Monday, March 28, 2011

Newness

A quick update about some newness in our lives.  Jack and I moved into our new place this past weekend - love it!  Felt good to be out of the house of lies as I have been calling it.  I bought new sheets and new bedding, new towels - just wanted a fresh, clean start.  We have a nice deck where we will grow some tomato plants and peppers this summer and of course grill often!  Neighbors are nice and Jack is loving exploring every inch.  It was a fun weekend for sure. Enjoy the photos:

The Living Room

I want to get a clock to go on the wall between the shelves










Still working on the kitchen.  Going to get a round mirror to go on Brick wall and gotta figure out something for the wood paneling.


Need to paint my chairs - will wait for warmer weather.



hallway



My Room







Jacker's Room












Bathroom - gotta love the blue toilet, huh :)

Back to living room - leading to the deck

I do like it - it's cozy and nice. I just can't think about the fact that I am 29 and living in an apt again.  But for us - right now - it makes total sense.


Other news - Jack is starting to cruise!  Literally Sunday morning (we moved in Sat) he started cruising from chair to chair...I freaked out - so proud of him. He is really taking off!!

And I got a new job!!!! I have been praying - as well as many others - for a new job at Wash U for quite some time -months - maybe a year even, and I was offered a position in Oncology on Friday. I will tell more details later.  But I am excited and can't wait to share more later.

Happy Monday!!!!


Monday, March 21, 2011

Happy Down Syndrome Day

Just wanted to write a quick note to say "Happy Down Syndrome day!" to all of you. My prayer and hope by blogging is that people will see how special and worth while Jack's life is as well as everyone else's with a disability. I hope our world becomes more accepting and more loving for people with disabilities and I hope that all of begin to focus on what all of can do instead of what we can't.    I know he will be a blessing to so many - he has already blessed me beyond measure.

Happy Down Syndrome Day my Sweet Jack!!
I love you so much and am so proud of you.  I know there is nothing in the world you could do to make me love you any less. You are my angel and my lifesaver. I love you tons and I celebrate all of you inside and out!!!


Hug your sweet ones extra tight today!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Screw you "there"...we are "here"

I've been asked by a few friends why I am not blogging as much.  I am not sure what to say to this.  Life is busy and complicated and I guess I am still not sure how this single mom stuff works.  But it's been awhile, so for those of you who are curious on how we are doing, I will hit the high points.

1.  We are moving.  Jack and I are moving to an apt in 2 weeks and my ex will be moving back into the house. Basically the house is too big and too expensive. I am excited to decorate how I want and to live in a smaller space, but admit that I feel like I am going backwards in life. I haven't lived in an apt since college.  However they have a wonderful playground and 2 gorgeous pools, so that will be fun this summer.

2.  Exercise. I think that is keeping me sane these days.  As you all know I am a beachbody bum (www.beachbody.com) and love the P90 series.  I have decided to pursue my personal training license.  So I will be doing that this summer.  Sort of a thing to fall back on and also maybe take up part time when needed financially.  And I do yoga at night to help relax me and just because I love it. Basically each night after Jack goes down I watch Sex and the City (it's on from 7-8) and then yoga, then read and/ or clean or pack and then bed.

3.  Jack.  Well, this will be a longer paragraph.  Jack is doing great.  He is 19 months old.  And we will focus on his strengths: signing really well, making sounds here and there, trying to make sounds to copy me, says Ma occasionally and Pop Pop, Pulls to stand, and is very interested and curious in most things.  Very loveable as well and still my cuddly sweet boy.  He has been really clingy lately - and the separation anxiety is at an all time high recently.  So, that's been hard.  I had a developmental therapist come evaluate him a few weeks back and she basically told me he was right on track and that I was doing everything right.  Fabulous right?  I was so excited, I cried and was so happy.  And just like every good thing, eventually the walls come crashing down.  When I told one of my therapists what the DT said, she looked at me and said, "well, he's functioning at a 12month level - and he should be functioning at 18 months, so we need to get him there".  And just like that I was deflated.  Why did she say that?  Why did it hurt so much? And I wonder - what am I supposed to expect of Jack?  Shouldn't I be excited at each milestone? God knows they take so long to get there.  And I know I should be working with him and desiring more for him, but isn't there a point as parents where we should accept their pace and their schedule?  Happy Medium right? I mean I was really upset when she told me this.  Yes I want Jack to "act his age' but he has down syndrome. I am not using that as an excuse...more of a matter of fact. I mean he has it and with it come certain things.  He is not going to do all the things exactly when other kids do, that doesn't mean he isn't going to do them...it's just going to take him longer.  I will never set limits for Jack and I want to enjoy the successes as they come -delayed or not. Why does the world need for him to be as normal as possible? There is a fine line between accepting his diagnosis and the challenges it brings and also providing him opportunities to stretch beyond his limits.  And I am the parent - shouldn't she be encouraging me.  It was a total let down and basically since that appt I cancelled therapy for 2 weeks (no worries, they have been going to school) and decided that between moving and my deflated heart that Jack and I just needed some down time.  And for the past 2 weeks each weeknight we have come home , eaten dinner, read books, sang songs and cuddled.  LIterally.  I haven't made him do a shape sorter or color or anything related to therapy.  Quite frankly I am exhausted and I am sure he is to.  And sometimes you just need to hold one another and that's what we have done.  And he has been totally content to listen to me read and sing and dance and I am starting to feel better.  And you know what - I don't feel bad about it.  I feel liberated and just fine.  He hasn't lost any skills and we sign non stop and more than anything - I am his mom and don't have to explain myself - so there!  Take that American Pediatric Society of America!!

Why do we let others make us feel bad about our children?  I should be proud of Jack and I am.  He has a lot stacked against him and I know he will get there...and that's the other thing. I hate that statement "he will get there".  Where the hell is "there" and why is it so important that he get there.  Maybe "there" is just to make mom and dad and society happen and has nothing to do with him.  Maybe the greatest thing in life isn't getting somewhere or proving yourself, but maybe it's love.  And Jack loves. Jack loves really well. And I love him.  So I don't give a damn where there is right now, because if the world expects moms to focus on the "there" all the time...we will never live in the "here".  And here is where the love is...where the laughter is...where joy and life are.  So kiss my ass "there".  We are "here" right now, and like it. 

I hope this helps someone else on this journey who is feeling like a failure as a parent cause their child isn't "there". I assure you - you are rocking it - but I challenge you and me to live in the here and to love and accept our children now, not when they accomplish some huge goal.

That being said, I am sick of rolling a ball back and forth all the time and do look forward to different play eventually. disclaimer: I suck at play btw.  I don't like play.  I like to read, sing, dance, cuddle. Those are the things I am good at.  Rolling a car back and forth pretending to crash is not my strong point.  Pretending to have a blast pretend stirring a make believe batch of cookies is not the life for me.  But I am learning.  And I am trying.  I was amazing at pretend when I was a child according to my parents, but as an adult - not so much I guess.  And my sweet Jack would roll/throw/ pass a ball back and forth all day and he does.  And as tired as I am of it, we still do it and he laughs each time.  And then I think, "why am I tired of this??? He loves it."  And then I laugh and smile and forget that I have been rolling a ball for 45 minutes and just relax in the "here".

4.  There's a lot more I want to say, but too personal to share.  Let's just say that I am smiling more these days and for that I am thankful.


This weekend - more packing and moving - aren't you jealous?!  I'll post pics soon.  Big HUGS to all the moms out there!!!