26 July 2008

i did it

Shortly before lunch on Thursday I took all three kids to a waiting room at an office where a friend of mine was just finishing an appointment. I've known her for a decade--indeed, we met working for the old location of this practice. She'd offered to watch my little people while I at long, long last got my first filling.

I found out about it the week I probably got pregnant with Baby J, so by the time my first appointment came around, the dentist preferred to wait until I was further along. I decided to wait until he was born after talking to another dentist friend--bear in mind, it was a small cavity to start with. So, when Baby J was almost a month old, I was scheduled to get it taken care of only to have the whole family get the flu. And so it got put off once more.

Way back over a year ago, he thought he could fill it without a shot. When I went in the past week, I was holding out hope that there would be no need to stick a long needle deep into my gums. I dreaded the very thought of being told, "You're going to feel pressure now." Ha. I'm the kind who needs to see the needle go in so I don't tense every muscle in my arm when I get blood drawn. You can't really see a shot going into your mouth. I was glad he still felt he could try to do it without.

I told him I felt nervous this time, unlike when I first tried to get the filling, and he only laughed. You've had childbirth, he said, practice your breathing. Then he raised the seat, whirred the little drill and asked if that sound bothered me. I considered it for a wisp of a moment. Nope. It was a familiar sound, one I always heard while working with him. And, having worked at his side, I knew without a doubt I trusted him.

He began, a small bit of drilling, asking if I was okay when he stopped. Yes. Then he asked if I wanted to look. Oh, yes. A sense of camaraderie arose as he dug for the large mirror and used his small one to reflect the tiny hole onto the glass for me to see. Cool. I used to love this. I'm thinking I miss this work.

I didn't see any more after that. I may have forgotten the names of some things, but in my mind's eye I watched his every move: I remembered what each instrument did, pictured the stuff he scraped out with the "shaking" tool and the little scraper (it's most fascinating to see what a cavity is made of, I tell you!), and recalled the steps of the filling. The worst was when he cleaned out the space with cold water just before priming it to fill. He'd gone far enough to make it really smart and I was thinking that if there had been much more to drill I might not have made it.

And in less time than it took to do a 12-year-old's cleaning down the hall, he was done. I felt like there should be more to it. But instead he winked and took me to the front (after which he had to take me to his office to show me a deer he pretended to have gotten although it was really one his father or father-in-law got back in the 70's...I can't remember now...he's crazy that way).

So, I did it. I officially have my first filling.
And I did it without the shot.
I feel so brave. Like a little girl who rode her bike for the first time.

But, I admit, I hope I don't have to ride that bike again.
One cavity was enough.

22 July 2008


There are changes in the wind for us.

Good changes, bad changes, difficult changes, undetermined changes.

In the midst of these changes, I am trusting the Lord. I know that in the deepest, darkest times, He still walks with us, never leaving us. I am thankful that we are never without Him. I recognize that even if the lowest of the low should come, the most significant thing is what God is after within us---not the outward things. He longs to gain more of our hearts. There is nothing too big of a sacrifice to reach this end.

I have also recently been considering that the Lord is not my first love these days. I pray, I praise, I sing and I love Him. But my heart wants to hold onto some other "things" first--above what He might ask. Outward things. Perhaps the changes right now are a time to help me refocus on the One who needs to be my first Love. There is no other. There should be no other. Also, I too easily neglect time in His Word--something I am far too aware of needing to remedy. I need my heart to be open to changes that I am perhaps reluctant for. If He is my first love, then when the Lord wants something, my heart will be open, willing, and even wanting the same thing. Without a willing heart, the Lord is limited in how much He can operate in me and through me. It doesn't even mean He'd ask. I just need to be open.

When I know more, I might share some of the changes going on. But, at the moment, the changes keep changing--one thing happens, then a day or two later, there's another spin on it, and even that could be changing. It's a bit crazy, so we will see how it is when things comes to a rest...

15 July 2008

and win some baby carriers!

Here is another fun contest that is worth your time if you have little ones (or need gifts to give for little ones...what a great thing for new moms to receive!). Just think, if you really got five carriers, you could pick your favorites and give away the rest. Well, that's how I think anyway.

Win the Essential Babywearing Stash from Along for the Ride (one Beco Butterfly, one Hotsling baby pouch, one BabyHawk Mei Tai, one Zolowear Ring Sling, and one Gypsy Mama Wrap)

cloth diaper contest!

Most of you know I like me some cloth diapers...and I found a contest right up my alley! If you follow this link to Nature's Child, you will find yourself a chance to win as well. The prize is pretty, too...18 bumGenius diapers, a diaper sprayer, a dozen cloth wipes and a bottle of odor remover or an equivalent gift certificate.

Win a Bum Genius 3.0 Starter Kit from Nature's Child - Wholesome Goods for Mothers and Babies

it's monday when . . .

. . . you need coffee so desparately (because you were up every hour with a random array of the three little people in your house) that you forget to put the pot in place before hitting the start button. A few minutes later I thought to myself that the drip had never been so loud, nor taken so long to get started. I checked, and was horrified to see it pouring coffee straight onto the hot pad which of course spilled all over my counter. And it was a steady stream, not a drip! I put the pot under it, only to realize that pushed more off the pad. So I moved the pot back to the counter and turned the whole thing off. But a moment later noticed it was still pouring coffee, so put the pot back.
I'm telling you--I was really not awake yet. I couldn't figure out why there were grounds everywhere, either. As I drove where we had to go, I realized that since the pot was not in place, the water had backed up in the filter area, and it finally was so full it was overflowing inside the pot and through the spout--thus the grounds that were floating and the lack of "drip" as it came out.
You can see the soaked paper towels behind the coffee maker. Each item I picked up, especially the cofee maker, simply held a reservoir of more spilled coffee. I didn't actually have time to clean it all until I got home later on, and you can see I'd already wiped a good bit of the spill before I thought to take a picture for evidence.
Thankfully, I was only making half a pot of coffee, not a full one!

07 July 2008


We had a lovely 4th of July weekend...mostly puttering around the house doing things that were long overdue. My husband had the pleasure of sleeping WAY in (I'm talkin' 10:30am, people!) one day, and stayed in pajamas two days. He pulled out the gazillions of picture frames we've had IN BOXES for the two years we've lived here and began replacing old pics with new ones and hanging or finding new homes for them. There is still more to do, but he also took over dish duty (THAT, my friends, is the gift of all gifts for me) and helped me get rid of some of the junk piling up around the kitchen counters. I'm a happy woman, let me tell ya. There's more to do there as well, but hey, I'm all about progress, not perfection.

I finished crocheting a hat and booties for my sister-in-law's preemie baby girl (I forgot to take a picture, which bummed me out--hopefully she'll remember to email me one, which of course, I'll post whether you like it or not). It was a wonderfully laid back weekend, the likes of which we rarely see.

Baby J however, kept me from getting much sleep for the past week. He has been waking up way too often for my taste. But then again, (other than the typical gas and reflux pain) in four days' time he cut his first two teeth and the next (today) he began sitting up by himself for a few minutes at a time. He's so happy like that..."tummy time" was becoming the bane of his existence since he was ready to move on to bigger and better things. Indeed, he has been working on rocking on knees and elbows already, much to my alarmed dismay. Watch out world, here comes Baby J!

03 July 2008

new stages

For those of you who've been around for a while, you have heard me talk about my son's Sensory Processing Dysfunction. About two and a half years ago, he was diagnosed and put into occupational therapy which essentially is to teach skills for coping in his world--home, school, and with friends. Most recently, we've been focused on the social aspects since this has been a very big struggle. I will not even go into the many meltdowns, and other frustrations that arise when attempting to play with friends.

However. We have reached a milestone that says he is making huge strides in coping skills, both for Little B and for me (as well as my husband). I am feeling a little bit on shaky ground, a little bit uncertain, and a lot like my security blanket is about to be ripped from my hands.

Little B is being discharged from Occupation Therapy when school starts.

Yes, you read that right.

He is done.

No, he is not "cured" nor does he lack struggles and all that comes with SPD. However, individual therapy no longer has anything to offer him. Prime example: when a gooey, sticky, messy project is part of a therapy session, he no longer falls apart, screams or resists at all costs. He now finds ways to do the project without touching the goop if at all possible, minimizes the touching if it just can't be avoided (wiping his hands immediately), and does all of this without the complete tantrum that used to precede it. He may not be happy about it, but he's learned to cope.

Another example: When in the gym during an OT session, he can strategically design/plan and execute an obstacle course without missing important steps, being afraid of swinging backward, falling or having to start over (among other things). It's okay if those things happen--it is no longer the end of his world. For Little B, these things may still present challenges, but he is now facing them realistically. As I mentioned recently, he is now riding his bike without training wheels and he has learned to roller skate. Both of these things would have been insurmountable two years ago for a myriad of reasons.

Socially...well this is still the weakest spot. But individual therapy cannot help that. He has had a "peer"--a child close in age--to do therapy with this past year, but that was only for half his therapy time. This summer we have put him into two "therapy camps" that are just group therapy twice a week at the same therapist's office. The goal is to work on those social skills as well as hone any other needs that arise. Every kid in the group is at different levels, so it's a very good place to learn such things.

But when summer is over, we will not return to individual therapy. He will not have to check in late to school once a week on account of that therapy.

What lies ahead? That, my friends, is a good question. He still has needs that we must address some how, some way. Unfortunately, the "therapy" style groups that could help him are not to be found in our area--it would be over an hour's drive if we took him to one of those (ie, hiking social group for kids with mild sensory issues--excellent idea, but not so practical). So, we need to carefully select an activity that will provide an opportunity to work on social skills and working together.

The things we are considering include: gymnastics, group horse-back riding lessons, martial arts and cub scouts. There are so many factors to consider and we want to be wise in this choice. There is one that stands out to me right now, but I need to be prayerful and also check into the options a little more closely, gathering more specific information on each one. I certainly don't want to neglect this need, but instead encourage and support him in a new endeavor that will continue to help him.

What does this mean for me? It means my constant support and suggestion-giver (his therapist) will evaporate from our lives and we'll miss her desperately. I've already mentioned to Little B that he's probably not going to have therapy in the fall, and he said he hopes it's not forever. (Why? Because he's going to miss his therapist.) She told me it's very hard to discharge clients like us, and I must admit, that was nice to hear.

But, I have to say, I find that I'm seeing myself as a person who can really cope with the needs as they arise, someone who has grown stronger and understands the finite workings of SPD, more specifically the needs that my son has. We'll have "off days" just like always, but I think I'm ready to be discharged, too. I can do this.