I started this journal in 2002 at age 20, just a few weeks after I got married. I'd kept paper journals through childhood, but a friend got me into lj and I never looked back.
I finished college, did an intership and graduated with a degree in journalism. I got a job in Idaho and we moved there.
In 2005, our son Benjamin Michael was born. His birth was a turning point in my life. I learned that you can do what you are told, or you can stand up for yourself and your beliefs and fight for what you know to be right.
For 7 months, my husband and I both worked and we had a part-time nanny, but it was hard on everyone. We missed the baby, he missed us, and we missed each other, because we worked opposite shifts. We also really missed our families back in Washington.
So I got a new job in Aberdeen, on the Washington coast and we were happy again. We lived close to family and I really liked my work, especially writing a column about my son called "Mama Talk." But it was a temporary kind of happiness, the kind you get from having no household budget and not realizing that every month you are sinking more and more into the red.
After 18 months of my husband being a SAHD, we were both ready to switch places. So I quit my job and became a SAHM and my husband got a job in his field as a full time massage therapist. We moved again, this time in with my mother while we tried to sell our home.
Five months turned out to be all we could take of that before we decided to go ahead a rent an apartment in Everett. I was pregnant again and we needed some space.
Our daughter, Allison Rain was born in spring of 2009 and her homebirth helped me heal from my previous trauma in such a way that I knew birthwork was in my soul from that point forward, but my children were still so little.
Our Aberdeen house finally sold and shortly afterward, we moved to a new apartment in the same city so that Ben could continue with his awesome preschool. A year and a half later, we were able to purchase a condo just in time to get Ben into the elementary school program we'd been eyeing for several years.
Now that the kids are growing up and getting more independant each day, I am finally able to do some part time work outside the home as a birth doula. It is every bit as sastisfying as I dreamed it would be.
We feel that our family isn't complete quite yet, but its so nice to take this break from babies and diapers and sleepless nights to really enjoy our children as they grow and get to know them for who they are before we start everything over again. Plus, two big kid helpers? That sounds amazing :-)
Ben's nursing ribbons:
Our goal was two years, and then I planned to take six months to gently wean him. I expected it would be very hard, but in the end, it was his decision.
Ben weaned on April 25, 2008, at the age of 28 months. It was bittersweet for me, but I am so proud of him.
Alli's nursing ribbons:
Alli weaned on Feb. 24, 2012, exactly one month before her third birthday. I was dissappointed to miss out on the three year ribbon, but so very proud of her. It was completely her choice, and she was proud of herself. She had been down to once a day for months, and had been skipping days. She knew she'd get to go to big girl preschool and get dropped off once she weaned. (This was her deal, not mine!) So when she was ready, she did it. No tears. Not even from me. Wow.