Thursday, July 9, 2015

Teething: Ain't nobody got time for that!

It's hard to get a clear picture from a fast screeming baby

Remember when you were a little one and you were sprouting your first set of chompers? No? Me either. I pray it's the same for our little guy. He's had the same four teeth for months now. He's currently 16 months old and we believe that he's starting to cut a few more these past few days. The poor guy has been miserable and has been making sure we're well aware of that fact. I can't blame him.

I remember what it was like having braces and that sucked most of the time. Each month (or however long it was), you'd go into the orthodontist and they'd tighten those metal contraptions to sloooowly move your teeth into the proper position. I can only imagine this practice evolved from some type of medieval torture device. "We have ways of making you talk Mr. Bond". I'm not sure which was worse, four years of that, or a super condensed week long version that Emerson is experiencing. Either way, I'm ready for it to be over. For both our sake.

The past two days have been much better. He's moved past the, "Get out of my way or I'll run you over with a steamroller" to the "I'm kind of miserable, please just hold me and everything will be fine". We've tried to use popsicles and other chilled teething toys, but he hardly wants to put anything in his mouth. Including food. He's always been a picky eater, but the last couple weeks have definitely been a challenge for Danae. I'm hoping that once his new teeth come through, he'll be so anxious to scarf down his meals that we we can slip in a few green veggies. I can dream right?

I was telling Danae that I remember as a kid, having insanely sharp pains in my legs. My parents told me they were due to me having growth spurts. When I'd go to sleep at night, we'd have to put hot water bottles on my shins because they hurt so bad. I don't remember how old I was, but I do remember how awful that was. Apparently this growing up stuff is hard. Whoda thunk it?

Overall, he really is taking it like a champ. He's at that age where he's very aware of what's going on, and what he'd like us to know, yet can't quite verbalize everything. Imagine how frustrating that would be! I picture being in a foreign country and desperately needing a specific type of medicine. You can't tell someone what you need because they don't understand you. It would be frustrating and scary.

Even though I know what's going on in his mouth, my stamina has been running low. I feel really bad getting frustrated with him, because I understand the root issue. But it's hard. It's hard to keep that game face on in the presence of a red faced toddler. I've been praying to be filled with patience and grace. I guess God's been sending me plenty of opportunities to practice just that.

Luckily, this is just a short season of life. I know it's temporary. I know it's not the most difficult thing for us on the horizon. It's always the most difficult when you're in the middle of it. I'm just anxious for that sweet hindsight. The time when we can look back on it and laugh as we think to ourselves, "Wow...we thought THAT was difficult?"

Keep going strong Emerson, you've just got a little further to go.


Friday, July 3, 2015

Getting Over Self

Growing up, I used to believe that I was a fairly laid back, easy going, and dare I say...outgoing person. I felt confident in who I was, especially when I was in my comfort zone surrounded by familiar people and places. I certainly wouldn't have considered myself to be high-strung.

It's amazing how quickly the door is flung wide open once you get married. All of a sudden, there's another person in your life 100% of the time. When you wake up, she's there. When you come home from work, she's there. When you go to bed, yup...there. The wonderful thing about this new person that soaks up every second of your life, is that she's not you. She has opinions, her own way of doing things, and her own free will. She folds clothes a certain way. She puts only the toilet seat down, while I also close the lid (mama taught me right). She grew up with different life lessons, different priorities, and different habits.

(Enter baby stage right). Now you've got a third person in your life, also there 100% of the time. Guess what? This little person also has his own opinion. And if he's anything like his mommy, that personality is a big one. He also does not have the same desire to do things the way that we do. After having been married for close to a decade, we've gotten into a sort of a rhythm. We're privy to each others ticks and the things that make us go bonkers. We know the buttons. Baby boy however, doesn't care about any of these things. He does like buttons though. Oh boy, does he like BUTTONS.

We come into this world as completely dependent individuals. Our entire being relied on those entrusted to care for us. How can we not grow up with an inclination to believe that our life truly is the center of the world. Because it's the very center of our world. Each and every day, our own thoughts rule and direct our lives. Every outside voice is either in harmony or conflict with the things we want and the direction we believe our life is moving. I think this is a major part of the struggle when new people come into your life.

I've been finding myself getting so frustrated lately because things aren't a certain way. It could be something as small as a dirty diaper sitting on the changing table instead of in the diaper genie. Sometimes it's a kitchen that's been messy for going on a week. Why do all of these things affect my mood? I think it's because they're not the way I would have them. Kind of makes it sound like my problem right? Exactly. 

1. My wants and desires do not dictate the priorities of others. 

2. The people I interact with, are not cognizant of every unspoken expectation.

3. If you want something done right, do it yourself. 

Sometimes I need to keep these things in the front of my mind and remember that my world is not the true center. It's okay sit on a pile of graham cracker crumbs at the end of the day. 

I've basically come to the conclusion that I'm not as laid back as I once believed. The reason I used to be, was because I only ever had to worry about my own needs. Now there's more cards in my deck. I've been given a responsibility, and responsibilities aren't always easy. I look forward to the challenge, and am becoming a slow learner. As long as my family can have patience and grace with my stunted emotional stability, we'll all be heading in a great direction.

I love my wife and son, and I would have my life no other way. Come what may, we're in this together!