Wednesday, June 05, 2013

My Person

The beginning is sometimes difficult.  It's only 8:45 AM, and there's a good bit I want to to say.  First and foremost, happy birthday to my breathtakingly wonderful grandmother.  Today would have been her 89th birthday, and I so wish she were here to celebrate it.  However, grief is a strange thing.  My grandma was (in the words of "Grey's Anatomy") my person, and I miss her every single day.
But now the remembering is filled with all the happy, incredible memories I had with her but not so much the anger and sadness I experienced for a long time after she died 12 years ago.  She was a good person in the sense of being a good Christian who taught through example, and for me I remember her forgiving, generous, loving nature ... someone I was incredibly close to and couldn't actually believe  would EVER leave this earth until she did. So today is so special, a day to reflect on the amazing times I had with her and mostly to thank God that He blessed me with her.  I'm choosing joy, but today it's not that hard. (For anyone who might not know, Annie was named after my grandmother :)

Switching gears, my daughter lost a tooth this morning.  I'm excited for her, but it's so hard for a non-morning person (that would be I) to generate the necessary excitement when the tooth-losing occurs before 7 AM.  Sheesh.  She's at camp all day so I'll work on whipping myself into a tooth-losing frenzy of joy before she gets home.  It'll pretty much take all day so I'll start soon.

I had a dream last night that Anthony and I were on a cruise (odd since we watched the end of "The Hunger Games" last night) and woke him up to talk about the huge breakfast buffett we were about to enjoy.  He fell back asleep and informed me we weren't on a cruise. I looked around and sure enough, we were in our own bedroom with 2 of our 3 dogs in bed with us, just like always.  Yes, judge us if you will: we're not good trainers of dogs AT. ALL.  The smartest dog of the bunch is Bonnie, who came to us already knowing commands like "sit" and "paw."  Oh, well, waking up with Bonnie and Harper snuggled up to us is fine by me.  Then again, I'd love to have a giraffe and zebra living in the backyard if we could.  Anthony says absolutely not.  Plus I believe it's illegal. Sigh.

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Aspiration Amputation

Today was a challenging day to choose joy. A debilitating migraine to start the day will do that to you, but I took my medicine and moved on.  I decided to do something lovely for my lovely child and start cleaning her room while she was at camp, but entering her room rarely ends well, and today was no exception.  I swear a natural disaster entered our home unbeknownst to me, hitting only Annie's room.  I just sat there staring with absolutely NO idea where to begin cleaning.  Disturbingly, I found a Barbie leg with no Barbie in sight.  Just the leg.  Was she going for amputation?  Is her aspiration to be Callie Torres on "Grey's Anatomy"?

Yep, it was difficult to choose joy today, but I did.  Sort of.  

Monday, June 03, 2013

Choose Joy

     Well, well, well.  Here I am again having a Lupron epiphany.  I've mentioned it before (maybe here, maybe in my own head) but having incredibly supportive friends and family is the ONLY way to get through this wonderful experience.  I've discovered that despite the persistent physical pain sometimes it's the mental strength that forces you to live your life anyway.  I had to return to the doctor last week for pain, and he was very surprised that after 7 weeks of Lupron I'm still having pain.  Turns out I still have endometriosis in an area that is surgically unreachable and the Lupron was supposed to "calm down" the pain.  My doctor said (as I already knew)  that my case is exceptionally rare and puts me in a group of women, a group of 1 in 100, 000 women who continue to have pain while on Lupron.  I  have to finish this cycle of Lupron (about another month) and then we'll re-evaluate.  We discussed options if the Lupron doesn't do its job, and each one was just a little more frightening than the one before.  The best one was a referral to a doctor on the east or west coast who specializes in very rare cases like mine and needles going places you really don't want a needle to go ... basically a nerve block.  However, as my husband says: we'll cross that bridge when we get to it.  Just the possibility makes me cringe; this is where mental strength comes in.

      Mental strength is what forced me to ignore the physical pain so I could enjoy my beautiful and funny daughter's dance recitals this weekend.  Not only mental strength but as a very smart woman in my family told me: choose joy.  So from now on (when the Lupron can be overcome) I will do my very best to choose joy. And now: pictures from the recital.  Some are just of Annie; some are of Annie and Caroline.  They're joyful :)

Monday, May 20, 2013

So Uncool

     This is Tiffany ... she is  my rock and my best friend. Who knew you'd find your best friend when you were in your 30's?  We're the yin and the yang of life.  Our friendship is effortless ... we're even the co-presidents of the PTO of our kids' school.  So all of that was said for a reason.  Friday was yet another wonderful day in the land of Lupron.  However, it was also Field Day for my sweet girl.  So, despite the persistent pain, I put on my big girl britches, went to her school and supported her.  At least I thought I did.  Somehow, even though Annie's only 7 I've become very uncool when I see her at school and she's with her  friends.  It's not the most self-esteem boosting feeling.  Nonetheless, I manned the ring toss area with Tiffany, and I swear I had a bullseye target on me because a lot of the precious children nailed me with the rings. Oh, well, Tiff and I had a blast ... our friendship is always fun.  Everybody should have a what-would-I-do-without-her friend in their lives.  And as for Annie?  Well, I might be uncool when she sees me in public, but in my completely biased opinion she's still adorable and beautiful.

     The weekend can be summed up in 2 words. Lupron. Lawnmowers.  I can't say much about the lawn mowing because a lot of those lawn mowing people (my husband included) are our neighbors and friends.  Plus what's the alternative? Set up a picket line until they all stop mowing their grass? Welcome to the jungle.  Nah, I don't think so.

     Oh, wait, I forgot.  I would be remiss if I didn't discuss the season finale of "Greys Anatomy." However, I can't say much without spoiling things so I'll just say it made me mad.  I CAN discuss the "Dancing With the Stars" finale coming on tonight and tomorrow night.  In my mind it's pretty much between Zendaya and Kellie so if people get that wrong I'll no longer be watching television.  Or I'll fly to Los Angeles and set up a picket line there and be sure to wear my "You Say Psycho Like It's a Bad Thing" shirt.  Very effective.

     We did have some serious excitement over the weekend when our sweet Bonnie killed a lizard.  I don't even know how she caught it because those things are crazy fast.  Anyway, she spent a little while tossing it into the air like a toy, and then inevitably the lizard moved into the white light of lizard heaven.  I'm not certain Bonnie knew that happened because when her lizard friend suddenly stopped moving she looked at it with a very disappointed look because it could no longer play.  Sigh.  Godspeed, small lizard friend.  We won't forget you.

     Oh, don't think I've forgotten the support of my husband, who patiently puts up with all the Lupron insanity.  He listens while I ponder if the red and yellow cards used in a soccer match were based on traffic lights and why on EARTH the couple picked that particular horrible house on "House Hunters International."  And he doesn't even question it when I decide it's the perfect moment to watch my 'NSync Pop Odyssey Live tour DVD.  He just patiently lets things unfold as they will.  Even if they're crazy.  And right now, they almost always are.  Always.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Land of Lupron

First and foremost, I must pay tribute to sweet Maggie Calvert, who passed away on Saturday morning at the age of 15. She was the wonderful, wonderful dog of my Aunt Mar and Uncle Larry, and she will be dearly missed.

Here, in the always exciting world of Lupron, well, ain't much happening. And yes, I have a degree in Journalism and I still used the word "ain't." Sometimes it just seems apropos.  I also have a Master's degree in Counseling, which lately means I can diagnose myself with whatever constantly changing "something" is happening to my body.  Or as an anonymous person to whom I've been married for awhile now simplified things: "Laurie, you've always been crazy, now you're just crazier." True that. Being on Lupron is like being on a hormonal roller coaster: you just never know how you're going to feel.  Somedays I'm fine (relatively speaking); somedays I cry for absolutely no reason; somedays people mowing their grass inexplicably drive me insane.  Why? I have no idea.

Oh, and those side effects you read about on prescription bottles?  May cause drowsiness, may cause dizziness, should be taken with food, etc.  Lupron has a HUGE list of side effects, and they're not messing around.  Everything from may cause sleeplessness, may cause fatigue (as if those two don't go together), may cause dizziness (NOT fun), and so many more I won't bore you with them. Let's just say I've experienced every. single. one.   The hot flashes are the most fun. Maybe I'll become a nudist.  Hmmm ...

I've gone from years of infertility treatments, one very successful round of IVF which blessed us with a beautiful, healthy daughter to the nightmarish Lupron.  Did I mention Lupron is an injection that stays in your system for three months?  THREE MONTHS.  And yep, I've considered using some tube  device to remove it, but even I know that really isn't a good plan.  And also, my experience with Lupron doesn't mean it's this lovely (read the sarcasm, people) for everyone.  Nonetheless, I'm still choosing what outfit I'll wear for that medical journal.

Finally, here are our "girls:"

From left to right, that's Hopie, Bonnie & Harper. Yes, I know they all kind of look alike, and they all have an actual syndrome: Black Dog Syndrome.  It's been proven that people are less likely to adopt black dogs.  Whatever.  I'll go for their personalities over the color of their fur every single time.

Okay, bed time for this crazy woman.  Until tomorrow ... whatever it may bring.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Remember Me?

May 14, 2013

Well, it's literally been years since my last post so it seems time to update this blog.  (Plus I've been encouraged by lots of people to get back to writing so that's exactly what I'm doing.)  As you would imagine a LOT has happened.  Annie is 7 now and finishing 1st grade.  UNBELIEVABLE.  She loves, loves, loves school and is learning so much that she very often asks questions to which we have to frantically seek the answers from the internet, etc.  She takes 3 dance classes now, which she loves, and her recital is just around the corner.

The picture above was taken this past weekend when she saw her first Broadway show, "The Lion King" at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center.  One of my best friends here in Nashville and I have season tickets so we have seen many shows, but this one was absolutely mind blowing.  If you ever have the chance to see this show run, don't walk to get tickets.  I assure you that you won't regret it!

Well, it wouldn't be a blog written by me if something medically bizarre weren't happening.  I honestly don't remember how many, if any, of my endometriosis surgeries were documented here, but I'm now up to 10 laparascopic surgeries plus a total hysterectomy thrown in for good measure.  I promise I'll land in a medical journal one day, and it'll be awesome! At the present time I'm being treated with a 3-month injection of Lupron.  I could use a lot of really, really strong words to describe the experience so far, but I'll refrain. Sigh.  I'll just say it's awful.  Really awful.

To update the happenings of our pets here we go:  our 14-year-old Hopie is still with us and just as feisty as ever; our sweet, perfect, wonderful Mary passed away on January 18, 2011, and I miss her terribly every single day.  She was diagnosed with lymphoma and died 13 days later.  Our incredibly wonderful vet came to our home and put her to sleep when the time came, and it was the most peaceful experience I have ever witnessed.  I like to think it was the final gift we gave to her, even if it was selfishly the most painful act we could do.  However, shortly thereafter we were referred to a fabulous rescue organization (Snooty Giggles Rescue) and came home with a wonderful puppy, Mary Harper Barclay.  She's now a little over 2 years old. We liked Snooty Giggles so much that we went back and got another incredible dog, Bonnie Barclay, who is also close to Harper's age so they have LOTS of wrestling, playing, and tug-of-warring (is that even a word??) time.  So yes, we are now the owners of 3 dogs, and we love it.  More importantly, Annie thinks it's great!  Harper and Bonnie (especially Bonnie) absolutely adore her and vice-versa.  Our sweet Mary is missed beyond measure, but we are doing our best to embrace the circle of life :)

I'll catch y'all up on more happenings in the next  post ...

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Geography Rules

Hello, the world! Ok, maybe not the world, but at least hello to the handful of faithful followers I have ...

Annie is now 19 and studying pre-med at Harvard; gosh-dang we're just so proud of her! Ok, maybe not exactly. Well, we are proud of her always, but she's not quite 19. She is, however, every single second of 3 1/2 with all the stubborness, etc. that comes with the age. And yes, as I have stated before, I am for all practical purposes raising a tiny version of myself. Things really do come full circle, don't they??

I'm now working 4 days a week at Annie's pre-school and loving it. I've always loved the program but even more so being on the other side of it. It's very, very much like a family environment, and I really feel blessed to have the opportunity to be there.

Annie is now taking ballet one day a week, which is great fun, and I promise to post some pictures. Actually I need to post a bunch of pictures, but that'll take a bit of time.

Ok, so there's a tiny glimpse into our lives at the moment, but I can't go without giving out a geographical nugget of information: there is not an Australian Ocean. Not that I thought there was or anything ...

Friday, July 10, 2009

Tin Cup Chalice

So as has become somewhat of a family tradition, we spent the 4th of July in a condo in Biloxi with my parents. It was a fabulous time and a wonderful opportunity to see lots of our family and friends. But I suppose a picture really is worth a thousand words, so here goes:

With my beautiful mother:
Annie and my grandfather:

Dinner with family:
My gorgeous Aunt Mar, who you may recall was Queen of the Mardi Gras Ball:
My best friend, Teri, and her three girls came over from Mobile, and these are pictures of them:

My daddy with Annie (her beloved "Pa"):

No point in trying to stay dry in the pool, Mom! (Annie with her "Kay-Kay")

Our good friends, Jenn and Chris and their fabulous pool:
Their Great Dane, Toby, who is breathtakingly beautiful:

Sunday, June 28, 2009

These Are the Days

So Annie and I returned a few days ago from our jaunt across to Atlanta to see our family ... my cousin, Kelly, her husband, Michael, their 2-year-old, Spencer and that precious new baby girl, Madeline ... it was great fun peppered with the antics of two toddlers and a newborn ...

Spencer and Annie (and Hailey the mighty dog in the background) spent most of their time right about here playing with Spencer's beloved cars or watching TV (if we were particularly lucky!)
And of course we spent a LOT of time loving on this little beauty:

And we watched this a lot:

And we spent a really cool morning with Spencer and Annie at a place called the Yellow River Game Ranch, which is sort of like an animal sanctuary where the majority of the animals just roam free:

But mostly we just hung out and had family time:

And at the end of the day (or anywhere during it) Hailey would just decide she was a teensy bit worn out from the stress of it all:

All in all, we had a wonderful visit, even if I did look around at the kids at one point and marvel at the fact that we're actually adults now with our own families! Have mercy!