Saturday, February 17, 2007

Hey, I remember you!

Keenan’s been sleeping through the night, which means I’VE BEEN SLEEPING THROUGH THE NIGHT! It’s happened more than 3 nights in a row so this officially counts as a “trend” and not a fluke. Oh, yippy skippy! I forgot how good it feels to go to bed at 10 pm and not get up until 5:45 am. I’m finally starting to feel like I’m coming out of the fog and as an added bonus I’m even starting to remember things. Is that good or bad? Sometimes ignorance is bliss. Well actually my red glasses have been missing for over 24 hours now. They’re somewhere here in this apartment. I’m sure they’ll turn up sooner or later. So yeah maybe a little more memory would be good ne? For now I’m pleased as punch to be getting a full compliment of zzzz’s.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day

Originally uploaded by kuckibaboo.
This morning Sean suggested we celebrate Valentine’s Day by at least thinking about sex. Hmm, not sure I have time for that! Oh blissful parenting!

I love you honey. Thanks for wearing so many hats lately and most of all for keeping me together and being by my side. The hazelnut latte and sleep in this morning were divine. You are the best husband in the whole wide world!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

9 months

You are 9 months old today sweet boy and you are having a great time living life! You are very curious and social and you love getting out and experiencing new places. You are generally very well behaved when we go out to restaurants or visiting and we’ve recently discovered that you are a very good traveler. You love cats and dogs and always reach out for them if they come within reach. You’re at the stage now where “activity” toys are the “it” thing for you and some of you old favorite rattles and small toys are sadly waiting for your sticky little hands to find them again at the bottom of your toy bin. You love books of all kinds and you happily turn the pages in the right direction as we read to you. You are now up to 3 solid food meals a day and eating is a really big deal for you. You have mastered the sippy cup and are the proud owner of a Nalgene Toddler bottle. You make all sorts of noise when you eat mostly ummmmm, ummmm and you are very impatient for the first few minutes and just can’t get it in fast enough. Your favorite foods so far are persimmon, Fuji apples, barley cereal, cheese, any kind of yoghurt, watermelon, blueberries, Shreddies, pears, peas, sweet potatoes, rice crackers and avocado. The other day you ate an entire Fuji apple, ¼ banana and 10 teaspoons of barley cereal for breakfast! You like chicken and turkey but not beef. You finally like eating with your hands but are still not too good at it and there constantly all manner of cereal O’s, squares and bits of cheese in your high chair. All the temper tantrums or “fits” you’ve thrown have been over food. You go to bed between 7 and 8 pm and sleep until 4 or 5 am. You wake up long enough for boobies and a bum change and then you sleep again until 7 or 8 am. We think you’re going thru a growth spurt as you motor through your breakfast and are back to sleep by 10 or 11 for a couple of hours. The last couple of days you’ve woken up for a snack and playtime and then start with the yawning again. You also could need a second nap because you’re a full on crawling baby now. You started seriously logging miles the day we got home from being in Ottawa for Oma’s funeral. Of course you weren’t crawling before we left so the apartment was not in any way baby proofed. So your very travel weary and emotionally bankrupt parents scooted after you as you discovered everything that you shouldn’t. It was a stressful afternoon and we were very pleased when the time change finally caught up with you and knocked you out for a few hours. Ever so thankfully your whinging seems to be decreasing with your increase in mobility. Your grampa said it best when he said “he’s been staring at all this stuff around him for months and now he has the means to get to it”. Baby you can have almost anything you want as long as you don’t whinge! You like to play in your crib by yourself when you wake up and can to so for up to 45 minutes. This playtime consists mostly of you kissing yourself in your baby mirror and babbling to the bears your gramma and Oma gave you. Once out of bed you like to snuggle with us for a while which is ohh so delicious! You don’t mind having your finger and toenails trimmed but it’s bloody hell trying to swab your sticky out little waxy ears. Your blue eyes are definitely here to stay and you’re sporting 8 bright white teeth now, four up and four down. I’m still breastfeeding you about 4 times a day and you’re starting to learn that biting me brings a swift end to that peaceful activity. You still despise having shirts or any type of clothing pulled on over your head and it sounds like we’re torturing you when we’re just trying to get you into your friggin’ snowsuit! What’s with that? You have learned to stand up if we hold your hands and we know that walking is just around the corner. Oh joy. It’s been a while since we’ve had time to weigh or measure you but I’d guess you’re about 19 pounds now. Babbling is your choice form of communication and you do bust out the odd mmmummmm mummm mum and dada daaaa. We’re pretty sure you’re not talking about us though. You used to clap your hands when you were happy but you haven’t done it since we’ve been back. The day your Oma passed away you looked at me from across the living room and waved bye-bye. It broke my heart and I secretly hoped you were sending Oma off in your own little baby way. Every day you bring us greater joy with your quick smile and sweetness. You’re such a smart little guy and we are having the time of our lives watching you discover and explore the world around you. We love you baby our soon to be toddler!

Friday, February 09, 2007

This post was started on Monday, January 21/2006

I’ve been away from this blog for a long while. We went to Tokyo for two days and then on to Canada for a month to be with our families over the holidays. I had intended to post while we were away but it seems time and good Internet connections got away from us on a daily basis.

We’ve been back in Obihiro now for a week. As a matter of fact we got home at nearly exactly this time last week. I’ve been up since 2:45 am, I fed Keenan and he’s now snuggled up with his daddy in our bed. I couldn’t get back to sleep so I’m once again turning to the blog for some wordage therapy.

It’s been a crazy weekend and I’m finding it hard to start so I’m just going to pick a point in time and let things flow as I’ve been told.

Sometime on Friday afternoon my mom had a stroke. She was on her way to the mailroom when she started to feel it. She made her way back home and soon after she was on her way to the hospital in an ambulance. She was conscious for a while and my sister Jose was very fortunate to be able to spend some time with her while she was still able to speak as by the time my brother arrived she was only able to communicate by squeezing her hand. We would soon learn that the stroke she had was a “catastrophic event”. She had developed a pool of blood above her brain stem that was about the size of a fist and because of its location, inoperable. We were also told that her chances of recovery were extremely slim and if she did recover she would be blind and severely mentally and physically challenged. It was decided we would wait 24 hours to see if there was any change. There never was and as a matter of fact the bleeding was getting worse. So slowly the doctors and nurses eased off the life support and our dear mom came took her last breath around 12:30 am on Sunday.

Everything happened so fast but it seems like an eternity since we got the first call from my nephew on Saturday morning (our time). I’m finding it very difficult to keep the timeline together with the 14-hour time difference. We were home just a week ago and now where getting on a plane tomorrow to return. I only know its Monday at 5:50 am because that’s what it says on the computer. I still have to put our clothes in suitcases that I hadn’t even put away in closets yet. I can’t believe we were waving good-bye to my mom from the car on the way to the Ottawa airport and a week later she woke up to her last sunny day.

She called last week. I can’t remember if it was Wednesday or Thursday but we had a great chat. If only I knew it was going to be the last I would have stayed on the phone forever. She could hear Keenan babbling away in the background and I could hear her smiling through her voice. We talked about our trip back to Japan and plans for moving back to Canada this summer. She was so excited that we were coming back and that she was going to get to spend a lot of time with Keenan, her little sweetheart. I was going through Keenan’s summer clothes after that conversation and I imagined Keenan wearing his little t-shirt and shorts and running through my mom’s front door yelling “Oma!” at the top of his lungs with a big smile on his face. It’s something that hasn’t even happened yet but my heart is breaking over the fact that it never will.

I feel truly blessed that we got to spend a month in Canada. Mom and Keenan feel in love with each other the second they met. I’ve never seen Keenan better behaved than with his Oma. She was the first to admit he could do no wrong in her eyes and to back that up it would appear her hearing aid couldn’t detect crying or whinging. My mom died believing Keenan cried only once in the whole month we were home! It was really wonderful to see the two of them interact together. I will absolutely never forget waking up the morning after we arrived. Sean and I were sleeping on the pull out couch in the living room and I opened my eyes to Keenan sitting in the middle of the dining room table with the place mats all over the place and mom looking on with utter adoration! Keenan’s crib was in her bedroom and as it turns out she woke up to find Keenan bright eyed, bushy tailed and quietly playing by his self. My mom had a bad back and not a lot of strength but somehow she managed to bend down, pick up Keenan and get him into the dining room. This would be her favorite place to play with Keenan for the rest of the month as she could keep him at eye level, let him play and have her arms around him all at the same time. Everything about Keenan brought light to my mom’s eyes. Seeing him open his mouth wide like a little bird whenever he ate, watching him kick in the bathtub, sleep in the stroller and of course smile at his Oma. In the last couple of days Keenan figured out how to clap and he would clap, laugh and smile whenever he was happy. This thrilled my mom to no end as she had been singing a Dutch song about clapping your hands to him since we arrived. She herself said that she couldn't have wished for a better Christmas.

The last 8 years have been especially hard on my mom. Uncle Ber, her beloved brother died and 6 weeks later my dad died. Then a couple of years ago Taunte Riet died, as did her best friend Blanche. All this time she’s been asking us and God himself “Why do I have to be the last one?”

I continue from here on Saturday, February 10, 2007…

I just read the first section of this post for the first time since I wrote it. I likely stopped where I did as we had a visitor or had to finish making our travel arrangements or the phone was ringing yet one more time. Everything about those first hours and days after Sean delivered the news to me that my mom had died is a blur and I don’t remember too much of it. We’re back home in Obihiro now and life is just steaming along and dragging me and my heavy heart along with it. It’s going to be a challenge for me to slow things down and feel. But I must. Writing here has been my outlet and seems to work for me. Something about this act of publicly writing for me and others to read is very cathartic. It’s not easy but forces me to be honest with myself; it keeps my mind clear and lightens my heart. Please feel free to egg me on. Here I go...