A Tale of Three Children

2e3304050e9fd53871c22891c4036db1I have tried more times than I can count to sit down and write a post. Every time. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. I am interrupted by a baby that wants to be nursed, a toddler that wants to be fed, or a preschooler that wants a hug. And furthermore… I cannot seem find the time to edit my posts to (semi) perfection. So I apologize in advance for any grammatical errors.

Welcome to life with 3 kids 4 and under. 

I had so many different stories to tell you, and now I can barely remember any of them. I do not know what happened to my brain. It is like the third baby took what was left of my brain and completely absorbed it.

The other day my mom stopped by for a visit, and as I was talking to her, my kid started to be fussy. I grabbed him, threw him in my lap, whipped out the boob to breastfeed, and started to whack him in the face with it while I waited for him to latch. You know.. the usual.

It wasn’t until my Mom loudly said my name that I realized what I was doing: 

I was trying to breastfeed my 2 1/2 year old… not my infant.

My bad dude. My bad. 

And as I ponder why I have no brain left… I look back on the day I just had.

(It takes me a moment. I look at my phone to find out what the day is… what the date is… but I know the month sooo… win.) 

Today- 

Hudsy got a lego stuck in his mouth. Correction: Hudsy got a DUPLO lego stuck in his mouth. Duplo Legos are mid-sized legos. They are not huge, but they are not small either. Somehow my beautiful child got one stuck sideways in his mouth and was starting to have a little panic about getting it out.

Like a smart boy he came over to Mommy for help.

The kid could not close his mouth. There he stood, in his 4 foot glory, with a mouth wide open and a blue lego peeking out from behind those pearly whites, and that lego was not budging from behind those teeth. Poor kid would partly cry, partly laugh, and partly gag the whole time he stood in front of me.

I tried my best not to fully laugh.

That was until I started to panic because I could not get it out. How he got it wedged in like that … I have no idea. Every time I tried to wiggle it out his gag reflex kicked in. Great.

Meanwhile I hear a cry from down the hall:

“MOM I POOPED! PEEESE WIPE ME! MOM I POOOPED! I POOPED! WIPE ME NOW!”

I am so proud of you oldest son for using the toilet, but I am trying to save your brother from lock jaw.

“POOOOOOOP. MOM POOOOOP.”

Oh… and did I mention I was laying down trying to breastfeed during this entire episode?

Every time I attempted to be ‘Jaws For Life’ for my two year old … my nursing infant clamped down and reminded of my body’s limitations on how far it can stretch.

Chaos.

Constant need.

S.O.S.

This is my life.

Sidenote: I did finally get that lego out. By the end we were both laugh crying over this debacle. Glad I have a son who also laugh cries at inappropriate times. But I digress.

During my absence from writing, I also attempted to potty train my 2 year old. He was a wiz (pun intended) at peeing. Like my oldest, he wanted to pee everywhere.

Toilet. Front yard. Back yard. Park bushes. Dry dirt. Trees. Brother.

They are all the same. Indecent exposure does not apply when you are two.

Free the P man.

But why would one use the toilet when it comes to #2? 

The struggle is real people. My children fear releasing the deuce on the porcelain throne.

I tried to get him to do it. I bribed. But no.

Instead homeboy decided that he was an outdoor kind of man, au natural.

I mean poop is basically nature’s play dough right? 

Do I need to even say what happened?

Cue tired Momma finishing a nursing session, walking outside to check on brothers, and to her joy, a gift is presented to her.

A grubby little man hands to her… a pinecone. Not just any pine cone.. a very special, decorated pine cone. A pinecone with half of said toddler’s poop squished into it. I say half because I later found the rest. It had rocks and sticks stuck in it.  

Sweet.

Thanks little man. I will just save this trinket to hang on this year’s Christmas tree. I think that will be your special ornament. Maybe Mommy could even stick a date on it. 

Memories.

So I think I have updated you to the best of my ability. 

I mean in between the crazy there has been so many hugs and kisses. So many sweet brother moments. So much wrestling.

This transition to three has been-

Messy.

Chaotic.

Overwhelming.

A little gross,

But

Completely Wonderful.

I am going to do my best to keep you updated with our journey, but sometimes you may just get a ramble. Because that is all that is left in my brain. And I guess for now, that just has to be alright.

Thanks for listening friend.

 

 

 

 

A Tale of Helga- I Gave Birth to Goliath

Sorry for the absence, but I have been running a circus over at my house trying to figure out how to take care of three kids 4 and under. In case you have not heard…

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I did it. I gave birth to my beautiful not-so-little boy.

Hayden Blaine entered the world on June 25, 2017… weighing in at 10 pounds 3 ounces and a whopping 23 inches. The first measurement was 24 inches, but the midwife had the nurse measure again because… no way.

His head and chest measured in at 16 inches, and I was informed that apparently the average head is 13/14 inches and chest 12/13. Suffice to say Hayden is a big boy.

I was kept blissfully (sorta) unaware of the fact that my large, posterior (sunny side up) baby was quite the topic in the hallways while I was attempting to birth him. It was a long, hard labor. I had a nurse who fought successfully to keep me from a c-section (God bless her), and many bets were made about how big this kid was. The midwife would come in, feel my belly, and look at me with a look of pity. “Big boy” was a common comment.

When my water broke the nurse said she didn’t need towels.. she needed blankets.

So ya… with a ton of fluid and a goliath baby… upon entry to the hospital I was pretty much as big as a house.

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At 34 weeks they knew he was 7 pounds. For most ladies, this size would garner a discussion about induction.

Not for me.

Nope.

Not this delicate flower.

I am a viking woman.

Apparently, the doctor saw that these Scandinavian hips were made to carry life.

Push out a 11 lb baby?

Psh.. look at her.. she can do it.

I am Helga. Hear me roar.

An interesting thing happens when you give birth to a child the size of the average two month old. Somehow the social etiquette of strangers asking about your lady parts goes away. Once I reveal how big he was, I can see their eyes shift downwards and start to burn as they begin to internally process the moral quandary about whether or not it is appropriate to ask about what went on down there.

Ya I basically gave birth to the average can of paint or a large house cat.. how do you think it went?

When I was at my oldest son’s 4 year check up the doctor asked me how old my baby was:

Me: “A month.”

Doctor: “Wow. Wow. How big was he?”

Me: “10 lbs 3 oz and 23 in”

Doctor with big eyes: ” Oh wow… did you.. did you.. you know?”

Me: “Give birth naturally?”

Doctor: ” Um ya?’ *Stares at newborn baby the size of a 3 month old*

Me: “Yup”

Silence.

Silence.

Awkward. Silence.

Doctor: ” Oh wow. Well… I guess the other two just paved the way for him.”

Sure lady. Thank you for that. You know I could probably birth a teenager by the fourth baby.

And you can just duplicate this conversation over and over with other strangers, but add in some V tearing questions.

I mean I do not think it is completely normal for complete strangers to ask the state of your lady parts… or to have concern for their recovery… but hey.. maybe I will start being awkward too.

“Oh ya… we are all good… the next baby will probably just fall out.”

“I turned down stitches because I plan on giving birth to twins on the next go and pushing them out at the same time.”

“How am I doing? Pretty good, but you should ask my husband.”

Ok. Ok. I will stop.

We love our Hayden Bug. He was worth it all.

I also really love this blog and love to write. Feel free to add some suggestions as to what I should write about or any suggestions for this space. I want to create a space for dialogue about being a woman, a mother, a wife… with humor, laughter, and love. I would so appreciate your help in getting there!

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PHOTOS COURTESY OF ANGIE KLEIN OF REELS OF JOY PHOTOGRAPHY

 

Poopageddon- A True Story

SO I have been on a writing hiatus for the past six months. 

Less than a month after my miscarriage I discovered that I was expecting again. I am now 7 1/2 months pregnant with a precious baby boy. I took the last six months off from writing because I felt like my heart needed a season of silence as I worked through my grief, anxiety, and joy.

The last six months have been filled with many ups and downs, tears and laughs, and two growing boys who give me a run for my money everyday. I can’t wait to catch you all up on the many stories I have accrued during this time.

 Today I would like to share with you an experience I had during this past sick season… one I assure you I will never forget. Enjoy. 

I did it.

I laid both the boys down in the same room for nap time… or quiet time. Take your pick. I didn’t care what they did actually. Sleep or play, they were banished to their room so that we could all get some rest. Their pregnant Mamma was tired, and it was time for some silence. Putting them in separate rooms had created more tears so I decided that they could just enjoy their nap time together. I did not have the energy to do anything otherwise.

After laying the boys down, I relaxed on the couch ready to enjoy some Netflix and alone time. I basked in the quiet. When your life is full of noise- roars, grunts, growls, robots, animals, or even the occasional pirates- the sound of silence is so thick, so fluffy, you can almost wrap your arms around it and use it as a pillow.

I enjoyed this peace for all  of twenty minutes. 

That is when I heard a door open and the shuffled steps of a little one coming down the stairs. Hudsy was on the move.  I saw his face peak around the corner a few minutes later. I decided I would not make a big deal out of it and just let him play. His brother had apparently fallen asleep so at least I vanquished one.

But then I smelled something.

Great. A poopy diaper. I did not feel like changing a poopy diaper. I silently thanked the heavens that Holden had finally conquered his fear of defecating on the toilet, and used this gratitude to get off the couch to  change his brother’s diaper.c30ef99afdc6833cb6f6e1a50ebca8d4

I noticed Hudsy looked dirty, and I thought that was odd. I did not remember him being so dirty when I laid him down.

“Guess we will be having bath time for sure tonight” I thought to myself as I gagged trying to get his diaper off. But when I got the diaper off there was nothing in it.

NOTHING.

No. Please. For the Love. No.

Deep down I knew that was not dirt all over his hands and on his face. I looked closer. One thing I did know was that this “dirt” most certainly was the cause of the smell.

Did he find a dirty diaper to play with upstairs? What the heck? He was way too old for that. He has not done that in like.. six months.. at least. 

Gulping down my frustration I hurried upstairs to hunt down the dirty diaper and whatever mess its little finder had made.

When I could not find it in any of the other rooms, I slowly opened the door to the boy’s room, and it hit me.

The smell.

The smell always hits you first. 

No.

No.

This was not a dirty diaper incident…

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… before me lay a wasteland of feces.

Someone had gotten explosive diarrhea. 

I tried to piece together what had happened in this war zone.

I saw the starting point. A brown puddle on the floor now smeared on the wall.

I saw that the child, in a desperate attempt to clean himself, had taken off his pants and underwear. He had fallen over in the process and gotten it all over his bed on the ground. He decided that this would be a good time to try to clean the area and himself up… with his blankets.

At some point he was standing again and had another attack. It squirted onto the bookshelf and his books. He must have been horrified. As he walked, apparently while defecating the Nile river, he spread his feces over his play mat, toys, on to the mirror, and even into the closet. This was getting impressive.

Another puddle.

But where was this poor sick soldier?

Finally I made it to the desk, and it was underneath that desk that I found Holden huddled, covering another brown swamp of his creation. This is where it had ended. The last explosion had gone off here, and he had hunkered down over it.. afraid and covered in his own poop.

I looked around. I looked at all the smeared poop. Holden’s sphincter had impressive reach and breadth. Apparently I was not the only one who admired this because his little brother had decided to use this brown liquid as a type of paint- face, body, and all other manners of paint.

It was a Apoopcolypse. Poopageddon. War of Feces. Battle of the Butt. D(iarrhea)-Day.

I picked poor Holden up from under that desk and assured him that he was not in trouble and that sometimes we get sick- but when that happens we need to call for Mommy so she can help.

I took both boys and put them in the bathtub. While washing them I even found poop behind their ears. How is that even possible? 

Next, I surveyed the wasteland that was their room. How was I going to clean all this off without vomiting everywhere? That was key. When I called Taylor he had said he would help. So I decided that I was going  to play the pregnancy card, and Taylor was going to have to clean the carpets. I could not be in that room with that stench for an extended period of time.

But I would take care of the rest.

I gathered up the play mat, toys, blankets, and clothes into a basket and brought them to the front yard. I took the hose and hosed down all my poop covered belongings right there on my front lawn. My neighbors have seen my children use our lawn as a toilet multiple times so I figured this would not be surprising at all.

“Hey Paul, how’s it going? Going good over here. Just fertilizing the lawn with Holden’s poop. Oh you know… the usual.”

I would like you to know that it took three runs of the carpet steamer to get the poop stains out. Taylor was a saint and scrubbed that carpet. Also, Holden now knows that when he breathes fire out of his booty he must yell for Mommy before little brother decides to have his own personal art festival. Hudsy did not learn anything except that it is possible for Mommy to laugh and cry at the same time.

And Mommy has yet another memory to laugh at for many years to come.

 

Monday Mom Talk- No Pants, No worries

screen-shot-2016-10-17-at-8-06-01-amFor this Monday’s Mom Talk, I want to talk about pants.

I have decided that my boys will grow up believing that one of the greatest injustices of their young childhood was that their mother made them wear pants. How two children 19 months apart can both hate the same thing so passionately will forever boggle my mind.

Have you ever tried to put pants on a baby who hates pants?

Imagine trying to stick a live fish you just caught into a sock, and that should give you a pretty good idea of what I go through every morning. You would think that having to somehow change a diaper while pinning the boys’ hands down so they don’t grab themselves would be punishment enough, but no, the changing table gods have decided that I must also have the pleasure of trying to get two flailing legs into two separate holes every time we go out in public.

There are times I have seriously contemplated leaving the boys looking like mermaids, with both legs in one pant leg, all day as punishment for defying my outfit choices. But I am merciful.

The other day my husband walked into a restaurant ahead of me with the baby. I was getting something out of the car so it took me a minute to walk in. When I walked into the restaurant, looked around the room, and found my family, what did I see? I saw my child sitting pantsless in the high chair.
The dialogue went as follows:

“Why is our child not wearing any pants?”

“He didn’t want to.”

Ya I bet he didn’t.

“So… Why is our child not wearing any pants? Furthermore, why is he pantsless at a restaurant? He looks motherless.”

“Someday he won’t be able to go out in public and not wear pants. Let him enjoy it now while he can.”

What?

That’s a thing?

I had only one response to this statement.

“Soo you wish you could still go pantsless in public?”

All I got was a smile.

 

 

 

How about you? Do your kids struggle with any particular clothing item? Do you? 😉

Panic! At the Library: A Tale of Dinos, Naps, and Fiction

In the weeks following my loss, I have made an effort to try and stay busy with the kids. In doing so, I have rediscovered an old love: the library.

On my drive to this magical place I daydreamed about my kids quietly thumbing through picture books as I sat cross legged next to them immersed in a book of my own.

Peace.

Quiet.

Escape.

Library.

All things I needed in my life.

Except who was I kidding? And what imaginary children was I envisioning?

On our first trip, we were all in awe of the kid’s section. I had never been to such a magical place. My boys excitedly ran around and pointed at all the teddy bear and pumpkin decor. We all squealed with delight when we realized that they had a toy section with dinosaurs and puzzles. Books, dinos, and happy kids? Sign me up. I only spent about half the time there chasing the boys through the book stacks so overall we were doing pretty good.

Every so often I would sneak a peak at the adult’s section of the library, daydreaming of being alone with those books. But today was a day for the kids, so we played and attempted to read in the big hot air balloon that was the kid’s room.

Take Two.

I was having a rough day, and Holden had just woken Hudson up from his nap. Irritated and not feeling like being home, I made the bright to decision to load them up, un-napped, and head to the magical place called the library. “For toddlers, they did decently well last time… why not?”

Why not? HA.

Hudson started crying the moment I got him out of the car. That should have been my sign. But like the Xena Warrior Princess that I am I continued on.

Who wouldn’t want to take two cranky toddlers to the quietest place on earth? I did not care. I needed to find a book for myself.

The kids darted for the kid’s room as soon as we entered the library. I looked longingly at the stacks of books. Somewhere in there held a novel with my name on it. I couldn’t wait to disappear into its pages.

These thoughts were interrupted by Hudson screaming at the top of his lungs. Someone had stolen his dinosaur. Panic ensued as that child started screaming. The silence that engulfed the library was now filled with sounds from a horror movie.

Quickly the other mother and I separated our screaming toddlers and gave each other the “I am so sorry” glare and our kids the “I will destroy you if you don’t be quiet” glare. It is an interesting procedure, tying to silence a screaming child without uttering a sound yourself. Kids really need a mute button, but I digress.

After this incident, nothing I did could get Hudsy to calm down. The kid just needed a nap, and I, in my determination to get a book, was ignoring the signs.

In my effort to calm Hudsy, I had lost track of Holden. While trying to tried reading Hudsy a book, I was interrupted by the sounds of Holden methodically taking books out of the bookshelf and throwing them on the ground. He was in search of a “racedar book”.

I could no longer ignore that we were the worst library attendees. Ever.

So I did what any mother would do. I took a deep breath, I picked up some kids books, and headed for the main desk. My kids started to sob. Why would they want to leave this magical cave of silence where they could hear themselves so well. I had interrupted their growling and roaring contest. Bad Mom.

As I was desperately dragging my children to the front, I saw that the library had some fiction they had featured on the wall close to the desk. The heavens parted, and I knew this was my chance. I desperately began to look at covers. I almost started to look for descriptions of the books when my kids started to play with the ropes in the library line. Time was of the essence, and I knew I had to move fast. I grabbed a couple novels that either had cool titles or cool covers.

Like a ninja, I practically threw the kid’s books and my newly chosen books at the poor lady, all the while grabbing my kids off of the ropes.

The whole time she was trying to do her thing I was desperately trying to silently scare my children into obedience. I have never willed fire out of my eyes before, but at that moment I wished that my children could see dangerous things in my eyes.

Finally, we were checked out, and I made a dash for the exit like a thief in the night.

Never again.

Later that night, I sat down to enjoy the books I had grabbed. It was then that I discovered that I had accidentally grabbed some highly pornographic erotic fiction.

I hope that the librarian got a nice giggle out of that in between checking out “Big Boys Use the Potty” and “Diffendoofer Day”.

Lesson learned: Next time Mommy wants a book for herself she is going to go by herself, or she is going to buy herself a kindle.  

 

For the Love of School- A Tale of a Flying School Bus

My oldest son is now three and has been asking to go to school.

This request is strange to me because for as long as I can remember when I try to teach him his ABC’s and 123’s, instead of repeating after me, he makes loud vomiting or choking noises.

He would much rather take apart all his toy cars and play on his “pirate ship” in the backyard. So, instead of the school that he is clearly not ready for, I put him in a weekly church program that he loves. They send home memory verses and some coloring or counting activities to do. “Here’s his chance to have school,” I thought.

Wrong.

When going over our memory verse he has started panting and breathing heavily like he has just run 10 miles and is exhausted.

When we go through his little booklet to read and count, he pretends to be a variety of animals so that he doesn’t have to participate for longer than he desires.

At one point he knocked his dry cereal off the table, became a dog, and pretended to bark and clean it off the floor.

My husband says Holden gets his love of school work from him.

The little booklet would only take *maybe* ten minutes with cooperation. Ya ok, so much for wanting to go to school.  But still, he continued telling me he wanted to go to “dool”.

“I do not think school means what you think it means bud. If you want to go to school we have to try to learn to count and not pass gas in response to someone showing us how to.”

Then one day the light bulb went on for me. I finally realized what my little imaginative son was talking about when he asked to go to school.

He was watching “The Magic School Bus”. Once again he asked to go to school, and as I looked up at that school bus flying in the air, I knew what to ask. “Holden do you want to go to school or do you want to ride the school bus?”

“YAAAA!!”

“Ride Dool Bus!!”

“Ride flying Dool Bus!”

Now the world makes sense.

There won’t be any preschool for Holden this year. We will continue to work through the pretend and the growling and the bodily functions to try and learn according to his interest level at home. And you know what? I’m enjoying having my boy here at home running around pretending to be a lion or a bear, dissecting toy car parts, and sailing the seas on his playground. Because if I am honest, I am not ready for him to go to school yet either.

Now I just need to find a flying “dool bus”. 

A Story of the Fight

I sit in my backyard and watch little legs move as fast as their owners can will them. Growls, roars, and grunts fill my ears.

Today my boys are a knight and a ninja turtle.

One is garnished with a shell on his back, no underwear, and a sword in his hand, while the other stands in his diaper wielding only an old broomstick.

The squinty eyes, scrunched noses, and little glares tell me they are prepared to battle.

The ninja turtle starts across the yard, raises his sword, and releases his warrior cry. Three year old Holden the Mighty takes off in a full sprint towards his target, his one year old brother Hudsy the Fearless.  Hudsy, a whole year and a half, holds his ground with his broom stick in the air, roaring back as he waits for his brother’s first attack. It comes, and Hudsy is surprisingly able to hold his ground. Both of the warriors yell and roar at each other as their respective weapons clank together. Eventually, Holden is able to hit Hudsy’s broom out of his hand. Holden immediately sprints away, and raises his sword high. His victory chant carries throughout the backyard. It is a guttural roar that is indecipherable to all but his little mind. He has won. He begins circling the yard and throwing his sword in a fit of joy.

Hudsy, undeterred, retrieves his broomstick, and stands again. The next battle will begin again shortly.

This is what much of my day looks like.

I watch their little minds turning as they explore, fight, and play pretend. It is fascinating watching  passion, aggression, and joy all fused together in tiny 14516384_10153809218755824_2092126855747553608_nbodies. This is who they are at their purest form.
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Two little warriors.
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Furthermore, I am astonished at how much of their little personalities I can begin to decipher as I watch them play pretend. Holden is passionate, aggressive, but cautious. His attacks are swift and precise. He will retreat quickly if things are not going his way or he thinks he is going to get hurt. He is smart and calculated and will act accordingly. You have to earn Holden’s trust. Once you do, he comes out of his shell and overwhelms you with his kindness and love.
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Hudson has absolutely no fear. Not only will he stand his ground as a massive three year old charges him, but when that three year old runs away from him he will go on the offensive. Hudsy will never back down. In all areas of his little life, with loving others and with play, he jumps in without apprehension or fear of consequences. He is aggression without fear. He is love without boundaries.
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I watch my two little men play and pray that I can help funnel and filter these strengths as they grow older. I want them to be allowed to be rough and tumble boys mixed with the sweetness I know and love.
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I want them to stay secure in their warrior spirits.
So often our society tries to suppress little boys and make them and mold them into little beings that they are not. I don’t want to do that. I want them to be well behaved, but I want them to be free to be themselves too. Right now I am able to shelter them and help them grow, but each day brings us closer to them stepping outside, slowly but surely, from this Mamma’s watch. But for now I am content to watch the epic battles they create.
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I watch and pray that my little warriors will always fight.
Fight for Truth.
Fight for Justice.
Fight for Love.
Fight for Faith.
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I watch them, drink them in, and I promise to fight to0.
Fight for Joy.
Fight Complacency.
Fight for Love.
Fight for Truth.
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Fight to Thrive. 
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But that, my friends, is a story for another day.
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