Stress List 2.0

August 10, 2011

A couple of years ago (has it been that long?) I blogged a list of all the items circling my brain just to try put some of them to rest. It actually worked out pretty well at the time so I’m going to go ahead and do it again. Here we go!

In no particular order…

Preschool. Renovations. Sex. Bills. Lucinda’s head. James’ finger. My side. Robert’s foot. Dry wall. Polyurethane. My diet. Robert’s party. Ice cream. Work. Always work. That weird scratching noise coming from outside. What am I cooking tomorrow night? Is my son watching too much tv? (some things never change.) Am I doing the right thing at work? New friends. Old friends. The weight of the books. Speakers. Money. Calories. Too many grams of fat. Twitter. potty training. Lucinda’s anemia. The metric system. Counting. One. Two. Three. Dozen. We all need hair cuts. Shaving my legs. What am I going to wear on Saturday? Cake. Date night. My bathroom. Ham or Turkey? White or wheat? Cheddar or American? Decisions, Decisions. Sausage. Calories. My freezer. Steve Carrell or James Franco? Laundry. Crawling. Teething. Carpel Tunnel. Editing my blog. Grocery shopping.

Even if I manage to work out all of these, I will probably always forget the weight of the books.


Do I know you?

August 8, 2011

I’ve posed the idea to others before, and people aren’t always sure what I mean, but I have in my heart a small collection of songs, movies, and even foods that are tied up in the memory of someone. I have songs I don’t want to listen to. I have movies that I won’t watch. I have foods and restaurants that I would choose not to visit.

But if I watch, if I listen, sit down in a familiar chair, memories and people come flooding back to me.

It can be the smallest of moments, the shortest of melodies, and my mind starts to wander.

For example, I’m not going to watch 13 Going On 30 any time soon. I’m not going to listen to that song that reminds me of the summer when I was 18. I even have a certain pair of pajamas that I intentionally abandoned in Canada because they remind me of someone.

Which brings me to my next question. Why do I avoid these things? Am I avoiding objects or am I avoiding memories? Is it all in self-defense? In defense of what? My own life?

As I sit back and consider my Pandora’s box, i wonder if the other people tied up in these memories still share them with me. I think that’s what I’m afraid of. Small moments and things that meant so much to me might mean nothing to the others involved. I suppose I’m making believe that they didn’t mean anything to me, either.

But I would be wrong.


May 25, 2011

Sometimes I think I made myself up.

Wordless Wednesday

February 16, 2011

Mommy’s Little Princess.


November 23, 2010

Five years ago I wore a pretty ivory dress and tiara. I stood in a courtroom facing the most wonderful man I’d ever met and I couldn’t stop gazing into his eyes. Five years later, I still can’t stop losing myself in his eyes.

Five years ago my new husband and I had our first dinner as a married couple at a fast food restaurant. Five years later, we laugh and remember fondly every time we choose to dine at Whataburger.

Five years ago we had our whole lives ahead of us. Five years later, we still do.

I love you more and more every day.

And thank God, you love me too.

Wordless Wednesday: “Do I know you?”

November 17, 2010

Lu and her new friend….the very fuzzy caterpillar.


November 5, 2010


I finally found a place other than my arms where she will sleep.

@Leighish: Read this.

November 4, 2010

Today on twitter, a trending topic is ‘tweet your 16 year old self’ and it seems most of the people I follow are pretty darned amazing. I started thinking about what I would tell myself at age 16.

@Leighish: As hard as it is to believe, None of this is going to matter in ten years.

@Leighish: You are going to make a lot of mistakes, and it will take time but you will learn from them.

@Leighish: Nobody is going to make you feel better about yourself until you do it for yourself.

@Leighish: While you’re always going to remember their names, You’ll forget their faces.

@Leighish: Reach out, if you can. You don’t have to go through this alone. You have friends for a reason.

@Leighish: You may not believe this now, but in 5 years you’re going to be happily married.

@Leighish: in two years, you’re going to have your heart smashed by a boy you really love. You’ll recover.

@Leighish: The nightmare you’ve been living with at home will be over, but aftershocks will last for years.

@Leighish; Everything is not lost. Because, and trust me on this one, It gets better.

@Leighish: But you have to -make- it better.

@Leighish: When you meet that guy from Texas on the internet, Keep an open mind and heart. Trust me.

@Leighish: You are much stronger than you could ever imagine.

@Leighish: By the way, you make some pretty darn cute kids.

@Leighish: Hold on. The sun will shine again.

Day Three.

November 2, 2010

I’ve sat here for a little while, with lucinda resting on my chest, trying to think of what i should write about for today’s prompt. Lu is very particular. She doesn’t like laying on flat surfaces, unless she’s knocked out cold. If she’s anywhere near being awake, she wants to be held, or cradled. Sometimes I can get away with her lounging in the boppy pillow but usually she just wants to be with me. So here I sit with her laying on my chest, resting on the remains of my baby belly. She has the hiccups and they won’t seem to let up. Soon enough it will be time for her to eat again, and if nothing else, that will ease the hiccups and put her to sleep for the night.

James wasn’t like this. James woke up, drank his bottle, burped like a champ, and went back to sleep. He didn’t mind being laid down on the floor, or the bassinet, or a car seat. I could lay him just about anywhere and he would sleep just fine. So I try to think about what is different, other than the obvious. I have the tendency to overthink things, in case you hadn’t noticed. James was born at 41 weeks, Lu at 39. James was nearly 9lbs, Lu was 7lbs 6oz. My diet was different with each of them. My starting weight was much different. I had more stress at work with Lu. When I’m not in overthinking mode, I realize that it boils down to that Lu is not James and that is that. Then I hope like hell she doesn’t develop colic.

But when i am stuck in overthinking mode, my mind wanders to ridiculous places. I start thinking that maybe the reason she is so clingy and so attached to me, is that after she was born, she wasn’t back in my arms until 8 hours later. Could have been a lot longer, but it should have been sooner. I waited to make the trip up to the nicu because I didn’t feel strong enough. I was physically and emotionally drained from her birth. Her birth went perfectly. I couldn’t have asked for a better team of doctors or a more comforting surrounding while still being in a hospital. I had tears in my eyes when I heard Lucinda’s cries for the first time. She was beautiful and she sounded great. A few minutes later, the doctor explained to me that Lu was having some minor respiratory issues but she was just fine. I thought to myself, of course she’s fine, can’t you hear her screaming? I was cheering myself on because I was doing pretty darn good. The spinal was making me itchy and I wanted to claw my eyes out but even that was miles above and beyond my experience with James. I wasn’t nauseated, I was calm and clear and relaxed. And then they brought Lu to see me. In an incubator. And I wanted to puke. I didn’t understand how she could be just fine if they put her in an incubator. They assured me that she was fine but was going to a separate nursery for closer observation. While I was in recovery, I fell asleep for about an hour. I woke up when the nurse came in to give me a shot of toradol. I asked her if she knew anything about my daughter and she didn’t. Robert came in and the first thing I asked is if she was really in a separate nursery or if she was in the nicu. She was in a level II nicu for observation for TTN. The fluid in her lungs didn’t absorb as quickly as it should so her breathing was rapid and shallow. She was mostly in the nicu because the regular nursery doesn’t allow IVs among other things. They didn’t want her to feed normally until her lungs had cleared for fear of aspiration.

In my postpartum room, i was feeling pretty weak and my nurses were concerned with my level of bleeding. My mom spoon fed me some jello because I was too weak to do it myself. When it was determined that I was not hemorrhaging, they gave me permission to go to the nicu to see Lucinda. But I couldn’t, yet. I could barely lift my head, how was I going to go to the nicu? They told me I could eat food again so I wanted to eat something substantial. I guess I wanted to give myself all the strength I could muster. From the time Lucinda was born, to the time I finally got to hold her in my arms for the first time, was 8 hours. It could have been worse. It could have been so much worse. But once again my expectations of the birth of my child were crushed.

When Lucinda was finally placed into my arms for the first time, It was like somebody flipped a switch. Lu’s breathing started to slow, and when she heard my voice, she cuddled into my chest. When I got to touch her hair and stroke her hands, my body began to wake up. It was the jolt we both needed. But I couldn’t stay long. My bleeding was still high and they wanted to monitor my levels pretty closely. I wasn’t able to make it back up to the nicu again that day and we spent another 16 hours apart. Early the next afternoon, she was given the green light to be released from the nicu. I wanted to hold her as much as possible. I nearly always had her in my arms. I didn’t want to waste any more time. So, sometimes I think the reason she’s so clingy to me is because we spent so much time apart. And when my mind wanders to those places, I can’t help but feel an excessive amount of guilt. Guilt that i didn’t fight harder to see her sooner. Guilt that even when I was allowed to see her, I chose to eat instead. Guilt that I didn’t demand to spend as much time in nicu as possible, no matter how pain I felt. Guilt that she was in the nicu alone while Robert and my mother were with me. It might sound like it was all beyond my control, considering how much I was bleeding, but I wonder if I could have fought harder. And I have to forgive myself not only for not fighting harder, but for staying up at night wondering what, if anything, I could have done differently.

But then I lightly rest my cheek on the top of her head. And I smell the baby shampoo in her hair. I can hear her tiny breaths and snorts, and even her hiccups. I can feel her little hands clutched to my worn out t-shirt. And I know that even if there was something I could have done differently, the end justified the means. I have a beautiful, healthy, baby girl who likes to cling to her mommy. And I forgive myself for ever thinking there was anything wrong with that.

Day 02 → Something you love about yourself.

October 30, 2010


So basically I wanted to balance out yesterdays schmaltzy, all-over-the-place, too long; didn’t read, you-need-an-editor post with something a little more thought out and ‘light-hearted’.

And here is what I have come up with.

My hair.

I love my hair.

It’s been a journey, my hair and I. A long, thick, and luxurious journey. I wish I had photos of all the stupid shit I’ve done to my hair. Where do I even begin? I’ll start about halfway through the ninth grade. A good friend of mine had discovered the secret to dying your hair with kool-aid. At the time it seemed like a huge feat, okay? Whatever. You boil some water, add the powder, and submerge your hair for 5-10 minutes. It was going to be super awesome. I went with cherry red, she went with purple. Purple didn’t work. Cherry red worked well. Too well. It looked pretty badass for about a week. I only dyed the bottom half of my hair so it kind of looked like my hair was on fire. Little did I know I may as well have set my hair on fire for all the damage I caused. After the first week, the color faded to a sickly orange shade. I bought a box of dark hair dye to re-color my whole head. It didn’t work.

I take that back. It worked on my natural hair color, but the sickly orange shade still shone right on through.

So I tried lemon juice.

That made it worse. I can’t even describe to you.

Finally I was left with no alternative but to cut all that stupid shit off. Problem was, I knew cutting all my hair off would not suit me at all. I ended up being left with some orange in my hair. Not as much, mind you, but in the months that followed, that 1.5 inches of orange hair served as a cautionary tale to all who may have thought coloring your hair with kool-aid was a good idea.

Eventually I got rid of the rest of that orange hair and I continued to dye my hair all throughout high school. Sometimes I had help, sometimes I didn’t. The time I wanted to go blonde was a good example of a time I should have asked for help. No, I wasn’t left with orange hair again, but the crown of my head was much lighter than the rest of my hair, and thus I was a walking brassy angel.

At some point I decided I wanted long hair for graduation. So I grew it out. And out. and out. By graduation, my hair was nearly to my big fat behind. As seen here.

I felt really pretty that day. I’m just sayin.

The day after graduation, I went and got my hair cut just a little past my shoulders. I kinda cried. A lot.

Soon after my 20th birthday, My hair was still about the same length but I wanted to do something different. A friend of mine was going through beauty college and I decided to get her to put some blond highlights in my hair. I guess she hadn’t realized just how thick my hair was because as soon as she put her hands through it, she looked worried. And rightfully so. She ended up needing two people to help her because my hair was bleaching faster than she could keep up with. So my hair started looking less highlighted and more…well. Blonde.
there were sections of my hair that were near white from the bleach. Destroyed my hair yet again.

Over time the color faded, but one day I went to get my hair cut (months later) and I decided to just completely recolor it. The stylist only colored the blond sections of my hair but she matched my natural color perfectly. Absolutely perfect. And since then? I have not messed with my hair color.

When I started losing weight two years ago, My hair was growing longer and the smaller I got, the more awesome my hair looked. I lovingly referred to it as my “mermaid” hair. It was my pride and joy. Except I also had an infant son. Who liked to pull on my hair. Which meant my hair was usually tied back. But when I got to wear it down, I think I would strut instead of walk.

A few months later, I did the unthinkable.

I cut it all off.

I *still* regret doing that. I had no earthly idea what to do with hair that short so I ended up looking like Carol Brady most of the time. Robert will defend my short hair to the death, stating it was my fault for not taking the time to learn how to style it, and maybe that’s true. But my hair is now once again down past my shoulders and I like it that way. I love it that way.

Me and my hair. It’s been a journey. A sometimes short but mostly long journey.

On that note, I need a salon day. Who’s buyin?