Monday, October 30, 2006

Friday, and forgiveness

Caution: This post does not start out as a positive one, it contains details of my childhood. Please feel free to not read it, and move on.

Last Friday was one of the those days, the kind where you would just as soon crawl under the covers and sleep a day or two to forget. I wrote of Lighting a Candle, and of saving a life. That day my own past wrapped it's cold fingers around my neck, and I couldn't stop it. Once I see something like that site, it never fails. All day memories, in every shade of sadness, plagued me. I tried to release them buy writing a positive post, but they refused to go.

Memories of my birth father (not the man I loved so dear as my real father, my step-dad)... and yes, memories of my older brother. Though he never actually followed through physically, the intent was there. He came close to ruining me several times, the way that my father did.

I have struggled with the memories for a long time, but as an early teen, I told my parents what he had done and had almost done to me. My mother (whom is a victim of incest by her father also) immediately took his side and called me a liar. i was forced to apologize to him, but I refused. My brother sat there and watched as my mother tried to beat me into submission, but I still refused. Eventually she grew tired and left me there, cowering beside our washing machine... and after a few weeks it was forgotten and never spoken of again.

A little added history...A year or two later, I would finally tell my mother- in a moment I had thought to be an honest and open one- that I had something horrible in common with her. I finally told her after 11-12 years of living with the deep, dark secret that I had suffered by the hands of my own father. We cried together, and clung to each other...Despite having been mentally and physically abused by my mentally ill mother for years, I had thought that that single moment would bind us together. She finally felt love and compassion for me. It took every fiber of my being to admit that secret to her. But that memory would soon be tainted with the new one of my family sitting me down and saying they had prayed about it. In their opinion I was sick and needed help, God had told them I was a liar.

Anyway, as far as my brother... Since becoming an adult, probably in my early twenties- I realized that my brother had probably been sexually abused. My mother's father, her grandfather, or my father could be to blame. He had all the classic signs and symptoms. In a way I understood it and tried my best to forgive him, and on some days, just overlook it.

We will never know, because he refuses to get help for himself, and refuses to talk about the past. My brother has never apologized to me, had never even acknowledged any of it. He saw me battered and bruised as a child because he couldn't admit it.

To this day, it remains a huge cinder block wall between us, and stumbling block to me. He would rather have that wall then to actually have a relationship with me. We talk maybe once a year, it's been that way for a long time. I get it, and I have come to terms with the fact that our relationship score will always be in the negative (You Sims players will know what i am talking about). OK, I have come to terms with that. And just when I start to feel OK with the fact that i will never have a relationship with him because of that wall... and each time my birthday passes without word from him... Two weeks later he calls and craps all over my progress.

I want to move on! I don't want a relationship with him anymore, it's too painful. I wish he would just leave me alone. I start to forgive him, and enjoy the absence of a relationship (and the absence of his resentment, anger, and sabotage), then BINGO! He is calling me and leaving a cryptic and gloomy message on my machine.

So to sum it up, Friday I signed a petition to stop Internet child abuse,had my past haunt me, then had one of those people from my haunting past call me and leave yet another cryptic message, saying how he was sorry for missing my birthday. AGAIN.

Oh yes, then I have my MIL telling me I have to cheer up.

It is still affecting me a little today, so I thought I would work it out for myself in the form of prose (again)- such as it is.
I have to forgive him, for me. I have to let it go. I don't want him in my life, but I can at least forgive.

The book of our past is stained and worn,
The letters smudged, unreadable.
Pages tattered and torn.

Though I haven't read the book in years,
It sits disintegrating on my shelves.
My eyes burn, but no tears.

The subject matter, I want to forget.
And with each passing day
comes sadness and regret.

Why wont you let me be, let me go?
You can't let me live in peace,
it's something you don't know.

This crackled book is bound with shame.
It's dull cover made with sorrow.
You're the Author, you're to blame.

I will burn this dreaded book in effigy.
Let the Flames destroy, devour
The past of you and me.

Curled edges burn, then turn to fly
It's end a sweet embrace,
My heart gives it's goodbye.

I am reborn in the glowing comfort of the flame.
I will write a new book,
This time it will bear my name.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Duuuuude- I mean Chick, they so rock!

Are you a Christian chick that is into rock/alternative rock? You HAVE to check out this group, Fireflight. Their new album Healing Of Harms is fierce. I just got it today, but already listened to it and loved it. My favorite song on the disc is You Decide, it is truly inspirational and cuts to the core of that one moment we must all face I our lives... To accept Him or not. I also really love Waiting, it has a killer beat.

The lead singer, Dawn Richardson can sound a little like the lead from the Cranberries, but the likeness stops there. The music obviously takes it influences from old school rock, but has some modern rock flavor with a bit 80's hair band thrown in the mix.

You can listen to samples of their debut album here at Jesus Freak Hideout.

Even if you are not a Christian, and you like music with a positive message and you like this kind of music, I guarantee you wont be disappointed.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Light a candle

I was visiting From Tracie's site and saw that she had information about signing a petition to stop Internet child abuse.

I have a really hard time with things of this nature... I am an incest and a child abuse survivor. This is not something that I advertise, but if I feel the need to speak up I do. I know I have addressed this on my blog a few times, but it's not something I am proud of. Actually , in real life I tend to run in the opposite direction at the mention of it.

I cannot watch the news, I am reduced to tears. I have thought to myself at these moments that I wish I could save just one child from this pain, and though I am not a perfect mother, child abuse is always on my mind. I am immobilized at times with grief for the helpless, and I want to save the world, but I cannot. The weight of it is too awesome, it's crushing.

I can only help myself, and my children.

I had been so worried that I too would become a child abuser, and I struggle every day with anger and rage because of my childhood. If only others would realize that this is the link they need to break! Often child abusers were abused themselves, and the abuse stems from undealt with anger... how are you helping the situation if you are making your children feel the same way you did as a child? As parents, we tend to justify our anger. We all do it in one way or another... but abusers they not only justify, the hide the abuse as well.

Everyday I struggle with the pain of my childhood, and some days it is too much to bear. To talk about it is to relive it, and I believe this is why I can't deal with hearing about it on the 6 o'clock news. To know that there are children out there who are suffering as I did, and suffering more than I did... It's too much.

It took a huge amount of courage for me to even click on the link, but I have to try to make a difference. Knowing that my grief is so small compared to the pain that these children experience everyday...

The statistics are staggering. It is painful to look at, let alone even discuss it, BUT if we don't talk about it- who will?

No more hiding, no more fear.

I choose to speak.

It's a struggle yes, but a worthy one. I encourage you to click that link and make a difference, if it saves one child it's worth it.

Light A Candle and save a life.

Thank you Tracie for having the courage to post the information on your blog.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

13 names I have been called in my lifetime, Thursday 13 #8

Thirteen names Mary has been called in her lifetime,

Well, I have been called many, some of them rated R... so I will try to keep them as clean as possible

1. Mert: my dad used to call me Myrtle for some reason, and my brothers shortened it to Mert

2.Gertle & Myrtle Gertle: Yup you guessed it, Gertle rhymes with Myrtle *rolls eyes*

3. May-reh: my great grand mother was from the south , and this is how she pronounced my name. I believe I started grinding my teeth around this time.

4. Murray: My youngest brother would call me this. He was a special needs child, and though I was ecstatic that he finally learned my name by the age of 5 or 6, I didn't quite like it as much as a teen, lol.

5. Flipper: Me and 3 buddies wore flippers (swimming gear) all day in high school, because we had declared Wednesday would be "Beach Day". Our teachers tried to get us to remove them, but we stood our flippered ground , saying there was no rule saying we couldn't wear them. :O)

6. Aury: my favorite nick name, given to me by my husband when we were dating

7. Cranny: a co-worker of mine while I was stationed at Bethesda Naval Hospital couldn't pronounce my new married name to save her life. No matter how many times I corrected her, she always pronounced it wrong. I even went through the trouble of spelling it out phonetically and taping it over my military name tag, LOL!

8. Chronic *rhymes with vich*: My married name ends with vich, and in the Navy- while on deployment in the Persian Gulf during the first Gulf war- my shipmates called me Chronic _itch. I am guessing this is because since I joined the Navy immediately after graduating from high school, I was able to make decisions for myself and have my own opinions for the first time in my life, in essence leaving my childhood as far behind me as possible. I think I may have over done it while stating my opinions during the first 2-3 years of my independent life.

9.Cromag: another name given during Desert Storm/Shield by a ship mate

10. Honey: this is a name used by all of my family members, we are all honey most of the time. I hate it when John actually calls me Mary, he usually only calls me by my given name when he is steaming mad at me.

11. Snarf: John and I both watched Thunder Cats as children, and one day happened upon an episode while channel surfing a longggggg time ago. We haven't called each other that in a while. :O)

12. Torti: my husband playfully calls me this because I am half Mexican, half Caucasian. As in Tortilla... I know, we're weird.

13. Fibble: My friend Effie and I have this horrible habit of mixing up letters when we a re talking, and in her case- making up entire words. She said I "fibbled" something one day, we laughed so hard that we never did figure out what she was actually trying to say. We occasionally call each other Fibble, still.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Oh the horror

So... we are at our most favorite place in the whole world last night, the Target *BTW, how sad is that?*, and we see John's co-worker, Richard. Richard recently applied for a job at Target to supplement his income because he sees a fairly large purchase in the form of a brand new vehicle in his near future. We were out getting Anna her 3rd costume because the first was mismarked and was too small, and the second fell apart while she tried it on.

John and Richard joked with me about dropping everything right then and there, and applying for a job at 8:30 pm. I became flustered at the thought. I am still not sure about what my choices are as far as employment. I have recently thought about getting a job there too because we could use the discount since we shop there a lot, but also because I know that I have neither the want or the patience to be a nurse anymore. We have discovered that we enjoy having a pleasant life, but having another child has kind of stretched the bounds of our means. There is nothing comfortable about possibly getting your heat shut off, so it looks like I will have to go back to work sooner than we thought. Well, actually I was supposed to go back to work this year anyway when Anna started Kindergarten, but then we had another unplanned blessing. :O)

Nursing... It's all I know, but... Since I was in the Navy as a corpsman (which is basically a medic) and was able to challenge the boards in California to become a Licensed Practical Nurse, I am missing theory hours in Labor and Delivery to meet Iowa's state requirements to use my license. I would have to begin school all over to become a LPN here, so I had thought originally that I wouldn't waste my time, I would just go to school for an RN Associates to begin with, then a Bachelors degree.

When I left California 5 years ago, I was very burned out as a nurse. There often was so much paper work and little time left to actually care for the patients. I hated feeling like I had not done my job to the fullest, and often lost sleep over it. Health care as a whole is only getting worse and I wonder if I would even make a difference, and at what cost. I loved taking care of people, it's what I was born to do. I loved the interaction, and feeling good about helping others. I do miss that aspect of being a nurse, and not to toot my own horn- I made sure to introduce myself to each and every patient of mine, and to not only ask how they were, but listen to the answer.

One thing I disliked very much about nursing was how nurses treated their patients. Don't get me wrong, this isn't me bashing the profession.I feel as if we are driven to work so hard, and do so much in one shift that it causes health care workers to forget that there is a human being on the other side of that bed. I noticed that instead of listening with care, we tended to list their complaints like we were taking notes during a deposition.

It's a very stressful job, I mean- there is nothing like holding someones life in your hands. Every little thing you do as a nurse contributes to the big picture, so one mistake could be very harmful. It's an awesome responsibility, and unfortunately a lot of nurses are in it for the money. The more stressful the health care professions become, the more nurses become burned out. You have negative word of mouth, and bingo... less people choosing to become nurses. That obviously is causing shortages of nurses country wide, therefore causing more stress and the need for higher wages to compensate. It's a never ending cycling, and it just keeps getting worse.

So, my dilemma is whether or not to spend the time and money to become an RN, and to do something that I love and have the strong urge to do, and makes oodles of money- but will eventually hate because it is so stressful. I am also concerned with my daughters and their image of me. I don't want them to be ashamed because their mom works at Target (not that there is anything wrong with that, I love Target!). I just don't want them - or anyone- to think I work at Target because of lack of ambition.

Also, I am afraid that my friend Effie will think less of me. She started out as a nurses aid, and worked her butt off to become an RN. In 7 years time she went from nurses aid to a manager. We worked together and became friends instantly, and even though we live 2000 mile apart, we are still close. We are kindred spirits, and she has decided that if she wins the lottery, that she will buy me a house in California. Her husband Tom also likes my husband a lot, and we always had a great time whenever we'd go out together. We all have the same weird and twisted sense of humor, man I miss them! Anyway, I hear from her how the job hasn't changed a bit... I am still a little confused.

Finally, as I told John last night, "I am worried that I am going to have to find my edit button and fix it."

He says, "I didn't know you even had one anymore. I think we'd better just get you a new one." Ah, honesty. You gotta love it! OK, not really, but you at least have to sit there and endure it.

I need my edit button back because there is also this fear that I might say something that under normal circumstances my husband would think quite funny, but said in front of Richard- could be embarrassing.

"What do you want to be when you grow up," my daughter asked me at the tender age of 3, two years ago.

The answer is a little more complicated than I had originally thought. Finding a new occupation at the age of 37 is not something to take lightly. I guess I have to stop worrying about what others will think, and do what is best, but will also make me happy. There is no sense in sacrificing time with my family, putting us deeper in debt for something that will eventually give me an ulcer. No amount of money in the world is worth that to me.

You have one life, that's it. I don't want to look back and wonder if I did the right thing by being there for my girls. I would much rather give up the material things.

Life is too short, and sometimes you just gotta dance. :O)

Monday, October 23, 2006

Schmeared with pharmaceuticals , with no end in sight

Ohhhh October, you cheeky month... how you have tormented me so.
With your chill and changing leaves you have brought a pox upon this place.
You are but a frigid shrew, but my eyes and heart are aflame.
I curse thee!
But, shall come to long and lust for your sultry colors once again,
and forever more.

Ok, I'm done with my soap opera Shakespeare.

If you have been wondering why I have had a lack of posts, interest in posts, thinking of posts, thinking about possibly contemplating a post... Here it is. I will lay it out for ya.

End of October -to date: One or more of my household has been sick, probably in every combination possible.

Oct 4: My birthday, got a kitten 50 miles away from where I live.

Oct 6: Anna was diagnosed with pneumonia, 10 days of antibiotics ensue.

Oct 9: Took new kitten to the vet for possible fracture, fro climbing a child safety gate. Well, actually 2, one above the other.

Oct 13:
Emma is diagnosed with pneumonia, 10 days of antibiotics ensue.

Oct 16: Spent a useless 4 hours and 45 minutes in the ER because Emma decided that dusty light blue was her new favorite lip color. No breathing treatment, nada. Well, she did have her blood taken, a rectal temp, and a chest xray. *rolls eyes* Then was sent home without an actual treatment for what ailed her, her lungs. Nice.

Oct 18: Noticed both of my cats were acting poorly, took them to the vet. We thought our old lady kitty was going to have to put down. B12/anti inflammatory/ antibiotic shots, 7 day supply of antibiotics for 9 and 17 year old cats, and vet visit for 2 cats+ 136$
Also, I called the guy who wanted to buy my house to set up an appointment to see the house in day light, no call back.

Oct 19: called the guy again about the house, no call back. I told John that we missed our window, and I was po'd with him for not having made the time to call him in the last 3 weeks.

Oct 20: I finally received my Sims 2 Pets expansion pack, and when I wasn't shoveling antibiotics, cold medicine, or anti-pyretics down someones throat; or force feeding a 5 yr old, a 19 month old, and said elderly cats- I was checking out my new game.
Also, called the not very nice, poop head of a guy about the house, no call back. Admitted defeat shortly thereafter. *sigh* I am really beginning to strongly dislike this house.
Finally, call to cancel the appointment I made for myself to have my "stuff" looked at for suspicion of fibroids ( 2 weeks of cramping, bloating, back pain, 4 months of irregular cycles) because... TMI coming.... I started my cycle 2 days early.

On the day of my GYN appointment. Yeah.

Oct 23: take Anna and Emma to their follow up appointments since they are both done with their meds as of today, but get new meds for the congestion Emma has fro her new cold, and ear discomfort and fluid behind the membrane in Anna's left ear. Oh yeah, and a script for Anna's brand spankin' new bladder infection.

Today I gave:
2 cats and one child antibiotics in the morning
1 toddler cold meds and Tylenol
2 cats and the other kid antibiotics
2 kids antihistamines
1 kid Motrin for leg pain

I have no idea which sticky, pink, fruity/bubble gum flavored splotch on my person is which.

Let's see... Also, this month Emma has learned how to say no and cross her arms, and testing the threat of time out to the very second I stand up to get her- just like her big sister. And she has demonstrated the art of the Pleading Pleasssssse, just like her big sister. When I asked for a smooch yesterday, she said, "Ahhh, no."

Don't mind me, I'm just griping. It hasn't all been that bad...
She can now sing "I wannnnnt daaaat!" to any tune while shopping, and says "peas", "tanks", "oday", and "aw-white". (translation: please, thanks, OK, alright) She can count to ten. Well, sort of: "un, doo, tee, eight, nine", and knows her ABC's : "EFG, EFG, EFG..."

Oh yes, and she now calls me momma occasionally intead of Bubba. :O)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

13 things I can now say with a Midwestern accent, TT #7

Thirteen Things Mary can now say with a Midwestern accent

I am from Maryland originally, but now live in Iowa, where my husband if from. I would like to say that this has all happened since moving to Iowa from the Bay Area in SF about 5 years ago, but to tell you the truth- after 17 years of marriage you tend to pick a thing or two from the other half.

1. Ahn: Do you want the TV ahn?

2. Pohtaytohs: How about those mashed pohtaytohs!

3. Paynts: I just bought these paynts.

4. Aherrh: Aherrh those paynts from Taherrhget?

5. Caherrh: I really need to wax the caherrh, but I would hate to get it ahn my new Taherrhget paynts.

6. Jahn: You've met my husband Jahn, haven't you?

7. Mahhm: Jahn, tell your mahhm we'll be there at eight. I'll bring the pohtaytohs.

8. Pahhp: I refuse to call it pahhp, it's soda.

9. Aiahna: My daughter Aihna loves chocolate just as much as I do.

10. Stahhp: Stahhp playing with your pohtaytohs, before you get them ahn your paynts.

11. Gaherrhbige: Put out the gaherrhbige on your way out, will you?

12.Dahern: Dahern, I just said pahp.

13.Ough myeee gash: Ough myee gash! Did you see all the pie your mahhm ate?

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

We interrupt Respiratory Infection Month to bring you this product endorsement...

Do you have a sick toddler with too much time on her hands? Does your toddler have a knack for finding odds and ends on the floor such as misplaced brown Crayons?

Never fear, Mr. Clean is here!
With Mr. Clean Magic Eraser Cleaning Pads, that brown Crayon she just decorated your walls with will disappear in a jiff.

This concludes the product endorsement segment. We will now return to our regularly scheduled program, All My Coughing Children.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Well, Emma's next

Emma has pneumonia now, too. She has had a moist cough for 3 days now, but has only occasionally been running a low grade fever (below 100). Since Anna was diagnosed, I have been keeping a very close eye on Em since she lost her appetite, which is usually the first sign that my kids are about to get sick. Well, that and crankiness.

Today I noticed that she was breathing faster than normal, after I realized her cough sounded worse. This afternoon scared me, her lips became a little gray. In certain light , they looked pale, like she was really not feeling well, in other light they looked dusky. Right away I tickled her to make her laugh, which in turn triggered her cough. Man, did she cough up some stuff!. At first I saw no difference, and I thought to myself that maybe she just isn't feeling well- John's lips get like that when he is sick. After about 2 minutes her lips turned pinker than I have seen them in days.

This nagged at me, I knew I couldn't be imagining that she maybe wasn't getting all the oxygen she needed. There wouldn't have been such a change in color. I made her an appointment for 5:20 this evening with the doctor on call. I told the nurse that if we didn't make it in it would probably be because I took her the ER (if she has another episode like that). I said she seems to be fine now, the nurse agreed that that was a good plan.

My 19 month old had her first xrays, she did surprisingly well- only because I told her we were going to take pictures of her belly, LOL. She is such a ham! She didn't like having her arms held over her head by yours truly, and got a little teary, but all in all it went well.

So now my other baby is on antibiotics twice a day. My poor kids. I had a feeling that she was going to get it, a day before we had Anna treated, Emma took a swig from Anna's milk. Also, no matter how much we told Anna, she always managed to cough in her sisters face. She doesn't get it that even if you cover your mouth, if you are 2 inches from your sisters face she is still going to get some germ-age. Oh well... Anna got to spend that afternoon with her Nana, when we picked he up this evening I made sure to tell her it wasn't her fault that Emma got sick. I could tell she was relieved.

We all have been sick since September 26 , it seems like just when we start to get better we come down with another bug. Bug swapping, that's what it is. Yep, I think we have been alternating hosting each bug, and then pass it on.Since I usually get bronchitis at least once a year- sometimes a mild case and someties a very bad one- I have feeling I am next on the chopping block.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Daddy get your gun!

Just 2 weeks ago Anna was saying that Evan H. was her boyfriend. John and I asked her at different times if he knew he was her boyfriend, she said no. We both told her that you can't just tell a boy, you have to ask and see if he wants to be the boyfriend. Now, don't get me wrong... we aren't encouraging this. We had thought at that point that her crush was harmless. I asked her what kinds of things she thought boyfriends and girlfriends did.

"Well, play together... and kiss." *GASP*

I tried to not look stunned and said, "No kissing, you are too young for that, OK?" She nodded.

Anna informed me yesterday as we were out and about that she asked several boys to be her boyfriend, but all of them said no. I asked her about Evan, wasn't he the one she liked? She said he was, so I told her that if you really like a boy, you don't ask everyone else to be your boyfriend.

She sighed, "I just want a boy to like me, and to treat me nice." John and I exchanged sympathetic smiles, then explained to her that she really was too young to have a boyfriend in the first place.

She said OK, then shared with us one more tidbit,"Anna K. (Her friend Anna #2) and Meagan have each kissed a boy."

My eyes leaped from head, and my mouth stood ajar.

"I don't want to hear about you kissing any boys," trying to make it out potentially hazardous to her health, I added, "Besides, a lot of kids in your class have been sick lately... Maybe it's from too much kissin'. You all are passing around the same germs."

She quietly sat in the back seat of our car and gave it some thought. John also sat quiet in thought, then turned to me and mouthed something about us being in trouble, and silently saying for the 40th time that we need to get a gun. The teen years aren't really that far away, but I think we have a few years before we have to even think about it. Besides, we would still have to wait three days, right?

*Makes note to self to revisit the whole gun thingy in 2700 days, 11 hours and 29 minutes, just 3 days before her 13th birthday.*

Thirteen things I thought to myself last night, TT#6

Thirteen Things Mary thought to herself last night

We went shopping last night to get Anna some more long sleeve shirts at Kohls. As we were leaving, the door unexpectedly snapped back and caught John at the shoulder... So here are the thoughts that stomped around in my brain at 8:10 last night. All I can say in my defense is that I know my limitations, and did the best I could. :O)

Don't judge me. :OP

1. Yes, adorably stubborn husband, we need to have them file a report in case you have problems with your shoulder later.

2. I hope the manager hurries, we have to go

3. Yes, it is worth the sweltering heat of my coat, and holding my 20 lb toddler
for going on... 15 minutes?

4. No, dear husband, We ARE NOT LEAVING until she writes this up.

5. Is she thinking that she can wait us out, and we will just leave?

6. If she knew me , she would know that she is messing with the wrong momma.

7. She better get up here soon, I have to get these kids to bed

8. Hmmmm, the cashier that called the manager is avoiding eye contact

9. I am going to stand in front of this cashier until she calls the manager again, because if I open my mouth I am going to get myself in trouble.

10. Girlfriend, you did the right thing by picking up the phone.

11. Yeah sure, she'll be right here. That's what you said the first time.

12. Don't you walk up here like that, with that stupid grin on your face like you didn't keep us waiting for 20 minutes!

13. This one I shared with John as we were leaving, he burst into laughter and whole-heartedly agreed: It's a good thing I decided to sit down on the uncomfortable bench with the kids at the entrance , because I would have ripped her a new one!

And so you know I am a hot head, hence the name Almost Somewhat Positive. ;O)

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

19 months, and already a sense of humor

Yesterday, as I told Emma to stop one of the many naughty activities she would have me chasing her around for, Emma looked at me out the corner of her eye with a hint of mischief. Pause... Then she said what had me running to the kitchen so that she wouldn't see me laughing.


As in, "I am so annoyed that you wont let me put my toys in the cat's water bowl. Again!"

Later while she and I snuggled on the couch watching Beauty and the Beast, she had me reeling from laughter, again. If you have seen the movie- which BTW, is one of my all time favorite animated Disney films- then you will recognize the scene I am about to describe.

There is a part of the movie where the Beast is trying his hardest to woo Belle, and he decides to gussy up a bit. He gets a trim and takes a bath, and after his bath his hall tree (coat rack) is toweling him off. With his back to the viewer and a towel being tugged over his hind quarters, Emma points to the screen and says one precious, hilarious word.


Monday, October 09, 2006

Great... the cat too?

Saturday evening we had to go out and get Anna food that she wants to actually eat. Pneumonia can take not only your breath away, but also your appetite, so we basically bought her a bunch of junk to to get her to eat something. I know, this probably isn't going to win me any Blogging Blogrolled Happy Monday Mother of the Month awards (I can dream, can't I?), but it's better than her not eating at all.

To make matters worse, Emma got a flu shot and immunizations on Thursday so she has been running a fever and generally not feeling well all weekend, John was nauseated, and I have been having what I believe to be symptoms of fibroids (family history, I will spare you the details). This last week end, I think the only one feeling normals might have been our beast of a cat, Wolfie.

Before we left home, I made sure to put up the baby gates on the laundry room that is currently Zoey's- "birthday fur ball numero dos"- fortress of solitude. She was able to climb over one, so two would be twice as nice, no? NO. When we got home, she was sauntering about like she owned the joint. I only put the gates up for her protection because our oldest, Numa the 17 year old curmudgeon might hiss/swat her to death; and Wolfie (Beowulf), Sir Fat Tass, might pounce on her. Turns out my so called protection did more harm than good. She probably fell about 5 1/2 feet, which for a normal cat (if such a thing exists) wouldn't be a problem. Our Zoey is only 8 weeks...

She seemed to be fine, but over night her front left paw started to bother her. Sunday she started limping. She has her first kitten appointment tomorrow afternoon but I tried to get her one today- no openings. Looks like she will have to suffer until tomorrow morning, when John can drop her off on his way to work. Our vet said that it is common for kittens to have minor injuries from falls, but she is going to do an xray just to be sure.

The funny thing is that though she would limp on the front left paw but mostly avoided using it if possible, this morning she is standing on it and limping on the other.

John rolled his eyes and said, "What a faker."

Great, our kitten is a hypochondriac. >"<
Also, , don't forget to head over to Of Noble Character for the Carnival of Family Life. :O)

Sunday, October 08, 2006

I am in love...

With Fall! There is just something about Fall that fills me with joy.

Maybe it's the colors that Fall brings, they are so romantic! These colors always remind me of the love and warmth of family gatherings. Fall hues also remind me of a cozy fire; it's flames casting a glow over the room, burnished cheeks and sparkling eyes.

It could be the memories that make me love Fall so; memories of walks through crackling leaves, with the promise of hot chocolate upon returning home. There is nothing I love more than to feel the warmth of the sun my back, and a chill on my nose.

*I wonder what it is about Fall that makes us suddenly crave pumpkin and cinnamon, and marshmallows and yams.*

I often fantasize in the heat of summer about how the sun seems to light a Fall tree from within. I long for lingering sunsets, and the elegant shadows that trees make in the waning light. I can imagine my sweaters waking from their hibernation, lumbering from their cardboard dens; and the southern migration of winter shoes from my attic, down to their secluded nests of our closets.

The changing leaves mean many things to me, and I couldn't ever choose one favorite thing about Fall. I love it all.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Anna is sick

Anna has had a "cold" for about 10 days, she was seen last Thursday for ear pain, and her fever was very mild. It turned out that she had some build up in her right ear, the nurse irrigated it with warm water and peroxide. After cleaning it out, she had no ear pain. Sunday she started to cough, she does this sometimes towards the end of a cold so we were hoping she would kick the bug after a few more days.

Last night when I checked on her she felt warmer than usual. When I woke her up to check her temp, she complained of a sore throat. Her temp wasn't too bad, but still for having a cold for that long, it shouldn't have been that high. I threatened to not let her go to school for picture day, at 1 AM, after about 20 minutes of threatening, she finally took the Tylenol. I can't imagine what her temp would have been this morning if she hadn't taken it. This morning- 105.0.

I knew she needed to be seen, and tried to make her an appointment. Meanwhile I had to bribe/threaten her to take cough medicine and Tylenol after she threw up from coughing so hard, and had her get into a warm-ish bath to try to get her temp down. Her temp did go down, to 103.7. She was coughing up a lot of crud, I was pretty sure at that point she had pneumonia.

Just before I tried again to get her an appointment with her pediatrician ( I didn't want to take her to the ER, I have waited up to 4 hours to be seen, might as well wait in misery at home), she complained that her left chest hurt while taking breaths and coughing, then I knew for sure she had pneumonia. We finally got her in to be seen at 1:20 PM, after waiting in the exam room for 15 minutes for her labs to come back, she barfed all over herself. My poor kid! The chest xray she had after that confirmed she had the beginnings of left lower lobe pneumonia, and her White Blood Cell count was way up.

The doctor asked if I was "beating myself up", I said of course! He said not to, I did the right thing by bringing her in today, he understood basically that Anna can take awhile to get over a cold and it wasn't my fault. If we had waited another day, she would have had to have been admitted to the hospital. He also said luckily it is in the early stages, we caught it at the right time. He hadn't been able to hear any congestion, but suspected she had it because of all the WBC's floating around in her blood stream.

Anna got a loading dose 2 part antibiotic shot (because she had barfed in the office, and he wanted to make sure she kept the meds in her system), and we got to go home. We stopped at Wendy's on the way in hopes of getting Anna to eat something, she wanted nuggets. When we got home, she ate one and refused to eat anymore. I had to plead/bribe/threaten again to get her to take her Ibuprofen... She is her father's daughter, stubborn through and through. She then took a 2 hour nap.

She's up now, and her fever is 99.7. She looks so much better, thank goodness. I was so worried about her, and had prepared myself for a hospital stay, all the while feeling horrible that I didn't take her in sooner. I had this nagging feeling... next time I am going to listen , no matter what.

Edit to add: In my haste to get out the door to go get her "sick days supplies" I forgot to mention the most important part. Right after she told me her chest hurt, I sat down next to her on the couch and asked her if we could pray together. This surprised me very much:

"I already did."

I wanted to jump for joy, but instead of showing too much approval (you know how kids are sometimes, they like to do the opposite of what parents want just to watch us squirm), so I said good and asked her I could pray. She said yes, and I did.

Tonight after we said bedtime prayers, I asked her what she prayed for. She said that she asked Jesus to stop her chest from hurting when she coughed, and to fix her throat too. I asked her if she realized that about 40 minutes after that, that she reported that her pain was gone. Even though we were in the dark, I saw that she had a light bulb moment.

She said, "Ahhh, so he knew I really needed help today, and took my pain away because I asked."

I asked her if she felt Him with her as she prayed, something we like to call the "warm fuzzies." She said she did, and they felt yellow, pink, purple and white- all of her favorite colors. She thanked me for holding her hand while she got her finger poked for blood and got her shots, and for being there to clean her up when she got sick in the doctors office. We both got a good giggle out of imagining what daddy would have done had it been his shoes she had thrown up on. :O)

My daughters faith amazed me today. She didn't know if He was going to "help her" or not, but she prayed anyway,
I am really proud of her. I am hoping that she has gotten a little taste of what faith can bring. For me, it was a timely reminder.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

13 Things I learned since my last birthday, TT#5

13 Things I learned since my last birthday

1. My husband says that since I am into blogging and ripping apart blog templates, that I am a geek. *rolls eyes* This from an IT tech. ;O)

2. My 5 year old daughter thinks I am a goofball. My husband thinks I am a goofball. My MIL thinks I am a goofball... So it must be true, however this smacks a little of three pots calling the kettle black.

3. I have come to terms with my goofball-ed-ness, and I embrace it.

4. Though I have tried, I really dislike fruit punch.

5. Self deprecation cleanses the soul and lightens the heart. It's good to be able to laugh at yourself, and have others laugh right along with you.

6. You can't like everyone, and not everyone will like you. The same goes for "people pleasing".

7. My husband really hates to have attention (good or bad) drawn to himself, and detests even the best planned Birthday Shanghai.

8. I can home school Anna, but in a different way. :O)

9. Saying good bye to a dysfunctional relationship is hard.

10. I am no expert, but I know my way around a computer. Either that, or just extremely lucky.

11. There is such a thing as a prankster gene, I am sure of it. ;O)

12. Though I haven't completely given up on the idea of a dog, I think we are cat people.

13. (This is something my husband learned, but I am sure it is something he will never let me forget) Birthday presents for a wife can expensive, especially if you buy her fur:

225.00 (with supplies)
-100.00 (found Sasha a new home)
+ 54.00 (Humane Society kitten)
+33.00 (kitten supplies)
212.00 = The most expensive Birthday present to date, and priciest pound kitten ever.

Meet Zoey!

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Wednesday, October 04, 2006

My Birthday

Today, 37 years ago... I was born at Andrews Air Force Base In Maryland, at 4pm. The day was unseasonably cold, and believe it or not there was snow on the ground! I was born with a head full of black hair, and I have been told that I looked like an American Indian baby. Makes sense to me, I am half Mexican, half Caucasian.

I often wonder to myself about my life since that moment, about it's worth and meaning.

My mother and I have never really had a good relationship, except at the peak of my co-dependant moments. My mother is bipolar and has Multiple Personality Disorder, and my earliest memories of her are filled with sadness. There is a palpable darkness when I think of my childhood, and my whole life I have walked over broken glass and egg shells for her.

Two and a half years ago, my mother pulled the last straw. She cut off all contact with me a week and a half after I miscarried, and when I was finally able to get a hold of her her email said to me and my brothers (who were both having marital problems) that she was angry with us for not having called her all week. Her email proceeded to tell me what a horrible parent I was, and pointed out all the ways in which I was flawed. Three quarters of the email was directed at me, again- 1 1/2 weeks after I lost a baby, at 11 weeks.

Over the years I had restrained myself from telling her my true feelings, I didn't want to be the cause of her insanity, and her death. She has attempted suicide many times, has been hospitalized for psychiatric treatment at least 5 or 6 times, so my brothers and I lived in fear for our whole lives. Fear of her "making her crazy", of her hands and words, of what she might do. Two and a half years ago, I finally freed myself from those fears and co-dependency. I had had enough! I wrote her back and told her in so many words we were through, I wasn't going to just sit back and take it anymore. I said that she wouldn't know what a good parent was, she had a lot of nerve, and that she had no right to hurt me like that after losing a baby. I could go on and on about what I wrote to her, but my point is that I finally stood up for myself, and in my own way told her " I am mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!"

I am thankful that despite the beatings she got from the man that sired me (for supposedly not being his child, even though I looked so much like him as a child, unfortunately), and despite her telling my childhood shrink right in front of me that I was an unwanted pregnancy because of him, that she didn't abort me. Or give me up for adoption like she did my older half-sister.I suffered as a child (as did my brothers) at her hand, but better the devil you know... I could have had it so much worse in the system. I choose to believe this, and I cling to it.

* I have something positive to say, honest!*

Though I have no actual relationship with my mother at this time and have not spoken to her in over 2 1/2 years, I am grateful that she had me. I am glad I am here, that I survived my childhood- despite my parents. I choose to be a good parent and a good person despite my genetic donors, despite my childhood conditioning.

On this day, a day I have dreaded my whole life, every single year... I finally know me. I know my purpose, and I am happy to be here. I am happy to have been born on this day, and I have joy to be where I am today. I thank God for bringing me through the valley, and showing me that I am loved and have value, and for blessing me with all that I have.

It truly is a joyous occasion.

Your Birthdate: October 4

You have an extraordinary character - moral, responsible, and disciplined.
Your sincerely and honesty shine through in almost every situation.
Driven and focused, you rarely let your emotions get the better of you.
You're level headed and rational. People count on your to look at things objectively.

Your strength: Your unwavering loyalty and ethics

Your weakness: Your rock solid stubbornness

Your power color: Navy blue

Your power symbol: Shield

Your power month: April

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Matter, grace under fire, and a little fruit punch

1. the substance or substances of which any physical object consists or is composed: the matter of which the earth is made.
2. physical or corporeal substance in general, whether solid, liquid, or gaseous, esp. as distinguished from incorporeal substance, as spirit or mind, or from qualities, actions, and the like.
3. something that occupies space.

If you know anything about the circus that is me, you may know that matter is irrisistably drawn to my person- usually the front of my shirt. But, this post isn't so much about that as much as it is about the substances of which Anna is composed. ;O)

This last Saturday my MIL, Anna and I went to Candice's (John's cousin's girlfriend's) baby shower. Being braver than usual, I wore a brand new outfit... what will happen next will shock and amaze you! Inside of 5 minutes of our arrival, and after arguing that since Anna is the normal messy 5 year old that maybe fruit punch in the host's living room was not such a good idea- Anna proceded to spill said fruit punch on the carpet. Fortunately, the host's carpet just happened to be a lovely mauve color so the mishap blended right in.

I quietly chided Anna as I cleaned the spill up, and quickly moved her punch out of arms length. Meanwhile, I turned mauve while apologizing to the hostess. Thankfully the attention soon moved from Anna and I, and the baby shower was under way. As we sat and munched on nachos, we talked and joked about babies, puppies, and mauve carpeting, Anna had managed to get her hands on her punch and sipped it quietly on the floor, to my right. Much to my horror, I managed to uncross my left left while punting- yes, PUNTING her styrofoam cup right out of her hand!

It went a little like this:

Anna: Arghh!

Me:*in slow motion* OOOOOOOOOH MARRRR GAAAARRRRHHHHHDDDD! *repeat 10 times, at normal speed*

None of this is that shocking or surprising to me, or to anyone else in my husband's family for that matter. What surprised me was this: despite having fruit punch dripping from her face onto her almost new shirt and pink camoflauge pants, my daughter sat there with a stunned look on her face, and arms poised in the requisite "I am soaked" position- she began to laugh. Her eyes lit up and crinkled, and she began to giggle uncontrollably. Her shirt and pants were soaked in spots (thank goodness she wore pink camo), but she sat there while 3 or more women attended to her.Now everyone in the room was giggling, mostly because I couldn't stop myself from taking the Lord's name in vain (see above), and was scurrying around for more napkins.

Under normal circumstances Anna can become upset very quickly, sometimes erupting into tears when things don't go her way. We have come to terms with the fact that this is just Anna, she can be high strung and a little high maintenance at times. *shrug* That's our girl... we deal with it as best we can. Lucky for me, the hostess brought Anna a clean T-shirt; this allowed me to clean her up in the restroom, soak her shirt in cold water, and also hide in humiliation. Even though I had once again managed to make a spectacle of myself, and the fact that she was feeling a little under the weather, Anna was surprisingly cheerful about the whole thing.

"Wow, mom... you sure are a goofball. Ya got punch all over me!" :O)

I am proud of my girl for keeping her cool, and still managing to have a good time despite her mom having wrecked the mauve carpet once again, and her entire (new favorite) outfit. I don't think that I could have accepted the cold wet fact that I would have had to sit there another 2 hours like that, and I am certain I would have been the one in tears. I have told her several times how proud I am that she was able to have a good time after all of that. My girl Is made of tougher stuff than I have given her credit for, and I realized I had taken that for granted.

To finish the story- soon after realizing that I had managed to escape complete humiliation buy having not spilled a single drop of fruit punch on my brand new white T-shirt, I dropped my cake on my lap twice and wrote on my brand new Mossimo Army green pants with an ink pen, by accident. I also realized that though I had survived the whole ordeal without any matter depositing itself on it's accustomed spot on my bosom, the Universe had righted itself and balance was restored once again. Three times over.

On my pants.