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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Why is our entire house slowly being taken over by bodily fluids? Sorry for the details, but we've got some serious issues going on that need to be worked out. Last Friday was CAT PEE 2006 -- (Mistletoe urinated on my wedding dress and in Matthew's closet, for those of you not in-the-know). Yesterday was kid vomit all over a bed, the walls, table and floor. And today -- whew! What a doozy! The morning started with a toddler pee puddle on the sofa and carpet, soon to be followed by baby explosive, blow-out-poo TWICE, and then I had the pleasure of baby spit-up dripping down my shoulder, arm and back. I have gone through almost an entire bottle of Kids and Pets Odor and Stain Remover in just a week! Buy stock now, 'cuz sales are sky-rocketing thanks to the Martin Household 'o Body Function. Somewhere in the middle of this I started thinking that it's time to double my dose of Zoloft -- for some reason I'm just feeling a tad overwhelmed, but thankfully I had a couple of great friends [love ya!] and my mom [love her too] reassure me that ANYONE would be ready for a pity party with all of that. Party on, friends.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Mike is a little concerned. Matthew's new favorite movie and his current obsession is one of my personal favorites: The Little Mermaid. I figure that it's good for two reasons: 1.) Matthew will hopefully pick up on the subtle moral of the film (obey your father or the sea witch will try to turn you into a weird little worm thing. Although Ariel still gets her way regardless of her parental disrespect and the risk of eternity in the mutant merpeople garden). And 2.) Now that Matthew is into The Little Mermaid, my dreams have finally come true -- someone actually asks me to sing Ariel's songs! At last!

We had one heck of a day today (and it ain't over yet)! I took the kiddos down to Mike's office so that his coworkers could finally meet Zachary (who's already four months old!) and see Matthew. We then went to lunch with Mike, dropped him off and went to Babies R Us to get a free birthday portrait of Matthew. Well, it would have been a two hour wait for the next available time, so forget that. We got back in the car at which point Matthew totally lost it -- full on toddler tantrum complete with abusing the mama and screaming at the top of his lungs. This tantrum continued all the way home, into the house, up the stairs, on the potty and into bed for naptime. The kid has stamina, people; there was no letting up. Zachary was starting to fuss due to that whole feed-me-every-two-hours thing, so I left Matthew to scream it out to his bears in his bed. Well, pretty soon I heard a sound which clearly indicated that he would soon be pushing his lamp and fan off of the bedside table in his fit of toddler rage. In order to stop this occurence, I quickly ran to his door and yelled for him to stop. He startled, stood up on his bed, and with fury in his eyes proceded to vomit all over himself, the bed, the safety bed rail, the floor and the wall. OH...MY...GOSH. We both just stood there for a moment transfixed with shock. Then Matthew realized that he was covered in grossness, so he picked up where he'd left off and howled even louder. Before I could get to him he worked himself up again in a serious sob and vomited some more. I repeat: OH...MY...GOSH. My first thought: Children really are a grandparent's revenge. I don't even know how many nights my parents spent washing sheets and cleaning carpets after I'd gotten sick before making it to the bathroom. Back to me though, 'cuz it's all about me, right? So, I've got a crying toddler covered in el puke-o and a baby in the other room crying for el boob-o. Thank God for Zoloft, people. Thank GOD for Zoloft! Oh well, gives me some material for my Blog.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Mistletoe the Christmas Kitty gave us a real swell thank you today for all of our love and support... She peed on my wedding dress. I thought that the urine situation was simply puddled on the plastic bag, but apparently during some of her stay in Matthew's closet (her new favorite hide-out since getting sick) she made herself a nice, cozy little spot by getting into the plastic bag and nuzzling down into the folds of the fabric back surrounding my dress. Anyway, pee soaked through fabric into wedding dress fabric, and we've got ourselves a cat-pee wedding dress, people. Now, the whole keep-your-wedding-dress-forever thing was a bit of a dilemma for me. See, I don't plan on ever wearing it again, chances are slim that any daughter of mine (should we have one) would want to wear that cheesy-so-outdated-thing, it takes up a lot of room in the closet, and quite frankly, my wedding day was not the most stress-free, magical, amazing best-day-of-your-life day that some people have. So, in the end, I think we're just going to have it dry-cleaned but not all sealed and boxed up. We'll either donate it or sell it and another bride can enjoy its cat-pee-free-quality.

Now, whilst on the topic of natural body functions. (Sorry). We had a break-through in the potty-training department! Matthew did his first poo-poo in the potty! Woohoo for the poo-poo! It only took an hour, seven books, and a perma-ring around his bum from the potty seat, but it happened! To give true celebration to the event, Matthew got an immediate prize from the Potty Bag -- a truck, of course. All day he was saying, "Do you want to play with my potty prize truck, Mommy?...See my potty prize truck, Mommy?" Hopefully this post-poo-poo proudness and pleasure do not pass and we continue successfully with the potty training process.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Zachary was baptised on Sunday, and thankfully he didn't pee in the font. Phew! That's always a worry with these nudey baptisms. I think it's appropriate that he get dunked the way that God made him. The water was a little chilly so he did let out a small complaint, but other than that he was the perfect little saint/angel baby that he always is. He was also a serious crowd-pleaser at our post-Church celebratory lunch, providing big smiles to all who held him.

On a sadder note, our wonderful Christmas kitty, Mistletoe is not doing very well. She hadn't been eating so Mike brought her to the animal hospital. She has liver failure and they're not quite sure what's causing it. They know that she also has kidney stones but don't know if she's not eating/has the liver failure because of those or something else. Unfortunately, we really couldn't afford to have her stay at the hospital any longer and they weren't going to do an ultrasound until Thursday. Even if they did determine that she has cancer we wouldn't be able to pay for Chemo and don't know that putting her through that would be just. Another possible issue could be Pancreatitis or Pancreitis...whatever. the end, we decided to bring her home and medicate for that, force feed her with a syringe and 'water her' (insert an IV needle between her shoulder blades and pump 100cc's of water under her skin once a day). So far, things look promising. She's gotten a little better each day, has started eating on her own occasionally and has stopped hiding in the closet so much. She's sleeping on our bed again and getting back to her old, purring, affectionate-seeking self. We're to give the vet an update on Friday and go from there. Neither Mike nor I have ever had to make that kind of a decision -- what kind of medical treatment you can and should pay for and at what point do you decide it's time to put the animal 'out if its misery'. Mistletoe's only six, so she should have plenty years left of lovin'. We'll hope for the best.

I should provide the update that I did decide to start the Zoloft perscription for postpartum depression. I struggled for so long with the decision and especially with feeling like I was a 'failure' if I couldn't handle things on my own and needed chemical assistance. In the end though, I am SO thankful that I came to that conclusion. I feel like a different person -- I feel like me again! I was so scared that the feelings that I was experiencing of being completely overwhelmed and not in control would never go away, so it's so unbelivably reassuring that it is just due to a hormone imbalance. Now when things get crazy at home, I feel like I can handle things in a healthy way. Someone who took Zoloft for postpartum depression described it as just 'taking the edge off,' and I'd have to completely agree with that. So, while I am sad that I did need the help, I'm happy that it should be a temporary problem, that I can cope now and that I won't spend the first year of Zachary's life miserable. I can enjoy it rather then just try to get through it. So, cheers! Here's to Zoloft!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

"Sit down, Sweetcakes." Matthew said this to me the other day. Huh! I've never called him 'Sweetcakes' in my life, so who knows where he got that one! This little Sweetcakes of ours had a very exciting day -- we signed him up for an "Almost Three's" preschool class that will meet Tuesdays from 9:30-11:30 starting in September. I don't know who's more excited about it -- him or me. I think it'll be a win-win situation for all Martins involved. Matthew will get the good learning experience (which at this age is really learning to socialize with other kiddo's in a more structured environment) and time away from home, Zachary will get to have one-on-one Mommy time and I'll get to have one-kid-less break-time. It sounds horrible to be excited about that, but I suppose it's a bit like the Moms who say they're a better Mother for working full-time. Since they have less time with their kids it's more quality time when they are home. Besides, absence makes the heart grow fonder; a two hour break will be a very life-giving thing!

When I told Matthew we were going to go see his preschool classroom he got so excited. He assumed that the kids would be there and he started naming all of his toys in the car and saying that he would let the other kids play with them. He's also thrilled about riding the school bus. I've tried to break it to him gently that he's not going to get to ride the bus for some time. Guess he's just ready to grow up on me.

Mike had his yearly check-up with his Oncologist yesterday. We know that when our Anniversary rolls around it's time to visit Dr. Hersman. He loves to see our expanding fam as do the Chemo nurses. They, of course, were not entirely surprised with our "exciting" pregnancy experience. By spending our wedding night in the ER, I guess we started a bit of a trend. I told them that I'm REALLY ready to have a boring life for a while. They laughed at that. Hmmm...apparently there's no such thing as 'boring' with two little boys.

So, back to our Anniversary -- we just celebrated our fifth! We've done a lot in five years: a major illness, new careers, buying a house, a few more ER trips, two pregnancies -- neither of which went without all sorts of surprises, not to mention lots and lots of good times. Anyway, I finally figured out why I had both of our boys five weeks early -- to score on the birthstones. Matthew's is Sapphire and Zachary's is the Diamond. Not bad, huh? And Mike REALLY scored big on the Anniversary gift this year giving me some jewelry that had both of their birthstones. Diamonds and Sapphires may sound a little dressy for playdates, but I don't care!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Oh, loyal readers of mine (i.e. my phenomenal family and friends), you don't cease to amaze me with your support. I shouldn't have hesitated so long in coming out with my tails of woe as a postpartumly-bummed mom of two. Since I decided to answer the "How are you?" question honestly, I've gotten nothing but love (except maybe from the grocery store clerk who would have preferred the anticipated "Fine, thank you"). And here's the thing, really I AM doing fine, and I know how blessed I am and how much worse things could be ('cuz honestly they aren't bad); I'm just not quite me. But I guess I'm also realizing that maybe I need to better figure out who 'Me' is.

I was telling the girls at Book Club last night [Hi! And I still think that we should allow a new member to join, and I'm willing to write an entire blog session on why, if need-be and it's not just because our new potential member is a friend of mine and she's great :) ] that a few years ago, a much wiser (and yes, older) friend asked me how old I was. When I told her 22 or 23 (whenever it was), she said, "Oh! So, you don't even really know who you are. You haven't reached that mid-to-late-twenties-read-Self-Help-books stage yet." Of course, I immediately got defensive: "Please! Like I would ever need to read Self-Help Books. I have a totally, clearly defined sense of self." Um, so now that I'm the ripe old age of 26...anyone know any good Self-Help books? I'm in the market for one.

Part of it, I know, is the whole struggle of the Mom thing. I wouldn't change it for the world, I'm so glad that I get to stay home with my kids, and it's what I've always wanted to do, so then why am I not better at it? Man, it's hard. And people always tell you 'being a Mom is the hardest job in the World' and 'it's harder to go from one to two kids than zero to one," but until you live it, you don't actually know what they're talking about. Now, I knew that I wouldn't be the fresh, all organic ingredients, home-made meals on the table every night kind. Or the slippers waiting for Mike at the door type either. And I can't tell you the last time that I ironed. I also know that I'll never sew a Halloween costume. But, still! And then we (Moms) have all this weird self-inflicted mom-guilt if we do make or take time for ourselves. Although, I am willing (sheepishly) to admit that I think I do a pretty good job of getting that me time. And Mike is certainly great at helping me get those much-needed breaks too. I just keep thinking about the Oprah a few years ago when Mom's were finally 'telling it like it is' -- how much nursing can hurt and how (as one woman put it) "no one told me that being a Mom would suck 80% of the time."

Matthew and Zachary are both supposedly napping right now which means that I automatically SHOULD turn into Productive-Mom (picture a cape clad Mom -- home-made, of course, with duster in one hand -- I don't even own one -- and cookbook in the other so that meal menus can be planned out weeks in advance...all the while folding the mountain of laundry with feet or the magical extra limbs that all super moms must grow). BUT instead of being Productive-Mom, I'm 'self-medicating' with a fudgesicle (sugar free, at least) and my blog. I was thinking that I'd even try to squeeze in some Pilates before I release Matthew from his anti-nap naptime. And maybe I'll even do some self-helping by researching self-help literature.

Better sign off before I'm completely out of my Me time!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

It's been a LONG time. I don't know if anyone even reads this anymore, but in case you're still out there -- thanks for visiting! We're doing...well. For a while there I really thought that things were getting easier, we were out of the foggy haze that is the first couple of months with a newborn, Matthew seemed to be settling down and adjusted to his baby brother, and I felt like we were starting to establish a bit of a routine. All of those things are true, but I guess I've also realized that it's OK to admit that I'm not doing as well as I'd like. We're thriving and surviving and all, but deep down I just don't feel like myself. I'm sure it's hormonal, blahblahblah, I even talked to the doctor about postpartum depression, but I really don't want to go on a brain chemical-altering drug that I'd have to be on for six months to a year and can cause 'suicidal thoughts' when coming off of it. I'm not suicidal now, so why would I sign myself up for the potential?! The thing that's reassuring -- and yet scary -- is that now that I'm talking to friends and family about my struggle and I'm hearing the same thing. Basically, "Yeah, life with two...especially in the IS that hard." Not really what I want to hear. I was hoping that there would be a magic happy pill to make things easier, but I guess I'm out of luck. So, in the meantime, I'm trying to do the things that help me feel like ME; that bring me back to the Essence of Jenny, the 'Jenessence', if you will -- read, talk to friends and family, and exercise (even if it still isn't running), and drink a cup of coffee with a dark chocolate kiss every morning. Chocolate really can cure all ailments.