Wednesday, December 26, 2012
I was home alone that day, with both kids in school/day care. I had seen a headline that morning about a shooter at an elementary school, but considering it didn't state "x number of people killed" or whatnot, I assumed that they disarmed him. Obviously, I was wrong. It was 2 or 3 hours later that I saw the news on tv or facebook and was horrified, of course. I truly felt like I was going to be sick to my stomach. Who does that? What kind of evil person does that? Now, my undergrad degree (well, my only degree so far) is in psychology, so I do understand and emphathize with issues of mental health. But this goes beyond any kind of understanding.
I tried to avoid the news, but you can't, unless you physically turn off the tv, radio and computer. Yet at the same time, I was drawn to it, trying to understand it, probably deep down, trying to figure out what happened so that somehow I can keep my babies safe. I picked Ally up at her regular time, and picked Kelly up early. I just wanted my girls where I could see them and hug them.
There was a quote misattributed to Morgan Freeman, that stated disturbed people look at the way the mainstream media covers such tragedies, and how we know the names of the shooters but rarely the victims, and that people crave that attention. I have to agree with that to a certain extent. I appreciated that Anderson Cooper wouldn't say the shooter's name.
We didn't know what to say to Ally. I know that some schools had a moment of silence for the victims, so I wanted her to have an idea of what they were talking about. So, we broached the subject by stating that something bad happened and people died. It wasn't until a few days later that I told her it was at a school. I don't want her scared to go to school. Of course, this is one of the core issues with these shootings--are we not supposed to send our kids to school? To a movie theater? To see a polician speak? I think that Giselle summed it up very well. At school, those people are there because they love kids. They would do anything to keep the kids safe. The teachers and staff in Sandy Hook? True heroes.
And I broached it for nothing--she said that the school didn't mention it. I did think it was important to point out, again, as Giselle mentioned, that if a teacher tells you to do something weird like everyone hiding in a closet or whatever, to do it. One thing that has irritated me is that we have received no letter or even automated call from our principal or superintendent. I didn't want to be another parent inundating the principal with calls, but I'm sure that I'm not the only parent wanting to know that our school has a plan and practices for such situations.
This tragedy has affected most people, I think. Sadly, when most of us hear about a death or something sad, we quickly forget about it. I don't think that has happened with this situation. Certainly not for me. I look at Kelly's little face when I am tucking her in and just get upset again, not understanding how someone could shoot a small child. These children were somewhere in between the ages of my girls. It horrifies me to think of the fear and pain in that classroom. How many cried for their parents. It's just too much. I can't imagine what those first responders how to live with. With the shooting happening so close to the holidays, I just feel that it adds another layer of horror. If you lose someone, even a parent or grandparent, the holidays are tough. Even years later. But to lose a child, and right before Christmas, it's unfathomable. I kept thinking of the unopened presents that are probably sitting in these families' house and it brings me to tears. While I'm not a religious person, I hope that these families find some comfort from their faith or their friends/family to see them through this time.
Thursday, November 29, 2012
The evil bastard used it as punishment, and the worst part of it is that he is still out there. No, I'm sorry--the worst part is that he has 2 daughters of his own, so you know that he is doing it to them too.
Apparently, a 2 year old is not considered a credible witness and the police really couldn't do anything. She wasn't actually raped, so I don't believe there was any physical evidence. Regardless, as N's mom said to me, that makes these small kids the perfect victim. No one believes them, and even if they do, they aren't considered credible in a court of law. Now, I have two kids, and I get that they make stuff up. My girls are incredibly creative when it comes to play and you just wonder where they come up with this stuff. But no 2 year old would make up what N said happened.
I was just sick on the phone as N's mom was telling me these things. She is rightfully angry, even after all this time. I don't know how to handle it. I did have a short talk with Ally reinforcing that no one should see or touch her "private area". (I know we should deal with anatomically correct terms, but we just don't.) And if they ever did, to tell us immediately. She wasn't exactly receptive because she wanted to play instead. The statistics out there are boggling with regards to women being raped, anywhere from 1 in 5 to 1 in 4. I'm sure that the percentage of children being molested is more than any of us can bear. (I just attempted to google for that percentage and now I am afraid what horrible things are going to pop up in my browser.)
I think that I have taught my kids to be safe, but I just want to keep them locked in my house forever.
Saturday, October 13, 2012
Then she sent me over to the lab for bloodwork and then sent me home to collect, ahem, other samples. That was disgusting. I am still waiting for results--she said the bloodwork should be back in a day and the other samples would take a while, depending on what specific test. I finally called on Friday afternoon, but the receptionist said the bloodwork results were in but she didn't know why the doctor hadn't done something, it wasn't clear to me, but obviously they weren't ready for me know. Sorry for the massive run-on sentence. Anyway, I hope to hear something Monday.
However, even just drinking liquids, my stomach was SOOOO upset. And my head was killing me. By Monday night, I was incredibly hungry and my stomach was not rumbly, it was making scary noises! I called Tuesday morning and she said to stay on the liquids for another day. Once again, I was ravenous, but oddly enough, my stomach wasn't making noises by that point. By Tuesday night though, I wasn't really wanting to eat anymore. I did think that I was going to pass out--I was so weak and out of it, that I literally stumbled to bed wondering if I was going to die! Wednesday, I got to start the lovely BRAT diet--again, I truly dislilke two of those things. I ate 6 pieces of toast that day and actually choked down half a banana. I hate bananas so much, my mom couldn't believe me when I told her I ate part of one!
So, I am slowly trying to eat again and see what settles okay. Things still aren't right, but they seem a little better. I am still having my headaches, but she has me on two new meds for that--gabapentin and riboflavin of all things. I am also trying to stay hydrated, so hopefully I never have to drink 2 liters of liquid in half of a day! Blech! We will see what happens next week!
Saturday, October 6, 2012
However, something is going on with me and I need to put it down on paper...err, just get it out of my head. I have felt like crap for the last 8-9 days--horrible headaches and stomach pain/diarrhea. Now, I am a sickly girl--always have been. I have migraines, so the headaches didn't seem that unusual. I also have irritable bowel (sorry if that's TMI), so the stomach thing wasn't surprising either. But the length and severity of both, combined right now, are scaring me. I've taken my meds for both and neither are working well.
Needless to say, being this sick has made me a little depressed. It's difficult to function--I was sick to my stomach while taking Kelly to school, and I can't be far away from a bathroom, so I can't run my errands. Not to mention, my headache makes me dizzy and I don't trust myself to drive.
But Friday morning, I started to wonder if there is some underlying problem--brain tumor? Stomach cancer? Are they both symptoms of something horrible? As much as I didn't want to, I called and made an appointment for the doctor on Monday. I'm hoping she will send me for an MRI or CAT scan so I can either know or rule out this scary possibility.
And going down this road, at least mentally, has me thinking about what I would miss with my girls and that, in turn, is making me emotional. I have felt stuck in a rut the last few years, but still don't know what I want to be "when I grow up". The idea that this is it, and I may not get a chance to see my kids grow up or ultimately make a difference in the world, is terrifying.
Wednesday, June 27, 2012
So, summer has been busy around here. About a week after Ally's school ended, we took the girls on their first trip to Disney World! It had been a secret up until two weeks before, when I screwed up and said the word "Disney". Mike and I had both said it before, but the girls never noticed. Until that night when Ally figured out what we were talking about! Mike and I had been to Epcot years before, but this was our first real trip. It was also the girls' first flight and I was incredibly worried about how they would behave. Not that they misbehave often, but when you take into account how early you have to get to the airport, and then add in the actual 2 hr flight, it is a long time to stay still. We flew into Tampa, since it was cheaper (and we were planning to visit my family out there while we were down), but then we still had a 90 minute drive to Orlando.
The girls actually did really well on the flight. Mike sat into between them, and I was on the other side. I hadn't flown in 9 years, and it bothered me much more than it had in the past. I didn't even want to try to look out the window! Neither of the girls were scared, thankfully they were more excited than anything. When we landed, we drove out to Clearwater just to walk in the sand and play in the water a little. Ally and Kelly had never been to the gulf coast area, or even to the Atlantic area.
|Playing in the water!|
|They preferred to play in the sand, burying my feet!|
The first day we went to Magic Kingdom and told the girls there was a big surprise!
|It was imperative that we meet Rapunzel.|
|This is at the Lego store in Downtown Disney. They have all kinds of characters made out of legos--phenomenal.|
|We had to meet the Mouse family, of course.|
|And, last but not least, we finally met Princess Tiana. She was much more popular than I expected!|
However, it was 93-95 degrees almost every day and I sweated like I have never sweated in my life. We usually only stayed for about 4-5 hours before we were all done for the day--hot, tired, hungry. I don't think that I would take them again in the summer. I would rather yank them out of school in March or November--and I don't normally advocate that. But it was much too hot to truly be able to enjoy and appreciate the parks.
And on our "off" day, we went to explore Downtown Disney. Huge Disney store with all kinds of merchandise. A huge Lego store (as referenced above) with Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs and other characters made out of legos. Kelly was whining that her belly hurt, so we thought she was hungry. We got in the car, she started to cough right after we pulled out of the parking spot. I looked at Mike and yelled, "Is she going to puke??" Mike stopped the car and yanked her out. He barely set her down in the lot before she threw up. Mortifying all around. At least the kid learned somewhere how to avoid her clothes and most of her shoes. I took her back in the bathroom to see if she was done and to try and clean her up. By the end of the day, she was eating and playing and laughing. I was hoping that it was a fluke thing, maybe because of the heat. But unfortunately, the next two days we continued to hear about her belly. To the point that she was hysterical and didn't want to meet any characters. She just wanted to go home--less than 2 hours after we parked at Animal Kingdom. The cast members were great, trying to cheer her up, but she was in pain There isn't much you can do for a 3 year old with a tummy ache. But both days she perked up and felt better and was able to enjoy herself. Thankfully, she didn't get sick again and the flight home didn't bother her.
Even with that, it was a great trip. I have almost 400 pics--we had to stop and buy another Disney photo album before we left! :) Maybe I'll post some more later!
Friday, May 18, 2012
She did great on the drive over to the hospital, talking and singing, even though we had to wake up her two hours early at 5:30. I think part of that was because her Daddy was there. :) We got called back quickly, and talked to all the nurses and doctors, who just loved her! Her surgery was supposed to start at 7:30, but it was closer to 8 by the time they actually took her back. The surgery only took 45 minutes or so, which is what the ENT originally quoted.
We went to the recovery room and she was quietly whining and moaning for mommy. It broke my heart, so I tried to comfort her and rub her head and back to let her know I was there. But she wasn't really awake yet, not for at least 10 more minutes. When she did wake up, she screamed and cried and screamed and cried some more. And she just wanted her Daddy to hold her. I joked with Mike that I should have just stayed home in bed. I think that was the last time we laughed for two days. She didn't want the popsicles, just a little bit of water. She was so out of it that she didn't even calm down to watch the Dora dvd they provided. We kept trying to settle her down, thinking that all that screaming must be excruciating. Didn't work. She finally threw up all over Mike and the floor, which was just lovely. But the nurse said she's had some kids throw up multiple times and we did avoid that.
Mike sat in the back seat with her for the drive home, and she dozed off. She spent most of the day sleeping on one of us and, when not asleep, screaming. Kelly didn't want ice cream, didn't want popsicles, slushies, ice, anything. We forced a few bites of melted popsicle down her in order to give her the drugs (tylenol with codeine and antibiotic). She actually ate a decent dinner--tiny pasta--and wanted seconds. I thought somehow 3 year olds really did bounce back quickly. Eh. She wound up in our bed (which is not unusual), but the screaming was horrible. None of us could sleep and nothing would pacify or soothe her. Exhausting. Again, we tried to convince her that crying and screaming would only make it worse, but have you ever tried to use logic with a 3 year old? Especially a 3 year old in serious pain??
After that first night, we couldn't get her to eat. We had to force her off of our laps and say that she could come back if she ate a few bites. We had to give her the medicine and I didn't want to do that on an empty stomach. She wouldn't eat slushies/popsicles/ice cream until 3 or 4 days later. She was actually eating meat before she wanted anything like the ice cream. Finally, Mike took her to the dr for the 1 week checkup and she was 80% healed, which was great. I fully expected the dr to say there were complications, but he wasn't worried. Meanwhile, I was ready to take her to the ER since she wouldn't eat. Kelly is tiny (30-31 lbs at the age of 3 1/2) and a week of hardly eating was scaring me.
But it took that full week and then she started to be my Kelly again. Back to picky eating and being silly.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
The results came back that her tonsils and adenoids were "significantly large" and some other insane terms. The dr said that it could impact her breathing (that freaked me out), probably is why she breathes/snores so loud, and could also be a factor with her speech development issues.
But he gave us the choice as to whether or not we should take her tonsils/adenoids out, saying that half of drs would operate now, and the other half would wait and see. We waited one or two months and decided just to do it now, and scheduled it about six weeks ago.
Well, tomorrow is the day. This momma is really worried. I trust the doctor--he did Ally's tubes, both of Kelly's tubes and in fact, even did my tubes as a kid. But this surgery is longer and inherently more complicated than tubes, and she is my baby. I hate watching your child being wheeled away into the operating room. Not to mention, she doesn't really understand what is happening tomorrow and I don't want to scare her. I've tried to explain, but she just says, "No. I don't want to go to the doctor."
I know that, obviously, there are much worse reasons she could be having surgery. I will be glad when this is over. Of course, then I will have to pull out all the stops trying to comfort her and make sure she drinks or eats something. I just hope it works!
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Anyway, today she was looking at an old album of pictures and kept asking if the little girl was her. I explained to her in each and every picture, that no, that is Allison. Which she knows, because we have looked at these before. I finally told her there was only one picture that she was in, and I showed it to her.
I asked Kelly if she knew where she was in the picture (after she said that Allison was her), and she yelled, "In your tummy!" I laughed and said yes. Then she asked, "What was I wearing? Was I wearing this?" and pointed to her shirt and pants! I laughed for quite a while at that one! Not a question of how did I get there or get out, but the important question of fashion! LOL! I had to call Mike with that one! She was certainly stinkin' cute then!
We spent a couple of hours in the basement, just in case. I picked Ally up, and then we headed downstairs. I had lots of supplies with us--snacks, water, flashlights, cell phone, camera to documents any damage--again, just in case. I even had the girls keep on their sneakers, in case we had to leave or any kind of damage, like walking over broken glass. Right after we got home, I turned on the news and heard that a tornado had possibly touched down, and was 10 minutes away from the city where my brother works. I called my mom and she was panicked, as was I. He wasn't picking up his cell phone! Once I finally talked to him, he was more than halfway home and out of the worst (or so we thought) part. Annoyingly, he was rather flippant and nonchalant about the bad weather. Adding to my panic on Friday afternoon was the fact that the National Weather Service had designated it as a "PDS"--particular dangerous situation--and that it is rare for that designation in this area. Apparently, it is normally used in Tornado Alley.
So, I huddled downstairs in front of the tv while the girls played games. My husband was on the road, and all I kept hearing about was possible funnel clouds and severe damage. Some places saw hail the size of softballs! The only thing that was remotely reassuring was that the most severe storms seemed to be south of us, and my husband was able to get home safely.
Sadly, several small towns in Indiana and Ohio were devastated--some were practically wiped off the map. And the fatality list continues to grow...so tragic. So scary. Please keep these families in your hearts and prayers.
That night, as I watched the news, I looked at Mike and said, "This is why I panic. Because you never know when it will hit YOU."
Friday, March 2, 2012
It reminds me of the day, almost exactly a year ago, that they were calling for tornadoes and severe weather in the afternoon again. The forecasters sounded dire, and calling for it to hit right about pickup time. Obviously, it's a control thing but I worry about my babies being someplace else during a dangerous time. I freaked out and, after conferring with Mike, ran out to pick her up early so that we would miss the bad storms.
Well, that plan didn't quite work out. I threw Kelly in the car and we drove to the school. By the time we got there, it was raining hard and I just ran in while holding Kelly, trying to shelter her face. But then Ally took forever to get to the office, and when we left, it was a deluge. I debated staying at the school, but was fearful that it would get even worse. We sped home while I attempted to see through the rain--the wipers on full-blast really weren't cutting it--and then it began to hail!!!!!!!!! The whole time on the road, I was alternating between cursing and praying. We ran downstairs when we got home, but it was pretty much over. The forecasters were so wrong on their timing and I was so pissed! I'm thankful that we were okay, but we wound up in the worst of it.
I took the following pics just in case we had roof damage, but you can see we had some decent hail. Oh, and just an FYI, I hate to drive in the rain, any rain.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
Friday, January 20, 2012
Saturday, January 14, 2012
We, well I, have had a huge issue with the birthday planning. When I was little, my mom made me invite all the girls in my class to my party--even the brats who teased me and made me cry. My birthday is in April, so we were usually able to have it outside. Obviously, with Ally's birthday in January, that's isn't happening. Nor can I afford it, or even imagine having 13 little girls running around. Oy!
So every year I have guilt over how to handle this. I don't want to hurt first-graders' feelings. Last year, we invited 5 or so kids and the teacher put the invites in the folder that went home every day. No problem and it was a small but fun party.
This year, I have the same guilt especially since she decided to wanted to invite a BOY! What? Here I am trying to figure out some way to invite all the girls and now you want to invite a boy? What does this mean?????
So, Mike slammed the brakes on inviting more than 6 kids and we were fine with the whole inviting the boy thing (though I still have questions...).
Her teacher this year does the same folder procedure--send the folder every day, and it gets sent home every night with notes, homework, fliers, etc. I sent the invites in Ally's folder with a note for Mrs. D to put the invites in the other kids' folders. I have explained to Ally that the kids who aren't invited might feel hurt that they aren't included--we are talking about 6 year olds here.
So that afternoon, I asked what happened. She said that Mrs. D CALLED EACH CHILD INTO THE HALLWAY TO GIVE THEM THE INVITE! Yes, I am screaming because I am livid! Apparently, she did it while they were cleaning up from breakfast. I asked if the other kids noticed and she said yes, they all wanted to know what was going on. One of the little boys said he was jealous. I am so ticked. Allison said that the kids could have noticed it in the folders as well, but I feel like Mrs. D made a HUGE production out of it, which was exactly what I was trying to avoid. Allison could have done it much more nonchalantly than that. Livid. Livid. Livid.
Am I wrong?