Thursday, August 28, 2008

Celebrating the mess

I've survived yet another bout of pregnancy sickness. Forget the misnomer "morning sickness", because that certainly hasn't ever been true for me. This most recent bout usually started for me sometime mid morning or early afternoon, but peaked right as I was trying to wind down for bed. Jonathan couldn't figure out why I didn't want to get out of bed "early" to jumpstart my day; I explained to him, that when the last sensation you remember before drifting off to sleep is akin to a chemistry- project- gone -wrong- about-to-erupt-in-your-gut feeling, it is such a gift to wake up feeling "normal" for a bit, that I just wanted to savor it until the girls woke me for breakfast. Then it would start all over again. None of the "remedies" that have ever been suggested to me have worked. Soda crackers, nope. accupressure bracelets, uh-uh. Ginger anything..uh, no. Doctors prescribed syrups, not that either. It does make me pause and appreciate the general ordinary things and good health my life usually is filled with. I find it amazing that a little (okay maybe a big) tweak in hormones can have such a profound effect and throw all the wheels into motion to create the right environment for the life cycle to begin anew. Wow! I'm rereading all the articles and books I've read my two previous pregnancies and am no less amazed at all that must go right to produce this new little person growing inside of me. How one cell multiplies into clumps that continue to multiply and spontaneously begin assuming various complicated and very different roles essential for making everything about us that makes us living and human. It is humbling to realize that I am just the vessel; like the farmer, I try to provide the best I can according to my abilities and resources, and then exercise faith and hope that my efforts will yield the desired results.

Yes, that was a big diversion. It started out as an explanation for why I am living in a mess and took on a life all its own. If this were a paper, I would certainly get poor marks for organization. OH well. In any case, I have been pregnancy sickness free for two days. My family is not unscathed by this recent bout. The laundry piles, the dirty floors, the kitchen I haven't kept clean, all ominous signs that something has been amiss around here. The girls have been very good about it, and enjoyed, I must confess, a lot more tube viewing than I like. Things could be worse. To top it all off, Kennedy came down with a fever of 102 last Sat. night and ran one off and on for two days. We kept her home from church, taking shifts so Jonathan could attend sacrament meeting and I could teach sharing time in primary. Come Monday, Macy is hacking, I feel miserable (this time cold/flu like symptoms) , and by that evening we have a bonafide epidemic in the Cope household. Fast forward to today. Jonathan was home sick (he contracted the nasty little virus last, poor chap), and I and the girls are feeling improved though, not fully. I took the opportunity to survey the scene...tissue wads overflowing from bathroom cans, robitussin on the counter, dishes piled in the sink, dirty pajamas strewn haphazardly, the "baby" toys scattered on the bathroom floor, and the fort the girls and I made yesterday, a skeleton of its former grandeur. You get the idea. As I was taking all this in, feeling rather overwhelmed, I mean, where DO you start when It ALL needs doing, I managed to find the silver lining. My kids have really sharpened their cognitive abilities where imagination is concerned. They've spent a lot more time bored ( I haven't been at the top of my game where childhood entertainment and stimulation is concerned), and have made lemonade from lemons. Their vocabulary has exploded; they've got imaginary friends, words for objects that I've never seen, heard, or dreamed of, and don't seem the least bit worse for wear. In fact, I think they've been just fine (besides too much t.v. viewing). I remember the days when I would see the playroom go literally untouched for days. It was so frustrating, afterall, why DID we have all those toys if not for playing with?? Why wouldn't the girls just go and invent spontaneous play together? Would I never have children who played independently so mommy could say, get some laundry done, or scrub a toilet?? I would practically beg the kids to play. As if teaching a puppy to potty train, I'd lead them to the toys, demonstrate some clumsy attempt of pretend play, and then eagerly sit them in front of their literal dream come true playroom and wait...for nothing at all. Alas, I can say, if in every other way we are worse off from the serious backlog of tasks left undone, at least my children learned to play together...for long periods of time. They taught themselves to put on Daddy's t-shirts (yes, I realize perhaps Kennedy should have already mastered this skill), Macy learned to apply mascara all by herself ( and did a fine job I might add), they spent time perusing books and telling each other stories, chasing, doing gymnastics on the couches in the living room, playing in the soil of a failed tomato plant, building forts, and learned the art of Hungry Hungry Hippos!, etc. All this while nurturing their own ability to direct their lives and express their independence through spontaneous play. So that gives me a reason to celebrate the mess. Heaven does understand and give aid...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Hellooo, is anybody there??

Just a quick post to let everyone know we're still here. We have had a whirlwind of activity this past month, and as you may have noticed, I am expecting and have been feeling "down and out" as is usual for me for the first trimester. I'm giving myself leave of absence for a bit, but plan to be blogging again in a couple of weeks. In the meantime I'll divulge a quick update. Nana Cope and aunt Charen came to visit us for a week. We all enjoyed shopping (duh!), playing cards, and talking into the wee hours. Our visit to NYC was a disaster...more on that later. Shortly after they returned to SC, my grandma Johns ( the girls great-grandma) and my uncle Jeff visited us for a couple of days. I have also been feverishly working on our ward's primary program ( I just got called to this position a month or two ago), preparing games for young ones for an upcoming ward activity, substitute teaching for the entire YW's program, etc. I feel like my life has been unravelling before my eyes. Since the days of being sick started almost two months ago, my house has only been cleaned twice, for Nana and grandma Johns arrivals. I have excused myself from cooking and have avoided the grocery store at all costs, only making absolutely necessary trips, until week 14 of the pregnancy (when I usually recover general good health). In the midst of all of this, Jonathan has been hitting the books for the GMAT every night and weekend. So there you have it; all of my excuses for neglecting the blog...I'll be updating again in September and hope you'll check us out then!