom left behind an extensive and very cool record collection. Chloe was so tiny. Seeing her so small, made me think about yesterday. I had gone to put the baby in the swing. I was surprised to see her feet slightly hanging over the edge. My first thought was “she’s already that long?!” My second thought happened to be a memory of Chloe as a baby, newborn, so tiny in turquoise pants, laying in that very swing, without her feet touching the edge. I recall a commercial for a soap opera. “Like the sands of the hourglass; so are the days of our life’s.”
- So often, a small child can say something and you’re like “what?!” So many nonsensical things escape their lips. I’ve begun to discover that just because it sounds like nonsense, the majority of the time, it is not. Sure, when she says “pooka, pooka”, I can be pretty certain that’s a made up word, but even that may mean something to her. Earlier she said, “Mom, I want twinkle, twinkle hairbow!” What?! I repeated it back to her and yes, I had heard it right. I could have let it go as nonsense and said “Okay baby. In a minute.” We’re all guilty of that, right? But after further investigation and questioning, it appears UTube on my phone was what she desired. As I searched “twinkle, twinkle” there was a video with a singing star (literally), complete with a smiling face and a pink bow on her star head.
- This got me to thinking. How often are we like this with life? How often do you look at where you’re at, then think about where you want to be, and have no clue how that’s gonna happen for you? Do we mistakenly and unintentionally see God’s will for our life’s as nonsense? When He speaks to us, do we say “Ok. In a minute.”? The verse that came to me then was Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares The Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.” Maybe if we can slow down with the task at hand, open our ears to His voice, and then investigate (think on and meditate) what it is He’s trying to tell us; then, maybe then, we will not just think our life’s are nonsense. Perhaps with open, non biased, non preoccupied ears, we can hear and more importantly understand the meaning and will for our life’s. They may seem like sands in the hourglass, but the eternity for which we are preparing is not.
- Is there anything more grating on one’s nerves than a child without a nap? The poor kid is past the point of no return. She’s gone over the hump of being able to take a nap and still go to bed tonight, so we’re in it for the long haul until she passes out from shear exhaustion tonight. I don’t know about other toddlers, but mine becomes really annoying when she’s tired. She’ll do anything to stay awake. She eats an array of items attempting to satisfy her sleepiness like its hunger pains. We’ve had a banana, salad, hotdog, and fruit snacks in the past 15 minutes. Her ability to focus is shot, much like us adults. She is currently watching 2 TV shows, coloring, playing dolls, and randomly chewing on a plastic tea cup. Sounds like me trying to clean house, minus chewing on a plastic item. She looses any ability to listen to instruction and she says “no” a lot. “No” angers me, but I try to give her some slack knowing she’s like a person having an out of body experience, and has no control over the majority of her current actions.
- I thought getting out of the house would do my little girl some good. I know the Vitamin D sunshine helps me. As I watched her running down the walking trail path, I thought how tuckered out she’d be and nap ready. Man, was I mislead. In parenthood, things seldom work out as planned. Best laid plans and all, right? It was a wonderful day though. So sunny and warm. Spring fever! We are enjoying it while it lasts. There’s not a lot of people at the park on a weekday, but I glimpsed other Moms pushing strollers like myself. We nodded as we passed like some secret society. I was amused at a Mom jogging with her toddler. I gotta give her props for the effort, but not sure how much she was able to keep her heart rate up consistently. Toddlers will run for a minute, but then they’re like a puppy. A stray cat is gonna catch their eye and they’ll bolt off in the wrong direction. And while they do make toddler leashes, you can’t pull back on one when your kid runs without capturing the stares of strangers.
- Do you ever have an unexpected financial problem or need come up, and have an unexpected financial gain happen at the same time? It’s often the same credit you need to cover that debit. Have you ever had somewhere to go and get delayed, but then later find out you missed a horrible accident that could have caught you if you were on time? Do you ever hear an inner voice telling you “don’t go that way” or “don’t let them leave” or “now isn’t the time, wait”? Do you use words like coincidence or lucky? I don’t believe in either. As I’ve grown closer to God and my personal relationship with The Lord, I’ve stopped saying “lucky” and instead say blessed. I’m also more able to see God’s hand in every aspect of my life. Even when negative things happen, you can look at it another way and see where He is using it for your good. This may not always be so. Sometimes bad things happen and we won’t see the silver lining, so to speak. But I would encourage you to always look for it. It’s like a hidden picture. You may not see His influence on your life at first glimpse, but if you stare long enough, you’ll see it every time from there on out.
That is all 🙂
- Conversations with a 2 year old are always entertaining. Here is a script of one such conversation:
To set the scene; I’m bathing the baby and Chloe is “helping”.
Chloe – Mom, I want some eggs.
Me – Ok. I’ll make them when I finish.
Chloe – You make the eggs and I’ll make the toast and butter.
Me – Sounds good. Bailey, what do you wanna make?
Chloe – Momma, she’s a baby. She can’t make anything!!
Me – You’re right. I was just trying to include her in the conversation. What’s Daddy gonna make?
Chloe – Anything.
Me – Yeah. Daddy can do anything, can’t he? Super Daddy.
Chloe – No. He can just lay in the bed while we make eggs.
- While watching TV, I saw the Sharon Osbourne Atkins diet commercial. I admit I was intrigued. I thought, “It wouldn’t hurt me to cut some carbs outta my diet!” The only reason I include my diet woes here is for shear amusement value. Anyone who is close to me knows I’m a walking carbohydrate. I sweat donuts and cry bagels. If I had a Living Will, I’d probably leave everything to my cakes, cookies, and pies. My Power of Attorney would be a loaf of bread. I strongly believe in carb loading before bed. Yet, for some reason I’m really wanting to try this low carb deal. Maybe I see it as a challenge, just to see if I can. Shortly after I decided, we went to our favorite store (Walmart) and bee-lined to Chloe’s favorite restaurant (McDonalds). As I stared up at the menu, I realized carb free items don’t fit in with my usual lifestyle. Surprisingly, I didn’t fold. I ordered a diet coke and watched Chloe and Ben eat. As I sit here writing this in H&R Block’s lobby, I was teased by the glimpse of a pack of candy in my purse. Curses! I ignore you sweet treat. We’ll see how long I can endure the torture.
- Sadly, even when you make an appt. at H&R Block, you may end up waiting well over an hour. I had suggested to Ben last week that I file our taxes myself. He had replied “When would you have time to do that?” I could now reply “While I’m waiting for H&R Block to do them.” I did enjoy the people watching. After all, all kinds pay taxes. I certainly enjoyed the tired looking Mom who held her daughter in a vise grip hold in her lap as the kid swayed back and forth repeating the whiny mantra “I want McDonalds!” It made me thankful Ben had stayed at home with ours. The wait was almost like a vacation. I looked at Facebook without someone pulling my arm down and pleading “let me play game on your phone” and went to their bathroom and peed all by myself!
That is all 🙂
- If I had to work a Sunday, this turned out to be a pretty good one. Ok. I know. I work every Sunday. But I’m just saying, it was very relaxed. I got to work to discover I was the only female nurse on my unit today. Men seem to be drawn to the excitement of Surgical Intensive Care. I was like a little ball of estrogen, lost in a sea of testosterone, just trying to stay afloat. I feared I might stop lactating. They humor my feminine ways and smirk when I go off to pump milk. Silly boys.
- By the end of the day, all them boys were malingering into the break room for peeks at the big game. I used to watch football every weekend. Then I had my first baby and watching something as closely as you have to watch a football game just fell to the wayside for me. I haven’t watched the NFL all year, so I won’t start today. But I do believe fully in celebrating Superbowl if you mean eating copious amounts of calorie packed food items. If anyone knows how to bring food to a place, it’s nurses. We packed that break room full of chips, dips, wings, cookies, and the like. And once you start eating carb packed yummies, you can’t stop. I’ve decided to take the Scarlett Ohara approach, and think about it tomorrow. The men folk certainly didn’t seem to scoff at the indulgence for the day.
- When I got home, my fat baby was eager to see me. I may leave bottles overflowing with milk, but nothing satisfies like the real thing. That child ate so much, and just kept eating. When I tried to pull her away, she would fuss for more. I finally convinced her she was done, and then commenced the burping. After we finished I realized I was covered with drool, spit up, and spilled milk. At work all day, I get covered with bodily fluids. I come home, and it’s the same.
That is all 🙂