Monday, June 29, 2009

Seriously, this is a true story

Here is the latest saga picks up Wednesday. Erica was in really bad pain all day. The doctor told us to put her back in her hard collar. Truth was I couldn’t find her hard collar. I had to call all over the city to find a pediatric hard cervical collar. She had to be on oxycodone and Benadryl all day to keep her as still as possible. When I talked to our genetics, Dr. Tinkle, he suggested that I take her to the ER to get one. I explained that I was nervous about taking her back to Children’s because the last time she was there it took 7 people to hold her down for the x-rays then she punched out an ortho resident! He said I should try Dayton’s Children’s Hospital instead. We didn’t need to, by the end of the day a brace shop found one in downtown Cincy. Mind you, I am on a lot of pain killers for my neck and now my elbow and wrist, so driving was dicey at best. But we finally got one.

When we arrived home, the kids noticed that our really nice cat was not eating and looked really skinny. She has feline leukemia and has no immune system. She had also most died 3 times before, but pulled through. But in order to keep her alive I had to begin to force feed her and squirt water in her mouth with a syringe. Wednesday night, Elizabeth could not sleep. She was really upset. I finally got out of her that she was grieving as a result of her diagnosis, mine and her sister’s. She didn’t want to admit it to me, but she was most upset that she did not have a mom like she used to. She didn’t want to admit it to me, but she finally did. She cried for a couple of hours and I tried to soothe her as best I could. It was quite a blow to me too, but I could see it coming. I had been going to a psychologist for the last couple of months and she warned me that this was probably the root of Elizabeth’s anxiety. Anyway, we finally went to bed at 4. CJ and Erica were up at 7.

Thursday was another day of rest for Erica, so I farmed out CJ and Elizabeth and tried to get Erica to just rest. In the mean time I was beginning to really worry because I had not had a period for 7 weeks. You will remember that Chuck got snipped after Erica. What I failed to tell you is that he never went to the follow-up visit to make sure he was firing blanks. Well, I couldn’t sleep that night either, so I decided that I would go to the store, first thing in the morning; still dealing with Erica’s extreme pain as well as mine.

I was bound and determined to get some sleep on Thursday so I got everyone ready. Just then a tremendous storm began to shake the house. It was so bad that I had to wake up all of the kids and bring them down stairs. No kidding, the lightening never stopped for a second for over 2 hours. At 12:30 it looked like everything was over and I put the kids to bed again. By 2:30, the storm began again, this time with rain like I had never seen. The younger two were still fast asleep and I was not going to get them up again. Elizabeth was up, so we decided to watch the storm. Elizabeth got the camcorder and we began filming the lightening and the little stream starting to run between our house and our neighbors. But with each passing moment, the stream got bigger. When I panned out, there was another river swiftly gaining size in the yard across the street. This one was bad, it was floating large downed trees like toothpicks. The house in question did not have any lights in the house. I did not see anyone else up at what turned out to be 3:30. I told Elizabeth I had to warn the house they were flooded, because the water was coming up above their foundation.

So I put on my rain gear and trudged through the river. The water was almost to my knees and I had trouble keeping my balance. I finally got to his house and had to ring the door bell at least 6 times. A very angry man answered the door. I said, “There is a very bad storm!” He said, “Yeah, I know.” To which I said, “There is a raging river next to your house that is floating giant logs. You better check your basement.” This is the same house that flooded about 7 years ago with 8 feet of water in their basement, but these were new neighbors. He quickly slammed the door in my face.

Of course, Erica woke me up at 6:00AM and I noticed that they had a work crew at their house trying to get the water out. I checked our basement that night and the next morning and we were good. I went to the drug store to get the pregnancy tests. I brought them home and there was a shadow. I could not believe it. So I decided to get the more expensive kind so that I would not have to wonder. I picked something up for dinner and sent CJ down to the basement to retrieve something. He called, “Mom, I’m standing in water!” To which I retorted, “One catastrophe at a time, boy!

I went down stairs and when I first looked it did not look too bad, just a little puddle here and there. I decided that we would eat dinner, I could take my second test, then I would deal with the water. In the meantime, Chuck called, “How you doing?” I wanted a little privacy so I went to the basement while on the phone and discovered that the reason the water was not all over is that many cardboard boxes that held our wedding pictures, honeymoon pictures, and so forth were soaking up the water. I panicked and got off the phone. I started to try to clear everything myself, when I realized that I could not. I called some neighbors in and they helped me to get the wet pictures out and lay them out to dry. We think that the water got down to below the basement floor and started to come up through the cracks in the floor. I think everything is cleaned up now, but I am in some extreme pain.

When it looked like things were going to be okay, I went outside with my friends and explained the whole late period thing and I started to laugh. I still did not have time to take the second test. At that point, it seemed almost surreal. I did finally go back in and do the test. It was negative and so was the one this morning. Within a couple of hours, I started. PTL! One of my friends thought that I had lost my mind, but honestly, could anyone make this stuff up?

I had to take CJ to another baseball tourney, but this one was more local. We went to early service and got to the field at 12:00. CJ’s team squashed the other team, so we had to play another game. During the next game, Erica asked if she could play on the equipment right behind the field. It was only 100 yards away, so I let her. I warned her not to do anything too crazy as her neck was still sore. She first played in the sand box, and then she wanted to swing. She asked an older boy for his swing, because he was just sitting. He said no, she explain it was the only equipment that she could do and could he please let her swing at which this 10 year old ball player grabbed her by the neck and slammed her head against the swing set. The other younger kids came and told me and I ran over. She was screaming that her neck hurt. I tried to get her calmed down and gave her some of her oxycodone. Then she got stung by a bee, so I gave her Benadryl.

About an hour an hour past before I felt it was okay to start to research this incident. I found a tem with the same colors and “talked” to the coach. I explained that not only had a child from the team assaulted Erica, but these boys were allegedly cursing at the little ones as well as pushing a 2 year old boy. This coach denied that his team did it. Then an older girl said that she saw it happen and it was not this time, but the 10 year old team that had done the harassing. I quickly found the coach and told him about what had transpired. He said that he would look into it and he was horrified that anyone from his team might be involved. Of course those kids had gone home, but another witness came forward to say that what Erica said happened, indeed took place. I told the coach that I wanted the crap scared out of the kids so that they would not even consider touching another young girl like that.

In the mean time, Erica laid down on our blanket and would not move to the other field, for the championship game. I asked some of our coaches to pick her up using the blanket. The head coach is a firefighter and said, no. He called a life squad. He said that if she was unable to move, she had to get checked out. At this point I just started to cry. Here my son was about to play a championship game, and I had to take my daughter to the hospital in an ambulance! All of the kids were scared. A lot of the parents on our team came over to help.

We take the ride down to the hospital and she started to get a little better. They did x-rays and they were not normal, of course, because of the previous neck issues, but they had not changed. After a 5 hour ordeal, she was finally released, but into another hard collar. My mom had to drive all the way down from Hamilton. When we took her to eat, she said that she could not see out of one of her eyes. I thought it might have been from the meds or something else. She would not stop complaining about it. I had to call the ER again to tell them about this latest development. She said that it is getting better, but I just hope it goes away.

Chuck is due home at any time. He had to stop and get Elizabeth and CJ from Chuck’s sister’s Jenny’s house because they were scared to spend the night there.
God Bless

Saturday, June 27, 2009

My daughter taught Donald Rumsfeld a manners lesson

A couple of summer ago, our family traveled to Washington, DC. We were there in the sweltering heat, waiting to go into the National Archives, where they store the Declaration of Independence, The Bill of Rights and the Constitution. We had to wait outside for a long time because a VIP was visiting the museum. This is not easy to do with three small children, but we felt it was important to see such historical documents. My husband and I began to tell the children what these documents were about and why they were so important. My 9 year old daughter then asked, "Don't all of those documents say that 'all men are created equal'?" To which I said, "Yes, you just defined irony!"

We finally go in to see the documents. There is a smaller part of the museum behind the documents that hold such displays as declassified conversations in the Oval Office and such. My 4 year old at the time was listening on the phone at one such display when in walks Donald Rumsfield, a host of secret service agents and foreign dignitaries. Mr. Rumsfield walked right up behind my daughter who was listening to the conversation on the phone. I tapped my daughter on the shoulder and said that the man behind her would like to have a turn listening on the phone. My little 4 year old strained her neck to look him dead in the eye and said, "I'm not done yet." and turned around.

At this point, he graciously stepped back, I tried to make a break from it. She had just insulted one of the most powerful men in the world and had gotten away with it. Looking around the room was some very amused agents and foreigners. Donald Rumsfeld just got told by a 4 year old!

We were still in shock when we made it to the gift shop. We told the lady who was working behind the counter the story and she let out with a scream! She looked down at my daughter and said, "Honey, will you come back tomorrow, Condelessa Rice is coming?!"

Later, my daughter asked if she was in trouble, to which we said no. "You had every right to have your turn. It is just funny because just about half of the world's population would have loved to tell him to wait his turn."
Do you ever get the feeling that things are so crazy that you have a giant marker on the back of your head? So many crazy things have happened in the last year and a half that most of the friends that I do have left suggested that I start writing it down.

When I got the suggestion to blog, I told my friend that I couldn’t just yet because I had broken my wrist falling down a hill.

It is so bad; most people do even want to ask me how things are going.

The crazy thing about it is that in reality, our family is really blessed. Of course, then everyone thinks I’m crazy and I probably driving down the road to insanity.

You know you are crazy when you can’t stop laughing at the fact that your three children washed the dog in the upstairs bathroom, but didn’t wash her in the tub.

You know you are crazy because you are laughing hysterically outside your house that just got flooded along with the wedding pictures: husband is out of town, one dying cat, a child with severe chronic pain and in and out of the emergency room, just put in a movie for the kids to watch so you could go up and do a second pregnancy test at 40 and the first three were high risk.

I had to call the neighbors in because I have a broken wrist and am due to have a second fusion surgery of the neck. While thanking everyone for coming down and your son has an asthma attack. Do you have days like these or is it just me? By the way, this is a typical day for me. Trust me; I can’t make this stuff up!