Monday, October 18, 2010

The Waiting Game

It seems like I'm always waiting for something.... From small things like a prescription to be filled, or a red light to bigger things like when our new small family business can be focused on and grown. We've spent a lot of time lately waiting on results from medical tests. We're doing it again now and it's trying, I just want to know. NOW. But what are we missing out on while we wish the time to pass?

Maybe, just maybe, we're missing out on looking around at where we are right then and there. Do we really want our kids to grow faster, our time with aging family or friends to be lost? Of course not. Yet we still want moments to fly, want to move on to the next phase.

Maybe, just maybe, we're exactly where we're meant to be, where God put us in this very moment. Maybe I can learn in this moment to trust just a bit more. Or maybe I can just spend a moment gazing at this gorgeous day.

Maybe these moments of waiting can be celebrated too.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Hospitals, broken adapters, and glasses oh my!

I should have been blogging while I had time to kill in the hospital with Michael, but I didn't, so here's a quick recap of our last two weeks!

Michael was in the hospital for 6 days last week.  The good news is he's doing much better overall.  He has Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome- basically, for 11 years he's been admitted for uncontrolled vomiting close to 25 times and is sick on a pretty regular basis.  It impacts his whole life.  (it's rare and odd and is interesting to read about if you like medical mysteries!).  The worst part is there isn't good treatment, mostly just sedating until it passes, usually a few days.  Every test known to man has been run.  Twice.  But this time he did have blood work show something new that we think is unrelated but needs to be addressed regardless.  He has very high prolactin levels, which are high enough for them to assume a pituatary tumor- though he is having an MRI next Monday to confirm.  It sounds scarier than it is, it will probably just require medication to shrink, but he's still a bit freaked out.

While he was in, the AC adapter for my breast pump broke, so I was going out to the car some to pump, and hand expressing a lot- I had lots of time to kill anyway, so didn't matter that it was taking forever.  But now I'm at work, and this is causing a problem!  I'm pumping less and that's probably okay, still bringing home as much as he eats, and we're getting close to 10 months when I planned to cut back some anyway (because I have a big freezer stash) so I'm trying not to stress over that.

And last but not least, the school called us a few days ago that they thought Drew needed glasses- so we took him in and sure enough, not so good!  Glasses will be here next week and we're trying our darndest to convince him it's not dorky.  I got them a bit later, though my vision is TERRIBLE, I hid it from my parents well, and I remember how geeky I felt, even though I love them now!  Hoping to help spare him some of that.
Okay, there is my book o drama on what you missed. 

Thanks to all of you who offered encouragement while Michael was in the hospital, it really helped!   :smileyhappy:

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Looking Ahead to Honor the Past

How do you focus forward when their is still pain and suffering?  How do you honor and celebrate the new exciting things in life, without feeling like you're dishonoring those you've lost, or things you've been through?  This is something that many of us struggle with, especially those who have faced great loss. 

In my home, we've struggled with this.  More than three years after my brother Austin's disappearance, we still hurt.  But new life has come into our home, life that deserves to be celebrated, loved, and enjoyed.  Does it dishonor Austin for us to laugh and love?  No.  Is it hard to remember that some days?  Yes.

In our church, we are still struggling with this as a body.  We lost our amazing Godly pastor five months ago, and still hurt as a church.  But God is working!  God has chosen another great man to lead us, and has brought our church together in ways we always prayed for.  We want to celebrate the way He is working, celebrate the plans that He has for us.  But sometimes that hurts.  We don't want to dishonor Pastor Ken by forgetting, but the reality is that we'll never forget.  But we will move ahead.  Does that dishonor him?  No, it simply means we learned from him that God will work through even our pain.

This will continue to be a work in progress for many of us.  But we're reminded that God is in control, God is working, and there are wonderful things ahead.  And while looking ahead and celebrating what is to come, we're truly honoring those who helped us become who we are.

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. (Psalm 103:2-5)

Monday, September 6, 2010

I was tagged by Krista from The Cameron Chronicles to answer a few questions about myself. So here goes nothing...

1. If you were stranded on a desert island what are the 3 things you would take with you and why?  my iPhone, because with it I can do anything including get communication out to people to find me (but only after a few days of quiet!), a good book (would use iPhone for all things bible related so this would just be pure fiction), and coke.  I love coke.

2. What is your favorite memory from college (or from your early 20's if you didn't attend college)?  All things related to Gator Football!  From my first games with a guy who explained it all when I was football dumb, to being part of recruiting, to going to an SEC Championship and later the National Championship.

3. How did you meet your husband?  Speaking of good college memories....  I was doing an internship at NAS Jacksonville to complete my degree in Recreation, Parks and Tourism.  I was helping manage a recreation center and planning special trips and events for the young single sailors that lived in the barracks.  Michael was one of them, and was different than most in there all the time, so he caught my attention.  We didn't do much 'dating' were just totally together from the start.

4. What does a normal day look like for you? (yes, I'm recycling this one because I like to see what everyone's schedule looks like!)
6:30  Ben starts waking, I slowly start waking
6:45  Get up (hopefully), change Ben and jump in the shower then try to get ready.  Get Drew up and moving
7:45 Leave (if I'm on time which is rare) and pump for the first 15 minutes of the drive
8:30 get to work, run crazy all day with meeting and a few more pumping sessions
5:45 Kick myself out of the office
6:30  Arrive home, kiss on my boys, eat dinner if Michael's made it, or throw something together
7:00  Many nights are somewhere  by now- either at a meeting, or practice or community group
8:00  Bath time if we're home
8:30 or 9  Bed time if we're home

9:00  Some quiet TV and often work time
10:00 My bed time!
And up within a few hours to nurse Ben and every few through the night

There you go, not too exciting- just the busy life of a busy working mom!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

KidStuf Kickoff Show

Today was the first show of the new season of KidStuf and it was great!  We had a huge crowd of people, and had quite a few new faces in the show.  We LOVE new people stepping up to be on stage.  And my husband.... well, he's quite the funny guy.  All in all, a great start to a new season.  Can't wait to see how God uses us all through it.

After the show, we had a BBQ with Mr. Leroy's famous food and kitchen crew and games and water slides for the kids.  So many people worked to make today happen, and in my opinion, it was well worth it. 

We are so humbled and honored to get to be part of The Church at Argyle family.  From our community group, to the KidStuf team, the students and leaders of Impact and Momentum, the leaders that love on our kids..... I could go on forever.  We're thankful, enough said.

To finish out for the day, here's a picture of Drew getting Michael in the dunk tank.  Fun!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


I love September and am glad for it's arrival.  It signals the start of football season, my birthday is right around the corner, cooler weather will be coming (eventually), and I can break out the fall scented candles and flavors. 

September 1st also always makes me think of one of my childhood friends who has a birthday today- haven't talked to her in a few years, but still send a silent 'Happy Birthday' out to her each year!

And just for fun, here is a picture of Ben from this morning.

Lots of work to do, gotta earn that milk!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day in the Life of Me

A message board that I'm on and love is doing a project called "A Day in the Life of..."   We're each taking a day, so here goes for me.  Lots of photos, mostly boring, but if you ever wondered "hey, what's Anita's day like?"  here's a typical weekday.  By the way, yes I realize that none of you have actually wondered that.  But still. 

Good Morning!  Ben wakes up happy.

Drew..... well, waking up is tough to do!

At 7am my husband actually does laundry.  Ben is already on the move, and Drew.... well, waking up is still hard to do!

Then it's time for breakfast for the boys.  Breakfast is new for Ben, but he's liking it.  Drew would rather still be sleeping!

And getting Ben's bag ready for his first day with his new babysitter Jennie.  Bag includes cloth dipes, wet bag, pacis, blankie, wipes,etc.  

Then it's time for me to leave- about 7:45.... who am I kidding, I'm always late and it's closer to 8:00!

And for a portion of the way to work, I pump- yep, in the car.

45 minutes of traffic is no fun

Finally make it to the office- love the windows in my office, keeps me sane some days.  We have wildlife out there too....geese, cats and snakes make regular appearances, but we've also had hogs.

Meeting and another pump later, it's lunch time.  Oh, and time to check into iVillage as you can see on my screen.  Was a healthy lunch- veggies and brown rice with peanut sauce.

More meetings and another pump later and I'm back on the road about 5:45.  I stop to buy dinner fixins for my mom's birthday.

Pull back in at home about 6:45.

First thing after kissing on my boys is to unpack my breastpump- today's 'take' was small, probably due to a stressful day.  Only brought home about 12 ounces.  But it's enough for him with some leftover.

Actually have a migraine building today- but made dinner (which I rarely do sadly!)- it was yummy, pasta with chicken and artichokes-  and iced the cake that Michael and Drew made for my mom

Then, I nursed ben one last time

And managed to get him in his crib to sleep, where he slept for about 3 hours.

And I wasn't too far behind him!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Summer Break

Yesterday started my 'Summer Break' as KidStuf finished up for the season and is on break!  I'm excited to have Saturday afternoons and evenings free for a while.... oh wait, except we're playing summer tball and have a few baby showers to host, and various other things that already have the schedule filling up like crazy.

It really would be nice to have a full break, but I honestly love all that we're involved in.  Some Saturdays come and I dread heading to rehearsal, wishing I had a break.  But each and every week, I laugh and enjoy the people involved, dance and sing with the kids, and truly love it.  So, while I'll enjoy the bit of break, I'll enjoy coming back to it too. 

Friday, May 14, 2010

Feet in Mouth

5 months old tomorrow, and Ben's feet are now one his favorite things to put into his mouth! Actually, he likes to put everything in his mouth.  But here's a cute photo that Michael sent me during the day today that brightened my day and made me laugh!  Happy 5 months sweet boy, life with you is never dull, and always happy.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Addicted to BabySteals!

I Love New Steal Daily - 9am MST

Love this site, can't say how much.  And doing this gets me entered to win the cutest onesie ever!  Check it out, you may become addicted too....

Saturday, April 10, 2010


I've probably been in more constant prayer over the past 36 hours or so than I have in a long time.  My heart has recently been heavy for a few friends and my uncle, and now our precious pastor is seriously ill.  It's very cool to be in constant commune with God, just wondering why it takes this.....

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Pumping, Pumping, Pumping

I'm doing a quick post while sitting in my office with the door shut pumping.  It's quite a pain in some ways to be so tied to the pump and to the clock, but it's nice to 'have' to escape for about 15 minutes with my door shut twice a day.  I also can't explain how good it is to know I'm doing my best by Ben by giving him nothing but breast milk for the first six months (and maybe a while longer).  It's a huge responsibility to be the sole provider of nourishment, but then again, what is parenting if not for a huge responsibility that requires sacrifice but is so rewarding and worth all the effort?! 

By the way, right now my pump sounds like it's saying "Let's go, Let's go..."

Monday, April 5, 2010

He won't meet them....

I often avoid topics that have any emotional connection.  It's not that I don't feel things, it's that I'm not the best at expressing emotion, and usually choose to ignore things I can when they come with sadness.

Today has been one of those days tough to avoid emotional thoughts though.  Ben is almost four months old, and everything surrounding him is about joy.  But some days the sad seeps in, of thinking of those we love who he'll never meet, who will never meet him.  Austin has been gone for almost three years, and realistically Ben and he will probably never meet.  I can't believe that the brother that I love, that I shared so many years and memories with, will probably never meet the baby who I look forward to loving the rest of my life and making memories with.  Michael's mom has been gone almost two years.  The woman who loved him and raised him will never know the baby he is loving and raising.  She should be so proud of the Dad he is.  She had the chance to see that with Drew, but didn't.  I always hoped she would one day, that she would be a real part of our life, but now there is no time.  There are others too.... most recently my Uncle is declining from him battle with cancer, and we probably won't make it before he passes and he'll never meet Ben.

I'll do my best over the years to tell my sweet boys about family they never met, or met and will never remember, but the one thing I hope is this....  they'll feel the effects of the impact those people had on our lives in a positive way.  To those we miss, we love you.  

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Weekend Warrior!

We have been on the go non-stop for.... well, forever it seems like.  We rush around trying to do so many things and fit in all the fun that we don't get to have during the week.  I love all that we do, but it's exhausting!  This weekend's schedule:

2:30  I leave work to get home early to drop off milk and nurse Ben for my first non-baby night out.
5pm   Leave for dinner and Mama Mia!
6pm  Hand express milk in the restroom of the Mexican place
7:30pm Arrive at Theatre and express more milk in the restroom since manual isn't very effective!
8pm   Show starts and is great!  Take a break half way through to express once again.
11:30  Arrive home, nurse Ben (much to my relief)
All night   Up and Down with Ben

8am  Everyone Up, nurse Ben
9am  Pump milk 
9:30am Try to clean the house (not very successful)
10:30  Get everyone ready, nurse Ben again
11:00 Leave for the Tball game
12pm Tball game, nurse Ben
2pm  Game ends, get subs at Publix and head the the SEC Gymnastics Championships.  Nurse Ben.
4pm  Meet starts (Go Gators!).  Listen to Drew whine.  Nurse Ben.
7:30pm  Watch Gators crowned, jump in car and race home.
8pm  Friends arrive for Game Night (so much fun!!).  Nurse Ben.
All night   Up and Down with Ben

7:30am Everyone Up, nurse Ben
8am  Forget to pump, uncomfortable all day as a result
9am  Arrive at church, run around preparing for show and finding people for next week.
9:30am  KidStuf Show
10:30am Worship Service, but leave to nurse Ben.
11:45am Head to Lunch with a great group of friends (Yum!)
2pm Stop at JoAnn on way home for frame and paper for gift.
2:30pm Fight with printer, finally get gift made and leave
3pm  Pick up friend and head to baby celebration.  Nurse Ben.
3:30pm Arrive late to celebration, enjoy friends
5:30pm Leave to get to church for special service
6pm Arrive at Baptism/Lord's Supper/Dinner/Dessert Auction
6:15pm Leave for lobby because pounding head and loud music don't mix.
6:45pm  Re-enter for Lord's Supper (a wonderful time of quiet and reflection in the midst of the craziness!)
7pm  Dinner (YUM!)  Nurse Ben.
7:30pm Dessert Auction begins, head pounding gets worse.
8:30pm  Pounding head wins, take boys home.  Go to bed.
All night   Up and Down with Ben

If you actually read all that you'll see why I'm exhausted.... and why the workday seems like a bit of a break!  I'm realizing that I truly need to slow down a bit.  I'm not yet sure what to do for that to actually happen, especially since I love all that I do.  But for my health and sanity, I think it's a must.

Love to all,

Monday, March 15, 2010


Ben is 3 months old today. For 3 months we've watched him grow and love on him. For 3 months we've watched Drew grow too- the changes in him aren't as noticable- the changes aren't huge by the day. But he's changed into a big brother. One day he was an only child with the world still revolving around him. The next he was a big brother, sharing the spotlight. While there have been challenges along the way, he is simply great. Ben already laughs at all he does and seems to think Drew is the greatest thing in the world. Drew regularly says he's lucky to have a brother, and is happy to help. I'm not sure which joy has been greater, watching one grow or watching one grow into a brother.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Welcoming Ben

We welcomed Ben Maddox Sullivan into our lives five short weeks ago, but in some ways it seems like a lifetime since we can't imagine life without him. Here is his birth story so I can say I wrote it all down!
Ben's doctors offered to induce when I hit 39 weeks several times along the pregnancy, but I didn't think I'd opt for that for various reasons. But, as I hit 39 weeks, with Christmas approaching fast and me becoming more and more uncomfortable, I caved- at 39 weeks and 3 days and said yes to an induction. I'd been having contractions for weeks, but not regular enough or strong enough to really be in labor. I was progressing though, and when we went in at 7:30am on December 15th I was 4cm.
Labor progressed (at Baptist Hospital- Downtown) with the help of pitocin and the only bump in the road came when my blood pressure dropped and his heart rate dropped. Our nurse was wonderful though, acted quickly and had us both doing okay very soon. I was on oxygen for a while after that, but no more problems. I had an epidural that was great- I could feel things but wasn't in pain- so I knew when time to push arrived. The nurse got us through all of the pushing and had me wait a few minutes until the doctor arrived. The tower was down to one elevator working that day, and getting downstairs took him a while! Once he arrived I pushed two more times and Ben was born at 4:36pm weighing 7lb and 12.8oz and measuring 19.5 inches long. He was gorgeous, and doing very well. I was so happy to have a few minutes with him before they cleaned him up and checked him out.
Mom immediately said he looked just like Drew, and after a few minutes I could see it too. Michael held him for a bit while they finished with me, and I was able to nurse for a few minutes before he went to the nursery. My Dad and Monica were there and able to meet him very early, and Mom went to get Drew so he could meet his little brother as soon as possible too.
Before she could get back with him, I was in my room, Ben came back and we had visitors. Ben's first visitors were the Parramore's (including Matt and Liz in from OK) and we were so glad he could meet his 'other family' so soon.
Drew meeting Ben was the best moment, one I'll never forget. I think we had all waited such a long time for that moment, when our family was four. Drew was immediately an amazing big brother, holding him and kissing him and obviously happy.
Christmas was just 10 days later, and we had a pretty quiet one at home which was nice. Ben slept through all the excitement, which mostly centered around Drew and his Legos.
Then, with the New Year upon us, Michael's sister and her family visited, which was the highlight of the season! None of his family had been to visit us other than for our wedding nine years prior, so it was nice to be able to share our town and our life here with them. Drew and cousin Joshua had a great time, and I think Ben enjoyed the kisses from his Aunt Rita.
Now here we are, with Ben almost 6 weeks old, and we're into a bit of a routine, doing well, and just loving every snuggle and kiss. Ben is starting to smile, starting to be awake more, and starting to show us his little personality that we are already in love with.
We can't wait to enjoy the rest of the moments for the rest of our lives!