Friday, April 24, 2009

I have no words for this right now.

I have no words, other than to ask you to pray or think good thoughts, or send good joojoo or whatever you do, to this family. They lost their 10-week-old son to SIDS last year, and have just miscarried. Go here to catch up with their story: CLICK

I'm afraid today will be a day of "downer" posts for me--more to come.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

D-Day

Today was D-Day. The day I begin the process of reclaiming my body from the depths of postpartum icky-ness. The day I stop nursing. If you don't want to read about breastfeeding and/or all the stuff that goes with it, please go to another blog now. That's right, move along, nothing to see here. In fact, here's one for you: Click here. There, I gave you one for free. Now, go! Away with you!

*Sigh* There were moments over the past year when I cursed breastfeeding. When Zeke would push me away and scream, arch his back, and act like nursing was the worst punishment the Lord could bring on him, I wanted to give up. Throw in the towel. But with the support of my husband and sheer determination to make it because everyone said I couldn't...I pressed on.

*Sigh* There were moments in which I LOVED breastfeeding. Even in the last week or so, when I was only nursing him twice a day, sometimes I could feel his body relax when he latched on. In the early days, our bond didn't happen immediately. I didn't feel that initial, overwhelming, heart-swelling love immediately upon delivery like I was "supposed" to. We didn't gaze into each other's eyes like La Leche League says you should. However, in the following months, Zeke and I got into a routine after he nursed. He would prop his head up on one arm, and just...smile. And coo. And giggle a little bit. That was our time together. Of course, as he grew and wanted more independence, he stopped. I miss that time.

*Sigh* Today, he exercised his independence by throwing several mini-tantrums. But, after we got into a little car accident (not my fault, and yes, we are fine) and we were waiting with Josh for the Highway Patrol, he snuggled on each of our shoulders. SNUGGLED. Today, while we were playing with his Little People Noah's Ark, he handed me each animal as if he was giving me a tiny treasure.

*Sigh* I am definitely excited to do the following--
diet. I have lost all my baby weight without dieting, and now that I am exercising so much, I want to see how much water weight breastfeeding has added to me.
cleanse. I want to do a cleanse to get rid of all the....junk in me.
take supplements. I need to support my workouts and supplement with protein and vitamins to boost my immune system.
wear a regular bra. No more little clips at the shoulders for me!
stop wearing nursing pads. I'm sick of the lumpy look underneath my shirts.
I'm just looking forward to getting back to "normal." I don't even remember what that's like!

I am SO PROUD to say that I nursed my baby for a whole year. They said I couldn't do it! They said I'd stop when he got teeth! They said I'd give up! HA! I stayed strong and perservered, and I'm glad I did. I am sad to see this relationship between me and Zeke go, but I have the memories and I will do my best to cherish them forever.

Hooray for boobies!!!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Bye Bye, Baby!

The inevitable has occurred. My baby, my sweet, cuddly, bundle of joy and love...
...yeah...that one. Well, he somehow turned into this:

...A PERSON. A real, live PERSON. With feelings, and opinions, and a big PERSONALITY!

Tomorrow, he will be a year old! I remember where I was a year ago today--at a friend's house playing games, I mean OWNING the guys at "Gimme 5," eating dessert, and experiencing the WORST headaches I'd ever had in my life. All the while praying that the hospital would have room for me in the morning. Turns out that the hospital did NOT have room, but the headaches were eventually enough to get me admitted and have the baby just 6 short hours after.

I was NOT ready to be a mom, but the Lord thrust me into this life and I am a better person for it. Now I can say that I made it through the first year.

We celebrated on Saturday the 18th with a party at my parents' neighborhood clubhouse complete with an amazing playground and pool, food that EVERYONE ATE, THANK GOD, and an all-natural carrot cake. And some not-all-natural brownies. Zeke made it through with very few tears (I think one of the other kids touched him at one point, and, well, he just can't handle that. We're working on it.), and even ate a little bit of cake! He crashed after the party and has been progressively playing with his new toys!

Today, Sunday the 19th, we had a dedication ceremony during our church service. Afterwards we spent time with some family. Today, Zeke did not crash. He refused to nap all afternoon...overstimulated much?!

I'm happy to say that with the help of Zoloft, I survived the weekend!

To say that this year "flew" by would be a massive understatement. Tomorrow I will nurse my son for the very last time. Pray for me, as I haven't really taken the time to process what that REALLY means and how I will feel about it. He's a big boy now, and it's time for him to move on toward greater independence. Am I ready for this? Just about as ready as I was to have him in the first place. But the Lord brought me through this first year and I am confident that He who began a good work (motherhood) in me will be faithful to complete it until the day of Jesus Christ (until the Lord comes). Philippians 1:6 is what I am living and breathing right now.

Updates to follow as I finally get my body back! It's bittersweet.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Attention, Orlando-Area Moms!

We interrupt the preparations for Master Zeke's First Birthday Extravaganza to bring you this important message:

National Mom's Night Out is Thursday, May 7, 2009!!!

Come to Seminole Towne Center in Sanford from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. for an incredible night of pampering, activities, giveaways, special discounts, and more!

As it gets closer, I'll post more info. What a GREAT way to celebrate...US!

Now, back to cake baking and sandwich making.

I need a nap!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Holy (?) Week

Yesterday was Easter. Or, Easter was Yesterday. However you want to write it, Holy Week just ended. In a non-denominational church like ours, Holy Week isn't THAT big of a deal. Easter Sunday is the main event. But in the church I used to attend, as well as the one my parents currently attend, the whole week is a big deal. There's Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Holy Saturday, and then the biggie, Easter Sunday. For more detailed information about Holy Week, check out this site. While our church may not observe each of these services, my family had a very busy week leading up to Easter. So here is Holy Week, Boldman Style:

Palm Sunday: Josh preached, which meant that the entire previous week was taken up by preparation and study for the sermon, as well as his normal duties, such as leading Youth.

Holy Week Wednesday (this only occurs in the Boldman Family Calendar): Josh led the Youth group. He actually got home early, at 9:30 pm! Woohoo!

Maundy Thursday: Worship team practice. Again, Josh got home early, around 9:00 pm! I felt like the luckiest girl in the world! Two days in a row!

Good Friday: It WAS a good Friday! Josh takes Fridays "off" so we went to the pool with Zeke! Later, we went to church for communion.

Holy Saturday: Easter Egg Hunt. Josh was at the church from about 7:30 am until 1:00 pm, and we joined him there from about 10:30 to noon. We had a blast! We then went to my niece's birthday party.

Easter Sunday: He is risen!!!! Josh was at the church by about 6:30 a.m., led worship for all three services, and got home around 1:00. We went to my aunt's house for dinner, and the Easter Bunny dropped off a basket for Zeke while we were gone. He had no clue what was going on, but I thought it was cute!

Of course, the list of things Josh did during the week is NOT limited to those on this particular list! The behind-the-scenes work that goes into a big week like Easter or Christmas is immeasurable. It was a wonderful week, and an incredible celebration of our Lord's resurrection. Many people's lives were touched, including my own. It's easy for me to get caught up in the fact that I barely saw my husband last week. But the purpose of trials and frustrations in life is to make me uncomfortable and to call me to holiness. So, while the week did not feel particularly Holy while we were enduring the long hours and stress, looking back I can see that it served to test and grow my patience; help me connect with people I normally would not; and overall, to make me more like Christ.

What does Holy Week mean to you?

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

...And Then it Rears its Ugly Head

Sometimes there are days like we had this weekend: everything is perfect. We go for walks, we play, we read books together, we spend time together as a family. On Saturday, Josh and I even took Zeke to the pool for the first time, and he LOVED it! Here is a picture of the sheer delight:
Sunday was great, too. Josh preached, Zeke and I went out to get lunch for him, and we all had a relaxing afternoon. Monday? Also pretty good. Zeke skips his nap on Mondays so I can teach my class at the gym, and he had a great time playing with Miss Alex and Miss Kate. His afternoon nap was a little bit short, but he went straight to sleep when it was time. And then there are days like Tuesday that make me wonder, "Who is this little alien child, and what the heck did he do with my sweet baby boy?" It's on these days that Zeke refuses to sleep, thus rendering him completely exhausted and unable to function like a normal one-year-old--whatever that means. He hits, he pulls, he tries to bite me, and he has incredible emotional melt-downs that rival any case of PMS I have ever seen.

You see, on days like we had over the weekend, or even on Monday, I start to think I'm doing okay. This "mommy" thing doesn't seem so bad, and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel wherein I might, maybe, possibly, someday be able to stop taking my medication. I feel alive, energetic, fit, healthy, and awake. But then I have a Tuesday. A Tuesday filled with anxiety over whether or not my child is going to ever go to sleep, and worry because I know I'm coming up on the time when I will have to spend 3 hours straight with him and I have no idea what we are going to do. I feel lazy, slow, bloated, fatigued, and tired. I don't want to get out of bed. If I am out of bed, I want to get back in. The tears, oh the tears, they rush in quickly then disappear. And then they come back; and then they go. And then they come back. And back. And back. And once the tears are gone I'm left with the sadness. The pit in my stomach and heart that let me know I'm not as "better" as I thought I was.

Yes, I have SO MANY MORE good days than I did when Zeke was first born. But the bad days can be really really bad. Maybe they're so bad because I have so many good. I guess then it's worth the trade. I've come a long way since last May, and thank God for that journey. But it's a journey I am still walking, and a fight that I am VERY much still in. On days like Tuesday I am reminded that the fight is not over, and I still have to claw my way out. I have to rely on the Lord to supply my strength, and my Husband to give me some much-needed relief by taking care of the baby while I get out for a while.

Oh, to feel "normal" again. Oh, to have never experienced this in the first place.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Menu Plan Monday!

I'm brand new to Menu Plan Monday! In addition to being posted on the fridge, I can also refer my wonderful husband to my blog when he asks, "What's for dinner?!" I don't plan for breakfasts or lunches, so here are our dinners for this week:

Monday: Macaroni and Cheese with Chicken and Broccoli--it was really good!
Tuesday: Frozen Burritos; Rice and Beans
Wednesday: Leftovers (Josh at Youth)
Thursday: Skillet Chicken and Chickpeas (Recipe from Woman's Day)
Friday: Easter dinner (yes I know Easter is not on Friday)--Ham, Potatoes, Veggies. We may be inviting people over to share our gigantic ham; and this may switch to Saturday. Haven't decided yet!
Saturday: Leftovers
Sunday: Easter! Time for fun and food with family...and me not cooking!

Want to see what the other cool kids are cooking this week, and maybe get some ideas for yourself? Head on over to OrgJunkie and check it out!

Serious.Life Magazine--April edition

Serious.Life Magazine


I wanted you to know about this publication I’m a part of called Serious.Life Magazine. They just published a new issue today, and I am in their Featured Blog Directory. It’s a very high quality magazine… you’ll really like it.

The magazine includes a lot of great content from bloggers you’ll appreciate, as well as great features, photos and other content. The magazine is owned and published by a family who have seven kids, three adopted and one who has Leukemia (www.riggsfamilyblog.com). The magazine gives away a bunch of ads to charities and ministries. Besides great articles on interesting people, there is a lot about family, adoption, personal finance, spiritual life, humor… all sorts of “life” topics.

Again, the subscription is FREE, and I know you’ll enjoy the magazine, so take a minute to check it out and sign up to get future issues. www.seriouslifemagazine.com

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Changes

Hi everyone!

I really have no idea who reads this, but my page view counter keeps going up, so I know SOMEONE is out there! If you're reading this, will you please just leave a tiny little itsy bitsy comment for me? Pwwwwwweeeeease?! You don't even have to leave your name, or write what you thought about my post. Just say "I read it", click "post comment" and move on to the next blog!

I want to figure out my "blog identity." The reason for my lack of posts lately is not that I just don't have anything to say, it's that I have no idea what is post-worthy and what is junk. So rather than make a fool out of myself, I've just kept to...myself. So I want to play around with themes for the blog. After speaking with a dear, sweet, wonderful friend on Friday, I realized that I have been given an incredible gift--I am married to a pastor. I never thought I'd say that--really, both of those phrases in relationship to each other were never on my radar before 2005, when I met Josh. I distinctly remember a conversation I had with a friend while running over the summer of 2005, just weeks before I met Josh, in which she told me that she felt "called" to be a pastor's wife and I responded, "you're crazy" and went on to list all the reasons why I wanted nothing to do with the ministry. I had a bad taste in my mouth at that point for pastors. Well, exactly a year later, I married a pastor and she married...a non-pastor (?--is that even a word/proper phrase? Whatever. My blog. My vocab.). I love being married to Josh, even though the "pastor" part was not in my original plans. I need to start living in light of the gift I've been given. So I'm testing out this theme of my life as a pastor's wife. Maybe you'll walk away with some insight. I'll still talk about my life, and the boring stuff that happens around my apartment, but I will hopefully have a little bit more purpose. Maybe I'll get bored and change the theme tomorrow! It's all about playing around, right?! I'm sure I'll stumble upon my blog-identity somewhere along the way!

Stay classy, blogosphere--
Rachel

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Hi there!

I know I haven't posted a new entry in a really long time, and I'm not going to now. However, I do want to leave you with this LOLZeke: