My Little Girl

My Little Girl

Saturday, March 30, 2013


Tomorrow is Easter. And this weekend just reminds me of all the traditions I can't wait to continue with my little girl.

The very first tradition I remember as a little girl is reading the Velveteen Rabbit every year. My Grammy would come down to my mom and dad's house and read it to us every year. If it was really nice out, we would get to sit outside and listen to her read it.
The other tradition is the "hiding of the Easter Baskets." See, we had a big house (at least I remember it being big), with all these fun little nooks and crannies. Places you could hide something easily enough but a little kid could still get to them. Then, on Easter morning, we would all run around the house looking for a basket. Any basket. It didn't have to be ours. It was actually more fun when it wasn't our own basket. Each basket had one of our names in it, so we knew whose it was. When we found a basket, we would go sit in the living room and wait for everyone else to find one. Once they were all found, we would  give the person their basket. It was like you still got all the fun of finding a basket, but then you got the gift of giving someone something they would like too.

The other great thing about our baskets: Yes they had chocolate in them. But they also had our FAVORITE type of candy in them. And they would have a toy or book or something kind of small that was specific to what we liked. I usually got Reese's cups, Nerds, and a book of some kind. My sisters would get what they like.

As I got older, there was another tradition we started. We would watch the movie Steel Magnolias. I don't even know why, but it has become a tradition.

The traditions we never really did: Easter Egg hunts. I don't remember going to too many of them. And I don't know if I would want to go to those. We never did the "get a new Easter dress." Well, I didn't really like dresses so I was okay with that one. I don't know that we'll be able to get away from that with our little girl, but it's not something I see as a "have to do."

Today marks 99 days until my due date. 99 days (round-a-bout) until I get to meet my little girl. Less than 100 days until I get to hold her and see her. I want these 99 days to fly by, but then I'm scared I'm not really ready for her yet. Her room's not finished. We still have a lot of decorating to do with it. Then there's the little things around the house that I want to finish before she gets her. That being said, I still am thankful for every day she's in there. It's one more day for her to get stronger. And one less day until I meet her.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

The "Name Game"

Okay, so the day we found out we were having a little girl, my boyfriend told me he wanted to name her Emily Rose. M is his first initial. Rose is my middle name. She'd sort of be named after both of us. My first thought was of the movie "Exorcism of Emily Rose." (insert shudder). He said I would probably be the only one to think of that. I told him I would go along with Emily if we spelled it EMMALEIGH. Now we both call her Emma anyways, so the spelling doesn't matter as much.

Trouble now is... neither of us love the middle name for her.  First off, I wasn't ever one of those girls who had to pass on my name to my daughter. I think it gets confusing. But also because my mom's first name is Lillie, I'm Rose... I didn't want it to seem like a flower garden on my side! lol

A few nights ago I was talking to my BF's mom and joked about changing her middle name to Grace, that way she'd have a shot at not being a clutz like me. His mom started "oooh-ing" and "ahhh-ing" over the name and saying how much she liked that. I kinda tested it out with my guy last night. He started saying the "new" name over and over. Emmaleigh Grace ____. Emmaleigh Grace ___. He said he liked it a lot better. Plus it wouldn't have the stigma of the horror movie (apparently I *WASN'T* the only one to remember!)

I ran her name by a few close friends and they all said the same thing: they love it. I thought people were silly before when they said "You'll know the baby's name when you hear it." But ever since I spoke it aloud, I've known that was her name. I'm gonna ask him one more time, just to be certain he's on board with it... but I'm pretty sure we've got a name change. Lol

Friday, March 8, 2013

How does this happen??

It has taken me almost an entire week to write this blog. Every time I tried to finish up the post on the anatomy scan, it made me think of what happened last week, and especially Saturday, and I just couldn't get the words out. Today I am making myself write this. I hope it helps me somehow. Most people who read this will probably not know the person I'm talking about. They won't really get this. And that's okay.

Last Tuesday, February 26th, a good friend of mine was shot. Not the kind of shot like he got caught in a crossfire. Not the kind of shot where he attacked someone. No. The kind of shot where some jackwad driver got upset with him, stepped out of his car holding his gun, walked up to Brandon's car, and shot him three times. Yeah. The utterly defenseless kind of shot. And three times.

Now this alone makes me angry. But it gets more ... there's really no word to explain it. The jackwad is trying to say he was defending himself from Brandon. Oh yeah. A man sitting locked and strapped in his truck is really scary and intimidating. This guy claimed Brandon had a gun. Well, when the cops checked Brandon's person and vehicle there was NOTHING!!! So how did this person feel threatened enough to justify shooting a man SITTING IN HIS CAR???

And then there's still more: The man who shot my friend was an off-duty security officer. A rent-a-cop. Who couldn't hold down a job in the field for very long. He had been a security guard for about 4 different companies and let go from all of them. Says something to me. When the cops came to the scene of the crime, they interviewed this guy... AND LET HIM GO!!! WHAT? Are you kidding me? Even if he is claiming self-defense, anyone else who shoots someone in broad daylight would be taken in for questioning. They would be held. Not this guy. He walked away from this. Went home to his wife. And nothing has been done to him.

Brandon fought for his life for four whole days. He ultimately gave in and gave up to the Lord. On Saturday, March 2nd, at 10:10am, Brandon passed away. He leaves behind his wife and three sons. His youngest son was just 2 weeks old at the time.

I sit here every morning and get on facebook. I look at Brandon's page, and those pages remembering and honoring him. I watch the videos people have made of him. For him. I spend an hour of my day crying, missing this person who was just SUCH a good person. He played in a Christian Rock Band. He fought in Afghanistan. He led the youth theatre in our hometown.

I met Brandon in 7th grade. Even back then, he was just such a FUN person. He played football, but he wasn't like the stereotypical football players. He didn't fit into any of those molds, on TV or movies or anything. He always had a smile on his face. Always. He was kind to everyone. When we got to high school, he got into drama and speech. I wasn't involved in any of those but we stayed friends for the next four years.

One of my last face-to-face conversations came when we were in college, way back in 2006 I think. He was about to be shipped overseas. We messaged each other and said it would be fun to catch up. He told me about his wife. Their new baby Nolan. His deployment. What he had been getting into since we graduated. I remember sitting in DUC and just enjoying time with my friend.

I never saw him again. Not in person. He went overseas. I went to the University of Alabama for my internship, then Florida International University for grad school. He came home and raised his family with his wife. They had another baby boy: Evan. I went to work in Texas for a bit. I moved to Illinois to be around my family up here. We messaged on facebook a few times. I loved seeing what plays and productions he had coming up with the youth. He'd post videos of his band. Let everyone know what they were doing. He ran for Constable last November and it was fun seeing that side of him too.

There are some days I wonder if I should just give up my facebook. Sometimes the drama on there is frustrating. After last week, I know that's just not gonna happen anytime soon. I am sooo thankful for the past 7 years of being able to stay friends with Brandon even though we lived so far apart. I know there will still be drama on there. People will say stupid things. But ultimately, it keeps me active in the lives of those people I grew up with.

Brandon, I miss you. Every day. I find myself sitting alone crying because I hate what was done to you. I am thankful you were my friend. I am thankful for the past 15 years of knowing you. I've said it before and I'll say it again: Right up to your very last breath you were a shining example for your sons. You fought and showed strength. You died and showed faith in God. You gave your organs to 8 people and showed compassion. Thank you B-Rad. Love and miss you buddy.

Every. Single. Day.

Rock out in Heaven, man.
 Brandon with his family before baby Conner was born.

My friend.

Anatomy Scan

***I started this last Saturday before I got some terrible new, and am just now getting around to finishing it. Sorry for the delay. I kept everything how it originally was and stayed with the "time" of the original post. Follow up to come**

After the week I had, Friday just brought so much joy and happiness to me. (I'll explain in a separate post.)

Well, first off: I got to go into work an hour late and leave about 20 minutes early! I had to cover for the hygiene area at work Monday night and can't work over 40 hours, so we worked it to where I came in late Thursday and Friday.

Then I went home and picked up my bf's mom, so she could go with us to the 20 week Anatomy Ultrasound (at almost 22weeks). I was at her house when I got a call from my bf stating he was called out to work and wouldn't make the ultrasound. :(

His mom and I went on to the appointment. We stopped for a quick bite before at a little cafe/bistro place. I had a really good turkey club sandwich and a kind of weird salad. It had pistachios and pears and grapes in it. Grapes were good. The other two... still not sure about! LOL

Then we got to the maternal/fetal center. The tech came in and immediately asked if we wanted to know the gender. Since it had been 6 weeks since we were told, and we were told kind of early, I said yes. I wanted to be sure my Emma wasn't going to turn into my Eli! lol

Well apparently Emma wasn't too thrilled about getting her space invaded. She kept her hands balled up in fists right by her face the entire time! No profile shots for us. And the tech had to push pretty hard to make sure she got the right measurements. Guess Emma was as deep as she could be, because at one point the tech had to use BOTH HANDS to press down. Sheesh, that was uncomfortable. Anytime I wanted to speak up, I just remembered what my dad always said: "If you complain, they just seem to take longer." So I stayed quiet and hoped this prodding would end soon.

Eventually it did. Here's the low-down: on Friday, March 1st, my baby weighed a whole pound and is set for an estimated delivery date still of 7/7. All good news! The tech got up to leave and my bf's mom and I both kinda yelled "GENDER??" She forgot! She came back and did a quick scan, but it was really grainy and none of us could be sure. The tech said "I think it's a girl, but I'm not sure."

A few minutes later the doctor came in. I said "Before you start, could you please double check the gender?" He smiled and grabbed the wandy thing, put it on my belly, and immediately found my baby. "Girl. Definitely a girl. No doubt about it." Then I asked him about her weight. I told him I had had some trouble gaining weight during the pregnancy and just wanted to make sure she's healthy. He did some computer magic and pulled up some stats. "She's in the 45% percentile. She's perfect. Absolutely perfect. Middle of the road perfect." That made me feel so much better. To know she was healthy in there. And if a doc tells you your baby is perfect, well that's a good sign in my book!

Right before we went to leave, he tried to get us a profile shot. He had the wand on my belly and started jiggling it around. Nope. Emma was NOT going to cooperate. She had those fists up ready to duke it out with us! lol She's a feisty one, my little girl. And stubborn too!!! I'm gonna say that's like her daddy! lol (because I can. hahaha)

Emmaleigh Grace

Emmaleigh Grace