Friday, July 31, 2009

The People Who Make A Difference

Today, we took the Little One to her follow up appointment on her Boo Boo Sock. Today, we were to find out if she had actually broken her growth plate, and needed a cast for longer, or if she would be free to roam again.
I have to say, before i tell you how the appointment went, that experience was actually a pleasure. No really. I mean it.
We are fortunate enough to live within 2 miles of one of the vest children's hospitals this side of the Mississippi, Rady Children's Hospital. Also fortunately, since this is the closest hospital to us, our insurance will allow us to go there, and not force us to use the military medical centers, in an emergency. This time, they even let us go back there for her follow up. After three total trips to this hospital, I am now a huge fan. This place, and these people, really make a difference. I can't imagine how different our experience would be if we had been forced into the military hospital for all of this.
At Rady's, they understand that you are dealing with children who are scared and unsure of what is going on around them. They take the time to be as patient as is possible. All three times we have gone, the girls have walked out with not only stickers, but a little stuffed animal, meant to keep them company though the scary parts. Today, the Big One was the first to get one. She had to turn her back on the table where the Little One was laying, getting her cast cut off. The man, who happened to be the one who put the cast on the Little One, standing there noticed her, and right away gave her a teddy bear to hold. Then, he gave her one for her little sister. It isn't even that they get stuff, so much as the fact that they are doing something to reach out and comfort the children on an appropriate level for the child. They are all specially trained, and deal with children in a most impressive way. Aside from just the bedside manor, they are good at what they do. Their knowledge is far superior, I feel, to what we would have gotten elsewhere, and I truly value their expertise.
On top of all that, you have other little things, that really add up. The place is all decked out for kids, from paint schemes to room theme, interactive displays, and the icing on the cake, volunteers who come in to work with the kids. In our first waiting room was a man making origami out of dollar bills, and doing magic tricks. In the second, was a man who brought in a small wooden harp, and was singing and playing for the kids. It was really neat to experience. Honestly, the visit was almost a please, aside from the fits of crying and the nervousness of not knowing what was going to happen to my baby, of course.
So, I have to say thank you to all those at Rady's, who are fantastic beyond words.

As for the appointment, the results were just as good as the visit. They saw no break on the x-rays again. They couldn't see anything. So, the Dr said it could have just been a deep bruise. They let her walk around a bit to check her out. While she does favor the leg with a good limp, and complained about walking at first, the Doctors felt that was due to her being in a cast more than anything else. After a little exam and some discussion, they told us to get out of there. No more Boo Boo Sock. Just watch her and bring her back if she gets worse or doesn't get better.

So, tonight, she gets a bath. A good play bath, at that. Were talking colored water, bubbles, and toys. The works for this one. I'm sure it will be a great wet time. We have to be careful not to rub the leg hard. She already took too much skin off, rubbing at the joint in her ankle making it bleed. In a day or two, though, she should be as good as new. She is already terrorizing the house with all her might. In two more days, we should start fearing for our sanity again, and I look forward to it.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Happy Birthday Big One

Today is the Big One's Birthday! I can't believe how big she is!!

It seems like just yesterday that I was bringing her home from the hospital. I will never forget our ride home with her.

We have a tiny little car, and I didn't ride in the back with her. So, with both of us upfront, we couldn't really see her. We didn't know about baby mirrors at that point. Anyway, I kept my hand on her, reaching back for her, the whole time. At some point, she stopped moving and making sounds. The Husband and I both sort of freaked out. I couldn't tell if she was breathing or anything. He tried to check her, and couldn't tell either. We began to panic and actually pulled over on the side of the road, jumped out and checked on her. Of course, the baby was asleep. Sound asleep. No one told us that babies sleep in cars. Our families were far away, and here we were with a new born, all by ourselves. How silly it all seems now. She spent many, many hours in that car sleeping in her car seat. In fact, we would often just get in the car, late at night, and take her for a ride and put her to sleep when nothing else worked. It would be just us, and the MPs driving around the base at 1am on a week night. We all survived her infancy, though, and that is what counts.

Now, she is such a character. She is absolutely 6 going on 17. She is all about the drama and attitude. She is the quintessential blond who lives on a different plane of awareness from the rest of us. She is also very intelligent. She is emotionally in tune with people. She loves animals. She has a heart of gold, and would do anything for you she could. She is an amazing young lady, and I am proud of her all the time.

We love you, Big One. Happy Birthday.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Walking Through The Fire

If someone came to you tomorrow, and told you that they found something very important to you that had been lost, but that if you really wanted it back, you had to walk through fire to get it, would you?

If they told you that the flames would lap at your skin, scorching, burning, leaving scars that will always be there, would you, could you try?

If they told you that you would feel each flame, and the pain, though it would physically fade in time, the memory of it would stay with you always, would you turn and walk away?

What if they also mentioned that though you may start walking through the fire, the pain may well end up too much for you, and you may end up jumping out of the fire with out what you had lost? Would you still even attempt it?

How important would this have to be for you to stay and walk through the fire to find what you have lost?

I may have just stepped into my fire, and I have a long path yet to take, but I have faith, and hope, that I can make it through. That is all you can have. Faith and hope, along with endurance, have to get you through.

In time, when my scars have faded, I hope to tell you that faith and hope are enough.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Boo Boo Sock

Sometimes, when you think life just can't get much harder, it does.

This past weekend, the Little One had a bit of an incident.
The husband decided to take us all to a huge inflatable bounce house play place for a family day. It in one of those places where they have a ton of huge bounce slide things set up. I hate those things. I cried twice when I was at the top of one. It was actually a great time, though.
Right up until the the accident.
The Little One was coming down a slide, and go her right leg tucked up behind her, with her knee bent at a bad angle. When she came down, she fell, and started crying. I grabbed her, and could tell that she was really upset. I got her to calm down, and held her under some shade for a while. I thought it might have just been the heat. She was tired, and sweaty, and apparently done. So, I held her for a few minutes while The Big One and The Husband played just a little more. Then, we packed up and went home. She was out before we ever got out of the parking lot.

We took her home and let her sleep. My Mom stayed with her while the Husband and I ran out for just a bit.

When we got home, The Little One was on the couch, and Mom said that she couldn't stand. After a few minutes checking her out, and verifying that she indeed couldn't put any weight on her leg, we called her Dr, and then headed off to the ER.

We had a nice long visit, with multiple trips to the x-ray machine. When it was all said and done, the orthopedic doctor said that he thought she had broken the growth plate in her knee, but they weren't sure. She needed a full leg cast for two weeks. At the end of the two weeks, we go back in for more x-rays, and then we find out for sure. They will be able to see healing on the x-rays if it had been broken. If they see something, she gets the cast for longer, if not, she is good to go.

For now, she is couch bound in her big purple "sock". She has to be carried everywhere. This is great when you are in the midst of potty training. I mean fun times. Really, though, I should be thankful that she is handling it so well. She has been a champ though it all. We have only had one big bout of crying, but other than being a little clingy, which I can handle, she is just going with the flow.

Let's all keep fingers crossed that when the cast comes off, the x-rays will be clean, and she will be free to move about the house, causing terror in her wake again.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

May I Borrow Your Copy?

I'm really not sure what happened, but somewhere along the line, I seem to have lost my answer key to my life's question book. Not sure how that happened, but I really need it back, if anyone finds it.

It seems lately that there are so many questions that I just don't have answers for. Hard questions. In fact, I don't even think I requested the study guide, let alone answer key, for some of the things that have come up of late, because I never thought I would need them.

In hindsight, I might have been able to pass the tests I am going through, or find the answers, had I only known that these subjects would come up. Instead, with no forwarning, I find myself in the midst of the hardest midterm of my life, about my life, with nothing but my own mind, wit, and what little wisdom that I have, to try to get me through. I'm not sure that any of that will be enough. I think I might be in so far over my own head, that I just don't know if I can pull this one out. My friends have tried to help the best they can and I appreciate it. I do. I love them for it, in fact. They are there, cheering me on, hoping that I find the right answers on my own, because the truth is no one but me can find the answers this time.

In truth, these questions really aren't a pass or fail kind of thing. It would be more like one of those books I remember reading a lot in middle school where you came to a point that there was a question about the action, and you got to choose how a character responded. Your choices led you down a different path with in the story, and each choice resulted in makeing a different outcome. I used to love those books, and would read them over and over again, each time choosing a different responce, just to see all the possible outcomes.
The problem with life is that I only get to make the choice once. I can't go back and re-do it so that it ends up with a different outcome, if I don't like what I get. So, I have to think very carefully, and really choose well.

It isn't easy. I'm not sure that anything is life is, but I can assure you that some choices are much harder than others.
Right now, I'm going to think carefully, and try my best to choose wisely. I realize that I have the power to change this story, and I intend to choose as carefully, and wisely as possible, because I really want a good ending.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Music for the Masses (of kids)

We love music around here. All kinds of music. Sometimes though, I think that if I have to hear one more song by a princess, or some tried, true, and oh so tired children's song, I am going to sew my own ears shut. Might even help take care of the "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy,Mommy,Mommy..." problem.

Instead, I have been trying to choose music for my kids a little more selectively. Right now, my girls really love the Beach Boys. They like a lot of old rock.
I have found that to be a good compromise for us. A little Beatles, some Beach Boys, and a tad of Elvis for good measure, make a great play list for the kids.

When it comes to music specifically for kids, though, we have issues. I have been able to find one newer artist they love, Hullabaloo. I have to admit, I love them, too.

Today, i decided to dance with my girls. We do it sometimes. I put a CD on, close the blinds, and we dance like crazy. Today's pick, by request of the big one, was Hullaballoo's Tall as a Tree.
I have really been listening to the words and lyrics in songs more than ever, trying to find inspiration when I can. I have to tell you, Steve writes a mean lyric on some of these. These songs have a great sound, that I can actually listen to, and enjoy. They are really have a great message too. Songs about how life changes, or taking things one step at a time at great for kids and adults. Even if they don't have a great message, they are just great in general.
If it weren't for Steve, I would never have realized that I carry a grown up sippy cup, but I do. I'm telling you, give them a listen. You'll probably find yourself dancing to them with your kids in your living room, blinds drawn tight, some day too.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Life Changes in a Flash

Sometimes, your walking around in life, having a great time, just doing your thing. Maybe you aren't even having a great time, but your in your life, where you know what is going on, and how things are supposed to go. You have a plan. You have a vision.

Then, out of no where, some thing comes at you like a 10 ton boulder and knocks you off your feet. You get the breath knocked of you. Your beaten and broken, and your left laying there, trying to make sense of the world around you, after that boulder flattened everything in its path, including you.

Sometimes, that just happens in life. Maybe there are warnings. Maybe you heard the boulder rumbling as it rolled before it came into view. Maybe there are no warning, and it came just as quietly as a mouse, but with the force of a n elephant, to topple your world.

No matter whether you knew it would or could happen or not, the force is the same. The boulder does the damage it can, and then you are left there to survey, and start over, broken, hurt, and different from its impact.

Some people can go on, and though they will always be different, you can never heal to be exactly the same way you were, you can be ok. Some people won't be able to go on. The boulder will leave them too broken to be able to continue.

Me. I am going to pick my self up. I am going to brush off the dirt that it left. I am going to allow myself the time to heal to breaks that have been caused. I know that I will never be the same, but I am not going to lye under that boulder and let it hold me down. I will make a new path, in this different world, changed by the impact, and though I don't yet know this new world, or know what that path will be, I am going to make it the best that I can.

I will be ok.