living after the death of a baby, living with Autism, living as a family of six, living on our organic homestead, living miserably, hopefully, and with joy, and somedays just living

Archive for July, 2008

Is finding yourself pregnant more than once RED?

Okay so I used red as the anti-Green colour simply because it is the opposite of green.  I have so much to blog about our anniversary date, Natalia’s birthday and Elijah’s move into real underwear, but as I was gardening today this came to mind.

Sometime ago in the green movement it was said that it was ecologically unsound and very un-Green of you to have more than one child, that somehow reduce, reuse, recycle was applicable to children too.  The true Greenies will let you have more than one kid if you adopt, preferably internationally from a third world country, I’m not sure if this is reuse or recycle, reuse I guess, I’d hate to think of how we would recycle kids.  Actually the above is probably not true, the true Greenies will likely never have kids for fear that they might undo all of his/her good work.

So when people, may I ask, did the planet become more important that the people inhabiting it?  Should we encourage people to take drastic measures if their carbon footprint is above a certain level?  Don’t get me wrong I love our planet, and I am thoroughly disgusted at is abuse, I recycle, try and limit my purchases, hang my laundry outside to dry, and I unfortunately shower less than I’d like cause I often run out of time in the day, and sleep outrules dirty.  But I fail to see how my creating life, and life is beautiful, as a point that some feel they ought to use against me, to accuse me even, as being irresponsible.  If I have five kids who I teach to be good environmental stewards, and you have one who isn’t, don’t I win?

The point was recently brought to my attention that large families living on modest means are likely more sound environmentally unintentionally, by not having the extra money, lights have to be turned off when you’re not using them, clothes are bought second hand or simply passed down until the print on the t-shirt is so obscured by stains that one can no longer determine what it was, car pooling is a must, and food is not wasted, but rather made into that yummy leftover casserole every Friday night.  These things aren’t done solely to be green, but rather as a means to stretch a dollar.

The whole thing leaves me feeling like I no longer want to be apart of the Green movement, sometime ago I heard that some people where trying to make Blue the new Green because it’s the colour of the sky and the colour of our planet as observed from space. I sure hope that the Blue movement has room for my kids, so I can be Blue.  I also hope that the Blue movement will be about more than the finger pointing that some Greens are doing.


nothing/somethings new

I haven’t had much to write about lately, so I guess I’ll just update you all on the mundane.  My headaches are somewhat better, not gone, still daily, but better.  Hopefully the neurologist will have some insights/cure.

We’ve fished building our patio and gazebo out back so now I have a wonderful space to sit and  relax, we can’t wait for you to come visit so we can share it.  I’ve also been gardening up a storm this year, and I find I quite like it.

Elijah is doing better some days, worse others. He is a full emotion package,  Hopefully we can get him enrolled into a speech therapy integrated preschool.  But we have to wait until august to have him evaluated and the developmental pediatrician our regular peds doc sent us to isn’t taking appointments until October.  So it feels a bit like were sitting on our hands.

Kyle and I’s 10th anniversary is just around the corner.  I had hoped to take a trip with him just the two of us to get away and reconnect, but he didn’t want to leave the kids, so I think we’ll just have an evening out.  It feels like a lifetime ago we were married not just ten years.  And in many ways it was a lifetime ago a different life.  How I ever got so lucky as to find ‘the one” I’ll never know, but he changed me in so many wonderful ways it’s hard to imagine I ever had a life without him.  He drives me crazy because were such different people, but I love him to an endless depth and he makes me better for it.  And it doesn’t hurt that he helped to create four of the most beautiful babies I’ve ever had the chance to hold, and most of them are becoming such delightful little people.

Natalia is about to turn one and baby fever is starting to set in again.  She’s amazing, she’s been walking for months and is starting to talk already.  She loves her brother and sister like crazy always traipsing after them and such.  Natalia really does seem more like a toddler than a baby.

I miss not being at home a lot, but were having a great time here, too bad Kyle is about to start work again soon.

MISS you ALL terribly can’t wait to see and embrace you again.


When in Rome

What does a quintet of Canadians do on the 4th of July? Why don our red white and blues and join the festivities.  The 4th started first thing in the morning with firecrackers randomly going off throughout the neighbourhood all day.  We worked on the Patio and played in the yard, we had Dominos for lunch and grilled hot dogs and hamburgers for dinner, adding to the very noticeable smell of outdoor cooking to our neighbourhood.

We waited until after dinner to tell the kids about staying up past bedtime and watching the fireworks as we would have been hounded with the question “are we going to fire works da-mom?”  all day otherwise.  Da-Mom is Petra’s confused name for us. Sometimes while talking to Kyle or I, and she’s not sure who she’s talking to you get a bit of both, Ma-Dad is Kyles name.

After dinner we put on their tee shirts and Natalia’s dress and got ready to go see the fireworks.  The kids shirts have a silhouette of the USA done in an aged stars and stripes and was printed Faded Glory 2008 in text underneath, which Kyle took an ironic pleasure in.  We opted to go to a local suburb for the fireworks they had planned, as the city of Chicago was planing on 1.2 million viewers in Grant Park downtown.  No thank you, not for us this year. Oaklawn’s show was amazing, nearly as good as Edmonton’s downtown show.

While waiting for dusk in the high school football field they had a band playing music and the kids ran around.  By this point the fire crackers and random fireworks from houses in the neighbourhood began to roar.  The Show was amazing!  It was more entertaining I think to watch Elijah’s face light up, as he echoed Boom after each one giggling. Natalia sat in her stroller trying to reach up to grab the sparkles, and Petra at their greatest intensity looked away and nuzzled into Kyle’s chest a bit afraid.  After it was all done we drove home, and to our amazement everywhere we looked fireworks from every neighbourhood lit up the sky it was non stop!  People were setting off mini shows in the streets nearly as good as the one we had just come from.  When we got home we layed our sleeping and very sleepy kids to bed with no complaints, and listened to the bewildering number of firecrackers and fireworks that continued to be lit.  When Kyle and I when to bed at midnight there was no sign of it stopping just yet, and so we fell asleep to the sound of fireworks bursting above us


The Best of the bunch to check out Elijahs reluctance of having his photo taken visit my Faceook

The best of the bunch to check out Elijah

Neurologically abnormal

So off I went to the doctor’s again to find out about my brain.  For those of you who may not know, I have been suffering debilitating headaches since May, and they are now at the point where they don’t go away.  Yes that’s right, the nausea and vertigo inducing headaches no longer cease, I wake with it, and try to fall asleep to it’s throbbings.  As a positive side affect though, I am losing weigh since eating is far from my mind at any given moment, and nothing seems appealing.

My CT scan came back normal, Praise God!  So now I’m off to the neurologist, it should be a pleasent way to spend my 10th anniversary, I think, since my apointment is on the 24th.

Until then I have started Paxil to help alleviate these chronic headaches.  Which should really be no big deal right?  But I feel strange about it. I have been though many bouts of depression in my life, some bad ,some mild, and worked it through without chemical help.  When Kate died I worked hard with two support groups, my Dr., and a personal grief therapist to make it thorough without the use of antidepressants.  I have no real reason to feel so adverse to them, I don’t view their users as weak, many people I love have or are using them. I guess I’m just reserved, worried perhaps, that I will feel better overall if I take them proving that I’m not as strong or willfully happy as I think.

And then there are the nursing concerns.  I am so happily a nursing mom that I’m not really ready to stop, and yet I certainly don’t want my baby ingesting any brain function altering drugs.  Supposedly this is a safe one, and I can still nurse, yet I’m cautious.

So all in all it’s good news, we may have found the answer in taking this new drug, we just have to wait a few weeks.  Hey, what’s a few weeks more anyway? And my CT is normal so I can stop worring about all the things those of you who know me well can imagine I was playing through my already painful head.


When did I become the parent of a Pre-schooler?  When did I stop referring to Petra and Elijah as babies, I think I still did last year, and now it would seem absurd to refer to them as babies, not to mention the scolding I would receive from them if I did.  I still feel like a new mom. weird.

We had a Pediatricians appointment yesterday and Petra answered the doctors questions herself, she didn’t cry when I told her she needed an immunization, nor when he stuck her with the needle.  And today when I dropped her off at pre-school not a tear was shed.  In fact she wouldn’t even look up for a picture.  She is very independent, yet still sticks close to her Mama as she has started to refer to me as.

We weren’t sure if we were going to even do pre-school as Elijah is not ready and I wasn’t sure that pre-school was even healthy for them.  Why ship them off to school at 3, shouldn’t I let them just be a kid?  After all kindergarten, the once thought of beginning of ones school journey, is still 2 years away.  But after thinking of setting her up for ballet we found this great pre-Art School which is exactly what I think pre-school should be.  They learn about drawing, painting, arts and crafts as well as acting, singing and dancing.  No pressure to connect the dots or recognize the alphabet, no tests or progress to track just two hours twice a week learning about how to express yourself creatively.  Great!  I did have a modicum of guilt not signing Elijah up too, but it’s not fair to hold her back or force him into an environment that he’ll fail in.

The great part is that it’s during Natalias nap, so that gives Kyle and I two full hours to just spend with Elijah.  Today we built a cardbaord car and painted it, we painted a clay dog and cat, built an alphabet puzzle, strung beads, and went for a trcycle ride.  Just Kyle and I completely focused on Elijah.  So I think until we can get his speech and occupational therapy sorted out we’re doing what he needs, focused attention.  So far the day has been really good, now if only I could turn down this headache.

The Far Away Girl

So okay I’m feeling sorry for myself again, although I’m not seeking pity, really.  Just need a place to jot down how I’m feeling, I guess.  Close the office door and cry a bit.

There is so much going on, and I speak to people so rarely that the ‘whats new?’ question is so big and complicated that I just don’t have the energy to get into it most times.  Today I think I’m just a bit lonely I really needed to go home this summer spend time with my friends, and catch them up on my life, and introduce them to my family.  Since the truth is we’ve all changed so much, very few of you know us any longer.  But the thought of a car ride headache ridden with a little boy who has a hard time adapting feels torturous to me, and I imagine it would be the same for Elijah, and flying is out of the question for us.  So were staying home, which was a relief and a heartbreak.

I’m missing so much of peoples lives it’s a bit painful I try not to think about it too much, what I’m missing that is, but the truth is this time  seems the most pivotal, things are happening, peoples lives are not just changing, but are more are less forming into new paths, and I’m not on it.  I know I’m missed and thought of often, but I’m not there.  I hear about new loves and babies that have been lovingly created,and I am full of joy at the news of it, but I’m missing seeing bellies swell with babies and getting to know the ones my friends are falling in love with.

It’s strange to think that though we are loved there is no one here to love us.  I have made one great friend and I am so grateful, she is lovely and kind, and I know she loves us, I just wish my kids could have the family, that is our friends, in their lives.

I miss summer get togethers in various back yards, Christmas Dinner, New Years parties, games nights, and the opportunity to help out with the things most of you have generously given us, help moving, painting or work on home improvements.  I miss Canadian playgrounds, swimming pools, hospitality, and Canadian air.  We love Chicago, the museums (oh the museums, wow!), downtown and mild winters, but we hate living in the USA.  We’re trying to get home, Kyle is applying for all kinds of jobs, and so I’m pressed under the stress of picking up and moving again and the thought of being stuck here.

I’m afraid that Kyle’s job is going to be listed this winter,  and he won’t be rehired which would essentially force us out of the country to try and sell our empty house of diminishing value from Canada.  I’m also afraid that we won’t find a job in Canada, he will be rehired and we’ll be forced to struggled with the education system here, the immigration issues that we have been avoiding, and whether I’ll ever be able to work again, or be forced to live within the confines of Kyle’s salary that would be 50% higher at home ( I can’t praise Canada’s education system enough now that we’re here, both their public schools and post secondary)

I love Kyle more than I ever thought I could love, but picking up and leaving to follow someone else’s dream is truthfully a bit difficult.  I would do it again in a minute and a second time if he asked, no regret, it’s just a tough thing to do.  I’m not sure I will ever get to finish school here, nor am I sure I want to work in US health care.  I feel suspended like cabbage in a Christmas gelatin salad…solid but worbbly.  I know who I am more these days and what I want, but I’m stuck as to how to play it all out.

We’ve talked a lot about Alberta’s economy and markets back home, but here it is a palpable feeling. It’s hard to explain you have to experience it.  Things are tough here no one wants to buy anything, houses sit on the market for close to, or over a year, and it is apparent that people are fearful.  If you buy a house you worry you paid too much, and if you’re selling you feel like you’ve been robbed.

I’ve tried to fill my time a bit, with kiddie gymnastics, playgroups, working as a volunteer for Birthright Chicago, trying to talk women out of abortions and find them the help and services they need to carry their babies to term, taking the kids to the aquarium, to the museum and on other  outings, but in in the end I just feel busy, not fuller, nor have I really met anyone though these endeavors.  It’s like trying to break into high school clicks allover again.

And so I think I’ll try and wrap up a bit here, I may have found that I have nothing more to moan about, though you may want to check back in five minutes for the blog entitled “oh and another thing”.  I’m not sure how often I’ll post here, and I’ll likely cause some people frustration over the fact that my entries are likely to be sporadic, but who knows I may keep it up.  Just keep checking in without expectation.  In the end it doesn’t really matter if anyone reads this. I guess it’s good to just jot it out.