Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.
~1 Timothy 4:12

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Part Two...

We were whisked up to the delivery suite only to know that we wouldn't deliver there; our baby was breech and soon enough we'd be in an operating room. We finished up signing papers, most of which read something like "we promise not to sue this hospital if either mother or baby perish". Riiight. Contractions continued during this time and I clearly remember clutching Mike's hand while he dialed my best friend, who then asked to speak to me...I think I got two words out before I couldn't talk anymore and had to hand the phone back to Mike. It was at that point that the nurse came in and wheeled me away and told Mike she'd come get him one "we were set". I so clearly recall being on that operating table and feeling completely surreal and out of place. I wasn't ready for this, and it certainly wasn't how it was supposed to go in my head. I had this all planned out, and so far, none of it had gone according to plan. I started to panic a little when I saw my sweet husband's (calm, but freaked out) face and I managed to calm down a little.

He sat at my head and stroked my hair and I think I told him to talk to me about something...anything, I didn't care. He chose Monty Python. ??? It worked, because it did get my mind off the task at hand...

It took about 20 minutes and I felt this little pop and then there she was, this little teeny (really! only 5 lbs, 11 oz) and Mike and I were unbelievably overcome and overwhelmed. I got to quick her for a very quick second before Mike and the nurse took her to the nursery. I went into the recovery room where 15 minutes or so later Mike appeared at the door and asked me "Would you like to meet your daughter"? That very question terrified the poo out of me, but at the same time, I couldn't say no. I'd never in my life wanted to hold anything more. He brought her to me and there was this amazing, perfectly peaceful little rosebud of a girl wearing a little pink and white knit hat. I believe (and I don't exactly recall because I was out of my mind on painkillers) the first words I said to my little girl went something like "Wow, you're so pretty and I like your hat"!

That day is burned in my memory. There have been many days that will stand out and have stood out since then, but the only other one that even comes close is the one when Aiden was born. It's special for so many reasons other than the obvious ones, but those are deep within my heart and they'll stay right there, but I will end saying this:

This sweet girl is my first born. She is one of the most beautiful creations I've ever laid eyes on and continues to be so. She's special for so many, many reasons, but perhaps she's most special because of one very simple reason: She made me a mother, and she's blessed me beyond explanation.

Happy birthday Ladybug!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Eight years ago...part one...

I was, exactly at this time, sitting on our couch, watching the finale of the first season of Survivor. Mike had duty, and thus would be spending the night onboard the ship, so it was just the tv, the cat, and one very, very pregnant me. Mike called about this time and he was watching the finale as well and asked how I was feeling. I think my response was something like:

"What do you mean, weird"?
"Dunno. Can't explain it. I just feel weird".

I didn't feel sick, or tired, or even achy, just weird, as if I felt this looming feeling that something big was about to happen.

I woke up at 1 am the next morning STARVING. I went downstairs and ate some chips and salsa and happily waddled back to bed (I think it took a solid five minutes for me just to make it up one flight of stairs). I went back to sleep, only to wake up very early (like 7:30-and yes, that's VERY early for me) feeling like poo. I felt like I was getting the flu, or at the very least, a summer cold. I called my mom from bed and told her how I felt and she said, "Call your OB". To which I bristled, because after all, it was just a cold! However, to make my mom feel better, I did call my OB and talked to the nurse:

"I have a cold".
"Ok, describe this cold". (??)
"I feel like I have a fever, my back is killing me and I have a sore throat".
"Hmmm. (pause). Carrie, have you had any contractions"?
(pause....longer pause) "Um...yeah! (and that's me just now realizing that I had) I have! About every eight minutes or so"!
"Ok, you need to come to the hospital. NOW".

I called Mike and of course couldn't get in touch with him, so I asked to speak to a friend of ours who was on the boat with Mike. Here's how THAT conversation went...

"Hi, Jonas, it's Carrie".
"Ohhh...Heeeey...Caaaarie" (in a very laid back manner) "Whaaat's uuuup"?
"Jonas, I need you to find Mike. I think I'm in labor".
"'re in labor...cooool".
(pause. me--WHAT?)
and then Jonas...
"Wait. Labor. LABOR? HOLY CRAP"!
and hung up on me...

We lived about 20 minutes from the base. Mike was home in about 12 minutes flat. We got in the car, and started driving to the hospital...I think I looked at him at one point and said, "If this isn't IT, I'm really, really sorry..."

Our doctor looked at us at the hospital and said, "Well, we're going to have a birthday today"! That's when I knew...this WAS it...

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Bars, Beam, Floor, Vault...

Today, in an attempt to channel Girlfriend's never-ending energy, I scheduled a "try it" class at our local gymnastics gym. (Is that what it is? A gymnastics "gym"? Wouldn't that be redundant)? Anyway...I digress...

I was sure Girlfriend would freak out. In fact, I was so sure she would NOT even ATTEMPT a cartwheel, that I would have placed money on it. I. Was. Wrong.

Baby Girl RAN down the steps to the gym...had more determination on her face then I think I've ever, EVER seen and started stretching...from there she went to work on the uneven bars--she swung and got her legs into some contorted position that actually had her legs then over the bar and swinging...

from there she climbed the rope (I felt kinda when I used to climb the rope in gym class...sorry, random Wayne's World reference) and she got almost to the top--eight times!

From there it was onto the trampoline, the floor and handstands. I couldn't believe it. I sat there with my mouth open, just sure she would balk at something, but no. NO! She revelled in it. She soaked it up. She LOVED it. My mom called while we were there and when I told her where we were, she went into the Retro Zone, recalling my five years of gymnastics. "You were a natural" she said. Ha. I DID love it, but the balance beam scared the dickens out of me. Are people aware that that thing is FOUR INCHES WIDE? I was honestly scared to death. I can still recall being 8 years old and doing a back handspring on the beam and almost pooing myself because I was so dang scared of missing my footing on the beam. That's all it took for me. I knew that going further in gymnastics meant facing that fear and at the time I wasn't prepared to do that. But enough about me. Come to find out, Devyn's friend Sara is in Gymnastics at the same gym and Devyn would be in her class. We're talking about it...Devyn made a list of pros and cons and then we'll talk to her Daddy about it. I know this much, though. Sweet Girl walked in that gym and it was like she had found her niche. Maybe I'm being naive, but it looked to me like Devyn had found her home...

A p.s. to my Sweetie--Happy Birthday my Love! Here's to a champagne-worthy 34th year. I love you!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Methods of Survival...

I've always said that those involved in a deployment get through it anyway they know how. Some spend insane amounts of money...some journal...some turn to other members of the opposite sex other than their spouse, and even some turn to members of the same sex to, well, yeah, I've known those too. August has been a hard month thus far. We celebrated our ninth anniversary (I spent the day cleaning the house), Mike's birthday is tomorrow and Devyn's is parents were here for two weeks, my granddaddy is not doing well, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. I could honestly yap all day long, but I'm not going to do that. Instead, I try to focus on means of survival. I've always had three: prayer, coffee, and red wine. Good red wine. Life is much too short to 1)not pray, 2) drink bad coffee and 3) drink bad wine. Of course, the kids help me get through, but those are my little joys I look forward to--the coffee and prayer every day, several times a day, the wine about twice a week. I have a new method of survival. I'm even slightly embarrassed to admit this, but I do have a certain level of pride about the whole thing as well. I now, since yesterday, am the proud owner of one kangaroo Webkinz.

So here's how it happened. I started helping Aiden play the games in order to teach him how to do it and I started thinking that the games would actually relax me and take my mind off things. Before long, I was playing the games with no child in sight. To beat that, I started playing all the"daily activities" on their "pets". The kiddles got annoyed. Told me to "get my own". So I did. Now don't go thinking I sleep with it and make little houses for it and what not. It ain't like that. It's just something easy to do in the evening after my brain is goo. I was asked today when I told someone about this new venture, "With all the games on Yahoo, you actually purchased something so you could play your own games and daily activities? On a four year old's website?" Yes. I did. No apologies. Casper and I are very happy together, thank you very much.

You think that's bad? There's still three months to go. Just wait until November...