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Sunday, October 31, 2010

You gotta leave your behind in the past.

Isn't that how Pumba put it before Timon corrected him?  It's been a while since I saw The Lion King, but I'm pretty sure it went something like that, and boy is it true.

So much has changed in my life in the past two years, I can't even begin to list it all.  The major thing, obviously, is Jason.  I mean, my life did a 180 in just three short months (And thank God it did!).  Not only did God send this amazing man back to me, but in doing so, it got me out of here for good.  Never ever did I see myself married to a Sailor and living in Guam.  It was more like, married to a high school history teacher and living in Brandon.  It's funny how God has such a grander plan, and you never ever know how it's going to work out.  I'm rambling..

Anyway, being home brings a lot of things to the surface for me.  There's a memory on every corner around here, and not all of them are associated with good feelings.  There are things that I did and can't take back, and there are things that were done to me that still hurt.  I wish I was one of those people who could honestly just move on and get over the past.  But I'm not.. nowhere close.  Case in point: I've searched for my elementary school best friend on Facebook for years now, when we haven't actually seen each other since we were 12. * In case someone knows her, her name was Kim Thompson and she left Pearl to go to St. Andrew's after 5th grade.  Somebody find her for me :) *

My point is, when I'm not home these things don't bother me nearly as much.  Since I can't drive past my former best friend's street, I don't think about her.  I don't wonder how her life is going, or what she's doing.  She's a former friend for a reason, and it probably needs to stay that way.  Some people just aren't good for other people, and that is definitely the case here.  But I still wonder.  I don't have to do that in Guam, and I prefer it like that, I think.  I can't be the only person who feels this way.

And now I just want to say that I hope KB listens to me when I tell her someone is bad for her.  It will happen.  If she's anything like me, she'll spend her life thinking she can fix the unfixable, and they'll eventually bring her down to their level.  So for future reference:  Katie Beth, your mother is a font of wisdom and you should listen to everything she says, even though she will NEVER tell you the stories that caused her to gain such wisdom.
Saturday, October 23, 2010

Home is where the heart is

So Jason is gone again, and I sit here annoyed with myself that I wasn't home with him for the past week.  I'm not going to complain that I am home with my family and friends.. that would be extremely obnoxious.  But it really bothers me that I will never be able to have both my husband and my family (to include my best friends).

During a phone conversation the other night, Jason told me that he had calculated all of the days we have between now and sometime in April when he will return from his last mission with this command.  Of the days left, he calculated the ones we will have together, those where we will be apart but able to talk, and those where he will be underway.  I don't know what all of the numbers added up to, but he said that we will spend 68% of our time apart between now and April.  68 percent.  Marriages aren't meant to be spent apart, much less 68 percent of the time.

I am so proud of what Jason does, and I'm even more proud of how he feels about what he does.  Being in the Navy, and being a Submarine Officer isn't just a paycheck to Jason.  He genuinely loves his job.  He doesn't always like the climate in which he works, and he usually hates the amount of time he spends at work, but he loves the work.

To be fair, I love the Navy life.  I love everything about it except the time we spend apart, and the fact that there will almost never be a time where we live close to either of our hometowns.  I know that isn't a big deal to most people.  If my family wasn't in my hometown, it wouldn't be to me, either.  I definitely don't have any emotional ties to my high school or anything.  I am, however, extremely attached to my family and to the friends I have here.  In fact, I don't think I'm attached like most people are.. I think my family goes above and beyond with the closeness thing.  Even while in Guam, I talk to Mom almost every day, Mammaw a few times a week, and Dad at least once a week.  I miss them so much while I'm a gajillion miles away.

But the flip side of that is Jason.  I learned last Fall that my real home will always be where he is.  If he decides to make the Navy his career, and drags me all over the globe to do it, so be it.  If home changes every two years for the next sixteen, fine.  If our kids never make lifelong friends because they move so often... Well, I just hope they don't resent us for it.  In fact, I hope they appreciate the fact that they will have passports before they even eat solid food.  Katie Beth's is actually already applied for, when I didn't get my first passport until I was 22!

All of this to say, I miss my husband and I'm sad I wasn't in our home when he got there.  I'm grateful for the time I get to spend with my family here.  I'm even more grateful that Katie Beth will have good relationships with her grandparents and great grandparents because we will come home often.  But I really miss my husband.
Thursday, October 7, 2010

Coming To Terms: A Mommylog

Disclaimer:  It's all about breastfeeding.  Feel free to stop reading now if it makes you uncomfortable.

I really, really wanted to breastfeed.  I'm not going to sit here and preach the benefits, because I'm pretty sure most people who care already know.  From the very beginning, formula was never an option for me.  I never considered what kind of bottles I would use, or which formula, or any of that.  I was going to breastfeed, and I would pump to build a stash so that when the time came, someone else could actually feed her.  I had my breast feeding pillow picked out, the storage system picked, the pump.. the whole nine yards.

When Katie Beth was born early, the ability to bond with her by breastfeeding within the first few hours of birth was taken away.  Oh well, things happen.  I was disappointed, but it never occurred to me that I wouldn't still be able to nurse my baby.  Well, since she was so small, that was not possible for the first few weeks, so I started pumping.  It made me feel better that, if nothing else, KB was getting my milk from a bottle.  I still fully intended to breastfeed.

Well, here we are 6 weeks later, and KB has yet to latch more than once.  The one time she did manage, she fell asleep after just a few minutes.  We've tried almost every day, and almost every day it turns into a fight.  Consider this:  Newborns eat every 3 hours.  So, at 9 am KB gets hungry and we attempt to breastfeed.  The fight here lasts about 20 minutes.  At 9:20 I stop and go warm a bottle.  That takes 5 minutes, and then KB takes about 15 to eat.  So we're at 9:40, then burping and changing take us to 9:45.  I have to get her settled back in wherever, so lets just say we're all the way to 10:00.  Now that she is settled, I have to pump to keep up the supply of milk she's getting.  That takes 20 minutes, minimum.  After I finish pumping, get the milk stored and bottles washed, etc, I'm at 10:45.  And it's time to repeat just over an hour later.  Talk about exhausting

So as of today, I've decided that I will exclusively pump.  My wonderfully loving husband bought me a crazy awesome breast pump that should make my life a little easier.  (I'm currently using a rental, which is due back this week.)  It's been really hard for me to come to terms with the fact that we won't actually nurse.  She'll still be getting all the benefits of breast milk, but I'm sad that we won't have the bond - and lets face it, convenience - of breastfeeding.

I don't know.... Maybe I should find a support group for this or something.  I feel like I'm giving up on KB, and that makes me a bad parent.  I just don't want to make myself crazy.  I'm also scared that this is some slippery slope.  Like, if I "give up" on her now, what's to keep me from giving up pumping in 2 months?  I'm pretty positive that formula would be so much more convenient than sitting down to pump for 20 minutes EVERY three hours.  That's so far from where I wanted to be, and that makes me really sad.