Saturday, April 30, 2011

Why I Love Camp Friends

If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you know that every year, I spend a week at Leadership camp.  We drive a couple of hours up to Mt. Rainier to Cispus to spend a week teaching high school students about leadership. 
 Cispus Learning Center.

Each spring, in preparation for the upcoming summer, the staff meets to review the schedule, fix what we perceive to be broken in the curriculum, and act very business-like about camp.  We also eat too much food, stay up too late, and chat WAY too much conversations, when we should be paying attention.  It's always good.  I love these people.  They are good to the core, they care about bringing out the best in others and they make me laugh.  I am SO blessed for having them in my life.

So, back to the point of the post.  Why I love Camp Friends.

Last night, at about midnight, I was sitting on my bunk, chatting to K and C, about turning 40.  K is turning 40 next week and is feeling good about it.  C turns next summer.  Both are JUST FINE about turning 40.

On the other hand, yours truly is TERRIFIED to turn 40. 

It's just a number.  Ya don't gotta remind me that the number is not an accurate reflection of the attitude or behavior.  I'm the girl who threw out her scale for the first time in 25 years because she was sick of the number determining her mindset. 

Back to my story.  The three of us are talking and in a very camp-like moment, they start asking me WHY I'm struggling with it.  WHY I am not ok with it.  WHY I am not ready for the next step.  These people see me three times a year and they are digging deep.  They are asking the tough questions, they are peeling back layers, and they are hearing everything I say.  The thing about camp friends is that they inquire because they care, they inquire without prying, and they inquire in a way that shows nothing but love and support.  They see me three times a year and they only want the best for me.  And, because we are at camp, I let them in.  Normally, I would deflect with humor.  Not a chance of that happening at camp.

I tried to shield myself from the hard truth (ok, I just put a pillow on my lap and kept hiding my face into it with each question) but the reality is...

40 means no more babies.  The door is no longer slowly swinging shut like it has been the past few years.  SLAM.  It's shut.   Done.  We will not have another child.  Simply writing those words makes me burst into painful, mourning tears (not now, since I'm writing this post, sitting at camp in a room full of people at this very moment).  Alexander will be an only child.  I will never feel another baby move in my belly.  I will never smell that newborn baby smell on my child.  I will never feel the thrill of bringing a life into the world.  Which means it is time for me mourn and move on from what will not be but what I wished for. 

I wanted 2 boys.  Not 2 kids...2 BOYS.   My dad often tells me I have 2 boys and, with Eric and Alexander, Dad is correct..  Don't get me wrong, Alexander is everything my heart desires and more.  It's the reality of a door shutting that hurts.  Its the reality of a door shutting that I FOUGHT so hard against for SO LONG during the infertility battle that hurts the most. 

BUT.  And here's a big BUT....

the conversation with K and C was healthy and good for me.   By knowing what is holding me back and dread a milestone, I can actually move forward.  It means I can spend the next six months mourning what won't be, what can't be, what will never be.  Instead, with each work-out and step in the right direction to a healthy lifestyle, I can move toward to what will be.

Vegas in October, baby.  Be there.  Cause I'm turning 40!  And I'm going to do my damnedest to be ok with it.  Especially if K and C have anything to do with it.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Looking forward to the weekend

I'm spending it with these folks.
Planning for our week at summer camp.
I love camp.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Here's where life stands right now

Last week included the re-wiring of my parents house so each room could have an overhead light.

Last week was the last spirit week of the school year, which included an insane amount of hours  decorating walls with giant flowers and supervision of several evening events.
 Last week was the airing of our school on a local news station (because of our March assembly for Rachel's Challenge), which meant coordinating interviews, phone calls and loads of positive PR opportunities for our building.

 Last week was the week my dad found out he has to work out a few kinks before the medical wizards will release him back onto the kidney transplant list
 (insert request for prayers for physical and mental strength here).
Last week included the first sunny day of spring and we played outdoors.  All.  Day.

Last week included Easter Sunday at my grandma's house.

Last week was the eight week mark to the end of the school year.

This week includes many meetings, student suspensions,
prep for Teacher Appreciation Week (May 2-6).
and waging a battle against a spring cold.


Saturday, April 16, 2011

A Day of Solitude

Imagine my surprise to learn that Saturday was set aside as a day for me.  Eric took Alexander for the day so I could do what I wanted AND have the house to myself.  For the first time.  In four years. 
Oh man.  What to do?  What to do?

Turns out...I didn't really know what to do.  Maybe the timing wasn't great because I was just home for a week with Spring Break.  Or maybe I'm boring.  I don't know.

I worked out.  Tanned.  Ran a few errands for work.  Scrubbed the kitchen.  Finished laundry.  Watched two movies (Love and Other Drugs and Elizabethtown).  Read.  Took a nap.  It has been a great day of nothing.

The guilt, on the other hand, is KILLING me.  I should be at my parents house.  The boys are there, with Josh, wiring the house for new lights.   Mom guilt makes me think I should be there.  Know what I mean? 

 Fortunately, Mom just called and invited me to dinner.  So, I gotta run.  Turns out, spending the day with my boys is what I really want, after all.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A Good Day

You know those days where it seems like everything went right?

Today was one of those days.

Nothing specific happened to make it a good day. 

Nothing monumental or life changing occurred that made me stand on a desk and yell "carpe diem". 

It was just...good. 

Does that ever happen to you?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Every morning.  Every single morning.

I step on a scale.  I see a number. 

I allow the number to determine my mood.  My self-esteem.  My self-worth. 

It is a number.  A number with too much power.

I cannot do it anymore.  I will not do it anymore. 

It is time to let go.

I am turning 40. 

I want to like me.  

 I want to be strong and happy with my body. 

It is time for me to accept that I have the power.

Not a number.

Goodbye, scale. 

It is my turn.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Happy Birthday, Jodie

My cousin, Jodie.

She is my cousin.
She is my best friend.
I was going to write a poem for her.
But she's an English teacher.
Too much pressure.

She has talked me off the ledge.
She has made me laugh until tears roll down my face. 

She is honesty and integrity.
She is my voice of reason.

And I love how much my boys love her.

Almost as much I do.

Happy, Happy Birthday, Jodie!! 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Change in plans

Today was about Eric and I.  Originally, I was planning to blog by the hour about our adventures.  I even took a picture of my wake up time. 
Yes, that's right. 9FREAKINGAM!! 

After a lazy wake-up, that included coffee in bed, we finally got around to starting our day.  If I haven't mentioned it before, Eric chose to be gluten-free about six months ago.  Since then, we've been searching for gluten-free foods.  Today, we decided to go on the search.

We found a few food items and headed home to eat lunch.
And that's when it happened...


Eric downloaded Glee. 

We. Are. Hooked.
  We're eight episodes in and haven't been disappointed.  How can you be when you find yourself dancing around your living room to Bon Jovi, Heart and Neil Diamond?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Playdate Cancelled

As mentioned, I was supposed to go out tonight with high school friends.  But, as can often happen with adults who have busy lives, the best laid plans can and will be shot to hell.  Thankfully, we made the decision before any of us were on the road or in the bar, waiting for the others.  Mindy was the only one actually dressed and ready to go so we'll make it up to her with a long Island iced tea.  She's easy like that.

So, what is a girl to do with her Saturday night? 
Well, it's nothing exciting and I've done it before but...


I'm obsessed, I tell you.  OBSESSED.  I used to think it was Wentworth Miller who was the hottie.  He is awfully hot, don't get me wrong.  However, after 27 episodes, it's actually Dominic Purcell who keeps my attention.  It may be that the man spends most of the show, running around with his shirt halfway unbuttoned but who am I to complain?  He may be on my "top 5" list. 

More importantly, Eric and I decided that tonight could be a-selfish-spend-time-by-yourself type of night.  He's upstairs gaming, I'm crashed on the couch, which means tomorrow is a full day of US TIME!  Alexander is sleeping over at his grandparents again (we are the luckiest parents ever).  A day with no plans right before I go back to work is exactly what we need.  I'm even willing to pass up on Zumba, if it means a day with my hubby!


difficulty in sleeping: inability to fall asleep or to remain asleep long enough to feel rested, especially when this is a problem that continues over time        
I can't say that I've ever truly suffered insomnia. 
When I have a big ASB event scheduled, I have restless nights.  The kids laugh when these nights occur because they know, while waiting for sleep to arrive, I have worked out every scenario so the event will be flawless, once we begin.  In their eyes, it usually is flawless.  In my eyes, I know the next time we put it on, there will be more restless nights.  Such is the life of a perfectionist.
When my thyroid isn't working properly, I have restless nights.  I toss and turn.  I'm in and out of bed.  And I'm a furnace.  Poor Eric doesn't stand a chance of finding sleep himself.  So, it is usually my sweet hubby who points out that I should have my blood drawn and the thyroid checked.  He's never been wrong.
So, last night.  I'm in bed at 9:30PM.  I work a bit on the computer til 11PM.  I figure 8 hours of sleep before Zumba and if I'm tired, the work out will wake me up.
Boy, was I wrong.  At 12:15AM, I text my mother-in-law to tell her "no zumba me" and reschedule for Sunday afternoon.  I lay in bed and watch the minutes tick by.  Eric comes to bed at 1AM and naturally, I turn on the light and start reading.  And reading.  And reading.  I'm no closer to sleep at 2:15AM than I was at 11PM but, Eric deserves some sleep in the dark.  BTW, I've also informed my lovely husband by this point, that there is NO WAY I'm getting up with Alexander at 7AM so he best be prepared.
I think I drifted off about 3ish.  And woke up at 7AM.  With a terrible headache.  Eric gets up with Alexander and I roll back over to try to sleep.
And no, I didn't drink any alcohol last night.
Here it is, 10AM and I'm still in bed.  Popped a couple of Tylenol.  I'm drinking coffee and writing a post.  With a headache.  Alexander is at a sleepover and we don't have anything planned for a lazy weekend.  Except for heading out with these folks tonight.  The crazy crew from high school days.
I think I just had a bad night's sleep.  However, if it continues, I'm gonna be pissed.  All my hard work to intentionally rest over spring break will have been for naught.  I better take a nap today, just to be safe.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Things I Learned While On Spring Break

Even though I loved the quote in my last post, I'm not quite sure wasting time is my thing.  Sure, it's great to lay on the couch in the middle of the afternoon and take a nap or watch a movie.  Lounging around is a much needed luxury during vacations.  And I've done a great job of lounging about every day this break.  However, I'm on day seven of spring break and I've learned a thing or two about myself this time around...
  1. Waking between 7 and 7:30AM is ideal, but the occasional 8:30AM wake up is awesome, too. 
  2. I eat and/or drink when I'm "bored".  This is not a new revelation but apparently, from the size of my arse, it is a habit that must be destroyed
  3. I love working out and wish I had more time during my busy life to do so.
  4. Speaking of working out, I've joined a Zumba club.  With my mother-in-law.  My first class is can bet that will make for a good post.
  5. In order to feel peace and balance, I need "Michelle" time, just as much as I need "mom" or "wife" time.  Although, time with this little bug has been wonderful!
He melts my heart!
Today's adventures include walking at the mall with the boys and Umma, a little shopping for me, a potential trip to IKEA for additional man-cave items for Dad, and an evening at home.  Sadly, the weather still isn't cooperating so I've given up hope of doing any yardwork. 

Oh, and a brief update on Daddio.  It's a day to day thing with the guy.  Last you heard, he was home from the ER with new meds.  The new meds are helping his blood pressure so that's good stuff.  Once he rids himself of a little pesky cough, he should be up and around.  We're all hoping he can start cardiac therapy next week and find his energy.  Thanks for all the prayers and good thoughts for my daddio!

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Thanks, JL

google image

Happy Thursday!


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Random post? Yes, please.

Well, the fun never ends.  Dad was back at the ER yesterday.  His heart went into atrial fibrillation.  After an hour or so of monitoring him in the ER, his heart went back into sinus rhythm but his blood pressure remained very low.  They kept him for several hours to monitor him, filled with him saline, and finally sent him home with new meds that, we hope, won't cause a terrible allergic reaction like last time.

I'm not sure what was the most frustrating part of this heart stuff.  The fact that he was back in there with new issues or the fact that there are no answers as to why his blood pressure is so low.  As a health major, it drives me nuts that I don't know the answers or can't problem solve for the answers.  DRIVES. ME. NUTS.  Clearly, the kidney dialysis creates a few complications but seriously, can't the man catch a break?  Why in the world does his blood pressure keep dropping, despite his careful monitoring of fluids?  Hopefully, the medication they gave him yesterday will help and keep him out of atrial fibrillation in the future.  If not, it's a good thing the hospital is less than 10 minutes from our house.  If you have the urge to throw a prayer up for the big guy, we'd all appreciate it.

In unrelated news, spring break is awesome.  Last night, Jodie was here for a sleepover and so was the Captain.  Oh, the Captain.  I've been tanning and working out and I LOVE the time for myself.  I've worn nothing but sweats, yoga pants, or sweatshirts.  I'm not napping as much as I should be but am addicted to watching Prison Break so the trade-off is worth it.  The weather totally sucks but I remain optimistic that the skies will clear long enough for us to take junk to the dump and do yard work this weekend.  I'm not sure what I will end up crossing off my list but I kinda don't care.  I have decided I don't really care if I'm productive or not.

So, that's the latest.  Tomorrow, Alexander has his swim lesson and first trip to the dentist.  He also plans to spend the evening with his grandparents so Eric and I are hoping to go out to movie and/or dinner.  Thursday, we're taking Alexander to the train yard.  And before you know it, the weekend will be here.  Crazy.  And so fun.  So, so fun.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Monday Morning

Not sure what has been the best part of today...

1.  Sleeping in until 7:45, when this cute little face woke me up with toddler kisses.

2.  Working out at Curves, after being measured and finding out I've lost 5 inches!  Yay me.

3.  Observing Alexander's swim lessons and seeing first hand what a little fish he is

4.  Watching more Prison Break, cleaning the house, and waiting for Jodie to visit us tonight.

Maybe it's all of the above!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Spring Break is here!

It's only been six weeks since mid-winter break but what a long stretch!  March is already difficult, with five full weeks but rainy, dreary days certainly didn't help my attitude.

I need this time at home.  I need to be with my boys.  I need to think about anything BUT work.

I have a list of activities I want to complete before the week is out.  Things like clearing out closets of old clothes, yard work, dump runs, and deep cleaning the bathrooms.  Instead of doing any of those things, I've been to Curves, went to a birthday party drank too much wine, watched Prison Break, re-decorated my dad's new man cave, finished the laundry, and started tanning again. 
Oh, how I have missed tanning.  Remember this? 

It's been almost a year since my face was sliced open from a flying rock and the doctor told me to avoid the sun.  For what it's worth, I did a damn good job, protecting the scar with sunscreen last summer and I avoided tanning booths. 

I think it's healed rather nicely, don't you?
However, I can't handle the pasty white skin that makes me feel like a beluga whale.  So, enough is enough and my butt was back in a tanning booth today.  Ahhhhh... 

If all goes well, the week will not only be a productive one, but a fun-filled one. 
Happy Spring Break!!