Thursday, October 28, 2010

Blog Schmog

Honestly, I don't see how people can blog all the time. Yeah, I appreciate the internet to an extent, but come on. Being a mom is one ass kicking away from insanity. Who has the time? I guess if I wasn't preoccupied with other things, I would be available to blog to my hearts content.

So I said in my last blog months ago that this stage of Harrison's life is my favorite stage. Meh, I change my mind. I love this stage more!! 9 months rocks. He's not a major crawler, but he's just learning how to army crawl and is showing signs of full on crawling here pretty soon. Hooray and oh crap. But I have to say, watching a baby try new foods is always ALWAYS a stinkin' good time. There was only one time a couple of months ago that he wasn't having peas. And who would. They really tasted terrible. But that has been the only thing he has spit out. He doesn't appear to be picky anyway. Plus the NAPS....... God definitely knew what moms needed. Because its a heavenly reprieve. *Sigh.

Costco was an adventure today. He was getting a little crankenstein when feeding time came but, for the most part, was doing okay. I'm constantly surprised at how people respond to babies. Generally, people do a double take when they see Harrison. It's funny. But I love it when people say nice things and even not so nice things. Since he was sitting in a weird position in the shopping cart, I had to assist him a bit with his bottle. Something I haven't had to do in a long time. A gentleman said to me, 'Ya gonna make that boy lazy.' Oh good. That was my ultimate goal this whole time! There's your sign....... #$%$@&*hole. I heart Costco.

Holy splurge! Got the cutest hand puppets. Really shouldn't have, but you better believe I should. Go check it out fellow bloggers. So fun. Just a plug for nonsense Costco merchandise. They have them in safari animals, farm animals, bugs, and reptilian. Excellent church attending hush ups! $7.99 of worth it.

Lastly, I also thought that the movie Despicable Me was an awesome make you feel good movie. I laughed and cried and cried. Maybe there are just movies made for your own life's circumstance. This was it for me. The main villain, who is this despicable ornery man, (voiced by Steve Carrell) has an ultimate goal to steal the moon. He lives alone upstairs and has an army of minions downstairs. He is obsessed with, ya know, villain stuff. So not to be a total plot ruiner, he meets three adorable children who soften his heart and teach him what is really important in life. It's not really the results of his choices that is fascinating, but the softening of the heart and his change in character. Impressive. Most impressive. It just goes to show that people can always change for the better. Wicked awesome show.

Well, it's almost 1:30am. I don't get blogging!! Bah! But it's fun to journal to the cyber world. We will be going to the Rally to Restore Sanity on Saturday. Hope to get some amazing pics of all the crazies. Should be a blasty blast.

Good night!!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Drooling Cavalier

We really don't know when the teeth are ever going to come in. No bubbles, just drool. Copious amounts of drool. I wonder if someone were ever to measure an infant to toddler drooling amount and if they would be surrounded by buckets. Makes sense to me.
This has got to be my favorite stage. He's not mobile enough to be destructo boy and he's not little enough to require so very little sleep out of mom and dad. It's the best of both worlds. Sweet rewards with his smiles and precious interactions. God knew what He was doing when He made children.
I think that I may have the hang of this. I will eat my words any day now. Just this morning I heard a cough that was deeper than usual and we will have to get this weezing stuff checked out. The asthma I have usually surfaces with allergies and colds so I hope its nothing serious. Just when you think things are smooth sailing, God throws another curve ball. Unfortunately, I strike out most of the time.
I don't quite feel like myself yet. Maybe it takes more time for the hormones to settle and my whole internal make up to reconfigure. Fortunately, I have great girlfriends who make amazing sounding boards for these cunundrums. Blasted hormones. I don't know if God knew what He was doing with hormones. Maybe He'll have to explain it to me after death.
Hyrum, I love you. You certainly have filled the missing pieces of my new jigsaw puzzled life adapting like a champ. Through my distorted thinking, you have always been an anchor of sanity even if its a tad patronizing with your soft spoken peter priesthood voice. Nevertheless, its better than being married to a yeller.
Harrison is my favorite kid.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Are These Deranged Feelings Artificial Hellfire?

I have always been an emotional person. I am uncertain as to where it all completely stems from. I recall explaining to my mother about how I felt an emotional immaturity within myself a few years ago. My mother said, "For someone who is emotionally stunted, you sure cry a lot." Thank you Mom.

Perhaps being the middle child and a middle child girl for that matter may have something to do with it. It could be chemical make-up, social conditioning, and an unfortunate temper. Ever get so angry you just cry? I think that I have always been sensitive, but I never expected sobbing in the middle of the night like a mia maid because Harrison weighs more than your standard lap dog. And to think I was crying about him being so incredibly small. Oh motherhood.

Harrison has grown more than ever! I was so happy for him and celebrated with Hyrum today when we discovered that our tiny little premature rantfant has obtain 50th percentile status. Can I get a woot woot? They always told me that there would be miracles in the 'last days', I just didn't think they meant anything about me.

My friend Amanda is about to join the Mommy club soon and has written a gratitude list of things about being pregnant that I was very impressed by. So many woman would give their husband's left testicle to have a baby and all too often pregoes complain about their newly developed physique. It is challenging to have perspective when your uncomfortable, moody, and a frequenter of the local restroom. Alas, it is a blessing and a gift to get knocked up. But hold on to that testicle sister, you just might need that.

So here is my gratitude list of being a new Mommy. Lord knows I have plenty to complain about, so we will do this freestyle gratitude list as long as I feel necessary. And a thank you to Amanda.

1. More to love. I didn't think my selfish self had room for it. And it was easy to do.

2. More understanding of the purpose of God and the love of God for that matter.

3. A greater need for civic responsibility. Yeah, if your creeping around my apartment complex late at night prior to me having a baby, I would have just labeled you creepy weird guy. Now that I am a Mom, your ass is grass mister! Two to the heart and one to the head if you get anywhere near my family.

4. An appreciation for the ones that gave you life.

5. A knowledge of why grandparents love spoiling their grandchildren. Children really are so fun, it's not that you don't have anything better to do.

6. Poop is a celebration here.

7. Smiles. There is nothing else to be said here. It just seems like today Harrison was all the smiles and to think I was even worried about him being a disgruntled hungrysaurus rex all the time. He really can be very happy.

8. I get an injection of joy. Sometimes it is inexplainable. I had no idea I would have this much fun.

9. It's great to feel like someone is very glad I'm around.

10. Of course Christ spent so much time with children. Duh.

11. Calvin and Hobbes read-a-thons

12. It's a bath time extravaganza!! Who cares about getting wet. You had baby puke all over you anyway.

13. I don't need a reason to cry. I'm a Mom now.

14. Being late for church.

15. Disney World!

16. Life lessons. I get to teach him about Jesus.

17. People will always get your last name confused with Hyrum Smith. You might as well get use to it kid. But it makes for great family dinner humor when the bishop keeps referring your family name as the Smith's.

18. Popcorn popping on the apricot tree. That doesn't even make any sense??!!

19. Less reality T.V. and more Muppets.

20. Singing lessons. Well, I'm dying to record one of my kids singing in the shower.

21. Fart humor.

22. Can't wait to say, "Because I'm the Mom. That's why."

23. I'm a better person because of him and I would like to say for him. I owe it to Harrison to be a better person.

24. Late night blogging.

25. A lifetime of laughter and love.

Well, that's a wrap folks. It's almost 3:00am out here in Virginia. I think that I've cried enough today. Mom, I would secretly make fun of you when you would cry during family prayer. I guess parenthood is God's way of showing tolerance, understanding, and a little payback.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mammories - All Alone in the Moonlight

After months of late night boob rendezvous, a three week trip to Utah, acid reflux, and milk intolerance...I'm no longer breastfeeding. AW!! Love me before you judge me!! I am seriously disappointed with how difficult and challenging its been. Before I became a Mom, I thought can't people just be a little less selfish and not give up. Isn't it interesting how you think you know what its like to be a Mom when you haven't walked the dark path of insanity? And it seems like you have to explain yourself before getting hit up by the other world record setting breast feeding Moms. Shut the hell up. Take my moccasins and walk my path and see how much better you do at running my life. La Leche League can suck my boob too. Yeah, I said it.

I'm angry sometimes.....and insecure. Plus, I'm not a quitter. But in hindsight, I have to reassess what I am measuring my worth with. The way other Moms think about me? Then what was I thinking. To quote from our friends at La Leche League's book The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, Dr. William Sears states, "Breastfeeding mothers respond to their babies more intuitively and with less restraint." Well this may be true for a breastfeeding mom, this is not the case for me. Dr. Sears can suck my other boob then.

God is always teaching me tolerance in the face of my adversity.

There are family members who really care about us and want to offer us advice as to how to remedy our difficult feeding situation. We appreciate the continued love. You can butt out now. Your services will no longer be needed at this time.

Harrison is growing and growing amid his tummy troubles! And thanks to Grandma Teenie, Harrison is doing so much better on a Similac Alimentum formula. It's labeled for food allergies and colic problems. Harrison sleeps so much better. Can I get an AMEN?! We aren't entirely in the clear yet. He has his colic moments still, but we are surviving much better with at least a few hours of sleep to get us through. Consequently, Hyrum is so much easier for me to love with more sleep and I think we can actually survive the first few months of our child's life. He will almost be four months and I cried today as I looked through his hospital pictures just amazed by God's sweet tender mercies on our little family.

I thank God everyday that he is alive and that he is mine and that we can find other effective bonding methods. He is liking baths now and I couldn't be happier about that. His smiles are gifts from heaven.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Spread Eagle and Center Stage

My Grandma doesn't have a belly button. It's true. She has a brown spot on her stomach were a belly button use to be. I told her to tattoo a literal button in its place. At least that way, it would seem to fit its labeling. She's not into tattoos. Evidently having ten kids left her without a navel.

Unlike my Grandma, my kid count will be relatively small and I still have a belly button after the first. After my ten day hospital stay, I started going into labor......

Let me back up to the night before. Since semi-private rooms are soooo not the least bit semi-private, I was unhappy to share my health information to total strangers. I didn't know my vaginal 'discharge' was anything but honorable much less sharing those details with a panel of doctors and three room mates. Turns out my second room mate didn't speak English and had a mental condition. Aside from her spontaneous loud farting throughout the night, the on and off of the telemundo made it difficult to rat her out to the nurse. I didn't know whether to cry, laugh, yell at her, or return fire. Consequently, I had some body aches due to the lack of sleep and my stomach hurt at what I thought was bad hospital food.

So it wasn't bad hospital food. Right. I've decided contractions are like bad car accidents, it comes when you least expect it and you immediately want to blame your husband.... just kidding Hyrum. All joking aside, it became evident that I was going into labor. The high risk manager came in to see how far the labor was progressing because they were making arrangements to change me into a private room. And to think, after all the roommate shenanigans I was FINALLY on my way to a private room only to go into labor. Screw you karma.

It is going to take a few months to rebuild any dignity I have with maintaining my body's privacy. Like my chess piece analogy, I really wanted some sort of strategy in play and my unrealistic expectations left me royally disappointed. Everyone told me the same thing. "You'll get use to it." And my same response is, "I doubt it." There are a few things that I've decided after experiencing labor and delivery. Firstly, it is an incredible and enormous task. It is an amazing and divinely inspired process. And I'm not in any position to judge someone on how they get their baby here except to say that they are just as perverted as I am.

My doctor is a nice guy. He really could be a perfect James Bond villain if he had a scar or evil facial identifiers. Bald, spoke Russian, dark villainous eyebrows, and from New Jersey. Upon asking him of his entanglements with the KGB, he wittingly replied, "Only on the weekends." Oh good, cause its Thursday and I was hoping that the dude elbow deep in my placenta was a law abiding citizen.

I think they lied about the epidural. I don't want dramatic licensing here, but either the dose wasn't full throttle or it was wearing off or it wasn't done properly! I remember telling Hyrum when I got uncomfortable, "Can't they just do a localized anesthetic down here?" Yeah, here's to the ignorant and unprepared. Perhaps I'll interview anesthesiologists next time.

Hyrum didn't realize that he would have such a vital role in the delivery process. I guess both of our expectation was that he would just chill up next to me, but he was super supportive and counted through the pushes. I never knew my crotch could ever be the center of so much excitement. There will never be another time like this where people are focusing on my hooha and coaching me as I exercise partially medicated. Since our baby was coming eight weeks early, we were prepared for somewhat of a neonatal intensive care stay. He delivered at 4lbs 11oz. Not much screaming coming out of him and everything happened so fast with him being taken to the NICU, I didn't really have the opportunity to have that special moment. I understand in a small way what it means to go home empty handed from the hospital and its a feeling and an experience that I hopefully will never have to repeat. I guess the best way to describe it is feeling a little cheated and I have more depth of understanding for women who go home with an empty car seat and with no hope of using the crib. There is hell on earth after all.

We didn't have a name picked out yet. I guess either one of us could have just caved on the name, but after seeing our baby turn into bionic boy with all the gadgets, accessories, and hookups - we were both so emotionally invested it would have taken an act of parliament to agree and settle on a name. After nearly divorcing and avoiding the boxing ring, Harrison Bradley Miller was named five days after his birth.

Well, that's the story. Harrison finally made his way home after spending a month in the hospital. Sheesh. After marrying Hyrum, I thought we would have had a ten pound whopper coming home just in time for lunch. Not this time. But it is so different having a baby in our house and he's my kid. I'm so clueless.

I love my son. He has no idea who I am, but I pray that somewhere in his developing mind and precious soul is an individual who knows Mommy is here and that I love him deeply. Welcome home Harrison. Oh, and by the way Grandma....Harrison has an outie belly button.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Fairfax Hospital


I still remember a pregnant girl that came to Junior Prom in High School. She had a full belly and a big rack and I still remember what her dress looked like and who she was there with. And she danced as if she wasn't pregnant at all. She obviously cared more about going and having a good time than what other people thought of her. I admired that about her because I knew that if it were me, I would have moved to Tibet where my father couldn't kill me not to mention forgetting Junior Prom.

PPROM in my case is considered a Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes. This would indicate that the membranes holding the amniotic fluid ruptured. "Woah snap." I woke up Sunday morning in a puddle. Hyrum tried calling everyone he knew that had a baby to confirm my water broke. I didn't need a confirmation, it was obvious to me that my water broke. I took a shower and went to the ER at Fairfax County Hospital through a rainstorm. Hyrum didn't even park the car when we pulled up to the door. He walked me in and said very quickly, "Water broke, 30 weeks pregnant." Well this will be the one time in my medical history that I don't have to wait in a waiting room. I have never had such immediate attention with my personal stretcher ride to triage while they told Hyrum where to park the car. People don't mess with a mom and the neonate.

I wasn't completely fearful for our little baby. I felt him kick on the way to the hospital, but I think there's always cause for alarm when there are things that you don't understand about your own body and that you have no control over and your life isn't the only one being estimated. I could hear nurses saying behind the drapes that, 'Number 2 is grossly ruptured.' Only to have another nurse ask me, "Now Ma'am, are you sure your water broke." Pretty damn sure. A woman was having contractions in the space next to me who had a case of Chlamydia and an impatient doctor. I thought hell had to have been a place like triage. Chaos and Chlamydia.

I cried while Hyrum filled out paper work down the hall. The nurse that came in had a beautiful smile to accompany her beautiful wig. She assured me that membrane rupture could have been as easy as the baby poking his finger through the sac. Who knew. The heart beat monitoring was one of the most calming sounds. I just listened to the heart beat and felt a lot better.

And so the education continues. I don't know exactly how rare my case is, but some readings indicate around 3% of pregnancies that have PPROM. Rupture of Membranes (ROM) at full term are normal. The normal consequence of labor soon follows. In my case, I never felt any contractions and since my water broke, new amniotic fluid is produced and then leaks on out. And since risk of infections are so high without the protective barrier, no one wants to get all up in your business and start poking around if your not having any signs of contractions.

I've only had a 'vagina culture'. You heard me. Vagina culture. I knew Hyrum took my Va-jay to the symphony a few times, but I wouldn't say cultured. They just swab it didn't tell me why come to think of it. I HATE IT WHEN THAT HAPPENS! Other than that, I have had I.V.s and shots but nobody messes with my downstairs. I have a fortress of defense down there with a knight, a king, an awesome queen, and a rook. Armada?

I'm feeling a sort of laboratory rat experience here. I have routine fetal tests every morning and a doctors rounds. Nurses are kind and very attentive and we are among the brightest and the best medical professionals I could ask for. I have bathroom privileges, so I can use the shower everyday. Strict bed rest for the goal of 36 - 37 weeks gestation age. I'm getting use to the food and our little life here for now. It could be tomorrow or five to six weeks.

My ward is very proactive in responding to my isolation and loneliness. The R.S. President calls me often and I have a little niche of supportive and understanding friends who love and care about me. I hope that one day I can pay it forward because I am highly undeserving of such generosities. Some have made huge sacrifices just to stop by for 15 minutes and I am honored and truly grateful that they would think of me. I have never felt the least bit entitled of someones time or attention, but flattered because hospitals are the last place people want to go to hang out. There's not even a disco ball here. And still, there have been sweet girls who are still getting to know me that have dropped off craft projects to keep me entertained. Truly a labor of love on both sides of the fence.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A New Term Of Endearment

Another great one-liner from the land of three year olds. When Andrew's mother got home from work yesterday, Andrew replied very abruptly - "Tristen, you can go home now." Well thank you Andrew for allowing me to serve you today, I guess I'll be on my way. It was really too bad since earlier he said something pretty cute like, "Maybe the doctor should take your baby out so he can practice walking." What a novel idea Andrew. He can be so adorable and I think thats whats the most frustrating thing about it. I've decided that the 'terrible twos' are over rated and that its really all about the 'horrible threes'. Some cultures send there kids to live with their extended family for really long periods of time. Sounds like a good idea right about now.

I've started another term at the online college I've been attending. How embarrassing is it that since my former math grades are so terrible that my current school wouldn't accept the transfer credit?! I am currently taking a very basic math class. And I although it is really tragic, there is nothing I could do about it and I might as well have the positive mental attitude and ace the course. When I looked at the syllabus for the first week, it shows LCD (lowest common denomenator). Okay, so does anyone remember that from the third grade. OH HOW SAD.

I'm taking a break from the interior design courses until the baby comes and so I have Gender Communications and Humanities on top of that so it should be a little bit easier of a semester. I anticipate being uncomfortable here soon with the pregnancy and didn't want to do major overkill in an effort to get done quickly. With bringing a child into the world, it really WOULD HAVE been easier to finish school earlier, but that is life. I took two years off getting Hyrum through to law school and so my education took the back burner. Online courses are a bit more pricey, but it is an investment for me in so many ways.

Hyrum is definitely concerned with our student-loan-the-size-of-a-morgtage expenses. I am too. The more student loan debt I accumulate, the more foreign the concept of having that little plot of land in the suburbs is. Somehow people work it out. I don't know the big financial mystery, but they make it work. Maybe I don't see the big picture at play.

Anyhew! Today I'm going to teach Andrew that telling someone to do something and asking someone to do something are two VERY VERY different things. He suffers from an overabundance of entitlement. I think the word RESPECT will be a part of our doctrine for the next five days. I can't wait to be done here so I can start substitute teaching. Praise be to Alah.

The word brat with a speach impediment sounds like BWAT coming from Andrew's mouth. When I correct him with a 'R' sound, he says, "Bwat with a RRRR sound." Yes Andrew, you are a bwat with a RRRR sound.