Dec 26, 2007
I am home on vacation until January 2nd, and I had such high hopes of cleaning the kitchen (finally!), and making some good dinners. It sounded like such a nice change of pace from all the holiday snacking. However, it wasn't meant to be tonight. I hardly slept last night due to Duncan coughing, weird dreams, and Patrick pulling the covers off me every time he rolled over in bed. I slept on the couch for about an hour, awoke from a freaky dream, ran upstairs and jumped into bed. When my heart finally stopped pounding, I realized that I was developing a migraine. It was 4 AM and since I can't take my migraine medication, I was out of luck. I awoke at 7:30 AM with an excruciating migraine - an I-can't-lift-my-head-from-the-pillow migraine. I took some medicine and stayed on the couch until 12 PM. It was at this time that I realized that there was no chance in hell that I would be making dinner...or cleaning the stupid kitchen.
So tonight's dinner is Jimmy John's...and while I feel guilty for another night of restaurant dining, I just don't really care. I know that I should be feeling better in a few weeks and that little by little I should be able to ramp up my cooking. I even got the Cooking Light cook book with every single recipe from 2007! I am actually able to look at the pictures without gagging, so I'm pretty darn proud of myself.
On the pregnancy front, I'm in my 9th week and I'm feeling...well, I've had migraines every day for about a week, I'm still nauseated (although the Phenergan is helping), and I'm bloated. Everything I've read said that this is all very normal, and that the migraines and nausea should begin to taper off by week 11.
Sometimes I feel like a giant science experiment. Other times I get excited when I read that the embryo (I don't think it's officially a fetus until next week), has four chambers to the heart and has developed elbows. I look forward to the day when it's head is proportionate to its body, so it no longer looks like a deformed potato. Because I pretty much look the same as I did 10 weeks ago, I don't feel a huge attachment to "it" yet, but that will come with the first ultrasound and when we hear the heartbeat. Duncan calls it the "baby" while I refer to it as a stowaway, a fugitive, or a freeloader. Of course, I mean this in the best way possible...
Dec 21, 2007
Dec 20, 2007
- Building the most awesome forts in our bedrooms during the summer and on winter weekends. We'd hold up the blankets with these monster encyclopedias...inevitably they'd fall on one of us in the middle of the night. And we would giggle until we fell back asleep.
- Sitting on the driveway with our coloring books, waiting for my dad to come home from work. I admired my sister, who was creative even back then, and would ask her for advice on what colors to use. Her standard response was, "Any color your heart desires."
- Spending the night in my sister's dorm room at Indiana University. I thought I was so cool back then (despite being a shy 16-year old). She introduced me to her friends and all the guys she knew. I was too young for them, but that didn't stop me from forgetting all about those silly high school boys.
- Rocking out at the INXS concert at the UIC Pavilion in 1988. We had 20th row seats and we stood on the metal folding chairs and screamed during our favorite songs.
- Coming up with the nickname "Skie," a name that we call each other. She's Skie and I'm Skie. It's a name that we've used for...I don't know how many years, and one that somehow morphed from the word "sister." I'm not even going to try to explain it.
- Attending our monthly Sunday matinees. Sometimes we'd be the only people in the theatre, but we liked it like that. It was our time together as adults - no boyfriends or husbands. Just the two of us, watching a movie that no one else would want to see with us. We had some of our best conversations as we left the theatre.
- Giggling about our inside jokes - some that we've shared since I was 13 and she was 16. "Talkin' to ya' cordless" and "I'll wait for you forevah..." are two of my favorites.
So, happy birthday, Skie. Can't wait to see you in a few days...
Dec 17, 2007
My diet has consisted of bananas, graham crackers, pretzels, cheese & crackers, and plain noodles. The weird thing is now all of these foods (even the mere thought of them) make me nauseous.
After 5 days on vitamin B6 supplements to combat the sickness, I was forced to call the doctor, who promptly prescribed me an anti-nausea medication - Phenergan. It's supposed to cause significant drowsiness. Whatever...as long as I stop feeling like throwing up 24/7.
So I'm wondering when the excitement of this situation will kick in. That initial sense of panic seems to have passed (I'm sure I'll have more of those moments as the weeks pass), but seriously, when will I really feel pregnant? When we decide on how to decorate the "spare bedroom"? When we start calling it the nursery instead of the spare bedroom? When I have that first ultrasound? When I outgrow my pants? When I feel the baby move? When Patrick and I go to Target to start a registry and I get to watch him randomly zap things with the scanner gun like he did when we were getting married?
This is all weird, wild stuff...
Dec 13, 2007
- Lettuce and pregnancy don't mix well
- Mayonnaise is REALLY good on sandwiches (and I normally can't stand it)
- "Morning sickness" is a misnomer
- "Evening sickness" exists...
- I can swallow a pill when absolutely desperate (vitamin B6 is supposed to help with the above-mentioned evening sickness)
- Grape sour balls make me happy
- The colder the drink, the better
- Old episodes of Beverly Hills 90210 make me cry
- My doctor and her staff are wonderful
I really don't want every post from now on to be about pregnancy, but this one was very necessary...
Dec 10, 2007
Yes, you read that right. I am in my seventh week of pregnancy, which according to some people, is too early to say anything. But guess what? I am turning 35 years old in one month. This might be the only time I ever get to tell people this news, so I'm taking advantage of it.
The last few weeks have been up and down. Scared. Freaked out. Exhausted. Excited. Nervous. Panicked. Exhausted. Have I mentioned exhausted? It's mind-numbing exhaustion. Think Nyquil 24-hours a day. Throw in some migraines for good measure and that pretty much sums up my last few weeks.
I don't think I'm at the point yet where I'm jumping up and down. I'm still dealing with the reality of this whole situation. It will happen. Right now, Patrick and I are in what I like to call the sarcasm stage. Sarcasm and humor are good ways to deal with life-changing events.
So mark your calendars for August 3, 2008 because that's when the newest member of our family is due to arrive. I sure hope he/she gets Patrick's dimples and laid back attitude and my empathy and knack for spelling and grammar. If this child can escape being a spaz like me, I think we'll be just fine...
Dec 5, 2007
I'm trying to breathe through it all. I am trying to focus on everything else - this weekend's trip to Chicago, how absolutely beautiful our living room looks from the white lights on our Christmas tree, holiday shopping, the new book I just started reading, etc. I am trying to get through these times with a lot of faith and a dash of humor.
It will get better. I know it.
Dec 3, 2007
The panic that I referred to in my last post is getting better. If I think too much about it, I start myself on that downward spiral. Day by day, I tell myself. Day by day...
Nov 27, 2007
We're all worried about Patrick's mom. She had a test today to determine if the cancer spread to her lymph nodes. She is scheduled for surgery tomorrow morning. All of this brings back bad memories of my aunt and all she endured. I know that this is a different situation and I try not to get caught up in my thoughts.
I also have some other personal issues I am dealing with, and I have been tormenting myself by overthinking. I hate doing that, but I'm just so good at it. I have moments when I'm fine and life seems so normal, and then I fall into this pit of anxiety and panic. I don't know how to stop.
Nov 21, 2007
This can't happen. On a cerebral level, I know it can happen, but emotionally, I don't want to deal with the aftermath. Patrick's father is battling advanced prostate cancer, and I don't know how this family will deal with the additional bad news.
Nov 18, 2007
The conversation was fantastic (as usual), the food was great (you can't beat a true Chicago-style hotdog!), and it was nice to get out of the house and do something for myself for a change. We had lunch, talked for a long time, and then I gave him a quick tour of the NIU campus. On a whim we decided to find my thesis in the library. Actually, I said it as a joke, but Jason seemed like we was truly curious.
Time passed a bit too quickly, and it was time for me to head back home. We stopped in Portillo's once more to buy some chocolate cake and then said our goodbyes. It was cold and damp and the drive home seemed longer than the drive in. I was tired and the grey sky and light rain was only making it worse. I started thinking about how much I miss my "old life." This isn't to say that I regret marrying Patrick, because honestly, I can't imagine anyone else being a better match for me. But I do miss my family and my friends and my "history." I spent 30 years living there, and everywhere I go is a reminder from my past - the park I played at as a kid, places I went with friends in high school, the mall where I had my first job when I was 16, the bookstore where I met a boyfriend that I thought was my soulmate, and the driveway of my parents' house where he cried when he broke up with me.
This has turned into a bit of a bummer of a post, but the combination of being with Jason and being on that campus just brought to me a wave of nostalgia - combining different parts of my past all in one day.
On the bright side, Jason and I agreed that we need to try to get together every couple of months. I'm glad because I really do miss him.
Nov 14, 2007
1. bicycle, 2. dream bedroom, 3. palm tree, 4. yield, 5. tomatoes, 6. open road, 7. dinkels bakery, 8. surf, 9. niu winter, 10. coke, 11. st josaphat, 12. mixer, 13. chandelier, 14. sock monkey, 15. little italy, 16. candles
Nov 13, 2007
It's definitely an interesting group of words. I also just realized that the title of this post marks the first time I quoted the song that helped me name my blog- "You and I Both" by Jason Mraz:
Nov 11, 2007
Seriously, this might be the first time something like this has happened (aside form that time in high school when I made cookies that included molasses and they turned into these hard Frisbee-like disks).
As I type this, I have the butter coming to room temperature. I hope they turn out as good as they sound (and look, although I haven't been able to find a picture of them online). I'll post as soon as I eat one...
Nov 8, 2007
I Googled myself and found a couple of things related to my time in grad school and my last job. Utterly boring...
And yes, I've Googled the exes and have found very little. My last ex has his name all over the place because of his job (HS teacher and coach). I found my very first love - he has his own business and he and his wife also sell snakes. So glad I got out of that relationship when I did.
Boredom + The Internet = Good Times...
Nov 7, 2007
Nov 5, 2007
(Ally will be the only one to recognize that we had the party at Happy Joe's!)
Some other funny pictures from Duncan's birthday include him opening his birthday gift from me and Patrick - Guitar Hero!!:
And one of my all-time favorites...Patrick living out his dream of being a rock star (OK, so his dream is really to play professional baseball, but deep down, don't we all want to be rock stars?):
Nov 4, 2007
Nov 2, 2007
Nov 1, 2007
They're actually staying at our house! They haven't done that since Patrick had to go to Las Vegas for work (and seriously, who really HAS to go to Vegas for work?). With Patrick and Duncan in North Carolina this weekend, I'm really looking forward to my mom and dad visiting. We don't have any specific plans, but I think we'll end up at Lagomarcino's for a caramel apple and probably some chocolates for my dad.
I miss my parents all the time, but it's never more obvious when they back out of my driveway and head home, but I won't worry about that until Sunday.
Oct 31, 2007
Oct 30, 2007
Oct 29, 2007
*Waiting for our server to be connected at work so I can start my day
*Sitting in part workout clothes, part jammies in front of my laptop at home
*Wishing it had been my Cubbies that won the World Series
*Waiting for the Excedrin to kick in
*Watching the clock because I have to get food in the crockpot by 8:30 AM
*Flipping through old issues of Advancing Philanthropy
*Being shocked that I only owe $14.20 for my mammogram
*Reminding myself that I need to start keeping a "What I'm Grateful For" list (see the above item regarding the mammogram)
Oct 24, 2007
Anyway...everyone seems to be pregnant these days. That is, everyone but me. We're obsessed with all the pregnant women in Hollywood, so it seems that the new "thing" is to be pregnant. Well, here's my new thing - I'm not going to have any kids. I don't want to have kids. I don't like kids.
So don't ask me when I'm going to have a baby because the answer is this - I'm not. It's my new thing...
Edited to add: And please don't try to convince me otherwise.
Oct 23, 2007
Oct 21, 2007
Right now, all of that stuff is sitting in the foyer of our house, waiting to be turned into a temporary home office later tonight.
Oct 20, 2007
Two Fiorcet, one Relpax, and an Excedrin later, I still have some pain. I don't expect this to go away anytime soon, but it is much more tolerable. I went upstairs at 12 PM to try to sleep. I woke up at 2 PM. I forced myself to get up and try to eat - the amount of medication I had in my system was making me nauseous. I made the most carb-filled meal I could think of (I crave starchy foods when my head aches like this). I made some pasta with butter, olive oil, and Parmesan cheese. Do you know what it tasted like? Heaven. It was food nirvana. And I drank a Pepsi that was so cold, my throat burned and my eyes watered.
I had some plans to get stuff done around the house today, but I have come to terms with the fact that it isn't going to happen. I will be lucky if I can get myself off the couch - not because the pain is so severe any longer, but because my muscles are tired and weak and I'm in such a fog. I happened to put on the TV and saw that on American Movie Classics, it is "Hitchcock Saturday." Perfect. I plan to stay on the couch, watching some of my favorite movies - The Birds and Dial M For Murder. My favorite is Strangers On a Train, but it doesn't look like that one is on today.
Patrick is out for the day, and I don't mind a bit. It's pointless for him to be stuck at home with me feeling so awful. I called him and told him that I couldn't cook dinner tonight. I told him everything I wanted - to get Chinese food from my favorite restaurant, to wrap myself up in a warm blanket, and to sit with him on our couch and watch Hitchcock movies all night. I'm not normally like that - whiny and teary-eyed. I feel sorry for myself right now and I feel like giving in to it.
I expect to get bad migraines toward the end of next week, so it looks like I will have to do this all over again...
Oct 18, 2007
Boo is recovering nicely and found a new hiding spot. Don't worry, the dishes were already dirty.
Oct 17, 2007
I still feel like I'm in that funk. I can't quite seem to shake it. I'm trying to allow myself to feel the funk, but make sure I still read, write, exercise (that's a tough one), and engage in my other everyday activities.
The only other interesting thing that happened today was getting my annual flu shot. Good times, people. My arm is sore and swollen. That happens every year. One year I got a lump in my arm the size of an egg. It's not like that this time, but it does hurt to lift my arm. I used to think it was psychosomatic, but it actually hurts to touch or move my arm.
I lead an exciting life...
Oct 16, 2007
A very long time ago I wrote a post about how I finally learned how to hem my pants. Apparently, hemming your pants is all the rage because people are Googling that like crazy! I went back and checked that post. The funniest part about it is my Dad's comment - I just love that man!
Of course this reminds me that I do need to hem a pair of awesome pants I just got at Old Navy...
Oct 15, 2007
Oct 13, 2007
'Da funk is here. I wasn't sure if it was just my stressful week at work or the change in weather, but I can feel my feet firmly planted in the funk - tired, lethargic, no desire to do anything but sit in comfy clothes and plant myself on the couch. We managed to go to dinner last night, but the large group sitting behind me was loud and annoying, and for the first time in a long time I felt just a hint of anxiety. I fought it off, ate what I could, and was thrilled when we finally left. Even our regular trip to Border's wasn't as much fun as it usually is. Patrick and I start at the bargain section and then go our separate ways in the store, meeting up later in the evening to look through the books we've picked up along the way. I browsed the literature section and then the cookbooks, but my heart just wasn't completely in it (although we are going back tonight to use our 20% off coupon for a book called "Big Fat Cookies"). I sat on the leather couch fighting off sleep while Patrick browsed the history section. Then it was home - on the couch in my jammies watching some baseball.
Patrick wants to go to Galena today. I said I didn't want to, but am wondering if I should make the effort to go. Maybe I can force myself out of this before it gets too bad. It's not a long drive, and maybe the cool, fall air will do me some good.
Oct 12, 2007
I haven't been getting enough sleep. I'm also slipping into a bit of a funk. Is it the weather? Is it just that time of year?
Whatever it is...I cannot wait to go to bed tonight.
Oct 11, 2007
Then I woke up.
So weird. I definitely want to investigate this one a bit more...
Oct 5, 2007
Then I found the post about life lists. What a fantastic idea! A list of 100 things we want to accomplish in our lives. It sounds a lot easier than it really is...and I have only begun the process. The tricky part is what to include - do I say I want to vacation in the South of France even though I know I don't think I could handle the long flight? It's something I desperately want to do, but I don't know if I can get on the plane. Is it more important to create an accurate life list, or to be able to cross off things on my list? Will I feel like a failure if I add France to my list and never go? I think I'll add France and see what happens...
I'm going to finish my list by next week and then I'm going to post it here. I challenge other people to do the same.
Oct 4, 2007
Do I start at the beginning or at the end? Hmm...I'll start at the end and work my way back.
When it comes to religion, I don't know what I believe any more. There is someone I "know" through the world of blogs who is battling Stage IV cancer. I'm not going into specifics because it is that family's personal battle and I have no right to identify them. I've been reading their blog for a while now and I like to check in on their progress. They are very spiritual people (yes, they are Catholics), and I am always amazed and impressed by the positive attitude they maintain throughout this process. They are parents (about my age), with very young children.
I'm not even sure where I'm going with this post. I know what I want to say, but I am having trouble getting there.
They frequently ask people to pray for them - for healing and a miracle. This is where I begin to question my faith. I was raised Catholic. I was taught that when people are sick, you pray for them. You pray for their healing and you believe in miracles. As a kid, this seemed OK because I never knew any sick people, so I never needed to question the validity of this. When my aunt got sick, we prayed. I prayed throughout the entire 8 months of her illness. It is the transformation of my prayers that interest me. I started by praying that the doctors were wrong about the cancer (they weren't), and then I prayed that the cancer wasn't as bad as they originally thought (it was). With the medical results to back that up, I started praying that my aunt would handle the treatments and would get better. She did get better...quickly. It was definitely a tough road for her, with the surgery, physical therapy, chemo, and radiation, but she did it. By the end of January, she was "cured" (don't get me started on the use of this word by her doctor).
Within a month things got bad again, and we started praying again. I had done the research and knew the grim prognosis - cancer within the central nervous system is not only incurable, it spreads quickly and most patients succumb withing a few months. I didn't tell my family, but I know my mom knew what was happening. We sat on the phone one afternoon and she said to me, "I just don't know what to pray for anymore." Praying for healing was futile. There weren't going to be any miracles. She was not going to survive this. I remember my brain switching from having faith to not believing, like turning on and off a lamp.
When do you make that switch? Is it wrong to stop believing? Do some people believe in miracles despite the medical evidence and the odds? A few days later my mom said, "I stopped praying for her to get better because I know that can't happen. Now I pray for her to be comfortable and at peace with death."
I know that things are not going well with my fellow bloggers. There are calls for healing prayers. Calls for miracles. I am happy that they have such faith, but it breaks my heart to read that. I remember those desperate times when I thought that saying one more prayer would make things better. I feel guilty that I don't believe in that anymore. But I can't. In my mind, what's going to happen is going to happen. You can't pray it away.
I am not here to criticize anyone's religious beliefs. Sometimes it makes me angry to hear people say that if enough people pray, and they pray hard enough, someone can be healed. Did my family not care enough? Did we not pray hard enough? I know that's not true - we did all we could when it came to prayers and the doctors did all they could when it came to treatments.
It's just too much pressure to think that you can control the outcome of someone's life by saying or not saying enough prayers. It's too heavy of a burden. I felt it. We all felt it.
I know there's a point somewhere in there...
There is another game tonight, though, and with Lilly pitching, I think we can do it. Our pitching staff is much deeper than the Diamondbacks (basically, they're relying on Webb), and if our offense gets hot...look out.
On a side note, Patrick told me last night that he doesn't think our marriage can survive this postseason. I guess it's because I'm superstitious, neurotic, and a bit dramatic. I also cuss like a sailor and can trash-talk like nobody's business. Deep down he loves it...
Oct 1, 2007
Sep 29, 2007
Another day that I've lost.
Sep 26, 2007
“Watching the Wheels” by John Lennon: 1980. Summer vacation with my family. We’re driving across the country in our 1979 Ford Econoline van – it’s not fancy, but it does have an AM/FM radio, which we listen to for most of the drive to Wyoming. My father drives while my mom switches between navigating and working on a crossword puzzle. My sister and I sit behind them singing along to the music. This is our favorite song at the time and we would sit and wait to sing the last few lines: “I’m just sittin’ here watching the wheels go round and round. I really love to watch them roll. No longer ridin’ on the merry-go-round. I just had to let it go.” We sang without having a care in the world. Our parents were in charge of everything , and we were just along for the ride.
“Nightswimming” by REM: The summer of 1995. Mike and I are fresh out of college and spending one last summer together before he moves. Over the past few years, he and I had a very complex and confusing relationship. We always wanted to date each other, but something always got in the way. Physical distance. Friends. Other boyfriends and girlfriends. Our own fear. The one constant with us was that no matter how much distance or time apart, we always found ourselves back in the same comfortable place. We spent most of the summer together – late nights talking about our futures. He was moving away and I was searching for a job. We both were trying to figure out who we were and what we really wanted in life. He had a girlfriend back at college and I wanted nothing more than for him to fall in love with me. One night, sitting on my parents’ driveway, he confessed to me that he didn’t think he could move…and that I was the reason for his change of heart. “You’re being silly,” I said. "You have to go." Why did I say that? We decided to spend as much time together as possible before he moved. We spent every day together, sometimes going out again at night. One night, not long before he moved, he drove me home from St. Charles back to my parents’ house. We had a 40-minute drive ahead of us and I hoped and prayed that we would miss all the stoplights, giving me just a few more minutes with him. But at 2 AM, that wasn’t about to happen. We were both tired, and I fought to keep my eyes open, enjoying the comfort that comes along with knowing someone so well that you can sleep in front of them. The ultimate vulnerability. This song played in the background. I looked out the window, then back at him, and again out the window. I watched the scenery become more familiar as we got closer to home, wishing we could drive around together until the sun came up. I can still recall those lyrics:
Nightswimming, remembering that night.
September’s coming soon.
I’m pining for the moon.
And what if there were two
Side by side in orbit
Around the fairest sun?
That bright, tight forever drum
Could not describe nightswimming.
You, I thought I knew you.
You I cannot judge.
You, I thought you knew me,
this one laughing quietly underneath my breath.
The photograph reflects,
Every streetlight a reminder.
Nightswimming deserves a quiet night, deserves a quiet night.