A bit better

Last night's entry was written at 2am.  I couldn't sleep.  I was homesick and sad.  I needed to vent.  I feel somewhat better today, or I did until I talked to my husband.  He brought something to my attention that I hadn't really thought of until today.  When people ask how long we've been here, I've been saying "Oh, a few weeks".  Britt told me today that he looked on the calendar.  This Saturday E and I will have been away from home for FIVE WEEKS.  That's just insane.  I'm so thankful that Hannah and Britt were able to come up here, even if it was just for a few days.  By the time we get home, we will have been here for over 7 weeks.  I wish I could say that when we get home, I'm never going to leave again, but the fact is that we will only be home for a couple of weeks and then we get to turn around and come back.  At least the next trip won't be for as long if scans go well.  We should be able to scan, get results and his meds, and head back home.  I pray that's what we can do.
So about the boredom thing.. I have a couple of friends that must have been reading my mind and knew that I was about out of my gourd with boredom.  A dear friends husband is in the theater business and knows some of the theater peeps up here in The City of Brotherly Love.  He made a phone call and got Elijah and I a couple of comped tickets to see a show.  We are thrilled!  Another friend contacted a few of Elijah's friends parents and they are working on a surprise for him to send us someplace for a fun day trip.  The trip is something that Britt and I had talked about doing all together, but we can't ever seem to get it going when we actually have a bit of free time up here.  I will hate going without him, but enjoy the opportunity for Elijah and the distraction for me. 
I received the most wonderful compliment today.  Someone that I highly regard said that she hoped that one day she could be as amazing as a mom as I am.  Wow.  It doesn't get better than that, does it? I sometimes get really down on myself because I haven't been able to finish school and I don't have a career.  Then I receive a compliment like this and it puts things in to perspective for me.  I don't want to be remembered for my education or my career choice.  I think it's a much greater honor to be considered a fantastic mother and a good wife.  I'd rather have a successful marriage than a successful career.  I don't want my kids to ever doubt that they are loved and are both amazing human beings.  Wow.  God must have really thought I had it in me to do something special when he blessed me with these two over the top fantastic kids.  If I was given a catalog and told to order whichever daughter I wanted, I would have looked it over and said.. "Oh!  I like that one with the gorgeous green eyes and brown hair just like mine.  Toss in a fabulous sense of humor.  Give her a dash of humility and heart that loves God and wants to make the world a better place.  Oh.. If she could have a sense of adventure, I think I'd like that.  The fact that she's stunningly gorgeous was just an added bonus.  Respectful.  Oh yes, she must be respectful.  Funny thing is, all those things I would have picked in a catalog are my Hannah.  She is simply amazing and I'm proud to think that I had something to do with just how amazing she is. 
Then there's Elijah.  Oh, lawd, is there Elijah.  This kid is a 27 year old in a 12 year old's body minus being gaga over girls.  He is the smarted 12 year old I've ever ever been around.  We go to movies together and have discussions that I might not even have with some of my adult friends.  The theories that he comes up with, ideas that he has, things he imagines and the things he paints and draws - It's astonishing.  And this kid's sense of humor is out of this world.  You have to be really careful because sometimes he's saying something witty and you won't quite catch it.  He is wonderfully talented and smart and private.  I'm the one that blabs all of his life on the internet.  I just want others to be touched by his story and to know how great he is.  Because he is great. 
Okay.  I'm rambling again.  Sleepy drug is kicking in so I must retire.  I don't think anyone reads this blog, but if you do.... What would you like to talk about tomorrow?  I'm open for suggestions. 


I try to maintain a positive attitude on Elijah's website. I try to keep things fairly light hearted and not whine.
I need to whine.  This is my blog and I can do that, right?
Here goes. 
I miss my husband.  I miss sleeping next to him every night and waking up with him in the morning.  I miss the fact that he kisses me every morning before he goes to work and every night before we go to bed.  I miss him walking up behind me and wrapping his arms around me.  I miss the smell of him.  I miss the calm that he brings to me and my high strung tendencies.  He is my other half and I feel a bit lost without him by my side.
I miss my daughter.  I am blessed to have a very affectionate girl.  I miss her hugs every day.  I miss our little jokes about books or movies that only we understand.  I miss seeing her beautiful smile and hearing her come down the stairs in the morning.  I miss her climbing in to bed with me in the mornings so we can talk.  She's such a beautiful soul and I ache for her. 
I miss my house.  I know some people would say that it's just a rent house - but I love it, truly.  I feel more "at home" there than I ever have in any house we've lived in.  It suits us.  It's my safe haven. 
I miss privacy.  Oh, how I miss privacy.  Living communally is NOT easy.  We eat in a common dining room with all of the other families.  I shower in a shared bath (the shower room locks).  Elijah and I are in the same room 24/7.  When his friends call, I try to let him have some time to himself and I go do laundry or read downstairs.  I am thankful that we have this wonderful place to live while we are here and we are comfortable here.  We always have been.  I just miss home. 
I miss my friends.  I feel like I haven't talked to them much since I've been here, and didn't see them hardly at all the 10 days that I was at home.  I have great friends and am so thankful for them. 
I miss the convenience of having a car.  Granted, I know it's a luxury to have a car - but it's a convenience I've grown accustomed to and am missing it. 
I miss the rest of our family.  Even though we don't see each other as often as we should, it's nice to know that they are just up the road a bit if we need them or have something funny to share. 
So there you have it.  My big whine.  I am homesick.  I know I am where I need to be and we really are fine.  I'm not crying all the time like I thought I would.  I've settled in, I guess.  We will be here as long as we need to be for Elijah.  It's the quest to get him well.  I know I have a purpose and that's to take care of this boy who I love more than words could ever accurately describe.  I'm glad I'm here with him.  He makes me laugh constantly.  Even though he's not as generous with his hugs as his sister, I still manage to squeeze at least one out of him every day.  I treasure every day with him and while I miss home so very much - I am thankful to be his mom and help him walk this portion of this journey. 


We are in Philly.  Britt just left today to head back home.  Even though Elijah and I are in one room together and will be for the next 3 weeks, I still feel alone.  Elijah has his friends that he facetimes with and plays minecraft with. I'll miss Britt being here so I will have an adult to talk to about something other than cancer.
When you are here at "The Ronald" it's all about your story.  It's kind of like what I would imagine prison would be like.  "So.. whatcha in for?"  I'm thankful to be here though. We are comfortable and it feels almost like home.  
I had my doctor increase my dose on one of my meds.  I just felt like I would need it being up here for so long.  So far so good with it.  I've noticed an increase in some twitching but nothing unbearable.  I'm hoping it will subside with a bit of time.  I do feel a bit emotionless though.  I didn't get upset about Elijah's scans being different.  I guess because I feel like his disease burden is about the same and we just needed to switch gears.  I felt like I was going to cry when Britt left today, but I didn't - which is odd for me.  I don't want to be numb, but I need to be able to get out of bed and function too.  Sometimes it's hard to determine which is worse. 
The uncontrollable eating is about to come to a screeching halt.  I'm just not going to do it anymore.  I've told myself that I'm going to eat whatever I want tonight - and make sensible choices at meal times, but eating when I'm not hungry and just because it's there is no longer an option.  It's hard here though.  There are always cookies and cupcakes in the kitchen.  Temptation sucks!

Depression & Anxiety

 Depression and anxiety both play such a major part of my existence.  I've been wanting to write about it for a while, but just couldn't bare to get started.  It's one of the ugliest things in my life and has been for a very long time.
I think I was 10 years old the first time I saw a psychiatrist.  I have had relationships ruined, jobs lost, goals never achieved, weight gained, weight lost, cystic acne, hair loss, irritable bowel syndrome, insomnia, stress tension headaches,  panic attacks, missed opportunities and so many disappointments - all because of depression, general anxiety disorder, and the insecurity that goes along with both. 
Over the past 30 years I have taken prozac, paxil, zoloft, effexor, celexa, lexapro, trazadone, amitriptyline, and wellbutrin.  I am currently taking celexa and wellbutrin.  I have had countless therapy sessions.  I own enough self-help books to open my own bookstore.  (self help and diet books - I think there's a correlation)  In all honesty, I should be in therapy now but I just don't have time. Before you say "you need to make time" you have to understand my situation.  I have a child with cancer.  We spend half of our time out of state for treatment.  The time I am at home is spent trying to catch up enough to get ready for the next trip.  There is no regularity to my schedule. Since I don't have time to go to therapy, my blog will be my therapy for a while.  Sorry.  This is for me.  Not you - so it won't be sugar-coated.  It won't be pretty.  It may not make sense half the time, but I need to get some of this out. 
I've been having a hard time lately.  A really hard time.  I think my meds are doing okay, but most days I just don't have the will to get out of bed.  I can imagine how hard that is for my husband and my kids.  They just think I'm lazy.  I don't want my kids to think of me as always being in my bed.  That's how my mom was.  I want to be the mom that is involved with my kids and active.  It shouldn't be that my husband is shocked when he comes home and I'm dressed and have make up on and the house is clean.  He should be shocked if I'm still in pj's and the house is a wreck.  Sadly, he's been used to the latter. 
Because I've recognized that I'm in a bad place, I've decided to practice something that a therapist told me years ago.  "Fake It Til You Feel It".  I don't fake my feelings for my family - ever.  But I have been forcing myself to get up at a specific time, make my bed so I'm not as tempted to crawl back in it, shower and get dressed first thing, and come up with a schedule for my day with Elijah.  It helps both of us to be on a schedule even if it is a flexible one.  (with cancer you have to be flexible).  I think it works to a degree.  I'm a bit more confident with my appearance, feel more confident in my parenting skills, and definitely feel as though I am making strides to be a better wife. 
Don't get me wrong.  I'm a great mom.  I love my kids and have a great relationship with them.  I make sure they have what they need.  Make sure they get to their appointments and do their school work.  I have a schedule for Elijah's medication that he takes 3 times a day.  I tell my children that I love them several times a day.  They know that I am proud of them.  I homeschool Elijah and I read to him every night.  I have long, deep conversations with Hannah on a regular basis.  My children are both bright, funny, talented and active.  I'm doing something right.  It's just a struggle.  I have calendars and lists everywhere because I am very forgetful.  Britt sometimes has to tell me things several times.  It's frustrating.
I'm also a good wife.  I love my husband with all of my heart.  I am loyal and faithful to him.  I am proud of him and tell him that regularly.  I pray for him every day.  We rarely fight or argue.  He makes me laugh every day, in spite of my illness.  For so many years he took my "not being happy" personally.  I think he still does to a point.  I am so happy with him, though.  I can't imagine being with anyone else.  He is my true soulmate.  It's hard for a man to understand that his wife is unhappy and she really means it when she says she just doesn't know why.   
I've gone through periods of destructive behavior.  Never drugs or hurting myself or anything like that.  Just other things.  Now my mode of personal destruction is compulsive emotional eating.  I'll be looking for self  help books on emotional eating this week.  Suggestions are welcomed and appreciated. 
I've been through some shit in my life.  A lot of shit, actually.  It's quite amazing that I'm as functioning and normal as I am.  I guess it's because I have to be.  I guess my hatred for cancer and my love for my family are stronger than this bit of mental illness that I constantly wrestle with. 
It's 2:19 am.  I took sonata 3 hours ago.  Sometimes I really miss ambien. 

Resolution Journal

I love my friend, Kelly. She has the best ideas and always seems to bring out the best in me. Or at least she helps me to feel like she brings out the best in me.. whatever. It's my perception that matters in this instance anyway, right? Kelly and I always seem to be on the same road to self improvement and trying to find more ways to be happy and make our lives better. Today I went over to her house and we made these little resolution journals. Super cute! I'm excited about mine. I put my five major resolutions in the journal and I think it will help me to remember what I would like to accomplish. I thought I would share them on my blog as well. Not that many read it, but it's another way for me to commit. I'm all about accountability these days.
I decided not to do the typical "lose weight, drink more water, exercise, etc. etc." resolutions. Some of mine are simple. Some of them are complicated and more in depth. I guess that's how I'm rolling these days.

In 2012 I resolve to make weekly menus for my family and to grocery shop from that menu. It will save time and money. My goal is to have 5 meals planned weekly.
I resolve to make time for myself in the mornings to pray,, meditate, and take better care of myself. I am going to participate in the Hello Mornings Challenge to help me on my way and to have accountability for sticking to this resolution.
I resolve to try harder to simplify my life by removing clutter and developing some organizational tactics to make things easier.
I resolve to keep the front of my house clean so it will always be fairly presentable for company to arrive unexpectedly.
In 2012 I resolve to engage in activities that promote happiness, peace and well being. More time with Britt and the kids, more time with my dear friends and family, exercise, eating for health, and having some fun. I'd like a real vacation, dates with my pals, to develop some hobbies and just take pride in what I do.

So there it is.. My resolutions in a nutshell. I think if I can stick to these - general though they may be, I will be doing pretty dang good. I have some goals I would like to accomplish, but those are goals - not resolutions. Goals are what I need to reach in order to keep my resolutions.

But Which Ones????

I'm going to take 5 things off my bucket list... and I'm gonna do em! That's right.. 5 things. Now.. which ones should I do???? hmmmmmmm suggestions?


Over the years I've filled out several of the little "getting to know you" emails and facebook questionnaires. I don't think they ever serve to really let anyone know anything shocking or terribly interesting. What I'm going to write in here probably won't be too interesting either, but what the heck? I've already taken my Ambien; I can write whatever I want. Have you seen the girl on Glee who says she has Asberger's just so she can blame random outbursts on her mild autism? I love that. I have now decided that my blog entries are AITS: Ambien Induced Turret's Syndrome. So here are some random and not very interesting things about me.
I used to collect unicorns. Lots of them. My grandmother asked me just a few weeks ago what happened to my unicorn collection and she seemed a bit shocked that I no longer had them. I have no idea when I got rid of them or what I did with all of them. I pray that they all have nice homes now.
When I was a young teenager, I listed to Ska, punk and rockabilly music. I listened to the B-52s waaaaaaayyyy before Love Shack came out.
I am an ex-smoker. I was never a heavy smoker, but it was a nasty habit just the same. I haven't had a cigarette in about 12 years. I honestly don't ever miss it either. It's pretty disgusting.
I like all vegetables but hominy and english peas. Those are just gross. I don't eat lamb or veal. Lamb is my choice because I just can't get past the thought of it. Veal is kinda the same, but more because in the Army they served nasty veal every single day and I think it's gross. I know I shouldn't compare Army food to normal food, but that's my reasoning.
I have been thinking that I'm going to start secretly planting little tidbits of information in my blog so I can see if my sister has been reading it or not. Passive aggressive, party of one? Yeah, that's me.
I once fell into my neighbor's recycle bin while rollerblading down my street. It was quite comical. My entire family got a huge kick out of it.
I get pissed off when people talk about not wanting to be around their kids, but then I think that in most cases I don't want to be around their kids either. (I said most, so that means not all. If you are reading this than I definitely am not writing about your kids)
Okay.. ambien is kicking in full force now. I need to sleep before I start talking about alien abductions. I'll save that for another day.

About this blog

I am a 43 year old Mom of 2 awesome kids. I have one child with a serious illness. Caring for him is mostly what I do - with a few other things mixed in here and there. I have been married to the same wonderful man for nearly 15 years now. I am forever on the quest to change my life for the better. I want to be more organized, much healthier, and much thinner. So far, I'm not getting there. This blog is for my ramblings and frustrations while on my neverending quest for improvement.