Our Family

Our Family

Thursday, March 26, 2015

New website!

I moved to a new site. http://www.jessicaseay.wordpress.com

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

February: 22 Months & 3 Months

So, I'm going to just say it how it is. Of course of piece of blogging for me is part of a bigger dream. Not so secretly I hope to one day have a post thats bold enough, hipster enough, sarcastic enough to make it big enough to be featured on the huffington post or be featured in a number one spot in a search on Pintrest.

It's safe to say that a tension exists between that piece & just wanting to share me and my family. So my confession to you all is just that and it's likely that that tension will always be present, but I'm batteling it because somewhere I feel like just getting to offer myself and my heart is enough.

I'm struck this month by the courage Jesus is giving me. Fear and insecurity have lived so long underneath a mask of performance.  Exposing and facing those things have forced me to confront the question of am I enough, Jesus? Its bringing me down a path that feels like such death. Feeling vulnerable. Feeling awkward. Feeling ehhh. HUMAN.

Man, I hate it. But I have hope that the walls of self-reliance and pride that I have built up, can be not only torn down, but redeemed by Jesus.

I'm finding he is producing a softness within. Even though the end goal isn't perfection, I'm finding that where there was once anger, there is sometimes a gentleness.

Example, Today's Victory. Please note that evidence of change isn't because I neccesarily didn't freak out.

Both the kids were up on and off every hour between midnight and 6.
Ellie is sick with a nasty cold, poor honey.
Rand left for work earlier then normal and we didn't get time to connect in the morning like we normally do.
Ellie's nose was a fountain and she needed a lot of extra loving.
Lunch came... and went.
Reid did happen to sleep for a 3 hour chunk (by the literal grace of God)
Rand came home just long enough for me to get to the bank before leaving for his bball game.
I was left to finish up supper, feed myself, and the kiddos, and get them to bed.

Would've shut down internally. Gone through the motions of putting the kiddos down while replaying the zillion reasons why I was a victim and Rand was the cause of this.

I entered it all.
I felt sad. Sad that his game was earlier and we didn't get to enjoy supper together or have a team mate in the night time routine.
I allowed myself to stay present with my feelings and found myself sturdier then I expected. While I would've liked a team mate, I felt like okay in the process of flying solo and even enjoyed the sweet snuggles before bed.
I got to speak. I told Rand why I felt sad instead of silently punishing him for his offenses.
I had self care.
Kombucha. Popcorn. Chocolate.  Law and Order SVU. Blogging.

I would call that process a victory. But I want my heart to know that even if it would've looked like even messier that that would have been okay too. I guess, it just felt good to be in a place where I got to enjoy that process. I think that was the invitation I was praying to get to see and accept today.

Another thing that struck me is how serious I can get.
I find that I go into "Mom" mode pretty quickly. Now there is nothing wrong with guiding and teaching a child, but I find that I can get caught into an unequal power "bossy" or "queen bee" mode with Ellie pretty quickly.
I long to be in a place where I can more fluidly fluctuate between "mom" mode and just being me. I mean it is chaos, a lot, so it would make sense that I would put on Mom mode to create a self-protective allusion of sanity. But I don't want to wear that mask either.
And the truth is, the control I feel is an allusion that keeps me safe, but robs me of the ability to get to be present with the things I dismiss; the diapers, naps, potty training, meal times, coloring, and naps.
The truth is somewhere admist those things is an invitation too. An invitation to enjoy my precious babies. An invitation to be me and have that be enough too.
And I want to offer that to my kids.
It makes me sad that often, they spend their days with someone who sometimes feels like she is just trying to keep her head above water. I long to enjoy them in the way they were intended to be enjoyed. It makes me tear up writing this. My heart breaks that often they aren't rejoiced in and celebrated for their preciousness in all aspects of who they are.

So thats that.

After her doctors trip. 
Earlier this week my team mate to this life thing, Rand, spoke something that really struck me. I dubbed it our families vision. In my own words, he spoke about hoping to create a place (our family unit) that is sturdy enough to handle one another. Where we all can go out and freely "be" who we are.

AMEN TO THAT. Can I just say how much I love that man and his strength?

Other big things this month:

Ellie had her first big trip to the doctor. She was "helping" Rand unload the dishwasher before work and slipped while holding a plate and cut her hand. She had a two inch gash near her left thumb and we would've had an ER trip, but our doctor had an opening right away. She was such a brave girl! The actual fall freaked her out, but the gash didn't seem to bother her. I was grateful for her reaction and the peace that I felt to be able to do just the next right thing.

Wrapped up in a blanket like "Auntie Alys"
Our hair stylist, toolman, boxer. 

Ellie pooped in the Tub. AND THE TUB WAS HAVING DRAIN TROUBLE BECAUSE A RAG HAD GOTTEN SUCKED DOWN IT. it was not fun, as you can imagine.

Whenever Ellie gets excited she sort or struts around and says dah dah and points to thing, eager to invite you into her world.

Ellie really likes to salt and pepper things. And really likes soup.

Reid. Well I still feel like I am just starting to get to know the kiddo.

He can hold his head up pretty well now when you hold him and is starting to grab at things.

He still seems to have a lot of gas, still. I am trying to take more dairy out and probiotics to help out a bit, which seems to be helping some. But typically it just makes for a babe that likes to be held in very specific positions and almost never the snuggly, nestled into the crook of your elbow type of way.

The kid can be as stiff as a board some times, but I guess it makes for excellent posture. During the superbowl, his soon-to-be Auntie Cor was lifting him up and he was straight planking.

He has dimples that are just the cutest.

Ellie was helping him clap the other day. She seems to have more of an interest in him.

Love this guy. 

This cardigan & V Neck. Oh man. 

What a typical day looks like...
We hosted a few little shin digs. Lately, I have had a taste back for being in the kitchen.  It's led me to get excited about trying out new meals and healthy twists to things. Eating together with others feels biblical. And my heart "runeth over" when there is good food and good people, so thats what we have been doing.

Rand turned 25. We ate strawberry cake and had spegettie carbonara per his request.

I started working a saterday shift back at Amazing Grains. I really enjoy the culture there and have enjoyed getting some time away.

I had surgery to repair a tear that hadn't healed properly after our home birth. Lets just say a second episiotomy isn't ideal, but neither was the alternative.  Recovery has gone surprisingly well and I'm confident I will be pain free soon. Not being able to exercise this last week hasn't been very fun, though, but I'm excited to be able to get back to it and do all the jumping and stretching I want again.

Something about training for something has been on my mind lately. Anyone need a training partner for something? The fargo marathon? A triatholon? Starting a summer adult soccer league? But seriously on all of those. Especially the adult summer league. The summer before Ellie was born I started one through the Grand Forks Park district with the help of a few folks and it was really fun!

So thats that.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

21 Months // 10 Weeks

Its hard for me to believe or remember life before our family of 4 right now. It is all starting to feel so normal to me.

My favorite memory from this month took place at Oh For Heaven's Cakes, in town. I wanted to get out with the kiddos and so showed up to this event. Once I got there I realized it was an event hosted by a specific group that I am not a part of.


Ellie wasn't all too interested in watching them decorate so we toddled about the store. I went to tend to Reid, who had started screaming and Ellie darted out the store and into the mall hallway.
The dreaded scenario was happening.


So, like any good mother would do, I left my infant child alone with a group of mother's I had never met to chase down my daughter who was delighted at the game we were playing.
After wrangling her, I stumbled back in to start to take very hungry Reid out of his car seat, only to glance up and see Ellie dart out again.
Love his face!
In the end, Reid enjoyed his meal, I got to enjoy and experience the help of a few other understanding mothers, and Ellie, well she enjoyed her game, as well as a delicious cupcake and handful of free cookie samples.
I was struck by my growth here. I did it! I was okay. Ellie and Reid were okay. And I was able to not only accept help, but enjoy it and not feel judged.
AND I had only sweated on my nose a little. (My not so secretive typical anxious reaction I can have)

Our little guy is so precious. Were figuring out life together. His schedule seems to be naturally unfolding and aligning to Ellies. I feel really happy about this one.

He is around 13 lbs now and 25in.

He sleeps in his room and typical is starting to look like sleeping for 6 hour chunks at night. PRAISE THE LORD!

He has two of the most precious dimples on his cheeks.

Often, people will ask who he looks more like or what Ellie thinks of him.

First smile!
I really don't know! And peoples responses have been everything from he looks exactly like Rand to he looks exactly like you. So thats no help. What I do know is he has very dainty and small features. His cheeks are loads smaller then Ellies were at her age. His hair is lighter and he doesn't have much. He seems to have Rand's ears and my eyes.

He likes to smile and coo.

His favorite spot in the house is his diaper changing station. If he's having a hard time, 99% of the time that will cheer him up.
Scheels one morning. 

Ellie is such a little girl now. I still call her bug, short for love bug.

She really gets into coloring at her little table Rand built her. She likes to invite you into it, but typically tells you what colors you can use and when you can use them. She recognizes the color blue, I think it may be her favorite.

She loves her Elsa dress and is incredibly proud of it. She loves to show it to people when she is in it and gets sad when she has to take it off.

Her hair is getting so long!
She really likes to invite you into things.

She is down to one nap a day.

She peed on the big potty for the first time this month! We haven't started potty training yet, but I think this one is right around the corner.

She is starting to "read" books by herself.

We have started going to more play dates and I notice that, in large groups, it takes a bit for her to feel comfortable. She sort of scopes things out before she starts to engage.

She is becoming more and more independent and can fairly easily entertain herself.

Rand taught her to touch Reid's nose and go "boop". She really enjoys doing it to Rand.

Her word of choice when she is excited it "hi". She loves to come into our room in the morning and shout Hi! Hi! Hi!

Were on day 3 of cold turkey for the pacifier!

Packed and loaded van! 
We haven't left Grand Forks in the past 6 months and took our first trip as a family of 4 to the Twin Cities for a long weekend. Our van is freaking heavenly for traveling. We savored sweet time. The kids got to spend a lot of time with my parents and Rand and I got to enjoy sweet and precious time together. My hands down favorite memory of the weekend was going on a run around the town I grew up in with him and sharing my memories of growing up there. Our very first run together. It was heavenly. I also enjoyed sweet time with a few precious friends and time with some extended family. Outside of that trip, things are starting to feel pretty normal. Rand has been working around 50 hours per week, balancing his day job and work for his business. I started back on Saturdays at Amazing Grains and really enjoy the treat it is to get some time with limited distraction. Also, ITS JANUARY and we have enjoyed a handful of walks OUTSIDE. What a treat the nice weather has been. I've also continued to try lots of different classes at Choice and the YMCA. My current favorites are a spinning class, kickboxing, Yoga, and Nubody. Self care is ever so important!

I think this second go at being a mom has allowed me to feel so much more hopeful. We are doing it! We are alive, the kids are alive, and I'm not sure I have ever felt more in love with the man who is by my side. If this paints any sort of picture of us having our lives pretty, orderly, and wrapped in a pink frilly bow, well, that is far from true.
But, admist the chaos I feel this taste of hope.
I know my God has us. Not in a silencing my soul and feelings kind of way, but The Guy really has us. I trust him and from that place I'm learning to trust and rely on my husband, and other people too. It's really this neat thing. I feel like I am going into battle each day. Against myself, mainly, but I'm starting to feel like I have warriors fighting before me and alongside me instead of more obstacles. He is transforming me. My heart. My desires. My love. My relationships.

Oh, PS, I wrote some about my homebirth story, but if anyone is every interested, intrigued or would like to hear more, feel free to ask!