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Showing posts from January, 2017

Kids Say the Darndest Things

When is it not crazy around here?

We've had some things come up that have brought to the surface a few raw feelings.  Tonight at dinner, we got on the topic of marriage and family and children. Shelbie had some passionate feelings on the topic.  She worries that she will never marry or have children.

When she dates, things go great for awhile, until she gets sick, or they find out she is sick and they run hard and fast; as far away as their little legs will carry them. It's sad really.

"It's not fair because I would be such a great mother!" She said.

I'm really good and coming up with all sorts of consolation prizes that I think should somehow make up for the deficits she is feeling.  "You get to hold and capture the essence of so many newborn babies. Their mothers are so appreciative of the way you get them to be quiet and still and calm. That's such a great gift.  You get to love them and send them home!"

"It's not even the same.  I …

On the other side

Finally!  I think Shelbie has rounded the corner on the flu.  Today, she had a pretty good day, even had a couple of big photo shoots and a service project for the Women's Shelter.

We successfully avoided the rest of the household getting influenza too!  I'm so glad, it makes me feel not so crazy for the amount of bleach I've been going through in the name of survival, or the lemon juice and apple cider vinegar.  I drank entire bottle of vinegar over the course of the week and started my second bottle today.  It's disgusting but I swear it helps keep the bugs away.

It has been a very busy day, not just at work but at home too.  The kids all had a crazy, disappointing day on Sunday and the fallout of what transpired has carried over to today.  For about two hours today, I had at least 7 text message conversations going at once, and several of them were my family.  It felt like I was putting out fires all day long.  I feel  accomplished that I didn't get any text mes…

Random Saturday

Whenever I feel like we are careening out of control, I declutter and clean.  By midnight on Friday, I had 1/3 of my living room filled with stuff I didn't want.  Today, I made a couple of trips to the thrift store and the dump.

Ahhh, I feel like I lost 20 pounds.

When Sam came home after his first week at school a while back, he said, "Wow, my room looks the same."

"What did you think your room would look like?"  I asked.


Turkey!  He came home this morning with his laundry and was a bit despaired.  He said, "Mom, you gotta help me with the smell in my apartment!  I can't stand it anymore! Do we have any Ozium?"

He went on to explain that there is no garbage disposal in the kitchen sink but food gets crammed down there anyways.  He said he keeps putting the little metal drains in that are meant to catch bits of food but his roommates take them out.  He's about fed up.  And while he was on his rant about boys and their leve…

Currencies of life

It's been an interesting week in this country, in my the lives of people around me.

Sometimes, I see things from the fringes of the hustle. The world is in a mad hurry to get somewhere and I am just stuck on the edge, watching it all unfold.

This week, on long drives to Utah, late nights in the hospital, middle of nights not sleeping, I have thought about the currencies of this life I know.  What is the currency of happiness?  The currency of joy?  The currency of hope?  Success?  One could go on and on.

As I caught glimpses of the 'March of Madness' last week in DC and around the country...(I know it wasn't called that but it seemed like a bunch of angry women with some disorganized thoughts.)  I really didn't get it at all, nor did I really try to understand the crusade. It seemed like one, unbecoming, ungracious, expletive and any worthwhile message was lost in the foul cries of anger.  I have nothing against women marching, I knew a few who attende…

Construction, The Er and the Eye Saga

The front of my house started coming down yesterday, on purpose.  I have to clarify because, well, you know us!  It wouldn't be a surprise if my house fell down unexpectedly!  The front of my house has been leaking since I moved in 11 years ago.  I didn't worry too much for awhile because it was just leaking into my unfinished basement.  Then, a few years ago, I tried to do something about it and the HOA just kept saying they would address it.  And then address it...and they never did.

Finally, in November when Shelbie had her stroke, the doctor was not happy she going up and down unfinished stairs and wanted them carpeted.  I'm not doing that until I know I have a dry basement.  So, long story short, my employer that I use to work for at the Architect firm jumped into action when he heard and lined up people to come and inspect it, establish the problems and then people to fix it right.  I was so relieved to have help on this one.  We are even trading for some of the work…

More of the same

We are still pretty much on the same rocky road.  Shelbie was lucky enough to develop a secondary bacterial infection.  Shocking!   And, not lucky at all.

When I called on Monday to schedule an appointment with our family doc here, they told me he was booked out until March!  Are you kidding me?  His partner is also booked out that far.  I'm not a huge fan of their PA's, mostly because they are all new and I just don't have it in me to explain the whole, long, dreadful story when all I need is an antibiotic prescription.

This isn't the first time I've called and they have been booked and I did try the PA's once but I made the hard decision to change clinics.  It was really hard and obviously meant that I did have to explain the whole nine yards. We settled on the urgent care clinic we've been frequenting lately.

It'll be alright though, I think the doc was a little overwhelmed.  Or a lot overwhelmed.  Anyways, she now has a sinus infection and her lu…

And then, a broken hallelujah

There's only one word to describe the past two days.  Broken.

Late Thursday night, Shelbie was called in to do a stillborn photo shoot at the local hospital.  She's been awaiting this call for a year and it has been something she has wanted to do for many years.  She is one of the hospital volunteer photographers for these situations.

She asked if I would say a prayer with her so that she would take good pictures and bring peace to the family.  It was a sweet and tender moment.  When she got home, she cried and cried and cried some more.  It was very hard for her to see that kind of grief and to hold and handle a tiny, 10 oz., 10 inches long, 18 week, perfectly formed baby boy who was breathing on his own and who's tiny heart beat for more than just a few minutes, much longer than expected.  It was hard to then see him return home to his Father in Heaven, already accomplished in what he was to do here.

A broken hallelujah.

We left just after 5 am on Friday for Shelbie's…

All you can do is hold on

Sometimes, all you can do is hold on for dear life and that is what I am doing.  This week reminds me of a merry go round.  It was all fun and games to start with.  You plant your feet on the gritty, diamond metal, ground down with years of dirt from little feet.  You grab the chippy painted bars and tell your friend to "GO!".

They run as fast as they can and the wind blows and your hair flies out behind you and you think  you might get sick but it's so much fun but then your slippery, sweaty hands slide down the pole and the force of the spin is shifting your feet and you're sliding ever so close to the edge and soon the ground is much closer to your body than when you started and you scream, "stop, stop, stop!"

That's me.  This week, its not so fun watching life come at me so fast and I'm screaming, stop, stop, stop!

We started with an unexpected bout of double atypical pneumonia in Sam.  He came home on Monday night and he was so sick and ran a…

Every Trace of Sadness

I have been lucky enough in my life, to experience things that absolutely took my breath away in awe and wonder.

I remember seeing the Eiffel Tower as a 15 year old in Paris.  The scale of that structure is staggering.

I remember when we were in New York at the Museum of Modern Art.  I turned a corner and there, hanging on a wall of its own, an original Van Gogh.  I was not expecting to it there.  Van Gogh is my absolute favorite artist.  I stood 6" from that painting and it took my breath away.  I couldn't move.  I didn't want to move.  Even now, I find myself craving that moment again.

Yesterday, at Shelbie's clinics, I found myself in moments of awe and grandeur.  Moments that stole more than my breath away.

We saw our Immunologist first.  He was taken aback at how awful Shelbie looked.  Even in the hospital 3 months ago she looked nothing as sick as she did on Tuesday.  As we sat discussing the past two weeks, Shelbie had an event.  The same kind she's been ha…

Beautiful How It Hurts

I came across this quote and it seemed to resonate with me.

I can't say for sure why or how we keep going.  You could say all sorts of things and they may border on truth of the whys and hows.  Certainly, there is a generous degree of mercy from Heavenly sources that help us out.  

Shelbie is going on week two of being quite sick.  She did have two days without a fever and she managed to even do a couple of photo shoots.  She had some issues during the shoots and was extremely fatigued.  She continues to have an odd set of symptoms, fevers and that flu-ish feeling.

Tomorrow, we meet with our regular docs and a very specialized doctor in Utah to see if she can make sense of it all.

In the back of my mind, I am always wondering if this is the right thing to do.  I feel like we just chase our tail in these appointments yet at the same time, it's evidence that we never give up.  What if this doctor was the one who actually figured things out?  What if we had given up and refused t…

Leaving Room

There is something to be said about the places and spaces in between the throes of life. Those sacred, empty moments where the mind can wander, thoughts find a place to settle down, peace is created, holiness is found. Nothing is there and Everything awaits creation and joy seems entwined about.  I never realized before, how important it is to leave room for those things to reside and flourish.

I am not good at leaving room in my life.

On New Year's Eve, I worked a full day.  The house was quiet and empty. Sometimes, there can be an uprising of silence, a roar of nothingness and it's all too much as was the case that night.

I took off to the nearest Barnes and Noble.  My favorite 'Wonder' in my world.  The place where you can be swallowed up in stories.  Million of stories that stir your soul.  I love sitting there.  The smell of paper and ink is indelible!

And so I sat.  I sat in the corner of Starbucks, a hot cocoa in hand and my favorite magazines stacked beside m…

Just like that...

My Sam came home this week.  Dirty laundry in one arm and a load of excitement and exhaustion in the other.  How did we get from this... 

To this!

To This!...College Life.  I think this picture Sam sent me of his first "homecooked" meal pretty much sums up the life of a Freshman College boy.

I text him everyday but it was so great to actually give him a hug.  We had a few moments of just him and I and I didn't want to waste a second to tell him how proud I am of him.  He shared that he loves apartment life, loves his roommates, loves being on his is hard.  He's got some hard classes and I could tell he is struggling a little with that but he's working hard.  Harder than I've seen him work.  He even added a ballroom dance class with his best friend Kelsie.  Those two have been like brother and sister for as long as I can remember.  She is beautiful in every single way and they have a good time together.

"Why are you so proud of me?" H…

Not To Be Had

I've really been trying to make the best of things this year so in my continued effort to pursue the hope of joy, I decided to go to the gym last night to work out some of my frustrations and clear my mind and I am finding it helps me sleep a little better than I usually do.

So, I change into my less than cute gym clothes, the T-shirt that says, "I Literally Cannot" because I love irony and oxymoron.  It was pretty crowded so late in the evening which surprised me. I chose my usual elliptical machine, turned on a TED talk about giving up social media and away I went.  By that, I mean about 11 minutes until I was completely bored with the talk and the elliptical.

There's one problem with not sticking with the bike, elliptical or treadmill...there's a learning curve to the other machines.  So, I wander around hoping to eye a machine I think I can master just sitting down on.  The gym is no place to build your confidence and independence if you don't know what y…


The misery of Shelbie's mystery diagnosis continues.  Poor girl is miserable and spends much of her days and nights in pain, discomfort and crying.

At dinner last night, she had a little melt down and said, "You always had the answers!  You always knew what was wrong and how to fix it.  You took care of us and I never worried because I knew you could do it but now you don't have any answers!  You never do anything to fix us." And with that, you could have heard a pin drop.

What do you say to that?  I can't argue with her.  I use to have all the answers, sometimes before the doctors had all the answers.  There always seemed to be something I could do to make them better or at least bring them an acceptable degree of emotional if not physical comfort.  It's too complicated anymore.

This morning, I had a chain of text messages from our Immunologist, Dr. G.  He is scratching his head as well and we both have similar thoughts on where this is going; either her bo…

Change Pains

It seems I am feeling the pain of change in my opposed to growing pains!

Sam has been officially on his own since Wednesday of last week.  I am going on record to say it is much harder to have a kid move 2 miles away than a State away like Spencer did.  It doesn't seem right that I haven't seen him in 5 days.  It doesn't seem right that he won't be here for FHE tomorrow night.  It doesn't seem right that I only set three plates at the dinner table.  It doesn't seem right that I am so lost and pained over the whole situation.  I can hardly wait for laundry day when he will come home to clean up!  Ha ha.

He sent me a picture on Saturday of his lunch with the caption..."Eating like a college student." It was disgusting.  Some sort of TV dinner with a shmeat of indescribable horror  (Shmeat is short for "not real meat".) and a side of rubbery mac n cheese!  Oh, my poor mama heart.  I can hardly stand the fact that I'm not taking ca…

Impeccable Timing

Today is one for the books...

It actually started last night when discovering that the microwave was broken.  I thought it was not running well for the past couple of weeks but didn't think much of it until it took 6 minutes to heat a slice of pizza until it was just under cold. The front door handle broke last night too.

This morning, I had to drive to Salt Lake for a presentation with some clients but upon entering the shower, there was no water! Not even a little tiny drop.  I checked all the sinks, toilets and nothing.  No water.  I spent about 45 minutes trying to figure out what to do but I really needed to be on the road in order to arrive to my meeting on time.  I threw on some clothes, did my make-up in less than 90 seconds and texted my home teacher to see if he had any ideas.

He came right over and then thought to check the main water valve in the basement.  It didn't seem terribly cold but there was water dripping from the pipe where the house meets the city pipes…

It's this and it's that

2017 is 2 days old and already, it's a strange little year!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words...

New Year's Eve, I attempted a nice little evening alone and that was too much of alone so I just went to bed.  Sam came home from his parties at 2:00 so I got up and caught up on his fun with him.  Shelbie and Spencer came home shortly after which was surprising because I thought they were all staying over at their dad's.  
But, there we all sat in the living room, chatting on about the new year, all our hopes and dreams...Just kidding, we aren't quite that poetic!  We were chatting about nothing really.  I guess my elbow knocked the edge of a small picture that hung on the wall and it took my huge picture down!  The simplest, tiniest nudge and the whole thing crashed.  On its way down, it whacked me hard!
I got a new nail and rehung the picture and then went to bed.  About an hour later, the darn thing fell down again!  I heard the most impressive crash and it w…