Proud To Be An American

Proud To Be An American

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

feeling like I can breathe again

Travis had surgery yesterday, 30 March 2015. I was terrified, but confident in the medical team taking care of my son.

The moment we showed up to the APU, our boy got attention. So many wanted to play him. He didnt get to eat for 7 hours by the time he went back to surgery and he was not happy. The pediatric anesthesia doctors "argued" on who would get to hold Travis to take him back- they both wanted to snuggle him. A random nurse popped in and said "i have nothing to do with his case- i just wanted to say hi because he is so cute". Made me and john smile seeing our boy make so many other smile so early in the morning.

They took him back and my cousin Patti showed up just in time to join us for breakfast. My parents showed up not long after- and the my husband parents and my big kid (Easten). Not long after our little boy was already out of the OR and heading to PICU.

We rushed to the PICU to put eyes on our boy. He was crying and have IVs and stuff everywhere. He was given morphine amd tylenol and it didnt help- later that night they switched his meds and he finally stopped screaming out in pain.

My friend Jen said the PICU staff would be wonderful- and boy was she right! We had great nurses- who werent afraid to give john crap right back :-)

This morning we woke up and our little guy was feeling ten times better- and the surgeon said he did wonderfully! The surgeon gave us her cell phone number and said to call with any questions :-) amazing care!! never felt so comfortable walking away from my baby for a few minutes ♡

Now I sit here and smile at my precious baby and Praise God for his grace :-)  we are on the "other side".

The swelling is going down and he is sleeping wonderfully and eating well. We are counting our blessings ♡

To pay it forward we are asking friends and family to purchase a tshirt in Travis' name. All proceeds will be donated to :-)

Follow that link to purchase a tshirt ♡

#teamtravis #craniowarrior #craniosynostosis

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

He Won't Break- Cranio Awareness

On March 30, 2015 our son Travis will be having surgery. This will be the 6th surgery between our two boys- it is the first time for our Travis though.

We want everyone to know that Travis will not break. You may come to visit after the surgery. You can call us if YOU need anything. Just because our son is having an important surgery doesn't mean we can't be there for you. So many are afraid to come around, but let me tell you something... TRAVIS WILL NOT BREAK. MY FAMILY IS OK. You can still be our friend, just because we have an angel baby doesn't mean you have to tip-toe around us. Yes we have a lot going on, but since when is life not crazy busy?

click those links and educate yourself. Travis has Left Coronal Synostosis (craniosynostosis) He will be in a DOC Band (helmet) until he is a year old.

We are nervous about this surgery, but in our hearts we know that he will be ok. Easten says that he will give Travis a bandaide and he will be all better. If only things were as simple as that.

As I type this I am thinking of my boys and my husband- and how much I love them. I wouldn't trade any of my boys for the world. Everything life can throw at my family is welcome- because we can overcome anything. We are strong and we have faith that God will guide us when we find it hard to keep going.

Hold your loved ones close. Snuggle your children, love your spouse, and on Monday, March 30, 2015 at 0730 says prayers for our family- for the surgeons- for the anesthesiologist- for the nurses- for the technicians- and for the blood bank.

#teamtravis #craniowarrior #laurenruns4me #superEasten


Monday, January 26, 2015

my angel baby-our newest addition

On 12/26/14- my family of three became a family of four. Our baby boy, Travis, has left coronal synostosis (a version of Craniosynostosis) and will need surgery to fix it.

I have come to the conclusion that God thinks we are superheros- and who am I to doubt that?

Easten has had 5 surgeries in his short 3 years of life, i have had two c-sections, and now our angel baby will have to have at least one before he even learns to crawl. Luckily John hasnt neeeded any surgeries (which is surprising with how accident prone he is!)

Are we scared? YES... But we have met the Craniofacial team at Walter Reed- and they are amazing! We are part of support groups- and have heard of so many success stories- which is OOBER comforting. His Surgery is March 30. All we ask for is that you hold your kiddos close, and send up some extra prayers for our family.

So let our adventure start with our cranio baby!

go to their page explains craniosynostosis

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Hello World,
When I first started this blog, my husband was deployed. I was struggling horribly and everyone thought it was because my hubby was away. I look back to almost exactly three years ago to the day when we were at the airport, Easten and I saying bye to John for 6ish months. That whole time is kinda a blur. I feel like I should remember those first 6 months. I feel like I should remember every detail about life, and our sons first adventures- but in reality- I don't. It is all a blur, and somehow I made it through. I told everyone I was ok. But I was terrified about somehow messing up. When Eastens reflux got crazy- I felt I did something wrong because I couldn't breastfeed. I thought I had somehow messed up so bad that I was making him sick. I felt bad that my son was in daycare and I was ok with that. I told myself I should feel excited to get so much alone time with this new addition to our family- but in reality- I was overjoyed for the time away. When John came home it was intense. I was scared to let him help with our son. I worried about going to the store and leaving Easten behind. It felt like all the worries I had slowly gotten past came back the day my hubby came home from deployment. BUT we got passed it. I am a worry wart to this day- and John I think accepts it.
I remember feeling horrible because my life had changed so drastically in a years time. I went from a  crazy, careless party girl- to a wife and mom. and then by the time Easten turned one I was preparing to get out of the military due to fitness failures. For a bit, I hated that I had gotten pregnant and "fatter". I felt that I needed to blame something- so I blamed the fact that I had a child. Then I felt like crap because I blamed my child- who was a sweet, strong, loving little boy.
now- almost two years after getting out of the military, I feel life for me has completely changed. I am a full time student, can't find a job ANYWHERE, and.... we are expecting baby #2 on 1/1/15. We are having another little boy. I love how excited Easten is to have a baby brother. Me? I am terrified. I have so many emotions going through me, I know I am a mom and a full time student, but I feel like I am not doing enough. I WANT to work- I miss it. But then I feel bad because I wont be able to spend as much time with my boys if I go to school and have a job.
I am terrified of somehow messing up with baby Travis when he gets here, I am terrified that depression will get the best of me, I am terrified Easten won't feel as loved wince there will be two little boys to love. I am afraid that Easten will always be my favorite- even though we aren't "supposed" to have favorites. Easten and I have traveled a roller coaster together- he is my strong, happy, fearless, independent little boy- I can only hope that Travis is that way too.

There are some people that say "if you don't want to be judged don't put your business out there".  I have had a few people say that to me recently. Go ahead and judge me- because honestly- Im a mom doing the best I can- doing what I believe to be best for my child. I am friends with many type of moms, and I don't judge. I may not agree with everything they say/do- but I respect that we are all doing what we can the best that we can.

I have so much going through my mind as we prepare for baby Travis. I have come to realize that my husband drives me absolutely crazy- but I wouldn't be able to go through my life without him. My son is learning to push every button just right, and sometimes he irritates me to no end- but life would not be right without him. I am terrified about having another child- yet so excited that we are adding to our little family- and that big brother is completely excited and overjoyed about being able to play with baby brother.

I have realized that being a mom is not easy, that you are not perfect- and that is ok. I have learned that not wanting to be with my son 24/7 is ok- and it doesn't make me a bad mom. I have learned that my son going to daycare is best for him- that he learns better, and has many friends because of it. I have learned that is ok that I didn't breastfeed- some things just don't work out the way we originally plan- and that's ok. I have learned that it is ok to hurt, be scared, and it is ok to cry. I cannot believe how much my life has changed since Easten was born. I went from thinking I had to be perfect (or at least appear to be), to just hoping and doing my best. I have been weak, I have cried, I have screamed, I have been strong, I have been afraid- and all that is ok. it took me a long time to realize that accepting how I feel, and not ignoring it is the best way.

what is the point to this post? I am not sure...  I just needed to get it out there. I am tired of the stereotypical mom- the way we are "supposed to be"- and what is considered the "right way/choice" for everything. I am happy- most days- and some days life gets the best of me- but at least I know I am not the only one out there that feels like this. Another blogger, whom I know personally, showed me through her words that the feelings are real, that the darkness is real, that others go through the craziness too.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

I have an addiction

When someone hears the word "addiction" they think drugs and/or alcohol. So many forget about the addictions that can do the same amount of damage to a person. It took me a long time to finally realize that I have an addiction. Have you evere thought if you have one or not? Are you in denial? It is scary to ome to terms to the fact that you are not helping yourself.

What is my addiction? Well I have more than one- all in the same catergory- FOOD

I am addicted to:
Fast Food
all kinds of sweets....

For a few weeks (ok more like a month or more) I was spending money at the Burger King here on base and getting  a Double Stacker, with a large fry, and a large Dr. Pepper. I couldn't help myself. We have food in the house- plenty to make whatever I want- but I coulnd't go without it- so I thought. But today I did not get fast food.
Soda is hard to not drink- I need to drnk more water... but that is easier said than done. For some reason I can drink a juice, tea, coffee, milk, water- ANYTHING- but my craving is always there. But today I did not have a soda.
Candy, cookies, all those sweet yummy tasty goodies- get me every time. Today candy won. We have begun to not even buy sweets of any kind- but I just feel like I NEED it.

Some may say this is too silly to call an addiction. Well the definition of addiction is:
the state of being enslaved to a habit or practice or to something that is psychologically or physically habit-forming

I am pretty sure that I have a addiction. My addicton is real- and while it may not be life threatening righ now- in ten years it might be.
My husband tries so very hard to help me with my issue. We are trying to be better with finances and my spending on sweets, soda, and fastfood can add up. So not only am I trying to take control but I want to save money too.

And though my addiction got the best of me today- tomorrow it won't.

I HURT every day
I CRAVE the bad stuff

I want to be HEALTHY
I want to RUN after my little man
I want to BE A BETTER ME!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Their Reality vs My Reality___perfection isnt everything

I have come to the conclusion that I am amazing at making plans and SAYING I am going to lose wieght and be better with anything and everything.

What people say my reality should be:
A happy 2 yr old- no health issues at all- not even a cold
A smart 2 yr old- I should be teaching him multiplication by now
I shoul have a spotless house- I should be able to lick the floor
The car and truck- should look brand new
I should be 125 lbs
I should be motivated
I should have a job on top of school and having a little one and husband.
I shouldnt mention I was in the military- cause lets face it- I dont look I have served a day in my life.
Looks are everything- dont EVER leave the house is an oversized sweater and sweatpants
4.0 gpa- nothing less

My reality is:
I cant find motivation. I know what I need to do- just cant get myself there. I hear from others "it's easy" "you just do it"... Sounds simple right? It isn't always that easy. I know I have a lot to live for- losing wieght can help prolong the length of time I am here on this earth- However- making me feel horrible because I obviously "don't want to be able to keep up with my child"- that solves nothing. BTW I still wiegh over 200lbs... but I did lose 5lbs in the past few months- a small difference is better than nothing.

My reality is:
I have piles of dirty clothes- that when they get cleaned- never end up getting put away. I have dirty dishes sitting in my sink. No excuse for my house not being spotless- I get it- I can be a sucky housewife... But the couch and food and soda and movies sound better than standing on my feet and walking up and down the stairs. Sounds pathetic right? I agree. I am trying to slowly get rid of this fastfood and soda craving I have ALL THE TIME.

My reality is:
My son has asthma, he attends daycare, he is a brilliant angel- with a temper to go with being 2 yrs old. I am sorry if he screams in the store- stare harder- see if I care. I have seen that little boy bring out the best in people- so how you feel about him right now is pointless- he is amazing.

My reality is:
i dont have a 4.0 gpa- I have a 3.6 gpa- I am on the honor roll. I am proud of myself- so kiss my butt

My reality is:
I may not LOOK like I was ever in the military- but talk to me. I am proud to have served and will NEVER keep that in. The chance to wear the unifom for 4 years- priceless.

I am trying to remmber that even though others have this "reality" for me- it doesn't mean I HAVE to be apart of it. I love my husband, I love my son- and I am struggling with the drive and motivation to GET MOVING. I have a bad temper(just ask the hubs! haha) I am a full time student- and I am getting better grades than I thought I could.

Somedays- like today- I find it hard to get out of the house and DO something. But I have a friends dog to take for  a walk- which means I will be taking a walk and helping a friend. It is a plus for me, my friend, and her dog. It isnt much but it is something. So I am making to elaborate PLAN to be a better me. I am taking it one day at a time. I may not clean today- but today I got out of the house. Tomorrow- I might struggle to just get off the couch- But I will take on that fight tomorrow.

I feel the need to send a shout out to the most amazing hsuband ever. He puts up with my temper and criticism... He loves me- even though I am a chunky gal. He is an incredible dad. He is my rock <3

I am working on today- tomorrow can wait!

Monday, September 9, 2013

How Life Changes-my new day zero

Hello everyone! It has been a while since I last posted- a long while actually...
I do believe it is time for an update:
Marriage is hard- extended family is hard- military life is hard- raising your children is hard. That being said it is crazy how strong people can be. I have been out of the military for going on 9 months- and I still miss it. I miss it so much so I never realized how hard it was affecting me. I have told so many- that if you are in the military and you struggle with fitness- try your hardest to keep in shape- and when you think you are trying your hardest try harder. I can not believe I still dwell on the past- I believe I am not the only person that does this. The past few weeks have been eye opening. My family and I are preparing for our first PCS (moving to another base)- we have had financial struggles- and right now we are living in an apartment so tiny that our almost 2 year old has had enough! Through everything john and I have been through- we have always come out the other end twice as strong.
Today I woke up with a whole new mindset. The past is the past and I can not change it. However, I can mold my future. Yes I got put out of the military for fitness- but being put out of the military has made me have to face myself and the change I have yet to make. We all struggle with some form of depression- some more severe than others. There are a lot of us that are in denial. I admit- I have been depressed over how my life was turning out. I know that this road to a new me- and this road that my family is going to need to help me with will not be easy- but I think after all the "talk" about changing it is about time I do something about it.
So here is day zero- today I will be me- I will be happy- I will enjoy the scary thoughts of our future.

My husband and I have some choices to make about our family and questions to answer. Do we put Easten back in base daycare, do we let him go to a home daycare. What will I go to school for? Will I put my GI Bill to good use? Will I work AND go to school? will my husbands new job be more demanding? Will be closer to family be a good thing or bad? Will I continue to get along with my husbands side of the family?

Today is my NEW day zero- today I will be me- today I will be happy- TODAY I will enjoy the scary thoughts of our future. WASHINGTON DC HERE WE COME!!!!!!