Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Quick Update

Sorry for neglecting the blog for so long. Blogging is definitely at the bottom of my priority list right now.

Things are generally good around here. We are getting ready for Christmas. Almost done shopping... still have a lot of making to do.

At the beginning of the year I made a commitment to loose weight because we wanted to try to get pregnant again around Michael's 3rd birthday. I was slow at loosing the weight, and then I broke my wrist, which did not help things. So for the last couple of months I've been spending a lot of time at the gym. I did my first ever 5k on Thanksgiving, which felt great. So the weight is finally coming off, but I'm resolved that we won't try to get pregnant again until I'm at least not obese... so that is probably still a couple of months away... which is a little disappointing cause we were hoping to start TTCing again soon, but being healthy very important, so that is a top priority right now.

My grandma passed away a couple of weeks ago. It was her time and I'm glad that she is no longer suffering. Her passing has caused my mom to be a little hard to deal with (I'm giving her a pass for now), but it has reminded me just how mentally unhealthy she is. And on top of that, my estranged aunt (that I haven't seen or heard from since I was 8) wants back in our life. Dealing with the emotions from all of that has been hard but it has also reminded me how far I have come, and that's something to be proud of.

Michael is awesome. This kid is amazing. And spoiled :) I don't know how we will fit all the toys he's getting for Christmas in the house.

I will try to post again soon. Keep warm!


Saturday, October 27, 2012

Hot off the sewing machine

I'm not a perfect person, sometimes I like to brag a little. My sewing machine and I are on good terms these days and I've been busy and just wanted to share a little.

Last week was the baptism for a cousin's baby. I made him a little hat and blanket.


The hat might have ended up a little small.

Here is a link to the basic instructions for the blanket. I opted to just use a piece of (wonderfully thick) flannel I bought at Joann's and I ironed fusible fleece on the back of that because the rose swirl minky was very see-through. I also embroidered his name on the blanket. I'm not good at embroidery  In fact, just in case you think I'm lying, take a look at the back of this mess.


Not pretty. 


I covered it with a little piece of interfacing so it wouldn't show through and sewed the backing on. 

My niece's first birthday party is today. I was just going to buy her a toy, then I found this cute bunny flannel on sale and that reignited my desire to sew this bunny jacket I had seen a couple of years ago in a store. The jacket was a super cute little hooded cardigan made from rose swirl minky (like the back of the blanket above) and pink satin lining and a bow-tie closure.


Yeah, I took a picture of it. I always snap a quick picture of store bought clothes I love and want to make some day to keep around for inspiration. Oh, and this little jacket was $50 as I recall.

My plan was to make it for her at Easter, but as a lamb instead of a bunny, but I just fell in love with the flannel (I have a boy, I never get to buy fabric this cute for him so I'm up for any excuse to indulge).



*Love*



Not bad. 

I made the jacket with some cream ultra-cuddle fabric. I'm pretty sure I've mentioned it before, but even though the ultra cuddle fabric feels so soft and wonderful, it is the devil, do not attempt working with this fabric if you are a novice. I made the ties with pink satin. The sleeves are also lined with the satin. I used a raglan pattern in 18 month size. She's a long baby like Michael, so I cut it long. My only fear is that the sleeves aren't wide enough.

Then I couldn't stop... I had long coveted this shiny, stretch denim at Joann's and just had to make her a pair of pants too. I used this awesome, free pattern Jess put out. They turned out adorable and I'm very happy with them.


Front


Back

Oh, and in case you think metallic, stretch pants are too much for a one-year-old, I did float this idea by her mom last weekend and she was ecstatic about it. So it should be well received.

And then I made her a little baby purse out of the denim scrap with pink, satin lining. I sewed a couple of ribbons with snaps on them so her mom and dad can tether some teethers or toys to the purse for fun.


I kinda, almost, wanted to keep the purse for myself. I'm still thinking about making myself one. You know, this would be a great holiday purse (minus the teething rings).


I'm not sure how durable those tethers will be, but the parents can just cut them off when they start to go and just keep using it as a play purse.

I used Rae's Buttercup Bag pattern. This pattern makes a very small purse. It's excellent size for a toddler, although it might be a little large for her yet. Oh well, she'll grow into it.


Michael is modeling the purse.


The set. 

I've also been working on Michael's Halloween costume. It's 97% done. I will have to force myself to finish the last little bit. Then I need to sew the gift for my nephew's birthday for next weekend (if his mother ever gets back to me with his measurements, grumble, grumble). Then it's on to Christmas sewing. I'm really excited about what I'm doing for all the toddler/pre-K boys in the family. I still have to figure out what I'm doing for my niece.

Friday, October 19, 2012

A Fall Weekend

We have been on the go over here. I'd say this has been a busy fall, but really, this whole year has been really busy for us. The pace isn't likely to slow down before the end of the year, so I guess I'd just better get used to it.

Anyhow, we took a quick family trip to Branson, MO last weekend. It was beautiful down there. Breath-takingly beautiful. We got to swim outside it was so warm on Saturday. On Sunday we went to Silver Dollar City and the temperature was perfect t-shirt weather (without being hot). And on Monday we were treated to peak fall foliage on a scenic train ride. We don't always get it right, but we sure did last weekend.

The first thing we did at Silver Dollar City was take Michael down into Marvel Cave. Going through Marvel Cave is one of my earliest memories. The giant cathedral room, riding the tram back up. Those things were so impressive they have stuck with me my entire life, so it was really important to me to take Michael through the cave too. He might still be a little too young to remember it, but being in a cave is such a different and grand experience, if he does remember anything from this age, this should make the cut. My only fear as we went through the cave is that he would have to go to the the bathroom and then he'd just have to wet himself because there really isn't another choice. Thankfully, we made it through no problem.


View from the bottom of the Cathedral Room


A waterfall... complete with mood lighting


There are many impressive formations in this cave


The tram that brings you back up to the surface


After the cave tour, it was on with the rest of the park. We took the train around the park and I got us the seat behind the engineer. 


Something was slightly wrong with the train, so I thought it was really interesting watching the engineer get out and inspect the train a couple of times... much better than the silly little train robbery they stage.


"Panning" for "gold". Michael was much more interested in playing with the water than the treasure he was supposed to be finding.


They have a super cool play house for the kids with thousands of these balls and tons of hoses to suck them up and air cannons to shoot them from. It was a perfect wonderland for Michael. 


The baby swings... not impressed.


Bigger swings, but still not impressed.


Impressed! He rode it twice. Turns out we have a ride junkie on our hands. The faster, the better.


Monday we stopped and checked out the Table Rock Lake dam.


Lake Taneycomo downstream from the dam.


Then we went and took a scenic train ride. This was Michael's first REAL train ride and it did not disappoint.


If you have never been to the Ozarks, you probably don't know how beautiful it is here. We may not have beaches or oceans but we have some of the most vast and beautiful deciduous forests sprawling over our ozark "mountains". My heart will always belong to these woods.


The train ride was pretty neat. It took us over 2 huge old tressels and through 2 tunnels. 


Tressel shadows on the valley below.


Perfect weekend.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Remember these?

I started making these Dinosaur Tails last year for my church's Fall Festival (with permission from Jess). But my machine lost it's timing at the last minute and I gave up all hope of finishing them for the festival last year. I got my machine fixed shortly afterwards and I did finish them, except stuffing (cause it's much easier to store 16 flat tails than 16 stuffed ones).

So next weekend is the Fall Festival again and I brought them upstairs and stuffed and closed them all up. Done. YAY!


I've gone from 16 to 13 somehow... I do remember finishing 2 of them last year and giving them away last year... not sure where the other one went.

And now a question... How much do you all think I should sell them for? Last year I was thinking $7 apiece, but I'm wondering if I should ask $10. This is 100% for charity, so it doesn't make a difference to my bottom line but I want all of them to sell. There will be lots of families and grandparents there, so there is a good chance they will all go. They typically serve 1,000+ meals at the dinner, so I feel $10 is probably reasonable, but I've never sold anything, so I feel really selfconscious asking money for something so cheap and easy to make. If anyone has an opinion, feel free to leave a comment.

---

I've been busy sewing for fall lately too. I have been making projects out of Sewing for Boys over the last year. I have previously reported that I'm less than impressed with some of the projects, but I am totally in love with the Treasure Pocket Pants. They are so cute. It's about the only chance I have to use fun fabric with boys clothes. And the main sections of the pants are smaller than regular pants, so it's easy to make them from old upcycled pants... like the stack of my husband's pants that he has ripped the crotch out of.

 Here are the 3 pairs I have made so far. I could make another dozen of these. Perfect for the toddler/preschool set.


Case pants made from the left over fabric we used in his nursery.


International Harvester pants... my husband isn't super wild about IH but it was about the only commercially available tractor fabric I could find that wasn't John Deere for awhile. This pair is a larger size and shortened. The fit is very poor, so I'm sticking the 2/3T size and just lengthening them. 


Construction equipment made with stretch denim. My favorite pair, by far.

---

We have been going and doing a lot lately. Some photos for fun. 


Fair time again. Fairs in mid September are the best.


Michael and Bandit, the sheep dog. My in-laws say he's a Great Pyrenees but I'm not so sure.


Michael with a sheep.


Apple picking at my husband's aunt's house. My husband told me these are good pie apples, but they are FLAVORLESS and we have 2 big crates of them. I'm experimenting with them and a bunch of lemon juice later today.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

From the mouths of babes

Michael has reached that age where he is interested in babies and would like us to have another one. His little pleas for a baby sister (usually he asks for a sister, probably because most of the characters in his books have little sisters) aren't enough for me to want to have another baby, but they are somewhat adorable.

Last night he asked me to have a baby again and I told him that we weren't ready to have another baby again. Then he said in his sweet little voice, "I will pray to Jesus for a baby."

Ok, (1) adorable, my heart melted right out of my chest with that one and (2) who or where did he get that from or did he actually come up with it himself? I'm strongly suspecting preschool may have had an influence here. I can't help but wonder what that kid says about me when I'm not around.

But in truth, we are gearing up to try to have another baby. We'd like to start TTCing again at the end of the year or beginning of next year. I didn't want to get too far ahead of myself and mention anything before now because I was worried I might need a couple more surgeries for my wrist. (My orthopedist was talking about removing a piece of my bone!) But it seems that the only surgery that I'm facing is getting my plate removed and they won't do that until it's been in for a year. So if I don't take too long to get pregnant, we could do it after having the baby.

I started back on my intensive supplement schedule... 5,000 mcg of folic acid per day (I take six 800mcg pills and round up), baby aspirin, and prenatal in addition to my regular metformin, zoloft and misc. vitamins and supplements. I'm taking nearly 20 pills a day again. wunderbar.

But the good news is that I'm very optimistic that we will conceive without medical assistance this time. My PCOS and MTHFR are under control with the meds. My period appeared* when Michael was a year old. Since then I've had 18 cycles in a row, averaging 31 days. Don't hate me because I'm regular :)

One snag in my plans is that I don't have a OB anymore. The hospital I had Michael in closed down it's maternity ward this year and eliminated McSoothy's position. She hasn't taken another position in the area, to my knowledge and I don't know who to use as my doctor now. Thinking about the OB situation gives me a bit of a headache. It's not really important yet, but if I do get pregnant, I want to have my progesterone levels monitored again and therefore probably need to establish a relationship with someone now. I could get back in contact with my fertility clinic for it, but it would be nice to just have one local dr. for everything this time.

I'm in a really good place right now. My mental health is better than it's ever been. My desire for another child is coming out of love and not jealously/baby envy (a year ago I don't think I could honestly say that). So I'm really looking forward to getting a chance to have another baby. And I get to look forward to TTCing with optimism this time instead of fear and doubt. I hope my experience lives up to my expectation this time.

*I would say my period reappeared, but that implies that I had one before getting pregnant, and I don't feel that's really accurate.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Breastfeeding, infertility treatments, and judgement

I'm in a huff. My physical therapist said some things to me today that I didn't like (and had nothing to do with my wrist). It started as a tame conversation and we moved into the topic of breastfeeding. He made the comment that it wasn't a big deal, "Just cover up with a blanket. The baby doesn't mind." I used to think that too, then I had a baby the didn't liked to be covered up. So I let him know that. Which led into a conversation where he called me sexist cause I told him he didn't know what it was like to be pregnant or breastfeed because he hadn't ever done either. Go ahead and call me sexist. I'll own that one. Seriously, I'm in a giant huff. I'll probably be pissed all weekend. I'm contemplating quitting physical therapy or at least finding another physical therapist now.*

I do have a lot of strong feelings about pregnancy and women's rights. And yes, I'm passionate about them. But the only point I really want to impose on someone else is that you don't know what it's like to be me. And that extends to whoever you are. Please try to stop assuming things.

One of the particularly bad side effects of making assumptions that everyone should be able to live up to your world view is that it creates guilt and feelings of failure when we can't. I might even want to live up to your world view, but that doesn't make it realistic. Take depression for instance... depression is real. You can have your opinion about what causes it, but that really is beside the point for me. What matters to me, is that it's real and you can't just snap out of it. I could pretend it wasn't real and that I should be able to snap out of it with the right diet and exercise, but if that didn't work, where would that leave me? People that deny depression as potentially serious medical condition stigmatize it for everyone.

Which brings me to infertility and my severe distaste for those out there that say things like, "If it were me, I would just adopt," or "Oh, I would never do IVF," or "If you want kids so badly, just take mine," and, of course, that relaxing bs. There is usually a lot implied behind these statements. Note: This statement is different than saying "We found out that we couldn't conceive and decided to adopt."  The difference is between relating a personal experience and saying what you would assume you would do if you were in that situation. That's a very important difference.

Many women/couples that are diagnosed with infertility feel a sense of failure... loss... that their bodies are broken. As a young girl diagnosed with PCOS, I grew up with the self image that my body was defective, which, I can tell you, was a very negative way to see myself during those formative years.

For me, treatments were critical to proving my womanliness to myself. There is so much emphasis put on young girls about becoming a woman and getting their periods. Missing this step has always left me feeling like less of a women. The first ultrasound where I got to see my pearly ovaries was such a moment for me. And that u/s of my corpus luteum is as precious to me as my first ultrasound of Michael (really, I had that little faith in my body, just ovulating was the proudest I had ever been of my body at that time). Getting pregnant was wonderful, but giving birth and breastfeeding were just as important in repairing my confidence in my own body.

Healing from infertility for many women is about more than just having a baby. It's about mitigating those feelings of inadequacy, defectiveness, being broken. If I had decided just to adopt I don't know how I would have ever overcome those feelings. And I'm not saying that you can't overcome them other ways, but the road is long and hard any path you take. So for me, pursuing fertility treatments were about more than making a baby... it was about making me a woman.

And this post is about more than breastfeeding and infertility... it's about building bridges. We can't all be perfect all the time and we will all say things that hurt others from time to time, but I think it's important to try to be inclusive. I know what it's like to hear harsh words grate across my ears and today was a reminder of what kind of person I want to be. I want people to be comfortable with me and I want to be empathetic of their problems and speak in non-judgmental ways. This is very hard for me. I hope the people you encounter in your life are better at this than me.

And my reaction to my PT's words today were probably out of proportion. As he holds my arm and contorts it in ways that physically hurt me, he doesn't know that injury took a breastfeeding relationship from me and Michael too soon. And then he passes judgment on nursing mothers and rubs more salt in the wound. He doesn't understand the extent of his offense and I can't hold that against him, but it can inspire me to be better than him.

*Ok, I probably won't quit, but I need to be pissed off for awhile.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A giant helping of mommy-guilt

Michael tends to mention that I broke my arm frequently. "Mommy, you broke your arm," is heard about 10 times a day around here.

I got a bit annoyed the other night and I said back to him "Buddy, you don't have to worry about my arm anymore."

And then he replied, "I can nurse again!"

Ugh.

I decided that we were done when I had my accident. Between medications and casts and keeping my arm elevated and the fact that Michael was 2.5 years old, I decided it was time to end it. I maintain that weaning Michael was the most painful part of breaking my wrist, but it was probably easier weaning that way rather than trying to get him to wean on his own (this kid would nurse until he's 12 if I would let him).

But my heart broke all over again the other day. Poor kid. We've talked about it dozens of times, but apparently he still thought when Mommy's arm got better he would get to nurse again.

I am still lactating (apparently) and we could probably step back and start again but I don't think that would be the right decision. He only nursed twice a day and didn't transfer much milk, it was more about the bond. I miss having that bond, but returning to nursing doesn't seem like the most emotionally healthy way to go forward from here. I thought he would have moved past that by this point, but nursing has always been much more than a way get nutrition for him. I just can't go back but that doesn't mean that I don't want to.

Sorry Buddy.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hunger Games Disappointment

Just for fun...

I read the Hunger Games books a while back and LOVED THEM. Then I heard that Jennifer Lawrence was going to be cast as Katniss, and I LOVED HER in Winter's Bone*. I really wanted to see the movie, but we just didn't have the time when it was in theaters, so we waited for it to come to video. I heard so many good reviews, I was really looking forward to it.

We watched it Saturday night. What a huge let down. I know it's always worse when you read the book first, but there was a lot not to love about that movie. DH and I discussed a lot of the short comings of the film... terrible casting choices, bad acting, but maybe most offensive was that they didn't really illustrate the literal hunger/starvation of the districts. Seriously, everyone was meaty. WTF. It's called the hunger games folks. Could no one go on a diet before shooting? 

Anyhow, this trailer is hilarious. If you found yourself a bit disappointed with the movie, then this is for you.


* I grew up in the rural Ozarks. Yes, the movie depicted it pretty accurately, except they actually filmed it in a nicer part of the Ozarks, whereas most of the Ozarks are much more rocky, rugged terrain and won't grow much more than some ugly post oaks. It's beautiful down here, but it ain't much for making a living. I'd highly recommend skipping The Hunger Games and watching Winter's Bone instead.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

An "Ah-Ha" Moment

Sibling spacing... some people like to have kids close together, some farther apart. I'm not sure there is a "best" way to space your children (assuming infertility cooperates) but I have spent a lot of time thinking about it, nonetheless.

A lot of my thoughts on sibling spacing are guided by my relationships with my siblings. I have a half-brother that is 17 years older than me, a half-sister that is 15 years older than me, and a brother that is about 2 years older than me.

Obviously, there were extenuating circumstances that created the large spacing between my brother and I and our half-siblings. We have some shared history, but we have never had a close relationship. But I don't spend much time examining those relationships.

It's the relationship with my brother that is 2 years older than me that I constantly mull in my head. My mom always like to comment about how much my brother loved me when I was born. I guess things went great for a couple of years and then we started fighting like cats and dogs. We were really mean to each other growing up. And now that we're adults, our deep, juvenile hatred towards each other really perplexes me.

Would it have helped if we were born closer together or farther apart?

So the Ah-Ha moment came the other night when I was watching a webinar for an internet "parenting counselor" (not interested, but the webinar was interesting). The woman leading the webinar was talking about how siblings like to fight when mom gets on the phone because they know that will get her off the phone and paying attention to them. This statement was an example about how children have to feel sufficient belonging/love or they will act out (something that I wholeheartedly believe).

My mom is mentally ill. I won't go into all the ways, but for this post you really only need to know that she talks NONFREAKINGSTOP and never allows anyone else to talk and totally ignores cues from others during conversations. She'll tell you the same story 20 times over. She's an awful gossip and would spend hours on the phone every night ragging on co-workers. Once you get reeled into a conversation with her, it's impossible to get out and you will do whatever you can to avoid having another with her. I really can't explain how miserable it is being around her, it's just something you have to experience.

So, AH-HA, I really think me and my brother's fighting was a directly result of the total lack of attention she paid to us. And she wasn't just a little negligent when it came to my brother and I.. she's full on cra-cra, so my brother and I really had to escalate our fighting to an extreme to get her attention. Hence, me and my brother's bloodlust.

In addition to being total narcissist, my mom manipulated us pretty badly too and constantly played favorites, woke us up in the middle of the night to clean and scream at us.... So there is a lot more there, but I had never really be able to wrap my head around why we physically fought with each other so much until that moment.

So the spacing between children is probably a lot less important than being a good parent.

Duh.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

First Day of (Pre-) School

I felt like such a dork, but I had to take those obligatory first day of school pics.


A dirty car makes an excellent backdrop for a moment to remember forever.


A whole classroom full of new toys and I can't get him to put down the farm toys.

He's only going one day a week for a couple of hours. It went really well. The teacher gave a good report and he was super excited to tell me all the fun things he did when I picked him up. 

And while he was in school, I got to dawdle through the grocery store. Dawdling through a grocery store is such a nice luxury. I'm so looking forward to Thursdays now.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

A few self-observations

I noticed two things about myself over the last week or so...

1. I don't like pain anymore. I used to think I was a little tough. I've been through natural child birth, in a bad car accident, surgeries, and this arm mess all with little or no pain medication which led me to think I tolerated pain relatively well. But I had my physical therapy appointment Monday and he hurt me, bad. I know PT hurts, but, I mean, owe. Seriously. I was glad that Michael was glued to his dvd player on the other side of the office because I was worried about him seeing this man hurt me and not understanding it. I am so done with pain. No more, please.

And I think my PT realized that he over did it a little on Monday, because he was easier on me on Wednesday. My sympathies to those out there with masochistic physical therapists or living in chronic pain.

2. I don't cry anymore. It's not that I can't cry, I did the night I broke my arm. And I can shed a tear or two (literally, just one or two), but I no longer cry like I used to. Crying used to be a normal part of my life. It's not that I couldn't control my emotions, but they were just so strong that crying was the only healthy to deal with sadness for me. I'm pretty sure this is due to the Zoloft. I don't know that it's a bad thing... I'm not sure it's a good thing. Maybe this is how things should be. I've been depressed for so long, likely since I was a child, I'm not sure I know what normal and healthy is. It's kinda nice, but a little weird still. Maybe I just need to get used to it.

Maybe I just need to hook up with Jude Law.

Friday, August 3, 2012

That explains a lot

Another post about my arm. Eventually I will post about something else again, but this has pretty much taken center stage for the time being.  

I went back to the orthopedist office Tuesday to get my stitches out. I wasn't smart enough to read my chart when they left it lying next to me until it too late to sneak a peak. I was able to catch a few things on it, but really, I have had no idea what happened to my wrist. When I came into the ER, things were pretty mangled, and basic questions like "How long will I need to wear a cast?" weren't even worth asking. And my ortho doesn't have much of a bedside manner*, so when I did ask questions, he mostly ignored me.

Then I had my incision check about a week after the surgery and his nurse,whom I will affectionately refer to as Brunhilde, proceeded to yank and pull and twist my arm with zero regard to its extremely inflamed state. She also informed me that I had to practice turning my hand palm up or I would loose that ability and have to  physical therapy... except she didn't say it that way... it was more like, "If you are a whiny-baby and sit around acting hurt all the time, this will be all your fault and PT will be your punishment."

I tried and tried to turn my hand up (supination) constantly, but it wouldn't go. Not like when you stretch out a muscle and you are fighting the burning of the stretch, but it just flat out stopped at a certain point and that was it. I kinda assumed that it was the cast in the way, but I think deep down, I knew it wasn't the cast.

Fast forward to Tuesday, I got my stitches out and my ortho grabbed my arm and twisted it. No go. He accused basically accused me of not working on it over the last 2 weeks and told me that I needed PT. Then he walked out and made me an appointment for later in the day. I was so angry, because I worked so hard to make my arm move and he made me feel like such a weakling for failing.

So I got to the physical therapist and I'm really glad that I did. The PT explained so much to me about my injury that I didn't know. I suffered what's referred to as a FOOSH injury and it resulted in a Colles' fracture (there are some photos in the link that give you an idea of what my wrist looked like, if you want to see them). He examined me and explained to me why I can't supinate my hand one damn bit.

When I fell, broke both my ulna and radius. My radius was severely fractured in two places and the plate was used to stabilize it. But, my radius also came out of alignment near my elbow and that's why my arm can't twist at all. It has nothing to do with me being a whiny-baby or not working hard enough, the bone is fucking out of place. And all these people that have been twisting my arm and chastising me have been torturing me for nothing. But above all, this is not something I can fix on my own, and I will have to endure a lot of PT to get this working again. And I do mean endure because basically the guy has to twist my arm with one hand while pushing against the bone with his other hand to nudge the bone back into alignment little, by little. In fact, when he saw my report he look at me and apologized to me because he knew the ortho was ordering him to torture me. And this is extra fun because the tip of my ulna is still very broken and the twisting hurts it like hell too. Oh, and the plate the ortho attached to me is screwed on directly over a muscle called the Pronator Quadrus*** and that causes a ton of pain and stiffness in itself. Fun.

The PT's explanation also explained while my whole damn arm hurt so badly even though I only fell on my hand. And that's why I was willing to wait so long for the OR, cause he might have been able to numb my wrist well enough, but my elbow is pretty eff-up too and I don't think the ortho got that. It also explains why my forearm was bruised all the way to the elbow.

So I'm done with the cast. I have a brace that I only wear to go out and sleep. I'm supposed to be stretching and twisting my wrist throughout the day. I'm working really hard at it, but it's frustrating because it is clear that I have a very long way to go, and the path to get there is very difficult.

And in case it hasn't come through in the post, my mood has gone from positive and optimistic to negative and depressed. I have my arm back, but I've lost a lot of functionality and its not clear if I'm going to get it back.

*According to my PT, my ortho actually has the best bedside manner of any of the orthos in my town. The bar is pretty low.

**That isn't necessarily a knock against my ortho. Many, many people I have ran into since getting this done have offered unsolicited praise for this guy. And my PT, who knows every ortho in town close him when his kid broke his arm.

***In case you were wondering, having you muscle screwed down onto your bone feels about how you'd imagine it would feel.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Healing

Life since I broke my wrist has gone from sucking hard to almost normal very quickly, and for that I am grateful.

So for those of you wanting to know what I did... I fell off my step at step-aerobics. I'd missed the last couple classes because our schedule has been all messed up lately and I felt it was really important that I go that night. I wanted to turn and run the other way when I came in that night and saw it was the Wednesday night instructor and not the Tuesday night instructor. I really, really don't like the Wednesday night instructor's style and honestly would not have stayed if I hadn't have missed the last couple of classes. I won't go into the particulars of exactly how/why I fell off (you'd have to be a step junkie to follow) but basically something twisted in my left foot during a move causing me to fall and I tried to break my fall with my right hand. I felt something *snap* and then looked at my arm and immediately knew that I had messed things up big time.

But beyond the initial awfulness of a very broken wrist, things went well. Michael was up in the nursery and the teachers there said they would watch him while I went to the ER. And Michael is very comfortable with those teachers, so I felt really comfortable leaving him there. The aerobics instructor took me to the ER (which is, handily, pretty much across the street). And the golden rule of the ER is (generally) "Whoever looks the worst, gets to go back the fastest." So they quickly brought me a wheel chair (which was great because my foot was hurting a ton too). I got and x-ray and a bed. And my husband arrived shortly after that.

A girl that works out at the Y and recognized me started my IV. I got some pain meds. And I hadn't been crying or really upset this whole time, but once I got the pain meds I started crying. Since I didn't have to focus on getting through the pain, my mind went to all the things that this broken wrist was going to screw up... playing with Michael, the two remaining swim lessons that we had to go to that week, working out, sewing projects, trips I had planned in the near future, but most of all, nursing.

Michael still nursed before nap and bedtime and we were getting very close to that ending. So close that I had actually been calling photographers just the day before to have a nursing session photographed. I just wanted the photos for myself to remember the sweetness of that time. Cuddling, him falling off to sleep, the beautiful innocence of my baby before he grows up anymore. Photos to have in case I never have another baby to nurse. Nevermind.

After awhile the orthopedist came in. He was going to have me sedated and set 'reduce' my wrist in the OR but a ruptured intestine jumped me inline. He assured me that he could numb me really well and reduce it with me awake, or I could wait until about 10pm for the OR. I fell about 5:45pm, so this was a while to wait, but my wrist was REALLY messed up and my whole arm hurt a lot, so I didn't think I would handle the trauma of being awake to have it reduced very well and opted to wait. My orthopedist assured me I could have all the pain meds I wanted while I waited and then left.

DH had left by this time to take Michael home and put him to bed. I was all alone for quite awhile, but that was fine because I was nodding off. But about 9pm my endorphins had worn off as well as my pain meds and I was hurting. I was all alone and pressed my call button for the first time. Finally someone came on over the intercom and asked me what I needed. Crying from the pain for the first time, I said I hurt and needed help. No one came.

So I pushed the button again, and cried for help again. Finally some girls came to move me to a closer room (I had been in the back all alone and they were basically forgetting about me back there). When I got there a male nurse came in and told me that I 'can't have pain meds every 5 mins' and I laid into him. It had been AT LEAST 1 hour since I'd had anything, probably 1.5hrs and I accused him of not having looked at my chart, then I removed the little towel I had covering the HORROR that was my wrist and told him not to accuse me of being some drug-seeking pansy. I was so proud of myself for giving it to someone that deserved it. I reported him later. No nurse should chastise a patient in pain asking for meds like that.

The unfortunate thing was that pain meds weren't working for more than a couple of minutes and I was rightback in pain again. But now because of asshole-nurse, I was afraid to ask for pain meds. I breathed deep and tried to manage the pain. Finally, at a little after 10pm the took me up for my reduction. I've never looked forward to anesthesia so much in my life.

It took almost 2.5 hours to reduce and cast my arm. I think I'm really glad that I waited for the OR. After I woke up my orthopedist said to me that I wasn't the worst wrist he had ever seen, but there aren't a whole lot of wrist he would have stayed up to midnight for, if that gives you an idea of what I was dealing with. I had a full 90-degree cast hung up to help support it. Although I was all strung up, I was still fine to get up and go to the bathroom, so at least I was left with some dignity.

Would it have killed someone to clean the plaster off my fingers?

They let me eat breakfast then took me NPO (no food/drink) so I assumed that I was having surgery later in the day but the orthopedist had told DH different after the reduction. So figured that I would just have to wait and see.

My parents came up to watch Michael, but the hospital room totally freaked him out so that was disappointing.

My ortho came in later in the afternoon and gave me a couple of options. Immediate surgery to stabilize my wrist was the only acceptable option, IMO. So he got me a CT scan and an OR spot. The surgery for the plate took quite a bit longer... maybe 4hrs, but I can't completely remember. They gave me a much smaller, more manageable cast this time. It took me awhile to realize the brown spots on it were blood seeping through the cast :)

World's ugliest cast.

So I spent another night in the hospital, but I got discharged at a decent time the next day. My mom came with Michael and took me home. It was then that I found out that my mom didn't know how to strap Michael in properly and had been driving around with his straps COMPLETELY LOOSE. I laid into her over that... anyone with common sense should know better. And my husband got it too for not showing her how to use it.

Things improved pretty rapidly after that. My swelling went down pretty quickly. I broke my right wrist, but I'm left handed, although right hand dominant (if that makes any sense)... so I'm a bit put out to have my right wrist broken, but I have been able to manage extremely well.

Michael decorated my cast for me.

I began to loathe my cast and decided all would be right in the world if I could just get a new one that fit better (since the swelling had gone down). Luckily I did get a new one early in the week when they checked the incision. I've decided this cast is much more stylish than the old one and doesn't make my arm look so fat/broken.

Finally, a respectable cast.

I did the happy dance when my mom left on Wednesday... but then my MIL showed up, without her hearing aids (grumble, grumble), half an hour later. I really just wanted to bum around the house in my underwear.

I've been very self-sufficient. About the only thing I can't do for myself is unhook my bra. I've been cooking real meals and can drive just fine. I'm looking forward to next week... no moms or helpers around. Michael and I getting back into a routine. Freedom.

I get this cast off at the end of the month and my stitches out. I don't know if I will get another cast or just a brace.

I'm sorry to have complained about things sucking so much. As you can probably tell, things have actually gone really well. As I have gone through this, I have been able to see how blessed I/we have been. So I will continue to work on healing up over here. Thank you to those who have worried about me. Again, I just feel so blessed that I have healed so well and been able to get past this so well.

At least someone likes that old cast.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Still sucking

So I broke my wrist... really badly. Like it was bent back the wrong direction. I took a pick with my cell phone, but its very disturbing and would probably make poeple ill so I will not be posting it. So a couple of trips through the OR later, things are as good as can be expected. I have a plate holding me together and a super heavy cast. Im hoping for a lighter cast next week cause keeping this thing elevated is a lot of work.

My parents did come up to help take care ok michael. My mother is slightly on my nerves, but im trying to not let her get to me too much and just be thankful for the help.

Although it does suck that my wrist is broken, I think i've really been pretty lucky. Ive done really well with the pain and got good, quick attention. Most of the hospital staff was very good. And family is available to help out with michael. So breaking my wrist wasnt too lucky, but everything else has been pretty good. this is just one of those unfortunate things that happens in life.

Im hoping that the healing goes quickly as the swelling goes down and I get a little further from the surgery.

So, theres my update. Ill be sitting on my butt so keep my entertained with some posts.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Well that sucked

Well... I'm not doing so hot right now. I broke and dislocared my wrist yesterday. Nit fun. I'll post more later, but i'm not really in the condition to type right now.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Good vibrations

My apologies to those who want to see my toddler art area post I promised. It's coming soon, but too much has been going on lately and I just haven't gotten around to it yet.

And as far as what has been going on, my husband's cousin got married over the weekend. Somehow, this took a ridiculous amount of my time. And it wasn't even my own wedding nor was I really very involved with it. Really, the amount of time I spent preparing for it makes no sense. We've also had a couple of parties to go to over the last couple of weeks. And my husband was out of town for work training for 2 weeks and my MIL visited for one of those weeks. I just get amazed at how busy my schedule seems sometimes... God forbid I ever actually get that busy, cause then I just really wouldn't know what to do.

We had quite a fun weekend out for DH's cousin's wedding. I took Michael to the zoo Thursday. It was over 100 degrees that day, which caused many people to think I was crazy to go to the zoo, but the plus side of it was that the zoo was practically empty. It was like having your own personal zoo. I've been to the zoo when it was so busy you couldn't see the animals and I hate that, so it was great getting to go at our own pace and see the animals all we wanted. 


I was way more excited to see the lion than Michael was.


Ok, I'll totally admit to being a crazy cat lady, but I had never been this close to a lion before, so it was very cool to me


Michael just wanted to climb around.


The meerkats were so excited to see us and wanted so much attention. I said something about it to a girl that was in the area and she was shocked because she said that she came every week and had never seen them get excited like that. So, yeah, I feel special. I'm a Krazy Meerkat Lady too.


Cheetah. Get a good look Michael, while you still can. 


They had a really cool elephant enclosure that was long and skinny and the elephants were really close to us. They were flinging mud around and I even got some on me. Oh, and there was no one there but us and some zookeepers the whole time. I seriously wish I lived near a zoo.  


The quintessential seal show. 

But one really nice thing about this zoo was there there were lots of things  to ride (a carousel, train, tram, boat, and 'African sky safari gondolas') and I got a ride pass and we made use of it. Which was especially nice since it was so hot. 


Michael liked the carousel a lot. He only rode it 4 times, but he would have rode it all day if I would have let him. 


He also got to have an Icee for the first time (two actually... what can I say, it was like 103, need to keep cool). 

After the zoo, Michael and I went and checked into our hotel. DH had to work, so his parent's picked him up and dropped him off after Michael had gone to bed. After Michael woke up the next morning he was sitting up in bed and pointed to the man in my bed and said, "Mommy, I don't know who that is." I laughed and told him it was Daddy. Then he was immediately excited, but it totally cracks me up that he thinks I was in bed with a random stranger.

We went to the Legoland "Discovery Center"* (ie, smaller version of Legoland) that was at the hotel. Michael loved it. He's actually not that into Legos yet, but they had a lot of fun things for his age to do. 




He got to see his first 3D "movie". DH and I cracked up watching him bat at the air when things were coming at him. 


He rode this cool little indoor ride. He was just big enough for it and I was worried that he would freakout on it, but he loved it! Seeing him do that made me really proud. 


I have an awesomely fearless kid. 

And then there was the wedding. I'm very proud to report that he and his cousin walked down the aisle! We weren't sure if they would since they are only two year olds, but they did it! I don't have any pics of them waking down the aisle since I sent them off and they closed the doors after them for the bride so I'm awaiting the photographer's pics.


Michael carried the groom's first ball glove (the wedding had a baseball theme) and his cousin carried a pennant with the couple's name on it. 


And Michael had a great time staying up late and dancing at the reception. 

So this has mostly been a long picture post about our last little trip, but other cool things have been happening too. I made myself a nice dress for the wedding that I was pleased with. I also made a big old tote bag because Michael started swimming lessons this week and I'm hoping that he will get more comfortable in the water from them. And the thing that has thrilled me the most lately is that Michael is starting to understand 1-to-1 correspondence when counting (ie, numbers are starting to have real meaning, not just words that he repeats in order to us). Somewhere in there Michael started telling me "You are the best Mommy I've ever seen," which I think he picked up from my MIL... but it doesn't matter where he picked it up, it feels nice to hear him say something like that. He's just getting to be such a good little communicator lately. He's no baby or toddler anymore, he's a little person now and I love it. 

I fell off the exercise bandwagon while my husband was out of town and I'm back on again and feeling really good about that. I've been doing some moves to strengthen my ass glutes lately and it just makes every step I take feel awesome. 

I'm just in a really good place right now and after struggling with anxiety and depression for so long, I'm really excited to be here. I'm just looking forward to doing more cool things with Michael and my husband and enjoying the days in between. I think I'm at a really healthy place when it come to family planning too. I feel like I'm past feelings of jealously towards others that are pregnant and 'baby fever' and onto doing what is right for us. That is the first time I think I've ever really felt this way, and it is great!

I'm hoping the rest of you are keeping cool and catching some good vibrations too. 


*A quick note to all the Lego affectionados out there... I wouldn't really recommend the Lego Discovery Centers if you have a chance to go to one (unless it's to take some kids). There isn't really anything for adults. You pretty much need to be between 3 and 4.5 feet tall to get much out of it, cause tickets are pretty expensive and it takes a long time to get in, even if you buy tickets online and come early. I hope the real Legoland parks are more fun.