heart in the clouds

Monday, February 25, 2008

In Protest of Winter

Being the native Texan girl that I am, I can say without hesitation that I absolutely abhor winter. I'm being completely honest here, I despise, hate, loathe ... however you want to say it ... winter. You see, not being able to soak in the sun's rays for weeks at a time is really not my idea of fun. I don't enjoy playing in the snow. I don't enjoy sledding or ice skating or anything that involves having to put on a lot of clothes, heavy coat, hat, gloves, etc.

I'll take it a step further and just admit I do not like temperatures below 50 degrees. I think that must've been one of the first consequences of sin. God said "Fine, eat that apple, but believe me those fig leaves ain't even gonna begin to cut it when I strike you with WINTER."

I lived in Texas the majority of my childhood and I think it snowed enough to matter once. In my memories, it was a blizzard with a ton of snow. In pictures, our snowman looked more like a grassman because we apparently had to scrape the ground to get enough snow to create the monster. Now, once we moved to Oklahoma there was admittedly more snow. However, said snow would melt the next day, the sun would come out and it would be above 50 degrees until the next onslaught. I thought that was winter hell at the time...but then in 1999, I moved to Kentucky. My first winter, I don't think we saw the ground all of January. I remember talking with a colleague whose calves hadn't yet seen the sun about how shocked they would be when it finally decided to peek through the dreary winterhell sky. They probably went blind and thought, "What the...!!"

So, today I decided to protest winter by acting like it's not winter. David picked me up for my chiropractic appointment and then we went to lunch. At the chiro office, I shocked myself hanging up my stupid wool coat. I told the girl at the front desk I'd be so glad when shocking season is OVER. She agreed and then I just got in a bad mood about winter all over again. We left and drove to Ramsey's. I decided right then and there to pretend it wasn't winter. I left my wool coat in the car and braved the 30-yard walk to the door. We walked in and I felt like everyone was looking at me like I was nutso butso, and well, I probably am, but dad gum it (I can't stop using that term from my Texas granny) I am sick of winter!!!!!!!

Don't worry, I'm not going to go put on my bathing suit and jump in the frigid Kentucky River to continue this charade, because it just didn't work. Even with all my efforts to pretend otherwise, it's still winter...dad gum it!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Sometimes I sing him to sleep

Sometimes I sing Zach to sleep at night. And, sometimes he even lets me sing songs I want to sing. I made up a song I used to sing to him while I was pregnant and he really seems to still like it, so that's a plus. I hadn't tried to make up any new songs lately because all he has been wanting to hear is Twinkle, Twinkle little star or a Gymbo the clown song to the tune of "The wheels on the bus go round and round." It instead has lyrics like "Gymbo the clown goes up and down..." Anyway, that song isn't too sleep inducing for obvious reasons. So I made up verses like "Gymbo the clown says close your eyes...and Gymbo the clown says go to sleep, etc."

Tonight however, he was feeling very generous in mood and actually allowed me to sing whatever I wanted. So I just started singing and came up with the start of a pretty cool worship song. I wish I knew how to write music. If any of you out there can write down the notes if I sing them...or play what I sing on the guitar or piano, let me know! I hope the melody isn't something already out there; I'd like to think the Lord gave it to me tonight. But if not, I know He gave me the evolving lyrics and I'm going to at least write those down here.

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
You are Lord of all
I lift my hands to praise you
then to my knees I fall

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
I say your name out loud
Jesus, Jesus Jesus,
Let me in you be found

Lord of heaven
Lord of Earth
Lord of all I'm worth
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus
you are Lord of all

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Is it really possible that two years have come and gone so quickly? I still remember the shock, excitement and anxiety I felt when our baby boy came a few weeks early. I hoped and prayed he would be okay while having to make a premature entry into the world. All my fears were put to rest when I saw him - all 6 lbs and 7 oz. - he was perfect at that moment. In fact, everything was perfect at that moment. I thought that I finally knew what love really was all about. But, in the past two years, I've realized I have just begun to fully understand love. Every time I think I've learned to love with all my heart, I learn to love even deeper.

The past two years have been filled with SO many tears, laughs, shrieks of frustration and jubilation, puzzled looks and exploration. All the cats still have their tails and no crayon marks have yet made it to the walls. We've had too many ear infections to count and now new words are spilling out faster than I keep up with as well.

Zach's birthday party was so much fun. He and 13 of his little friends had a blast at Gymboree Play and Music. Miss Jenny did such a great job keeping the kiddos entertained. Zach is usually larger than life at Gymboree, but when all the other tots showed up, he looked really confused. He just wasn't used to seeing them out of their "place." He is used to seeing the church kids at church and the babysitter kids at the babysitter. But combining them in a place where he usually sees a whole different crop of tots was confusing. He seemed a little overwhelmed that all the songs Miss Jenny sang were about him too. Once things got going though, he did end up having a great time and I think most of the other kids did too; I don't really remember any major tantrums.

I started thinking about the "out of place" stuff. Would my "church" friends recognize me in another setting? Would my "non-church" friends recognize me at church? For that matter, does my heavenly father recognize me out in the world, away from church? I guess it all comes down to being consistent in attitude and actions. I know there are a lot of times I've probably seemed like two different people at the very least. But that's not what I want to be; I want to be real all the time. It shouldn't really be such a struggle, but sometimes it is.

Monday, February 11, 2008

My new horn

I bet I could make a million on this invention...customizable voice horn. I'm fed up with the jaywalkers on Nicholasville Rd. as it turns into Limestone on UK's campus. In the middle of the morning rush, EVERYDAY, someone runs out in front of me or the cars around me when they are merely 25 feet from a crosswalk. Mind you, people have been maimed and killed doing just this in the very recent past, but obviously that's not enough to deter these folks from their precarious habit of playing frogger in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

This morning it happened again, as usual, and I thought about honking at the death-wish pedestrian. However, I realized I didn't have the right horn. I need one that screams out "GET IN THE CROSSWALK, IT'S ONLY 10 FEET AWAY!" There could be other phrase options as well, such as "Should I sprinkle your ashes in the crosswalk, since that's where you should've been before I hit you?" or "Did I say you could run out in front of me?" or even "You deserve to get hit!"

Oh it's so hard to have compassion on Monday morning!!!!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Head Drama revisited

So I think I'm going to permanently affix a helmet to Zach's head. In November his head got into battle with a ceramic flower pot on the "Nina's" front porch. Short version of the story... the pot won and Zach ended up with IV sedation and four stitches. It was very traumatic, mostly for me, at the time. But, we zoomed past that boo boo in a hurry and were on to bigger and better things.

He'd occasionally bump the same spot again and get a small bruise. It was like they sewed in some kind of "smack me here" magnets with the stitches. Last night though, those magnets must have been working overtime. I went to pick him up at 4:45 and when I walked in the door, I heard him crying. Now, that's not so unusual as lately, he's been quite tantrum-prone. But when the babysitter rounded the kitchen corner holding an ice pack on Zach's head with blood all over his shirt, I knew we were in for a long night. Linda said...Aimee, he did it again.

She was nearly in tears and then I was beginning to get watery eyes when I realized it was the same exact spot on his head as the last split. Oh great, I thought, at least it'll still just be one scar. Oh crap, I thought, his two-year pictures are next week. I know that's bad, but it was one of the first thoughts I had after I knew he wasn't bleeding out. So vain - I know, I know.

On first inspection, I thought maybe we could get by with some neosporin and a
band aid...then he dug his finger into it while saying "Mommy, boo boo." Sheesh, self mutilation at this point was just not acceptable! But that's when I knew we were going back to the ER. You see, the pediatricians are not equipped to do stitches, so if there's a possibility of needing them, they tell you to go on to the ER.

We parked in the garage so Zach could ride the bus to the ER, which just awed him. They got us right in and asked the routine "I'm trying to figure out if you are a child abuser" questions. We were sitting in our room 10 minutes later when the doctor walks in and I'm like "Oh, David look...it's Dr. C____." Dr. C____ was surprised that I knew him and wanted to know if he was missing something.

You see, this is the same Dr. who let David go after his stroke without doing any
tests. So I got him up to speed on who we were and that we found out David had a stroke that day. He was very apologetic for not doing a CT scan on David that day, blah blah. I had to keep my cool and try not to question why God had given us this same doctor again. He really did seem sincere and concerned and he was very good with Zach.

Dr. C_____ decided Zach wouldn't need stitches. The old scar had only half way opened up...so he could use glue. Whew! They put a numbing gel on his head for about an hour, but then he did warn me that they'd have to wrap Zach up to clean it out and get it glued straight. We had a lot of time to waste, so we walked the halls and Zach insisted on going potty...good boy! Turns out what he really wanted was to play with the "magic" hand towel dispenser. He got a good giggle out of waving his hand in front of it to get paper towels. I told him if he was scared, all he had to do was tell Jesus and if he wanted to pray, we would pray too. He bowed his head and we asked God to be with him and keep him from being afraid.

Amazingly when they wrapped him in the sheet, he didn't even cry.
He did seem a little unsure of things and got a little fussy toward the end of the procedure, but we started singing Twinkle, Twinkle and he just focused on the song. He didn't even cry until it was all over and the doctor wanted to put a band aid on haha. I know it was just a little wound, but I think God was trying to show me that this guy was a good doctor and that I shouldn't hold a grudge against him. He's human like all of us and he made a poor judgment call with David; he acknowledged it and we must forgive him and be grateful that God protected David through that oversight. So, I suppose I learned a little about forgiveness through this experience.

Psalm 86:5 (Holman Christian Standard Bible)
For You, Lord, are kind and ready to forgive,
abundant in faithful love to all who call on You.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

1:24 a.m.

...That's what time it was when I was awakened from a deep sleep by the tornado sirens this morning. I guess no longer have to wonder if we live close enough to them to wake up for middle-of-the-night twisters! As soon as I figured out what was going on, I went to get Zach and the three of us made our way downstairs to turn on the TV or radio to see just what was going on. At first, the cable wouldn't come on and so we started listening to the radio and the first thing we heard was "Jessamine County take cover." Oh crap, I started thinking about all the stuff we needed to move out of the closet under the stairs to actually "take cover," since "the killer is at your door," (reference to another storm in the recent past where the weather man actually said that...Kentucky meteorologists...WOW is all I have to say.).

The cable came back on and sure enough, we were under a tornado warning. I tried to put Zach down so I could empty the closet, while David grabbed a bunch of pillows from upstairs, but he was shaking and so scared so I had to do it one-handed. We were trying to act as calmly as possible so he wouldn't be traumatized too much. But I guess there's only so much calming you can do for a nearly-two-year-old when you wake him up at 1:30 a.m. and run downstairs, only to start throwing things out of the closet.

We all got safely in the closet and piled the pillows on top of us. Zach kept saying "mommy?" and I was just telling him to shhhh so we could hear the TV and know when we could come out of the closet. We started praying outloud, telling God how impressed we were by his mighty display of power, but that we were also a little scared and just asked for more faith to believe he would protect us. Zach kept saying "pay, pay," his way of saying pray. Then after we finished, he kept saying Amen! By then, he wasn't even shaking anymore, he was just laying calmly with his head on my shoulder because he knew we had his back.

Having lived in Texas and Oklahoma, I've been through more tornado warnings than I can actually remember and I even like that kind of weather. But in Kentucky, I just don't have the same faith in our weather folks to give us advance warnings and I HATE middle of the night storms that leave you with what we called back home..."tornado eyes." Even with all that experience, I was a bit frightened last night. Mostly because I'm a mom now and everything changes...so cliche, but so true....when you become a mom. You worry so much about your babies and being able to protect them.

I was thinking even as I was praying that it was so silly for me to be afraid when God is totally sovereign and that He has OUR back. It reminds me of one of my most favorite scriptures, Zephaniah 3:17: The Lord your God is with you; He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.

Wow...He is with ME? Little ol' me?...well not so little, but you know what I'm saying! He is using His MIGHT to save ME? Why then, do I even fear anything but God? Praise the Lord for this day and his mighty power to save us.

Monday, February 4, 2008

No, No, No and ...did I say NO?

Ah the joys of the nearly terrible-twos. Such a little person, yet such an enormous temper! From the moment Zach woke up this morning he wholeheartedly didn't want to do anything - but he didn't want to do nothing either. I call this toddler apathy. Here's how our conversation went down this morning.

Me: Good morning, Zachary! Come here and give me a hug!
Zach: No.
Me: Oh come on, come give me a hug!
Zach: NO!
Me: Okay, do you need to pee pee?
Zach: Yeah.
Me: Okay, let's go potty.
Zach: NO! (followed by the foulest scowl you ever did see).
David: Let's get your pants off, so we can put on big boy pants.
Zach: NO...NO...NO...(followed by the classic stiff stance, clenched fists).
Me: Zach, mommy doesn't have time for this today, let daddy get you dressed.
Zach falls to the floor half naked: NOooooooooooooo
Me: Fine, do you want to be naked and cold?
Zach: NO! NO!

After this we pretty much stripped him and redressed him while he kicked and screamed and begged for a "bah." He wanted a cereal bar. So we proceeded downstairs to get said bah.

I unwrapped the bar; I sat Zach in his chair; I laid the bar in front of him on the tray and he just stared at it. And then of course came the word of the day "NO!"

I just ignored it and walked into the bathroom, where he could still see me.
Zach: NO
Me: You said you wanted a bar; I gave you a bar, now eat it!
Zach: NO!
Me: Are you hungry?
Zach: Yeah
Me: So eat the bar and chill out!
Zach: silence
2 minutes later, bar still in tact;
Zach: NO!

You see where this is going; nothing in the world would please that child this morning. I could've him anything he asked for and it still would not have made him happy. But why? I don't think he even knows that. He just wanted to completely control his environment, but he wasn't sure what final outcome he really wanted.

I find that so true in my own life. God tells me to do something, that I know in my heart is the right thing to do, but I say no just to exert my own will. I ask God for this or that - thinking it will make me happy. Then He gives me exactly what I asked for and I don't want it anymore and I say NO, Lord, NO! Where is the logic in this?

I think He knows exactly what I need, when I need it and I should just trust Him. He also wants me to trust Him; take what he gives and not look back.

Think about Lot's wife. God gave her family freedom from a region that He was about to destroy because Lot asked for God to protect them. Instead of just being grateful for the Lord's gift of freedom, she had second thoughts and wondered if that is really what she wanted. God turned her into a pillar of salt when she looked back on Sodom. That may sound like an extreme analogy, but is it really? If Zach would have just let us get him out of his pjs, to the potty and into his clothes, he would've spared himself a long ride on a very emotional roller coaster. If he would have eaten what he asked me to give him, he wouldn't still be hungry 10 miles down the road.

I need to remember to obey God when he asks me to do simple things and also be grateful for the times when he gives me what I ask for.

Genesis 19:26