Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ohmmmmm.... positive focus.

Oh, I forgot some positive stuff.

I bought two dresses at White House Black Market the other day. I got them so cheap I was scared I'd be stopped for stealing on my way out. Then today, I found a gorgeous black silk blouse on their online sale page. Originally $78 and I splurged for the $18 they had it marked down to. It's a classic piece and will never, ever, ever go out of style.

Bought a 100 pack of Huggies diapers on amazon for $21 and free shipping. Another steal. Thanks, Renea!

Had a couple of evening phone calls from my wonderful, sexy, sweeet, smart and strong husband. The man makes my day. Less than 5 weeks til I see him in person again!!!

I did something nice for someone. It doesn't matter what it was, but it was good to feel as if I might have made a difference. Don't tell anyone though. I'd hate to ruin my reputation.

Let's try this again

At two o'clock today I found out that I'm having surgery tomorrow afternoon. That didn't leave me much time at all to prepare for any help while I recover. So what do you do when you're in a bind? No... you don't grab a bottle of wine to mull it over, but I like the way you think. You go with your last resort, cross your fingers, pray to the gods, and brace yourself for doing most of it yourself.

So, surgery at three.

I've had some great help since the last surgery. I found her on She's been coming out from 6:30 in the morning til seven in the evening. What a keeper! She's a dream with Alyssa... patient, sweet, fun, and hasn't gotten on my nerves even once in the two weeks that she's been with us. That's more than I can say for my own child. Bless her heart... Alyssa, that is. She is testing her boundaries with me lately. She threw a big tantrum at nap time. That was fun. Not. Then tonight she threw a fit that made nap time look like a day at the spa! During our bedtime routine we brush her teeth, go potty, put on pj's, and finally read a book and sing a couple of nursery rhymes. She couldn't go potty so we went to put on pj's and she started whining that she had to go potty again. We went through this cycle three times before I said "It's OK if you can't go potty. You can try again tomorrow." So, back to the bedroom, again, for the pj's. When she tried to pull the "potty" whining the fourth time I said "Let's put on pj's and read together". Redirect, right? No. That's when the fight started. She got so angry and started screaming, kicking, and hitting. I tried to ignore it and put her pj's on her, but then she kicked me square in the right breast. That's when I exercised my parental right to discipline and spanked her bare butt*, but it DID NOT stop. It only made her madder and louder. Oh my god. Seriously, I didn't know what to do. So, I took a breath, waited a while for a break in the tantrum and then told her we'd try one more time. This time, though, I faked her out. When she didn't potty, I just said "Great job!!!" gave her the toilet paper, let her flush, and it worked. Ugh. This being a parent thing has its hard moments. Sometimes I feel like I'm not doing the right thing and it makes me feel clueless, guilty, and stressed. Am I giving in? Am I not giving in enough? Am I promoting her fit in some way? Am I on my way to a straight-jacket and a daily dose of a tranquilizer, complete with the drool? I can not wait for this year to be over so that my husband will be home. Then I can relieve myself of feeling like I'm not doing anything right, and focus on telling him what he's doing wrong with her. I like it better like that. (That's supposed to be funny just in case you didn't take your humor vitamin today.)

*There is a very clear line between spanking and beating a child. Because of today's society and the fact that some people (the know-it-all, obnoxious ones that usually have kids that are as equally obnoxious) think a spanking is abuse, I feel as if I must make that delineation here. I very rarely spank my daughter. If I do, it is because I refuse to raise an unruly brat. My first go-to is a warning, then time-outs. then taking away toys. But every once in a while, and as Alyssa's mommy I know exactly when this is, none of that is going to work. So, don't go calling the social worker's on me. I'm no child abuser. I'm just a mom with a very sore boob that loves her daughter.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

If only I were a millionaire

I talked to the Dr.'s office today. I'll be going in on Tuesday to see my surgeon. I hope there aren't any unforeseen issues in correcting this. It's going to include another surgery I'm sure, but it will be worth it. I just don't have the luxury of time seeing as how I've already paid for plane tickets to South Korea. Non-refundable, too. Could I possibly allow myself to hope that this could go smoothly? If it does then I just have to figure out how to arrange for more help with Alyssa. I simply can't pick her up while the muscles are healing. Since I'm running out of money for 12 hours of help a day with Alyssa, I don't really know what to do. Of all the great services available to the military and their spouses there's a huge, gaping hole in providing help to families in situations such as these.

I'm exhausted. I think I'm overdoing it a little bit, combined with the fact that Alyssa was pretty defiant today. She must realize at some level that I'm not able to do some of the things I usually can.... like swat her on the bottom if she's really acting up. But I am able to take away toys! I've already confiscated her new cell phone (an old one of Bruce's), her two pink puppies, a pair of sunglasses, and her building blocks. Once she realized Mommy wasn't playing around, and she wasn't getting them back after a few minutes, her attitude got a little better. There was one major meltdown/screaming fit today which rivaled anything in the past. She's asleep now, though, and tomorrow is a new day.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Is that a goiter?

I went to my follow-up appointment today. After all the bandages were taken off, it was quite obvious that something did not go as planned. Now my Dr. is "out of the office" but I was reassured by another Dr. in the group that my doctor wouldn't leave me hanging, that's he's an excellent surgeon, and that he was sure this was not what my doctor had intended. It's kind of depressing.... dealing with the hassle of getting everything approved, struggling to find help with Alyssa, having the surgery itself with an entire day of vicious vomiting afterwards, and now this. The doctor was quite surprised that I wasn't taking any pain medication, but hell, so was I! I was prepared for it to be much more painful, so this level of discomfort is tolerable without pain meds. Although, now I have to go back to taking them in order to tolerate the "aggressive massaging" they want me to do. OK... no problem. I'll do my part as long as they do theirs.

SO, to focus on what I can control and in trying to be positive, I have to tell myself that this WILL be taken care of. It WILL turn out OK. I am resilient. Maybe, just maybe the massaging will help. If it doesn't, well then... it will simply have to be fixed. I can deal with that, too.

My wonderful husband called me this evening to see how my appointment went. We don't normally talk in the evenings, so it just seemed very sweet for him to call and made me feel so loved. He's been very supportive through this whole thing. When he saw on Skype what I was worried about, he agreed that something wasn't right, and that whatever it took we would get it fixed. Then he followed that up by telling my how beautiful he thinks I am.

I'm tough. I'm hanging in there. But, what I really want to do is cry. This wasn't supposed to happen.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Swelling or switch?

Hmmm... when it rains, it pours. I've got my follow up appointment tomorrow afternoon. I wonder what the Dr. is going to say when he sees the work done? Since the Dr. who did my surgery is out of town now, he's having me see another Dr. in the group. I think someone screwed up. Big time.

Going to bed.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

D Day

Well... I think I'm ready for tomorrow morning. I've left two long, too long notes for the babysitter. I hope she doesn't think I'm that mom. But I probably am. Oh well, at least I'll be that mom with a great rack after tomorrow. Ahhh... please excuse me, I'm a little worried, and I guess it just comes out as warped humor. Oh, and just in case you don't know the history behind this surgery... it ain't no boob job out of vanity. It's a "reconstructive" surgery. I'm just lucky enough that at age 37, they'll have to do both now.

OK. So, I've got the coffeemaker ready to go on auto at 4:15am. I've cleaned the kitchen. I've got magazines for Kimberly, which she probably won't need 'cause I can just about guarantee you that she'll be flirting with a cute Dr. by the time they're finished with me. I'm about to head up to the bus station to pick her up. That girl is the perfect example of a true friend. Let me tell you... I sent her a text the other day, just to annoy/confirm with her that she was still coming. She responded she would but that she'd have to take a bus since her car had decided to up and die on her. Top that with her very stressful job that she's been staying four hours late at every night this week just so she could take tomorrow off, AND the fact that she just moved last weekend. How do you ever repay someone for all that??? I'm going to have to come up with something good. Real good.

I am nervous. Not really so much about me, but rather Alyssa. When I was talking to Bruce and taking the opportunity to delve into his psyche, I asked him what he would do if I died. I know, I know... completely melodramatic, but I was just curious as to what his response would be. Do you know what that man told me?! He said he'd hire a $25/hr hooker to take care of Alyssa. I guess his sense of humor gets a little warped too, when he's nervous (we'll give him the benefit of the doubt.) I laughed my ass off when he said it, then I said "You ARE joking, right?" He assured me he was. Let's hope we never have to find out.

I am nervous though, for me. I'm not dwelling on it, but I'm going to get it out here. It would suck if something bad did happen. Finally, as an adult, I am happier that I had ever imagined possible. Awesome husband, absolutely beautiful daughter, terrific family, good friends, great home, etc. It seems silly to be worried now that I imagine someone reading this and rolling their eyes, but it's different for me at this age. When I had my spinal surgery at 25, I wasn't nearly as scared. And that was a big deal. Over eight hours of surgery, and the risks were much greater. Considering where I was in my life at that point, if I'd had any sense I would have been terrified. Oh well. I guess it's true that we think we're invincible when we're young. Since I'm no spring chicken anymore, the frontal lobe of my brain is kicking in, saying "What if?"

Well. I'm a lucky girl. I heal quickly, too. There won't be any hitches! I wouldn't be mad, though, if you crossed your fingers, said a prayer, or sent positive juju my way.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

I earned this big glass of wine.

Please. Somebody. Help. Me. With. This. Two. Year. Old.

Whew. This has been a day. When I got Alyssa up this morning she was grumpy. This isn't unheard of, but once she's had breakfast she's usually fine. Not this morning, though. Breakfast came and went, but the grumpiness was still lingering. Fast forward one hour and she was briefly content with Mickey Mouse. That didn't last, though. There were fits, disagreements, boo-boos, tears, and time-outs. Not to say there wasn't some laughter and fun in the midst of all this.  Being bipolar is part of being two.  The whole age is rife with afflictions if you ask me. So, anyway, then it was nap time... yes, we are only halfway through the day at this point... and I told her if she took her nap like a good girl that we would blow bubbles this afternoon. Didn't happen. I had to stick to my guns and withhold the bubbles. When she did finally go to sleep, I decided I was wore plum out and needed a nap myself. That was the most relaxing part of my day. Probably a good thing that I recharged my batteries, 'cause I had no idea what I was in for this afternoon. Since I've got surgery coming up this Friday, I have a long list of things to do beforehand so that I can lay around, heal and do nothing. I was going to tackle several things this afternoon and knock out a big chunk of it. The best laid plans... **insert maniacal laughter**

Well, I DID get two of my plants repotted. WITH Alyssa's help. (Groan) That translates into "What should've taken me 15-20 minutes ended up using the rest of the afternoon". At first I wasn't going to let her help me. I'm anal like that. But then I thought "What the hell. Let her help." Bless her heart. Her idea of helping was to, at first, add a teaspoon of dirt at a time cupped in her little hands. Once she realized that dirt had some real potential for fun she began throwing it up in the air to celebrate. My normal, anal self would have flipped, but I realized it was simply too late to do any good. Oh, and the fact that she had a mouth full of blood thirty minutes before this kept me from stopping her fun. Let us backtrack... right before we went outside, during a flash of happiness, she insisted on wearing her flip flops to go outside. I helped her put them on and then she took off.... only for that damn flip flop to catch on the carpet. She went flying forward and hit her face squarely on the arm rest of the love seat. Commence the screaming, and my acting skills. Seeing blood never bothered me before I had a child. I was one of those people that just kicked into gear to fix/help the situation. Since having her though, I'm a new person. A scared, wimpy one. I deserve an Emmy for this afternoon, though. Once I saw the blood, I just wanted to cry and run out in the street and get a neighbor to take care of it, but I didn't. The show must go on. I put on my big girl panties, scooped her up, took her into the kitchen, got a paper towel, all the while telling her, and myself, that it was going to be OK, and then cleaned her up. The blood was coming from that little piece of skin right above the two front teeth. Thank god no teeth got knocked out! The bleeding didn't last long, but if it had you better believe I'd be ringing a doorbell. I have told that child several times of the rules in this house! She is NOT allowed to choke or bleed when her father is not here. It better not happen again. Well, everything is calm now. She's had a bath and I have a glass of wine in my hand.

Bought our tickets to South Korea last night!!!!!! Yeeeeeee Hawwwwwwwww! I'm so silly excited. I went through They were the cheapest, and I should know after checking out many, many, many sites over the last few weeks. I'm actually gloating here. It's a non-stop flight that leaves and arrives at reasonable times. Even if something happens to delay our trip (crossing my fingers so that my healing goes without a hitch) we'll only be out $600. Comparatively speaking, that's great.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

I can do it!... But how?

I'm getting a little nervous about next week. I'm also disappointed about having to change my plans for going to TN to visit. This was going to be the first time I've seen some of my sorority sisters in years, and now I'm going to have to cancel. There's just too much to do before the surgery and I think it's best to stick around here until afterwards. Ugh... I really was so excited about the get together :(

Now the conundrum is trying to figure out how I'm going to take care of Alyssa when I won't be able to lift over 5 pounds for weeks. Two  One of my friends has the first five days covered (thank you baby jesus for Kimberly), but no plan after that. I'm trying to avoid having to hire someone since that would be really expensive for 13 hours a day, but we'll see. If I put the surgery off any longer, though, then it literally wouldn't happen until 2012. So, come hell or high water I'll figure something out. If any one's got an idea... let me know!

We drove to Aldi in South Carolina today. Ooooh, I just love that place. I actually made it out of there under $100. That included wine, too. Other than fruits, veggies, diapers and milk, I'm set for the next month.

Wisdom of the week: Do not talk to strangers. Seriously people. There's a reason the word "strangers" contains "strange".

Sunday, July 3, 2011

My surgery is scheduled!

Great news! I'm having surgery in less than two weeks!!! After writing the insurance company regarding the initial denial I'd received, it was overturned. Yay! This whole challenge has been going on since February, so I'm sure you can understand my relief that it's finally going to be resolved. My only concern now is trying to find someone to help me with Alyssa after I have it done. At least I've got the first three days covered, though. My first call was to my Hotlanta hottie, Kimberly, and she said "Of course I'll help". I almost cried with relief! It's difficult at times like this when Bruce is overseas, and I have no family close by. So, she's coming down the night before my surgery and staying through the weekend. Now, I just have to find some help for the week following that. One of the biggest reliefs with the approval is that they approved the Alloderm, which is not something that's normally approved. Because of this I'll have to have drainage tubes (ewwww, right?), which will be a little tricky with Alyssa, but I'm sure I'll figure it out somehow.

I'm back into my routine since Bruce has returned to South Korea. It's been much easier this time. We're Skyping in the mornings and it seems Alyssa knows this is how it's going to be for a while. Whew... that part is a relief. There's nothing worse than a two year old having a broken heart... just about killed me the first time around.

Oh, I got her passport in the mail the other day. It's just the cutest thing. They also mailed back her original birth certificate, which impressed me. I'm sure my passport will be arriving shortly. Between the surgery, healing time, and excitement of getting ready for our trip to visit him, the next month and a half should go quickly.

We went over to my neighbor's house on Thursday. She's in her sixties and cool as can be. She's computer illiterate, though, and needed some help getting back online. After two hours of trying to get her wireless router and modem working together and several calls to Comcast, I told her we needed some alcohol. I swear I think Comcast had brought in some of the Saturday Night Live characters from the IT skits. One chick had it down to a "T" and was really getting on my nerves. She kept snappin' at me and giving directions way too fast. I could just hear her rolling her eyes through the phone. I'm pretty decent with computers, so it wasn't as if I couldn't keep up, but she'd tell me to do something, then back-track, then snap at me when she made a mistake. She sounded like she had a big wart on the end of her nose.... bless her heart. So, anyway, my neighbor ran over to my house and grabbed two bottles of wine while I was still on the phone with Comcast . Then her daughter, Michelle, came over with her kids and we proceeded to drink until 11. These two are fabulous. We laughed, we sang, we drank and then laughed some more. At 11 I knew I had to get home with Alyssa, but Michelle said "NO, NO, NO.... let's go swimming at my house!" I gave it some thought, but asked for a raincheck. Seems I missed all the excitement. They all went to her house and swam for another two hours. When my neighbor was trying to round up her two chihuahuas to come home, she somehow managed to vault herself over a fence which was backed by another fence, and get stuck! Spritely for sixty-something, wouldn't you say? Sprained her ankle, and they had to call Michelle's neighbor to come help them dislodge her at 1am in the morning. I stopped by on Friday to see about securing her wireless router and got the whole story. That ankle was shiny it was so swollen. She must be as tough as woodpecker lips because I had to MAKE her take some Motrin and prop her foot on a chair. I hope she heals quickly, and next time I'm not passing up the opportunity for night swimming.