Monday, June 30, 2008

Welcoming the Calm

Well, the storm has passed and we are all healthy now!  Woo-Hoo!  Jaden has been waking up at night the past few nights, and I thought it was just because he hadn't been feeling well, but lo and behold, today I discovered two molars that just broke through, in addition to two bottom teeth that are also coming in!  Poor baby!  4 at once!

Hubby has been gone for 3 days now and things have gone so smoothly.  I have slept better this time than ever before when he's been gone (okay, well, I was only alone for 1 night, but still - it was a GREAT night's sleep).  My sister came yesterday and just her presence has made things so much easier.  She is a great help around the house and it is so wonderful just to be able to go into the other room and not worry about the boys since she is with them.  She leaves tomorrow, and then I head out to my parents the next day.

On Sunday I took out our new double jogging stroller, which I bought after being inspired by Corrina, and I loved it!  It is about 50 pounds lighter than pushing the boys in the other double stroller.  We took a walk to the 99 cent store, my favorite walking destination (about 4 blocks away), bought some items and came home.  The boys really seemed to enjoy the ride and I enjoyed the walk.  Note to self: get out more!  :)

I know Jaden doesn't look happy, but really, he is :)

Today was Micah's last speech therapy session.  I think I have written about this before, but when he entered in December, he was only using about 10 words and was considered to be 10 months behind.  His speech was just re-tested last week and they said he is right where he should be - Praise God!  Now he just needs to work on articulation.  So today at his last session, they had a little "graduation celebration" for him and presented him with a certificate and I made home-made sugar cookies for the occasion.  I totally teared up at the end.  Our little  boy is growing up!  Even his therapist teared up and said Micah is one of her favorite students and she is going to miss him so much.  It was a precious time and I felt so nostalgic on the way home.  This is just the beginning of these life transitions... I don't think Micah realizes he won't see his "friend" (therapy teacher) anymore, but I know he will be sad eventually that he hasn't seen her for awhile.  I am so thankful God ordained that she was his teacher.  

Saturday, June 28, 2008

One For the Books

Last night was a night like no other in my 3 years of being a mommy.  As you know, the kids and I have been fighting off the stomach flu for the past 4 days or so. Well, it all came to a head last night.  Martin was packing to leave for Utah (in his typical fashion, at 11pm the night before), and he had to leave the house by 3:15am.  So, at 10:30pm, I am in bed, Martin is in the living room, and we hear Micah crying.  So we go in there, and he starts throwing up all over the place.  (He had not thrown up on any days before this).  We both clean him up and put him back to bed, and he precedes to throw up about 4 more times until 2:30am.  At 2:30am, Jaden starts crying hysterically, and we run in there and find that he also has thrown up all over himself and his crib.  I had to take him out and give him a bath, trying to keep it dark so he'll go back to sleep easily, but he didn't understand and just cried the whole time.  From 10:30-2:30am we did FIVE loads of laundry!  Pillows, blankets, sheets, clothing, you name it.   I kept trying to fall asleep but it seemed to be the night for a motorcycle convention in our town, because every motorcycle within LA county with an absurdly loud muffler was driving near our house.  At around 3am, to top everything off, police helicopters surrounded our neighborhood looking for some convict in the area.  Nice.

As we were laying in bed around 3am, not able to sleep, I couldn't help but think "What is going on here?!!"  Of course this would all happen within hours of Martin needing to leave for a youth missions trip.  Ephesians 6:12 came to my head and I just started praying..."For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."  

Martin set off at 3:15am, right on schedule, but felt really bad leaving me.  I was having stomach cramps myself all night right along with the boys.  I teared up at the thought of having to go this alone when I am not feeling good myself.  But I knew that God would see me through.

It is 4:13pm now, and we've almost made it through the end of the day.  Bedtime is 3 hours away. The boys have napped, I even got a nap, and nobody has thrown up since 3:15am.  God is good.  :)

Friday, June 27, 2008

3 Down

On Sunday when I picked Jaden up from the church nursery, I found out that another baby in there had the flu.  I was so upset!!!  Sure enough, on Tuesday he got it.  On Thursday I got it. Micah got sick on Tuesday as well with some sort of really bad cold - stuffy nose, coughing mucous, etc...  So, this has been a week of staying inside and trying to get well.  Martin leaves on his trip tomorrow for 7 days, so I'm just praying I'll at least be back to 100% by tonight.  

I got my schedule figured out for my week alone - on Sunday my sister is coming to stay with me for 3 days, then I'm going to my parents until the 4th of July.  Looks like it will be a full and busy week.  

On another note, on Wednesday my sister called me hysterically crying and said that she was out jogging with her dog Skye, and Skye had a seizure and died on the side of the road in her arms.  I was so sad for her!! She has had her dog for over 7 years (he was part Akida) and they didn't know anything was wrong with her.  She held him on the sidewalk just crying and ran to a stranger's house to use the phone.  She went back to the dog and someone drove by and helped to load Skye into his pickup truck and they took her back to my parent's house.  My mom came home and they both took her to an animal shelter.  So sad....  That is pretty much the worst way to lose a pet!  

Monday, June 23, 2008

Something New

Today I got an offer from a Pregnancy Help Center to become a Lactation Educator!  I am so excited.  For awhile I wanted to become a certified lactation consultant but I got scared off when I found out all that involved and all of the hours necessary to become licensed.  But this is perfect for me!  The Help Center was given 4 scholarships to put people through the program, and they asked if I would be interested.  Basically I will take an online course for 3 months, where I will also get to do homework assignments like "diagnosing" people (which I already love to do!) :) and then I will need to complete some hours (but it is only like 8 hours), then I start teaching a class. My class will be taught with another educator and will be one time a month, for pregnant women or new mothers.  

This will be a great "outlet" for me, I think, because this has been a passion of mine ever since I had my first-born.  I had every known breast-feeding problem in the book, from plugged ducts, to mastitis, to nursing strikes, to chronic thrush with both boys.  By God's grace I was able to continue breast-feeding both boys for almost 11 months.  I definitely feel for women who are having problems nursing and have been wanting to share all of the things I've learned so far.  

This also may open a door for me to help teach a course at a continuation high school across the street from my house, where about 15-20 pregnant teen girls go to school.  Every day I see them walk around my block during their P.E. class.  Two weeks ago I finally got the nerve to go on the campus (walking past 3 guys cat-calling me the whole way) and I found their classroom, and asked if they needed any donations.  This past Monday I brought them about 15 bags of donated baby items.  So, today when I got an email from the Pregnancy Help Center asking if I want to do the lactation educator class and possibly help start a support group at the high school by my house, I knew it was God.  The director at the help center (who I last spoke with over a year ago) had no idea I had just been to that high school just last week.  Amazing.  I am so excited to see what God will do!

Sunday, June 22, 2008


For months I have been dreading next week, and now I am only 6 days away.  My hubby is going away for 8 days on a youth trip, so I will be flying solo with the 2 boys.  I don't do well when he is gone, I admit it.  I think of every possible scenario as I lie awake at night, I hear every sound, I triple check every window and door, I keep the phone and my Bible in bed with me, and I do not sleep much.  I get lonely, I cry, but I survive.   He's never been away for this long before - only 3 days max since we've had both boys.  

One time when he was gone, I woke up at 2am and looked out the front window.  There was an unfamiliar car parked in front of my house with the windows all fogged up.  I watched for awhile out the window, and finally decided to call the police to come check it out.  After waiting for over an hour and calling them back asking "where are you guys?" (their answer: we are busy; the car is out on another call.  In other words, there is only 1 car available.  That made me feel so much better).  Anyway, when they finally arrived, they opened the car doors and nobody was inside.  They started shining their flashlights around my front yard, into my back yard, while I was quietly running from window to window trying to see if someone was hiding in my back yard.  My heart stopped when I saw what looked like the silhouette of a person against our garage in our back yard.   The police didn't seem to see this even though their flashlight kept shining in that area.  When I ran to another window, the shadow was gone.  Then I saw it again.  I was truly freaking out, almost to the point of tears.  As I looked out the window again, I realized that it was the shadow of a large vase that I had put out to dry, projecting against the garage door.  I felt foolish and stupid, and nervously laughed to myself (but was still scared inside).   The police never found anyone so they had the car towed away, but it still left me wondering where that person went who owned the car.  So, I stayed up for over 2 hours until sunlight started to show again, fell asleep, and then had to wake up with the boys a short time later.  EXHAUSTING.

Anyway, sorry for that LONG story, but now you know where I'm coming from.  I know that "God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of love, power and a sound mind."  I constantly have to recite that to myself.  But it is not easy. So, this week I am planning what I will do to keep busy.  I am trying to think of people to stay with me but the only person I've come up with is my sister, who is going to stay one or two nights.  That leave 6 more nights.  I have thought of going to my parent's house for a few days, but their house is not baby-proofed, and there is not a comfortable room for the 3 of us to stay in. It is also hellishly-hot where they live.  I'm not sure about that option yet.

I will probably stay up late and blog every night during that week, so stay tuned... In the meantime, any suggestions you have for my time would be greatly appreciated!! (Your prayers are also coveted too!!) :)

Monday, June 16, 2008

Passion and Calling

Yesterday I was so humbled and honored to be asked to preach the Father's Day message at church. My message title was "A Father You Can Trust" and I spoke from Matthew 6:25-33. I talked about how our earthly fathers strongly influence how we view our Heavenly Father, but no matter what our experience on earth, our God can be trusted. The message went well and I was really happy with how it turned out. But while I was speaking, I just felt this extreme sense of "This is my purpose! This is what I was meant to do!" I mean, I have felt this before - this was probably the 3rd or 4th time I spoke at church on a Sunday and I've done retreats and women's events before, but I don't know... that "feeling" was just overwhelming this time. About four people came up after the service and said "This is what you are meant to do." I came home and shared that with my husband. I haven't felt that way in a long time- in fact, there are many days where I wonder "What IS my purpose?" But I just keep coming back to this, and it has been in my heart since I was 15.

Another instance like this happened on Saturday when I was at the mall for a few minutes, walking through the parking lot, and felt an overwhelming sense that my heart is so incredibly burdened now for babies who are abandoned or orphaned. It came out of nowhere and hit me hard until my eyes teared up. "What is this all about?" I wondered. I don't know what will happen with that burden but I really wonder about it.

Sometimes I feel like I am getting old and I get discouraged, wondering if anything will ever happen with these dreams. But it is encouraging to know that I do feel I am still moving in the direction of these dreams happening, while I am still pursuing my main #1 calling of being a mother right now.

So, let me ask you - What is your passion that has not died? What makes your heart race at the thought of it? What dream have you had for a long time that maybe nobody else knows? Think about it, and let me know! I'd love to hear about it. And don't be discouraged - God has a plan for you!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Thoughts on Staying at Home

While you are reading these thought that are going through my head, I first want to say that I LOVE being a stay-at-home mom. Every single day I thank God for the opportunity He has blessed me with. I am completely amazed at His provision and the miracle it is that I have been able to stay home with my boys for three years now (3 years last month, actually!). Watching my boys take their first steps, hearing their first words, and be there for the ins-and-outs of every day bring my heart joy.

Yet nobody really tells you what it is like to be a stay-at-home mom. Nobody really prepares you for what to expect. The only piece of advice I was given before I took off work for maternity leave was "Jaimie, you really need to start slowing down now. Don't wait until you are off of work. Because when you have that baby, your life is going to come to a screeching halt and that is very hard on some people who are used to being so busy." A counselor told me that, and it was one of the best pieces of advice ever given to me. I did start slowing down right when I heard that, and it definitely helped me in my transition to being at home full time.

But still...nobody really tells you that there will be melancholy days. They will begin to weave in and out of your life in this new season you are in. Nobody tells you that sometimes you will feel really lonely. You will crave adult conversation that is uninterrupted and not rushed. You will long to not feel the stress of being at the store and needing to get home quickly. You will desire the days where you could clean the house and it would stay that way for longer than 1 hour. You will wonder what happened to those goals and dreams that you had - that God put there - that resurface when you have time to think about your life. Nobody tells you that sometimes you will feel really bored, like you have cabin fever, and you just HAVE to get out, but you can't, because it is so much work that it is not even worth it. Nobody told me these things!

Everyone says "You are so lucky! You are so blessed!" Yes, I agree with you. I AM blessed. But don't be fooled. This is not an easy life we are living. People who go to work get rewards for what they are doing - they get a paycheck, a pat on the back, they get some recognition. Moms who stay at home get different rewards, and sometimes they are few and far between. They come in the form of your child actually pooping on the potty after months of practice. They come in the form of a wet, slimy kiss when you are crying because you feel you're going crazy. The rewards are there - they're just harder to see.

So, would I do it differently? No - I wouldn't. Seriously. I have come to terms with the fact that having these days is okay, and it doesn't mean something is wrong with me. Some people just don't get it, and may feel like I need to "fix something." But I am learning that God is there in the loneliness, in the boredom, in the wonderings. He's okay with it. I just have to be careful not to dwell in it.

I have been thinking about these things lately because at one time in my life God put a strong calling on me, strong desires that have never gone away. I don't see them happening right now, because (as you already know) I am fulfilling the greatest calling He has called me to. I know that! But I still wonder about those other callings I was called to! What will happen to those dreams? Will anything ever come to fruition?

Sometimes I find out that I have missed opportunities that would help me reach these goals, "because of my kids." I occasionally get passed over an opportunity because it might involve traveling, or I'd have to find a babysitter, or it is just easier to ask someone who doesn't have to deal with those issues. It makes me sad when that happens. Yet I know this is the season of life God has called me to. I don't regret it at all. I don't want to give the wrong impression. I just wonder what will happen, that's all...

So, these are my thoughts. I love it, I wouldn't trade it, but it is not as easy as some people think it is!

Monday, June 2, 2008


This past week was pretty uneventful, other than being busy with some church activities this past weekend. June is going to be a really busy month for us as I am preaching on Father's Day (and have to prepare in the little spare time that I have), then Martin is leaving for 8 days for a youth trip to Utah at the end of June. Micah turns 3 on June 21st as well, so I have to think of something to do for his birthday!

Today we got some great news from Micah's audiologist that Micah no longer has fluid in his eardrums and his hearing seems to be back to normal. Micah was such a good boy during all the tests and I was just thanking God for all the progress he's made. Just six months ago, in December, he was only using about 10 words a day, and now he is up to over 300 and speaking in sentences. His speech therapist said he has made years of progress in only a few months. The day before his 3rd birthday his speech will be re-evaluated and we will see exactly how much progress he has made. I am so, so thankful to God that we found the problem early on and were able to get help for him. Now Jaden is trying to communicate too so it is one loud household! :) Praise God!!!