Wednesday, October 28, 2015


This morning was pretty momentous. Hang onto your hats, folks, because I got to go to the store by myself. As soon as Theodore was on the bus I rode like a boss in my minivan to Walmart listening to whatever I wanted on the radio as loud as I wanted. And here is the really sad part..... I actually felt like I had a purpose. I had reason to wake up and get dressed. My life had meaning because my chickens and cats needed more food. Also, I was out of coffee. 

My life literally has no purpose. Why get up and get dressed and ready for the day when you go DAAAAAAAAYS without leaving your house? And why leave your house when it takes so much effort to? Sure, you can do it and it'll last for a week or a month or, tops, 3 months, until you realize.... IT DOESN'T MATTER. The world doesn't know or care. Sure, I can make elaborate birthday parties that my children want "more than anything in the world", but to what end? It is forgotten the next day. I'm not kidding- the. next. day. All that time and effort (I'd say money, but who am I kidding... everything is from scratch here) for a blink of the eye. I clean up, I break up fights, I make food, I clean up again, I teach, I reteach, I discipline, I re-reteach, I clean some more, I go to bed. 
And I know what you're thinking - "But nobody else can do your job." Except, here's the thing. People ARE doing my job. A million, maybe a billion times over every day. Every single mom is doing my job. 

It is the most common job in the world.

Tell me that's not a depressing thought. 

It is really sad when the highlight of, quite possibly months is going to Walmart and Tractor Supply at 8am. I mean, they aren't even fun stores. Are you telling me that my purpose in life is to be ignored, underappreciated, and used by the people I'm supposed to be pouring my heart and soul into? And that's it? I don't even get some "me" time or a job where I might actually accomplish something? (Because, let's be honest, raising children never actually accomplishes anything. You face today the same exact things you are going to face tomorrow x 365 x forever  until they move out.) I mean, it'd be laughable if it wasn't so stupid. 

Well, obviously, I'm having a super awesome day and can't wait to step back on the mommy train. Kudos to you moms who have something else to step into even if just for a little while, be it an outside of the house job or outside of the house hobby or gym membership or whatever. Good for you. I mean it. 


Friday, October 2, 2015


We are revamping our old drafty farmhouse. Nothing major, just some small budget improvements and updates while keeping its charm and character. And I'm loving it. I totally am. 

Only............ my love is starting to run thin. I'm about 80 degrees beyond ever wanting to see trim again. (I don't even know if that saying means anything but it felt kind of right. Until it came out and then it seemed like it maybe didn't make any sense. I'm still leaving it.) It took 4-5 coats of paint in our bedroom. FOUR TO FIVE. That's a lot of paint on a lot of trim. But, thankfully I can say that our bedroom and bathroom are complete. 

Then for some reason I decided to move onto the entrance way and paint the door and ceiling and then have to repaint the ceiling back to the original white because I didn't like it painted the door color. But that's okay because now that is done too. (Even though our idiot dog has already scratched it.)

Now, I am so far into kitchen cabinets I can't see the light of day. It took me DAAAAAYS just to pick a cabinet color. (I went with 'horseradish', by the way, which definitely looks as cute as it sounds.) But painting is never as simple as it seems with the hinges and the screws and the drop cloths and the clean up. And then there's the putting all the doors back on and picking out knobs and drilling the holes for the knobs and having to buy extra long screws for the extra thick drawers because, of course, the package of knobs you chose only have the short screws. 

I have 6 cabinets left. The end is insight. If I can just keep motivated until then. The new kitchen floor my husband put down is definitely helping with the motivation. I can see the victory. We. Are. So. Close. 

And, finally, and also simultaneously, I have pulled up half the carpet in our living room/dining room revealing the original hardwood. WOOHOO. And by "woohoo" I mean "woohoo" for the end of that project because it was one of the dirtiest things I've ever done. Also, carpet is heavy. 

We plan to paint the floor and those awful cedar plank walls. (Or pine... whatever they are. Terrible is what they are. 80 degrees of terrible.) Hopefully we'll end up with a relaxed, beach sort of feel. That's what we're going for anyway instead of the current 1990 builders grade 'charm' that's going on.

And when we're finished I promise to make an effort to put up some pictures of our hard work. Because I know you all care. And in the meantime, take some time to revamp something in your life. A room, a chair, your spice cabinet...... It'll feel good. I promise!        

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

I cried at FunLand.

"I don't think you understand the concept of FunLand." - Benjamin

I cried. Right there under the Paratrooper ride next to the hose for vomit. Right in the middle of FunLand with screams and laughs and smiles all around me. For the most part I think I went unnoticed. Parents too busy videotaping their children on rides for the first time, boys too busy trying to impress girls, kids too busy running away from their parents. 

I'm sure I wasn't noticed. That is until Emma turns around and in an effort to speak above all the noise loudly says "Mom, you look like you might be crying!" And EVERYBODY and EVERYTHING stops. All the noise and rides are suddenly supernaturally suspended mid air and all eyes are on me. The void of movement is palpable. I'm pretty sure time stopped. Yes, yes, people, I'm crying, get over it. And they do in a matter of about 0.2 seconds because, thankfully, nobody really cares.  

I cried at FunLand. How in the world does someone who is having a great, dare I say excellent, time with their family cry in the middle of a mini amusement park? Unfortunately I can't say it was out of happiness. Or I could and this little story could be over. I might seem like an overly emotional woman if I did that, but let's be honest...... I'm not that far from being an overly emotional woman. (Benjamin nods his head in agreement behind me.)

No, this is all because of one boy and girl. Strangers. Two people I see as we are standing in line with the kids. (This is not a walk down memory lane for Benjamin and myself, don't worry. It's not a story of nostalgia and the "good ol' days".) This young lady between the ages of, I'd say, 16 and 30 (is that safe enough?) is holding an oxygen tank that is connected to a young boy, probably early teens. He is an unusually short red head. I can recognize some of his facial features and movements, and could guess that there were some developmental delays although I can't say with absolute surety their extent. There is an instant familiarity. He was smiling, walking around, happy and thoroughly enjoying himself. I have no idea who the girl was to him but she was so sweet and appeared to be enjoying herself as well. 

Okay, so you are probably thinking that I cried because it was oh so adorably sweet. And it was, but you'd be wrong. Or at least partially wrong. To be honest, I'm not 100% sure why I cried. I'm still trying to figure it out myself. But I think it had to do with the fact that I related in so many ways to them. To these people I had never seen before. It was like looking in from the outside. 

To be more clear, I live my life, like everybody, IN my life. I'm inside the circumstances. Everything that happens, the way we do things is just part of our life. It's natural. It's the way things need to be done. It just is. When we go out I don't always think about the fact that we are operating with a special needs child. I mean, I do... but I don't think about the fact that other people see us and recognize that we are different. 

At FunLand, I was the "other people." But I was the "other people" with the ability to relate. 

Yes, I think it touched me in a way that it can't touch others who haven't had experience with a special needs child, but it was more than that. It was also the fact that he reminded me of Theodore. I know that Theodore is different and that he will be different probably for life. I know that there are so many unknowns with him.  But I don't think about that. This caused me to think about these things. It was like looking at Theodore in the future. He may very well be that short. He may very well always be noticeable in a crowd. He may not develop to the point of a normal functioning adult. 

I don't say any of that to be sad or seem defeated. But I live everyday IN that day and this took me outside of that and helped me to view it instead of live it. 

I have no idea if I've made any sense. I just know that those two people will always be precious to me. I just know that I cried at FunLand. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Well....... that was fun.

Last night Theodore decannulated himself. Yes, it happened and it scared the **** out of me. There are so many reasons it could have been way worse than it was and I am so thankful that God gave me the urging to look over when He did. I'm happy to say that Theodore is doing just fine and my stomach is back where it belong as opposed to on the floor. 

So here's what happened. I put Theodore in bed last night the same way I do every night... off to his dreams so he can try to take over the world. But he had a late nap so he was not falling asleep. He's happily in his bed, I'm on the other side of the room and I can hear and see him sitting up and standing up and playing, etc. At one point I heard a familiar noise. It's hard to describe unless you are familiar with it. But I looked over to make sure that Theodore wasn't blocking his trach with his finger like he so often does. He was standing up and I could clearly see him and his trach collar still in tact so I knew that he wasn't doing what I had suspected. It was back to my little world for me and I left him to his to play until he got tired enough to sleep. 

I'm not sure how much time went by it could have been 30 seconds, it could have been several minutes (but not more than 15- which is an eternity in this situation) but I look over at him again just to check and I see him standing up, trach collar in tact, but he's holding his trach over the side of the bed. Yes, folks, his trach. He somehow managed to get it off from under his trach collar. I know that may not make a clear picture to some of you unless you are familiar with his equipment but it's kind of like getting an undershirt off without displacing your long sleeve tee. Possible, but not easy. Needless to say I ran over with my mind running in a thousand different directions but I kept myself calm so as not to miss a step or rush through the process and cause panic to either of us. I laid him back gently (he looked ok by the way), asked God to please please let the trach go back in easily, and took it out of his hand and inserted it back in his trachea where it belongs. Then I got the trach collar back on and checked his sats. They were a little low- nothing to fret over. But I turned his o2 up and then hugged that little boy so tightly.

You know how, especially moms, we can tend to think about what could have happened and get ourselves worked up over something after it's already over. Like, for instance, and I'm not saying this actually happened, but like if a big brother were to pick up his little sister from behind while her hands were tucked inside her shirt and then she were to face plant on a hard wood floor because she couldn't put her hands down to protect herself. And everything ends up fine save for a little bruised cheek and nose and a small concussion. But all you could do, if again this ACTUALLY happened.... which it didn't..... but all you could do is think about how her nose could have broken or she could have knocked out her teeth. That's pretty much what happened to me - I just kept thinking about what would have happened if I hadn't looked over, if indeed he had fallen asleep trach out without my knowledge. And it's not the oxygen I'm that concerned about, he's proving himself to do well without that, but the fact that his trachea collapses without the trach in. Thanks be to God that it wasn't the case and all went well. 

I do think I've lost about 2 years of my life though and I definitely lost a good nights sleep last night.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Sloooooooooooow goings and signs

Last time I wrote I said something to the effect of weaning Theodore off oxygen and hopefully being off completely within a month or so.

HAHAHAHA. Pipe dreams. Here's the deal: he was doing really well, but then he got sick. A week of fever and low sats and high heart rate..... some kind of infection or virus, who knows. Anyway, we are going on 2 weeks now of no time off the oxygen at all. And that's okay. It shows us that he isn't ready to be free of it yet. Not fully anyway. Once he fully recovers we'll start weaning again, but he's showing that recovery takes some time. So we have just settled back into same ol' same ol' and aren't rushing anything. 

Below I am listing a link to a bunch of signs that Theodore has learned and is using or is learning. Several people have asked so here is your reference :)











Thank you

That's a good start for now. These are the ones that he knows and uses well. I'll do a list next time of the ones we are teaching him.

And for those of you that haven't seen this (and for those who have and still find it incredible like me):

HELLO. Is this not like staring directly at a 6 year old Theodore???! This is his great grandfather and the person he is named after, Theodore Payne Taylor. It's like the same person. It makes my heart so happy for some reason.  

I'll leave you all with that!!