Friday, July 3, 2009

This Post Made Me Cry

Ok, I know, horrible title, but this post really did make me cry.   Maybe I'm just imagining Carissa crossing the finish line one day and part of my heart going with her, or maybe the part about failures as a parent making us better parents, but it tugged on my heart strings.  I had a thought the other day, yes, just one, that Carissa is this potentially beautiful flower.  God has already given her the genes and DNA and all the potential she will ever need to become her own beautiful creation.  I'm just the gardener who stakes her up when she's over burdened, waters her when she's wilty, covers her with shade netting when she's too hot.  I just need to love her, protect her and support her until she reaches that full bloom, and even after.  All of her beautiful personality is already there, waiting to come out, I'm not going to screw that up.  

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

New Stuff I'm Into

Hi! I know it's been a while, but I've been busy!! You see, I started to train for this insane triathlon in September with Team in Training.  Check out my other blog to get updates, if you want to:  Last night at training I was asking my coach what I should focus on, since I pretty much suck at everything.  I said, " So since I suck at the bike and the swim, oh wait, and I suck at running, too.... what should I focus on?" She starts laughing, " So I signed up for this race....."  Yeah, pretty much.  So I haven't been training like I should, I know, it's just so overwhelming.  And my daughter, cute, 16 month old daughter, isn't walking yet.  She has hip dysplasia, which isn't like a disease, it's actually fixable, but I thought it would be fixed like, a year ago now.  So I'm really weirded out and scared that it's not fixed yet.  And I hate looking at the way she kind of drags her left leg along with her ankles all rolled in when she "walks" with our fingers or her car.  I just have to trust her pt, this is fixable.  She will be totally normal in a few years, you won't be able to tell her apart from the other little ones running around.  I just have to believe it.  And on top of training and my daughter's ( I love saying "my daughter") pt, I have also gone to Vegas, for a long weekend, two days of which we spent driving back and forth, and fundraising for before said triathlon.  Crazy, crazy days.  On top of house work and meals I'm supposed to somehow provide, you know, I'm a stay at home mom, that's actually my job, so I feel totally inadequate when I look around at all the dog hair and stains on the tile, the mildew growing in the bathtub, the pee smell coming from the carpet, oh god I live in a pig sty!! So yes, I've fallen off of the blog bandwagon.  

I'm seriously considering going back to work.  I'm really going insane staying at home and trying to do everything.  

I'm seriously considering giving up the "dream" of Cyclebrew.  This is my passive aggressive way of confronting this issue.  

Ok, I'm cleaning up the desk now.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Square Foot Gardening

I started a garden, again, in the backyard. Every year we try, and every year we fail. Hey, it's Colorado, things just don't grow here. But now I supposedly found a fool proof, fail proof gardening method. This is my last ditch effort. It all makes sense, especially for our poor Colorado soil quality. The premise of "Square Foot Gardening" is that you don't use ANY of your own soil, and that you don't waste any space.

First Speedbump built me some nice boxes, four feet by four feet, six inches deep. I filled them with a soil mixture: 1/3 vermiculite, 1/3 compost and 1/3 peat moss.
Then I marked off every 12 inches (it didn't really work out that way, see I screwed up already, I am arithmatically challenged) with string and made a grid.

Then I used pvc pipe to make a structure to hold up clear plastic, since it regularly snows in spring.

Then I started planting, but only cold weather crops. I planted lettuce, you can get four per square, broccoli, one per square, and spinach, nine per square. I also put in some pansies at four per square just because they are cute.

Next I'll be planting turnips, sugar snap peas, carrots and beets from seed directly into the garden. Around May 15th I'll be planting tomatoes, cilantro, and peppers.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Honestly, I don't think I need this blog anymore. I'm not holding it in my death grip like I did in the beginning. For one, I don't have "Perfect Mom" to compete with anymore. I finally stopped reading her blog and started feeling really good about myself. The other day Carissa started waving at everyone in the grocery store. It was so cool. It was one of those moments where I wanted to grab the person next to me and say, "Did you see what my baby just did? Isn't she so smart? So cute? Wow, look! She just waved to you!!" And ya know? I wouldn't have had that awesome moment of glee with my baby had "Perfect Mom's" baby done that three weeks before Carissa and had blogged all about it. I would have had a knot in my stomach thinking that something was wrong with her. Why won't she wave!!! Oh my God something is wrong with her!!! I've stopped panicking about Carissa's schedule, what she eats, what she doesn't eat, why won't she stop crying, and wondering if I am a horrible mom. Life is a lot calmer, more peaceful. I enjoy Carissa more. I know now that I KNOW what to do for her. I know that I am not alone. I know that I can handle what comes my way. I still don't REALLY enjoy being a stay at home mom. I don't like the feeling that I'm never accomplishing anything. It still feels like the same things over and over and over. But to me I'm doing the best thing for Carissa. I'm giving her stability and love and lots of hugs and kisses. When I told a friend that I struggle with finding happiness at home, she sort of implied that I need to study up on gratefulness. I don't think I'm ungrateful for what I have. I have special moments each day where I'm so so so grateful for my baby girl. No, I love being a mom, I'm just bored with the stay at home part. I made a "life plan" the other day, and that helped me put the stay at home part of my life in perspective. I'm only going to be at home with Carissa for two more years, then I'm on my way to being a certified teacher and reading specialist, to races all around the country with Filoli and maybe Barbara and others I meet along the way, to travel with and without Carissa, to going to Carissa's gymnastics meets, dance recitals, or whatever she's into, and then onto helping Shane become the brewer he wants to be. There is so much of my life I'm excited about. And I'm so excited about the miracle happening right in front of me right now. Carissa took steps while I held her up! And now, honestly, I must go to bed.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

5k on St. Patrick's Day

My first 5k of the year! A couple of weeks ago I thought, oh shit! My race is coming up! I'm only running about once a week! So I kicked my training into high gear for about two weeks, after averaging about twice per week over the winter. I managed to shave off nearly 7 minutes from my first ever 5k from last August, and 5 minutes off of my last 5k last October. I crossed the finish line in 33 minutes! As soon as I crossed the line I thought, next time I'm going to do this in under 30. I think that's a sign that I love running. Here's another great thing: it only took me about 3 minutes of cool down after the race to go from, "I think I'm going to barf" to "Wow, I'm feeling great!" This race was awesome in that there were so many people running and it was a beautiful sunny morning, though 32 degrees. This race could have been a lot better if there were more support people cheering the runners on on the sidelines, and if the mile markers had been more visible. I'm really proud of myself for pushing all the way down the home-stretch. I started passing people left and right after the last turn. My nerves were so bad, though. I think my stomach and all of it's butterflies started pressing up into my lungs and taking up all of my lung space. I could barely breathe and I felt so sick as I sprinted the last block. Boulder Bolder, here I come!

Thursday, March 12, 2009


I need to write...I don't want to write, but I need to.

I need to get out of my heart everything that's bothering me.

Please don't say, "you shouldn't be so hard on yourself," or "Don't listen to your negative thoughts," or "She'll be fine, she's ok." I just want to talk without judgement, for once. Why is it that people think I need to be told what to do all the time? I HATE being told "You should......" I just need those two words banned from vocabulary, everywhere.

Just listen, please.

Carissa is going to physical therapy. Her last orthopedic appt. didn't go so great. I went in thinking everything was going to be hunky-dory. I wasn't stressed, I wasn't even thinking about it. And then the doc says, "Her right hip still looks a little loose." I covered my eyes with my hand, as if to block out the x-ray, and slumped. I couldn't believe it. I thought we were done. I thought she was going to be fine, it was complete, over, perfect. No. Her hips are unstable, that means she doesn't like to stand, she feels wobbly. But if she doesn't stand, her hips will not form correctly. She needs the pressure of standing to form her hips. It's a viscious cycle. We have to go to physical therapy to help her stand and walk.

I sob on the way home. I don't know why, but I do. I realize that I'm terrified....of I don't know what. Before I had a baby I imagined watching her stand, watching her pull up and walk. I never imagined it being in a physical therapist's office. When we go to my mommy group or baby story time I see all the other babies standing, crawling, taking steps. They aren't scared. They don't hurt. They are making the transition easily and normally, with some falls, of course. Carissa is delayed. It hurts to think about that. It makes me so sad. It's a sadness I didn't even know I had that just wells up from deep down in my heart. I don't know what it's about.

And then we go to the physical therapy appointment. She isn't crawling, she scoots on her bottom and pulls with her hands. I never thought that was a bad thing. I never gave myself a hard time about it. The doctor never told me she needed to crawl. The books all say it's an optional milestone. Dr. Siegel, the orthopedic surgeon always said some babies just walk and skip crawling. So when I spoke to the physical therapist, she gave me a ton of reasons why it's good for babies to crawl. It involves their trunk muscles, which scooting doesn't. It helps their hand-eye coordination and their cross-over skills, which scooting doesn't. She could more easily get to her knees to kneel, which now I have to train her to do, to engage her muscles that help stabilize her hips. Why didn't I give her more tummy time? As soon as she learned how to sit I gave up on tummy time. She played more easily from a sit than from her belly. She always cried when I gave her tummy time. And lots of friends said their babies hated tummy time, too, but they all learned how to crawl. I wish I had known how much it would have helped her, particulary with all of her problems now.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Death Day

I don't know why I'm hanging on to this anniversary, which was actually yesterday, of the night that Shane was hit. I guess because it was probably one of the biggest life changing moments I've had so far.

Shane was riding his scooter to work at 8:00 p.m. when he was run over by a 19 year old girl in a Jetta. Both of us lungs collapsed, his liver--obliterated, head trauma, femur--broken, as well as many other bones in his body.

I had decided to go to bed early, and as usual, I didn't have my phone with me, and it was on silent. On a whim, I decided to check it. I had 8 missed calls from the same number. Strange, I thought. Only one voicemail. It was the police, no details. Very strange, I thought. I called Shane, "I got this call from the Colorado Springs Police, do you know what they want? Alright, call me back, bye." Then I got the call. "Where are you?" he asks, "Your husband has been in an accident. You need to go to the hospital and you need to plan on staying there all night." "All night!" I thought. "I have to teach in the morning!!!" Wow, was I in denial? Shock? I don't know. All I know is that God's amazing love wrapped around me like a blanket and got me into clothes, got me into the car, and got me safely to the hospital. I didn't even know where it was, but I got there.

I didn't know it, but the police were waiting with the girl at the scene to see if Shane made it to the hospital alive.

I should have known the severity of it all when I was ushered into the little private room in the ER and was given a chaplain. "But I want to be out there with all the normal people, why am I in here?" I thought.

Dr. Fisher: His blood pressure is 0, we're taking him into surgery right now.

Jean and Paula came and listened to Dr. Fisher and watched me for my reaction: completely blank. I don't even remember what Dr. Fisher said after the surgery.

The next morning reality came home. "When are Shane's parents getting here?" asked the nurse. "Next Friday." "They need to get here, NOW." "Why, he's going to be ok, isn't he?" "I never said that," said Dr. Bogarin. "What?!! What are his chances?" "About 50/50." He's a great doc, no bedside manner. I thought, "Why didn't we have any kids?"

I just realized this, but they had me stay in the little house next door to the hospital for three nights that is usually reserved for the family of cancer patients. They gave me the small, private room at the end of the hall in the ICU. They didn't expect him to make it.

Peggy, "Don't listen to Dr. Bogarin, he's going to live! He's going to make it! He's strong! I can feel it! He's going to make it! God's grace is on him, I can feel it!" If it weren't for Peggy's attitude, I wouldn't have made it, and maybe Shane wouldn't have either.

That night and next day and the next 6 weeks were so life changing. When I think back on that time I know the power of God's grace. I know I contained a strength that was not my own. I gave myself totally up to that power. I surrendered everything, and got back everything, and more.