Everyday lives of the Meabon Household

Friday, February 15, 2013

The New Body

A couple of weeks ago, I put the kids down for their afternoon naps, hopped in the shower and went about my regular bathing routine.  Unsuspectingly, I got out, dried myself off, towel wrapped my hair and turned around to face the mirror.  That’s when I noticed them.  The saggy, limp and what I can only describe as noodles hanging off of my chest. 

I ran buck naked across the house, charging into Jared's office.  He swiveled around in his chair and a smile slowly crept across on his face...it’s not often his wife comes streaking into his office mid-day on a Tuesday. 

“Wipe that smile off of your face and look at me!” I yelled.

“Um, I am” he said, confused as to what the hell was going on.

“No!   Look at me.  Or more specifically, look at my boobs!”

I saw his eyes slide down my body that was so familiar to him when the shock hit him. 

“What happened?!?!?” Jared exclaimed. “They look so weird.  They’re, like, deflated.”  He then realized what had come out of his mouth and tried making up for it by saying, “No, it’ll be great - something new and different!”

All I could do was look at him and say, “YOU did this to me!  You and that penis of yours!”

As you probably well know, since 2009 I've gone from pregnant to breastfeeding to pregnant to breastfeeding.  I had just weaned Cito two weeks before and this “change” happened overnight.  I had always been told that motherhood would ruin your chest but in a mere 24 hours, I went from bouncing grapefruits to deflated water balloons. Not only that, but they are concave – like a big hollow canyon with a mound of fat at the bottom!

I have always had a love hate relationship with the twins.  The days of sixth and seventh grade dances come flashing back when I was flat as a wash board.  No one wants to slow dance to Guns and Roses “September Rain” with the flat chested girl.  Then in eighth grade, I took little notice to the fact that those mounds were growing at rapid speed until Ross Nobles began calling me “Tissue” and telling everyone that I stuffed my bra.  From that point on, those suckers never stopped growing.  Finally, I hit my junior year of high school, was 5’7” weighing 125 pounds with size E knockers….oh, and I ran cross-country.  That sucked. 

So I made the decision to chop ‘em off.  I remember going to the plastic surgeon for my breast reduction consultation and he efficiently explained how they would do everything possible to save my milk ducts so that I could possibly breastfeed one day.  My 17 year old self promptly responded by saying that I had no plans of breastfeeding any child.  That was disgusting and he could forget that idea.  Thankfully, he realized he was speaking with a 17 year old who had no clue what she was talking about.

Post-surgery, I was always told there was a 50/50 chance I could breastfeed and I wouldn’t know until I got there.  Little did I know that Harper would be born with a birth defect that would make my first experience in motherhood so different than what I had dreamed it would be. A 2 1/2 month NICU stay, not holding my baby until she was a week old - it was not the fairytale-like motherhood I had signed up for and I yearned and longed for normality. 
And guess where that normality came from?  Yup, you guessed it.  Those mounds on my chest that, by that point, swelled to gargantuan proportions.  They did the job the good Lord intended them to do and I began producing milk like I grazed in a pasture.  While my lactating began with the help of a pump (whomp, whomp, whomp,whomp), I can remember the thrill of seeing those tiny drops of liquid emerge.  And a few days after holding her for the first time, I was given the green light to attempt breastfeeding.  I remember crying my eyes out when she latched on and began sucking with all her might. 

So I nursed Harper throughout her infancy.  The same month that I weaned her I became pregnant with Harris and have been nursing him since March. 

But after all of that use, those two lovely blobs have become….not so lovely.   Have you ever put a tennis ball in a pair of pantyhose and swung it around your head?  Well, now you know what I look like naked. 

After the initial shock of seeing my now deflated boobs wore off, I took some time and examined myself in the mirror.  Saggy boobs, paunchy stomach, C-section scar, hips a little wider than they use to be - the marks of motherhood.  But I must admit, I can look at my body and think it’s glorious when I see the little smiles that look up at me and know that this body made them.

Two and a Half - Harper

My little Squirrely Whirl,

You are two and a half!  And you love to say it.  I can just hear your little voice "two-and-a-haff".  I remember when you were a baby thinking that I couldn't wait until the day when I could carry on a conversation with you.  Well that day is here and it's even more fun than I thought it was going to be!

There are times when I wish you could stay two and a half forever.  You are so curious.  One of your favorite things to say is "Wha-wha-wha what's dat Mommy?" and "Where's it going anywhere?" meaning where is something going or what is it doing. You sing ALL DAY LONG.  It is so sweet to hear you in your own little world just singing and singing and singing.  Your favorites tend to be Old MacDonald, Ram Sam Sam, Jesus Loves Me, Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer and Frosty the Snowman.

When you are home, you are a total chatterbox.  You are non-stop talk but get you outside of the house and it always takes you some time to warm up.  You love to giggle and dance and run through the house yelling "ahahahahahahah!!!!!"

Other things you love?  DINOSAURS!  You can't get enough.  T-Rex is your absolute favorite but you amaze me with your knowledge.  You can name T-Rex, Stegosaurus, Triceratops, Brachiosaurus, Diplodocus, Apatosaurus, Allosaurus, Pachycephalosaurus, Parasaurolophus, Stegoceras, Anchylosaurus, Coelophysis, Velociraptor, Microraptor, Utahraptor, Corythosaurus, Protoceratops, Chasmasaurus and I'm sure there are more.  How do you know ALL of those dinosaurs???  You have dinosaur costumes, dinosaur shirts, dinosaur sneakers, dinosaur legwarmers, dinosaur pjs, dinosaur wall stickers, small plastic dinosaurs, stuffed dinosaurs, dinosaur books...you are a dinosaur explosion and I'm sure the collection will continue.  Let's just hope your little brother is as into dinosaurs as you are!  If you had it your way, you would be adorned in something dinosaur at all times.

Puzzles, puzzles, puzzles.  You could sit and work puzzles all day long and sometimes, you do!  You especially love your Thomas the Tank Engine puzzles.

You don't get them very often but you love a cookie and savor every last bite.  Daddy and I have to laugh at how long you take to eat a cookie but you know how to make it last.

Coloring, stamping and stickers are great entertainment in your world.  I think we bust out the art supplies at least once a day.

You love Ms. Lisa, your teacher at school.   You love your Honey and Grandy.  You love talking to Grammy on Skype.  You love your uncle Brent.  Any time these people are mentioned, you jump and up down and get so excited.

Don't get me wrong, you definitely like to test the limits.  There are days when I think you could gold medal in whining but it can usually be beat with the threat of time out or banishment to your room.  You're also learning to challenge your mother and can get a little gleam of mischievousness in your eyes but you are quick to make sure that we are on good terms when you know you've pushed the limit a little too far.  Good thing time out is an effective tool for you!

You are starting to have that oh-so-typical love/hate relationship with your little brother.  You always want to know where he is and what he's doing, love making him laugh and can dole out hugs and kisses when you think no one is watching.  But you're quickly realizing that he wants whatever it is you might be playing with.  He also wants to follow you EVERYWHERE.  I have some good and bad news.  He'll, most likely, want to follow you everywhere for the next few years.  Enjoy this time with your built in best friend.  He won't always be scurrying at your feet!

You have a definite sense of style.  Most days, you have a firm opinion about your outfit and what you would like to wear.  I've learned to pick my battles and love seeing what your little imagination decides is the fashion of the day.

I love you so much my little Squirrel and you make me smile all of the time.

Happy two and a half years!



Harris - 11 months

My happy little pumpkin is eleven months old.

Four Teeth

Walking!!!  Yes, fully walking and so proud of himself.

Saying dada, mama, baba but not necessarily at anything.

Points at everything and waits for us to say what it is. As soon as we do, he breaks out in a huge smile.

Follows his sister everywhere and loves sharing things with her.

Still not sleeping through the night.  Someone please tell me he magically will when he turns one!
Starting to wean himself off of bottles and great table food eater.  LOVES fruit and veggies.
Loves his pacifier, his elephant Wubbanub, his little stuffed football and his plastic mixed veggies and plastic waffle that he confiscated from Harper's kitchen.  He likes to have one of these five items if not all of them in his hands or mouth throughout the day. 

Harris is such a happy boy and loves being around people and animals.  He is our little social butterfly and will smile at almost anyone.  Such a sweet boy.

Ears, Noses and Throats

OMG, we've been tots MIA because life has been cray-cray!!!  Prepare yourself for some blog dumping again.

The day after Jared and I got back from DR, I took both kids to the ENT doctor.  Harris had basically had ear infections since August and with Harper's snoring and EXTREMELY loud breathing, our pediatrician said we might as well take them both in to get checked out.  Sure enough, Harris was put on the books for tubes the next week.  And we were told Harper was a text book case for tubes and getting her tonsils and adenoids out.  Perfect.

Cito had his procedure on Friday, Janaury 25.  Other than having to be up at the crack of dawn with an infant that was hungry and couldn't eat, his procedure was pretty much a breeze.  We were scheduled for 8am, had to be there by 6am and we were out and home by 9am.  He was pretty grumpy from the anethesia and only wants Jared when he doesn't feel good so they got some extra snuggling in.  We came home, he conked out for a few hours and by the time he woke up from his nap, he was golden!  
Early morning and ready for the tubes
Post-Tubes Snuggle
We had about a week of blissful sleep from him and quickly realized the power of the tubes.  

Harper's was scheduled for Wednesday, February 6 at 1pm.  Sure enough, Harris became crazy sick that Tuesday.  He started running 102 fever which didn't break until the following Saturday.  Not only that but he is pretty pitiful when he's sick and then broke out in a horrible rash.  We had three visits to the pediatrician that week but it was just a virus that had to run it's course so there wasn't much we could do.  Our sleepless nights started with him on Monday.
Not feeling so hot
On Wednesday, Jared, Harper and I headed to the hospital for her surgery   Since she was getting tonsils out, she had to spend the night in the hospital.  She couldn't eat at all that day and was actually great until 1pm when her surgery was scheduled.  Unfortunately, the doctors were running late so she didn't get started until 2:30pm but thank goodness for nurses that noticed she was getting fussy and offered us a lovely drug cocktail to knock her silly.  Um, hysterical and yes I took videos that I might have to show at her rehearsal dinner one day.  
Arriving at the hospital and thinking this whole thing was pretty fun
Off she goes!
Overall, the surgery took about an hour and a half.  She was pretty miserable the rest of that day but slept like a log that night.  I had the pleasure of sleeping on the fold out chair at the hospital but was happy I could be there for my sweet girl.  She woke up Thursday morning starving, polished off ice cream, scrambled eggs and jello for breakfast and we packed up to head up.  
When awake, she kept trying to cover up her IV with her short sleeveed hospital gown
Ready to go home
Harps did great for the first couple of days but then really kind of fell apart just as Harris was starting to feel better.  The doctors told us to expect for her to get worse before she got better so we braced ourselves for an uncomfortable few days.  She was waking up crying about 3-4 times a night.  We also had to keep her out of school for a week and on very minimal activity for 2-3 weeks.  Try explaining that to a two year old.  
A bubble bath makes everything better - shortly after this she said to me "I tinkle in the bubble bath Mommy!"
On Friday after her surgery, Jared had to travel for work.  Harris was still sick and miserable and Harper was feeling like doodoo.  We had also been cooped up in the house for two days so, in an act of desperation, we actually made a trip to the grocery store....at 5:30pm....on a Friday.  Yes, it was that bad.

Don't they look thrilled to be there?
But as of yesterday, everyone seems to have turned a corner.  Harper went back to preschool today and Harris has been great all week.  Harps is still on limited activity but we're able to get out and get some fresh air.  Now we've run into the problem that everyone seems to have forgotten how to sleep around our house.  Harris got use to a 3am feeding when he was sick and Harper got use to having her mommy or daddy come sleep with her and rub her back when she was crying in the middle of the night.  Needless to say, Jared and I are walking around a bit zombie-like these days so I think I see sleep training in our very near future.  Wish us luck!
Out for Frozen Yogurt

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Honey Hijacking - Camp Boswell

I did it again.  I've let my blogging duties slip.  Honey sent this to me a few weeks ago but I'm the slacker that's just now getting it posted.  Heeeeerrrrreeeee'sssss Honey!

January has become annual Camp Boswell time for the Meabon children.  Jared has worked hard and been fortunate enough to be awarded incentive trips in each of the last five years.  Each January we have kept Harper while they have enjoyed a much needed week at a tropical destination.

This year, adding another little Meabon to the mix was going to make our babysitting duty a little more... consuming.  Thankfully Brooke and Jared thought ahead and flew Jared’s mom in to co-sit.  Now, what I’m about to tell you moms with more than one little oneis pure wisdom...a jewel, a pearl, a key to blissful living for everyone so read these next words carefully.  If at all possible, when leaving at least two very young children for more than 48+ hours at a time, having two grandmothers on hand is perfection. 

Daughters/sons we are too old, our bodies are too tired to do what you do as a parent. The current 58 is not really the new 40.  When keeping small children 58 year olds quickly age to about 65 year olds.  It’s not because we don’t love you or your children, we do, that’s why we beg to keep them.  The problem is our bodies can’t keep up with their energy level and when you multiply it by two...Holy Moly!!  So my sage advice to each of you Peep readers is:   Bring in those grannies and I say the more the merrier.  

Here’s a summary of our fun five days.

Grandy and I kept Harris from Friday night to Sunday evening.  Now, I will be honest and say that after knowing how little sleep has gone on in the Meabon household the last 10 months due to Cito being so prone to ear infections I was gearing up for a few sleepless nights.  I was also gearing up for some very active days with this little human tank plowing his way through, and I do mean through everything.  I did think ahead on this and will digress for a moment here to ask a simple question...What ever happened to playpens?   They were a magnificent invention, meant to keep your toddler out of harms way, yet able to be confined and entertained with whatever you chose to plop into the said “pen” with them… a great invention.  I was raised in a wooden one with slats, my children were raised in ones with soft see through mesh sides.  We are all perfectly normal functioning adults now, it caused no mental nor physical abnormalities in either generation.  All I can say is someone needs to rename them and BRING THE PLAY PEN BACK, you would make a fortune.  

Okay enough of that, so I thought ahead and went upstairs a week before the children were to come.  We already have a little Mouse House built into our eaves where the grandchildren all love to play but I felt the need for more space, with the little human tank coming.  So I took a closet and turned it into a little playroom as well!  I put in little drawers, shelves, a mirror, filled it with toys and voila I now have multiple play spaces to occupy busy little bodies.

Long story short, all my fears about Harris, not sleeping,  wanting only his mommy (not unusual for a 10 month old), getting another ear infection...Harris was a perfect baby boy.  He slept like a champ, he took two naps each day two hours per nap.  He cuddled and toddled from one play area to another.  We took long stroller walks, we swung and sang, we took fun baths after terribly messy dinners!  Every minute of keeping Harris was a joy and a delight and Sunday afternoon when I had to make the switch I must admit I did so reluctantly because I had so enjoyed our one-on-one time together. 

Then it was time for Harper.  I helped her pack her bag which was full of dinosaurs, Bruce the Rabbit, Soft Blanket, pull-ups, and a few clothes.  As soon as we got home Harper began constructing her Dinosaur Museum for Grandy, complete with dinosaur fabric that I had found to make her some big girl panties and a wooden spoon to begin her digging for dinosaur “rocks”.  Harper began to amaze and entertain both of us with her incredible imagination and sponge like little mind.  We had such fun washing dishes after meals, putting big girl panties on all the dinosaurs, cleaning up dinosaur tinkle, wearing nothing but big girl dinosaur panties, but not having anything to do with going to the potty.  Oh every minute was an adventure. 

The one-on-one time made all the difference in being able to truly enjoy the time we were able to spend with each child and not feel so strung out at the end of each day.  It was special time not only for Grandy and me but I think it was equally special for Harper and Harris.  Both children were able to have some wonderful quality time with each grandparent without having to share attention.  I’m telling you, this is a win/win situation and if you ever have the opportunity to try it out, do it.  I highly recommend it, as I can honestly say Grandy and I just had one of the most fun five days of our lives!

Much Love,

Harris - Ten Months

I realize the boy is about to hit 11 months but I'm squeezing the ten month markers in before the deadline.  The pictures were authentically taken about a week after Cito turned ten months and I'm trying desperately to remember what he wasn't doing three weeks ago.

Teeth - three.  Two on bottom, one on top with the fourth just on the edge of his gums when he turned ten months.
Diet - I weaned Harris just before we left for our trip to DR so at ten months, he's officially formula.  He's also moved to table foods - hooray!  And he won't have anything to do with someone feeding him with a spoon.  This boy wants to feed himself only.
Crawling like crazy and taking about 3 steps at a time.  He is just on the verge of walking but is moving everywhere.
Sleep - still not great at ten months but I have a little update to the sleep department headed your way!
Just now starting to get stranger anxiety.  This hit on December 22 when we had our Santa party and it's stuck.  He'll smile all he can at a passing stranger but he only wants to be held by those that know him best.
Harris adores his sister and now follows her everywhere.  Harper goes to her room, Cito goes to her room.  Harper goes the kitchen, Cito goes to the kitchen.  Harper goes to the potty, Cito goes to the potty.  
Harris is just starting to get verbal and is making more noises with each day.  
Throughout late December and January, Harris's face was covered in war wounds from attempts at walking. The poor child was a giant scab.

And Harris LOVES his Daddy.  He wants Mommy when all is great and dandy but when he's feeling sick and puny, he only wants Jared.  

My sweet, happy boy!