Monthly Archives: May 2013

Girls That Matter

I love the following song.  It resonates.  It brings comfort.

“One Heartbeat At A Time”

By Steven Curtis Chapman


You’re up all night with a screaming baby
You run all day at the speed of life
And every day you feel a little bit less
Like the beautiful woman you are

So you fall into bed when you run out of hours
And you wonder if anything worth doing got done
Oh, maybe you just don’t know
Or maybe you’ve forgotten

You, you are changing the world
One little heartbeat at a time
Making history with every touch and every smile
Oh, you, you may not see it now
But I believe that time will tell
How you, you are changing the world
One little heartbeat at a time

With every “I know you can do it”
Every tear that you kiss away
So many little things that seem to go unnoticed
They’re just like the drops of rain over time
They become a river

And you, you are changing the world
One little heartbeat at a time
Making history with every touch and every smile
Oh, you, you may not see it now
But I believe that time will tell
How you, you are changing the world
One little heartbeat at a time

You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
How you’re changing the world
You’re changing the world

You, you are changing the world
One little heartbeat at a time
Making history with every touch and every smile
Oh, you, you may not see it now
But I believe that time will tell
How you, you are changing the world
Oh, I believe that you
You are changing the world
One little heartbeat
At a time

And you’re changing the world


And then the insidious doubt creeps in.  Is this “all” I’m supposed to be doing?  Raising kids to be the next generation?  Am I raising them to their potential if that is what I focus on in my life?  What about Caitlyn’s loosely formed dreams of being a doctor, or Sue’s plans to be a rock star?  Am I encouraging them to reach for those stars if I tell them my job is to stay home with them?

I was a working mom until last October.  Being home is the best thing for me right now for a number of reasons they will not understand right now.  And my job wasn’t on that mattered.  I didn’t help people, or entertain.  I just pushed paper, or more correctly, e-mailed.  I often wondered what I was really doing and then one day I wasn’t doing it.  So, see, it didn’t matter.

Now I am home.  I am terrified of the coming summer as I have all three home.  The constant demands.  The bickering, the whining.  Ugh.

I am thrilled to be home.  Helping them be stronger readers, going to the park, zoo, water park, doing crafts and having play dates.  What’s not to like?

Such a balance.  Such a reach for laying them a foundation and helping them reach for the stars.  I breathe in and out having no idea what is best for my girls, me being home, me being in the workforce to show them you can have value there too.  I simply don’t know.  Sigh.



She’s Mine–Don’t Take Her

Patrice made her pregnancy unique by flipping and flopping in my belly, spending way too much time breech, coming out blue–doing it her way.

Postpartum was unique as well with the onset of severe postpartum anxiety and depression.  Thanks to those issues, I got an extended maternity leave, which equaled more time with Patrice than I had at the early age with my other two.

And there in began to grow a seed of worry.

Why was I getting more time with her?  What was going to happen to her?  Was she going to be taken from me too young, too early?  Would her days be short?

To be honest, I can’t believe I’m putting this out there.  I’ve only said it out loud one other time.  It was poo pooed.

I went back to work when it was time, but had a few more times off due to the depression and related issues.  And the fear niggled.

Then, out of the blue, I lost my job.  Overnight I became a stay-at-home mom.  Almost every moment of my life is with Patrice.

And I love it.

I love being here for her speech therapy.  I love watching (most) of her two year old antics.  I would have loved those things with the other two, but I didn’t get it. I have the time now.  Why?

Am I going to lose her?  Don’t get me wrong, she has no health problems, beyond what illnesses her sisters bring home from school, but is something going to happen to her?  How do I soak it all in, just in case?  What is my responsibility to her in these days?  How can I best love and hang on to her without smothering her?

I have no idea.  And again, I am shocked I am writing this, I am shocked I am putting this out there.  But, it has been weighing on me heavily as of late and I simply don’t know what to do with it…


Memorial Day

A friend posted a very poignant reminder that this weekend is not about barbecues, and may I add, mattress sales, rather it is about remembering those who are no longer with us.

It is about remembering soldiers, and public safety workers who protect us.

It is about remembering family who is no longer here.

This long weekend, Tuesday actually, they will hold my grandma’s memorial service.  Her soul went to heaven months ago, but now her body joins that of her husband of decades and her only born son, my dad.

All my love to those who will be there for the service and to grandma, grandpa and daddy.

grandma and dad grandpa dussel


Too many thoughts.

Pulling downward.

Going round and round.

Hiding inward.

Spinning through mud.

I want out of my head.

It’s the only place that is safe.

People need me.

I wrap my arms around myself.

I reach out.

Afraid anyone will reach back.

Spinning through mud.

Lacing Up My Shoes

So recently, for Mothers Day, Caitlyn made an acrostic of attributes for me using the word Mother.  R was for runner.  That means I should get running again, huh?!

Tonight I was crawling it out on the treadmill.  I got 1.4 miles logged.  Part way through that, while I was helping Patrice go potty, a tweet came through about logging 10 miles of exercise this week in honor of a little boy who will not get to celebrate his 10th birthday with his mama this coming Tuesday.

Another great reason to get moving.  Here goes…



Please hug your little ones tighter, check out Jana’s blog, and consider joining me as I do #10ForCharlie.

My Girl

My Caitlyn is growing up.  She’s ending her first grade year.  Personally, I remember the moment that stick showed two lines and she entered our lives.  I am tearing up thinking about it now.

And here she is begging for nail polish and pretty dresses, E-mailing friends and helping me at every turn.

She is a very observant, self-possessed little girl.  But every once and a while she surprises me.  Yesterday was one of those.

I got a call from school right after drop off that her eye was bloodshot, puffy and painful.  I went and got her.  Dropped her off at home with daddy and ran with Patrice to speech therapy, which we were doing at the school just in case Caitlyn had pink eye.  Turns out my Caitlyn cried when I left with Patrice.

She told me herself later in the day when she ran out to the car when I was going to the grocery store, “daddy said I could go.”  She had told him it was because she didn’t want to listen to Patrice cry, but she told me, “I miss you when you are gone.”

As we drove to the store, I said, “I love being with you.  Before I know it, you are going to be grown up, you’ll go to college, get married and have a family of your own.”  To which she said, “You will always be my family.”  It was mama’s turn to cry.

Today was the Mother’s Day brunch at school.  My Caitlyn ran right over to me.  She also visited with her friends.  She was a joy to watch.

IMG_20130510_2So I was a little shocked when she started SOBBING when it was time for me to leave.  She cried so hard and so much that she soaked the shoulder of my shirt.  I wanted to gather her up and bring her home so badly.  I even asked her several times if her eye hurt, knowing I would take it as an out to whisk my baby away if she said yes.  But her honest little self said, no it didn’t hurt.  So I left her there.

Now I ponder, can a heart break and be thrilled?  My heart was breaking leaving her there.  I always love having her with me, and especially when she obviously wants me so much.  And at the same time, I was thrilled that she wants her mama so much.  I know she can take on the world.  But she is very grounded with us.  I love that.  I love she is connected and desirous of her family.  I honestly wish I was a strong enough, smart enough mama to be able to home school.

For now, I take each day at a time and count the moments, especially today, until I can go get my girl.

And do you see that acrostic poem she made for me (below)?  See the letter R?  I better get my butt in gear so I can qualify again…5k training anyone?




So my lovely Caitlyn

made what she thought was a funny joke yesterday. She said we were having a fourth baby (we’re not). Then started laughing hysterically. Then she said, “you know why it’s funny? I say it because of your fat.”

I hurt like a big dog. Too bad it is true. Really true. I have a lot of weight to lose. And somehow I have to lose how much her comment hurt.

Have your kids said something really hurtful? How did you get over it?

Prepare Yourself…

I was going to write another heavy post and then I saw this happening outside of my house.


And yesterday there was this when we were participating in a fundraising walk.


Revisiting the Beginning

Baby Blues hit me with each of the girls.

I remember when Caitlyn was born being overjoyed, then two days later, sobbing as the nurse tried to take my blood pressure and temperature.  Hubby had left to shower and freshen up.  I was alone with our girl for the first time.  You know, as alone as you can be in a hospital.  And I was totally overwhelmed with fear and dread.  How would I be able to take care of her?  How would I know what she needed?  How would I know if she was eating enough?  Bless that nurse, she spent quite a bit of time with me reassuring me, going over the feeding cues, those things that came to be second nature to me, but at the time, wow!

It wasn’t quite as bad with Sue.  I had done this newborn thing just 15 months before.  I knew a little more of my mothering style.  I was a little more comfortable in my mommy skin.  But there were still these unexplained tears.  The moments that boggled my mind.

Right on cue, the baby blues hit when Patrice was born too.  Then I got a week where I felt good.  All felt right in my world.  I had three amazing girls.  That was an awesome week!  I remember it and can almost feel it even now, 2 and 1/2 years later.  What came after was what can only be described as a descent into hell.

I developed postpartum depression and anxiety.  With anxiety being the biggest demon.  Thankfully I was happy with my mommy skills.  I never had any doubt I could do what was needed for my girls.  If anything I overdid.  We went to the park.  We went to the library.  We went to the zoo.  We went non-stop.  At first it felt kind of good, making up for lost time with my older girls for the stuff I couldn’t do with them in my last weeks of pregnancy.  But then it got sinister.  I cried more.  And my activity got frantic.  I was tired, but couldn’t sleep.  I would watch Patrice sleep and was so jealous.  So jealous.  I mean, who has a newborn and insomnia?  Talk about irony.

I went to my beloved midwife.  We started me on zoloft.  We thought maybe it helped a little bit, so we upped the dose.  That did not help…that began a spiral that ended with me at my midwife’s office begging her to take my girls home and just love them.  She did the best thing…she called my hubby…and made arrangements for me to be hospitalized to make sure I was safe and medication could be addressed.  I spent 24 hours in the hospital…it was hard, really hard.  When I got out, my midwife continued to help by finding me a psychiatrist who would treat me while supporting my decision to nurse my baby.

It’s been a hard road.  My youngest is now 2 and a 1/2.  It’s been a long journey since my girl was born, but we are all healthy and well.  I have a team of people who love and support me and help keep us that way.

If you are new mom, a mom many times over, and adoptive mom or a dad, struggling after the addition to your family, seek help.  Do it for yourself and for your loved ones.  You’ll be glad you did.

If you need immediate help, please call the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8225)

If you are looking for pregnancy or postpartum support and local resources, please call or e-mail us:

Call PSI Warmline (English and Spanish) 1-800-944-4PPD (4773)


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