Archive for October, 2012

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Baby, It’s Cold Outside

October 29, 2012

I am extremely thankful the Chief is home. We currently are safe and dry and we have power. The Chief also managed to score a generator this morning–though we had made contingency plans of bags of ice and even planning to walk through the rain to a neighbor’s to have my medicine stored in her fridge should we lose power.

So far so good.

No school today–and I should have gone on last night to acknowledge that fact to avoid the o-dark-thirty wake up call to tell me my substituting services were no longer needed. And there will be no school tomorrow as well.

It has been a productive day. I have almost planned an upcoming scouting event in its entirety–I just have three more things to type up. I watched two new Halloween cartoons with T1 & T2. Got a quick nap to make up for the early morning.

But what happens if Halloween is canceled? Now I’m actually glad we went to the amusement park earlier than usual this month. Sure it threw off my sense of timing and my inner holiday clock thinks we should be carving a turkey any day now … but at least I got my scare on! Sadly, the scout policy is that if school is canceled so is scouts so we will not be having our party tomorrow night.

I hope T1 & T2 remember these storms. I really only remember one East Coast whopper from my childhood–I just can’t remember the name. Neither of them remember Isabel greeting us in our new home 9 years ago this past September. Irene was kind of a non-event for us last year and a little anti-climactic after the earthquake and the pre-storm. The girls will tell you the “Thursday storm was worse than the hurricane”. But they will also look a little sad as that was our last night with our beloved Cassie.

The Chief has been home for Isabel, Irene, and now Sandy. I’m grateful. I’m thinking we should send the girls to bed early and I’ll put on “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” and make the most of it.

Oo, I’ve been called to dinner–the girls made it! Stay safe!

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Squishy Squishy

October 25, 2012

I went for my first mammogram today. At o-dark-thirty! To his credit, the Chief offered repeatedly to go with me and as much as I wanted him there, the children could not be left to get ready for school alone.

The actual squashing wasn’t so bad. It was the top plate jammed against my pectoral muscles that hurt and left red marks. Ouch!

The tech was good and caring. I appreciated that.

This is the shirt I bought at Wal-Mart to wear on the days my mom has chemo. A portion of the proceeds went to the National Breast Cancer Research Foundation.

I did not request the two-hour call back but I was assured that if something was seen I would get a call later today or first thing tomorrow by a nurse. If everything was normal a letter would go out either later today or first thing in the morning.

I was also told that it is not uncommon for a call-back on a first time mammogram. They have nothing to compare it to so they want to make sure. That is what a base-line is for so that is reassuring.

One of these days I need to sit down and write out my medicines and my medical history and keep it in my purse. I need to do this for me and for the girls. Actually, for the Breast Cancer Awareness badges they are earning one activity is to write down the family history. It will be good to get it done.

Another activity was to visit a mammography center. I silently debated about bringing T1 with me. Ultimately I decided not to–just not knowing how she’d do emotionally. I will bring both of them when I get one done at 40 (they will be 14 & 12 respectively).

What’s your opinion? Would (is) 12 have been too young to take her? Or is it a wise thing to keep them prepared and to understand early detection is going to be the key?

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Hmmm…

October 19, 2012

So I body-checked T1 into the wall and took down two 14 year olds. Not sure if I should be proud of that but after subbing 5th grade for two days it felt so good!

Ask me about all my aches and pains in the morning.

Where have I been for the past month? Riding the continual roller coaster that is my life. The Chief came home.

Surprise! Hey, welcome home; take a nap ’cause I’m subbing so I’ll see you this afternoon!

Now that I think about it, because you’re home and the house is in the middle of being painted, can you change out the mirror and light fixture while the crew is working?

What? The old one was a fire hazard?! Surprise! It is just like being at work–did I say welcome home yet?

I actually did feel bad about that. I really do make it a point to let the Chief get his land-legs before throwing my massive to-do list at him. But really if he hadn’t taken down the fixture before the guys painted, if we had discovered all the not-to-code problems later, it would have been a waste to have had the bathroom done. Now the bathroom looks awesome–and it is to code too.

I’ve been subbing quite a bit. All by request too. Half-day here, full-day there. It takes a lot out of me but not as much as it used to. And I’ve turned down jobs too. Two days in a row is max for me. I need to recharge my batteries after that. Or run down and plow over teenage soccer players…

T2 has been declared “Normal.” Okay, yes, what I saw was unusual but according to her blood work everything returned to normal. So it wasn’t a defect in her blood–it was her blood reacting to something. Either the viruses giving her the ear infections or the antibiotics for said viruses. We even looked at a very common condition that many (I’m talking many) people have and don’t even know it. Now according to my one very knowledgable friend who keeps me sane in situations like this, one “normal” result for this condition does not necessarily mean that is the case. But it is not a life threatening condition so I’m not going to sweat it at the moment.

I can just imagine T2 at doctor appointments in the future listing all her mystery illnesses–before she even gets to the whacked out genes and family history! Honestly, I’m really wishing she didn’t have these mystery illnesses. It would be a lot less stressful for us. Especially because it only seems to happen when the Chief is at sea. At least the Chief was home to get the good news.

I’m pretty certain I posted this … my mom has breast cancer.

My.

mom.

has.

breast.

cancer.

I wear my pretty butterfly shirt on the days she has chemo. That development was a shock to us. I think I’m still numb. My sister had a call back on her first mammogram but it was just a calcification. Mom lost her hair. We’re not talking the thinning I’ve had since starting MTX. No. Her’s came out in clumps. She asked my brother to shave the rest.

My mom has cancer.

Actually, she’d had a non-melanoma skin cancer before. But this is different.

Did some reading. Seems that on those commercials that list all the side-effects of the drugs I’m on just to be able to walk … “And other cancers” means non-melanoma skin cancers and metastatic breast cancer. Um, hello? I’m pale. Very pale. I already have half her genes anyway so who is to say the drugs will have anything to do with it anyway?

I still get goosebumps when I think about the most amazing and real way God answered my prayers this summer at camp and yet I found myself morbidly asking why? Why answer my prayers? Why heal me? Yeah, the thoughts of my own mortality mixed with the realizations that my parents, the Chief’s parents just aren’t getting any younger. After all, my father had spent a month in the hospital prior to all this. Did He answer so that all my ducks were in a row? Closure before the bottom fell out?

I don’t know. I’m still numb. Sure other people’s lives are worse off. Other people’s parents are ill, far more seriously than my mother (she is only Stage 1 and prognosis is very good). T2 is NOT sick … abnormally normal, but not sick. The Chief is an amazingly supportive husband and the girls and I lack for nothing.

But I have panic attacks every week when scouts rolls around. I can only physically and mentally sub for two days in a row max–what would happen if I actually had to work full-time? The Chief and I are still working on things … getting closure was only the beginning and I have such a long way to go. Between me and him I still have to figure out how much is/was the PTSD, how much was me and how much was him … we’re in uncharted marriage ground here.

Speaking of uncharted territory … my 12-year-old. I’m supposed to be keeping track of how she behaves when it is just me and when the Chief is home. Actually, I’m beginning to think it may be more telling to look at her behavior and moods when it involves or doesn’t involve her sister. Jealousy is a green-eyed monster disguised as a blue-eyed girl in this case. And I’m still left wondering how much of it is the PTSD, how much is just me and how much is her … and how badly have I already messed her up? And how do I help?

That is what I have been up to. Thanks for stopping by!

BTW, choice number two with the “oriental rug” and black dress has gotten the overwhelming approval. I’ll post on the event after it takes place next month.

And I go for my first mammogram next week. I’ll post about that too.

Oh, and I know God answered for His glory–I’ve just got to figure out how He wants me to show that, to live that in my life. I know He’ll give me that answer too, if I just look harder and finish what He set in motion.

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Fashion Dilemma: VOTE!!

October 17, 2012

Hey there! No, I didn’t drop off the face of the earth–the Chief just came home. Soccer season plus the annual family trip to our favorite amusement park for their Halloween mayhem plus the start-up of scouts has kept me very busy. I will try to do an update post next week on a few of the other things going on. Right now T1 has challenged me to post this.

Last year, the Chief had to go to Scotland for a seminar. I got to tag along but I had no idea what to wear based on the fact I had been out of the professional setting for YEARS and I had lost a bunch of weight. Needless to say I got a great deal of advice about what was “Business Formal vs. Business Casual” and what would be appropriate to wear to the gala dinner. Let the hilarity ensue–miracle tailor telling me “You have no butt. You no look good.”–and ultimately, all the American wives opted for black pants suits while the British wives wore Sunday dresses (what I had wanted to wear but I ended up in a pants suit with a bright-colored jacket).

So, today’s Fashion Dilemma. The Chief has been asked to represent his company to receive an award on its behalf. I get to go. Hey, I can sit through boring speeches to eat a nice meal and have a child-free night in a nice hotel. But what to wear? Is everyone going to be in boring black pants suits again? Should I just wear the one I have (after what I paid for miracle tailoring I should get my money’s worth)? Or should I wear the dress I had purchased?

I have a third option which is a sleeveless black sheath, belted at the high natural waist. Because this will be a November night I will need some kind of jacket. So I went to Christopher & Banks (the place I ultimately ended up at for properly fitting slacks and discovered I’m a Short rather than an average–huh?). This store has nice stuff but I wanted to make sure I didn’t end up with something more matronly than my age. I love fall colors but wanted something I could wear all winter, not just October and November. (Again for the price I needed to be able to justify the expense.)

So I was trying on the black dress with the new jacket. The Chief was fine with it. I thought I looked pretty good in it. We called T1 in. Her eyes bugged out. “What is that?”

“A jacket.”

“First, it needs to be zipped up to be a jacket.” Zip.

“Well?”

“You look like you are wearing an oriental rug.”

“What?! It’s like brocade. You know, like the upperclass ladies at the Renn Faire wear.”

“Exactly. The Renaissance? You’re wearing a rug.”

So now I need your help. Below are the three choices. With both dresses I will be wearing a nice pair of knee-high boots. Please send me a comment and let me know your choice! Thanks!

For the original posts, please see:

Fashion Dilemma 1

Fashion Dilemma 2

Fashion Dilemma 3

Fashion Dilemma 4

Fashion Dilemma 5

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