The Big K: Survival of the Fittest

 

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Avery, Camdyn and Emily

 

 

It has been a while since I blogged about the girls.  My last post was about beginning of a new era: Kindergarten.  Nine weeks have gone by and I think I could have written a novel just filled with emotions and all the changes it has entailed.  I titled this post, “Survival of the Fittest,” because that is what it has felt like.  I feel I have been to battle and back.  Adjustment after adjustment, tear after tear, but I believe we are slowly turning a corner just right in time for the holidays!

Any mother can relate to the day you first watch your kiddos walk through those big school doors and look back and say, “Bye, Mom!”  I have had a million people ask me if I cried.  Well, I am human people!  I did wait until I got in the car with my husband.  It was the ugly cry no doubt.  I knew they would be happy and have a great day.  They have an adorable teacher.  Going to school six hours a day, five days a week has been exhausting on the girls.  There have been several, “we have to go again today?”  Unfortunately,  yes you do my loves.

 

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Emily, Camdyn and Avery on their way to Kindergarten (Photos by Anne Schmidt)

 

It has been hard on both of us.  I feel empty nested.  I don’t have a baby or toddler to go home to when they go to school.  I don’t work outside the home.  The big question, “What do you do with all your free time now?”  I got passed being somewhat insulted by this question.  Some people are just generally curious and I get that.  I have had six years of utter adventure and a non-stop physically taxing job raising them to this point.  It has been sort of a bitter sweet symphony (insert theme from Cruel Intentions).  We are all navigating this new season together.

 

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Emily Ray

 

This sweet girl above has hit me out of left field with some separation anxiety.  It has broken me at times seeing her in tears and upset just about going to school.  As much as you can nail down a five year-old, I have explored every issue that could possible be the reason why she doesn’t entirely like the school process.  Bottom line, she just misses time with her mama.  Boy my girl, me too. You have no idea.  In true Emily resilience, things are moving upward!  You go my big girl!  We are exploring her gifts and giving her space to be the silly little one she is.  She has a heck of a swing, so maybe golf or tennis in her future!

 

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Avery Lynn

 

Avery takes on challenges in true stride.  Not much shakes her and her confidence is something to be admired.  She is trucking along about to learn a back handspring at tumbling and taking on dance once again in a mini-hip-hop class.  She is super eager to read by herself.

 

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Camdyn Lea

 

Camdyn…Oh Cam..She is the ultimate teacher’s helper. Seriously loves all things school.  Has been incredibly happy and is such a sweet friend to new friends at school.  She is also doing tumbling and her confidence has really soared.  She used to be really hard on herself if she didn’t get something right away.  I have seen over time how practice is making perfect or at least teaching her she can accomplish it if she wants to.  She is also doing dance!

Although this post is greatly delayed all of the emotions are still ringing true for this mama.  My faith in the Lord has pushed me to feel and to conqueror this season with new hope for the future.  Thank God he meets us right where we are every day.  We all know some days are better than others!

Those days of bottles and a mountain of diapers are gone.  I never in a million years thought I would grieve for those days.  Ok, I lied.  I don’t grieve for any of that.  I am more than happy to put that behind us.  But, the littles.  The little fingers, little toes, little words, just all things little are growing into bigger girls engaged in a bigger world.

Lord, thank you for our health and these gifts we get to call our daughters.  I promise to pull up my bootstraps and get on with it!  Haha.

Blessings,

Mama Coy

Reflection: The big “K” is coming

The big “K” is coming.  Yep, Kindergarten.  I blinked and we are here.  I wanted to get these emotions out early, so I can attempt to celebrate their first day.  Let’s be honest, this will not be easy…on me.

For a straight year, I have heard a few reoccurring statements.  The inevitable, “What are you going to do with all your free time?”  and “Are you going to go back to work.”  I won’t lie, at first I took these two comments very personal.  I even shed some tears thinking to myself, “Am I not worthy enough just being my girls’ mother?”  I never thought the moment I dropped them off at school for the first time I had to have a plan.  I didn’t realize I turned off “mothering” until 3:40 p.m. when I will pick them up.

I prayed this last year for clarity from God about my next step in life.  I was a professional for almost 12 years before they came along.  I fought hard to be successful and be known as someone that was hard working employee and someone of value to a team.  Little did I know the spontaneity of their coming into this world is the most challenging and biggest blessing I have ever had in my entire life.  Everything I thought I needed, everything I thought I wanted changed the moment they were brought home from the hospital 43 days after their birth.  The past five years, we have put up our dukes against any challenges that came our way.

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We took on years of sleep deprivation, potty-training, and the 24-hour bug (that should be called the two-week bug once they had all passed it around). The joys of taking your kiddos on playdates and to lunch and to experience all the world has to offer through the magnified anxiety and physical challenges.  Those early newborn cuddle sessions were not things I look back on with bliss in my heart.  Sadly, those moments rarely happened.

I told myself that regardless of how hard this would be to be “normal” I was bound and determined to live that life for my girls.  Not to toot my own horn…ok…I will…I think I kicked ass!  The fog called raising a newborn, toddler, etc..is slowly coming to close and I will celebrate that with joy in my heart.  Many mothers may be thinking, “how in the world could she wish those moments away…they were the best times of my life.”  I have many “best times” I will hold so dearly close.  First trip to the beach.  First trip to the zoo.  First time they tried pizza.  First time they all slept through the night at four years old…YES FOUR YEARS OLD FOR EVERYONE TO NOT WAKE UP BEFORE MORNING.  First times they learn something new and I glowed with excitement with them.  First time they experienced pre-school.   I am not a mother who missed anything.  I got everything.  And I got everything times three!  I am a blessed woman.Me and Girls with Sunglasses summer 2014

As I navigate this next season, I have chosen to not look back but to celebrate looking forward.  To being a happier and healthier mother to my girls.  To enjoy their successes and to cuddle their failures.  To participate in things at their school.  To just frankly, BE AVAILABLE.  I am choosing to continue to be their mother.  I thank God for presenting this clarity wrapped in the amazing Word.  Women, we don’t have to be multi-faceted to be successful.  We don’t have to conqueror the world in order to prove our importance and value.

I do plan to do some soul searching on how to get back a little piece of me.  Don’t get me wrong, this will not be easy.  I truly believe a woman loving her life is the best example to our children.  They will know I am a person and that person just happens to be their mother.

But who am I kidding?  I will be choking back tears as I let go of their hands and give them to someone else for the entire day in a new environment with new things to learn.  I am honored to be their mother.  I have three of the most beautiful girls God could have wrapped into one womb.  Trust me, there wasn’t run for much more!

I hope they know I adore them.  Their hearts are beating for God. Their smiles melt me.  Their bickering even lets me know that I am living and life is in full effect.   They are growing into such amazing little ones.  I cannot wait to see their future, but I plan to continue to mother in their “present.”

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Good luck to all the first-time school moms out there.  I will be flashing back to those moments they were first born right along with you!

Blessings always from the LORD!

Stephanie

 

 

Just one of those dayz…

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The title says it all.  Just one of those days.  Many of my friends may remember this old Monica song:

Just one of them days
That a girl goes through
When I’m angry inside
Don’t want to take it out on you
Just one of them days
Don’t take it personal

The girls have just been overly whiny and demanding lately.  We are not sure what is going on or if this a taste of what three girls with PMS will look like in our future.  Don’t get it wrong, the picture above is in no way promoting child labor.  But, after Avery broke an entire bottle of OPI RED nail polish on our master bathroom floor I knew the day was not off to a good start.  I typically don’t freak out over things like this.  I have way too much patience for that and know things just happen.  I was about to implode and they were sort of laughing which even made it worse.  Grab a toothbrush girls and get scrubbing!  Of course, this lasted maybe five minutes and it took me more than an hour to turn my bathroom floor back into somewhat normal when it was a crime scene!

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I tried everything!  Nail polish remover to baking soda to Clorox to pumice stones to scrub it out!  Just me and a toothbrush and nail polish remover for more than an hour.

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Secondly, you know this wonderful idea that I had to get a puppy?  Well, she I like a fourth child right now.  The adorable-ness of these dogs is what makes it worth it, but seriously, come on!!!

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The girls like to wake up at night and so does the puppy.  She has an excuse.  She is a puppy.  They are almost five!!!!  I find myself resorting to old parenting ways of just putting Miss Murphy in bed with us so I can sleep a few hours.  Then I remember that does not help in the future. The part that does not make me happy is the poop.  “MOOOOOOMMMM Murphy pooped in Emily’s room AGAIN.”  If you are a Mom, poop is not really a big deal.  At least it never was to me and I had lots of poop going on in this house.  But, I will say throw up on all accords I absolutely despise.

WARNING!!! This photo is not for the weak stomached. Yep, that is MASSIVE throw up from our eight year old Boxer, who we took to the pet ER last week.  I literally thought she was dying.  She does have some issues to investigate, but put it on the list right?

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Things can always be worse and in this house they have been in the past!  But this day just really had me spinning and my blood pressure out the roof.

So, if any parents out there have tips on the following please help a sister out!

  • puppy training
  • attitude adjustments – This could actual be good for me and my hubby as well as the kids 🙂
  • why dogs eat EVERYTHING!
  • why kids don’t want to eat certain things!
  • why we still can’t get a full night sleep in five years?
  • why somehow I still find all of this somewhat humorous
  • why I still have not checked myself into some type of retreat for crazy people
Prayers for a new day because God always makes the sun come up tomorrow!!!
Love,
Mom on the Edge

The new baby

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As if we did not have enough chaos in our lives’ we went and got a new dog gone baby!  Obviously, it’s a fur baby.  Pump your breaks people!  For all of you who have asked about us having more children you are looking at her.

We are pleased to announce Miss Murphy “Rose” Coy.  She weighs roughly ten pounds and is almost eight weeks old.  She is the most precious Goldendoodle.  I wore my poor husband down for more than six months discussing a new pup for our family.  I clearly know this is my project, but like I have told some people that thought why in the world would you want a puppy I say this…No puppy in the world is as tough as raising three babies at the same time.  No puppy is as difficult to comfort or console as three little girls.  No puppy will intimidate me to potty train.  I conquered three two-year-olds in record time.  Thank you.

Most animal lovers know the wonderful joy they bring to your home.  We are at a good place in our lives and the time was right.  One more mouth to feed but what’s one more?

To be honest, I think this idea of another “baby” started brewing on my heart as the months dwindle down to these little girls all leaving the nest for Kindergarten in the fall.  They are turning five in a few weeks and although my heart is so happy for the place we are in right now, you can’t help as a mother to stop and say, “Wow that went by fast.”

I always knew that maybe I would be a better mother with little girls instead of little babies.  I don’t remember many moments of just pure joy that lasted any longer than five minutes.  Life was fast.  Life was chaotic.  So when I say that I look forward to little girlhood I say that with the upmost love in my heart for the future.

The only person that may be resentful in our family right now is our almost eight year old Boxer, Stella.  I think she will learn to appreciate her.  Maybe not.

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None the less, I hope this precious pup will love being my little side kick.  She already has a way to lighten the mood when the mood needs lightening.  You know what I mean mamas…When the whining is just too much and the demands are just too high.  When the eyes have rolled too many times and the “you are not being fair,” has just reached an all time level.  I hope I can look at this fur baby and just say, “Do you have any complaints girl?”  I feel confident that fuzzy face may come by my side and signal that it will be all be ok.

Here is too adventures with our Miss Murphy.  Welcome to the Coy Pond!  Hope you can swim! Hehe.

WOOF WOOF,

Love Murphy

The long awaited surgery

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On our way…Surgery Day

If you know me, you know I have never once lied about the lack of sleep in our house.  It has by far been the hardest part of raising the girls.  We felt about a year ago we were getting somewhere and then we had this little one habitually waking and coming in our room every single night.  Emily is my petite and mighty little girl.  From conception, she has always been “the one to watch,”  like she was a Heisman Trophy candidate you kept your eye on all season to see what they would do.  She always had us on our toes, our little Baby A.  Coming into this world at just two pounds and 11 ounces, she has never failed to amaze us with her fighter attitude.  She is not much of a complainer at all but we began noticing a pattern that worried us.  She was not staying asleep and was exhausted in the morning.  This little one would snore like nothing you heard before.  I often would confuse her and my husband.  Big Bear and Little Bear!  She also would listen to things at such a high volume we wondered what was up!  Well, after two medical opinions and tonsils like the size of Texas, we decided to proceed with having them removed.  She also basically failed a hearing test and if that doesn’t make you feel awful as a parent that you didn’t know.  Like I said, she is not a complainer and has always found a way to compensate.

Surgery of any kind is enough to make any parent weary and emotional.  This would be her third set of ear tubes and first tonsillectomy.  The end result is what we focused on and prayed about.   The morning of her surgery I read from a devotional the following: “Some trust in and boast of chariots and some of horses, but we will trust in and boast the name of the Lord our God,” Psalm 20:7.  It continued to speak to me and calm my nerves.  It stated that trust is not confused, because it has no need to lean on its own understanding and does not give up or panic.  Well, if God says so…That is what I was gonna do.

Her is our girl coloring patiently as we waited….Avery would have been bouncing off walls. Hehe.  Camdyn at this point may have convinced us to leave all together.

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Waiting..waiting…

And we waited some more….She decided to try on gloves and check out her Daddy’s teeth.  I think she was thinking, “Yep Dad.  They are big and white.”  Haha.  I suited up to go back with her until she was ready for the procedure.  I was listening to her voice and how before it sounded as if she was holding her nose as she spoke.  I thought that I may hear a new girl after all this and that was just ok with us.   20 minutes later is was all over and we were on our road to recovery.

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Still waiting…..

The nurses said she opened her eyes and didn’t complain or cry and she honestly rarely has since.  I truly think she is a reminder in my life of how to trust and have faith and overcome.  She has always been my fighter and always been my reminder of the glory of God, just as her sister’s are as well.

The moments we get to snuggle and nurture just one of these girls at a time is slim.  Surgery is not the ideal way to get personal time with your mom and dad but I think she has been pleased with it 🙂  She has just been all snuggles and by my side since Thursday.  Her sister’s got her this yellow Care Bear and I think it really helped bring a little sunshine to her even when she didn’t want it.  I don’t think I said a lot of “I love yous,” or gave kisses after any procedure I have had…This kiddo sure does and it was precious.

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Just waking up

Just put it down in the books as another obstacle in parenthood fought and overcome!  For that alone I will continue to put my trust in Him and try not to take other things in life so seriously.  But again, you will never hear me lie when sleep is non-existent in this house.

Praying for peace and quiet in the night hours to come!

Love,

Mama Bear

Christmas Magic

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I can’t believe yet another holiday with this trio has come and gone with a blink of an eye.  We celebrated our fifth Christmas.  Five beautiful Christmas’ with these babies.  Boy, I remember our first Christmas.  Avery and Emily had tubes put in their ears at 10 months so right before Christmas.  We had spent eight miserable weeks with babies with constant ear infections.  At that point, I am not even sure I remember sleeping at all.  Come to think of it…yep…not much sleep really now either.

I told myself I would start early this year on shopping and planning in case the dreaded seasonal sickness hit us again as it always does each year.  I am blessed that the Type A in me went with my gut.  We spent two weeks dealing with pneumonia with all three girls.  I mean really? Pneumonia?  Last year it was the Flu.  Year before it was RSV.  Year before it was Upper Respiratory and Ear Infections.  I swear, this next holiday season we are spending eight weeks in the Bahamas!

The girls actually enjoyed Santa this year.  We had no crazy tears this year even though those pics are some of the best in our vault to date. They talked to Santa all about what they wanted for Christmas.  Go figure that it was not one of the things I had yet to purchase.  Thank God for Amazon Prime!  Amazon Prime and I are in a pretty exclusive relationship.  We can communicate any hour of the night or day and it is extremely prompt on ending up on my doorstep within two days.  Do not think we will break up anytime soon!

We shopped for foster children for our second season this year.  The girls really enjoy it.  We tell them a little about each child and give them each the job of picking out what that child would want for Christmas.  We love making this part of our giving season so they understand some day that it is truly an honor and privilege to do for others.

Look at these sweet girls on Christmas morning!  They are really spoiled beyond their heart’s desires because Santa and their grandparents and aunt and uncles.  Daddy was reading letters that Santa wrote each of the girls.  Bryan is really a little word smith when it comes to these projects.  From new babies and dolls to strollers and pretend play and puzzles and games and crafts…you name it…it is here.  Yet, are my kiddos the only ones two days after Christmas that say, “What are we doing today?”

The holidays really are so much more meaningful with these three.  As we look into the New Year, we pray for health and happiness for all of our friends and family.  Emily will be having a surgery the first part of January so we graciously asked for prayers.  Tonsils gone and a third set of tubes!  She has really been struggling hearing and actually close to failed her last hearing exam in one ear so we pray this is a solution that will make her feel so much better…and listen to things at a much,much lower volume!!!

Happiest New Year!

Blessings,

The Coys

 

 

“In All Things…Give Thanks”

This year, our little family decided to ring in the season with Thanksgiving cards.  When our world is in such crisis and we all know people hurting in our communities and around the world, it is so important to value what we have right here at home.  I know I am not the only mother that may wake up like Mary Poppins and end the day being Cruela Deville.  There are days that are more ragged than others, go smoother than others and there are days that are just knock dead drag out  days from you know where!  Lately, I have tried to stop more and stare at the girls when they sleep, hone in when they are loving one another when I am not looking, cherishing more of the moments that may not even make sense when they are congested with screams and shrills…fighting and yelling…tears over who knows what.  I am leaning in and loving it all.

I have not posted in a while so I have some catching up to do!  There is no place like home with these little Dorothys.  Yes, they were all Dorothy.  Emily decided she was the first to be Dorothy.  The selling point was definitely Toto in the basket and the red glittery shoes.  The other two quickly changed from mermaids to Dorothy, no questions asked.  Girls and accessories.  Even at four, it is clearly apparent that fashion is important.

Dorothy Halloween 2015Five minutes before we walked out the door to Trick-Or-Treat, Emily decided she wanted to be her own little person with her own ideas and quickly turned into Elsa.  The good thing about not worrying about the costumes is that we have tons of them to choose from.  No harm no foul and everyone was happy!  “Let is Go” Right?

The girls are rockin’ Pre-K!  They love their teachers and they are learning so many amazing things.  The big thing they love is being “the line leader.”  Recently, they all had an opportunity to do what they call “ME Day.”  Their teachers send home a special bag and they get to fill it with what they want to show their class.  What many may see as a simple project for their kids was taken very seriously to mine!  The girls do not get too many opportunities at home to take a hold of something that is just individually “THEIRS.”  A sister is always there to partake.  It was heartwarming to them so proud to show off their favorite things to their classmates.  To be just Avery….Camdyn…Emily.

They all told me, “Mom, I don’t need any help with my homework.”  I wish they did need help, because when they get older and ask for help on that math homework they are going to be up a creek!

Mercy NICU Wall of HOPE

Last night, we were honored to be chosen for the girls to be photographed and placed on the Mercy NICU Wall of Hope.  Through the March of Dimes, this special project hopes to inspire the hundreds of parents who walk through those unchartered doors of the NICU with so much fear of the unknown with their sick babies.  Our time in the NICU was scary, but we had amazing faith and a wonderful medical team.  Seeing our girls next to other success stories was really emotional.  For the first time in a long time, visiting the NICU was a happy moment in my life.  I had visited in the past, but still the smell of the medical soap, the sounds of the monitors, the big double doors that open and many other reasons really kept me from putting the experience behind me for many reasons.  This was sort of a break through for me that spoke to me in volumes about how far we have come in our journey.  The girls are such miracles that it is hard to imagine that moment in life almost five years ago.  But, it happened and it is always a part of us and now in happy and promising way!

Mercy NICU Reception with Girls

 

So to wrap up for this post, we wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and many blessings.  The girls always remind me that giving does not have to be done in big magnitudes or big financial amounts to make an impact or difference in someone’s life.  I challenge each of you to do an unselfish act of kindness for someone you love…or someone you know that needs love.

“In all things..give Thanks.” 1 Thess. 5:18

Love always,

The Coys