Posted in mommyhood

We are moving on to Second grade!!!

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I was sitting at a coworkers desk when my phone vibrated. Looking down at the message, tears immediately slid from my eyes to my cheeks.  Images from this past year flashed through my mind. The first day of school, all of the struggles with homework, all of the frustration, realizing she needed an evaluation for ADHD, getting those results, and the decision to medicate. All of it down to her sheer determination to drown out all of the distraction in her mind, even before we had her ADHD diagnosis. It all flashed through my eyes and I cried.

The message was simple. Her teacher had texted me one line. She has passed the DRA 14!!! This is what we were waiting for! She needed to be able to focus enough on this one standardized reading level to pass the first grade! To make matters even more emotional, this was three weeks before the last day of school. Leave it to my child to pull it off at the last-minute! She’s passing, she was passing!!!! I had honestly resigned myself to the expectation that we would repeat the first grade despite how well she did in the other subjects in school. Her teacher was right, she knew how to read all along, she just needed help drowning out all the distractions!

It has been a whirlwind of a year, with a whirlwind of emotions to go with it. There has been frustration, tears, laughter, determination, anger at the school system for these standardized tests, hope, and fear. We have experienced them all. There has been weekly conversations with teachers, quarterly meetings with guidance counselors and visits to the pediatrician for month-long testing.

I am thankful for the path God has put us on. I am thankful for her teachers. She had two this year, and while the first one was not my favorite, she was the one mini me needed at the time. She not so subtly hinted that she felt mini me, had problems focusing possible had ADHD. In my mind, ADHD kids were always hyper, which she is not. Then, over the Christmas holidays, her first teacher retired and we got Ms. R.  Ms. R has been a blessing beyond blessings. She has worked with mini me one on one, dealt with my constant text messages and checking on her, and took the time to get creative with mini me, so that she could learn in the way that was best for her. She really went above and beyond for our little girl!

I am thankful for our pediatrician who also specializes in ADHD and put her through a month of testing before diagnosing her with ADHD. I have seen so many physicians just slap the ADHD label on kids with only a screening, and not performing certain tests. He really looked at the whole picture with my daughter, and i couldn’t more thankful for that! I am so thankful, for a pediatrician who asked the parents how we wanted to treat her symptoms. The decision to medicate was not an easy one, but it seems to be the right course for her.

I am thankful for my daughter, who despite all odds never gave up on herself and always tried. Even when everything in the world tried to distract her, she tried.  I have seen a change in her these last couple of months. She has been smiling more, and seems more confident. Before, I could see anxiety in her eyes when it became time to read. My baby girl, i am so unbelievable proud of you! You have had to work harder than a lot of kids this year and even if things didn’t work out the way we had wanted, i still would have been very proud of you!!!!

Now as the summer months begin and the last day of school has occurred, a whole new set of emotions occur! I have a fourth grader, a second grader, and a preschooler! All three in school. I just can’t even deal!

Posted in acceptance

I am Second

I was driving home from work today thinking about the past few weeks events. If you have read this post, then you know it has been a stressful and challenging week.  While sitting at a red light, I read the bumper sticker on the car in front of me. Three simple yet powerful  words that caught my eye. I am second.

It’s incredible how something so random and simple can sucker punch in the gut as if to rock you to your core. I am second. I have spent the past few weeks complaining about how hard my life is, how tired I am, and how alone I feel at times.  Now I realize how many times I say “I” in a week, day or hour even.

The truth is, I am not first. I am second. Without knowing where these words were coming from, I somehow knew. We are second to God.  I am second to God. So I should stop complaining about life right now and just spend more time talking to him.  So, now instead of listing my complaints about life, I am going to list my blessings from the week.

  1. Spending the day at the beach and seeing Mini – Me smile with that contagious sun shiny smile of hers
  2. Watching 9yo play soccer
  3. 4yo’s cute little bed head when he wakes up in the morning
  4. A job that allows me to be home normal work week hours
  5. our new church home
  6. The wonderful teachers God has put in our path
  7. Quiet time for reflection
  8. Coworkers who make me laugh despite the horrid week we have had
  9. Potential job opportunities ( I am praying hard to make the right decision on that one)
  10. Teaching our children to pray
  11. Fairy Garden’s ( we haven’t killed the flowers yet)

What are your blessings this week?

 

Posted in mommyhood

Community

I have been thinking about community a lot lately. Last weekend we attended a community event to raise  money for the children of a mother who was died violently in our area.  The event was kid friendly with carnival games, face painting and prizes for the little ones. There was even barrel racing and silent auctions. I was amazed at the sheer amount of people who not only volunteered their time, but donated the items for auction, food and prizes. You could feel God’s presence during this event as if he was wrapping his arms around these two children who will grow up without their mother.

Although, I did not know this woman personally, her story has sat with me for a while. This could happen to any of us, and the thought of leaving my children is just too much to bear .  It’s amazing what a group of people or community can do in the face of tragedy. WE can lift each other up, help one another, bring a sense of peace that was not there before. Which leads me to wonder, why can’t we do this every day?

My 7yo wrote the following paragraph on president’s day.

wp-1490191512111.jpgWouldn’t you vote for her? What a smart girl huh? My mommy pride was in beaming affect after reading this passage . Kids are much more intuitive than we ever give them credit for. You see, we drive by the same homeless man every day. I am pretty sure I have never mentioned him to the kids and just drive past as if he wasn’t standing there in need. I have wanted to stop, but have always been too busy, too everything i guess.  WE help in the mist of tragedy yet, aren’t those who do not have homes considered a tragedy?

This sweet daughter of mine, has me thinking of this man daily now and how we can help. Maybe its a simple meal for lunch, maybe its a kind conversation, maybe its just the acknowledgement that yes, he is sitting there on the same corner of the street every day for the past several years.  Today, I will pledge to help this man in some way. i want my children to know that they can make a difference in the community,no matter how small. Even the smallest gestures can lead to the biggest impacts in others lives. The community event that we attended started out as an idea for barrel racing to raise money and turned into quite the event. While this event will make an impact on those children financially, there can be no price placed on the impact it has had on me!

How can you make a differene today?

Posted in mommyhood

Spring Break Fun: Creating a fairy garden

Spring break is in the air! The kids get to let their hair down, and relax for the next week to come. Unfortunately I still have to work this week, but will take a couple of days off to enjoy some time with the kiddos. The girls have been hooked on this fairy garden idea lately and I promised them they could make on  spring break.

Now, this sounds all well and dandy except I am pretty sure that I have what you call a black thumb when it comes to gardening. No really, I kill every plant I touch! So to plant a couple of flowers for the fairy garden is a far stretch for me. I began looking up plants that are low maintenance and cactuses  looked good to me. Desert fairy garden anyone? No.. the girls wouldn’t let me buy a cactus either. They mentioned something about not wanting the fairies to get poked.

Eventually we just decided on a couple of annuals, that may or may not die in a couple of days. I will let ya’ll know! Since I have never so much as planted a seed in our yard, we had to buy everything we needed. Gardening can be expensive ya’ll! Anyways, add a little fairy, fairy house, maybe a cute little dragon and you have yourself a fairy garden! Because one garden isn’t enough we also made a mermaid garden thanks to Michael’s for having those options. Just add a few lights, and you have yourself some magic in your very front yard. WE even found a cute little garden gnome named Winston to watch over our gardens for us. HE is a very chill gnome, seems to like hanging by the palm trees and soaking up the sun.

The girls love their gardens and I loved working in the yard with them. Shh.. Don’t tell anyone I said that. I typically  do not like any resemblance of yard  work! Spring break day one was a huge success! Now, I have to go to work tomorrow while the kids enjoy spending time with their cousin for the day. Why can’t parents get spring break? Oh well, I took off work Wednesday, so only a couple more days, and we will have some more fun planned! What are your spring break plans this year?

 

 

Posted in acceptance

Choosing to love

It was March 15, 2004 on a cloudy yet, sunshiny day when I became the Mrs to my Mr.  I was 22 years old then, and full of love, hope and images of a picture perfect happily ever after. It’s hard to believe it has been thirteen years since we have said ” I do.”

Fast forward to that thirteen years on March 15, 2017 . I received an edible arrangement at work from the hubby and can honestly say that I was completely surprised. How does he still manage to surprise me after all these years?  We had a survey happening at the hospital so my day was long and exhausting, so the nice fruit basket kept me going throughout.

When I came home from work, our anniversary was anything but picture perfect. The house was a complete mess, kids had to be fed; homework need to be done and baths were started. The fancy anniversary dinner consisted of pizza that was eaten roughly around 7pm that night. Then, the hubby fell asleep in Buddy’s room  while putting him to bed. It wasn’t romantic.. it wasn’t ideal. It was just a normal night like any other. It just simply was.

>>>>>>

Apparently when you have been married longer than ten years people start asking what your secret is. Isn’t that funny? Ten years hardly seems like it has been long enough to know the key to keeping a lasting marriage. Yet somehow, seems like a lifetime in this day and age.

Once  you add social media to the mix, anyone can seem like they have this picture perfect marriage and then boom suddenly they are getting divorces leaving others wondering what could have gone wrong. I am sure if you looked at my social media pages then you would think that our marriage is perfect too. We only show people what we want them to see, which is usually  the good stuff. The flowers, the nice gestures, you know.. all that stuff. It hardly seems right to say hey, my husband sucked today..

The truth is, these past thirteen years have not been perfect. We have had some amazing times as well as come incredibly rocky times. It has been hard and a lot of work to continue to stay married for this long! I can’t tell you the magic secret to staying married, because well, we are still a work in progress and I think if anyone tells you different, they are living in a fairytale.

The only thing I can say, is that I am still married because once all the newness and honeymoon phase has worn off , we have to make a choice. A choice to love one another no matter what. I am still married because I choose to love this man even when every when I don’t like him very much. I choose to love the man who put over 200 valentines cards in a bag with different messages he had hand written on the day he asked me to marry him. I choose to love the man who communicates with very little words. I choose to love the man who once drove over an hour away to pick up a tablet that he ordered for me to celebrate a promotion. I choose to love this man who once again drove an hour away to buy soccer cleats for our oldest daughter because she doesn’t like the color pink and the green ones, were only an hour drive away. I choose to love the man who is sleeping right now, while I am sipping a glass of wine and cleaning our house ( I am a little mad about this one, but I still choose to love him.. Wine helps!)

Love is  choice. It is not easy, it is not picture perfect. It simply is the act of showing kindness, gratitude, compassion, and affection for one another. Love is a choice. Who do you choose to love today?

 

 

Posted in acceptance, mommyhood

Facing ADHD

 

It took me a minute to realize that I was holding my breath every time the shadow of feet outlined the crack underneath the door. An hour of waiting and that was lot of breaths being held by this very worried mommy. My mini me sitting in the corner playing with a toy in the office, while my husband and I sat waiting for results to all the testing mini me had done. Does she, or does she not have ADHD? That being the question on our minds. Did parental intuition set in, desperate for any indication as to why on earth this child seems to be struggling, or were we being two completely overly worried parents?

Once the doctor came, in it  was both the quickest and longest conversation we have had with any doctor I have ever experienced in my life. He spent over an hour with us going over test results line by line. I love him for that. We may have had to wait for an hour to see him, but it was because he wanted to ensure that he had enough time to explain the results and what it means for our daughter. The entire office had left for the evening, but we were there with our doctor. The terms, ADHD predominately inattentive type came out of his mouth and I swear at that moment I finally let go of the breath I had been holding. WE went over treatment options, and terms like 504 and IEP to help her in school. Then I swear that sweet doctor looks at me with the most sincere eyes and asks me the million dollar question. ” How do you want to treat this?” I am pretty sure that tears began to fill my eyes, because aside from working as a nurse, no doctor has ever partnered with their patient like this, that I have ever seen. Not really knowing what to say, I finally said that I wanted the treatment option that would help her the best. She is struggling in school and needs help.

The next day I sat in the kitchen holding a medication in my hand with tears streaming down my face and my body shaking. A medication that could help this sweet baby of mine focus, but could have some serious side effects. WE expected this, we knew this was the most likely scenario and yet, my heart felt burdened.  With my daughter in the living room, I silently called out to God. I just couldn’t hold the burden of fear any longer and gave this situation to him. I gave her to him. Suddenly I felt lighter, wiped my tears and drew up that medication as I have done for so many patients at in the hospital. With the good Lord’s grace, she took that medication without fight and I went to work and waited. I am not really sure what i waited for, to hear something bad happened, i don’t know. But i waited for word that she was okay, and she was. Day one of her medication and she was okay.

The first day of her medication was last Friday, and although he said she only needed this on school days, I gave it to her all weekend long to monitor her for side effects. She is on the lowest possible dose, and thankfully she did great! Monday came around and her teacher texted me that she had scored the highest grade on her fluency to date.  I can  breathe again, for now it just may be okay. For now, we have hope that she could still pass the first grade. For now, she only needs the lowest dose possible of this medication. Although that could change in the future, I am so thankful for that. For now, we just wait and see what else God has planned for this beautiful child.

Posted in mommyhood

Time for Preschool

It that time again. Time to sign up for Preschool. The beginning of sending my child to school and this time it will be the last first day of preschool! Oh boy, I need to let that one sink in a little. Pretty soon, I will have three school aged children and then what? I’m just getting old that’s what, Ha!

Now, you would think that I would be a pro at this by now, but seriously! Why didn’t someone tell me this was going to be so hard! I mean, since when did getting into a preschool become as competitive as getting into college?

The truth is, with the older two we did not attend the typical voluntary preschool program. With the oldest we chose a facility that provided the curriculum and had an excellent teacher! I mean the child had homework every night. But then, when it was time for the middle child to attend, we noticed a decline in the quality of the program. The same teacher that was amazing had left and we were left with some teachers who were not as structured as the previous one and well, it really became just daycare. So now, here we are scrambling to find a place for 4yo so he can get a good quality education and be ready for Kindergarten!

There is a place near my work that has a good reputation, but when I called the day before open registration they had already filled their spots! How does that even happen? A lot of places around here only do the VPK from 8-12 and do not offer extended care. This is obviously not an ideal situation for a working mom!

Thankfully, my sister-in-law is willing to help be my extended care if he attends the same preschool as her daughter. This is also a really good preschool and open registration is Monday. Now, I have anxiety that when I show up on Monday they will be a line out the door and I will be still not  have a preschool lined up! UGGH!!! It was easier for me to get in college than it is to get my little man in preschool! So for now, all I can do is hope and pray that this situation works out..or I will just cry..