Tuesday, October 30, 2012

"Mama is OUT TONIGHT!"

First Sister Photo
 I am still sore from Saturday night. It's been three days. It was a good night.  Reminiscent of the crazy, carefree college weekend nights, during the non-competitive swimming season.  I can thank my big sister, my little sister, a few of her friends, some cousins, my mom, my in-laws and most of all, Matt, for this treasure of a night.  I had sincerely forgotten what it was like to go out with girlfriends.  To have an evening dedicated to fun, and one girl in particular and her last night of "singleness".  As maid of honor (or Matron of Honor, technically) in Leah's wedding, I was the coordinator of this night.  But many were involved, as it was a progressive dinner, where we enjoyed food, drinks and gifts at 4 separate houses before finally settling in at the Red Balloon {dive} Karaoke bar.  Such a massive success.  And, as the saying goes, "What happens at the Red Balloon, stays at the Red Balloon", or something like that...so I leave you with photos.
"It's not a party, without deviled eggs" -Leah
The 4 Hostess' of the evening.
"So Happy Together"
Final Sister Photo

 And, the hangover cure?  A lovely shower.  We all wore PJ's.  Does it get any better?!  I love you, sissy.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

More than 8 Months. Much More.

George's 8 month birthday, marked my freedom from human parasites for the first time since Valentine's Day 2010 (or there abouts).  I nursed him that day, just so I could say I made it 8 months - the longest stretch of breastfeeding I have made with any child.  I am going to blame this phenomenon on the late tooth eruption time, as George decided to wait a bit longer than usual, save 'em up and grow 6 teeth at once.  I will add, the first to poke through were the top 2 surrounding the front middle.  In other words, we thought we might have a little vampire for Halloween, thankfully the center top and bottom teeth quickly followed.  Besides some clear drainage from the nose, a slight increase in his desire to be held, a new habit of rubbing his gums on everything and a few, momentary night time awakenings that do not require any action from his parents, other than paranoid attention to the monitor, you wouldn't even know he was teething.

But, back to me.  George becoming a full time bottle feeder has increased my odds of making it to work on time in the morning.  This is due to an extra 15-20 minutes from no longer feeding, then an additional few because I don't have to pack up the pump, and even more because I do not have an adorable baby awake, distracting me from getting dressed.  It has allowed me the freedom to eat, or not eat.  I no longer have to ensure I consume a few liters of water every day.  I can live off of caffeine if I feel like it.  Though, my eating habits are probably not near as healthy, it is much easier to shed a few pounds.  And TMI, despite my decreased in daily H2O, I have almost no constipation.  My libido has fully returned.  My hair, nails, skin, all seem back to a baseline I forgot ever existed.

It has been so long since I felt this way, I forgot how great it is to be me.  So, George turning 8 months means so much more to me, than a fully mobile baby, who crawls to and climbs on everything.  I will still remember that he now makes his pig nose face, more than he smiles.  And that he is already imitating his brothers and following them around in every way he is capable.  I will remember that I gushed, and rambled on and on and on about how happy, complacent and easy Curtis was, but have not even mentioned that George shares his middle brother's demeanor in this way.  In example, I think George played in an Exersaucer, outside at a friend's son's 2nd birthday party, by himself, for no less than 40 minutes, without so much as a peep.  Give him something new to play with, and you've bought yourself some time, Curious George, he is.  But I will also remember, that at this age, he gave me my youth back...
...which makes me really want to add another.  But until then, it's just me and my 3 amigos.

Friday, October 19, 2012

"Oh, well, I can't complain to you"

So very often, a friend will begin to complain about something.  They might mention how busy they are, or tired or overworked.  I will listen, and sympathize with them.  Afterall, I too, know what it feels like to be entirely too busy, worked to the point of exhaustion, and in the mood to complain.  In fact, I live my life in or verging on this condition at all times.  And, as soon as I start to tell them I understand completely, it's like a bomb goes off, they seem almost startled, and say something to the effect of, "but I can't complain to you [fill in with: I only have one kid; I only work 4 days a week; I am not even married; etc]"  I simply smile, and say: but of course you can, I agree, that sounds like a shitty day, situation, meal, co-worker or whatever it might be ailing the person at that particular moment. It is not in me to ever presume that my situation is any harder than anyone else's.  We all fight our own battles.  Everyday.

I choose to challenge myself on a near daily basis.  I love pushing myself to the breaking point.  I need it.  It's how I function, thrive, maintain my sanity, tame my energy, feel productive, support my pride, enjoy my life.  This is me.  I expect no one else to do or feel the same.  As a child, I did puzzles.  All sorts of puzzles, jigsaw, word search, crossword, logic.  I took these types of things to school with me, so that the motor in my mind could just go, and go, and go.  I swam before and after school, for 11 years, to work off my near limitless energy.  I remember reading for hours in my bed, yet still being the first to wake up, every morning as a youngster. 

I don't judge you for working 3 twelve hour shifts in a row and feeling beat down and exhausted.  It just so happens, my limit is more like 16 twelve hour shifts before I feel broke. But, if I have to wait even 20 minutes in line at the DMV, or anywhere for that matter, I am nearly in tears, and pissed off for the rest of the day.  I have abandoned carts with groceries totaling well into the 100's just because of line length.  I can't do it, just can't.  We all have different limits.  My loves and hates differ from yours.  Who am I to find your complaint invalid? Unsupported?  I feel for you, I really do.  There is nothing worse than feeling helpless, or like things aren't going your way.  We all have those moments.  And though it may not be something that would have affected me in the same way, I know the feeling of defeat, disappointment, or unfulfilled expectations.
And let's get real, I am in no way exempt from committing complaints.  It's only fair I be on the receiving end from time to time.  This is in no way an open invitation for venting.  Just know, I am not comparing my life to yours, so don't compare yours to mine.  I only strive to become the best me I can be...I suggest you do the same.  Living everyday, with the knowledge that I have tried.  That I gave the day everything I had in me to give, which leaves me satisfied every night.  I am happy in this life that I chose, because I chose it.  Every bit of it.  I am proud of it.  And I love it.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Nasty. No joke. Insanity.

As we sat in clinic, typing away at orders for our patients, a nurse walks in carrying what appears to be an empty urine sample container. She says, "Anyone know what kind of bug this is? They are all over a patient." And she unscrews the lid as we all peer into the cup. What!? They are ALL OVER a patient!? What exactly do you mean by that? How can bugs be all over a patient? Bugs don't LIVE on patients, unless they are scabies. And those burrow into the skin. Or ticks. And we all know what those look like, and they don't generally crawl around, they are kind of know for being stationary. Also, at this point, I don't know if I am more shocked by the nurse's statement, or the lack of reaction by my fellow residents. Everyone just takes a look and acts as though this is a routine diagnosis. After we all decide that we have no clue what kind of insect that small, pea size, beetle/maybe winged insect thing is by appearance, one resident suggest we "do the taste test." So disgusting. Seriously, gross. (I literally just shivered, while writing and remembering this moment - Matt asked if I was doing ok.) I mean, it's true, this really isn't all that surprising, considering our patient population, but I am still flabbergasted. Appalled. Confused. Exceedingly thankful that I am not the resident responsible for seeing said patient.

Eventually, the resident comes back from interviewing, and PHYSICALLY examining the patient! Yes, she, to some extent, touched that patient. And the verdict came in, they were baby roaches! As in Cockroaches. Climbing and living on a human being. I couldn't believe it, I just couldn't. I insisted it wasn't true, only to be told by the reliable resident herself, that she, personally witness 3 small roaches run over the patients shoulder, across her collarbone and descend into her cleavage. Ugh. *chills* I begin ranting. "Take a shower. Change your clothes. Is it really that difficult!? How can you live like that? I am so confused. So confused." I continued to get the chills, and shiver, and itch, periodically throughout the rest of clinic that afternoon. In fact, right now, I can feel little buggies crawling up my leg, or running under my armpit. I might have to shower now. Though this is not what I signed up for when I decided to be a doctor, patients like these never cease to surprise, amaze, confuse and inspire me. As in, inspire me to shower more frequently. Appreciate my clean home. And love my family, mental health and social status.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Fannie May: June 2nd, 2011-October 2nd, 2012.

I am going to spare details. I will probably re-live the moment Fannie passed, and how she died many, many more times throughout my life.  The images, unfortunately stained in my brain.  I just hope it isn't the same for Brock.  I instead, would like to write about and remember all the moments prior to her tragic end, at the hand of a passing vehicle on our street.

In most people's opinion, Fannie May came into our lives at a very in-opportune time.  I was pregnant with my 3rd child, just starting residency, and we had just lost our wonderful, irreplacable Tali. To most, getting a tiny Coonhound/Great Dane mix puppy, which would soon become, a giant puppy, was an overwhelming, possibly irresponsible, decision.  And I cannot say that I don't somewhat agree.  But, I saw her, met her, and knew she was ours.  Love doesn't always make the most logical decisions. Yes, even I, someone regularly accused of being "cold-hearted", "lacking emotion", "inhuman", am not immune to the power of love.  Especially, when it comes to all things small, adorable, sweet and perfect.  This puppy licked, and loved our boys from the first moment she met them, until her last.  She never, ever, even hinted at the thought of nipping, growling, or biting these little boys.  George, loved to pull her ear, he would pull and pull, until he got it to his mouth to suck on it.  Curtis thought she was his own personal pillow.  Brock let her outside nearly every morning, and his cute little voice, calling her name put a smile on my face. Every time. Being a puppy, she loved playing in the backyard with the boys, and all Summer, she enjoyed the hose and pool just as much as they. In fact, she thought all their toys were her toys!  All of them.

Yes, Fannie destroyed more children's toys, clothing, and accessories than I care to recollect, but we have an over abundance of all that stuff, anyway, perhaps she was doing us a favor.  She grazed the table top, as her head easily reached above it, and enjoyed many treats straight from the trash can.  She thought that the furniture was placed for her personal use, especially the green striped chair in the living room.  She would relax, with her hunches in the chair and just watch the animals, people, and cars go by our house.  She didn't bark, just sweetly, serenely observed.  Despite her many, many puppy-like and often aggravating habits, her demeanor was indescribably perfect.  I loved her.  I laughed at her long, gangly legged-attempts to run up the stairs that often ended in her slipping back down, due to a severe lack of coordination.

I watched her attempt to sit in, not only my lap, Matt's lap, Curtis' or Brock's lap, but also nearly every other visitor who gave her even an iota of attention.  That huge dog, thought she was being sly. She would lay her head in your lap, then raise a paw up to the lap, then the other paw...all while her head remain in the same position.  As if we didn't notice the slow addition to all the rest of her appendages and body.  Just silly, plain silly.  Which is why she fit in so well with our motley crew.  I often get complimented on how "happy" we always look.  And Fannie was no exception.  Her jovial, playful, flippant attitude is what got her into trouble in the end.

She may not have been around for too long, but she will be missed as though we had her forever.  We loved you, and love you still, Fannie May.  And Brock hopes you are having fun in heaven with Tali, digging holes in the dirt, eating trash, drinking from the toilet, chewing up burp clothes...

Monday, October 1, 2012

Don't Worry. Be Happy.

As a parent, you worry.  It's unavoidable, absolutely.  I can attest to this, because I am in no way a worrier.  I may panic (probably due to the fact that I never worry. Therefore, when a stressful event like a test, or swim meet finally approached, it would suddenly dawn on me, crap, maybe I'm not prepared!?) But I don't worry.  Until these kids existed, that is.  And Brock, with his stubbornedd and neurosis, is no exception.  He gets so obsessed with things, I have to bribe him to do fun stuff!  Just the other day, while at a parade, he got offered a pony ride, but he wanted a sucker.  His little brain cannot comprehend that he can both ride the pony AND have a sucker.  I imagine his mind to be saying, "sucker, sucker, sucker, sucker, sucker, I want a sucker, where's a sucker, sucker sucker."  I had to tell him he could have 2 suckers if he rides the pony.
Why not let him miss out, you wonder?  Well, when he can't come up with a good reason as to why he doesn't want to do something, or try something, he decides it's because he is scared.  And with his elephant-like memory, these things turn into true fears.  He remembers the situation. He remembers there was a pony, and he didn't want to ride it, therefore, he must be afriad.  He does not remember that he didn't ride it because he was too busy obsessing about suckers.  So, he got on the horse, and probably only enjoyed the ride half as much as he would have, due to concentrating so hard on trying not to smile.  Damnit, his parents were right.  That was fun.

Brock is in pre-school now, for a half day on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. He LOVES school.  Loves it.  I love it, because he loves it.  Summer is rough for a kid who wants to know and understand the entire world, how it works, how to fix it.  I've said it since he was born, Brock thrives off stimulation. Think he will be an over-commited adult, like his mommy?  Anyway, I attended "Back to school night" of sorts a few days ago.  I could not wait to hear from someone who has seen, worked with, and taught 3.5 year olds nearly as long as I've been alive. Miss Mary taught a couple of Matt's brothers in preschool at St. Ann's as well.  If anything can quench a parent's worry about the behavior, progress and social skills of their child, it's an experienced teacher. She seemed ambivalent.  According to her, Brock is not doing anything out of the ordinary for a three year old, and participating well in class.  So, for now, I can rest assure that Brock is not a trouble-maker in Miss Mary's eyes.  In fact, she said that he is part of the threesome that LOVES the cars, trains and trucks.
While in the classroom, I was scouting the room for "Alex".  When Brock comes home from school, he will admit to having only one friend, "Alex".  I thought maybe he just remembered this kid's name because it is the same as his cousin, Alexander.  I thought, surely he plays with more than one child.  There are no nametags, so I have to just listen to the mom's say their kiddo's name.  I couldn't find him.  Maybe Alex didn't show up.  In my observant stalking of all the children, I noticed this one kid.  He was the only one taller than Brock.  He had shaggy hair like Brock, only blonder.  He was dressed nearly identical with loafers, shorts, a sweater and a polo (though Brock was a bit more casual in a sweatshirt instead) and most of it from Gap; the two frat boys of the classroom.  I just couldn't help but notice this kid, he stood out to me, probably because of the many similarities between him and Brock.  The two of them easily looked a year older than the rest of the class.  The only difference between the two, is that this boy was clearly extroverted, while Brock tended to himself.

We are packing up to leave, and finally, I hear, "OK, let's go Alex."  I immediately turn my head, to find that Alex is Brock's bigger, slightly frat-ier classmate!  Of course, it is.  I go up to his mother and say, "So, this is Alex, apparently, he is Brock's only friend."  And she smiles, and exclaims, "And you're Brock's mom!? Alex talks about him nonstop."  We go on to chat for a while, finding out that we know a few mutual people, and that we both went to IU and graduated the same year!  What was in that water!?  Seriously, we all create huge, beautiful boys. Maybe, this is Indiana's way of finally having a good football team, they found some genetic secret and infused us all; look out, in 17 years we will dominate.  And speaking of dominating, let's hope these 2 big boys remain sweet, and innocent.  I no longer worry about him socializing, I worry about him becoming the bully.  In short, the night wiped away some of my worries, but created others.  The cycle never ends.