Monday, February 16, 2009

Feeling Like A True Parent

Thanks to everyone for the well-wishes for Maya! She was such a big girl on Friday! She had a 2-hr wait before they brought her into the operating room.. and then they forgot to give her the little 'chill' drug before taking her in.. so I was very proud that she did not freak out. When she was lying on the table, they tried to put the 'strawberry air' on her, and then she got scared. She refused to let them do it for a minute.. but then the anesthesiologist and the nurse started singing 'Mary Had a Little Lamb'.. and she was somewhat intrigued. After a couple of seconds, she started licking at the air inside the mask! It was so funny. :) She passed out and mommy went to the waiting room.
Dad had to leave and take Devi to the pediatrician - somehow we scheduled that appmt and then completely forgot (oh what a shock - not!). I sat and waited.. and after ~1 1/2 hrs, the dentist and then the anesthesiologist came out to tell me that she did great. They ended up having to fix 6 teeth instead of 4.. and they are worried that they still won't hold up until she loses them for permanent teeth. But we will probably have to do several cleaning visits/year plus special toothpaste. Blah.
Soon after the docs came out to talk to me, the recovery nurses called me into the recovery room. Seems that our little Maya was flipping out! She came out of the anesthesia in a panic and was throwing a big fit. I helped them restrain her and take her from the recovery room into the post-surgery room. She was FREAKING out. Much as I luv the Children's Hospital, I was a little surprised that the nurses did not help me. Poor Maya was thrashing around and literally screaming as loud as she could 'GET AWAY FROM MEEEEEEEEEEE! I WANT TO LEAVE!' and then just scream-screams. She was hitting me as hard as she could (no idea how I did not leave there with a black eye) and kicking me. The tubes (IV, finger monitor) were getting all wrapped around her. The heartbeat monitor kept going up to 170 and beeping like a maniac. Meanwhile, I was trying to talk her down and hold her down so she did not fall out of the bed and hurt herself/pull out the iv/etc. Finally I decided to just pick her up and hold her b/c I thought I might be able to restrain her a little better.. and that did work. For the first 5 min or so (this was about 15 minutes into the recovery craziness), she screamed and tried to beat the heck out of me (including head-butting, which was lovely). Finally she slowly calmed down.. and eventually I was able to sit in the rocking chair and rock her to sleep. My GOD! The nurses who came in to check the beeping monitor said 'oh this happens.. it's normal.. '.. but it would have been very nice had someone forewarned me that this could happen. I didn't expect her to wake up happy - but this was a child who was NOT my child.. if you know what I mean. A bit scary. I knew it was the drugs, but it felt like it took forever to calm her down and nothing I could say or do was helping. I wish they had told me to hold her immediately, because that probably would have been the best thing to do. In retrospect, I can't believe that I didn't just DO that.. but when you are 'fighting a fire' so to speak.. I guess you are reactionary and you don't always think logically. Poor little baby!!
Wierd thing is.. she remembers this! I thought for sure the drugs would make her forget. I have asked her 'do you remember hitting mommy and yelling after your surgery?' and she gets a sheepish look and says 'yeeeeesss..' and giggles. Another funny thing is that I heard her singing 'Mary Had a Little Lamb' in her toyroom earlier today - and she never has ever sung that song! Both verses even (they sung both verses as she passed out). So isn't that funny?
But - she was fine.. and her mouth hurt for ~1 1/2 days, but everything feels good now. I hope that the teeth hold out and we don't have to deal with any more of that! Not looking forward to Devika's teeth issues.. hope this doesn't happen. They have warned that it looks the same. Blaaaaah.
Of course, it is these times that really make you feel like a parent right? Those poor little girls! Maya was post-recovery and Devika was post-5-shots from the pediatrician. :(( Our house was not a happy one this weekend! Maya is still not completely recovered from the trauma - she is sleeping in my bed as I type this! But oh my gosh, your heart just could burst from wanting to snuggle them after seeing the sick kids in that hospital. I want to hug my girls and never let go!!!

Btw - for those of you who have contacted me to let me know you would like to contribute photos - I will email you tomorrow w/my personal email address. Thx in advance!

Maya loves being a big-sister!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy {early} Valentine's Day!

Maya was quite excited by the valentines she rec'd in the mail today. A Tinkerbell 'love day card' from grandma and papa.. and a Thomas the Train 'love day card' from her cousin Andrew, and the rest of his family. It was pretty cool that her valentine matched the new jammies that we bought her for her hospital day tomorrow!
Happy Love Day everyone!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Just In Time For Love Day

Our sweet little girl.. Daddy's innocent little baby.. experienced her FIRST KISS! Haahaa.. Age 3.. starting pretty young. I almost forgot to document this event, and I will definitely want to remind her of THIS in the future!
Date: Super Bowl Sunday - February 1st, 2009.
Boy: Sawyer H - friend/neighbor. Age 2 1/2.
It was soo cute! Not sure what was up with that boy, but when we first arrived to hang out and watch the game, he was telling Maya how much he liked her. A couple hours later, I catch him standing up on his tip-toes (he is a bit shorter than she is and has the cutest spikey hair) and planting a big smooch right on her mouth! She was watching him as he stood staring at her and then reached up for the big 'moment' - standing still with her hands clasped behind her back and her head tilted in confused-curious-amusement.
What is this kid doing? Why did all the grown-ups in the ro
om suddenly stop all conversation and stare, startled, at us? Why are all the women saying 'ooooh, how cuuuuute!', and why is Daddy running towards us with his brow furled and saying 'hey! if your son touches my daughter again, he is going to be in BIG TROUBLE!' (and then something about body parts that I don't understand..)

Ah, the memories!

Yesterday, we visited
the Children's Hospital for Maya's pre-surgery tour. A child-life specialist walked us (and one other family) through the process we will go thru on Friday - all the rooms and all the steps involved. It was great! I'm so glad that we did this. I think it will help Maya to not be quite so scared - tho I'm sure she will get freaked out at some point (psh, who wouldn't?). She wouldn't try the little 'lighted band-aid' on her finger (that measures heartbeat, etc) - tho Mommy and Daddy both tried it and showed her how painless and fun it would be.
She was very cute though - she asked lots of questions (constantly entertaining everyone in the area), she tried everything else (blood pressure, breathing into the strawber
ry-scented mask, sitting up on the operating table, taking the IV out of the doll's arm). She is very much looking forward to Friday so that she can wear the 'hospital jammies' and play with the toys in the 'toy corner' of the procedure area. Unfortunately, they walked us thru the very cool and much larger toy room of the major surgery area before walking thru the area she would be hanging out in.. and she thinks that she will be playing with those toys. yikes. Bad move really. Hopefully she is just too tired to care, as we will be there at 6:30 am.
I bought her a new pair of Thomas the Train jammies for the day.. as well as a Thomas toy to play with when she returns home. I hope she isn't too freaked out! If she is, they might have to give Mommy a sniff of the strawberry air also! :D

On a different subject - I am creating a film for the Joint Council for Int'l Childrens Services. I am in need of more photos of adoptive families/kids. If any of you adoptive-family readers are interested in sending me a photo or two, please contact me. I will require that you sign a release form (standard practice). Not sure exactly what photos I will need, as I have not begun working on the film yet.. but if you have a couple of favorites (from picking child up/orphanage/etc or child with your fam at home).. please let me know! Comment with your email address - or msg me on Facebook. Thanks in advance!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

10 Years - OMG!

Today is a special day!

Today is the 10 year anniversary of the fateful day that I met my husband! To honor this decade.. and him.. I am dedicating this blog post to him. No groaning please.. he deserves it! I occasionally hear that I am not the best person at ‘positive feedback’ when it comes to some of the people who are closest to me {ok, ok, I can be horrible about it at times.. but I am really trying to work on that.. and I’m not including my kids in this comment b/c I work my butt off to always ‘feed the meter’ with them. I just need to remember that adults need this also!!}

So.. in the spirit of those stupid ’25 things about me’ lists going around Facebook these days (yes, I’m working on mine but it isn’t done yet.. haha):

25 Things That I Love About My Husband

  1. 10 years! My longest relationship with a man prior to my husband was 3 years (and included a marriage.. ah the mistakes of our youth.. sigh). It feels like I have known Aj forever.. but then ’10 years’ sounds like an eternity.. I feel stuck in some type of paradox here. I have to say, however, that HE probably feels like these 10 years HAVE been an eternity.. haha! I’m not the easiest person to live with, but for some reason he tells me that I’m the best thing that ever happened to him. Another paradox.. I love that he loves me.
  2. I am so proud of him! He is very successful. He has succeeded at work, with his ‘moonlight’ work (real estate – and it is successful, even if we get sued every freaking year by some idiot or have to sue some idiot for doing something idiotic every year. Should they be called ‘rental’ properties? Maybe ‘suck the life out of you’ properties would be more representative.), with his coaching (past soccer teams, work teams, etc), with his friendships, and with his family.
  3. We both had the same favorite movie when we met (and still do): It’s a Wonderful Life. {No one is a failure who has friends.}
  4. We have had artists ask to paint our portrait because our coloring and facial structures blend and contrast in a way that would create a striking image. I’m quoting here.. and I hope that it was complimentary and not a ‘Dali-esque’ style of painting they were referring to!
  5. Before I met Aj, I had only traveled to a few states within the US, and only been on a plane a handful of times. I HATED to fly (still do not enjoy it – scares the heck out of me and requires the ingestion of several xanax).. but somehow this man has managed to show me the world! In the past ten years, we have flown to Brazil, New Zealand, Australia, MexicoHawaii (ok, a state.. but it was a looong flight!), Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Saint Martin, India (twice to adopt our kids), as well as several states on the east coast, west coast, and interior of the US. There are many more countries that we have on our ‘travel list’, but they have to wait until the girls are a couple years older and better travelers. (many, many times),
  6. I love that Aj is super-intense, but has a very sweet, soft side. {oh crap, I am not supposed to tell anyone that..}
  7. I hate that he had to deal with 55 hours of thinking that I had a very short time to live - because of a large tumor that was found in my colon. I love that the doctors were wrong and it was NOT cancer. I love that he took such amazing care of me during the recovery from that scary major surgery and the following scary complications.
  8. I love that he manages most of our finances, because I hate that part of life. I love that, while he manages our finances, he reviews everything with me so that he is sure I know everything that is going on at all times. I might act annoyed when he is digging thru financial details, but I appreciate this so very much.
  9. I love that he loves to learn and he tries so very hard to teach me things – especially things about history and sci-fi. History (not all, of course) bores me, but I wish I could be more interested and remember a zillion little facts and dates like he does. I wish I could have conversations with people and spout these facts off to support my viewpoints and ideas.
  10. I love that he is very smart, but I feel that we are equals. We are smart about different things and we complement each other (usually, anyhow!). For example, I am much more technically-adept than he. If I ever die, someone needs to program his alarm clock for him (and the tv.. and the remotes.. and..)
  11. I love that I met him 10 years ago at a party.. I left the party to go to a bar (the party was horrid and I was there with a girl friend who wanted to go find some fun).. and he found a way to leave his best friend’s party and follow me there.
  12. I love that he tells the story of our meeting.. and how he knew that I was ‘the one’ when I bought him a beer at the bar. I love that he conveniently forgets that I bought six different people beers at that same time. J
  13. I love that we made complete fools of ourselves that first night – dancing up on some podium-thing. I had never done that before that night.. nor ever after! Of course, the fact that we were slightly (slightly?) intoxicated and doing a little dirty-dancing really added to the memories (yikes).
  14. I love that I could not remember how to pronounce his name the following Monday at work (party was on a Friday). His friend – the party thrower, whom I worked on the same floor as, laughed at me when I came up to him at least 5x that day with Aj’s biz card to ask ‘Now.. how do you pronounce his name again??’ {..a bird.. a jay..}
  15. I love that Aj gave me his biz card that night and wrote down SIX different phone numbers where I could reach him. And that I didn’t use any of them. I do not call the guy the first time – he calls me!! I think that led to some type of email fiasco – b/c his friend thought my last name was ‘Zimmerman’. It was not.
  16. 10 years ago tonite, I first heard the words ‘In my country – you would be queen!’. Funny that I just heard him utter those same words to a male friend on super bowl Sunday! Of course, when he said them to me – he was trying to entrance me with his sense of humor so that I would come up to his ‘hot tub on the roof’. Nice try Aj.
  17. I LOVE that the night Aj and I had met – he was leaving the next week to finish his move to LA. He had already moved all of his personal items out to his house on Redondo Beach. Needless to say, he did not finish his move.. and ended up moving back to Cincinnati (a city he hated) to be with me.
  18. I love that we both have the same dream of owning a house in New Zealand and splitting our time b/t that house and our house in CO.. someday not too far in the future we hope.
  19. I love that Aj is so very supportive of me, and my pursuing my dreams.
  20. I love that Aj is such a great dad to his girls (including our lab, Tasha).
  21. I find it hilarious that Aj tried to ‘save face’ and keep up with my brother-in-law, Charlie, when drinking at a bar very soon after meeting. Had I known he was doing this, I would have stopped him immediately. It takes a special type of person to be able to keep up with this boy (or anyone in his family!).. and Aj is much, much too much of a lightweight! Yes boys and girls.. it was ugly.
  22. I loved that, on our 2nd ‘real date’ (I don’t include this meeting night as a ‘date’ – our first ‘date’ was valentines day) – we went to The Teak in Cincinnati and ate Thai food. The poor boy was sweating profusely b/c they made his food much hotter than he had ordered. He was sooo embarrassed.
  23. I love that, for our first ‘real’ date, I drove to Indianapolis, where he was working, and met him for dinner. Our first non-intoxicated kiss (I just can’t count that) was in a glass elevator. I was quite embarrassed. He, unfortunately, was not.
  24. I love his family and their culture. I love that I have learned what it is to HAVE a culture. Though it has made things challenging for us a few times in our relationship, his culture is an integral part of our lives and something that I am envious not to have grown up with.
  25. I love that we had discussed adopting girls from India prior to our marriage and prior to finding out that we could not have bio children. I find it a bit coincidental, looking back, that we had these conversations and were both on the same page. I love that we have worked together to adopt two beautiful little girls from India, and that they have their daddy and his family to teach them about their heritage. I love that we are a family.
25.5 I love that I could continue this list, but have run out of my 25 numbers. :)

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Little News

Ok.. everyone out there who has known me for any extended period of time.. please do not laugh so hard that you roll out of your chair, fall over something sharp and find yourself with serious head trauma.. or laugh so hard that you pass out from lack of sufficient oxygen levels:
I am officially... {insert drum roll} .. in-training!
I am training for a triathlon (sprint triathlon, not a big one!). I was somehow talked into this by a friend of mine recently. She is a non-athletic, anti-workout type person also.. and thought that I would be a perfect buddy for her. How she came up with this, I have no idea. Seriously. ME??? But hey - here I am 1 1/2 wks later - already having registered and paid my $100+ (non-refundable I might add).. and having completed all of 'week 1' plus 2 workouts of 'week 2' of the 'Couch to 5k' running program.
The triathlon that we are entering into is the Tri For The Cure, which is being held in early August.
See? She also hit me with a cause that I am very serious about.. and at a time that my mom is seriously battling for her life against this hideous disease. What could I say?
So I'm into the 2nd week of working out. It hasn't been too painful so far.. but I'm not into mega-workouts yet. I balanced the chemicals in the pool today and made sure it is turned up and ready for me to use. I guess I need to start working on my swim skills and endurance. I don't OWN a bike, so that is going to be a bit of a challenge. I don't have the money to throw into a nice pricey bike right now, so I'm going to start looking at the used bike stores in the area. I have no idea what to even look for.. so I hope someone there can help me. Or maybe I should do some research/visit a retail store to gain some knowledge.
Yes, I am insane.
Yes, I do need this motivation to get myself moving.. and I'm very excited that I at least will be getting into shape! Hopefully I live to tell about it.. ;)

In other news, my mom is quite sick right now. Last week was probably her worst week EVER. She got more and more sick.. and by the weekend she was vomiting/keeping down no food or drink/dehydrated/in hideous pain. The core of her issue is the left side pain. The doctors can't find anything actually causing it, so they are now assuming it is the cancer in her spine/hip bones. Her last PET scan (was that 2 wks ago now?) - showed no new cancer in any organs, but the bone cancer is still charging right along. They put her on a new chemo and also a chemo pill. She's getting slammed.
She got so sick last week (she lost 8!! lbs b/t Thursday and Sunday!) that her doctor put her in the hospital yesterday. THANK GOD!! She needed it. She's still vomiting and feeling horrible, but the side pain was alleviated first by the morphine and now the oxycontin. They are going to put her on a strict pain-control regimen when she gets out. It will require that she SLEEPS (she never sleeps) and eats right. They are also doing some radiation on the part of the spine that they think could be causing this. Radiation is a last-ditch effort, which.. well.. which sucks. They can only radiate so much, and they won't do it until they HAVE to do it. Now they have to do it. Not sure what this will mean in the future, but whatever. She has to have pain relief, so I guess we're to that point.
Soo.. if you are the praying type.. please add her to your prayers. Her name is Ruth Morgan. She needs all the prayers she can get. She needs a lot of strength to get through this.
I'm trying to find a way to get back to IN in order to help out my mom and dad.. but no way to do it right now. Hubby has to travel for work later this week and part of next week.. Maya has oral surgery next week.. the girls have colds, so they couldn't be around my mom.. blahblahblah. But if I need to get there, I'll do it. I have a couple of friends/relatives who have offered to help with the girls, so that is always a possibility in an emergency. Hopefully there will be no emergencies. I was just hoping to get home to help with the house/laundry/food.

That's all the exciting news I have today. I spent this evening having a pretend picnic in the living room with Maya and several of her not-present school friends. It was so cute - she was very particular about the food we were eating, the utensils that she handed out, and saying grace several times throughout the picnic meal (of course there was no real food/utensils/etc)! She then spent the rest of the evening playing 'my bear is so sick and in the hospital and I have to take care of him'. :D