Sunday, May 30, 2010

Didn't see that coming...

Every now and then, things seem to just click. We find our rhythm, and adapt to the pace that seemed out of reach before. Things start to become easy, and the challenges we faced in the past are just memories of what we’ve left behind. We shift into cruise control, and throw caution to the wind, while enjoying the ride. That’s when it sneaks up on you…those little speed bumps in the road of life that slow us down, and remind us to proceed with caution…A reality check that serves a purpose. It may take a little bit of the thrill out of the ride, but it also protects us from the possibility of dangers ahead.

Yesterday’s speed bump came in the form of a wedding. A beautiful, happy occasion that I was looking forward to. I didn’t see it coming. As I dressed the kids and got our things together, I was excited. I love weddings. I love the flowers, the dress, the cake…all of it. I love the dancing. From Unchained Melody to YMCA, and everything in between…weddings are so much fun. And although I’ve shed a tear at ceremonies before, I am not a sappy person, and I usually do not cry at weddings. Yesterday, I held back tears at a wedding…tears that had nothing to do with how beautiful the bride looked in her gown…and she did look beautiful. Tears that had everything to do with the little lump snuggled on my lap during the ceremony, her little fist wrapped tightly around my finger…completely selfish tears.

I want it all. I want to see Madison walk down the aisle one day. I want Chris to walk beside her, and give her away to someone who will love her so completely and know what an amazing gift she is. I want her to date, and go to prom, and wear high heels. I want her to have a family of her own, and know how amazing it feels to have that little fist wrap around your finger. And I’m so torn between hoping for all of these things, and feeling guilty for doing so. If my dreams for Maddie, turn out to be just dreams, I have to be ok with whatever is in store. But does that mean I stop hoping for them? Is it selfish of me to dream of a life for her that may not be possible? Sometimes I feel like I’ve been robbed. Like something precious has been taken from me, but I can’t tell yet what is missing. Like when I put her braces on, and instead of feeling grateful that she has braces, and that they are helping to support her, I catch myself wishing I could put her in all the cute baby shoes I see other babies wearing...completely selfish. I don’t want to be disappointed in anything that she does or doesn’t do in her life. I want to support her in everything, and encourage her to have dreams of her own. I don’t ever want her to see disappointment if my dreams for her don’t come true.

I know everyone has hopes and dreams for the future. I felt the loss of a dream as soon as we found out about Madison’s SB. I knew the pregnancy, the birth, and everything surrounding it would be different from anything I had planned or hoped for. And it was. The pregnancy was filled with condolences instead of congratulations, the birth was 1000 miles away from home, and the experience was unlike anything I could have imagined for us. And although it wasn’t what I had planned, it still worked for us. I know there is a plan for Madison’s life…it may not be the same as my plan, but it will still work for us. It goes against everything in me to just accept that this may not all work out the way I’ve always dreamed, so I won’t. I’ll continue to hope that one day she will have it all, every single beautiful thing that this life has to offer. And for whatever joys life chooses to deny her, I will do my best to make up for it with all the love I can possibly give her.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Glad that's over...

What a crazy week this has been...the weekend is finally here and I have survived the gauntlet of Monday through Friday yet again. If only this weekend held the promise of lazy lounging and cold beverages…nope. It’s packed from beginning to end.

Monday I wasn’t feeling well, so I had to tackle all of Monday’s tasks on Tuesday. Tuesday’s are always rough because I have to get Mason to school, run errands, feed Maddie, and get her some kind of nap before PT at 11:30. Then after PT, we have about one hour before we have to pick Mason up again. Tuesdays are the days I forget to eat. So after going through all of this in order to be home for PT, you can imagine my disappointment when the PT substitute called to cancel on us. To add to the fun, I found out when I picked Mason up, that his last day of school was Thursday…this Thursday. Not next Thursday, like I had thought, and was counting on. Yikes.

Wednesday I met with some new clients. I do a small amount of residential design these days…mostly in New Orleans, and this new client was a referral in the same area. The kiddos stayed at the in-laws, and thankfully did just fine. Madison is happily taking a bottle 2-3 times a day, while I try to make the most of the tiny bit of nursing that remains. Sigh. Everything is changing so fast, and I’m still not ready to let go…the bright side is it makes life much easier for our babysitters. Now that she will accept something besides me, things are much more enjoyable on their end…and I’ll learn to appreciate my new freedom…eventually.

Thursday I spent working on a cake with my friend Vanessa. It was a Mickey Cake for a neighbor’s son. Mason had his last day at school (tear), and we worked on the cake until I had to pick him up. Friday belonged to the cake as well, and it came out super cute.

So, although this weekend holds no rest for the weary, I am so glad it’s here.
Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Shades of Summer

This past week was such a busy one, jam-packed with outdoor activities and special outings and it felt like the first real taste of summer. Remember that feeling of anticipation as the remaining weeks of school slipped from the calendar? It was sheer joy when the final bell rang and we were out for summer…an entire summer…3 whole months of freedom and fun, and the possibilities were endless. As a kid, I remember thinking that every night felt like a Friday night, and every morning was a weekend morning…Lazy and delicious. My little people are still too young to get that feeling, but I felt it just watching them this past week. It felt like school was out for summer, and I was happy.

It started on Wednesday with a trip to the zoo. This wasn’t the most well thought out trip…we decided to go with my Mother late that morning. So by the time we made it to the zoo, I had two cranky, hungry kids that were badly in need of naps. And because I live in Southeast Louisiana, the temperature was in the 90’s by noon, and most of the animals had settled into heat-induced comas. This made for an interesting day. Parts of it were great fun and laughter…and other parts (meltdown at the carousel, meltdown at the playground, meltdown at the train) got downright ugly. Luckily, I didn’t photograph those parts. Here are some of our happier moments…

Thursday I surprised Mason with a trip to the pool after I picked him up from school. This was Maddie’s first time to the pool, and she loved it! She loved to watch Mason run through the spouts, as she squealed, splashed and clapped her hands. We had so much fun!

My sunbathing babe...

Saturday was another birthday party, and Sunday was a Mother’s Day Crawfish Boil at my parents’ house.


This was a special Mother’s Day for me. It was my first with Madison, and my first as being a mother of 2…which I must say, is dramatically different than mother of 1. I have learned so much this year about what it really means to be a mother…to accept the perfect imperfections and know that’s what makes our life more beautiful and more real. I have learned that life doesn’t come with a script, and I have found a more alive and authentic version of myself that exists only in those moments when I really allow myself to let go. My babies have taught me how quickly this precious time flies by, and how to soak up every single last drop before it is gone.

They allow me to see the world through their eyes, and it holds so much more wonder and beauty than anything I had seen before…and for that gift on this Mother’s Day, I will be forever grateful.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Milestone: mile•stone (noun)
A stone showing distance to a place. A significant or important event in the history of a country or a person’s life.

Milestones can happen at any moment, at any age, and for any person. They can be big or small. They can mean everything to one person, and be insignificant to another. They can bring both satisfaction and frustration.

When Mason was a baby, I lived by the charts that told me what he should be doing and at what time. I wanted to be sure that he was on target, and that he was progressing in growth and skills at the appropriate times. As focused as I was back then, you would have thought the milestones would have meant more to me. As soon as Mason achieved a goal, I mentally checked that off my list and moved on to the next…Never completely content to just sit back and enjoy the pure wonder of a baby learning to do what babies do. I was a “Mommy on a Mission.” You’ve seen and heard them before…usually sipping frappuccinos under park pavilions, pushing strollers around the mall, or in the hallways of your daycare or preschool. Their casual conversation so often comes back to what amazing feat their little one has accomplished…..3 months ahead of schedule. They live by the milestone charts. It’s funny now when I hear them…I realize they have tunnel-vision. They can only focus on that one single thing right in front of them, and in the process they are completely missing the big picture.

I’m looking at things differently now. The older Madison gets, the more she separates herself from the rest of the pack. She is unique in so many ways, and her timetable for reaching milestones will be as well. I don’t get so caught up in the charts anymore, because I know that the same rules don’t apply, and knowing that somehow allows me the freedom to enjoy each and every accomplishment so much more. Knowing how much harder we are working for each milestone makes them so much sweeter once they are reached. Although she amazes me on a daily basis, this week Maddie decided to check off a few milestones of her own, and I couldn’t be more proud. In one short week, she said her first words, “Mama and Dada” (in that order! LOL), she started using a sippy cup, and she waved bye-bye for the first time as Chris took her away for her nap. My little lady is leaving behind her baby days and well on her way to being a full-blown toddler…and, no…I’m not ready.

Chris reached a milestone of his own this week…
Happy 33rd Birthday Sweetheart!

Mason was so excited about the singing card he picked out, that he woke Madison up that morning with a little serenade…She loved it.


And for those who have asked about the treadmill sessions…Maddie is doing really well with it! She did 10 minutes on Monday and 12 minutes on Saturday!

I am so hopeful that this will help her take those first steps…but like every other milestone, I know she will do it in her own time. That’s the thing about milestones…they mark the progress we make throughout our journey- not the speed we kept along the way.

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