Saturday, March 22, 2014

Miss Perfection



There she is.  You all know who I'm talking about.  She's the mom in the school drop-off lane who has, once again, managed to make workout clothes look like a Vogue inspired wardrobe masterpiece.  Her hair is perfectly sculpted; make up is runway ready.  She has seemingly perfected the morning routine, and will probably dash off to go train somewhere for her 4th marathon once the kids reach the school doors. 

Even though I, myself, do not endure the drop-off race at school (as my kids are not yet school age), does not mean I am void of "Miss Perfection's" presence in my life.  In fact, she's everywhere.  Miss Perfection is at the gym, quietly mocking my exercise efforts.  She is at the grocery store, staring judgmentally at the bag of chips placed in my cart.  Miss Perfection is even in my home, disapprovingly hovering over the pile of laundry I have yet to fold and put away.  Yes, Miss Perfection IS everywhere, haunting my every move.  She has become the poster child of everything negative in my life, and quite frankly, I'm tired of it.

You see, in recent months I have felt an overwhelming heaviness.  A heavy load of emotions stemming from the notion that I am just not enough.  It seems as though my Facebook page has exploded with pictures of people displaying their recent weight loss in before and after pictures.  There is a constant influx of ads and news articles featuring dramatic headlines of "Lose 20 pounds in 20 days!" or "Look how easy it is to burn that belly fat with these 3 simple steps!"  In an effort to escape being sucked in, I head over to Pinterest, which turns out to be an even bigger vortex.  After scrolling through HUNDREDS of posts, eagerly pinning a majority of them, I am left feeling inadequate. 

In my quest to piece together (through multiple pin ideas) my "dream home", all I see is that right now I don't have the dream home.  I don't have photo galleries hung on every wall.  I don't have the perfectly organized toy room for my kids to enjoy.  Nor do I have a glass kitchen floor that looks down into my basement pool (really??).  I lose sight of the fact that I have a beautiful home, when so many don't have that luxury yet.  Although it is not perfectly organized, my kids do have a toy room that they enjoy even though the room doesn't have a theme or color scheme even.  I don't have a pool in my yard, let alone my basement, I have a HUGE backyard that my kids love to explore.  I lose sight of those things because of this twisted idea of perfection that looms large in my head.

Some of you, (whoever you are) might read this and think, "Andrea, you're just jealous of these women losing weight.  You're just envious of people that have what you don't."  To that I say you're absolutely right.  I am jealous.  I am envious.  But I am tired of feeling bad about things I can't or don't have, and I am tired of feeling inadequate for things that are not realistic in my life.  So today, I am saying stop.  Today, I am saying no. 

Today I am saying no to trying to achieve the perfect body.  I am saying no to shedding tears over not losing any weight.  Instead, I am saying yes to health.  Today I am saying yes to making the healthiest decisions possible, but allowing for a dose of reality every once in awhile. Because you know what?  On an emotionally draining day, or a fun family outing, I am going to eat a brownie, or an ice cream cone and yes, I will finish the chicken nugget off my kids plate.  That's just life. 

Today I am saying no to the idea that what I have is not enough.  I am saying no to DIY everything, along with the concept of "dream home, dream yard, dream wardrobe" etc.  Today I am saying yes to counting my blessings and appreciating what I already have, even though it's not perfect.  While I would love to make every single item of clothing for my family, orchestrate the most picture-perfect family photo, and cook up culinary masterpieces for dinner, I just can't.  Instead I'm going to shop smart with the budget we have.  I'm going to keep taking the flash pictures of kids zooming by, and I am going to enjoy a peanut butter and jelly sandwich kind of meal every so often because that's who I am and that is okay.

What I'm really trying to say here, is that somewhere along the line our perception of how we should be and how we run our lives has become massively distorted.  I applaud people for losing weight, being able to completely organize their home and maintain it.  I clap for people who seem to have it all figured out, I really do.  All I'm saying is that I don't have it all figured out, and probably never will.  I am realizing that that is okay.  I am realizing that my worth is more than the unattainable "perfect body."  My worth is more than the clothes pile up invading my laundry room.  And my worth is more than any disapproving look received from "Miss Perfection."

So who's with me?  Who is ready to say no to all the things weighing you down?  And who's ready to start saying yes to being "good enough"?

Monday, January 21, 2013

Its Been A While

We've been away from the blog for a while but our kids are up to a lot. Here is a short video of some of the things we have been learning while we've been away. Lots to learn and the kids turn two this week! By the way the marching in the video is because we were watching dumbo and it was the elephants on parade part and they got up and started marching.

MVI 4125 from Tyler Young on Vimeo.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Emery the Brave

What a week it has been!!  Let me start from the beginning...At about 13 months our sweet little Emery started the journey of complete mobility by walking.  She did what most kids do when they're learning; she hobbled, she bobbled, and she fell down...a lot.  At first we thought it was cute, but after a month she was still hobbling and bobbling; not getting any better at stabilizing or walking on her own.  Tyler and I grew concerned and called the pediatrician.  One of the nurses reassured us that "all kids wobble and fall down, that's just part of learning to walk."  We understood that, but in our gut we knew something was wrong.  In April we finally scheduled an appointment with an orthopedic specialist and had Emery checked out.  Sure enough, something was wrong.  Emery had what is called hip dysplasia, which basically means her right hip had been dislocated since birth without anyone catching it.  She would need surgery as soon as possible.
   After playing a big cat and mouse game with the surgeon's office to finally establish her surgery date, it was set for June 5 (just a couple days ago).  We had about a month and half to prepare her, and let's be honest, ourselves for her surgery.  We played outside a lot, went swimming, went for walks, and toured a couple of new playgrounds.  We wanted her to have a summer as much as she could before she'd be stuck recovering.
   June 5 arrived, and before we knew it we were arriving at Children's Hospital at 5:30 a.m to get the ball rolling.  Emery made LOTS of new friends while waiting to be taken back to the operating room.  Every nurse, doctor, and technician that entered the room would get a warm greeting from Emery, arms outstretched and a big grin on her face. They told us that wasn't common; most 16 month olds run from the scary people in scrubs.  :)  At about 7:30 they informed us that it was go time, and Emery would need to head back to the operating room.  I don't think anyone can fully prepare you for watching as your child is put under and you are whisked away.  She just looked so small on that big hospital bed, and confused as to what was going on.  The anesthesiologist placed a small mask over her face, which she fought, and then turned the gas on.  She swatted at the mask and started to cry...I think at this point I was a mess too, and even Tyler was shedding some tears.  Before we were taken out, the anesthesiologist whispered, "I just want you to know we've all fallen in love with your daughter.  We'll take good care of her."  That is exactly what this mother needed to hear.  Take care of my baby, because I am helpless and heartbroken for her.

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The surgery lasted a little over 4 hours, but everything went well.  They had to cut some tendon and ligaments, shorten her femur, and install a plate to take the pressure off of her hip socket.  Now is the hard part.  She is in a full body cast (armpits to ankles), with a bar in between her legs to stabilize the cast. 
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She's a bit awkward to hold, because of the cast, but I am just grateful we are still able to hold her and snuggle with her as best we can.  Her brothers like to throw stuff at her and hit her cast, but they can also be really sweet sometimes, patting her back, handing her toys, and sitting with her.  She will be in the cast for 3 months, so we have a long summer ahead of us.  However, with the help of my parents and other family, along with amazing friends, we'll get through this!  

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Sunday, February 5, 2012

The 3 Littles Turn the BIG 1!!!!

I was warned. People said it would happen, but I just didn't believe them. I mean could a WHOLE year really go by quickly?? I didn't think so, but boy was I WRONG! The first year of parenthood was an absolute blur. Each of the babies have come so far...Tyler and I have come so far. I can honestly say this has been THE most challenging year of my life, but it has also been the most rewarding.

To think back on this year is kind of bitter sweet. They have gone from being in the NICU, looking like tiny little peanuts and barely able to finish a 1 ounce bottle, to strong, healthy, little goof ball 1 year olds!

There were times when I wanted to give up. There were times I lost my patience. There were times I needed to cry. There were times I felt discouraged. I was only able to make it through because the Lord gave me the capacity to endure each day, whatever came, and because I have the most wonderful partner in all of this...Tyler. He was born to be a daddy, and I could not be more thankful to have him as the father of my children. His patience is endless, his love is unconditional, and his service is given freely.

So in honor of our 3 little loves, here's some stats on each of them to bring you all up to date. :)

Emery-
Nickname: Sweet baby girl
Weight: 18 pounds
Favorite Toy/Activity: For their birthday, the kids got a stuffed rocking horse. Emery does NOT like animal toys that move or make sounds...she crawls in the opposite direction crying. Well, this rockin' rider does both- moves and sings a song. It took Tyler an HOUR to even get her to go near the thing, and another 20 minutes to get her to sit on it. FINALLY she started to ride the horse, and now loves it! She even does a little shoulder shimmy dance every time the song comes on. :)

Aiden-
Nickname: Bubbs
Weight: 18 pounds
Favorite toy/Activity: Aiden LOVES this little blanket that has a stuffed monkey attached to it! He carries it everywhere and even eats with it...SO cute!!

Landon-
Nickname: handsome BubbaLou
Weight: 21 pounds
Favorite toy/activity: Landon loves Legos...he loves chewing on them, slobbering all over them...everything! Tyler will build him some sort of structure and then for like 20 minutes Landon will pull off each Lego until it's completely destroyed. I gotta say, I'm a fan too...it keeps him occupied and out of trouble! :)

Here are some pictures from their "Survivor" themed 1st birthday party:

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I made onesies for each of the kids that said Survivor #1, Survivor #2, Survivor #3

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I made Tyler and I both shirts that said, "I survived..." on the front, and "our triplets' first year", on the back. Each kid had their own little cake, plus I made a big one that said "We Survived". For a decoration, we taped up a bunch of pictures chronicling their first year.

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Each of the the birthday kids with their crown...

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Cake is YUMMY!!

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Enjoying their birthday presents from Grandma!!!