today is my due date!

I’m sitting out on our rooftop patio before sunrise today. It’s beautiful. I’m wearing a tank top and shorts and I’m neither cold nor hot and I’m in heaven. In just a few short hours this rooftop will be uninhabitable and we will be locked up tight back in our igloo where we stay nice and cool all summer long. Which in Los Angeles has sorta become half the year now. 😉

 

I’ve been thinking about dusting off the blog now that I have so much free time, HA!, I mean I’ve been writing blog posts in my head for months, just sitting down at my laptop at a time I’m feeling creative or like unleashing just isn’t always possible. And then when it is possible, I’m too tired or stabby to attempt to communicate! But I NEED it again. I NEED to write. It’s been four years since I was writing weekly/daily.

 

Four years ago I met my husband and figuratively put down the pen.  I had a hard time transitioning back then from “angry, lonely, sad, almost 40-year old” to “happy, on cloud-9, engaged woman, expectant mommy, married mommy to be, wife……” it was ALL SO MUCH SO FAST. It still is. But writing has always been how I quieted the voices in my head.  And it’s time again. I’ve realized I don’t have to write about the present if I’m still taking time to process what’s going on, like my baby turning 3 in two days, let’s not talk about that right now. Or maybe I will. Maybe I will talk about things that are going on in the here and now. Like how much I love motherhood, every.single.thing, but MAN having a toddler is tough!!!

 

So here I am picking it pack up again…….just like that I am jumping in. Or sitting down and putting my feet in while I slither in slowly.

 

I’ve never written Sloane’s birth story. Oh, who’s Sloane. Duh. Traci, you haven’t written much since Sloane’s birth so perhaps you should take one GINORMOUS step back.  Okay.  My baby girl is named Sloane…….she is the light of our lives and a joy to everyone she meets. Well, that one is negotiable these days, but she is truly a miracle sent here to do big things. I’m in awe of her most days. That I grew her. I helped make her. I have loved and watched many babies grow up, but there’s something about Sloane that’s just different. And I promise you it’s not just because I’m her mommy, she’s here to do something big, but for now, I’ll settle just for potty training! HA!

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Today is my due date. June 12th. 2016. For anyone who’s been pregnant, we all know that that due date sticks to us like glue. We hear it for 9+ months at the Dr. We repeat 3,000 times to anyone and everyone who will ask. It sort of becomes part of ones identity. “When are you due? What are you having?” are the most common questions one gets asked!

 

Admittedly, I’ve been caught several times misidentifying my daughters birthday as “June 12th, er, I mean June 16th. Nope! Its June 14th. It’s a long story!” I’ve said THAT one more times than I’d even like to admit. And you know what, I decided in this nice cool morning air, as I breathe in that familiar “camp smell” only someone who remembers what summers in Los Angeles were like in the 80’s would know. Cool mornings, capped off by scorching days and warm nights. Yes, it’s extremely nostalgic for me. I guess Summer is my season; ironic since now it sends me into hibernation, but I’m going to try and enjoy more early mornings up here…….

 

Back to today being my due date.

 

35 months, 3 weeks and 6 days ago I was fully pregnant and ready to explode. But not quite wanting to experience “what came next”. I was more than ready to be done being pregnant, I assure you, but, I never was too excited for the whole childbirth experience. LOL. I laugh now, but at the time my anxiety couldn’t have been higher and I unfortunately did not get the help and support I needed. So instead we made jokes about how exactly was I planning on getting her out? I didn’t even care. Or want her out. Yet I did not want her staying in. LOL

IMG_0353It was a Sunday. The first day of my 40th week. My Dr gave me every chance to go into labor on my own. In fact , for the last 5-weeks they kept saying “she’s coming early”. She did not in fact come early or even on time, so clearly they knew what they were talking about there. LOL. Nothing like thinking that at any moment you’re gonna have your water break and your ginormous baby is going to be sneezed right out in the middle of Target. Looking back I just laughed outloud, if only it was that easy! HA!

 

We were to check-in at Labor & Delivery at 8pm. We had all day to relax. And wait. And eat. And wait. And talk about how this time next week we would have our baby at home, meanwhile every single conversation about this makes me more and more scared about giving birth.  And my husband who was so damn excited about her would have pushed her out himself if he could have, cannot stop talking. It’s like he’s so excited and so nervous he’s talking in full conversations to himself but loudly that it appears like he’s trying to converse with me.  I know now this isn’t an uncommon habit of my husbands, but at the time I couldn’t figure out if I was supposed to interject or just let him keep going! Lol

 

We had an appointment for 4pm at the Beverly Hills Library for our passports. Yes, you read that correctly. The day I was being induced we went to the library to get passports, like it was just any day. I THOUGHT THAT WAS WEIRD THEN AND I THINK IT’S HILARIOUS NOW!!!  So after my husband says, “what now?”. I’m literally about to explode with baby. Every move is hard work. Her head is resting on my pelvis and he wants to know “what next” as if that in and of itself on my due date wasn’t enough. LOL. Please understand, I say this all as true comedy that it is and was.

 

We barely knew one another, we were both grown ass adults who were used to being on our own trying to learn this new dance called the compromise and I’m looking like a whale as we stand in BH talking about what’s next.  On my due date. When we need to be at the hospital at 8pm. And not a moment earlier btw, because of a shift change at 730pm. (Shift changes made me stabby, wait until you hear about the shift change I told off a nurse!)

 

So we go home, I “nap” with the dogs. My husband is packing for himself. Or something. I don’t remember. He just moves around a lot. And I don’t. Especially 10 months pregnant and hours from being induced with my first baby. I was anything but fast!

 

The hospital is 8 miles from our house. We have driven it many times. We have driven it in traffic hour and it’s about 30 minutes away. 45 would be including parking. And that’s in weekday morning traffic. This was a Sunday. We leave our house with 90 minutes to get there. We stop for sandwiches at Jersey Mikes so that we have something to eat while we are sitting there and waiting.

 

My husband is happy to just drive slowly down Ventura Blvd taking in the scenes. I am not. I am ready to get this baby out, but I’m scared to fucking death and he’s quite literally on a Sunday stroll.  I don’t really remember this time well other than please dear lord don’t let it pass too quickly I’m not ready for this and please make him stop talking because I just cannot hold a conversation right now.

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We check in at labor & delivery a few minutes to 8pm, they ask us to wait a few minutes while they finish their shift change. No big deal. They say its not a busy night and proceed to put me in a corner room. You see, I’d been in L& D before with some preterm labor and false alarms, and because of my age I was checked for everything constantly, both because of protocol and because I was a nervous nelly. This was legit the smallest, oddest shaped room I had ever been in, and this cannot possibly be where they keep me for long. Right? Wrong!!

 

This room was so small and stuffy, I asked for a fan they brought me a hand fan. Like the kind you spread out and look fancy with?? Yes that’s what they offered to me as I was laying like a beached whale, terrified AF, getting ready to be induced.

 

I wish I could say it all went by in a blur but that would be the absolute opposite of the truth. Time could not have taken longer at this point. Someone comes in and tells me that I’m having contractions but not dilating. Yes, I’m aware. For 5-weeks this has been going on lady. So she tells me the most fun part, “because you’re already contracting, but not dilating, we can’t give you Pitocin, we have to try something else first”. WHAT. Why didn’t anyone mention this ahead of time? I’m a details person, and Kaiser, the HMO where we had Sloane is anything but detailed. They like to tell you as little as possible so you can’t question anything. LOL. I mean that’s hopefully not their protocol but I stand by that assessment!

 

So they come in to do the balloon induction.  Picture the thing you use to raise a car to change the tire, inserted to help open ones cervix. Good times.

 

I FREAKED. This was the worst pain I had ever felt in my life and we aren’t even close to getting this baby out. I have learned A LOT about childbirth and previous trauma, no one mentioned any of that to me  before pregnancy or during and unfortunately it caused a lot of stress and emotions I didn’t expect on what was supposed to be the happiest day of our lives. (More on that in another post.)

 

I get an epidural. I’m laying there contracting every few minutes but nothing productive.

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Carefully chosen socks to wear and be cozy. 🙂 #FTM

I’m still in the tiniest room in the world shaped like a triangle. An isosceles right triangle. It was stuffy. I felt miserable. No one was really explaining anything and I’m laying there just waiting for this baby. I was kept calm the whole time by being able to watch the fetal heart monitor and hear it as loud as I wanted so I know she was okay, and as long as I knew she was okay I felt that I could survive this “incredible” process.

 

I can hear the little princess screetching to get out of her bed now……sorta hard to focus on the miracle of her beautiful birth with that going on. Although perfect and ironic considering. LOL!

 

I’ll stop here for now. And this way it’ll force me to write more and complete her birth story before her 3rd birthday on Friday. ❤

 

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Our Yom Kippur 2018

Becoming a parent, I have made clear I didn’t want Sloane to change our lives but to enhance them. And that she will just learn to go-with-the-flow. And so far, she’s done awesome.

We take her to concerts and restaurants. We have taken her to museums and  parties. She can totally hang. We have been very lucky that she loves people and loves going out and doing new things with us.

So when Yom Kippur arrived this year I thought it was important that we took Sloane to synagogue with us. They offer a “Tot” service that would be perfect for her, but, its at 8am and that’s like the middle of the night for Sloane so we opted instead to take her to the 1pm school aged service.

We got Sloane dressed up in her best white clothes for the Day of Atonement.

She could not stop repeating, “I can’t wait to go to Temple, I’m so escited!!” which made my heart swell.

We pull into the parking lot at Temple Beth Hillel and in her adorable 2 year old little voice she says, “We are HERE! We are HERE!” at which time I realize I had forgotten our tickets on our kitchen counter. Luckily we live only 8 minutes away so we quickly ran home to get them. All the while explaining to a frustrated toddler that we ARE indeed going back to temple we just have to get something mommy forgot at home first.

We pull back into the temple and again hear “We are HERE! We are HERE!” followed by “I can’t wait to see Rabbi Ellie and Rabbi Sarah!!!!”

I explain as we are walking into the synagogue and up to the sanctuary that while we would see Rabbi Ellie and Rabbi Sarah up on the Bima (stage) we would not in fact be able to talk to them today. I explained that we were so lucky we had just seen them on Saturday at the beach but that they were VERY busy today, we could wave but we could not talk to them.

We go and sit in the back of the sanctuary, like as far back as possible in the folding chair area hoping that we won’t disturb anyone but we can still enjoy and appreciate the service.  I sit on the end so that Sloane can walk around and watch the Bima and see. Me, stupidly hoping that if she could see she would enjoy the service more.

The service had already begun thanks to our double trip to temple, but we were able to set up shop and thought we were doing fairly well. We had arrived, all dressed with all our belongings and Sloanie by 1:05pm.

That’s when Sloane, in her NOT QUIET VOICE says to me, “I cannot see Rabbi Ellie, I can’t see Rabbi Ellie.” I ask her to speak in her whisper voice and tell her we can walk closer and watch quietly as they sing. So I pick her up and walk along the east wall of the synagogue so that Sloane can see better.

Suddenly chatty cathy decides she has more to say, in her not so quiet voice she says “oh, Rabbi Ellie, I lub you. Oh Rabbi Sarah I Lub you too.” Which IS precious and adorable, don’t get me wrong, its just not necessarily appropriate at that time! fullsizeoutput_3709

Me: “Sloane, we need to be quiet, all of these people are here to listen to the rabbi’s we can’t be talking loudly”.

“Okay mommy” in the quietest voice she has ever used.

So we stand there a little longer, she’s very excited to be there which makes me happy and she’s watching the Rabbi’s and the teens that were participating in the service.

All of a sudden, like only a two year old can do, she suddenly discovers the stained glass window behind us she has seen hundreds of times already, but because the way the afternoon sun was hitting it, it truly was magical looking, she decides to talk about the stained glass.

Again, in her not so quiet toddler voice.

“Oh mommy yook at the red! The green! The blue! Oh mommy, yook at the lellow!”

I look around embarrassed and quietly nod and apologize to those around where I was standing. I whisper to Sloane that we need to go back to our seats because we are disturbing the congregants.

We get back to our seats and while I’m frustrated that my plan to take Sloane to Yom Kippur services is proving more frustrating and exhausting than I ever could have dreamt she decides to say in her again, not so quiet voice, “I lub you mommy and daddy” and our heats melted.

And we bolted out of there. 43 minutes we lasted.

I will forever refer to 2018 Yom Kippur as the day “we tried”.

Posted in family, life, mommylife, sloaniebaloney | 2 Comments

a walk down memory lane….

sometimes something happens that catches me completely off guard and its like i’ve been catapulted into my past. into one of the chapters long since closed. long since grieved for.

sometimes, its a song, running into someone, or finding something from that time period.

on friday i had some nervous energy and decided to clean out my car while waiting in the carpool line.

i haven’t had this car long, but considering how quickly my life has changed, there was a story of items from the past 5 years. hidden treasures within my seats, in my glove box and in my armrest.

as i moved things around this popped up:

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i’ve seen it in my armrest since i got my car. in fact, admittedly it moved with me from my last car. it’s just a pacifier you say. why yes, it is. and oddly enough it doesn’t belong to my daughter sloane or the little girl that i nanny for, m. they both use pacifiers but this one is not theirs. how do i know you ask, because this one, this one belonged to calen.

calen is 10.5 years old now. he hasn’t used a pacifier for more than half of his life. but in so many ways he was my first baby. the first one who i loved with all of my heart and all of my being. he was the one who taught me how to love unconditionally. he’s like my little best friend.

somehow seeing this little treasure every time i’d go into my armrest made me feel like that time wasn’t so far away. it allowed me a moment of an escape to a different time. a simpler time. it made me relish those times when it was just calen and i. it was so very long ago. several lifetimes. but such a happy time in my life. he was like a little angel who brought happiness to everyone he was around.

without calen, and this pacifier, i would’t be the mommy i am today. he helped me see what was important and what kind of mommy i wanted to be.

see, a walk down memory lane brought to you by an 8 year old pacifier. 😉

RIP Tiger Paci, it was time to send you on your way. thank you for the memories. you will never be forgotten. ❤

Posted in mommylife, the munchkins, things i love <3 | 1 Comment

my nana

So, forgive the time in between posts. I’m working out some kinks. Not in my blog but in life! LOL! Juggling mommying, working and home life, it’s rough. And I needed a new computer, which I finally got, and I’m writing my very first blog post from right now! I feel like I’m on my way to being a legit writer now that I have this here MacBook Air. my very own, very first Mac. Thank you to my loving husband and an early Valentine’s Day gift. ❤

I thought this second blog post of the year would be about my new laptop or about Sloane, or about my husband and how we met. But sadly, on Tuesday, January 30th, my Nana passed away. I have so many thoughts, so many things to share, but for now, I think the best is the eulogy that I wrote and said at her funeral this past Friday.

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I read of a man who stood to speak
At the funeral of a friend

He referred to the dates on her tombstone
From the beginning to the end

He noted that first came her date of her birth
And spoke the following date with tears,

But he said what mattered most of all
Was the dash between those years

For that dash represents all the time
That she spent alive on earth.

We are here today to celebrate my Nana Gayle. A woman who lived her dash to it’s fullest. She was born in 1920 and lived until 2018. The magnitude of those numbers is just baffling to me. She and I often discussed of the massive changes that had happened in her lifetime.

A child of the depression, my Nana was one of the most frugal people on the planet, having begun recycling and reusing before I was even born.

nana with her grandchildren circa 1977My Nana was a do-er. She wasn’t one to just sit, she always had to be doing SOMETHING. She loved to cook and bake and she was amazing at both!! Her food and her baked goods are some of the things that will highlight her absence the most. Her matzah ball soup, was delicious and amazing! Her rolled cabbage that sadly my husband roy never got to have was my favorite. Her life changing mandle bread she would give each of us and label with our names with the promise of us returning the container when we had finished it. A few years ago when she gave me my container of mandel bread I asked her if she would make me an extra container and leave it in her freezer for me to find after she passed away. I understand there’s one waiting for me with my name on it.

She was an avid reader, oh did Nana love to read. We all had taken to giving her the latest Biographies or Autobiographies as gifts because she would sit and read each book cover to cover. And I have no doubt that she finished all of the books that we all gave her for Hanukkah in December.

My Nana was a, no nonsense, very capable and independent woman. Well, in my eyes anyway. I remember when I was a little girl and I was so proud that MY NANA had a job she went to every day. No one else’s grandma had a job outside of their home! More recently, the fact that at 98 she was still living on her own, in her own home, by herself was incredible. She still paid her own bills and made her own appointments and kept her own bank accounts and business affairs in order. She was truly amazing at 98 years old.

In 2003 my Papa passed away, her beloved Danny. They were married for 63 years, which absolutely blows my mind. They loved to do things together. They had a love of traveling, and seeing the world. They loved music and getting together with friends and playing cards. My Nana loved to host and have people over. Always being ready with a basket of lovely fruit and a plate of candies or delightful little cookies or maybe even a bundt cake.

How DO I share 42 years of memories?? I could stand here telling you stories for hours. I love to write and yet I’ve never found anything as difficult to write as this. Trying to sum up it ALL up and not keep you here for hours isn’t easy.

I spent a lot of time over the years with Nana and she loved to share stories that I remember as if they were imprinted on my memory. Etched there for my lifetime. When I was younger we would go on walks around her community and she would tell me detailed stories of when she and my Papa were newly married they lived in an attached duplex with her in-laws and young SIL. When my Papa was stationed at San Clemente Island and she was home alone with a young baby Joyce.

She would tell stories about my mom, her perfect teri who could do no wrong she would say. I could tell you stories about my own childhood and how Nana would come over and within minutes of arriving she was ushering me to take a walk with my babydoll in her stroller and our family dog. Or she would be in the front yard playing basketball with Ryan. Or she would have an apron on and be tinkering around in the kitchen. Whether she was baking with us at our own house or helping my mom out with a holiday meal. In more recent years she would sit down at the kitchen table and my mom would bring her things she could do while sitting, like cutting the apple for apples & honey at Rosh Hashanah.

There was never a shortage of questions from Nana. She took a real active interest in our lives. She wanted to know what we were up to, who we were seeing, what we were eating, where we were going. She spent A LOT of time as I like to refer to it, “in her own head” so when she actually saw us or spoke to us she had thought through all sorts of scenarios and situations and wanted to ask. “Listen dear, I was just thinking…..” are words I have heard for 42 years.

One of the great heartbreaks of my life is that my Papa didn’t get to meet Roy and see meimg_0073 married and a mom. He would have loved both Roy & Sloane. And of course my SIL Britt and my niece Dylan. The amazing thing is that Nana was there for ALL OF IT. And we knew how special it was. I am so grateful that I was able to tell her that. She knew that having her at my wedding and meeting my daughter were HUGE for me. She claimed not to understand it, but I know she knew. The pictures tell the real story and I’ve never seen Nana smile so big.

This week we have heard from family and friends near and far. And hearing what people had to say about Nana has been so eloquently stated and spot on. She was so filled with spunk and vitality one person stated. Which couldn’t have been more accurate.

That was my Nana.

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Happy Twenty Eighteen!!!

Happy New Year! As I begin to write this, its 1:27am on January 2, 2018. But I haven’t been to sleep yet, so in my mind it is still the first day of 2018.

It seems like forever since I sat up late at night and typed away click click click on my keyboard. Put my feelings to “paper”. Shared my thoughts and my feelings anywhere. And I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately.

I LOVE to write. Writing was my release for a while. And just as quickly as I started I stopped.

The good news is it was for good reason, instead of writing about what I wanted or missed out on having, I was out there getting it. As of today, January 2, 2018 I have been married for 22 months. And at least 1000 times a day over the course of the past almost 3 years I have wanted to stop and write about what was going on in my life. The funny, the mundane, well let’s be honest, there was no mundane, but there was the sad, the enjoyable and the enlightening. I chose to live life and not worry about sharing it publicly.

And now, tonight, I realized that back then I was alone so much in my own head that I constantly had thoughts I wanted to get out of my head and put on paper. I constantly felt things I needed to explore with words. But now, there is so much noise (SO MUCH NOISE) around me that I rarely have time to think much less ponder how I got here. Instead I make lists of things I need to get done.

But I miss writing. I miss feeling things the way you do when you write. I made myself a promise in July on my birthday that “this year I would write more”. It’s been almost 6 months and for one reason or another something keeps stopping me. But 2018 is about me. About me getting back to being me and doing the things that make me tick. About me getting healthy inside and out. And one of the things that makes me feel better is writing.

So here I am.

I don’t even know where to begin. On one hand I feel like I should bring you all up to date on my life. On almost 3 years of my life. But on the other hand, likely if you’re reading this you know me and you’ve followed along enough of Facebook to have an idea.

Here’s the brief version. HA!

In January of 2015 I embarked on my new adventure with a new nanny family. (This week will be 3 years I am with them!) Much more on that to come, but I am very, very lucky in the job department. And this year is 10 years I have worked as a full-time nanny. That blows my mind. I spent 11 years in radio and advertising so next year I’ll have spent an even number of years in each of my professions.  DAMN I AM OLD! I used to think that people who could say things like that were like middle-aged moms! Oh right, I AM a middle aged mom now.

After 4 awesome months really enjoying life, I went on a blind date. THE blind date. The only blind date that will ever matter. I met my now husband. I promise to get back to stories about our meeting, dating and our engagement (spoiler alert: that does not paint me in the best light, but might be the funniest shit that could ever actually happen in real and did, to me! Of course!)

We had a whirlwind romance (that sounds MUCH fancier than it was!) but we had fun. And at 40 years old and almost 45 years old we both had dated enough to know that we were meant for one another. After 3 ½ months of dating, my now husband planned an elaborate and very public engagement the night after my 40th birthday. Spoiler alert: I said yes.

We immediately began planning a wedding for February 2016.

See, who had time to write?? I was VERY busy LIVING life-like something out of a fairytale! And I knew it at the time which I think makes it even more special.

I can’t lie, writing this stuff down reliving some of the most exciting days of my life is probably the best therapy anyone could ever have.

Ok, so here’s the timeline……

In Fall of 2015 we began to plan for our living situation. We ended up having my then fiancé move in with me. We both rent but my place was nicer (and had central heat & a/c, and a balcony).

On October 31st we dropped off the keys and the garage clicker to his solo apartment and we were officially cohabitating.

On November 23rd I took a pregnancy test and found out that I was, in fact pregnant. (THE BEST SURPRISE ever!! And an amazing story that you’ll get more details than I’m sure you’ll ever want!) They tell you not to rush to the Dr so I waited until December 8th when I could get an appointment. Some thought I was going to the Dr too early, but when I think about it in hindsight I was in such a blur those 2-weeks that I HAD TO go to see if this was all for real.

On December 8th I found out that I was not only pregnant, but I was 13 weeks pregnant. And the baby was healthy and waving in fact. I WAS STUNNED. WE WERE STUNNED. And scared. Spoiler alert: everything was perfect.

On February 20, 2016, we were married in a perfect wedding with just family and close friends there.

IT WAS A WHIRLWIND!!!

When I sit here writing about it now, it seems like a lifetime ago. WHICH IT IS!!! But I remember every detail and am so excited to document it and share it. There are so many very funny experiences we have had that only my husband and I could have gotten ourselves into.

Just 4 months after getting married,  on June 14, 2016, I gave birth to our beautiful, healthy, full term almost 9 lb baby girl. She is perfect. I want to share everything……I promise, I will catch up!

Luckily life is so boring and mundane these days, other than a toddler tantrum at Petco because I wont let her have a doggie cookie or the fact that your toddler will only eat with a fork and will repeat the word fork 500 times in a row, except fork sounds like fuck and this is my life now!

We have known each other less than 3 years. We aren’t quite married 2 years yet. Our baby is 18 months old. We have moved 2 times already……and I have everything I ever dreamt of.

Our lives are an ugly, colorful, fun, sticky, loud and glorious mess! I have a supportive, loving husband who will go along with almost anything I suggest. Not without a protest though. And my toddler who suddenly understands the art of negotiating! Some days, I swear to god I can’t imagine this is what 42 looks like! I still feel like a teenager. I look around for that adultier adult like the meme says, and I AM THAT ADULTIER adult! So I stopped counting the years, and instead decided to LIVE them. And amazingly enough, I am a lot happier. ❤ ❤

Posted in life, marriage, mommylife, new me, new year | 1 Comment

more red balloons

This Saturday is May 2nd. It will be one year since Ryan Cruz Saldana was killed and takenIMG_2026 from Jacqui and Dan. 365 days later and I still can’t rectify it in my head or my heart. I don’t understand it. I don’t know that I ever will.

I do not know Jacqui personally although we are connected through several different avenues including my sorority Gamma Phi Beta from Sonoma State University.  If you don’t know this story you can check out her blog at www.babyboybakery.com.

imageThis story touched my heart deeply last year. It happened at a very vulnerable time for me and it was a rough, rough week. The kids were out of town and I was watching their fish and in their home daily without anyone home and the silence would kill me. I would walk in through their front door and the stillness of the air and the quiet and the strewn about toys and things hit my face and brought immediate tears. And each day I’d think to myself, “they’re coming back. They’ll be back. Ryan is not”.

It touched me because as a self proclaimed worry wart I am annoyingly overprotective with the children in my life and I know from following Jacqui she was as well. Which made this a true, honest to goodness accident and my heart could never take it. Neither could my brain.

When Ryan died Jacqui asked for one thing. She didn’t want her son to be forgotten. Which makes sense. And I will do everything I personally can to help her with that. I wear my red Converse and think of him. I go to Disneyland and see a red balloon and think of him. Ryan IS everywhere and has touched so many of us.

In times of tragedy there are people who try to take advantage of others, and I don’t ever imagewant to be in that boat. I mourn this baby lost and I feel horrible for his family. I too jumped on the #RedBalloonsforRyan bandwagon last year. I own several t-shirts. But I am wiser this year. Sadly. And I now know that people profited off of that. And yes, IT DID make Ryan known and as of my last check that hashthag has almost 45,000 Instagram posts. (Some are creepier than others, but none the less, Ryan has not been forgotten.)

 

So with the year anniversary of his death coming upon us I wanted to start with those closest to me and the people in my life. Let’s remember Ryan by doing something to give of ourselves this weekend. We can all find a minute or a $1 to donate let’s do it and let’s do it big in Ryan’s memory. For Jacqui.

I’d be honored and grateful if you’d share this post and spread the word. I don’t want anyone to benefit from this but the people on the receiving end of our gestures of kindness.

  • Whether it’s helping an older person at the market.
  • Or paying for the person’s Starbucks behind you.
  • Offering to watch the children of your single mom friend.
  • Getting a meal for a homeless person.
  • Or picking up the phone and calling someone you love to tell them that you love them.

 

DO SOMETHING TO PUT A SMILE ON SOMEONE’S FACE THIS WEEKEND AND REMEMBER RYAN CRUZ SALDANA WHILE YOU’RE DOING IT!!!! imagine_sig_02

 

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give yourself a hand…….

I posted this last night on Facebook but I wanted it to be a blog post. I decided to cut and paste the post to share and to keep for myself for future reminders!!  

After almost 5 months at my new job and watching a teeny tiny infant turn into a precious, vivacious little person mimicking behaviors and showing her feelings of love towards us, something kind of profound about watching children (or parenthood if you will) occurred to me.

When you are with a baby every minute of every day is filled with watching them grow and shape and change. Whether it be little things they start doing or actual developmental milestones you watch them reach, you kind of feel like a rockstar on a regular basis. 

“Today was the best swaddle I’ve ever done!”
“She just smiled at me!”
“Omg she gives kisses now”

“He walked!!”

Conversely, when your kids start to grow and babbling becomes talking and talking becomes negotiating every.single.thing and reminding and repeating yourself 90 millionty times an hour and needing a black & white striped shirt & whistle for refereeing 24/7 if you have multiple children you can’t help but end each and every day feeling like somehow you have failed in some way. 

“Crap I sent him to school in long sleeves and it was warm today.”

“If I have to ask you to stop doing that one more time I’m going to have to…….”

“Why did you pick today not to nap?”

“Because I said so!!”

So Mom’s, Dad’s, Nannies, and anyone else who spends more time with children than with adults…….you did it! 
You survived today! They may not have learned to roll over today or wave today or anything that seems extraordinary, but they’re alive and you taught them what being human is all about. 
It definitely doesn’t get any easier in some ways as they get older and I’ve had the unique opportunity of going back to the experience of being with an infant all day and it really made me think about how hard on ourselves we are. How hard it is sometimes to see the little miracles in older children because they ARE just normal everyday things.

So in a few years when I get back to that point where there’s a toddler running and climbing and whining and throwing and asking “but why” a zillion times a day, I hope I can remember this feeling and remind myself sometimes just getting through the day with children is more than enough. ❤️

Posted in life | Leave a comment