Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Not So Fabulous

Most times life is fabulous. I try to look at it that way.

But sometimes, it isn’t and I can’t help but see it.

This year has been under the “isn’t” category. In fact, I’d like a re-do on 2012. I said this year was going to be big, but I meant good big. So far 2012 has been packed with devastating news, inconvenient challenges and unexpected disappointments. I guess, sometimes, years (or hopefully only months) are just like that.

My nephew, Lincoln, has leukemia. He’s got at least three rough years of treatment ahead. After an awful five and a half weeks he’s in remission and for that we are grateful, but it’s been HARD on my entire family.

linc hospital

dad& cheryl

One of my best friend’s dad died unexpectedly. He was only 57. My friend is sad. I am sad.

On top of that we’ve been sick and hosted a lot of sickies. My parents and nephew Sawyer were here for 10 days (quarantining themselves from Lincoln who has zero immune system during chemo). We had some fun times but just about everyone had terrible colds, not to mention heavy hearts, the whole time. Max got another double ear infection, spent two weeks on the nebulizer and then had pneumonia. I feel like someone in our little family (usually me and/or Max) has been sick since before Thanksgiving. I’m so sick of sick!

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Meantime, I’m still adjusting to the news of staying here another year coupled with having three children far from family. Oh and child #3? A boy.

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A boy who is so amazing he can already blow bubbles.

Not what I was expecting. I’m going through a motherhood identity crisis. Fact: I will not raise majority female children. (Do the math. I’d have to have seven children to get majority girl and that is not happening.) Possibility: I may never get a daughter period. This is hard for me. I always wanted to raise girls – plural. Sisters. I adore my sisters. I saw myself as a mother of pedicures and ballet and feelings and bows and dresses and drama. Yes, drama. I kind of like it sometimes and think I’m decent at handling it. The news of boy #3 has shifted my game plan. Now I will be a mother of sticks and ball games and… gulp, boy scouts. (Is that why I’m in my current calling?) I know, I know, I already have two boys. Two boys doesn’t feel overwhelming to me. But three? Three boys. Three boys on top of another year far from family. Double whammy. That feels so big. Big like, let’s go ahead and print “No balls in the house!” on vinyl now because I’m suddenly very aware of how often I say it. Big like, we’ll be that rambunctious house, that noisy church pew, that crazytown boys family. Big like, three boys will marry three girls and leave me. Maybe you haven’t noticed but boys kinda leave their mamas, whereas, if you’re lucky like I am, when you are a grown woman, your mom is one of your very best friends.

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After my gender ultrasound I picked up Anderson from preschool and we had the following conversation:

Me: “Anderson, what did you learn in preschool today?”

A: “Oh, nothing.”

Me: “Which friends were there? Did you sing a song? Did you read a story? Any crafts?”

A: “I dunno.”

This is a typical exchange when I retrieve him after he’s done something without me. If I know anything about his day and can ask specifics the details start to flow, but if I don’t know what he did and I’m generic with my questions I get nothing.

Me: “Can you tell me anything about your morning?”

A: “Mom, how about I tell you later.”

Later never comes with this one. I’m always promised later, and I usually let it go. For some reason, that morning (of all mornings!) I teased:

Me: “Anderson, why do you always say, “I’ll tell you later”?”

I kid you not, his response:

A: “Because Mom, I’m a boy. And boys don’t talk.”

Exactly, Anderson. Exactly. Tears!

IMG_0651Our post ultrasound “Celebration of 3 Brothers” Cafe Rio dinner. I LOVE my boys. If I could only keep them mine forever.

There are other challenges and heartaches in my personal life and around me right now. Ones I can’t write about. It seems everyone I know is currently facing a big trial. One of the biggest emotions I’m battling this year is guilt. Guilt because I may be going through a couple rough patches, but many of my loved ones have it a lot harder so how can I complain? C’est la vie, right? But when did life get so big and so hard? Oh yeah, in 2012.

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Anyone else feel like hiding under a bucket until it all goes away?

Things are turning around. I am very hopeful for a better, brighter March starting tomorrow (in my opinion, this particular February didn’t need an extra day) and rest of 2012 to follow. The weather has been beautiful. Max is 100% better (finally!). My sister Cheryl’s optimism, bravery, humor and relentless concern for others through her own worst nightmare is admirable. She inspires me. So does this guy.

lincIt’s like he knows he’s winning his war with cancer.

I am having a healthy baby and will have a home full of three darling, sweet, best buddy brothers. How can we not be thrilled with boy?! I mean, this is going to be me every father/son campout for years. Hello sweet, sweet side of Boy Scouts.

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And my pregnancy is more than half complete. I’m 21 weeks and 1 day. Half way is big, fat deal.

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Yes I realize I’m showing my 2-0 backwards. My brain, like my life, is not in top form.

Welcome March. I am ready for spaaaa-riiiiiing! I am ready for the newness and freshness of the season. I am ready for the cleansing of rain and the bursting of colorful flowers. I am ready to blog about things that bring me joy. Back to fabulous. It’s time! I’ve had my good cry (a few of them). I am ready for many good things to come for me and for the people I love.

20 comments:

Crystal said...

I hear you. This year has been a real downer so far. It does seem that way for so many. I'm still waiting for the universe to make up to me for the suckiest Christmas ever, and it has yet to do so. I'm sorry your growing brood is all male, but that is good news for me. That means more good men in the world for my darling daughters. Also, girls don't talk after preschool either. They can't even name one person, song, activity, story, thing from the entire three hours. Lets hang in there and hope for a better next season.

Lisa Weiler said...

Crazy month. You look good pregs at half way! Love ya sista

Summer said...

Wendy, your posts are always so honest and insightful. I totally know how it goes with having a certain picture in mind of what kind of mom and type of family you'd have one day.

I just wanted to share my perspective as a sister to three older brothers - I was adored not only by each of my brothers, but also accused (even to this day) of being spoiled rotten by my parents. I don't have any sisters, but girlfriends along the way made that one a non-issue and now as a grow woman I have some lovely sisters-in-law :) My brothers were my protectors and I always knew they'd do anything for me. That was my experience have 3 big brothers, overall a pretty great one! Not saying your next child will be a girl, but if it is she'll be sooooo lucky :)

Rachel said...

Oh sweet Wendy!!! Sorry it has been rough. Things are turning around. Also, I have 3 brothers and 0 sisters and would never want it any other way. There are a bazillion reasons why it is awesome, and I will tell you all of them whenever you'd like. :) Love you girl! I'm always here if you need someone to rush to Gaithersburg and distract you from your problems/let you vent.

Ali Snow said...

Our family will never forget 2012 - both the good and the bad. We still have a lot to look forward to and many blessings to count.

Awesome bubbles baby boy!

Jess said...

Ugh. Some days, weeks, months, and even years are like that. I'm positive your 2012 is looking up though. Great news about Lincoln, a new baby, and weddings to look forward to! Winter always sucks, especially when you're pregnant.

Mom said...
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Mom said...

I love you and your blog and your writing and your humor. My favorite part was the when you said, "don't you sometimes just want to put a bucket on your head?" with the pic of Max. LOL. You are funny. It's true. I do want to hide under a bucket until it's all over.

Great pics. Esp the prego ones. YOu look so skinny in your pink belt pic. Also really cute pics of the boys in there brothers t-shirts. Your legs look super skinny in that pic too.

Thanks for your kind words about me. I love you. :)

Mom said...
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Ming said...

Ditto to your mom's comment about the bucket. That was funny. And true. Also ditto to the skinny comment...what the what? That's not fair.

What a year so far. I feel like I somehow set this spiral of badness in motion with my visit. Not really, but kind of. It seems to have started there. Well, I guess Harley's news on your bday maybe started it. Lets blame him! :) j/k

The good news: Lincoln is in remission. So wonderful. Everyone in your house is finally better (mine too). So great. AND you are HALF way through pregoness. Amazing!!!

I have a good feeling about Springtime. Good riddance winter...bring on the cherry blossoms!

I love you.

Anonymous said...

I am also sick of sickness. Thanks for hosting us so gratiously.

Love Dad

Szobonya Bercel said...

Hmmm... from now on, 2012 will be YOUR year. Promise! Love, and a big virtual hug from us!! :) Etus

Ligia said...

Spring has almost sprung and I see better days ahead. To be honest, I always thought that I would be a mom to all boys. Convinced I was, and surprised when my first was a girl. You are such a fun mom and I see how your boys adore you. If you're ever needing some girl drama you are free to deal with my one, extremely dramatic, and sassy little girl! Good heavens! Oh, and I too have to add that girls don't talk about preschool either. I have to ask a gazillion questions just to be told that they had story time that day. They always have story time. Tell me something I don't know, little one :o)

Kricket said...

My prayers are with you my friend. Here's to better days, months and years.
:-)

Laura said...

Time to put an end to the blog stalking and comment. I'm sorry things are not so fabulous right now. I'm sad about Jess's dad. I'm sad about your nephew. I'm sorry your far away from family. BUT, speaking from experience, sometimes being the mom of three boys is pretty fabulous.

Much love.

Laura

Kate said...

oh my gosh wendy. i get such a kick out of your blog and writing! I love it. every time i read your blog i think, "man i wish she lived closer and maybe we could be friends because she's just so great." my friend had her third boy about a year ago and she had these exact feelings about it. totally normal i think! and if it makes you feel any better my girl is seriously making me question any more children. she is HARD!!! and that's an understatement. it's a lot of, "i love you, but i don't like you right now" around here. most people want their kids to stay little... i just want mine to be 7 and 5 already... and then maybe stop growing.

i hear ya on the 2012 thing... my 2011 was pretty much a mud pit that i had to wade through... but i think there is a light at the end of the tunnel. i found your sisters blog and have been reading about your nephews cancer and she is seriously an inspiration. i think the same thing about my life... "why do i think i have it so hard when someone else clearly has it harder." and glad to hear you've had some good cries... i have those about every 2 weeks and it seriously helps!

and now as if this comment couldn't get any longer I have some book recommendations for you. because i've been burying my head in books probably to escape my problems :)

1. Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman (loved!)
2. Sweet Misfortune by Kevin Alan Milne (good)
3. The Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda (which i haven't actually read but it's the book i'm hosting for book club this year and my mom said it's great)
4. Levi's Will by Dale Cramer (just started this one)
5. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier (also haven't read, but on my book club list and heard it's really good)
6. Matched and
7. Crossed by Ally Condie (a young adult trilogy - just ok i think... but quick reads)

Those are the ones on the top of my head... hope enjoy a couple!

Joo Lin said...

Wendy,

I'm so very very glad I met you in college. You're an inspiration. You're funny. You're beautiful. You have so many wonderful talents. Life will get better.

You look absolutely AMAZING in your prego photos!

Your boys are adorable and you capture the best moments!

Love ya!

Kell's Belles said...

AMEN, sister. Goodbye, February! Don't let the door hit you on the way out :) Can I please borrow the bucket?

Loved those conversations with Anderson. He's a funny guy. Don't feel too bad. My super chatty girls won't even tell me about school right after they get home. I have to think of leading questions a few hours later to get any details (and usually it ends up being that one of them got in trouble for talking--not a problem Anderson will have!).

You look amazing! Congratulations on surviving a VERY bad month!

anna banana said...

So glad you recorded that conversation with Anderson, that is just classic, and could be written in like Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus. Awesome.

Boys are fabulous, and they dont have to leave you. My mom has six boys, and she talks to most of them every single day. You can be their best friend too. It is all about being there for them, you are an amazing mother and your boys will always be close to you.

I feel your pain, you are totally normal, so glad Lincoln is doing better and the rest of us will continue to get better too. 2012 will improve! Love you.

J. Ed King said...

I'm a boy and I like to talk...Debby tells me to shutup all the time!!