Monday, October 27, 2014

I can't believe he's two today. He's growing too fast. Lightning speed and to match he is a whirlwind of endless energy and constant conversation. He's sweet, observant and so interested in everything life has to offer. He made me a mama and has given me the lesson of slowing down to see the world through his new eyes everyday.
Things like trees dancing and ants climbing on the garage door are part of a daily reminder he gives me to slow down and appreciate it all.

Happy Birthday Jonah Matthew. I am thankful for you everyday and thankful you made me a mama.

We love you!!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Life gets busy and hectic quickly lately. It's hard to remember what day it is and all the sudden another week has blown by. This is such a short and busy season and it seems like just yesterday I was pregnant with Jonah. Now Miah is half a year old. 
This time is sweet but hard. Hard to get anything done on a do list. But not hard to just sit and play with them. Hard to not feel guilty about not cleaning or having dinner on the table, but feeling good about how much time I am present with these two. 

The growing pains I am feeling are that of fitting snugly into this title of mother, wife, partner, side kick, nurse, woman, daughter, sister, daughter in law, and friend. It's a lot to accomplish. 

Sometimes I feel like a Jack of all and master of none. 
The one I am most successful with at the moment is momma. Which truthfully is most important to me currently, as I feel it should be. 
But then the others are lacking...some way more than others.

I want to be the best I can with each role but sometimes the best I can be is not the best for the other person in the receiving relationship. So I try again and again. I try again and again to learn how to make each part of this puzzle fit together and live in harmony. 

I push forward with one and then feel another lacking, I give more to one and take from another. 

And it's exhausting. And I am not looking for a solution, as I know there is only the one of trial and error and work and thoughtful reflection to keep trying to balance. This will continue to be a battle forever. I just have to forgive myself and try again and let those out there know I am trying. And I am doing my best. The neglect is not on purpose or because I don't care. There is just so much of me, which sometimes (like today) feels like there's just not enough of. 

So for today I try again to fit into all these roles at wholly as I can. And realize....This is the day that the lord has made; I will rejoice and be glad in it. 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart. - Jeremiah 1:5

Pork chop, cuddle-butt, buba, little brother, Jeremiah cha cha cha, little man, Miah, sweet Jeremiah are just a handful of the names we have for him.
The fourth member of our Team is fitting in perfectly. He loves his big brother and watches him constantly. He squeals when big brother laughs or jumps around putting on a special show just for him to watch.
He likes to cuddle in bed with us around 4am until his brother gets up around 7. Then they both cuddle in bed with us for a little while with lots of "good morning Jeremiah" from big brother. We all slowly make it to the kitchen for coffee, milk, and some form of bread product with "JAM" on it for big brother. He loves Jam lately. All the while Jeremiah is watching his brother from my lap. He started solids and is loving them. He sits in his high chair next to big brother. Both in highchairs next to each other is just too adorable.
All and all the dust is settling nicely here. It was rough, I'm not gonna lie but it was so worth it. Those first 4 months of trying to balance them both was hard to get down but I think we are finally doing it well.

Both Mr. Big Dog and I have know a Jeremiah in our younger lifetime. Both of us thought fondly of them and their name. It is a strong name and he is strong boy. It is a solid name and he is a solid boy. He makes his presence known when he wants to but doesn't seem to make himself the center of attention. More like I'll let you know when I need you, or hey I'm over here if you need me. Then other times he just goes with the flow of the family and hangs out taking it all in.

He and big brother are bonding with hand holding, Miah grabs at him and really anything in his reach lately. I know it is very early but I see bunk beds and middle of the night chatting and laughing in their future. I see flash lights and tent camping in the backyard. Adventures on bikes and wrestling with daddy. I love being a boys mama and I especially love my boys and how our family is developing.

For I know the plans I have for you Plans to prosper you not harm you Plans to give you hope and future - Jeremiah 29:11

Miah is very similar to his brother but oh so different at the same time.  He is so perfect and was made just for us. Both are very active and strong, like can hardly hold in your arms when they want to move around. But Miah seems more cuddly, and likes to be held more often it seems. As oppose to big brother who we called "the observer" who sometimes just wanted to be put down to watch you.  Both seem to have loud voices when they started babbling those lovely baby babbles. Miah has a little hoarseness to his voice sometimes, which I wonder if it will stay. And physically you can definitely tell they are brothers. It's uncanny how you could mix up the pictures of them, but then they look so different too. Miah's mouth is a little more like daddy's I think. Jonah seems to have more of mommy's smile.

I am feeling blessed to have two boys, blessed the colic is over of course, blessed to get to stay home with them and watch every milestone happen before my eyes.

The hours are long, the pay is poor but every second of my job is amazing and I wouldn't trade it for a million dollars.......

Friday, April 25, 2014

God only gives you as much as you can handle right? Poor little mister has officially been diagnosed with colic...and a severe case at that. He has had some miserable days and tends to really be the most uncomfortable from 2 to 4 am unfortunately. His tummy seems upset and at times there is nothing I or anyone else can do to soothe him.
He's healthy, already at 12 lbs, and so strong with loving tummy time and lifting his head so high I think he might try to roll over if he tilts just a little to the left or right.
He has been giving me smiles already at 5 weeks old. He seems to have even given his big brother a couple smiles and coos, which is so heart melting. He is happy at times but then he is also afflicted with these fits that come over him and just make him look so physically uncomfortable.

These fussy crying fits that overcome him are so painful for me to watch and I now really do understand a parent's pain of not being able to soothe your child. Especially when they are so new to the world. But just when I think I can't handle the fussy crying a second longer, like nails on a chalkboard or just the nerve racking of him being so upset for so long.... God calms him and helps him to sleep. Or even gives him a full night like last night where he is able to eat and go back to sleep without the rage from 2-4am. For him and myself the break was much needed.

Besides God himself some other things that are helping little mister get some rest and relief are:

Swaddling. Big brother liked being swaddled too, so of course we were already fans but he seems to get some comfort from it.

The swing or mama-roo: He seems to sleep much better upright and with a little constant movement. The swing is on constantly at night in our room. And the vibrating button is a must as well.

The pacifier: Sometimes yes, sometimes no....depends on his mood at the moment.

Sound machine: Again something big brother loved as an infant. The ocean sound is a favorite at the moment and helps us to not have to be silent around him as he sleeps. It looks like a sheep which is cute too.

Mama's milk: Sometimes that is all that soothes him, boob = silent peace and calm....and eventually sleep...but sometimes he is too upset for even that.

Gerber's Soothe Colic drops: This is a pro biotic was are trying per the recommendation of his Dr. It helps change the bacteria in the gut...which is found to be a little off in colic inflicted babies. And helps 50% of the time....still can't tell if its helping or not but we are hopeful.

Daddy wearing him in the baby Bjorn and walking around: He will usually pass out this way after a short while.

The car: Like most books, websites, fellow parents suffering from colic inflicted babes....this will most of the time get little mister to sleep.

Anyways, the length of colic in infants is suppose to last until they are 3-4 months old, so hopefully we are halfway thru this timeline. Poor little mister......

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Two days overdue, exhausted and just plain ready we went with the advice of our midwife to have an induction on March 19th. I'm not gonna lie, it was scary. After our last birth experience with Jonah and knowing too much being in health care myself, induction might as well been a four letter word. I of course trusted whole heartily my midwife and used her judgement to guide us.
Day and night is the best way to describe our newest little mister coming to us. Jonah came in like a lion and labor was 18 hours with the last 2 1/2 pushing. Who we now know to be Jonah's little brother, Jeremiah was a mere 8 hours of labor with oh.....15 mins of pushing.

I can't say how much relief we have with Jeremiah being here, healthy, and my personal recovery being much gentler this time around. I want to say it even makes my latest sleepless nights less brutal and more tolerable.

Jonah is adjusting quite better than we anticipated for a 17 month old. The newness at least hasn't worn off at this point. He calls him "my miah" and "brother" sweetly. He talks to him in jibber jabber and shows him his cars/trucks. He is as gentle as 17 month old can be and wants to "kiss miah" often. We really couldn't ask for a better start to adding Jeremiah to our family.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Expectations are hard to overcome. Due dates are a joke in my body's world. And it's horrible how my mind can put me into a tail spin of stress resulting in my first migraine in probably 7-8 months.
Maybe it's the hormones, but my pounding head seems to have a direct correlation to my racing thoughts and fears about this upcoming delivery date.

Of course I can't make myself go into labor. And I can't have any complete peace of mind until this little one gets here. I am my own worst enemy. My mind won't shut off.

My body is tired, my mind exhausted. I try to talk myself down off the ledge over and over but really only get moments of peace when I think back to little mister's delivery. And how everything will be alright. I think about my faith in God and how arrogant it is to have any worry when he is the one in control. How it's easy to say but hard to do. To let go control and really realize what will be will be. He will take care of it all.

I want what all mothers want, I healthy baby. A safe delivery. My family to be okay without me being able to take care of anything/anyone for a couple days. My heart is heavy as I am starting to fall apart physically, emotionally and mentally from this last part of the marathon. I am so tired.

But as I don't know how I will take even one more step, I have to. I must and so it starts.
He is already working and I am just along for the ride. When you think you just can't go any further, and then you do somehow. That's not's him.

And so I head back to bed, for tomorrow may just be the first birthday of a new little cherub here on Earth......

Friday, March 7, 2014

My wedding ring officially does not fit anymore due to weight/swelling.

Nothing really fits at this point, even most of the maternity is ill fitting and tight. Nothing comfortable except sexy sweat pants that actually have a hole on seam of the crotch.

I'm almost 39 weeks and in the last 5 miles of this mental marathon.
I don't know if it's just me, or do others get to this point? If they do they mask it well. I'm physically feeling done and mentally I'm getting there.

Everyday I think this may be the last as our little family of 3. I cuddle little mister a little longer lately and even that is becoming harder and harder physically.

Every other step seems to ache and hurt. Sleep is becoming more and more non-existent. And I have had a couple boughs of contractions that tease me just enough into thinking the "big event" might be starting.

So for now I wait. Which feels like eternity. Others wait too. They wait of the call, they wait to find out if it's a he or a she. They wait for it all......the pot just simmering and not feeling close enough to a boil for me.

He only gives you as much as you can handle. He pushes you to your limit and sometimes beyond what you may think that limit is.

I'm at the starting line waiting for the gun to fire, I'm holding the college entrance examine waiting for the teacher to say start on the timer, I'm just waiting and sometimes that is the hardest part

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

It's probably totally normal to compare pregnancy one to number two, but from everything I've read lately they can be polar opposite in every single way.
With little mister I never had a single second of nausea, but I did have this black hole of hunger that would over come me in the first trimester. I'm talking HANGRY hunger and even after putting away a whole meal it was still not quenched. I also remember my skin starting to really feel tight about this time with little mister. Like water balloon tight all over and my maternity jeans being a chore to pull up over my widening hips. So with number two I'm the same weight but my body seems to be holding he/she differently. Pants still easy to get on and my tummy seems higher for some reason. Nausea was there in the first trimeter for sure but left by the second.
Who knows, all the wives tales may lead you to think it's one gender or another....but only time will tell if it's a little brother or little sister.

I realized I haven't ever told little mister's birth story in writing. And part of this blog is a time capsule for my little family to look back and read about our adventures and how life unfolds for us. So with that in mind, before I have a new story to tell I thought I should put it out there in black and white about how little mister came to us.

I was due October 19th, which would be 40 weeks pregnant. However at 36 weeks my midwife began to say my body was getting ready. And this is also when those weekly appointments begin. So week 37, 38, and 39 all showed more and more how "ready" my body was becoming. I was dilating and effacing and all looked "so promising" for a first time mom. I had even stopped working at 36 weeks because my body seemed to be about to go into labor with what I fondly referred to as lightning crotch with about every 10th step. My job as a nurse in the CVICU was very physically demanding and people were starting to feel my limping waddling discomfort personally those last few weeks. My midwife said no more and to not push all the walking on the trail by our house I had been doing (1.5 miles out and then 1.5 back...which then would lead to no walking for 3-4 days due to the hip and lightning crotch unfortunately).
So off work, off walking for exercise, and with most of my family in town watching the pot waiting for my simmer to turn into a boil.....we waited.

With each visit to the midwife, and each night of not sleeping due to the discomfort I started to get pretty haggard. It was rough. The due date of Oct 19th came and went. I was truly in my own personal marathon of a different kind. It was physically hard, emotionally draining, and then mentally I was trying to just keep positive. I mean, all babies come out eventually right? We didn't know Jonah was a little mister so that helped a little to distract me. But boy oh boy did he seem comfortable in there.

I did not want to be induced unless I absolutely had to be. I didn't want to force nature, I didn't want to end up with a c-section. These were my goals.  So when 40 weeks came and went, my midwife set a a kick baby out goal for 41 weeks and 5 days as our induction date. If this little one didn't want to come by then, they felt the placenta would be getting worn out and mentally I would need an intervention. I was walking around 4cm and 80% effaced.........

So the date for induction was set and we set off home again to wait.

Mr. Big Dog wasn't sleeping much since I was up all night tossing and turning. So I pretty much forced him to sleep in our guest room.

I was 41 weeks.
It was 1:20am on October the 27th, 41weeks and 1 day.
I woke up for some reason......decided I should probably get up to use the bathroom and move around.....and as I lied there trying to just get the nerve to push through the pain of moving and muster up the energy to roll over to get up.....pop my water broke. Not a huge gush like people say, just a little and enough for me to think I better get Mr. Big Dog. So what do any couple do in the age of cell phones....I called him from downstairs.
He answered and actually said he had just woken up for some reason too. We called the midwife and they said to come in within the next hour.
So we started to straighten up the house, let the dogs out, check to make sure we had everything, kind of at a moderate speed. Then it got real, REAL fast. I was in the laundry room when the first contraction of any substance almost took me to my knees. I called for Mr. Big Dog and said I would be making my way to the car and he needed to speed up from my former dilly dallying speed seconds before.
We quickly took off and the ride between our house and the hospital was about 20mins. I remember all 4 contractions between here and there. The intensity, the pain, and the realness that this was happening and this baby was coming. The realness that I had no control or power over any of it. Not the due date, not the time, not the speed...but I was still holding on to the hope of the place....that being the hospital and not the car.

We made it there, got checked in and the midwife checked me at 7cm. Again the optimism began with the hospital staff. This baby will be here by 8am, and it was now 3am. The epidural was being called for, I was ready. I was relieved it was all worth the wait and I would be having as natural a delivery as I could.

I loved my epidural and felt the best I had felt in 5 weeks, except of course I couldn't move my legs but it didn't matter the pain and discomfort was gone and I was going to have my little baby soon enough. I would find out what he/she was.

Then 8am came and went, and I was still 7cm. My contractions were happening but not progressing me along. It was like another little finger shake from God just saying "why do you count your eggs before they have hatched?" ( kind of literally right? ) " I am in control not you." And that is when I really felt full surrender. I had a great nurse who did everything in her power to keep my labor progressing. Flipping me side to side every couple hours, medications were started to help my contractions be more efficient. Then a fever started. Followed by tylenol, Ibuprofen and antibiotics. This was not looking good. Fevers don't make for great labor and everything started to putter out. I slept as much as I could though out the day. But if I was to have a c-section then that was the fate. I had done all I could do to not intervene and now was proof that it was all going to happen however it was suppose to. It was not up to me.

Then about 5pm everything started to work. The fever was breaking, the antibiotics must have been doing their job and I was 10cm by 6pm and 100% effaced. I made it, I remember thinking. This was it, time to push and meet my little one. I was tired but so excited.

I have never worked so hard for anything in my life. Not my running, not my 100 mile bike ride, this was by far the most physically demanding thing I have ever done in my life. Oh and the epidural stopped working just as I was it was wearing off with each contraction. Not that I want some badge of courage for that, but I think it did make it more memorable and mentally tough for me....with each push I was closer and closer but it took 2.5 hours.
It was now 8:20pm......Jonah Matthew Rios came into this world at 9 lbs 9oz 21.5inches long. A head full of hair and a loud cry. He was moving all around as they were trying to measure him and weigh him. He was huge and tanky. I remember Mr. Big Dog telling me sweetly he was a HE. I'll never forget his face as he told me we had a son. It was one of the best moments of my life. It was like it was just Mr. Big Dog and I in that room and we now had our son. Time seemed to just stand still for that minute.

They brought him to me quickly and I got to see how he was perfectly made.
The past 18 hours of labor, the past 41 weeks and 1 day were all worth it. No matter how hard it seemed at the time, every second had a purpose and made the reward so much sweeter.

He was and is amazing. I can't believe he's already 16months old and I am about to do it again with his sibling.
God is good and is in complete control. He takes care of my family and will give me whatever I need when I need it.

This picture was his ride home from the hospital.....I've never been so terrified in my life. 
And this was a week home...already about 10lbs just observing everything. My blog header he was about 2weeks goes so quick! 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Jonah is the sweetest little man I could have ever dreamed of. He is cuddly at times, giving his daddy and I "loves" and wild at times when he takes off running through the snow in the yard (which btw only happens once every 5 years or so here in the pacific northwest) and stomping his feet in complete rebellion about going inside when it's only 20 degrees outside and we've played till his cheeks were rosy red and my feet were numb.
 He's all boy and then some, but sensitive at the same time. He's very interested in books and learning words. He loves reading and wants you to read "aaahhhhginnnn" before you're even done. He's pretty amazing, as most parents say about their children.
 I love that he is my first. I love that he will be a big brother soon. I love that they will be close in age, even though it will be two under 2 for a while. I just can't imagine it being any other way. He was perfectly made for Mr. Big Dog and I, as I am sure number two will be as well.
He is getting ready in his own way for number two to arrive. Books on babies coming; he squeals baby with each page and will point to my belly...who knows how much he really understands but it's better than nothing:)  He transitioned to a new room, and a new schedule. A lot more walking and less carrying.
And I know it's all good, but part of me wishes I could have my cake and eat it too.
Keep him my baby boy forever, but he's growing so fast and he welcomes it. He welcomes it with his little mister independent attitude and it would actually be more selfish than lovely of me to stunt any of his new changes. Heaven forbid I not given him a fork with dinner or try to brush his teeth before he has tried himself.
This picture really shows him. He's so serious at times, taking it all in.
I love you little man and can't wait to see you as a big brother. I know you'll love it and you'll be amazing at it.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

My newest little is due in just 7 short weeks. EKKKK! How did that happen? I remember last pregnancy counting days and wishing it was the half way mark at like week 10. And now this time around it's blown by and I am feeling like just yesterday I was sharing the news with Mr. Big Dog that there were two pink lines on the pregnancy test.

So maybe it's having a toddler that makes the days melt by? Or maybe it's the holiday season in the middle with all the chaos and hustle and bustle?
Or maybe it's just a little bit of anxiety not really wanting to focus on this pregnancy 100% head on? Like not looking directly at the sun......maybe it's been a little too much to think about?
And then there is the thought of two under two years old, which is daunting for a lot of people including me. But women have done it for centuries right? Or maybe it's the thought of a delivery anything like my first (lets just say Scary with a capital S, days in the hospital, and blood transfusions do not sound warm and fuzzy to me). Whatever it has been, this pregnancy has flow by and I find myself a little panic stricken at times with "oh my, am I ready?"

But ready or not, the closer we get to this little making an appearance the more my faith seems to comfort me. Faith that it will all be okay and I am not in control really at all of any of it. What will be, will be. I will be taken care of and it will all fall into place as it did last time. My little family will be okay and taken care of.
My fears and frets are filled with my hope and prayers that my little mister will not feel neglected or too shocked by the new addition to our family. My worries are substituted with a simple prayer that he knows how much we love him and will continue to feel it with sharing his parents with a little baby. And I have reassurance that everything will go as safely as possible and I will bounce back because I did last time and it all worked out.

We have had a lot of hiccups the past month or so with many decisions that have needed to be made. Financial decisions, scheduling decisions, thoughts and plans about our little family and what is best for it with our upcoming growth spurt of one more little person with the same last name.

 And in the end, having faith it will all work out ultimately is what saves us over and over again. Saves us from worthless worry. Saves us from stress and anxiety. And just helps us keep in perspective that we are not driving this bus of life. We can only do so much, wish and pray for so much and basically show up ready to take on whatever this life hands us.

The rest is in HIS hands as it should be.

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