Monday, May 9, 2011

oh yeah, I guess I should eat and sleep too

Having two kids has been a wild roller coaster ride. Daily. Moving homes last week probably didn't slow things down either. We moved more into town and I really enjoy our quaint, quirky little 1920's house we moved into. As a mom of two now, I find there are always about 3-4 things I need to be doing at one time. I enjoy being busy, though. I tend to feel guilty that Henry is not getting near the attention and oggling over that Amelia did as an infant, but I know that feeling must happen to every multi-kid mom. I love him so much though, and wish I could spend days just staring at him, listening to relaxing music and making him smile for photo shoots like I did Amelia. The poor guy rarely gets an uninterrupted meal in without Amelia needing something RIGHT NOW.

Things are going great, though. Just very fast. And I feel pretty sloppy and forgetful most of the time. And if I accidentally catch a glimpse of my post pregnancy bod I can't believe the weird figure I have. I started running again (very slowly) this week, so that helps me to feel better. But it's funny, since having number 2 I don't really have time to worry about how flat my hair is, how round my shoulders are or how bad the chipped paint on my toenails look. If I notice other girls or women that have hair done, nice make up and nails done, I just nod my head thinking about how I couldn't come close to looking that "finished" right now. With a 7 week old and 2 year old, it seems like everything is rushed and halfway done. Phone calls, chores, everything. I don't mean to complain, it's just the way it is right now. I feel like my entire self is for them right now. I can't worry or compare myself to anyone right now, I just have to get through the day and be a great mom to them. This won't last forever, but it's how it is at this point in my life. Hopefully I can find time to keep running throughout the week, though. That seems to give me some time to let my brain refocus and forces me to just be quiet and breath for a little bit.

A few cute things:

Cash is in our new house with us. Amelia and him are best buds, she plays "kitchen" with him and serves him his dog food with spoons and toy plates. It drives him crazy to only get 1-2 morsels at a time, but very cute.

If I get a second to throw on some make up, do my hair, or maybe get out of my pajamas if I'm feeling ambitious, Amelia calls me "Meg" for about 5 minutes. To Amelia there is the happy, pretty, skinny, rested version of mom, and her name is Meg. The more daily version of mom is the one that looks like she's put on 15 pounds, has been run over a bus in the morning and a bar fight in the afternoon is normal mom. Nice.

When Cash obeys Amelia after she yells at him, "Da-wop it! Wight hee-ah!" (Drop it, right here!) She says, "goood guuuhhh" (good girl) to him.

Amelia has learned how to take care of her baby based on my feeding routine with Henry. She'll lift up her shirt to "nuss" (nurse) the baby. Then after a few seconds finds a toy "Bah-wall" (bottle) for the baby to supplement her feeding. She'll be having no malnourished baby dolls under her care. :)

I better get back to work...naptime is almost over.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Greatest Load of Laundry

At our cozy little home on the lake, we have a pint-sized laundry machine and dryer squeezed into a cracker-jack box of a room. The small-sized loads that the machine will allow obligate me to do one load of laundry each day in order to keep up. No big deal, it's accessible and has become routine.

The third day following the arrival of Henry, I finally got around to doing a load of laundry. I opened the dryer door and mindlessly started pulling out material to get some folding done. I yanked the first item straight down to begin the fold, and had to catch my breath. Manly brown and white with sewn puppies, warm and soft from the dryer, and about the length of my forearm: Henry's first sleeper. I have had a baby boy! Picturing his little body fillling out the fabric as he slept in the next room, for some reason this nightly chore becomes an incredibly emotional first-time event. I remember doing Amelia's first load of laundry and being shocked by the euphoria; pulling out a river of tiny pink fabric pieces and savoring the fold of each one.

As I continued to fold the new little manly items mixed in with our usual clothes, I couldn't help but see this as a kind of personal welcoming ceremony that I was holding for Henry. There will only ever be one first load of laundry where your child's dirty laundry will get cleaned for the first time; and this is the Greatest Load of Laundry.

The Arrival of Henry: by Aunt Meg

7 pounds, 10 ounces

Dark thick hair.

Chubby little cheeks.

Quiet little cry.

Easy to love and hug.

He's my new crush: Henry.

And here's how we got him:

On Friday morning at 4:30 am, Heath called and told me, "it's time! I've been having contractions since 1:30, and am feeling like just like I did with Amelia. It's happening!". So, I jumped out of bed (looking fabulous) and headed straight up to Snohomish. On the drive up, I was hoping I wasn't "too late" and worried that I might miss the birth. Little did I know what lied ahead. 24 hours ahead...

Once I got to Snohomish, Amelia was up and at em', getting ready to spend the day with "gamma Tanya". Heath was watching tv, counting there her contractions every 5 minutes. Amelia left soon, and it was just Heath, me, and Grant. Waiting.

Around 9:00 am, we decided we should move this labor along, so I coordinated a jogging and jump and jack routine that lasted about 15 minutes. It was more of a laughing hysterically at Heather trying to do these things than the actual exercise, but it was a good distraction. Still, the contractions stayed the same frequency and intensity. It was getting a little tiring to watch, but, don't worry, I was okay. :)

We watched Jersey Shore and read some People mags for about 3 more hours. Still Heath's contractions didn't change. When she had contractions, we muted the tv, put the mags down, and counted throut it with her. After about 25 counts, th etv was unmuted and we resumed our convo about Jessica Simpson's life going down hill.

Then around 1:30 (a wee 12 hours of contractions for Heath), the contractions became more intense, the celeb gossip had come to a lull, and we decided we should get in the car and head to her midwife's home, where we better be havin' this baby.

So, the midwife checks Heath, to find that she is 2 1/2 cm dilated. You've got to be kidding me. This labor is going as slow as Krisi Alley's weight loss. Heath is in so much pain, and it doesn't quit. 2:30 rolls around, then 5:00, then 6:00. Heath is silent, exhausted, and her face showed excruciating pain. The midwife checked her again. She was only 3 cm. This is when I cried. I know, such a wuss. The contractions were never ending. I'd spend the last 13 hours staring into her pain-filled face, squeezing her hand, imagining her pain. She told me that "3 through 20" were the most painful, so it was during this time that my face mirrored hers. Not because I could feel her pain (I wished I could), but because I know her face (it's just like mine), and I know what every wrinkle meant. Pain. Exhaustion. Sometimes I just felt like she would be in labor for the rest of our life, and that absolutely nothing will ever be as horrible as watching her go through this. Oh ya, that's when I lost it.

From 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm, she continued contractions every 3-5 minutes. Grant and I held her hands while she squeezed and we took turns counting with her. He kissed her all the time, and sometimes she would smile when he did. I was so glad she had him. At 11:30ish, the midwife checked Heath again. She was still 3 cm. I couldn't believe my ears. All of this pain and no change. Then the midwife asked Heath if she would like her to break her water. Heath didn't hesitate. "Yes. Do it". She said calmly. After that, Heath kind of lit up for a second and had a look on her face that "IT'S GO TIME". And that's exactly what happened.

All of a sudden, Heath turned into the Incredible Hulk. With one push, she went from 3 to 6 cm. Another push, 6 to 9 cm. One more push, she was at 10 cm. Grant and I were cheering for her, she was so focused and so determined. No screaming, no yelling. Just totally focused. Three more pushes, and there was Henry.

It was a surprise gender, they didn't know what it was going to be. We were so tired and glad to be finished, it didn't matter what it was - we were just thankful Heath was finished. Both Grant and I agree, it could have been a monkey and we would have said, "great. let's go home".

So, that's my birth story. Henry is absolutely adorable, and Heath is amazing. I'm so glad I have a new baby to hold and am so happy to be Aunt Meg to this cute little guy.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Amelia's last month as an only child...

Amelia's days as a self-absorbed toddler are about to come to a screeching halt within the next month. But, we've given it a good run for the last month or so. I'd say these final days have been filled with some good times, as you'll see below.
At the zoo with Jess and "Ooo-see" (Lucy)

Jess gets Amelia giggling while Lucy snacks on some gravel.

Winter sunset from our little abode...not too shabby.

Amelia's "buddy". He's going to kill me for sharing this, but this was actually Grant's doll when he was Amelia's age. Amelia loves him, and is teaching him all the ways of the world. In this photo she's explaining to Buddy that we're getting ready to watch a "moo-fee". Eye contact is very important, obviously.

Gabbing over chips and tuna sandwiches.

Getting Buddy ready for a bath...with princess bubbles, and princess jammies, naturally.

I couldn't resist.

What?! You want me to eat snow off of this tree??? This is CRAZY!!

Yep, just as things seem to be getting under control in the Lane household, we're about to throw another baby on top of the madness. I can't wait to see how this goes...

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Robbin the Bobbin

This morning Amelia and I were going through her story book, while she pointed to and identified all the things she recognized. Birds, sunshine, girl, dog, umbrella, etc. When I turned the page to this particular character she pointed to him and yelled, "mama!", proud of her discovery...

It's true, this is usually the position I'm in anytime I get to relax for a second. And, yes, the poem is about how this character eats everything, eventually eating the people in the town, the livestock and even the church; and is still hungry. So, seeings how she's around me 100% of the time, she's not too far off with the habits either. But, at least it looks like she thinks I have skinny legs.

I'm gonna go make a sandwich now.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Complaining Post

Week 33 of pregnancy no. 2. I am big. No, I'm not going to post photos of how big I am. That's a picture of Meg. I'm writing this blog only to vent some complaints, which are inevitably going to get worse in the next 7 weeks. So, Baby Number 2, this blog's for you.

My belly is big and tight, and as sure as the sun will rise, my back will hurt. I obviously don't sleep well, and after I get done bringing the groceries into the house my groin feels like I just rode a brand new, very cheap bike from Seattle to Portland. I can feel the back of my upper arms resting on the side of my back, letting me know that I have definitely gained weight everywhere. ALL of my underwear is too small because my butt is too big, and I don't have the courage or humility to go buy bigger underwear. So instead, it's just tight and covers about half of what it used to, and I pray that you can't see bulging underwear lines through my maternity jeans. By 5 pm I am totally maxed out for the day; emotionally and physically, and use the energy I have left to will myself NOT to call Grant and beg him to come home sooner. My boobs are completely unrecognizable to me anymore, one of these days I think they're going to just get up, walk away and live a life of their own. I have my "pregnancy" eyes on, meaning EVERYONE looks like they've lost weight to me, and every woman I glance at has me jealous that she just gets to walk around with her empty abdomen, feeding only herself and carrying only herself. Each morning I look in the mirror, seeing what's bigger. "oh my gosh, is my chin bigger?"

I know that it's almost over, that I just need to get through it, and in a few months this last part of pregnancy will seem like a blink of an eye. But for now, I'm going to complain, because I don't complain often, it's not over, and it won't be for about 7 weeks while I keep the fat suit on. Consider this my "pregnancy journal".

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Wow, it's been a while!

As I finish week 32 of this pregnancy, and Amelia continues to blossom into the energetic toddler that she is, I don't think I need to mention why I haven't been able to sit down and blog in the last few months. As Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas have raced by and now I find myself dangerously close to being a mother of two, Grant and I are as happy as ever. Every day presents new stories that I wish I could record more often, so I'll just say a few of the recent, daily, happenings that I hope I never forget.
Amelia is now able to take her own diaper off. So, as I was in the bedroom and heard the scratching of the velcro indicating the diaper was being removed, I stomped out to scold her, which of course startled her, so she ripped her diaper completely off and threw it across the living room to scurry and hide in her indoor play tent. The problem was: she'd just pooped in the diaper. Yuck.

Last night I was trying EVERYTHING to get Amelia to eat a simple grilled ham and cheese sandwich for dinner. Instead she was wailing for some sugary yogurt, crackers, ice cream and popsicles, and hearing "no" to her requests only made the situation escalate. Grant relieved me of her and stood in front of the fridge with her as she cried and he tried to comprimise with her. Minutes later, I came to kitchen as she was inhaling pot roast and addition to the sandwich I'd made her. Wide eyed, I asked, "how did you do that?" He responded with a sympathetic look, "Not everyone's cut out for parenting, Heath". Thanks, honey. Can't wait for baby number two.

Amelia never misses a chance to say "hi baby!" to my bulging belly, gives it a kiss and lays her soft head on my tummy. I would love to know if she really understands a baby is in there, but it is such a gift to me that she seems aware of it.
We left Amelia's little play-stroller outside for a few weeks. After snow, wind, rain and messy December weather, it's covered in pine needles and filth. She wanted to bring it in to finally play with it, so I told her we needed to clean it first. I got the bath going, with dishsoap, and with her at my side watching my every move (and very concerned about the stroller), I started scrubbing and explained that it needed to be cleaned. She put her little hand on my back as I scrubbed, and then layed her head on my shoulder while she stood. Then she turned my face with her hands, and very seriously brushed my hair out of my face with her hands to lean in and give me a very sweet kiss. It was like she was so worried about the condition of the stroller, and was so thankful I was taking care of it. I'm not sure if that's what all the emotion was actually attributed to, but it was very apparent and sweet. Anyways, just another special moment.