I am the co-sleeping, attachment parenting, no-spanking mama. Outside of my family, I live for art and writing. I keep journals, baby books, date books...anything to help me help my boys know who we are, where we came from and all that we've survived. My children are my life. I struggle everyday with my relationship with God and trying to end my crisis of faith. I have Fibromyalgia, which is a chronic pain disorder and effects every aspect of my life. I love to write and the act of writing, which I believe is a dying art. I am a cat person. I love my Cleo and I don't care for dogs. That being said, I love my Maggie Sue and Henry James. I love my friends and family, everything I do is for them. I think, more than I should. I talk, more than most. I'm creative, in almost everything I do.
Rob, my darling husband is everything I could ever want in a spouse. He's my best friend, a wonderful father to our boys, and a dedicated provider. He would give you the shirt off his back if he thought it would help. The again, he could also sell ice to eskimos if the mood struck him. He runs our construction company and our computer repair business. Then he spends what precious free-time he has learning all he can about electronics and computers. He enjoys creating operating systems for smart phones and sharing them with other smart phone users. He also loves the outdoors, playing video games, playing with the boys, creating slide shows from pictures and videos with music, and hanging out with family. He is one of the most caring and compassionate people I've ever had the joy to know and I love him more than words could ever express. He has sacrificed so very much for our family and we all love him so much. For once, I don't have the words to express it adequately.
Gavin is my oldest. He's seen more in 10 years than most have seen in a lifetime, only he doesn't have the tools to process any of it. He has Asperger's/high-functioning Autism, OCD, ADHD, Bi-Polar Disorder, PICA, Sensory Integration Disorder and Conduct Disorder. Not to mention that he's prone to psychological breakdowns. He's quick and clever, highly intelligent and incredibly manipulative. He's a blue belt in Karate, loves art class and writing stories, and excells in math and science. He loves his blankets and tries to sleep with more stuffed animals than he has room for in bed. He loves Legos and it's nothing short of amazing the things I've seen him do with them. Gavin's entire world is in his head. Some days he is so lost in his own universe, that we are lucky to get through to him and connect at all. Whereas some days, he seems fine. He interacts with us and seems like every other American boy. Other days we can't seem to do anything right and everything sets him off because he's so sensitive from not being used to "living on the outside". To that end, everyday with Gavin is a challenge and a constant balancing act on the head of a pin. Not a moment goes by that I don't pray for the patience and guidance to help Gavin navigate a society that he is unable to understand. A society that is, for the most part, unwilling or unable to understand him.
Elliott Richard is our first preemie miracle. Born at 36 weeks gestation, he was practically perfect in everyway except for those pesky lungs. He was born with Premature Lung Disease, which partnered with other complications caused him to spend his first 10 days in the NICU. He's now a happy, healthy 3 year old "terrorist" who refuses to potty train. He's sweet, compassionate, afffectionate and silly. His clear blue eyes and curly hair help him to get away with far more trouble than he should. He loves Lightning McQueen, Hot Wheels cars and asking questions. He's always willing to be a "super helper", unless of course he isn't. He is an amazing big brother and does his best to take good care of both his brothers. Although he's often confused and believes that he is the oldest of the three. He loves pizza, hates jo-jo potatoes, loves tubbies, hates bed time and will ask one question after another after another to try and stay awake. He loves to talk, just like his mother. He is a perfectionist when it comes to certain things and incredibly laid back when it comes to other things - like the state of his room.
Mr. Emmett John is the baby of the family. He's my other preemie miracle, born at 36 weeks after many months of preterm labor. He managed to avoid the NICU only to return to the Peds Unit at 2 months with sleep apnea and then again at 11 months with dehydration. Now he's a year old and one by one slowly over-coming his health issues. He loves to eat! He's got a mischievous grin that he uses for trouble-making and
general exploring mayhem. Then he has a beautiful grin that takes up his whole face and crinkles his eyes. He has a very curious personality and a selective sense of humor, which have already started to get him into quite a bit of trouble. There's no baby-gate that can hold him. No barracade that can keep him in (or out for that matter). When he sets his mind to something, look out world! He doesn't talk yet but you can tell he's taking everything in, which scares me a little. He's working on walking and would probably be taking off already, if Elliott Richard weren't so over-protective. His favorite toys are Daddy and Maggie Sue. He's picky about his sippy cups. Loves Blues Clues and being sung to - no matter what the tune. What can I say, it's tough being the baby.
Maggie Sue is my beautiful, energetic American Bulldog/Boxer mix. She looks so fierce that her name is a little play on words. We named her Maggie after the children's cartoon "Maggie & the Ferocious Beast". She loves peanut butter, snuggling, playing tug-of-war, doing tricks, her family and especially "her" babies. She loves the boys as if they were her own puppies. She cares for them and is so very careful with them. It's amazing. When they cry, she's right there checking them out. If there is noise outside, she checks it out. No one is harming "her" babies on her watch! She weighs 60lb but seems to believe she's a lap dog. When she decides it's time to snuggle, it's time to snuggle, by force (very gentle force but force nonetheless), if neccessary. As my Fibromyalgia has gotten worse she's become my comfort. Every night she climbs up on the couch next to me and lays half on my lap, very gently. It's almost as if she's trying to absorb my pain and stress; God bless her. She's never turned down a ride in the car - even to go to the vet. At night she isn't content unless she is sleeping on the foot of our bed...under the covers and most of the time entangled in our legs.