Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Girl Who is Big

Today is Jen's 30th birthday! She is, without a doubt, the best godmother to my child and the best friend that I could have. In honor of her lovely birthday, a bunch of us are hanging out in Captiva enjoying a girly slumber party. So I left Zuzu overnight for the first time and enjoyed a full 24-hrs away...

It's a feeling like restlessness. 

When we got to the beach, I didn't know what to do with my hands. My hands! They are always active - caressing, fixing, stirring, fetching, pointing, teaching, holding, playing. They aren't still very often - mending, washing, changing, dressing. Even when I'm attempting to enjoy some contemplation or time in relaxation, they are doing something - writing, praying, gardening. Even when I sleep, they are poised on the cusp of action, waiting to be called back into service, and morning finds them, more often than not, holding a little someone anyway. 

Being without her felt like learning to ride a bike - awkward, scary, anxiety producing. I felt so devoid of purpose, like I was constantly forgetting something, and had to keep stopping to think "what is it that I'm supposed to be doing?" Every child that made a noise drew my immediate attention, because all of my senses were putting out feelers, straining, and searching for her: the one they are attuned to, the one that they focus on, the main thing that I marshall all my energy for every day. 

And then I was fine. Like someone flipped a switch. It wasn't forgetting, because I was so terrified that it would be like forgetting. It was just - new. I knew she was okay, I knew I wasn't far, I knew he was with her and all was well, all was well. It wasn't not missing her either, or relief, which is good because that frightened me too. I just enjoyed where I was and let her enjoy being daddy's girl. 

At night it was harder; I prayed through a great deal of missing her, missing him, missing being the one to take care and do for my little nest. In the morning, too, I realized it was the first time ever in her life I had not seen her wake up face. It stung and gnawed at me. But I relaxed, forced myself to relax, to sit and enjoy morning silence (my favorite thing). 

Then I was home. Home and she shouted "Mama! Look it's my mommy!" when I pulled in the drive. "Where have you been?" she wondered, and when I held out my arms she stared at my fingernails. "oh where did you get this?" She was fascinated with the entire idea: Mama went away and came back in a red bathing suit with red fingernails. She didn't cling, or cry - she ran back to the neighbor girl and kept playing, invited me to play, didn't mind when I didn't, went on with her childhood work. 

It was a full 24 hours away and I came back to a girl who is big. 

Saturday, January 3, 2015

2014 in Review

I am bad at remembering: I don't like to look back - I'm always looking forward. Sometimes this causes me to overlook some wonderful moments or fail to learn from some difficult ones. So I'll join Dwija in this stroll down memory lane:


I was also in my third month of leading the youth ministry and took a bunch of them to the St. Augustine March for Life

The first of the year in 2014 found me longing for order, the word I chose to guide me throughout. I wanted to be pregnant, we were considering adoption, I wanted my life to have a proper sense of proportion. I was very much searching.


Then in February, Tom's parents rented the condo across the street from our house and that was such a blessing. Having grandparent's literally across the street, along with some lovely cool weather, gave us a month where I did little blogging, except to note the fun MLK parade attended. Lots of time with Tom and his parents, lots of dinners on the patio, lots of wonderful memories!


St. Patrick's Day was Confirmation last year, so March flew by as my work life was very busy. I found myself struggling with being a working mom and trying to find my peace fulfilling two roles I never saw myself doing at the same time. We were also re-doing my office at work, so Zuzu was spending A LOT of time at the parish.

This was also the year that Zuzu got THREE Easter baskets, because Jen, my mom, and I are all incapable of communicating.
Last April was a busy, angst filled month - we had our Rummage Sale to benefit the youth group, Easter of course which is a very busy season for Tom, and then both of our birthdays. I dyed my hair red and struggled a lot with the point of (me) blogging.


This month brought one of the most fun vacations we've ever had when we visited the Christensens in  Missouri. Zuzu thoroughly enjoyed their four lovely children - and their chickens! Tom and I loved time with another family that is striving to raise their children focused on Christ.


In the middle of the year, we confirmed the news that we had lost the baby we had been so excitedly anticipating. Nevertheless, we enjoyed a great trip to Pittsburgh to visit my friend Colleen and Miami to see my friends David and Jennine - trips that were fun, relaxing, and a much-needed distraction.


We took our big trip this month and went to Aruba! I discovered that Aruba is a lot further away than I had thought (4 hour flight from south Florida...19 miles off the coast of Venezuela!), and that having your picture taken on a beach vacation can be kinda hard. Edel happened, and it wasn't everything I wanted it to be, but I learned a lot about myself so that's worth something, right?

Time with GG and Grampy at the sail club! 

We spent some much-needed time with Tom's family. The annual hang-out at the sail club, trips to the zoo, and summer weather that did not necessitate constant AC: summer in Indiana.


We announced our big news - second baby on the way! That and sleep dominated my least, until we went to Ireland for ten days. The cooler weather did a lot to alleviate some of my fatigue and queasiness, and we had a lovely trip without a single drop of rain.


Zuzu turned two and we found out we were having a baby boy!


I decided that I wanted to NOT look like a total slob this pregnancy, and started to get on top of Christmas gifts (in the thriftiest way possible). We spent Thanksgiving in Indiana with Tom's family, where we got a white Thanksgiving and lots of time in the cold (this really helped me with my desire to look cute - good hair days are plentiful when there's no humidity).


Last month I didn't make my 2-post a month goal, but did manage to get all my Christmas gifts out on time - and half my Christmas cards! So I'm really counting that as a win. It was a busy month celebrating all the lovely feasts in Advent (St. Lucia Day, Our Lady of Guadalupe), keeping vigil with the Lenaburgs, and getting my house ready for Christmas. My parents came to visit for a little bit during the Christmas season - and man, we got a LOT done during that time! I'm not quite ready to do a post on Zuzu's new room, but I really want to because their hard work deserves a post of it's own.

And THAT makes for quite the year!