Friday, April 29, 2011

Thinking happy wedding thoughts

I'm in a wedding mood today- thanks in part to the beautiful royal wedding today, and also thanks to the fact that my best friend got engaged last week, and she's coming over tomorrow, so I get to see her ring and make happy squeally noises of excitement about the upcoming wedding. I'm kind of funny about weddings- I never cared even a bit before my own. I was actually a difficult bride because I cared so little.  No opinions on much of anything.  But now I like weddings and bridal magazines and all the stuff. Being happily married does that to a person, I suppose.

Yesterday I prepared to watch the royal wedding by buying a fancy little cake and mimosa makings. And by doing this photo shoot with the kids:

Ethan was happy with the tiara until about 1 second before the auto-timer counted down


A big tiara fan
I used to inform people that I was the empress of the universe. I'm not sure how that got started, but it continued for a lot of college and all of grad school. What can I say, I'm a little quirky sometimes. So one of my friends gave me this pink tiara and I break it out every now and again. Yesterday seemed a good occasion.



Anyway, I went to bed early last night, but 2:30 is still very early, so when I woke up I wasn't even vaguely interested in my snacks or mimosa. Still, it was great fun to watch the arrivals (the hats! Oh my goodness!) and tweet my opinions and see what everyone else had to say. I thought the wedding was beautiful and romantic and sweet and it was totally worth getting up for. 

Now I have a busy Saturday to get ready for- we're having friends from my former church and our current church over for tapas (and cupcakes, in case the tapas are a disaster) in the afternoon.  And Ethan has his first school-friend party in the morning. It's a wild and crazy Saturday!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

What I did after watching the last major royal wedding

I made my mom find this picture and email it to me- it's from 1981, after the Diana and Charles wedding. According to my parents, I spent a lot of time running around with a blanket on my head, pretending to be a bride. Not sure what my brother's role was, but I'm sure that I had given him strict instructions (for some reason) to follow me around while waving the toy broom :)

Daniel's decided that I need to try to recreate this picture with Vivian and Ethan. They are almost the same age that my brother and I were back then. We'll see how creative I get tomorrow while also insanely sleep-deprived from voluntarily waking up at 2:30 AM.  :)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Confessions

1. My son has been eating Easter candy for lunch for the past week. Specifically miniature Reese's Cups. I generally wait to give him these until Vivian has gone down for her nap, since I don't feel eating candy is a suitable lunch for her. But for Mr. Anything Goes As Long As It's High Calorie- candy is just fine.

2. I'm planning to go to bed at 7 PM tomorrow night so that I can get up at 3 AM and watch the royal wedding. Yes, I'm that insane.  I was glad to see Mona's post on the same topic today- good to know I'm not alone in my insanely early rising plans.  Not sure I'm going to join in the champagne drinking plans that many others have, but I do plan to watch live.  Apparently I watched Diana and Charles' wedding when I was little (I have no memory of this) and played "bride" for about a year after that. I was all of four years old, so I don't remember, but I'm sure I was cute.

Thankfully we don't have too much going on Friday that I have to be awake for.  Other than Ethan's therapy appointment.  Much caffeine will be consumed before that!

3. I can barely identify my own husband's handwriting.  After almost seven years together. Seriously, I was just going through an old box of mementos and when I pulled out a card with my name written on the front, I had to open it up and see who signed it, before if I could tell if it was from Daniel or from one of my ex-boyfriends.  We communicate by phone or in person or on Skype, so there's virtually no reason for me to ever see his handwriting. Still, it's strange that I don't recognize it. 

4. On that note, I was a little disappointed today to discover that I seem to have gotten rid of all of my love letters from ex-boyfriends. I really thought I'd saved a few from each of them, just for memory's sake, but apparently not. It's not like I'm pining for those guys or would want to be married to anyone else, but it's part of my distant past, so I'd like to have something to look at and remember and smile. Oh well.

5. When my doctor told me this week that I'd need to be on my antidepressant medication for at least eight months, my first thought was one of enormous relief. I'm going to therapy and doing the work to try to get better and not have to be on medication forever, but right now it's having such an enormous beneficial effect that I have no desire to mess with what's working.

6. And on that note, I am so sad that it took me so long to talk to my doctor.  I'm feeling hopeful and positive and for the first time in a long time I'm excited about the future. Finally able to look at where I'm at in life as a great open opportunity for me to find out what's next, rather than feeling like I've done everything I planned to do and I have nothing left to hope for (which is what my brain was convinced of until recently).  I can't wait to see what God has in store for me for the next section of my life. :)

Speaking out

Free Them 5k Fun Run

Max Lucado wrote something in his book Outlive Your Life that has really stuck with me since I read it. Here's what he had to say:
"A few years back, three questions rocked my world. They came from different people in the span of a month. Question 1: Had you been a German Christian during World War II, would you have taken a stand against Hitler? Question 2: Had you lived in the South during the civil rights conflict, would you have taken a stand against racism? Question 3: When your grandchildren discover you lived during a day in which 1.75 billion people were poor and 1 billion were hungry, how will they judge your response?
I don't mind the first two questions. They were hypothetical. I'd like to think I would have taken a stand against Hitler and fought against racism. But those days are gone and those choices were not mine. But the third question has kept me awake at night. I do live today; so do you. We are given a choice... an opportunity to make a big difference during a difficult time. What if we did?" Max Lucado- Outlive Your Life
The other thing that's really been motivating me lately is a song by Josh Wilson called "I Refuse". I love all of the lyrics, but one part particularly speaks to me right now:
Oh, I refuse

To sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself
Oh, I could choose
Not to move but I refuse

I can hear the least of these
Crying out so desperately
And I know we are the hands and feet
Of You, oh God
I'm not at a place in life where I can hop on a plane and go off to the mission field or do any of the other "big things" that need to be done to help fight poverty and injustice.  But what I'm trying to remind myself is that I CAN do something. Even if it's small. I can support and pray for my sponsored children. I can give as God leads me. And I can speak up for causes like the fight against human trafficking. This is such an enormous problem all around the world, including here in the United States. But it's not one that is spoken of enough.  Slavery is going on around us today, and it is wrong. Here's some information from the World Concern website:
The reality is sobering. Impoverished parents who struggle to feed their children, or who are compelled to instead feed an addiction, sell their kids to traffickers--sometimes for as little as $50! Often it comes after believing lies about job opportunities in other countries.Other children find themselves meeting the wrong person, or being orphaned, with no good way to provide for themselves. When it's too late, they find themselves having to repay a debt to the person who bought them. Sometimes it's thousands of dollars, and it takes years to accomplish.
It doesn't have to be this way.
Once you know the facts about human trafficking, you have to act.
Learn more and do something about it.
Here's more about how World Concern prevents trafficking.
From the blogs: A first-hand look at how we protect children in Cambodia.
I'm going to lace up my shoes on May 7th and run 5K (while playing "I Refuse" a lot on my iPod!), thinking every step about families and children who are facing situations that are awful beyond my comprehension. If you'd like to help fight this problem, I'd love prayer support (especially since my shin splints are acting up again), and if you'd like to donate, you can find more information here.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter weekend

It's Monday afternoon, my house is a mess, I have nothing planned for dinner, and my home fellowship group is coming over in three hours. So it's clearly time to blog :)  Oh, and my kids are running around the house with their bears and clean diapers, telling me that their bears did "big poopoos" and need a change. They've been on this kick for the past week or so.  I'm pretty sure Vivian could actually change her own diaper at this point, she's pretty good at putting a diaper on her bear.  She also has been accessorizing her outfits by wearing her (unused) underwear on her wrist as a bracelet. She's fascinated with the underwear and is desperate to wear it, but is firmly anti-potty, so apparently a bracelet is a good option for now.  I'm pretty sure this would have seemed weird to me at one point in time, but not so much anymore :)

Anyway... we made it through the weekend and had a pretty nice time up in Canada. As nice as a trip involving a funeral can be, I suppose. Daniel's parents are definitely taking the loss very hard. They were in a good, energetic mood on Thursday evening and Friday, but after the funeral they just looked like someone had drained everything out of them. During the funeral itself, I sat with the kids in the enclosed balcony (and all the people who were late got to sit up there with my energetic kids!), so I had a birds eye view of the family.  Watching Daniel's other aunt (we'll call her younger aunt) and his parents and cousins and all cry about broke my heart. The worst part though was when the family was walking past the casket, when younger aunt totally lost it.  Hearing those cries pretty completely reduced all the rest of us to tears as well.  Younger aunt lost her mom six years ago and her husband (in a freak "car versus pedestrian" accident) two years ago and now her older sister, so it's been a particularly rough time for her.

The graveside service and lunch afterwards were a bit less heart-wrenching, and it was nice for the family to spend time together.  They also had a family dinner late on Saturday evening, but the kids and I bowed out of that one, since it didn't even start until about an hour past kid bedtime.

As expected, attending Easter service on Sunday in the same church where we'd mourned on Saturday was totally strange, but it really made the "resurrection and hope in Christ" message particularly poignant for us.

The kids were overall not into the Easter morning photo shoot, but we did manage to get a few cute pictures here and there.


The best of MANY shots :)

This photo is so representative of the kids personality- Ethan was being silly and Vivian was just protesting the picture

Getting good pictures of two kids is nearly impossible. I am SO impressed by my friends with more kids who manage!

Happily dancing around in her Easter dress and shoes

Both happy, playing with toy cars at church

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Tulip Festival!

I know I promised to leave you all alone this weekend. Then we decided to bring our computer and even found free wifi here at the in-laws. So your break from me has ended prematurely :)  Anyway we're here and the funeral activities all begin tomorrow. As it turns out, most of the activities involve dinners at 8 PM, so I'm going to be spending most of my time here with the kids while Daniel goes places with his family. We'll be at the actual funeral and graveside service, but other than that, hanging out.  Which, honestly, is fine with me, as it means I get to eat non-Chinese food (I know, I'm the only person on the planet married into a Chinese family who doesn't really like Chinese food) and hang out in my pjs with the kids and watch cable TV (we don't have cable at home). And Daniel will get uninterrupted Chinese language conversation with relatives with no wife to translate for and no kids to round up.

Oh, and did I mention that I already stocked up on Canadian candy? You can get some fabulous candy here- especially near the holidays. 

Anyway, today on our way here we stopped at the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival to check out the flowers. The rain held off during our visit (hurray!) so we got some pretty good ones!










Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Packing (while thinking deepish thoughts)

We're headed north for the funeral tomorrow.  Dropping by the local tulip festival briefly on the way to get (hopefully) some cute photos of the kids frolicking in the tulip fields.  That'll probably last about 1.4 seconds before they start attempting to pull up all the tulips in sight and we'll have to move on.  :) 

I've been working with Ethan for the past few days, trying to prepare him for what's to come on this trip. With all his speech delays, it's still really hard to know what he understands and what he doesn't. But he seems to get that Papa is sad and that he needs to be sure to give Papa lots of extra hugs and kisses. 

For my part, today is going to be a quiet day at home to clean and organize and pack up pretty much everything we own.  Packing for Saturday and Sunday has been bringing a lot of thoughts to my mind, and has been making me think a lot about the message of Easter Sunday.  It's like a real-life example of this line from my favorite Caedmon's Call song:
And it's like that long Saturday your death and the rising day
When no one wrote a word, wondered is this the end
There was a devotion or book or something on this topic, which I no longer can locate, that talked about this same idea. How the Saturday between the cross and the resurrection was such a day of darkness and confusion. Even though the disciples had been told what would happen, they didn't quite grasp it, so that Saturday they were lost and confused and hopeless. Then the resurrection came on Sunday and there was so much joy and celebrating.

I feel like we're getting a first-hand tiny glimpse of that this weekend.  Even with the things I'm packing, I'm reminded of that. Subdued, somber clothes for the funeral, then fancy, bright clothes for Easter.  Saturday we'll be celebrating, for sure, because we know Aunt is with her Savior now. But it's still a sad day as we adjust to her not being here and feel her absence and as the family faces the reality of days and years without her around. 

And then on Sunday, we're going to be at church (the same church, no less) singing songs of hallelujah and rejoicing, sitting in the same pews where we mourned on Saturday.  Being brought face to face with the bigger message, the joyful message that the funeral is not the end, that Jesus' death and resurrection adds another chapter to Aunt's story and our stories as well.

I don't know if that makes any sense or not, but that's the sort of stuff that's running through my mind today. Those thoughts and the thought of "what on earth are my little kids going to wear to a funeral?" Daniel said "not bright and flashy", which rules out oh, ALL of Vivian's wardrobe.  Ethan will be fine, because his clothes are boring anyway, but Vivian's are all covered in flowers and sparkles and such. And let's not even get into the fact that I have to be brave and try on all my dresses today in the hope that two actually will fit me. 

Anyway- I'm going to be offline for a while, so Happy Easter to everyone! "He is Risen!"

In which I apologize for being insensitive

I realized something today, through a comment that a friend innocently made, that some of the things I post here about cross-cultural marriage may not always come across as I intended, and often they're not as sensitive as they should be.   Although much about my husband's culture baffles me, and I may discuss it here as such, it's incredibly, incredibly important to me to still embrace it as much as possible. Reality is, my kids belong to that culture as much as mine.  And it's such a rich world with a history that I want to know more about, and that I want the kids to be able to explore and take in as part of who they are.


That all being said, I know that in my mind at least, I often think "oh, I'm married into this culture, so I can joke about it here or roll my eyes at things."  Even though I'll probably continue to do that (let's be honest, that's pretty much one of the top reasons why I blog), I'm glad that this is something that I had to stop and think about today. Because I know that my ways of interacting with Daniel's culture and family are going to affect how my kids perceive it. They're getting to be old enough that I need to be very deliberate about what I do and say, because little ears are listening.

People, this parenting thing is complicated! :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

The weekend of FUN!

This weekend was insane. In a good way though. We crammed more activities and excitement into two days than any of us could really handle :)  Saturday morning we attended a screening of African Cats, then headed off to our favorite museum, the Museum of Flight for free attendance day. My family has a long history of flying planes, and Daniel just loves planes, so this is a must-attend place for us pretty much every opportunity we get.  Yesterday we had church, where Ethan's class supposedly sang a song for the whole church (in reality they stood there and looked confused and poked each other with palm branches, but what do you expect from three year olds?).  And then home to open Easter baskets a week early, since I have to pack pretty much everything we own for our trip to Canada and am not packing random toys and candy as well. Oh, and they also got haircuts.

By yesterday evening, we were all in an exhausted stupor from all the excitement (and from the post-Easter candy sugar crash).  Fortunately we had plans with friends this morning and a little bit of sunshine to keep us going today.  Thankfully the sunshine was over on top of Seattle, because 10 miles away where Daniel works it was actually snowing. Random.

All this to say, I had a good weekend.  And, as I was telling my friend this morning, it's definitely a change from how I've been feeling for the last way-too-long.  I normally get antsy when we're out and am always wanting to go do "something else" and am constantly trying to find something that makes my brain happy for a while. But now, I'm happier to just be in the place and moment. Yes, I'm still totally hyper and am constantly running through the to-do list in my brain, but it's much improved. Much.  There is not a day when I don't thank God for good doctors and medications.

Now I've got to get myself in gear and start working on the part of getting undepressed that I have some control over- the things that my therapist and I discuss and the books and workbooks she suggests. Since I am an avid "avoider of unpleasantness" and don't really want to think about depression (I find it depressing to think about depression), this is not as easy as popping some pills. But it's what I need to do for the long-term solution. I just need to get my lazy butt in gear and do it! In all my spare time...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sadness and peace

It's such a bittersweet thing, the death of a wonderful Christian man or woman.  Daniel's aunt passed away last night, after a short but intense battle with cancer. She's been declining rapidly and in pain for the past month, so we're glad she's at peace, and we know she's rejoicing with her Savior today.  But it's still sad to have to say goodbye. To watch her kids and grandkids mourn. To see her husband, who will not have her around to celebrate their 54th wedding anniversary next month.  To look at Daniel's dad, who now only has one living (full) sister left (I'm a little vague on the half siblings, as there were two simultaneous wives in the family and the family tree makes my head hurt).

The funeral is delayed until mid- to late- next week, so that people can come in from Hong Kong.  So I'm not sure exactly when we're heading up to Canada, but we should know soon.  Oddly enough, this is only about the third funeral I've attended since I was old enough to remember. I'm sure I'll spend most of the time in the hallway with the kids, but hopefully just having the kids around will be comforting to Daniel's parents. 

In totally unrelated news, Ethan came home today with a birthday invite to a school friend's party. Our first invite to a party where we know no one!  I'm planning on making Daniel go, as it's the same day as I'm throwing a party here in the evening, and I have stuff to do. At least that's my excuse, since attending a party with a room full of strangers strikes terror into my heart. Daniel isn't scared of people, so he'll be fine :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Rescuing Mommy

My kids have a new favorite game- "rescuing" Mommy! They're especially fond of playing when I actually do something crazy, like sit down and try to have a quiet moment on the couch :)  I couldn't get Baby to cooperate for this video, but Ethan (and Monkey) were happy to demonstrate.

video

video

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Amusing notes from the running store

Around 8 AM this morning I discovered that I had a houseful of sick people. And, since sick kids generally means a week of cabin fever for me, I headed out alone to church, with plans to stay out as long as possible.  Even if it meant finally going to the running store.

Yes, the running store.  I've been buying running shoes from the department store, but haven't ever been in to get a professional opinion. And last year I ended up with nasty shin splints and possibly even a stress fracture that sidelined me for months.  Now that I'm planning to continue running longer distances, something had to be done.

So, after church, I showed up with my shoes at the store. Wearing my cardigan and skirt.  And heels.  The strange looks began from the moment I stepped in the store, since every other person was wearing running clothes or jeans.  Still, I put on my shoes, jogged around the store in my old shoes and new ones, ran around the block and tried out the shoes. Church clothes, running shoes and socks and let's just say "less support up top" than I wear when I'm really out running.  Yep, I got lots of weird looks as I ran up and down the hill near the store and in and out of the store. Thankfully I didn't have to try on too many pairs before we found one that we all liked, and I plopped down a bunch of money and headed out the door in my heels, new shoes in hand.

My other favorite part of the day was when the helpful running store person told me to be sure to factor in all the other time I wore my running shoes into their life, not just the time I wore them running. I wanted to ask her if I really looked like someone who ever wore running shoes for something other than running, but I was good and restrained myself :)

Okay, Seattle people- anyone up for doing the Iron Girl 5K or 10K with me this fall? I did it last year and it was an absolute blast- this year I'm planning on doing the 10K and would love to have some company!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Possibly one of the top 5 proudest moments of my life

This morning I got up early and went running. Vivian made it easy for me to get out of bed, since she spent most of the hours between 1:30 AM and 7 AM kicking me in the side and the head. Her sinus infection is back and she's making sure that we all know that she's unhappy.  Anyway, I left her kicking Daniel this morning, drank some coffee, ate part of an energy bar and drove to Green Lake to run.  I intended to do two plus loops today, with the goal of making it 10km. My longest run ever was just over 6km, so I knew this was a big jump, but I was confident that I could do it.

And I did.  I ran over 10 kilometers- and it didn't take me two hours :) Mainly because I wanted to be able to brag on Facebook and write this blog post. And because I've seen so many of my other friends who were couch potatoes just like me get up and run long distances. The friends that I made 6 years ago on a WW discussion board are particularly motivating and encouraging (I know some of you read this blog- HUGE hugs to you for the motivation and HUGER hugs for encouragement to keep running yourselves!). 

I know that I'm due a crappy run any day now, but lately things have been going really well.  I keep thinking about the mental block that I had last year, when I just couldn't make the leap from 5 minute runs to 8 minute runs. Today as I ran for 20 minutes or more at a time and kept going after my first loop around the lake- I thought about that person and smiled. The sad thing is that I was actually thinner last year, but I know I'm still in better shape now and that I'll get that under control if I keep this exercising up.

I've still got 5 months before my actual 10K race, as 10Ks are hard to find around here.  So lots of time to get my time from turtle speed to something slightly faster.  I am running a 5K next month to help fight against the problem of human trafficking. If anyone feels motivated to donate to help with this cause, there's a button on the right side of this page that has more information on the race, the cause and how to give. 

Now I've got to go work on  my Saturday chores- the laundry awaits! Hope everyone is having a great Saturday and that you're feeling victorious today with whatever you're accomplishing.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Funny and wonderful things

Thing #1: Ethan's getting a lot of good from therapy and developmental preschool- I am SO grateful that we have these resources to help him catch up and learn. Beyond all the great skills that he's learning though, hands down the best thing is that Ethan's finally learning to speak a little bit.  And for the first time, we're hearing the words "I love you" coming from our son's mouth.  It took over 3 1/2 years to hear it, and was worth the wait.  Seriously, the best words ever.



Thing #2:  Although Ethan's making progress with speech, he's still delayed, and we don't always understand him.  This does not stop Vivian from copying and repeating pretty much everything he says though- so we get one slightly confused sentence from Ethan, followed by a much more confused toddler version of the same sentence from Vivian. It's like having a really bad language interpreter follow Ethan around everywhere :)

Thing #3: Ethan can count, but only in reverse, since he's over-the-top obsessed with rockets and blast off.  Sometimes we can get him all the way from one to four in the right direction, before he reverses and starts the countdown.  This means Vivian is also learning her numbers in reverse.  And any time numbers are introduced to the conversation, it ends with both kids screaming "blast off!" Always!

Thing #4: Daniel and I both don't really care that much about clothes. We like to look reasonably nice, but we're bargain shoppers. And I never iron, so we always look a little wrinkled. Somehow, we ended up with two kids that care VERY much about what they wear.  Ethan's pretty good about wearing something from his drawers of clothes, but only if he picks it out. Vivian is different though- I have to take her shopping with me, because if she doesn't approve of an outfit, she will not wear it without a major struggle. Although sometimes I'm pretty sure she's messing with me with that.

For example, last Sunday, I put her a frilly new dress that I had just bought her online. She cried and wiggled and fussed and tried to take it off.  She was pretty sure it was torturing her. Then we went to the outlet stores after church, and ended up in the outlet for the store from which I'd purchased her new dress. And the child ignored an entire big store of clothes, walked right to the dress rack, pulled out the same dress that she was wearing and started petting it and trying to pull it off the hanger.  She also has strong opinions about her hairstyles. And she's not even two yet! Seriously, I'm terrified of this girl's teenage years!



Thing #5: Ethan's other funny speech thing that he's started doing is telling long, involved stories, much of which we don't understand. Then at the end, he's begun to tack on "remember? remember Mommy?" Which is my cue to not only understand, but remember the exact situation he's talking about. And since I don't have the memory of a three-year-old, I often don't remember as well as he does.  I need to do brain exercises to keep up with my kid! 

Thing #6: One of my friends told me that her son's favorite part of developmental preschool was the bus ride. And she was so right! Ethan mentions school once or twice per day, but he talks about the bus non-stop! And Vivian's obsessed with it too- we overhear them having fights that consist of "my bus!" "no, it's my bus!". Back and forth. They both want the bus so much! Vivian only gets to go on and off for a minute when we're putting Ethan in his seat or taking him out, but that's pretty much the highlight of her day. School buses are fun!

Vivian (lower right hand corner) watching "her bus" pull up out front
I think it's as I always suspected- I'm not much of a baby person (although I can't wait to meet all the babies that my friends are having this year!!!), but I like this toddler/preschool stage. The kids are so funny and affectionate and it's so fascinating watching them learn and grow. Tiring, but exciting and humbling too- I'm so blessed to be a part of their little lives. 

Monday, April 4, 2011

Resolutions and realizations

I was in the car a lot on Friday and Sunday and on the bus on Saturday, so I've had a lot of time to think. And now I'm going to subject you all to my thoughts *insert evil laughter here :)*

Realization #1:  Daniel and I don't have many disagreements or issues, but we have some, and I have the hideous tendency to make them be his fault. And, since he's about as confrontational as a marshmallow, he kind of lets me believe that. But then everything changed last week and now that things are going better with me, I've had the disturbing realization that some of these ongoing issues are better. Which kind of makes them my fault. Whoops.

Realization #2: Part of the reason that it took me so long to go chat with my doctor is that I don't feel like I have any right to be depressed. If that makes sense.  I've not gone through any major tragedies, and our stresses lately have been real but haven't ruined our family or anything. Yes, my son is diagnosed as failure to thrive and may need a feeding tube soon, and yes, the rental property sucked up a large amount of our savings, but we're still standing. Ethan couldn't possibly have better doctors or therapists.

And I'm living what I know is a lot of people's dream, being a stay-at-home mom, with adorable, funny kids and a husband that would do anything for me. So what do I have to be depressed about.  I think that's why I kept just waiting and hoping to get better. And praying to get better.  But the truth is, whether it makes sense or I have a "reason" or not, it's true.  I don't know if it's the hormones from having kids so close together or trauma from Ethan's birth, or the life changes that came so fast over the past 5 years or a combination of everything or something else entirely. But this is real and I have to stop avoiding it. And I have to stop worrying about "why" and just deal with it in every way possible.

Realization #3: My kids are much cuter and their behaviors are SO much more funny and entertaining when I'm not living with a big black cloud over my life.

Realization #4:  I have no excuse for my extra weight.  According to the doctor, there's nothing physically wrong with me.  The reality is that I'm not 28 any more (the age I was when I last lost weight). My life is more sedentary and my metabolism is probably slower and I just have to deal with that and stop making excuses and change my bad habits and get my weight under control.. And I have to stop shooting dirty glances at the seriously underweight males in my family during dinner, when they are eating something yummy and I am eating yet another plate of veggies. It's not their fault and I must love them anyway and not eat all their chocolate.  

Resolution #1: As soon as I'm sure I'm feeling better and am capable of a conversation with smiles and undepressing topics, I'm going to have to go make some friends.  I'm just not a person who can spend 5 days a week, every week, talking only to my husband and the people at the grocery store.

Resolution #2: I'm going to run a 10K in September, come hell or high water.  I feel like I've really turned the corner with running lately- worrying less about what's going on around me and just staying in my head and making myself keep moving. I'm still freakishly slow, but I'm running distances that I never could have imagined running last year.  On Saturday, when I have a bit more time to run, I'm going to try running 10K on my usual training path.  Hoping for the best! 

Resolution #3: I'm going to find a way to be honest about what's going on in my life, when and where appropriate. Other than here, of course. You're all stuck with reading whatever I feel like, appropriate/wanted or not. Seriously, I'm not going to go around and introduce myself as "Carrie, the depressed girl", but I don't want to be hiding it either. I was so encouraged by people who left messages here or who were honest on their blogs/Facebook/whatever, and I think honesty is such an important part of helping each other as women.

In other, un-resolution/realization-related news, I just pulled out the iron to iron a shirt that Daniel bought yesterday, and Ethan looked confused and frightened and immediately asked "what is that, Mommy?" He's apparently forgotten what the iron looked like since this time last year when I last pulled it out of the closet. Wife of the year, right here :)

My new theme song

I heard this song last week on the Christian radio station and am in love! It's called "I Lift My Hands" and it's sung by Chris Tomlin. 

Saturday, April 2, 2011

It's Saturday and life is fine!

I love Saturdays- seriously, is there any more fabulous day?  Although yesterday was pretty good too, since the kids and I were out for about 90% of the day.  Took a trip to the mall, where I used a gift card from Stride Rite to buy shoes for myself rather than the kids (I cannot bring myself to pay that much for kids' shoes that they outgrow so quickly! And I need good shoes too, right?).  There was also a whirlwind trip to H&M to look at clothes and an equally fast trip into Sephora to pick up my birthday present from them.  Fast trips all, thanks to my kids who had grown weary of the mall and were not being particularly charming.  Later we topped off the day with sushi AND a trip to Target. Seriously, pretty much the best day ever with Sephora and H&M and sushi and shoe shopping and Target all in one day!

Speaking of good days, I know it's too soon for the antidepressants to really be working, but I'm still desperately searching for positive signs.  And I think they might be helping a little.  I just have to wait and see. So far they're mainly making me feel out-of-it and tired. Calmer too, but not necessarily all there. I had lunch today with my favorite local bloggers and some wonderful out-of-area bloggers, and I felt like I couldn't keep my brain in the conversation the whole time.  Hopefully that effect will improve as I adjust. I'm also feeling a loss of appetite, but there's no way that's anything but a positive!

And speaking of depression, my poor husband is starting to look like he's a little more affected by the weather this year than other years. I find him on the computer researching trips to Hawaii and California every time I walk past. Just now I had to kick him off the laptop so that I could play for a while.  I'm hopeful that this trip will happen, but I'm not entirely sure that it will.  Keeping my fingers crossed- we could all use a change of scenery for a while!