Friday, September 28, 2007

Life is Good

This has been a wonderful week:

- We found a WONDERFUL church

- Liz came to visit and trusted me to help her pick her hair cut, and she looks hot.

- Hana's x-rays were clear, there's no infection

- I spent all of yesterday with other mom-friends

- I got to talk to Jess Tot Weaver

- I went out last night with other moms and no babies (4th time going out without Hana for more than an hour)

- Hana has slept from 9ish to 6ish the last 3 nights!!!

Life is so good right now!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

My baby is sick

She's had a cough for well over a month. At first it was because she had a cold. Then she had a lingering runny nose. Then I couldn't figure out what it was and called the Dr.

I'm a severe asthmatic. I've been hospitalized a lot because of attacks and infections, especially when I was small. I was diagnosed when I was not much older than Hana, and at her age was in the hospital more than I was out of it. I know how serious just a cough can become.

The Dr. prescribed her an inhaler, got chest x-rays and asked if there was a family history of asthma. Be praying that she gets over this cough and that her lungs are whole and healthy.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007


I consider myself an enlightened idealist. There are certain things that I think/feel/believe and I know the world would be a better place if others agreed, but I also know that's not going to happen. I see the way things could (should) go, but know that they won't always go like that.

Life is hard for idealists. There's a lot of disappointment. There's a lot of frustration. There's a lot of pain. There's a temptation to turn cynical, jaded, to appear uncaring as your sense of justice is trampled on again and again. There's a lot of thought, a lot of passion, a lot of emotion.

It can make it hard to let things to, to not act, to be patient. It makes it easy to care, to move, to do something. Unfortunately there isn't always something to do, and sometimes one must resign to the fact that this is the way the world works.

I enjoy my idealism, my passion, my drive, my emotion. Yes, it leaves me wounded at times, but I'm also stubborn, so I get up and keep on moving. In my mind moving towards a small bit of change is better than not moving at all, so for now I take what I can get.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


I never get enough sleep. In the past year I can only think of 4 times that I have gotten 6 or more hours of sleep in a row, and one of those I was medicated. This is nothing new though, I've had issues with insomnia since I was in high school. In college it was normal for me to only plan on about 6 hours of sleep a night. When I was pregnant I was getting up 3 or 4 times a night, and was awake about every hour. So having Hana get up two or three times a night really isn't such a big deal.

I know some of you will be shocked that my 10.5 month old still wakes up at night. She doesn't get up to eat, and usually doesn't need a diaper change, she just wakes. About half the time she puts herself back to sleep, sometimes she needs her soother, and sometimes she needs help getting back to sleep and comes into our bed, or I don't feel like getting up at 7 and bring her in bed with me with the hope that she'll go back to sleep until 9 - but those ones don't really count because it's technically morning when she wakes up.

I'm not bothered by Hana waking up at night, because I know I wake up at night, and Ben wakes up at night, and pretty much everyone I know wakes up at some point during the night and then falls back asleep. I don't even mind going in to help soothe her and help her get back to sleep - motherhood is a 24 hour job and I want Hana to know that I'm there for her no matter what time it is.

That's not to say that I don't get frustrated or even angry at times over the whole situation. There have been times when Hana has been in her crib crying with me sitting on the floor, also crying, and holding her hand. There have been times when I've had to wake Ben to help soothe her because I just couldn't take it anymore. There have been times when Hana and I have had to sleep on the couch to keep from waking the rest of the household. Frequently I nap during the day to catch up on sleep I miss at night (although usually missing sleep at night has nothing to do with Hana). It's rough, it's annoying, it stresses me out, and there are nights when all three of us have ended up crying. But Hana is never left to cry alone.

Not that I think crying will necessarily cause any permanent damage (altho if high levels of stress hormones are bad for adults I can't see how they couldn't be bad for babies...). I just know that if someone I love heard me crying and didn't offer comfort I'd feel alone and abandoned, and crying myself to sleep gives me horrible headaches and bad dreams, and I don't want to treat Hana in a way that I would not want to be treated. I know this is temporary. And I know getting her to sleep through the night is no guarantee that I'll get any more sleep than I usually do anyway.

(as a side note, STTN is usually defined as sleeping from midnight to 5 am without waking. I don't understand why people get in such a row over infants of x age needing to be able to STTN - at the age of 24 I still rarely fit that definition, and I was sleep trained...)

With moving and teething and transitioning to one nap things have been a little rougher than usual with sleep. She went from waking once a night (around 5) to waking twice a night, and then on bad teething nights sometimes 3 times (when the advil wears off). She's been doing well lately, going down MUCH easier since we dropped the morning nap and settling herself the first time she wakes at night.

Anyway. I was thinking early this morning (3:23 to be exact...) as I tried to comfort my crying daughter by leaning over her crib and rubbing her head - why is baby's sleep such a hot topic?

If you look at humanity though the eyes of anthropology, babies waking in the night and needing comfort is completely normal and to be expected. No matter how you believe humanity came into existence, you can't deny the fact that for a good chunk of our history we were tribal, nomadic, and lived communally - babies had to be kept close for their own safety - the threat of animals, cold, and other dangers was a real one. Globally most babies sleep with their mothers, not in a crib down the hall. Sharing sleep regulates temperature, digestion, and breathing. Sleep cycles become synchronized. Most of all, the baby knows they are safe and secure. A baby can not survive on their own, and they know that. I think waking at night for comfort is just their way of making sure we remember that they are completely dependent on us, no matter how independent and self sufficient we trick ourselves into believing they are.

(and as that thought was running through my mind I picked Hana up and brought her in bed with me, she settled and we got to stay in bed until 9, with one short waking around 5:30)

Not that I'm against cribs - Hana is peacefully sleeping in hers right now. But I can't deny that she (and possibly Ben and I) would probably get more sleep if she was in bed with us. Maybe all these "sleep issues" we think babies have are actually ones we bring on ourselves.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

In other news...

My baby has a tooth. FINALLY!

Hana started teeething at 9 weeks. Yup. Chewing on hands, drooling, cranky, liked it when I rubbed her gums, swolen gums, everything. SHe would have at least a couple days every week where she was out of sorts and chewing on everything, but most days were ok. THe last month has been a little rough.

So she's pretty cranky, and another tooth is about ready to come through, and her top gums are swollen. It's going to be fun here for a while.

Media Awareness

Sometimes the propaganda floating around out there just makes me sick. This is just a friendly little reminder to take everything you see with a grain of salt - it seems no one is telling the full story

Friday, September 14, 2007


I have issues.

Ok, so that much goes without saying. More specifically, I have guilt issues. THey come from a few different sources, here's some of the major ones:

- Close relationships with passive-agressive/manipulative people. THese people have the unique ability to bend reality to suit their needs, making others responsible for their feelings, actions, disappointments etc. It's hard enough bearing the weight of one's own live, let alone that of others.

- Work situations that caused me to bear the consequences of the decisions of others. This is why I'm always nice to people who work at call centers. It's not their fault; they're just doing their job.

- The inability to meet unspoken expectations. I will do all I can do to meet a reasonable expectation, but if all I feel is the negativity from not meeting some obscure hidden standard, I'm left feeling defeated.

So I have this issues, and I'm aware of it, but that doesn't make it go away. For example, a few weeks back I told Tyler and Denise I'd help chaperone a trip to the zoo for their summer program. THe day before the trip the breaks started acting up in the car and I didn't feel save having Hana in it (and Ben didn't like having me in it...). Unfortunately, because of circumstances beyond my control, me not going would me the trip couldn't happen. THankfully something worked out, but I still felt guilty all day for causing the complication.

I'm realizing my guilt issues affect my life. If Hana can't sleep I feel it's because I'm a bad mother. THe rational part of me knows it's because she's overtired/going through a pahse/whatever.

It doesn't matter, I still feel responsible, and I still feel guilty.

I have sleep issues. Sometimes they interrupt the daily flow of our family because I need to nap. Usually, instead of sleeping, I toss and turn because I feel guilty for needing the sleep.

I let myself get into situations that I know are unhealthy for me because protecting myself would put someone else out.

I'm pretty much always feeling guilty.

I really don't know what to do. I feel so responsible for the happiness/fulfillment/dreams/expectations of those around me that at times I just feel helpless. And then I feel like it's all my fault and feel guilty for having any frustration, let alone expressing it.

So here's my idea. I'm not trying to be selfish, I'm just setting some ground rules to try and make things a little easier.

- If lack of sleep is preventing me from being effective in what I am trying to do and the opportunity to sleep arises, I will take it.

- If my family does not regularly enjoy a specific food or drink it should not be expected that we regularly have it available, no matter how much our guests may enjoy it, so long as we have a suitable substitute.

- being a good wife and mother means regularly taking time for myself and my passions. I will fell free to do so as long as my immediate responsibilities to my husband and child are taken care of.

- I have a right to my opinions and am entitled to express them respectfully.

- I am not responsible for the happiness of others so long as I am treating them with dignity and respect.

- I can not be held accountable for the decisions, attitudes or actions of those around me.

- The house needs to be cleaned once a week; it doesn't even all have to be on the same day. When other things are more important, housework will wait.

Now maybe if I can remember those things I'll be able to ease up on myself a bit.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Fun and Games

Hana and I have a new game.

I lay her down on the floor at one end of the room, then go to my computer at the other end and see how much I can get done before she rolls over and pulls on the coards.

It's fun, and she's getting quick!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Confessions of a reluctant co-sleeper

When I was pregnant with Hana I had so many ideas and thoughts about how I would parent. Within about a month they pretty much all went out the window.

The hardest one for me to get over was my disinterest in co-sleeping. Ok, disinterest is too mild of a word. I hated the idea. Ben and I had decided that Hana would be in our room for the first month or two in a pack-n-play bassinet, and then she would sleep in her own bed. That lasted about half a night.

When I was struggling with nursing, I would bring Hana in bed with me because side-lying was pretty much the only osition that worked for us. However the fear of rolling on her and the attitude that I would never be able to get her out of our bed made that short lived, and back to the pack-n-play she went once I stopped nursing.

That was when I realized she was a very noisy sleeper, and we all decided (as in I decided) that we'd sleep better if she was in her crib. I'd rock her and settle her and then I was free for the night.

Or at least free until the early morning hours when she thought it was morning and I still wanted more sleep.

And so the routine began. I lay down with Hana to help her go to sleep, then move her into her bed, and then sometime between midnight and 7 am she comes back in with us.

My reasons are selfish though. It's easier to pop her soother in her mouth when it's inches away from me instead of accross the hall. And she sleeps longer in our bed, which means I sleep longer, and that's always a good thing.

But we still don't co-sleep all the time. Not because of the insane idea she'll be sleeping with us until she's a teen. I mean come on people, if sleep associations from infancy were that far ingraned then most of us would still be in cribs wailing before we fell asleep. No, it's because I can't get over my need for my own space. I can't let go of the idea that it's my only baby free time (even if it does only come in two hour incriments).

 x  n n nm mn n n รง gb vbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbb xc zx n hn xcv  ˜¨hjjx∆˙vz (Hana's contribution to the subject....).

So for now, Hana is welcome in our bed at any point in the night, so long as when I go to bed I can convince myself she's spending the night in her own room.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Saturday, September 08, 2007


Is the name of my new kitten. Well, almost my new kitten. Officially I'm just fostering her, but it's only a matter of time.

She's about 6 weeks old and was abandoned by her owners at a bus stop. Thankfully one of the volunteers with Carma was there at the time. She came to the house two days ago and has already made herself at home. She' tiny, cute, persistant and full of energy (just like another little girl in my life....).

So why nimy? It's short for Nimrod...makes me giggle.

Pictures to come.

Friday, September 07, 2007


Hana is mobile.

She's still not crawling, but she can get anywhere she wants by rolling and wiggling. It's pretty entertaining to watch actually. She seems to be always moving now. ALWAYS. Last night at 5 (yay 5! So much better than 2 or 3!) I had to change her. She was on her belly. Have you ever tried to change a baby when they're on their belly? Here's step by step instructions:

1 - Turn baby on to back then reach to unfasten diaper.
2 - Turn baby back onto her back, hold her with one hand and unfasten the diaper.
3 - Get the new diaper.
4 - Turn naked baby back onto her back
5 - grab baby by ankles and remove wet diaper (note: hold ankles tightly as baby will try to twist around again)
6 - place new diaper under baby and ease her down onto it
7 - let go of ankles while holding baby's belly with other hand
8 - fasten one side of diaper (note: which ever side you try to fasten, baby will decide to roll to)
9 - turn baby back onto her back
10 - repeat
11 - fake fastening one side until baby turns, then quickly fasten the other
12 - repeat steps 9-11 as needed

It's fun having her able to roll around, and we think she'll be crawling/scooting soon, but we'll see. Right now she and Caylee are playing around on the floor watching kittens. I love being a mom!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Mighty God

Have you ever sat and meditated on the might of God?

mighty (as defined by the dictonary widget) means "posessing great and impressive power or strength, especially on account of size".

So an ant being able to lift 10x it's weight could be considered mighty. Or a small group of people taking on and winning against a huge corperation can be considered mighty. Such a small force achieving something so great is a display of might.

Now think of how huge God is. The God of all gods, creator of heaven and earth. Think of the force - the power or strength - that He exhibits in order to be called mighty.

I grew up near water, on the Saint John River minutes away from where it met with the Bay of Fundy. In my teens I used to spend a lot of time on the bay watching the waves, or out in the middl eof the night in a thunder storm. There was something so beautifully frightning about those times. The power of the water, the rumble of the thunder, the flash of the lightning. It made me feel small, and yet at the same time so very safe.

I serve the God who can still the waves, the One who created the thunder and the lightning.

TO be in the presence of God is to experience something beautifully frightning. I love the image from Isaiah 6. He describes the scene with such detail, he must have been struck by the beauty of it. Still, he is aware of himself, of his folly, his faults, his powerlesness in the face of the might of God. And God, in another display of His might, welcomes him, cleanses him, makes him worthy.

Why do I consider the forgiveness of God a display of might? None can be His equal. No one on earth could even come close to comparing, we're in a different class, a different creature all together. The Father created us and can so easily rule over us.

But He doesn't.

Instead He forgives, teaches, loves, accapts and welcomes us as His children. We are not a threat to Him, not in our disbelief, our good and bad intentions, in our ambitions or anything. God's might is so huge, so absolute, that He is able to lower Himself, to come as a servant, to die as an innocent in order to make us live, and still be God, no less powerful, no less holy, no less mighty.

Praise be to the mighty God

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Exodus part 3 - The Mountain

The mountain.
Part 2 is here, part 1 is here

The mountain was the destination, the purpose of the exodus. The people were called out of Egypt to go to the mountain to worship God.

Then something went bad. Very bad.

While at the foot of the mountain they heard God's voice, and it terrified them. It scared them so much that they decided they didn't want to hear from God anymore. That was Moses' job, not theirs. So they sent him up to talk to God while they waited.

You have to wonder how long that was. Apparently for some it was far too long, they got bored. They got so bored in fact that they had time to cast an idol out of gold. THink of how much time and effort that would have taken. Finding a craftsman, collecting the cold, melting it, molding it. THis was no spur of the moment decision.

They had encountered the real and livng God, but He was too much for them. THey wanted a tamer God. One they could see, one they could control. They made a calf.

How stupid that seems when we look at it. We with our vast knowledge and understanding of God. Yeah....right...

How many times have we been touched byt he breath of God and turned away? How many times have we felt real worship, have we joined with heaven itself in praise to the King, and then decided it was too uncomfortable. Too unpredictable. Too lavish. Too eccentric. Too whatever.

I'm not saying we should (or even can) continually live in that space, in that moment where there is God and nothing else. As wonderful as it would seem, we couldn't survive in that space, it's not where we're supposed to be, at least not yet. As important and wonderful as praise is, we should be more like Isaiah, crying "woe is me" as we experience the presence of God, offering to be sent out in His name so that we may be welcomed back to praise when our time has come.

Still, worship is neglected. Real, true authentic connections with God scare us. THey're unpredictable. THey're not "seeker friendly", they don't fit the time frame. Heck, sometimes connecting with God doesn't even fit in the church building.

There is a deep need for God and at the same time a deep fear of Him. Perhaps is the residue of our sin nature, perhaps it's just the result of our humanity, I don't know. I do know, however, that there is a tendancy to try and create worship instead of experiencing worship. THe Israelites did do what they were supposed to - they worshiped. It was the object, the method, the content of that worship that needed to change. Perhaps the same is true in our lives.

Monday, September 03, 2007

10 months

My baby is 10 months old. I now have a baby who can figure out a way to get almost anywhere she needs to go, even if she's not quite crawling. She can also stand while holding on to things, and pull up to her feet when holding our hands. Her first word is kitty (well, acutally it's more kihteee, but we get the point). She's also started eating well, almost two jars of baby food a day plus whatever I can give her from supper. She's learned the art of making faces for laughs and is a great source of joy and laughter for anyone around her.

As Hana grows I become more aware and in awe of the love of God. I am forming dreams for her, but I know that my desires will only play a small part in the person she becomes. I know I am her caretaker, and that at some point I will have to let her find her own path, and now that she's moving around that thought is at times frightening. I'm amazed that God would trust me to such a task, it is my highest priority.