Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Longet Blog Post. Ever. About Shannon. And Other Randomness.

I'm writing this in the middle of the night, I was going to write down my feelings in the morning but I am feeling so overwhelmed with gratitude that I need to write the way I feel or else I'll end up getting too busy tomorrow and will end up forgetting to write. This is a super sappy post about my husband. I know there are days like Valentine's Day or your anniversary to write about how much you love your spouse, but I feel like moments like right now is when it's the most authentic feelings that you can put into words rather than on days like Valentine's Day. The reason I'm even up right now is because Kinzie woke up and started crying in her room, and we usually let her come into bed with us if she's at least been in her room for a few hours to sleep. I brought her into bed with us and started snuggling with her, trying not to wake Shannon. Kinzie has this obsession that she's had pretty much her whole life where she has to pinch your skin when she's just snuggling with you, or in the car, or pretty much just any time you're by her. I thought it'd go away when she was like 6 months old, but she's 2.5 and going strong with HAVING to pinch and play with your skin, weird I know. Anyway... I usually let her hold my hand when she comes into the bed with us for a little bit to help her fall asleep, and usually she prefers my hand over daddy's, maybe because I have softer, less hairy skin?? Who knows... But tonight, after a couple minutes, Kinzie leans over to me and whimpers, "daddy hand, daddy hand." I thought Shan was asleep but all of the sudden he rolls over and just pulls Kinz in close so she can snuggle with him and she can hold his hand to pinch. It's such a small thing, but I just laid and started to have tears of gratitude for these tiny moments of how Shannon is literally the best thing that has ever happened to me. I love the moments like the way I'm feeling right now when you wake up in the middle of the night or you're driving in the car and it just hits you after such a small thing he does, not the grand gestures of presents or being super rich and taking me on surprise, spontaneous vacations. Not saying I'm against those gestures at all 😉, I just love these raw and real moments more when you're in bed and the emotions just hit you having so much love and gratitude for a person and you can't stop the tears from coming. I have felt these moments a lot lately, probably the most I've ever felt in the past 7 months than in the almost 6 years we've been together. With being pregnant, going to school, working, taking care of an active toddler, and the busy-ness of every day life.... Shannon has been my rock. Whenever I've been sick this pregnancy or completely exhausted or needing to study for school, Shannon has picked up the slack 100% with the house and with Kinzie.  I feel horrible inside, not being the domestic homemaker that some wives are, with having dinner ready every night, having the house spic and span whenever he gets home from work, and taking on all those "wifely" duties... But Shannon has been a rockstar with no complaints at all. And I'm being dead honest.... I've waited for him to break down and complain to me, but he just doesn't. He just helps with the laundry and cleaning and wakes up just as many times in the night, if not more, to help with a fussy toddler who won't go to sleep in her own room even though he has to get up early for work.

I have felt this way the whole time I've known Shannon.... How grateful I am to get to be his wife. Being with him has honestly been the BEST time in my life.

 I feel like I don't talk about my life growing up often because I don't want people to think I'm constantly like "wo is me, I've been through so much, blah blah blah" and I'm going off on a huge tangent... But anyway, I feel like my mom made my life growing up the absolute best she could, but looking back, my childhood was far from easy and smooth riding. My whole childhood was my dad in and out of my brother's and my life, doing drugs. He was there when he was clean and sober and we would go stay with him every other weekend when he was clean. But to be honest, those times of clean and sober lasted short times... It sucked, to be quite honest. I was jealous seeing my friends have what seemed to be the "picture perfect" family. Mom and dad in the home, sealed together as a family in the temple, dad being able to give you priesthood blessings, etc. I craved that and prayed for that all the time. My dad kind of just got into drugs and stopped coming around completely I think when I was in 6th grade-ishhh until about my junior year. Having soccer games or choir concerts, asking him to come and him telling you he will be there, and it was that sad thing you see in the movies every time, where the kid looks over into the crowd looking for their dad, and him never showing up. But you know what... My mom was ALWAYS there and always did everything she could to be there. Her energy and excitement for everything I did in my life seriously made up for the lack of a father figure in my life. Also, I'm not saying my dad was this horrible father, he was a great dad when he was in our life... My mom was just my constant and best friend. But of course, life throws you more curve balls and Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer right around when I turned 15. She struggled through chemo and radiation. After those treatments, they did some tests and I remember her saying she was cancer free! I think that lasted only like 6 months at the most?? I don't remember the timeline exactly because I was young and didn't understand a lot of it. But I remember when the cancer came back, I think it was like September-ish time of my junior year.. I remember being super sad and upset by it, but I was a teenager in denial that I would ever lose her. Looking back, I just thought "She got through this one time, she will get through it again." I didn't put all of my energy and time into spending every moment with her, I was young, wanted to hang out with my friends, I was just the typical, bratty teenager that wanted to just live life and maybe even subconsciously wanting to put the fact that my mom was dying of cancer out of my mind because I didn't want to believe it. I remember hearing about people, I'm guessing adults who knew my mom, judging me or getting frustrated with me that I wasn't being there 100% to take care of my mom and being this selfish teenager who wasn't responsible. It was only Parker and I living with her at the time, we were both teenagers still dependent on needing taken care of, but being expected to grow the hell up and be there for mom. Trust me.... Looking back, I would spend every waking moment with her... Rubbing her feet with lotion like she loved us doing, turning my radio down in my room so it wasn't blasting while she had a headache from the chemo, and just spending more time with her. I do remember going into her often and just talking about life in general and boy troubles or friend drama. She knew a lot about my struggles as a teenager, more than I feel most parents know about their kid's life as a teenager. She was so understanding and loving, I just wish I could've understood and known the short time I was going to have with her. It frustrates me to no end the way I felt judged and alone during that time, hearing people say I'm not responsible and I'm just a bratty teenager. To those people who felt that way towards me, you didn't understand what it felt like going through all of that as a child still and being expected to grow up so quickly. It was hell, I felt like I was being torn in so many directions, wanting to be a kid and have a carefree, fun high school life, but then having that kind of responsibility hanging over you to grow up and take care of your dying mom.... It was hard. After she died in April of my junior year, my brother in law and sister, Josh and Dyan, moved in to take care of Parker and I. I have so much love and gratitude for their sacrifice to step in and do that looking back at it now... I am their age now when they had to step in and parent two teenagers, and they had only been married 9 months.

I was in a dark place.... To be honest, I wasn't close with my two oldest siblings growing up, like ever. Parker is only 2 years older than me and he's always been one of the closest people to me because we went through so many things together at such a similar age... But I had so much resentment for Josh and Dyan coming in after mom died and trying to parent me. I was a difficult person that last year of school. We didn't get along.. I wanted to move out so bad. Parker went on his mission only about 6 months after mom died so imagine the two people you are closest to in life both leaving you within a year.. It sucked so bad. I don't think I've ever felt more alone in my life. I'm in tears as I write this because I feel so bad that I lived with a lot of anger and hate towards people around me because I always just felt judged and not loved by my actions and behavior as a teenager, and I think that's why I've pushed so hard after graduating high school to accomplish so much and be the best person I can be to prove all those people wrong who judged me, but also to prove to myself that I can come out of that kind of childhood with accomplishments and a life to be proud of and a person my mom would be proud of.

Back to Shan though.... I feel like he was honestly my saving grace. When I met him, it was only 2 years after mom passed. I barely ever talked to Josh and Dyan or my oldest brother, Justin. I still had a lot of growing up to do, I was 19 at the time. I remember telling Shannon when we first met that I wasn't close with them, I rarely talked to my dad, I just was still bitter inside. But Shannon has helped me grow up so much and I feel like when I started dating him, my relationships with people changed. My relationship with Josh, Dyan, and Justin changed...with my whole family changed. I feel bad how difficult I was to Josh and Dyan because they were in a tough situation and they helped me so much, and I will forever be grateful to them and I'm so sorry I was the way I was when you guys moved in to take care of me. I am so close with them now though, and I honestly feel he has so much to do with that. He encouraged me to call my dad often (and still does), to see how he's doing and make sure he's okay. He honors his priesthood and has always respected me. My mom had a hand in helping me meet him, there is no doubt in my mind she helped. I need him and I will always need him. He really is my better half. He is the best communicator, he is outgoing, he makes me laugh so hard, he is so attractive (which doesn't matter a whole lot, but it's extra brownie points 😁), and he continues to help me grow as a person. He is so supportive in everything I choose to do. He loves his mom and dad and siblings so so much and makes an effort to be so close to them, which I love. I looooove that I'm a part of his family because I have the best in laws. I love that he gets along with my family so well. So many of my family members and extended family have told me how much they love him and how perfect he is for me. He has helped me grow up and teach me what's important in life. He is such a good dad to Kinzie, the best in fact.

I truly feel so happy when I think about him and the amount of love I feel for him is indescribable and it just grows everyday. It's brought me to tears often recently, and maybe because I'm pregnant, just because I didn't know life could be this good. Life right now is hard and overwhelming, don't get me wrong, I have so much on my plate I don't know how to keep up, but he keeps me calm and helps me get through life and I'm just a super grateful wife needing to share my love and gratitude for this guy who I'm so happy to know I am married to for eternity.

I know this was a long post and I hope no one in this post felt like I was talking poorly of them, I just wanted to express how I had felt in the past. I rambled, but I had to express this overwhelming feeling to get it off my chest. I love you Shannon, and I'm so grateful to have you in my life. 


Friday, June 20, 2014

Freshly Picked Moccasins [Review]

Can I just say how much I love FP moccs. 
They are my absolute fave. 
I have been drooling over them for months, entering every giveaway possible,
 sold a bunch of my clothes to buy a pair for Kinzie, 
and now I've been given the opportunity to do a review for them! 
I also love being able to do this review for FP, because it gives me a chance to
 practice my horrible picture taking skills. :)

The color that I picked to do my review is glacier, 
which is probably my favorite color they have. 
Everytime I see a post with a baby wearing this color, 
I just keep staring wishing I had them for Kinz. 
I also have their platinum color, which I love 
because that color goes with soooo many different outfits. 
I was hesitant about getting such a bold color as glacier,
 because I didn't know if it would go with as many things, 
but I've found that it has been going with so many outfits! 
And lets get real, I now base my whole outfit off how to make it 
look good and match so she can wear her Freshly Picked Moccs. 
I also love the glacier, because it is gender neutral 
so that if we have more kids, boys and girls, 
they can be worn no matter what. 


I pretty much always have Kinzie in shoes...
 I think shoes on babies are so stinking cute 
and then they get used to wearing them for when 
they start walking and have to have them on. 
The only downfall.. they ALWAYS fall off her feet or she can pull them off easily. 
It is so obnoxious having to put them on every 5 minutes. 
And especially now that she is about to start walking, 
I needed to find a pair of shoes that would stay on well. 
I finally bought a pair of the freshly picked moccs, 
They stay on her feet so well because of the elastic around the top of the shoe. 
They have never fallen off. And in the past, Kinzie would try to pull her other shoes off, 
but she hasn't tried pulling her moccs off once! 

I love that the moccasins are soft soled, especially since Kinz is on the verge of walking.
It helps her to be able to grip more with her toes so that she can balance,
and I have heard it's better for babies as they are just starting out with walking. 

There are two points I want to address as minor cons:

1. The price of the moccs are $60. To me, this is a hefty cost, especially for a baby shoe. I can't fork out $60 for shoes with Shannon and I starting out our careers and starting out our family. However, the quality is fabulous, the design is adorable, they are made in the USA, and they are hand made to order. Freshly Picked does so many giveaways and fun events to get a pair of moccs, as well as many different sales a few times a year. I bought my first pair from their warehouse sale for $30, which I thought was a very good price and I got a size or two bigger so that Kinzie could grow into them. (one a side note, another reason I love these shoes is the fact that you can get a size or two bigger for your babe and they still stay on! unlike any other shoe that was a little too big for Kinz, they would just fall right off or look clownish on her little chubby feet.) I do believe though that everyone should buy at least one pair for their babe, because they are the best baby shoe out there. 

2. I wonder if there is a way to put some type of grippers on the bottom.. because since Kinz is still trying to learn her way with standing and walking, sometimes when she is standing on a slicker surface, the bottom of the shoe can make it a little more slippery. It's not a huge deal, and once she gets the hang of walking and the bottoms of the moccs wear down a bit, it won't be an issue. 

I can't wait to get more and hopefully maybe even win one of the giveaways some day :D
They also just came out with a new pair of moccs that are patriotic which I am OBSESSED with! 

You should head on over to Freshly Picked's website here, and buy a pair! 
Your babe will thank you will some open mouth, slobbery little kisses.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Kinzie Cyd

Has it really been over a year since my last post? PATHETIC. I need to catch up. I did a little update with my blog since we now have a little king (or princess) added to our family. I wanted to post during my pregnancy, and then I failed at that. Then I told myself I was going to post right after giving birth to her, and I failed at that! so now, I'm going to write KC's birth story, 9 months late. Better late than never...

I'll start with the week prior to giving birth. It was the last week in August, still working full time, back hurting, exhausted, been sleeping on the couch the last 5 months because it was more comfortable (Shannon had a twin mattress on the floor next to me that full 5 months, what a sweetheart), I was ready for her to come!!

August 24, 2013 (39 weeks)

We went on walks pretty much every night, I did the lame curb walking, and I looked a little ridiculous doing it. Did it help? uhhhh, I don't think so. We walked in the pouring rain, who knew it would get freezing cold in August. This picture below depicts my pregnancy perfectly... fat, happy, ice with me at all times. 

August 27, 2013

On Wednesday, August 28, I went in to see Dr. Allen to have him strip my membranes. I was 39.5 weeks along. He had offered to strip my membranes only a few days before that, but I said no because I was scared. A few days went by, and I was getting too anxious so I called the office and he fit me right in to get it done. I tried not to get my hopes up, but I was expecting something to happen that next day. NOTHING. aggghhhh. So Shan and I continued to go on walks after we both got off work at night. Her due date was Saturday, August 31, so she still had some time... and Shannon's family was coming into town that weekend since it was Labor Day weekend so Marlee, Tate, and Aaron had a 3 day weekend. WE HAD TO HAVE THIS BABY BEFORE THEY LEFT MONDAY. They would be getting into town on Friday night and on Friday morning I had another appt with Dr. Allen to strip my membranes a second time if I didn't have the baby by then. 

Friday morning around 7am, I was up getting ready for work and we heard a knock on our door. We answer it and guess who it was?!?!! The family surprised us and got there early!!! Dyan even surprised me and came too! I was so so grateful. I was able to get work off so I could spend the day with them. We went to my appt, got my membranes stripped, and I was 80% effaced and dilated to 3cm. I asked Dr. Allen if he would be on call the next day in case I go into labor. He said he wouldn't be, but he gave me his cell phone number and said, "I will just be canning tomatoes tomorrow with my family, so if you go into labor, call me and I will come." Seriously?! I can't say enough how great of a doctor I had. So of course whenever I get together with my sisters and mother-in-law, shopping happens. We got some decor for Kinzie's baby room and did some other shopping, which means we walked around a ton! 

When we got home, I was feeling some lower abdominal cramping around 9pm. I didn't think it was labor or anything because I had heard from other people that contractions happen throughout your whole abdomen. So we all went to bed..  At around 4-5am I woke up because I kept having cramping in my lower abdomen. I would try to go back to sleep, but it was getting to the point where I couldn't even lie still, I was curled up in a ball, clenching up because it was hurting so bad. I started counting them and they were about 7 minutes apart, lasting 30-45 seconds. All of the sudden, at around 6am, my water broke! I leaped over Shannon, smacking and yelling "My water broke I think!" (he still to this day laughs about it.. a fat preggo jumping over a twin bed from the couch, running to the bathroom... yaaaa...) Shan ran to get Silva and she said, "YEP! LOOKS LIKE WE ARE HAVING A BABY!" and Silva to this day laughs that I had to rinse off and take a shower before we headed to the hospital. We called Dr. Allen at 6:30am, and he said he would head over to the hospital right then.

Once we arrived at the hospital, they checked to make sure my water did break, which it did. If I remember correctly, I was dilated to a 4 and 80% effaced. The nurse asked if I wanted an epidural, and I said that I would try to wait a little longer... That little longer lasted about 30 seconds and one more contraction. I was just a bitttt overdramatic telling someone to go get the nurse for the epidural. About an hour passed (8:30am-ish), and I finally had my epidural... BEST THING EVER. It hurt less than getting an IV started, and it felt like heaven. The only way I can describe it was being all warm and fuzzy. Right after I got the epidural, they checked how far along I was and I was dilated to a 5 and 100% effaced. 

Now the waiting game begins...

Shan still talks about the awkwardly placed knob in my delivery room.. 
I married a mature man, people. ;) 

Dr. Allen on the right and my L&D nurse, Judy. I was blessed with the most amazing doctor and nurse. Judy helped me through breathing and gave really good tips to Shannon to help me during my contractions before I got my epidural. 

By 12pm, I had reached 9cm dilated and at 1pm I was 10cm. It seriously went so fast! Some people might think I'm crazy, but my husband, sister, sister-in-law, mother-in-law, best friend, and a nursing student were all in the room when I started pushing. I just didn't care! If they wanted to be in there, I wanted them to be in there. I pushed for 45 minutes, I think it was a total of 4 or 5 contractions but I can't remember. Kinzie had a double nuccal (cord wrapped around her neck twice) and a true knot (her umbilical cord was tied in a knot). Shannon said when Dr. Allen saw that it was a true knot, his face got very serious, he told me to stop pushing, and he got Kinzie out as quickly as possible. After he and the nurses made sure she was okay, he told me that if they would have known that she had a true knot, I would have had a C-section because of the risks of giving a vaginal birth with a knot in the cord. Kinzie was such a strong girl. She was cyanotic when I delivered her, but she cried as soon as she was delivered. She didn't have to go to the NICU, She was just given oxygen for a little bit and that was it. Dr. Allen and the nurses called her the miracle baby that day. I know without a doubt in my mind that there were angels watching over Kinz that day. I know her Grandma Cyd was there. 

Kinzie Cyd King was born on August 31, 2013 at 1:46pm. She weighed 7lbs 8oz and was 19 inches long. Her middle name is in honor of her Grandma Cyd. 

Some of the following pictures are a bit graphic, but I wanted to post them for journaling purposes. 

(Graphic: You can see the knot in the umbilical cord)

I made lots of little goodie bags for my doctor and all of the nurses that took care of me while I was at the hospital. 

Every moment with her has been the best, sometimes hard, but so very worth it. Being a mother is beyond what I thought or imagined it to be. It is one of the most sacred gifts that Heavenly Father gives us, as women, to bare his children, to nurture and love them, and to learn from these sweet little spirits. Seeing her grow each month and reach different milestones has been the best! Her personality is growing so much, she is so so sweet but has a lot of sass as well. It's a perfect combination, and she always keeps us entertained. I love this daughter of mine so much, and I love Shannon more and more as I watch him with her. You don't truly see how your husband will love and act around a baby until he has his own, and he is the absolute best daddy! I am so in love with my little family.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

To My Mom

I'm pretty sure most of my posts on here mention my mom or are about her. But that is when I feel like putting down my feelings the most. I actually meant to post about being pregnant and all that fun stuff today, but I will get to that this week hopefully.

With working full time, now being pregnant, and trying to get all errands and responsibilities done during the week, I feel like I just get so caught up in it all that I don't sit and really ponder about life and about mom. Of course, without fail, there is not a day that goes by where I don't at least think about her though. Well, my brother, Parker, emailed me all the emails she would send out to everyone for the first year she was diagnosed with breast cancer and her journey through it. I don't remember ever reading them, because at the time I was only 15 years old, and I doubt I even had email at that time. But nonetheless, for the first time I read all of her entries tonight. I have not been this emotional in a while. I feel so so vulnerable when crying or wanting my mom, so I always end up going to a room to be alone whenever I really miss her (basically for the bawl fest) and because I know there is nothing anyone can do about it, so why cry and complain to someone about it.

Anyway, part of me wishes I didn't read all the entries and part of me is so glad that I did, because it gives me so much more respect for my mom than I already had. I knew she hurt and it was probably two of the hardest years in her life, but she rarely ever showed her pain and suffering to me. I wish I could have been older so I could've understood and been more receptive to her needs rather than being a selfish teenager, which I get that's not an excuse, but it is hard knowing I didn't do all I could for her.

Here are just a few of the posts that I love so much...
June 17, 2006- An amazing thing just happened.  The doorbell rang.  I opened the door and standing there was a group of people(men, women, youth) from my church all standing there with a rose.  My ward does service projects quarterly and I thought, “Oh, that’s nice, they are doing a service project and they’re going to plant flowers in my yard.”   Then I took a second look and they were all standing there (with Parker and Kristi in the front) with shaved heads… that’s when it hit me (oh… and let me clarify… the girls still had their lovely locks).  These men and boys had shaven their heads with love and in support of what I was going through.  I was overwhelmed with gratitude.  My soul was touched deeply.  I have been having anxiety attacks in anticipation of going in again for my second dose of chemo next Wednesday (06.21.)  I cannot tell you the courage that has given me to continue this fight. Thank you ALL for you love, support, prayers, friendship, and service.  You don’t know how much that assists me in this experience I’m having. Thank you and God bless you. - Cyd

September 13, 2006- I’M DONE!!!!  I had my last chemo treatment today!!!  I still get to go back in on Friday for my shot which is a real kick in the butt, but the chemo is ovahhhh. My doctor and nurse told me something today… I think they were waiting until ‘the end’ and didn’t tell me this when I first started the treatments so I wouldn’t get psyched out. My nurse said of all the chemos, she thinks this is the hardest to take. My doctor said that most of his patients that get this chemo don’t make it… not that they died, they just quit and change to a different type.  I knew his last patient quit after the second dose.  I was considering stopping at #4 (actually, I wanted to stop after the first) but I was wondering if it possibly could have done it’s job after 4 and maybe I wouldn’t have to get any more. It had reached the point when I couldn’t keep my eyes open during the treatments.  Not that I fell asleep, but I couldn’t watch the “stuff” going into my body… it was devastating.  It didn’t matter anyway.  Even though I didn’t watch the nurse change the bags or shoot other stuff into the IV, I knew when it happened because I could feel it and taste it.  NASTY. 
Anyway, today, as my eyes were closed, I could feel/see my mom and dad there with me… with their arms around me and with them were many angels.  AND I have MANY angels on this side… YOU… I don’t think I could do this without your many, many, many prayers and your love and your support.  You have all truly been a rock… always there for me whether in person or through thought or prayer.  THANK YOU. - Cyd

Those are just a couple of times where it shows her positivity. She always said how blessed she was. She never asked, "why me?" She was a rock through the whole thing. I know she will always be with me in spirit, but there isn't a day I wish I could just talk to her and share all the experiences I am having. I want to talk to her about me being pregnant, about how it is living in Utah, how it is working as an RN, etc..

I love and miss her so so much. She would be turning 50 this month. No doubt she is partying with all the family and friends on the other side. And I can not believe this April, it will be 5 years since she's passed away. SO much has happened in the past 5 years, and I have been so blessed with an amazing husband who supports and loves me more than I could've ever dreamed of- my mom would have loved him so much, I just know it. I've been blessed with the family I married into. Always wanting younger siblings and I was blessed with that, having an equally amazing mother in law as my mom, and having a righteous and great father in law who is a strong priesthood holder. I've been blessed to have an education and be able to work full time to help support Shan and myself. And I have always been blessed to have amazing siblings and extended family members on my mom's side who have been so supportive through my whole life. I know this is a super long post and if you read even half of this, wow. Props to you. I just wanted to put my feelings out there, more for myself than for anyone else. I love you mom and there is nothing more in the world than to be able to talk to you. MUAH!! xoxo.