Mary Kate Frances
Mary Kate calls Thomas the destroyer and a messy monster. At 19 months his hobbies include knocking down towers built by Mary Kate, climbing stairs, riding in his red car, anything outside, being held by mama, taking things apart and putting them back together (Tim's bottle parts are a current favorite), playing with my phone, opening/closing doors, playing with the microwave door, emptying my cabinets and coloring. All boy, this kid can destroy a room in .2 seconds. I love it. He is not walking yet which definitely makes his mama sad sometimes. Our precious friend/physical therapist thinks he may walk by his 2nd birthday. If I didn't see him making progress in his motor and speech skills I would be more worried but he is moving forward in all the areas. He remains extremely short statured but hope grows that it is simply a coincidence that he is very short with accompanying developmental delays instead of some underlying issue. The next step for him is brain imaging but Ross and I both think we will hold off. It requires general anesthesia and the treatment plan is likely the same- lots of therapy. He still loves mama best of all (sorry Ross :) but is doing better at letting other people hold and care for him. He loves both his grandmothers, finds his Pops to be absolutely hilarious, and tolerates church nursery just long enough for mom to hear a few words of Mass. He is flirtatious, social and handsome. He still loves to wake up MK from her dwindling naptimes and adores her. He is saying Mama, Dada, da-doo (thank you). He is signing what he wants and is really growing into a little toddler. After months of worrying about his future, I definitely treasure the moments he is simply being a rascally boy. This child is a daily reminder to pray and believe.
My precious little Timothy. At 4 months he is my biggest and most talkative baby. He smiles from ear to ear and simply wants to be talked to. I don't know if I will ever not feel a little guilty about his newborn months but I'll just work extra hard to love on him as he grows. He is a healthy 14 lbs (44 %) and is 2'.075 long (39%). He eats 7 oz of milk 5-6 times a day and spits up a few of those ounces each time :) He is a good napper and sleeper and as all newborns are, is a reminder to slow down and snuggle someone. Like his siblings before him, he abhors the carseat and prefers to be held at all times. There are truly worse problems. He is adored by his big sister and most common nickname is "bird" for the little shape of his mouth when he talks to you. Last night Ross played tennis and I did Tim's dream feed. He fell right back asleep on my shoulder and I stared in the bathroom mirror for a good five minutes at this little baby on my chest. I cried tears of gratitude for him, ever thankful that God gave him to us.
These days are hard. Someone, including mommy, is almost always crying. To copy my friend Rachel's jargon, "little kids ain't fer wimps." Mommy is slowly (emphasis on slowly) returning to running and trying to find her own oxygen mask. Less diet coke and chocolate morsel lunches and more nutrition and prayer. (As I put down the graham cracker). Ross is the glue holding our family together, simultaneously changing a diaper, holding a toddler and talking mom off a cliff. He goes into work late, takes lunch breaks for doctor's appointments and bears more on his shoulders than I'll ever admit out loud. But our family is well. A word that keeps coming to mind lately is "treasure." I am trying so hard to be more intentional about slowing down and treasuring the hugs from my ever affectionate Mary Kate, treasuring seeing Thomas pull up on a coffee table, treasuring smiles from Timothy and treasuring the work my husband does. I keep writing here so that one day my adult children in the throes of young parenthood will look back and see that I, too, had days where I cried and cried and days where I couldn't stop rejoicing. C'est la vie.
Tonight a blessed babysitter comes over so I can go to Confession and maybe fit in a run. I can imagine many of life's problems can be solved by this combo. My prayers these days are for my babies, for God to send them sweet, God-oving friends and one day, sweet, God-loving spouses. I pray that Ross and I show them what love and faith look like. I pray that they know Jesus deeply and fully.