Posted in Personal growth, Raising kids

Frenzied day: juggling kids and their needs on a dentist outing

Wednesday started with a frenzy. I was taking both kids to their dentist appointment and I barely slept the night before: too much coffee too late in the evening. 

As I grabbed the last minute things to take with me, I realized that Ellis’ antibiotic was still in powder form.  She needs to take it 30-60 minutes prior to her dental cleaning to prevent bacteria from infecting her heart. Keeping track of when to give her the medicine within the recommended time frame, in addition to all her morning ones, usually stresses me out. It was no different this morning.

When Chris picked up the medicine on Tuesday, we assumed the pharmacist reconstituted it already. I couldn’t even get mad because the pharmacist probably thought he was doing us a favor: longer shelf-life and convenience to mix it when we needed it.   

I called Chris for help. Ringing, then voicemail. He was probably in a meeting. So I stashed the powder bottle in my bag and decided the best thing would be to reschedule Ellis’ appointment; only Elliot would have his check-up. Ugh, whatever, I’ll figure it out on the drive there. I told Ellis the situation expecting her to be delighted but her response was unexpected.

Ohhhh, the drama that ensued: Ellis moping because she needed professional help to check for loose teeth. The first baby tooth that falls out will magically turn her into a big girl. Elliot, hearing the commotion, asked with a grin if he could skip his appointment too. Sorry dude, you’re still going in. And the barrage of questions demanded answers that I wasn’t motivated to give: “How come she gets to….?” “Why do I have to…?” 

Five minutes behind schedule and I’m running out of time to tend to my OCD counting before leaving the house.

We all had different needs begging for attention that morning.

I asked myself in exasperation: can’t these kids just give me one silent minute to count in peace? I’m not asking for too much. I just need to check the stove like 3-5 times until I’m reassured that it’s turned off. And if the kids don’t need my immediate attention, I can spend a few seconds to check more thoroughly by placing my hand on top of the burner. (I know it hasn’t even been turned on and it’s not hot at all, but I still feel the need to check). This behavior is bizarre, irrational and compulsive.

It was a wild morning. Thankfully, the antibiotics situation resolved. Chris called back and walked me through the steps to reconstitute the powder at the dentist’s office. And to Ellis’ dismay the dentist did not detect any wiggly tooth. 

In the meantime, she can check herself for any sudden shakiness while keeping up with good dental hygiene. The former she does enthusiastically, but the latter with much reluctance and complaining like you wouldn’t believe.

I think God created kids to be adorable, with their small angelic faces and big smiles, to help parents to overlook the small things. There’s so much going on raising kids and living life that I’ve got to learn which battles are worth fighting. 

Photo by Caio Resende on Pexels.com
Posted in Photo-a-day challenge

City Sonnet’s Photo a Day Challenge: May 5, 2019. Birds: Peacock, Owl pellets (a squeamish experiment)

Name of bird unknown. Picture taken at San Diego Safari Park Zoo

Peacocks make trilling sounds. When I first heard it from afar I thought it was an angry cat meowing. But it turned out to be this colorful bird.

Resident Peacock at Ardenwood Farm

On a whim, my kids and I decided to dissect an owl pellet. I found a foil-shaped egg for $3.50 by the cash register of a school supply store. The lady told me that young kids enjoy this fun science activity, especially if they like digging for dinosaur bones or treasures.

That sounded like something my kids would like, so I ended up bringing the pellets home. Once we opened it and saw the brown lump of dirt, my kids screamed and refused to go near it. Our babysitter came to look at what we were doing and almost threw up.

I am not kidding: it was that gross. But I wanted to show them the importance of persevering through challenges and finishing what you start (even if it makes you squeamish). So I dissected it myself (with plastic gloves and lots of cleaning solution and lots of regret). I later glued the bone pieces onto a paper in a CD case (so we could identify which animal it ate).

It’s safe to say I will never do this experiment again; once is enough. We still get grossed out thinking about it and the CD case is duct taped and put away in a brown lunch bag. After all the work I invested into it, I don’t have the heart to throw it out, just yet.

Posted in Random Thoughts

Thinking out loud this Saturday evening: spring allergies, Costco, Target, Bridge to Terabithia, etc.

Free book from the hospital library

This is my second year having spring allergies. Its symptoms are long and annoying: sneezing, itchy & puffy eyes, runny nose that drips like a leaky faucet, headache, and itchy throat that tickles my ear canals too. 

This morning I woke up congested and immediately worried it was a cold. I felt panic setting in and pulled the covers over my shoulders. ‘Not this again.’ ‘If I’m sick, then everyone (in the Suh clan) will catch it and that’ll land us right back into hermetic and emergency mode.’ Aaahhhhhhhh!

Once I pitied myself for a few minutes I got out of bed. It’s my way of telling myself that it’s ok to feel bad, as long as it doesn’t continue for the whole day (that’s another story). When something gets hard concerning health issues, I imagine throwing up my hands in exasperation thinking, ‘what else am I supposed to do?’ It’s a rhetorical question that validates my worries. But God is so faithful to remind me that He journeys with me. A voice whispers in my allergy-hurting ears, ‘Just move. You think can’t but I can.’

I recall countless times God gave me strength and resolve that I did not have to make it through some tough days. Funny how sometimes you need to tell yourself that it’s ok to feel bad before you start feeling better. Sitting on the couch with a box of tissues for my nose, I got a chance to revisit an old book Bridge to Terabithia. I haven’t read since junior high school. It’s a better reading experience when you aren’t chastised by your 7th grade teacher for not “getting the book.”  

Today is my first day of taking Kirkland’s allergy medicine and I am surprised at how quickly it works! I no longer feel like a walking zombie. Love Costco, but it’s a dangerous place: you walk in to get a few things and you walk out with a cart full of things you just can’t live without. Same goes for Target. Dangerous places…

When Ellis goes in for a blood test or a hospital visit that is out of the ordinary, she tells me, “I’m having a bad day. Can we go to Target?” Sometimes she’ll say it’s “the worst day ever” depending on how much she wants to check out Target’s toy aisle. But I understand. Sometimes just meandering around helps to take the mind off unpleasant things/ experiences. 

If you’ve come this far to this post, thank you for reading my rambling thoughts! Have a wonderful weekend.

A peaceful sitting area to experience spring’s warmth and some calm
Stanford University campus, April 2019




Posted in flower of the day

Flower of the Day: May 3, 2019. Billy Balls Yellow Flower

On an afternoon walk yesterday, Ellis and I had to stop and inspect these whimsical yellow balls. They were perfectly round flowers, so perfectly intact that it almost looked artificial.

The owner of the house must’ve seen us looking at them, because she came out to tell us more about them. This type of flower is called Craspedia (Billy Ball Yellow Flowers). They are easy to care for, hardy, and grows prolifically: criteria met for a black thumb like me.

The lady was nice enough to give Ellis 3 stems to take home. I’m tempted to plant them in one of our containers: wonder if they will propagate. But I know my limits.

I can’t juggle plants/ flowers and keep alive 3 Neon Tetra fish, 1 Betta fish, and 5 snails (imperative to keep them alive after the loss of 3 fish and 2 frogs earlier this year). So the yellow ping pong balls are housed next to our faux green stems for now.