That MOM Style…

That MOM Style….I know I am mixing it up a bit but I feel like I really need to touch on this topic. 

This photo taken about 4 months ago, when I was in the midst of baby madness and post-partum craze, and physically now where I wanted to be……BUT it shows the essence of  MOM Style. 

This photo is scary but true….

I see all these fantastic photos of instabloggers on social media….They are momstoo  and their houses are cleaned and in pristine condition, their closets are organized, they have perfectly curled hair, and they wear perfectly contoured make-up and most of them are always traveling with their littles. 

This isn’t real life….they have to have help… RIGHT?? 

OR…Am I the only one in the first few months after giving birth….heck even after…..that is falling apart with spit up and milk on my clothes and the only thing I got accomplished for the day, for myself was straightening my hair…

I am trying but I am sure that insta-perfect will never be me….

Before the boys were born I was a shopper, I liked my high priced staple items BUT also finding a deal. I would try to have several cute mix and match pieces. I was into watching and looking for what was “in” and then finding a way to make it my own. 

Most of the time I enjoyed being overdressed.

Since having the boys and having my body change and then change again, I was lacking style. And CONFIDENCE….

Plus the budget had to change. 

Well, ya know, because we are now buying clothes for two other people…and I LOVE baby clothes.

BUT…..

I mean Momma’s let’s get REAL……

We can’t call yoga pants/sweatpants and a Piko top ….style.

Nonetheless, that was my “uniform”.

For a while I felt unhealthy and lethargic. My style and myself wasn’t on the top of my priority list. I wasn’t sure why I had to wear something cute when I was just chauffeuring my son to therapy, running errands , going to doctors apts, and cleaning and organizing the house. 

But now I see how it affected my mood. 

Now that Theodore is 1 year, 9 months and Oliver is 8 months, I finally am beginning to find my “mom style”. It is more practical and subtle but I am beginning to have fun again. 

I am beginning to accept my imperfect, scared, blemished and YES cellulite body. I now just find pieces that help me feel comfortable in my own skin. 

I worry less about what is in style or on the runway, and focus more on what makes me feel beautiful. 

I still have my eye on this high priced items, but I either search for them on eBay or other shops where I can get them at a great discount. 

Most of the time I try to find items I love just at a great price. 

Sometimes, I find an item I love and buy it in EVERY color. I don’t fret as much anymore about the size but how it fits. Before children I may have been ashamed BUT now I DONT CARE.

If I think it’s cute, it fits and it is practical for therapy for Theodore and chasing two boys around………. I buy it.

I still wear many dresses and skirts, ( bc I really hate jeans) but they have to be more flowy and a bit longer. 

I still wear jewelry, but it has to be JUST RIGHT so I don’t scratch the boys. 

I still wear heels and wedges, but they have to be comfy and just not so high. 

I still love purses, but I have resorted to a big diaper bag and a wallet I LOVE!!! 

I still wear hats, but I know they may get ripped of by my boys. 

Now don’t get me wrong I still DONT wear make-up often, I cut my hair short because you won’t catch me curling it into loose waves, sometimes I forget deodorant, I put dry shampoo in my hair most days, converse are often a part of my outfit, I love  black yoga pants, I have clothes I still wear from high school, I repeat many outfits and sometimes still wear yoga pants and work-out clothes bc I feel to tired to change clothes. 

I will, Report to Duty, MOST days to put an outfit together. However, I will still have days that I wear comfy ill fitting clothes. From now on I will post my outfit and will always be open to recommendations. Style, shopping and clothes are things I find to be good for my sole and I want to be accountable more often. 

I have discovered that in this life I need to find things I enjoy more often and follow through with them MORE OFTEN. I hope you can do the same! 
Until Next Time,
Reporting to Duty
Xox

Happy Mother’s Day 

I have had the opportunity to look up to some pretty great mothers in my life. They have taught me a great deal and have showed me unconditional love. 

Before becoming a mother I knew I wanted to cherish these role models, and tools of motherhood. BUT…. I also knew I had to make my own rules and guidelines. 

I have to think just two short years ago I was not even a mother. I had not been through the trudges of motherhood or knew what was coming to our life. 

We were expecting but I had no clue how UNIQUELY BEAUTIFUL our life would become. 

I had no clue that you could love so much that it would hurt. 

I had no clue how much responsibility it is to take care of such a tiny life. 

I had no clue that no other job would be as gratifying as being Theodore and Oliver’s  mother. 

However, this has been the hardest most rewarding job and role I have ever done. 

Some days it has been significantly lonely, and it has been many times thankless. I have bawled, screamed, ugly cried and cursed. I have fought depression, anxiety and have struggled with jealousy. I have felt alone, judged and hopeless. I have wanted more support and struggled with the WHY.

It is the scariest thing I have ever done being these boy’s mommy.

This job… being a MOTHER has changed who I am deep into my soul. 

Although, it has been hard I wouldn’t change it for the world. I would not have it taken back and I am NOT giving up. 

NOW…TWO years later……I like to think that I am an improved version of myself. 

“MaMA” has been my most favorite role, job, title and life perspective.

BUT….

I have apologize to all mother’s because I thought becoming a mother would be different. I didn’t necessarily think it would be easier, or more rewarding but different. 

BUT

It is so sooooooo much more……

It is EVERYTHING.
Happy Mother’s Day to mother’s of all kinds. 

I will be, Reporting to Duty, this Mother’s Day. I will be giving my boys some extra love and spending it knee deep in motherhood. I will be continuing to try to take more time and cherish the good with the bad. I will continue to take in the scent of their skin, the rhythm of their beating heart and the warmth of their hugs. 

I will cherish motherhood. 
CHEERS! I make a toast to you!! And do something great for yourself mother’s!!!
Until Next Time,
Reporting to Duty 
Xox

Updates, Updates Get Your Updates!! 

It has been forever, I have written so many drafts but have not published anything in quite some time. We have been running around, with appointments and more appointments.

I do apologize.

Right now we are knee deep in sleep fighting. BOTH boys, I repeat BOTH boys are going through a sleep regression. I am not even sure if I can call it that, because right now I believe they have a FULL ON strike with sleep and Us as parents.

They hate us, I know it. I thought they would be older when they declared their hate, but I am sure they hate us now. I mean if they loved us wouldn’t they sleep more???

Well,  I must say while they are not sleeping they are growing. Oliver grows like a weed, and eats like a champ! He is getting so big and sometimes I just want him to slow down… both growing and getting into things.

Theodore as we know is a bit more tricky. He is growing… YAY! He has maintained a steady weight but has been getting taller…soo he is starting to look like a little string bean.

Theodore has been eating better, but we don’t plan on taking him to any buffets anytime soon.

BUT….. I am proud of what he is eating.

Bites are getting bigger and chewing is getting better. He is picking up some of his own food with his pencer grasp. Although, he is picky about what he picks up, I am happy he has started self feeding.

I realized once I stopped stressing (as much) about his eating he started eating better. I wish this happened for everything.

I believe Theodore’s eating is getting better because he is getting stronger. He is tolerating more tummy time, getting on his tummy to reach for things, and rolling…. YES rolling!!!

Ok, I have only seen the rolling a couple times. It has only taken place when he wanted to get away from his brother and to get to dirt BUT I will take it!!! It is rolling!!

He also is chatting up a storm, not “real” words but words that he expects us to understand. Which is wonderful but when I don’t know what he is saying he gives me the stink eye. So that’s fun….

Theodore is also doing wonderful weight bearing and standing up. He loves his AFO’s (braces) and because of them he is pulling to standing from an elevated seated position. He will also go from seated to standing while playing. It may not happen a lot, but he is trying to build his endurance.

That I LOVE!

Walking is also something we have been working on developing. A few weeks ago he got a gate trainer, which looks like a fancy baby walker. This has not been beneficial for him because he always sits on the seat in the center. Knowing Theodore if you give him an inch he takes a mile… soo when he sees a seat he is sitting!!

Because of this we have tried an actual walker. The baby walker is adorable. This week (for the first time) he put pressure on his hands to stabilize the walker and took some assisted steps!!

Wooooohooooo…..

Whaaaaaaaaaat……

Our boy took steps and he was proud. He was cheering in the mirror watching himself walk and it made me all the prouder.

I can not wait to see what the future holds for our little Theodore.

We still have a lot to practice. He won’t drink from a sippy cup, still chokes on water sometimes, does not crawl yet, is not strong enough to push up or pull up to knees, hates having a good deal of pressure on his hands and feet, and doesn’t enjoy a certain amount of messy.

I shouldn’t focus on the negative because I can’t show him when I get discouraged. I want him to know I never get discouraged in him, I get discouraged in myself. I fear I never work hard enough, or work enough. I, myself have to remain positive because I know my support and joy help him fight.

Nonetheless, I am proud of of him. I am proud of what he is doing and where he is going. I have many days where I feel like nothing is changing and we are in the drudges, but I know in my heart it will get better. I pray it will get better. He will get stronger.

I will, Report to Duty, in fighting through this sleep strike and fight to make both of our boys stronger. I will help them work to be their best. I will do better at acknowledging everybody has bad days. I will do better at understanding that you have to have bad days to appreciate the good! I hope you all do the same!!!

Until next time,
Reporting to Duty
Xox

Fight for Each Other.

Over the last few weeks we have been trying to line up docotors in North Carolina.

It is something that I didn’t particularly want initially, because we LOVE our team in Indiana.

However, while we were home, in Indiana, we had a couple cancellations. This messed with a few medical questions and urgencies. Since we were there only a short period of time we were unable to see them….. stressful, I know!!!!

Soooooooo……Now, we decided we needed to build our team of doctors for Theodore in North Carolina.

You would think this would be rather simple, but because of this tedious process My hair started falling out, I questioned God, the medical field and increased my wine intake.

These people have been infuriating to work with, they are slow, rude, do not follow through and question my own knowledge.

A great deal of them have been disrespectful and I am not sure how some of them have their medical license.

……….

After many useless appointments and tons of paperwork we have asked to see specialists at Duke Medical.

Ummm…. that wasn’t easy either AND it was as if I asked many of them to cure cancer.

One doctor read Theodore’s charts/notes incorrectly and before they even seen Theodore they gave him a diagnosis. The others wouldn’t see him until I dotted every I and crossed every T.

1. I understand and appreciate efficiency, but what about emergencies and the urgency of the situation at hand?

2. They diagnosed him with something he clearly did not have and when I told them they questioned me….whaaat?

3. They wanted us to wait EIGHT months to see a doctor. No sir that isn’t happening!!!

……….

I have fought, argued and challenged many medical facilities, because of these mishaps.

This should not have to happen, we are dealing with actual lives. Shouldn’t it be more efficient, no matter who it is shouldn’t we care MORE??

……….

A medical professional actually told me that I fought only because I was educated.

Not sure if that was a compliment or them being disrespectful BUT…..

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!

No…..I fight because I care!

I have a lot of fight and a lot to fight for ….but what about all the other children in this world.  What about all the other PEOPLE in this world??

Shouldn’t we all have someone fighting for us??

Just because I am educated you recognize my fight.

……….

I have come to learn that racism isnt just black or white. It is educated, uneducated, black, military, non-military, poor, rich, white, northern, southern, red, green purple  and blue.

What are we supposed to do?

All lives matter right?

I know this is a topic that has been popular over the last year, but I never come to recognize its importance until I had to fight for my son just to be seen at a specialist.

We are all so afraid of fighting, and if we’re not fighting then we are challenging EVERYTHING!

I understand the fear…

We are in a constant push and pull!!

I don’t have the answers but DAMN IT I will find the answers and I challenge everyone to speak out and find answers.

In our current situation it is the medical field.

But ….many others struggle in different areas.

We have had the privilege of seeing the best medical care in Indiana and I will fight for nothing less.

……….

I fear for those who know nothing different.

I fear for those who have no more fight.

I fear for those who are bullied.

I fear for those who are challenged.

……….

I am, Reporting to Duty, and asking you all to challenge the fight. DO NOT give up or give in!!

We all need to fight for EACH OTHER. I am going to continue my duty. I am going to write a Thank You letter to those medical professionals that have helped us and I am going to write those in charge of the medical professionals that have challenged us. Something needs to change and ALL LIVES MATTER!
Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

Thankful for those TINY little things! 

In all of our lives things become OVERWHELMING.

Sometimes we are going too fast, working too hard and concentrating on things too long to see what makes things go, work and turn.

I am definitely one of these people. 

I am constantly focusing on the BIG goals and the BIG steps we have taken to get where we all need and want to be in our lives. 

I forget about the TINY little things.

However, this year on Thanksgiving I am trying to remember all the TINY little things and BIG things we should be thankful for this year. 

1. I am thankful for our two beautiful boys. A year ago we only had one and now we have two. Each very individual of each other, but equally special. Theodore is spunky, loving, strong headed, courageous and unpredictable. Oliver is brave, predictable, loving, he already idealizes his big brother and we continue to learn more everyday. I am thankful God chose us to be their parents. 

2. I am thankful for my husband. This last year has been interesting to say the least  and I am glad that I get to have him as my partner. He was especially strong and supportive while Theodore and I lived in Indiana as we figured out/researched Theodore’s health. During this time I had our family near but he was all by himself and remained our strength. I am thankful for him everyday, even when I don’t show or say how I feel.

3. I am thankful for my family. They have been so supportive and helpful. I don’t take much time off from fighting or being a mommy but if and when I do they have been there to help (sometimes they even force me to take breaks). Each one of them celebrates our wins and encourages through the losses. I am thankful for each of them and their uniqueness. My family is like no other! 

4. I am thankful for the doctors that believed me, faught for us and broke boundaries to find Theodore’s rare chromosome deletion. We never wanted something wrong with our child, but  we knew something wasn’t right. I am glad they took the time to figure out the cause.  I continue to be thankful for their input and support with not only Theodore but Oliver. Not all doctors are equal and when you find those that REALLY care, you found a rare gem. In that, I am thankful for our team of docotors!

5. I am thankful for our Journey. I have not been happy, thrilled or joyous everyday of our Journey. I have learned how strong I can be and how hard I can push. I have seen and been amazed with the strength that has come from such hard and low moments. I am thankful for those we have met and all we have learned.

6. I am thankful for our friends. Those that have been in this with us have been patient and understanding of our inability to be present both physically and mentally (LOL). They have checked in and sent many many prayers and I am thankful for each one of them and their individual qualities. 

 I am thankful for a great deal. I hope I am able to see the beauty in everyday and I know that I will have days where I continue to struggle with seeing the positive. 

Nonetheless, I want to Report to Duty in taking time today, and try every other day to be thankful for those things that we take for granted. Some of these things we may even find silly to say aloud, but I sure am thankful them. 

Here is just a small list…..our home, our dogs, our nieces 👯, my shoes 👠, food on our table, shelter, our dogs 🐶, my comfy bed, transportation 🚤✈️🚂🚲🚙, support, feeling loved, being an American 🇺🇸, being a women, comfy slippers, wine, love, kindness, freedom, coffee ☕️, a nice handbag 👜, lip stains, vacations, medical breakthroughs, and much much more…

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and please take time to be thankful for the small tiny tiny things. 

If we can’t be thankful for the small things then maybe we will never be appreciative of the bigger things!! 

Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

Following MY Journey.

Last week my husband, Keith asked me, when the last time I wrote on my blog.

I knew I had been neglecting it and I tried giving a valid excuse, but the wonderful man ( sitting across from me in the hospital) wasn’t going to take an excuse.

Sadly and honestly I don’t remember the last time I posted a blog. I do know that I have several drafts and a few titles, but no posts.

In my mind I am stressed out, LOST,  over worked, being a terrible adult and severely OVER multitasking. In reality, I am making excuses and feeling sorry for myself.

Sooo…… I need to get over myself!

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind.

*Adapting to Oliver and working his schedule into ours

*Learning what is best for Oliver

*My healing( after c-section)

*Theodore’s therapy

*Learning how to parent two children

*Taking a road trip to Indiana for Theodore’s schlew of appointments

*Learning about more interventions/procedures needed for Theodore  ( eye surgery, new glasses bc new prescription, hearing aids bc failed hearing in left ear, ENT bc breathing issues while sleeping… I will update in another blog)

*Keith getting put in the hospital during his short visit to Indiana interrupting my crazy plans (diverticulitis and an abscess in the colon) -Exhibit A -I should ease up on the planning.

All of this feels like a lot and sometimes I feel extremely overwhelmed, LOST , mad, sad and tired.

BUT…..I have to keep telling myself we can get through this journey, I can handle my part of the job…..

but ….DAMN IT, sometimes it is freaking hard.

I have come to realize I cry less than I used to and I pray more. I pray so much more. I pray when I am showering, walking out of the hospital, before I go to bed, grocery shopping, when I am driving and even when I occasionally drink a glass of wine.

I need to know that there is something bigger better and in more control than I am. I need to know that God is only giving me what I can handle and that Keith and I can conquer each of our challenges together.

Now I am NOT trying to get you on a God bandwagon and it really isn’t something I “preach” about, bc ya know I don’t care who your God is and I am not judging.

BUT I am sharing because I need God!

I still cuss, yell and drink (ya know we believe water was turned to wine by BIG J himself so it’s appropriate)  so I am NOT claiming to be all holly and perfect but I NEED the man! I NEED to know he listens even when I feel lost.

I NEED to stop feeling lost and out of control!

I know in my life I have said I need many things; including Starbucks and a new pair of shoes, but I truly know those are not real needs. I am just being over dramatic and probably should get over myself. But hey it wouldn’t be me without those quarks!!

I know in order to stop feeling lost I need to stop saying what if, over planning and let life happen. I NEED to trust in the plan created for me!

If you know me well those three things are VERY hard! But that truly does NEED to happen. I understand I will occasionally feel lost in my life but I know I will NEED to regroup and understand life happens! You all need to pray I can let go….GROUP WORK!!!

I will TRY to Report to Duty, everyday, in effort of letting go and following the journey. MY Journey. I will try to guide myself with the enjoyment of the unknown and refuse to get lost.

Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

Preparing…

Getting ready for Baby Miller #2 has been anything BUT whimsical. Part of the reason why I have been MIA.

After vacation and Theodore’s first birthday we all came home to North Carolina and hit the ground running. My husband and I were making a good pace, but Theodore decided, yet again, to take his own.

This causing my “plan” to be off schedule. You would think, by now, that I would understand planning is a recipe for disaster…..but I never follow suit.

So instead of getting things ready we have spent countless minutes and hours trying to understand Theodore’s feeding.

To catch you up…

Before Theodore turned a year old Keith, I and Theodore’s team of doctors decided that we would keep him on formula to continue giving him the extra nutrients. Nonetheless, we would switch from him infant sensitive formula to toddler formula.

Initially we tried a standard formula and he was eating it but you could tell it wasn’t his favorite. Then he quit drinking, all together. So we started trying all types of toddler formula. NONE I mean NONE were suiting him.

We went to the doctor in fear of teething, ear ache or any other answer….. And well…..we received the diagnosis of possible continued milk protein intolerance and STUBBORNNESS!!

They were worried because he has not gained any weight but has grown pretty much 2 inches in less than a months. Soooo…. The mystery continues and he needs to be drinking, drinking, DRINKING!!!
A few days in and no drinking/fluids we tried giving him his old infant formula! It didnt work initially and we had to find another avanue. So….. while we feed him his old formula and we massage his jaw while he eats!! He has since been drinking but you have to hold his jaw.

i did this on a fluke and it WORKED!!

Weird, right???

After googling it we found that is is not as rare as we think. Some babies jaws hurt while they are teething and with Theodore’s low muscle tone it is causing him more stress on his jaw.

Because of this and it being weird we still are going to find further consultation. Let’s all pray for answers.

So now, in the midst of figuring Theodore out I started deep cleaning and I finally have finished some hospital packing….although a great deal of laundry needs to be completed…..any takers????

Since we have two weeks until the due date we all……

We are trying to remain calm and continue our daily lives. This includes getting Theodore signed up for therapy in NC, getting the room ready for the baby(crafting, DIYing, organizing) making sure we have the proper baby items in the house and continuing with all doctors apts.

I am fearful of the change that the new baby may bring to Theodore. However, I have to keep an open mind and know this is the plan that was chosen for us.

Now we will, Report to Duty, in settling back in and getting ready for the baby! We also will continue to encourage growth for Theodore.

Until Next time,

Reporting to Duty
Xox