Thursday, July 30, 2009

3 days

Yesterday Josh called me at work.

I could tell something was wrong by the way he said "......hi" when I said "hi babe!" in my normal "excited to hear from you" voice.

His Dad had just died and he was still in shock. I was in shock. It took me nearly 20 minutes to realize that it was real and start the crying.

He had been in ICU overnight. We didn't know about that.

He has been really sick since I met him 4 years ago (in a wheelchair and unable to do much, if anything, on his own) and getting worse and worse for the past few months. We did know that.

He's been in and out of the hospital and so sick for so long that I kindof figured he would be forever. For that reason it's completely shocking that he's gone. But the truth is that he's been so sick for so long it's amazing he lived as long as he did. Meleta and Ben took good care of him and if Meleta wasn't the expert nurse that she is who knows what would have happened.

When Josh's Grandpa died earlier this year I learned that I could take 3 days off if I needed them to help with the funeral and mourn and become a real person again. I didn't. 3 days seemed like an eternity, that's more than half the week! I could count on one hand the number of conversations I'd had with him, and while I cared for him, I just didn't have a lot to do to help. 3 days seemed like eternity.

Somehow now 3 days seems so short. Only 3 days?

Day 1: Find out he died. Cry. Visit the family and body in the hospital. Cry. Remember that Baby Thomas needs to eat. Cry again. Reminisce. Cry more. Try to pretend life is normal by doing a load of laundry. Cry while it's washing. Forget it is there and leave it for later. Who can do laundry at a time like this anyway? Cry because it's "a time like this". Call other family members. Cry with them. Etc.
Day 2: Funeral arrangements.
Day 3: Funeral.
Day 4: Back to work?

Really? Is that even reasonable? 3 days...72 hours....

We drove to work this morning (I figured I'd be more useful at work than anywhere else, and since it didn't look the like the funeral would be until Monday or Tuesday anyway....I'd need my 3 days later on) looking at all of the cars around us thinking that they had no idea how different today was.  They had no idea how life will never be the same. They're all just going to work totally oblivious to the hurt, the loss, the pain.

When we told Ron we were pregnant he got all excited that he'd live at least long enough to meet his grandchildren. He was relieved that we were finally going to give him a grandbaby and that he'd certainly live 8 more months to meet that grandbaby. Yesterday he told the kidney Dr. that they had to keep him alive long enough to meet his grandkids (Misty is due in December) and after that he could go.

Some are convinced he was just trying to cut in line and get to hold Baby Thomas and Baby Cason before their own dads (or anyone else) get to. Rude.

Josh is the oldest son and suddenly feeling his age. His dad's dad died in his early 50's due to a heart attack. His dad died in his early 50's due to....well there's no official reason because there were a million things. If that trend continues Josh is halfway through his life now. Right now. That's more than a little sobering. Meanwhile he suddenly has a lot of responsibility.

On top of losing his Father, who is very much a piece of him. He worries a lot about Meleta, his step mom. Ben (his little brother) will be going on a mission at the end of the year which will leave Meleta here alone.

On one hand, the woman is stronger than anyone I've ever known. She might enjoy the peace and quiet for the first time in her life. She's very independent and capable of....well anything. The woman is amazing.

But on the other hand, what if she needs something/someone. What if we flit off to Montana (looking like a very real possibility again) and Ben is serving a mission 10 million miles away, and Misty & Ryan are in St. George and nobody is here to take care of her? I'm not vain enough to think she actually needs us...but what if she needs us?

I can't imagine how she's feeling now. I can't imagine how Ben feels. Or really even how Josh and Misty feel. All I know is that I spent enough of the morning crying that my eyes were bloodshot by lunch. I wish I knew how to help. I wish I knew what to do. I wish I felt like enough of a grown up to deal with things like this. I wish I knew the right words to say and the right things to do. I'm totally and completely helpless and I am experiencing nowhere near the worst of it.

With Ron's incredibly poor health, I can honestly say that I know he's better off. It's one of those things you say to make yourself feel better in a situation like this, but he really was miserable here. He hasn't been able to walk or move or do things on his own since....I don't even know when. As for the rest of us, I suppose eventually we'll just drive to work being totally oblivious to the person in the car next to us, for whom the world has just ended.

Eyelashes and more on 28 weeks...

Baby Thomas is growing eyelashes - which will protect his new unfused eyes. Is it just me or does the ability to open your eyes make you more of a real live baby? 

When I was a little girl my Aunt Amy was cutting my hair once (no she's not a stylist, no I didn't have great hair....) and while she was trimming my bangs  she asked if I wanted her to trim my eyelashes since they were sticking out so far. She chuckled to herself at her joke, which I didn't get.

I thought she was serious and I probably would have let her (she wouldn't have done it) if it weren't for the fact that the scissors would be RIGHT IN FRONT OF my eyes and that freaked me out. I'm a chicken.

She didn't trim my eyelashes, but that was the beginning of knowing  had long lashes....come to think of it, they're not that long anymore...maybe she did trim them....

When I was in 5th grade I had an "all about me" book where there are a bunch of different pages all One of blanks to fill in said "I think my best feature is _________" and you were supposed to draw a picture of your face in the big empty box on the page.

I distinctly remember thinking about it (overnight) and trying to find something that I thought was a really good facial feature. I thought for a long time, skipped the page and came back to it later. I finally filled it the blank with "my eyelashes" because it was the only thing I genuinely believed was exceptionally pretty about my face. I hope Thomas inherits my eyelashes and Josh's lack of self-esteem issues.

He's also growing all sorts of boring things....brain cells, neurons, baby fat . But the eyes! Oh the eyes! I already know I'll spend at least 90% of my days trying to sneak a peek at those eyes. And when I see them I already know they'll melt my heart.

In the meantime I'm in my 3rd trimester. What a beautiful thing!

Maybe it's just that I didn't exactly get the "happy, excited, good-feeling phase" promised to accompany the 2nd trimester....but I don't really expect the 3rd trimester to be as bad as it sounds. Maybe I'm a trimester behind and it will all be perfect and sunshine lollipops, disneyland and rainbows from here on out. Maybe all of the 2nd trimester good will show up now? Or maybe it'll be miserable and horrible and I'll be begging you to tear my toenails off and burn me alive just to make it stop. Only time will tell but I expect nothing but good from here on out.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Pregnancy = "fun": who knew?

Today a coworker asked if I was sick of being pregnant. Without even thinking about it I said "Nope. I actually think it's really fun."

This is interesting because it means that either (a) my instinct is to tell big fat lies when this person asks me questions. or (b) I enjoy pain, puking and exhaustion (which makes me a masochist) when lined with a big fat miracle.

Knowing myself as well as I do (probably about as well as the back of my own hand* or something....) I'm betting that I'm more apt to "naturally lie" than enjoy pain and exhaustion.....but I don't lie to other people about this whole experience.

Anytime a woman asks how I'm feeling I'm brutally honest usually launching into some big whine-fest about how hard it is. As if these women don't already know how hard it is. The only women who care enough to ask are those who have been through it and know very well how hard it is and more importantly how hard it's going to become.

So I'm very confused by my response.

Am I ready to be done being pregnant? Absolutely not. Not even close. Because when pregnancy is over, this baby will be OUT of me....did you hear me? OUT. OF. ME. And that's when I lose all control. I'm not ready for that.

Am I sick and tired and growing more and more uncomfortable each day? Yes. Absolutely. I'm terrified for what the next 3 months bring.

Do I want to spend the rest of my life measuring how good my week is based on how many minutes I spent with my head in the toilet? No. Not really.

Do I wake up to kicking/punching thinking "that is the coolest thing on the planet" pretty much every day? Yes. Because it is the coolest thing on the planet.

Do I think it's a miracle that (1) I got pregnant (2) I stayed pregnant and (3) My baby is growing exactly as he should? Absolutely! Because it is a miracle.

So, while there are really cool aspects to pregnancy, I don't think that "fun" is the word I'd naturally use to describe this experience. It's amazing, I'm thankful for it, I love it, I enjoy the developments, I have an appreciation for my body I've never had before, I like to look at (and touch) my baby belly, but it's not like "hey what are you doing this weekend? being pregnant? oh you're so lucky! I wanna do that too! Then we can go to Disneyland and eat popsicles and paint rainbows!" It's more like "wow. I'm pregnant."

Things are hard and exhausting and stressful and scary and tiring and overwhelming and......sigh.....

Then again, it rocks to think my enormous stomach is cool. It's fun to learn about what my body is doing. It's interesting to learn about the thing growing inside me. I like being in the "pregnant ladies" club. I like having a built in (quite literally) conversation piece. I like that the guys at work come check on me regularly just to "make sure everything is going OK." I truly do enjoy being pregnant. So maybe it wasn't a lie. And maybe I'm not a masochist. Maybe it really is fun.

Who knew?

*In case you were wondering the back of my hand is actually pretty cool. I used to have 3 scars in my knuckle-valleys (is there a technical term for that area?) now there are only 1.5, but I still claim they are "my Wolverine scars from when my blades come out" every time Josh whispers in Sacrament Meeting "Where'd you get those scars?"

Joe's Valley

For the 24th we planned to go to Joe's Valley with Josh's family which was something I was a little pessimistic about to be painfully honest. I'm all for camping. I'm all for Josh's family. And I'm all for holiday weekends. But to drive 3 1/2 hours SOUTH (which translates to 'hot') to spend just one night there before heading home. It seemed like a lot of driving for a very short (hot) camping trip and I wasn't sure it was all going to be worth it. 
I was totally wrong.
We took the "scenic route" there and about 5 hours later we pulled into camp (you should know this was my fault....I was driving....I didn't know we had better instructions than google....and I didn't know that google thinks you can drive THROUGH mountains). We put up our tent and it immediately started to rain, which made me feel a lot better about the whole situation. It was cool, and wet, and beautiful and that made me happy.
Mom Reilley cooked some DANG good food. This is her rolling out the topping to the berry cobbler-y stuff which had festive star shaped crust pieces on top. Yes she knew we were camping.
We finally got to see fireworks which was thrilling for Josh.

We laid on the sidewalk in Castledale to watch the fireworks.

Mom and Dad Reilley.

Cami & Jessie

The next day we spent in the water, which was a blast! Josh had plenty of time to play on the wave-runners and I swam for a good 3 hours before getting out. It was beautiful. The water was cool (but not too cold) and felt perfect. We swam all over the place from one side of the marina to the other.

One thing I really love about swimming is that I can easily keep up. Had we been hiking for 3 hours I probably would've died. But swimming for 3 hours wasn't even tiring, just pleasant and enjoyable. Everybody else was wearing life jackets and getting tired and I just wasn't. I'm just learning that it's fun to do things you're good at. (I'm allowed to say I'm good at swimming because I'm not great at many things...but I am a decent swimmer. In the words of Josh's 19 year old brother "Geez! you're a beast!" Josh assures me this is a good thing.)

I love the view. The water was beautiful.
Yay for the "beach". It's no Bear Lake, but I'll take it.
In the middle of that gigantic splash is Josh and his toy. He was going nuts having a great time trying to throw himself off the wave-runner. He was successful at least once or twice, which means he was satisfied with his day's work.

After spending the whole morning in the water, we went back to camp, ate, played games and packed up. It was short, but perfect. We had just enough time to do everything we wanted to do (once) and got home BEFORE dark (which is rare). What a fantastic weekend with the family!

Baby Belly: 28 weeks

This belly shot brought to you by: Lindon, my parents, yummy bbq salads, the letter 'Z' and the number '4'.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Baby Lucy continued

Wanna see some cute pictures of my new niece? You can.
These tiny toes are probably the cutest thing I've ever seen.
Not the cutest picture of me....but don't I look great holding a new baby? Yes I do.
I could tell you that we were praying at this particular moment, but it'd be a big lie.
She's so tiny that the bow thing doesn't fit on her head. It falls off when she moves.
Check out nose on this little one...positively adorable.
Daddy trying to wake her up...those legs are tinier than they look.
The family picture in the hospital. The only one where they were all holding still.
Ryann loves Baby Lucy.
Ryann puts on her baby voice and goes "ooohhh look! it's a brand new baby Lucy!" It's adorable.

I couldda gone to Oprah

Well....I suppose it's time I say something about Montana.

Really we just don't know...we don't know anything so there's not a whole lot else to say. Josh has had a couple of phone interviews and he is currently sleeping in a hotel room in Chicago ready to go in for his interview tomorrow morning. (Which is scheduled to last 3 hours....not a typo seriously. 3 hours.)

We'll see how the interview goes, then we'll figure out what our choices are, THEN we'll make a real decision. I've been back and forth a million times about going and not going. We'll see what comes of it.

In the meantime a friend of mine at work asked me what the deal with Montana was. I told him Josh was in Chicago interviewing and his immediate response was "well, why didn't you go? You could've gone to Oprah!" I laughed out loud. Yes, if I were in Chicago I could've gone to Oprah, but the truth is that I would rather play cards in the hotel room with my best friend than go see Oprah without him (even if it were the show where she gives everybody a car or something....).

Tonight I miss my Josh. I wish he were here, I wish I were there, I wish I wasn't sitting at home blogging and watching tv. I wish I hadn't put my house back together all by myself. I wish he were here so I could tell him to feel my tummy for Baby Thomas's kicking. I wish he held my hand when we prayed tonight. I wish he were here to talk to me and tuck me in and kiss me goodnight. I wish I didn't have to go downstairs to make sure the door is locked all by myself. I want my husband back because no matter what it's always better when we're together.

This feeling of loneliness makes me think there is no way I could handle the travel requirements that come with the Montana position. I'd rather stay here knowing that I get to see my husband every day than have the grand adventure and know he'd be travelling and I'd have to spend a lot of nights feeling like this.

My baby you'll be

I know my job as a mother is to raise my baby boy to be a good, honest, successful, kind man.....but I don't wannuhhhhhhhh!

The other day when we went swimming, the pool was filled with overgrown testosterone containers in the shape of teenage boys. The wrestled, the chicken fought, they built man-towers 4 people high, they yelled and screamed and cannonballed, they made fun of each other, they completely disregarded anybody else within 15 miles and were teenage boys. I came home and cried because I thought that maybe my Baby Thomas might someday go through an "obnoxious smelly overgrown teenage boy" phase.

This weekend we met Baby Lucy. She really is an angel, and she's beautiful, and calm, and reverent and well behaved. I came home and cried because I thought that maybe my adorable little fetus might turn into a real live baby who other people can take away from me (and by "take away from me, I mean hold without me touching him") and who can get as much love from someone else as his own mama.

On Sunday we sat behind a family in church whose children were beautiful and reverent wearing missionary hair and glasses. (I secretly think glasses make a child act more reverent, so I'm secretly planning to get Baby Thomas glasses without corrective lenses asap.) Their 8(ish) year old in his blue sport coat and khaki pants laid down reverently under the bench and nearly filled the space between the bench legs with his long lanky body. I came home and cried because I thought that maybe someday my Baby might outgrow my lap and have to lie down under the bench instead. And then I realized that maybe someday he might outgrow the "under the bench" and have to sit up while he sleeps through Sacrament Meeting like his dad. And then I sobbed.

As I write this, I imagine my mommy and her baby (who has a wife, a job, a home, and 3 babies of his own) and how it must break her heart that other people can hold him and love him, he passed through the obnoxious smelly teenage boy phase (and probably still has his smelly days....), and there's no way all 6'2" of him fits under the bench at church. She must ache for the days that she could rock him back and forth, back and forth, back and forth while singing him a song.

I'm sure I'm tough enough to handle pregnancy, I'm sure I'm tough enough to handle labor and delivery, but am I tough enough to handle growing up? I don't think so. So, as far as I'm long as I'm living, my baby he'll be.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Baby Lucy

Thursday evening my sister had her baby!

Josh is always totally enthralled with new babies. he can't stop touching them, and holding them, and feeling their "so soft skin" and he gets the big goofy grin and I love it.

She has a ton of red hair, and the same pouty lower lip that her sister had. This girl is bound to be every bit as adorable as Ryann - with her genes it's not like there's any other choice.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

3am: The Pros & Cons

The thing about 3am is that nobody else is up. Even the ridiculously early risers are still asleep, and even the ridiculous party animals are already in bed.
The only people who are awake at 3am are new mothers, pregnant ladies, and people who work (or live) at the ER. Which is probably a good thing because what do you really need to be awake at 3am for anyway? Nothing.
This morning certainly had its pros and cons.
When Baby Thomas started practicing his Billy Blanks impression Josh was awake enough to care. He finally felt the Baby move for the first time, which got me all excited. However, my tummy started rumbling right after and he said he couldn’t tell the difference between “hungry” and “baby”. That’s OK. I couldn’t tell the difference at first either.
Since nobody is awake and nothing is going on, we got to just talk and enjoy each other’s company. That was nice.
But my favorite thing is that Josh tells me things late at night that he normally wouldn’t bother to tell me. The funny thing is it’s usually important stuff. Like “oh honey, I spent $400 today, OK?” or “by the way, your mom called and your sister had her baby last night” (that didn’t actually happen, did it Kate/Nate?) this time it was “oh yeah….by the way…. I beat Zelda tonight.” This was the moment that I really really woke up. As in jumped up and down on the bed, shouted “waaahoooo!!!!!!!” and told him we needed to party. He thought that 3am was not an appropriate time to party, but I know better.  You should probably know that Zelda has the world’s most annoying sound effects and music (seriously, singing wolves & flutes DO NOT count as “good background noise”). Also you should know that when Josh gets into something he has the ability to totally forget that anything else exists. So for the past 4 months, once he starts, I won’t see him again for hours. HOURS. Because he’s busy “almost beating this level.” Or “getting to a good saving place.” Him beating Zelda is better for our marriage than…..I dunno…..better than getting rid of all our tvs, better than leaving on vacation for a week with no cell phones, better than moving away from the inlaws and being grownups by ourselves, better than ANYTHING. No other Nintendo game has ever made me want to party at 3am. I haven't felt like this since Josh graduated from UCMT I almost think an "I beat Zelda" party would be appropriate.....would you come?
6:00 came mighty early. Aundrea asked if I was sick or tired or both this morning – I always get nervous when those are the first words out of her mouth because it means (although she'd never say it outloud) I look as bad as I feel. *sigh* Tonight will be better.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bear Lake

I can't believe I'd never been to Bear Lake before Josh. How do you live your whole life and not experience views like this?

Of course we did come down long enough to play:

Mostly I sat in the sun.....

...Because Dr. Man said I'm not allowed to go wave-running. 
Did you know pregnant ladies can't go wave-running? Who knew?

I did get to help Josh dig a big hole to sit in.....
And I got to eat some dang good pizza.
So even though the trip was short - it was a blast. It's always nice to go someplace beautiful and soak in the view.


Sometimes Josh & I ditch work to go to the movies.

But this time we had the day off for our anniversary and couldn't think of anything better to do than go see Harry Potter. So we did.

Then we went mini golfing.

We document "holes in 2" where I come from.

Except Josh. He documents holes in one.

We were behind a big group of little kids...we had time to take pictures.
After the movie, and the minigolfing we decided to be grownups and got some shopping done. 
Nothing says romance like Costco. 
It was a great anniversary - not like a trip to Alaska, but a great day anyway.

Belly Shot - Take 2

This is 27 weeks. 
Yeah, that's right, 27. 
As is "40 minus 27 equals 13".
Yesterday was the 20th. 
As in "T minus 3 months". 
Are you sensing the panic in my voice fingers? (...whatever.)
Can you tell how many things I haven't done?
Are you laughing because you've been waiting for this moment?
Do you think it's funny that I have made zero life decisions about what to do post-baby?
Are you picturing the hilarious blog posts about how I can't handle it?
Are you laughing because you know I have a plant in my living room containing like 10 gallons of dirt....just sitting on my floor looking lovely waiting to prove how baby-unwise I really am?
Can you tell I haven't cleaned the cracks and crevices of my home that I really need to clean?
Do you realize you haven't seen any pictures of the beautiful nursery my child will call home? And did you realize that you haven't seen pictures because it doesn't exist now and probably never will?
Did you remember that Josh still has the "no buying anything big (bigger than a breadbox) in case we move" edict in effect?

On a slightly less hysteric note: I'm slightly prettier than last time, right? Other than the fact that I only have lip gloss on my lower left lip, and my eyes are screaming "I kill you!" I think it's a pretty great picture. Even if I don't get to show off how cute my shower curtain is....

Things that grow - the truth revealed

Remember how excited I was about my bucket garden? OK OK, and maybe I was a little proud.....I can't help it, when I'm creating something beautiful, I get a little proud.

Immediately after planting our beautiful strawberry plants we had some strawberries grow - and they were good. We picked maybe 4-5/day and we thrilled and couldn't wait for when they really "came on".

We're still waiting for that "coming on" business....currently the leaves are brown and look like they've been torched. Do you think our neighbors are scaling the wall and taking a blow-torch to the leaves while we're gone during the day?  Maybe tonight I'll swallow my pride and take a picture to show you just how sad they are. But this post is about my tomatoes.

We saw our tomatoes growing and had a little party for the first green one. And by "had a little party" I mean "opened the fridge and ate big beautiful store-bought tomato thinking about the day I'd have a fresh tomato from my very own plant".

The tomato and squash plants get droopy every day, so we water them (a lot) every day and we worry that they are getting too much sun and not enough water (or too much water and not enough sun....but when they look burned and droopy and the soil is dry we tend to think not enough water, too much sun), but all those worries floated away when Josh brought this beauty in from the garden yesterday.

Ain't she purty?
Awww...but don't be too quick to judge - the beauty of this tomato is really just evidence of my incredible photography skills. 
You wanna see the ugly truth?

I know what you're thinking: "My goodness she has a lovely thumb!" but try to look past that and focus on the tomato, which is the subject of this post.
Something is horribly horribly wrong and to be honest, I haven't the slightest idea what it is. Of course my first inclination is to call it a fluke (because I'm a tolerator and I tolerate.) but science (and the fact that Josh brought in 3 more just like it last night) is forcing me to evaluate.
Could it be the big stinky truck that drives through our neighborhood each night spraying for mosquitoes?  Or perhaps the fact that I live in the middle of an industrial park and am surrounded by refineries.  Maybe it's the lack of sun, the bucket it too small, I'm not giving the plants enough love and attention, they're too thirsty to grow?
Clearly this is not a phase a tomato can "grow out of" it's ugliness is permanent and will spread to the others if we allow it. The rotting bottom is evidence of.....I don't know what, but it certainly ain't purty.
This much I know is true: I am capable of growing a garden all by myself. I've done it before. Remember the cucumbers from 2 years ago? That was a great year, we couldn't even keep up with all the things that grew. We constantly had fresh produce rotting on our counter because we couldn't eat it fast enough.  I know it does't sound pleasant, but it was.
Somehow this year's efforts are not as fruitful. Which means that my mom (who I love) is going to have a lot more "help" using the harvest from her garden this year. 
Also it reminds us why sometimes it's not a great idea to "buy local" cuz sometimes local isn't better. (see photographic evidence above)

Monday, July 20, 2009

One time....

One time (three years ago) Josh and I got married:

It was all about the.....
A tiny bit of shade
And an awful lot of sun
Little boys
Big boys
A little dancing
A lotta kissing
Splashing (shhh...don't tell my mom)

And most importantly, 
The Temple, MY temple.
What more could a girl ask for?
The last 3 years have been amazing, and whether we spend the next 3 in Utah or Montana (or in a van down by the river); whether we're rich or poor; whether we have an obvious adventure or just a regular old boring adventure; whether or not we remember every day how much we love each other; and whether or not we always get banana pancakes to pretend like it's the weekend.....with or without any of those things, I will always be glad we made the choices we made 3 year ago. Because that was the smartest thing I've ever done (granted, it's only been 24 years...I have plenty of time to think of something smarter....) and that one thing has made me happier than any other thing ever could.
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