Tuesday, October 27, 2009

And the leaves keep talking


It has been a while. Ginny's bed rest has not really allowed much time for blogging- or going to the bathroom for that matter. She has a Dr.'s appointment tomorrow. It has now been 6 weeks and 5 days of bed rest, but who's counting?

Me, that's who. February, the month she's due, seems more like a speck on a distant horizon than a reality, almost a little cruel to actually dwell on. But getting through a day is a victory, and a good thing for baby #3.

I always prepare scripted answers to questions I know I will receive in multiples of ten. This process, while admittedly uncreative, allows for the fact that I am prone to uninhibitedly say what I think and this habit often leaves me apologizing to someone for something. So, I craft a good enough reply, and if the first recipient seems pleased, I go with it. In order to give you a window into our world, here are a few of the ones dealing with bed rest.

> Life looks wildly different than it did 6 weeks ago. The way we do every single thing as a family has changed.

> For me it is completely a a physical thing. There is more to do than I can. And I have no time to feel anything because the trash needs to go out, Hazel is crying, and we probably need to eat something tonight. For Ginny, it is completely an emotional thing. And the fact that what we are walking through looks so different, is what makes it feel like your not going through it together.

> No Ginny is not bouncing off the walls. She is actually handling the down time well. Somehow, she manages to have plenty to do, all from her perch on the couch. But what has been really hard for her is not getting to mother Hazel the way she would like. Watching other people meet the needs of your daughter is not fun.

There are plenty more actually, but you get the idea. I just wanted to give a brief update on bed rest. Again, our family and friends have made it possible for Ginny to do what she is supposed to- sit and be still. We cannot thank them enough.

However, today is not really about bed rest. Today is about honoring two of my favorite lives: my son and my wife.

Today is Ginny's 30th birthday and the 3 yr marker for Eliot leaving this earth.
Today is a special day.

I hoped that forcing myself to write on this day would help me grapple with what I feel and think about a day that is always an awkward tight rope walk between deep pain and inexpressible joy.

Tears fall like leaves around this time each year. Fayetteville is on fire.
Our hometown is covered with hues of red, orange, and yellow. As if the trees were trying to tell us something. A recital for those who will listen. I devise reasons to get out of the house just so Hazel and I can meander through streets- the ones with real trees, just before and after the suburbs. I don't even try to describe the brilliance to Ginny because she will know she is missing out.

Far and away, this is my favorite time of the year. The intensity of the colors are matched only by the thoughts of my son that come so effortlessly and so often. Thus, this season always come bearing gifts for us. And I love it for that.

Ginny broke down this week on a friend who asked what we would do for this day. Nothing seems appropriate or enough. How does one approach a day that changed everything? Not to mention, it is Ginny's birthday. And before you wish that weren't so, just know that there is something beautiful about that fact that I cannot quite put to words.

So, defying doctor's orders, I took her out today. We visited the grave and ate an Italian lunch. But most of all, we just drove around and looked up at the leaves.

We talked about how Eliot's life has changed us. Of how God has worked enough redemption that we can breathe. We can see green peaking through ashes. In fact, just being witness to this is one of the main changes. For we desire to be a part of God's working redemption in the lives of others.

And the leaves keep talking. He is making all things new.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


october is a great month. leaves are changing & falling. football is in the air. pumpkins on the porch & pumpkin bread, pumpkin lattes, pumpkin muffins in the kitchen. lately, when folks come over to help bedrest life happen they have on jeans & boots & scarves. everyone is buying candy & working on their halloween costumes.
and...october is when hazel was born, when i was born & when eliot went home to be with Jesus.
yep, it's a big month around here.

hazel turned 1 last wednesday & on saturday we had a little party at our house. bedrest didn't stop the fun. i made a banner and then bossed my great mom & great mother-in-law on all the other details. friends, family, tons of kids, pbj sandwiches, balloons, cake and the wonderful chaos that the combination of those things bring. hazel even got to try her first piece of cake. to say she loved it is a serious understatement. she looked at me, with that serious look she so often wears, as if to say "really? you knew about this? and you're just now letting me try it". she devoured it. started by picking the icing off, then grabbed the whole piece in her hand & ate off of it one bite at a time. all the while never unclenching the fist out of fear of losing this greatness.
later that day, when most of the guests had left, matt & i gave her the gift we had gotten her: her first baby doll. i've never seen her play with a doll before & wasn't sure what she'd think. it was love at first sight. all hugs & kisses for the doll.

all first birthday parties are special, no matter who the kid or what their family. but for me, this one was quite special. it wasn't exactly what i pictured...many of the fun & crazy traditions i'd like to start for Mooney family birthdays will have to wait till next year, when my world is a bit larger than my couch. the truth is that hazel will not remember her first birthday, but i sure will. at one point i looked around the room & the scene looked particularly familiar. some new faces, but many of the same faces that knew & loved eliot & celebrated his birthdays with us, were joining us once again for a birthday celebration. yes, it was quite a special day for quite a special gal.

now for lots of pictures:

Friday, October 9, 2009

impossible love

there's a line from a movie i have never seen that my dear friend often quotes when we are talking about being moms. the mom in this movie looks at her daughter, sighs, & says "impossible love". if you are a mom, my guess is that resonates with you. how can you even describe what loving your kid looks like? what it feels like? it bursts, aches, frustrates, rejoices, thanks, tires, energizes. it can make you feel crazy one moment & more sane than you've ever felt the next. i think about this often as i attempt to mother eliot while missing him. hazel while currently on the couch. #3 while not yet having met him/her.
i think that there is a lot of mommy refining taking place here on this couch. i don't pretend to totally understand all that He is teaching me. but what i do know is that i am not the mom i long to be and it has nothing to do with this bedrest journey.

for about the first 3 weeks of bedrest i didn't have our camera. i wasn't totally sure where i last had it & asking someone to search for the camera was low on the list of all the millions of things other people are daily doing for us. the other day a friend brought his fancy camera by for us to borrow. i am beyond grateful. here are some of the latest pics taken by a mom who loves her kids with that impossible love...



a little...well, a lot...of bonding time with dad lately

side ponytail (& when mom's on bedrest, pants are totally optional)

Friday, October 2, 2009

thirty thanks

A friend of mine keeps a blog completely of lists…and I love it. Not sure why, but it intrigues me and even when the topic is seemingly not that interesting, it is really interesting. So this post is a little random list of some of my most recent bedrest observations. I do not presume that this is interesting, but I guess you never know.

Things in my normal life that I usually take for granted, but bedrest has reminded me that I am really really really grateful for:

1. An incredible husband (think I’m just saying that? wrong, see previous post).
2. 2 incredible kids. (almost 3)
3. Serving Matt.
4. Caring for Hazel. (see #11-17)
5. How many people I know & love.
6. How many people I know & love that are really fun to hang out with.
7. How many people I know & love that are really fun to hang out with & go out of their way to stop by my house.
8. The windows in my living room.
9. The view out the window from my living room. (trees, leaves falling, clouds, sun, squirrels)
10. Where I live. (Close enough to the university to hear ballgames, frat parties, etc.
11. Bathing Hazel.
12. Feeding Hazel.
13. Holding Hazel.
14. Dancing around the living room Hazel.
15. Playing with Hazel.
16. Changing Hazel’s diapers.
17. Swinging at the park with Hazel.
18. I can read.
19. I can see.
20. I can smell.
21. I can think…well, most of the time.
22. Cooking.
23. Walking.
24. Books.
25. Driving.
26. Restaurants.
27. Grocery shopping.
28. Cleaning. (this one is so shocking)
29. Shoes. (I guess more specifically I’m thankful for typically having a reason to wear them)
30. i get to be a part of God making another person! May I never overlook this gift...amazing!