Skip to main content

The Man Beside Me

As I reflect on this past year I think about the whirlwind that has been our lives, from the miscarriages to Kaleb's dramatic entrance into the world/NICU staff, and all the moments in between. There are many different trails of thought I could venture down but the one I am focusing on is my husband. Most of my posts center around our boys (K1 and K2) and my thoughts since I'm the one penning our experiences. Unfortunately TJ often doesn't get the recognition he deserves. This year has not only taught me more about myself than any other year but it has taught me so much about the man I married. This year has tested our marriage. There have definitely been rough times, then again what do you expect. We are human, not to mention two of the most stubborn people on the planet. I won't speak for him but I believe it has ultimately made us more united than ever. We are a team. 

I could talk about various ways he has been there for me this year, especially when I was put on bed rest and then my week in the hospital. He stepped up like never before. I could talk about how we bonded and pulled strength from each other as we worked through our emotions of learning Kaleb's Down syndrome diagnosis. How once he accepted it, he accepted it and was the strong one when I felt I couldn't be. How he selflessly stayed in Bartlesville to take care of Kaden which meant giving up trips going to the NICU to see K2. Often going several days without seeing him because he knew how important it was for me to be there. 

Now with Kaleb home he is my partner as we travel to and from the various doctors appointments. He is my partner as we work to care for and parent two little boys. He gets up with me in the middle of the night to prepare Kaleb's feed while I pump and then wash my pump parts while I feed Kaleb. He is there every step of the way, or every step of the parade that is our nightly walk from the living room to K2's room. The parade that consist of me carrying Kaleb while TJ directs the cart holding Kaleb's medical equipment that Kaden thinks he has to push. He oversees turning the monitors and oxygen back on while I let Kaden hold Kaleb as I read them a bedtime story. It is a big understatement to say I don't know how I would do this without him. 

Just this past week on Christmas Eve I had my first experience with the two of them by myself. On Christmas Eve we took the boys to the duck pond so Kaden could feed the ducks and Kaleb could nap covered in the car seat and stroller. I then survived getting both boys back home while TJ went grocery shopping at Walmart. After getting the three of us and all of Kaleb's equipment inside it was time to feed Kaleb. Of course while feeding Kaleb through his mic-key button Kaden decided he had to poop. So there I am in the floor holding Kaleb's feeding tube with a three year old doing his poop dance saying "help Momma." I quickly looked for a method of holding Kaleb's feed in place and sprinted to the bathroom to place Kaden's Thomas potty seat on and help him up. As I'm coming back in the living room my phone charging in the kitchen rings with a grocery question from TJ. No sooner had I sit down to resume Kaleb's feed than the door bell rang. Again I placed the feeding syringe in my makeshift holder (not going to tell you what is was so I don't give fuel for my NICU friends to laugh) and go answer the door. All the while talking to my neighbor at the door I pray that she cannot hear my three year old clapping and saying, "I pooped, I pooped a big poop." Or even worse, "Momma come see," (yes we are in that stage). Needless to say I breathed a sigh of relief when I saw him walk in the door. 

I have been with this man for ten years, married eight of those years, and I have loved him all of those years. Now though seeing how he is with our boys whether it's reading them a story, playing with them, giving cuddles, or doing one of the many unglamorous jobs that need done it has added another depth of love. 

TJ, you said the other day that you were looking forward to 2016 to see the growth and changes in our boys. I, too can't wait, especially with you at my side ready to take on each adventure that comes our way. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

These Adventures We Call Life: A New Diagnosis

I’ve unpacked most of our luggage from vacation. Laundry and dishwasher are both running. I’m now sitting here in the recliner researching and reading, trying to expand my knowledge on Kaleb’s latest diagnosis. I am reading about cerebral palsy, or more specifically, spastic diplegia CP. The movie Avatar is playing in the background. Why do I mention the movie playing when I have much more on my mind today after Kaleb getting yet another diagnosis added to his seemingly ever growing file? It’s because the choice in movie.
After a few minutes I am reminded as my heart aches from processing this new piece of information that this movie ironically was on the tv on another hard day in my life. That realization, the recall of that memory, and life following suddenly makes it easier to process this new added section to Kaleb’s file. That day was the day after Kaleb’s diagnosis of Down syndrome. It was also our last night in the hospital. I was going to be discharged the following day. TJ an…

Happy birthday: I Love You Stinky Face

Happy birthday Kaleb! Every birthday a person experiences is special but I'm not sure one has held so much significance for me as your first birthday. In some ways I feel that it is my own, since it signifies the beginning of my own transformation.

I think back to this past year filled with all the tears, heartaches, prayers, cuddles, hope, and love. I am reminded of our bedtime story, I Love You Stinky Face. I read it to you each night while you sit on my lap nestled against me. Yes, it's the one that you try to hold and turn the pages while I'm still reading. At least once or twice during the story you will turn your little head to watch me with your big beautiful eyes as I read.
I love that book. It's a very cute story. The other night while rocking you and giving you a few extra cuddles I read the back of the book. The back of the book speaks to the unconditional love of a mother. In the book the mother's love is tested. This year has tested us but I hope you h…

May I Have This Dance

As I spin you in my arms dancing around the living room I look at your beautiful face and you look up smiling at me. It's such a sweet moment, the kind of moment that you want to bottle up and keep forever. As we dance I watch your tiny little hand rest in mine and I lean my head against yours. As we dance I think of dancing with you as you grow throughout the years. Dances with you on my feet while I lead and then dances as you get older and you lead. My train of thought continues drifting the years of your life until the thought of dancing with you at your wedding plays in my mind. That sweet moment I had been enjoying is interrupted and is replaced with frustration and heart ache. You see my precious child I love you so much and it pains me whenever I have a thought and then begin to wonder if you will ever get to experience it. 
Then almost as quickly as the frustration and heart ache appears it disappears and is replaced with feelings of irritation at myself. I work to be to a…