Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Reason, Season, or Lifetime

People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is,
you will know what to do for each person.

When someone is in your life for a REASON,
it is usually to meet a need you have expressed.
They have come to assist you through a difficulty;
to provide you with guidance and support;
to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually.
They may seem like a godsend, and they are.
They are there for the reason you need them to be.

Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time,
this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.
Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away.
Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand.
What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done.
The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON,
because your turn has come to share, grow or learn.
They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh.
They may teach you something you have never done.
They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy.
Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons;
things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation.
Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person,
and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life.
It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

— Unknown

Thank you, Jamee T., for sending me this today.  I really needed it!  It helps me to sort through a lot of mixed emotions I've been having lately, which is no small task.  

Since Harrison's arrival, I've been getting pretty picky about who is in our lives.  Clearly, drug-addicts, child-abusers and the sort need not apply.  But there is this other gray area that I'm trying to wade through, and I'm not sure where to draw the line.  Sadly, even family is included in the gray, and it breaks my heart.  For them, more than for myself, but most of all, for Harrison.  He is such a wonderful baby and his personality is really starting to shine through and there are people who simply are not interested, and it's sad to me. They are missing out on so much and there are no re-do's.  I've been reaching out to the people that I feel should be, need to be, or I thought would want to be a part of his life and I'm really surprised at some of the results.  There are people in my own family who will never even meet him, and others who will only meet him once.  I'm not talking about distant relatives either.  No, "distant" would never describe someone who grew up in the same house as you, now would it?  As far as friends go, I've never expected my baby to become the center of anyone else's universe - you'd only get in my way, anyway.  But the feeling of being shut out?  Not something I expected.  

So lately, I'm a little hurt and wanting to react, but trying not to.  I'm not ready to end any friendships over it.  But I guess what I am ready to do is start figuring out which category people fall into and reset my expectations accordingly.  

In the meantime, my very best friends are living under my own roof, which is more than I could ever ask for anyway.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Tiredness Just Never Ends.

I just did something that I've been doing a lot since Harrison was born...I wrote a whole blog entry and then deleted it because of how all over the place it was and the complete lack of sense it made.  I used to be able to just rattle off whatever was going through my mind, do a quick spell check and post.  Now I have to proofread everything very carefully and ask myself if anyone other than me will have any idea what I'm trying to say.  My brain has been partially deactivated, and I'm just now starting to realize what a huge effect that has on things.

You know what's really helpful in keeping yourself on top of things and getting through every day more or less unscathed?  Sleep.  You know what simply is never going to be in full supply again?  Sleep. You know what pregnant women THINK they are missing out on and look forward to being able to do again?  Ha! Sleep. Uncomfortable as it may be, pregnant sleep is still much more effective than post-pregnant sleep. And guess what?  You're not going to be doing much of it for a very, very, very long time.  Even when you do, and your sweet little baby is doing you the gigantic favor of sleeping through the night, you'll still wake up every time he makes a sound.  Or maybe he won't make a sound.  That will wake you up too, because WHY ISN'T HE MAKING A SOUND?  And let's just say that everything falls into place you both get a full eight hours one night...or even two or three nights in a row.  It's simply not enough to make up for all of the sleep you have lost over the last few months.  Not to mention the fact that once he's sleeping through the night consistently, it becomes ten times harder to get up with him on the nights he wakes up for whatever reason.

Yesterday, we left the house for thirty miserable minutes to go buy Harrison some new clothes.  It was 174 degrees outside, I felt sick as soon as I shut the front door behind me, and twelve seconds after Peyton put the car in drive, Harrison started crying.  As I reached for something to soothe him, I realized that I had just walked out the door with my purse in hand and nothing else.  My purse, mind you, contains absolutely nothing of importance.  You would think that after five months of practice, I would have the simple step of "pacifier - check" down pat.  Or that maybe, care and concern for my baby would lead me to grab a bottle of something for the car ride, what with the death-heat I was dragging him into and all.  But brain had shut down for the day at around three o'clock and this was well past four.  Poor Harrison. Poor everyone involved, really.

This is how life has come to be and I am trying my best to accept it and to put steps in place to make sure I come across as a functioning human being.  For example, it just took me six tries to type the word "functioning" and three of those attempts resulted in an offensive word.  Sending emails has become a scary thing.  My grammar and spelling skills are half what they used to be, which is awesome, since that's one of my biggest pet peeves.  I've come to work with half my make-up on, I frequently leave my lunch in the microwave for half an hour or more, I get up from my desk to go to the printer, and do three other things instead, none of which involve the printer in any way.  Which is fine, because half the time, when I do make it to the printer, I get there only to realize that I never hit "print".

Sad to say, I'm averaging eight hours of sleep per night.  But the nights that I sleep for eight straight hours without waking up are few and far between.  Who knows when I'll finally catch up from that first month, when I only slept eight hours total.  I would love to not know what three o'clock in the morning looks like, but it has actually become very familiar, although we are not friendly with each other.  It's also quite possible that eight hours is just not enough anymore. Taking care of a baby, as fun as it is (and it really, really is) is absolutely exhausting.  Magical too, though.

My advice for anyone who is pregnant right now:
Get a pregnancy pillow. Now.
Start writing everything down.  Your memory is NOT coming back.
Sleep when the baby sleeps.  Every. Single. Time.
Do not get a video monitor.
Daddy can do the dishes and the laundry.
If you can take a two hour nap while the baby sleeps on your chest, do it. No one is getting spoiled. Trust me.
Cry-it-out is the dumbest thing I've ever heard.
And I hate to admit this one, because I was 100% opposed to the idea...get the baby into his/her own room as soon as you can.  You're going to jump out of bed every time you hear a sigh while they sleep in your room.
Keep the monitor turned down low.  You need to hear, "AAAAAAHHHH!" You don't need to hear "Eh."

Not to scare anyone of course.  Babies are, after all, the best reason to lose sleep there is. And brain cells.

Thursday, July 7, 2011


We are house-hunting for our first house as a family, and it’s starting to hit me just how important this is.  Without sweet baby Harrison in the picture, it would be all about floors and room dimensions and fixtures and lighting.  It would be about finding just the right house to suit our taste.  He brings to light, however, that there is an entirely different angle that has to be considered as we search for our new place to live.  It’s something intangible that we can’t just list under our “needs” and “wants”.  Likewise, it’s something I can’t even really put into words. We are not just looking for a house for Harrison, we are looking for a home.  But how will we know the difference?

Growing up, my parents moved us around much more than I would have liked, and it never felt like we stayed anywhere long enough to feel attached to the place we lived.  Once, we did live in a certain house for about three years, and it came the closest to being a home to me, but once again, we moved away.  I’m not really sure what it was about that house.  I remember the day we moved in, I counted the steps from the doorway of my bedroom to the kitchen table.  It was seven.  Every day after that, I made sure to get myself to breakfast in seven steps or less.  I practiced jumping from my bedroom door onto my bed, without having to touch the carpet, which was actually lava, so I could live to see another day.  My closet door opened just the right way so that the light from it would shine on my bed instead of towards my door, allowing me to stay up late reading well after bedtime, without getting caught.  In the long, skinny bathroom with the tub at the end, my best friend and I shampooed the floor and flung ourselves to the other end, slipping and sliding into the door.  There was a big bay window at the front of the house, where we always placed our Christmas tree, and each room of the house led to another, so I could literally run laps around the inside of the house if I felt the need to, and I often did.  That was the house where we brought home my new baby brother, and hung framed paintings I had made on his walls.  I learned to do (and hate) my own laundry, and also learned that valuable lesson that dish soap and dishwasher soap are not the same thing.  Outside of our house, the streets were hilly and perfect for bike-riding adventures.  Every friend I cared to have lived within riding distance, and the neighbors without children would let us use their pools during the summer if we didn’t feel like going all the way to the yacht club.  Yes, that house was the closest to home I have ever been, and it has now been twenty-three years since we moved away, and it’s a place I still drive by every time I get the chance.  It has even been for sale a few times and my heart would race at the possibility of getting to live there again, but it would never be the same now. 

I want what I had in that home for Harrison, but I want it for much longer than just a couple of years.  So now, when we walk into a house, I try to picture all of the memories that will be created there, all the magic that will happen, all the growing up that will take place…and it has nothing to do with anything but a feeling, I guess.  Also, some practicalities, like “will we have plenty of space to bake cookies together?” and “will Harrison be able to sneak out of his bedroom window someday?” (every kid needs that option, no matter what you say.)  I try to imagine him waking up on Christmas morning and running to the Christmas tree…should he run down a flight of stairs?  Should the tree be next to a fireplace?  Will there be plenty of kids on the block so he can share his new toys?  Can the backyard be another world if it needs to be?  Is there at least one overgrown yard, hiding a run-down house so he’ll have a place to be the subject of his scary stories?  

These are all important things to a kid, things I lost too soon and never got back.  Part of keeping our house a home will fall to us, his parents, but part of it will just already be there, in whatever house we choose, waiting for Harrison to wake up its magic and bring it to life. 

No pressure.