Sunday, July 10, 2011

Learned from one year

Well, I have been realizing that I am so much more calm about this pregnancy than I was with Lucy. I was just talking about it with our Sunday School class this morning actually. With Lucy I was so cautious not to eat steak rare, sushi, any type of fish, careful not to lift heavy things, lay on my back to much, so on and so forth. But this time around I have eaten numerous rare steaks, some fish, lifted my 22 pound Lucy, lay on my back and stuff my face every night. I learned that it's OK to not take common sense things LITERALLY. All things in moderation. Lucy is just fine even though I had sushi, and she is fine even though I had the occasional super caffeinated sweet tea AND she is even fine even though I didn't take my pre-natal vitamins, GASP. So I have been thinking about things I have learned as a parent not to freak out about:

1.) Poop comes in many colors, don't be alarmed if your child has different colored poop from day to day. Its pretty normal.
2.) Spit up, totally normal. Unless he/she can't keep any of the milk or formula down, you don't have a major problem. It's just a part of a babies life.
3.) "Exorcism" like spit up also happens, they are disturbing. But it's OK, things happen. Just clean it up and take a deep breath.
4.) On the spit up note, if she is notorious for spitting up always have a burp cloth or blanket available, don't feed her in your bed, and have an extra shirt.
5.) No need to check on your baby when you hear every little wiggle. Babies wiggle and they grunt.
6.) There is even no need to check on your baby every single time they let out a little peep. Use your brain, if they are crying and it's time to get up or eat, get them up or feed them. Simple as that. Sometimes a little cryig just needs alittle patting and shhing. No need to pick up and soothe, EVERYTIME.
7.) Using the pacifier is legit. No big deal. Just cold turkey it when you're done, you're done. A few nights of crying is better than buck teeth. I mean poor Lucy it's already in my genes, its fighting against her.
8.) Breast feeding is over rated, sorry to offend. But seriously it is hard, time consuming, and OK if you can't go for 6 months or even a year. More power to the Mama's that do, but don't beat yourself up over it. Different things work for different people. She is not going to be an abandoned and unloved child because you don't breastfeed her super long.
9.) Pee pee diapers can go a little longer than you think... If she weighs an extra 7 pounds because of her diaper, you might want to change it, but one little trinkle aint gonna do much.
10.) Poo poo diapers, change them. Don't be rude and make others smell it. It's just not nice.
11.) No need for all the fancy toys, boxes are just great and cheap too.
12.) I slept on my tummy and I am fine... That's all I am going to say...
13.) No need to see the doctor if there is no other symptom besides a fever 101 and under... They will just tell you this, "Give her tylenol (1.85 mL I think...) and alternate it with Motrin every two hours. If she doesn't improve or gets worse call us in the morning." $25 copay for that...
14.) Bumpers are so annoying when trying to change the crib sheet. Velcro instead of tying strings, is WAY easier.
15.) No need for a fancy diaper pale, the inserts and replacements cost to much money to keep up.
16.) In no way should you have scalding water for bath time but come on would you want to sit in a luke warm bath? No. Make it a little warmer. Much more comfortable.
17.) Naptime is great. But someday's it just doesn't work, relax take a drive in the car with the baby. Might help.
18.) Baby books. Hmmm. If you aren't a fan of reading or fly by the seat of your pants. They may just make you frustrated enough that you throw them across the room.... (clears throat...)
19.) Use your family. Use them. Go over to there house whenever they want you there. It's nice to have support and feel the love of your family.
20.) The long nights really do end. I promise.
21.) It's OK to not go by all the books, branch out; figure out what you need to do with YOUR child.
22.) Teach her how to hold her bottle. Totally worth it. TOTALLY
23.) Geeze this list is long.
24.) Every Mom gets frustrated with there child, don't feel like you are the only Mom who has ever wanted to, and has, yelled "Just shut up please for ONE minute!!" We are human, we get frustrated. Apologize though, don't start any bad habits.
25.)  Mickey Mouse Clubhouse is baby crack. Its addicting and they love it.
26.) On that note a little TV never hurt them, again all things in moderation.
27.) One day your sweet little baby, will be a Mommy herself (Lord willing!) one day. Savor the moments.\
28.) Look back and laugh at the bad moments, and cry joyful tears thinking about the good ones. Not worth it to get so frustrated.

The one year I have had to parent so far, has gone by in the blink of an eye. I can't believe she is already one. I remember crying when she was just a few days old as she sat in her swing, peaceful (finally), thinking my baby will be a young woman one day and there is nothing I can do about it. She was created and then given to Scott and me to raise and let go one day. Tip #29 don't speed it up, life goes fast enough by itself, don't rush her to sleep through the night, eat her bottle, sit, crawl, walk, talk and any other milestones!

Love you sweet Lucy Kate and my precious BB2!

Monday, July 04, 2011

The Fourth Brings Back Memories

June and July may bring up some negative memories to me, BUT there are also loads of good ones especially wrapped up in the summer of 2004. Around March of 2004 (end of my sophomore year of high school) there was a time capsule opening at my old Elementary school. Scott just so happened to have been in my kindergarten class and we had gone to school together ever since. I casually told him about the opening and did not expect him to come. I mean come on a school time capsule reopening? Lame. Well I didn't think it was; I am a sentimental person... Anyways, he actually showed up! At the time I didn't have any feelings for him, in fact I had a rather large crush on one of his friends, who shall remain nameless (thank you very much). But I still thought it was neat he came, especially since my ride, thanks T-Guth, wanted to leave early and I wasn't ready to go. Scott offered to take me home and I said sure (did I not mention our parents houses are about half a mile away from eachother? Sweet I know!)

On the ride back to my house, I noticed Scott was listening to Jars of Clay, I was like what? A guy. From my school. Actually listens to Christian music. What? Well I wanting to show off my "Christian music IQ" (you know because that makes you a better Christian... jk) popped in Burlap to Cashmere. Which we listened to about one song, then Scott sort of politely switched it back to Jars of Clay. This is the awesome part...Well one of the awesome parts, we listened to World's Apart. Not only did he sing his heart out, I sang too AND we drove around the block TWICE to finish out the whole song. Y'all there was something special there. No denying it. Well after that we began to chat on AIM, and I actually got an invite to his birthday party (which is a whole story in and of itself).

The evening of his birthday party came quick, because he had just given me an invite that day. Thanks Scott. So I got ready, nervously came into his house and saw a whole swarm of people I didn't know. It was awkward. I spent most of the night talking to his parents, little did I know they would be my inlaws. They actually had a big part in our relationship, they told Scott, "Scott, you have to come upstairs and talk to this girl Jenny!" So he did, might I add arrogantly reclining both arms behind the couch and squeezing his behind in the already crowed couch. Needless to say our conversation was short and left me with a hmm.... Is this the same guy? Lest we not forget, I still had a crush on his friend, who again shall remain nameless (thank you very much.) When I was picked up to go home, I got in the car and said "Scott is so rude, I could never date such a rude guy!" Let me clarify: We were in high school, he thought he was cool, and he was more bold about is opinions than me. We were just different.

We still continued to talk on AIM, and had really great conversations about God and life. The end of the school year came, and since I had a surprise birthday party, he was not invited because my family just didn't know him that well. We still chatted on AIM and we were talking about my dance recital coming up, he said he would like to come. I was like OK... So I dropped TWO tickets off at his house the next day. The dance recital day had come and I had not forgotten about the tickets I gave him. I gave him TWO. Hint, hint, nudge nudge, invite your friend! Right before the show started, I peeked out from behind the curtain, I know a no no (tisk, tisk), and didn't see him. Gotta say I was alittle disappointed. But the show must go on! It did and it was great!

After the recital, I went to see my family and when I turned around to give someone a hug, I saw this smiling tall, dark and handsome guy, walk down the stage right side aisle, with a handful of pink roses. He swooped me in his arms and gave me a big hug. This was no side hug ladies, this was a real hug. The words he said to me I will never forget, "Jenny, you were just beautiful." Wait, what, you're not my dad, or my mom, or a family member? You are actually a real guy saying you thought I was beautiful? I was so touched and blushing red. I had never been told by any other man but my dad, and maybe granddad, that I was beautiful. You know as women we just don't believe it when it's from our dad! He has to say that. Anyways, from that night on, Scott says his eyes were opened to me and he began to have a, "I like you like, like you, like you type of way"

So now we skip to a week later, fourth of July 2004. On the back of my 2003 black chevy cavalier about 9:00 pm at night. Now let me let you know why it was so late. Thanks to Mr. Jon Yarbrough who just wouldn't leave so we could talk! We talked about EVERYTHING, life, love, marriage, school, college, possible college options, how many kids we wanted. We talked so much I didn't even realize my dad's oh so subtle hint of turning off the lights so as to letting me know to come inside. He actually had to come outside and so embarrassingly said, "Jennifer, it's late get inside now! Bye Scott." Whoops... Sorry about that one Dad...

 Alright, I will leave you in suspense as to how the rest of the story goes... Obviously it ends happy so don't be too concerned ;o)


Saturday, July 02, 2011

To be or not to be?

Today, as I quickly and with panic drove home from my parents house with a slight stomach ache, I remembered that this past week marked five years since, what I would call terrible experience, I got a stomach bug. Go ahead, you can chuckle. I get it. It's silly for someone to remember and dread the anniversary of their first stomach bug. It sounds quite silly to me too, as I sit and type about it. This blog post is about the big question I faced in times when I had a panic attack, to be or not to be... on medication.

I know I am going to step on somebody's toes and I don't mean to offend, really. I don't. Through the biblical counseling my brother in law did with me, the subject of whether or not I should take medication came up and helped me to gain a better understanding about the matter.

While at a check up at my doctors I mentioned I have been struggling with being anxious. The first thing that came out of her mouth was, would you like to try some medication? I was a little shocked, to be quite honest. You're not going to ask me why I am anxious? Or try to help me in any other way? You're just going to prescribe me something? So, I said well I guess so. She gave me a free sample card for a months supply, then went on her way to her next patient. I had the card for about a week before I brought it up to Ben, my BIL. I was torn between wanting relief from the anxiousness and panic attacks, but knowing myself I would probably not want to get off of them. Which posed a problem, in no way did I want to get addicted or have a reliance to medication.

At our next counseling "session" I guess you could call it, Scott and I sat down with Ben and talked about the option of medication. Here is what we talked about:

- Medication is often times used to balance out chemical imbalances in the brain. But there is not a way, at least that I am aware of, that can test the chemicals in your brain. Therefore, how do I really know if I even have an imbalance?
-Medication, for me and I think many others especially those who are followers of Christ, does not get to the root of the problem. My heart. In my heart I seek after comfort, and when that is not granted I panic. My heart is sinful and desires things of the flesh and not of God. Medication, I believe, would have only put a tarp over my true heart, just hiding it from the surface and preserving the sin. Once that tarp was lifted and the sin was unmasked again, I would be right back at square one. Because the SIN IS STILL THERE!
-Anti Anxiety/Depression medications can make anxiety worse in some cases.
-Sometimes all that is needed is to balance out your thyroid levels, vitamins, diet, and/or exercise which can be easily tested with a routine blood test. (From personal experience what I ate could make the anxiety worse,and if I was not active that did as well. If I sat around the house and did not get out and do things my anxiety got worse.)
-A great way of handling anxiety and depression can be followed by this verse, "Do not be anxious about anything but in everything, by prayer and petition, present your requests to God and the peace that passes all understanding will guard your heart and minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:6-7

There have been so many prayers and petitions that I have said to God, and he HAS given me a peace I just do not understand. That peace has helped me get through so many tough situations with anxiety.  God has told me, us, that in everything we should pray and petition to God  our requests and HE will provide a peace we don't understand. I still many times have anxiety and i don't understand how He is going to provide that peace to me, but He does. He does not fail!

The conclusion that we came to, was no medication was not for me. Would it have made this refining process easier, maybe. Would it have made it harder, possibly. Would I change my decision, no.

I don't know if you are reading this and your on medication or your not, or if you hate my guts because of what I said, but look to your heart. What is in it? Is it deceiving you to believe that everything is fine because  it is masked by something? Masked by pity for yourself and your circumstances, by medication, sin, or are you seeing the truth that your heart is deceitful and there are things that need to change? Do it today! Look into your heart, ask God to change it! My anxieties are not gone, and I still ask God why, but He has not let me down, and He has and always will provide for my needs in the way He sees fit.