The Black Hole of Parenthood

Black Hole of Parenthood

When I had my babies, I didn’t really mind staying home all the time. My “free” time was spent caring for them. I loved watching them day in and day out, but as they grew to be toddlers and the newness of having an infant had worn off, I found that I really did want to do things outside of our home…………. without the babies.

At a family gathering my sister Olivia and I watched our kiddos play and lamented the need for a break. She explained our situation as being “The Black Hole of Parenthood.” We would not see the light of a social life until our kids were older and the pull of constantly supervising them grew weaker. Eventually, there would be time for having dinner with friends or dates with hubby, and we would break away from the forces of the black hole. My thoughts were that most black holes crush whatever enters them (I didn’t really want to be crushed) and (even though I wanted a break) I didn’t really want my kids to be big enough to not need me. Continue reading “The Black Hole of Parenthood”

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The Heroics of Parenting

The beauty of cinema is that it often has the power to put into words what we most need to hear at the toughest times in our lives.

This summer my husband and I took our kiddos to see Incredibles 2. As the film progressed it was clearly a flick for both kids and parents. There were many powerful messages for parents who doubt their “super” status in the realm of child rearing and a number of messages for kids about the importance of always doing what you know is right.

EdnaIn a scene where Bob (the dad) is at his wit’s end about being a good dad, Edna (the family’s designer) shares a powerful message. One that we need to remind ourselves of often. “Done properly parenting is a heroic act.”

The elements of “properly” and “heroic” give this statement some serious intentergy.

Continue reading “The Heroics of Parenting”

This Mama’s Heart

This Mamas Heart

This Mama’s Heart via Daily Prompt: Nervous

When you become a mother you give away your heart.You love stronger and harder than you ever imagined possible. That love grows with your child. The pains that come with it grow too.

This mama’s heart has grown and loved in so many ways since the births of my three kiddos. My heart has calmed and smiled at their peaceful sleep and joyful discoveries. It has hurt and beat to rocky rhythms when they have scared me with their  recklessness and angered me with their antics.

With each doctor visit or ER escapade, my heart has really taken a beating. Sprains, stitches, and broken bones leave their scars. However, the ache isn’t truly felt until after the whole ordeal is over.

In the last two years I have made six trips to the emergency room. Not all of the trips were for my kiddos, but the impacts on my heart were no different whether I was taking in hubby, my own mama, or one of my babies.

This spring my daughter broke her arm. Like all of our other trips to the hospital, I was able to stay calm and put together all of the information and documents needed to ensure beneficial care be provided. Similarly, my heart ached as I watched someone I loved lying in that hospital bed. Later that night I woke suddenly. My heart was racing. I could not catch my breath. I was shaking. Continue reading “This Mama’s Heart”

Emergency Room Enlightenment

Emergency Room Enlightenment

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Labor Day 2016 – I was grading papers. My husband was watching baseball and surfing the internet. My kids were jumping off my daughter’s bed onto a pallet of pillows and blankets. All was right in the world…

My youngest son was too excited to wait for his turn; he pushed my older son. My older son rolled into my daughter. My daughter fell off the bed and whacked her knee cap on the bed rail.

Her knee swelled immediately and she cried and screamed for quite some time. Ice and ibuprofen did not seem to help. At 6:00 p.m. on Labor Day, I took my daughter to the emergency room.

We waited a long time after being check-in. The Emergency Room is busy on Labor Day.

My daughter was in pain, but her curiosity kept her busy with worry for every person who came through the ER doors. Eventually we were taken back to an exam room and she was evaluated by a Nurse Practitioner name Dana. Everyone treated my little girl with kindness and comfort. She was taken back for x-rays and handled with great concern. Fortunately, the x-ray revealed that her knee cap was not broken. The swelling was probably the result of a ligament strain.

A doctor joined Nurse Practitioner Dana and confirmed these results. Maggie was to have her leg splinted for a few days and then keep weight off of it until we could follow up with our pediatrician.

The nurses who cared for my daughter were busy and working hard, but took exceptional care to check on Maggie’s comfort. They even gave her lessons on how to use her new crutches. Finally, at 2:00 a.m. we were ready to be discharged. Before we left, Nurse Practitioner Dana stopped in to see if we needed anything else. She kindly provided an absence excuse and physical activity excuse for Maggie. But,she gave me the best gift I could have hoped for that night. Continue reading “Emergency Room Enlightenment”

I didn’t want them to see me

I didn’t want them to see me

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Today was the first day of school for my kiddos. My 7 year-old arrived eager, confident, and happy. She has a terrifically sunny disposition and sees good in most everything.

My 5 year-old can be a bit nervous at times, but is a lot of fun. He was soooooo ready to go to kindergarten. He smiled big and was the first one in the car.

When we pulled in the school parking lot, a switch flipped. He went so white I thought he would faint. After a very tearful departure, my day was ruined. I was terrified that my son was miserable and would never like school.

As the day progressed my fears eased and I went about my necessary tasks. Unfortunately one of the tasks brought me right past school to the post office.  We live in a small town. There was no avoiding it. It was near lunch time and I just knew my son would be out at recess, see me, and take off running. What was I going to do?

I sped.

I drove as quickly as was safely possible past the school, never pausing to look at the faces of the playing children. I ran in and out of the post office as quickly as possible and got the heck out of Dodge. No children came crying down the street so I felt like I bypassed that landmine and went back to my to-do list.

Getting groceries was the last thing to do on my list. After purchasing all of the things on my list, I could do one of two things.
1. Drive the four miles home, drop off the groceries, and prolong my son’s misery by not being one of the first parents at school.
2. Go sit in the parking lot and work on my coursework for the new class I start teaching next week and greet my babies with open arms as soon as they were dismissed.

Option 2 was my choice.

It turned out to be a terrifying decision. I was going to park in the back parking lot (so as to not be visible from the school), but as luck would have it, there were classes on the back playground having P.E. Continue reading “I didn’t want them to see me”