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New Baby, New Home

James is two weeks old and our household has changed quite a bit in that short amount of time. As Mr. Sexy and I were getting ready for bed last night, he commented how happy our home felt when he arrived – almost 2 hours late due to a last minute project he was given by his boss. Not only did I have my first outing with the three kids by myself yesterday, but the kids kept busy with chores while I toggled my time between James and Pure Romance. It was a busy day. For Mr. Sexy to come home in a terrible mood only to be uplifted by our high spirits is a huge compliment to me and the kids.

Pregnancy was rough this go around. My emotions were heightened to the max and seemed to increase month by month. Mr. Sexy and I struggled with Michael’s selfish behaviors which caused constant screaming between him and Denai. I lost count how many times I called Mr. Sexy during his work day in tears because I was at such a loss as how to handle Michael’s disobedience and non-caring attitude about how much he hurt those around him. Then, more often than not, Mr. Sexy came home after a stressful day of work to find me and the kids at each other’s throats.ย Adding a newborn to this crazy lifestyle we had somehow created seemed ludicrous to me.

As James enters his third week of life, Michael is finally home for the first time as a new Big Brother. When Michael comes home there is always that rough transition period which ends as he is about to leave for a week at his dad’s again. It’s a frustrating, never ending circle. Our transition this go around, however, has been, well, seemingly non-existant. He has happily complied with chores I have asked him to do. This morning dish-duty was his idea. WOW. No complaints. No tantrums. No whining. This was a proud moment for me. Michael continues to show off the servant’s heart he was blessed with at birth – something that has been covered up for quite some time. And when it comes to being a Big Brother again, Michael has taken his new role very seriously. Timothy makes a peep and Michael is right there to comfort him. Michael is obviously much more connected to his role as Big Brother now than he was 3 1/2 years ago when Denai was born.

So what has changed? I have, for one. My emotions have seemed to level almost immediately after having James – this has been surprising to me. And I feel blessed by it. My demeanor is more relaxed and while Denai is still in the habit of screaming when she doesn’t get her way, I am able to brush it off when needed versus overreacting. Denai also wants to help James and I as much as possible. She even goes so far as to ask if she can hold my breast pump for me while I pump. I have to tell her thank you but no, that’s just weird – and then I laugh. Denai’s love for James is undeniable. All she wants to do is watch him and touch him and get whatever he needs. For the most part. She does have her special moments of being “too tired” to fill my water or, and this is the best line, “my back is killing me.” Yes, she uses this last line quite often to get out of finding me a burp cloth or grabbing the Boppee.

I have noticed a switch in Michael, also. I see a new sense of responsibility in him. Mr. Sexy and I had a very proud moment as Michael mowed our lawn for the first time this week. He was detailed and worked very hard to make the lawn look perfect. Afterwards, we sat around and admired his hard work. It was such a blessing to see his pride show off for a job well done. Mr. Sexy and I have been waiting for a moment like this for a long time. Through prayer and not giving up on his heart, we are seeing very real glimpses into the young man we are trying to raise. I didn’t realize that all it would take was ten months of pregnancy, two days of contractions and 5 very long hours of active labor. Michael was the first family member to hold James. Perhaps that’s when the magic happened.

I am blessed to have the family that I do. Without Mr. Sexy doting on me after James’ birth, I wouldn’t have been able to heal as quickly and easily. I have two kids at home who do have their “special” moments – but overall are ready to jump in and help out. I do hope the happy home Mr. Sexy came home to last night is around to stay.ย I think it is. I have more patience for the kids and have recently gained new tools on how to respond better. I’m even relaxed enough to start writing again – a pleasure I have gone without for far too long.

Gymanstics

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Denai is doing gymnastics for the first time. She is the smallest in her class by a full head and probably the youngest, too, though not by much. She’s just a tiny thing. Always has been.

I think sheย takes after her daddy who grew up stick-thin. At least, that’s what Mr. Sexy tells me. I didn’t know him when he was young. I wasn’t even born yet. (See how I throw in those old-man jokes haha)

The fact that Denai is the tiniest in her class makes watching her jump and roll and balance that much more fun. Oh, yes, let’s not forget that tongue of hers. Her tongue is a sign of concentration and I have come to know it’s an endeared trait from Mr. Sexy’s side of the family. Yes, Mr. Sexy himself has been known to ponder, or work hard to fix a problem, all the while his tongue barely crosses the threshhold of his lips. Like I said, it’s an endearing trait – one that I make fun of from time to time.

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We Survived

I look for any excuse to get friends together. I like to entertain. I like to party. I guess that makes me a perfect Pure Romance Consultant, doesn’t it? So when it comes to birthday parties I always strive to make it something memorable for the special someone. Sometimes that means it’s a Surprise Party, or a small get together with close friends, or a huge ta-da with the whole town being invited.

The past year and a half has been a strange one for me internally. I have had very little desire to do these birthday bashes. And working from a tight budget means I have to be a bit more creative and crafty. (Thank you person who created Pinterest.)

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When First Grade Sucks…

I got Michael’s report card for his second quarter last night. While on paper there is improvement; behaviorally, however, things are just the same. It sounds simply, really: He is have major trouble focusing. Michael is regularly sent home with class work he should have finished that day (we chose this instead of missing out on every. Single. Recess). I also just learned he is now being given the bare minimum of class work and he is STILL not getting it done. His teacher has given him his own desk by himself in the front row of class. She has given him headphones to help cut out background noise. She has even given him a chair that leans a little so he can rock and be a bit more comfortable so he can (hopefully) focus.

In my non-professional opinion, his teacher has gone above and beyond my expectation. It is clear that at this point she is at a loss.

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