Thursday, November 15, 2012

a mother's day

*Here is another post from my archives. I wrote this about a month ago- in the middle of October sometime.  

I wake up in the morning and I do what needs to be done...uncomfortable with my big pregnant belly, I waddle up the stairs and talk myself into giving the day my best shot. I am already wasted and the day hasn't even begun. I wake up Kenzie and remind her how lovely it is to see her. I have to talk her into getting ready as she complains about the cold. I make her breakfast. Kenzie wants to stay in bed. I make her lunch as she struggles to get dressed. I am excited to sneak in a chocolate chip cookie into her lunch because she will be so surprised at lunch time. Kenzie makes it to the table and eats. We say morning prayer. I brush her hair and talk about the boys in her class who like to pull at her braids. She gets mad at me when I brush her tangled hair. I try to have patience but time is running out. We have to leave for school in 5 minutes.

Julia and Xander get pulled out of bed last minute and thrown into the car. They are cold and Julia let's the whole world know it. I run into the house and grab Julia's favorite blanket and a pair of socks. I snuggle her up warm in her car seat- she starts to calm down. I have about a 10 minute drive to school. We sing sometimes or we will talk about weird stuff like the clouds and the changing trees. Sometimes I will listen to talk radio and I am surprised how much the kids listen also. We talk about freedom, choices, consequences, hot dogs and princesses. 

I walk Kenzie to her door at school and my little heart pounds EVERY single day as we kiss each other goodbye. I wish I could homeschool Kenzie and keep her close but I know it's not right for her and I wish I could be that organized and motivated mom who could pull off homeschooling but I know I would be a disservice to them as their teacher in the long run. oh all the things I wish I could do and be...

Back at home Julia plays with her toys as I do the dishes. I love hearing her imaginative dialogue with her dolls. "Up in the mountains is a secret box full of bananas that glow in the dark." It makes me giggle. Xander tries to help me load the dishes and it sort of drives me crazy as he only reaches for the knives EVERY time. He then wonders off to start another mess. I then try to think about all that needs to be done and I get overwhelmed so I sit down at the piano to sing and play a song. Xander follows me and listens to me play as he holds a few toys in his lap. I somehow know Mom playing the piano is a secure thing for him. He loves it and wants to be close. 

I struggle getting motivated because I just don't feel 100% with my health. I am still nauseous believe it or not and my MS is bothering me...plus a whole list of other pregnancy issues that literally drag me down.

The dishes are always a struggle. I  don't think I have ever done the dishes without complaining just a little. Isn't Einstein's definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results? Hello dishes and laundry- you're driving me insane. Laundry seems tiring. I manage to get Julia to do a puzzle and work out of her preschool workbook. She is mastering her letters and numbers. She loves to color and is actually a very easy going little girl when it is just her and I. I have learned that she thrives off of praise and so as long as I am there congratulating her with each of her little accomplishments, she feels on top of the world. "Make her feel on top of the world, April" What I tell myself when I am tired of seeing her 100th coloring page that day. Usually all I have to do is gaze into her dark eyes and that adorable face and my heart melts. I love being home with her all day, I really do. 

Today I went outside to sand some wood for a Relief Society project. Xander loved that I was outside and he ran around bare foot as did Julia. The weather was fall perfect and the kids knew it. Leaves are all over the backyard as they slowly but continuously fall from our beloved big tree. The kids played on the playground and it was a little bit of heaven you know. Perfect crisp air with colors all around. Children laughter...heaven.  

Xander randomly came up and tried to help me sand wood. He tries to communicate the best he can and I acknowledge his gibberish the best I can. We somehow understand each other enough. He would flash his big eyes my way and walk off to play with Julia. There were little fights between the two here and there and some frustrations here and there- as there always is, but overall it was a beautiful simple normal moment- treasured by me. I love Fall. 

I went downstairs and paid some bills and sent out emails to all the people on my church Halloween Party committee. I called about a late library book and set an appointment for my ultrasound. I also made an appointment at the Brigham City Temple for Saturday. Xander comes downstairs and he has dirt all over his face and hands. His feet are black. Julia was complaining about Xander throwing dirt. I go upstairs and wash him up. We clean up toy blocks in the living room- doing all I can to make it look fun so my kids will want to help pick-up. I get upset when Xander then dumps out all the blocks we just picked up. He knows mom is upset so he starts to cry and then I hold him for awhile and reassure him his mommy still loves him. We decide to make blueberry muffins to keep restless little hands busy and excited. Ju Ju and Xander help every step of the way and therefore 5 minute muffins out of the box turned into 30 minute muffins...especially when Xander grabs an egg and squishes it in his hand.

Julia wants help with her puzzle so we end up doing 4 puzzles. Xander went and grabbed his favorite puzzle and we all sat around the table and worked on puzzles until the muffins were done baking. I am starting to get a little anxious as my mind if filled with a hundred million things I need to do for Super Saturday, gospel doctrine class, and the Halloween Party and basically all I have accomplished all day is some little things here and there but mostly cleaning up messes, doing puzzles with a 5 year old and eating blueberry muffins. 

It is time to get Kenzie from school and we pile into the suburban. We get to the school and Xander takes off running. I am fat and pregnant and can barely move. He throws a tantrum while we wait for big sister to get out of school. I hug, talk, sooth, ignore, and kiss Xander until his heart is soft enough to quit the episode. I am tired.  I remember that I need to find some fallen down branches to paint black for the Halloween Party. I take the kids to a nearby park where there is a hillside of trees and forest. The kids are in heaven. It feels so complete to have Kenzie with us and her face is lit up with the excitement while walking through the woods and finding treasures. I was in search of some perfect big branches and all the kids, including Xander decided to be Indians and build a fire and T-pee. They gathered rocks and sticks and built a pretend fire on the grass. The weather was amazingly perfect and so were the circumstances. Kids playing in the woods...laughing and working together. Mom walking along trails, missing Newman Lake and North Idaho and "real forests" but ever so grateful to be out in nature- my true love.

 I am really fat and really out of shape and so I don't really even know what or who I am physically. FOREIGN and out of touch with my body. I can't think of anything more suffocating and out of control than pregnancy. My body does its own thing- cravings, weakness, tired, puky, bloated, weight gain...it is NOT fun. I hate it. Can't wait until February...to hold this baby boy in my arms and get on track to getting my body back. 

But with that all put aside, I was so joyfully fulfilled and happy today being with my children and walking through woods, looking for perfect branches to paint and decorate for the church Halloween Party. I felt like in that tiny moment, I was doing exactly what I was supposed to be doing. The kids continued to play until I noticed the keys in my pocket were missing. Oh no. They could be anywhere in that big grove of trees. Me and the kids gathered around the "fire" the kids, I mean the Indians built and we prayed to Heavenly Father to help us find the keys. I told everyone to put on their magic eyes and off we went. Surprisingly we found the keys in about 15 minutes. We stopped in the middle of the trees and prayed again to say Thank you to Heavenly Father. Little Xander with his arms folded and head bowed is priceless.

Kenzie and Julia then took off on some trail going upwards. Kenzie is super explorer lately and she wants to take every trail- every pathway. Xander stays pretty close to me as he is connecting the dark forest to one of his favorite books "Cowardly Clyde". He is pretty sure there is a big scary monster sleeping somewhere in the trees. We walk back to the park hand in hand and we talk about the book- he points to the sun over and over because it is the big bad sun that made the monster "explode" at the end of the book. I can't believe how much Xander and I can talk without him really saying any words.

I am with that boy all day long. I know what his favorite songs, books, and foods are. I am so thankful I get to squeeze those cheeks whenever I want to. Although I have hard days where I just can't take being a mother anymore and when nap time for Xander finally comes it almost feels like this euphoric feeling of freedom for 2 hours and the minute I hear him cry in his crib I'm like "nooooo, he's awake!" LOL-

But gratitude still finds its way back somehow and I am filled with thanks for my life...my simple normal life. 

It is time to go home from the park. We somehow get these huge branches I found on top of the suburban and we managed to do a horrible tie-down job. We drive super slow all the way home hoping the branches don't fall off. Dinner is in the crockpot and we patiently wait for Daddy to get home. I feed the kids tomatoes from the garden with salt- one of the their favorite treats- they are tired and hungry. I know a fall-out fight between the kids could happen at any minute, so I get out some dolls at the bottom of their toy basket and Kenzie and Ju Ju instantly start playing dolls. Phew! They get a little crazy with their play. Supposedly one of the dolls has a farting problem and Ju Ju and Kenzie are rolling in laughter as am I as I listen to them while cutting up Zucchini. Kenzie seems to be going through this "picky eating" stage but instead of getting overly frustrated, I try to focus on the few vegetables she still likes- tomatoes, zucchini, broccoli, avocados- 

We make cookies after dinner...Chay is more excited than the children for the cookies. Everyone is happy with their cookie and cup of milk. Kenzie and Xander take a bath together...those days are probably coming to an end so I made sure they had fun together. They played and giggled so hard in the bath tub. It was like music to hear them play together. Kenzie has a special gift with little babies and toddlers. Xander loves loves Kenzie but Julia and him seem to not have quite the same bond. :) After bath time, we rounded up the crew and got naked kids dressed. Julia prefers to sleep naked with only panties on. We usually let her but it is getting really cold at night...Julia has itchy dry skin- combine this with her free spirit, and well, she is hard to keep clothes on believe it or not.  

For scripture time read about what happened in the book of mormon when Christ was killed in Jerusalem and how dark it was for 3 days in the Americas. We talked about darkness and light. We talked about the light Christ brings to the world, even today, where there is so much darkness. We turned off all the lights and Chay turned on the flashlight on his phone and we talked about light in the darkness. It was really neat to see how still the kids were. When Julia said the family prayer she said "please help us keep the commandments so we can always have light" wow, I thought, she was actually paying attention even though she could barely sit still with all that energy. 

Kisses, prayers, hugs...I am tired...I was too tired to read a story or to help Kenzie with her homework. I was done. 8 o'clock and I am done. I really start to slack after 8 o'clock. That is when I pass over all responsibilities to Daddy. I take Xander into his room and fall asleep with him on the rocking recliner.  

I look back on the day where I feel nothing really got accomplished and yet I find that I felt a lot of joy and fulfillment with my simple life today. Sometimes I have not so great days and I feel it is a huge sacrifice and unfair to be a mom and other times I am reminded that I am doing EXACTLY what Father in Heaven wants me to be doing right now. I just can't believe how hard it can be. Hard on days when I really try to have patience and hard on days when I don't have patience because I feel guilty. Regardless, on most days I feel so incredibly lucky.

Going to bed.