Monday, November 30, 2009

Fifteen Minutes of My Day.

OK OK OK OK....Monday!! Got the morning started off fabulously with a six AM kickboxing class, came home to Ethan tripping over some toys in the dark hallway and when I picked him up and put my nose in his hair, the smell was sweet, breathtaking, like morning. I snuggled him and had a moment, thinking that it won't be long until he doesn't want me snuggling him anymore, so I took it in. Joey came out of the bedroom rubbing his eyes, in his underwear, and when he spoke his voice was all deep and sleepy.
The little booger started crying, so I went in and released him from his snugly, arms flying upward, legs stretching out all the way through his teeny toes. I love this stretch he does. When he does it his eyes are scrunched shut and his lips go into a straight line, making his cheeks bulge out like a chipmunk. It's pretty much breathtaking too.
We sat down to nurse. He's a little piglet, using his nose to nudge and bump and snuggle my breast until he finally latches on. He sounds like a little piggy too, grunting until he's on and gulping. I still cradle him in my arms, he's so small.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

My thankful list.

Three little Turkeys.
I am thankful for...
The way Noah's hair feels soft and fuzzy on my cheek when I hold him. I can't keep my face away from his head.
Ethan's bright eyes, his high pitched voice when he's excited, and the way he throws back his head and laughs at silly stories.
Joey. Sitting on the couch with him while watching House, all tangled together like when we were dating, staying warm as the house gets colder and colder. The only word I can think to describe it is comfortable, but it's so far beyond that--relaxing and restful with a tad of excitement. Perfection.
I am thankful for my health. That I can run and sweat and breath.
For my little doggies--Fiebe and her crazy beard; Riley and her soft eyes.
I am thankful for my home, for it's coziness, and for my dreams of what colors I can paint it's rooms down the road.
I am thankful for my dreams, for growth, for change.
I am thankful for my older sister, that she is close. She is fun, dedicated and so inspiring. I love her.
I am thankful for my litter sister, far away. She is brave, sooooo caring, and the most generous person I know. I love her, and am so proud of her.
I am thankful for my parents. For Joey's parents, and siblings. We are surrounded by love, love, love.
I am thankful for God, for giving me all of this. Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Kickbox Babbling into Retreat Memories into My Heart.

Two months! He makes the sweetest conversations.
I got up in the darkness to go to kickboxing yesterday morning, the only time we've decided it works with our crazy life and the life and health of our boys to do it. So I sucked it up and did it, quite willingly, actually, despite the little thoughts of "gas money!" going through my head as I made the twenty minute drive there.
It was fabulous, just as I remembered (only my butt shakes more and so do my bigger boobs in the mirror) and then the rest of the day I could barely walk because I have two or three good size blisters on each foot from the turning and twisting on my recycled virgin kickboxing feet. Then by last night I felt it, the soreness in my neck and shoulders and triceps and hamstrings and calves and get the point. A massage on these sore muscles would be heavenly, and I have decided to spend some of my December spending money on one.
I got a massage last month at a women's retreat in Tahoe, and as I laid on that soft bed, feeling the masseuse's big hands kneed out knot after knot, I thought, man I need these more often. Afterwards I felt like I had spent time with God.
The retreat was restful, leaving me feeling peaceful and serene, with clear thinking and understanding about things that normally are smokey in my everyday mind. I went up wanting that to happen, but for the first day and a half, it was just a big old house crowded with a lot of women I didn't know. I still had Noah, still had the minute by minute demands a newborn puts on it's mother, so I really wasn't feeling the whole "retreat" thing.
But after a couple of sessions of worship, of playing my guitar for the first time in a long time in worship, of deep sharing and prayer with two women who are in such a different stage of life than I am but whose guts and hearts feel the same pain and torment as mine, I started to feel God's heavy, comforting presence.
I went for a run, thinking of my past. It was at this same retreat center that I realized I loved Joey, enough to take a step into the unknown and marry the boy. The mountains looked just as big and beautiful as they did six years ago, the lake just as clear, like turquoise liquid glass. The air was cold, making my face feel like refrigerated play dough. I could see my breath coming out in front of my face as I ran. I thought about Joey, and about the insaneness of us having two boys.
On the way home Joey's mom and and I talked about family history, of people and addictions and overcoming odds that seem like insurmountable mountains.
I know one of my mountains is fear.
"...but perfect love casts out all fear." This is what I am trying to understand, to know, to experience. I'm staring at the big ugly thing head on.
"...behold, old things have become new..."

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Goodbye Guitar.

Remember when it all started, deep in the forbidden bedroom of a boy who played Stairway to Heaven on an old, yellowish acoustic guitar? I don't know if it was for the boy, or because the song was so sad and pretty (I'm pretty sure it was to impress the boy), I wanted to learn to play. I taught myself on my parents' old guitars which were years out of tune, until I decided to buy you.
Remember Jeremy took me to that small hole-in-the-wall guitar store? You were hung up high, your black body shining down on me. No other guitar even caught my eye. Jeremy asked if I wanted to play you first, to see how you sounded, and I said sure, even though that was not my first concern. I guess I should have paid more attention. At the time, the only thing that mattered was that you were beautiful, sleek, almost sexy.
We'd play together for hours, remember, in my bedroom? Remember when Dad stopped by one day and said, "Danae, that is so pretty," and we both beamed for days?
If I could only see then how significant you were, how my entire life would ride on our choices together.
We started branching out, me and you, with a courage hard to imagine. We played open mike nights for gosh sakes, at small, crowded coffee houses. I remember the first time, my gut twisting and my body sweating as we waited for our turn to play. When it finally was time, you were completely out of tune and I was so nervous I couldn't hear straight to fix you. I never really knew how to tune you by ear anyway. A kind, very encouraging friend offered to help while the listeners fidgeted uncomfortably in their seats. Yeah, we've been through some seriously embarrassing moments together.
There's been good times too. Times were you were in tune, and so was I, and we blended together seamlessly, our music filling high ceilings. One of the best times was on the beach at Tahoe, playing that song we wrote together for Angel's wedding. With Joey. And his red guitar.
You were the one that led me to Joey's house in the first place. I would never had a reason to be there if it weren't for you. And then one day as we sat on one couch and he sat on the other, playing his own guitar with his feet stacked right on left, Joey and I fell in love.
You started all that, you know.
We've played for seniors in wheel chairs with drool hanging out one side of their mouths; we've played for wiggly preschoolers with wide eyes; we've played at weddings and church and camp and school. We've gone everywhere together.
And now it's time to say goodbye. Because you never stay in tune, darn you. You are memories now.
Goodbye guitar.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Our Date.

We took the new truck because Ethan thinks it is so cool. I feel pretty cool driving it too once I get up there. I mean, it's not even a big truck, but if I have super tight jeans on (and all my jeans are super tight right now), I can barely get my bent leg up to pull myself up. I feel so self conscious as I am hoisting myself in, wondering if my jeans are going to split right up the butt.
We drove down the street to McDonald's (affectionately call Old McDonald's by Ethan, who probably was learning the song at around the same time he first went to McDonald's, and so now the two are forever married in his small, genius of a mind) and as we walked in I thought how wonderful it was that going to McDonald's was the only thing on my agenda for the day; that I could hold Ethan's hand as we walked in, not rushing him, not thinking about anything else but the moment with him.
We walked into a small crowd. I hadn't been in a McDonald's in forever, and I noticed how they are trying to be Starbuck's--the muted colors, (Common! McDonald's in not forest green and egg plant purple! It's orange red and mustard yellow. Wear it.) and even the wall decor of coffee cups. Please.
I was overwhelmed by the menu, and decided to go with the huge, Swiss cheese and mushroom burger.
I think I must have been on drugs or something.
Ethan wanted a happy meal with chicken nuggets and apples with carmel dip and chocolate milk. He also wanted a specific toy, but I told him you get whatever they throw in the bag-it's a surprise! That seemed to appease him and I prayed it would ward off any sort of melt down if didn't get what he wanted.
I let Ethan choose where we wanted to sit. He chose the bar stools. We watched a mom and her two elementary school kids while we waited. I tried to talk to Ethan (so, how are you?) but he was more interested in swinging side to side int he bar stool, which was OK.
My burger had a cup of mayonnaise on the top bun and reminded me of this cream of mushroom dish my mom used to make served over noodles, only thicker, with chunky beef . I scraped the mayonnaise off with a straw, and took two or three bites because it cost $3.99, and then came to my senses and realized I wouldn't want to eat the rest of it even if someone would pay me a hundred dollars.
Ethan loved his apples and carmel dip. I asked if I could have his chicken nuggets, and he gave me all of them. He ended up getting stuck with a lame dragon instead of the shooting toy he wanted, but he started playing with it, thank you Jesus.
Ethan took his time, kicking his legs as he sucked his chocolate milk through a straw. I downed the chicken nuggets as if we had somewhere to go. I started to get restless. It's not like you want to spend thirty minutes in McDonald's. Heck my butt was starting to hurt from the plastic chair, and my stomach was still turning over from the after taste of my burger.
I promised him ice cream, so we had to get a cone. His mouth took little tiny licks, and I sat there watching him, getting more and more restless. "Commoncommoncommon, let's go buddy," I said to him, instantly feeling guilt for rushing the poor kid. Can't I slow down enough to let him finish his ice cream cone without feeling the rush that otherwise rules the roost?
Obviously not. I waited another thirty seconds and then told him it was time to go.
He gave me the second half of the ice cream cone, which I was really happy about because I really wanted it after sitting there and watching him eat the first half.
It was a really good experience for me, this little date. I realized how hard it is for me to slow down and enjoy my kid. I need practice. We'll do another one soon, but it sure as heck well not be at McDonald's and will involve nothing even close to resembling a Swiss mushroom burger. *Barf*

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Naptime and God.

I have been moody and depressed lately, with seemingly nothing worth writing. As far as my emotional state goes, the clouds start to clear, and then they come back. I haven't had a bright sunny day in a while.
There is something big going on, something wanting to change deep inside me, and I am strapped in, along for the ride. I am trying desperately not to resist it.
I sit at the teacher table at nap time, while my kids are rolling around like marbles, reading new books that are rocking my world (Emotionally Healthy Spirituality, Love is a Choice, Boundaries in Marriage) and between spurts of telling little Johnny or Sue to be quiet and hold still, I feel the dark hole in my chest. Just feel it. Let it be what it is. I don't use verses to get rid of it, don't ignore it, don't feel guilty about it. Just let it be, and tell God, well, there it is. Here I am. A dark hole.
And we sit there, me and God, during nap time, and I can actually for the first time in a long long time, pray.