The Sting Sometimes

It’s Saturday morning and I’ve been up for an hour.

What. The. Heck.

I have a golf tournament I signed myself up for at 8 AM, I’ve made plans for Elle to go to my parents this morning so Jon has the luxury to sleep in (something he loves to do), and when Elle woke up at 4:45 AM, it occurred to me it might not be a bad idea to get out of bed and call myself productive. That, and the fear of over-sleeping got me up and moving. I’m still on only my first cup of coffee, but have managed to accomplish unloading and loading the dishwasher (thereby cleaning the sink), putting away a bunch of random stuff on the counters, cleaning the kitchen dining room, steam mop the floors, make Elle’s bed, pick up Elle’s toys and books in her bedroom, fold the used blankets in the living room from last night and…take out the garbage. Not bad for an hour’s worth of work well before the sun comes up. I wish I felt the urge to rise early other days than just my day off!

Elle and Jon are peacefully sleeping, and I’m trying desperately to get back in the habit of writing, so here I sit.

I hope to catalog the good and bad of most things…

So, here’s the sting of what it’s like to have been pregnant and no longer be pregnant without having a child…it’s like the pang of stubbing your toe, where it’s a sharp pain instantly, a dull pain for awhile, then it’s gone. That’s what it’s like sometimes when I see a a) just a little hint of pregnant woman or b) set of twins. It’s weird, because I’m not terribly sad about the miscarriage (which I feel is a weird word with a stigma that doesn’t lend itself well to saying out loud…it always makes me think of Nancy Grace saying something like ‘this has been a miscarriage of justice ya’ll’ or something equally as stupid. But anyway — it’s not a huge deal. It’s not like I don’t KNOW and comprehend that it’s all for the best. But, when you open your iPad and the reminder pops up that you’re 13 weeks pregnant…that sucks a little. Or when you start your period when you were supposed to be pregnant. I get sad that we’re not talking to Elle about being a Big Sister (which, the shirt I bought that says “World’s Best Sister” is in the drawer that doesn’t get opened much, but of course the shirt itself is bright yellow, so there’s always a hint of it sticking out somewhere). I feel like the calendar exists at the moment for me relative to would-have-been. Not all the time, but sometimes. Like, when I think of my brother-in-law and almost-sister-in-law’s wedding in September, I think ‘we would have known the gender of the baby(ies) then’ and I remember that I had been really concerned about making sure that we found out well before the wedding so that I would be able to focus on the wedding and not my sheer pleasure in knowing what was coming into our lives. Or, thinking about Christmas and about how I figured that this Christmas would be all about getting ready for the new baby(ies). And about the office room which was to become the new baby(ies) bedroom, which I’ve mainly left the door closed on and tried not to think about touching it much at all because I’d already sat in that room and envisioned what it was going to look like with the crib I’d imagined, with a rocking chair, with a new rug and paint on the walls.

And all those things will happen for us – I know they will – but there is a sting sometimes to actually living a life in which you’d made plans with someone in mind and then that’s no longer an option. In fact, it’s much like losing other people in my life that I’ve loved and known. And yet – I didn’t know these children, but I knew and fell in love immediately with the idea of them.

So, sometimes it stings a little (not a lot) but, here are things that I don’t find difficult at all: being truly happy for those people I know who are pregnant, being excited for getting pregnant again and welcoming another child into our lives. Those things don’t scare me or sting much. But some of the rudimentary, day-to-day stuff does. Weird, huh?

Anyway — I have signed myself up for a golf tournament at our course this morning. I haven’t played in many tournaments out here as a grown up. None, in fact. So this is a new thing for me. I’m hoping that my cart makes it around the course (we’re having a battery issue) and that I play relatively well. I played nine holes in a scramble format last night at a course in Frankenmuth with some work colleagues/friends which was nice, but wasn’t really a good prep for a tournament. But, hopefully we’ll be done by Noon and I can continue being productive on this Saturday.

This is the first weekend this month that we’re just sticking close to home. The first weekend was the 4th, and Elle and I went upnorth. The next weekend Jon and I went to Boyne for the weekend for Jason and Nikki’s wedding and last weekend was Jen’s shower at our house. Which means that Elle has been off schedule on the weekends (throwing off the week) for nearly a month. Hoping that that ends today.

Well, as a by-product of my golf outfit for the day, I really must go shave my legs.

Enjoy your day!


In Need of a Word Vomit

I’ve missed my blog.

But it’s the one thing that I’ve allowed to fall by the wayside because I simply have over-extended myself.

I firmly believe (because I don’t have a religion) that the reasons you get married BEFORE you have kids is so that A) it is the absolute easiest to look your best (I mean, seriously, WHERE does the time to work out come from with a toddler, a full-time job and a need for social interaction?) and B) you can do NOTHING productive while a toddler is awake and in your house and move that task forward. Like, you could TRY to unload the dishwasher, but mainly someone with sticky fingers is going to ‘help’ you and then tear apart the bottom rack of the dishwasher and put it in her Minnie Mouse shopping cart or her baby jogging stroller and it’ll end up in the master bathroom. I mean, not that that happens every night…

Kind of like when I got in the shower this morning there was definitely NOT a Mountain Dew bottle in the shower.

It’s not that Jon or I is really craving the Dew while we shower…it’s simply that the shower in our bedroom is one of Elle’s go-to places to a) play or b) poop. And she’s a pack rat. She puts all sorts of things (summer sausage, beer nuts, dirty socks, sticker books, baby dolls) into her shopping cart or stroller and pushes it around the house. And sometimes Mountain Dew. And then puts it in the shower.

I’ve told you, she has her own sense of how the world should be organized.

Anyway, wedding planning takes up A LOT of time. And I like planning things, but there are reasons (which I’m not going to get into quite yet) why it’s been a buggar to plan this wedding. But, it’s going to be awesome. Can. Not. Wait. I love the vows we’ve chosen. I’m feeling good about the photographer. I love my dress and the accessories that go with it. Nearly all the people I love and hold dearly in this world will be celebrating with us.

Going to be awesome!

And then, there’s the Board position at the country club. It takes up a LOT of time. a LOT. But, it’s moving in the right direction. I’m so, so hopeful about the direction that the Board is taking the Club. We’ll see where it goes, but it does take up any extra time I might have.

I got a new title at work, which means that I’m now the Director of Marketing & Business Development. Which sounds ROCK STAR FAB. And it is. But it also means that I kind of have less time to get things done. My job didn’t change, but some of the descriptions of things I’m supposed to do (like, walk the 100 acre property at least once each day!). The walking every day has been great for my hips, and I love NOT sitting at a desk.

I went to the Pure Michigan Governor’s Conference on Tourism this week. Talk about things looking up. I’m always inspired by Pure Michigan and the things going on in the world of tourism, but Michigan is definitely the creme de la creme. For sure. And the conference was just the re-energizing thing I need.

Not to mention that as soon as the wedding is complete, I have the following Monday off work, then Tuesday I’m in the office, then Wednesday go to Novi to set up for the Novi International Women’s Expo, then work the Expo on Thursday and Friday (well, some of the day Friday). Then host a big event at the Club on Friday night. And then…enjoy the weekend off before flying to PHOENIX for a week the following week.

THEN, I’m going to cold-turkey cut bottles off for Elle.

Yes, she still gets a bottle. Don’t judge. She likes it. And it’s been easy and it, along with my blog, is one more thing I’ve allowed to not be a priority. And I’m okay with that.

My Aunt Lori has been battling multiple myeloma for several years now. The battle is getting harder these days. I watched my Grandma battle the same disease. I hate this. Cancer sucks.


Anyway, I needed to word vomit. Now I’m going to write a letter to Elle, to attempt to not lose sight of those. I like those letters.


She Said Shit

The day has come – Elle said shit.

Yes, she speaks. She speaks a lot, in her own little gibberish way where her lips get wet and shiny and if you do it back at her she seems to understand what you’re saying. She says “Papa” and “Mom” and “Dad” and “Ball” and “wet” and “bath” and “kick” and “pat” and “baba”, among other things.

Now, she also says “Shit”.


Mother of the Year, Over Here

Stop competing.

I’ve won it.

Mother of the Year.

Elle woke up with a cough Saturday morning. She was going to a birthday party with my Mom while I worked at a women’s expo (that’s a WHOLE other post). I put the cough medicine in Elle’s go-bag and it didn’t get used that day.

Sunday the cough was still around.

And sleep was not the greatest during this time frame.

Monday morning, she woke up with the cough even worse. I called Jon’s parents (remember, mine are sipping pina coladas on a beach somewhere on an island) and they watched Elle. I didn’t want to send her to school with no chance to feel better, a bunch of other sick kids running around.

They kept her well-medicated, put the humidifier in her room at their house and paid good attention to the cough.

It didn’t seem like it was getting better.

Same thing happens Tuesday morning.

And finally, this morning, I take her to their house again and on the way to work call the pediatrician’s office. I tell them that she has a cough, has had it for a few days but didn’t know if maybe the doctor could tell us over the phone a good medicine or if we should come in.

Oh, come in – they say.

So, I go to work, do the morning routine, and head back to get Elle and go to the doctor’s office.

(Sidenote: two molars popped through in the last five days as well. Medical professionals can swear this has nothing to do with anything…but…I don’t believe them).

We don’t wait at ALL in the waiting room and we’re in the room waiting for the doctor. The nurse-girl takes Elle’s temperature (99.5, slight temp still) and weighs her (22 pounds!). He arrives and listens to her (he always calls her Ellie — and calls me by what will be my married name…and I just let him) chest and breathing. He calls for the RSV test. Swab of the nose, nebulizer treatment and five minutes later aaaaannnndddd…it’s RSV.


Annnnnndddddd…it’s an ear infection!



How’d I miss an EAR infection?

And then, just for good measure (to really shore up MOTY) I ask about a sore on Elle’s…lady bits…and he indicates it’s from not changing her diaper frequently enough (I’m blaming daycare, but I’m sure it’s not just them). He also points out that her lady bits are quite red and hands me the name of an OTC cream to use to make it less red and uncomfortable for Elle.


How’d I miss ALL of that?

While all the cutesy-ness of Elle using signs to communicate is nice, learning words is entertaining and the ways we forge communicating daily are improving, it’ll be nice when she can TELL me her throat/chest/ladybits/ears hurt.

Felt SO bad that I called in and took the rest of the day to spend with her. Can you take a Mom-Guilt day? They should give you some of those at work, to use just for days like this. I’m glad I did. She slept nearly four hours this afternoon, two of them after waking up crabby-patty and letting me just cuddle her (while I watched the movie The Debt with Helen Mirren – I wouldn’t NOT recommend it, but unless you’re looking for a movie you can watch with the sound low (subtitles, yay!) and aren’t looking for anything entirely stimulating, then go ahead and watch this one. It felt good to watch a movie, even if it was out of Mom-Guilt.)

She’s in bed early tonight, considering she slept so long this afternoon.

And I’m still up, contemplating how all of those things got past me.

Either way, she’s on the mend now. The goal is to be healthy enough to contemplate attending a birthday party this weekend, but I’d hate to pass on this Mom-Guilt to anyone else.

I hear it’s contagious.


Breaking the Silence

I haven’t written in quite some time.

Since last year.

Since when these pictures were taken.

December2012Sledding-0108 December2012Sledding-0045 December2012Sledding-0084

It’s not that I mutinied and walked away from my blog. But it’s not like I didn’t. I found myself at this impasse — where over the holidays it felt like every time I went to tell a story about Elle or myself or our lives that whoever I was talking to already knew my story.

And I didn’t like it.

Not one bit.

And then, I got this weird stage fright/loss of voice/loss of direction crisis of confidence going. I don’t know that I’ve found my true and right blogging voice. I don’t know what I want to keep off-blog and what should go on-blog. (err…offline and online?).

I wanted to do a thing like this Aesthetic Voyage blog that a friend from my Alma College days writes, with a photo a day to capture my life.

That lasted seven days and I’m not giving you the link because it’s my anonymous blog in the universe and I kind of like it that way.

I wanted to be funny or candid or… like…well…most of the blogs I follow daily. Like this, and this and this and this and this.

And I wasn’t sure that I was.

So I just stopped.

And I’ve really enjoyed my approach to that for the last month.

But I started getting the itch this week, to write again.

So here I sit tonight, with a terrible mess in the kitchen, living room, bathroom and my office, not to mention the piles of laundry on the floor. Here I sit tonight, trying to finalize a wedding registry or four, trying to work on projects related to my post on the Board at the golf course and ignore the mess around me. Here I sit tonight with things to say, unsure of the voice with which I want to write.

But I know I want to write.

And then, evidence that the universe gives to you what it is that you need, this blog post from ScaryMommy came across my Facebook feed today.

So, because I don’t do baby books and am seemingly uncapable of finishing any particular photo book that I begin on shutterfly, this is what I have to give to my daughter.

I will write. I won’t worry about the voice, the purpose. I’ll just put my thoughts out into the world, keeping some tidbits for myself too.

So, welcome me back Interwebkinz.


She Loves Me Back

Elle has turned the corner in the last 5 weeks or so to where she’s crazy — she’s ALL toddler, MOST of the time. Which is to say that she doesn’t respond well to ‘No’ (she just keeps doing what she’s doing, laughing in my face) and with the attention span of a gnat, she flits from one thing to another causing as much disruption as possible.


But she’s really darn cute, too.


Despite all of this, the other day I was overcome with a feeling as her Mom that I was unfamiliar with. I’ve had frustration and guilt and fear and love. But there was something new to what washed over me in an instant one afternoon a week or so ago.


I have been toying with the idea, thinking it and mulling it over to discover if it really was what I believed it to be – that I wasn’t off base.


And here it was:


She loves me back.


I mean, I have loved this girlie from the moment I knew there would be a baby, let alone a girlie and then let alone ELLE. But, for the first time, I felt like she loved me back. I mean, she’s NEEDED me since before she was born…but love…that became something mutual between us only very recently.


I don’t know if it’s that she’s entered into the separation anxiety stage of her life so that she is sad to see me go away and overjoyed to see me come back or if it’s just how our relationship has evolved, but it made me feel like she’s a person, a real person, capable of developing bonds and relationships with people.


Maybe this sounds bad? I don’t know…but it’s how I’ve felt.


I thought about while putting her to sleep many nights lately. It’s like I’ve been in this relationship where I was putting in all the effort to see if I could get the other person to like me back…perhaps love…and then, suddenly, magically, it worked. Nothing changed on my end, I’d been doing what I’d been doing for over a year. But her, she changed. And that puts it over the edge. I am confident now that we’ll forge a great relationship as mother and daughter and a great friendship as people who fell in love – even if it wasn’t at the same time.


It’s certainly an odd sensation to be overcome with, but I don’t know how else to describe it. My girlie loves me back — I can’t think of any better discovery in the world!


Trick or Treat

It’s Halloween 2012.

Work is ramping up and craziness is ensuing there. So, I’ve noticed myself trying to control things more at home and I kind of like it. I wish I were just a little more like this all the time. I am actually thinking about resolving for New Year’s to be one of those people who can’t go to sleep with dirty dishes in the sink. Anyway – control.

And Halloween.


I took Elle to school this morning, and the teachers asked if I had brought her Halloween costume. Well, since they were doing the trunk-or-treat at 3:15 PM (hello, the reason my kid is in daycare is because I WORK in the midst of the day). Anyway – I hadn’t. I figured she was little, wouldn’t know the difference of participating, yaddayaddayadda.


But, they said they’d change her into her costume and they would be taking all the babies out to trick or treat through the line up of trunks.


So, despite a hectic morning and day, I left work and went home, grabbed both the check book (more on that momentarily) and the costume and stopped in to school.




In the meantime, I am running for the board of directors at the country club where we are members/where I grew up. The office woman called me to remind me that my bio is due asap. So, I told her I would get it to her quickly. I also then remembered this…that I needed to put down the deposit FOR OUR WEDDING at the club. So, thus the checkbook.


I will not elaborate but to say that the venue is now booked and April 27, we’ll make it official, with the party, the dress (did I mention I got one of those, too?!) and the whole she-bang.


But, this is about trick-or-treating (do you like that cliffhanger I just left you with?).


So, I had a manager’s meeting (weekly) and got that done with, and was working on a deadline project that I needed to wrap up by the end of the day today. It was nearing 3 PM. Being new to the whole trunk-or-treat experience, I wasn’t in a huge rush. I finally left work at like 3:20 PM. I got to our house to pick up Jon (who is working 7 PM – 7 AM building windmills) and head to trick or treating. Jon had the camera ready to go and we were on our way.


We probably got up to the school at like 3:35/3:40 by the time it was all said and done.


And…we’d missed it!


Seriously, missed it.


And, since I hadn’t seen my girlie in her costume, it was my first glimpse of her all dressed up (thanks Andrea for the costume, by the way!).


Here, my little moo-cow.

We left school and headed to Jon’s parents, where Elle would ‘trick or treat’ and hang out there until I was out of work.

She is so busy, and the tights and the getup just kill me. She actually didn’t mind the hood being on her head at all. I don’t know why, sometimes she can get weird about stuff on her head, but mainly hats, not hoods. Odd.



The tail just gets me. LOVE.


She was such a good girl all day long.


If you’ll recall last year, there was a massive poop blowout at Grandma and Grandpa Carpenter’s, and Elle ended up in the bath in the kitchen sink at their house as a result. This year? She simply peed on me as I was trying to change her diaper. 2 for 2, that girlie of mine.


Elle got a whole goodie bag of stuff at Jon’s parents – glow stick bracelets and necklaces, snacks and juice.


At my parents, she got a mini-wagon and some new books.


Anyway, we went and visited my Grandma Carrell, who has moved here from Missouri (and we like being able to see her much more regularly, I have to say). And Elle got a ‘universal remote control’ for toddlers.


So, this is what I have to say about all of that.


First, thank you.


Second, I kind of feel like I got jipped all those years with only getting candy.


All in all, a good day and a good trick or treating experience. I’m sure this will be among the most low key Halloween’s of ours for quite some time.