Saturday, April 26, 2014

Time Warp

I've neglected this blog bigtime. The last time I posted, Gwyn was just born and now she's coming up on 11 months. I'm at a complete loss on how to capture the last 11 months with words and pictures at this point, but I'm going to make an attempt because I will NOT let her life go undocumented, dangit!

Gwynnie is a doll. Her "baby" personality matches pretty closely with Jude and Ada's, which means she's sweet, predictable, and fairly relaxed. It also means it took her over 4 months to start sleeping full nights consistently. Which is okay. I've caught up on sleep since then:)

I had planned on breastfeeding her for 6 months, but she had other ideas. She refused to drink bottles. We gave her every shape and size from the time she was 1 month old, and she refused every single one. Which was tricky, since I started working part-time again and had meetings that kept me away from her for several hours. She finally broke at almost 8 months (10 days shy of 8 months, but who was counting?? Uh, me) and she finally switched over to formula in February. Some would call that stubborn. I call it fiercely loyal to mama.

What else? Her first road trip was to Nashville to get in touch with her half-Southern side, her first plane ride was to Cape Cod for Gramp's wedding, and we just got back from her first trip to the beach, which she loved. I can't remember what her first food was (see? I hate myself for not blogging more often) but it was mostly likely butternut squash or sweet potatoes. She loves all food and has eaten a huge variety of it. We're loosely doing something called "Baby Led Weaning" which is a glorified way of saying we give her table scraps rather than a lot of pureed baby food, which seems easier and she seems to dig most of the stuff we eat. She started crawling at 8 months and we've discovered our house contains an obscene amount of "chokers," as Jude and Ada like to call them--tiny toys she likes to put in her mouth and freak us out. So since she became mobile, she spends a lot of time in the Pack-n-Play, which lives in the middle of the house, unfortunately.

She is happiest when the older kids are home and literally rocks back and forth, reaching her arms out and itching to join in their fun. (Not long til you can, little mama!) The kids know inherently how to cheer her up when she fusses in the car, how to do distracting renditions of Itsy Bitsy Spider when I need another minute in the kitchen, and how to make her laugh uncontrollably when everyone else can't get her to do it. I see that and so often marvel at how lucky she is to have them. Jude and Ada have such a tight bond and declare themselves "best friends" and I think about how Gwyn will fit into that mix, but I know she will. They adore her.

Having 3 kids has taught me a lot. Like I can wash my hair every third day instead of every second. And like I'm married to someone who seemingly never runs out of energy or tickles or patience. And like we will never be anywhere on time, and if we are, I'll make us late by stopping for coffee. And that people help when you ask and nothing deepens relationships like giving and taking help. And mostly, that life goes really fast. I spent a lot of time worrying and waiting and analyzing with Jude. Less so with Ada. I can honestly say, I am enjoying Gwyn's babyhood so much. Yes, its tiring and the physical work of a baby is hard. But this time--finally!--I get how fast time flies and I've been able to sit in it longer with her, which is great for both of us. All of us, really.

Ted and I have caught ourselves talking about the next chapter, and its exciting. For the past 6 years we've been in "childbearing" mode, and creating our family has been the most awesome ride imaginable. We feel like we're all here now, and I'm so looking forward to watching these 3 crazy-beautiful kids grow up.

I'll try to blog about it every now and then :)

Monday, June 17, 2013

Finally....Party of 5

Wow, I haven't blogged since February, and now its June. A lot has happened in the meantime, but the biggest and best news of all is that our sweet baby daughter Gwyneth Gray is HERE!! She burst into our lives on June 9 at 3:37am, weighing 5 lbs. 15 oz. and 19 inches long. To borrow a phrase from People Magazine, we are "over the moon!"

Here's a recap of L&D (mostly so I myself don't forget the details down the road):

At my 35 week appointment, I charted several big contractions during a nonstress test and my dr. checked and found I had started to dilate, about half a cm. That's a little too early for comfort, so she told me to take it easy-ish and she'd check me again at my 36 week appt. At that point, I was about 3 cm dilated and 25% effaced. I normally have babies 2-3 weeks early so I was preparing myself for that anyway, and after that appointment, I wanted to reach 37 weeks and then get this show on the road!

I got confused several times. I would go for a few hours having consistent contractions, and just when I would start to think it was time to head to the hospital--boom, they'd disappear. My other 2 labors hit suddenly and unmistakably, so I felt like a first-time mom trying to figure it out. Last Saturday afternoon (I was 37 weeks 1 day) I was feeling pretty grumpy about it, so Ted suggested we take a family walk to the hardware store and buy some herbs for the garden. Later I picked up Thai takeout for dinner and we rented a movie after the kids went to bed. During the movie, we started timing my contractions on Ted's iPhone app (way more high tech than the stop watch we used during Jude's labor!)  and they were really irregular, although beginning to hurt. We decided to call Ted's dad and let him know we needed to go to the hospital. When he got there, I said I was 50/50 that we'd be sent right back home, but better safe than sorry, right??

We got to the hospital a little after midnight, and when the nurse checked me in triage, I was almost 6 cm dilated. Ted and I were surprised because at that point, I was still "fine" and not in very much pain, when normally at that point I'd be pretty miserable. Around 1am they admitted us and moved us into a labor room, where we did some paperwork and met the dr who would deliver us. My contractions started picking up at 2am,  getting really close together and super super duper painful. I asked the dr to break my water at 9 cm. Then things got a little nuts. He kept wandering in and asking if I was ready to push after that. No, I wasn't. When I get the pushing urge, its like I get a second wind and burst of energy, and that totally wasn't happening then. He said there was a lady also at 9 cm and he was worried he couldn't be in two places to deliver babies at once, and finally picked me as the lucky winner who would push first. Ready or not.

I wasn't very happy about it, but I'd rather have someone deliver my baby than no one, right?! So I pushed with all I had for 6 contractions, and she was born. Ted is always pretty instrumental on our babies' birthdays, and this time took the cake. The dr let him put on gloves and help deliver her on the last push--her daddy was the first person on earth to hold her little body as she came into the world. (For the record, I would faint if I were a husband. Ted is a different breed)

So the labor was almost exactly like the others once it got started. Right around 5 hours, middle of the night, a few weeks early but right on time:) She looks like her big brother and sister, with the chin dimple every one of us sports, and minimal hair! Ted and I settled on Gwyneth (we call her Gwyn) because to us, its strikingly beautiful and feels full of substance and grace. Gray is actually a nod to my's Grady without the 'd' and although its a rather roundabout way of getting some part of his name into hers since she's a girl, I smile every time I say it.

We are loving being home with her, and I mean it. This isn't "blog talk" where everything sounds rosy when it's really not....I am honestly so ridiculously happy to have sweet Gwyn in my arms that I could cry (and I do, happy tears, pretty often). The last time we left Community North L&D was almost exactly one year ago, and I was empty-handed and reeling in grief. I have been waiting a long time to hold a baby in my arms, and I cannot get enough of her right now. No, she's not the baby we lost and could never replace him. But she's Gwyn, and she's ours, and she's here, and she's healing me and without a doubt, she is a gift straight from Heaven and made perfectly for our family. She gives me joy deep down in my gut. I know it wouldn't run as deep without feeling the losses and gains of this past year allowed by the God who is Only Good, who walks beside us and redeems our broken situations for His glory. He didn't have to redeem ours by sending Gwyn; I knew that. And yet, here she is.

Meet the baby of our family.

"Then, when it seems we will never smile again, life comes back." -Unknown

Sunday, February 17, 2013

The House Goes to the Ladies!

We found out a few weeks ago that we're having another GIRL!

We've always kept the gender a surprise, so this was a switch for us. It was mostly on my initiative...Ted would always prefer a big surprise:) But after doing it that way twice, I was ready for something new. Plus, to be totally honest, I felt like I needed time to wrap my head around whatever the baby was going to be since this is the first pregnancy I've had any hopes on the gender. I know, I know--that's a horrible thing to say. But ever since last summer, there's been a big hole in my heart where a little boy was going to be, and I just wanted to fill that hole somehow, even with a different boy.

Ted and I went to a support group for miscarriages and stillbirths once, and lots of the people there had gone on to have subsequent kids (and were still attending the support group, if that tells you anything about how deep and long that scar runs). I talked to a mom afterwards about whether she was sad or relieved to have the opposite sex child after her stillbirth, and she said she was relieved. She said she believes God knows what our families need. I believe that too.

The ultrasound tech turned off the screen to label and print out the gender photo, and we sealed it in an envelope and took it home. We had a sitter lined up and a fancy dinner downtown awaiting, and had planned to open it there. But Ada came up with a fever and we picked up Bazbeaux pizza and opened it as a family instead. Jude took the picture out and Ted and I waited with baited breath as Jude furrowed his brow and read the ultrasound photo. "Burl!" he finally screamed. After some shuffling and deciphering, it turned out to be a girl:) It took a second to digest, and after it did, happiness set in. It wasn't so long ago that my prayers were fervent requests for a second chance...a heartbeat...a kick. How quickly I forget the graces stacked on me. But then I was reminded, and ended up on my knees with gratitude in the kitchen the next morning while my coffee brewed and the kids watched Cat in the Hat.

A gift. A tiny, baby girl gift. I can't WAIT to kiss her face.

21 weeks

Friday, January 4, 2013

All the Holidays...and baby

I don't know where to start, as is always the case when I let the blog get away from me for too long. All the holidays, I guess? I'm sure each one could have been an entire post, but I'll package them all up:
Halloween: 1 robot + 1 minnie mouse + too much candy
Thanksgiving: Tennessee + gobs of good food + crazy cousins + good sister time + car trouble :/

Christmas was really nice this year. We stayed in town and relaxed, eating our way from one family member's house to the next and enjoying the company. I really like being able to get our fill of both of the dynamics of Ted's extended family and mine--there are three grandkids on the Mosey side and seven on the Hensley side. Holidays in Nashville are wild and fun and filled with lots of laughing and chaos. Its so fun to all stay in the same house and have coffee by the fire in the mornings and watch each others' kids grow. (Lauren and I also discovered that our children have completely different accents this past visit! I suppose it was inevitable raising kids in Arkansas and Indiana, but man--I've really disturbed the family tree on this kids are Yankees!)
Holidays in Indy are saner, with appropriate nap times and bedtimes and more space to talk and listen and savor the day. They are both completely wonderful, and that's why I'm so glad we get opportunities for both. We are more than lucky!

The news is slowly coming out that we're expecting another baby. I'm realizing how long I've been blogging when I can count 4 times I've posted that news here:-) And here it is again. I'm almost 15 weeks along and have experienced a pretty broad range of feelings so far--very very excited and thankful of course, but also very very anxious. I'm on Lovenox (anticoagulant) this time and its really not that bad, and gives me some peace of mind. But I know in my gut that no amount of Lovenox, or prenatal vitamins or yoga or finger-crossing can keep my babe completely safe. Only God can, and its a tall order to hand over to him as a mom, it is. I've caught myself blinking back tears driving to my last few dr. appointments out of fear that lightning will strike twice, and each time these verses have drowned out my thoughts loudly and unexpectedly:

"God--your God--is striding ahead of you. He's right there with you. He won't let you down; He won't leave you. Don't worry." Deut 31:6 (Message)

"The Lord your God will go before you, and the God of Israel will be your rear guard."
Isaiah 52:12

He's ahead of me and behind me. He's got my front and my back. I wasn't wracking my brain for those words--God just shoved them into my head when my thoughts started spinning out.

I still miss James. Being pregnant again really hasn't touched that. But it has changed the tone in our house, and the kids are excited and we are, too. (Ada keeps pointing to her belly and asking when she can grow a baby inside. Whoa, sister.) And I feel good. I've always thought it was amazing that I have very few pregnancy symptoms, but I kind of wish for them now! We hope to meet this baby June 30.

14 weeks

14 weeks

Monday, September 17, 2012

Summer Recap

It felt like a long summer. It was just a hard season for me, but things are slowly getting better and better. I've been on an emotional merry-go-round (not roller coaster!) because I seem to cycle back through the same lineup of feelings again and again, although with less intensity each round. Ever since we lost the baby, its gone something like this: heartbreak/sadness, completely forgetting about it, out of the blue anger, then calm perspective. Repeat. Repeat. For the record, I prefer the "Calm Perspective" phase, but I get that I'll continue to revisit those others for a while. It is what it is. But by and large-- and by the good grace of God--I'm okay.

We're all okay, actually. The summer's been peppered with lots of good stuff: Jude riding his bike (with no training wheels!), learning to write and sound out some short words, taking a big interest in robots and transformers, and really starting to be more social and excited to be with his friends. He's in his third and last year at MSPC and goes three days a week this year. He hasn't shed a single tear this year and comes home excited about his day and what he did, which makes me really happy. In fact, until recently I was pretty set on holding him back from Kindergarten til he's 6, but with how he's blossoming (I'm sorry, I can't think of another word) lately and being so eager to learn, Ted and I are considering it for next year. We've also thought about signing him up for a sport soon, since he's been eyeing some of the older boys on the playground by our house lately while they practice. We registered for flag football lessons but it didn't end up working out since there weren't enough kids registered, so we might apply it to some baseball lessons later. I feel like he's getting to an age where life starts speeding up, and filling with more activities. I've sort of resisted busy schedules with the kids...I don't know why. Childhood is so short, and there's something precious to me about being able to wake up a few days a week and ask the kids, "What do you want to do today?"I want to keep away the "tyranny of the urgent" as long as possible I guess. Or maybe I'm just super lazy and like to sleep in and hang out in my PJ's until lunch, and now I have people to do it with:)

Ada is at school once a week and loves it. Like, LOVES it. I thought about putting her in Jude's co-op since she's old enough now, but if I was co-oping for 2 kids, I'd be there all the time. So she's just in CDI, but its across the hall from Jude's class and she has so much fun. Apparently, she's potty trained at school, but not at home. Hmm. When I try to get her to go potty at home, she actually yells her teacher's name and runs away from me.

She and I have "girls day" Mondays and Fridays now while Jude's gone, and its awesome. She's a funny, funny girl and we're starting to have some intelligible conversations now, which makes me equally proud of how big she's becoming and equally want to put a lid on her head to stop her!

What else? Ted and I went to Chicago for a quick getaway in July and did all the UN-kid-friendly stuff we could squeeze in: long slow walks with no destination, an hour's wait for deep dish pizza, a loud bar for a beer, high heels, newspaper at breakfast, kayaking.

Jude (and Ada, when her words allow) has been begging to go camping, so we borrowed a huge, sweet tent from some friends and drove to our friend Sam's hunting property near Ohio a couple weeks ago and had a blast. I think the key to it all was keeping it short and sweet. We got there late afternoon, set up the tent, built a fire, Ted and Jude caught a fish and threw it back, we made dinner, played with sticks, pee-peed in the woods, made s'mores, Ted told a spooky campfire story at night about Dora and Diego (I can't let him see this before I publish it!), went crazy with flashlights in the tent for a while before going to sleep, and we packed up and left when we woke up. Wham, bam. They did awesome and had the time of their lives, and it was really nice to do something different.

The boys went to the Colts preseason game. Jude is digging the game more and more each year.
To celebrate Gramp's 65th birthday, the whole (Mosey) family went to New Buffalo, MI for a weekend. The kids had fun playing at the beach, checking out the lake, and making some memories with their cousin Annabel.

Ted went to Mexico with his brother Pete over the summer too, and they built a house for a family. I'm really happy they got to spend some time together, and Ted said it was a great trip. He's still full steam ahead with school, and he's in his third quarter now and finishes in April after a trip to Europe with his class. I've been pretty busy with work, and its a lot easier to get done now that school started back up and I have some time alone. It didn't come a day too soon...Ada actually clung to my leg hysterically screaming "POOP!" during my last phone interview with a renowned chef, God love her. I'm also taking a class at Butler this fall. Its a fiction writing workshop and a writer friend of mine recommended I apply. I've never thought about writing fiction, but I'm really excited to take an actual writing class (the professor is also a novelist) and be on a college campus again.

So, the summer had its ups and downs. We hosted our annual block bbq last weekend, which we always do at the very end of summer to kick off the Fall. I say this every year, but I'm READY! Bring on the cooler weather and new season. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012


If you're reading our family blog, you're probably a pretty good friend of ours and already know most of the details of our last month. Just in case you don't, here's the short(ish) version:

Ted and I went to our 20 week ultrasound on June 19th and discovered the baby didn't have a heartbeat. The doctors determined the baby stopped growing around the late 16th/early 17th week of my pregnancy. Because the miscarriage happened so far along, we ended up inducing labor and delivering the baby. That day was probably--well, no definitely--the most difficult day I've had yet. We had a boy. We got to hold him and name him James and then let him go. 

20 weeks is a long time to expect something. And not just something--someone, someone that was supposed to be a part of your family forever and that you'd been making plans for, and talking to, and praying over, and eating for, and growing with. I expected him. I wanted him. I wanted to raise him and kiss him and see if he had the Mosey dimple in his chin. I wanted to drag myself into his room at 2am and feed him, grumbling on the outside but feeling impossibly happy and blessed on the inside. I wanted the opportunity to be his mom. Ted and I will probably grieve that loss for a long, long time. Maybe forever.

I did get some insight into the miscarriage a few days ago. One of my blood tests showed I have Factor 5 Leiden, which is a genetic blood disorder that means I'm at a higher risk for clotting than most people, particularly during pregnancy when blood volume increases. A blood clot could have gotten into the placenta or the cord. Nobody knows for sure, but it’s a definite possibility for Factor 5 moms, and I met with a hematologist that I'll have to work alongside for any future pregnancies. You don't have to do anything for Factor 5 during "regular" life, but I'd have to give myself blood thinner shots during pregnancy or any kind of prolonged immobilization. (Ugh) It is good to know, though. 

Somehow in the middle of this loss, we noticed we are finding things, too. We have found that we are surrounded by extremely compassionate friends and family members that care deeply about us and our family. Like, blown away by the concern and support we've gotten through this. Ted and I have not felt alone or isolated for one second. Friends have cried with us and spoken the most healing words to us. Gallons of coffee and lots of tears have been shared at our dining room table these past few weeks, and for those of you who occupied those chairs or sent us encouragement: thank you. Those moments were gold to me. They rebuilt me. 

I've found there are dangers and risks associated with motherhood and I'm more than willing to take those risks--and even lose to them--to know the depth of joy that that it brings to me. I know that my God doesn't make mistakes in numbering anybody’s days, that He can take my anger and accusations, and that He'll still walk slowly with me down that road until my anger gives way to peace. 
He knows what its like to lose a son.

He’s still good to me, even when I have to look harder to see it. There's way too much life and hope and miracles abounding all around me to ever deny that.

For now, my heart is still heavy and there are definitely hours when my bitterness gets the best of me. My heart is completely broken for not just us, but for anyone that has gone through this. But I know that it has to fit in somewhere, somehow. My favorite name given to God in the Bible is the Author of Life. I love thinking of Him as a writer, and it gives me a lot of comfort to know this is part of my story, my book, that began and ends with Him. He has James now, and that just gives me another reason to long for Heaven.

A friend of mine shared some new research with me that was discovered the same month of the miscarriage. Researchers found that fetal cells cross the placenta and get into the mom’s system and stay there forever. Whether the baby was born or miscarried, thousands of their cells remain and have been found concentrated in areas of illness in the mom’s body, fighting off disease for her for the rest of her life. We shared a little cry over it. How amazing. Our babies are part of us forever, literally.

I know that everyone has their own burdens and trials, and we thank you so much for hitting pause on yours and coming to help us shoulder ours lately. 
Our hearts are healing faster for it. 

I have no doubt we’ll keep finding things that James’ life—however tiny and short—has taught us. 

“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”
James 1:2-4

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Birthday Season

I had good intentions to create separate slideshows for Jude and Ada, since they both recently celebrated birthdays. But alas, each time I've sat down to start making them, I end up bogged down in emails or researching story assignments or looking at photos of Jessica Simpson's baby or something, and I've realized its not going to happen right now!

So I will paraphrase the last year of their little lives.

Jude turned 4. What a big guy! He learned to do so many new things this past year physically (I saw him ride a bike without training wheels this week!) but what impresses me most is what he's learned emotionally. He is seriously one of my best friends. Being home with the kids all day, I've become so grateful for another "person" in the house, one that talks WITH me and makes me laugh and think and answer questions. He is sensitive and intuitive; he picks up extremely quickly on others' moods and responds accordingly. He is increasingly mechanical and can do puzzles and take apart/put together toys and machines better than I can, and seems to take a lot of pleasure in struggling through making something fit together or function and then triumphantly announcing, "And that's how it works!" He is a good friend and is extremely loyal, and prefers to play in a group of 2 or 3 kids rather than a huge crowd. He reasons well, and often asks me about things and then accepts the answer and never asks me again, and I'll catch him explaining it to Ada later. He takes really well to discipline, and earns our trust more every day. We entrust him with a lot, and tell him so, and he really rises to responsibility when we give him the chance. Recently, I've been letting him cross the street alone to go to our neighbor's house when he wants to go play or I need to borrow a lemon or something. It's not a busy street, but nevertheless its a street he could get smushed on, and even though I stand inside the storm door and watch him, his adorable exaggerated left-and-right checks for cars and the pride on his sweet face when he takes off across the street...its priceless. He helps out a ton with Ada. I hear him telling her how things work, and telling her that if she screams again it will make mom mad and hurt our ears, and reassuring her she's not in trouble if we correct her and she cries, and ordering her back into timeout when she sneaks out, and popping grapes into his mouth when she's refusing her lunch and saying, "See? It's yummy and good for your body! Don't you want to grow big and strong?" He tells her she's special and he tells her God loves her, and he says he'll pray out loud before lunch on Ada's behalf until she can talk and pray herself. He has an uncanny ability to interpret her needs for me. He will still snuggle Ted and I until he's blue in the face. His bedtime routine involves back scratches and me singing his favorite lineup of songs: Daisy Daisy, I've Been Working on the Railroad, and Amazing Grace. (When Ted puts him to bed, his routine involves being made into a human burrito and devoured--different styles:) He's just the best. Sure, he's a kid and he has his moments of insanity, but that boy is pure joy to us. He is so much like Ted.

Ada turned 2. And that apple falls a little closer to this tree, in terms of her personality! We used to think she was just like Jude, but here lately she has become her own little person and its hilarious. She is sweet and spunky and FUNNY! She also takes well to correction (she will RUN to timeout if you say the word and freezes when she hears the word "no") and she loves to make us laugh. And loves TO laugh. She's a big, big fan of slapstick humor. If you really get her going, I've seen her laugh so hard she's had tears in her eyes and can hardly breathe. She vacillates between being extremely gentle and extremely rough (lovingly pat-pats her baby doll to sleep and then violently flings it against the wall) and LOVES TV. The  girl can watch movies Her nose is in a book for hours each day while she narrates loudly in her own little half English, half Toddler language. She sings songs with us and dances with great abandon around the house! She's starting to string 3 or 4 word sentences together and its lovely to know what she's thinking or wants. She wakes up in the best mood, practically chirping and smiling and jumping in her bed when I come in (we'll see how that mood jives with Jude's morning mood once they share a room!) She's getting girly...there's been lots more digging in my makeup bag, purse-weilding, and accessorizing here lately. She's also developed a sassy temper lately too, so we shall see what 2 holds in store for her! Luckily, its normally short-lived. We started potty training, then stopped. We had a pink chart on the wall, and stickers, and some excited wiggling on the potty seat, and the whole 9, and then nothing. She cries when I  ask if she wants to go potty, big heaving sobs in my lap screaming "Nooo Mommy!" So, whatever that means. Overall, Silly Goose is just the term that pops into my head most often to describe her. I just love her. I love who she is. She's ours, and she's laughter and light in our house.

Happy Birthday to my babies.