Feeling Better 

At last I have some answers. I’ve been dealing with this for so long but the corner has finally been turned and now I can truly begin to heal, or so I surely hope I can!

My initial surgery was over a month ago and I’ve been so terribly ill since then. Many trips back and forth to the hospital as well as Pablo, the drain placed 26 days ago. Pablo was initially working well, but started malfunctioning. I began flushing him a bit more frequently. I continued having fevers and feeling terribly lightheaded and detached from the world. I tried my best to eat and not I felt the same.hing had flavor. I had 3 antibiotics.  My labs still looked the same and still showed the abscess was much smaller but remained. From a 7 cm to a 3 cm abscessed area which is an improvement for sure, but finding out that I can help this to go away faster?  What a golden opportunity to be proactive in my healthcare.

I have never in my life felt so sick.  I have never felt like I would never get my energy back or be able to once again go for a walk without passing out.  I have made one walk since my surgery.  It was a the only day I felt good.  I walked 4 houses up the street and back again.  It was to my dad’s house.  He didn’t answer the door either.  Hubs and I didn’t have our mobile phones either to give him a call, so we walked back down.  The next day, I felt just as terrible as I had previously and remained that way until yesterday.  I do listen and I do everything I’m told to do.  I’m a very good patient.  I know what I have to do and I do it.

After being in the nursing field for 29 years, I should know a thing or two about how to get better, but this has been the absolute lowest point of my existence.  Honestly, I was ready to seek healthcare elsewhere if it weren’t for Dr. Burke finally giving me the answers I was seeking on Thursday.  Hubs took me to my sinogram, where dye is placed into the drain and then x-rayed for drain placement and to see how much fluid is still present.  It’s really very cool.  What we were shown is that although my abscess is much smaller, the abscess is made up of pancreatic enzymes which is trying to eat my body instead of processing food because of where it has leaked to.  There is a small pathway which has formed which we need to help seal up.  We can do this by flushing and creating the proper pressure in there, a neutral pressure, allowing the nasty, thick drainage from the pancreas to drain.  If I gavage it with the saline 5 or 6 times a day, it will allow the thick drainage to flow more freely and therefore, it will be released more easily.

Guess what!  It’s been working great!  No more fevers, and I feel much improved.  I sure won’t be running any marathons.  In fact, I’ll have to work up to walking any great length again, but I’m getting there.  And I’m planning on more writing.  I’m able to focus a little more clearly already.  Just think, maybe, just maybe, I might get a little bit of my summer after all! Wouldn’t that just be awesome!  I know the Hubs, the kids and I would be so thrilled.  Thank you for all the prayers and good wishes.  Keep them coming.  You have no idea how much they mean to me.  Your kind thoughts are so wonderful.  They truly mean so much to me.  I can’t thank you enough for caring about little old me!

Blank Looks

Image result for blank looksShe stared at the plate set before her.  It was the weirdest conglomeration of food she’d ever seen.  The blank look on Kate’s face must have elicited the response of giggles from her husband.  He had done this on purpose, but she really would never know.  The kids were to have chosen the meal for Mother’s Day breakfast, but little did Kate know that her darling husband, Ryan had assisted them in the choosing. The girls were elated to have made mommy breakfast in bed.

As she choked down chocolate cake, scrambled eggs, some fruit salad consisting of strawberries and bananas, and some leftover pork chop from the night before with peach compote, Kate thought of how lucky she was to have such a beautiful family.  She relished the thought of this happening every year, but knew this may be the last year.  She had been diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer and had just undergone her bilateral mastectomy 2 weeks before.  She couldn’t think of her little girls growing up without her.  She had a will to live that was fiercely strong.

Her girls, Ella, aged 4 and Emma, aged 2, were her life.  She was so blessed to have them as well as having the most loving and supportive husband.  Ryan worked so hard so she could stay at home with the girls.  How had she not felt the lump? Why did she stop doing the stupid monthly self breast exams?

Tomorrow she would start the radiation and next week her chemo would begin.  She knew how sick she would be from both.  She didn’t like to think about it, but she did think about it.  Of course she thought about it.  She was normal, for God’s sake.  And she prayed every day.  She prayed for healing.  She wasn’t sure how her girls were going to handle all this change.  She looked up at her husband.  Now it was his face that was blank.

“Honey, what’s the matter?” she asked him gently reaching for his hand.

“It’s just that I could tell by looking at your lovely face what you were thinking about.  You are so beautiful.  I want you to know that I will always love you.  I will always be here for you and we will get through this.  I love you, honey.  I love you with all my heart.  I know that you are scared and I’d be lying if I told you I wasn’t, but honestly, you’re going to make it.”

“Thank you,” was all she could manage to say between the tears streaming down her face.  The blank look was gone between both of them.  There love had lasted through these last 20 years of high school, college and the rest.  Their’s was a love that would stand the test of time.  If time was what God and medicine would give them.

Feeling Positive and Making Changes

th-1.jpg.jpg

I love when I feel positive about life.  When I’m more positive, it makes the world around me a more positive place to be.  I can’t say that I always succeed, but when I do, oh boy, it’s a lovely world I’m surrounded by.  When I’m surrounded by negativity, I feel depressed.  That makes it really hard since I suffer from depression as it is.

I always say I’m a work in progress and I truly believe it.  My goal is to become the best person I can be.  This means I have to not only have to believe in myself, I have to be patient and kind to myself and to those around me.  I’ve been working on being more kind to myself now very hard for about a week and a half.  I’m proud to say, it’s going rather well.

Each morning, I get up and tell myself that I’m worth the love that my husband and children show me.  I’m also trying to look for kindness all around me.  That will be a post later this week.  I’m in the Revolution of Kindness which is truly revolutionary to me.  I really want to transform myself from the inside out.  If I can be the best person from the inside, then my family, friends and the world will have the best me possible.

th-8.jpg.jpg

I think my oldest daughter will hopefully see this transformation the most, as she lives away from home.  I love all of my children so much, but she and I have a bond that is unique to just us.  We are very alike in many ways but also so very different at the same time.  Since she doesn’t live at home, she should be able to see a difference when she comes home.

If you would like to join the Revolution of Kindness please do!  It’s making a difference in my life already and it’s only been a week and a half.  Just click here!

Finding Joy after 40

As we approach the middle of our lives, our mindset sort of changes. We start to think of things a little differently and start to think about things we really had never considered before. One of those things is our own mortality. When we are young, we think we will live forever. Oh, how life changes us.
image

We begin to ponder more seriously whether heaven and hell really exist. We ponder our financial futures and if we will be able to retire, ever! We contemplate our spouse’s mortality and health becomes an issue. If we are in the dating realm, we contemplate if we will ever find our person, our soul mate.

Family is more important than anything still, but our family roles change as well. Children grow up and start to leave our nest. I will have two daughters in college this fall and I know already how just one leaving changes the dynamics of our family. I am having a hard time imagining life with two out of the house, but life continues to march on.
image

Losing my mom last November, my world changed forever. No longer could I pick up the phone and talk to her about this or that. No longer could we go have our favorite salad at Applebee’s. Her life here was completed and my own was turned upside down. For anyone that has been through the loss of their mother or father, you understand.  That loss brings to mind our own mortality.  What would happen to our family if we died? Would our children be okay?  Would our spouse be okay?  Would he/she remarry? Am I ready if God calls me home?  Will I go to heaven or hell?  Will my family be okay financially?  So many questions.
image

Then, once you start thinking about those things, you start thinking about what would happen if someone you love dies as well as what will happen when you lose your other parent.  It’s a place that you could easily lose yourself if you let yourself get sucked into that void.  Death is part of life.  We are all born and the only guarantee in life is that we will eventually die.  Morbid thought, isn’t it? But losing someone so important to your very being is losing a piece of yourself.  They live on in your heart, but no longer are they here in bodily form to touch and to have a conversation with.

image

As we get to the middle years, even our style of parenting changes.  One of my mom’s best friends used to tell her that every time you have a child, that child comes at a different stage in your life.  You aren’t the same at 26 as you are at 37.  It makes sense then that your children will all be just a little different because you are a little different.  Sure, there’s the genetics and the birth order, but the other factor I see in my home is the kids have different parents because we are different than we used to be.  At 26, when my oldest was born, I was full of energy.  I had no aches or pains.  I saw the world differently than I did at 37 1/2 when I had my youngest child.  Because of this, my youngest child does get away with more than my oldest did at 9.  My oldest was also more responsible too.
image

Financially, we start really focusing on the future and we are able to see that there may be a light at the end of the work tunnel.  Maybe we will be able to retire, someday, but will we have saved enough?  With kids in college and more than likely weddings sometime after that (I have 3 daughters), it’s hard to come to grips with the idea that I will have to work long after 62 if I’d really like to retire comfortably.

image

I also find that although I love babies, I like other people’s babies.  I have no babies pulling on my apron strings anymore and no desire to have anymore children.  I have a dear friend who has only one, beautiful little boy.  She and her husband are considering adoption at the moment.  For them, I am ecstatic. I, on the other hand, want nothing to do with bringing more children into my own house.  Four is my limit and I’m always kicking the kids to play outside because they are loud and messy.  It’s not that I dislike my children, in fact, I love them with all my heart.  It’s just that I would like to keep the few things I have in my house safe from hockey in my living room or wrestling.  Someday I pray that I will have grandchildren to spoil, but I certainly hope never to have to worry about having any additional children of my own.  I’m too old anyway. Thank God for that and hysterectomies. I’ll gladly wait for grandchildren now but I’m in no hurry.
image

As I said before, life continues to move on.  We have choices.  We have so many things on our mind, but we have to move on too and remember to make the most of each day.  Each day is a gift.  Each child is a gift.  Each time you spend time with someone you love, that’s a gift.  Life is a gift not to be squandered.  We all must focus on the good and positive things in our lives, the people and things that bring us joy.  Make the most of today and everyday  You only get one chance to live your life, so dwelling on what could have been is self defeating.  So, find joy in your day and focus on that instead of the negative thoughts or comments.

 

I Think I’m Becoming Nocturnal

cool night time pic
Look it’s me in my dreams, anyway, also minus a laptop. I thought it was a really interesting picture to share!

I should be asleep again.  Deirdre, what are you doing up?  It’s 2:30 in the morning, you say? I know.  Believe me, I’m completely aware of this annoying fact, but I’ve got things on my mind and sleep seems just a bit too far away again.  Hopefully, living with the two hamsters who like to run races against each other on their wheels at this hour aren’t influencing my circadian rhythm.  Those two little nuggets of love seem to think sleeping all day long is great and staying up all night in the running wheels is a riot.  I swear, even though they can’t see each other, they have to be racing each other.  I think the new one, Bugatti, the one with the racing stripe down her back, is faster than the larger, more docile, Nagini.  I think we named them well.

so cute squirrel
Way to cute not to share.  Looks like Dexter.

I know, I’m rambling once again, but what else do you do at this time of night? I’m certain there are others out there, especially in my age category, who suffer from this nasty thing called insomnia.  I have to say, I usually don’t, but I seem to have too many things on my mind again.  It is, however, very common for women of the mid 40-early 60’s to suffer with this dreaded insomnia.  It’s part of being women.  I always think back to before I had children, 20 beautiful years ago.  I could sleep through anything, then Emma was born and I haven’t had a decent night’s sleep since.

I think that once a woman has a child, or even in the last part of pregnancy, you know, when you can’t get comfortable for anything , you say goodbye to sleeping well.  That time when you want to beat your husband with anything you can get ahold of because he’s sleeping soundly and says he didn’t sleep well the next day? Or, you watch them sleep.  You just sit and watch them sleep when you can’t.  Then they say they didn’t sleep well. GGgrrrrrr….

20141001_223352
The boy about age 3 but such a cutie!

I still remember after I had my son and it was complicated afterwards, but Hubby was great! My c-section wound had opened up and my dutiful husband would get up when the boy would wake up, after I nudged incessantly to wake his happily sleeping, snoring form up from our bed.  He would go get the boy and bring him to me, then immediately fall back to the slumbering, snoring form.  He was known to say how little he slept, and I know he didn’t sleep like he had before, but I was the one not sleeping.  Darn breast feeding for that one!  But then one day, the boy only wanted daddy to cuddle and carry him through out our small house.  This became part of the nightly routine and sleep was lost.  The hubby was more tired than he had imagined being.

I wonder if he remembers that feeling now!  Now, he sleeps with a C-PAP machine which supplies constant air pressure to make the slumbering form next to me not snore and provides him a restful sleep.  He also doesn’t keep me awake with the thunderous, oncoming locomotive snore of previous years.  Sleep apnea was diagnosed several years ago and this machine is the stuff of the Gods! Anyone who snores like that should definitely have a sleep study done and get checked out.  You are risking your life, not just irritating the one you sleep next to.  Seriously.

Ah, blissful sleep.  In another 20 minutes, it will be time to feed the baby squirrel again.  Yes, it’s the rodents of the house that are keeping me awake this lovely evening.  That and I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, well, in 12 hours actually, that I’m rather concerned about.  It’s a follow up for my pancreas.  I’ve been waiting for this one and I want answers that I know I will only have to wait longer for.  Waiting truly sucks and I am impatient.  I want to know what this is and let’s get the party started and fix me already.  I’m going by myself too, by choice.  Hubs is working overtime and I don’t want him to lose out on it.  Maybe I should take dad.  I go to his appointments so why not take him to mine.  He is my daddy.  What do you think?  Yea or Nay?  Decisions.

Well, back to preparing baby squirrel formula and feeding him.  Hubs has his “Darth Vader”mask on.  Love that thing.  Maybe I’ll even think about sleeping for a few hours.  Who knows.  Wish me luck!

Life Just Isn’t Fair Sometimes

wp-1460234694683.jpeg
Dexter and Felix last week.

This week has been one of those weeks, which isn’t good since it’s only Monday.  The problem with this week is that it’s attached to last week.  Last week, we received the little blessings of 2 beautiful baby squirrels to rehabilitate since their mother was sick, fell out of her nest and then was eaten by a dog.  We lost Felix in the wee hours yesterday morning.  This morning, I was so frightened that we may lose Dexter as well.  I can’t lose another baby squirrel.  Oh, did I mention that we also lost the little hamster we had for 2 days? Yes, I’ve quite frankly had enough of death of small, cute, furry creatures for a while.

When I looked at my little Dexter, I saw him not moving around like he was yesterday. I saw him starting to scoot his front paws instead of actually using them to climb, like he was yesterday.  I was so frightened.  All I could do was cry.

My wonderful 14 year old, Katie, took over squirrel care for me and I took a break from the world for awhile.  She fed him and also found a site which explained exactly what was going on with our baby, Dexter!  It’s on Squirreltales.org and I am praying that I can help our baby make it through this awful disease now that I have the tools to do so.

What our baby seems to have is Metabolic Bone disease and it’s basically a calcium deficiency.  I’m reading everything I can now on how to help him. I’ve given him his first calcium supplement and pray that by morning I will see a difference.  I have to get some avocados though.  I can’t believe I’m out of them.  Me, of all people, out of avocados!   Apparently, if I hand feed my sweet little Dexter the calcium laden avocado, he’ll love it. I’m sure hoping so because the first thing I noticed was his appetite declining.

I managed to give him his dose mixed with some pedialyte tonight, and I will give him the remainder of it at the next feed since he’s not been too terribly interested in his normal foods and is just as happy to have his formula.  Hopefully the special biscuits will come tomorrow and will help him as well. Ah the things we do to rehab the wee ones.

I pray that Dexter will recover from this.  It is a very painful condition as it debilitates their tiny bodies.  If the answer is calcium, I can do that.  I would do anything to rehab this little guy.  He will be released into the wild if we can get him that far, but that is our job in all this.  We are simply a stone in the path of his tiny life to building his little fortress.  I’m just praying we can do it.  I can’t have my nearly nine year old and myself crying to bits yet again!  We haven’t even gotten over Felix yet.

A Never Ending Love

Gently, he took her hand in his

As he kissed her petal soft cheek.

She gazed into his deep, hazel eyes.

Her blue eyes slightly dampened from tears.

She felt as though she had failed once more.

He comforted her as he always did.

He told her how perfect and beautiful she was.

How her eyes sparkled when she talked of their life.

He told her how kind, how thoughtful to others she was,

How she touched those who ached,

How everyone loved her, except herself.

The tears softly flowed like drops of rain down her cheeks

As she listened to each word he uttered.

“I’ll love you, my dear, till the seas are all dry.”

And knew she would be his forever.