70 posts categorized "Maddy"

October 09, 2008

A letter to Maddy


Sweet Madeline, please believe that Mommy would never lock you out of the house.   NeverNot-in-a-million-years EVER.

The door was not locked (you just thought it was) and Mommy is so sorry that she didn't hear you crying.  When I finally figured out what happened, you were so distraught and I'll never forget the look on your precious face when I think back on all of this*.  Really, I'm so incredibly sorry about that.  Trust me, my baby, that I'd never do anything to hurt you and I'm so sorry you were so upset.

Here's the whole story:  Our washing machine died this morning with a huge, soggy, load inside only 1/4 finished.  We checked the Owner's Manual and learned that our problem would require a visit from a RLSP (Real Live Service Person) so I completed the necessary information online on the LG Website and waited to hear back from the service department.

When I picked you and Gwenny up from Preschool and came home to wait to hear from the technician, I noticed that I had an email with some instructions to troubleshoot the problem with the washing machine.    At the same time, you asked to go outside into the backyard to play so I opened the sliding-glass door for you.  Then I shut it (like I have many times before) because I thought you could easily pull it open again.  But I guess Gwenny is usually with you and she was probably the one who opened the door for you.  But she was inside today (watching Curious George on TV).  I really didn't know you'd be stuck out there in the hot sun and unable to open the door to come back into the house.  You must have thought that I did this on purpose but, please trust me my Sweet Darling Girl that I didn't.  I never thought for even one single second that you couldn't get back in.

When your brother was about 3 years old, we were looking at new houses and he accidentally wandered into the back yard and found himself unable to get back in.  A few minutes later, I found him with his teary face pressed against the glass door and it's an image I've never been able to shake out of my head.  Even 17 years later I see that wet face on the door.  Today, it was your teary face pressed against the glass and my heart split totally in two pieces when I saw you.

There will be pain and disappointment in your future but I promise that none of that will ever intentionally come from your family.  Even though you might have thought you were locked out on purpose, you will NEVER be cut off from the people who love you.  This I promise from the very bottom of my broken heart.



*This picture wasn't taken today.  Maddy was much too upset for cameras and such things.  The picture you see was from 9/18 and it was a photo that I loved even though she looked so sad.  As usual, her sad face was just a quick and fleeting thing that day.

September 17, 2008

Another drawing from The Princess of Crunchville

It's been a week since Maddy's surgery and she's been eating soft foods without much protest -- until just now. 

After nap, she asked for a "crunchy cookie".  Not just a cookie but a crunchy cookie.   I can't really blame her since squishy food must be getting pretty boring by now. 

When I explained that she still can't have crunchy food, she ran into her room and cried.  My poor little Princess still has one more week to go!  When it's all over, we'll celebrate with the crunchiest Oreo cookies and Cheetos and Ritz crackers!  But for now it's soup and soft toast.  Ugh.  Maybe I'll melt a Hershey Kiss and let her lick it off a wooden spoon.  Who wouldn't like that!

Before nap, she was my usual happy little artist and she drew this handsome lion (background added by Mommy).   Don't you just love that tail? 


Today is Andrew's parent's 42nd wedding anniversary.   Two of the nicest people I know who just happen to have created the man of my dreams.

Happy Anniversary to Nana and Grandad!

September 15, 2008

Elmo (more Maddy Art)


Click to enlarge image and read text.

Yep, it's more of Maddy's fancy artwork.  She spends the entire day doing this sort of thing.  Really, that's every waking minute not taken up by pre-school, park, nap and dinner.  Her fingertips are permanently stained by the crayons and pensa but the beautiful smile on her face appears to be just as permanent!

Maddy has natural talent but her drawings don't come straight from her pretty little head.  I'm not an artist (far from it!) but I show her how to draw the things you've seen on this blog.  I demonstrate once and she's eager to give it a try on her own and that's what you see posted on this blog.   Pretty soon, her skills are going to far surpass mine so I'm very grateful to everyone who's commented (or emailed me) with a link to a good drawing instruction product for children.   Since my own skills are so basic (and crappy), I'm excited about trying some of these products myself! 

Art is fun.  I'm really happy that Maddy has a very special hobby to pour her heart and soul into.  I wish Gwen had something as special but I suppose she's more the typical four year old with wishy washy interests in a hundred different things and no special focus on any of it (yet).    So far, her interest in crayons hasn't extended beyond peeling the paper wrappers off and snapping them in two! 

September 12, 2008

Our Family Portrait (Maddy's Art)


Maddy is an amazing little artist.   Last night, she created this masterpiece all by herself!  Click it for a larger view.  Keep in mind that this little girl just turned four on July 31st!

She sits here in the playroom and draws pictures every minute she's not at preschool or sleeping.  All the practice is paying off as her technique improves by leaps and bounds every single day. 

Most kids have some interest in art but very few can pick up a crayon and draw something without being taught a few of the basics.    Even if it's just stick figures, it makes a world of difference to give them some instruction.  We started by showing Maddy how to draw a person's face by drawing a circle with two eyes and a nose and mouth.

She practiced her faces this way for more than a week but when she was ready to add a body, all her people had arms and legs sprouting from their head!  So I taught her to draw a neck then a square for a shirt and rectangles for sleeves and pants. (a triangle for a skirt for a girl).  A few days later, we added hands (small circles with fingers) and "L" shaped legs and feet.   Just this little bit of instruction made so much of a difference!  Before long, she'll be teaching ME!    

Our favorite art supplies are Crayola products.  They have a bunch of stuff that is "twistable".  Non-toxic crayons, colored pencils, even markers that don't break or lose their point or have messy paper wrappers or lids to get lost.  Most are washable and many are erasable.  Our most recent favorite is "Crayola Slick Stix".  They're almost like drawing with Mommy's lipstick but there are more colors and you don't get in trouble afterwards!

September 10, 2008

Maddy's Surgery (She's fine!)

It's been quite an adventure.  Not an especially fun one but an adventure nonetheless.  Here's a quick pass at Maddy's Big Day. 


So, there are the highlights.   It was a pretty amazing experience but not one I hope to ever have to repeat.  Frankly, it scared the hell out of me. 

I used to be a deputy sheriff and I knew that I couldn't knock on any mother's door and ask if she was the mother of So-And-So without giving her heart failure.  So I always prefaced my first question with a statement that her kid was fine.   Why don't Doctors lead with this declaration too?

At one point, the Surgeon came to the waiting room and asked me to step outside and I fully expected him to tell me something devastating -- something that would change my life forever (I've gotten this type of news before).  My heart was pounding so hard that I could barely process his words and when it was finally clear that Maddy was actually okay, I was too relieved to voice any protest about his absolutely crappy message deliver technique.  Why didn't he just say the surgery was successful first

Maddy did really well.  Her palate is closed and now the inside of her mouth looks just like everyone else's.  I'm happy about this but I'm also just a little bit sad because the tiny flaw they fixed wasn't a flaw to me.  She was already more than perfect in my eyes and in my heart.  And that little fissure in the roof of her mouth was the sole reason she was on the Special Need list at the exact moment we were looking for her.    I don't expect anyone to understand what I mean when I say I'll miss her cleft palate.  I know how strange that sounds but I love every part of my children and the unique parts tend to stand out the most.  This part of Maddy is gone and even though I'm not sorry about that, I'll miss it.

This is part of Maddy's story and all the pictures above are for her.  Someday she'll want to know more about this and I'm glad I'll have photos and text to share with her.   

I didn't think I could possibly love her more but my love for her grows deeper every day and this was a very special bonding experience for us.    Daddy and I are not in competition for the love of our kids but Maddy has always been "Daddy's Girl" so I'm especially honored that she specifically asked for me after surgery and I'm glad I could be there for her and give her comfort.  She was so strong through all this but also so vulnerable.  I'm very proud of her.  We would never expect such a young child to be so brave but she was amazing.  Bless her sweet little heart!

Heartfelt thanks to the many friends and family who prayed and hoped and wished and held their breath with us while we navigated this particular obstacle.   We're always grateful and humbled to have such good friends.

We're happy to have this event behind us and now we gratefully resume our regular old life.  Whatever that might be this week.

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