Sunday, May 29, 2011

Sunday morning...

Screeching lifts me from my sleep/coma.

"Daaaaadeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Daaaaaaaaaaaadeeeeeeeeeeee. Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeleeeeeeeeee."

I push Mark with my foot. He grunts, farts, and rolls over.

"Mark. The house is on fire."

"Mmmmmfrrmmmmmmmmm. Hot wings. Mmmmmmphrmmmp."

I roll my eyes, push him again with my foot.


(translation: Daddy, Lily. Dude, I totally pushed you out with your gigantic head and NO WORKING EPIDURAL. Throw me a bone and call ME for once, huh?)



I get up, yank my hair into a bun, and stuff my glasses onto my face. I squint at the clock.


What the?

I mean, really, son? Really? Is this who you are? Waking your mother up at 5:55 am?

I stumble to the kitchen and start the coffeemaker.

Yes, I started the coffeemaker before I made his bottle. I have standards, yo. Mama and coffee go together like cheeseburgers and peanut butter. And also, the coffeemaker makes a huge grinding noise that scares the little tyrant and I was feeling a bit hacked off. So, there. I am vindictive at 5 am. Who knew?

Warm the milk for the little creature, stumble into his room. Realize the bottle is leaking. Say things that are definitively inappropriate at 5 am on a Sunday. (my apologies, God- but it's 5 am. I mean, can you believe this child?)

Refill a new bottle.

"Daaaaadeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!" Ummmmm hello, breasts and womb. One who carried you and pushed you out. Nursed your little early teething self. Can I get a token mama?


Bring the bottle in, hand it over. Carry him to the changing table while juggling child, bottle, woobie, and paci. Making sure the flow of milk is constant or the foot kicking screamfest begins and I will so drop you, son, if you kick me in the baby maker again. I will SO do it. Don't test me.

He kicks me anyway. I don't drop him.

Restraint ya'll. It's a gift.

Peel off the pee wet pjs, change the 40 lb diaper. Powder, desitin, tummy rubs and head kisses. Cause he's a menace and it's 5 am, but I still love him a little too much to be healthy.


Lay him back in bed with the bottle ( shutty, dentists, I know) and high foot it to the bathroom while whimpering "Ohboyohboynotgonnamakeitkidruinedmypeeholdingin muscleswhatarethosecalledoooooooocoffeeisready!"

Focus. Another gift.

Pee. Ahhhhhhhhhhhh.

Glace lovingly at the coffeepot on the way back to the tyrants room/ Maybe make out with it just for a minute.

"You complete me, Cuisinart."

"You had me at self grinding."

Walk into the tyrants room. Prepare bright mommy smile/one day you will pay for making me get up this early grimace.

To see that he is asleep.


Oh no he din't.

And I can't even go back to sleep cause once my warm nether regions hit the cold toilet seat that's it, sister. I'm up. Cold toilet seat=coffee soon. Anybody knows that.

He looks so cute when he is sleeping. I have the distinct urge to yell "Saaaaaaaameeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!" in his face. But I won't. Cause of the restraint thing. Be envious of my will power.

But I won't say I didn't turn the coffee grinder on just one more time.

Mmmmmmmm coffee.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Brooklyn "InDaHouse" Said- 5.21.11

To say this is bittersweet is an understatement.

This morning we put our dog, Brooklyn, to sleep.

She was sick. She wasn't eating well. And this morning she woke up panting. Turns out her lymph nodes were so swollen she couldn't breathe.

We knew she had lymphoma. She was diagnosed in Sept of last year. But still, this was sudden and shocking.

Anyone who knows me knows I had a love/hate relationship with my dog. She was a constant whiner, a constant presence of stressed out energy. She was perpetually unhappy and rarely affectionate.

But she was a helluva protector. And she LOVED my babies. And I loved the security she gave me, and th presence she offered me.

She was fierce. She was strong. And now, within a few moments, she is gone.

Her body was worn out, and I knew it. I knew she wasn't doing well. And this morning I told Mark with a sudden and horrible certainty that I knew she wasn't going to come back from her vet's appt.

I was right. I've never wanted to be more wrong.

I want to give her a proper eulogy here. I want to say she was a happy and sweet soul. But she wasn't. She was a horrible creature, but I loved her dearly. She protected me for 8 years. She watched over my babies for 4. She slept, tucked against my growing belly through both pregnancies, and laid stone still and warm againt my back when I lost Joshua.

She aggravated the hell outta me. She tested my every reserve of patience. Sometimes I wanted to open the door and let her go. Sometimes I wanted to make her into stew.

But I always loved her.

And now that fierce soul is in heaven. I am sure she is whining at God's feet, begging him for a piece of steak or a biscuit. She is maybe scratching at the back door and looking at Him like "Ummmmmm hello, service! Don't you know how important I am??"

But I have no doubt that she is there.

And in the end, it was me who held her while she went. The one who always had such a contentious relationship with her held her sweet head and kissed her warm ears and told her over and over how much I loved her. I whispered how much I would miss her. I bathed her face in tears and let her go to God. I watched as her face fell into lines of peace, and her breath stilled. I listened as that big fierce heart trickled out.

We should all go this way- in the arms of somebody who loves us, hearing how much we will be missed and how loved we are. An easy slip into the next world, from one set of arms to another.

Dear Brooklyn,

You will be missed. (Yes, even by me.) You have already left a void so great we cannot see how it will be filled. I am carrying around your picture and crying. (Yes, me) I love you and I hope that right now you are eating steak and barking as loud as you want. I hope you are chasing the FedEX man, and that you catch him. But mostly I hope you are lying in the sunshine and the grass, looking up to the sky and breathing deeply, just like you did here at home. Tell Beau and Joshua and my mom I love them.

I will see you someday, my horrible creature.


Monday, May 16, 2011

I am a Christian

I am a Christian. I don't have all of the answers. I don't know why God creates us how he does. But this is what I believe.

Being gay is not wrong. It is not a choice. It is as deep in the DNA as eye color or hair color.

I don't think gays are sinning. I don't KNOW if they are. The only person's sins I know are my own.

God taught me to love. He loved me despite my sins. And I do the for my fellow man- whether they are gay or straight.

I think gay people should be allowed to marry.

I think gay people should have children.

I don't think gay people should be discriminated against, harassed, or hurt for who they love.

I believe with everything in my body that God loves us ALL. That He sees all and knows all and loves us despite it.

That He does NOT condemn anyone. And that I should follow His example.

Why am I writing this? Why am I risking offending many who read my blog and have different views?

Because I should.

Because too many claim to love God on one hand, and on the other condemn those He created.

And I hate being pigeonholed. I hate the fact that the word christian has come to be synonymous with "anti-gay".

That the God I love has been painted with such small strokes as to seem as if He can't accept and love everyone.

And that we as Christians cannot step up and follow His example.

IT IS NOT OUR JOB TO KNOW WHO IS SINNING. It is not our job to condemn.

It is our job to love, to give, to help.

It is our job to be His hands and feet on this earth.


And you can't get into the trenches and help those who need it if you are too busy pointing fingers at everyone you feel falls short, can you?

I am a Christian. And this is what I believe.

*You may have noticed I disabled comments on this post. I am not interested, even remotely, in hearing any dissenting opinions or having scripture thrown at me. This is what I believe, and I won't apologize or back down. Period.*

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


I am writing this on the floor of my closet.


It's a really long story.

I am sad. And lost. A humbled. And...well, mostly sad.

And it's for a stupid, vain, and ultimately nonsensical reason.

I am laying here looking at racks of clothing I have bought, hoping they would make me look like somebody else.

Somebody skinnier.

There, I said it.

I hate my body.

There, I said that.

And it's a huge, mountainous struggle.

This is MY thing. My something. My burden and my pain.

The struggle is that I KNOW that God loves me. And that I love Him, so very very much. I know He created me. I know that I live to make Him proud, and by constantly hating myself, I am crushing Him.

Not to mention how it affects my family. My relationship with Mark. With my kids.

I am hurting over something so silly and vain, and I truly hate myself for it.

But there it is.


I want to put on a brave face and say to everyone- "Hey, I will get through this!!! It doesn't hurt that bad! I'm okay."

And I probably will say it. But I don't mean it.

And I want to pretend I am okay with myself ...with my big belly and legs.

But I'm not.

And I have worked damn hard to change it all. I cannot eat any less. I cannot exercise any more. I can't. I have done it all.

So, I guess what I am doing here, in my closet, is grieving.

Grieving for the girl who bought these clothes thinking they would give her confidence.

Mourning for the girl who stands in this closet most days and feels like she is carrying a boulder on her back.

Thinking of the girl that tugs at her clothes, that sucks in her stomach, that hides behind long sleeves and jeans.

For the girl who has done this for 24 years, with hope that one day it would change.

And the girl that knows, right in this moment, that it WILL NOT.

I've exhausted my options. I have prayed my heart out. I have worked and worked and worked.

And it has led to this- sobbing in my closet in my workout clothes, looking at all of my hopes hanging from clothing racks.

I will not ever lose weight.

I will not ever slim down.


I can be strong.

I can be healthy.

And I can try to accept this body God created for me.

Because if I only know one thing right now, it's that God doesn't make mistakes.

And as much as I long to look how I feel- strong, agile, and healthy- I just...don't.

So, acceptance.

Trusting God.

Tomorrow will come, and I will continue to work out, eat well, and push through.

But tonight, my friends, I gotta be honest.

Tonight it's me, my closet, and my tears.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

Mother's Day.

I used to dread this day.

And then, like tide over sand, God washed the old away and made everything new.

Where there was sadness, there is now great joy.

Where there was loneliness, companionship.

Where there was anger, now there is contentment.

Where there was a holding on to hurt, there is a letting go.

And the letting go, is just bliss.

Today is about my babies.

Today is about family.

Today is about celebrating the women who have stepped INTO my life instead of stepping away.

And it is so beautiful.

I looked through Lily's newborn clothes today. All of the little, all of the pink, all of the memories flooded me with such joy.

And also the knowledge of just how far we have come, she and I.

From a tiny newborn fighting for strength to this sweet spitfire of a girl.

A girl with her own voice, and her own spirit.

And me. A mother of two on this earth, learning that motherhood is so much more than I ever thought it could be.

Infinitely harder.

Infinitely sweeter.

It has broken me, mended me, and broken me again.

It has opened my heart to such a degree that I cannot close it again. Not to my children, not to the world.

Made me softer to all things, more compassionate at all times.

Made me love deeper. Made me hurt worse than any other pain.

I believe in something bigger than myself- in family and love that can and will not be broken.

I believe in all of the true things, the lasting things, and the God given things.

I believe in my abilities as a mother and as a woman.

And I also believe and know that my children will never know what I did.

They will know love and devotion that does not waver. They will know loyalty that will not turn away, ever.

They will know love that does not ever give up. Ever.

Life is sweet. Life is good.

And God has made it all possible.

Happy Mother's day.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


My facebook friends status said simply:

"i serve a God that has come to set the captives free."

I read it. I re-read it. I choked up. I looked at it at least 10 times.

And every time I came back to it I felt a pull, a deeper meaning that was trying to wind around my heart. I kept thinking of these words, over and over.

Today I was driving Lily to school and those words flashed in my head again. Two days of this carousel going around my mind and I was about to come unglued.

"Lord, please just tell me what this means? Please tell me why this is so important that I can't get it out of my head?"

And my mother's face flashed in front of me, clear as day.

My mother.

My mother was a captive.

Captive to her own mind, which drove her to drink, to pursue men. Which kept her from ever caring for me like she should have. Which kept her from knowing where I was for years. Her own mind imprisoned her as surely as iron rails.

She couldn't love. She couldn't care. She couldn't function.

Severely bi-polar people cannot function unless they are medicated. Medication from a knowledgeable doctor, or self medication in the form of alcohol, drugs, and sex.

My mother was never diagnosed until she was terminal with cancer. She was then put on lithium. She was normal. She wanted to mend broken-ness. She wanted to live.

And then, she died.

Captive to a body riddled with cancer, even though her mind had finally been freed.

I used to be angry with God for those last few months. When she reached out to me. When she wrote to me, sent me money to visit. Begged me to come.

I was too angry then. Young and stupid. I didn't want to forgive her. I didn't want to mend anything. My heart was blackened and stilled with anger.

Captive, if you will. Imprisoned by unforgiveness and rage.

And so she died in a strangers house, in a strangers bed, with no blood family around.

Freed from a body of pain, and a mind of torture.

A captive set free.

He set her free from herself, from the bondage of mental illness and cancer. He resurrected her to Him, whole and without blemish. Without sickness or sadness or regret.

She was restored. She lives, even now. She was set free.

And today, I realized, so was I.

I was set free from the worry of where she was, and the pain of separation from her. I was freed from her presence here on earth, and the chaos she always came with. I was set free from obligation to her.

I was freed to forgive her.

And today, I also realized she will be RESTORED to me.

One day, I will walk into the gates of heaven. And she will be there. And all of the bitterness will be washed away with the redemption of Christ's love.

The moment she died, she was free.

And so was I.

I serve a God who came to set captives free.

Isaiah 49:

8 This is what the LORD says:
“In the time of my favor I will answer you,
and in the day of salvation I will help you;
I will keep you and will make you
to be a covenant for the people,
to restore the land
and to reassign its desolate inheritances,
9 to say to the captives, ‘Come out,’
and to those in darkness, ‘Be free!’

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I ran.

Yesterday I went for what I thought was a walk. I was praying as I usually do as Sam chattered from the stroller. Then:

"Why don't you run?"

Clear as day. I inside my head. Along with a compelling need to do as I was asked.

So I did.

I jogged until my breath was squeezed from my lungs. Then I walked. Then the voice, again:

"Why don't you run?"

I bet you can guess what I did then. I jogged some more. Then walked.

And so on.

And I made it 4.5 miles in 70 minutes. I can hear all of you runners making a little joke in your head. Yeah, I's slow. Turtle time.

But for me, it was a huge victory. I actually jogged.

The feeling was one of exhiliration. I didn't die. I wasn't even damaged or injured.

And I felt incredible.

And this morning, I did it again.

This time I started out jogging, taking only a few breaks to walk.

Everytime I wanted to give up, I got strength to go a little bit further. To push a little bit longer. To breathe deeper and dig deeper.

And I did 4.5 miles in 50 minutes.



I sat down afterward as Sam snoozed in the stroller. I sat in the sun on a bench overlooking the pond, and I cried. I called out to God in a voice filled with wonder and gratitude.

"Lord, I ran!"

"I know."

"No really, Lord...I RAN! For 4.5 miles. Just like I had prayed for for so long!"

"Remember, your dreams are MY dreams."

And then I just cried harder.

I doubted myself, and I doubted my God. I was ashamed of this body He gave me. I cursed it.

And then, this body carried me into a run.

This body carried me through miles. My lungs stretched to accomadate my drive, my heart beat hard and true to take me father than I thought possible. My legs did not tire. I did not collapse.

I ran. I ran into the dream that I had had for so long. And God ran beside me, step for step.

Monday, May 2, 2011

It's not over.

Mark and I woke up to the news that Bin Laden is dead.

I was immediately elated. And just after, stricken with guilt for being elated.

After all, I am a child of God. And God does not celebrate over death of an enemy.


Evil has lost a figurehead this day. Evil has been defeated in this small way.

Justice, after 10 years. Or is it?

Is it justice that this evil evil man has been shot in the head when 3000 of our fellow Americans died a fiery and terrible death?

Is it justice that he died quickly and had a burial in the Islamic custom when so many of our people were never recovered? And so many of our military have given their blood and lives to find him?

Is that justice? A quick death?


But it is what is. And evil is less powerful today than yesterday.

I am not celebrating death today. I am celebrating that evil has been trumped in this small way on this day. That our country somehow has a bit more peace knowing this monster is gone.

I am celebrating our military's patience and dedication to hunting this man down.

I am celebrating that our memory is long and our patience more so, and that we REMEMBER what this man did, and that we were relentless in finding him.

I am celebrating that the evil that brought down the towers has lost their figurehead.

But I know it's not over.

Far from it.

This is good and evil. This is predicted and known.

In a way, it is just beginning. Not ending.

So today we clelebrate the defeat of evil. And tomorrow we get back to the buisness of rooting it out and destroying it.