December 16, 2009

Quick Getaways and Orifices

Well, there is for sure something to be said about being able to get out of the house quickly in an emergency. Like say, your house is on fire. You certainly don't want to be stuck in your pajamas with your teeth unbrushed and your hair a greasy mess if it happens to already be 10:30 am and it's because you're just being super lazy. Nope, you want to run out of your house with your designer jeans on, accessorized, blow dryed, and with mascara in place. And of course the kiddos need to be dressed to the nines as well. Now, if it's 3 am, well, that's an entirely different matter. I'm pretty sure it would be odd to not be in pajamas at that hour. But we're talking about 10:30 am here. I think most of my neighbors are ready to hit the town by 7 am. I however, I'm a lollygagger. We mill around the house in our PJs with crazy hair until we're pretty much forced out of the house because Young Man starts kindergarten at 12:30 every day. I have never been much of a morning person. Sure I get out of bed, but it's real hard for me to feel motivated before noon. I'm sure that will all change when Young Man starts all day school next year, but for now, why rock the boat?

So it's 10:30 am and we are, as usual, all in our pajamas having *just* had breakfast. The kids were playing in Young Man's room together. I was NOT on facebook , I swear. I was...uh, doing laundry. Yeah, I was catching up on laundry when suddenly I hear the Princess say to Young Man, "Can you get the lego out of my nose?". And she sounded just a little panicky. Now Young Man responded very appropriately with, "No way, I'm not sticking my finger in your nose!". So then of course I was heading in there faster than you can say "Jiminychristmas" and verified that yes, I could see just the tiniest bit of white plastic up her nostril. So it was off to the Pediatrician we went. Oh great.

Now remember I said that none of us was in a state to be seen in public. So I took the fastest shower I have ever taken in my life (and managed to wash my hair, I was so proud of myself). My legs are looking pretty hairy due to not having any time to shave them, but hey, it's winter and we're in pants every day. Within 20 minutes, we were all dressed and rushing out the door. I wouldn't say I was exactly presentable. I was wearing Husband's baggy butt sweat pants and an old pink hoodie with my wet hair pulled up in a wet bun with a scrunchie (shudder), but like I said, I WAS clean. If I were one of my many lovely and stylish neighbors, I would have already been dressed and ready to go, looking hot at the Pediatrician's office rather than like frumpy mom. But oh well, that extra hour of sleep was probably worth it :).

So the Pediatrician took about 5 minutes with some pretty wicked looking instruments and popped the lego out. He asked if I wanted it back and I, of course, asked him to just throw it away with the crinkly paper after he finished thoroughly checking her every other orifice above the neck. Princess hated the whole process as you can imagine. I'm pretty sure she won't be putting anything else up her nose for awhile. So a lesson has been learned by both Princess and by myself. Princess learned that foreign objects don't go up noses or in ears or mouths. I have learned that there is something to be said for getting out of bed at the crack of dawn to dress nicely and do my hair. You really just never know what is going to happen and what will force you out of the house before you are "dressed".

December 14, 2009

The Gift of Life

So I was sitting in Relief Society (for those not in the know, that is one hour in our 3 hour block of church where the women folk meet) a few Sundays ago perusing through the various sign up sheets. I was having the usual monolog in my head: "Do I want to volunteer for opening or closing prayer? Really? I hate to answer a question with a question, but are you really asking me that?"; "Am I interested in a scrapbooking class? Absolutely nope."; "Would I be willing to volunteer in Primary (kids Sunday school) if needed? HAHAHAHAHAHA..oh wait, they're serious. So nope."; "Can I take a meal to so and so this week? Only if they want to die on top of the hard times they are already suffering, or want pizza"; "Would I like to donate blood at the ward blood drive? Heck no". Oh wait. Donate blood? I've never done that before. Hmm, maybe it would be kind of fun. And so went my thought process until I actually found myself signing my name next to one of the open time slots. I think some otherworldly force temporarily took control of my hand and signed my name. So then I had an appointment...

So the magic day of giving of my own precious bodily fluids arrived, faster than I thought it would, and I actually felt beholden to the promise I made when I signed my name on the sheet. Before I knew it, it was 5:50 and time for me to leave for the place where this donation was to take place. I was nervous before I even left the house. By the time I got there, I was positively pukey with anticipation. If you can believe it, there was actually a line of people willing to do this, so I had to wait about 40 minutes before my number was up...I mean called. While I was waiting I made the mistake of glancing around at the numerous beds which contained people hooked up to tubes that led to clear plastic bags that were in various states of being filled, with blood. Yes, the bags are actually clear. And yes, they actually have the people right out in the open. You know, just to chase off at least 75% of the first timers who show up to "do the right thing". But I didn't run. No sirree, I stayed right where I was. I think my face might have changed to a frightening shade of vampire white though, because a couple of the people I was waiting with asked me if I was okay.

So then my number was called and I was led into a small booth with black sheets all the way around it. Why choose the color black anyway? I mean, it's kind of morbid. But I digress. So there was just enough room for me, a small table with a computer at it, and the nurse who was sitting in front of the computer. She proceeded to ask me all kinds of questions and if I weren't donating blood to some other person which made the questions relevant, I would have been offended. And just for the record, no, I've never had any experimental vaccines, sex with men who have had sex with other men, lived in the UK for 3 months or more between the years of 1986 and 1996, had syphilis, or any other manner of awful sounding conditions. And yes, if you are reading this, I guess I have given away that I do in fact weigh more than 110 pounds. Dang, my secret is out.

So anyway, reading down the list of 1,000,000,001 reasons why a person can not donate blood, I felt sure I would come across something that would disqualify me. Then I would be able to leave with my head held high and a halo over my head anyway because, well, I would have tried. It wouldn't be my fault they didn't want my blood. But alas, I am clean enough for the Red Cross, and there was nothing to disqualify me. Not even my traitorous blood pressure felt like being traitorous. For the first time in my entire life, it was completely normal in a medical situation. Sheesh, how unreliable. So then the nurse did something completely unforgivable in my book...she actually pricked my finger. And it hurt! I nearly shed tears over it but since black sheets don't actually muffle sound, I felt embarrassed and didn't cry. And yes, my iron levels were "excellent". Absolutely, perfectly high. My level was 15, and it only needs to be 12. So I was officially cleared and led to the table like a sacrificial lamb.

I climbed onto the table, making jokes like I usually do when I'm nervous. I tried to make myself comfortable but my feet were slightly above head level and the nurse wouldn't let me cross my legs, so that was a battle lost before I really even began to fight it. Oh yeah, and of course there was the, "Oh my good grief that thing is huge!!" needle they so delicately shoved into my vein after a relaxing betadine bath for my arm. I'm not kidding folks, it is a big needle. It's long, yes, but the most scary part is the girth of the needle. It is made to drain blood, and fast. As soon as they put it in my vein, my blood was flowing like beer at a frat party. Oh yes, let the party begin. It took 7 minutes and 34 seconds to drain away a pint of my blood. And apparently it will take up to 5 weeks for my body to replace those lost red blood cells. That's an awful lot of time for replacing something that took only 7 minutes to give away.

They gave me a sticker, some juice, and a cookie. I felt an awful lot like a kid must feel after they've been to the pediatrician to get shots. The sticker really just doesn't make it feel worth it. Now if they'd given me a sucker, I might have felt differently :). So why did I do it? I'm not sure, really. All I can say is that it really wasn't all that bad (except for that dang finger prick) and I felt pretty normal the next day. And well, I guess I did feel pretty good about myself and my "gift". I think I left the building looking a little like this. But don't worry, it didn't last long...

December 08, 2009


I've been thinking lately. And my thoughts have been kind of troubled. I'm sure you might have guessed lately that I've been feeling "down". I hate to burden you with it, but then again, I'm just writing down my thoughts, it's up to you if you allow them to burden you :). I think being a mom is the hardest thing in the world. Every single day I feel like quitting. Like throwing my hands up in the air and saying, "forget it". But you can't do that when you're a mom. You can't quit. It's the one job that you absolutely cannot turn in your letter of resignation. The second that Mr. Sperm was introduced to Miss Egg, I was beholden to the little zygote. And I don't regret it, that joining of DNA that resulted in 2 wonderful children (though not at the same time). But that doesn't mean that I don't doubt myself.

I'm not going to lie to you, I feel like a lousy mom. If my kids grow up to be a couple of Mansens, well, it's not their fault. It's up to me to mold their little minds, to shape the people that they will become. And it is such a burden, trying to make decent human beings. Every day I feel like ultimately, I will fail them. I especially feel like I will fail Young Man. His particular DNA came with a special set of circumstances. If you know Young Man, you know he's different. You'd call him charming, but you'd also call him quirky. He is absolutely unique. He is who he is, which is unlike most of the little kids we come across in our lives. I can appreciate this. But unfortunately, the world we live in and anything "different" often do not mesh. People don't understand Young Man, and to tell you the truth, I do not understand him either.

If you have one of these unique kids, then you know what I'm talking about. You know how I feel. If you don't, well, then you'd probably tell me to just "get over it". I knew from the time he was 2 years old of his differences. And I spent at least 2 years trying to convince myself that it was all in my head. I desperately sought for people to tell me I was nuts, that there was nothing different there. But Young Man didn't speak until he was 3, and then it was this strange kind of echolalia that made the hairs on my arms stand up for quite awhile. Just when I thought I couldn't take it anymore, he walked up to me one day and literally spoke a complete, complex sentence that was an original thought. His speech therapist was floored. I was elated. He was finally "normal". But you know what, he was still who he was, just with the ability to tell me about it.

I have utterly failed him already because I cannot just accept him the way he is. I struggle with my immense guilt and the hate I feel for myself when I get embarrassed at something he does rather that support him. I am his advocate, but here I am hiding under a rock. Have you gathered yet how very painful this is. It is awful. Thankfully he is fine and has not yet felt the sting of the world. But I am shouldering a burden that is going to crush me very soon. And you know the worst part, I feel completely alone. I am wallowing in misery, guilt, and complete confusion, and I am looking for a hand up. Anything. He has trouble socializing with other kids, and unfortunately, he is not given the chance to practice.

I know this sounds bad. Trust me, I know. I guess I hope that someone out there will read this, someone who feels the way I do, and she will not feel alone. She'll know that she's not the only one in the world feeling such terrible things. She'll know she's not the only mother out there that cannot seem to stop mourning the loss of a child she never had. I don't know what it's like to have a "normal" little boy. I don't know what it's like to have a child that other children like to play with and invite to birthday parties. Princess is too young to have really had any of these experiences yet.

You know, I never talk about this. And the few times I've gotten up the guts to mention it, I really only scratch the surface. I cannot fathom the depth of my sadness over this. He is healthy, he is beautiful, he is wonderful and smart. So what is my problem? I cannot help but fear that his will be a life filled with judgement and rejection. And I ache to think of my beautiful little boy feeling desperately alone. So there is one thing I'm working on and it is that he may never, ever think for one second that he is not completely loved and accepted by me. His Mother.

December 05, 2009

Let's play catch-up...

Folks, I left you on a sad note last I wrote and I do apologize. But as I'm sure you are aware, life just isn't all sunshine, roses, and unicorns. But wouldn't that be great if it were? I mean really, that would rock. My unicorn would be pure white with a pink tail and mane, and of course would have a garland of baby pink roses wrapped around her neck. Oh, and I of course would ride her with no saddle or bridle, she would simply read the subtle movements of my super long, very slim thighs. Oh, no wait, she would read my mind. That's better huh? Our minds would be linked together in some kind of other worldly, Rainbow Brite, virginal kind of way. But hey, like I said, no unicorns. And sometimes we get rain and poopy diapers instead of sunshine and roses. I'm just not perpetually happy all the time but I sure as heck do wish I were.

Just what in the world have we been up to anyway? Well, a whole lot of the same stuff we're always up to. I know, I know, you were expecting exotic travel, stories of hobknobbing with glamorous celebrities, and the spending of copious amounts of money on children's clothing weren't you. Okay, well, I have been up to a little bit of the latter, to my husband's irritation, but the kids sure are lookin' sharp this winter ;). So anyway, I'm just going to post some pics of things we've done lately and sort of leave it at that. Lame, I know. But I promise I'll dazzle you with some super witty and intelligent post at some point in the near future...

We went to Aspen Grove in the mountains where we played a lot of volleyball with the whole extended family, Princess nearly lost a hand to a hungry bear, and Young Man picked his nose and did sweet Kung Fu moves...a lot...

Oh and of course I ran around looking like Bigfoot in my enormous pink sweat shirt and absolutely no make-up, but was still lookin' cute just because of the cute vibes that ooze off of Princess onto whoever happens to be near her...

We've done a lot of playing...

We trick or treated and nearly died of body wide shock from all the sugar we ingested...

Princess suffered the dreaded stomach virus (and the rest of us too!)...

And the kids have become better friends nearly

So that's a little photo fun for ya! I hope you enjoyed it :).

P.S. The husband does exist, I promise! Unfortunately there just happened to be no pictures of him in the computer files I was accessing for this post. I was simply too lazy to go looking around for one with him in it.

Oh's one. He's holding Princess and her best buddy, cousin E :).

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