Friday, December 21, 2007

Calories don't count till January - then they double

I've been working in the kitchen, all my live long days...

Today I have made:
Caramel Popcorn Twists
Nuts & Bolts
Butter Tarts
Buckeyes (the peanut butter ball part anyway)
Toblerone Shortbread
Crab dip
Taco scoop
Spinach dip
Liver spread (don't knock it till you've tried it)
Green onion dip

Still to come:
Bon Ton Tarts
another batch of Toblerone Shortbread
dipping the Buckeyes

Oreo Fudge

I think I've made 6 batches of the Twists. The teachers all got some, I had a secret snack exchange, a batch for the lady who drives Josh and Sarah to is a favourite. And, so freakin' yummy that it should be illegal.

Go ME!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


A few years ago, my doctor told me I had fibromyalgia. I had been dealing with this feeling of having run a million miles and my muscles were just aching and I felt like I'd been dragged behind a bus. I wasn't sleeping well. I had no memory. My hands would fall asleep for no reason. I would have to make repeated urgent trips to the loo - delightful...and I would get knock me to my knees headaches from the smell of any aerosol cleaner or heaven forbid, a glade plug in. I remember the babies climbing on my lap and yelping in pain because their little feet hurt me so badly (all 18 lbs of little feet). None of it made a lot of sense. I thought maybe depression? But, my doctor did some investigating and performed a few little touch tests - pressure tests - apparently there are a potential 18 points on the body that would be tender if lightly pressed on - I was in tears.

So, the diagnosis was fibro. The treatment was pain medication and an old school anti-depressant that had a side effect of drowsiness. I played along. For a while. Pretty much poo-pooing the whole thing. I thought it was undermedicated thyroid disease. So, I had my thyroid medicated. Then I had my thyroid removed. Then I medicated some more, cause now I can't live without the stuff. I am still brought to my knees with this out of the blue pain. This strange phenomenon of feeling like I've participated in an Ironman competition - without the medal or the personal best.

I'm having one of these attacks right now. I feel HORRIBLE. I feel like I'm walking in neck deep concrete. I ache. I'm exhausted, but I can't sleep. Pain meds don't really do anything. I want to crawl into a hole, but I can't, cause there's too much to do and too many people to do it for. Christmas is coming. I have things to do. I have things to prepare. The only upside of this thing is that I occasionally get a boost in the evening...but then that just perpetuates the problem. Stay up too late, push my body to do things it's asking me not to do, wake up feeling like a bag of crap. Lather, rinse, repeat.

I would really like to just pretend it's not true. That it isn't happening. That I don't have to deal with it. But, every 6 months or so - it rears it's ugly head and demands to be recognized and attended to. And, I hate it for that.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Christmas Spirit?

Christmas usually brings a whole gaggle of angst. Lots of expectations. Lots of disappointments. And, that's just the stuff I put on myself - never mind going out into the big world. Family relations are expected THIS month - they don't happen any other month, but somehow it always stings more this month. In fact, as I write this I realize that I must've started blogging a year ago. Same theme, same topic...but this year, I'm strangely calm. It is what it is. I've reconciled myself to the reality. Nice feeling. Part of the reconciliation may just come from the move. We're in our new house. I love our new house. I love our new house decorated for Christmas. And, we (me) have decided that there will be no more travel. We will be here. Santa comes here, not to a Super 8. I can throw a turkey in the oven with the best of 'em (thanks to my friend Marguerite's tips). Come one, come all - cause I ain't leavin!

And, I'm on top of things. I've baked and baked and baked and baked. I've wrapped gifts and they're under the tree. I've cleaned. Not that you can tell, but I have. I have my Christmas dinner list and plan on doing things in advance so that when it's time, I can sit and visit and talk and laugh and love and enjoy - I'm looking so forward to that.

By golly, I do believe I'm getting my Christmas Spirit back. It's only taken 9 years. Retail will suck the life out of it and leave it for dead on the side of the road. It's nice to listen to Christmas music IN DECEMBER. It's nice to see Christmas trees IN DECEMBER. It's nice to not have to be yelled at by some yutz who's mad at you because they didn't get their poop in a group. See, almost a decade later and I still start twitching when I think about it. Can you have PTSD from working multiple Christmases?? I love, love, love, being free from that :)

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Lunch at the diner

Mmmmmm poutine. We went to the Red Dog Diner for lunch. The littles and I picked up Daddy. The bigs had school, awww. Obviously, Matthew needs a haircut, but that will have to wait till he agrees with me. And I was giving Michael the "leave me alone I'm eating" look - but it just looks like I'm trying to prove where the kids got their big eyes from :)

These kids don't even need cheese curds to make them delicious. YUM!!!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Is it time??

They don't look naughty, do they??

Sheesh, you'd think I was busy or something. I've found myself with a pesky extra hour to do with as I please.

Fallin' back is one of my favourite things. Except when 2 two-year-olds won't sleep. And you have company. And the two-year-olds bedroom is right beside the guests sleeping quarters (aka family room floor - it's luxury baybee). And you take said two-year-olds to your bed. And you, foolishly, think that the little buggers are going to sleep. And you, optimistically, think that thought for approximately 3 hours. And then it's 1:49 and finally the 2 two-year-olds (who are seemingly oblivious to the amazing restraint and generosity of spirit you've shown them *for 3 hours* because they're still breathing and snoring that tiny, sweet snorfy snore that only 2 two-year-olds can snore when they're not rolled up in a carpet and stuffed under the stairs *I digress* )fall asleep. And you think Thank You Jesus and all things Holy and Good. And then it's 4:12 and 1 of the two-year-olds decides that that's good. That's it. He's DONE. And, then you curse said two-year-old under your breath, because you're not the kind of parent who would EVER dream of using expletives around your beautiful, innocent children, even after 2 hours and 15 minutes of sleep, because you channel Mary Poppins and all things Holy and Good *remember* and plus that's just plain wrong, right? And then, the second two-year-old catches wind of the impromptu party that is going on without her and POP! up she is. And you want to poke your eye out with a rusty spoon or uhm, anything you can find - like a dirty diaper...regardless, it wouldn't be pretty...and they stay up. Until noon. Noon o'clock. Which was one o'clock the day before. And you're pretty sure you've been up for 1,000,000 hours give or take a few, cause you're old and these beautiful children are making you older by the minute. And now, cause you have an extra hour - you need to grocery shop. Cause there ain't no rest for the wicked and apparently, even though life can be mind numbingly boring these days, it's becoming increasingly obvious that in the immortal words of the lovely and pure Maria Von Trapp..."somewhere in my youth or childhood...I must've done something REALLY REALLY BAD" *yawn*

Monday, August 13, 2007

Well...a chapter is almost finished

We're on our way tomorrow. Our house is full of boxes. The babies are having one last nap. The movers come tomorrow. The U-Haul gets loaded tomorrow and we're off. It's exciting and scary all at the same time. We're going to miss everyone SOOOO much. I'm really going to miss my boys. :( Sunny and Sumeet have been like sons to me. But, easier than sons, cause I don't have to make them eat healthy food or clean up after themselves or make them do chores. I just have to like them. That seems to work a little better than this parenting gig most days.

We'll get the keys to our new house on Wednesday. I don't know when we'll actually get our belongings, but we'll have keys! I think it's going to be fabulous...but it's still going to be lonely for a little while.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

New listing

We've put our house on the market. I've had a slew of friends support and help me during the preparation time. Char, Susan, Lorraine, Marcy, Lois, Miriam, Sherry, Sumeet and Sunny have been INCREDIBLY helpful. I would be rocking in a corner, like one of those little monkeys taken away from it's Mommy if I didn't have them!

90% of our home is in the garage.

Our house looks great. But, there's no trace of 4 children. Me thinks the kids are going to get a lot of outdoor time this summer. Those damn mosquitoes better stop eating my baby boy :(

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Time for yourself

What does that mean when you have a busy family?? I can barely get a mouthful of food without someone swarming me. I have been tasked with an assignment to carve out more time for myself. I think the key for me is to be intentional. Make the time, take the time, savour the time. It's not that I don't get away. Michael is really good at letting me bolt if I have to, but it's not necessarily a recharging time because I don't do anything that will recharge me...ya know??

I think I need to start drawing again. Or writing. Or singing. Some of the most relaxing, recharging times have been singing with Miriam and Mike. Just playing around with harmonies and learning to hear things with a different ear and take some chances. I miss having music in my life. One of my biggest fears about my thyroid surgery was the potential risk of permanent damage to the vocal chords. Thankfully, that didn't happen, but a little over a year later, things are still repairing. I don't have the range that I had and it wasn't like I was a freaking chanteuse or anything, but I knew what I could do and could do it I try and when I get there, the bottom falls out and that's weird.

I would love to have a little paint set that I could carry around with me - I could go sit in the ravine for a while and just see what I could see.

And writing. This is an outlet, but I think that this "me time" can't involve this outlet. It can be freeing and restricting all at the same time. I used to write poetry. Or at least I did for a blip in time. Not great, but kinda fun to do - way better than sudoku 8^)

So, the digging continues. Hah! Hopefully I'll have this all figured out before I die!

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

I've started my detox

Woohoo 8^) Well, at least the organ support portion of the program. Three weeks of getting the organs ready to excrete, then a 12 week cleansing that will be broken up into two 6 week protocols.

I'm feeling so much better in my head because of Dr. K, that I, honestly, can't wait to do this.

I see Heather tomorrow. She's an intern at the clinic and she deals with counselling and life skills. I hope to learn some new skills so that I don't feel so overwhelmed just doing the basics that this job of mine entails. I often feel like a 4 year old trying to raise a family. A fairly large family at that! I'm just not equipped...but that sure as hell doesn't help the people who rely on me everyday, now does it??

Friday, June 01, 2007

My bloodwork this month

is actually starting to reflect all the hard work I've been doing!! For the first time in - ahh - ever - my bloodwork and my symptoms are matching up. My thyroid meds are finally mimicking their long lost compadre and I am feeling decent. My B12 levels are up and in a really good place. My Vit D is still dodgy, but we're working on it and now that I know it's fat soluable and I'll take it properly (why do they do that??)
My free T3 and free T4 levels are almost perfect. This is honestly, the best doctors appointment I've had in a long time.

My adrenals are starting to get better too, so we're dropping my liothyranine med down a smidge to reflect my functioning adrenals. Liothyranine is a T3 only med, my body wasn't converting T4 into T3 because of the low adrenal this is exciting news - apparently my body is starting to convert again!!

Word to the wise: DO NOT EVER LET THEM YANK ANYTHING OUT OF YOUR BODY THAT IS THERE FOR A REASON WITHOUT A SERIOUSLY GOOD EXPLANATION AND AT LEAST A SECOND OPINION. Life with a underactive/unmedicated thyroid disease was hard. Life without a thyroid gland at harder. And, I am soooooo grateful that I have found a doctor who believes me and not just the numbers and thinks outside the box. If it wasn't for her and her support - I honestly think I would've committed myself already or committed something fairly heinous. My mental health was dancing really close to the edge and that is totally related to thyroid disease. It isn't always JUST depression. When every 2nd person you meet is on an's time to question the system. Quick fix? Easy answer? Dunno. But, I sure am glad I took this fork in the road.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Seattle and youtube discovery

Seattle was beautiful. We were staying right on the Harbour, just up the hill from Pike's Market. Stunning city! It was wonderful to see my friends and meet the ones I hadn't met. It was all wonderful!

Now, I'm totally in love with the movie Moulin Rouge. It was on TV the other day and I tell ya, it knocks my socks off. So, in my need for some of the soundtrack I youtubed the movie and played the final "Come What May" scene. Well, dammit, the kids just crowded around the computer, absolutely mesmerized! Hot damn! Kinda like Teletubbies, but less mind numbing! So, throughout the day I tested my theory and sure enough, as soon as Nicole Kidman sung the first line, Matthew flew into the room and just stood there, glued to the screen. Life is good.

I totally get to satisty my JAM tooth too. Hours and hours of Jim Krasinski is never a bad thing!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Seattle bound

I'm on my way to Seattle on Friday. I'm meeting a bunch of twin moms that I've met over the internet. Our last trip was Chicago. I'm there until Monday. We're staying in this place and it's going to be lovely.


Thursday, May 10, 2007

I was thinking today about the things that are missing in my life. The parts that I have cut off or hidden or denied. Lots of these things have to do with love. Love is something that, apparently, can make the world go round...but what happens when you've been damaged by love and can't see it for the gift that it was, only for the pain that it caused. What happens when the pain, though distant, still occasionally aches or stabs? How does this effect me in my day to day??

What would happen if I stopped focusing on the pain portion of the program and stopped reliving the mistakes and just started to accept that I love. I've loved. I will continue to love. I'm a lover, dammit. I love music. There are lyrics that stop my heart. There are arrangements that give me goosebumps. I love spring. I love the air and the crispness. I love flowers, from the most delicate to the most hardy. Just like people. I've loved lots of people. Lots of them don't even know I loved them. I've loved facets of people that I didn't even like. I love deeply. I love HARD. I love daily. But, when I pretend that I've only ever loved one person, I become a liar and pieces of my heart get closed off. How am I supposed to continue loving through thick and thin if I'm so willing and able to pretend that some of the greatest love I've ever felt or ever given didn't happen. Why not just cut my loses and give up today too? I reduce my capacity to get through the hard days if I shut down areas of my heart and feel shamed by them instead of thankful for the opportunity to grow in that kind of way.

So, what do I do about this??? I dunno. It's totally against our christian led culture to embrace your past. I feel like I'm supposed to be ashamed of having not "saved" myself for my husband. I was 29 for crissake. Lotsa luck. But, is it shameful? Is it something that I should have to bury away and act like it never happened?? Am I the best me I can be if I treat the experiences that shaped me, made me, taught me, as useless and worthy of discarding?? I dunno?

Such lofty thoughts for a bored suburban housewife.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Midlife crisis

I think I'm going through one.

So much has changed and yet so much remains the same. I feel the same emotionally as I did a million years ago, but physically, things don't jive.

I've spent 8, almost 9 years at home raising children. We both agreed at the onset, that I would raise our kids. We didn't factor in a set of twins, so there was an unspoken expectation that I would be free from oppression as of September, when Sarah started grade one. But, that's not necessarily the way it's going to be.

I feel like I don't contribute anything of value to the family. I feel like I play this role of "mother" and she's truly a role. I don't think I'm this impatient and angry and bitter and frustrated...but the character is...and I must wear her each day.
Is she easier to put on because I've allowed myself to become a shadow of my former self?? Was my former self even developed fully enough to survive this foray into selflessness? Would I feel like more of a viable human being and less of a leech if I had a job?? Went to school?? Tuned into my creative side??? Who knows?? Not I.

I feel like my body is deceiving me. I'm much to young and vital to look and feel this tired and spent. I have an expectation when I look in the mirror and it's gone. I'm trying to do what I can to reclaim it, but the lines and grey hairs won't go away no matter how perfectly I follow Weight Watchers plan. I feel like I've lost my sparkle. I think I had a sparkle. I remember a sparkle. I feel like maybe it's been smeared in baby poop and lost at the bottom of a toy box. Or maybe, it's in the lint tray of the dryer after the 13th load of wash.

I just don't know.

I was talking with a friend about deconstructing myself. Chipping away the undesirable bits and pieces until...what was left was a mutilated version of the truth. I did it when I was dating. So desperate to be liked, so desperate to be loved, that I hid away whatever piece of me I didn't think was attractive to homme du jour. Luckily, I had some experiences just prior to meeting Mick that put me back on track. But, now I've realized I'm doing it again. Letting pieces of myself die off because they're not appropriate for a "mommy". Throwing away remnants of my past because I'm ashamed that my daughters might come across Mom's 20-something journals and be disgusted and embarrassed that their mother was ever that desperate or confused or just plain sexual. So, the deconstruction continues. Why can't I just be solid in the fact that I was what I was. I am what I am. This journey continues and it's in the mistakes and the blips and the embarrassments that the most wisdom is realized. If I'm okay with who I was at 8, why not 18, why not 28, 38, 48, 58??
Somewhere peace has to be realized.

I know damn good and well that I was not happy with my reflection at 27. I didn't see the sparkle. I didn't see what was right in front of me because I was too busy looking back at 17. I have to come to terms with the sands of time at some point in my life and start living in the present instead of looking over my shoulder to see if the past has had some sort of differnet ending.

Whoa, this was almost theraputic.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Waiting games

are irritating and frustrating and generally not okay for an impatient person.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


You can cut it with a knife.

I hate that.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Our first step

I saw Dr. K today. She went over all my test results and determined that the first step needs to be getting my endocrine system repaired. My body is really fatigued from years of misdiagnosed Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. Dr. K doesn't want to move quickly. She said she wants me to start feeling better before she starts the heavy duty stuff. She said that I would hate her if she didn't start slowly. So, I have a whole schwack of homeopathic medications and supplements that I have to start taking, as well as a diet plan for parasympathetic metabolic types (that's me).

There are a lot of other issues. My body isn't really processing anything properly. I had a heavy metals urine test today. No heavy metals were detected. But, my electrodermal screening indicated that I have high levels of heavy metals in my body. Dr. K suspects that my system is so sluggish that it's not even trying to excrete them anymore. My liver is completely congested. As well as pretty much every other filter - so that's going to be coming up. I guess there's a certain amount of purging that goes on and I'm just not in a position of strength to deal with that.

She had some interesting information about my root canal. Also my silver filings. And we got into how our life experiences can cause physical problems. It seems kind of flighty, but nobody denies that when you're nervous your stomach plays games. Or stress can bring on headaches...really just the same concept. I suspect that my inability to let things go in my life is the main culprit behind why my body is unable to let things go. My emotional issues are manifesting themselves in my body.

I start tomorrow. I can't wait!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

The costs outweigh the benefits

I left the house this morning. I know, I know...that shouldn't be newsworthy, but since having the babies I try to avoid it at all costs. Sadly, I'm a really social person. I really lose something when I'm locked in the house all day. But, I've done it to myself. I just can't manage taking them out. There's two of them. Do you realize that?? There is one of me and two of them. The numbers ain't lookin' good. And, most days I feel like only 1/2 because my energy level is so really, it's just a lose/lose/lose situation.

But anyway...we left the house this morning. We went to a ladies brunchy thing. There was daycare. Now that's a win/win/win situation. As we were leaving the daycare Meghan was crying. The woman kindly told me to not worry about her, she'd be okay...LOL...funny how your empathy/compassion goes right down the shitter with 4 kids. I know she'll be fine. She's got her gangie and her brother...there's not much else she needs. I didn't think twice.

Then we got home. My friend helped me unload them from the van. Matthew beetled off towards the slew that is our backyard - so I unload Meg, notice where Matthew is headed, put her on the ground and start for him. Dumb, dumb, dumb...Meghan took off - almost like she was saying "see ya suckers" - before you knew it she was 6 houses away - I'm hollering for Sarah to go catch her, cause this old ass can't run as fast as a toddler, particularly not a Meg toddler. I grab Matthew. Sarah grabs Meg. We come in house. Sarah puts my purse on the floor. 30 seconds later the contents are strewn across the landing and Matthew is doodling in my chequebook. Sigh.

So, the moral of the story is that the costs of taking them places seems to outweigh the benefits of staying home where it's safe and a controlled environment.

Sadly, we all really need more time out of the house. Anyone know any good cloners?? Hell, I don't even need a good one...just any one will do.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Medical mysteries continue

I saw Dr. A today. My TSH level last month was 24 (anything over 2 being bad). This month it was .03. Anything under 2 being bad. So, last month I was extremely hypo...this month hyper. What the hell??? Luckily, this doctor actually looks beyond the numbers. Plus, she also checks my Free T3 and Free T4 levels, which give a much more accurate reading of what's going on. My TSH levels have been reading normal for years. I KNOW that they haven't been, but the doctors I've seen won't look past the data. If Dr. A were following protocol, she would have to lower my dosages right now. I'm just starting to feel a little better, but my old doctor would've had a knee jerk reaction to this new lab result and pulled the rug out from under me. Thank god I've found this doctor - who actually furrows her brow and actively tries to figure out this puzzle. I figure my health is a big old puzzle of blue sky. All the pieces look like they should go together...but they don't :(

I also made a call and have an appointment to see Dr. K. She does something called European Biological Medicine. I love alternative medicine. LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I love investigating the mind/body/spirit connection. I love thinking outside the box. I love being an active participant in my healing. I love the idea that I can be healthy without filling my body full of pharmaceuticals. I'll happily take my thyroid medications. I can't live without them...but for a lot of my other "issues", I really need to look deeper.

5 weeks ago I was in Dr. A's office with Michael, blubbering about how I needed to see a psychiatrist and psychologist and get on meds. I just need something to make me feel better NOW! I could even understand how people could commit themselves. I felt that bad. Of course the insane thyroid level was a huge contributing factor, but I didn't know it at the time. Dr. A didn't just write me a script for antidepressants and anti-psychotics and sleeping pills. She saw through the hysterics and tried to address the root. And, by prescribing me a higher dosage of thyroid and starting me on a T3 only med Liothyronin...things improved. No psychotropic drugs necessary. For me - this is good news. I needed someone to keep a level head and stay the course that I agreed I wanted to be on when I started to see her. I think I have a crush on her. :P

So, the mystery continues, but hopefully things will continue to improve :)

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Monday, April 02, 2007

Laundry math

Suppose 6 people go away on vacation.
Each one of the 6 people wear at least 5 items of clothing a day.
How many items of clothing are dirty at the end of said day??


Now imagine those people are gone for 6 days.

How many items of clothing would they have to bring to wear clean clothing every day??

180 items of clothing

Aren't holidays fun
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This is the front hall. Oh, and be sure to tell me that my kids are going to trash it and it'll be wrecked by May - I'm not at all tired of hearing that.
For all intents and purposes it's for resale.

New floors

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So, they're in. Espresso stained birch and ceramic tiles. Still have some transition strips to get and kickplates for the cabinets. He also has to do the bathrooms upstairs - but the lion's share is done.

Friday, March 09, 2007

First phase.....CHECK

Michael had an interview last night with the University of Lethbridge.

It lasted 90 minutes. (beats the hell out of that 7-11 interview I had ;) just kidding)

Sounds like he nailed it. I knew he would - he may not be able to take the garbage out with any sort of consistency - but, damn, that man is good at business. His mother says he has the gift of "brown sugar" which, I found out actually is her cute way of really saying bullshit. He has the gift of bullshit and it does him well. He knows how to ruffle feathers and stroke them back into place all at the same time (except with me...but whatever - we're not talking about me :)
And, honestly, they'd be fools to not snatch him up.

The guy he talked to is kind of the top guy, so if he's not interested, then they're not interested, that sort of thing...but the guy said that he needs to warn Michael that the school can be pretty stingy. Michael gave him a few creative ideas to drum up some more dollars. He suggested that UofL guy approach the Arts faculty and get some money from them and Mick can teach Photoshop or one of the other 1,000,000 programs he's a freakin' guru at. He's been teaching at McEwan for years and is damn good at his job, so the UofL guy was impressed with the idea. He hadn't realized the depth and scope of Michael's abilities. (again, undermined daily by that pesky garbage problem).

Anyway - couple of days to hear what UofL thinks. I really hope they think HELL YA! Come on down!!

Monday, March 05, 2007


Am I the only one that's failed?
Am I the only that falls?
Am I the only one in church today feeling so small?
Cause when I take a look around
Everybody seems so strong
I know they'll soon discover
That I don't belong
So I tuck it all away
Like everything's okay
If I make them all believe it
Maybe I'll believe it too
So with a painted grin
I play the part again
So everyone will see me, the way that I see them

Are we happy plastic people?
Under shiny plastic steeples
With walls around our weakness
And smiles that hide our pain.
But, if the invitation's open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain - on the stained glass masquerade

Is there anyone who's been there?
Are there any hands to raise?
Am I the only one who's traded in the alter for a stage?
The performance is convincing
We know every line by heart
Only when no one is watching
Can we really fall apart
But would it set me free
If I dared to let you see
The truth behind the person that you imagine me to be
Would your arms be open?
Or would you walk away?
Or would the love of Jesus be enough to make you stay?

Are we happy plastic people?
Under shiny plastic steeples
With walls around our weakness
And smiles that hide our pain
But, if the invitation's open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain on the stained glass masquerade.

-Casting Crowns

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

ADHD or Shitty parent...which one is it?

We've had the flu this weekend. I think we're finally at the tail end of it - but it's been a tough one. I was the second man down...not fair for a mom. We're supposed to be last man standing. We almost have to be, but anyway...I wasn't. But, this weekend really impressed on me that there I have a legitimate reason to be concerned with my son.

An 8 year old child should be able to process a request and the reason for the request and comply with said request. Shouldn't he?? Now a 4 year old...meh. 5 year old - depending on maturity... 6 year old - we're starting to get into no brainer territory here. You should be able to say to an 8 year old "Please keep your voice down, Sarah, mom and Meghan are all sick and need to rest." But, you can't.
This morning alone, Michael told him to quiet down at least 10 times. At 7 in the morning. It usually goes a little something like this. "Josh, hush." "Josh, quiet please." "Josh, come on man, your mom and the babies are still sleeping." "Josh, knock it off, what did I just tell you?" "Josh, you need to stop talking." "Josh, quit making that noise." "Josh, SHUT UP!!!!!" and even then...nothing. I know he hears, cause we've done those tests too.

So, I came downstairs this morning with an epiphany. All these wasted years of me thinking that Josh's issues stem from my shitty parenting are just clouding the subject. The subject being that maybe there is something wrong with Josh. Maybe there is a neurological reason he is unable to process basic requests. Maybe it's not all about me. Maybe the people who think that I'm the reason for his behaviour can go sit and spin, since I am able to raise 3 other children rather calmly. Particularly the people who don't have children but think they have all the answers on how to raise them. So wise.
I have been ground down to the fracking bone with this child. All of my parenting resources are exhausted. No one comes with a manual, but honestly, I'm a pretty good, consistant, fair but firm mom with my other children. I've been told that I treat Josh differently. Josh is different. Not sure what I'm supposed to do with that? I'm tired of being judged. I don't have to raise my voice to Sarah. She complies. She asks a question, gets an answer, positive or negative and carries on with her day. Life does not revolve around Sarah. I don't know about the babies yet, because they're just that, babies, but neither one of them is showing the will that Josh demonstrated at 2.
So, I guess it's time to dig a little deeper. The pediatrician says he has it. I don't believe she looked deep enough. If he has it, he has it and I'm fine with that, but I'm not taking a diagnosis because a show of hands indicated that he drives them crazy too. I guess it's time to see a psychologist/psychiatrist. Things need to change. I'm going to explode if they don't. I can't bare the brunt of this responsibility any longer. I makes me so sad that when he leaves the house for school, the whole place changes. I can let my guard down. He thinks I hate him. Which is very basic, 8 year old thinking. He's wrong. I love him so much, but I can't afford to let him rule the world any longer. I love him enough to know that he doesn't have the fortitude it takes to be the commanding presence in our home. It's time for the table to turn back to their rightful places. Maybe he can find some rest in being the child? I don't know where to start, but I have a doctors appointment in mid March, so that might be the place to get some info.
This weekend away is sooooooooooooo needed.

Monday, February 26, 2007

What a month!

Woo! The month started with an unexpected set of visitors. A friend of mine from my twin message board needed to be admitted to the hospital. She doesn't have much in the way of support from family - so I really felt a huge NUDGE and POKE to help her. I drove out to Ponoka and met her for the first time. My intention was to encourage her to let me take her kids back to my house so that she could go to the hospital.
Understandably, she wasn't comfortable with that, so I brought her and her 4 year old twins back home with me. The hope was that a hospital here in Edmonton would admit her. After 3 days of sitting in emergency waiting rooms and getting the news that they don't admit for infections, we headed back to get her settled in the Ponoka hospital. By this time she was comfortable that we didn't run a babyskin lampshade making factory - so she agreed to leave her babes with us.
We had the kids from the 5th to the 17th. It was a long run. They were very happy to see their mommy. We had a 5th birthday party for them while they were here. It was an interesting social experiment. I was really impressed with my kids and their tenacity. And generosity. And patience. It was a good thing for me to be able to see that I must be doing something right. A very God filled experience.

Now we have the flu. Sarah went down first. Then it hit me. Then Meghan. Now Josh. Slowly, but surely it's working it's way through the house :( It's not fair for the mom to get it until the end. I truly feel like a zombie. Michael has had a ton of deadlines - so he's been as helpful as he can be - in a distracted, disinterested sort of way.

I just need to be better for Thursday. Doesn't even matter if I'm better for Thursday...I'm going on my weekend. Annie and I are going to Canmore for the weekend. She's flying in from Winnipeg and we're staying at the Fire Mountain lodges - lovely.

Michael is going to the University of Lethbridge's Edmonton campus tomorrow for a job interview. We're really hoping that he'll get a job at the University. We both think it might be time for a real job (not that Devbox isn't a real job) with real benefits and hours and structure. This owning your own business thing can be pretty insidious in the way it can take over a we'll see. There are a lot of things we both like about the idea. We'll be closer to the mountains and Waterton. It's easier to get to Calgary, where Michael's family is. No snow. Mountains. No snow. Better real estate. Mountains. No snow. You know, stuff like that.

Anyway...that's this month's update. Been a little too crazy to keep up!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Can you imagine

if we could read each other's minds??? Eeek!! I shudder when I think of this.
When I first started watching Heros, they have the Shaun from Felicity/Alias guy who reads minds. That would just be freaky.

I live with a man who wouldn't say shit if his mouth was full of it. Bonus for me. I'm a nasty little prick, most of the time, and if I could tap into what he really thinks. Zoinks! I just know it wouldn't be good.

I have a son who I love, but struggle with. I'm pretty sure he thinks I hate him. I'm pretty sure he hates me because of it. But, I get to blissfully skip along, tapping into this reality when I want to and ignoring it when I don't. What if I heard his thoughts when I'm bullying him - yet again??

I have a daughter who is beautiful and kind, like her daddy. She just wants everyone to get along and everything to be happy. Like her daddy. But, it's not the way it is. What if I could hear how much my ranting and raving and crying affects her??

Then there's the babes. Seemingly unaware, but just know that's not true. I've had enough kids to know how much I'm affecting them. Every little thing I do is AWESOME and worthy of copying. That's encouraging now isn't it. Uhhh, don't copy me, copy someone else. Anyone else. Just not me. I wouldn't want to swim around in those thoughts, knowing that I'm creating a cesspool of how poorly to treat others, particularly the ones that love you.

And then of course, what if they could hear my thoughts? It wouldn't be pretty. I wish I could take a magic pill to get me out of my head. I've lived inside this musty, old, chemically deficient, thing for too many years. How do you go from being a total depressive/self-absorbed/crazy person to someone who just hucks it all and lives in the moment. I like my head. It's comfy in here. There's a lot of old familiar faces, ones I don't get to see on the outside. Ones I don't want to let go of. But at what cost?? When there's all these faces standing at the window, trying to peek in, so they could maybe, just maybe get a glimpse of their mommy, while she pathetically rambles around with her ghosts and her regrets and her memories.

Monday, January 29, 2007

I just set up my treadmill!!

I'm part of a shopping club that meets every month. I won for January and hadn't spent my money I got Michael to pick up the cheap, manual treadmill that Superstore has this week.

It's manual for sure. And I'm out of shape for sure. But, I'm dedicated to getting healthy and if this will help me manage my maniac stress/anxiety issue, then cheap, manual, foldable treadmill it is. I'm not the person who's gonna go for a walk...with 2 or 4 children in tow. So much for stress relief!

I've decided that I have to avoid the morning chaos for a while. I'll make Josh's lunch the night before, but I have to wait until some of the whirling dervish that is the morning dissipates before I can come downstairs. Maybe that'll be the perfect time to treadmill??

Hope I don't break a hip! LOL

Thursday, January 25, 2007

I'm a little confused

The doctor did not say "YOU have bipolar affective disorder". But, she is treating my imbalances the way you would treat a patient with bipolar. So, I'm confused. If it walks like a duck and talks like a it a duck??? I don't know. (bearing in mind that she also had the wrong test results, pc problems and a pda that was kinda hiccuppy.)

Michael is disputing that it is what I think it is. But, I wonder if it's just a matter of avoidance?? Not sure. I think I just need to call the doctor for clarification. On one hand, it doesn't really matter - this is a label...and the labels don't necessarily matter. I'm moving ahead with the doctor's plan. On the other hand, I have to wrap my head around the whole thing. I just don't know.

I've asked for support from my husband. He often misinterprets "support" for "solution". *I've heard boys can do this??* The solution is something my doctor and I will work towards...I don't need solutions. I need support. The crappy part is, I don't even know what that looks like. So, he's completely confused as to what I need. I'm totally confused, so I don't know what to tell him - and around and around we go. ARGH!

I'll talk to the pharmacist tomorrow. And, put a call in to the doctor for a little more info.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

And the winner is...........

some other lady!!!!!

I'm sitting down with the doctor and she's got the results of my labs in front of her:
CBC looks good.
Fasting blood sugar looks good.
Vitamin D is a little low
TSH 1.75 - really good (all things considered)
No antibodies present (I had my thyroid removed because of the antibodies that were attacking it???)

So, it's all looking very mysterious. My blood work is perfect. All except some low Vitamin D - to which I say "Welcome to Canada." What the heck????

All fine and good...she needs to go to her office for her prescription pad and I say..."What about my adrenals? How was my cortisol level??" She hands me the big pile of results and says "Take a look - I don't remember seeing it on there."

I'm checking it out and writing down the results of the things I thought might be interesting to have. There is no cortisol level. There is no Free T3 and Free T4 levels....weird....I look at the top of the sheet....well, last time I check I'm not Sandra Reeve (name changed to protect the innocent, poor dear with her decreased vitamin D level :( ).

So, we were checking the results of some other lady's blood work. Nice.

Bring on the accurate blood work.
High TSH - indicating more hypo than normal. Not surprised.
Cortisol a.m. level - 329 between 120 and 620 is normal - she'd like it to be higher though.
Free T4 - 9.2 - indicating more of the same...hypo.
Vitamin A - low
Vitamin B12 - wants to see it better - it's 177 - she'd like to see 500
no results for Vitamin D - poor Sandra and that low D level :(
Thyroid antibodies - 49
On an upside...I'm not in menopause :) Maybe I should have another baby.


I have to go to a compounding pharmacy to get the supplements she wants me to start taking. I need Vitamin A, a sublingual (under your tongue) B12 supplement, something called MABA, which I know nothing about, I think it's a combination of three different amino acids.
Tyrosine, which apparently, transmits nerve impulses to the brain, helps overcome depression; Improves memory; increases mental alertness; promotes the healthy functioning of the thyroid, adrenal and pituitary glands.
and Tryptan this medication is used in addition to antidepressants in the treatment of bipolar affective disorder. It works by affecting the levels of certain chemicals called neurotransmitters in the brain.

I guess this could explain the roller coaster that is my day to day experience (and everyone unlucky enough to know the real me.)

So, there ya have it. Nutritional changes as well. No more coffee. No more caffeine. No more unstable fats (vegetable oil, margarine), no more sugar, no more white flour. Luckily, I'd committed to changing my lifestyle the morning of my first doctor's appointment. And, I feel much better for it, so I don't think sticking with a new way of eating is going to be as difficult as it has been in the past. I've already lost 31 lbs in the last 6 there are obvious advantages!

Let the healing begin.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Countdown to the results!!

Tomorrow at 2:45, I see my doctor.

I can't wait.

I hope those 7 vials have unearthed something. I really, really, really hope.

I've been reading The Mood Cure by Julia Ross. Very interesting read. Full of information that I'm in a really good head space to read. I've been completely convinced that diet had everything to do with Josh's eczema over the years and now it's looking like diet may just have a lot to do with my depression. mean you can't eat carbs 24/7 and still feel healthy, vital, energetic, spontaneous and enthusiastic?? How odd. But, all that glue makes you feel good when you eat it??? Oh well. I'm inclined to believe the people on the fringe of the health care system a little more than I buy what the "usual suspects" are selling. How surprising that the medical associations would tell us to eat "this" and we get sick?? Wouldn't they be cutting their noses off to spite their faces if they created a healthy Canada??

I'm not very good at patting myself on the back - but I will give myself this....I have not been interested in taking the crappy, quacky diagnosis' that I've received laying down. Sometimes you have to just keep looking. Keep digging. Keep refusing to believe what you know in your heart of hearts isn't true. You will eventually stumble upon someone who doesn't think it's your weight or your age, your marital condition, your stay at home momness, or the amount of kids you might just be your health. Hmmm.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Now it may seem...

that all I've done lately is relax. What with the Saturday of leisure and the Thursday of the Full Body Rub Down (where's a cloud9 emoticon when you need one?)
But, I gotta tell ya. Lately, I've been held together by one soggy piece of duct tape and a paper clip. So, this is something that has to be done - for the safety of my family and my self.
I'm thankful that I can do it. I wasn't able to do any of these things a few years ago...but I'm really thankful to be in a place where it's not a matter of decompressing versus groceries.

I saw a new doctor this past Wednesday. She sent me for blood tests. Part of the coming apart at the seams thing has to do with my missing thyroid gland. Things have been even worse since it's come out. There was a brief reprieve, when I started some new meds...but all in all - I'm unraveling quickly and with a house full of children and a puppy (where's a bang your head against the wall emoticon when you need one?) there isn't a whole lot of room for error.

This new doctor, Dr. Deborah Andrew, sent me for blood work. 7 vials of bloodwork, I might add, and I'm sooooo hopeful that she will be able to help me find some closure on this damn problem. She refused to prescribe me an anti-depressant. She doesn't feel it's necessary to keep trying the same thing over and over again - since it hasn't worked in the past. Interesting. I'm used to being written a script and ta da - I'm done. Every damn time I'm given a script - I walk out of the doctors office with this little white piece of hope. And every damn time - I walk back in without any results. 7 antidepressants later - here we are. A doctor who isn't interested in the easy/obvious fix. Especially, since it hasn't ever fixed. (where's a sigh emoticon when you need it?)

I'm encouraged. I'm hopeful (with a dash of leery). She recommended a book called The Mood Cure. I've been reading it and am completely blown away by it's accuracy to my case. I'm at a stage in my life and health, where I'd do anything - eat desiccated dog poo even - if it was going to help me feel well and enjoy my life and not ruin my family with my extreme, unmanageable mood swings. I'm curious to see what these 7 vials of blood have to say. She's checked things that have never been looked at before. They happily yanked my thyroid gland, without so much as a visit to an endocrinologist and now, FINALLY, someone is going to act like a scientist and actually try to help me.

I'm angry and I'm bitter at the whole damn health care system (at least the part I've had contact with.) because of their lack of curiosity. Their desire to just pump us through, because they have to see 30 more people this a.m. to make their quota (I don't even know if that's true, but it certainly seems like it.) I've been to doctors that I've walked in, told them what I thought was wrong, and they prescribed something - without barely an upward glance. (where's a suspicious/paranoid emoticon when you need it?). And, now, with this book, and this new doctor, it's looking like a lot of concerns I have can be addressed and dealt with nutritionally and with amino acids. And not amino acids forever, amino acids until my seratonin, catecholamines (dopamine, norepinephrine and adrenaline), adrenals and endorphine levels are returned to their rightful place. This is all. It just seems fecking insane to me. That I know people who have had electro-shock therapy because of such severe depression - and I can almost guarantee, no one has checked these brain functions on them. This is too holisitic-y. Too out there. Too cheap in the long run (where's the roll my eyes emoticon when I need it?)

So, anyway....I just wanted to spill all that. I'm going to consider this year, 2007, my Journey to Wholeness year. There's so much more too it - this is the tip of the iceberg - but you gotta start somewhere and this is where. I think that if I could actually get some energy and some joi d'vivre - I might be able to face the other obstacles that stand in my way of being the person I was meant to be. The wife I was meant to be. The mother I was meant to be. The friend...the freakin' next door get the picture.

If you're reading and are a praying person - please pray for me. I can't right's one of my hurdles. But I believe in the healing power of prayer. I believe in praying for wisdom and guidance. I would really appreciate any prayers or kind, positive thoughts you would put out there for me. I need them. My family needs them. We're a bunch of hurting units right now and it's going to be an interesting journey.

Full Body Massage

Yeaaahh baybeee! That's more like it.

And a tea date - life is good.

Until tomorrow.
(wow! that sounds pessimistic!)

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Day of chillaxin'

Ahhh, that was a nice day! Note how many times I use leisure in this enrapturing commentary :p

Michael is heading down to Canmore soon to hang out with a bunch of old high school buddies. He found a great 2 story condo at a resort there and since it's off season, he's getting a screaming deal. He suggested I find a friend and go there to check it out...this weekend. Uhh, not really that feasible. So, I suggested a variation of his idea.

I took today off. :)

I slept in (till 9 - I suck at sleeping in). I talked to my best friend while lounging in bed, a la my single years. I had a leisurely shower...even plucked my eyebrows! Amazing, I tell ya.
Then, I met Miriam for a leisurely brunch at the Queens Atrium. Then I bought two cool new necklaces to add to my expanding cool necklace collection. Then I bought a couple of books recommended by my new doctor (another story unto itself). Then I leisurely, doodled around Southgate, bought some lipgloss at M.A.C. (another foray into the unknown). Booked myself a full body massage at Eveline Charles for Thursday - to use up the remainder of a gift card I've been carrying in my wallet for ....uhhh...3 years or so (oops). It was just a lazy, delightful, self absorbed day of goodness. I got home at 5:30, the babysitter came at 6:00 and Mick and I went to That's Aroma for dinner.

That, my friends, was my kind of day. I really could handle being a lady of leisure!!!

Leisure is good.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Happy Birthday Meghan!!!!

My Meggie Moo has just turned two!!! Look at that face. She's such a pudding pop! They had more fun with these balloons than anything else they received. How typical. Megalicious made it about 1 hour and 10 minutes in that dress. Then she was DONE! This is one baby who loves the skin she's in.
Well, if you read about Matthew, you'll know that I remember none of it. Good thing there are photos. I can muster up some sort of vague, dreamlike recollection of some sort of vague, dreamlike time we've had in the past two years. All I know for sure, is that these babies make my heart feel something that it's never felt before. And, I like it :)

Happy Birthday Matthew!!!

My littlest baby is 2!!! I can't fathom where the time has gone. I just don't know. And, you couldn't pay me to know, since I think my brain fell out with the placenta. :)
Hard to believe my big meatball was only 5 lbs 16 oz at birth. The kids got a head like a helmet. We're not sure what happened to his lip. There were no witnesses. I have a couple of is furry, one is his wombmate. She can be a little bit of an....uhmm...enforcer.

Happy Birthday Baby Boy!!!

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Two two year olds

How about that??