Monday, July 25, 2011

weekend fun

The last couple of weekends have been full of fun and friends.  I got to visit with my three best friends that I no longer live close to.  It's hard when the friends you relate to the most are the people that are the furthest away.

em. and L visited first, staying just a couple of days.  It was Em's first chance to spend quality time with Dexter and the first time she had seen Theo in action since March.  With em. being the superior photographer, I let her take the pictures while she was here and I don't have them yet.  We had a great time and a couple of pre-scheduled appointments meant that em. and L got to babysit for a couple of hours.  Theo and Dexter loved it...Mommy and Daddy might have loved it even more.  We certainly appreciated the help!

As soon as they left, it was time to get ready for a weekend at the in-laws' lake house with my college BFF, T, and her adorable family.

T has a sweet husband, S, and they have two beautiful children, G (5) and M (2). 

M and Theo had lots of fun playing together.

Both G and M loved loving on baby Dexter!  I guess Dexter didn't love it as much.  Party pooper.

And during the weekend, Theo discovered a couple of things that he loves, too.

Nana's front-loading washer...

and reading books in Dexter's bouncy seat. 

It was a great weekend.  Other favorite pics from the weekend:

Then, this past weekend, another BFF (named E) came to town.  I love how she jumps in like Dexter and Theo are her own kids and plays with them, diapers them, and does whatever else needs to be done.  Dexter has been getting happier and happier and I couldn't be more excited.  Just like last time when I was on maternity leave, it starts getting fun right around the time you have to go back to work. 

We went to an old-fashioned ice cream shoppe and soda fountain. 

Afterwards, we went to a large indoor playground.  Perfect for a hot, steamy summer afternoon. 
I climbed to the top of this crazy thing with Theo.  What?  It said ages 5-12 recommended.  

Hard to tell how hot and sweaty I was by this point.  Not Theo.  He could have stayed for hours.  

It's pretty challenging to travel with two babies, so I'm eternally grateful to my three best friends who made long trips to come see me and my little family.  Feeling pretty lucky these days.  


p.s.  Also feeling happy about finally getting a new computer.  Yes!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

dear pancreatic cancer...i hate you.

Dear Pancreatic Cancer,

Today, it's been 4 years since you robbed me of my dad and my kids of their Gramps, whom they will never know outside of the stories they are told.  Today is the anniversary of the day you stole a devoted, loving husband from his faithful wife of 35 years.  You took a grandfather from two little kids that thought the world of him.  The little girl is now 9 and it's been almost half of her life since she saw her Gramps.  Will she remember him?  The little boy was only 2 at the time and he already remembers Gramps only through stories he is told and pictures he has seen.

Pancreatic Cancer, I hate you.  You're the meanest, least forgiving cancer and I wouldn't wish you upon my worst enemy.  Only 6% of people diagnosed with you survive more than 5 years and nearly three-fourths of patients die within 1 year.  You made quick work of my dad, ripping him from my clutches 4 months to the day after he was diagnosed with you.  You're sneaky and relentless.  You hide and fail to present with your symptoms until it's too late.  In 40 years of research and clinical trials, no cure has been found to eradicate you.  No treatment has been found to hold you at bay.  

You have forever ruined July 23rd for me.  My kids will only ever have memories of one of their grandfathers.  I have beautiful memories of my father's father, who died when I was 8 or 9.  Knowing him helped me know my father.  Helped me understand where he came from and how he became the man that he was.  My kids will never have the chance to hear stories about their mommy when she was a little girl from their maternal grandfather.  They may never know what they have lost but I will always know.  I will always loathe you and blame you for the deficit in their lives.  My dad was only 55.  Don't tell me everything happens for a reason.  There is no justification for taking such a wonderful man away from his family, who adored, admired, and needed him.  

Pancreatic Cancer, I hate you.  


Thursday, July 21, 2011

in 3 years

At my 6 week checkup last month, I talked to my OB/GYN about birth control options.  After discussing all the possibilities, I left with a pamphlet about Implanon and made an appointment to get the implant a week later.  After doing a little research online, I decided that this was the best option for me.  I am horrible at remembering to take pills daily - especially the kind that you have to take at the exact same time every day (like the Mini-Pill, which is the only pill recommended for nursing mothers).

Implanon slowly releases hormones that prevent ovulation over the course of three years.  The implant is a small plastic rod inserted inside the upper arm.  I was given a shot to numb the area and then the rod was placed in my left arm through a needle, in which it was pre-inserted.  Did it hurt?  Yes.  Insertion hurt and it was pretty tender for about a week.  But so far, it's worth it because I don't have to worry about any more surprises for three whole years.  The biggest side effect that women complain about is irregular bleeding.  The doctor stated that very few women get it removed as a result.  

Ask me now if I want to have more kids and I will cut you off before you finish the question with a resounding "NO."  Some days I am drowning in self-doubt and there are many days when I wonder if I can give these boys the best life with them being so close together.  I feel guilty because Theo didn't get to be the baby for very long.  I feel guilty because Theo is still a baby, therefore Dexter might not get as much attention as he needs or deserves.   


In 3 years, I'll be 34.  In 3 years, I will have a three year old and a four year old.  In 3 years, I'll know for sure if I want to have more kids.  I can't imagine myself having kids after the age of 35 for a couple of reasons.  I want my kids to be close in age and I wonder if I would have the energy to be raising teenagers into my fifties.  In 3 years, we will have made the decision of whether we want to have three kids.  We will not "try" for a girl.  If we have another child in 3 or 4 years, we will have an expectation, acceptance, and desire to have three boys.  If we ended up with a girl, it would simply be a sweet surprise.

In 3 years we will be out of diapers (hopefully) and our boys won't rely on us as heavily as they do now.  In 3 years, I imagine that I will yearn to feel the sweet weight of an infant on my chest.  In 3 years, 2am feedings will be a distant memory.  In 3 years, I think we'll know for sure.  Until then, I'll pretend that my child-bearing days are not behind me.  Until then, I'll pretend that I might see myself with a baby belly again.  Until then, I'll live in the moment and make the most of the days and hours I have with these babies that are here right now.  Right now, I will make the most of the good times and the hard times.  Because in 3 years, I think we will decide that 2 babies are enough.

Time will tell.


Monday, July 11, 2011


Over the weekend, both boys had a couple of big firsts.  On Sunday, we went to my husband's parents' house.  Nana and Pop Pop live on a small lake and one of the highlights of our summer is to spend time floating on rafts and taking pontoon boat rides.  Last year, Theo was too young to get in the lake, but this year we thought he should give it a try.  Theo just loved it and we were shocked that he lasted over an hour in the water.

He didn't fuss to get out but it was clear that he was tired so we took him up to the house to take a nap.  I wanted to check on Dexter anyway, who was hanging out inside with Nana.  He was lying on the activity gym that Theo loved so much as an infant, just looking and batting at the dangling toys.  Then, right there before my eyes, he flipped over from his back to his belly.  I could not believe it.  It's kind of funny that I had just asked the dada not too long ago if he thought it would be as exciting for us when Dexter started doing things as it was when Theo did them.   It was.  Nana had gone into the kitchen to work on dinner.  The little sneak is only 8 weeks old and he rolled over as effortlessly as if he had been doing it for months.  Naturally, I was the only witness and he refused to do it again.  But he did it.  I swear!

I love summer!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

"rough patch"

I started this blog (and named it "rough patch") on 6/28/11 with the following: 

I often remind myself not to compare Dexter to Theodore, but it's virtually impossible.  Daily, I'm surprised at how much is already so difficult to recall.  What did I do when Theo did this?  How old was Theo when he started doing this or stopped doing that?  Despite my efforts, I repeatedly find myself saying "Well, when Theo was 8 weeks he slept through the night for thr first time, so that must mean he was only waking up once a night by the time he was 6 weeks" or "I don't think Theo cried this much at this age."

Then I recall talking to the doctor (at Theo's 1 or 2 month appointment?) about colic and wondering if Theo had it.  I remember telling my mom that Theo must be the unhappiest baby in the world because he cried so much and asking myself "what am I doing wrong?" a hundred times a day.  And I look at him now and know that, while I may not do everything by the book, I have one of the sweetest, funniest, happiest little boys I can imagine.

Unfortunately, that's not always enough to ease my mind while in the throes of one of Dexter's fits.  Or enough to relax me when I'm up for the fourth time in as many hours during the night.  There are certainly similarities between Dexter and Theo at this wee stage, but some new challenges particularly because of Theo.

And today, 7/9/11, is the first time I've had a chance to complete my thoughts and this blog entry. 

So, since I started this blog 2 weeks ago, things have gotten better, although I didn't really get a chance to go into all the details.  I hate that I have not been able to blog because I have had so many things I wanted to jot down that I have already forgotten.  Dexter showed me his first sly smile at 4 weeks.  And yes, I'm sure it was a real smile.  Now, at 8 weeks and 1 day, he offers them freely and they make everything worthwhile.  About 2 weeks ago he scared me with the worst case of baby acne I have ever seen.  It came on so fast and seemed to be spreading rapidly so I quickly consulted with the pediatrician to ensure that baby acne was all that it was, and not an allergic reaction to something I was eating or putting on my skin.  The doctor explained that newborns between the age of 1 and 2 months go through a "mini-puberty" while the leftover hormones are leaving their bodies.  The acne cleared up as quickly as it came on.

We made a quick trip south to visit my family for the weekend of July 4th.  Dexter got to meet his aunt, uncle, and two first cousins and got to visit with Grammy again for the first time since he was 2 weeks old.  Surprisingly, Dexter slept A LOT in the car both ways and it didn't seem to affect his night sleep.  But when he was awake in the car...oof.  It was ugly.  He has a high need/desire to be held all. the. time.  Luckily he slept over half the way down there and back.

Theo is amazing me more each and every day.  I look at Dexter and wonder how this little lump of snugly goodness will learn so much in the next year.  We are having so much fun with Theo.  Every stage that he enters is better than the one before and I'm curious when that all starts to reverse or slow down.  I love to watch him learn and make connections.  He is talking nonstop now and repeats almost anything we say (good or bad).  He still barely says "mama" at home but the babysitter recently informed me that he has been saying it for months and will point to my picture on the family wall and say "mama" on command.  Little sneak.

Theo has been clingy to me ever since Dexter was born.  It's not to the point that it's bothersome but sometimes it's a little, when I'm nursing and he wants to lay across my lap or smother Dexter in hugs and kisses.

I have less than 4 weeks of maternity leave left and the bitter reality is setting in.  I'm trying not to focus on it but it's always in the back of my mind that this precious time is winding down.

Oh, something really fun was a couple of weeks ago when my friend and I took our toddler boys (same age) to the zoo while I left Dexter with his grandparents for the day.  I realized that for the majority of Theo's life I was pregnant and therefore haven't felt good enough or had enough energy to do a lot of fun things with him.  I had been miserable ever since he could walk.  It was so much fun doing an activity like that with him when I didn't have to worry about Dexter throwing a fit or needing to find a private place to nurse.  Of course I thought about how different things would have been up to this point had we not gotten pregnant with Dexter when we did, but when I picked Dexter up from Nana and Pop Pop, I was ready to snuggle with him and kiss the skin right off his little face.  I missed him during those 6 hours apart and I can't imagine having to wait another day to have him in our lives.

So, that's it in a many feelings and situations have come and gone and I hate that I haven't been able to keep up with every detail.  The problem has been our must be in remission today, because I haven't been able to get it to even turn on for almost a week.  The battery is just shot and we keep putting off getting a new one because I want to get a good (read: expensive) one that can easily handle processing high resolution photos and videos.  Anyway, I think we're close to getting a new one and then I will be bloggin' Betty once again.  And my blogs will feature photos of my cute boys much more often.  This dumb computer gets bogged down when I just upload photos to it, forget editing or doing anything else with them.

Oh.  And by the way, Dexter slept 8 hours on the day he turned 8 weeks old.  There's hope after all.

be back soon,