Thursday, September 29, 2011

Rear Window

Poor Jimmy Stewart. I feel his pain, those rear windows can be a pain in the butt.

When last I left you all, I'd been recovering slowly from the cooties Chris gave me, which consisted of a sinus infection, and goo infiltrating my lungs. I haven't had my voice back in 2 weeks. Last Monday I started an antibiotic, I just finished it today. Wednesday I threw my hip out while running, not as bad as it could have been. I went to the chiropractor the week before, when I was just gross and cootie covered. And I walked for a while after. I thank the Lord for Good Drugs, but somehow consequentially, the last couple weeks have gotten away from me entirely. Last Saturday morning, I ran 2 miles here at home all by myself. I've been a hot mess. Just want to curl up and stay in bed all day...but the boys won't let me. So I press on.
This week, I actually made it to running on Tuesday night. I was so proud of myself, I repeated Week 5 of the C25K program, running 5 minutes, walking 3, for 5K, and I did it, in 51 minutes, and didn't die. That's the most important part. I didn't cry, or die. It wasn't easy, but it was doable. I can do this! I'm so excited I'm thinking about signing up to run my first official 5K, the Family Fun 5K in DisneyWorld. Eric signed up for The Goofy Challenge.
I was feeling good, so Wednesday I grabbed a girlfriend, and we hit the Eiteljorg, went shopping for supplies for Freezer Cooking night at Sam's. I had plans to cook all night Wednesday and most of the day Thursday. Well, plans fail. It was nice and cool after we dropped Maria off, and we were a little toasty in the car, so Sam asked me to put up his window. He meant to roll it down. But when I rolled his window down (and not mine) something in the air pressure of the car rapidly changed. Suddenly there was whirring and shaking in my head. Then I got dizzy, and really nauseous.
That's not Normal. So I immediately pulled over and called Dr. C, our family doctor. They agreed it was not normal, put me right on with the nurse, who put me on hold to talk to the doctor. I figured this much abnormality, it must be my ears, so I commenced driving straight to my doctor's office. They were cool with that. (Gosh I love them!) I called a friend to snag Chris from the bus, God Bless Her. And Sam (who was desperate for a nap) and I hit the doctor's office for me. I was so Queasy. It's funny, when I feel the most like ass is when the kids find the most energy and discover new ways to annoy me?! Anyway, Dr. C. says it's Vertigo. Color me not surprised. Been There, Done That. My friend Kathleen, immediately went scrolling back through the blog to when I'd Done That the first time. I was fair miserable for a few days, but unable to drive far for weeks. Super.
At least this time, I'm not suffering a back injury, just some sore feet. I went shopping for running supplies: shoes and a new bra, on Tuesday, and the Running Man told me my foot pain sounded suspiciously like plantar fasciitis. Ugh. At least Eric doesn't have to stay home and babysit me. I took it very easy on Thursday. God Bless my friends. My friend Elizabeth came over for a visit, armed with a McD's carmel mocha, ready and eager to help in any way. Once I gave up the ghost to cancel everything and not go anywhere, we were ok. Actually, Sam was pretty adorable padding around the house in his jammies all day. It had been a while. In the evening, my superfriends struck again, bringing me a load of frozen meals, even though I'd been able to finish mine. Hooray, now I didn't have to expend much energy to cook dinner either until my ears settle up. Very nice.
Actually, Friday morning, I opted to head out and see if our original schedule would work. I did learn, that I can only drive about 15 minutes comfortably. Heading out to Speedway had me a little queasy, but I stopped at Starbucks on the way, made it much more bareable. ;) Coming back was a little bit rougher.
Luckily, this weekend's plans keep us pretty close to home, we'll see about Sam's school next week. Vertigo sucks.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Happy Hoodie Weather

Love Fall! And I'm pretty excited to announce the boys are thrilled to be able to pull jackets out of the closet (off our newly installed hanging bar!) and put on hoodies. We were having a happy hoodie party in honor of the beginning of Fall!

Happy Autumn!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Whistling in the Dark

Last night was a bad one. I thought I was healthy enough to go for a run. Apparently, I get stupid when I get sick. I haven't felt that bad, really, then again, I hadn't left the house much. I just didn't have much of a voice. I put in my CD with Defying Gravity, and I couldn't sing along, I just croaked and whispered. But who cares if I can sing or not for running?! So, I left the house ready to run with the girls. Found a full house when I arrived.

So we took off running. It was the beginning of our 5th week, so we the plan was to warm up with our 5 minute walk, then a 5 minute run and 3 minute walk until we hit the mileage. We tried a new path, but I wasn't really a fan. We ended up going right down Main Street. Lots more people and cars than I'm used to. Chewing on it a while I realized I don't like the crowds, I don't like people seeing me run. I prefer the quiet of running at night. I like the dimly lit roads, not the bright lights of cars going by.

Anyway, after going about 2 miles my hip started to twitch. Painful twitching. Then it stopped doing what I wanted to. The entire hip went into spasm, it felt like a hip charlie horse, I put my hand on my hip and I could feel all the strands, cells all twitching in random rhythm. I couldn't run anymore. I couldn't keep up. I called out the girls names, but I'd been last in the line for a while, and really falling behind, I ate their dust. And I called. And they couldn't hear me. At all. I yelled, but it only came out a squawk. I whistled. I screamed but only a mere whisper.

It was bad. I kept walking thinking, we've come 2 miles, I'm going to have to get back, and I don't know which way they were planning on going. So I turned around, and commenced walking, no gimping my way home, back to my car. I could hear them ask where I'd gone, but they couldn't see me, or hear me. They turned back around, and came my way. By the time they arrived, I was a hot crying mess.

I tried to pull it together, failed miserably, and ended up sitting in the grass trying to stretch the muscles out. Helped a little, stopped the spasm, but not the ache. My head was swimming. I hurt. The gals all stopped and prayed over me.
That always helps. Even when it doesn't stop the pain, it stops the panic, and I can move on.
I got up. Not easily. Needed help. But then I stretched the hip out a little more and I could get it moving. We limped back. I told them to walk on, but they wouldn't. Now they wouldn't let me go alone. It was very sweet.

The big (fast) group made the run home, and came back for me in a car after I'd gimped about 3/4 mile. They took me to mine. Not moving in her car's seat felt so wonderful, the tears just ran down my face, uncontrolled by me. I apparently had been holding them in on the walk, and they just flowed. Karin said I was strong. Here's what I say about that. Being Strong Sucks.

I was so sore. I came home, took good drugs and cuddled up with an ice pack. The next day I spent most of the day just getting by, walking to our various meetings very slowly. Making Sam go on his own steam.

I should've known better. I shouldn't have run if I was still not feeling 100%. Eric and my friends said that running helps when you're sick, flushes out the goo. Not in this case. My appetite was off kilter all day, I didn't want dinner. That should've been my sign. I'm not saying I'm giving up running all together. Jury still out as to whether or not I'm built for running, my plan is to keep trying. I'm guessing maybe my chemistry was all out of whack, and I still had a head full of snot from the sinus infection. But still don't want to overdo it, maybe wait until I don't get tired after a shower, or hungry for dinner, or not dizzy anymore. You know, being sick (and strong) sucks. I need to be careful, listen better; if my body says not to overdo it, I should listen. One of these days I'll listen. I hope.

Wordless Wednesday

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Silly Sunday

Sam and I are still sickly. But I got to leave the house yesterday to go have lunch with my bestie Kathleen. That makes twice in the same historic month our boys let us go for some Girl Time. It's been great, refreshing, and fabulous, and we are so grateful for the opportunity,. But sometimes we get a little silly. And it's Good. Sometimes I need a little Silly. Especially when I don't feel good, like today. So I'm channeling some past silliness.

This was from labor day weekend when we tried on the boys Buzz and Woody towels just to make the kids laugh. It worked. Well, they partly laughed, and partly were just shocked to see us be so silly. Oh kids, you have No Idea.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A Pain in the Neck

This morning I woke up and the mildly annoying tickle had grown to a fullfledged cough, and I have no voice. I can be heard if I speak loud and low. But it's easier to whisper. Only....the boys don't really let me do that.
So I try to talk to them, and end up hacking up my lungs.
All I've wanted to do all day is curl up in bed. Finally Naptime rolled around today, and Sam asked me to sleep with him. If he asks, I almost always will lay down with him because a. it's going to get more rare that he asks, and he's so snuggly sweet when he's asleep, and b. because his mattress on the floor is amazingly comfortable. He's got this nice and soft Toy Story 3 comforter and it's so nice, an that room is the only one with curtains, and (once Sam stops talking and kicking me) it gets all quiet and warm, and his gentle breathing kicks in and.....see? I'm getting sleepy all over again.
Today during naptime Sam and I just exchanged coughs. I think Sam is coming down with the same cooties. When he woke up his full cry crackled a little bit at the high notes. And when I woke up my neck hurt.
I always get scared when I have a cold and my neck hurts. I know it's silly. AT least in my head it's silly. They said Lightning doesn't strike twice, but sometimes, sometimes it does.

Though that reminds me I don't think I ever wrote about the neck problems that began almost a decade ago that created part of the hot mess you see before you today.

Picture it, back in the early winter of 2002, I was working at Cargill, in the corn mill. My job was to take corn samples from the 5-10 pound 'sample' bags they sent up to the lab from every corn truck that came in. I would grind it down in a coffee grinder and set up the sample tray for PCR. That was one part of my job, the other was that I ran the RVA, a viscosity test, for any product that was getting sent out. There were many of those a day. And the PCR trays needed like 50 to finish a tray, so I'd let the piles of bags build up outside my office, and take a day or two a week knocking those out. There was a week that winter where I'd been out sick, had a cold. When I came back I did a day's work of incoming samples. The next few days felt like I'd pulled a muscle in my neck, you know that crick in the neck. Finally that went away, and I felt I could do another sample day. The next morning I woke up and I couldn't lift my right arm more than 90 degrees straight in front of me.
They thought it was a lift injury. To sum up months of testing, multiple MRIs, xrays, and lots of very painful therapy, it wasn't. They finally sent me to a Physiatrist at IU and he listened to my story and wanted to do a test where they stick a needle into the muscle to test the contraction. It was painful. By that time, my muscle had atrophied, and there was no cushion, he popped right through it, but he could easily find the nerve. And what he diagnosed me with was a neuropathy on my Cranial XI nerve. Meaning for some freak reason, that nerve had died. It was only firing at about 5% functionality. He told me not to lift anything more than 2 pounds. Not even a gallon of milk. And no more PT. For 6 weeks. I tell you what. The man was a genius, within days of stopping the PT, the pain was gone. I couldn't do much, it was really weak, but the pain was gone. He told me it would take months for it to come back. If it came back.
Fast forward months and lots of therapy, I got up to about 25% of my nerve function back and about 20 pounds to be able to lift my niece again.
Another year later I got a rather nasty cold, and woke up one morning and my left elbow and hand were weak. I didn't have the same immediate loss of function but just instant weakness. This perplexed everyone again. I went back to Dr. B. the miracle worker, and he did another emg. He said it was another neuropathy, but it wasn't workers comp so he couldn't see me anymore. I was working at the health department and was sent into a different group of doctors and therapists, and got some of my lifting back. Actually my left is my stronger arm. But really I can't lift more than about 20 pounds in each arm. Luckily God has blessed me with dainty children. I went to a neurologist who diagnosed me with Brachial Plexus Neuritis. It's also known as Parsonage-Turner Syndrome, PTS. He said it's like lightning striking. It was a freak thing that it attacked in both shoulders but I should be done.

Whew. Right? No.

A few days after Chris was born I started experiencing shoulder pain in my right shoulder, that same time we were all camped out at Riley. I was on very good drugs from my c-section. By the time we got home I was running out of my very good drugs. And I found I wasn't taking them for c-section pain. I was taking them for the pain in my shoulder. Yup. I was afraid it was happening again. The doctors told me I was crazy. It doesn't happen twice. It certainly doesn't happen three times. Yes, apparently it does. The MRI revealed it had happened again.
By the way, if you are nursing a newborn and they order an MRI with contrast, it's going to mean that you have to pump and dump, so be prepared. I wasn't.
But I did have a great physical therapist in Brownsburg that time, and she and the whole staff loved that I brought baby Chris in his bucket to every appointment. I was Blessed with a great team of helpers during that time, Chris had his own issues, to add my own to it was really tough. I don't think we both really came up for air until he was a good 6 months old. The neurologist told me that PTS gets set off on occasion by the immune system, that a cold, or c-section can send my immune system into overdrive. He said, it is usually a lightning strike once thing, so I'm not telling you not to have another c-section. But then again, I would've said it wouldn't happen again after the first time. Blessedly nothing happened after my c-section when Sam was born.
But every time I wake up with a crick in my neck, I always worry. And that is worry.
Though I've now spent most of the evening writing this story, and the crick isn't so bad, so maybe I'm just catastrophizing, and I'm really fine. I've been known to get a little crazy when I'm sick. My mom tells a great story about how I got strep and a fever of like 102, and insisted on going to school because I had a test. I remember crying because she wouldn't let me. Yeah, stupid crazy. So maybe I'm just on the verge of that.

Breaking records

I ran for 5 straight minutes last night. I must say I was quite proud of myself. We alternate running and walking for 3 miles, but I ran 5 straight miles, and only walked half that. And I did not die.

Something was tickling in my throat. I had a little trouble hitting the high notes as I was singing along on my drive, belting out Defying Gravity.
I was quite surprised that I didn't die from running for 5 consecutive minutes, and managed to break my record, we went 3.1 miles in 50 minutes! The night before we did it in 52. I am really making Progress.


Monday, September 12, 2011

Battle of the Blues

My sister in law had a Brilliant Idea. We should all go the Butler VS. ISU football game in Terre Haute, which was this past Saturday. For the first time in 37 years they would play football.
The Battle of the Blues.
Blue and White ISU Fighting Sycamores. (Really, what are they, Ents or something?) VS. The Blue and White Butler Bulldogs!

That's Right Ryan. FEAR THE GLASSES!!!

(My brother in law is often mistaken for Brad Stevens.)

I'd like to say the boys were all excited about the game. But to be honest, they got more excited about the band. Who can blame them right?! Eric and I met in the Butler Marching Band, but Ryan and Amy met in the ISU Marching Band. So we are all about the bands.

When the Butler Team took the field for the first time, in my head I heard the intro drumbeats for the Butler War Song. It took me a second to realize, they weren't in my head. I was hearing the Band! Hip Hip Hooray! Super added bonus surprise! The Bulldog Marching Band was Actually there. It was Dueling Blue Marching Bands.
Oh yeah. They marched Pregame and a song from Cirque de Soleil Nuba. It was Awesome!

And then ISU marched and did a great version of Robin Hood:Prince of Thieves, which for some reason I think I've heard (or played) before, and it has been stuck in my head ever since.

Then it got really Super Awesome as both bands took the field and played America the Beautiful in honor of September 11.

Now me, I would've been perfectly content leaving after the halftime show. Probably happier. Butler didn't make much of an appearance in the 3rd quarter, but we at least brought our loss up to reasonable instead of a trouncing by the end. Maybe we'll get invited back. Sam, however was DONE by the second half.

Nice soft concrete.

Good game. Great Times.

Oh did I mention that Mom and Dad W. wanted to crash the party? Oh yeah, they came along and kicked the trip up a notch by wanting to have a big family style German Dinner at the Bierstube in Terre Haute. It was so Yummy. But what was pretty impressive was that the kids did quite well considering their states of extreme exhaustion. They had a lot of fun playing with each other. Kaylee and Chris told sweet cheesy jokes.

And Lexi was having a great time making Sam laugh.

I don't know if you can see this one very well, but Sam's cheeks were really round and he has no eyes because he was laughing so hard at his cousin.

It was raining as we left the restaurant, raining on our heads, but sunny on the horizon all around us. I looked for rainbows, and when I couldn't find one, I decided it must've been where we were standing because it was just that kind of an awesome day.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

From Mom2Mom

As fall begins, we jump start the new school year with a Mom2Mom picnic in my friend Jen's backyard.

Sam immediately found a bunch of new toys, and we couldn't talk him into eating more than a bite of dinner, and it was macaroni and cheese, that's unheard of.

But he found his friend Noah and NoahSissy, also known as Ella, and he got carried away with playing.

Same thing with Big Brother. Chris discovered the bouncehouse about 2 seconds after we arrived, and he didn't stop jumping until they tore it down.

And even then, he didn't want to stop playing on it.

He had a great time playing with Jen's tough girls, and the three of them had a great time climbing a 'tree', really it was a big bush, but Chris had a great time climbing it.

Unfortunately, today is our first group meeting, and we can't go because Chris is sick, he's got croup, but that leaves him plenty of time to watch cartoons, and more time for me to blog. ;)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

1 Working Bathtub - Ah Ah Ah

I know Count VonCount doesn't exactly count bathtubs. But one of the big highlights last week was finally getting the bathtub working in the new house. First the boys were able to take a bath.

And finally get a chance to use the adorable Buzz and Woody hooded towels their Grandma Willman got them. She generously supplied a whole passel of Toy Story themed goodies for their bathroom. And they LOVE it!

Me too! Especially now that Eric finally got the shower working for the grownups. One bathroom mostly done, 2 more to go!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Where to begin?

Oh my goodness. So much has been going on the last 6 weeks I can't even begin. I've been trying to keep up here, but it's a lot. I'll start with we now finally have internet access. AT&T kept dancing us around for weeks, first saying that we weren't a real house. They finally sent someone out to confirm, scheduled a guy to come an install a month later. But when he got here, he said we were too far away from some box, and he'd send a guy out. Only the next guy said he couldn't fix it either. And that they would send another guy.
They didn't.
We kept giving them the benefit of the doubt. So last weekend we were at the mall, they had an AT&T store; Mike and Kathleen said we should still give them a try. We did. They said they'd call the Uverse guys, who weren't open and get them to come out on Monday.
They didn't.
Last week we called Bright House, and we were just about to lose our minds when they said we didn't have a real address either. Only they did actually come out.
And Bright House installed for us this morning.

Hooray for Internet! What an insane summer. I'll try to get more caught up on blogging, pictures, and whatnot.