I Lied About Being Able to Relax

“What do you do to relax and how do you know once you’ve achieved relaxation?” Simple question, right? I was sitting in a circle with maybe a dozen other people. All of us parents of children who have vision impairments among other ‘different-abilities’. For once, I didn’t feel vulnerable sharing pieces of me that I tend to tuck away until the time is right. We were all together for the annual Visually Impaired Preschool Services (VIPS) Family Retreat in Louisville, Kentucky. Lola was over at the Respite Camp and I was excited to be working at the Retreat as a VIPS employee. And while I am indeed an employee, I still and will always be a VIPS mom. Just as the other parents and caregivers in attendance, I’m...
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Today’s Silence Comes With an Unfair Price

Something strange and wonderful is happening in my house right now. I’m sitting here sipping my coffee while trying to organize all of the thoughts in my head. I hear the whisper of the fan, I hear the rhythmic pattern of the washer and I can even hear the rumbling of my stomach telling me to go eat breakfast. What is missing this morning is the usual chaotic noise that is generally found in my home. There are no kids laughing or crying, the dogs aren’t barking because they are being attacked by Lola or Sebastian (OK – mostly Lola) and the TV isn’t displaying its normal morning show — Curious George. Instead I’m sitting here alone and in silence. I should say that I’m missing all of...
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What Life Means Today

Some years ago, this blog began as a way to stay connected with family and friends while Rob and I embraced our new life in Costa Rica — it was actually called Live Love Travel Souls. I then became pregnant with Lola so I thought I’d blog about the healthcare system in Costa Rica and raising a baby in a foreign country. And then over a course of time, life changed drastically when Lola was diagnosed with infantile spasms (a rare form of epilepsy), cortical visual impairment and global developmental delays. The blog morphed into Say Hola Lola. When Lola began to have seizures, countless medical appointments, endless diagnostic testing, a daily regime of medication and therapies to help her get strong both physically and mentally, I scoured...
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Embracing Me

After I gave birth to Lola, my body went right back to the way it was before I was pregnant. Shockingly, I didn’t have to work extra hard at getting rid of the baby fat–it just sort of went away. I considered myself lucky and never thought twice about it. As many of you know, Sebastian came out enormous for my 5’3″ body. He was 10 1/2 lbs which would explain why I felt so huge throughout my entire pregnancy. I was naive to think my body would quickly slim up like it had after Lola. I quickly realized Sebastian’s presence in my body would leave a permanent reminder that I once housed a child. The stretch marks, the flabby belly and the inability to yet fit in...
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Lil’ Melon Baby Knee Pads Giveaway!

Lil' Melon Baby Knee Pads Giveaway

From the moment I found out I was pregnant with Lola, my maternal instincts quickly kicked in. My new job in life–to protect. I watched the types of food I ate, I didn’t allow myself to be around smoke, I didn’t take any medications that weren’t prescribed, I did everything in my power to protect my growing child. That’s what we do as parents, right? We love, we nourish, we care for and we protect our children. That need to protect has evolved into various forms. When Lola began to roll, I made sure she was never close to an edge. When she began to eat solids, I made sure her bites were small enough so she didn’t choke. When she began to crawl, I began to baby-proof...
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