Monday, November 28, 2011

While I eat my millionth Trader Joe's JoeJoe

Wooden shoes = the next big craze. 

'ello! (As Harper says.) I hope everyone had a nice and restful turkey day. I spent mine on the Right Coast, my first over this way in 6 years. It was a lovely first holiday back -- lots of food and family time and oohing and ahing over Chennypants.

I couldn't help but pause to remember last Thanksgiving -- also known as, what I hope will remain and not be usurped ever, The Worst Thanksgiving of My Life. I had a sick baby (who was beginning a very sudden self-weaning) and a very (very) sick husband. Schlepping through the airport, cc weak and unable to carry the baby, the baby wailing from a stomach bug and ear infection, I considered lying down in the middle of everything and letting one of those moving walkways take me away, Calgon. Exhausted from a year of serious sleep deprivation, I was still the only one that felt relatively well. There's no sitting down and kicking up your feet over a slice of pumpkin while the rest of your family is suffering.

We spent those days gritting our teeth, grinning and bearing it -- in cars and planes, sleeping in different beds, swallowing sweet potato, all the while trying to act okay. I'm pretty sure we failed.

The fear and exhaustion and uncertainty of that time was nothing I'd ever experienced. I fought back tears when Harper wouldn't nurse on our last day in Texas. I tried and tried and tried to get her to latch, but she was simply and suddenly done. Beside myself with grief and rejection, I convinced myself I was a terrible mother; looking back, I was anxious about some much deeper things. It was simply something to pin those feelings on.

But shew yikes -- back to the here and now. Exactly a year later and life looks much different. Happier, slower, much healthier, more grateful. Thursday morning, while I tossed the squash in evoo and brown sugar, alone in the kitchen for a minute, I paused. I wasn't anxious, I wasn't scared. I could hear cc and Harper giggling, coloring frogs and ghosts together before they moved onto reading that Arthur book for the 25th time. I started to cry, overwhelmed in the best of ways.

And oh yes, there was plenty of pumpkin this time around.

(Back to the JoeJoes.)

10 comments:

  1. I had to go back and read a few posts from the end of Nov. last year - because right now I feel like the nursing is less and less and it makes me sad - crazy that Harper was going strong and then suddenly stopped. How old was she? Jane is 9 mos.

    Also, mmm, were they the peppermint Jo Jo's? I <3 TJ's!

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  2. So so glad to hear you're having a much happier time this Thanksgiving! ♥

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  3. Lauren in the Minneapple2:42 PM

    this post makes me so very happy for your incredi-self and amazing family unit.

    happy thoughts for you from the minneapple!

    love,
    Lauren

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  4. Did I mention that we have a TJ's downstairs? :) And, though I'm there every other day, what the heck's a JoJo???

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  5. a. Yeah - miss those drive, puke, drive, puke, drive, puke days. Fun times. :-)
    b. Wish I had video of the wooden shoe walkathon
    c. Interesting how the cookies appear after cookie monster heads south

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  6. You were a brave family last year. Now you are off to a great start fulfilling some of those delayed dreams. Please send your new address when all is signed and sealed. Miss you all and understand the calmness you must feel during this November and December. Love you.

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  7. Oh man Ams, getting teary. You guys are a strong fam and deserve the best of Thanksgivings. Hugs hugs hugs!

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  8. Thank you so much, everyone! <3

    @Frugal: Harps nursed for the last time a week before she turned 10 months. There are certain peeps (who I think are wrong) that claim no babies self-wean before 12 months. But that's exactly what she did! No matter what I tried (and I tried it all) it she was "uh done." I think the hardest part was how quickly my hormones changed/had to adjust. Usually it's much more gradual! If Jane's in the midst of weaning, it will probably feel pretty sad for a bit -- but trust me, I've now come to see it's MUCH easier than having to tell a very with-it toddler "no" when you decide it's time. I never once had to turn her away! Bonus :)

    @LVD: They're Oreo-type cookies that are filled with creme made with crushed up candy canes. AHHH.

    @cc: You gots to work harder at your scavenging techniques. They were in the cupboard, right beneath your cute little nose.

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