Babies & Birthdays

I knew that it was a girl the moment I took a home pregnancy test. Every fiber in my being told me so, and when I finally got the phone call with the results of our amniocentesis I was not at all surprised when our genetic counselor told me it was a girl. I daydreamed for months about the strong, sassy and independent girl she would be.  And now exactly five years later she’s everything I thought she would be and more.  She is kind and thoughtful and full of heart. But she is strong-willed; she speaks her mind and doesn’t care much about what other people think.

I think many people; when they have a daughter, worry. Worry because girls are weaker, are not as able to take care of themselves and are more prone to heartbreak. Me? I laugh at the thought. In fact my worry is more for the people in this world who stand in her way, or hurt the people she loves, or try to force to do something she doesn’t want to do.

It’s really hard to express how much she means to me and how totally shocked I am at how fast these last five years have gone by.

When she was first-born, I was terribly concerned with how she was breastfeeding. Mainly because my son would feed for close to 45 minutes on each breast and during the first couple of weeks I had a hard time getting him to latch on correctly and to really get the hang of breastfeeding. It was a lot of work.

But my daughter, she latched on instantly. And her feeding ran about 10-15 minutes, TOTAL. I just knew she must be starving and couldn’t figure out why she was feeding for these short spans of time.

When I took her in for her first exam she had gained over a pound. I asked the lactation consultant how that was possible when she was hardly eating. She laughed. “It’s not that she’s not eating, it’s that she’s eating very efficiently.”

It’s been that way ever since. Every time I think I’m failing, she shows me I’m not.

I can’t believe she’s five today. My baby. Quite possibly my last child. Five. She’s not a baby anymore. There are no diapers, or changing tables, or bottles. No high chairs or cribs. I only have kids now, no babies in this house anymore.

Oh, who am I kidding? She’ll always be my baby. Whether she’s five or fifty.

Pictures

Most of you on Facebook may have noticed the retro thing going on with people’s profile pictures. Well considering how many dozens photo albums and picture boxes I have stocked full of millions of pictures, I thought it would be fun to pull out some old pictures, scan them and then tag all my old school friends. But instead I ended up spending an entire evening pouring through every single photo album and photo box I own.

I have pictures that of course begin with me as a baby, my childhood, teen years and into the years my husband and I were dating, our wedding and of course there were tons of both pregnancies and the kids all the way through now. My mind is kind of racing full of all the memories. It’s so weird to look back and see how much I’ve grown and changed. And even weirder to see how much the kids have grown and changed. I swear it was just yesterday that they were born. Then again I would’ve sworn that it was only yesterday that I got married or graduated high school…

There were so many pictures that just took me back. Friends and family that have long since passed away, friends that are still in my life today. So many people and so many memories.

Nothing puts your life into a sharper focus then looking back over your life in pictures. It reminds you of where you come from and who you are. It also reminded me of just how fast my babies are growing and that I should take time to slow down and smell the roses with them more often.

My dad took this picture when I was in elementary school. He told me to picture the woman I’d be when I was 30 and to say hi to that woman. And now here I am, 32, looking at that same picture, saying hi back to that girl I once was.

I never did scan any pictures and upload them to Facebook. Maybe tomorrow…

My Hometown

This morning I heard Brue Springsteen’s My Hometown on the radio. It made me stop and get all weepy & nostalgic, which I think many Springsteen songs do for a lot of us. I’ve written a ton about my hometown, this place I grew up in, over at JamsBio. But it’s been awhile.

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about my hometown, maybe because my son turns 6 this weekend. Six years old. Wow. It truly goes by in a blink doesn’t it? This morning as I ran a couple of errands and saw the gray skies blanketing the foothills of my hometown, I felt my heart swell with love. Those foothills have surrounded me my entire life. And for as many of my teenage years that were spent plotting my ultimate escape of this boring little NorCal town, there have been even more years spent trying to stay here. As the economy continues to struggle so do we, but we keep fighting to stay here.

My dad was an air force brat. He was born in Germany and moved around constantly while he was growing up. When he had his own kids he decided that he would not do that to them. He wanted his kids to grow up in one place and one place only. So even when times were tough he and my mom managed to stay here. My dad would always find work even when times were tough and there was no work to be found. He managed to keep us grounded, to keep us in one place. And all these years later, I’m still here. And I can’t imagine raising my kids anywhere else.

Not too long ago my son and I were driving through downtown and he said to me, “Mom, I love our town.” I smiled and said to him, “Me too kiddo, me too.”

Just Chillin after too much Easter Candy, and WAAAY Too Much Cake!!

Today was Patrick’s 5th birthday! Unbelievable. It’s sooo hard to imagine that he was born exactly 5 years ago today. Life before seems like a lifetime ago. He’s such a little doll. The other day he got very upset after pre-school. He was CRYING and very upset (he was tired and had not taken a nap, so that did add to the drama I will admit) but through his very dramatic cries told us about how he was upset with his friends, the boys, at school. He said they kept wanted to chase the girls and be mean, and he was trying to stop them but they wouldn’t listen to him. They wanted him to chase the girls too, but he didn’t want to be mean. His boys got mad at him for it. It was all very upsetting for him. I felt bad for him that his friends were mad that he didn’t want to tease the girls. But than I started thinking that the boy we’re raising, has this strong of an opinion on being mean to girls at this age. AND that as upset as he was that his friends were mad, he didn’t give in to them. How frickin awesome is that? He’s going to be quite a man.

The party went well. A good turn out. My brother & niece were there, which was just about the best present Patrick could’ve asked for. He loves them a lot. I wish they lived closer. We need to make it a point to make a weekly call to them. Sometimes keeping in contact with family and old friends seem hard, but man is there any other piece of technology easier to use than the phone? Nope.

Other musings this week, anyone watch American Idol? Beatles? Really? As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not really watching this season. But I watched enough of the last two weeks to say, FOR SHAME!!! I couldn’t have said it better than Joel over at The Soup did,
”Congratulations, Yoko Ono, assassins, cancer, and one-legged gold diggers: You’re no longer the worst thing to happen to the Beatles.”

Has anyone seen Pop Fiction????? OMG! It is soo funny! It’s stars (I’ve seen Paris, Avril Lavigne, and David Spade) who basically punk the paparazzi. They set up the paparazzi, by orchestrating an incident (that is totally staged) and see how long before it hits the tabloids. Avril put on a “baby hump” and went with her guy to a baby store. The next day pictures of her “pregnant” belly were plastered. Take that stalkarzzi! Better think before you snap…

It seems fitting to have this show happen after the tabloids revealed Lisa Marie’s pregnancy before she wanted to reveal it. Have you heard this? The tabloids ran all this about her gaining all this weight, only for it to turn out she’s pregnant. Funny that this all happened as Dancing With The Stars was about to premier though. Ya know, starring Miss Priscilla? Dancing With The Stars…hmmm. Don’t you think that maybe they’re using the term “stars” kind of loosely these days? Just asking…

I can hear the chocolate cake in my kitchen calling to me….HELP! I’m sooooo addicted to chocolate. I really need to crack down on the chocolate obsession. I was good for so long, and now ick. Maybe it’s the holidays. I need to get back on Weight Watchers….It’s either that or start smoking again. Since I’m going on 6 years, that would just be a tragedy to start back up now.

Oh yea, Bankruptcy news!!! We signed the papers today! FINALLY! Senile old bankruptcy lawyer finally got it all set and is going to file on Tuesday (Hey, when did the day after Easter become a holiday? Did I miss a memo?). Now we play the waiting game, and see what the trustee says. Keep your fingers crossed.

That’ll have to do for now. I’m burned out from a VERY long day. Happy Easter everybody!