Wednesday, October 29, 2008
For those of you whose children have experienced trauma, I would recommend trying fish oil if your children show the same behaviors as TM. It's been a very good thing for us. Actually the best combination has been fish oil plus a tablet form of acidophilus. Acidophilus helps promote serotonin (the chemical that contributes to feelings of happiness and contentment) production in the brain. Children who have experienced trauma often have lower than normal levels of serotonin and giving their serotonin levels a boost helps to boost positive feelings. I have found Deborah Gray's book, Nurturing Adoptions: Creating Resilience after Neglect and Trauma, to be a very valuable book.
Oh, back to the bathrooms. I'm not sure if it will make anyone feel better or not, but to those of you with fewer bathrooms than we have (which I realize is nearly the entire world), having more bathrooms does not stop the jumping around in agony outside the bathroom door. It would seem that each child develops his or her own favorite bathroom and becomes incapable of using any other bathroom. The child would rather wait...and sometimes wait too long...just to use the bathroom of his or her choice. Even if there is an available bathroom not more than 20 feet away!
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
In the great scheme of ER visits, this was pretty short and easy. The cut was too deep and pulling open too much for the ER staff to glue it back together, so K ended up with 7 stitches. The worst part for him was having to be strapped into the papoose. I admit to stepping out of the room. I didn't really want to watch (unlike M who was disappointed there was no hand mirror so she could watch as they were stitching her up a couple of years ago). I also didn't want him to associate the trauma of being strapped in a papoose with me, either. We are at a great spot right now and I would much prefer to be viewed as the person who swoops in and rescues him when it's all over. We even made it home in time for us all to be on time to our children's choir rehearsal this afternoon. But, really, I'm done, truly and completely done with doctors and hospitals and emergency rooms. I know that 4 visits to the ER over the course of 15 1/2 years of parenting is pretty good, but if our current rate of visit continues, we will have more than made up for the first 13 1/2 ER-free years.
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Also note the sporty new haircuts. J is getting a lot more haircutting practice these days. B isn't sure he wants to be a practice subject, but then his bread business supplies him with a modest income so he can spring for his own haircut. (Which I wish he would do soon. It's becoming increasingly more difficult to find his eyes under all his hair.)
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
No, what I want is a book that discusses what makes a home. How do we go about turning the set of rooms we live in into a place of comfort and refreshment? I want a book that reinforces the importance of making a home and provides encouragement in doing so. I want less mechanics and more thought. I want something that feeds my soul while it encourages me to feed the souls of my family. The best example I can think of is Edith Schaeffer's The Hidden Art of Homemaking. But surely, she is not the only one to write such a book. I'm beginning to think I may have to write it myself.
One more quibble about the BH&G book I first mentioned. The section on household help belonged more in the universe of television than in the real world. First, families in this book's world have 3 children at the most, and then, the writing makes it sound as though the mother is totally overworked. Second, the idea that hiring outside help is unaffordable for some doesn't exist...no mention is ever made that this might not be economically feasible for some. And third, this book seems to inhabit a world where children are merely a thing, something you acquire because it's nice to have. Why do I say this? Because, right there in the household help section, along with window cleaners, cleaning ladies, and upholstery maintenance person, is child care provider. It truly does look like children are merely one more thing that requires cleaning and maintenance. Surely children and their care warrant a different level of importance. In fact, it seems that a section devoted to the care of children would make more sense than a few throw away comments that would indicate you should give the same amount of thought to the question of who cares for the children as to who washes the windows. Who knows, maybe they're really expensive windows....
Thursday, October 09, 2008
But, I have been blessed with a terrific sense of peace. I know that we are in God's hands and that He will take care of us. So, instead of dwelling on yuckiness, I want to dwell on my blessings. There are so many, but I will only list the top 10. 1) I am married to, arguably, the greatest husband in the world. 2) We have seven healthy, beautiful children whom we love and enjoy. 3) M's knee continues to recover. She can now bend it and use it in ways she hasn't been able to since May. 4) We are able to eat three meals a day and pay our bills. 5) We have wonderful friends and family living both near and far who love us and whom we love. 6) We live in a house with ample space, both for living in and for providing hospitality. 7) My parents have given J and I a gift of a four day trip to New York City next June. We will be joining them for when the choir from my dad's church goes to sing in a concert at Carnegie Hall. Plus, J's brother and his wife (my blog designer) have agreed to care for our children while we're there. 8) We live in an culturally diverse area rich in museums, parks, and culture. 9) The teen years of our children (at least those who have reached this point) have been a joy. We are constantly amazed at these two young adults...at their self-assurance, at their compassion, and at their love for their siblings and others. And 10) That libraries are still free and we live 1/2 a block from one. I know this doesn't seem to carry the same weight as the others, but when a family reads as much as we all do, it becomes one of the necessities of life.
Saturday, October 04, 2008
I rest in His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.
On Christ the solid rock I stand,
All other ground is shifting sand,
All other ground is shifting sand.
His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He still is all my hope and stay.
On Christ the solid rock I stand,
All other ground is shifting sand,
All other ground is shifting sand."
Thursday, October 02, 2008
Imagine my chagrin when the pediatric orthopedist was showing us the pictures he took of her knee during surgery (yes, we now have pictures of the underside of M's kneecap...I wonder how we should frame them?), and told us how she injured her knee. Yes, you guessed it, her kneecap had slid out of joint and when it popped back into to place it sheared off a 1.5 cm piece of cartilage from the end of her femur. The surgeon was able to remove the cartilage, and although she has some scarring where it was broken off, it shouldn't affect her. We are thankful it was in a part of her knee that is not weight bearing. If it had been, it would have had far more serious consequences.
M continues to recuperate nicely. Her knee is a little painful, but very manageable. She is able to move around pretty easily and has some crutches if she needs them. (TM and D are very jealous of the crutches.) We are also now the proud owners of the Polar 300. It is really just a cooler with a hose and a pump that circulates ice water through a tube to a wrap that goes around her knee. It is to help the swelling, though it is covered with warning labels that frostbite may occur if used improperly. Since I'm sure we paid the equivalent to at least a month's worth of groceries to own this glorious contraption, I've been trying to think of some practical use for it when M's knee is all healed. I'm not planning on anyone having anymore injuries, so its intended use is out. Any ideas?
So, having made it through M's surgery, I can go back to worrying about other things...the roof we can't afford to replace, IL's adoption laws and my realization that we may be done adopting unless we decide to move, the property tax bill that's coming (moving may not be such a bad idea), and so on. Perhaps the surgery was a nice mental break...it was at least a change.