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Archive for October, 2010

Job Description

I rarely use an alarm clock.  At least not the traditional kind.  My alarm clock is a 15 pound blue eyed beauty.  Not a bad way to wake up in the mornings.

I show up to meetings with mysterious stains on my right shoulder.

I spend an inordinate amount of time in the kitchen.  Cleaning up after breakfast.  Fixing lunch.  Cleaning up after lunch.  Fixing dinner.  Cleaning up after dinner.

I spend my days stepping over toy landmines all over the apartment.

I know every detail of another person’s digestive system.  When she needs to eat.  When she’ll probably poop.  How much she will poop.  What color the poop will be.  Need I say more?

I recite the same spiel countless times each day: “This is a dog.  He is like Sunny.  Dogs say, ‘Woof, woof’.  This is a cat.  What does a cat say? ‘Meow, meow.'” 

I tear up every time I see new baby pictures of a friend on Facebook.  I cry when I read blogs about babies who are sick or who have died.

I know exactly in which drawer/area of the closet everyone’s clean laundry belongs. 

I spend my evenings putting the toys back in their bins, our DVD collection back on the shelves and our magnets back on the fridge.

I give about 100 kisses a day, change around 4 diapers and feed Annelise 5 times.

Every night I pray for a full night’s sleep.  God doesn’t answer, “Yes” very often.

I am a mom.  And it seriously is the best job I can imagine.

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9 Months.

Sweet Annelise–

I can’t believe you’re already nine months old!  That you’ve spent as much time outside my body as you did on the inside (okay, technically women are pregnant for over nine months…but then you were born four days early…carry the one…oh, I don’t want to do the math right now).  Having you outside has flown by much faster than having you on the inside did, that’s for sure!

You are such a joy, my child.  You’re so funny.  Every day, I say at least 10 times that you’re the funniest person I know.  And you can’t even talk yet!  Although you do have this super high pitched squak/squeal that you do for a significant part of your waking hours.  It is so girlie. 

You NEVER. STOP. MOVING. either.  You are always on the go, looking for something fun to bang on the floor, something to put in your mouth or something to climb on.  You don’t even stop moving when you eat.  I seriously wish it would be appropriate/you would care to see a video of you eating.  You like to stand up on one side of my chest while you eat on the other side.  Literally, you do the downward dog yoga postition during every meal.  And then bounce your butt up and down the entire meal.

Which probably explains why you’re so petite.  You’re just my little love bug (I would like to call you my cuddle bug, but you don’t snuggle anymore due to the fact that you would have to stop moving in order to do so).  It’s so funny to see you standing because you just look so tiny, like you shouldn’t be old enough to stand yet.  You’re already nine months old, and you still fit into most of your 3-6 month stuff.  You even wear a skirt that is 0-3 month sized.  You’re just my itty bitty sweet girl.  I’m pretty thankful though because it sure makes carrying you around much easier (which is helpful since, as I said before, you don’t stop moving so when I try to carry you, you lean forward as far as possible until I’m carrying you like a sack of potatoes).

You don’t have too many new skills this month.  You spent most of the time perfecting the skills you already have.  Crawling, standing on furniture, and walking along furniture.  A few times you’ve tried to stand without anything to pull yourself up on, but so far you haven’t been successful.

You did have a couple firsts this month.  We went to a pumpkin patch with Mimi and got you your very first pumpkin.  It was fun to take you on a hayride and get super cute pictures amongst the pumpkins.  Also, you and I spent our first weekend alone when Daddy went to lead worship at a retreat.  I was nervous that I would feel tired and worn out from flying solo all weekend, but honestly, you made it so easy.  The hardest parts were 1) when the toilet overflowed, and I had to figure out how to fix it myself and 2) taking care of Sunny.  I definintely didn’t realize how much your Daddy plays with him to get rid of his energy.  Of course, we were both really happy when Daddy finally got home.

You are to the point where you get excited to see us when we come home.  You crawl super fast toward us, and you have the sweetest smile on your face.  I love your smile so much.  You have no idea how it melts my heart when you look at me from across the room and flash your sweet grin my way.

You and Sunny greeting Daddy when he gets home

Annelise, I just don’t think I can tell you enough how much I love you.  Having you in my life has softened my heart in ways that I never imagined possible.  I honestly can’t believe that I get to be your mom.  You’re my beautiful little girl, and literally every single day I thank God for the joy that you are and the privilege of being your mom.

Love you forever,

Your momma

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29 Years

This morning I woke up for the first time as a 29 year old woman.

Like every other day, I woke up to the most wonderful gifts.

Like this face…

And this one…

And this one…

I’m the luckiest girl in the world.

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Broken

I don’t often use this blog as an outlet for processing my thoughts and feelings about events in the world.  Mostly because that isn’t the goal of this blog.  The goal is to chronicle the life of our family–Annelise’s milestones, funny stories, and my feelings toward motherhood.  But I can’t just ignore This. Story.

Maybe you’ve heard it, maybe you haven’t.  I never would have if it weren’t for Royce telling me because I avoid the news at all costs.  Tyler Clementi, a freshman at Rutgers University, jumped off the George Washington Bridge into the Hudson River last week after his roommate secretly filmed Tyler having a sexual encouner with another male and then broadcast the encounter on his Facebook page.

An eighteen year old boy kills himself because of a gross invasion of privacy and, let’s be honest, cruelty of another kid.

I couldn’t sleep last night thinking about it.  Questions kept spinning in my mind.  “How could Tyler’s roommate do this?  How can you be that mean to another person?  Why did Tyler kill himself?”  And then, the question that underlied all the other ones…”Does Jesus care?”

Because if Jesus cared, where was He when Tyler was standing on the bridge ready to jump?

If He cared, why is there a mother who has to wake up every day for the rest of her life without her son now?

These are hard questions.  And I’m not going to pretend that there are easy answers. 

Intellectually, I know that Jesus does care.  I know because I’ve experienced Him pursuing me when I couldn’t care less about Him.  I know because I’ve read story after story where He stopped what He was doing to love and heal an outcast.  I know because He’s spent 2,000 years transforming men from lovers of self to lovers of others.  I know…but still…

I wept last night because what about Tyler?  Why wasn’t someone standing up for him?  And what about all the other people in the world deeply affected by sin?  What about the women (and I use the word women loosely because many of them are just adolescent girls) not going to sleep in India, but instead spending their night meeting the needs of men because their parents sold them into the sex slave industry?  What about orphans and children going to sleep at night without anyone to love them?

Sometimes the heaviness of living in a fallen world is too much for me to bear.  Last night, I pleaded with God to return soon.  To restore the world to its created order–with no more death, no more tears and no more sadness.  I pleaded with Him because I can’t love everyone in the world and can’t meet all their needs, and I feel that reality in the depths of my soul.  I can’t.  He must.

Don’t get me wrong, I want to take every opportunity to love those around me.  THE thing that I pray for my daughter is that she would understand that God loves her and that she would love others because of His love for her.  That she would stand in the gap.  That she would be an includer.  But I also know that as long as sin reigns, people will be deeply affected by its devastation.

Last night, as I lay in bed thinking of these things, Annelise woke up and started to cry.  I went to her, breaking my no-going-to-her-in-the-middle-of-the-night rule (I’ll tell you about that at another time).  I picked her up and nursed her.  Because last night, I think I needed her more than she needed me.  She ate, and I cried. I cried for Tyler and his family and for all the people who are outcasts and unloved.  And as I cried, Annelise reached up and touched my face.  And in that moment, I felt God say to me, “Liz, I know.  And I care.”  And then I cried a little harder because I believe Him.  And I believe His heart is more broken over the state of the world than mine is. 

I don’t know where He was when Tyler was standing on the bridge.  I don’t why any of this had to happen to begin with.  But I do know that He cares.  And I guess today, that’s all I need.

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