Tuesday, April 26, 2011

How to Wait for Daddy

When you're 4 and 2, the only thing cooler than finding a sweet stick in the shape of a "shooter gun" is waiting for Daddy to come home!

Here's how to do it:

1. Tell Mommy you won't eat until Daddy gets home.

2. Get in a major fight with your brother that results in separating yourself from said brother.

3. Go to the front porch and wait.

4. And wait...

5. Start licking and blowing raspberries on the glass door.

6. Refrain from running in to the driveway to greet Daddy!

Monday, April 25, 2011

A Little TMI

But it's my blog, right?

I've spent the last two weeks just overly tired (I'm usually a pretty energetic person), short tempered and back achy. Sound like familiar symptoms?!?

Yaaaaay. <---- Insert super duper sarcastic voice riiiight there.

Aunt Flow, ridin' the tide, trolling for vampires, saddlin' ol' rusty, you know, not feelin' my best 'cause my VUH JAY JAY IS BLEEDING.

Not good. Especially the first one in...FOREVER! I had just two periods after Eli was born and before I got pregnant with Deacon. So, let's just guestimate since September of 2007 I've only had two!

So, it felt like a got hit by a Mac truck after being sleep deprived and punched in the gut.

It seems the fog has FINALLY lifted and my days are much brighter.  In addition to finally feeling better Deacon has graced me with MANY nights of sleep and I have a husband again!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Eli's Turn

Poor dude. 

He did not have a good day. He was ornery and kept crying at random. 

I found him like this when he was supposed to be napping.

We went to the Y so I could go for a swim and the boys could play. After that we went to the park, came home for naps, Turner practiced some sight words for school and then went back to the park. 

Eli was just off all day. I cuddled him and just tried to tread lightly. He fell at the park and I actually thought he might have injured himself because he kept crying and whining about it (usually, a kiss will make it all better). We got home and he was still crying, bath time was teary eyed, getting in to jams was filled with tears...

Finally, I said "Buddy, show Mommy where it hurts. Is it your chest (from the fall)?"

 His lip curled up and he goes "I want Daddy. I miss him."

(Insert Mommy sucking it up right here)

Poor dude. He was out of it. 

Turner totally stepped up and put his arm around him and goes "It's ok, Eli, I'm the dad now." This all stems from a conversation with John in which John tried to explain to Turner that he was the "man of the house." 

Heh. Men.

Monday, April 11, 2011

A Pattern Emerges

Alright, folks, I'm going to be a little honest here. 

Our adjustment after John came home/I had a baby was arduous. The first months were incredibly rocky for our family. John and I never really got that reconnection that should have been top priority after deployment. The kids were socked with a double whammy of Daddy (whom Eli thought just dropped off the face of the Earth) and a new brother. 

Thankfully, Eli was too young to understand much. All he knew was that he was happy, healthy and enjoying time with his family. Turner, on the other hand, was stressed from the events. It was a terrible, albeit growing, time for all of us. I was completely confused about Turner's behavior and, in turn, grew very tired and agitated. The little boy didn't throw a tantrum until 2.5 years old was acting completely out of character. 

After months of wondering if his anger (calling base psychologist and discussing taking Turner to a "talking" doctor) and emotional outbursts were normal, we reached some sort of equilibrium again. 


And then John left in January and I was standing, alone, with an angry child. Clearly upset but not able to talk about anything. Again, I asked just a few close friends their thoughts. I received nothing but support but I could see something was wrong. Not just the anger, but the inability to handle simple situations (just ask me about the library), insecurity, fear of me leaving... So, again, I called around for a "talking" doctor. Someone has to know how to speak to my child to get him to open up. I tried to make connections with him and for him. "So and so's daddy leaves, too" or "So and so gets sad, too." I have and am still trying (but not overly aggressive) to ask the right questions and give him the chance to speak. 

I found a great resource in Ah Ha! Parenting and have been using the articles and newsletters to remind myself daily of the task at hand. Positively raising this child that harbors such anger at times. He's young, and that lil' frontal lobe won't develop for years: I understand that on a geekery level. Anger in a child with such a good family life is hard for the parent to understand. We're far from perfect, but we've got a pretty great life! 

John returned from that underway and, after a few days' worth of adjustment, Turner was back to a more normal self.

John's gone again and we had a great few days. Then, today, he woke up pissed at the world. Why? I have no idea. I spend the entire day being calm and non-reactive, loving and attentive. I got yelled at hit and just disrespected. The kids fought like brothers do when it's one of "those" days and the baby was a bit off. Not taking that personally is a daily struggle. 

Today it was hard.

I've finally seen the pattern. It was difficult, at first, because we only experienced this a few times. The pattern was too short. I see it now, so I feel a bit better that my baby does come back. He just needs to feel his daddy's absence and this is how he does it. 

It's not fun. It's exhausting, time consuming and frustrating. But he didn't choose this life for him, we did. I'll be damned if I don't do anything and everything I can for him. 

Friday, April 8, 2011

Gearing Up

We've been gearing up for some time without Daddy. Unlike January, I've tried to prepare a little more based off the last experience when we were whacked with the flu, then colds. I've pre-made breakfast items, thought of snack ideas and am going to the commissary for a stock up trip (if it's still open when/if our government shuts down!!).

Instead of rice boxes for this month I made some new sensory boxes for school/around the house. I've been trying to plan things to do but it seem that life got in the way and I have had to play catch up with baby food making and climb Mt. Laundry.

I've been working on a ton of things around the house as these were the last weeks of nothing for John. We'll be back to some sort of grind at the end of the summer and I don't anticipate doing fun home decor things then!

Trying to prepare the boys for Daddy's absence has led to "normal" (for us) adverse behavior. Turner gets incredibly emotional and does lots of out of character things. Eli usually doesn't really notice much until someone (cough cough Turner cough). Thankfully, it's not our first rodeo and unlike the last few times John's left, I'm much more prepared for it. Nothing makes even short separations easy but I think we'll be alright this time around.

Hopefully, these few weeks of separation and then the next few months will pass without incident. As long as we don't get sick, I can handle almost anything!!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

9 months!

It's been absolutely crazy! I'd say I can't believe it, but I can. 

All deployments, babies born the same day as daddy returns, toddlers acting nuts, and moving aside...

Deacon is fabulous. 

A dream baby if there ever was one. 

The sweetest, blue-eyed, little boy. 

He is the epitome of go-with-the-flow.

He just takes us all as we are and smiles even though he's been hit, bumped and screamed around.

If I had a husband that came home every day at 4pm and never left, I'd have 10 more of Deacon. 

Really, he's that great.