Cleaning stuff out…

These past two weeks have seen a good deal of cleaning in my house. It’s been very welcome. With two (very) active boys, it’s often hard to find the time to deep clean, but I’m finding ways of getting it down. Iggy and Orchid are often here on the same day and at the same times…one watches the boys and the other helps me get stuff done. I even rented a U-HAUL van and moved a whole bunch of boxes and books to our storage unit. Plus, there’s been multiple trips to various donation centers and packing things up for a few charities we support.

Of course, it’s hard to keep the house clean on a daily basis, but…something that I strive to do…cleaning up messes as they are made. Honestly, I have the broom out about 20 times a day, just cleaning up the dirt, food, and various bit of play-doh that litter the floor about 5 minutes into any activity we start. I try to think of it as an act of love, and some days that’s easier than others. Laundry is (and probably always be) my nemesis.

I’ve been paring down on my homeschooling books, with the realization that I just won’t have time to read all the books I want to. I have a stack about 6 books high that I really want to get to, but am just not sure when I’m going to fit that in. So, I went through my homeschooling shelf and cleared out a good stack that I knew I just wouldn’t get to in the next year or so.

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McRuger and I have had a few really good talks recently, clearing up some more miscommunications we’ve been having. Expectations, especially unspoken ones, are so hard to navigate. So, we’ve been really trying to take a breath…before making assumptions. We also had a date this last weekend…the first in a few months. We saw the new “Captain America” movie (it was decent) and snuggled (always a plus).

We’ve come to some very good agreements on housework, bedtimes, homeschooling, and even how to handle some more challenging behaviors from our boys. I feel really good knowing we’re on the same page.

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Sadly, it’s been really hard to get ANYTHING done due to some new behaviors from Cadet. He’s now so fearful of my leaving, I literally can’t run errands without a huge meltdown (and generally end up taking him with me) Even if he’s just staying with McRuger, he will fall into hysterics at the mere mention of my leaving. I’m talking sobbing, screaming,  and general anxiety. It’s quite upsetting to everyone. And while I know this is some unresolved issues from my hospitalization, it’s a rough thing to deal with. I hate seeing Cadet so upset. It really makes me upset. Orchid and Iggy have been really patient with him, as we all try to deal with these new issues. We all agree that patience and reassurance that mama is okay will eventually solve this problem.

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The next three weeks will be a flurry of crazy. My mom is coming into town next week to “help”…(read: visit). Then, I have a week before MIL arrives for almost 2 weeks…during McRuger’s travel time. In between now and McRuger leaving there are so many details to take care of: McRuger needs a dental cleaning, an eye appointment, and a hair cut (all of which I have to carefully schedule as to NOT disturb any crucial appointments McRuger may have at work)…he literally doesn’t have the time to schedule anything himself. McRuger’s been working 12-16 hours days, coming home, helping get the boys to bed (or cleaning up), and then sitting down to do more work.

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This is a blood draw week for me. And while the new system of not looking at my results is useful, I still get anxious. Send good thoughts and prayers that everything will look good!

How is your week going? Any big plans?

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Categories: Family | 4 Comments

Onward and Upward…

My latest test results came back just fine. Both McRuger and my mom looked at them, and declared that I had nothing to worry about. I was a nervous wreck for most of the morning, but did what I could to push it to the back of my brain. The day turned out to be a good one, and I got a ton done! It didn’t hurt that I had both Iggy and Orchid here to help.

My parents were down here for a few hours, even stayed to have dinner and chat after the boys went to bed. Dad is finally going to retire this year…which I am very thankful for. His health isn’t great, and I know it will be healthy for him to have some time off. Anyway, we chatted about the boys, our plans for summer, and family history.

The next day, my mom went in for her 9-month-post-chemo check in. She’s still cancer-free which is awesome! Her eye is still giving her tons of problems (itching, pain, blurring), but her doctor told her that it’s just a result of the chemo…and it may be a while before it goes away.

As for Grams. Well, yeah, besides age-related dementia…she’s the picture of health. Seriously.

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After a really rough few weeks with Cadet, we’ve made some progress. He’s been really testing boundaries and ignoring consequences. McRuger and I have had several talks with him, reestablished boundaries, slowed our (already slow) social schedule, and spent a long time just being together. While it hasn’t been easy at times, it’s been good to refocus. The last few days have been more settled and relaxed…which has been definitely needed by all. In the midst of all this, it’s been quite amazing to watch Cadet grow in his imagination and vocabulary. He’s a sweet kid with a limitless capacity for kindness and compassion…just sometimes it’s hidden behind his more physical behaviors.

Pumpkin, at almost 19 months, is a spit-fire of a toddler. He’s a dare-devil (and I say that as both a good and a bad thing) and quite intelligent. Pumpkin is much more cunning and clever than Cadet was at this age, which certainly keeps me on my toes. Pumpkin is also a total snuggle-bunny. He really enjoys a good snuggle on the couch or before bed…and if there’s singing or music…all the better. Pumpkin is also in a hitting phase, which I hate, but am hopeful he’ll grow out of soon.

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McRuger and I have had a few really rough relationship nights. We realized that we’ve been building up lots of resentments and miscommunications since I was released from the hospital. There’s still a lot to talk about, but at least we’re talking. Last night was, I think, a revelation to both of us…just in terms of how tired and “out of it” we’ve been (in terms of “us”). So, we’ve made some agreements and we have “homework”. It’s been good to air out all this stuff…as hard as it’s been. One thing keeps popping up in my brain is how lucky I am to have him as a husband. He wants to talk and communicate and do better and learn. Not all husbands (or wives) are like that.

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This week promises to be a busy one. Lots of spring cleaning left for me to do and quite few late nights for McRuger. I’m in the process of packing away winter clothes, old books, and outgrown toys. Plus, I’m starting to organize for a garage sale we’re planning in June. Thankfully, we have a date planned for Saturday to reconnect.

What are you doing this week?

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Categories: Cadet, Family, Marriage, McRuger, Pumpkin | 5 Comments

Just some things…

Well, it was a nice…yet rough weekend. McRuger did a great job in making Mother’s Day feel special: flowers, sleeping in, favorite breakfast, cards…it was lovely. Sadly, Cadet has been challenging us with some really awful behaviors (think a 45 minute tantrum over not being able to peel a snap pea…). Combine that with my on-going insomnia…the weekend was a bit of a roller-coaster. I have been having lots of anxiety, which is also rough.

On Mother’s Day, I visited Grams for her facility’s MD Brunch. It was a very nice affair with cake, cookies, tea, and a sense of occasion. Grams was very concerned that she had not yet called her mother (who has been dead since 1975). It was the first time I’d really heard her be confused about the distant past, generally speaking she’s only fuzzy about the last 10-15 years.

Last night, McRuger and I spent a few minutes looking at pictures of Cadet and Pumpkin when they were really little. It’s amazing how beautiful and precious those photos are to me. Such little babies…such amazing futures.

For Mother’s Day, I sent off MsV a purple butterfly necklace (her favorite color and animal), a framed picture of Pumpkin, a card, and some of his “art work” (scribbles). We texted back and forth on the day, but she didn’t really want to talk…which I respect. But, overall, it was nice to have a connection with her on this day!

As for MsJ, we texted back and forth over the whole weekend. I sent her tons of pictures (via text) from Cadet’s first few days, which she didn’t have copies of (lost in the prison system somewhere). We also talked about having our first visit this year, and how excited she is to hug Cadet. Due to her recent moves, we don’t have her new address yet…she’s been reluctant to share it.

But, today is Monday. Our new sitter, who is working out really well…and I suppose I should give her a name…since she’s been working with us for 3 months and is no longer “new”. Hmmm, I’ll call her Orchid. Anyway, Orchid is here. I texted her last night begging her to help out today, and she was glad to. So, she’s outside with the boys getting their ya-yas out. My yoga teacher will be here in 30 minutes to help me relax and stretch.

This week promises to be interesting. AE is leaving for 2 weeks for a vacation in a distant land. I hope she gets a nice break from her work stress and comes back refreshed. My parents are coming down to take Grams to her yearly physical and then Mom is getting her 3-month cancer check done. We’ll have a short visit with them, because Dad hasn’t seen the boys since January.

Then, of course, it’s also a blood-draw week. By mutual agreement, I’m not allowed to look at my blood results any more. I was starting to obsess over every number…and not in a healthy way. So, after my numbers come back, McRuger looks at them…checks to make sure that everything is generally okay, and if it isn’t…texts DrA for clarification. The deal is, McRuger won’t tell me anything unless he needs to (i.e. something is wonky). I think most of my anxiety is based (at least right now) on the fact that I’m still a month out from my check-in with Dr.A and while my numbers are still good…I don’t know his view on them. Plus, I’m feeling pressure/twinges from my right side…which freaks me out!! Last night I couldn’t sleep because I was having occasional pains  near where my liver is….hahaha…not cool.

So, that’s where I am this week. Please send good thoughts to Grams, Mom, and me…that all of our tests come back with positive news!!

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Categories: Family | 8 Comments

It’s May???

How the heck did May get here already? I’m not usually one to be surprised at the passage of time…but May snuck up on me. That means we’re almost to summer…which I am in NO WAY prepared for.

The last weekend of April flew by. I did a kid-free hike with my friend L on Saturday. We hiked about 3 miles and did a lot of talking. It was lovely to spend some time with another mom/woman who “gets” me.

Sunday was our traditional Farmer’s Market run. Tomatoes, oranges, kale, croissants (for Cadet), pickles (for McRuger), and even some early apricots. Then came home for lots of doing nothing…and we needed that.

Then, Sunday night…Pumpkin basically didn’t sleep much at all. He’s teething so hard, and even giving him a dose of ibuprofen didn’t do much to help. Adding to the fun was the fact that (after several nights of awesome sleep), I basically tossed and turned until 2am. So, I woke up in a rather foul place. Cadet, had several nightmares, and slept poorly as well.

As you can imagine…today (Monday) was not exactly fun for us. Lots of tantrums. Lots of fussing. Lots of me wanting to just have peace and quiet for 2 minutes (which didn’t happen). Dinner, I kid you not, was some leftovers quickly heated…and some kale/raspberry smoothies. I was not proud of the mother I was today. But, tomorrow is a new day, right?

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Categories: Cadet, Family, Pumpkin | 7 Comments

Don’t really have a title…

It’s been a long (almost) 3 weeks here. Nothing horrible has happened or even particularly time-consuming…just lots of details and small things have taken up my time. I’ve started several posts, only to abandon them…since I couldn’t find time to finish them. I have over 300 posts in my “draft” folder…hahahahaha. Clearly, I have a problem with not finishing posts.

Molly, McRuger’s sister was here for a 6-day visit with her daughter. I’m not lying when I tell you it was a very stressful few days. Thankfully, she was staying with other family in the area, but she was only there at night. My niece, at 3, is one of the whiniest children I have ever met. The kid whined constantly, something which gets on my nerves. Plus, she doesn’t like to be touched, have other people within 2 feet of her, or being outside…so that was a huge challenge for my in-your-face-let’s-hug-or-go-outside boys.

On the plus side, it made me appreciate the parenting that McRuger and I do…our kids aren’t very terribly whiney, they are generally friendly, they like meeting new people, and they like to move their bodies (which I really like about both of them). I also really took to heart how amazing my kids are. When we took Molly/and daughter to the local kid’s amusement park…just watching Cadet interact with other kids and us was so uplifting…plus he wanted to ride on the roller coaster with me a few times (which always thrills me).

Cadet and I have been back on the homeschooling train. It’s been a fascinating time in that regard. DrM and I have been seriously talking about what Cadet’s issues actually are. Yes, he has SPD (and is a seeker), but generally speaking, his more extreme tendencies are under control on a daily basis. But, there’s something else going on. At various times we’ve thrown out ideas…tested them…and moved on… It’s not his eyesight, it’s not motor planning issues, it’s not lack of cognitive function (he’s incredibly bright),  and we’re pretty sure it’s not even visual memory at this point. Our current theory is that he’s suffering from anxiety. And when he says “I can’t do that”, what he’s actually saying is “I’m scared to fail”. It’s emotional, rather than physical or cognitive. Cadet has been experiencing “big emotions” these past few weeks. Lots of highs and lows. So, we’ve all been talking quite a bit about how to handle our emotions in productive (rather than destructive) ways. Both McRuger and I have been talking a lot how best to help Cadet understand these feelings… and how it relates to his learning.

As for Pumpkin, well, he’s 18 months old and is never still…except when asleep. He wants to do everything that Cadet does…even if he really shouldn’t. Pumpkin spends most of his days just trying to get into everything…and “explore” it (in reality, he just wants to tear everything apart). Every cabinet is locked down and every door has an anti-Pumpkin lock on it…but even so, he manages to create an insane amount of messes in the hours that he’s awake. He’s using several words: Cadet’s name, name of Cadet’s best buddy, dada, dog, car (he says “GO”), stop, uh-oh, and night-night. As for his receptive language (what he understands)…he’s off the charts. I’ve “tested” him a few times, using some of the old tests that Cadet took…and Pumpkin is way ahead in this area. He loves to color, play with trains, “cook” in his kitchen, and run after Cadet. His fine motor skills are ahead of Cadet in some ways. He’s been working on some teeth and it’s hard to watch him be so grumpy…because it makes him…well…a bit of a challenge to occupy or distract.

McRuger is coming up to his busy time of year, which is always challenging. He’s stressed, has tons on his plate, and is generally exhausted at the end of the day. From now until the end of July, things just keep getting more intense. Then he has a small “break” in the deluge, and it starts up again in September/October. So, I’m trying to find ways of keeping family stress off his plate…but it’s hard because I also need breaks and a good deal of rest still.

How am I doing? Not too bad. I’ve been really struggling with sleep recently, which wears me down. I end the day feeling so exhausted and out of spirit. So, I’ve been really working on not feeling guilty about taking breaks during the day for myself (blogging, reading, chatting with a friend, or just getting a warm meal). It’s been hard to keep my calm some days because of the extremes in emotions that Cadet is going through…and Pumpkin’s grumpiness. But, I’m doing my best.

But, overall, things aren’t too bad. The weather has been amazing, allowing for plenty of outside time with the boys. We’ve done some amazing hikes with some friends. And, last week, we did a family-group hike, which was a ton of fun. Pumpkin, now that he’s very mobile, is really enjoying the outside…I just have to keep a eagle-eye on him so he doesn’t put any slugs into his mouth or try to roll in a bush of poisonous plants!

So, what have you been up to? Are you enjoying spring yet?

 

Categories: Adoption, Anxiety/Worry, Cadet, Family, Homeschool, Household, Pumpkin | 3 Comments

When it don’t come easy…

–I don’t know nothing except change will come
Year after year what we do is undone
Time keeps moving from a crawl to a run
I wonder if we’re gonna ever get home

You’re out there walking down a highway
And all of the signs got blown away
Sometimes you wonder if you’re walking in the wrong direction
But if you break down
I’ll drive out and find you
If you forget my love
I’ll try to remind you
And stay by you when it don’t come easy

So many things that I had before
That don’t matter to me now
Tonight I cry for the love that I’ve lost
And the love I’ve never found
When the last bird falls
And the last siren sounds
Someone will say what’s been said before
Some love we were looking for–

When it Don’t Come Easy by Patty Griffin

 

There are some days that just aren’t easy. Days when getting out of bed seems like the most horrible idea ever invented. Days when losing my patience is always just simmering under the surface. Days when leaving the house, for anything other than a crisis, is just not going to happen.

Today was one of those days. Both boys were up at 5:30am…rearing to go. Cadet was grumpy from the get-go…begging to go outside (in the half-dark) to play in his water table and with his “booster rockets” (his spray bottle that “propels” him backwards). Pumpkin wasn’t grumpy, but he was stubborn (a more common occurrence these days). He wanted things his way…and anything less was a terrible assult to his personhood.

To make this day really “special”, I also got a nosebleed mid afternoon. It’s my first since my admittance to the hospital (4 months and 1 day ago…for those keeping score). I know it’s because the weather has been nutty and my sinuses have been acting up (with lots of nose blowing and dripping). My nosebleed clotted in a normal time frame (something I have to watch for these days), and hasn’t bled since…but it freaked me out. I spent the rest of the day worried about having a AIH flare (which, of course, I’m not).

Normally, two kids up at 5:30 would have been an annoyance…but today it was a downright nightmare. Because, for the last two nights, I have battling against some serious insomnia. I’m exhausted, but I can’t sleep. So, for the last two nights, I’ve been averaging about 4.5-5 hours of sleep. Because of my liver, I can’t just pop a pill like I would have done in the old days…now I’m limited to warm milk, cool room, lavender, and patience. I’d kill for an Advil.PM or one of my anti-anxiety meds right about now. But, no…I just have to tough it out.

So, why can’t I sleep? Honestly, there’s just a lot going through my brain these days.

*My father’s health is part of it, I think. He’s been sick, pretty much non-stop, since January…culminating in (most recently) double pneumonia and possible pertussis. He’s also fought off a kidney stone and is currently dealing with some heart issues…which have not been fully explained to me yet.

*Another reason I can’t sleep is I’m really struggling to understand how I can be my best self as a parent, especially now as self-care is so important to my health. How do I slow down for me…but keep pace with two very active boys? We’ve discussed putting Cadet in school, but it just doesn’t feel right. Most weeks we have 2 to 3 “big” outings to parks or the ocean or a hike or a big-ish bike ride. Cadet loves these and is learning so much. So, it’s hard to think about putting him in a school program where he wouldn’t be out and about. And, if I’m being honest, Cadet is really thriving right now. He has a few little buddies he plays with, his vocabulary and understanding are growing exponentially, and he’s happy (most of the time).

* And, on top of it, there are some money concerns that McRuger and I are dealing with. We’ve really been looking at our budget and there are some red-flags in terms of how well we should be doing….and how we are actually doing. Our rent has increased this year by several hundred dollars, which isn’t helping anything. Having a second kid isn’t helpful either. Now, we’re not in a hole or anything….and we’re basically debt-free (except my car and a piddly amount left of my student loans), but we’re just not saving as much as we should be. Oh, and I forgot, my diet requires us to spend more $$ on things we rarely did before: free-range, organic meat, being the big expenditure each week. So, fun times with money….

*Oh, and the cherry on top…McRuger is stressed…and that’s rough on the family. Part of it is work, part of it is some health stuff he’s dealing with, and part of it is just the slow transition back to home (after his trip to the Midwest). But, when McRuger is stressed about anything, it really impacts our whole life.

So, now, I’m going to try to sleep. Thank you for letting me vent…it’s just been one of those days! How are your days going?

Categories: Family | 7 Comments

Theme Songs…

I’m a big believer in having a theme song…even if it’s for an hour or a day or for life. A song that just really speaks to where you are in a moment…or longer.

Since the boys were young, there have been songs which have spoken to where they are. Sometimes it’s been a reaction to a certain piece of music….others lyrics have expressed a challenge or joy they have gone through.

My theme song, for the longest time has been: Matadjem Yinmixan by Tinariwen. It’s a beautiful song (although the lyrics are not really happy ones) that never fails to get me out of a bad mood…and set me on the right path. When I was in the hospital, I would walk up and down the halls (or outside when allowed)…allowing the song to lift me up. If that fails, I can always turn to When You’re Falling by AfroCelt Sound System or The Blood of Cu Chulainn by Jeff Danna.

Cadet’s song has been Hall of Fame by The Script for the last year or so. He loves it, he sings along. And he identifies with some of the imagery. MsJ and I have shared how much this song is something that Cadet just “gets”. He also loves The Safety Dance by Men Without Hats and Mean by Taylor Swift. While Cadet loves music, he often gets overwhelmed by it these days. And these three songs, for whatever reason, don’t overwhelm him.

Pumpkin’s song has been a little harder to nail down. The first song he really reacted to was Trip the Light by Garry Schyman. But recently, his favorite song is (and I hate to admit this) is Ugly Heart by G.R.L (McRuger introduced him to the song). In reality, Pumpkin loves any music…and will stop whatever he’s doing to do a little dance.

McRuger doesn’t really have a theme song, although he does have the musical taste of a 13-year old girl…so a lot of teeny-bop music.

So, do you have a theme song?

Categories: Family | 5 Comments

Not quite alone…

For the last week, Pumpkin and I have been on our own. McRuger and Cadet flew to the Midwest to spend Easter with McRuger’s family. This plan was originally conceived because we had canceled on McRuger’s family for Thanksgiving and Christmas…and MIL has been wanting to have her family together for a holiday. Due to my liver issues (and limited diet), traveling for me wasn’t going to happen (McRuger and I didn’t feel quite comfortable with me being so far away from my doctors). And, I didn’t want to send McRuger out there with both boys (chaos!). So, we decided that McRuger would take Cadet (who loves planes and generally travels well) and I would stay with Pumpkin.

It’s been a mixed bag for both of us, but overall, I think positive.

I’ve enjoyed having some one-on-one time with Pumpkin. He’s such an interesting little person. So charming and stubborn and serious and complex. We’ve been spending a lot of time just exploring toys, books, the house, and the neighborhood. He likes to be out and about, seeing people and doing new things. Even though he doesn’t have a ton of “real words” yet, he communicates insanely well. And his understanding of what I’m asking or telling him is quite advanced. He just knows what’s going on.

And, it’s been nice to get a few projects done. First up was Cadet’s “big boy” bed. He now has a twin sized bed set up in his room. It’s insanely comfortable and I think it will solve a few problems. Second, was oiling/polishing all of Cadet’s wooden railroad tracks. Yes, that sounds insane, but it’s really good for the wood and encourages the pieces to slide together easily (making for easier play). Plus, it helps prevent the wood from splintering or chipping. And, of course, the constant war against dishes and laundry…I’m losing that battle…but winning the war (I hope).

The BIG issue I’ve been working to solve is to get Pumpkin in a better sleep/eating schedule. And I’ve done that. He goes to bed between 6-7pm, depending on how busy the day was), up at 11-12 for a final bottle, and then he sleeps until 6-7 in the morning. Trust me, it’s WAYYYY better than the schedule that McRuger had him on. And, yes, he still takes a bottle three times a day. Pumpkin isn’t a huge fan of solid foods, so we’ve been working hard to encourage more eating…but it’s been a SLOG.

Today, I’m finishing up laundry and getting some of the Pumpkin messes picked up (he likes to scatter toys like seeds across the house). I’ve also had to order some new bathroom rugs (after some miscommunications with Iggy) and get Cadet’s room back to an orderly state (Pumpkin has been thrilled to be able to play in there unimpeded).

My traveling men get back pretty early tomorrow and I just can’t wait to have them home. The house has been so quiet and empty. I miss them so much.

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Late last week, Liz (a mommy friend) and I attempted to take our children out of town for a night to a local vacation spot. It was a lot of work to get the plan together, pack, and get out of town…but we had fun…until night time. For me, it was a night from hell. Pumpkin, who hasn’t slept anywhere but his own crib for most of his life, was up EVERY HOUR crying (although I was sleeping with him). He wouldn’t settle down and I could do very little to soothe him. I think it was the combination of a new place, new experiences, and no familiar sounds (which he is very attuned to). Basically I got 1-2 hours of sleep that night. When I woke up, my right hand was swollen so much I had to struggle to get my ring off. My feet were also a bit swollen. Now, generally speaking, this isn’t a huge issue…but with AIH…it can be. So, I naturally freaked out. And, instead of having a day of fun on the ocean…we spent it driving home…and I tried not to worry about going to the hospital again.

Liz, being the insanely flexible and kind person she is, actually watched Pumpkin for a few hours so I could try to nap. The swelling in my hands and feet did go down, but I am still struggling to catch up on sleep from that night.

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My first night alone with Pumpkin, AE came over for the night. We had a GREAT time. We sat on the couch after Pumpkin went to sleep and talked for hours. Just hours of being together and chatting. I can’t tell you how much that calmed me down and got me in a good place for the rest of the week.

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Easter was very low-key here. Pumpkin and I paid a visit to Grams. While there, we also saw an aunt and uncle. It was great to spend time with family. We then came home and had an early night. Back in the Midwest, Cadet had fun at a church egg hunt, ate lots of candy, and played with his cousins…so it was a success.

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And, in between everything, I’ve had some time for journaling and collaging. I’ve even had some time to work on our family budget and get some (minimal) gardening done.

I hope you all are well. What have you been up to over the last week?

 

Categories: Cadet, Celebrations, Family, McRuger, Pumpkin | 5 Comments

Enjoying Normal…

It’s kind of funny how normalized my weekly blood draws have become. They know me at the lab (I found a lab only about 15 minutes from my house, instead of 35). Check-in is quick. I have my results within the hour…if not sooner (today it was less than 45 minutes).

But, the days before my blood draw (because these days, I have to schedule it so I can keep sane), my anxiety ticks up a few notches. What if my numbers are spiking? What if that twinge I felt was another part of my liver dying ? Should I re-pack my hospital bag? And yes, I have a hospital bag ready to go…packed with the things I know I’d need/want if I have to be re-admitted. But, no matter what, I don’t miss a draw. I force myself, even if I’m really anxious. I just go. Because I can’t ignore it.

Cadet “helps” with blood draws. He goes into the lab with me (Pumpkin is either with McRuger or Iggy or the new sitter). He points out which arm is better for drawing blood (my left). He tells the technician where to find my veins on my arm. And sometimes even helps them “feel the vein”. Often, the techs give him gloves and make him feel important and special. He wears those gloves for as long as he can, and will spend the next few hours showing people how to find mama’s veins. On days when the techs have a hard time finding a good poke, he can tell them my “alternate” spots (that’s what he is showing the parking attendant in the picture…).IMG_4338 And finally, he always picks the color of my bandage. I’m so impressed with how the techs have handled it. I know it’s a bit of an inconvenience to have a 4.5 year old in the room (because Cadet isn’t the quietest of kids). But, it helps Cadet feel normal about the whole experience, and he doesn’t worry about mama so much. And, I think he gets a sense of pride from helping everyone out! I’m proud of how much he focuses when he’s helping! It’s amazing!

Today’s blood results are as close to “normal” as I have been in a very long time. In fact, all of my blood values are either “normal” or within 2-3 points of being normal. That’s a big deal in the world of my liver. My next meeting with Dr. A is next week, and I’m sure he’ll be pleased with the results.

In other news, it is a beautiful spring day here. I mailed off MsV’s Easter package…coloring books, sidewalk chalk, and candy for her kids, a photo book of Pumpkin for her (plus a lot of chocolate). I mailed Cadet’s Easter basket to MIL’s house, so it will be ready for him when he’s there. Pumpkin’s Easter basket is ready to be boxed and transported to the farm.

Today, I had lots of help. Both Iggy and the new sitter were here getting stuff done. Iggy cleaned, as the sitter watched the kiddos. I ran errands, and even got some time to myself. I ordered pizza for everyone, and even had a piece myself. Tonight, I head out to the huge kids consignment sale in my area. McRuger, being his generous self, is letting me have the night off from dinner/bedtime duty. It will be a nice change of pace. I’m hitting the sale with a few friends. I’m looking forward to it. My goal is to outfit the boys for Spring/Summer for under $75….we will see if it happens.

What are you up to on this glorious day? How are you celebrating “normal”?

 

Categories: Anxiety/Worry, Cadet, doctors, Family, Liver | 4 Comments

Microblog Monday

Rough nights. Tired kids. Migraines. But…but…but…

Life isn’t all that bad.

  • My yoga instructor will be here in 30 minutes.
  • There’s a great kid’s consignment sale I’m going to this week.
  • McRuger and I are in a good place.
  • I’m munching on some wonderful, fresh pineapple.
  • I’m getting my hair trimmed on Saturday.
  • Grocery shopping for the week is done.
  • McRuger did the dishes.
  • I have some awesome homeschool lessons scheduled for this week.
  • I’m really enjoying some new-to-me books on homeschool and housekeeping.

 

Microblog_Mondays

Not sure what MicroBlog Mondays is all about…go here to check it out!!

Categories: Family, Homeschool, Household, Marriage, McRuger | 9 Comments

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