Archive for November, 2012

“You Should Tell Your Story”

November 30, 2012

I’ve heard this and felt this, many times. There have been several times that I thought I was ready to jot it all down and get it out. After-all, it’s a pretty good story; teen pregnancy/deciding to keep a baby I was encouraged to give up for adoption/being a working single-mom, going to school and solely supporting myself and my daughter/bad decision making/life-changing decision making/getting married to a man I hardly knew and spent almost no time with/moving away from a small town and my family and becoming a working mother of 2 and military spouse/becoming a stay-at-home mom/having 3 babies in 2 1/2 years/making several moves to different states while having babies/being SO dang poor/settling in San Diego/fighting for better for my kids/finding my voice/realizing I was fighting a losing battle in my marriage/deciding to leave my marriage/finding out that one of my kiddos (and probably at least one other before him) has Aspergers/leaving my beloved Pacific Beach as a homeless and unemployed single parent/finding a home/fighting for my kids/finding a home/relying on my support system/accepting love/finding my worth/finding work…

There are so many things in each of those topics that I’m not ready to talk about…may never be ready to talk about. Yet, there’s so much that I would like to share. There are so many lessons I’ve learned about overcoming fear and believing that there’s a plan larger than ourselves and that if we take each day for what it brings, we will make it into our successful futures. I’ve learned never to give up on what my gut, heart and mind tell me are right. I would like to be able to share some things with young mothers, but that can be done on it’s own.

I was encouraged to enter “My Story” for a magazine contest with a prize of $5000 attached to the winning story. I thought about it for a few hours, but ultimately decided that not only am I not yet ready, but I also don’t want my story to belong to someone else. When and if it’s time, it needs to be done in my own way and my own time. Though $5000 would be nice :-)

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Tummy Troubles

November 27, 2012

For the last few weeks, we’ve been battling some issues with Lex. All of a sudden, he’s started having uncontrollable bowel movements. Some days, he’s been in the bath or shower 4 times. At first I thought he had gotten a flu bug. Then it kept going. I took him off of all dairy products, which were a pretty decent portion of his daily intake; milk on morning cereal, butter on toast, string cheese for a snack, cheese on sandwiches, yogurt for breakfast or an after school snack, chocolate milk for a treat…After 2 days of no dairy, we had an accident-free day. Then 2 accident-free days. Then he went to his dad’s house for the weekend and he was back up to 4 accidents a day. When he came back to me, we went back to completely dairy-free, but the accidents kept coming. So I cut out gluten and anything processed and tomatoes and all juice. After 2 days of eating only plain veggies, almonds, apples and chicken with nothing on it, he was back to being accident-free.

Yesterday I took him to the Dr. because I want to rule out the possibility of a parasite. After-all, he is an adventurous boy, who spent much of the summer tromping around in the greenbelt next to our house. He brought me tiny dead fish and picked up snakes. Who knows what made it’s way into his mouth and then his system. But after hearing all I had to say about the history of Lex’s bowel movements (over the last 3 years, since he’s been potty trained), the Dr. insisted that he is blocked up and afraid to go to the bathroom. He would have no other word or idea about it. He declared with great confidence that he knew exactly the problem. Never mind that I’ve been through that with one of my other children. I remember the pain they were in. I remember rushing them to the Dr., afraid it was an appendix or something terrible. Never mind that Lex is in NO pain and told the Dr. this. He sent us off for xrays and told me to give him a tablespoon of mineral oil once a day. I can’t wait to get those xrays back and hear his explanation for why they don’t show anything!

So we wasted a day at the Dr. I took Lex to school today with his lunch packed and instructions in the office to call me if there’s any issue.

I’ve been given the name of a Dr. in the area who helped my cousin with her children’s food issues and also the name of a chiropractor that’s close by who does stick-free allergy testing. Into the unknown I go!

I’m really hoping to get some answers soon! Lex is looking pale and thin (he’s never been a heavy kiddo, but he’s pretty thin right now).

Prayers and suggestions are appreciated.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Max, the Mad Genius~

November 18, 2012

This morning I listened to an exchange between Gabi and Max that kept me giggling. Either Max just learned new nuances of sarcasm or he’s been faking us all out with this whole Aspergers bit.

Gabi was on the computer and Max was DYING to have his turn. Gabi was playing a “girl” game where you decorate a doll; pick out ribbons, hair, clothes, shoes, skin color, etc. Max had been watching her time and bugging her about finishing the game and giving him his turn. This is the usual banter I hear when one kid is on the computer and another wants to use it. I reminded Max that he would get his turn when her game was over.

All of a sudden, everything changed! Max leaned over Gabi’s shoulder and started saying things like, “Oh, long hair! Yes, that’s my favorite!”. Then Gabi would change the hair to short (to spite him) and he’d say, “Or short. Yes, I like short hair too”. Then came the ribbons-Max got right into it, “Pink! Yes, yes! I love pink.” And of course Gabi would change it and he’d play right along.

Gabi started yelling for me to help her. My simple response-”Just love him”. She said she didn’t know what to do with a brother that loved ribbons. I smiled even bigger. Max was brilliant!

She quickly finished her game, handed the laptop to Max and ran from the room.

Max is a mad genius! I love it!

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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A Simple Idea That Makes Life A Little Easier

November 13, 2012

As a busy mom, I’m always looking for ideas to cut down on the amount of work that it takes to keep the house going. One of the things that frustrates me to no end is that now that my kids are are out of the baby/toddler stages and no longer have sippy cups or bottles, we are just using the regular glasses out of our cupboard for everyone. Back in the days when everyone was little and I was packing diaper bags, everyone had their specific and “special” cups. But over the last few years, I’ve noticed that the glasses were inevitably ALL being used on a daily basis. The kids would grab a glass for water and then either put it in the sink or rinse it and set it on the counter. But with no way to clearly identify who’s cup was who’s, they would just grab another out of the cupboard the next time they would want a glass of water or something else to drink.

Yes, I tried buying a different cup for each person or even using water bottles with different colored lids. The water bottles would get left at school, on desk tops or would mysteriously disappear. Bottom line, I needed a better system. After some brain storming, I realized we had several of the stretchy, plastic bracelets from various causes, that were no longer being worn. I gathered them up, set them on the counter top and announced that each day, everyone could pick their band, put it around their glass and then use that same glass for the rest of the day.

Each evening I remove the bands, put the glasses into the dishwasher and smile at the fact that I’m washing 7 glasses instead of 24!

It really is the little things.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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This Morning We’re Just Like a Regular Family

November 9, 2012

This is the statement I got from Max when I handed him an egg and cheese sandwich, orange juice and 3 sausages for breakfast.

Even though we don’t have cable, apparently his little mind has been filled with an image of what a “regular” family eats for breakfast.

Then he looked at me in my pj’s and my robe and said, “except that you’re not dressed”.

Sorry to disappoint, Buddy.

Here’s to being “regular” (I’m thinking it must have been the juice that sealed it becaue I cook for them about 50% of mornings and sometimes I’m even fully dressed and ready for the day)…even if for only one day.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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…and then I drove away~

November 8, 2012

This post has no picture because I’m pretty sure if I had stopped to take a picture before I drove away, someone would have surely called the police.

A few days ago I took my 3 youngest kiddos to the park to kill the 40 minutes we had before picking up my high schooler. I chose the park directly next to the high school for ease of location and because we hardly ever go to that one. AND I chose it because I knew there is a path from the park, through a little green belt area and over a little bridge that leads right up to the tennis courts at the high school. The kids have used this path on a couple of occasions and always come back with stories of what they saw next to the path (a fish, a funny plant, a lost item…). So my plan was to let them play and when the time came for me to pick up their sister, to have them walk the path and meet me over at the tennis courts.

The park was fairly empty except for 3 or 4 moms with preschoolers who were likely finishing up their morning play and lunch and heading back for naps (this was a short day, so the kids were out right after lunch). Everyone played and had fun and then I made the announcement that it was time to go over to the high school. I gathered all three kiddos together and explained that they could use the path and to stay together and that I would meet them at the tennis courts. Lex took off running. Gabi took off after him. Max walked a few steps and then told me it was too hot to walk and that he wasn’t going to. Lex was already far ahead with Gabi behind him. I knew I couldn’t let the 2 of them go on their own, so I told Max he didn’t have a choice and he needed to be the big brother right now and GET GOING!. I started to walk to the car. I see Lex running on across the field and then I see Gabi lying on the grass and Max sitting on a bench. What the heck are you guys doing?! GO! Catch up with Lex! He can’t go on his own (well, he certainly can, but I didn’t feel that it was safe). Gabi and Max start crying. CRYING! They start following me to the car! NO! Go to your brother (who is oblivious that no one is behind him). GET! GO! “It’s too hot”, “I don’t want to”. I knew I had to get over to the school for 2 reasons; 1) to make sure Lex came through the other side with no problems and 2) to be there in time for my high schooler. AND I knew that those two, complaining, stubborn kids needed to catch up with their brother!

So I jumped in the car, kids still complaining at me and drove away. I was prepared for all manner of trouble from the preschool moms, who surely didn’t know what was going on, but saw me drive away from two kids who were begging me not to leave them. Great!

You can see the field and the playground from the short drive I made and when I got to the tennis courts, I immediately got my daughter, parked and ran out to the path to make sure Lex had made it and that Gabi and Max hadn’t been scooped up and taken to the police station as abandoned kids. And can you guess what I saw?

Three happy siblings, coming out of the green belt and across the bridge. Max was SUPER excited because he’d found a lost rocket that someone had surely launched and lost in the brush. Lex never knew he was almost alone on his little journey and Gabi was skipping up the path.

Sometimes things that seem drastic, really aren’t and these stubborn kids of mine, sometimes need me to drive away (figuratively speaking) so that they can be forced into the result I know is coming.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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