Just Surviving

birthday

I feel like it’s an accomplishment that I survived today. We had a gymnastics birthday party for my daughter with 12 kids (other than mine) and it was hectic. I’m not sure what was funnier to me, the girl that wanted me to buy her a gymnastics outfit instead of giving her a gift bag, or that my mother-in-law said one inappropriate thing after another.

My neighbor was talking about a situation her older daughter is having with a co-worker and that she tried to talk to her boss about it, but nothing has been done. My mother-in-law blurted out, “Oh is he gay?”

I’m not sure how she draws conclusions. My brother-in-law and I had to walk away because we were laughing so hard. I used to spend time trying to explain to her that her comments could be taken as rude, insensitive, and inappropriate, but I gave up on that about 8 years ago. She isn’t going to change.

Tonight I’m fighting a headache. I’ve been able to stay on top of the pain, so it’s not bad, but I realized that I skipped taking my birth control pill last night and that always triggers a migraine for me. As soon as I realized it, I took the pill this afternoon, so I’m hoping between that and some over the counter meds that I don’t wake up with a bad headache tomorrow.

It’s bad enough that the temperature is going to be -14 tomorrow morning. I don’t need a migraine on top of dealing with that. The front of my thighs are hurting me tonight; one more than the other. I’m not sure what that’s about. Of course, my mind jumped to the fact that I work with the computer on my lap all day and it’s probably a tumor.

Tomorrow is also a school holiday and then we have a snow storm coming on Tuesday. At this rate, the kids will be in school until July.

So I need to get back on the diet wagon tomorrow. I am thoroughly disgusted with myself. I allowed myself to fail…again. Tomorrow begins a new week and I’m going to give it my all. I’m going to ignore the fact that I made banana bread today and that I’m likely the only one who will eat it. I need to get serious before it starts to get warm.

I was good about exercising last week, so I plan to keep that up. I didn’t do anything today and did plan to, but I got sucked into watching the Saturday Night Live Anniversary Special. It was great watching some of those older sketches with Phil Hartman, Chris Farley, Will Ferrell, etc.

I’ll get back to my elliptical that I hate tomorrow. It’s good for me, and I need to work up to a longer amount of time. We’ll see. I was thinking of pulling out my step and doing an old step class. I miss it. It was my favorite class to teach.

I need to get back to doing it a few times a week. It will break up the monotony to spending 30 minutes on the elliptical. It’s now 12:30 and I’m still wide awake. I’m going to have to take a half an Ambien to get some rest.

If you’re on the upper East Coast, try to stay warm.

Ending a Migraine

Brian-Williams-memes-20-400x400

As per my usual M.O., I got a horrendous migraine after I calmed down about my dad. When I saw him on Wednesday, he looked so good and all my stress seemed to fade. It was about 7pm and I was watching a show with my daughter when I lost my vision in one eye.

This one came on fierce. I took migraine meds and muscle relaxers. I used ice and had my TENS unit going trying to loose up the tight bands in my neck. It was one of the worst I’ve had in a while.

I slept a lot yesterday so I would feel well enough to go out to dinner for my daughter’s birthday. She had a wonderful birthday and was thrilled with her presents and going out to eat. She got a lot of presents, which is unusual for us for a birthday, but most of the things she wanted were tiny. Anyway, she was thrilled.

In stead of telling you how much I binged today and strayed from my diet, I thought I’d discuss Kanye West. What was he thinking? My guess would be that he doesn’t think anyone other than he or Beyonce deserve awards. Now I won’t sit here and say I’m familiar with any of Beck’s music, other than the Loser song from a while back, but he played 14 instruments on his album. He also wrote all his songs.

To insult him for winning album of the year was just plain wrong. I got jumped on when I posted that I thought he was racist on my Facebook page. Yes, I’m well aware that he married a white woman, but I can’t stand the way he talks about other artists. He just a very odd dude.

There is also the Brian Williams fiasco with his lies about being shot down in Iraq. I was disappointed because I like Brian Williams. It’s like that story that keeps growing and growing each time it was told. He got so much attention from it, the lie took on a mind of it’s own. I give him credit for explaining it and I do hope that people forgive the mistake and move forward.

I am still searching for a puppy. Actually I found one, but the shelter hasn’t gotten back to me. I fond a few puppies that were for sale that were so adorable, but I really prefer to adopt. We’ll see what happens. I’m thinking maybe that would make my birthday more tolerable this year since I’ve been dreading turning 43, the age my mother died.

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and we are getting yet another snow storm. I’m praying it ends early on Sunday because my daughter’s birthday is at 2pm. I was so stressed that no one could come, but now she has about 5 friends and her cousins, and of course her brother and sister.

I’ve never been a big Valentine’s Day person.  I once had a boyfriend that showed up at my work with roses and chocolates out of the blue…we had just started seeing each other. Then I went back to his place to get dressed to go out to dinner and he had more flowers there, perfume, and some lingerie. That’s about the most romance I’ve ever had. It was a complete shock and I guess that’s why I liked it so much.

Since there will be a snow storm and it’s going to be like 0 degrees out, we’re going to have dinner at home with the kids. I need to go on Pinterest and find something to make.

 

 

 

 

Update on My Dad

I didn’t sleep much last night, even with the Ambien. I got the kids on the bus after their 2-hour delay, took a half of a xanax and went back to bed. I was really worried and I though if I could relax and have a nap, it would help.

Happily, I can report that around 1pm I heard that my dad was out of surgery and that it went well. It took a little more time than they thought because they almost needed to use a metal valve instead of a cow one, but in the end they got the cow one to work, which from what I understand, was the preferred option.

So what has this taught me? There’s a lesson in everything, right? It taught me that even though my dad doesn’t express emotion well, it does not mean that I should refrain from telling him I love him more often. Don’t get me wrong, my dad loves me and I’ve never doubted that, but he’s just not great at showing feelings.

Hearing him say he was scared last night was really difficult. Once again I was reminded that your parents are human, and I was deathly afraid of losing another one.

I knew the stress would bring on a flare, so I was prepared. It’s freezing cold here still, and the Raynaud’s was bad again today, but my hips, low back, and feet were also bothering me. Right now it’s mostly my hips.

The good news is that I still managed to do the stupid elliptical (I hate that thing) for about 10 minutes. I was planning on doing 20 minutes of abs after that, but with homework, kids going crazy, etc. It didn’t get done. That I will do tomorrow night.

We’re supposed to get another storm on Thursday afternoon. It’s my baby’s birthday. She so wants to go to school with her cupcakes and celebrate, so I’m hoping school isn’t canceled. She asked for so much for her birthday, but most of the things were around $6-$10. A large box came today and I could tell she really wanted to peek. She’s so funny.

As I mentioned in other blogs, my baby girl was a twin and we lost a twin about halfway through the pregnancy. My daughter was crushed in the uterus and they told me she had clubbed feet and they weren’t sure if she’d walk because of how mangled her legs were at the 20-week ultrasound.

She has defied the odds. She runs, jumps, and everything in between. Her coordination leaves a little to be desired, but she makes up for it with spunk. It was a tough pregnancy for me, but she makes me laugh every day. She has her own like unique outlook on life and I love her thought process. I can’t believe my baby is turning 8!

That brings me to my mid-life crisis. I’m 42. I have fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, and Raynaud’s. All my life I have felt like I’d die at 43 because my mom died at that age. So here I am…I’m turning 43 at the end of March and I’m not ready.

I told everyone that I’d just prefer not to have any kind of birthday celebration this year. I mean, look, my kids will make me cards and that is enough. I just don’t want a big deal. I believe that’s why I’ve set my sights on a puppy. Of course, I don’t need one.

I have always wanted a German Shepherd puppy. It’s always been a dream. Maybe I’m feeling like I need to fulfill my dreams now before it’s too late. Morbid thinking, I know. Maybe just focusing on the faces of puppies is making me feel better.

Tomorrow is another day. I have a PPT for one child and a Valentine’s Day party for another one. Did I mention after all these snow days that my kids have winter break with no school Friday and Monday? Yay me!!!

Thanks for the thoughts and prayers for my Dad. Much appreciated.puppy-german-shepherd-mix-for-sale-img6231

Stress, Snow, and Sleep Issues

dad

I don’t think my kids have been to school on a Monday in the last three or four weeks. Again, we have a decent storm last night and this morning so my little cherubs were home, and arguing all day. They argued over XBox controllers. They argued over which character they were using. They argued over lots of mundane issues.

We already have a two-hour delay for tomorrow so of course no one wanted to go to bed on time. My son is still awake at 11:30PM, but I think he’s worried about me. My dad is having major heart surgery tomorrow morning. I was doing okay until I spoke with him tonight. We don’t do emotions well, my Dad and I. We love each other very much, but it’s just not him to say it a lot. I told him I loved him and that I knew everything would be okay. It was difficult to hear him say he was scared. I’m scared, too.

I’ve been so worried about me dying at 43 that I hadn’t given much thought to losing someone else in my life, like my only other living parent. I’m not ready. I just pray that it all goes well, and if you are the praying type, please say a few for my dad.

My kids saw me crying after I talked to him and they really stepped up. The older two were really consoling, but my youngest got very upset, too. I didn’t want that so I regrouped and focused on assuring them that the doctor said Grandpa is an excellent candidate for this surgery. He’s active and otherwise healthy. I just need him to be okay.

I took a half an Ambien because I knew I’d have a difficult time falling asleep. I took it an hour ago, and now I’m wondering whether I should have taken a full one. We can all sleep in a little bit tomorrow with the snow delay.

Other than the situation with my dad, I’ve been doing okay. The Raynaud’s is really tough on these cold days. My fingertips were so cold that when I got in a warm (not even hot) shower, they felt like they were on fire when the warm water hit them. It’s the oddest thing. Does anyone else have that?

I know that it’s normal for your hands to get very white or even bluish, but when they are returning to normal temperature, do you have pain? I just want to make sure I’m not a freak of nature.

I was able to get on my elliptical machine today for a workout. It felt good. I couldn’t last too long, but I took a break and did some pushups in the middle and then got back on. I’m going to really try to do 10 minutes a day for a few weeks. I know that sounds so lame, but I need to make a goal that I can keep. Once I’m used to doing it for two weeks, maybe I can up the time.

In my spare time, I’ve been looking at puppies online. I don’t need another animal. I have a dog, three cats, and a parrot. It’s just that I’ve always wanted a German Shepherd puppy. Now I’m not that person that wants to go to a breeder and AKC papers, I want to rescue a pup. It’s just that the timing has to be right, and I really want a young puppy in order to acclimate it into our menagerie.

Is the man of the house on board? Not yet, but I’m working on it. This may sound awful but I put up with so much bullshit that I don’t think he’d really say no. I think he’ll try and talk me out of it. If nothing else, it’s keeping me busy while I am worried about my dad.

Town Politics

angrycat4

I don’t like politics. I have my views, and I don’t shove them on anyone else, and I hate when people shove theirs on me. But national politics are very different than local politics. I live in a fairly small town in New England. Living about 8 miles from Sandy Hook Elementary School, our lives were forever changed by the massacre that occurred on 12/14/12. It also changed the things that area schools do to protect our children.

Our town is in a first with our First Selectman over money needed for special education. For those that have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I work for a nonprofit doing special education advocacy. Let’s put it this way, a town cannot simply decide not to fund special education, Unless, of course, they are willing to take on the lawsuits that will result from that decision of doing something against the law.

Our town’s Board of Education requested a special appropriation of money because they are over budget due to the need for long terms subs and special education. Our First Selectman and Board of Finance turned the other way and ignored a 1000-person signed petition for a town meeting. I’m going to be blunt…I think he’s a schmuck. Funny that no one on either of those boards have a child in the district.

So all of this is on my mind today. It wasn’t an eventful day overall, but it’s one that’s fairly pain-free, so I’m thankful for that. I’m just finding that my patience is thin. I snapped a lot at my kids today, and I hate when I’m like that. I’m just tired of the bickering and nastiness toward each other. Do you ever just need a break from your kids?

Maybe I sound like a horrible mother saying that, but sometimes I just need a break. I have three kids, two of whom have learning issues, and two of whom (not the same two) have ADHD. Homework is not easy, nor fun. I’m just crabby today.

For the first time I’m hoping for a snow delay tomorrow. I’m overbooked and that would clear my schedule. Also, I cheated on my diet terribly today. I mean, not just a little cheat. I found chocolate covered peanut butter pretzels…ate way too many. And, I had an ice cream sandwich. I never crave ice cream. It’s not really my thing. I enjoy it when I have some, but it’s nothing I go out of my way for.

My youngest daughter begged for them in the grocery store today, and I didn’t expect to have one, but I’ll admit…her’s looked delicious. So it’s back on the wagon tomorrow and I will be stepping up the exercise. I also wasn’t great about drinking the crazy amount of water today, and believe it or not, I’m finding I feel better drinking all that water.

I have more energy and I think I have less headaches. So, it’s back measuring my water intake. I need to find more willpower. I’m going to force myself to write down everything I eat. Maybe that will help.

Hoping you all had a pain-free day.

Super Bowl, Snacks, and Snow

1924704_633697193423518_3362526524254187185_n

I’m not a football fan…except when my son is playing. But, this Super Bowl was a darn good game to watch. The girls and I opted to not go to my sister-in-law’s house to watch the game, and instead we watched movies for most of the day and then watched the game.

I learned how to stream my movies through our XBox so I made the girls watch Grease for the first time ever, and we also watched Mamma Mia. They’ve really been into musicals, but I forgot about some of the scenes in Grease. I suppose I could have exposed them to worse.

I haven’t updated the blog in a few days. My migraine was complete hell all the way until late Friday night. I attended the class that I was accepted to through the state of Connecticut, and I had to take muscle relaxers and two rounds of migraine medicine just to be able to function.

I was very nervous, but it was a good experience. I did my three-minute speech–even cracked a few jokes. I met some very nice people, as well. I would say half of the participants have some sort of disability and the other half are parents of children with a disability. It’s going to be a ton of work, and I still haven’t decided what my final project will be, but I need to figure it out this week.

The other issue I had is that after sitting from noon to 8:30PM in the same chair, I was a mess on Saturday. My body can no longer handle sitting in the same position for that long with only a few small breaks. Saturday’s class was really hard because my hips were so stiff and my back was really bothering me.

By last night I was hobbling around due to joint and muscle pain. When my husband asked why I was walking like I was dying, it really hit me that the rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia have really changed what I can and can’t do. You wouldn’t think sitting would be that big of a deal, but I was in a straight chair and it wasn’t that comfortable to begin with.

The fact that my body stiffens up so easily makes things really difficult. I didn’t have a lot of swelling, but I had a lot of join pain. The only good news was that my migraine finally let up on Saturday. It’s funny, I can suffer through my arthritis pain for the most part, but the migraine was horrid. At one point I was trying to pay attention and I could hardly see because my vision was getting so blurry.

The table of people that I sat with was very nice. I met some great people and made a lot of contacts. It’s funny though, whenever you tell people you are an editor (as I did in my three-minute speech), people want to tell you about a book they are writing. While I did talk to two people at length about editing, I was really focused on all the stuff they were teach about the Department of Developmental Disabilities.

The only issue with the training, other than the fact that I had to give a speech, was that the woman sitting next to me talked under her breath the entire time. I think I heard her snoring on Saturday morning, but I was trying not to look.

For a project for Saturday morning we each had to choose a disability from a given list that we would want over the others, and one we wouldn’t want. I’m not sure why alcoholism was listed as a disability, but it was on there. Anyway, we were supposed to go around the room and tell what we picked and why. The lady next to me chose to have alcoholism and when she got the microphone she just started going through her day of what she’d drink.

The group leader had to tell her to stop when she named her fifth or sixth alcohol. I chose deafness as the disability from the list that I’d take. My first major in school was interpreting for the deaf, so I know how strong the deaf community is. There is a lot of support and I think as much as I’d miss my music, I’d be much more afraid to lose my vision.

We’re also getting hit with another big snowstorm tonight. It just started snowing and they already closed schools again for tomorrow because we’re supposed to get between 12-18 inches of snow. So yay me!! The kids will be home again, and I won’t get much work done.

I’m not even sure what movie to rent tomorrow. I’m looking for something all three kids will enjoy. Hopefully, they can pick one without too much bickering.

 

 

Another Storm, Another Migraine

blizzard

I woke up with a migraine this morning, and it seemed to get a little better and then came back with a vengeance. My neck is so tight on the right side and my vision is blurred in the right eye.

I usually take a muscle relaxer at night for my fibromyalgia, but I took one around 6pm and then another one again at 8:30. I have the TENS unit going on high to try and loosen the area up, and I have to just say that I’m hardly feeling any relief.

I’m supposed to be practicing a speech I have to give for a class tomorrow, but I can’t even read it at the moment. I hate public speaking…I’m terrified. My two directors at the non-profit organization talked me into applying for this program that is run by the state of Connecticut. It’s called Partners in Policymaking and it’s once a month for 9 months. I go tomorrow at noon and won’t be home until Saturday evening.

This is the first session and I’m in a panic, which I’m sure isn’t helping the headache. It’s supposed to start snowing at some point tonight and stop around noon tomorrow. I’m supposed to be in Hartford at noon and that’s at least an hour away without snow.

I’m praying I don’t wake up with this headache tomorrow because I don’t know how I’ll do in two 8-hour study sessions. I can hardly function as a mom when I have a migraine, let alone take notes and get up and give a speech.

My other issue today was my hands. I know I’ve complained about my Raynaud’s numerous times, but it’s so odd to me how some days there is just nothing I can do to warm up my hands. I had a heated blanket over me for the majority of the day, and my core wasn’t cold, yet my fingertips were a bluish and freezing.

I haven’t had much swelling in my hands, but the pain and numbness is awful. I am packing my heating pad for tomorrow.

My kids are not used to me going away. Even though it’s only for one night, they are kind of a mess. I’m hoping that they don’t have a snow day so we have to deal with a sad goodbye as I’m leaving. My youngest daughter just learned how to text through her iPod, so I know she’ll be contacting me often.

I have to finish editing a manuscript before I can go to bed, but the good news is that I’ve been through it several times and it’s very clean. This is one for middle-grade readers and while fantasy usually isn’t my thing, I really enjoyed it. She’s a very good writer. I’ll be reading with one eye open, though.

 

 

Storm Juno: A Bust!

Sleepy-puppies-9415133-1600-1200

Though the winds were howling most of the night, we only got about 7 inches of snow, compared to the 30 they were predicting. I know other areas of CT and MA got hit a lot harder, but luckily we were spared. As I mentioned, as long as we didn’t lose power, I didn’t care how much snow came down.

The kids have a 2 hour delay tomorrow, and I’m glad they opted to decide that tonight rather than wait until the morning. Because there is still a layer of snow and ice on the roads and it’s supposed to be like zero again tonight, it was a good call. The kids get to sleep in a little, so they are pleased.

It wasn’t a great day for my diet again, so tomorrow I’m going to buckle down and re-start. I’m beginning to think I have an addiction to sugar. I was feeling good with out it, and today I had a cookie and a brownie and it became difficult not to go back for more.

I did stick to my small meals and shakes, though. Dinner was chicken sauteed with onions, mushrooms, spinach, and kale in a wine sauce. My portion was decent so it’s a start. I’m making the decision not to get down on myself about it. I workout out tonight and did a lot of arms and abs because my class was snowed out this morning.

Tomorrow I plan to get back on my strict routine, and I’m prepare for the first two days to be tough again with my sugar cravings. I’m ready.

Today was also a little more difficult with my fibromyalgia and/or rheumatoid arthritis. My hands were very stiff, as were my hips and back. I was able to take a nap with everyone home, which is shocking, but the kids were fantastic all day. I know I’m lucky. My older daughter really wanted to bake, so that’s why there were brownies in the first place.

She’s been into cooking lately, I just wish she’d eat more. This sounds hilarious but today she tried a sandwich for the first time. For whatever reason, the kid never ate bread until recently. I have to pack turkey or ham with no bread for her lunch, so this is a huge breakthrough.

I’m ready for bed early tonight, and I can only blame the exhaustion on the fibro. I didn’t do enough today to be tired, but for some reason I really am. I think as a mom, you just get used to ignoring when you feel tired. I don’t know a mom out there that isn’t exhausted, but it is a different type of exhaustion with an autoimmune disease. I can feel my body saying rest now or pay for it later.

I push sometimes when there is something I really want to do, but in this case, I’m just and relaxing. There will be time to finish up things tomorrow (while I’m dealing with being hungry).

I hope you all survived Storm Juno unscathed. I could use some positive vibes for getting back on track with my Ideal Shape tomorrow. I need to do this.

I Cheated

Wish I Was There Instead of Here

Wish I Was There Instead of Here

They are calling it the possibly one of the worst storms in history. My kids are home, possibly through Wednesday and I ate three cookies and a handful of potato chips today. I learned it’s much harder to stick to my diet with them home. I’m back on the wagon tomorrow.

The wind is really starting to pick up here. I’m not sure how much snow we have, but the roads were looking bad around 5pm. The state put a ban on all travel on roads except emergency vehicles. I’m taking that as a sign that it’s pretty bad.

As long as I don’t lose power, I’m fine being stuck snowed in for a few days. I’m just stressed with the high winds and heavy snow that we might lose a tree and knock wires down.

Surprisingly, my pain level is pretty good today. I did not go outside, other than to carry in some wood for the wood stove. The kids went sledding and I watched from the sliding glass door and had hot cocoa ready. I have a feeling that they are going to try and talk me into sledding tomorrow and that’s when it all could go downhill.

Today would have been my mom’s 72nd birthday. It’s funny, some years it hits me really hard and others not. I didn’t get emotional today, but I think that might be because I let it all out last week after a talk with my son about her. My life would have turned out so different had she lived. I can’t even imagine what my like would be like with her here. Actually, I think I’m going to have a more difficult time with my own birthday this year.

I’m turning the age that she was when she died–43. I remember at 14 and everyone was telling me how young she was. But now I see it. I don’t feel old. I can’t imagine preparing to die and leave my children. I just wonder who she had to talk to during that time. She had her mother and my step-father, I guess. I just don’t know how she did it.

Onto a lesser intense subject. I’m watching The Bachelor. Dear lord! Some of these women have no respect for themselves. Okay, all of them. You don’t compete for a man! I admit to watching because of the psycho people. It makes it a little fun, but I’m not liking this guy too much.

Hopefully I’ll have something more inspiring to talk about tomorrow. It was such a quiet day here. I hope everyone in the Northeast stays safe in this storm.

 

Still Dieting

snow

It’s day 4 of my Ideal Shape diet. Yesterday was easy, but today I had to go to brunch for a family event. I probably ate more at that one meal than I would have if I were home, but I skipped an extra meal today and only had four. I’m probably not supposed to do that, but I really wasn’t hungry.

Interestingly, what is the most difficult is getting all the water in. That’s a LOT of water, definitely way more than I’m used to drinking. I’m wondering if my headaches will improve a bit with all the extra water. My brother-in-law is a neurologist and he always said dehydration is a major cause for headaches.

I got to go to dinner last night with an old friend and that was good therapy for me. She is one of my oldest friends. We met in kindergarten. I think I needed the therapy session with someone who knew my mother. We went through a lot around the same time, first with my mother being sick and dying of cancer, and then she had her own family issues a year or two later.

When you’ve known someone that long, inevitably you have a lot to reminisce and laugh about. It was a good night.

We are now expecting a huge snow storm. Depending on who you listen to, it’s either starting tomorrow morning or after 5pm. They keep moving it up…and increasing the amount of snow we’re supposed to get. I stopped listening when the amounts were over 18 inches.

I braved the grocery store with all the nuts getting their bread and milk this evening. I like to cook when we’re snowed in, so I bought a roast and snacks for the kids. And, I stocked up on cat treats for the furry children. Heaven forbid they go without.

I don’t mind the snow when I have nowhere to go. It’s kind of nice being snowed in, as long as we don’t lose power. Our electric company has already sent a robocall about power outages. So basically, people are going insane.

Typically we don’t lose power that often. We survived Hurricane Sandy with only a few flickers, but everyone else on our road was out for over a week. We’re on a different power circuit (that’s about as technical as I get). We do have a wood stove, so that will help should we lose power. I have my crocheting, board games, cards, etc. We’ll keep busy.

I just signed up for Netflix. I might possibly be the only person that hasn’t joined until now. I’m hoping that will be something the kids and I can do tomorrow. I was looking all over for the movie West Side Story to show it to my daughter. She’s all into musicals and I know she’d love it.

So that’s the plan for Snowpacalyse. Stay tuned. Hopefully I can survive baking cookies, etc. with my diet!

 

Previous Older Entries

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 913 other followers