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Archive for the ‘baby’ Category

The Trump administration is building “tender age shelters” for babies and toddlers whose only crime was to be brought with their parents to seek a better life.
 
I know I have friends who wholeheartedly endorse this policy. They think because immigrants “broke the law,” these families deserve to be torn apart by the US gov’t. This is unchristian and nothing advocated by Jesus. I am shocked to know people who think that the Bible verse to follow is the one used by Nazis and slave owners to prop up terrible laws. I am shocked to know people – devout Christians – would the in the crowd voting to crucify Jesus Christ because he also broke the laws of his time.
 
Sometimes laws are immoral. If our immigration policy is so broken, fix it. But don’t destroy families to do so.
 
Who employs these immigrants? What penalties are applied to them for breaking the laws? Why do we only blame immigrants who seek a better life and not the employers who exploit them?
 
Our government is creating trauma for children – this trauma will take a lifetime to recover from. It’s wrong. Please call your elected representatives and tell them to stop separating families at the border.
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18 years ago, I was nine months pregnant with my first child. This beloved and wanted baby was due in the early days of a new millennium – if you remember, the Y2K fear ran strong in 1999 – we were being told that all systems could collapse due to a programming bug that meant computer programs might not be able to recognize years beyond the 20th century.

Being nine months pregnant around Christmastime, I could not help but think of another mother, a young woman whose pregnancy preceded her marriage, who had not planned to become pregnant by someone not her husband. Mary was God’s choice of mother for his son. Joseph, her betrothed, was initially unhappy to marry a pregnant woman, but then an angel came to him in a dream. And so Joseph married Mary and stayed with her and raised God’s child as his own.

When I was nine months pregnant, I was uncomfortable and clumsy and I would think of Mary on that long donkey ride from Nazareth to Bethlehem. I thought about the discomfort and the dust and the effort it must have taken for that couple to make that journey just prior to the birth of their baby.

When I was nine months pregnant, I went to see a friend’s child in a Christmas pageant – we arrived late and there were no seats. I stood for the performance and again thought of Mary and I thought of arriving at the destination to find “no room at the inn.” I thought of what it must have been like to go into labor in the stables, with no crib, no bed. I thought about what it was like for this young woman to lay her newborn baby in a manger, a feeding trough.

When I went into labor, it lasted for 23 hours; it was long and painful and at times, frightening. I gave birth in the hospital and came home to see my baby welcomed by our family. Ithink of Mary, laboring in the stables, with no family but her husband nearby. I know that she received gifts from strangers but she was in a stable far from home when she delivered her first child. She, too, must have had moments of fear and doubt as she labored to bring the baby to this world.

My son’s birth ushered in my life as a mother; motherhood has made me more connected, more aware of the links that join us together. Once, a child was born who was to be God’s savior on earth. Always this time of year I remember when I was large with child and I think of Mary and her journey to become the mother of Jesus. Tomorrow is Christmas and soon after, my son will turn 18. Tis the season for celebrating life on this earth. And tis the season for sharing our love, our care and our support with others.

From Luke 2:14 – “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”

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After 23 hours of fear, anxiety, boredom, sweating, puking and searing pain (and that was WITH the epidural), I had had enough.

To hell with the delivery. I ordered everyone to stop what they were doing – I was going to remain pregnant for the rest of my life.

It seemed so logical at the time. I even went so far as to envision the size of my stomach when my child was about four years old.

Thankfully, no one paid any mind to my delirious rants. But my husband instructed me to look down – the baby’s head was out – we needed just one more push. My husband held my hand as I looked at my baby – the little person I’d imagined for the last nine months. My baby and I looked at each other and we both screamed loudly at the sight.

(Later, my sister-in-law pointed out that he must have been a “sunnyside up” baby – most babies come out face down. Perhaps that is one reason why bringing him into this world was so challenging…)

It had been a very tough day, this day I was going to meet my son for the first time. The day that I would become a mother. The day my husband would become a father. It was a birthday for all of us.

Yes, I remember the stress, the pain, the puking. Yes it was rough. But my most enduring memory of that day is from after my son was born, after I got to hold him and felt a rush of love that was utterly powerful, after the doctor held up the umbilical cord to show me a loose knot that could easily have killed him. (We are truly lucky – that knot could have tightened, could have cut off the oxygen, but it didn’t. Angels watched over us that day, I believe!)

What I remember most is watching my husband hold his baby for the very first time. He looked straight into Aidan’s eyes and started talking to him. Not sure what was said. But the gaze was powerful enough. My husband stared intently and lovingly at his baby and welcomed him to the family.

Certainly parenthood isn’t easy. I’m lucky to share the job with someone who is a great dad. He’s not perfect. But he’s there for his kids. He’s there for me. He shows up to the games, the p/t conferences, he’s there with hugs and he’s there with discipline too.

He’s also there with an apology if he feels he’s made a mistake.

Father’s Day was last weekend – I had wanted to post this prior to the day we set aside to celebrate the Dads – but we’ve been busy – busy with all the things that come with having children and working. So this is a belated tribute to the father of my children. Happy Father’s Day to all of us! Especially to my hubby….

I married someone I loved and discovered later that he’s also a really great dad.

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So it’s St. Patty’s day and as a good daughter of a dead Irish woman, I should be thrilled, happy, all in green to celebrate. Today’s the day we celebrate the banishment of snakes and the victory of Catholicism and all, right?

But I’m – dare I say it – irritated instead. I’m irritated because (more…)

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Bristol Palin spoke to Greta Van Susteren the other day about the impact motherhood has had on her life. I briefly mentioned it in my post from yesterday, but I remain haunted by the interview.

Strangely Famous for Being – and Having – a Mother
Bristol is 18, the child of a very famous public figure, yet she is herself a girl who remains untutored in the art of public speaking. Her answers are sprinkled with teen-speak phrases that include: “like,” “whatever” and “I guess.”

Her hesitancy and apparent shyness are in marked contrast to media savvy teenagers like Miley Cyrus and other child stars who cavort across the TV screen all the time these days. Despite the unending scrutiny that comes from living in a fishbowl, Bristol seems engagingly ordinary.

But she’s not ordinary. She’s a teen mom with a bully pulpit and she chose to sit down with Greta Van Susteren to share her message with her audience.

The ABCs According to Bristol
And it’s not necessarily “just say no.” (more…)

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I’ve never been one of those moms who wax nostalgic about the baby phase of motherhood. For me, it was utterly exhausting. My firstborn never slept – ever (still doesn’t to this day!) And in all honesty, I have few memories of the first two years of the twins’ life. Sleep deprivation is truly torture.

So imagine my surprise when I was wandering through Target buying groceries not long ago and had a nostalgia meltdown in the diaper aisle. I entered the aisle feeling as if I needed to stock up on diapers, then realized that the diaper phase of my life is done for good.

And it’s BEEN done for several years now, making my yearning for babyhood all the more surprising.

My babies are getting big now. In fact we have no babies in the family any more. We have little girls who like to poach my purse of its lipstick. We have a young boy who now giggles mysteriously when I mention the name of some of the girls in his class.

So in Target, I had a moment of mourning for the loss of all things baby in my life. I never knew until motherhood how loss coils its way into your heart alongside of love; every new phase of childhood signifies the ending of another.

And then I waved good-by to all that and remembered that I’m actually happy that I will never buy a megapack of Huggies ever again.

Where they ever babies? Or was that just a dream?

Were they ever babies? Or was that just a dream?

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