IT’S A BOY!!!!
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I had a rare opportunity to go on a date with Lindy over dinner, Ruby free, meaning; no fussing, no wrangling a toddler while trying to eat, no high blood pressure -just calm, time to focus on my 6 year old.
While we were waiting outside to be seated, I checked my phone. I guess looking to see if Dale had called. Lindy wanted to play “hide the princess wand” so I obliged – all the while texting a friend some non-critical information. Checked my phone to see if my friend replied. We were sat for dinner, I checked my phone – maybe Ruby was giving Dale a hard time. Within a simple 25 minutes, I checked my phone 5 times.
Each time I thought about my phone, pangs of guilt crept up. Why do I need to check my phone right now? Can’t I eat dinner for 45 minutes without checking my phone?!! In the back of my mind, thinking of this exact blog post that I’ve wanted to write for a year. Shaking my head at myself. I’ve even tried to play the game “don’t look at my phone over dinner”.
I am sad to admit my own behavior with technology is no different than the majority in this world; my computer, facebook, my phone, – and I don’t even have a smartphone! I still just have a teenage girl texting phone! (We are cheap)
I am addicted though, needing to get my fix all the time, any time, throughout the day. Ironically, I am spending 2 hours on my computer tonight to write this post.
When I sit down and think about it, what is it that I really need from other people ALL the time? Because, that is what it is….a need to be filled by someone else. Of course, I can suggest that I check facebook ALL THE TIME so that I don’t miss ANY special announcement and so I don’t have to scroll through 25 pages worth of people’s lives to catch up from yesterday.
Because in fact, I’m only checking, texting, (I can’t even say blogging because I’m not consistent enough with it, ha), because I am filling a void in my life – filling a space, a hole. And I’m filling it with -other people.
In our world of chaos and business and tweets and texts, I believe silence is escaping our souls.
It is a stealthy (is that a word? It just doesn’t flow right) idol; we don’t think twice about browsing the internet for hours or checking our messages 10 times a day, but we are filling the void in our souls with constant connection with others.
As I sat at dinner at restaurant with my husband a few weeks ago, I looked around and I did not find more than 2 people who were distraction free, meaning they did not have a phone in hand, on the table, or vibrating in their pockets, or answered it during dinner. Who ARE we that we cannot go to dinner without having our phones on the table in front of us?!
Do you know who visits us in our silence, in the quiet spot of our souls? Our Maker. He meets us in that silence.
Now, I’m not suggesting that God doesn’t speak to us through the fabulous NIV translation on our fancy phones, but I am suggesting that technology has become such an idol in our lives, that we are forcing out the silence in our souls. We are filling it with the need to satisfy something in ourselves via facebook or mommy blogs.
I have searched myself, trying to figure out why I am so drawn to attention from “friends”, why I need to receive an update about everyone in my life constantly. It is filling a void, a craving for a relationship, that hole is one that God should be filling.
We need to INTENTIONALLY find the time to be quiet, to find rest, to meditate, to just be, and listen to God.
There is something to be said of the Amish folks who do not subscribe to email let alone cellphones like the modern world – keeping it very simple. I think we need to be different from the world and that means with our technology. Technology will only get more convoluted and intense unless you set some boundaries.
As I hear more and more about families that are giving cellphones to their 8 year old children, I am absolutely MORTIFIED. I always ask, and why? I always get the same kind of answers, but I question whether in 5 years if we will be in the same boat. I don’t want to be. I remember the days of technology free thinking and daydreaming and wondering and silence. We are raising children that won’t even know what that is!
I have had this theory, probably completely heresy, but it has been in my head for years now. Might I just suggest the Antichrist is actually technology itself. Yes, I know, ridiculous, but worth just a thought. Obviously, the Bible probably couldn’t have come out and said, “The box shaped thingy will bring worlds together”. I am not asking you to say that is true; but I have put some serious thought into the concept. I just I feel that we are letting technology creep into our souls without really understanding the spiritual consequences.
I KNOW that the void I am filling is loneliness. I am lonely all.the.time. And part of it could be that Dale is never home and when he is, well, he doesn’t really have time to emotionally invest right now; part of it is depression that I deal with, and another part is just how hard being a stay at home mom is – it is a lonely job.
I know that being in the word more and communicating with God would actually be a healing salve to my heart and help with the loneliness, all the facebooking is only a temporary high.
I want to stop trying to get this attention from other people, and spend more time getting GOD’S attention and communicating with HIM.
I urge you– stop with the technology addiction already! Get off the computer, the phones, and fill that silence in your soul with God.
The next time you reach for your phone/computer or any other newfangled device that connects you with other people, think twice about it.
Would you say you are addicted?…if so, what void are you filling?
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Wow, we have just been showered with so much excitement around this new baby – it has brought us so much joy! Thank you all for the love. You all have been on so many adventures in the past few years with us and your response to our news was fun.
After being diagnosed with secondary infertility after Everett and having a really hard time conceiving and doing infertility treatments before Ruby, this next round, we had no easy expectations and month after month, started to get disappointed again – but, the DAY Dale was supposed to start his infertility testing (they make you both do basic tests again before treatment…just in case something has changed) was the day we got our positive pregnancy test. Ha. Can’t get any better than that.
So, I am 13 weeks – almost into the second trimester. And just like the last 3, NO morning sickness!!! Apparently, that is the way to go. I feel great.
Just this week, we did the NT Scan which gives probabilities for Down Syndrome and Trisomy 18. Our results came back very low, so that was good news. I am not naive to think we are in the clear for every OTHER chromosomal abnormality, but I take the elective test because I am a planner. I’d like to be prepared if my child comes out with 3 arms.
It was GREAT to see the baby again – moving around, stretching, see the heart beating away. This was our second ultrasound. We’ll have another one in about 6 weeks. It never gets old seeing such miracles.
Oh, and the baby did have only 2 arms.
I’d be lying if I told you we weren’t nervous about our future and the baby and all that stuff. Possibly 3 major life changes within a 6 month time period sounds a little daunting. I think you’re supposed to only allow 1 per year? ha. Now we all know why the title of the blog is ADVENTURE! Fun adventures ahead!
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oh…and one more thing…
We are THRILLED to announce that I am pregnant with baby Harris #4!!!!
Expecting the newest addition to our family in late September!
Thanks again to our dear friend Matt who took the time to take some family photos with his fancy camera and great eye. He put up with A LOT that day – just like the last time. It might have even included a 5 minute time out in the middle of our photo shoot to correct a little 6 year old’s attitude and then another break to grab some candy to get the 18 month old to behave.
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Have I told you how her fussing has diminished DRASTICALLY? Aside from always wanting to be on my hip, she doesn’t fuss in the car as much anymore – actually not at all. She has been AMAZING. The only thing I can contribute it to is figuring out her sleeping schedule. I’ve ALWAYS thought her sleeping has been causing her to be fussy – getting up at 5am and taking barely one nap a day is ROUGH on a little girl. Well, a few months back, we dropped a nap and everything kind of shook itself out! She is definitely not a sleeper like her mamma and sister, but I’ll take what I can get. Daylight Savings Time ALSO saved us! She is now getting up between 6 and 7 – I can handle that. She takes a nap at 11 which allows for us to go get Lindy at school so I don’t have to wake her up – it is perfect!
(note to self. I just wrote perfect, that means something will change this week!) That is just the laws of parenting babies. You get them RIGHT where you want them and then something changes. Maybe teenagers too?
Ruby and I communicate really really well – it is probably a little scary. She has that typical, 2nd child syndrome where she doesn’t really have to talk well because, I just talk for her! I can undersatnd almost everything she wants by pointing or grunting or her really cute words. She doesn’t say anything very clear but we get it.
She is a mamma’s girl. ALWAYS wanting to be held by me. Always. I’m trying to find ways to play with her and yet do some stuff around the house. It is a hard balance. I don’t think I’ll ever be happy with both the state of my house and attention I give my children.
Ruby got her first ear infection last week – it was a rough couple of nights, getting up with her every 10-15 minutes, she just wouldn’t settle. When you go from sleeping through the night to THAT, it is almost a sure fire way to know it is an ear infection. Dale and I rotated sleeping on the couch with her upright on us. Made for long sleepless nights. It was the roughest visit to medexpress ever. She screamed the WHOLE WAY THERE, THE WHOLE TIME IN THE LOBBY, THE WHOLE TIME THE DOCTOR WAS LOOKING AT HER, WHILE WE WAITED FOR THE MEDS, I thought she was going to explode she was so upset. I was crying, praying that the pain would go away. She wouldn’t let me hold her, was WRITHING around in the stroller, falling out of it. I would try to pick her up and comfort her, she would go limp and let me tell you, it is HARD to hold a limp child, acting like jelly to get out of your arms. Her face was BEAT RED, she had been screaming for probably 2 hours. And the minute we got into the car, she stopped. Just like that. We got home and she was a peach. I have no idea.
She has peed on the toilet 3 times now – I haven’t been trying to potty train her, but everytime we go to the bathroom, she wants to pull her pants down and take her diaper off, so I follow along. Well, in the last 2 weeks, I asked her to “go potty” and she sat there and MADE herself go! It was the cutest thing ever. She knew exactly what I wanted her to do, and she did it! So, I let her walk around naked with the little kid toilet in the living room. of course, she peed in the toilet and then 10 minutes later peed all over herself. She doesn’t have the development skills to know when she is going to pee and to go to the toilet but she DOES know how to make herself pee when asked. It.is.adorable.
Ruby has a few chores around the house. She feeds the cats, helps me unload the dishwasher -which just means handing me all the stuff piece by piece, and this week she helped me with dinner!
And she has the cutest little “cheese” smile.
She can put her shoes on now, she’s been working on it for MONTHS and just this week, I turned around and she had put one on!
We had a fun night at Dale’s school the other day. One of Dale’s buddy’s in the program is from the South and decided to host a Crawfish Boil for all of us. IT WAS SO ENTERTAINING and DELICIOUS! He had about 50lbs of crawfish shipped to CMU and then we all enjoyed watching the process of cooking it all! Ruby probably ate more crawfish than Dale and I combined! Who knew?
This girl never ceases to amaze me. She is one smart cookie – just an incredible memory. Tonight at dinner, she said, 4 times 4 is…16. Just like that. ha. Yes, yes it is. And for her to explain how she got to that point, it is super difficult. Sometimes I have no idea how she gets to the answer!
This past week she learned how to blow a bubble with bubblegum. She learned to whistle this month. Just soaking up so much! I expect my baby is going to start losing her baby teeth soon. She was upset that we hadn’t been writing down her Book-It books for the month and had basically forgotten about all the books thus far. So, one night, she read 17 books to catch up. And it wasn’t like skimming the books, she read them all and we wrote them down the next morning.
This week, Lindy asked if she could “put Ruby down for bed.” I said sure! Let me tell you, it is the cutest thing to watch your oldest child try to manage the baby. Lindy had never changed her diaper and she did it like a charm. She dressed them up in the same PJs and brushed teeth, read books and then got a stool to hoist ruby into her crib. Ruby wasn’t really a fan – she had more fun playing tag naked while Lindy chased her, but it is moments like these that I want to bottle up and remember forever. I got a cute video but will have to save that for the family archives – Ruby is naked for the majority of it.
These days with small children are HARD. It is not easy for me and I have a lot of emotional guilt and anxiety about doing everything “right”. My house is rarely clean, and I’m not just talking about dirty dishes, I’m talking about piles and piles of crap on my floor and no room on the counter for EVEN the dirty dishes. Piles of clean laundry for weeks, just never put away, stuff EVERYWHERE. I like that we have anything we need at any moment in time but man it makes for A LOT of clutter. I think I hate to cook. I haven’t always hated it, but when Dale is never home to eat, it is basically cooking for me and 2 picky girls so that just leaves cooking for me. Heck. Let’s all have cereal for dinner. Ugh.
In my spare time, I launched a new website for a client of mine – very dear to my heart. Their son, Zachary was born with congenital heart defects, 2 of the same defects as Ruby, he underwent surgery with the same doctor as Ruby, but sadly, he didn’t come out of it, ok. He only lived a few days but his parents are making an AMAZING impact here in Pittsburgh in the hospitals in his name. They are doing incredible stuff! You can check out there website.
We have how many more days left of his 3 year MFA program? 62ish? I’ve lost track but we are CLOSE. As for Dale being close on his thesis, well, not so much. To say that he has been working overtime, well, that is the understatement of the year. He doesn’t come to bed before 3am. The other day he came to bed at 4am. Then got up at 7am to take Lindy to school. It.is.rough. BUT, slowly, other projects are winding down which will somehow (?) allow him to get to his thesis. I say all this and he is driving to WISCONSIN tomorrow for an “elective” event that is taking up 7 days of thesis work. UGH. BUT, it is THE major networking event for his field and he actually submitted a technical exhibit and it was accepted, so he will be showcasing his design and model there – with potential to win an award.
He had what could be his final show at Saltworks. A very bittersweet weekend for him but with so much going on, no real sentiment or goodbye. Kind of sad. We moved to Pittsburgh to work for Saltworks – and Dale has been around these kids for 15 years. WOW! Makes me sad to think we won’t be a part of it anymore. Well, he ROCKED the set and sound and lighting again for the show – even in great distress over everything else in our life that needed to be done. He.is.amazing.
Lindy below on the “Aladdin” set that Dale designed and built.
We don’t have any solid plans yet for the future. We had 2 job offers, declined one and another we will hopefully hear from soon and hoping for at least one more interview with another place.
So much to say, but I must retire.
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We went out to eat the other day and a little boy came up to Lindy and they started playing. I guessed he was probably 4 years old! My mind raced of seeing Lindy with a little brother and how they would communicate. Dale asked how old he was, 3 years old. I was a whole year off. It’s like a year just disappeared and I have no concept of what a little 4 year old boy looks and acts like! It took my breath away.
Our little Everett would be 4 today and being Dale’s son, he would have been so awesome.
I wish I would have made a different choice that day 4 years ago. I don’t have any other way to say it…I want to have one of those “choose your own adventure” books and go back to the beginning of the book and choose a different chapter. I truly believe in my heart of hearts that had I just gone to the hospital the minute I felt “different”, that he would have been saved. No one can tell me otherwise, even my doctors. It is a burden I will bear for the rest of my life and it brings me great waves of sadness and tears when I think about it. I don’t play the “if only” game a lot, but in this case, yes, if only I had gone to the hospital at 4pm when I started to feel nauseous and sick. Instead of the chapter we chose and didn’t arrive at the hospital until 12 midnight. We didn’t think ANYTHING was wrong. Dale got off work at 8pm and came home. I distinctly remember him saying “are you sure you just don’t want to call the doctor?” and then I’d say, oh, lets wait it out a little longer, besides, who wants to labor in the hospital for hours and hours!? We took our time while my son was dying. We took our time.
The hardest part is knowing they tried to resuscitate him. They would NOT have tried to resuscitate him if he was beyond hope. Thus, telling me that 8 hours earlier, he was still alive. 7 hours earlier he was still alive, 6 hours earlier he was still alive. You get the point. That is what goes on in my head.
I know many of you will try to comfort me with “you just don’t know what could have happened” – so I said it for you, you don’t have to.
I ask to choose another adventure but in my heart of hearts, I know, we can be used more by Him on this side of death than the other. So it is a hard thing to say that “I wish it never happened” but also saying “I want my son back, but I want to keep what I have learned from all of this.” Does that make sense?
Today hit me harder than I had anticipated. I let the tears flow. Surprisingly, the tears came as I received messages from all of those we love. Each message was so personal and heartfelt as family and friends remembered us and our baby boy. Many of them from those who held him in the hospital or came to the funeral and then many from all our friends we’ve made along the way.
This year, we didn’t get away on a mini vacation – we wanted to save time and money and well, we are just plain fried from so much stuff going on. So, we did our annual balloon release and visit to the cemetery. Dale was home most of the day, so that was a nice treat.
Then, we purchased tickets to take Lindy to the Disney on Ice show. Ok. So. It was incredible. I wasn’t really excited about it but just this week I had this overwhelming feeling that Lindy is gonna grow out of this princess stuff and soon and that made me really really sad. I discouraged the princess stuff for a long time but somehow, they monopolize everything down to the pencil erasers in the stores, so it just happens. She loved it. And we loved it too. I couldn’t help but talk all about the rigging and the automation. Seriously. That is all I could talk to Dale about. I guess that is when you know what has been going on our life for the past 3 years. It was pretty impressive for a kids show.
I do know that joy does come in the morning – we have tasted it and we are living it. Yes, the pain, the hole is still there in our hearts and I believe it will be there until the day we die, but we move forward and each day we live our new normal. God can make beauty from ashes.
P.S. To top our day off, Dale had a phone interview with another company, the company we WANT to get a job at and it went really really really well. It was a good end to our day.