Friday, January 28, 2011

Updates all Around

My Dad, the Super Hero, was discharged from the hospital 4 days after his surgery.   The "inoperable" tumor operated on and gone.  

It is a miracle.  Of this we are certain. 
And we, his family,  are so thankful.

My birthday was hard.  VERY hard.  On the day of the year that the loss of she who was my 'daughter' is the most significant, our shared birthday, I found out news that broke my heart again.  I ache for her and dream that she is experiencing only joy.  And when I catch a glimpse of reality far different I grieve. 

   I know how my story turned out, I know now looking back how she changed us and our family for the better.  I see no "all things working together for good" yet for her.  And it is hard. 

I cried, I sobbed, I screamed at God.  And I came home to an email from a friend containing photos I had never before seen.  She had been sorting her pictures on her computer and wondered if I wanted them.  

There we were.   Baby girl and I. 
I cried again. For our past, and for her present.

My present, the girls, are amazing.  Huge.  Amazing.  Smart. And very, very busy.  The relationship we are trying to build has become very one sided.  Fifteen offered visits cancelled, missed or ignored since the last in  November, September the last before that.  I struggle with how much is my responsibility to force, and my family struggles along with me as we navigate this journey. 

Oh but the girls.  The girls.  Worth every moment. 
Can you believe that Chunk of Love on the left, Miss Jayde, was once a tiny "failure to thrive" babe?  And Miss Smarty Pants Learning My Letters Already Taya was once called 'developmentally delayed'?  
Me either.  Their present is very, very good.

The big boys are growing.  Up and Out.  And with that we face new issues, new challenges, new opportunities.  And I have made a decision that out of respect for their new maturity, and a desire for privacy on all our parts, they will no longer be an integral part of the blog.    They are just as loved.  Just as amazing and just as complicated but they are owed that right now, and I give it happily.  I promise to brag almost as often about how amazing they are.  

My middle boys remain the same.  Growing.  Laughing.  Loving freely and easily.  

I have found this a complicated time.  I am stressed out.  Tired.  Worried. Frustrated.  Questioning.  The future worries me, the past hurts me and the present drags on.

 Hmmmm?  Could this possibly be the mid-winter blues?

Monday, January 24, 2011

My Dad

He has bravely accepted and then defeated 5% survival odds, endured 2 difficult surgeries, never complained once while enduring 22 doses of chemo, willingly gave up his passion of antique cars, and maintained a positive attitude every single moment of this journey while the rest of us screamed at God. 

He loves me, he loves my sister, and he loves all our kids with the passion of an adoring, amazing  grandfather. 

He chooses to put him self through torture because he wants to live, for us.  Not for himself, but because he knows it would be hard on us to lose him.  He is the rock solid center of our universe.  The strongest, bravest, and hardest working man I know.  And oh how he is loved.

If you pray, please say a prayer for him today as he is in surgery #3, on his otherwise deemed "inoperable" cancer. 

This is my Dad, but you can call him Superman.

******** UPDATE *********   My dad came through the EXTREMELY risky surgery with flying colors.  Thank you.

Friday, January 21, 2011


732.  Not that I am counting or anything.  

I wondered in amazement, many years ago, how a mother ever EVER let her children move out or move on.

My perfect, affectionate, loving and REWARDING toddlers.  Living life without them under my roof seemed a night mare of unimaginable proportions.

Now I know.  Apparently there is a reason for the teen years.

732.  Not that I am counting or anything.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

I Wonder

I wonder how many years it will be before any thought of my birthday doesn't bring me to the brink of tears?  Last year I was so hopeful I was over the raw part.

I wonder if this is something you ever get over?  If acknowledging that this is my reality makes it better? I get one day a year to be ok with missing her.  That God coincided the day of her birth with mine so I would never forget to pray for her?  That in some way, we are tied together for the rest of my life, even if it is never acknowledged anywhere else, God ensured I would never, ever forget.   That on this day her value, her worth to me, is always at the front of my mind.

I have promised a friend, facing the same inevitable,  unfathomable loss, that she will be ok.  And yet, on days like this, it does not feel ok.  Most days it does.  But not on this day.

My digital photo frame holds 1000 pictures and I awoke yesterday to find it had frozen on a picture of her.  6 months old.  Laughing.  She is still frozen there because I haven't the strength or the courage to press play or fast forward.

That's how I feel.  Rewound and paused.

I will be able to press play on Friday.

I  just have to get through tomorrow.

Happy Birthday to me.  Happy Birthday to her.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hmmmm 2011, I think you suck

We had a lovely New Year's Eve Toddler Party.  Yes. Toddler Party.

It ended at 10:20.   This was just fine with the women of the family.

The next day I was admitted to the hospital.  Again.  I am not sure if I have mentioned it on here before but I have been a few times lately with stomach issues.  PAINFUL stomach issues.

And now I am out of the hospital and faced with the daunting reality that food hurts.  Eating food hurts badly enough that I get hospitalized with a large IV and really good medications.

This is not a break.  I have six kids.  It means I come home to a disaster zone.  Its simply easier to stay out of the hospital and quit eating.

Now I LIKE food.  I like to eat food.  I like to smell food.  And although I am not even that overly successful at it, I like to cook food.  If I was one of those "should be shot" Naturally Size Zeros who eats the odd green leaf only to stay alive, maybe this wouldn't bother me.  But it does.

I would write the food list that I am not allowed to eat on here but it would take several pages.  The list I am allowed to eat?

One day, Meat.  Without any sauce, flavor, garlic or onion ESPECIALLY.

Rice.  Plain.  Well maybe a bit of salt.


Broth.  STRAINED broth.  Just to be sure no flavor gets through.

Potatoes and Corn.  Green Beens. Maybe one day when my stomach heals enough.

Exciting isn't it?

By summer I am going to be the grouchiest size 2 around.   Either that or I am taking out a room at the local hospital and asking to keep the IV in.

The real question is a life without chocolate a life worth living?  No coffee?  No diet coke?

*** For those that care, I am on the FODMAPS Diet which specifically addresses people with fructose allergies. I have that in combination with a wheat allergy, and a colon not happy about all the abdominal surgeries in my past and the resulting scar tissue. IT SUCKS.