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Monday, October 5, 2009

Creamy Roasted Green Chile Chicken & Rice Soup

I don't think I've ever blogged about a recipe but this one is too yummy not to share. I've been making this soup for years and have no idea where I ran across the original recipe. Doesn't really matter since I've changed it up. I have a hard time following a recipe exactly the way it's written and usually the only recipes I have are for desserts since you have to be more exact in baking.

This is how I like to make this one:

2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
1 medium onion, diced
3 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbs oil
10 cups chicken broth
6 roasted green chiles, peeled & diced
2 cups minute rice*, uncooked
2 tsp salt
3 tsp cumin
3 tsp oregano
1 1/2 tsp black pepper
3/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 cups sour cream
1 cup heavy whipping cream

Saute the chicken, onion and garlic powder in the oil until the chicken is no longer pink. Add the broth, green chile's, rice and all seasonings. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove from heat.

Stir in sour cream and whipping cream. Serve immediately.

*Instead of the rice you can add 5 peeled & diced potatoes or 2 cans of great northern beans.

Enjoy!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Eight Years Ago Today...

Eight years ago, I wasn't a mother.

Eight years ago, I was in a new relationship and had just moved in with my boyfriend.

Eight years ago, I wasn't too concerned with the state of the world or our future in it.

But then, eight years ago, terrorists hijacked 4 planes and changed the fate of our nation forever.

I was at work on the morning of September 11, 2001 when my manager started walking very quickly down the aisles of cubicles and telling each of us, calmly, to get our things and go home immediately. We all questioned her as to why we were being sent home and she ignored us all. As we slowly gathered our things and shut down our computers, her sense of urgency started showing. I remember her raising her voice a little louder and saying, "Come on! Let's go! Hurry up people! Get home to your families!"

She was never very personable with us as a manager. She kept business hours very professional and didn't talk to us about our personal lives or families ever. For her to tell us to get home to our families was this huge red flag to all of us and we hustled out of there.

I don't remember getting home to our apartment. I don't remember driving there or the traffic on the way. It was all a blur. All I remember next is sitting on our couch, stunned, watching the attacks on TV. Every station was showing the same thing. The planes each flying in to the twin towers. Over and over again in what seemed like slow motion. People jumping from the burning towers because they thought that maybe that would be a more humane way to die then suffocating in a fire or having the building collapse on them.

And I wept. I cried and sobbed with the rest of our country. I felt violated and scared. I was angry when I found out why and who had done this to us.

Over the next few days and weeks as stories unfolded and people were shown on TV holding pictures, crying for their missing loved ones, it was overwhelming. Jason and I remained at home, holding on for dear life to each other. To what we had. And I felt guilty. Guilty that my world wasn't torn apart, but theirs was, and that I still had all of my family, and they didn't. Their pain was unfathomable.

The world was too scary to bring a child into it. I told Jason I couldn't imagine being a mother with how uncertain life was at that moment. My heart just ached thinking about being a mom and not being able to get to my child. I decided I couldn't start a family until life returned to a somewhat normal state. Being a mother was the one thing I knew I wanted my entire life and now I couldn't imagine doing that anymore. So I decided I wouldn't become a mother. I wouldn't go through that agony. My heart couldn't stand the idea of it.

Then exactly 2 months after 9/11, I found out I was pregnant. It was bittersweet because the doctors told me I wouldn't be able to get pregnant without "medical intervention." But there he was. His little heartbeat just throbbing away. And my hope was reborn during that pregnancy.

Today, I'm a mother of a 7 year old amazing little boy.

Today, Jason and I have been together for 8 years.

Today, we remember the lives that were lost. We remember the innocent souls that perished. We remember the rescue workers who lost their lives trying to save others.

And hopefully today, we'll remember how life can change instantly and how important every single day is and we'll remember to make the most of each one.


Monday, August 31, 2009

Dude, I Practically Ate Salad All Day

I'm not sure what's more disturbing: That I ate a red hot burrito for breakfast OR that I'm really upset that I ate the *last* red hot burrito because that means I can't have another one...

PMS, I haz it...

I've eaten so much crap in the past 24 hours that I literally have a stomach ache.

Bacon cheeseburger, fries, and fried potatoes and bacon.

Oh, and Doritos and pumpkin chocolate chip cookies...

Oh, and deep fried french toast sticks.

And OMG and don't forget the Starbucks Caramel Macchiato ice cream at about 1 a.m..

It wasn't all bad though. I threw some cantaloupe in for good measure. AND if you think about it, there was some other nutrition in there. The cheese on the burger, the eggs in the cookies and french toast sticks and the milk in the ice cream totally count as my dairy requirements for the day. The burger and bacon count for the protein and the bun is my grain. The potatoes are my vegetable and FTW: cantaloupe was my fruit serving!

So when it comes right down to it, I practically ate salad all day because it was all so healthy.

The food pyramid never lies.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Heating Pads, Food & Orgasms

*phooooooo*

*phooooooo*

*phooooooo*

That's the sound of me blowing the dust off my blog. Because it's been forever since I posted. Or a couple of weeks, same diff.

Still don't have a job but there's still money coming in for awhile so I'm not stressed out. Yet.

I've been taking it day by day, trying to be a good little housewife. Doing laundry, cleaning, making dinner almost every night. All the normal, day to day crap I'm in charge of all by myself since I'm the only one not working.

And I'm bored out of my mind!!!! My brain is turning to mush. I have such a greater respect for stay at home moms now. I always thought I would enjoy staying home, raising my kiddo, doing the domestic stuff, instead of working.

I so don't.

I enjoy spending this time with my son, who will be 7 later this month. Don't get me wrong. But he's old enough that he doesn't need me as much. He has his friends in the neighborhood, wants to be outside enjoying summer with them, or playing his XBOX.

Damn XBOX. Damn Call of Duty game. All the gunshots and artillery fire are grating on my nerves. (Can you get PTSD from listening to a war game all the time?)

I have lists, each a mile long, of things I want to accomplish while I'm unemployed. And no energy to do any of it. The chronic health issues I deal with daily make it nearly impossible to bust ass all the time. Those health issues alone are hard enough to deal with but I'm also trying to wean myself off all my medications.

Chronic pain usually requires strong narcotic pain medication. It definitely did in my case and I've been on strong pain killers for 9 years now along with stimulant meds for my Narcolepsy that helped keep me awake during the day. After years of taking these meds, your body becomes dependent on them. Not addicted but dependent. (And I'm not in the mood for the addicted vs dependent argument so don't start with me on that one today!)

I lost my health insurance when I was laid off and the medications I have been taking for years now require monthly visits to my doctor & blood and urine tests. All of which equal huge dollar signs. Which aren't possible since I was laid off. It's a crappy cycle.

I've been slowly lowering my doses on my pain and Narcolepsy meds since the end of June. And my body is not happy. I'm going through withdrawals in a big way which sucks big donkey dicks. I can't sleep. I'm trying to do without the pain meds my body needs for me to be able to function halfway normal like regular people do. Pain meds controlled my chronic pain levels to a point where I could actually get out of bed (most of the time), go to my full time job (90% of the time), and try to take care of my house and family (with help from Mr Man of course).

Yes, I was STILL in horrendous pain but the meds usually made it a "bearable" pain. Taking my pain levels from a 9 to a 7 on a scale of 1-10. Still awful but I could at least push through the pain most days. Now I'm trying to do without that help. All I want to do is sleep all day, curled up with my heating pad which has become my new BFF. Seriously, if it could make me dinner and give me orgasms, I'd never have to leave my room.

So what's a girl to do? I continue to do what I've always done. Force myself to get off my ass, take care of my family & home as best as I can with my limitations, and be a good mom. Even if that means I have to take 5 naps a day, it all has to get done right?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Is It Too Late To Become An Astronaut?

My son asked me the other day what I wanted to be "when I grow up."

I tried to explain I am grown up. That mommy is just "between jobs" since I was laid off. And he just kept saying, "I knoooooow but what do you want to BE?!?!

How do you explain that you aspired to be many things growing up but due to certain circumstances, life choices, and too much alcohol (ha) you never went to college to "become" anything really? That you ended up becoming an Order Entry Admin? Wasn't exactly what I dreamed about as a kid.

Who dreams about sitting at a desk all day getting screamed at by customers? (Which, by the way, I'm wonderful at in case you have a job opening at your company for one Order Entry Goddess!)

As a kid I dreamed about growing up and becoming a writer, an artist, a teacher and a mother. Life happens though and sometimes your life is derailed. Sometimes, due to circumstances, you have to focus on your family and help take care of your brothers while your mom works full time and goes back to college at the age of 45. I'm extremely proud of her for that considering she never even graduated high school and had to get her GED first. (She dropped out of school when she was really young to take care of her mother when she was dying of cancer.) Then I had to do the same thing, take care of my brothers, all through high school while she tried to support all 3 kids by herself.

There was no money for college and to be honest, I was too busy to think about *MY* future really. I was busy helping to raise a family. I didn't have time for anything extra. No clubs, dances or anything that required my time before or after school.

So as I sit here, unemployed and looking for work, his question resonates in my head. What do I want to BE?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

How Much Daytime TV Can You Watch Before Your Ass Becomes One With the Couch?

I've been hiding out. In a big way. I've slipped into this funk and can't seem to shake it. I had to sign some legal stuff this week that I did NOT want to sign. I felt like shit putting my name on that little black line. Like I was signing away my dignity. "Sign your name then please bend over!" Whether I was or not is mostly in my own mind I'm sure but that's what it felt like.

So that makes it real right?

I know there have been people from my past reading/subscribing to my blog that I would rather didn't. People I no longer speak to and have cut off communication with. Knowing they're visiting and reading my blog, my own thoughts, has stressed me out in such a huge way that I've almost felt compelled to stop blogging here.

Almost.

Yes, blogging is never really "private" unless you mark your blog private but I know a lot of great readers & other bloggers found my blog by chance or through someone elses blog (and vice versa) that I do not want to do that. It was tempting.

Then I pulled my head out of my ass.

Why should I allow someone else, who I DO NOT CARE ABOUT, have control over something that I really, intensely enjoy doing? My blog is my outlet, my art, my place to bitch and be a bitch. If they feel the need to spy on me, and obviously have nothing better to do, then let them.

I refuse to stop doing the one constant thing in my life that I turn to when things are good. Or bad. So to hell with them. Seriously...

In other news, I still don't have a job. BUT, I've watched enough daytime TV that I could host a talk show, be a news anchor and run paternity tests all on my own. How's that for talent? Don't be jealous because I know you are...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Tina Miera Photography: Art at it's finest...

A couple of weeks ago Tina with Tina Miera Photography invited me and my son down to have some fun at her studio and around downtown Salt Lake. She is an amazing photographer as you're about to see from the pictures below. You can also see so many other beautiful, intensely touching photos on her website she's taken that seem to jump off the page at you.

She has this way of capturing things with a camera that others can't. She can look through her lens to see the true personality and spirit of anyone she photographs. With one click of her camera, she freezes small moments in time that you will never be able to forget. I know I've personally been moved to tears by a lot of her photos and I'm 100% certain I'm not the only one.

As a mother, there isn't anything more important to me then remembering & preserving my sons life and our life with him. Through Tina's photography, I've been able to do that in a way no other photographer has ever been able to for us.

I could go on and on about how amazing, talented and creative an artist Tina is but I don't need to. Her art speaks for itself. If you ever need a photographer for any occasion, you need to call her. I promise you will never be disappointed!

This one was one of my favorites of the session!


Me and Brady


You can hear his laughter in this one!












Tina took this one a few years ago at a family pool party and it has been my favorite photo of Brady ever!




She takes photos of everything you can imagine!

She can capture you at your most beautiful during pregnancy...

She'll freeze those newborn moments in time forever...

Remind you how adorable and sweet your babies are, especially when they're sleeping lol

Steal your heart with beautiful photos of your chubby toddler...

Give you pictures of your children together that will remind you that they do adore each other deep down! (Which you can then pull out during those moments when they're screaming that they hate each other!)

Remind you what the wonder years are like...

Give you family memories that will last a lifetime!

Legacy photos that you would be proud to leave behind...

Holiday and seasonal pics that you would be proud to have anyone see...

Senior photos that are so much better then the standard cap and gown ones...

Last but not least, pics of the teen years....

Pictures at the mall are so impersonal and everyone's look the exact same. Don't you want something different? Photos that showcase how beautiful and amazing your family and children really are? If so, call her. I know that's why we do!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Anyone Have a Spare Set of Lungs?

I know I haven't posted since we left for our vacation a couple of weeks ago. But as mothers like to say: "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all..." So that's where I've been lol

I am still unemployed, still grappling with legal and financial decisions I need to decide on since being laid off (which I'm not at liberty to discuss at this point). I've felt like I'm floundering lately, sort of lost and not quite sure what to do or where to turn. I've avoided my blog, avoided twitter for the most part, even stopped being on Facebook so much. I thought being laid off and not having to go to work every day, I'd be able to catch up on tons of things online that I've been slacking on. Even thought I'd be able to get a lot of deep cleaning at home done that I've been wanting to do.

I haven't touched any of it and this will be going on to week 3 of being unemployed.

One thing after another has happened since we returned from our trip and then I got deathly sick this past week. I must have bronchitis or pneumonia although I can't say for sure since I lost my health insurance at the end of June when I was laid off and haven't been to the doctor. All I know is whatever it is, is down deep in my lungs and in my chest. And I feel like death warmed over!

At any rate, I'm working on a couple of posts that will be more upbeat which you'll see soon. Just wanted to let you all know I'm still alive and kicking. Well, sort of anyways. I'll be more alive after I get over this crap that's taken up residence in my body!

New posts coming soon! I promise!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Thankful Thursday

Today is my first Thankful Thursday post. When you read down below at what happened today, you might think I'm crazy that today of all days is when I decided to start this. But, I figured, why not? I still have a lot to be thankful for and besides that, I feel I need to throw some sort of thanks out into the cosmic universe before anything else happens...

You know, like I lose an eye or a leg or something.

Today I am thankful that my beautiful, gorgeous son is healthy and happy.

Today I am thankful that Mr Man still has his busy job that will help us out in this trying times.

Today I am thankful that we have a roof over our head and food in our stomachs.

Today I am thankful that my mother in law is still with us even though her cancer is progressing very rapidly. And I'm thankful that she's been able to spend a couple of days here and there with B even though I'm sure it tires here out like crazy!

Today I am thankful that my mom is still with us so that when I had my mental breakdown today, and wanted my mommy, I could call her and cry on her shoulder and she made me feel a whole lot better. Like moms do!

Today I'm thankful that my sister is my best friend. I called her the minute I left my office today and she cheered me up a little and assured me everything would be OK.

Today I'm thankful for all of the friends I have online, past and present. Seriously, you guys are the best! I had TONS of comments and posts on twitter and FaceBook commiserating with me. Trying to make me feel better. Friends I went to high school with, blogging buddies, twitter friends. Where else can you get support like that anymore?

Now that I've listed my thanks (did you hear all those Universe???) I can tell you all the shiz that's gone down at Casa de Crazy just this week alone.

There was a $200 roof repair bill. Then Mr Man accidentally dropped his 2 way walkie talkie radio outside our house. Someone walking by stole it before he realized he'd dropped it. That was in a span of ten minutes. Literally.

My cute nephew Malakai, 6 months old, had to have heart surgery this week to repair the half of his heart that was not working when he was born. He was a really sick little boy at birth and it was very touch and go for a while there. He was not strong enough, or stable enough, to have the surgery done as a newborn so they had to wait 6 months to repair the defect. Luckily, he is doing awesome now. He's such a trooper!

I've never had the chance to hold cute baby Malakai in my arms. His mom lives in another state but she's supposed to be moving back here soon. I'm hoping I'll get to hold this beautiful chub of a baby soon enough. Isn't he sweet?

We're trying to get ready for a vacation to the Jimenez Family Reunion this week and it seemed everything was conspiring against us. The first few things piled up and it was tough to keep pushing forward. But we did.

Then we had a collection agency come after us for some stupid gym membership that was supposed to be canceled long ago. That Mr Man had canceled long ago. Now they wanted interest and fees! So that battle was on.

Then remember the brand new tires we just bought? That cost $800? Ya, one of them was flat. Flat! WTH? Had to have it repaired. Luckily for us, our one break, it was under warranty.

Then I got laid off yesterday! After 7 years of employment with this company. SEVEN YEARS!!!! Out of nowhere! I am just flabbergasted. It's the one time I can say that word and know it's EXACTLY how I'm feeling right now. I'm just stunned. It came out of nowhere!

So there you have it. My lovely week in a nutshell. But still, there's a lot to be thankful for right? I still have my health.. Oh wait, I don't have that.

Hey, I have my legs and my eyes. And my family. And all of you!

XOXOXO Love you guys!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Our Trip Sponsored By Elegant Boxed Wine & Malibu Rum

A couple of weekends ago we went camping with some friends and family in Manti-La Sal National Forest. If you live in Utah, it was a loooooong way up Spanish Fork canyon.

Normally I love camping and since we bought a tent trailer and I no longer have to sleep on the ground, I've loved it even more. (Seriously, who enjoys sleeping on the ground? Sadists? That's torture right there for me. It's bad enough it's freezing cold at night but then to sleep on a bed of rocks? PASS!) To be honest, I was not looking forward to the trip that week because someone had a crap attitude about going and how much work & packing it was going to take.

And no, that someone was not me. This time at least. Surprising isn't it?

Here's a pic of our campsite, which was gorgeous btw... Our friend Floyd went up the night before and was brave enough to leave his trailer there overnight to secure our spot for us.

Meet Sam Wow. A gorgeous pure bred that my sister adopted the week before from someone really, uh, poor. (Ya, click that link and see the pic of their house. I made sure to leave them some information on local food banks and shelters. I'm a giver!)

Sam spent the weekend stealing food from plates, waiting for plates to be left unattended so he could steal them, and eating anything out on the table. To be fair, when you're holding a hot dog and sitting in a chair, his face is eye level with your hand. He took that as the "go ahead, take a bite" invitation. We saw him eat at least 2 turkey burgers, a hot dog and a carton of sour cream.

Oh, and he also took time out of his busy eating schedule for a little frisbee...

Saturday morning was the only time the weather fully cooperated with us. The rest of the time it was cold, cloudy and drizzling so don't be fooled by all the pictures of sunshine and smiling faces. Mostly there was frowns and complaining of how damn cold it was. Ok, THAT part was just me. I'm a baby...

Here's my kiddo running through the meadow. In hindsight, he was probably running away from his cousin G because they spent the entire weekend fighting and bickering. They're like brothers that way.

Normally when we go camping we tell the kids to take a hike and amuse themselves while we get drunk and pass out. Er, while we "relax." This weekend though, we went with a couple who was more prepared then I've ever been and they brought things for the kids to do.

Horseshoes anyone?

Frisbee....


And the most popular activity of all... dog snuggling. This 4 legged friend is our dog, Izzy, who was a big cry baby all weekend because of how cold it was. She spent more time in the trailer under the sleeping bags then we did. And when she did come outside, she had to be wrapped in blankets or stuffed in our coats around the fire to keep warm. Isn't that what their nice shiny coats are for? Warmth?


There was a lake "near" our camp that we decided to take lunch to and let the men do a little fishing. It was "near" camp in the way that the sun is "near" the Earth. Took forever to get there. We totally should have packed snacks for the drive up there. Just sayin...

To get to the lake you have to pass this beautiful creek first. Which was running higher then normal because of all the damn rain we've had lately in Utah.


This is where the braver part of our camp decided to cross the creek on foot. As you can see I am not in this photo. I didn't want to, uh, get my camera wet. So I stayed back to let them try it out first.

This picture right here is the *exact* moment B decided it was too cold and didn't want to go any further.

Here's my cute nephew T who came to his rescue and saved him from frostbite on his toes. He had to carry him all the way to the other side.


This is where our friend took my sisters car first into the creek. He's no dummy. He wasn't testing it out with his Durango until he saw how deep it came up inside the car.


And he made it! For the record, it took about a week for her waterlogged horn to stop sounding like a dying duck.


This is our friends Durango after crossing the creek. (On the return trip, the plate was pushed completely up against the bumper.)


This is when we finally reached the lake part of the excursion. After hours of driving in 4 WD, climbing mountains, stopping for naps along the way, we'd finally made it.

My son sat inside the back of the truck and made the other kids toss the ball to him there. Lazy or genius? I'm going with genius because I would totally do that!



View of the lake... This is where we all got eaten alive within seconds of getting out of the car. Luckily our friend remembered to bring the bug spray with her which warded off the millions of other skeetos that came to have lunch at our expense.


The only one who decided to fish was my nephew T. The other guys could "tell there wasn't any fish" just by looking at the water. Whatever the hell that means! He sat there, uncomfortably, while we stared at him fishing for 15 minutes, until he packed it in so we could have lunch.


Last pic was taken as we were leaving on Sunday. The kids appear to be having a good time and are actually smiling for me. Most of the weekend was spent with them asking me to get the damn camera out of their face.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Still No Concrete Answers...

I still don’t have many answers from my surgeon about the test results. Not surprising. It’s always been a “wait n see” kind of game with these tumors. You’d think after a few years of dealing with this, I’d be more patient. But no, I haven’t.

The test I went for at the hospital was awful. “Here, drink this barium while we contort your body into different positions.”

“Yes, ma’am I know this has the consistency of paint but you have to drink it for the test to work properly.”

“Ma’am, ma’am! You have to swallow alllll of it!”

“Turn to your right side… Lay down on your back…. Turn back to your left… Stand up please…. Lay on your stomach…”

“Now we need you to do a handstand please…”

Ok, that last part didn’t happen but totally could have that morning. As if it’s not awful enough that you have to drink 6 different cups of barium shit in different consistencies ranging from a melted milkshake to PAINT, you have to contort yourself into different positions for 45 minutes so they can make sure the barium covers everything. I wanted to vomit but of course made myself keep it down. If I would have puked, they would have made me start the test all over again. To which I would have said Hell no because once was quite enough. (Needless to say I was sick from that much barium for at least 3 days after the test.)

At the end of the test they have you swallow a pill of barium which is supposed to be about the size of chewed up food so they can track it from your throat down to your stomach. I guess to see if there’s any snags along the way. I took it and I hear one of the techs behind the glass go “Huh” in that kind of tone that’s like “huh, that was weird.” or "Huh, maybe she shouldn't be wearing pants so tight that I can see the cellulite on her ass!" So he tells the tech in the room with me to make me do it again. So I do and that’s when I hear.. “There it is!”

He comes out to tell me that while there were no “large” tumors or blockages that they could see, there was “something’ in my throat. RIGHT where I’ve been telling these doctors I can feel a lump. It seems the pill they had me swallow twice got stuck in the same exact spot. They were both stuck there for a good 2 minutes before continuing down to my stomach. Unfortunately for me, the technician said they would have to run a different test with better definition visibility or some such crap to see what “it” exactly was.

So I guess I’m in limbo again. Waiting for the final report from that test, for a new test to be ordered, and still waiting for the results from the blood work and biopsy they took.

You will all know as soon as I know what the hell is going on.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Waving My Rainbow Pompoms

I’m switching it up a bit today, taking a break from the depression that has been my blog lately. I know that if I don’t, I’m going to have to start setting out Prozac and Cymbalta in candy dishes around my place here. “Hi, welcome to my blog. Would you like a mood stabilizer before you read my post? I know it’s a little dark in here but please don’t open the blinds. The darkness is more friendly…”

Today we are blogging for LGBT Families Day! If you have no idea what LGBT means, it stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender/transsexual people. The day is open for all LGBT families and their allies. I am considered an ally since I am not gay myself. I am the cheerleader waving the rainbow pompoms for my friends and family members I love. Even for those I have not met. (There may even be a rainbow headband and matching wristbands as well. I’m just sayin…) Why? Because everyone deserves the same civil rights. Because it is the right thing to do. Because everyone deserves to be happy.

Anyone who knows me, reads this blog, follows me on Facebook, or basically hears me speak (yes, I am a loud mouth) knows I have strong feelings & opinions about the LGBT community and their families. I strongly support same sex marriage and think it should be legalized everywhere. That’s no secret if you know me at all. I’ve been really vocal about it, especially this past year. I’ve even been told to shut up a few times. That only makes me yell louder. Anyone seen my megaphone?

My convictions were not always so strong. In fact, I used to be very quiet, very shy. Painfully shy when I was younger. After I became a mother myself, I felt this need, this driving force, to make the world a better place for my son to grow up. I realized if you don’t speak up, if you don’t say anything, you leave YOUR fate and the fate of your children in the hands of others. People whose ideals are not YOUR ideals and beliefs and convictions. Where does that get you? No where, that’s where.

Every year my family and I go to the Gay Pride Festival here in Utah. Every year the festival is kicked off by a huge parade march through downtown Salt Lake City. And every year there are protestors at the gate entrance screaming hateful propaganda (in what they believe) is in the name of their God. Shouting awful names at peaceful families, couples, friends and allies entering the festivities. We’ve taken Brady every year since he was born and the first couple of years I covered Brady’s ears as we walked past these people to shield him from what was happening. He was too young to understand and too young for me to explain these people to him. People who I believe are so bound in their hate that they can’t and won’t see the love right in front of them. Brady’s third year to the festival I didn’t shield him from anything. He asked me why those “mean people” were yelling at us as we walked past and I tried to explain to him how they thought the festival was wrong. I, of course, got the “Why?” question all mothers get all too often. How do you explain something like that to a 3 year old? After talking in circles for a while, I finally settled with, “Sometimes people hate people that are different then they are. It’s our job to show them that we believe differently by being here and supporting our family and friends.”

In one corner of the festival they have the children’s corner where the kids can make crafts, get their face painted and fun things like that. Last year they did a small kids march and Brady proudly marched around the festival with the other kids. Waving little flags and masks they’d made. I was so proud of him. I kicked myself for the camera battery being dead but I can still see his glowing face in my head. To him it was just a cute little kids parade but to me, I can see all of those children proud and smiling walking through the festival. And the looks on all their parents faces was priceless.

I couldn’t help but wanting to freeze that moment in time. That sense of all of us feeling safe and happy and content; my family included. All of them able to openly hug each other, hold hands, and express affection without any fear of judgment from anyone else. With all of the “mean people” locked firmly on the outside of the gate where they couldn’t hurt anyone.

Why can’t the world be like that? Why can’t we change things so that no one has to live in fear for who they are and who they love? Our children learn their behaviors directly from us. They learn compassion from how we treat others. If all of us made a more conscious effort to speak up and right the wrongs in the world, and our children see this, our world will be a much different place in 10 or 15 years. I strongly believe this.

I believe I’ve said this before but we have more friends in same sex relationships then we do straight friends. Brady honestly has never known there was a difference between myself and his dads relationship and that of some of our same sex friends. To him, it was love and that was it. To him, it was normal for kids to have 2 aunts that live together with a child and 2 uncles that live together and love each other. There was no difference. It wasn’t until he was in Kindergarten this year and someone in class called someone else gay at recess and he asked me what that actually meant that I realized he didn’t really know. I am proud that we’ve taught him to just see people and not labels.

Because there is no difference between us.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Gush a Lil Blood on Someone's Keyboard & They Act Like You Killed Baby Jebus

I'm going to apologize in advance for this post. I've got too much on my mind and this post is not going to be entertaining nor funny. Just sayin...

I had planned on posting an update the same day I got back from the doctors office but couldn't bring myself to do it. Somehow it felt like putting how the appointment went into words made it more real and I was not ready to do that.

So I put it off.

I had a test scheduled for first thing Thursday morning, the day right after my pre-surgery consult, to find out for sure if what the doctor suspected was what was actually going on. That night I was up most of the night worrying about what those results would mean. I woke up Thursday morning and panicked. Couldn't do it.

So I put it off.

(I'm nothing if not consistent!)

The news I received from the surgeon was not all bad. He did have some good news for me. The one tumor they'd been following on my thyroid since 2006 that they were most concerned about is gone. Just disappeared. He said that does happen in 22% of cases like mine so that was a bonus. Score one for... Well, for whatever the hell happened! He also said that the new tumors appear more cyst like in the ultrasound but he couldn't be sure unless he biopsied them. They also thought the current tumors I have now were more "cyst like" as well until they biopsied them and found out they were not cyst like when they tried jabbing them with needles. That was good times.

For the bad news... He has not taken thyroid cancer off the table yet but he has shelved surgery for a second until more test results come back. He is more concerned about throat cancer.

I know right?!?!?!

My first thought was: How the hell would I have throat cancer? I don't smoke! Don't only smokers get throat cancer?? Obviously not! He went on to explain how throat cancer symptoms mimic many other illnesses so it's hard to pin them all down and point them at throat cancer. But when you add them all up, bam, there it is! Or, there it could be. Here's a list I grabbed off the net which is what he explained in his office:

Common throat cancer symptoms include:
  • A lump or sore that does not heal (mine is a lump-1st complained of in 2001)
  • Sore throat or cough that does not go away (I have a sore throat all the time, cough usually in the morning)
  • Pain or difficulty swallowing (I have both-1st complained of in 2001)
  • A change in your voice such as a new hoarseness in your voice (1st noticed around 2002)
  • Trouble breathing (I started noticing this getting worse over the last year)
  • Difficulty speaking (check)
  • Pain in the ears and frequent headaches (absolutely! suffered from for years though)
  • Blocked sinuses that will not clear (Have had problems with since 2003)
  • Bleeding through the nose (Started having nosebleeds in 2002; never had problems with before)
  • Pain in the upper teeth (yes! Dr once told me this was because of chronic sinus infections)
  • Headaches (Chronic sufferer)
  • Swelling in the eyes (This is the only thing I haven't noticed though doc says otherwise)
  • Chronic sinus infections that do not go away when treated with antibiotics (Have had problems with since 2003)
Throat cancer is a pretty wide term doctors use to cover cancers of the head and neck. I've been doing a lot of research on it and it's not sounding good. With thyroid cancer, there was no chemo to deal with. Just surgery. Maybe iodine treatment of some kind. That was it. If this is some sort of throat cancer, it's a huge deal. There is major, major surgery IF they can remove the tumor and survival rate for this is really not good when it's not caught early enough. And since I first complained of having this feeling in my throat that I couldn't swallow half the time, a feeling of having something stuck in my windpipe all the way back before B was born in 2001, I could be screwed. Royally screwed. Like, without lube screwed.

And I KNOW it's not a diagnosis and I KNOW it's not for sure and I KNOW he's only running tests to find out but this is what he said to me: "I'm afraid that while we've been focusing on thyroid cancer, we may not have been looking at the bigger picture. You can have a lump feeling in your throat if you do have GERD or chronic heartburn. But, since you're missing the main symptom of that, which is the burning sensation that is heartburn, I'm thinking that is not it. I'm thinking there is a blockage in your throat that we need to address. Which is where throat cancer comes in." Obviously that's not word for word because I didn't record him but that was the gist of it.

I may have down played what he said a bit to my family so as not to freak them out. I know, not exactly honest, but with Mr Man's mom dying of cancer right now, I can't exactly put this on him as well. I did try and explain a little of this to him earlier tonight but he was a little distracted and I don't think he heard me. I figured I'll wait until i know more and then let him know for sure.

He did a procedure at the appointment where they stuck a scope and camera up my nose down my throat to collect some cells to send off to be biopsied. (I may have twittered during the appointment. I may also have made the nurse wait while I finished sending a tweet so she could spray the numbing stuff up my nose. She may also not have been very happy about it! lol) They said my nose would get numb but they failed to mention all of my teeth would also. Oh, and they also forgot to mention I would get a bloody nose afterwards. It didn't happen right after the procedure like you would think. It happened 40 minutes later when I was sent down to the lab at the hospital to have some blood drawn for other tests he wanted to run. I bent over the admins desk to hand her my insurance information and it gushed out like Niagra Falls. The woman behind the desk freaked out. Geez, gush a little blood on someones keyboard and they act like you just killed baby Jebus...

It's 1:00 A.M. and I'm currently fasting for the hospital test I'm going for tomorrow morning. I will be drinking barium while they take xrays to find any blockages between my throat and stomach. As soon as my surgeon has the results back from all of the tests, I'm supposed to go back to his office to discuss all the results and make a "plan of attack" with him as he puts it.

So, I guess think happy thoughts. With rainbows and unicorns dancing on a candy covered lawn. Or throw back a few shots for me. Ya know, whichever feels appropriate to you. I'd choose the shots if it were me. Just sayin...

Hopefully my next post will be more upbeat. I make no promises at this point.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Ugh Dr Appt This AM

Just wanted to let everyone know I'm heading for my pre-surgery consult this morning. This surgeon is the one who's been following the tumors on my thyroid and the thyroid growth for a year and a half now. Tumors have been growing for over 3 years now but he's fairly new to the tumor scene in my body. He's an awesome specialist and surgeon and I feel confident he knows what he's talking about.

I, of course, reserve the right to change my opinion at any time should I not like what he has to say this morning. lol

Is it sad that I am more concerned that I'm having trouble breathing and swallowing more then the threat of thyroid cancer at this point? Well, that and the scar and the recovery. The recovery from the surgery is freaking me out of course. Big time!

Anyways, I will let everyone know as soon as I have information to share. Other then the tumors, my biggest concern is how much the right and left thyroid lobes have grown since 2007. I have all my test results compiled like a good little patient and will be heading out in 10 minutes...

Wish me luck!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Almost Dying Really Sucks on a Holiday Weekend!

I bet your Memorial Day weekends were filled with sun, fun, bbq's and good times right? Mine? Ya, not so much.

Mine started out with a near death experience. Literally.

When I was a lot younger, ya know, back when there were no wrinkles on my forehead and I had no idea the power that cleavage had, I stepped on a bee walking barefoot in the grass. My foot swelled up to the size of a football. I was just told I should be very careful around bees because I'd had a "bad allergic reaction" to the sting.

I've always been really careful since then. Never been stung again.

Fast forward to Saturday morning. I was waiting for my sister to pick me up for our weekly sister bonding time. My sis is my BFF. We have so much fun together and every Saturday while Mr Man is at work, we hang out all day. Go to breakfast, run errands, go shopping. You know, drag the kids around and do all the things that they hate getting dragged around to.

So anywho, I'm sitting on my couch, thinking for once I should actually blog since it's been awhile, and I was on twitter being my usual twitter whore self when I see this bee or wasp inside my house. It's buzzing around the window right next to my head. I, of course, in girly fashion, immediately go into hysterics, screaming for Mr Man to come kill it. Only, he's not here! The 6 year old is, lets face it, only 6, so he's useless in rescuing his damsel in distress mother from the killer bee she's freaking out over. So what do I do?

I so grabbed the tv remote to kill the damn thing! Granted, in hindsight, it PROBABLY wasn't the smartest idea since the remote was a really expensive remote to our flat screen tv that Mr Man loves more then me and B put together. (Seriously, if there were a fire, and he could only grab one thing, he would try and carry that mo' fo out of the house while it burned around him! Ok, first he would yell to me to grab B to get out of the house WHILE he grabbed the flat screen. Just sayin') Now if I would have broken it trying to smash the damn bee to pieces, Mr Man probably would have sold *ME* to buy a new one.

I saw it staring right at me a few times as I swung the remote at it. I think I even saw it crack it's knuckles and throw it's head back to laugh at me as it flew out of my way and landed on the window pane thinking it had gotten away from me, little bastard. It took me quite a few swings to smash the damn furry, buzzing beast of death but in the end, I won!

You would think this would be a happy ending right? I was smart enough to kill the bee before I got stung with it right?

Right?

Ya, fat chance! If only I were that smart.

I told B to get me some tissue so I could clean up the carnage. Which was smart right? So I wouldn't accidentally step on the dead body right? WRONG!

I cleaned up the body with the tissue from the window and the window pane. Set the tissue on the coffee table to get up. Then the damn dog started barking and I got distracted. Left the room, did something (I don't know what), let the dog out, yadda, yadda, yadda. Came back in the room and picked up the tissue forgetting what was inside of it and... Yes, you guessed it... STUNG MYSELF.... With the DEAD bee.

I know right? How stupid is that? And I of course, was still twittering with people online and ImWendy and I of course, laughed at my stupidity that I still stung myself with the dead bee. Rightfully so, cuz I was a dumbass. Then IamDebra was asking me questions about how I was feeling, the swelling, etc. Sent me a link to webmd.com about the allergic reaction I was having. My finger instantly swelled up but that was it. No other swelling but my lips were tingling really bad. That was it.

At first.

Then I started having trouble breathing. My sister got there and gave me 2 Benedryl but as we drove, it was getting harder and harder to breathe. My chest was hurting really bad. My hands and feet and lips had this buzzing/tingling feeling. I was really dizzy and I was starting to panic and I just remember telling my sister "Something's wrong!" So she drove me to the Urgent Care where my mom works. As she was driving I just remember it getting dark like my vision was fading and I couldn't see very clearly. My sister said I fell asleep, (which is also code for "passed ou"t according to the doctor I saw) a few times on the way there which means I was pretty bad off by the time we reached urgent care. My sister said she kept yelling at me to wake up and kept shaking me and I'd wake up for a second then pass back out.

By the time we got there, I could hardly breathe and it was as if I could hear everyone talking to me but I couldn't speak and couldn't move. They had to help me out of the car and put me in a wheelchair to get me inside the building. I do remember being so embarassed that I cried. I remember that much. I remember being rushed down the hall and nurses running. I remember getting stabbed in the arm with a shot of Epi and my heart feeling like it was going to jump out of my chest and go flying out of the room.

I remember my poor, sweet 6 year old being so terrified and scared at what I was going through & he was crying so hysterically that he made himself throw up. My poor mom was running out of the room to find him one of those plastic bins to get sick in. Poor baby. And I'm just laying there on the table like a slab of meat trying to get my wits about me, unable to comfort him. Huge FAIL as a mom! At least my mom works there and my sister had brought me so both were there to love on him.

After the Epi shot and a breathing treatment, the doctor came in to talk to me again. Sounded like I had started going into anaphylactic shock from the bee sting. Which I guess is fairly serious since you can be dead within minutes if you don't get treatment right away. And I guess each time you get stung, the allergic reaction is worse each time. So the next time I get stung will be worse then this time. Yikes!

The doctor said the epinephrine, the breathing treatment, and the steroids I had to take would all make me feel pretty wired and out of it for a couple of days. And believe me, Mr Man's been hovering over me all weekend to make sure I was ok. The meds did wire me but it was the crash from all of those that made me feel like someone had let the air out of my tires. I imagine this is what crack whores feel like when they're looking for their next fix. Seriously, it was that bad!

I now have to carry 2 Epipens with me at all times and make sure everyone I hang out with regulary knows how to use them in the event of an emergency.

Ya know... Should I ever decide to get stung again...

By a DEAD bee!

What a way to spend Memorial Day weekend!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Tumors, Surgery, and Hair...Oh My!

Life has continued to be surprising, busy, and craptastic. I've started lots of blog posts and not finished any of them. Yes, again. They've all been too negative to post to I've kept them to myself.

Again, you're welcome! lol

Had a nice Mothers Day though. Brunch with my little family and my sister and her 2 kids. Here's 2 pics of me and B at the restaurant. Bunny ears courtesy of Mr. Man...

Here's a better pic, sans bunny ears...


After brunch I sent Mr Man and B over to my in-laws to visit his mom and dad while I went for a haircut. Every other summer I chop all my hair off and donate it to Locks of Love. I normally wait until June or July but this spring I've been dying to get rid of it all and just didn't want to wait another 2 months.

It started at a family reunion while we were camping, many moons ago, with my cousin who is an amazing hair stylist. I've NEVER had short hair and he convinced me to chop it all off and donate it. He explained how this company takes the hair that's donated and makes hair pieces for children of low income families who've lost their hair due to long term medical illnesses. So even though I've had long hair all my life, I'm a sucker for kids so I let him go to it! That first time was 8 years ago, and I donated almost 16 inches of hair.

Here's a pic of what the back of my hair looked like a couple of weeks ago before I went in to donate it:


Here's a pic of the of the ponytail that was chopped off for the donation. Doesn't look very long but it was almost a foot long. Over 11 1/2 inches!


And now, here's a couple pics of my sassy new 'do:

I haven't had time to ask anyone to take an *actual* picture of me so these are all pictures I've had to take with my blackberry. And yes, they're taken from my car lol

This one looks kind of Farrah Fawcett'ish huh?


And that's the good news for the week.

For the bad news... Ultrasound results came back. 2 new tumors showed up for a total of 6 tumors that they can actually see on or near my thyroid. I am scheduled for pre-surgery consult for May 27th.

Surgery. Ugh...

I felt a lump near my collar bone a few years ago. Started having routine tests to monitor my thyroid. Over the course of the next couple of years, the tumors started multiplying like Gremlins in the rain. Found out a year and a half ago, maybe 2 years ago, from my dad who lives in New York (and who I haven't spent much time with growing up), that his side of the family has a ton of thyroid cancer history.

I've had countless tests, ultrasounds, CT scans, 2 biopsies, and one surgery, so far. They removed a lymph node near my neck that was encased in a tumor that had cancer characteristics but the final report ultimately proved it was fine.

I had one endocrinologist who was following the tumors in 2007 who I hated. You know the kind of doctor who acts like you're wasting his precious time? Ya, that kind. My mother in law told me about the surgeon who handled her thyroid removal surgery when she had thyroid cancer for the 2nd time. I started seeing him in 2008 and he is amazing.

At my appointment last year he said that with tumors popping up at such an "alarming rate" and with my family history of thyroid cancer, I have an extremely high chance of having thyroid cancer in my life (if I don't already). So, we have 2 options:

1. We could continue to monitor my thyroid and these tumors and anymore that pop up for the rest of my life. Got that? REST. OF. MY. LIFE. Which means ultrasounds, CT scans, biopsy's done with very long, sharp needles by inept 1st year residents who don't know what the hell they're doing, etc every 6 months.

2. We could do surgery and remove all the tumors and remove the thyroid gland all together. And be done with it!

Yes, I would be taking thyroid replacement meds for the rest of my life but that would be much less invasive then what seems to feel like a ticking time bomb. Because in all honesty, my surgeon thinks it's only a matter of time, before the cancer strikes. If there were no problems with my thyroid, and no tumors at all, we wouldn't be worrying. But there are, so we are.

In 2008 we agreed to give it one more year as a test to see if these tumors would stabilize before committing to surgery. The year is up. New tumors have arrived. Moment of truth is here.

I'm not looking forward to surgery but I'm thinking that the alternative would be more stress for me, which in turn, makes all my other health problems so much more worse. I don't want to spend the next 10 or 15 years stressing every 6 months about test results and wondering if *this* test will be the one that comes back showing I need to have immediate surgery.

Could be a moot point. I could have cancer now. The surgery could be non negotiable anyways. But even though I'm not looking forward to the surgery, I do feel confident it's the best choice for me at this point in the game.

Is it sad one of my bigger concerns is the scar it'll leave? I can't rock hot cleavage with an ugly scar on my neck!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Oh Ya, the Cat's in Heat Too!

"Craptastic life, party of one, your table is ready!"

Ya, that would be me. Well, officially the last couple of months sucked pretty hard but who's counting right? I'd like to share just the last few weeks with you so here we go...

Should we do it by bullet point? I think this much heinousness deserves some bullet points for effect...
  • B broke his wrist. Jumping off the swingset in our backyard. To be fair, he didn't do it while pretending to be Superman or Flash or whatever superhero crap is big these days (which I would know nothing about because I try to ignore as much of that as possible being the only girl in the house. It's bad enough half the time the toilet seat is left up. A girl can get a rude awakening in the middle of the night. Just sayin'!) There was 20 little kids in the backyard since they all congregate at our house, his friend was pushing him too high, he was yelling "stop!" and the kid said he didn't hear him with all the noise with the other kids, so B jumped off. Snapped one of the bones in his wrist.
  • For some reason the ER where we took him the night he broke his wrist put a splint on him and asked us to come back in 3 days for a cast. There. To the ER.
Now if you have never really broken a bone in your life, like me, you would take this advice at face value. When a doctor who seems to know what he's talking about, tells you what to do, you do it right? Sounded reasonable. I didn't know any better. (Plus his name was Dr. Heck (no joke) and he was very handsome. Handsome doctors *always* know what they're talking about right? Just watch Greys Anatomy! Having the ER put on the cast was a huge FAIL. Poor B suffered through having the cast on for almost 2 1/2 weeks when I found out something a little strange...

I had picked him up from my mom & I said to him (from the front seat where I was driving) "Little dude, I can smell the stink from your rotting skin under your cast all the way from the back seat!" To which my smart, intelligent son says (from the backseat) "It can't smell that bad gorgeous, beautiful mother o' mine! I took the cast off today and washed my skin!" Well, ok, he didn't say the "gorgeous" part but you get the gist. Here's me doing a double take in the rear view mirror! "Wha...? Huh? What do you mean you took OFF your cast???" My son explains that he could take the cast completely off and had been able to since it was PUT ON. Ya, oops. Guess the ER didn't know what they were doing. Since B has never had a cast, and we fail as parents, no one really explained to the poor kid, ya, you probably shouldn't be able to do that.
  • We took B in to an actual Ortho Specialist/Surgeon last week as soon as I realized he had on a faux cast. Loved the new office/doc who we were referred to, B was happy because he got to choose a red cast (the last one was white since that's all the ER carries), and all was fine right? Wrong! That very afternoon when we picked B up from school, B once again tells us that this 2nd cast ALSO comes off. This one is more loose then the first one. Yes, he's now on his THIRD cast. Not only that but he has to be in the cast again for ANOTHER 3+ weeks to see if he's healed yet since the last one did not give him proper support. Ya, he's thrilled about that. You shoulda seen the poor kids face...
  • Over the past 2 weeks we've had to replace 6 tires between my car and our truck. To the tune of $850! Want to know how many purses I could buy with $850?? (Shuddup... We all have our own addictions. Some people drink. Ok, I drink too but I get my rocks off on the all the pretty purses I can find!)
  • Someone took offense to my post I'd written on Iowa's ruling to allow same sex marriages. (No, it was not someone gay. Had nothing to do with that). Someone felt I poked fun at their expense, was very upset about it, and I've now been forbidden from talking about them anymore online. FORBIDDEN! This includes my blog, Twitter, and Facebook. I didn't see what the big deal was, and felt this person blew it all out of proportion but their feelings are their feelings. Now, you guys know I never do what I'm told and when someone tells me I HAVE TO do something, I always do the opposite right? But this time, since I care about them, I will respect their wishes. I won't like it, but I'll do it. pfftttt
There is actually more that happened, like, oh I don't know, the fact that I'm stuck on my couch with my back locked up, and something happened at work yesterday that involved my boss finding me on the floor breathing in to a paper sack. But I'll leave that for another day.

Whew! I feel much better that I've unloaded on all of you. I know it's been a long time since I've posted and I've missed it. Someone has to tell me their month has been worse then mine! Come on.. Spill it.... Make me feel better!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

For Maddie & Thalon

I have sat down at my laptop countless times to write this post and haven't been able to do it. It was just too much, just too painful for me. And god, how selfish and small I feel saying that when I compare it to what these families are actually going through. To say I've tried at least a hundred times to type this out would not be an exaggeration. But I always found something else to distract myself from writing it. I had to check facebook for the millionth time that day, or twitter, or email or whatever. But my heart is too heavy and my head is too full today and if I don't get this out now, I may explode from all the words and feelings clouding me.

Our online world has been hit hard the past few weeks. It's been so sad, so filled with grief and heartache and pain. Everywhere I turned, I read another blog post, another tweet, and there was another small tear in my heart. And all the feelings I'd buried deep down inside of me years ago resurfaced like a swimmer coming up for air. And each time I would gasp over and over again, trying to catch my own breath.

Our blogging family lost Maddie first. Then Thalon was taken. While these babies may not have grown in my stomach, they've definitely taken over my heart. I have been devastated for these 2 families. I can't even begin to put into words how deeply these 2 deaths have affected me.

Sounds weird since I've never met them in real life right? If you read blogs but are not a blogger yourself, this may seem far fetched to you. But if you're a blogger, you totally understand my feelings and connections to someone I have never met. Us bloggers share this common bond, this common thread. We cheer each other on when great things happen, we share stories and pictures and friendships with other moms and dads. We know these families as if they lived right
next door to us. Most importantly we console each other when bad things happen. When their happiness is our happiness, also their pain is our pain.

My heart and mind have both been consumed with thoughts and suffering for the Sphors for their loss of Maddie and to Shana and her family for their loss of Thalon. Both of which came way too quickly and much too early. All that keeps running through my head is that a parent
should never EVER out live their child. It goes against the natural order of things. I saw my mother go through it when my brother was killed a few years ago. It's NOT RIGHT! This can't be happening!

When I was 17 I found out I was pregnant. I had, what I believed to be, a very serious relationship & we were going to get married. We had been together almost 2 years & we were in love. On the day I found out I was pregnant & was going to tell my boyfriend, before I could say a word to him, he came clean about an affair he'd had with a friend of his, and that consequently she was now pregnant.

I was devastated when I lost that baby a few months into the pregnancy. I never told anyone I was pregnant except for 2 friends who helped me through the whole thing. My family didn't know. I couldn't tell my mom. Sex before marriage was a huge no no and I couldn't deal with her disapproval at the time too. They thought I was just depressed about breaking up with my boyfriend. I've never felt more alone then I did at that time.

I never got to hold my baby, kiss him, snuggle him, hear his giggles, feel his finger wrapped around mine as he ate. And I felt robbed. Cheated. And yes, I know I refer to this lost angel as a "he." It's always felt like a he for some reason. I never thought there could be anything worse then what I went through. But while I was wallowing in my pain back then, crying hysterically over the things I would never get to experience, I couldn't understand how much deeper and harsher that pain would be had I HAD time with him.

As a parent now, I realize how all consuming children are. They incorporate every fiber of your life. Every place, every song, every commercial, every food, every THING seems to remind me of Braidon. Of something he did or said or a smile he gave me. I can't imagine him being taken from me and going on with the memories of what used to be.

That total upheaval of my life years ago completely changed me in ways that even I can't explain. They say your heart shatters into a million pieces when it breaks and you slowly find them and pick them up again to rebuild yourself. What they don't tell you is that you'll find
pieces of your heart in the most unlikely places. Such as in the smiling faces of beautiful angels like Maddie and Thalon. And in the acts of kindness that have been taking place all over the USA to help out these families. I can only hope and pray that these 2 families have felt some comfort from all of their blogging relatives.

I know my life has been forever changed by their beautiful children!

I will hold my son a little tighter...

Play with him a little longer...

And ignore my blackberry more often.

•´`•.(*•.¸(`•.¸ ¸.•´)¸.•*).•´`•
«•´`*• Andrea •*¨`•»
«•´`•.(¸.•´(¸.•* *•.¸)`•.¸).•´`•»

Saturday, April 18, 2009

No Wonder His Skin Has Been So White Lately...

So this morning my son walks up next to me and I can smell his feet.

His feet never smell! I don't have smelly feet and LUCKILY for Mr Man (because I might have to kill him if he did) he doesn't either. So I don't know what was up with his stinky feet.

Anywho, since he just had a bath last nite, and I'm lazy this morning, I told him to go get some baby wipes and clean his feet before putting on his shoes & socks this morning.

I'm watching TV and I hear him sit down on the love seat near me in the living room and I turn to look at him & see him cleaning his feet with these:

To be fair, I did leave them in the bathroom on the counter when I was cleaning the bathroom last week. He said he's used them "a FEW times!"

OMG!

Can't that be really bad for his skin? They have bleach right? Holy hell! No wonder his skin has been so white lately!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Love is Love people... Love is Love!

Ya, I haven't had much to say at all lately. But today there is huge news and I would be lame if I didn't put in my 2 cents. Yes, I know, I can hardly afford that 2 cents but I'm sharing it anyway!


This morning the Iowa Supreme Court legalized gay marriage!

(This is where the trumpets sound and the balloons and confetti fall from the rafters!)

Obviously I'm personally not gay. "Mr Man" is not code for my butch lesbian lover. Yes, I joke that he is more the woman in the relationship than I am. Yes, he loves to talk on the phone while I DETEST IT with every fiber in my body. Yes, he likes to shop while I would rather be jabbed in the eye with a sharp stick. Yes, he spends more time in the bathroom getting pretty then I do but...

Where was I going with this?

Oh right... He's not really a woman. He is in fact a man. I swear it. I have the hair shavings all over the bathroom sink to prove it!

Even though we're not gay, the majority of our friends are in same sex relationships. Our best friends are gay. My ex brother in law is gay. I am very excited for today's ruling in Iowa.

I don't think of this so much as a gay vs straight or "innee vs outee" (or who does what with their innee's or outee's) type thing. To me, this is about EQUALITY.

Say it with me people....

EQUALITY!!!!!

I think it's high time that states start recognizing that everyone deserves the same rights. Man, woman, straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, intersexual, and asexual. And anyone else I forgot.

When an unmarried man and woman have a child together, sort of like Mr Man and I, although we're in a common law marriage now, we both have equal rights as our sons parents in his life. If something happened between us, God forbid, knock on wood, *spit, spit, spit (like on My Big Fat Greek Wedding (pttooey, pttooey, pttooey) we would both have EQUAL RIGHTS in front of a court of law to work out a custody agreement. That is not the case with gay parents when only one parent is the legal or biological parent to the child. Even though both of those parents raised that child and took care of him or her and loved them, bathed them, read to them, most courts would not recognize both parents.

Can you imagine having to walk away from your child?

If your spouse was in the hospital, you as his wife or her husband would be able to see them in the ICU, sign documents, make legal decisions, pull the plug. Ok, I threw that last one in there just for fun but you get my drift.

Gay couples do not have that same equality. Legalizing gay marriage changes all that. It affords gay couples the same opportunities us "breeders" have had all along, should they want them of course. And that's what this is all about! Giving them the option to have that choice!

There are a lot of people who believe marriage should only be between a man and a woman. I am not one of them. (Hey, if they want to get married and fight over whose turn it is to cook dinner and who took out the garbage last and why their husbands socks are on the floor by the hamper and not IN the hamper then more power to them right? Seriously though, what IS THAT ABOUT? The hamper is INCHES away from where he drops his socks! There isn't even a lid on the damn thing. Why can't he just drop them in the hamper instead of next to it?)

All kidding aside though, today's ruling was a huge step forward for the world and for equality and I'm so excited about it.

I believe we are all born with our sexual orientation pre-determined. Gay people are born gay just as I was born straight. (Well, except for a little experimentation years ago but who hasn't done that? But a few times with another woman does not a lesbian make. Right?) To say that someone doesn't "deserve" the same equalities and rights as other people because of who they love makes absolutely no sense at all.

Gay is not a choice. They do not CHOOSE to be rejected by their families, their friends, their God. They do not CHOOSE to be rejected by society, by state and by government. If gay was a choice, don't you think they'd "choose" an easier lifestyle?

Love is love.

Repeat it with me...

Love is love....

So what do you think about today's ruling? Are you happy about it? Upset about it? Tired of hearing about it? I'd love to know.... (OK, I really don't want to hear you're tired of hearing about it because it just happened hours ago. Get over it. Suck it up. Build a bridge. Whatever.)

(Thanks to David for helping me when I got stuck on my blog post earlier! You rock. Did you ever know that you're my hero? You're everything I wish I could beeeee.....)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun or Why It's Hard to Fight With a Nail Tech While in Big Foam Flip Flops

I could totally bore you with reasons on why I have not blogged in ELEVEN days but I have not one valid, good reason that would make you forgive me for being gone so long.

But I will hope that you love me enough to overlook my small blogging vacation if I promise to get off my lazy, tv watching, catching up with my DVR'd episodes of Greys Anatomy (and OMG they're totally killing off Izzy!), guzzling water by the gallon, reading with my kid, eating out with my sister, getting a pedi, and working overtime ass.

There, I feel better.

For the Mr. T update, I was worked all the way up to 100 mg but I talked my doctor today into letting me go back down to 50 mg. I really felt great at 50 mg and felt like it was controlling my headaches and migraines better at that dose. It was also controlling my appetite better also. I'm down 11 pounds by the way. I'm now allergic to lemon pie, lemon yogurt, sausage, jelly, ham, bottled ranch dressing, cake mix and boxed pudding mix. I think it has more to do with some preservative that those things have in it that Mr T is causing some allergic reaction to rather then the things themselves but at any rate, I can no longer have them at all!

Last weekend my sister and I went and had a pedi together at a new salon. Our normal salon was too busy to fit us in and since my older nephew was watching our younger kids, and we didn't want to make him wait 3 hours while we had our toes done, we went to a new salon closer
to home. The new place was much nicer, much cleaner, and there were MEN working there!

Men with bulging muscles and tight shirts and.... Oh sorry.... Where was I?

Oh ya... The pedicure... The whole pedi went really nice. Until we went up to pay. Now, at our old place we normally pay $20 for our pedi (no matter what you had done to your toes as far as color or design, etc) and then of course we tip the nail gal on top of that. This new place was nicer and they told us it was $25 for the pedi. Then we went up to pay. They charged us extra for every single thing. The white tip on my toes. The flower on my toes. The extra design that I didn't ask for. The little purple jewel that the lady put in the middle of the flower on my toe.

THAT I DIDN'T ASK FOR!

Now you may be wondering why I didn't stop her if she was doing things I didn't ask for? First of all, don't be so judgemental. lol For two, I wasn't really paying attention because I was visiting with my sister and we're obnoxious and loud and all we do is laugh and carry on when we're together. You know those 2 girls you see places who are always laughing hysterically and making fun of everyone and everything around them and can't keep a straight face? That would be me and my sister. We are 2 peas in a pod. We are the girls you hate being around in a quiet place like a movie theater or a library or something because we couldn't stay quiet for ten minutes if our lives depended on it.

So we go up to pay and the lady is all, "That is 3 dollahs for white tip and 3 dollahs for design and 2 dollahs for jewel" and on she went. What a rip off! Of course, it is the ONE splurge I do for myself. I hate to go clothes shopping or shoes shopping so I don't spend money on stuff like that. I did get some new clothes a few weeks ago but that's only because Mr. Man forced me to go for my bday. I don't enjoy wandering for hours, trying on clothes. I am soooo not girly that way! I hate shopping. There I said it! I've been masquerading behind all this pink for so long but I can no longer pretend to be girly!

So did I argue with the lady that she never said there would be extra charges for everything she did? No, I didn't. I didn't feel like a confrontation. I do like to speak my mind (and everyone knows I do!) but not that day. I paid my bill, tipped her, smiled and walked away.

I guess I didn't feel very big in my big, fat, green, foam flip flops.

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