Imperfect Perfection

In my past life as a working woman, back before I was a mom, I worked for the March of Dimes. One of the things the Dime was working on during my time there was increasing the number of state mandated newborn screening tests.

I didn’t think much about it. I was happy to help other people’s children. Let me emphasize, OTHER people’s children. Even though I didn’t have kids I was sure I wouldn’t need those tests. Newborn screening tests only benefit imperfect children. Mine, of course, would be perfect.

Those tests were for other people’s children until May 30th when Alvy failed the hearing portion of the newborn screening. That day the other people became us.

I was told not to worry. Babies fail the hearing test all the time, especially c-section babies. Most of the time they still have fluid in their ears and that causes them to fail the test. They would come back the next day with better equipment and retest.

The next day he failed again. Twice. We were referred to an audiologist but still told not to worry. Sometimes it takes a couple weeks for the fluid to dry up.

At their direction I didn’t worry. He obviously could hear. He startles at the sound of a voice in a quiet room or when the dog barks and he wakes when he hears loud noises while sleeping. So when we went to the audiologist Monday I really didn’t expect to hear anything other than “he’s fine.”

Needless to say I wasn’t quite prepared to hear the phrase “hearing loss”.  After two hours of testing it was determined that Alvy can’t hear certain high frequency sounds which will eventually lead to speech problems and delays. Our one month old little boy needs hearing aids.

Unfortunately, that doesn’t make this mommy feel much better. I’m coping with the realization that my little boy isn’t perfect, at least not in the way I thought he would be. Though I know he’s still perfect in his own way and is exactly the way he should be.

Where do we go from here? Alvy has to be retested when he’s three months old. In the meantime we need to see an ENT to have him fitted with hearing aids. After that we get to go back to the audiologist every six months until he’s three years old for monitoring. It’s possible he will need speech therapy down the line but we will just take that as it comes.

This isn’t something Alvy will grow out of. It won’t get better; it actually could get worse. Luckily it was caught very early thanks to the newborn screening test and it hopefully it won’t affect his development too much. Right now, I couldn’t be more thankful for the newborn hearing test…you know, for other people’s kids.

He’s here!


I apologize for the length of this post. I’ve got a lot to say and who knows when I’ll  have the chance to post again so prepare yourself for a little bit of verbal diarrhea.


On Wednesday, May 29, at 1:16 pm our son Alvy Olen Buck was born! He weighed in at a hefty 9 pounds, 2 ounces and was 20.5 inches long. The delivery was done via planned c-section and though there were no medical complications I certainly can’t say that it went smoothly.

I couldn’t feel any pain during the surgery, thanks to an epidural/spinal combo, but I could feel them pulling and tugging on my insides. Needless to say it wasn’t a pleasant sensation. The OR staff sensed my discomfort and gave me a cocktail of drugs that would make even the most dependent of drug addicts jealous.

Now I know how Alice must have felt when she disappeared down that rabbit hole, except instead of falling down a rabbit hole I disappeared into a drug induced neverneverland thanks to a combo of laughing gas, Ketamine and goodness know what else.

The room started spinning. The OR lights turned into a kaleidoscope. My body felt light, like it was floating. I tried speaking but my lips weighed 100 pounds.

I heard crying. Where was it coming from? Is there a baby here? Who would bring a baby here? Wait, where am I? Where is here?

I opened my eyes. On the overhead monitor I saw him. They were measuring his head. I was right, I did hear a baby. But where’d he come from? Wait. I was supposed to have a baby. It’s he mine??? That’s right I was having surgery to deliver a baby! He’s mine! OMG HE’S PERFECT!

Jason brought him over to me swaddled up a blanket. I saw him and cried. He really was perfect.

Just a few minutes later they wheeled me out of surgery and into recovery with my baby in my arms. He caught onto breastfeeding almost immediately (thank goodness) and things have been relatively smooth sailing from there.

Three weeks later I already can’t imagine life without him. I realize now how incomplete we were; he is supposed to be here. We’re still getting to know each other though.  From what I can tell he’s a pretty laid back little guy. He doesn’t cry much except for when he’s sleepy or hungry, he is very sweet and loves to cuddle. He’s beginning to “wake up” from his newborn easy-to-lay-down, sleep-every-second-he’s-not-eating phase. You can tell he’s tired and needs rest but he doesn’t want to miss anything. His big steel blue eyes just want to see the world.


The first few days were rough on Evie. She wasn’t sure what to think of our new addition. The day we brought him home from the hospital she was openly mad at me for holding another baby. Poor thing. Her little world got turned upside down. While looking at the above photo she was eager to point out mommy, daddy and Evie but when asked who the baby was she became noticeably silent. Only after a little prodding did she mumble, “Alvy” under her breath.

Thankfully, over the past several weeks she has adjusted well and now will stroke his arms and legs and give him kisses while I nurse him. Though I don’t think she’s completely okay with him being here I think she’s well on her way to becoming a great big sister.

Having a newborn and a two year old hasn’t left much time for anything else and there’s no way I would have been able to get through this transition without the help of my friends and family. Thanks to them we have been pretty well taken care of over the past three weeks. Though, I realize our help is coming to an end soon and Jason and I will soon be doing this all on our own.

Monday, was my first day without help alone with both kids while Jason was at work and Evie choose that day to get sick – nothing like listening to your newborn cry while you run your toddler to the bathroom before she projectile vomits all over the place. And, as these things go, yesterday it was my turn to be sick. All that worrying I did about how I was going to take care of both of the kids and my very first two days I don’t even get it easy. That sounds about right. Trial by fire, I suppose. If I can handle those two days then I can handle a normal day. Right?

Today, I feel much better, by the way AND I only have three weeks until I can start running again. YAY!


Two years ago today my life changed forever. I became a mom. The mom of Evelyn. What a wonderful day that was. It was a traumatic day. After a long induction and a non-planned, almost-but-not-quite-emergency, c-section I was an exhausted mess by the time Little E finally made her appearance at 6:41 pm.


That first year was brutal. When she was only three weeks old, our brand new family moved from Dallas to Houston. Loads of stress followed.

No only were we all adjusting to being a family we were adjusting to a new house, a new city and  Jason’s new job. To make matters worse we couldn’t find anything because with a newborn who has time to unpack?

I was constantly asking myself a series of questions.

Why is the baby crying? Is she wet? Hungry? Sleepy? Overstimulated? Where is my spatula? Colander? Office supplies? How can I send out birth announcements if I can’t find them? Where is the nearest post office? Grocery store? Pharmacy? Gas station? Where am I? How do I get home? Why is the baby crying? Why am I crying?

She turned out to be an infant which can be referred to as “high need.” An infant constantly in a state of unhappiness unless she was being held standing up, outside in a state of constant motion. I think I spent three months just walking her up and down our little street. Back and forth. Back and forth. Every. Single. Day.


Right about the time she turned one things started to get easier. At 13 months she began walking and her temperament improved. At 15 months, I finally night weaned her and sleep trained her. At 18 months, we took her on an epic camping trip to Big Bend in west Texas.

All the while she started talking…a lot…and she hasn’t stopped. Everything has a word now and if she doesn’t know what it is she is eager to find out.

She’s a type A perfectionist. Things absolutely MUST be perfect, exactly the way she wants them OR ELSE. She’s stubborn to the max (I can’t imagine where she got that from) and fiercely independent which is a fairly new development. She is smart, or at least I think so and she has this hair, which I wish I had a picture of, that has a mind of it’s own. She’s smaller than average for her age but that’s not a bad thing.

She’s very polite – saying please, thank you and excuse me even to inanimate objects. Nothing humors me more than, “Excuse me, teddy bear” which comes out like, “Skews me, tay bay-aar.”

IMG_2387Hee hee.

As it turns out this mom business isn’t so bad after all.

Each and every day she teaches me something new. Thanks to her I am more compassionate and forgiving, patient and kind. I am so thankful to have her in my life and am a better person because she is here.

She keeps me laughing and crying all at the same time. One minute, I can be in stitches over something funny she said, the next minute in tears because she refuses to listen.

I find it amazing that had she been conceived during any other time during any other month she would be a different person – a different part of Jason, a different part of me and we wouldn’t have her. She is here because she’s supposed to be here, just like she is – absolutely perfect…

IMG_2388…crazy hair and all.

Witching Hour


ˈdɛspərɪt, -prɪt/[des-per-it, -prit] adjective

An emotional state in which a person feels a situation to be hopeless and without satisfactory options. Desperate decisions may be more rash, impulsive, and inappropriate than those made in a rational frame of mind.

Our weekdays are busy but generally uneventful. We run in the morning and take care of errands after breakfast. We come home for lunch and after lunch E takes a nap. After her nap we play.

Something happens though, around 4 PM. Evie morphs from a fun, albeit high maintenance, little girl into an high need monster. She becomes short tempered, hard to please, clingy and difficult to care for. She wants everything but nothing makes her happy.

My mood isn’t much better. After chasing her around all day, I’m exhausted. Any caffiene I’ve ingested has long since been metabolized and dreams I had of cooking dinner are slowly disappearing – along with my patience. It’s the witching hour.

During the witching hour, I become desperate and will do anything to keep her occupied until Jason gets home.


Want a cookie????
(That will buy me 10 minutes.)

Wanna go to Target? We can share an Icee!
(An hour.)
Note: Target can be swapped out for any large retail store where I can enjoy the air conditioning and let E wander up and down the aisles.

Let’s go to the park! We can slide!
(45 minutes.)

Are you hungry? I’ll make you a grilled cheese sandwich!
(20 minutes.)

If the desperation reaches record levels I will pour some fermented grape juice into an outdoor friendly cup (read: inconspicuous), strap Evie in the stroller, head out for a walk down our street and pray that Jason doesn’t choose to go to happy hour after work. If my pace is slow enough I can usually walk in circles until he gets home…

…which is where I found myself today. Walking down our street, pushing Evie in the stroller and carrying a souvenir cup we got at a football game 10 years ago. The cup contained about 6 ounces of a very nice single vineyard, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon that Jason opened last night. The bottle cost about $100 and really should accompany a broiled ribeye.

Instead it accompanied me on our walk.


It was really good though.

Introducing Evelyn!

On Monday, May 16, after a long labor, our daughter Evelyn was born via unplanned c-section.  She was 8 pounds, 2ounces and 21 inches long.

I realize this post is a little belated but life with a newborn has made everything more difficult…including blogging, which I am currently doing with one hand. I do admit that I’m impressed with my one-handed typing ability and suspect it will be getting even better in the weeks to come.

I am amazed how quickly she has changed. Everyone has heard the old cliche “they grow up fast,” but not until now did I really understand what they meant. Many of the brand new baby things are already gone and her little personality is starting to show. I never thought in 12 days that she could change so much! I often just find myself staring at her trying to imbed as much of her newbornness into my memory as I can because I know it is fleeting.

Today is a big day in the life of 12 day old Evelyn. Today she gets to meet Uncle Andrew and Aunt Megan for the first time.  I intend to break out the camcorder for this introduction!

And Then There Were Three!

Friday, September 10, was a day that changed our lives forever. That was the day this happened…

For those of you keeping track, that was only five days after the Virginia Beach Half Marathon…which means I ran 13.1 miles when I was six weeks pregnant. Yeah, I know. Wow. No wonder it was so hard.
Three weeks later, we were at the doctor where we got to see little Baby Buck for the first time. Her little heart was beating like crazy and while we were watching her we even saw her move – something which the doctor said was a treat that early in the pregnancy. From that day forward she has been referred to as the Wiggle Worm.
Notice that I am referring to Wiggle Worm as a “she” but in reality we don’t know the sex of our child. I have been using the pronoun “he” and “she” interchangeably instead of calling the Wiggle Worm an “it” – I figure I’m right half the time. We will find out the sex of the baby at an appointment about two months from now.  As soon as we find out I will let you know, trust me.
We went to our second doctor’s appointment yesterday. They got all the necessary medical stuff out of the way and we got to hear her heartbeat. Even with the ultrasound and the heartbeat it wasn’t until the doctor sent us home with a goodie bag full of formula samples, bottles and catalogs of baby stuff that it became real.
Are we excited?
Is the Earth round?
Of course we’re excited! Thrilled is a better word!
Wiggle Worm is expected to make her appearance on May 7. I cannot imagine a better Mother’s Day present!