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Tuesday, November 27, 2012


The holidays always bring me out of my day to day routine and thrust me into happenings in the community. I love it for the most part because I get to catch up with people I haven't seen in awhile.

Tonight was a good example. I haven't officially worked since Sept 2010, but my former employer still treats me like family and I got a special invitation to the women's Christmas gift exchange. I loved being able to see everyone and visit without having to disrupt their workday like I usually do whenever I want to see them. Some things have changed a lot. And some things never change. I found myself able to just thoroughly enjoy the evening. It's something that has changed for me since I had time to step away from the career side of myself and embrace the domestic / mom / wife side of myself.

I think being a mother has made me a nicer person in short.

And, in thinking about what has changed so much for me it boils down to this simple thing...I find myself wanting to acknowledge others. Wanting to make the effort to say hello and invest a few minutes in conversation. And, sometimes, realizing that there is opportunity to encourage by going a step further than a hello. It's very enjoyable to find these moments.

I also realized that sometimes, the most hurtful thing I can do someone else is to simply not acknowledge them or their presence. Examples would be glancing over during my grocery shopping and then pretending like I didn't see someone so I don't have to stop what I'm doing and say hi. Or, not stopping my conversation to say hello to someone when they walk up to me. Not smiling when I make eye contact with someone. It's almost worse than being snappy or pointed in some ways because at least the other person exists when they do enough to get under your skin. Being able to completely block someone out can be the most hurtful thing ever.

So, I'm working on it. Going beyond polite or having to do something into really wanting to do something that says "HEY! I'm glad to see you. I hope you're having a great day. Maybe there's something I can do to help if you're not having a great day."

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Isn't It Ironic...

I have been scanning HUNDREDS of negatives this week and stumbled upon an envelope of camp pictures circa 1999. So many memories and so many people I never see at this stage of life.

I had my heart set on one person in particular so he makes many appearances on my computer screen these days. Normally, I just keep skipping along, but today, at the same time the pictures were popping up on my screen, Pandora threw this song into the mix and when I closed my eyes, I was back at camp laying on my back on the basketball court watching the stars. And that person was laying next to me singing this song to me.

I now know that this particular relationship meant the world to me at the time...and it was just one giant ego boost to that particular person and that I never meant anything special to him at all.

But dang it, that song has a way of taking me back even if it's just for a few minutes.

Back to the negatives! And a new station on Pandora, me thinks.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Towing The Line

Sweet Baby Elliott is fast approaching his 9 month birthday and what a crazy week it has been for him! The side roll / side plank combo has evolved into being able to sit up by himself and his snail pace scooting across the floor has turned into a speedy army crawl. He disappears from view in a matter of seconds and his most favorite place to go in the entire house is Jackson's room. I have found him several times happily sitting in the middle of Jack's floor surrounded by toys. And today, I peeked into his room at naptime and found him STANDING UP in his crib looking very pleased with himself. I think naptimes will prove a little difficult until the novelty of standing up has worn off.

In light of how big the boys are getting and taking my health and age into consideration, we need to make a decision about the possibility of Baby #3. Not in the sense of trying right away, but more along the lines of getting it on the schedule. It's something I have been thinking about and praying about for several months. I just feel like we are supposed to have one more baby and after being lost in my own thoughts about it, I finally reached out to Pete last week to check in and see where he is on the subject.

He was pretty supportive of the idea on a verbal front, but after watching him for the past week, something hasn't been right in his countenance or attitude. Lots of frustration, anger, bad language, easily provoked, etc... and last night, he got upset with me for stepping in when he and Jackson were doing their oil and water Custer's Last Stand. I probably should have stayed out of it and let them work it out, but I had a migraine, I had just gotten Elliott to sleep, and the yelling was getting really LOUD.

After I got Jack into bed, Pete said a few things that caused me to stop talking (which is a feat in and of itself) and this morning, I felt a stirring to just reach out again. I decided to send the following text: "Hey Babe. It's pretty obvious that you do not want anymore children. Rather than have it continue to be a point of contention or leverage during arguments, I just wanted to say that I am thankful for the two boys we do have and that I won't bring the subject up again." His two word response was "Thank you."

And now, I am sad. I know it was the right thing to do, but it still makes my eyes tear up when I think about how I won't ever feel our sweet little baby moving around inside of me or what it feels like to see my baby's sweet face for the first time. So many amazing experiences that I thought I would get to enjoy and relish one more time. And now, it looks like that isn't going to be the case.

 I am just asking the Lord to help me get over this and not be upset or resentful about this as the years go by.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Making Progress

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism in 2003. I had been tested for hypothyroidism a handful of times prior to being diagnosed beginning around sixteen years of age. My TSH levels have NEVER been outside of the "normal" range so it was certainly the Lord intervening on my behalf that led to that diagnosis because the doctor based it on my symptoms as opposed to my test results.

I started taking Synthroid shortly after diagnosis and my dosage has been adjusted 3 or 4 times over the past 9 years. I was off the medication for about 4 months when I lived in the UK because my GP / doctor wasn't comfortable refilling my prescription since he didn't diagnose me. He gave me a bottle of anti-depressants instead and told me to come back in six months to see if my numbers reflected my diagnosis. I knew the numbers wouldn't show anything so on my first visit home, I got my meds refilled in the states and never went back to the GP again. In that 4 month time period, my symptoms came flooding back and the worst day that I can remember involved having huge waves of nausea hitting me, heat flashes rolling up my body from my toes through the top of my head, being so dizzy I could barely stand up, followed by being completely disoriented while riding on the bus to get to work. I managed to stagger to the front of the bus but I couldn't stay upright and ended up slamming my cheekbone into one of the poles on the bus. The driver finally stopped and let me out and as soon as the cold air hit my face, I dropped to the sidewalk and stayed in a kneeling position while everyone got off the bus. I'm sure I looked like I had just had too much to drink the night before, but one woman stayed with me until the color came back into my cheeks. The bus stop was about 1/2 mile from my office so I still had to walk to work and ended up being about 20 minutes late which was VERY frowned upon. Thankfully, my manager could see it in my face that things were just not right.

Hypothyroidism for me has been a journey of ups and downs. The medication would work pretty well for a few years and then we would need to adjust. I have been on 150 mcg of Synthroid and I was VERY hesitant to go any higher in dosage because Synthroid (among other side effects) can cause bone density loss. I had begun to experience a lot of joint pain in my hands and the point that I couldn't hold a pen or use my sewing scissors or type on the computer without having to wear a brace. My feet were hurting to the point that they would ache at night when I was trying to sleep and sometimes, the pain would cause me to wake up in the middle of the night. I was taking 800 mcg of Ibuprofen each night to help me sleep. And, after diligently following Weight Watchers online for 8 weeks, I had actually gained a pound. I had swelling in my face, hands, feet, legs, and stomach to the point that I couldn't wear my wedding ring any longer. I was also experiencing migraine headaches several times a week.

I finally realized that all of these things were hypothyroidism symptoms! I shouldn't be experiencing ANY of these things, in my opinion, because I've been on my medication and have been diligent in watching what I eat and drink. I decided to do some research and after reading some great books and researching my medication options, I switched from Synthroid to Armour about 3 weeks ago.

In that three weeks, I have lost 7lbs. My face, hands, feet, legs, and stomach are no longer swollen. My joints have stopped hurting COMPLETELY. I haven't had a migraine in almost a week. I am sleeping at night. I don't have any fuzziness in my thinking. I am able to concentrate on what I'm doing. I just feel GOOD.

I'm excited about these changes, but I'm even more excited to see where I am 6 months down the road. Do I think Armour is a cure-all? No. But, for me, it is the missing piece needed to round out the good habits I have developed and the things I was already doing to make sure I had things under control healthwise. So, if I can keep up my end of the bargain, hopefully, my broken thyroid can meet me halfway and I can finally fit into my GAP jeans from my freshman year of college (which was the smallest I have ever been since going through puberty at age 11)...140 lbs is the smallest I have been since I was 11. Wow.