Saturday, August 30, 2008

Politics and the Prince of Bel Air

I never thought this would turn into baby blog (typing with one hand because the other is holding Sparky), but here it is. So...while the rest of the world was watching Barrack deliver his acceptance speech, and hearing the morning news about McCain's choice of running mate...and what an interesting choice it was...

Exhibit A
via Verging on Pertinence

...I was enjoying an all night visit to the emergency room at Children's Mercy. Okay, "enjoying" might not be the best word. "Enduring" might be more like it. What started out as a day out for Julian, staying with his Great-Grammie while his mom took care of her own doctor's appts and job interviews, ended with a trip to the ER. The whole experience can be chalked up to a lesson learned: follow your instincts. Because in the end, there was absolutely no reason to go to the ER (except that vomiting and a fever in a tiny baby is very scary for a first time mother), let alone spend the entire night there. But, as I often tell my daughter, "boring (and unnecessary) is a good thing" when it comes to babies. And I do mean boring. Since Julian is an infant and the ER was filled with all sorts of kids with all sorts of ailments, we were shuffled off to our own private waiting room, with a teevee. And while I'm sure there was a way to change the channel, we never really attempted to do so and it seems there must have been a marathon running, of Prince of Bel Air episodes. Surely, this was no less exciting than Obama's acceptance speech.

But the more I hear about Sarah Baracuda, the more excited I become about this election. I really like her! And while she may not have much experience, her attitude and apparent leadership qualities are refreshing in a world that has been dominated by "typical" politicians. And now, with much ado about the fact that she has a daughter who is unwed and 5-months pregnant, I can truly relate to that aspect of her life. And seriously, does the main stream media realize how utterly stupid it looks running that story alongside Hurricane Gustav stories all day. Good grief.


Sunday, August 24, 2008

Grandpa's Hands

It's something I never gave much thought to, until I was staring at Julian's hands one day and realized...he has his Grandpa's hands.* Or more specifically, Grandpas thumbs. I'll have to see if I can pin Grandpa down for a shot of his thumbs, so as to properly document the similarity. Aside from being grateful that he inherited Grandpa's strong Croatian genes, I never really looked for, or noticed any family traits, until that moment. Regardless of whose they are, babies' hands are the cutest.

* This reminds me of a favorite Keb' Mo' song: Grandma's Hands

My favorite line: "If I get to Heaven, I'll look for Grandma's hands."

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With Family

I feel somewhat obligated to post something but am completely unmotivated to do so. Life has been exhausting lately, on several fronts.

As always, there is more work to do at the office than there are hours in a day and it only seems to get worse as we bring in more new clients and lose staff (there are currently 5 key tax staff/managers who are pregnant, one on bedrest almost from week 1 due to complications with twins, others with various due dates between now and the end of the year) it appears I will be there at least until the final due date of all 2007 tax returns, which is 10/15/08.

And then there are the two aging, ailing dogs. Smokey is less and less capable of walking on his own, nearly having to be carried outside to do his business (which he still does wait to do...he seems to know that if he starts peeing and pooping all over the house, that might be the end), and he's eating less and less. He generally needs to be carried out at the exact moment that it is my turn to feed the baby. Cocoa, seemingly despondent ever since the baby came home, had to go to the vet Friday to be checked for an intestinal blockage. He was in obvious pain and straining to void his bowels but the doctor, as doctors are prone to doing, said he couldn't find anything wrong and sent him home with some pills and instructions to give him extra attention, all of which cost $359. Plus $27 for 12 cans of special food.

And then, clearly, the newest addition to our family is commanding a lot of attention at home and makes me realize the importance of leaving my company sooner than later. When I first started talking about resigning (some call it "retiring"), I joked, "now that my kids are grown and out of the house, I think I'll quit working to become a stay-at-home mom." Now, I see the joke is on me, because the kids are coming back home and multiplying. And while I am not Julian's mother, his mother needs a lot of help right get her feet under her emotionally and financially, to decide that she really does want to be a mother, to decide what path she will follow into the future as a single mother, all of that. And I'm willing to help if I am able. Right now, I pray that I have that opportunity. While caring for an infant is exhausting in its own right, it is heartbreakingly painful trying to coach a 19-year old who says she "hates being a mother." And honestly, he's an easy baby to care for, aside from needing to be fed every 3 hours and only a handful of gassy episodes (that alone is exhausting so really, my admiration for mothers who have to cope with more than this has gone up tremendously!). Thank God he's been easy. I can't imagine how we would have coped with a colicky baby, or worse.

And now, all of the words we used when trying to counsel our daughter about adoption come pouring out of her ("I'm not ready to parent, I'm only 19 years old, I should be in college, I should be married before I have children, this is a lot harder than I thought it would be" etc.), usually at times when Julian needs her most. There is a very, very small sliver of my inner ego that is at least gratified to know she really was listening, but there is a much bigger piece of my heart that breaks whenever she breaks down like this. I realize and understand that there is a very real possibility that she may decide to place him for adoption. And that may be the best thing she could do. Obviously, the whole family has accepted Julian into their hearts and has prayed for him from the beginning as he fought a valiant fight just to stay alive. We all wish the best for him and understand that the most loving option may well be to place him in a loving home. But that doesn't make it any easier to consider the possibility of letting him go. I know there are grandparents out there raising their grandchildren, but I don't think that's in my heart. I pray for guidance on this. My real hope is that our daughter can find it in her heart to do the right thing, whatever that might be. She needs a lot of prayer right now.

The picture taking has waned ever since we got home, but here are a few special ones taken with family over the last couple weeks. On August 20, his due date, he was over 7 pounds, finally at the starting line as far as his gestational age is concerned. He is thriving and growing stronger each day. For that, we are so grateful!

With Great-Granddad (and Leah)

With Great-Grammie (and Leah)

With Cousin Erin

With Great-Uncle David

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