Friday, August 22, 2014

A Child Life Specialist's Apology to Parents

As a child life specialist, I supported parents in their decision to accompany their child to a procedure or not.  Outwardly I would put on my most empathetic face and reassure each parent that they were making the best decision for their family, although on the inside I never truly understood a parent who refused to be with their child during a painful procedure.  I faked it, I knew exactly what to say and I would never make a parent feel bad, but secretly I wanted to tell that parent to just suck it up and then I was thrown into their shoes.  For something as minor as shots, I found myself eyeing the door wishing I could run away until it was all over.  I held her little hands so the nurse didn't have to and told her everything would be ok except I knew it would hurt and that the rest of her day would be difficult because of a decision I made.  She needed the vaccines and it was for her own good, but none of that meant anything when she screamed out in pain and I had to wait for two more pokes before I could pick her up and attempt to comfort her.

So to the parent who didn't want to be in the room for that painful procedure, I am sorry.  I'm sorry I judged you and thought I knew what was right.  I'm sorry you even had to make that decision.  And I'm sorry I didn't understand the stress you must have been experiencing.

To the parent who chose to stay in the room, I am sorry.  I'm sorry I assumed you were tough enough to see your baby in pain.  I'm sorry I allowed the hospital to become routine and label procedures as 'easy'.  And I'm sorry I didn't check-in after the procedure to see how YOU were doing after experiencing that pain.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

{Thankful} Thoughts

Lately I have been especially thankful for 4 years of marriage to the love of my life

for reminders of the power of the human connection

IKEA boxes that promise a simple life of organization

And bedtime stories as we watch her learn to coo

What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


Teamwork is falling asleep on the couch while our little eats for hours just so I don't feel alone and he can be there to burp her while I get ready for bed. 

Night time is the most stressful part of this new job.  I have not quite figured out how to escape the anxiety that comes as I think about sleep - when we will get to sleep, how much sleep we will get and when will we have to wake up...  This stressor, while not surprising, is extremely overwhelming and can be helped so much by the mere presence of another adult human.  I am so thankful for a husband who is figuring this parenting thing out with me and supporting me through the good, the bad and the ugly {even though he has to get up at a terrible hour for work in the morning}. 

Here's to more love and support than I know what to do with! 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Life Lessons :: Nap Time

We can all agree nap time is important...even essential, but one thing that seems to be quickly forgotten is the stress that develops when your little one misses a nap {or three} during the day.  Lately, when it comes to sleep, I have become obsessed.  It consumes my mind. I am constantly thinking about who is getting sleep, when it's time for more sleep and what if there isn't enough sleep to be had - not just for the baby, but for me and my husband too.  And when something doesn't go as planned in the sleep department, I find myself becoming anxious because I know the trouble that will eventually come without it. 

But my stress and anxiety are not only laughed at in the real world, but often completely ignored.  How do these amazingly successful parents around me forget the stress that comes from lack of sleep?  They don't forget, they just don't care and I know because I was there two months ago with nieces, nephews, cousins, friends' babies...the list could go on.  It is exciting when a baby is awake and even more exciting when they coo, smile or interact.  Plus the greatest part is that no one but me and my husband are responsible for the consequences, everyone else can go home to their comfortable beds and get into a deep enough sleep to dream.  Am I jealous?  Of course!  Would I have it any other way? Not a chance. 

So if you have a sleeping baby and I see you in public or stop by for a visit please know I will not speak a word and I will probable move very slowly {with a slight bounce} in fear that somehow your peaceful little one will sense me and wake up because she is to nosey to stay asleep.  I will be cautious and understanding until one day when my own sweet baby doesn't cry to fight sleep or require five naps a day, then I will most likely forget the stress of sleep and actually consider touching your sweet, sleeping baby's foot to show my sense of awe!  Until then, I will put sleep on a pedestal and give it the respect it deserves.

What has my life become that sleep is one of the biggest stressors in it?  Signing up for this mommy club is one of the easiest things I have ever done, maintaining my membership, however, has certainly been one of the hardest.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Thankful Thoughts

Lately I have been thankful for evenings on the river with my dad

tough guys with lots of love

summer festivals that will clog your arteries

and horrible traffic that leads to surprise ice cream stops

What have you been thankful for lately?

Monday, August 11, 2014

Life Lessons :: New Mommy

Being a mom is by far the hardest job in the entire world and, while that is not a secret, it is not openly discussed nor is it accurately portrayed via the most important means of socialization and communication (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter of course).  

My friends and family know (and are probably tired of hearing about) how shocked I was at the level of difficulty this gig turned out to be.  I felt disillusioned and lied to as I experienced complete loss of control, exhaustion, confusion and HORMONES - all before even being discharged from the hospital.  Then I was expected to take this little being home with me and just (no big deal) keep her alive. 

For the first month and a half I cried, uncontrollably at times, for no particular reason.  I looked at this sweet baby and sobbed because she wasn't going anywhere and I felt completely unprepared to care for her.  I felt isolated and alone on a good day and completely shocked at the emotions I was not prepared to deal poor husband had no idea he signed up for crazy when he wanted to start a family.

Then I talked to some other moms and read this blog post and my life suddenly made sense.  No one was shocked at my despair and I found comfort in shared experiences.  Being a mom isn't easy and it doesn't get easier, but it does (I'm told) become more manageable.  I now celebrate moments like understanding a cry, being able to rock her to sleep and seeing a smile when she recognizes my voice because we are figuring it out and that feels really good!

I'm not an expert, I don't really know how to be a mom and I will not pretend that this has been a good experience thus far, but I do have some good days and I get excited when something (by the grace of God) works out the way I want it to.  So thank you to all my friends who have been honest with me and showed me love when my crazy was at it's worst.  Your horror stories have brought me peace and helped me feel less alone in this scary new life I jumped into so carelessly 11 short months ago.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

2 Months

Happy 2 months of life sweet girl! This month you have gone on a fishing trip, discovered the wonders of a security blanket and you have grown into your digestive system {sort of}.  You went from crying {a lot} to cooing and smiling. You love to watch the ceiling fan and kick at anything within your reach.  You continue to teach us selflessness, unconditional love and remind us to slow down.  We love you little!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Back At It

I have taken a bit if a hiatus due to a pretty significant life change {oh and my hormones were so out of wack I couldn't even brush my teeth let alone write a blog post}.  But I'm back and I have a whole new perspective on life and a whole new mess of posts coming your way about mommyhood, life and, of course, play!

Thanks for sticking with me and a special thanks to all those who have loved on us the past two months! I am so blessed!