Thursday, January 1, 2009

caterpillar to butterfly

I don't know about you, but I am GLAD that 2008 is gone. Granted, one of the biggest blessings in our family life happened with the addition of Cora! Nonetheless, I'm more than ready to start a new year.

Last week, one of our pastors spoke about making 2009 a year of Transformation within ourselves. He likened our lives as Christians to the transformation of a caterpillar to a butterfly... I enjoyed this analogy.

I don't like to make resolutions. I prefer to set goals and work on objectives toward reaching said goals. Yeah, I know it's the same thing.

So I've listed some goals for my own, personal Year of the Butterfly. I'm first to recognize that I will not be perfect in these areas. But I will celebrate every baby step I achieve. Plus, by putting these here on the ol' blog, all you 3 people that read it might help me stay accountable. heh.

This year, I will strive to be:
- a child of God that actually listens to my Father speak to me through His Word
- one that will also talk back to Him through prayers and intercessions
- a loving, giving, content wife
- a FUN mom that doesn't yell and lose her patience at the drop of a hat
- the kind of friend with whom others actually want to be friends
- a person who only speaks when what's going to be said is thoughtful and considerate
- healthy; one who treats my body the way it deserves to be treated
- one who loves God and others unconditionally
- one who forgives others, just as my Savior has done for me

The old is gone, as of last night. The new begins today. I'm excited.

Monday, September 29, 2008

sleeping angels

Once again, I'm entering a contest at one of my favorite sites,
But I couldn't just pick one sleeping pic because they are both angels!

Madison is asleep in the car. During the day.
I can count on one hand how many times she's done that in her whole life!
Cora is crashed in her bed. Without swaddling -- a rare event, too.
What I love most about both pix is that these girls are crashed because they've been living their sweet little lives to the fullest!! Madison is sleeping after a road trip to see great friends, and just look at Cora's little red knees... she's been BUSY!
So the contest is to win a beautiful bedroom set -- we'd love to win the Lily Rose -- so go ahead and enter your angels, too!!
PS... I'm doing better. I'll elaborate more soon, but want to thank you for your prayer, links, emails and love. You are all the best.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


No, not that kind. PADS is an acronym for Post Adoption Stress Disorder. Didja ever hear of it? Me neither.

Most people probably haven't noticed that I've not been 'right' for most of 2008. I can go through the motions with the best of 'em. And I know I need to do the necessities -- getting to where I need to be when I need to be there. Plus I've gotten good at putting on The Happy Face so that I look like the blessed, happy mommy that I should be. But I'm not.

And now I know why. I have a name for my radical emotions. And maybe I can STOP IT THIS INSTANT. Okay, probably not this instant. But at least now I know I'm not crazy. Or alone. And I have a path to hopefully follow.

Can I just say? God is incredible.

He knew how I was suffering long before today. He's kept me surrounded by the love/support of true friends. He continues to envelope me with a family who loves me unconditionally; including two daughters who don’t judge my tirades. And long ago He gave me a husband who is the. most. patient. loving. tolerant. human being in the world.

As if I’m not blessed enough, He has also opened doors to new friends galore. I have a new book club group, new MOPS group, new Bible study group and some new blogging buddies that live in town and love coffee as much as me. It’s this last group that led to my discovery of PADS, in the most round-about of ways.

I am not a great blogger. I don’t post everyday. Or every week. I have a total of 43 posts in 19 months. But I read other blogs. A lot. And I "meet" new people all the time.

Addie was one of the first blogs I read since I actually know her and all. Eventually, I started going through her blogroll and reading some she recommended. That’s how I met Shalee. Since I enjoyed reading Shalee's posts so much, I looked in her blog list and saw some that were also in Addie’s. I started reading more and more different blogs. Eventually I found Lifenut. I don’t know her but we have a lot in common.

Today, she posted at another site – Mile High Mama’s. After reading her post, I read down that page to this post. Intrigued, I went to that blogger’s homepage. And read the posts that put a name to these crazy thoughts I’ve been having, justifies the emotions I’ve been experiencing, gives reason to my not wanting to clean my house (I know!), clean bottles or even clean myself many days.

Once I had a name for this 'syndrome' I went on a web-search. Oh, I had looked online numerous times in the last several months… for things like “depression after adoption” and “post partum depression for adoptive moms.” I found some articles, but never did I find the wealth of info I found today. And while, certainly, not ALL of it applies to me, a lot of it sure does.

Here’s some of what I found out about PADS from some great sites:
“The public and medical attitudes toward (post partum depression) are a far cry from the silence and secrecy that surround a much more pervasive problem – Post Adoption Depression Syndrome (PADS).”

“In many cases, after enduring years of disappointment with infertility, family members don't understand why the new mother isn't completely happy and content now that she finally has what she's wanted for so long. Rather than disappoint and confound her family, many new adoptive moms simply suffer in silence, filled with shame and guilt, feeling themselves imperfect or selfish.”

“PADS can range from a full-blown episode of severe depression that requires hospitalization or just a simple case of the blues that lasts a month or two. The few scientific studies of PADS indicate that over half of adoptive mothers experience it.”

Amazing, huh? And there's a lot more like it. I'm not alone.

It took a complete stranger to help me. A complete stranger that I met through a series of complete strangers. That I met through a friend from my church. I don’t know what you’d call that, but I call it a God-thing. A Lovingkindness. A heap of blessings that I needed RIGHT NOW.

Thanks, God.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Tulsa... or rather Broken Arrow

I got side-tracked and forgot to blog about our trip to Oklahoma last month.

Some of our closest friends, K, E, T & A, moved to Broken Arrow, outside of Tulsa, a little more than 3 years ago. We visit them as much as we can; including every August when we drive down so Tuck & K can drive on to TX and ride a (crazy) bike ride called the Hotter ‘n Hell Hundred. It’s a 100-mile bike ride through TX prairie land… in August… and from what I hear, it’s HOT. Hence the name.

Anyway, while the dads are gone we moms & kids stay in OK and play! There should be a slide show at the end of this post...

We went to this monstrous pizza place – think D@ve & Busters for kids that’s faaarrr better than our local CEC with the giant singing mouse. Not only does it have games for tickets that can be traded for priceless trinkets, it has a small bowling alley, bumper cars, mini golf and even an indoor race track. And the food is great. In the slide show you’ll see Cora’s thoughts on the whole thing (she’s sleeping!).

We also melted at the Tulsa Zoo. It is a beautiful zoo and had an incredible traveling bird exhibit, but it was hot and HUMID. Imagine one of our worst summer days in KS and multiply it by 100. You’ll see some perspiration on my nice gray shirt in those pix… and my poor girls sopping wet with their own. But it truly was fun!

I asked Madison her favorite part of the weekend, and she said “all of it” (amen!), but specifically when E pulled her tooth, when A’s bird, Nonie, landed on her head, jumping on the trampoline with A, cooking with Aunt E and she really loved hanging with Aunt E’s sister, C. She played Frisbee with C’s dog, drilled holes, used a nail gun, rode on her motorcycle and basically got away with pretty much ANYthing she wanted.

Cora can’t talk, but it was quite obvious how much she enjoyed the constant attention, hanging out on the bright towels and how much she LOVED being buck naked on the front lawn! She could not get over the texture of Oklahoma grass.

My favorite part of the whole weekend would have to be Saturday evening. It rained that morning which had actually cooled things off instead of making it mucky, like around here. We hung out in the hand-made Adirondack chairs and just SAT. Of course there was our constant chatter, lots of laughing, bunches of photos and there might possibly have been a glass or two of wine for those over 21. Then we made our home-made fudge – which I always used to do with A & T when they were Maddie’s age & beyond. The whole evening was my own personal heaven.

I hate that these guys have to live 4 hours away from us now. But it sure gives us unforgettable times to treasure. While we barely saw K or T (he’s is a 16-year-old-boy, after all), in many ways this trip was better than the others. Madison was old enough to really appreciate it, Cora slept well and was happy as could be and I got to be with some of my favorite people on the planet.

Friday, September 5, 2008

baby girl's name

I got an email about the baby's name that I could be heard saying in the video on my last post. I've actually been asked this many times before so I thought I'd explain.

I haven't posted her full name because I don't want a specific guy to Go*gle her and find out details about us, but her name is C o r a l a i n e. Clearly in reality there are no spaces in her name. It is pronounced Cora-lane, emphasis on the 2nd syllable.

When we found out we were likely getting a girl, we had no girl names we could agree upon. Tuck was attached to the name Cora (have you seen Last of the Mohicans? one of his FAVs). While I love the name, we know several Cora's and I wanted something unique like our names this time (poor Madison). Plus I fell in love with the name Delainey; I thought we could call her Lainey.

One night (actually Feb 8... I know, it's scary), we were chatting when Tuck asked "what still needs to be done before Cora comes home?" I told him that we still needed to find a changing table for "Lainey." Rolling his eyes, Tuck reminded me that we'd discussed using one of my grandma's old dressers from my folks' basement for "Cora."

Silence. Then I suggested maybe we should name her Lainey Cora. I think I actually heard Tuck's eyes rolling that time. So I said, "you'd probably prefer Cora Lainey."

Picture both of us looking at each other as if saying, "Hey, that's not bad!" We both kept repeating Cora... laine... Cora....laine.... Cora...laine.

It was settled. As it turns out, her name is as unique as she is.

PS -- Although Madison's name isn't unique, I'm quite sure there are no Maddie Claire's like ours.
PPS -- It's funny that I don't call the baby Lainey at all. She simply isn't a Lainey.
PPS -- Her middle name is Hope, based upon the life verse we've chosen for her.