Friday, February 27, 2009


I used to spend a good deal of my time angry and overwhelmed. It happened all the time- I was pissed about something or other nearly always. I spent my time fuming over ridiculous things. I never looked at myself. I never wanted to see what would show up if I did.

My life and relationship with Mark made me see things differently. He made me want to be better...just by loving me and refusing to give up on me, even when I pushed- HARD. He stayed the course.

Four years ago, I decided to stop blaming the world and everyone else for my troubles and to start looking where the real blame was lying- with me.

I tackled those obstacles arduously, with a whole lot of therapy, and even more prayer and faith. I stepped out on a limb and asked God to show me who I could be without my anger and temper. In the doing, I had to go down roads I did not ever want to see again. I had to revisit memories and times that I had repressed and focus on how they affected my ability to just be human.

I am still a work in progress. I still have my days where I don't want to get out of bed, and where I battle things in my mind that I can't share with anybody.

Today I had a good morning. Lily and I went to class, visited with the girls, and came home. As I drove home I was telling God of how happy I am that I have changed into such a different person, and how strong I felt.

Then I walked into my front door, and panic hit me like a ton of bricks. An overwhelming sense of fear and dread. There was SO MUCH to do, no time to do it in. Instantly I felt myself drowning in chaos and feeling my old self rising up through it. I was angry. I was pissed off. I was determined to let Mark have it if I even saw his face coming down the stairs.

I had no idea where all this anger came from. But I stood in the pantry to collect myself and asked God for help. His answer was to bring me a wave of peace, followed by intense sadness. In the sadness he whispered to me of all of the strength he gave me everyday to be a different human being, how he created me anew each day, and how I cannot be who I am without him.

I listened. I simply stood and listened. And I realized I have been smug in my prayer. Instead of asking God for continued growth, I have been informing him that I am proud of MYSELF for holding it together. Well, my strength doesn't come from myself. Moments like I had this afternoon is proof of that. On my own, I am angry and bitter and sharp. With him, I am all I want to be.

I showed my humility but preparing a beautiful lunch for Lily, in taking Mark lunch up as well, and in trying my best to push my sadness and overwhelmed feelings aside and do what needed to be done.

Instead of "letting Mark have it" when he came downstairs, I let myself go and cry and tell him of how I was feeling. How I was missing the baby, feeling pressure, and feeling like I wasn't myself and couldn't pull it together. He, in typical Mark fashion, made it all better and had me feeling like myself within minutes.

When he left to go to the store a few minutes later, I sat in the quiet. I could see, quite clearly, what I needed to learn from all this.

I need God like I need water. I need him to fill me, comfort me, and keep me alive. If he, just for one moment, lets his guidance slip from me, I am lost. Without him, I am somebody I do not want to be.

He has provided me with a man that is so good and kind. He has provided me with friendships. He has given me my daughter. But more than that- he has given me myself. The person I want to be all lies in my trust and faith in him. With him I am free to let go of all of my burdens and simply be.

Thank God he found me. Thank God he keeps me. And thank God he lets me know just how much I need him.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Week one

One week of vegan living. Well not entirely...cause there was that chocolate fondue and shrimp, but almost entirely vegan living otherwise.

Here's a little recap.

Day One- Hmmmm this isn't so bad. I can do this.

Day Two- WTF are these people THINKING? I am hungry- HUNGRY!!!!

Day Three- I would kill somebody for the cheese under their fingernails or the meat in their teeth. I am SO NOT KIDDING.

Day Four- Wow. I am awake at 6:30. I have energy. I am not wanting to hit my husband just for breathing in my direction before I have had coffee. Interesting.

Day 5- Had some chocolate. It was good, but not as good as it used to be.

Day 6- Feeling my body give up fighting against this new food- 12 servings of veggies and fruits a day! 90 oz of water! Hummus and beans and almonds and strawberries!

Day 7- Realizing I havent had a headache or stomachache in 4 DAYS!

All in all, the first 3 days were hell. But I feel really really good now. I have no food cravings. I havent had a stomachache or headache in 4 days- something that I had every single day.

And, I am realizing there is, at least for me, a definite karmic reward for not eating meat. I feel that if I can subsist without taking another life to do so, that I should. It makes me feel better about myself and my choices. I don't expect anyone else to do it, or even to understand it...but my body is so peaceful with this change that it may be something I keep doing indefinitely.

So there you go. Of all the diests I have done, and I have done them ALL, this is the one that my body has settled into and not fought. I have lost 2 pounds, which is great. But the real benefit is feeling as if my body is running properly and feeling good.

So, vegan I will continue to least for now. :)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Actual conversation...

(We are in the car, driving to class this morning.)



Ohno pease. Ohno pease. Ohno!

Ono? As in Yoko? Ono as in Bono?

Ohno pease mama. Pease mama? PEASE?

(cue me frantically looking over my shoulder at her as she signs to me. Random patting of her hands together.)

Ummmm Lily, I don't know what you want.

(pointing) Ohno mama. Ohno!!!!!!

Ummmmm my phone? Water bottle? Two day old apple core?


(she points to my lotion)


Yes, ohno. (she takes it happily)

Then it occurs to me why she calls it by this particular name. Becuase the only time I can find to lotion up my hands is at red lights...and inevitably the moment I put a big glob on my hands, the light changes. Hence the "Oh no!".

Note to self. Find something else to call the $#%*&*((*)%#@ in front of me when he cuts me off. Ahem.


Words cannot express how much I love my daughter. Today was an immensely blessed and GOOD day...full of laughter and joy. We played, we snacked, we went to the park and out to dinner. Just she and I.

I am realizing more and more just how compassionate my child is. Today she met a new friend at the park, and she took her hand and walked with her. She didn't want to let her go, but simply held her hand and kept saying her name "Ella, Ella". I was so proud of her immensely kind heart.

She has compassion. She has joy. She had tenderness. She opens her arms to the world without fear.

I look at her and wonder who she will become- what will she be? She won't be saddled with the same past I how far will she go as a human being? She won't have to put up walls to keep people out. She will always have a safe place to fall. How wonderful for her to have it, and for me to get to witness it.

Beauty from ashes, indeed.

She is innately kind, and possesses such a good strong soul, already. I watch her and think to myself that if anyone were to damage that sweet soul in any way I would come unglued. I can keep her safe for now...but what about later? She will grow...she will go to school. She may be bullied or picked on. She will be wounded. And I will have to watch.

Motherhood is the sweetest, heaviest, burden a woman can carry. I never understood that until the moment my child was born. She looked up at me and that was it. I was lost to her. I could never hurt her. I wouldn't know how.

All of this leads me down roads I don't like to travel. Thinking about the past is futile...I know this. But there are times when I look at my sweet baby and know that I was that small...that good...that loving. But instead of being treasured, I was cast aside.

I know that one day I will have answers to my questions. I know one day I will approach my God and ask him all of the things I can't understand here. One day I will kneel before him and weep when he hands me my sweet lost baby.

Until that time, though, I will watch my baby girl grow. I will hold her and kiss her and tell her every chance I get of how much I love her. I will stop the world if she ever tells me she needs me. I will hold her hand. I will bathe her and snuggle her. I will cherish her.

And in so doing, I will heal my own wounds.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Day 6

I woke up this morning dreading to go to my beloved Stroller Strides class, because I was afraid I would have no energy. The EXACT opposite was true. I felt lighter, cleaner, and better able to do every single exercise- from jogging to wall sits. All of it was easier.

Now I know this diet isn't for everybody, and truthfully, I have cheated a few times-I've had chocolate twice and shrimp once. But other than that, I haven't had a bit of dairy or meat in nearly a week.

And- I AM NOT HUNGRY. Seriously. I have been eating so much fruit and veggies that I am just not all. Which is certainly something coming from me- the bottomless pit.

Spiritually I feel a little bit different too. I am more clear minded, and feel as if this was something God was telling me to do for quite a while, but I was to stubborn to do so. I need to listen more, that is for sure.

So there it is. I promise one day soon I will have something other than diet to talk about. I've had alot on my mind, and have come to a really big decision today.

Peace reigns in my mind and soul right now. And I am grateful.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Skinny Bitch...indeed.

Day three of no meat or dairy.

I am cranky. I am angry. I am sullen. I would tackle somebody for the traces of cheese under their fingernails.

But, as if this morning, I also feel lighter, cleaner, and less weighed down.

I did decide that the coffee couldn't go. Actually, Mark begged me to not stop with the coffee, because yesterday, frankly...I was a monster. So, as any good wife would do, I submitted to his authority and had a cup this morning. I am anything if not obedient. Ahem.

Anywhoooo, I am committed. But if this feeling of being unsatisfied after meals continues, I will be committed to either jail or the looney bin. I hear in both places you get three square meals a day...that include meat.


Thursday, February 19, 2009

This for that...

Okay, maybe I am just weird...but do you ever look around at the grocery store and see something is misplaced and wonder if the person who left it there sat it down and picked up something else as a substitute?

No? Okay, the cheese stands alone.

Well anyway, I was at Wal Mart yesterday killing time and I noticed the Easter candy was already out. Firstly, I was friggin shocked that the easter candy is out already-I mean, come on! I was just starting to describe my righteous indignation to Lily when I noticed the Cadbury Eggs were on display. I then went into fits of hysterical giggles and began chanting "Chocate! Chocate!!! Yeeeeeeaaaaaahhhh Chocate!!!!" I think I may have also pumped my fist into the air and did a little air guitar as well.

No, I have no dignity. I am a mother. Ahem.

Anywho, as I was picking up and sniffing the nougaty, carmely, chocolatey deliciousness I noticed a real package of eggs had been left on top of the Cadburys. Wonder of wonders that I could think in my sugar driven haze, but I began to wonder if the person who had left the wholesome breakfast staple had indeed given them up for a few Cadburys.

Not that I don't fully understand that choice, but it led me to do some thinking.

How many times in our life do we give up something good for something bad?

The good guy for the bad boy. The salad for the pizza. The better way for the feel better in the moment sin.

I know I am guilty of it, everyday. I sometimes choose the easy road with Lily- the TV show, the movie, the easy dinner. Instead of putting in the effort to make things better in the long run, I chose what serves me now. Instead of thinking of what a choice for me might mean in the long run- say choosing pizza over a healthy stir fry, I am pleasing myself NOW, but ruining myself later. Instead of taking the time to think through my decisions and pray, I sometimes just jump in.

All of this thinking yesterday led me to wonder a few things about myself. I know I have a food addiction. I LOVE food. I love sweets. I try not to eat them, but if they are here in the house, I usually give in. It's not a part of myself that I like, and it makes me feel very weak and stupid.

There are many corners of my life that are not in as good of control as I would like, but since this is the most obvious, I decided to focus on it.

Here's the thing. Food is fuel. It is meant to simply sustain our bodies. But it has been twisted so badly by our society, that it has begun to take on an almost sexual quality. It is not seen as fuel for muscles and bones, but as something sensual and intoxicating.

We eat too much, but it's no wonder. We are surrounded by food, by commercials about food, by food food food. And most of it bad. Ask yourself this- when was the last time you saw a head of lettuce, a pear, a carrot, an apple advertised in a magazine or tv? But how long ago did you see the latest burger or ice cream?

Last night I started reading a book called "Skinny Bitch". Horrible title, full of vulgarity on every page...but nonetheless, tells in no uncertain terms how we are poisoning our bodies. Refined sugar, refined flour, pesticide laden meat, dairy, and fruits and veggies. Caffine, artificial sweeteners...I could go on and on.

Don't even get me started on the chapter about meat and the slaughtering process. You will be hard pressed to ever get me to eat meat again. Ever. And that's saying alot from this Nebraska farm girl.

I can't say that I agree with all tenents of the book. I don't think I can give up dairy. I can cut down and go organic...but I won't cut it out. But I do agree with the premise that there is no FOOD in our food anymore. Everything is processed. The only thing that is recognizeable as it is in nature is fruits and veggies, but cant see pesticides.

I have a point. Maybe. My point is this...I have gone long enough in my life fooling myself that substituting my future health for my momentary pleasure is okay. It's not okay. Because frankly, if I fail to take care of myself now, who will care for my child LATER?

You can substitute many things in your life, but your mother is not one of them.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


The house is quiet. The tea is hot and steaming beside me. I am crying and mourning while the sounds of christian music fills my ears.

I am so so sad. But I am not lost. This sadness has purpose and meaning. It is not debilitating or hindering my life. It just IS. It is part of me.

With each tear I draw closer to God, because He is the only comfort for this. He gives and takes. I love Him, I trust Him, and I know that there is meaning to my pain.

I miss miss miss my baby. My sweet little one. My body is empty, but my soul is not. My soul is full of a yearning not to understand this loss, but to draw closer to God THROUGH it.

Peace or understanding.


This has made me so much more compassionate. I look at others and think of the battles they are facing- battles in secret, battles in the open like mine- and I feel such overwhelming love and empathy. I am not the first, nor will I be the last to lose something so precious. Loss is part of life. It shapes us. It is the bitter to the sweet- without it, we would not know how precious joy is.

I look at my baby girl and I think of what a gift she is. She is the reason I get up each day, she is my life and joy and everything good. She is my world.

I remember clearly lying in the hospital bed while they gave me an ultrasound. I was bleeding, soaking the bed and the floor. I knew my child was gone. All I could think of was getting home to Lily and holding her. Taking my comfort from her presence. She is saving me, everyday. She is uplifting me and showing me the way back into life. She brought me back from the brink. She is my little bit of heaven, here on earth.

I am still crying nearly everyday. I am still standing at the window, looking out at Joshua's resting place. I am still grieving and missing him. But the grief is tempered with peace. I long for him. I wish for him. But I know to whom he belongs.

Today my friend Adrienne gave me a card. On it is a picture of Jesus lovingly cradling a small baby. The child rests it's head on his broad chest, a smile lighting it's face. Adrienne wrote that everytime she saw it she thought of baby J, so she gave it to me. When I saw it, the tears flowed. Tears of sadness for myself and my mother's heart, but tears of joy for my sweet child, who is healed and waiting for me. It was exactly the right thing at the right time.

So I am grieving. But I grieve with hope. I live with hope. And I am thankful in my circumstance. I am thankful for the onrush of pain and tears and the comfort of peace that comes after. I am thankful for my husband's hand on mine while he washes prayer over me. I am thankful for my Lily's smiling face as we dance in the kitchen. I am thankful for the small sweet resting spot of my sweet baby that I can look at each day.

Dearest Joshua,

Oh how I miss you. How I wish for a second chance. But I would never take you from where you are now, sweet boy.

You are loved here on earth, and also where you are. Loved, treasured, remembered, and cherished.

So play, laugh, be joyous.

One day...


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

I havent written in a little while, and I don't really know why. We've had a big week, with Lily's birthday and family in town, but I have also felt very off. Very distant from everyone and everything.

I was watching the kiddos run around Lily's party, and while half of my heart was putting on a brave face and celebrating, the other half was so so sad. I miss my baby. My body feels empty and wrong. I feel like my soul no longer fits in my skin. I feel at times like I hate my body for letting my child die, and times I am grateful for it's ability to be wise even when I am not.

I am by turns sad, grief stricken, angry and then sad again. Then there are times that I don't think of the miscarraige at all.

I don't know what to do with all of these feelings. They are so much bigger than myself.

Somebody commented on my blog after I wrote of losing the baby that miscarraige is a "common disaster". I thought that was so profound. Everyone, from the nurses at the OB, to my girlfriends, to family memebers have experienced this. It IS common. But it is also disastrous to your mind and spirit. I have gone through many things in my life, but holding my own baby after it passed from my body and then watching as my husband buried it was enough to utterly wreck me.

I've had a few people say things such as "It wasn't really a baby yet." And "Well at least it was early on." I know these are well meaning comments but they are totally defeating to me. I know for myself that I loved my child before he was even concieved. I cared for him, prayed for him, felt his spirit. I spoke to him and asked him to join us. I prayed to God to keep his tiny soul safe until he could be placed in my body.

He came and went in just a few weeks, but I loved him every second. I still do. I always will.

In the midst of all this, there is real life that must go on. There are gorceries to be shopped for, meals to cook, laundry to do. There is my sweet Lily who must be loved and tended to. I feel divided between my living child and the one that has passed. I know who needs me more...but sometimes I just want to fall apart.

Lily's second birthday will always be bittersweet for me. For what should have been, for my ideas of watching her play while her sibling grew inside of me. I don't know what is to come- I don't know if I will ever have the chance again to carry life. I don't know if I want to.

Today I am sad and a little lost. Tomorrow will probably be different. Eeach day comes with it's own worries. It's up to me to simply put one foot in front of the other.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Baby J

When I found out I was pregnant this last time, I had a vision in my mind about what Lily's party would be like. I would watch her play with her friends and smile while my second child grew inside of me. I would celebrate life while creating life. It would be wonderful and fufilling.

Instead I am planning my daughter's birthday party with an empty womb. I am sad. I am disappointed, but I accept.

Gods ways are not our ways.

In some ways, losing J was a blessing. Would I do anything to have him back- oh yes. Anything, anything. But the loss was a huge turning point in my relationship with my husband. We realized many many things about ourselves and our lives. We have made huge changes. We have become different people.

If we decide to try for another child, we will be better parents and better role models because of our loss. We will cherish more, spend more time in the moment, pray more, love more, and give more.

In the days after the loss I was suprised every morning when I woke up and the world had kept turning. People went on with their lives. The mail came, the dog barked, the sun went down. I went to the grocery store, got gas, ran errands. And everywhere I go people would look at me and not know that my life had just been devastated.

This led me to be kinder to anyone and everyone. Because you never, ever know what someone has been through. You don't know their battles. You don't know how they hurt. Your smile could be the only one they see all day. Imagine that. You could be the only kindness to touch their lives.

I have lost what I thought my family would look like. I have lost my child and all my dreams for him. But through that, I gained perspective I never would have had.

He continues to touch me and teach me, even past my empty womb. He is still here.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Breastfeeding is a topic that is very close to my heart. I intended to breastfeed Lily for 6 months...mainly because I didn't want to pay for formula. She only weaned (by force) this October.

I cannot explain the love I had for my body when I was nursing my baby. To be able to produce the perfect nutrition for my child was a constant amazement to me. Every single time I nursed I thanked God for the ability to do so. It was a miracle I got to experience every single day.

In the days since losing baby J, I have felt such a strong urge to nurse Lily that I have actually attempted to do so twice. Yes, I know I have no milk. Yes, I know she doesn't need it anymore. But my maternal longing is so strong that nursing seemed a healthy outlet.

I cannot imagine having to look down at my child who is hungry and NOT be able to nourish her. It is a feeling women in Africa experience everyday. This video touched me so deeply. To give a child who is not of your body your milk is generosity at it's deepest. That is true sisterhood, and realizing we as mothers are all connected..whether on the plains of Africa, or here in America.

From hair to maternity....

Have you ever had one of those days when ALL YOU DO is clean and pick up and do laundry and empty the dishwasher and cook and clean faces and let the dog out make the coffee get the baby some milk and lay her down for a nap and run and run and run?

No? Then you are obviously not a mom. I envy you. Enjoy it while it lasts, slacker. BWAHAHAHAHAAAAHAAAA. Ahem.

Yesterday was just such a day for me. Add to it no sleep the night before because of a puking toddler and a touch of the flu myself, and you have a recipe for

So here is where the funny part comes in. Cause you know me, I can make anything funny. Mark, stop shaking your head. I can. Whatever, just admit it, fool.


So last night I decide to dye my hair and also...errrrmmm... use a depillatory on my upper lip, just to get rid of some peach fuzz. Okay, it was to get rid of my hitler like mustache, but that's besides the point.

Anyway, I put the damn hair dye on, slap some depillatory on, and sit down to enjoy some tv.

45 minutes later I am still engrossed in "A Very Duggar Wedding" . I reach up to pull my hair into a ponytail and....yeah, you guessed it, get a handful of dye. I then rememer that I am only supposed to leave the depillatory in for 8 minutes. 8 MINUTES!!!! I ran like FloJo to the bathroom. I wiped away the goop to discover that not only had it not burned my skin, thank God, but that it didn't even fully WORK!!!

Ummmm WTH man? It's not like I'm sporting a Hulk Hogan here. I have a little bit of a hair issue. But apparently the depillatory is no match for the strength of my 'stach. I would be proud if it didn't make me feel a little masculine. *sigh*

So I proceeded to wash the dye off, etc. Everything was going well until I realized that because the dye had been on so long, my ears are now a lovely shade of burgundy. Pretty, I tell ya.

So, if you pass a mustached lady with brown ears on the street today, please be kind.

Thank you. :)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

I think it's serious

My child is suffering from a disorder.

One that makes her prone to bratty behavior, unplanned outbursts, fits that include throwing objects and screaming, and in general the ordering around of her most important entourage. Ahem, that would be me, an entourage of one.

If she was a rockstar, this is what her rider would look like:

Madam Lily requires warmed milk with just a hint of sweetness...but it cannot be sugar, oh no! Madame is watching her figure. It's Nestle's Quick she must have. She will call this "mocka mik". Learn it. Know it. Don't screw it up.

Madame also requires her bidding to be done NOW. If she wants her princess shoes, you must find them NOW. If she wants "appa duce", you must find some right away. And always, always ask her what kind of cup she wants or all hell will break loose.

Madame requires her pillow, her woobie, her baby doll and american girl doll and also a toy dollar store sheep in her bed. You must also ask her repeatedly what blanket she wishes- owls or apples? After she lays down, you must pat her butt appx 300,000 times before you tiptoe from the room. If you stub your toe on the way out, simply drop to the floor and stifle your screams with your hands until you can army crawl out.

Never, ever, tell madame she cannot have candy. You will need a nuclear detonator to diffuse the situation.

Madame must have her apples peeled, her oranges unpeeled, her strawberries diced and her grapes halved. She will, however, eat an entire can of disgusting syrupy peaches with no problem.

Madame will insist on eating 2 cheese sticks at once. Then she will not poop for 4 days. This will make her very very cranky. Hide the cheese sticks. Trust me.

Madame will not tolerate water over her head during the bath, however, she must be clean. So you will have to wrestle her like some WWF oiled up hunk to get her hair washed. You will be dripping and yelling, she will be squirming and screaming. This will happen EVERY NIGHT. Accept it.

Yes, that's my Lily in a nutshell. She suffers from the same disorder I have been battling my entire life- DIVAITIS. Unfortunately, I never had anyone to wait on me hand and foot.

But Madame, however... Has a poor sucker known as...mama.

This is her when she woke from nap today. Is she sick? Feverish? Hanging onto life by a thread?

No. She woke up grumpy and insisted that she have cold juice, cookies, the footrest up (why? I don't know, her feet don't reach it. I am simply the humble servant) and a blanket. Oh, and I had to wedge the blanket so that she could lounge backward. Because what two year old doesnt need a Barcalounger and a butler?

Yeah, so that's what we got going on over here. But I can say, she comes by it honestly...

From her daddy!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Dreams and doves

Last night I had a dream. My grandmother and I were walking along a beach. She was younger than when she died, but her eyes and face were the same. Her voice was so comforting I began to cry.

She grabbed me and held me fiercely. Tight, tight. And she let me let go. Every tear I have held back in the last week came flooding out. I cried until I had no breath.

She pulled back when I was finished and looked me in the eyes.

I asked her why. She told me she could give me either peace or understanding, but not both.

There was no question. Peace.

She smiled and told me my child felt no pain, and I would see him again.

When I woke up, it was early morning. My pillow was still wet. I got up and looked out the back window to see a small dove sitting in front of the statue in the backyard. I stood and watched until Lily began to call for me, and he never moved.

When I came back a while later, he was gone.

Sadness still lingers. But I accept the peace I have been given. I will see my child again.

So fly little dove. Fly high and far. I love you.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Sadness still lurks, and my heart is still heavy, but these two people are worth fighting my way back to happiness.

Thank you, Lord, for your gifts.