Sunday, October 28, 2012

Halloween Happy

It was a special day around here today. It was pumpkin day. Time to paint. Time to carve. Time to dig. And it went surprisingly well with our crazy little guy. Pictures will do a much better job at describing it (with some of my ridiculous comments included), so here ya go.

{Disclaimer: We know our child's hair is longer than necessary, much longer. We aren't doing it purposely. It grows faster than sin, and we have pictures coming up. We are just trying to hold off until as close as we can. Yes, it is driving me crazy. Also, he generally is always dressed, really. But when paint and pumpkin guts are involved, my OCD doesn't allow for clothes to be on.}

My perfect little pumpkin and his perfect little pumpkin.

Checking out all the angles. This is how an artist prepares himself to create a masterpiece.

"Now listen, man. I'm gonna paint you. And you're going to be pretty sweet. I know you think you're already gorgeous, but just wait."

Let's do this!

Hard at work.

The masterpiece. 

"That's what I made?"

Proud of his work!

I think he was a little embarrassed that his big ol' belly kind of resembles the big ol' pumpkin.

He was a little unsure of the situation goin' on inside the pumpkin for the first few minutes.

But...eventually the curiosity won out and he was all about it.

And then he went to work. Pulling out He would have sat and done this for the rest of the night, if his parents had the time and the patience. 

The final product. Yes, we still did it even though they are down by 3 games. Because we're REAL fans. And we still love them. Even if they get swept tonight. But we still have faith in our boys. But ya know what, second place ain't too shabby, and we're proud. 

And yes, we're all also dressed in Tigers gear. With our Tigers pumpkin. Maybe we're obsessed. We're ok with that.

And of course, the best part of pumpkin carving, aside from the memories, the baked seeds....
Oh yum.

Other than our pumpkin adventures, today included some time out of the house with my Mom. Which was beyond needed. Yesterday I hit a wall. A brick one. A brick wall of total exhaustion, overwhelm-ment(?), and desperation. Jeremy works 6 days a week. Has class until 10 on Mondays. Coaches soccer until 8 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I have something going on with my body, thyroid, hormone imbalance, something, whatever it is, I'm dead weight. Landon is a crazy. I am NOT complaining, please, please, please understand that. I LOVE my life. I love my son, my husband, my home. But every mom out there knows, sometimes it just all adds up and gets to be a little much. I won't apologize for it. Yes, I only have ONE child. Yes, my husband is home in bed with me every night, not traveling, not overseas. I don't know how those moms do it. Sarah, I don't know how you do it with four and a husband who is always out of town for work. I really don't. So please don't think that I'm taking any of it for granted. I'm not. I also know my limits, and I know when I'm reaching them. And yesterday, I did. So today, I got to go out and go to lunch with my mom. Go shopping. Just leisurely wander around stores, without chasing Landon. Without him screaming. Without just trying to find what I wanted and get out. We didn't have anything we were looking for, we were just looking. And at our own pace. With each other. And it was wonderful. Thank you, Mom. You re-energized me today. I love you, and if I never thanked you for being a kick ass stay at home mom when I was little, I'm thanking you now. I never gave you the credit you deserved. 

Oh....and another re-energizing element of the day? LANDON USED THE POTTY. PEED ON THE POTTY. I know there are going to be moms that are telling me I'm doing this way too early, and probably damaging him for life. But you can just take that criticism somewhere else. We have a routine. (Amost) Every night we take a bath, and after the bath, before I can get a diaper on him, he pees. On his bedroom floor. On his white carpet. So after months and months of cleaning up his pee, and trying to find faster ways to get a diaper on him (and yes, I tried it in the bathroom too, but then I was just washing my bath mat daily. The kid is like a puppy, he only does it on soft carpeted areas), I decided I would bust out the potty. I'd set him on it, and if he went, that's great. If he didn't, that's ok, we'd keep working. We've been doing this for over a month. The first few nights, he would sit on the potty for a few minutes, and then as soon as he stood up, he would pee. I would pick him right up and put him back on the potty, but of course, he'd be done. And now there was a line of pee from the place he started to the place he finished. Tonight, it finally happened. He sat down, he peed, he smiled, and he clapped. He knew he did it. And that kid got so many kisses and claps and screams, it's a little insane. But his milestone was my milestone, and I feel pretty amazing about it. Yes, I know it won't happen every night. It might not happen again until he's two. That's ok. It happened tonight. And I'll take it. 

For now, I need to go root for my Tigers. And eat my weight in pumpkin seeds. Perhaps sneak a bath. And then go to bed, feeling so much better than I did when I went to bed last night. And tomorrow, I'll wake up energized, and ready to take on the week. Hopefully.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Moments. Strangers. And Grandpas.

Every now and then, you have a moment. A moment when you meet someone who changes your day around. Sometimes for the good, sometimes for the bad.

Today I had one of those moments. For the good. But let's back up.

This morning I discovered reason #752 that I don't enjoy taking showers anymore. It was peaceful enough. No major trauma during the showering process. Landon was absent from the bathroom, but I knew Dora was on in the bedroom, and quite frankly, I was relieved to not have him going through all the cabinets causing more work for me. As I get out, and am leisurely drying myself off, thinking, "wow, that was nice!", I heard it. I couldn't describe what it was, but I knew it wasn't good. What was it? 17 month old violently shaking an OPEN can of Diet Coke. Diet Coke everywhere. On him. On the carpet. On the walls. On the CEILING. On the dresser. Everywhere. Diet Coke.

Now I'm naked, trying desperately to keep a towel wrapped around me, that the same 17 month old has now made a game out of trying to get off of me, and trying to clean it up. Didn't even know where to start. I know there was some yelling. Some "What are you THINKING, Landon!?" and some "NOW COME ON!!!!!!". But there was also a massive internal dialogue, saying, "Um...hello. You're the idiot. You're the one who left it sitting there. Open. Half full. He's a baby. He doesn't know any better. He thought it was a new toy his awesome mom gave him. Uh hey, have you seen her, by the way? Because you're being kind of evil right now, and he probably misses her".

I somehow got it all cleaned up, continued on with getting ready, which, as usual, took way longer than it needed to because I was constantly stopping to put things back in cabinets, and I decided it was time. It was time to finally baby proof OUR bathroom too. So that during my showers, I can lock him in there, with some safe, REAL actual toys, and he can't get into anything. I've been putting it off, because...why? Because I enjoy the mass chaos that is every morning? No. I have no idea why I have been. But I have. But I'm not any more. So we head out the door.

I stop to get gas, and I pull up to a pump, get out, get my little gas tank cover thing a ma jiggy off, and go to put my card in, and realize the credit card swiper is broken. Ok. Fine. Put everything back in place, and back up to the other pump. Get out and start again. Once I had it started, I opened the back door so I could talk to Landon, try to keep his screams for "OUT!!!!" to a minimum. Suddenly, I hear a kind voice say, "It's the greatest time, isn't it?" Huh? I turn around and see a gentleman, probably about 65, standing at the pump on the opposite side of mine. I politely say, "Excuse me?" and he says "The baby. It's the greatest thing." Oh, right. Well yes, it is. But if you had been at my house this morning, you probably wouldn't be saying this. I smile politely and say that it really truly is, and turn to check my ever going total on the screen. "It's also the hardest damn thing ever, right?" I can't explain it, but I instantly relaxed. I was no longer afraid of the strange man talking to me at the gas station. I was no longer afraid the stranger thought I wasn't up to par as a mom. He got it. I looked at him, and I think I started to tear up. "Yes" was all I could say. He kind of laughed and then said probably the most kind words anyone has ever said to me, at least that a stranger has ever said. He asked if I was working, and I told him no, I am a stay at home mom. "You're amazing. Cut yourself some slack. Every day isn't going to be perfect, he's going to have some bad days, you are too. But you've devoted your life to raising a human. And from what I can see, a pretty damn cute one. I don't know how your day today is going, but you need to hear that. You're doing a great job." Honestly, I didn't know what to say. I just nervously laughed and said thank you, but he wasn't done yet. "My wife stayed home with our boys, and she's the strongest person I know. I had it easy, ya know. Leaving to go to work everyday. Coming home and just getting to play, then putting them to bed and I was off duty. I got all the fun parts. She had the hardest job in the world. And she did great. But she never gave herself enough credit. You don't either. Trust me when I tell you, you are doing great". This man has to be an angel or something. There is no way this is happening. Again, I thanked him, told him it really meant a lot to hear. He smiled, and so graciously said, "You don't have to thank me. Just telling a phenomenal mom that she is doing great. That's what we're all here for, to build each other up when we need it". We talked a little more, about his grandson, his wife, their boys, him telling me that "it'll all be over before you know it. And you'll miss it all. Don't blink". I think he is maybe the wisest, kindest angel God has walking this earth right now. My tank was full, so I said thank you again, told him to enjoy his grandson, and started to get in the car. "Dear, thank you for thanking me. You could have just walked away. You helped build me up today, too. God bless. And go Tigers!!!". I got in the car and truly wanted to cry. I wanted to know more about this man. I wanted to spend more time talking to him. I want to know how we happened to be at the same pump, at the same time, and how he knew exactly what I needed to hear this morning.

Then it hit me. Just yesterday, I was talking to my cousin Kristen, who was telling me about frustrations with her 3 year old, and how she found a quarter at therapy with her youngest. (If you don't know about the quarters, just hang tight, a post will be coming about it. But just a summary, it's our Grandpa's way of telling us he's there). Grandpa had been there. To remind her that it was all going to be ok. To remind her that he's always with her. Just breathe, and enjoy it. I had texted her not more than 30 minutes before I met this man complaining about the Diet Coke on my ceiling. And then I meet him. I'm pretty sure Grandpa concocted that, too. He sent me an angel today, to say all the right things. So thank you, Gaga. You still know exactly what I need. {Thank you too, for getting Grandma back home and settled in this morning. Be with her. Keep her comfortable and happy. She needs you, too}

So that was it. That was my moment today. A moment that I didn't even know I needed, but I really did. As we went on our way to Buy Buy Baby, we laughed and sang, and enjoyed the windows down on this 75 degree October day. I bought him a new toy, because he deserves it. I let him pull his shoes and socks off on the way home without once telling him to keep them on. I let him drink his bottle in the fort we built this morning, instead of on the couch. And I just put a happy, gorgeous toddler in his bed for nap. The Diet Coke stains will go away, eventually, with enough scrubbing. But so will my baby. I need to enjoy him. Soak it all up. And know that even in my worst moments, I'm still doing ok.

Thanks, stranger. For teaching me a much needed lesson today. I hope you are out enjoying the heck out of your beautiful grandson. He's a lucky, lucky boy.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Landon's Birth Story

This has taken me DAYS to write, to get just right. And I'm still not sure I have done it justice. But, here it is, my best shot at telling the story of the best day of my life...

For those of you who know me well enough, you know that my entire pregnancy was a roller coaster. We spent months in and out of the hospital, on bed rest, taking half a dozen different medications to keep me from contracting. Each time the doctor sent me to the hospital, I secretly prayed they would just say I had been through enough, and they would let me deliver. Before you jump down my throat, I DID realize, all along, that I needed to get as close to my due date as possible, for the health of my child. And I truly didn't want anything to get in the way of that. However, anyone who has ever been given a 24 hour dose of Magnesium to stop labor….TWICE….knows why I wanted it to just be over. 

But this post isn't about that. Or all the down days, or the drama of it all leading up to it. No. It's about THE day. The most amazing, spectacular, life altering day of my life. The day Landon Warren Teltow showed his gorgeous, perfect face.

I had been up virtually all night with horrible back pain. It didn't matter how I laid, how I sat, how I stood, nothing made it go away. Thank goodness Jeremy was scheduled to be off the next day, because I kept him awake most of the night too. By the time daylight finally broke, he convinced me that I needed to call my doctor. I was in too much pain. So I broke down and called, knowing what she would say. Yes, I had to go in.

But, since we were so used to this drill, we took our own sweet time. Jeremy showered, I put make up on and did my hair. Got my bag all packed, because I assumed I would be spending another couple nights there while they monitored me….again. We were confident that we knew what the day was going to look like. But as I was getting close to being ready, something changed. I started feeling….different. I can't explain it. But those of you who have gone through it, you know what I mean. Just….different. 

As we were about to walk out the door, Jeremy's phone rang. The reviewers were at his office. Panic set in. For him, not me. I was just over here trying to figure out what the hell was happening and why I hadn't felt this way before. As I could see him start debating whether he should go in to work or not, I called my mom and told her we were going in, I would let her know what was going on. I nearly asked her to take me, because I was sure Jeremy was going to give in and go to work. He later told me that he could see on my face that something was different, and he knew he couldn't go. So we finally get ourselves into the car, probably a good hour and a half after calling my doctor, and we headed back to St John's…our second home. 

Every few minutes, I could feel something else change. Something just kept getting weirder. I started realizing that I was timing the pains in my back….about every 4 minutes. Shit. They're actually contractions. It hit me like a ton of bricks. Why hadn't I realized it before? Because they had never felt like this before. Honestly, even all those times I was in the hospital, and everyone was staring at the monitor telling me how big they were, they never hurt. They were uncomfortable, sure. But painful? Nah. Not really. And those were all in my stomach. These were my back. And they hurt. Bad. And every time they got worse. I vividly remember looking at Jeremy and saying "These are REAL contractions, he's getting ready" and him saying "Just relax. It's ok". We were only at 35 weeks and 4 days. That was still over a month early. And then the next ton of bricks hit me. They told me after 35 weeks, they wouldn't stop it. They wouldn't keep putting me through this. They had given me two rounds of steroid shots to help develop his lungs, he was measuring at a good weight, I was exhausted. Mentally, emotionally, physically. 

But still. We were so used to the whole ordeal, I didn't truly believe it. No, they would do something, or it would just stop eventually and after a couple days, we'd go back home, I'd go back to laying in bed all day, and in another few days, we'd do it all again. That was the plan.

So we arrive, they get me gowned up, and in a triage room, and my boy Dave came in to see me. Who the heck is Dave, you ask? Dave is a very large man. A very large male nurse. A very large male nurse who did countless extremely uncomfortable exams on me during the pregnancy. Did I mention he was HUGE? Yeah, take a minute to let that sink in, ladies. But, Dave liked me, and I liked him, and we had seen so much of each other, we were almost happy to see one another again. We both thought it was just another visit. The norm. 

So good ol' Dave hooks me up to all the monitors, assures me that I AM contracting, and does the exam. Tells me I'm at a 3. Well crap, that's a whole centimeter more than I was just 2 days ago. Says he'll sit and watch me for about an hour, and check again. If I haven't progressed any, I'll go home. If I have, plan on staying. Right before he left our room, I remember him turning around and saying, "Remember kid, we aren't going to stop it any more. This could be this boys birthday". Yeah, ok Dave. We both know what's going to happen here, and it doesn't include a baby coming out of me. Not today. So Jeremy and I settled in, him on his phone with his office, me on Facebook. I honestly have no idea when my mom got there. I want to say it was sometime at this point, before we got sent to our room, but honestly, the next three hours went so fast, and have become such a blur, I really have no idea.

After our hour of waiting, Dave came back and checked again, while assuring me that I had been contracting the entire time. Yes, I knew that. Remember, Dave, I'm the one with the uterus. Well, sure shit, I was at 4. That did it. I was being admitted. Ok, still. This didn't alarm us. We knew it was coming. I was even past the point of getting upset about it. It was just….routine. Whatever. 

So I get wheeled down to my room, settled in, meet my nurse, do all the usual chit chatting. "Do you know what it is?" "What are you going to name him?" "I hear you've been here a lot". Yadda yadda yadda. I remember my mom calling my Dad to tell him I was there again, and had been admitted. I remember Jeremy on his phone, freaking out over what was happening at his office, not so much about what was happening in Birthing Suite 26. Now before you curse him for being insensitive, or an asshole, keep in mind that we still thought this was just the same old thing all over again. I wasn't too concerned over what was happening either. Aside from the fact that it still hurt like hell, and I was still feeling….weird. It was probably somewhere in here that I asked for my first hit of Zofran, because, again, if you know me at all, you know that puke is my worst fear. And no matter what I was there for, I refused to throw up. And any little wave of nausea was reason enough for me to ask them to pump that into my IV. 

Here's where it all gets fuzzy. I have no idea what time this portion of the story went down. Absolutely no clue. I just know that I was hanging out, without a care in the world, aside from the ridiculous stabbing pain that kept coming out of nowhere, watching TV with my mom and husband. My nurse came in, I was assuming just to ask how I was doing, and that was it. She dropped the bomb. "Ok, I talked to Dr. White, and he is committing you to deliver today. So let's break your water!". Whoa….what?? Hold on a second. I think a small "yelp" escaped from my mom, Jeremy's face was just a whole lot of "What the hell are you talking about?" and I was….I have no idea. I think I laughed. She had to be kidding. This was a sick joke. I remember my mom calling my Dad again, and telling him this was it, I was having the baby. I remember the nurse saying she was going to get another nurse, and they were going to come in and break the water, and I remember looking at Jeremy and telling him I wasn't ready. Which….again….what? After all of this? I wasn't ready? Come on, Kelly! But no. I wasn't. I was not prepared. Not prepared to be a mommy (and really, I think just not prepared to share him with everyone else. Up until this point, it was just him and I. In our own little world. Once he was out, he was everybody's. I wasn't quite sure I was ready to let go of him yet), and sure as hell not prepared for the next several hours. 

But regardless, in came the nurses, and the huge ass "crochet hook", and it was time. Now here's where it gets a little funny. First of all, I was determined, for the entire 35 weeks and 4 days, that when my water broke, I wouldn't know it. I would dismiss it, and I wouldn't know it happened. HA….HA….HA!!!!! Join me in my laughing, mommies. Oh no, there was no mistaking what happened when it happened. Also keep in mind, I had high levels of fluid for about the last month and a half of the pregnancy. Old faithful doesn't really even begin to describe it. But that's a detail nobody wants to really hear about. Besides, if you're a mama, you know what I'm talking about, no need to get ridiculous. And here's the other funny part. Before they broke it, my dear, sweet nurse, asked me if she should call up for my epidural, so that they would be here within reasonable time after they broke my water. Pssssh. No, silly. I don't want that yet. Look at how amazing I've been handling this pain. I'm a pro! I'll let you know when I need it, but it's not now. Besides, it'll slow this down, and I want a baby by 4pm. HA….HA….HA!!!!! 

Basically…..I was a really huge idiot at that moment. It took me, quite honestly, about 10 minutes after the geyser had broken to know just how stupid I was. The pain went from horrible to unbearable. This kid seriously had it out for me. So I gave the signal, I needed it, and I needed it NOW. But of course, Kelly, since it hadn't been ordered yet, you're going to have to wait. Lovely. No idea how long I waited. No damn clue. I just know that it was agonizing, I thought I was going to vomit, and Jeremy truly believed that saying "just breathe" over and over and over and over, was helping me. 

FINALLY, the miracle man showed up, my mom and Jeremy left the room, and it was time. This would be quick, right? No. I couldn't curl my back in the right way because I felt like my back was about to blow up. I couldn't tuck my head down, because when I did, I was sure I was going to puke. I couldn't "stop shaking" because um….I was just told I was having a baby TODAY…about 45 minutes ago. I'm kind of in shock here. I don't really remember a lot about the process, honestly. I just remember hanging on my poor nurse like my life depended on it, praying that I wouldn't throw up, and still trying to understand how it was possible that I was having this baby. Today.

And then the waiting game began. I was a big floppy mess, couldn't move, but pain free. But, I really, really hated the whole epidural thing. I HATED not having control over my legs. I remember laying there thinking I would outsmart this thing. If I stared at my leg long enough, and had enough willpower, I WOULD make it move. But no. Couldn't get it. I had to have someone help shift me every time I got uncomfortable. Hated it. Yes, I was happy to be pain free, but paralyzed? Not cool. 

I vaguely remember my in laws coming it at some point during this time, vaguely remember texting my best friend and telling her it was happening, and her telling me she was coming, she would leave work and be there. I think I remember calling my cousin, and her saying she was on her way. But I think during the whole time, I was in a daze. Part of me was trying to contemplate what was happening. Another part of me was scared out of her mind. And another part of me had never been happier. I was finally going to meet him. Today. I was going to hold him and kiss him and love him like nobody else could ever love him. And I was going to do it today. May 19th, 2011. I was going to meet my SON. The son I created. The son I grew inside of me. The son that I would lay in bed and crack up at at 3:30 in the morning because he was moving like crazy. The son who would get hiccups at least twice a day. The son who used to flip like mad every time I ate a tangerine. My SON. My son. Today. And it was going to be perfect and magical and peaceful. HA….HA…..HA!!!!!!

I think it was close to 6 (no, I KNOW it was close to 6, because I remember my mom telling me that maybe he would be born at 6:19, which was his due date….HA!!!!), and my parents were in the room, my cousin, Jeremy, my in laws….all just hanging out, playing the waiting game. When suddenly it happened. Something felt different. Not like I had been feeling. I remember Sarah asking me if I was ok, and me saying that something felt weird. My pelvis felt heavy. "OH MY GOD! You have to push!!!!!". No, no, no. Not yet. It just feels different. "GET THE NURSE! SHE HAS TO PUSH!!" Calm down, damn it. I don't have to…oh….maybe? Why am I doubting her? She has four kids. All came out of her. All came out the same tunnel. I think she knows what she's talking about. Nurse came in, family walked out, and sure enough, "Kelly….you're at a 10….it's time". Ok…again….WHAT? The in laws came back in, told me good luck, I would be fine. Sarah, who I trusted implicitly (as my cousin and basically my big sister, mother of FOUR, why wouldn't I?) told me "It'll all be over in 20 minutes! Push hard, and it will go so fast! I can't wait to meet him!". HA….HA….HA!!!!!

Now, our original plan was for only Jeremy and my mom to be in the room with me. But at the last minute, as everyone else was leaving, my dad, my daddy, my hero, came over to the side of my bed and said, "Can I stay? I'll stand in the corner, I just want to be here". Those of you who don't know me well enough, and don't get it, are now saying "WHAT? NO! Gross! Leave, Dad!" But to you, I say, shut up. You don't get it. This man had rubbed my back countless times as I puked growing up. This man had been by my side through every boo boo, illness, scary time. This man had just lost his father, exactly one day short of a month ago, and hadn't been "himself" ever since. So, no, I didn't give it any thought. Of course you can stay, Daddy. If this is what makes it all better for you, then yes. Stay. Little did I know just how much I would be needing my Daddy in the coming hours. Yes, that's right….I said HOURS.

I think it's mandatory for all nurses to tell you on your first few pushes that you're "doing great!". But I also think they're full of shit. And I started realizing about an hour into pushing just how full of shit she was. No, nursey, if I was truly "doing great", he would be here by now. But all you have been saying to me for the last hour is that you can see the top of his head. The TOP!? What about the middle? I mean come on, I'm an hour in. 

By hour TWO, I was cursing Sarah. That witch (which I can say with total confidence that she knows that I still love her more than life, I was just hormonal and tired and trying to get a kid out of me) told me this would be over in 20 minutes, and it's two hours later, and the wench at the end of my bed is still telling me she can only see the TOP of his head. But hey, I'm "doing great!". No. No I'm not. By this time, my mom had worn out of energy from holding one leg, and could see my will was starting to run dry, and tagged my dad in. That's right kids, my dad was now holding my leg. Jeremy on one leg, my dad on the other. Hey, by hour two, does any one REALLY have any modesty left? I've been rigged up here, like this, for 120 minutes now. I don't care if you want the bum on the street to come in, if he can help this be over, call him up. 

I remember my dad trying so hard to tell me I was fine. Rubbing my head. I remember Jeremy continually saying "breathe….breathe….breathe…..". I also remember wanting to rip Jeremy's face off. STOP TELLING ME TO BREATHE!!! I CANNOT BREATHE, OK!? And I remember telling my dad to COUNT FASTER! Seriously….when your daughter is trying to push a HUMAN out of her, counting to ten is NOT supposed to take a full ten seconds. A full ten seconds is what kills women. No, I can handle a solid 7. But after that, I'm done. I remember telling the nurse I couldn't do it. Telling her she had to do something. I was running out of steam. She kept telling me I had to do it. There was no reason for them to take me for a c-section. He was in position, his heart rate was good, I just needed to push. Yeah, ok. Sure. 

Around the three hour mark, I remember the doctor coming and standing at the end of the bed, watching me attempt to get this done. Just standing there. Just staring. All cool and calm and collected like this was nothing. Which, ok fine, he does this everyday, but I don't! And I….am….DYING! I saw him start to unwrap all the tools on the little table at the foot of the bed, and I figured, YES! IT'S TIME! We're getting close! He must be able to FINALLY see the middle of his head! But no. Then I saw him unwrap the forceps. In my right state of mind, I probably would have panicked. I probably would have told him there was no way in hell he was using those on my perfect baby. I'll do this. It might take me 4 years, but I'll do it. But no, after 3 hours of pushing, a pelvis that felt like it was about to SHATTER INTO A MILLION PEICES, those forceps were the light at the end of the tunnel. But….just as quickly as I watched him unwrap them, I saw him set them back down on the table. NOW COME ON!!!!

I know I asked him if there was anything he could do. I know he told me no. I know I hated him, because I knew he was lying. I may be an exhausted, disheveled, bitch of a mess, but I saw what you just did, what you just took out. Now help me!!!! Please!!! It was around this time when I again assured everyone that I couldn't do this, and suddenly I heard my mother in law say, "Yes you can, Kelly. You don't have a choice." Wait…what? When did you get here? Who else is in here? Thankfully, no, nobody else. She had come in to find out what the heck was going on. She had been sitting in a waiting room with my cousin who couldn't understand why 20 minutes had come and passed about 42 times and there still wasn't a baby, with my best friend who had no idea what was going on, with my father in law, my aunt and uncle. They wouldn't let anybody else in, so she took matters into her own hands. Did I mention that she's a nurse? And very determined? And doesn't easily take no for an answer? So yes, now she had joined the mass chaos. 

The rest is truly a blur. I think I remember someone saying "Oh geez….he's face up" (UMMMMMM WHY DIDN'T YOU REALIZE THAT THREE AND A HALF HOURS AGO!!?!?), and then things kicked into high gear. I remember wondering why I was in SO much pain, even with the epidural? I remember the doctor telling me if I had been pushing this way the whole time, he would have been here by now (You…..shut it. I hate you). I have no idea when he finally picked up the forceps. No idea when he put them on Landon's perfect little head. No idea how long it took him to pull him out. I just know that one minute I was dying, and the next minute, I was truly alive. 

I think I heard my mom scream before I even realized it was over. He was here. 9:21PM. He was on my chest. He was screaming. Screaming! That meant the steroids worked and his little lungs were working! Oddly, even in my horrible mental state, that was my first thought. He's ok. He's screaming. I remember grabbing him, trying to take it all in. Trying to really SEE him. I heard people crying around me, I heard cheering, I heard the doctor telling Jeremy where to cut the cord. But none of it was registering. It was just Landon and me. Right there. On my chest. Happy. Healthy. Screaming. Crying. Perfect. It doesn't matter how long I sit here and try to put it into words. I can't. There's no way. Every mama knows. And if you aren't a mama, just wait. It will be the single best moment of your whole life. And you will have no idea what else is going on. And you will never have words for it. Just a feeling. A feeling that can NEVER be described. 

All too quickly, they took him, and started doing what they needed to do. I was a real mess, so the doctor and I had our own little adventure while everyone else doted on Landon. I sort of remember one of the nurses telling me they were going to take him down to the special care nursery. He was having a little trouble breathing, and they wanted to keep an eye on it. For some reason, I was ok with that. We were expecting that he probably wouldn't get to stay with me. He was a month early. BUT. He was screaming. And that made me feel better. I think I started to panic, because no matter how prepared you are for it, it's still scary as hell and heartbreaking when they tell you they are going to take your baby away from you. You won't be holding him again tonight. You won't be kissing his little fingers, and staring at his little nose. But I was assured he was fine, and as they started to take him, I heard someone tell them to let me say goodbye. You couldn't possibly be considering just TAKING him, without letting me get another look, another kiss, right? Whoever that was remains on my list to this day. Jeremy asked me if I wanted him to stay, but I told him no, he needed to go with Landon. I couldn't stand the thought of him not being with me, I certainly didn't want him to be entirely alone. Yes, I realize the nurses are there. But no, they are not the same. 

A few minutes later, someone came in and told me that they had taken him to the NICU, he needed more than what they could do for him in special care. That's when real heartbreak sets in. No, he needs me. He needs his mommy. That's what he needs. Let me go see him. Let me snuggle him. He'll be fine. He just needs me. Him and I know what to do together. We got this far, didn't we? Let me. But no, that's not allowed when you're still paralyzed and STILL being sewn up. Too much information? Sorry. You read this far, you should have known the horror of it all was coming at some point. 

Slowly, the room cleared out, my other visitors were allowed in, and my Diet Coke was delivered. The Diet Coke that I had been DYING for for 9 months. It was my father in laws only job that day. To make sure I had it when I was no longer pregnant. And he pulled through. Like a champ. I finally got to see Megan. After she sat in the waiting room for 4 hours waiting for her Godson to be born, but at the end, all she got to see was me. Worn out, disgusting, me. No baby. Because he wasn't there. He was down in a cold room with nurses who didn't know him, hooked up to wires and monitors. Jeremy was able to see him, so was his mom and my mom. But not me. Pure heartache. Finally, everyone gave me their congratulations, their kisses, and said goodnight. But as exhausted as I was, I didn't want to do anything but see my baby. Which probably could have happened, if what happened next didn't happen.

It was around midnight, Jeremy and I were having a conversation with the nurse, and I sat up in bed to grab my trusty Diet Coke. And I felt like I was about to fall off the earth. I don't know how else to describe it. It was an awful, awful feeling. Just not right. The nurse laid me back down and asked if it was any better laying down. It wasn't. And that's about the last I remember. Fully any way. I remember hearing the nurse get on the phone and say I was "symptomatic", and there was "a lot of blood". I remember the doctor coming back in and saying "Get me an OR". I remember them telling me they were taking me down to the operating room, but I had no idea what for. I remember crying and holding the nurses hand as they wheeled me down. I remember thinking I was dying. That I had just given birth to this beautiful, perfect little boy, and he was going to be without a mother. Which had been my worst nightmare for the last few months. That something would happen. I would bleed too much. They wouldn't be able to stop it. 

Long story short, at 1:20 AM, I was in an operating room, hemorrhaging. I remember nothing between crying with the nurse and waking up back in my room, holding Jeremy's hand. When I started to wake up, they were telling me that they were giving me blood. I was ok, but I needed a transfusion, I had lost too much. What?? No. I just had a baby. And he was screaming. And I got my Diet Coke. Everything is perfect. But it wasn't.

And it wasn't until the following AFTERNOON that I finally got to hold my baby. I couldn't get out of bed in the morning when they tried. I was too weak. I couldn't get to the wheelchair. And I was beyond frustrated. All I needed was to see my baby. And my body wasn't letting me. I wanted to scream. Finally, that afternoon, I was able to get just enough energy to get to the chair, but that was about it. I was too scared to hold him when we finally got down to the NICU because I thought I would drop him. I just sat and stared. At this amazing, small creature that I had made. Sure, he had wires, and tubes, but he was perfect. So I just stared. And let him be perfect. 

The nurses were amazing. They assured me I was strong enough to hold him. Assured me that he would give me the strength I needed to hold him. And they were right. It was pure heaven when I finally got him in my arms. Everything else disappeared again. I had no concept of pain, or dizziness, or fear. Just of this little man, holding my finger. This little CHAMP who, even at a month early, only needed oxygen for a couple HOURS, and then was onto breathing room air. He was getting fed through a feeding tube, which was probably the hardest part of all the wires and tubes. But he was getting food. And that was good. 

He spent 5 days in the NICU before we were able to take him home. But we never left him. My doctor was wonderful, and kept me in the hospital for an extra two days, so I could be there with him. When she finally discharged me, they let us stay as "boarders", which meant we got to stay in our room, just without nurse care. So we spent those days going back and forth from our room to the NICU, every two hours to feed him, to hold him, to change him. To just be with him. Our last night in the hospital, we stayed in a room IN the NICU, and he stayed with us. He was still hooked up to monitors, so if anything happened, the nurses knew to come get him. But nothing did. It was perfect. It was such a small room, but it was the three of us, spending the night together. And it was perfect. It was the start of our journey, and while, sure, it would have been more comfortable at home, I wouldn't change a thing about it. It's all part of our story. Our perfect story. 

Landon Warren Teltow
May 19, 2011
9:21 PM
5 lbs, 14 oz, 18.75 inches

Finally holding him, and finally feeling that grip on my finger. It was like he had been waiting for me to get there.

Finally eating from a bottle!

The most beautiful sight in the world. We went down to feed him, and all the wires and tubes that were there just two hours ago, were entirely gone. He was completely free.

They finally let us dress him around day 3. This was a newborn outfit, and it was HUGE on him. 

He had a lot of milestones he had to hit before they could consider sending him home. One of them was the carseat test. He had to breathe on his own, sitting upright in the carseat, for one hour. He passed with flying colors. And he was adorable doing it.

Finally going HOME!!!!! On an incredibly rainy, cold day. We had to take a different route home because the freeway had flooded and was closed down. We could have freaked out, thinking it was a bad omen, but we knew better. This cutie was going HOME with US. Life was perfect.

Getting settled in at home!

And that's that. Landon, today you are a beautiful, healthy, energetic, happy, loving, absolutely amazing 17 month old boy. Nobody that we tell our story to believes us. There is no way you could have been a month early. Been hooked up to those wires. Been in the NICU. But you were. And you beat all the odds, and you came out on top. You are the center of our universe, Landon Warren. You have shown us what life is all about. You're everything. We love you to the moon and back....times ten.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

I Have A Secret...

....and an update.

But first things first. I was looking at my page stats the other day, and I saw that this here little blog has had over 22 THOUSAND views. Holy what!? I don't know that many people. And I know that those of you who are on this journey with me, and are reading faithfully, still could not surmount to that number. Which means that I have people that I don't know reading along. Which makes what I'm about to do a little easier. And a little harder.

I have a secret. And it's somewhat embarrassing, beyond frustrating, and incredibly anxiety-creating. And I have been back and forth a million times about if I wanted to write this post or not. But when I saw that huge number, and I remembered the amazing outpouring of love, support, and outreach of people suffering with the same thing, from my post about my anxiety, I realized that I had to do it. Even if just as a release. So here it goes.

I'm losing my hair. Not just your average, end of the season shed. No. Losing it. In clumps. Handfuls even. And nobody knows why. This has been going on since probably the beginning of the summer. My hormone levels were checked around July, and everything was fine. Thyroid was fine. I didn't just give birth. My mom has a full head of hair, never lost it. None of my grandparents were ever bald. There is no reasonable explanation for what's happening. But it's happening.

I have pictures, which I debated posting, but I can't. Because somewhere deep inside, I still have hope that one day, someday, this will all be over, and it will start growing back. And I don't want to stumble across the pictures on here one day, and feel this way again. Disgusted. Annoyed. Sad.

I have an amazing husband, who tells me every day that I look great. I have a wonderful mom who assures me daily that it's not as bad as I think it is. I have phenomenal friends who say all the right things. "You can't even tell!" "It looks like you have a full head of hair!" "You are beautiful!" I have great people in my life who say all the right things at all the right times. But it doesn't matter.

It doesn't matter because I still get out of the shower daily and want to cry. Most days, I do. I see a pile of hair in the shower. Another in the sink. Another on the floor. It's everywhere. Piles of hair. I see nothing but scalp, dotted with random hairs, from my forehead to about 3 inches back onto my head. I see a hairbrush that needs to be cleaned out twice during the blow drying process. I see someone staring back at me in the mirror that I don't even recognize. She's gross. And no matter what any of those amazing people say to me, she's still who I see. Gross.

I've tried two different treatments now. One insanely expensive that did nothing. One that I was told is what chemotherapy patients use to make their hair grow back. It's doing nothing. It just keeps getting thinner, and thinner, and thinner. It's disappearing. Every day. More and more.

I ordered extensions. Which is great, it gives me gorgeous long hair. But it does nothing for the areas that there is nearly no hair, because that can't be covered. There's no hair to clip the extensions too. My temples are nearly bald. Almost entirely. I can't cover that. I'm going to try dying it back to a lighter color again, in hopes that it makes the scalp and hair blend a little better. But for all I know, the dye will make it all fall out.

Here's the thing. I know I sound vain. It's hair. It's not cancer, I'm not dying (at least I don't think?). I'm lucky. It's just hair. But. I'm a woman. And it's my hair. I can't pretend that it's always been my dream to be bald. I can't pretend that it doesn't bother me that it takes me an hour to do my hair everyday, and it still doesn't look right. I can't pretend that I don't want to just scream at all those people who say all the right things. That I don't want to shake them and make them realize that it's not ok. Not to me.

Today is a decent day. Everything seemed to fall into place and it actually looks....ok. Which I'm beyond thankful for, because these days are few and far between, and we have to be at a family gathering this afternoon. Around people. People who would see if it was a bad day, and all the spots were showing.

Wednesday, was not a decent day. It was an awful day. Jeremy was off work, and we were going to take Landon to Rainforest Cafe and do a little shopping. It was going to be a perfect day with my little family. I spent an hour and a half in the bathroom. Putting extensions in, taking extensions out. Teasing and spraying, then brushing it out. Curling and straightening. Sobbing. Throwing things. Telling Jeremy I didn't want to go, I didn't want to be out in public. Somehow, he got me out of the bathroom, I put a hat on my head, and we left. And I'm glad he got me out, because I felt better when I was out. The bathroom and the mirror have become my hell. And I need to get out of it as often as I can. But still, despite the fun that we had, and the fact that I felt better, I had resorted to a hat. A hat. I couldn't leave my house without a hat on. Sure, it's a cute hat. But it's ridiculous. That I needed it to leave my house.

Here is where I'll address the "update" portion of this. On my anxiety. In some ways, I'm killin' it. I'm doing great. In some ways, it all depends on the day. Somedays I don't care if there is a cheerio on the floor. Other days, I'm on my hands and knees scrubbing the grout on my bathroom floor because it doesn't look white enough. But, now I have this hair issue. And it is making my anxiety go crazy. I can't stand the sight of hair on the ground anymore. I cleaned our master bathroom today, and I can't tell you how many millions of hairs I cleaned up. After I got out of my shower, I stopped, every few seconds, to pick hairs up off the ground. I couldn't handle them being there. Partly because I spent almost 2 hours scrubbing the bathroom, and I wanted it to stay clean for longer than 30 minutes. Partly because each hair is another reminder. Another reminder of what is happening. And I can't take it. I hate the reminders. I hate the hairs. Hate them. I walked into Landon's room and saw one laying on his dresser. I nearly panicked. Over a hair. Almost cleaned his entire bedroom because of a single hair. But, and here is where I'm making at least a little progress, I didn't. I just picked the hair up, threw it in the garbage, let myself be sad for a couple seconds, and then moved on.

At the end of the day, the hair makes me sad. Incredibly, horribly sad. I wish it didn't. I wish I could say I didn't care. That I am focusing only on the positive and this is such a minor, stupid thing. But it's not. At least not to me. And I'm sad. I can probably even say depressed at certain times. Like when I'm cleaning the third pile out of the bathroom sink. Or when I take a hair tie out of my hair and there is another huge clump stuck to it. Or when I want to just be able to throw my hair in a pony tail, but it's all bald spots, and you can see them all. I cry daily. I get angry daily. I pray daily (over hair, yes.). I am defeated daily. And it is sad. I don't know what other word to use to describe it besides sad.

So that's where I am. And now I'm exposed. Now everybody knows. Which is embarrassing. Because now I know you'll all be searching my head when you see me. Looking for the thin spots. Looking for the bald spots. Just looking. But I also know that I have people who are going to step up. Step up and tell me they love me, full head of hair or no hair. People who are going to ask me if I need anything. People who are going to offer to just listen to me complain when I need to. And maybe, someone will step up and tell me the same thing happened to them. This is how they fixed it. Maybe they won't. Maybe someone else is going through the same thing, and thinking they are the only one, and feeling so alone....because let me tell you, that's where I'm at. Very alone. Nobody seems to get it, and it's lonely. Maybe it will just continue to fall out, and soon I'll need a wig. I really don't know, honestly. I have no idea where this is going. And it's scary. But I'm trying to stay hopeful. Some days it takes more to be hopeful than others. Some days are like today, when it seems "ok". When the spots are covered, at least mostly (and at least they were when I walked out of the bathroom 20 minutes ago. I could walk back in and it could have all gone to which case, if you have to see me today, just be ready. I probably won't be smiling and chipper), other days it feels like with each hair that falls out, a little bit more of me breaks, gives up.

But for right now, all I can do is try to be proactive. So I'll keep using my special shampoo. I'll try to fix the color and hope that helps. I'll go back to see the endocrinologist again, and hope that he finds the source of the problem, and that it's an easy fix. I'll keep taking my Biotin three times a day. I'll try to believe everyone when they tell me it looks fine. I'll keep crossing my fingers that this is just a weird, crazy phase. I'll try to keep hope...

Let's end this on a high note. Some pictures. Of my adorable kid. Who doesn't care if I have bald spots or not. He loves me just the same.
Total amazement at Rainforest Cafe. He was in complete awe.

He doesn't care if I have a hat or not, he's just happy to hang with his Mama. 

So amazed. At the sights, AND the food.

Also, I'm working on a couple very special posts. I have read numerous "birth stories" from so many amazing mamas. And I love each one. Every one is different. Everyone is perfect and special in its own way. So I want to write Landon's. But I also want to do it justice, so I'm taking my time. I want every single thought and feeling to be articulated just right. Which is so hard. So hard to write about the day that changed your life forever. The day that you were scared out of your mind, but so unbelievably happy at the same time. The day that has portions of it that I really struggle remembering. But I will get it right. Eventually. And then Landon will always have it to look back at, and he'll always know just how much work, sweat and tears went into getting him here. How much he was loved from his very first breath. How perfect he really is. 

I'm also working on a post about the night Jeremy and I met. We're coming up on the 5 year anniversary of that night, and each year, I get sappy, and I feel retrospective over the night that truly did change me forever. So that's another one that needs to be written just right. I need to find the right words to honestly describe what happened to me on November 3, 2007. And again, it's hard. Hard because yes, there is a LOT of that night that I don't remember, but for much different reasons than during Landon's birth. And hard because it was the night I met my soul mate. My perfect match. How do you put into words what that meant? Sure, I could write all day about the ways he drives me crazy and makes me insane, and how we fight. But to put into print that way I felt that night? The way I still feel, truly, about him? Beyond all the silly stuff? It's going to be perfect. So when it is, it'll show up here. Stay tuned ;)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Mommy Guilt

I've been reading a lot about "Mommy Guilt" over the last few days. And through all my reading, I've decided....I've got it. Bad.

But the thing is, mine seems totally unjustified. Not the guilt, I'm totally legit on the guilt. But the cause of the guilt....not so much.

I've been reading about mothers who have "mommy guilt" because they work, and are away from their kids all day. Or those who are in an unhealthy relationship, which their children see every day, but they stay anyway. People with serious issues.

My mommy guilt? It's over me being...well...ridiculous. I get frustrated. A lot. Guilt. I get angry. Sometimes, but more than I should. Guilt. I get overwhelmed. All the time. Guilt. I get preoccupied. Way too often. Guilt. I snap. One time is too many, but it happens frequently. Guilt.

Problem: I get frustrated when I have said "no" five thousand times, and he still looks at me, smiles, and does it anyway. In my head: Enough is enough. Why isn't he listening? Reality: He's 16 months old. He's testing limits. He's learning. He isn't going to understand everything right away. Result: Guilt for getting frustrated.

Problem: I'm showering, and he is destroying the bathroom. Again. This time, he broke my blush. When I get out of the shower, it's ground into the white bedroom carpet. In my head: He is doing this on purpose. He hates me. He wants to see me break. Reality: He's 16 months old. He doesn't know. How was he supposed to know that the blush, that was left on the shelf, in the cabinet, that he can get into, wasn't a toy? Result: Total MYSELF....for not child proofing my make up better. And then....guilt. Not for being mad at myself, but for getting mad at him.

Problem: The kitchen floor is sticky. The highchair still has remnants of last nights dinner in it. The cat is meowing for NO REASON. He is currently reprogramming my TV because he got a hold of the remote....again. Jeremy has left a list of errands he needs to me to's a mile long. The bathroom hasn't been scrubbed clean in over a week. It's raining, and I am going to have to take him out in it. In my head: I can't do this. There's no way. I need to clean EVERYTHING. Right now. I need to send the cat to live on a farm. I'm just going to have to throw the damn TV out because it's probably going to be useless in two minutes. Doesn't Jeremy ever think that maybe HE could run an errand or two? The bathroom should probably be demolished because it's just crawling with germs and nasties and I can't handle it. Reality: I don't need to clean everything. I can wipe the high chair down in 30 seconds, and I can wash the floor while he naps. The cat isn't going anywhere, she just needs me to stop for two seconds and pet her. He does this to the TV daily. Have we ever had to throw it out? No. Jeremy works a full time job, takes a class for a second masters degree, and coaches soccer two nights a week. When would he find time to run to the dry cleaners? The bathroom is gross, yes, but if I spend a half hour on it, when I get a half hour, it will be fine. And it can wait until then. I should take this time to go sit down and read a book with my kid. Or tickle him. Or kiss him. Or just sit with him. Result: Guilt. Guilt for being such maniac about the germs (Justification: I'm keeping us all healthy). Guilt for even thinking of sending my princess to live with anyone else. Guilt for giving two shits about the TV, he's entertained and honestly, probably knows exactly what he's doing. Guilt for being angry with Jeremy when he works his ass off for us, and so that I can stay home and worry about all the rest of this. Guilt for...well for not cleaning the bathroom sooner. There's really nothing else to say about that.

Problem: I just cleaned one bathroom, so I need to clean the other two. Or....Pinterest just sucked me in. In My Head: What sense does it make to have one clean bathroom, and two dirty ones? None. And besides, he's totally occupied with Dora right now, he doesn't even noticed that I'm pinning the most random shit in the universe and pretending that I'm totally going to make that six layer chocolate cake. Reality: Not all three bathrooms need to be scrubbed within the same hour, on the same day. They just don't. And I'm never going to make that damn cake, so why am I wasting my time sitting here pinning it? Result: Guilt. Guilt for letting Dora watch my kid while I give in to my anxiety and clean like a crazy person. Guilt for thinking it's ok to let him occupy himself for an hour so I can play on the computer. Guilt for not being on the floor, building those blocks as high as we can get them. For not having a book open and reading. For not having a dance party in our pajamas at 9 in the morning.

Problem: He just looked right at me, smiled, and threw ANOTHER handful of food over the side of the high chair. This time it was rice. In sauce. In a pile on my kitchen floor. And, by the way, I'm exhausted because I cleaned the whole house during nap time instead of taking two minutes to sit down and breathe, or maybe close my eyes. In My Head: He just looked right at me, smiled, and did it. He knows whats coming. He asked for it. Reality: He's 16 months old. He thinks it's funny. And he doesn't realize that it doesn't just disappear, that it actually needs to be cleaned. But now he's crying because I just screamed "LANDON WARREN!!!!!!" 20 octaves higher than necessary and scared him. I was mean. Downright mean. Result: Guilt. Guilt for making him cry. Guilt for not taking the time that I needed for myself earlier so that I didn't get to this point, of snapping. Guilt for not letting him just be a boy, and find it funny to throw food on the floor, he's just a baby.

All of these things add up to one huge thing: Guilt for not being a better mommy.

And at the end of the day, that's at the root of ALL moms "Mommy Guilt". We all feel like we could be doing better at any given moment. And maybe sometimes we could be. But other times, we truly are doing the absolute best we can, and just because at the time our "best" means that we have to walk away from the adorable little creatures we created, and sit in another room and just cry for a few minutes....that doesn't mean we're "bad moms". It just means we're "human moms". And kids, I'm as human as it gets. Sometimes with a little psycho added in.

But, let's be honest, even as I sit here and write that, with such conviction, like I tell myself at the end of every day that I'm a "GREAT MOM", I don't. And I don't always believe it. More often than not, I'm hating myself for not doing better. I know, without a doubt, that I was given the right baby for me, I've talked about all the reasons before. But, how do I know he was given the right mom? Doesn't he deserve a mom who is always happy? Always smiling? Always on the floor playing? Always has an immaculate house? Always laughing and never, ever angry, overwhelmed, frustrated, or sad? I know he deserves that mom, and it kills me daily that I can't be her. But, really, does she exist? Is that mom out there? If you're her, please get a hold of me ASAP. I'd like to take classes. And then probably round house kick you in the face. Because if you exist, that's just not fair to the rest of us.

So for now, I'm just going to find contentment and peace with the overflowing basket of laundry in my bedroom. And the pink stains on my carpet from the smashed blush. And in all my pins on Pinterest that I will never, in a million years, do a damn thing with (and also with the ones that I HAVE done, and done WELL). And in the time that I DO spend on the floor, tickling, laughing, building, reading, loving my perfect, adorable, sometimes really, really misbehaved, little guy. Because I think, at least I hope, that he's happy with the mama he got. Despite all my crazy. And that's enough for me. For now.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Making Strides

We've had a full weekend around here, and it has been fabulous!

Friday night, I had to work, but by work I mean run a party for some of my favorite women. I also mean that I got to snuggle a perfect, squishy, teeny tiny, one month old baby girl. Oh man. Just perfect.

It's weird how you forget about all the little noises. And the little movements. And all the little. She seemed SO tiny, and yet Landon was a good pound less than her. How was he SO small? And how is he now almost 17 months old and SO big? Where did that time go?? How is possible that I just brought his little potty upstairs tonight, and sat him on it for the first time? The POTTY!!! Holy Moses.

ANYWAY. Friday night was lovely. Got up bright and early Saturday morning to meet up with the same fabulous ladies for our annual breast cancer walk. Both Jeremy and I have lost grandmothers to the disease, and he has lost an aunt. It's something very close to our hearts, so it's always such an honor to be surrounded by such phenomenal women and walk to help find a cure.

Long story short, it was supposed to rain, and it held out until our drive home. Landon loved every second, especially the warm up session which allowed him to dance and clap like a maniac. Pictures will do the event much more justice than my words can.

These two dudes were layered with so many clothes, but they were such troopers.

This face pretty much sums up Gavin's experience at the event. I could just eat that little face!!!

Let me tell ya, he was a HUGE hit. His enthusiasm was definitely contagious!

The boys and their Grandmas! Jeremy's mom and her sister, Brenda. Two incredibly strong women that I'm proud to call my family.

Getting two toddlers to stand still long enough for a picture? Major work out.

The walkers there to represent our team, Beier's BooBea's. So, so, SO fortunate to call these women family. 

Ready to rock and roll!!!

He loved these cheerleaders, and they loved him. 

Gavin crossing the finish line!!! We did it, buddy!!!

He walked SO much of the walk on his own, and the ONE part we wanted him to run through with Gavin, he refused. All tuckered out. So Grandma took matters into her own hands. He looks thrilled, eh?

But of course, this was my view on the way home. A peaceful, worn out baby. 

It truly was a great morning. And the 3 and a half hour long nap we both took when we got home made the afternoon equally as great!

This morning we decided to tackle church. Figured we would try it. We haven't been to church as a family since probably April. We have a crazy toddler, remember? And today we were reminded why we haven't tackled it before now. I can't count how many times he climbed up and down the pew, how many times we said "Shhhh", or how many goldfish, fruit snacks, and animal crackers we went through. Lucky for us, we are the only ones that really sit up in the balcony, along with a couple that just adores Landon. They truly think they are his third set of Grandparents, and to be honest, we couldn't ask for a better third set. And Landon loves them. And, let's review, I love me some Grandpa's, and this grandpa is a class act. I love it. 

I will be the first to admit that on most days, Jeremy and I struggle to work as a "team" when it comes to Landon. We seem to have totally opposite views on so many things, and more often than not, we butt heads before we're able to compromise and come to an agreement. But today, somehow, everything aligned in just the right way, and he were a true tag team when it came to keeping the crazy toddler in check. And I'm pretty damn proud of us. Doesn't mean every day will be the same, I'm quite positive it won't be, but it's progress. And I mean, it's about damn time. He's almost 17 months old...

In other news, we have an office in our house. When I say "office", I mean a spare room with a huge desk in it. This desk is covered, and I mean covered in papers, books, receipts, and everything else....all that belong to Jeremy. Jeremy. Who has an office outside the house. Who doesn't do any WORK from home. This presents a problem because I DO work from home. And I have NO where to do it from. I am going CRAZY with my lack of organization. If you know me, you know I like things in a certain order. Right now, I have NO order for ANY of my business related "things". So my goal this week, is to make myself a workspace. It may have to be down in the basement, which would honestly, be pretty nice. I could work while Landon plays, and if I need to be alone to get things done, how much more secluded can I get than the basement? Although, I'm me, and I'm still "urked" that there is a whole room dedicated to being an "office" upstairs, and I have no part in it. Have you mentioned this to Jeremy, you ask? Why yes, I have. And I always get the same. "I'll work on it". Or "I cleared out a drawer for you...". Mmmm....not working. Time to take matters into my own hands. Stay tuned. There's no saying where this could lead.

Hope everyone else's weekend was wonderful, and here's to a great week!! :)