Thursday, January 27, 2011


This year, I made two New Year’s resolutions. I decided that I was finally going to attack the squish around my mid-section and lose some weight. Fortunately I only gained about 18 pounds during my pregnancy. That was all gone before I left the hospital. I can’t blame this on Lennon. This is the extra fluff I had before I was pregnant. I need to lose 30 lbs. So, I started with a bang, losing 4 lbs during the first week. Since then, I have faltered and cheated. A LOT. But, I am geared up and ready to tackle this fluff for good!

My second resolution has been a bit easier to keep, but I am sure that is not going to be the case for long. I resolved to not purchase anything new for the entire year. My only exception would be consumable goods and undergarments. I am really excited about this. It is going to be tough. There are going to be many times that my resolve will be challenged, but I think we can do it. I am going to take Lennon from his 8th month to his 20th month solely in hand-me-downs and second hand bargains. We will celebrate his first birthday with handmade and second-hand gifts. People have told me that it’s good to do it now, because he “won’t even know the difference.” You see, I want him to know the difference. In a disposable world, I want Lennon to know that as long as something is still usable, it still has value and shouldn’t be tossed into the garbage.

All my Christmas shopping will be at second hand stores and ebay bargains. When my wardrobe needs to be updated, I will have to search the racks of thrift stores. There are tons of options when it comes to purchasing used goods. There are used bookstores and second-hand children’s stores.
I know this is just a resolution I made for 2011, but I hope that Josh and I can learn a lesson and a new lifestyle that we can pass on to Lennon. Kind of like the velveteen rabbit, the more an item is loved, the more love it has to give.

I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

It must be in the water...

I was lucky enough to have lunch on Sunday with a friend from high school. She and I were thick as thieves as kids. As we grew up we didn’t keep in touch as we should have, but we reconnected when we were both expecting our first children in May of 2010. It was great to have someone to talk to about the leg cramps, heartburn, insecurities, excitement, dread, nausea, exhaustion, and fear that came along with pregnancy. We kept in better touch and as fate would have it, my husband and I moved to Northern KY just down the road from where she and her husband lived. Our kids are going to be best friends, that is if Lennon can get over his fear of the cute little girl who always has a bow in her hair. During lunch, every time she would make eye contact with my little ‘fraidy cat, he would turn up his lip and squirt big crocodile tears out of the corners of his eyes. She sat in the high chair across from him and laughed and smiled and Lennon just cried and cried. This is not going to bode well for him later in life if he is that terrified of a cute little girl three inches shorter than him.

Anyway, my friend announced to me during our lunch date that she is expecting. Before I even realized what I was saying, I gasped, “ALREADY?!?!?!” She has an 8 month old, two weeks younger than Lennon. Holy-moly! Then after I got home, I got a text from a friend in Lexington that she and her husband are also expecting. She has an 11 year old and has been trying for #2 for years and years. I am so happy for her! It must be in the water.

If you read my last two posts, you already know that Lennon was a huge surprise to us. We had tried and were told that it wasn’t going to happen the old fashioned way, so when I learned that Lennon was on his way, we were shocked to say the least. Anyway, even before he was born, I knew that I was not planning to have any other children. Put down your stones and call off the angry mob. I have already been told how unfair it is to raise an only child. He will have no one to play with. He will be spoiled beyond belief. Yeah, yeah, yeah. I love my kid, but I truly hated pregnancy that much. It was terrible. Some women glow, I was green the whole time. Throwing up relentlessly even on the day he was delivered. And bed rest is for the birds!

I never expected it, but I am feeling a bit of envy toward my preggo friends. I would love to be able to justify having ice cream every night (I NEED more calcium). I would love to have an excuse to sleep any time the mood strikes. I would be ecstatic to do all of the planning that comes along with the birth of a child. I never thought I would have these feelings. I have started wondering if I should hang on to some of the toys/baby gear that Lennon is out growing. Cloth diapers are even more economical if you use them for multiple children….

Then I remember the misery of pregnancy, the exhaustion of very little sleep, and my nearly empty savings account. For now I will hold strong as the mother of an only child.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Mission Statement

So over dinner last night, I told Josh that I finally did it. I finally wrote that first entry to the blog I started a year ago. He asked me what it would be about and I was stumped. I guess I am interested in writing about parenting. My parenting ideas that pan out and the ones that fall flat. How my mistakes and failures shape the person Lennon becomes. How being a parent is changing me every day. How I somehow manage to cook, clean, study, work and occasionally get to take a shower or an uninterrupted bathroom break. [On any given day you can only count on 2-3 of the preceding list of tasks being completed.]

I think I am going to begin by telling the story of Lennon's birth and trying to dissect the blur that is the first few months of his life (as concisely as possible).

My little brother was graduating from nursing school on Saturday, May 8, 2010. My parents were in town and staying with Josh and I to attend the graduation ceremony. On Thursday before my folks came in on Friday, I was frantically cleaning everything. Then I started doing yard work. I squatted down, 36 weeks of baby belly between my knees, and pulled a bush that had bugged me ever since we moved into that house out of the ground. It took a few tugs, but I got it. I was filled with energy and strength. Then the cooking began. Oh, the cooking. I made 24 salmon croquets, meticulously wrapping them individually and then packaging them by fours. Then I baked a ham. While the ham was baking, I made 2 chicken pot pies, a lasagna, and a meatloaf and put them all in the freezer. Once the ham finished I carefully sliced it. Some thicker slices to have as ham steaks and some thinner slices to make ham sandwiches with, then I labeled each accordingly with a sharpie and put them into the freezer. Thursday night I slept like a baby (at that time I still thought that meant restful, deep sleep). Friday morning I woke up with considerable less energy, but was thrilled to see my parents. My dad and I walked around Glen Eagles neighborhood and talked about all sorts of things. Our favorite foods, music, the cows at the farm, gossip from Princeton, etc.

That night we all settled down to bed around 11pm. My back had been hurting all day long, presumably from that darn bush. By midnight, my back pains became more intense and began radiating from back to front of my spherical mid-section. I got out of bed once I realized that my tossing, turning, and moaning was keeping Josh awake and he had to work early the next morning. I went downstairs to the couch and was able to lay down for a few minutes and then I would pace for a few minutes. This went on all night long from midnight until 6am. At that time I went upstairs and told Josh that I think I overdid it on Thursday and I was going to try to lay in bed all day. As he showered for work, I lay in the bed trying to find a comfortable position. Then it happened. My water broke. I was ecstatic. Our baby was coming!

My mom stayed behind and like the saint she is cleaned up the amniotic fluid in my bedroom and we promised to call once we knew something more.

Fast forward 12 hours. At 9pm I had not made any progress. The contractions I had been battling for weeks had stopped once my water broke and I was not dilating. It had been a long day. My midwife decided to increase the pitocin they had started earlier and within 3 hours, I was begging for mercy. Though I was still not making much progress, the pain had become unbearable and the natural, drug-free child birth I had planned for months came to and end. I never saw the anesthesiologist, I still don't know his name, but I love that man! Once my epidural was in place, I apologized to Josh and to Gretchen, my nurse, for the dirty words I called them. For the next 6 hours, Josh and I closed our eyes but never slept.

All night long Lennon's heart rate would drop and my blood pressure would plummet. Around 6am on Monday, May 9th, my midwife decided it was time to start pushing even though I had only dilated to somewhere between 8and 9 cm. I pushed and I pushed. Until all the blood vessels in my eyes and forehead burst. Around noon, things started getting really scary, but not for me, I was oblivious. Lennon was six months old before Josh ever told me just how panicked everyone truly was. My baby was not handling the stress of 36 hours of labor including 6 hours of pushing. Dr. Campbell decided it was time for Lennon to be born, so during one last push with the help of the vacuum, here he came. 12:30pm. Lifeless and blue. Not breathing. It was the scariest 5 minutes of my life. I never heard him cry. I barely even saw his face before they whisked him out to the NICU.

En route to the NICU, Lennon began breathing and when they reached the 4 floor, he was doing just fine. Josh came to tell me and then joined Lennon for his first bath and his initiation into humandom complete with heal pricks, weigh-ins, and Hepatitis vaccines.

I don't really remember hardly any specifics of the next 3 months. He and I ate a lot, cried a lot, and slept a little. Everytime I would close my eyes, for weeks, Iwould hear the tha-thump-tha-thump-tha-thump of the fetl heart monitor. I spent those 3 months co-sleeping with Lennon in the guest bed. He would nurse off and on all night and I cherished those quiet moments we spent alone in the dark becoming best friends. Each night he would scream from the pain of reflux for 20 minutes to 3 hours. Josh and I would take turns rocking him and singing or reading to him trying to find something to soothe him, but nothing could. This is the hardest work I have ever done in my entire life. The paycheck is worth the work though!

Fast forward again, to today and we are in a new home, a new city, and a new (much preferred) sleeping schedule. We have somehow become parents to the happiest, loudest, cloth diapered, well fed, slightly spoiled, funniest, most opinionated, cutest baby boy in the world! I'm not sure how we did it. It just happened. Some of my big ideas about parenthood have worked out (we are still cloth diapering and LOVE it) and some of them didn't go exactly as planned (I had full intentions of breastfeeding until Lennon weaned himself). But nonetheless, it is perfect.

2nd Time Is the Charm

So, I actually thought I was going to take on this blogging project before Lennon was born. Nearly a year ago I created this blog and wrote my first entry, but never posted it. I had all the intentions in the world of capturing each moment of his life in a blog for our family and friends to follow, but then life got in the way and I never made the time. So, here I am again. Blogging. Maybe it will stick this time...

Here are some excerpts from that original post that never made it live:

January 17, 2010

We knew on September 20th, 2009 that things would never be the same again. As I laid on our bed trying to pretend that there was nothing to fear, I heard the most telling sigh coming from our bathroom. That God-forsaken little hourglass had stopped blinking and that tiny little gray screen read the single scariest word in all the world. Pregnant. I couldn't even look at it. I made Josh do the dirty work, but he couldn't even say the p word.

We wanted this so badly, right? I guess after years of being told that this day would never come, that I would never have children of my own without extreme medical interventions, all it really took was one night in mid-August of too much wine and too few inhibitions and we went from a couple to a family.

Wow! What a difference a year makes! Now I have an 8 and 1/2 month old baby sleeping peacefully in the room next to me. The house is quiet and peaceful for now. Only the whir of the dryer in the background and the click clack of my typing fingers. Josh is at the gym and Marley is curled up at my side. Soon enough though, Josh will be home and Lennon will wake and peace and quiet will be replaced with cooking dinner and the squeals of my baby.

This picture was take on Tuesday before I delivered Lennon on Sunday, May 9th, 2010.

May 9th, 2010 12:31 pm

Christmas 2010