Thursday, November 25, 2010


I'm trying to tell myself to stay positive and write a lovely post full of giving thanks. I do have a lot to be grateful for. A wonderful family that I'm close to, a husband who, even in his massively over-protective ways, has the best wishes for me and supports me, and a beautiful little girl who makes me insanely happy even in times of frustration.

I had the opportunity of a lifetime to visit and live in England and see the many sights and wonders it has to offer and I truly miss it at times. I miss the friends I made there and watching my little girl grow up with the friends she made there.

I have a job in this uncertain economy and I have a husband who still has a job and I pray he continues to have a job in this next year. I have the opportunity to send my little girl to a great pre-school that she loves going to, I have a roof over my head, food for my stomach, and I have my health.

Even with all these blessings, God gives us trials and I have a couple on my plate right now that are proving a bit frustrating.

Many know of my struggles with infertility and that through IVF I was able to have Makenna. Not only that, but on our first try which was truly a miracle. Well many, many tries later and we have not had the same success. I seem to be strong through each trial and failure but little by little it eats away at me. I try and be positive and remind myself that many don't have any success and I've received Makenna.

We decided to have one last go around and we were going to start back early in the year (like around April,) but at Chris's insistence, I went to my regular OB/GYN to have them to do some follow-up routine type work to see if there was anything else we were missing. Through some testing, they found that I have hypo-thyroidism. This can cause, among other problems, an inability to have the fertility treatments work. After many weeks of trying to get it regulated and within an acceptable range, we were ready to start again. Then the OB/GYN here suggested an "Implantation Failure Study." We did this extra test figuring that it would help rule out any more reasons why IVF might not work. Those tests all came back fine.

After some more go-arounds with the Fertility office, I was finally able to start shots this month. Then the news yesterday from the doctor's...My thyroid level is way too high. They were still telling me to take the shots and medications and come to their office tomorrow but I don't see the point. Until my thyroid level can come back into normal limits, I don't know if we should continue down this route.

I had to call my OB/GYN here and ask them to up my dosage but they are not really in the endocrinology business and agreed to have me up it but also are going to set me up with an endocrinologist as soon as possible. In some sense I know all this is for my good and it's just teaching me patience of which I am sorely lacking. The OB/GYN here feels that the fertility drugs are probably inhibiting my pituitary gland from doing what it needs to regulate my thyroid so it's like I'm in a catch-22. I guess I just have to wait and see what the fertility doctor says tomorrow and go from there and if I have to wait longer, than so be it.

The other issue is that the dreaded "C" word has hit my family. CANCER. We don't know what stage but the doctor here seems to think that it was caught in the early stages so that the chances of it being anything too serious is most likely minimal - again another blessing I have to hold on to and hope for. The hard thing is that it's my mom. It would be hard regardless of who it hits but I was not prepared for it to be my mom. That's another trip up to Syracuse in less than a week to see what they say. At least I've been able to be comforted that this may be an easy fix, and that's what we're praying for.

Now back to blessings.....Last Sunday at church, Makenna was part of a Thanksgiving program and she had a line to say. But to my surprise, she had many lines to say and singing to do (with other kids). She filled in for other kids that were unable to be there. I was surprised at how well she got up in front of all the congregation and just said her lines with no fear or shyness. I hope that stays with her as she grows and has more opportunities for public speaking.

It's also a blessing to see her personality blossoming. Today, while looking at ads from the paper with daddy, (in trying to get ready for shopping,) she saw an ad for purses. I muttered how she has enough bags (bookbags,) and or purses to last her. Her reply, "I don't have enough purses!" (stated matter-of-factly). All I can say is that who ever is lucky enough to marry this girl better have a closet bigger than Imelda Marcos!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Just Be Quiet Mom!

Ahh Yes, another wonderful comment now coming from my child's mouth. There's nothing like you talking all nice and calm to your child to help her calm down in a bout of frustration over not being able to draw a face the way she wanted to and have her yell back at you, "Just Be Quiet Mom!"

We obviously had a bit of a stern conversation about the proper way to speak to people, let alone her mother. Not that it has stopped her from saying that, but now she says it in a softer voice; enough to have me hear it but not enough to where she should get in trouble - so she thinks.

Again, I just hear this escalating in the teen years. I'm not sure if I'm the only one who hears their small children say things that immediately project themselves to the future and how it's going to be? Plus I can see a lot of me in her when she gets easily frustrated with things. I think that scares me more. I've really had to adjust my "patience" level.

At least, for the most part, we've had a better week. I did get a report from her school about her development. They check her Gross Motor Skills, her Fine Motor Skills, and her Language Ability.

No surprise here, but she scored above average on her language ability. I could've saved them the trouble and told them that! Or they could just come to my house for a day and see the conversations that take place (like the one above).

As for the other two, she's a bit below her age range, especially in the Gross Motor Skills area, such as running, jumping, etc. This shocks me because of all the different activities she's involved in (swim, gymnastics, T-Ball). Although, they said the same thing last year at her screening. I just assumed last year it was her not listening or paying attention to what was asked of her as being the culprit of a low score but now that it's happened twice, I had to look into it.

I asked both sets of teachers what they felt the issue was with her gross motor skills and both said that she seems a but clumsy. She trips over her feet, doesn't quite kick a ball, etc. One teacher even said that she could be standing against a wall and then the next thing they know she's on the floor and they have no idea why.

I felt like asking, "Does genetics play any part in your grading? Especially the female gene?" "Just look at my mother and myself, we'll tell you we're clumsy." After thinking about it, I guess they're right, she does seem to fall quite a bit but I attribute that to not paying attention to her surroundings and banging into things, or tripping over things, etc. I figured it's a spatial-relation issue - not recognizing her feet in relation to her body. Plus, she's so tall for her age, it could be hard for her to carry around her body. Not that it's freakishly out of proportion or anything but these were just my thoughts. As for kicking a ball...well, that's her parents fault. We don't go around kicking balls very often or encouraging her to, but now that we know there's a foot to ball deficiency we can work on that come Spring.

I like these reports to an extent. I like to see where she's falling short and needs work on but at the same time I feel like a "failing" parent. It makes me think maybe we need a Wii for Christmas and we can work on these things in the Winter (hint, my husband.)

They did notice a "mature grasp on the pencil" for her fine motor skills. So even though she's just a bit behind I guess all in all she's okay there. This past weekend she was writing her name by herself and got frustrated that she couldn't write the "K." I tried helping her but she just got more frustrated. I was just ecstatic that she wrote her name (in no particular order) all over the paper.

This weekend brought another birthday party, for her Uncle Jared who turned 30. She again was getting a bit miserable after a long day of gymnastics practice for her Christmas program. So during the day, I finally said, "That's it!!! Nap time!" She refused but still went up and promptly fell asleep for two hours. She definitely needed did we! She had a lot of late nights starting last Tuesday and she had to be up late Friday for gymnastics practice too so by Saturday she needed to catch up on much needed sleep.

She at least was more compliant at the practice's. What was funny on Friday night was that during one of the songs, all the little kids come out and do there little thing and then they run off and the bigger kids are running and flipping and out runs Makenna onto the floor! I was stunned and frozen in fear. Another mom started pointing to the director and saying, "little kid! little kid!" and the director turned and saw her on the stage and got her off. At least she thought it was funny and cute. Unfortunately we have that same schedule of practice this Friday and Saturday so I hope we can have good results for that too. By the end of last Saturday's she had, had it and kept asking when we could go. I don't know how she's going to get through all the shows if she can't even put up with the practice!

I can see it now, "Makenna, hurry, get out on the stage, you're supposed to be on the stage!" Her reply, "JUST BE QUIET MOM!"

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Four Year Old Hormones

I don't know if there is such a thing as four-year old hormones - I mean, I'm sure she has hormones, but I picture the teenage hormones when you say the dread "H" word. People this past weekend have assured me that Makenna's fragile break-downs are attributed to her growing and hormones running wild in her.

Okay, well let's hope that does explain the mess she became over the weekend. I went to a spin-class on Saturday morning that my friend was teaching and I came home to a child in crying mode for whatever reason and her father said, "She's been like this for an hour, I don't know what to do or what her problem is." I thought, welcome to a preview of what's to come in about nine years if not sooner.

I tried talking to her to find out what the problem was and she was upset that we weren't at her cousin Katie's party...yet. After trying to console her I resulted to threats of not going to the party if she couldn't compose herself.

One thing she was having an issue with is why she wouldn't be opening up presents. Why it wasn't still her birthday and why she couldn't blow out the candles on the cake. I told her that if she asks Katie nicely that maybe she could help with both but that we wouldn't know that if she didn't calm down enough for us to go to the party to begin with.

We obviously went and Makenna was able to help open the gifts. In fact, Katie who is now three, was not opening them up fast enough for Makenna. She kept telling Katie that there were more gifts to be opened. It was as if she was frustrated that Katie didn't understand she could play with all her gifts later and didn't need to linger over them. There was ripping to be done and by gosh Makenna was going to make sure it was done in a timely matter.

In regards to the candles on the cake, Katie blew out her own candles but Makenna was okay with that and in fact cheered Katie's success in doing it. The next semi-break down was when it was time to go and all we were doing was going home. That was not acceptable. We had to be going somewhere else besides home.

We did go home and we played Chutes & Ladders while daddy did some work outside. Then she was able to go outside and help daddy do a few things so that made her day. I swear the two of them outside together doing things is so cute and warms my heart.

Well then the next breakdown was on Sunday at church. I was sitting in a class and the next thing I knew I had a sobbing child in my lap telling me that she missed me. Now while that's adorable and would make any mother's heart melt, I knew something else was up.

I took her out of the class and sat with her on the couch and tried to find the reason behind this crying jag. Come to find out, she had ripped her scriptures accidentally and even though Aunt Autumn taped them back together, she was still quite upset by the whole ordeal. I was able to show her that they were fine and it was only a blank page that ripped so it was really okay. Once I got her calmed down enough I got her back to her primary class.

People said to me after I returned to class, "Wow that must make you feel good." They were only going off of the "I missed you mommy" comment so they didn't know the whole story. But I mentioned how she's been a mess all weekend and that's when a couple of people told me about how it's probably her hormones. Wonderful.

I wish I could say the rest of Sunday went well but we had an incident at the nursing home. Makenna was trying to climb a bookshelf and there was a teapot set on the top and down it came along with a few books, of which one hit her in the head, and breaking the teapot into pieces.
We brought the teapot set home as Chris thinks he can glue most of it back together again. Makenna kept asking for the rest of the day to help glue it together but it's still sitting on our table waiting for that magical day of it being fixed.

One last "new" thing that Makenna has started now is making up words and then asking me if I can say them. So she'll say, "Mom, this frog is drizzy, can you say drizzy?" Then she waits for me to say her new word. If I don't say it right she'll say, "No..." and repeat the word again. Seems like my words coming out of her body again, except the words I try to get her to repeat are real. Maybe the next word she'll learn is HORMONES.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Halloween Fun?

Friday at the church they had a trunk-or-treat which just basically means that instead of going door to door for Halloween candy, you go to people's cars. They usually have their trunks decorated and you go up and say the usual, "Trick-or-Treat" and you get candy. The nice thing about this is that it's all compact and in one area and you can be done in about 10 minutes or so. I also thought this was a good thing to do so that if Halloween was too cold, then at least Makenna would get some loot out of the holiday. Unfortunately to Makenna, this is not true trick-or-treating.

We went to the party inside the church and she had fun painting a pumpkin

And getting her face painted

And she loved her Tinkerbell costume

But when it came time for a game similar to musical chairs where you could win a cake--she was not into it. I have to admit I wanted it more than she did as some of the cakes looked scrumptious. It wasn't until the game was almost over, and had to be rigged so she would win and stop crying, that she finally participated and we won some cupcakes. All the good cakes were already taken by that point.

She was obviously in major break-down tired mode. By the time trunk-or-treating came about I went to our car to hand out candy and Chris took her around to the other I thought. he came back about 15-20 minutes later and said she got about nine pieces of candy of which three were from our car. He said she was so upset that he just had her in his car trying to get her to stop crying and calm down. I hurried and finished handing out what candy I had left and we took her home and to bed.

The next day we took her to a gymnastics practice for a show in December. She was supposed to also be there last night but I wanted her to enjoy the Halloween party - for what that was worth.
Unfortunately the practices are utter chaos and she was just as tired and miserable. I was getting really frustrated with her and with the process. I wanted an agenda of what happens when so that I could tell if she was supposed to out on the floor practicing a routine. As it was, I didn't see any kids from her age group or class there so I thought maybe we weren't supposed to be there. I asked repeatedly and they assured me that yes, she was supposed to be there.

Another problem is that there are so many things going on at once that the people directing the show don't know if every child who is supposed to be out on the floor for a certain piece is really out there so it wasn't until a minute or so into it that I'd be like, "Makenna, I think you're supposed to be out on the floor doing this." Then we'd try to get her out there and she wouldn't want to go. When everyone was off the floor then she'd go out and dance around.

Between not knowing when she should be out on the floor for a routine and her not wanting to when I did figure it out, I was about ready for a melt-down myself. We did end up leaving early because I figured if she's not going to do this then I'm not wasting my time sitting her arguing with her about it.

Later in the afternoon, she decided to dance around some more at home making me think that maybe dance is the way to go and that I should get her into it sooner than I had planned...but I'm not having her give up yet on gymnastics or this program.

Then on Sunday, Halloween Day, Chris's church also decided to have a trunk-or-treat and we got the same results as Friday's--refusal to go to the cars for treats. At least this time she wasn't crying. They didn't really have much in the way of games for her to do and it was all outside so after a while we left and went to her grandma and grandpa Jones' house. They graciously fed us dinner and Makenna had made up her mind to not go trick-or-treating at all. After a long weekend of trying to cajole her into doing it at cars I gave up and gave in and said that she could help her grandparents hand out candy.

The doorbell rang and a kid said, "trick-or-treat" and a spark went off in Makenna who decided that she wanted to go house to house. I said, "Okay, we'll just go down this street and then come back." I was setting my hopes low this time. We got out on the street and there were only a few houses lit up and one was "too scary" for her to go to so she agreed to walk a bit further onto another street. After about the fourth house she would keep asking, "Mom, can we go get some more treats?" Off we went onto different streets around the area. By the end we had a pumpkin bag full and it was a good ending to a bad start.

On a side note, earlier on Sunday, we went and visited my grandmother at the nursing home. They informed us that they were having a Halloween party and that the kids were welcome to come. They also said they were going to have a pinata filled with candy for the kids.

We went to the party and Makenna didn't want to hit the pinata at first as she thought it was going to explode like a firework and make a loud noise. She kept covering her ears as others hit it. Her cousin Eli took his little toy hammer and was lightly hitting the pinata which was hilarious to watch. It was as if he was trying to fix it. After a few hits by other kids, she saw that it wasn't going to be loud and she absolutely loved the candy falling to the floor and the free-for-all that ensued. Luckily they had another pinata and she got into whacking that one.

The funniest part of the weekend though was Makenna's answers to a couple of jokes that were told by staff at the nursing home. This lady was up front telling really bad Halloween jokes to everyone. The lady asked, "What is Dracula's favorite holiday?" Makenna loudly replied, "Ours is Sukkot." This is a Jewish holiday that she learned about at pre-school so when I stopped laughing and composed myself I said, "Wow, I didn't know we were Jewish." Then the lady asked, "Why did the mummy have no friends?" Makenna's reply, "Because he wasn't being a good listener."

Something she accuses me of all the time, and maybe she's right. If I had truly been listening, I would've let these little things go by this weekend without getting so uptight and let things fall into place themselves and probably would've enjoyed the weekend much more.