Thursday, February 27, 2014

So I Blinked......

And this......

Turned to this....

Where does the time go?

Monday, February 24, 2014

Eating Disorder Awareness Week - What you might not know about me.

Today kicks off the start of Eating Disorder Awareness Week.  More people die from eating disorders than from any other psychiatric illness.  Eating disorders destroy lives and families.  I know more than I would like to know about eating disorders because at age 16 I was diagnosed with Anorexia Nervosa.  The funny thing about eating disorders are that they start small.  They are sneaky.  I remember with me it was the end of my sophomore year of high school.  During that summer I decided that my thighs were too fat and I was going to diet.  The diet became skipped meals, became hours of exercise, became a 20lb and then a 30lb weight loss over a year.  By the time I was 17 years old, my mom had exhausted all the outpatient therapies and nutritionists she could trying to help me and with my health failing (I was 89lbs at almost 5'8) she put me inpatient.  First it was at a psychiatric hospital in Pennsylvania that had an eating disorder program, but when that proved to be too dangerous (since we were mixed with violent children with other psychiatric illnesses) she moved me to a eating disorder program at Princeton Medical Center.  It was her last option.  Surely without some sort of intervention I would have died.  I spent the entire summer of 1999 inpatient doing group therapy, solo therapy, nutritional therapy, and was heavily medicated.  Slowly but surely I gained weight, followed the rules and was discharged a week before I was to start my senior year of high school.

The funny thing about eating disorders is they are never really "cured".  I like to say that like Cancer (which I have had too!), eating disorders go into "remission" and when they flare the person with the eating disorder needs to decide if they want to fight to keep themselves together and healthy, or let the eating disorder win.  I started my senior year of school, but that wasn't the end of the story.  Just 2 weeks after starting school I managed to loose 20lbs.  Back inpatient I went and this time it was longer.  Much longer. I rebelled, I fought tooth and nail AGAINST the program.  I was determined to "NOT GET FAT!" no matter what the cost.  I ended up even more medicated, just barely missed getting a feeding tube, and earned myself a one-on-one and bedrest because I liked doing jumping jacks in my bathroom.  It wasn't all bad though.  While I was there I met a lot of wonderful people.  I met someone there that still to this day remains one of my very best friends.  Eating disorders are very isolating.  No one really understands what it is like to live with the voice in your head telling you that you are fat when you are 70lbs.  People don't understand why you can't "just eat".  Friendships were formed out of a common foe.  I spent most of September, all of October, and almost all of November in those walls.  Finally around Thanksgiving my doctor decided that I would be better off going home, because staying there wasn't doing any good for me anymore.  My mom was scared and so was I.  She brought me home the day after Thanksgiving and I have never been inpatient since. Almost 15 years.  I am an almost 15 year eating disorder survivor.  That is a huge deal.  I am one of the lucky ones.  I know many people that weren't as lucky as I am.  They didn't make it.  I am happy to say that my friend that I met inpatient all those years ago has finally found her road to recovery.  She is 2 years hospital free.  Some people have harder roads to recovery than I have had.  My journey hasn't been easy and there are still days now all these years later when I have to make the decision to keep myself healthy and I do.  Not just for me, but for my sons and my husband.

Have you tried Ebates?

I know, I have read sone hokey referral blog entries before, but I promise this one is worth it.  Back in 2012 my brother-in-law asked if he could send me something to my email for me to read.  He had just signed up for Ebates and the more people you refer the more money you make.  I figured it wouldn't hurt to sign up, at best all it would do is help him out.  I signed up, got to pick a $10 gift card (I picked Target, cause well, it's Target) and waited to see if I would actually get anything.  I didn't have much faith.  Low and behold a few weeks later I had my gift card and a renewed interest in buying online through Ebates.  I do a lot of online shopping and to date I have earned $78.33.  I realize that doesn't seem like a lot in 2 years, but it is when you are basically getting paid to shop.  Ebates also has all the current coupon code available for many sites, so you can shop, get a discount, AND earn money back.  Sounds good right?  Want to get started?  Follow the link here!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Surviving Teething

Brady has been a beast lately.  If teething was a sport, he would be a gold medalist.  After getting his two bottom teeth just shy of 4 months, the kid has gotten 4 more teeth and they always come in pairs days apart.  Life has not been fun.  He is grumpy and not sleeping well.  I have tried everything on the market and some things work better than others.  Here is my list of go-to teething helpers.

Punkin Butt Teething Oil - This is stuff is awesome.  It is a mixture of essential oils of chamomile, clove and peppermint.  I put some on a q-tip and rub onto Brady's gums and it seems to help quite a bit.  Smells lovely too!

Amber Teething Necklaces/Bracelets - Some folks swear by these (like me) and others think they are worthless. I have found by using them on 2 out of my 3 boys that they do help.  I have noted a reduction in drooling and daytime fussiness when Brady has his necklace on.  Some folks don't mind having their babies wearing necklaces while they sleep, I am not comfortable with it.  Brady wears an amber bracelet at night under his PJs.  You could also take a necklace and wrap it around a wrist or ankle, but keep in mind it works better the closer it is to the head.  Lightly colored raw amber has more painkilling properties than the polished and darker amber, but they are all amazing.  I even wear an amber necklace myself to help with my upper back/neck pain.  Helps a ton.

Teething Rings - Honestly I have never experienced these being super helpful.  Yes, my kids chew on them and yes I have about 203902390239 of them laying around my house but babies will chew on anything!  My favorite teething rings are the Life Factory Silicone teethers and the Heava Panda Teether.  I see these as safer options for Brady to chew on, other than the Matchbox cars scattered around my house.

When all else fails, and sometimes, like the past 2 weeks when Brady has gotten 4 teeth pretty much at once I have had to resort to using my more natural means as well as giving Tylenol or Advil (never together).  The pain of teething can be a real pain in the butt for both baby and you when your kid isn't sleeping.  I reserve the use of actual medications for nighttime when he is completely miserable and we need sleep.

Wishing you easy teething and that your kid is nothing like Brady and gets teeth at a more manageable pace.  Geeze. Everything I have listed here can be bought at Dearest Diapers from the link below.

Happy Teething!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Dear Baby

My Dearest Baby Boy,

I realize that you have only been on this planet a mere 6.5 months and things are all new and exciting for you.  I also realize that it is hard being a baby.  Teeth, gas, rolling over, the lint and stale cheerio you were trying to eat off the living room floor all contribute to you needing to stay awake all night and process through your very bright and very new brain.  I get it son, I really do, BUT - MAMA NEEDS SLEEP.  Sweetheart you aren't an only child.  You are one of 3 very sweet, but very needy boys.  It is bad times when I am so tired that I forget your oldest brother's drink in his lunch or his lunch all together, because you decided it would be fun to roll around grabbing your feet while simultaneously screeching about not being able to get to your foot through the sleep contraption you insist of sleeping with at 3 am. I have left keys and wallets places they shouldn't be left.  I drove away one morning after warming up my car (gotta love the -10 degree weather!) forgetting that I was driving the big kid to school.  Oh and while we are on the subject of sleeping my love, naps?  Yeah, lets work on them.  I would love nothing more than to snuggle you and carry doze on the couch holding you for your naps like I did with your brothers, but I can't.  I have too much to do and I don't relish the idea of living in squalor.  I only ask for 1.5-2 hours twice a day, in your bed so I can do stuff like....shower, wash dishes, clean up the gazillion toys looking to ruin my feet while I walk, and think about all the cool stuff I want to do with you guys that I can't do when I am going on 2 hours sleep a night for months and months.

You know sweetie, they say that parents of babies who sleep are much more fun.......

All my love,