Army Wife Blundering

My goal is to be like Claudia Joy Holden: Loving mother, supportive wife, successful college student, FRG president. Right now I’m like Roxie LeBlanc: shotgun wedding, living on post, baby-father drama, and I don’t even have a Hump Bar! I am, however, a loving mother,  a college student (success to be determined) and hopefully, come September 5th I’ll be FRG President, too. As for the supportive wife part, I’M TRYING. It’s actually a LOT harder than it sounds.

To love someone so much, we bump heads a lot. Right now, we are in the “Pamela and Chase pre-divorce” stage of our marriage. But I don’t believe in divorce. That sucker is stuck with me forever. He does whatever the heck he wants; apparently, I’m controlling and sometimes emasculating. Those weren’t the exact words he used but that is what I got out of it.  How to be supportive: I have no fricking clue.

How can I support a unit that keeps my husband away from home almost EVERY DAY for 14-18 hours a day? How can I support a husband who would rather play EVEonline than have a conversation with me most times? Don’t get me wrong, I love the Army and I love my husband; sometimes, I just want to kick their butts, though.

So I have recently been called to be the secretary for Relief Society at church, I’m taking 4 or 5 classes with a course-load of 10, I’m going to be the FRG president,  and I’m attempting to keep up with all my surveys because in a week I’ll be in Virginia and I’m going to need some extra spending money.

I’m going to be in Virginia for a month, separated from my husband. On the bright side, I’m going to get to see Jermahl, which is great because Druggie is trying to make it hard for me to talk to him. Unless of course, I pay for a 7-year-old’s cell phone when they have two working phones and 3 computers. They probably won’t let me Skype with him because the house is still filthy and they don’t want me to see it.

Anyway, non sequitur. I feel bad for Judas and Jesse. Judas will be away from his daddy and Jesse won’t have his wife or his kids. L He has this four-day weekend and I want to make it special. Unfortunately, a day and a half of it has been wasted. Claudia Joy would have already done something spectacular for General Holden. I pulled a Roxie and burned the bacon. Even Roland is better at being an Army wife than me.

Maybe I’ll let Jesse play Eveonline the rest of the weekend and Jude and I can watch the 4th season of Army Wives. Jude stops whatever he is doing when it comes on. It makes him do this, though:

He looks like Jesse more and more every day.

Advertisements

Spanking vs. Beating: Where is the line?

Most people my age and older came from a household where spanking was allowed. For me, the two-and-a-half years in foster care and the subsequent butt-kickings from boyfriends have me completely “pro-peace.” I am almost incapable of spanking. Don’t get me wrong. I’ve tried it out on Jermahl. When I was raising him with his pothead father (who Jermahl was named for so we’ll call him ‘Druggie’ from now on), Druggie said you’re supposed to beat your kids. How else are you going to teach them? Mind you I was 15 when I got pregnant, and I thought, perhaps, there might be a difference from what I experienced and what he was talking about.

So if Jermahl was acting bad, I would pop him on the hand or the butt. Just once. But Druggie would slap him in the face or kick him. And God forbid I protested, I would get the same in kind. Well, one day, I was out with a friend going to the market. Jermahl just broke out into a tantrum in front the Food Lion market it was sooo embarrassing and I was getting mad. I kept telling him to be quiet and he wouldn’t so I popped his mouth. But he fell over and he bust his lip. I bawled in front of that store telling my baby how sorry I was. I probably looked like a crazy person, hugging him and crying.  I will never know if my anger made that ‘pop’ a ‘slap’ or if he just didn’t have the balance (my friend tried to convince me it was the latter), but I refused to spank or pop him for a long time after that.

When he was about 3, Chris (sperm donor #2) and I moved to Houston together. Jermahl was out of control because he had been living with Druggie who doesn’t believe in teaching, just beating. So we tried to just show him love whenever he was acting out. Eventually, it got to be too much, and we decided maybe spanking should be part of his discipline. So we sat him down one evening and told him what would constitute a spanking (screaming, hitting, not listening for the umpteenth time, things like that). Well, Chris’ father used a belt, so he thought we should, too, and I figured, as long we didn’t hit him hard, or directly on his skin, just the idea of it would be effective. The belt terrified Jermahl, though, and it wasn’t teaching him anything but to be afraid of his parents. So we used it about three times and retired it.
I had to come up with more creative ways to punish him. We made him stand in the corner, took away his favorite toys until he earned them back. It all depended on the offense. We found something appropriate for his age that he would understand. But I never spanked him again. Recently, he’s been having trouble with lying. So every time he lies, we have him hold a phonebook up for a few minutes. Depending on the severity of the lie, and how many people he could have potentially hurt, determined the size of the phonebook he was holding up. And I explained to him the reason he was holding the phonebook up instead of being spanked, is that spanking doesn’t teach you anything, it just hurts; but, even though holding up the phonebook hurts, it also builds up his muscles and makes him stronger.

At his house, his dad just gets angry and beats him, punches him, hits with random objects (don’t wory, I’m working on getting him out of there). At school, the kids tell Jermahl he’s a weakling because he doesn’t like to fight. So I told Jermahl, and I truly apologize to anyone this offends, anyone who needs to hit or use violence to get their point across is stunted and stupid, and no one taught them how to use their brain to express themselves, so instead they have to use a fist or a belt or mean words.

Jermahl, who is now seven, remembers the 3 times I used a belt when he was three years old.

I choose to discipline with love and until recently, I’ve been under the firm impression that hitting your child is not love. However, a lot of my close friends use spanking as a punishment for their kids.

One of my girlfriends said, “The corner is all fine and dandy, but my kids will stand in the corner and make fun of me because the punishment means nothing to them. Spanking actually resonates with them and they realize they’ve actually done something wrong.”

Another friend said, “You don’t just start off beating the crap out of them. For my son, when he started crawling around 7 months, that’s when I took 2 fingers to pop his hands when he touched something he shouldn’t. Now that’s he’s almost 2, I pop his butt a few times when he does something he actually knows he shouldn’t. When he’s a teenager, I’m going to punch him the chest. I’m not going to actually punch him the chest, but the sight of my fist coming towards him is  going to hurt way more than when I actually touch him.”

My sister-in-law says that with her 1.5 year-old nephew (whom she’s raising for now), when he touches something he shouldn’t, she says no, pops his hand and moves him. And she does this over and over until he gets the idea.

So what do you do? How do you discipline your children? When do you start? If you spank, how do you know you’re spanking them to discipline and not just because you are angry? Obviously, a punishment needs to happen immediately for a child, but if you are angry at the same time, is the discipline as  effective? And how do you show your child you still love them after a punishment?

I’d REALLY like to hear everyone’s opinions on this this. What is the difference TO YOU between spanking and beating? And should it happen at all?

I Like My Scotch Stiff, Not My Babies

I don’t actually drink scotch. I still don’t like my babies stiff. Which is why I am writing this blog. The last few days have been completely mortifying. Wednesday, Judas and I were watching YouTube videos together. He was being my usual super-sweet baby.

 

Giving me Kisses

 

Judas stopped breathing. He may or may not have just held his breath on purpose, but he began turning blue. I have been taking care of babies since I was 4 and I have NEVER seen a baby turn blue. Ever. Unless, you know, they were dying. Apparently, though, there is a new brand of baby terrorist, and they go around holding their breath and scaring the crap out of their parents. Okay…That’s fine. After I took Judas to the E.R., and they put him on an oximeter, gave him some oxygen, and did a chest x-ray, I would have been able to accept that as an answer. Reluctantly, but I would have been able to.

 

Image

 
Unfortunately, the very next day. Judas had a seizure. He started coughing, foaming at the mouth, and his eyes were very unfocused. Then he stopped breathing and got extremely stiff. I could feel my own body get weak, because I was terrified. I thought, oh, God. My baby is dying in my arms. DO SOMETHING, MIRANDA! So, I called 911. I started patting him on the back. I was afraid to do chest compressions because CPR on a baby lives on the very thin line of helpful and harmful. The dispatcher wasn’t even a dispatcher for my post, so she had to transfer me and I had to repeat my address to the new dispatcher three times. It took 6 minutes from the time I called to the time the rescuers got to my home. by then I had done 4 rescue breaths and got Jude breathing within 1 or 2 minutes.

Image

He was very upset his arm was stinted for the IV

My poor baby was so tired and lethargic. But he was breathing. I had to tell countless people over and over what happened. We went to the Weeds Army Clinic. They drew blood, ran an I.V., did a CT scan, even gave him a sterile urinalysis. I felt like a horrible person when they did that. Watching your baby boy get a catheter is not a pleasant experience for you or him. His dad and I just kept looking at each other the whole day, procedure after procedure, like…what next? Eventually, the doctor said they didn’t have the equipment to run further tests, so we were transferred to Loma Linda Children’s Hospital (120 miles away from home).

Another EKG and 4 hours later, we were ‘admitted’ to the Pediatric ward. They put us in a room with 2 other families. I guess they were saving money that way…There were more tests. They took his temperature so many times, I lost count. They took even more blood. They flushed his IV every 8 hours until finally they gave him fluids. They did another EKG and an EEG. He was miserable and probably feeling violated and scared. Their stupid cribs looked like baby jails.

 

 

Finally around 5pm on Friday, they told us they his baseline was so normal and healthy, they couldn’t find anything wrong with him and didn’t want to be more invasive unless absolutely necessary and discharged us. As we took him out of his crib and put him in his car-seat. He was SO happy all of a sudden. It’s like he knew we were leaving that place. 3 hours later, we were happy to be home, albeit a little miffed that they didn’t find the cause of the seizure. We follow up with the doctor next week. I just hope he stays healthy.

Before Bed

 

 

Hiking Photography

Beautiful photos of hiking and other outdoor adventures.

Author Marva Seaton

Book Reviews, Inspirational Quotes, Commentary

ON WINGS OF HOPE

Sharing Positive Thoughts, Poems and Words of Inspiration

Tackett shenanigans

Random excitement throughout two people's busy work lives.

Armyliving13's Blog

Just a glimpse of me...

Poets Afterthought

The Life, Thoughts Of A Poet Living With Sickle Cell Anemia