Baby Got a Booboo?

a mom blog

This past weekend while I was on our church’s women’s retreat, Hubby was in charge of the girls. On Saturday, He sent me picture via text of Rae’s face with scrapes all over her nose, a bloody, swollen upper lip, and sad puppy-dog eyes looking up at the camera. “WHAT HAPPENED?!” was my obvious reply. Apparently, they had finished up a shopping trip at Kohl’s and were walking outside on the icy sidewalk. Hubby called to her hold to his hand, but she yelled back over her shoulder, “I can’t, Dad! My hands are too cold” and she stuffed them in her pockets. .But even as she was speaking, she slipped on the ice and fell face first. And with no hands (or “bumpers” as my brother calls them) to catch a fall, her face got the brunt of it.
Poor baby. Blood was everywhere, practically squirting Hubby in the eye as he struggled to haul both girls back to the car (no one stopped to help…typical, right? Why take time out of your busy trip to Kohl’s to help a man struggling with two little children, one of whom is bleeding profusely from her face…?)
Well, I managed to keep my calm and avoid blaming Hubby for this unfortunate event. He felt awful, of course, and said to me, “I never, ever want to be a part of something like that again.”

This was one of Rae’s first big “boo-boos” (except for a time when she fell 5 feet out a window…but that’s a different story–and a lot less bloody). And it served as a reminder to me that although we’d like to, we cannot protect our children from everything. We can’t protect them from getting boo-boos, or from the playground bully, or from a broken heart–not even from death. I struggle with that relinquishing of control. I struggle with saying, “Yes, God…I realize that these precious little bundles were never mine to begin with and so I give them to you.” But it’s a gradual submission, I guess. A gradual recognition that despite how much I love them, God will always love them more. A gradual extension of trust, a gradual admission of faith.

But Rae seems to be handling it okay. When she looked in the mirror the first time after the boo-boo, she said, “I don’t look so good. The kids goin’ ta laugh at me and say I’m like Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.” Well, Little Miss Rudolph–I think you look just plain wonderful.

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Sick of being sick

a mom blog

This winter has been terrible concerning illness for our family. From late Oct. to Jan, I personally have had four colds, and I feel like the girls have had leaky faucets for noses.
Well this past week we were all sick with the stomach bug. First Rae got it (at the fast food’s play-gym perhaps..?), and let me tell you…a three year old throwing up is quite dramatic. Not only was each round of upheaval accompanied by many groans and tears, but for whatever reason, she could NOT make it into the bucket. She must have thrown up more than 10 times, and not ONCE could she simply turn her head and aim for the bucket. It had to get all over her face, her hair, the carpet, her clothes, and her pillow…every time. Disgusting.
Then the following day, little Ally got sick twice during the night. I think it’s strange how everyone responds to sickness differently. For Rae, it was seven hours of dramatic vomiting and for Ally, it was two little bouts of throw up.
Well, then Hubby got it. (Oh my big strong man–he’s quite the baby when he’s sick.) And now, despite much hand-washing and sanitizing…today it hit me. I haven’t thrown up but I feel perfectly miserable.
I must admit, I’m not generally the nicest person to be around when I’m sick. Maybe it’s a result of the lingering smell of lysol in the air that makes me this way, or maybe it’s just the annoyance at being constantly needed despite just wanting to lay down and rest…whatever the cause, the result is one Grouchy Momma.
But being sick certainly does make one appreciate health, doesn’t it? As soon as we are all better, not only will I quarantine us from the world for a week or two (so that we don’t have to deal with this all over again on the heels of this virus), but I will also remember to praise God for two beautiful, healthy girls, one handsome and healthy husband, and my own strong body, given to me with the purpose of serving Him and others.
Now, please excuse me while I go get the lysol to disinfect the entire computer…

The Sound of M(otherhood’s)usic

a poem celebrating motherhood

The shrill, frequent quiver of a newborn’s cry,
2am feedings in silence of night.
Bouncing baby’s squeals of delight,
Cries of a toddler, wide-eyed with fright.

Hiccups and burps and whimpers and slurps.

The swing that needs oil, the cd that skips,
Overplayed Elmo and whining on trips.
Chewing, complaining, ‘There’s nothing to eat!’
Hushed pitter-patter of pajamma-ed feet.

Crashes and bangs and clatters and clangs.

The washer that hums, the bottles that clink,
The splashing at bath-time, the brushing of teeth.
Singing and shhing and creaking up stairs,
Gentle, sweet whispers and saying of prayers.

Giggles and laughter, and Happily, Happily Ever After.

Miss Independent

a mom blog

The other morning when we got up, Rae plodded downstairs, put some cheerios on her sister’s high chair, then unlocked the back door and let the dog out. I came downstairs laughing, “Wow! You don’t even need me, do you?” She replied, not quite as confidently as she seemed, “I’m not that big, Mom!” But this is the same ambitious three year old who brushes her own teeth and spits out the toothpaste, takes small toys away from the baby (“so that she don’t choke”), makes her own bed, unloads the silverware from the dishwasher, picks out her clothes and gets dressed (albeit multiple times a day), and has gone to the bathroom on her own since she was just 2 years old. Miss Independent.

It frightens me sometimes how her need for me is gradually (and sometimes not so gradually!) diminishing. But I guess that’s the whole point of parenting, right?…to raise a person who’s completely capable of living without you! In the beginning, they rely on us for everything–even burping and falling asleep–but eventually they learn how to do all these things on their own–eating, taking a bath, riding a bike, doing homework, driving a car!
And we’re left standing in the wake of their abrupt autonomy….and wondering where all that time went. I pray that my children grow up to be self-sufficient, self-disciplined and successful individuals, and I hope that I’m training them to be such. But, jeez, kid…couldn’t you just slow down a little bit?! 🙂

Treasure up these things…

a mom blog

My sister in law recently gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. Holding her fuzzy, wiggling body flooded my heart with memories of my little girls as newborns….hairy ears, saggy, soft skin, curly tongues, whimpers and wails… And although it seems like ages ago that Rae was a “newbie,” strangely, it seems almost just as long ago that Ally was there too–even though it’s only been ten months!

Babies are amazing, aren’t they? In only a few months’ time, they go from being unable to roll over to speed-crawling (or, in Ally’s case, “knee-walking”), from grunts and groans to shrieks and squeals, from sleepy yawns to babbling phrases, from drinking milk to eating everything…including stickers and crayons from sister’s craft table.

I’m reminded of Mary, who “treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). I don’t want to rush through these early years of motherhood, lugging laundry, wiping faces, and mashing sweet potatoes, without taking time to treasure up these special things that, in a few years time, I’ll look back on with sentiment and fondness.

We mothers are so blessed! Not only are we privileged to form character, build trust, and instill morals, but we get the pleasure of hearing first words and holding little hand. By the time we reach the teenage years, the character, trust, and morals will still be our responsibility, but the conversations and snuggles will be much more limited. And although there are other special moments with older children, the daily “treasures” may feel few and far between. So while my children are still little, I want to allow every silly song sung, every tantrum tempered, and every peek-a-boo played, to help me “ponder in my heart” the treasure of motherhood.