Saturday, September 27, 2008

Secret Rendezvous in Heaven

Many fun things were on today's calendar. None of them happened. =( Because of one thing or another those plans never got a good chance at showing themselves today. Too bad...

I've been a ridiculous mess of emotions and headaches, deadlines and budget, kids' homework and activities, Dr. appointments and packing to move. Earlier today dear, sweet Hubby asked me if I'd like him to get my purse so I could get a headache medicine. I said, "No thanks, I'm okay, I'd rather just get through this and get home and then I'm sure I'd feel better." He gave me THAT look and reached for my purse anyhow. "Please, for the kids and me? You're killing us."Shoot. Am I really? And he nods.

Bitty as I speak is teething on the side of her crib. Earlier today she was teething on the legs of chairs. Who's child is this? Seriously. Then the bottles that she uses are the bottles with the liners in them. Since the bottle isn't closed on the bottom, and you just change the liner, it's really much easier to clean. But this kid is smart. Or funny. Or destructive. Or all of the above at the same time. She learned today how to stick her hand UP the bottom of the bottle and 1) SQUEEZE the liner bag so it sprays formula every where and 2)YANK the liner, formula and all, right out of the bottle.....oh doesn't that paint and lovely little picture? My car will smell fantastically of old, warm, formula tomorrow I'm sure.

So we're wrapping up a fairly uneventful day, and it's finally starting to cool off. We load some more boxes. We undo part of my closet, then start on Hubby's. There's been this box in his closet forever labeled "Halloween." I didn't get to it last year because Bitty had just been born. Didn't get to it the year before that because Mom had just died. And now I couldn't really remember what we would have that would be in that box. Hmmmm... so I open it.....
Oh. My. Goodness.
When I think this little train of mine can't chug chug through anything else... I get this little love gift. Inside the box are sweet little clothes of mine from when I was baby. NOW I remember Mom giving me this box a few months before she died. Oh they are precious. Precious-PRECIOUS. Favorites that she'd saved for me. I'm taking them out one at a time and showing them to the bebes and hubby. Maybe 15 little outfits. Down at the bottom is the sweetest one of all: A hand-sewn dress by MY MAMA for ME when I was but a wee-little-babe. It will fit bitty perfectly. Look how sweet it is:

These little love gifts from Mama pop up about once a year. She never got to meet Bitty. Bitty was due to be born one year TO THE DAY after Mama died. Bitty is Mama's namesake. I wonder if they secretly rendezvoused in heaven. There is so much about my sweet baby that is so much like my mom. I wonder if when Mama was making this dress for me, if she ever imagined that a grandchild she'd never meet on Earth would wear it joyfully years later. Or maybe she knew all along....

Tomorrow we will get up early and go to church, and then to a company picnic. Bitty will wear this sweet dress all day tomorrow and I will quietly smile and know that Mama is keeping an eye on me and my bebes from afar. We are surrounded by love..and I am thankful.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Let Me Tell Ya a Little Something

When the going gets tough, I put on my blinders, pray for a guardian angel, and try not to think. Just DO. Do what needs to be done, DO DO DO, thinking leads to worrying and that can happen later. Unfortunately I know well how to be numb. I don't like it, but it's a survival technique I suppose.

Big Bebe's MRI came back completely clear which is a blessing. Looks like we'll have about 2 visits a week to Lucile Packard for the next several weeks. Pending the results of those appointments, then we will get a game plan. Amen for my ipod, these car rides are consuming me. I am LOVING the time I'm getting to spend with her, just one on one. She's 9 and sassy, but she's a good, sweet, thoughtful, sensitive kid. More than anything I just want her to get to be a kid. I don't want her to feel she IS this disease. I don't want that to be her identity. It doesn't define her. I don't want to pretend like nothing's wrong either. I want a lot of things and I don't know how to make them all happen. So I pray.

I pray that my other kids don't resent me for spending so much time away with her. This is their childhood too. It shouldn't be defined by her disease either. They should just get to be kids. Kids who make mud pies and climb up the trees and get poison oak. Kids who go swimming with grandma and have sleep overs with friends, and get to spend time with their mama too.

I've always believed that no matter what the situation, no matter how tragic, hurtful or painful, that there is always a way to channel that experience, frame it in a way that will promote love and healing and personal progress. I know we will each learn something, remember something from this tough time. I pray that I can provide an environment for my kids that is conducive to their needs, collectively. And in years to come, they can look back and know that they learned something from this too.

.....Fear not for I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you…..seek me with all of your heart and I will reveal myself to you….

I pray I can keep my eyes on Him, and soldier through this.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Adventures in MRI-ing

Oh my gosh I am exhausted. Not to mention being completely emotionally drained from putting on a happy "nothing's wrong" look on my face....Whoa. First mistake was not eating lunch before our trip to the hospital. Dumb. Big Bebe's MRI was scheduled for 545. We needed to be there at 445. When we got there they were running WAY behind. She didn't get into the MRI until 715. I do have to say that children's hospitals are definitely geared towards kids. Works out well, huh? They had someone come and meet with her and show her pictures of the MRI machine and play her sounds of what it would sound like. Very thorough, very comforting. But even though they were running late, she still wasn't allowed to eat. So we were waiting, patiently, hungrily. We finally got out of there around 845. Got lost leaving the circular shaped hospital. Realized it was a circle only after making the full loop and getting right back to where I started. When we went to leave the parking structure I couldn't find the parking pass thingy (LAME!) so I had to pay for parking. Had to fumble around in my purse to find 6 bucks. Add to that the fact that I was now SUPER hungry, tired, we needed gas, and I really can't see well, especially at night. I could barely make out the street signs in the dark and got lost. (Again) Then was looking at the bumper sticker on the car in front of us....I swore it said this:

VEGAN
FUN

But when I got close enough to cause an accident, it clearly read:

MCCAIN
PALIN

Hahahahaha. I pulled over at the next gas station and found my glasses before getting back on the road.

I'm feeling a little tension, a little anxiety. Worried about the MRI results, worried she didn't get all her homework done, worried I don't know how to find the highway, nooooo actually can't find the high way. I wasn't blessed with the gift of direction. Big Bebe is a trooper and giving lots of suggestions about how to find my way home. Thank you dear.

We find our way and inevitably get the night they are working on the road and down to one lane. Whatever. Just get me to food and I'll be OK. Get to a fast food drive through and can't find the money. I had it before to pay the parking attendant. Can't find it now. I hand my wallet and purse back to Big Bebe to look through while I turn on the light for her and try to place an order that I don't know I can pay for. In the middle of all this she says Hey Look! And I'm assuming it's the money. I turn around to grab it, and she's holding up a tampon from my purse. Mama, What's this? Seriously? Like there haven't been a million of these things under the bathroom sink, and NOW while we have no money to pay, mid-order in the drive through with other cars stacking up behind us and this is when she wants an explanation of a tampon!?!?! Gimme a break. I'm thinking can you please put that thing down and quit holding it up to the light? Goodness gracious child, give your mother a break.

Whew. Round 2 tomorrow....

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Funny FUNNY

Just finished dinner, washed the dishes, folded and ironed all clothes for this week. Bathed the baby, and put her in fuzzy jammies. Put the big girls to bed with kisses and hugs. I'm feeling accomplished and rather domestic ...Ahhhhh....there is peace...
Keeping in the spirit of spa day yesterday, I decided, Hey... I'll put on that mask so my skin can be so soft, and check my email for a little before bed. I am feeling very much like this:
I'm typing innocently away catching up with an old friend. OH CRAP. There is something in my ear and it's moving and I turn and Big bebe is standing there trying to whisper something quietly to me (because Bitty is sleeping) and she was SO quiet I never heard her come in, all I felt was the breath in my ear and it scared the living daylights out of me. So I SCREAM...and then SHE SCREAMS. And she looks at me very perplexed..."You scared me, Mama." No, What??? "I scared YOU? You just creeped in here!" Oh and her little face is so worried. "But look at you mama, what's a matter with you?" Oh poor dear. Here I am feeling very serene, and I'm sure this is the visual she has of mama in a mask:

Sunday Fun Day

I have had a GREAT couple of days. Mean Mister Migraine left, and not a moment too soon. We got our keys to our house on Friday and it was so neat...to walk back through the front door, but this time is was to OUR house. Hmmmmm. We ordered pizza and sat in our bare house on the living room floor. Sis-in-law Nicci (love her--wish she could be mine)came with us too and the girls danced and sang and twirled around.

FYI--NO that is not beer (Duh!) We are NOT THAT country. It's cream soda. Which Big Bebe promptly spilled right across the carpet onto the hardwood floor. Christening of sorts, no?


Then yesterday we had a girl's day for B's B-day with a few friends. Oh Lordy Lordy. What fun we had. I have NEVER been so pampered. Certain things were planned, and other things not, and it was perfect just the way it was. I attempted to get pics of our sassy happy toes (meaning I brought my camera), but did I remember to use it? NOooooooo. So pics of my soccer-ly mutilated chubby toes will have to suffice. =) (Doesn't this just scream, "please ladies have another pedicure so I can get a good picture?")

Here are a few quotes from the last several days. Some are funny, some are meaningful, and some are not:
*How can I miss you if you won't go away?

*I love my job....and my new medication

*I'd tell you to go to hell, but I work there, and I don't want to see you every day

*It's getting hot in here (and then someone put on earmuffs to avoid turning bright red)

*I think it's a window cleaner, like this, see? Ooohhh...helloooo officer....

*Mom it's just no fun getting ready in the morning if you're not yelling at us

*They were smooching on the deck, but I was watchin' 'em so it's OK

*Is that a sock?
*You're hormonal are you? NO! I meant, You're a HOME-OWNER you....promise!

Things have been lively, that's for sure. Onward to this next week. Thank God for a couple GOOD days to prepare me for the next few to come. I'll be with Big Bebe at Lucile Packard on Monday and Tuesday this week. MRI on Monday, results from labs and more tests on Tuesday.

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can get through this next week, be a good mom, daughter, wife, worker-bee, not lose my cool, be patient, kind, listen well, love unconditionally, and be thankful thankful THANKFUL!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Being Me

My brain thinks of lots of odd things when I'm not feeling well. I still haven't kicked this migraine yet. And with that, and a slight fever that comes and goes, lots of sleep, plenty of medication, big pink elephants in the living room and such...these dreams that manifest themselves in this chaotic, cryptic mind of mine, are really something else. It's at times like these that it doesn't seem so odd that those famous writers, composers, poets, and musicians did their best work when they were crazy out of their minds. Too bad I'm just crazy and have nothing else to show for it. Hmph.

My mind does not rest at night. It never has. Even as a child and all the way through school, I would figure things out in the middle of the night. Those ridiculous math analysis formulas never made sense in class. But give me the motivation and a good night's sleep and I'd have it figured out by morning.
Many times I feel lost. Lost in my mind, my identity lost as a mom, lost in every day life and in this world. I'm mostly comfortable being quiet and keeping to myself, but appreciate being noticed. On a rare venture I may step out of this realm and sneak my foot just a little farther past my boundaries than I am used to. Sometimes I find success, and mostly I don't. Retreat and I have a common understanding.

I know we are not to have idols. But tell me where is the line between being challenged to be something you know you should/could be, and idolization? Are we not to look up to those around us, as a way of encouraging ourselves further? I don't think God's intention was for us to not consider these. If the capacity in which one is growing is to further the glory of God and spread His love, I would think it should be OK. But it's not always so simple.

Have you ever had that one person that no matter what you did, you could never (in your eyes) even compare? This is where I find a constant struggle. There is that one person that I am always trying to please, understand, be just like. But I will never be good enough. I will never compare. I will never measure up. I think I've fooled myself into thinking that I could be closer to God, I would be a better follower, and be more loved by Him, if I could be just like this other person. It's ugly. I've spent YEARS trying this and that, so I could be just like them...

In my somewhat delusional migraine infused dreams last night this was the constant dream. What can I do? What can I change? I should be more like this. I shouldn't do that, blah blah blah. When I woke up I realized this is NOT what I want, and it certainly can't be what God wants either. I can and should be challenged, but I shouldn't have to change who I am to accomplish that. Perhaps just fine tune things to be a better me. Keep a keen eye out for ways of sharing God's grace and love and mercy. Be open. And remember:I can't be me if I'm trying to be them.

This all makes perfect sense to me now, but the real challenge will be putting it into action. Not so much changing what I do, but why I do the things I do. It's the little internal voice that I need to have a come-to-Jesus talk with....and with a quickness. Maybe one day it will let me free, and I too can fly....

Sunday, September 14, 2008

A Letter

Dear Mean Mister Migraine-

Why do you torment me so? I can see you coming, creeping up. I try to humor you and it doesn't work, so then I turn around and run like hell trying to stay away from you. Can't you see you aren't needed here? Don't you know I have a lot of heavy things right now to attend to. You're getting in my way. I pretend you aren't there, but Noooooooo...... your feelers never get hurt. You always come back for more. The equally mean side of me wants to get you back so you know how awful this is. Trapped inside my own head, with the pain of a vice and the audacity of you to just sit there are mock me. Shame on you. Who is your mother? I'd like to have some speaks with her. Does she know you are up to no good? Didn't she treat you respect?


I like to think that I could be crafty enough to evade your presence. Apparently I haven't gussied up enough craftiness if you to keep tailing me like this. I've got a lot of better things to be doing than sitting here trying to make nice with you. Go away Mean Mister Migraine, GO AWAY!!!!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Seven Years


7 years ago tomorrow changed my life and changed the world. It started ordinary enough. Hubby was up and out early to drive his sister to school. I stayed cuddled in bed with a new 2 month old bebe #2. Postpartum depression had been eerily invading my space and mind this time 'round. I was thankful for the quiet morning spent dozing off with a sweet cherub in my arms.

Then hubby comes hurling back through the bedroom. "You've gotta come see this." I knew it was serious. He had heard it on the radio and then we watched it unfold right there on t.v. Then to see the 2nd plane, there was no more question. We were under attack. It was not an accident. My blood pressure spiked, my mind is spinning. I have a 2 year old and new baby, we have no basement. Where will we hide and take cover? I'm checking off things in my head, water, food, diapers, batteries, radio, flash lights, guns...and no I'm not joking. We are country folk and I was in over drive to prepare and protect my family. I had never so much appreciated living in the middle of nowhere. Maybe we'd be spared.

We ran a restaurant at this time. We decided several hours later to go ahead and get ourselves together and open the restaurant for the day back in town. It was a ghost town. Hardly any one was out. We were all ready, on guard. The stories coming from ground zero were paralyzing. Searching and finding, hoping for life, praying for a miracle. Soot, ash and debris held the nation's attention.
Hubby was particularly affected. Being a fire fighter...he knows the sounds. Yes- sounds. When they started playing the video tapes from hand held amateurs...the sounds are what made it almost unbearable. Sure as if the sight of it all wasn't enough. After the towers came down and they rolled through the streets, the sound that was heard was the CRY of the SCBA (self contained breathing apparatus.) Any fire fighter, or any one who has even trained or anything with the fire department knows that on the back of the SCBAs are PALs. These are special little devices that squeal after a certain time has elapsed without movement. It helps to locate firemen in a fire who can't find their way out. It signals a fire fighter down. But here, this time, there was a CHORUS of PALs crying. Not a few...there were hundreds...thousands...and no movement...just ash.
The family phone tree started to take action as phone circuits allowed. We had not lost anyone. Where I lack in siblings, I make up for it in cousins. One cousin had a gig planned in one of the towers later that night. Another cousin (different side of the family) had taking the sub to his stop below the south tower just an hour before the first plane hit. We were lucky. As a whole, as a county we were devastated, but our little family was ok.
I didn't sleep well. Even with the grounding of all commercial planes, I still stayed awake to see if I could hear one...that might be THEM. Then I'd drift off to sleep, just to be startled awake by a government plane making rounds above.

The President's speech challenged all Americans to find a fire fighter and thank them for their service. Hubby turned to his step dad, and his step dad to him, and they said thank you, through tears (man tears....like one) to one another. The next day back at the restaurant it was slow. People were really on edge and quiet and contemplative. I was just barely keeping it together. A man came and placed a to-go order with hubby. It was very usual. He was an older gentleman with weathered, leathered skin. When hubby went to hand him the change, the man looked up at him and then looked at hubby's shirt. He had on his fire department shirt. The man took his change and took hold of hubby's hand in one motion:

Man: You a fire fighter?

Hubby: Yes, Sir. I am.

Man: Thank you, son.

All this while holding his hand firmly and looking him right in the eye. God bless America. What a beautiful, beautiful moment. Now we got the big alligator tears out of these men.
I take this night and I pray relentlessly for all of those who lost a loved one, or were injured. I pray for those who were pregnant and lost their husbands. Those sweet babies that never knew their heroic daddies. I pray thankfully for the flight attendants whose quick thinking identified the perpetrators. And the valiant passengers who fought back. I pray for all the medical and fire personnel who ran UP the hundreds of flights of stairs to save the victims, just to be brought down by another airplane and the building caving in.

Tomorrow will be a somber, thoughtful, reflective day. May I take all these emotions and memories and let the little things be little, and be thankful for the rest.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Ready



'Cause tomorrow's another day
And I'm thirsty anyway

So bring on the rain



Friday, September 5, 2008

Not Great

I have just a few minutes here at home before I have to scoot (meaning an hour's drive) to pick up hubby from the airport. He waited standby for a much earlier flight, bless his heart, but didn't get on.

Spent ALL day at Lucille Packard Hospital (sub set of Stanford.) The news isn't great. Not bad bad, like dying bad, but not great. Met with a new doctor for big bebe. He's an MD, PhD. Good start. What we thought was one thing, might not actually be what it really is. More questions, lots of neurological tests, lots blood tests and urine test. You can't give that kid enough fluids to go pee on demand. Isn't gonna happen. She's starting a new medication tomorrow in case this is easily curable, which would mean it's metabolic. But here's the scary part-- she needs an MRI of her head and neck and a spinal tap. Oh flippity flippin flip flop. Ok enough about that. I can't dwell there right now.

In addition to the above..... my i-pod died, my cell phone ran out of juice, and on a separate stop I went to go by hubby's doctors for some paperwork. I couldn't figure out quite how to get there, but after a few turns this way and that, I found it. Paid for parking. Hiked across this BIG building to get to the office. As I'm walking through the door, I realize this is NOT the right office. I was wrong. It was the OTHER doctor at the OTHER facility. Fabulous. Let me just hike back to my car in 105 degree weather. Finally get to the right place, get the paperwork and now I have to pee like it's no body's business. Ahhhhh... there's no place to put my purse (no hook or counter) so I put it in the sink. THIS lovely place is very high tech and has SENSORS for their sinks and excellent water pressure. Do you know what that means? My purse was swimming and sinking. That mixed with the delightful cheerios and fig newtons I have crumbled at the bottom of my purse made a lovely pasty sloshy goo. Oh to be a mom on the move...

That's it for now...more later...

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

What's Going On

Little mini snippets of my happenings in bite sized pieces:

  • Still in escrow, may be able to close early
  • My right ankle is doing some funny crunchy-cracky thing AND I have to cancel my appt at the chiropractor this week. Shoot.
  • No recent headaches
  • Hubby leaves on a plane tomorrow for a few days
  • Have to set my alarm for 4am tomorrow morning. That's not that far away from right now
  • I told a friend I think if we were animals in a past life she was definitely a flamingo
  • I got a new pair of sassy shoes
  • Grandma bought Bitty a pink feather boa
  • It smells like old celery in my laundry room
  • I frequently get flowers from a gay male...sounds odd, but is the nicest thing
  • I got a friend a birthday card; I almost peed my pants and died laughing
  • I take big bebe to Lucille Packard Children's Hospital on Friday. We've been waiting for this appt since March
  • I have a bazillion songs on my ipod and I always listen to the same 5 over and over
  • A favorite friend is moving back to the area
  • I need to clean out my car
  • I'm refusing to get sick, strep likes my throat
  • I'm praying for a special someone (YOU!)
  • My computer cord is super funky and not working well at all
  • I'm anxious about packing
  • Mama Hen is my saving grace, again
  • I'm really missing mommy today
  • There was a mountain lion sighting at the mall---odd
  • I get to go to Sacramento in a few weeks and really hoping for appendicitis or similar
  • Bitty has music in her soul and rhythm too
  • I had a not-so-nice thought about someone today.....and then my eye started violently twitching
  • Still no dog yet. Go ME!
  • I am really excited about our new neighborhood
  • I am thankful
  • Night nights dear friends....