Tag Archives: kids

Putting One Foot in Front of The Other

Pretty sure this could rate as one of the shittest weeks on the record of my life. What makes me laugh is I have made more than one in the span of my 37 years and this week probably makes top 10.

On the 21st I lost my grandma. Someone I loved very fiercely who was the centre of my developing life. I learned a lot about life, love, marriage and child raising in the confines of her Snow Lake home. I’ve taken the loss very deeply. I won’t lie as I have processed it a lot over the last two weeks but moment where I weep still come.

I remember all the really great and interesting stuff about her. I am happy she had a life she loved and I embrace those memories. Just not quite where they don’t cause me pain.

Tuesday I had to return to work. Alas mortgage, food and other payments don’t hold for our grief and my grandma was someone that would say that being busy was good for you. So back to work I went dealing with customers and projects.

Tuesday Nathaniel had his first football practice. He was so very excited to be on the field working towards learning what position he will be playing. I watched him work hard, proud that he was listening and trying hard to learn from his coached and put in a strong effort. I know part of him is in football because I, personally, love the sport and he’s trying to connect with me on that level. What he hasn’t realized that I hope he gets more out of it than my approval. Deep down Nathaniel has to learn how to function as a cog in an overall team dynamic. If he gets that from this season I’ll call it a great investment.

Thursday I stayed home from the Bombers home opener because I intended to be at Nathaniel’s practice. He asked me to be there and while I am a rabid fan of the Bombers, I know that he asked me because he needed me to be there for him. It was one of those times when being a mom mattered more than being a fan. Ashleigh went and spent the evening with her grandpa. They had an amazing time together.

More amazing than my Thursday turned out to be.

Thursday afternoon Nathaniel developed a fever. Nothing serious to start off with but as the night wore on it became more of a concern. At about 1 am we noticed he had a lump at the side of neck. In 2008 Nathaniel had this happen and when I took him to Children’s he was diagnosed with an infected lymph node. Upon discussion with Kevin I decide we’ll head to Children’s to be safe rather than wait to go to the walk in clinic first thing in the morning.

Get to Children’s, get checked, confirm that Nathaniel has an underlying virus and what the Dr is pretty sure is an infected lymph node again, get prescription and the requisite talk about what to watch for (Or as I am now dubbing it…This is When You Should Panic). Head off into the pre-dawn night and need to locate a bank machine so I can pay for parking so we can get the car out of the William Parkade and stop for small nervous breakdown.

I think the worst part of what I’m about to put here is that my pretty sick 9 year old had to deal with his mother weeping and having a small panic attack. Honestly, I’m pretty sure that is in the list of globally recognized mommy fails. I have no real defense other than extreme emotional distress.

The last place I really wanted to be was back at HSC not even a week after having lost someone I love dearly there. It’s not a reflection of the staff or the care as much as it is somewhere I lost someone I loved very much. Having to take Nathaniel there to deal with his health as emotionally raw as I am, as tired as I have been, pushed me very close the emotional edge. Having to enter the building through the same doors I entered for almost a week to keep vigil with my passing grandma, walk past the elevators that I entered more than once, knowing the space was so close, was more than I could bear. So I cried, so I tried to get my sick 9 year old to go as fast as possible to a bank machine and back out when he was tired, sore, feverish and sick. I was so distressed that he stopped me to hug me and tell he was sorry for being sick.

Shit.

Mommy fail on so many levels.

I don’t even think I could say I just have a history of having mental moments in hospitals where major life events happen. While I’ve broken down in Concordia (see post Phantoms Feb 2010) where I had my hips replaced I’ve never lost control of myself in St. Boniface, which frankly probably has more personal trauma attached to it than any other hospital in the Winnipeg City Limits, and I’ve been there often.

I’m sure someone would tell me that it was just too soon to deal with things, or that I hadn’t dealt with it enough it doesn’t make me feel better than I caused trauma to my 9 year old when he least needed it. I’m the mom I should have my shit together in these times.

Looking back at it Kevin would probably have been the better choice for this mission.

Hindsight really is a bitch.

After going to the bank machine and getting the car out of the William Street Parkade we head to the 24 hours Shoppers where I learn that while they are 24 hours Blue Cross direct bill is not. Come back in a hour and a half so home we go.

As Friday goes along we get medications going, children’s Advil keeps flowing and Nathaniel has good moments when the medication is keeping things under control.

My dad sits the kids Friday evening so Kevin and I can go out to a networking event. We go, we meet folks, we have dinner and head home. Check Nathaniel and he’s warm but good. We’ve got time to Advil so we relax and settle in for some t.v. watching. At 10 I go back to check and he’s spiked a good level fever.

Back to Children’s, back to HSC and the William Street Parkade for the second time in 24 hours we go. I was the DD for the evening so I get him in the car and we go. Much to Nathaniel’s anxiety (see mommy fail).

Turns out the virus he has likes to screw with us. As long as he responds to Advil we just ride it out.

I need to ride it out too.

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The Complexities of Ashleigh

Ashleigh is 4 going on 16. She this complex little thing just a few short months away from her 5th birthday. Of all my kids she frustrates the most and I suspect it is for simple reason…she’s my daughter.

I don’t do manipulation with crying. I find it useless and a complete waste of time. Kevin also doesn’t react to it. He just finds it annoying. So with all three kids tantrums have been ceremoniously ignored. Somehow even 2 years after the terrible twos Ashleigh still resorts to it as her get out of jail free card. It’s annoying and frustrating because she’s smart, she’s tough, she always charges forward with no fear but if she suspects that there is a hell storm coming her way she begins to turn on the tears and play helpless. It gets her as far as it did when she was 2 and yet she continues. Her Oscar acceptance 25 years from will I am sure be one of my proudest moments as a mom.

I think it bothers me so much because I know she has so much potential. It was commented to me last week that if she has no fear she could be a National Tae Kwon Do Champion by the time she is a Junior…which is 10 if you are keeping score. To hear that she has that potential is mind blowing. She’s 4.5 but she is very strong willed and completely fearless. When she breaks down into crying instead of trying I often wonder when she became a crazy 16 year old girl.

I love her but sometimes she makes me crazy. I do hope that she can embrace herself and use her powers for good.


Busy time of year.

I have been bad at blogging but frankly when life gets me running. in circles I find that I must allow something to drop. In April it was the blog but i am determined to get back on the horse and get back to recording my thoughts. I found this to be a good outlet for myself. I’ve been missing the release that comes from just putting my thoughts out there. I don’t expect folks to read and be profoundly changed by my words but often I just need to put it out there.

Mid-May to mid-June is usually our family’s busiest time of year. It tends to start with Mother’s Day and ends with Father’s Day. We have now 4 birthdays in between those dates (in order my dad, Kevin, myself and Nicholas) and this year for good measure we added Tae Kwon Do fundraiser (May 15th), Tae Kwon Do testing (May 19th), Arthritis walk (May 3oth), the Frontenac Parents’ Association BBQ (June 3rd), and Iron Fist Competition (June 12th).  I am also the co-ordinator for the silent auction for the BBQ and I am very happy with how it is coming together. Winnipeg has some of the most generous businesses out there and I am always happy for the support they give. However, after 2 years I am going to step down next year for someone else to invest the time into it. I will need to be focusing on other things at that time provided of course that I am able to get my goals. Ultimately there is something going on every week this month and whle I love that we are busy and active in our community is many ways you sometimes wonder when am I in over my head?

Tae Kwon Do is something that I see my kids are embracing. They have taken up sparring on Saturday mornings and what I see them gaining from it is a sense of confidence. Nathaniel and Ashleigh both have a frustrating habit of giving up when things are hard, they don’t run into challenges…they run away from them. Sparring even if they aren’t winning they still want to get back into the ring and keep trying again and again and to do better and improve. They would like to compete on June 12th and for that they need their own set of sparring gear. Luckily for them we are able to get this for them so they will soon be hauling their own gear to class on Saturday morning. Nathaniel’s focus at school has improved and with his continuing maturity we’ve given him some more responsibility. He is also starting to help around home. He’s taken it upon himself to make sure that the kids’ milk are on the table before breakfast in the morning. He just started doing it on his own and it helps. Sometimes though as a mom I find it hard to step back and see him as being as grown up as he is. He genuinely wants to help and often I worry that he’s loosing the kid part of his life when he does that but I also see him trying to show us that he is growing up that he is ready for some responsibility.

My big item that I want to do well this month, other than Kevin’s birthday, is the Arthritis Walk on May 30th. Kevin, the kids, my dad and myself will be a team, walking the 1K to raise funds for arthritis research. I’d like to raise $200.00 as a team but so far I’ve not raised 50% of the goal and we are about two weeks away from the walk. I don’t think it has helped that I have been raising funds for Jump Rope for Heart, selling tickets for the fundraiser on Saturday, and now I am asking again for more for this walk but this holds a place in my heart given that I have not only lived with the frustration of having arthritis but have already had to deal with the result that comes from extreme damage. I also believe that sometimes fate tells you things. Fate told me that this year I celebrate my left hip’s second birthday walking on it for without it I wouldn’t walk at all, I wouldn’t have my Nicholas, I wouldn’t be able to be the mom that I am now to my kids. Last year I celebrated my left hip’s first birthday by walking trying to go into labour.

If you would like to donate to our team’s cause please visit http://arthritis.akaraisin.com/pledge/Team/Home.aspx?seid=2997&mid=10&Lang=en-CA&tid=24478