Postponed On Account of...

March 29, 2011 by Rieshy
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I was going to title this, "Postponed On Account of Vomit", but then I thought that was too gross.  Then I decided that I am too brain dead to think of anything else, thus the coquettish "..."  The dots were coquettish, no?

I have a long and brilliantly planned post about how to survive a hospital stay.  It will have to wait.

Several of my children were vacationing with their grandparents last week and therefore missed the stomach virus/ hospital/ ambulance drama.  

They came home.  One of them is now throwing up.  Yes, throwing up.

There is no way any germ can have survived my Lysol assault of the house while they were gone.  They must have brought home a new virus.

Poor 9 year old.  He's quarantined in my bedroom, possibly for the next 2 years.  I briefly considered getting in my car and driving to Tahiti.  By myself.  But, well since it's an island I didn't.

Instead I am broadcasting a planetary alert as in Star Trek IV- you know, the one with the whales. 

This is the President of the United Federation of Tiptons. Do not approach Our Home!
The transmissions of an orbiting Virus are causing critical damage to this family.
It has almost totally ionized our mother's ability to cope.
All brands of germ-ex  have failed. All orbiting anti-emetics are powerless.
Further communications may not be possible
Save your energy, Save yourselves.
Avoid the Planet Tipton at all costs. ...Farewell.

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Exhaling

March 28, 2011 by Rieshy
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Going home from the hospital after a child's illness is such a surreal experience. It's akin to walking out of a matinee movie; the world looks oddly proportioned and impossibly vivid.

It can also be bewilderingly emotional. As a hospital "frequent flyer" I humbly offer this suggestion: take some time to cry.

Tears can release the fear, the anger, the grief, the joy, the disappointments, the relief, the panic, and even just the boredom of a hospital stay.

Combine a few minutes of tears with a hot bath and you've just bought yourself some sanity. Sanity to cope with taking life off the illusory, hospital induced, "pause" mode.

Romans 8:26 "Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words"


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Prescriptions

March 26, 2011 by Rieshy
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My almost 5 year old and I met a very sweet woman who happens to be a Little Person. She chatted with my 5 year old one morning and we have since waved to her every day of my son's current hospitalization.

I was surprised my son did not say much about her until- "Mom, that Little Lady kind of scares me." I asked why, assuming it was because she is under 3 feet tall. "Because her voice is so high sounding," he explained. Which just proved to me for the 500th time that when you think you know what another human is thinking, you're probably wrong.

We had a brief discussion about how her voice sounded odd to him because some parts of her body don't work quite right but that she's smart and nice and has a family that loves her and a job she loves...

A body that has parts that doesn't work quite right is something my son can relate to.

Later, after my son relapsed and had a bout of low-budget-horror-movie-puking he was lying on his back obviously troubled. "Mom, did that nice Little Lady's legs not grow because she threw up too much?"

Funny how self-centered fear tends to be. I know most of My thoughts have all been on My family this week, My fears.

We are called to worship God even through trials. Christian worship, the antithesis of self and the prescription for fear.

My son's I.V. pump just started beeping an alert, making me jump. Time to hum my favorite hymn, "Oh Lord My God".


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Our Eyes Opened: Kirill's Story

March 25, 2011 by Rieshy
I wanted to repost in support of this family. Please pray for them.

Our Eyes Opened: Kirill's Story




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Virus In Verse

March 22, 2011 by Rieshy
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Sunday night,
Long story, short story?

Two Littles taken ill.
Scarey drives and ambulance rides,
16 year old daughter/super hero.

My toddler twosome in green pajamas.
Peas in a pod,
matching hospital beds side by side.

Fods-o-rama, metabolic drama.

Prayer. Coffee.
Friends bearing burdens and
friends bearing chocolate.

New room, larger beds.
Quiet hum and distant beeps lulls to sleep.
Held in God's hands

Always.

Whirlwind

March 18, 2011 by Rieshy
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Wow, let me catch my breath.  It's been one of those weeks.  A week that was neither bad, nor glorious, just Busy

If you were to say, "Quick tell me 3 things you accomplished this week." I'd probably stand still, looking blank for a few seconds, before apologetically blurting,  "Ummm, lots?"

The only thing I know for sure is that my 5 year old passed his eye exam with no sign of retinal pigmentation- take that FOD.

Speaking of milestones.  My 3 and 5 year olds are currently at the park with their grandparents.  I'm currently... not at the park.  This may sound weird to those of you with healthy children, but this is a Big, stinkingly good, Big Deal

Even though I  pretended that it wasn't when I waved goodbye.  Even though I keep wondering how things are going.

My 5 year old just doesn't go anywhere without me or his father- unless it's a quick trip to the grocery store with his big brother or sister.  His health has been just too unpredictable.

The park?  Running around?  Expending energy?  Wow.  This is a first.  It's also a great sign of how excellent his health has been for the last 10 months.

All I can say is, "Thank you God."

I guess it has been a glorious week.


Non Sequiturs Du Jour

March 16, 2011 by Rieshy
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6:30 a.m. The house was quiet.  My 3 year old and I were quietly eating chocolate chip cookies before the rest of the family could catch us and call foul.  Suddenly, I heard a voice call out from my 5 year old's bedroom, "Mom, you really need to get me a dog."

Uh, hmmm.  Request noted, and filed.  Now hide those cookie crumbs, witnesses are awake.

A few minutes later both 5 and 3 year old were sitting at the kitchen island drinking milk when my 3 year old looked at me and said, "I only have a small balloon swimming pool up over MY house."

5 year old responded, "That balloon freaks me out.  I mean, how do you get down?"

I'm just glad I knew what they were talking about.  


 Thank you Dr Seuss for the morning smile.






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Highway Art

March 11, 2011 by Rieshy
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I made my 16 year old use my phone to take a picture on the way to piano class.  Because this is the sort of thing I find amusing.



The strapped on load coated with a patina of one-tone-grime made me think of Louise Nevelson's 1960's sculpture Royal Tide IV.

I admit I couldn't remember Nevelson's name.  I had to wait until I got home to flip through some art books.  But here it was in, Art Now.


Am I right, or am I right?


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White Line Fever

by Rieshy
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An oddity of parenting is hypnotic disassociation during Read-Alouds. It has to be the same phenomenon that allows one to drive home from the grocery store without any memory of the actual journey.

White Line Fever.

Think about it.  What is your least favorite children's book and how often have you read it aloud because your precious snuggler adores said book? How many times have you reached the end of the story without conscious notice of any of the words? 

Black Print Fever.

I think it is a sanity saving grace that our minds can read twaddle outloud without having to actually be present. Especially since my 3 year old keeps rescuing a certain book out of the GoodWill pile.

I just wish I could consciously develop hypnotic disassociation at other times. For instance, while I prepare our income taxes.

Red Ink Fever.




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March 9, 2011 by Rieshy
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Last week I bought toddler scissors for my 3 year old so we could, "work on fine motor skills."

Yesterday, I posted about not being sleep deprived. 
 
Somewhat ironically, while I was sleeping in to the excessively late hour of 6:14 a.m. (thus practicing sleep non-deprivation) my 3 year old was awake and on the loose.

When my 16 year old stumbled into the dining room and patted him on the head he announced, "I did not cut my hair."  I guess he didn't think that being caught in possession of the scissors would be used as evidence against him.

The look was... The Mange.

Clippers to the ready... He's now sporting an uneven Southern buzz cut of Summertime, a few months early.
 
No matter what- he's always comes out on top.


The hair was easy to fix. Now, I need to work less on motor skills and more on truthfulness...  or at least work on teaching him to sleep in.


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For The Sleep Deprived

March 8, 2011 by Rieshy
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Dear Sleep Deprived FOD Mommas,

I realized something this week.  I'm not exhausted all the time.  I'm no longer a walking zombie.

It's certainly not because I get enough sleep.

I still get up at 1:30 a.m. every morning to feed my almost 5 year old his night feeding and night meds.  I still have teenagers that prefer to have deep conversations only after 10:00 p.m.   I still have a toddler that wakes at the crack of dawn.

But I'm used to it. 

I'm thinking this is God's grace.  If my "must have 8 hour a night" body can get used to far less sleep- anyone's can.

I'm also thinking that it's because after years of dealing with a child's chronic illness it really does get easier to sleep at night without worrying.  It's easier than it used to be to wake in the morning and walk down that hallway....

God's grace is a beautiful thing, and it's there for the asking.




Speaking of Children's Books

March 4, 2011 by Rieshy
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There's not a room in our house without a bookcase or two- or at the least a stack of books.  This means that books disappear and reappear into family circulation in somewhat mysterious ways.

Yesterday my 3 year old carried In the Night Kitchen, by Maurice Sendak, in his stack of to be read aloud books.  I hadn't seen that book in a couple of years.  As I started to read a bevy of older kids were attracted to the sofa.

Evidently they all wanted to see the 3 year old's reaction to this admittedly quirky book.  After all our 3 year old has shown a strong preference for personal nudity.

No reaction.  No reaction at all.  He had a poker face- even after Mickey fell out of his clothes.

I finished his stack of books.  He paused and then pulled out In the Night Kitchen again.  "Read this again," he said with a perplexed look.  So I did.

This time he responded.  Each page turn was a new expression.  He was enchanted.  This time he did not disappoint his siblings.

After I finished the book he turned to the page where Mickey is swimming to the top of the jar of milk.  "That's disgusting," he announced with enough facial expression to make a child-Disney-actor proud.

I thought it was Mickey's lack of clothing that was bothering my son, but for my Feel Good Friday funny it was something different.

"His BOTTOM is in the milk!" he exclaimed with 3 year old revulsion.

You know, that is gross.


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Duckmäuser

March 3, 2011 by Rieshy
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On Meekness

Two translations for meek in my small German/English dictionary.

Duckmäuser: moral coward.   Hmmm, as meek as a church(Maus)mouse? Definitely a pejorative.
Or

sanftm├╝tig: Which uses two words that could be translated separately; sanft (gentle) + mutig (courageous)= meek.

Somehow, I don't think it's the moral cowards that will be blessed.



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A Question of Rhinos

March 1, 2011 by Rieshy
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I've been reading,  Who Wants A Cheap Rhinoceros, by Shel Silverstien to one child or another for about 17 years now. 

For the most part the reality of the book is accepted without question.  For instance, this page illicits a smile but besides an almost tangible yearning for a pet so wonderful, this picture is evidently believable. 


This page is also accepted in a matter of fact manner.  No questions asked. 


If you are in a hurry to finish the book to get a small personage into bed, it's best to skip this page entirely.  Never mind the page about the rhino plowing fields with his tusk, or assisting in donut making, this picture requires considerable clarification. 
 

However, the true crescendo of questions arise with this picture, and you best not skip answering them.   Evidently even the smallest of children understand physics enough to feel alarm at the smallness of the construction and the sharpness of nails.


What we accept, what we don't...

How do you explain things when the questions are all the wrong questions?



Do we ever ask the right questions?