Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Wuts Up & Lindley's Angel

Yo peeps!

I'm not officially here. I'm supposed to be doing a million other things right now, but today I'm making time to tell you I don't really have a sweating problem. Yes. I stopped everything to tell you that. I was joking in a previous post, but I kept getting serious replies about what I could do to help the situation. It was Merle's idea that I had a sweating issue, and I jumped on board with it as a "ha ha" kind of thing. Now my pride is getting in the way, and I can no longer stand the thought that people here and abroad think I have sweat squirting out of my pits like water sprinklers.

What else has been going on? Ummm...my house is turned upside down while I clean out every nook and cranny to de-clutter and have a garage sale this Saturday. I'm in the tenth week of my pregnancy, and fatigue is getting in the big, fat way of making progress.

It snowed on Thanksgiving and again on Saturday! Woo hoo! That practically never happens here.

What else? There have been a meelion things I wanted to tell you guys, but I haven't had time to stop and write.

Here's an interesting story (in my opinion). As you've probably read, my 3 year old had open heart surgery on October 2. About 5 or 6 weeks after the surgery, she pointed to an angel we saw somewhere. Making small talk, I asked her if she had ever seen an angel in real life-- expecting her to say no or that she had seen one at church or on t.v.

She said she had seen one at the Mickey Mouse House. I thought she was talking about the television show, but she corrected me and said she saw one where she played with Mamaw and Pappaw before the doctors fixed her boo boo. She was describing the Ronald McDonald House. She probably called it the Mickey Mouse House because in the center of the play room are two enormous stuffed Mickey and Minnie Mouse toys. My parents have a picture framed of the kids with those stuffed animals. I just thought it was interesting of all the places she's ever been, and considering how briefly she played there before being admitted to the hospital, that she would single out a place where probably many angels were gathered over sick children. It's Biblical that children have angels watching over them, and I was emailed a prayer for Lindley that she would be aware of all the angels in her presence while the doctors were operating on her. Maybe she was. A week or two later, my mom asked Lindley to tell her the story of where she had seen an angel, and she repeated the same thing even though we had never spoken of it again.

I think I may decorate with angels this Christmas. :D I hope your holidays were great! Now let's get ready for Christmas...

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Blood, Sweat, and Seedless Raisins

Boring update: I was asked if the blood tests changed after becoming pregnant.

They've been coming back with good results since either the end of last winter or the beginning of spring. My OB/GYN wasn't willing to help us try to conceive until my blood tests were normal again for a decent length of time.

Last summer I went to my PCP because I wasn't feeling well. He started running blood tests and focused on the high bilirubin levels. He wasn't getting anywhere fast, and then I found out about Lindley's heart defect. I put my own issues on the back burner until fall. That's when my OB/GYN took over trying to figure out why I wasn't feeling well. She requested the results of my previous blood test results, and that's when she wigged out about my red blood cell count being so high. I have no idea why my PCP wasn't concerned or didn't notice. So my bad test results were first "noticed" last summer and lasted through the winter.

The short answer to "Did the pregnancy cause the positive change?" is "No."

About the profuse sweating that Merle mentioned in his comment, I don't know how on earth he found out that's one of my symptoms. He's a super sleuth. I look like I have water sprinklers shooting sweat out of my arm pits. No one can stand close to me without getting sprayed. I have to tape mounds of cotton balls under my pits daily, but they are quickly saturated. Oh great....I feel another wolf crotch scenario coming on.

Speaking of cotton balls, I saw a man walking around Walgreens last night with a package of cotton balls. I thought that was strange. What do men use cotton balls for?

And while I'm on the subject of things I don't understand, I saw an ad yesterday for seedless raisins. TRY OUR SEEDLESS RAISINS!


Monday, November 12, 2007

Merry Christmas to Me!

Dang it!

I was hoping today was my last appointment with the hematologist. I hate going to The Cancer Center. Was there no other name available? Was A-Town Oncology Associates already taken? The Cancer Center seems like you're doomed. Last Stop would have been almost as welcoming.

I was originally sent there last January because my blood tests alarmed my OB/GYN, and she thought I might have leukemia. I got to spend the Christmas season wondering if it were true until I could get into the specialist. Further tests showed that I had erythrocytosis which means I have too many red blood cells. My hemoglobin levels were elevated. Erythrocytosis isn't a disease itself. It's usually brought on by tumors or another disease. Bone marrow is involved. I don't really "do" medical stuff, and it's boring anyway, but that gives you an idea of why I've been going there.

I've had SO much blood drawn this year, you'd think I would have lost some weight, but NO! Anyway, the story is we did months of blood work showing that my levels were elevated. There was no treatment to undergo. I was being observed for a while to determine what to do next. I changed absolutely nothing about my diet or lifestyle during this time. Candy bars and Dr. Pepper continued to be the mainstay of my diet. During this period of testing, my blood tests started coming back completely normal. So then I was observed for an even longer period of time to see if I would remain "normal." My hematologist said, "It's like your body healed itself!" Well, sure it did! Because I'm cool like that!

I went back today hoping to be dismissed from his care. We did even more lab work, and it all came back perfectly normal. You'd think he'd be convinced I don't need to return. Instead he said, "I want you to come back in six months and then a year or so after that. At this point I'm no longer trying to determine that you have erythrocytosis. I'm determining that you don't. "

My insurance company will be happy to know their dollars are going towards making sure a well woman is well.

I'm skeptical that my body healed itself. I'd be more inclined to believe prayers were answered since I can't even subtract without moving my fingers. I'm just glad that this Christmas is going to be a very Merry Christmas. No fears this year. No images of leukemia taking me away from my family before I'm ready. No anxiety over my child's open heart surgery. Just peace.

Monday, November 05, 2007

7 weeks

Aw, cute and scary! This isn't my baby at 7 weeks, but it is a picture of some one's baby at 7 weeks. It could be you for all I know. The size of a bean. Wow. No matter how many times I've been through this, it still fascinates me.

Fun Without Kids

We had another weekend without kids! Woo hoo! They went camping with the grandparents! As you will see, we did what weird people do when they don't have children draining their energy and spontaneity.

First we went to a nice restaurant where we had our rehearsal dinner 12 years ago.

These flowers were supposed to be delivered to the restaurant and waiting as a surprise for me when we arrived. Wouldn't that have been awesome!?!

Unfortunately, the florist didn't get the flowers to the restaurant before they closed at 2. The florist closed at 3, so they ruined the entire thing and delivered them to our house right after I got home from errands. Idiots. They even got the card wrong, but Ironman still got all the brownie points. You wouldn't know by looking at it, but that arrangement was almost too heavy for me to lift, and I'm used to picking up one or two kids at a time.

These next pictures are in random order because I'm not talented enough to upload them correctly.

In this picture you will see that Ironman Jr. is already showing up even though it's only 7 weeks old and is the size of a grape. Somehow that translates to 3 pounds and a protruding abdomen on me. I blame the fact that it's the 3rd pregnancy and 4th child. My abs gave up a long time ago.

Posing with the art rock.

Lovers on a bench I. Too bad all these pics were made after dinner when I had no lipstick left.

Lovers on a bench II.

Little girl in a big hat I.

Little girl in a big hat II. I was hoisted up there.

Simon says hug a tree I.

Simon says hug a tree II.

Impaled pig sculpture. My hands were on his hooves, but it just looks like I'm in the midst of pig worship.

Come on, get happeeee!

There was a full Charlie's Angels pose going on there. Don't ask me why the man didn't get the entire shot.

Arrrrgh! None of the text will stay with the pictures when it's published from here down no matter what I try. How weird! Hope you can make sense of it.

Wondering why he married me...

We have bright lights, too.

And then the fun ended when Ironman got busted for playing on fine art sculptures. I walked away like I didn't know him.

Lindley's scar

Update: Photo removed for safety reasons.

Has it only been a month??? October 2 was Lindley's open heart surgery. Here's a picture to show you how well she's healing! Obviously the scar down the middle is where her ribs were separated and then wired back together. The round scar to the left of the picture was where one of her tubes entered. That's the one the ER echo tech put a sticky thing over and then ripped off the scab when she removed it.

She's doing great now!


Update: Photos removed for safety reasons.

A little late, but here are the Halloween pics. We had a lady bug, a kangaroo, and an elephant. These pictures were taken at my parents' house. Shortly after, trick-or-treaters came to the door dressed at various things dripping with blood or generally looking dead. This caused my three children to let out blood curdling screams and run into each other as they all bolted for safety. Then they calmed down. Then another dead looking child would come to the door which would start the screaming and crying all over again. After three times of this happening, we made a break for the car, shielding their eyes from oncoming ghouls.

They talked fretfully about the "monsters" non-stop all the way home. I assured them all that the monsters were just little boys in costumes. I even lied to them and said all the costumes were in the trash and the little boys were getting spanked that very second. For good measure, I also told them that if I ever saw those little boys again, they'd get a spanking from me, too. This seemed to make them feel better.

The kangaroo woke up startled throughout the night screaming. I know this because I finally let him sleep with us. When I say "us" I mean "me." Ironman slept on the couch, and I had a few hours sleep total. Woo. Halloween was fun.

I was fairly surprised to go shopping the next day and already see all the stores decorated for Christmas. Does it get earlier every year? And Delilah is already playing non-stop Christmas music. I just want to relax in the tub and hear Journey! I don't want to hear boy bands sing their version of "Let it Snow!" Waaa!

Every year I'm so excited about Christmas. By the time it's over, and I've been celebrating it for two months, I'm totally burned out and hope it's a very long year before I have to do it all again. I need blinders and ear plugs for shopping so that I don't have Christmas overload by Thanksgiving. Gah!