Wednesday, May 25, 2011

When did that happen?

Monster Boy "graduates" from Kindergarten tomorrow.

I'm always vastly amused by all the "graduations" they have out there now.  Monster Boy went to preschool for two years (three year old class and four year old class) and didn't have a "graduation" from either one, but I see many friends on Facebook with pictures of their kiddos in graduation gear.  Caps and gowns, the whole nine yards.  Now, I'm not saying anything against this.  At ALL.  I just find it amusing, is all.

They are having a little graduation ceremony for Monster Boy tomorrow.  Nothing big - no caps and gowns or anything of that nature.  Just a little presentation in his classroom before school lets out for friends and family.  He  is very excited.  I'm wondering how hot it's going to get in his classroom with all those people in there.

But, it's bittersweet.  I can't believe he's already in school, much less getting done with Kindergarten and getting ready to go to first grade.  And, I'm a sap, so I'll probably cry, or at least tear up, tomorrow in his classroom.

Miss Sunshine is getting a new speech therapist.  Her old therapist, who we love, is leaving the nonprofit that provides her care - they have had a lot of budget cuts this year, along with some other financial issues - so I'm not sure if this is a voluntary leaving or not, but she did call us personally to tell us that she was leaving and we would get a new therapist.  Which I thought was wonderful of her.  So now, we get to start new, with a new person.  Miss Sunshine is pretty reticent around strangers, so I imagine it's going to take some time to get her warmed up and we will be seeing more of the speech therapist than I'd like this summer.  That's okay, though, you can't get too much therapy, right?  I know that Miss Sunshine is well on track now, and our only major concern is her nasality.  I'm hoping that the new speech therapist feels the same way.

But, for now, I'm just going to go finish making dinner.  And wait for the rain to let up...

Thursday, May 19, 2011


I just got home from vacation.

A REAL vacation.  You know, the kind where you don't have to worry about if your kids are destroying something, or if that shopping excursion is going to turn your two year old into a demon if they miss their nap, or if that's a kid friendly restaurant you are headed to.  A child-free vacation.  I haven't had one of those since, well, I had kids.

I did miss my kids terribly.  And my husband horribly as well.  I talked to Daddy Mac daily, got updates on the kiddos, and even talked to Monster Boy and Miss Sunshine (who, in true "girl" fashion, monopolized the phone and refused to give it to anyone else for the duration of the call).

And now it's home again and back to the grind.  But I can still look at pictures of my feet on the beach and remember how nice it was when I need a little getaway...

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


I tend to avoid writing on here when something is particularly upsetting to me.  I might come back after a day or two to address what happened, when I am more calm and able to tell it in a funny or otherwise not angered way.  Today, I cannot do that.

I rarely use my blog to "address" things.  But something got called to my attention last night on Facebook that I simply CANNOT ignore.  I can't wait and let myself calm down about it.  It's something that NEEDS to be addressed, now.

In case you haven't seen what I'm about to go on a tirade about, well, here it is...


It is from New York Magazine.  They commissioned several cartoonists to make caricatures of Lady Gaga.  Most were typical - make her look like some kind of alien, robot, superhero.  Why THIS particular artist (Tim Hensley) chose to illustrate her with a cleft lip is BEYOND me.

I first saw this last night.  I didn't click on the image link when it appeared on my Facebook page, as I felt that the picture itself was offensive enough.  I made the mistake of clicking on it this morning.  Yes, the image is offensive.  But even more so, is the caption that the artist felt necessary to include.  Really?  REALLY?  "Birth  defect through elective surgery"??????  First of all, it CAN'T be a birth defect if elective surgery created it.  Secondly, we, as parents of cleft children, watch our children struggle SO MUCH with the surgeries to repair this and you are going to glamorize it?  This isn't even TOUCHING on my feelings about the phrase of "birth defect"  (I've said it before, and I'll say it again... My child is NOT defective.)

I know people speak before they think.  It happens.  I expect THAT.  This.  Well, there just aren't words strong enough for my distaste of this.  This is something that took time.  And thought.  And planning.  And never once, along the way, did it occur to you, Mr. Tim Hensley, that THIS was a BAD idea????????????  This isn't some fictional scenario.  People, children, are born, daily, with this condition.  A condition that requires numerous surgeries, starting as young in some cases as SIX WEEKS OLD.  Six weeks!  And you are going to make a cartoon out of it?  Our children face enough bullying and ridicule in this world, without taking in to consideration their clefts.  You, sir, have opened the door for even MORE opportunity for ridicule.  My daughter does not have a cleft lip.  She has a cleft palate.  But we are all one community, and I know I speak for many when I say "SHAME ON YOU."  Seriously, for shame.  To glamorize, to bring down, to ridicule, to make a joke out of what our children face every single day - the stares, the whispers, the surgeries, the pain, the scars...  I don't know your situation, sir.  I don't know what lead you to believe that this was somehow an appropriate thing to do.  But I can tell you that in all the cleft groups I belong to, there is an almost universal outcry of outrage over this.  That alone should tell you something.

I certainly hope that New York Magazine takes a step back to reflect on this.  I hope Tim Hensley reflects even more.  And then, I hope, that they issue an apology, an explanation of why he drew it and why they allowed it to go to publication - even if only online - and then I hope they do something productive, something POSITIVE, to highlight cleft awareness and what our children face daily.  Do NOT minimize this.  Do NOT push it under a rug.  We demand respect, for everyone who faces life with cleft.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day to all you moms (any kind of moms) out there!

It's going to be a quiet day in the Mac household today.  I figure we got enough adventure yesterday that today we are going to take it easy.

Speaking of yesterday's adventures... Well, the day started off much as usual.  Daddy Mac headed off to work, the kiddos and I got up.  I settled Miss Sunshine into her booster seat with some yogurt for breakfast and started working on the sink full of dirty dishes I had in the kitchen.  My goal for the day was to get the house nice and clean before Daddy Mac got home from work.  Yeah, that didn't happen.  Ten minutes in to my cleaning day, I stabbed myself with a very sharp knife.  On the back of my hand right on top of my first knuckle.  Slid it in from the tip back about three quarters of an inch.  After staring stupidly at it for a minute, I ran it under some water and then applied pressure.  I had Monster Boy call Daddy Mac and tell him to come home to take me to the ER.  At this point, the only person in the house who is dressed is Monster Boy.  So I call my grandmother and ask her if she can come sit with the kids so they don't have to go with us to the ER.  Then I attempt to dress myself while my hand is still bleeding.  Managed to pull on shorts and a t-shirt.  I have not showered or anything.  Daddy Mac gets home and I have him get Miss Sunshine dressed and help me brush my hair.  I did mention I am right handed and I, of course, stabbed my right hand, didn't I?  My grandmother arrives and off we go... My biggest fear a this point is that I have hit a tendon with that darn knife.  After sitting in the ER for nearly two hours, they call me back, check it out, declare the tendon safe, toss a couple of stitches in there and send me on my way in roughly fifteen minutes.

So now I have to keep it clean and dry, and no swimming, which is less than ideal considering I leave for Florida in three days!  Such is life, I suppose.

Obviously today I am taking it easy - I'm still in quite a bit of pain (stitches really are painful - this is my first ever foray into the world of stitches despite two c-sections) from the cut and my tetanus shot - so I plan to pack for my trip and otherwise be lazy.  Lot of laundry needs to get done - I'm hopeful that maybe Daddy Mac will just pack it all up and head to the laundromat with it while Miss Sunshine naps... we shall see!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Flying by...

Where does the time keep going? It seems like I just wrote my last blog post yesterday, and turns out it's been NINE days. Sheesh.

Things have been trucking along as usual here. I have started working more days at my job, while Monster Boy is at school. It's nice in one respect, because it means I am home at night for dinner so we can all sit down as a family. But it is surely wreaking havoc on Miss Sunshine's schedule. I generally work 9-2, and Monster Boy has to be picked up from school at 3:15. Which generally means that there is no time for nap for Miss Sunshine. By the time we get home from picking Monster Boy up, she is on her second (or third, who knows!) wind and not in the mood to nap. I try to compensate for this by putting her to bed early those nights, but I know it isn't enough. However, we only have a few more weeks of school to get through and then we will be able to better handle it because we won't have to go pick Monster Boy up - I will just transition her to a later nap time. She usually falls asleep in the car on the way home, so I know she would sleep then, the problem is that I have to wake her up thirty minutes after we get home in order to go pick him up from school. Which is where that next wind comes in - she gets a bit of a catnap and it's enough to energize her into not napping again that afternoon. So hopefully we can get that resolved soon.

Miss Sunshine is also developing quite the personality. Daddy Mac was sure that Monster Boy was the most stubborn child on the face of the earth, but I am confident Miss Sunshine has him beat. Poor Daddy Mac, he has no idea what he is in for. She is getting quite lippy. On the one hand, we are obviously thrilled with the take off in her speech lately. On the other hand, it's is NOT so thrilling that one of her major strides is some serious sass and backtalk. The other day, she informed me "I am SERIOUS, Mom". It took me forever to figure out what she was saying to me, and when I did all I could do was laugh. Apparently, we tell her we are serious a bit too much! I have also gotten "Hold ON, Mom", "Do you understand me?" and "I don't think so" out of her. SIGH. The next two years are going to be awfully long, I have a feeling. Thankfully, she is a bit slower to hit the "terrible two's" than her brother was - he was there at 18 months. However, anyone with an older child knows that the only people who call them "Terrible Two's" are people who have never had a three year old. Can I just fast-forward over 2012, pretty please?