Thursday, September 30, 2010

Happy Birthday Dean!

I can't believe it's been 2 years! Dean turned 2 years old on September 29 and we had our first round of birthday celebrations with Uncle Joel, Catherine, and Zibah. We started the day with Kindermusik and play time at Zibah and Deeda's house. Then home where Josh took him out for chicken nuggets and to see the airplanes at the airport observation deck. After a good nap by all, we were rejoined by Zibah, Uncle Joel, and Catherine for presents, pizza, and donuts.

I was really amazed at how Dean seemed to really grasp the idea that it was his birthday (or at least that it was a day where everyone was focused on him) and knew his age! He loved the act of opening presents and playing with them all immediately. One great thing about a 2 year-old's birthday is that gifts don't really matter. Dean got to open everything from rain boots and a Mickey Mouse play set to juice boxes and fruit snacks, and loved them all! After much celebration we all went out to Monkey Joe's for bouncy castle fun. Unfortunately, Dean was a bit freaked by the huge inflatable monkey and would only play back in the back corner. Still seemed to have a blast though, as did all the adults who got to play for free (minus over-pregnant mom).

Dean went to bed exhausted and woke up wanting more. Go figure! I think this was just stage 1 of many birthday celebrations for him since relatives are coming into town over the next week to meet his soon-to-be-born little sister. Hopefully he won't come to expect a week's worth of celebration and presents next year. I guess, as long as he's ok getting juice boxes and fruit snacks it doesn't really matter though.

Happy Birthday to my baby boy! Your Mama loves you very much!!!

Friday, September 17, 2010

No control

I think that the biggest lesson that I keep learning over and over and over again, is that I am not in control. This seems to be forgotten as quickly as it is learned. Recently Dean has decided that when I put him to bed it is the absolute worst thing in the world. He claws, kicks, general, throws the biggest tantrum a 2 year old can throw when I try to put him in his crib. One would think that it had something to do with the bed, but when my husband puts him to bed it's peace and quiet, down for the count in a matter of minutes. Maybe he can sense that something is about to happen to mommy (the baby) or maybe it's just one of those seemingly random phases that kids go through. Either way, it has had me pulling out my hair, constantly in tears, and generally exhausted for a week now. I have tried every trick in the book with the same results. Last night my husband put him to sleep, with no fuss of course, but at 3:30am he was awake with the same tantrum and hysterical screaming. We decided to see how long he could go. Josh put earplugs in and turned on the TV in our room. I retreated to our den, aka "the cave", turned the TV on, and grabbed my laptop. I spent the next hour trying to tune out the wailing and thumping, and writing out my prayers. I have alaywas been one to process outwardly faster than inwardly, so the writing was a big help to me. 2 pages into it I realized my problem was not that Dean was in hysterics - that was going to happen off and on for his whole childhood. The problem was how I was handling it. I was trying to control every element of the situation, every behavior that he had. I started to receive that familiar sense of peace that I get when I know I'm truly listening to God. I could see him shaking his head with a smile on his face, so happy to have me come around yet again. The crying eventually stopped (an hour and 15 minutes later) and Dean fell back asleep until the morning, when he awoke as if nothing had happened. How thankful I am for a gracious God, and the knowledge that I am NEVER in control. What a wonderful world THAT is! Yes, I will need to make decisions, and yes, I will need to be an active participant in this world, but I DO NOT control it! This I can remember this lesson when Riley comes along and I am trying to manage a 2 year old and new born? Or better yet, do you think I can even remember this lesson tonight when Dean is having another tantrum? Maybe, maybe not. The learning process is all part of the journey.