Category Archives: Scary Bits of Life

Losing My Stuff…And the Dog

It had been such a nice weekend. Really, it had. Every year, my community does a big festival the first week of October. Friday night there is a cruise-in, Saturday is a parade, and Saturday and Sunday are a street fair. Since my mother is up for re-election this year, we attended most of it. While wearing “Vote for Nancy” shirts. With the kids handing out campaign stuff and asking passers-by to “Please vote for my Grandma.” Go ahead, say it. Awwwwww

We missed the parade, though, because Wyatt and Noah had their last soccer games on Saturday. Part of me is sad for them since they really loved playing. Then the part of me that doesn’t have to spend almost every evening at the soccer field throws a big fat party.

So, anyhow, the weekend. It was nice. It was productive. It was even spiritually enlightening. Overall, it was great.

Until approximately 5:45 Sunday evening.

That would be when Sean called me, as I was driving home from helping my mom one last little bit at the street fair, and said “Um, we have a little bit of an emergency here—are you almost home?”

As I wasn’t home to assess damage and daddy apparently gets a little more easily freaked out than I do, an ambulance was already on the way by the time I reached the house. Apparently, Eli had been on a bike with training wheels and Sean had asked Noah to push him for a bit. Sean thought Noah would know to be really gentle. Sean was wrong. One good shove later, blood was everywhere and Eli’s tooth was shoved way the heck towards the back of his mouth.

A visit to Children’s Hospital and an emergency office visit to my (cosmetic) dentist (that man is AWESOME), the poor kid had essentially been through hell having his tooth pushed back closer to where it belongs (but it isn’t wanting to stay there). By the time we got home and tried to put him to be, he was MAD. As in, punching anyone who got close to him. Except Noah. He got a good poke in the eye.

A little after midnight, when we were finally all settled into bed, it occurred to me that I didn’t know where our one dog, Thunder, was. He snuggles up to me in a thoroughly obnoxious way when the nights get chilly. And last night was definitely chilly. And he wasn’t there. And I realized he didn’t greet us with the other dogs when we got home from the hospital. And I couldn’t remember seeing him since, oh, around lunchtime.

We searched the house. We checked the backyard. We looked in both cars. We went into our garage and sheds.

We couldn’t find him anywhere.

I spent a restless night alternately being woken up by a hungry baby, a 19-month-old in pain, and worry. Worry about my son. Worry about the missing dog in the cold air. And COYOTES! Have I mentioned we have coyotes around here? And you know that Jessica Simpson just lost her dog to a coyote. And if it can happen to a celebrity, where does that leave us mere mortals and our mere mortal dogs???

When I left this morning to get Eli’s prescriptions filled, he was still missing. I even did a lap around the neighborhood on the way out to see if he was anywhere out in the open. Or squished on the road (horrible, I know, but I’m just being honest).

As I wondered the store, I got a phone call from Sean. He just wanted to let me know that his car stunk of nervous dog. But Thunder was safe and sound.  He had apparently gotten in there when Noah was getting a sucker out of the car yesterday and, even though he saw him jump in, neglected to make sure that Thunder got back OUT before closing the door. And the fact that Sean and I BOTH checked that stinkin’ car last night (Sean even opened the door!)??? Who the heck knows. I’d like to think the stupid dog learned his lesson but, well…Let’s just say that shih tzu’s aren’t the brightest breed in the kennel.

So here I am—sleep deprived and on the verge of a nervous breakdown. Oh, and unable to cook a meal for my family since Sean was in the middle of swapping our old stove for a new one when all hell broke loose. So I currently have two stoves, but they are both in the garage. Which is, of course, incredibly useful.

And my poor little boy, by son with an incredible smile, still has a horribly swollen mouth and a Cletus tooth. And I still don’t know if it will go back into place, fall out, or have to be pulled. 😦 Thankfully, though, he is feeling much better. And what kid is going to complain about living off of ice cream, popsicles, pudding, and applesauce?

So, when it rains it pours. But at least my dog is home—alive and safe. So every cloud has its silver lining. He maybe a stinky, brain-dead silver lining, but I’ll take it.

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Filed under Daily Life, Kids, Parenting, Scary Bits of Life

Adding to the Gray Hair Count

Around here, Saturdays are not a time to relax. Sean and I vie for the opportunity to complete projects that are just too difficult to do on our own with the kids around. He hopes to mow the lawn and do projects like putting in new windows. I go grocery shopping and do more involved house cleaning. It is always a day of constant movement and commotion.

Saturday dinner is frequently a little on the late side, and almost always a bit more casual than other days. Tonight, we threw some hamburgers on the grill, cooked the corn I bought this morning at the farmer’s market, and sat down to eat. Noah insisted we open a jar of the pickles I canned with my mom this week. Sean brought a cutting board to the table and sliced up a tomato my mom had given my boys fresh from her garden.

I rushed through my dinner so I could nurse Violet, who was becoming unhappy. As I sat with her, Sean and the kids started clearing the table. At one point, as Sean was in the kitchen, I heard Eli messing around on the table and had a terrible thought. I called into the kitchen, asking Sean if he had already cleared the sharp knife he used to cut the tomato. He rushed in to be sure that Eli hadn’t grabbed the knife since he hadn’t taken it off of the table. Eli didn’t have it.

It wasn’t on the table.

Caleb was nowhere to be seen. Sean started rushing around, calling for Caleb. As he entered Caleb’s bedroom, I heard the panic in his voice as he kept saying, “Is that blood? Where is the knife?”

Caleb was crying. He had one hand over his eye. His hands were red. Redness filled his mouth, dripping out and down his chin. I grabbed a washcloth to clean him up and try to figure out where, and how badly, he was cut. Sean went back into the bedroom to try and find the still-missing knife.

As I started dabbing at Caleb’s mouth, Sean came out with…an open tub of cherry Crystal Light mix. That’s when we looked and saw the missing knife, safely sitting in the sink.

And now you know—if you ever need to look like you’re bleeding to death, just try to eat a container of powdered drink mix. It is ridiculously convincing.

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Filed under Daily Life, Kids, Parenting, Scary Bits of Life

Update on My Father-in-Law

First, thanks you to everyone who prayed for my father-in-law.

After running all of their tests on Friday and finding six blockages to his heart, the doctors decided that he was stable enough for them to play golf over the weekend for them to wait for an opening in the operating room today.

The nice thing about this was that he was able to get a five hour furlough from the hospital yesterday to come to the family get-together that had been planned for over a month. His younger sister from down south was there. And a couple of relatives that have refused to be in the same room together for about a year now called a truce (and even seemed to be patching things up!) for the occasion. Prayers were said and love was expressed. I’m really glad that he got to be there.

On the way home, I told Sean that his dad was obviously more concerned than he was letting on. When Sean asked why, I pointed out that Tom had kissed me on the cheek when he left.

“Yeah, me too,” Sean said.

“Um, your dad has NEVER kissed me,” I pointed out.

“Well, I think he is just accepting that things might not go how he hopes tomorrow,” he answered.

Um, you say potato, I say beady-eyed root vegetable. (“You say potato, I say potato,” just doesn’t work well in print.)

From what I understand, Tom’s surgery started about  7:00 or 8:00 this morning and ended around 3:00 or 4:00 this afternoon—longer than expected. I still don’t know if he ended up with a triple or quadruple bypass. (Even though there were six blockages, some were in the same arteries. We teased him that he should be ashamed of himself for getting us all worked up over a sextuple bypass when, it turns out, he would “only” need a triple or quadruple one.) We are still finding out details but, apparently, it took so long because they were having a hard time finding soft tissue to graft the veins onto.

We are being told that he has very advanced heart disease. That is not at all what we had expected to hear. Before the surgery, they told us that, other than the blockages, his heart seemed to be in good condition. So this is a complete change from what we were expecting.

For right now, we are trying to focus on the short-term relief of knowing that he is through the surgery ok. But long term? We’re scared.

 

ETA: We just found out that it was a quadruple bypass.

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Filed under Scary Bits of Life

Week 34—The Weather Report

At this point, it has basically been a whole month since I have done any kind of pregnancy update. Mostly, this is because I’ve never felt like doing a picture. I actually tried to do one last week, but they all turned out awful. And you aren’t getting one today—after working in the garden in 85 degree weather, I’m just not even going to try.

Honestly, I probably wouldn’t be doing an update today if I didn’t feel a little bit like my hand was being forced. But, you know, sometimes other people talk about things you hadn’t planned on discussing, so you feel like you need to explain.

If you are a man and go to church with me, for the love of all things holy, run. NOW.

Friday afternoon, I woke up from my nap to find that I was a little, um, damp. (I warned you.) I monitored the situation for a little while, then decided to call my midwife. You see, when I was pregnant with Wyatt, I went through the exact same thing for a few days. Then my water totally broke. But that was ok since I was past my due date that time. This time, I was much more concerned about the situation. My midwife suggested that I wait and see if anything had changed by the next morning. The problem came and went for the rest of the day.

Saturday afternoon, during my baby shower, my mother asked me if I was still having problems. While I was getting refreshments. I told her that we would talk about it later since, you know, I really didn’t think Miss Manners would sign off on discussing the relative humidity of my unmentionables over cake and punch.

(How the heck would you determine that one? About fifteen percent? Twenty? I’ve never been very good at rating things. Just like those stupid smiley face pain assessment charts that are in every single labor and delivery room.

Wong_pain_scale

Since they have never handed me a mirror when they ask me to rate my pain, you would think they would be a little more qualified to judge—seeing as how they are LOOKING AT MY FACE while they ask. Anyhow…)

So, I thought I had dodged any public discussion of my private parts.

When I woke up Sunday morning, the problem had returned. I decided it was time to go have things checked out. We decided that Sean and the kids would go to church, and I would go to the hospital.

Shortly before they left, Noah came up to me and said, “Mommy, you’re LEAKING?”

No matter how many times I have pointed it out to him, my husband still hasn’t figured out that there are certain things you shouldn’t say to little kids because they will, invariably, repeat them.

I told Noah that under no circumstance was he to discuss that with people at church. So, of course, I was not surprised to learn that when Sean went to get Caleb from the nursery, Noah took the opportunity to announce to every adult present that his mommy was leaking.

Sigh.

Of course, it appears that his grandmother may have rivaled him in the discretion department that day, so I guess I can’t give him too much grief about it.

I am considering teaching my husband a lesson, though. You see, he justified sharing that information with the kids by telling me that he thought it would be good to explain to them how the baby is floating in water in my tummy so they would learn more about what was going on with the pregnancy. So I’m thinking I’ll tell them when I lose my mucous plug. And when they ask what that means? I’ll send them to daddy. He’s good at explaining those pregnancy things.

So, yes, I did go to the hospital yesterday morning. And, no, they do not think that I am “leaking.” Which leaves little explanation for the issue. Well, ok, they did give me one possible explanation, but I feel very certain that it isn’t what is happening.

For now, I’ll just shrug my shoulders, watch, and wait. I’m not going to let it slow me down (even more). I spent the day doing housework and the evening hoeing. The garden, that is. As opposed to ho-ing which, based on the looks and comments that I have been getting recently from some rather skanky-looking men, there appears to be a certain subset of the male population that thinks I am currently qualified for.

Gross.

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Filed under A Scary Look into My Mind, Kids, pregnancy, Scary Bits of Life

Why Do the Criminals Get All of the Rights?

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In case you are wondering, that is what happens when you bang your head against the keyboard.

So, when I wrote about the Lying Jerk Face (heretofore known as LJF) who backed into me yesterday, there are a few things that I left out. I did it on purpose, because I wanted to confirm what I suspected before I said it here.

Soooooo…

You know how I said he tried to talk me out of calling the police? I mean REALLY, REALLY tried? And then got mad when I did it anyhow?

Did you know that, if you have enough personal information about a person, you can pull up their driving record on the Bureau of Motor Vehicles website? Ah, see, you learned something today. Or, at least, I learned something. Actually, I learned A LOT of something.

For instance…

  • LJF has two separate DUI’s and a drug conviction.
  • He refused to take a breathalyzer on the scene of both DUI’s.
  • His license has been revoked five times (three concurrent for one offense, two concurrent for another offense) and is currently driving under a three year restriction.
  • He has settled an injury case out of court.
  • He was picked up by the cops twice in the same day (once for reckless driving, once for one of the DUI’s) in two different counties.
  • He currently has 14 points on his license. (Fourteen! People, that takes effort! Especially when your license has been revoked for half of the reporting period!)

And that is just the standard three-year driving record report. Who knows what this idiot did before then?

Could someone please tell me why the heck this guy is still on the road??? Or why the cop on the scene of our accident didn’t press him a bit harder instead of just acting like I was wasting his time by wanting him to take a police report?

Or, better yet…

You know how I said that you can get this information if you have enough personal information about someone? When the cop came, he had us each fill out two forms. One was our statements about what happened in the accident. The other asked for our name, address, phone number, birthday, driver’s license number, social security number, and insurance company. After we filled those out, the cop gave me his, and GAVE HIM MINE!

That’s right. LJF, who is a CONVICTED CRIMINAL, has ALL of my personal information! The only thing he didn’t get was my insurance policy number! And that was the only bit of information that he actually needed!

People, I’m going to order a complete criminal background check on him. Because I only know what shows up related to his driving record. And, given what a gem THAT shows him to be, I would really like to know what else this guy who now possesses my Social Security number and HOME ADDRESS has done. You know, in case I want to get a concealed carry permit.

And, if he does have a record outside of his stellar driving performance? I will raise hell with the police department. This should not be legal. They had to know who they were handing my personal  information over to when they did it. And that? That is just wrong.

ETA: And now they are talking on the news about how they are going to start reading Miranda Rights to terrorists. See? We have to protect the rights of those criminals. People who pine for the days of the Warren court need their heads examined.

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Filed under I think my head might explode, Idiot Files, Scary Bits of Life

Sometimes, I Hate People

Or…

Is it Wrong to Hope He’ll Rot in Hell? Because This Life Sure Isn’t Fair.

 

First, let me start by saying that yesterday was a completely lovely day. I even got a nap. And I had wanted to write a positive blog post today to balance out my last one. Obviously, that’s not happening.

Sigh.

In an effort to make today another lovely day (like yesterday), I thought it would be fun to take the kids to our local children’s museum. After all, it was raining outside. Plus, the museum has a new exhibit about dragons which I figured the boys would really enjoy. So, we got ready, loaded up and hit the road.

A couple of miles from the museum, I stopped behind a pickup truck at a stop sign. Let me rephrase: I stopped SEVERAL FEET behind a pickup truck at a stop sign and SAT THERE, MOTIONLESS for a few second. Then, I watched his reverse lights come on. And I laid on my horn as he proceeded to back into me.

He pulled back up and, for a minute there, I thought he was going to take off. He finally got out and, at first, tried to say that it looked like my car wasn’t damaged. Yeah. Except for those dents in my bumper and that spot where the grill is cracked in half.

accident1

accident2

accident3

We pulled off of the road into an abandoned parking lot and I proceeded to call and report the accident. That was the point at which he started begging me to Please, Please, Please just exchange insurance information with him because he doesn’t have a good driving record and he’s going to lose his license over this.

Um, no. And dude, if you are that big of a menace on the road, you shouldn’t be allowed to drive.

After I called the police, he told me that if I was going to go and make things difficult by reporting the accident, he just wouldn’t give me his insurance information. Yeah, nice, huh? Of course, it turns out that this probably had more to do with the fact that he didn’t have it on him. (Did he think I would just trust him when he broke out with some random policy number without me being able to verify that he wasn’t just pulling it out of a bodily orifice?)

At this point, I was getting concerned because I suspected what he was going to do. And I was right. When the cop showed up, the dude LIED TO HIS FACE. That’s right. Apparently, he was just sitting at that stop sign, tweedle deedle dee, innocent as can be, when I slammed into the back of his truck.

People, livid does not begin to describe how I feel about this situation.

Now, I don’t think the cop believed him. After all, he didn’t ticket me. But he didn’t ticket HIM, either. And that means that I’m on the hook for my insurance deductible. Oh, and to make it even more cheerful? In order to perpetuate his lie and try to save his own a…hem…butt, he has filed an insurance claim trying to make ME pay for the damage to HIS CAR.

Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

I wish that outburst would have been even slightly cathartic.

So, yeah, I’ve got a busted grill (or my car does…my face, and every other part of my body, is fine), a $500 deductible, a lying jerk to deal with, and—to make it even more enjoyable—little boys who have been playing compare and contrast this accident to the last one all day long. Because I really want them to have to think about that, too.

But, there may be hope.

You see, he was apologizing and trying to convince me to not report the accident WHILE I WAS ON THE PHONE WITH 911 DISPATCH. I’ve requested a copy of the call and should have it in a few days. I’m hoping that he’ll be audible on it. At the very least, I know that I will be, and I was having to interrupt my conversation with the dispatcher to reply to what he was saying.

Call me uncharitable, but I’m hoping it will be enough to pin his hide to the wall.

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Filed under I think my head might explode, Idiot Files, Scary Bits of Life

I Don’t Remember My Parents Going Through Stuff Like This

Yesterday, I had four happy, healthy little boys who spent the morning vigorously cleaning their toy room with their great-grandmother and playing with their visiting cousins all afternoon. I had a fifteen-month-old who was laughing and playing and hugging and kissing and being totally normal.

Until bedtime.

That’s when Eli started crying for no immediately noticeable reason. It wasn’t a ticked off cry because he wasn’t ready for bed. It seemed to be a pretty obvious “I hurt” cry. Since I couldn’t see anything wrong with him, I decided to check his diaper and make sure nothing was getting pinched.

Oh. My. Gosh.

While I’m sure it wasn’t a logical conclusion, I thought that one of his test*cles had moved to the other sided of his boy parts. Like they got tangled or something. I’m guessing that doesn’t happen but, people, that is definitely what it looked like. One side looked empty, and the other side was way too big and looked like it had two. In my book, this was not the kind of thing that you wait a day to see if it gets better. By 8:15 pm or so, Eli and I were in the car heading for the Emergency room at Children’s Hospital.

Thankfully, they were able to get him in pretty quickly, since he was having repeated bouts of inconsolable crying. No question about it, my poor boy was hurting. When the doctor came back, he determined quickly that he had a hernia. Then he went about trying to push it back where it belonged.

And I thought my son was in pain before. Wow.

He was able to get the “big part” in, but couldn’t get the rest in. He told me that we would wait a bit and try again. If that didn’t work, they would sedate him and try again. If THAT didn’t work, they’d call a surgeon and transfer him for emergency surgery. But, don’t worry, because that NEVER actually happens. They can always get them back in.

Uh, yeah. I guess they made an exception for us.

The ER doctor tried. He really did. And it was obvious that Eli did feel significantly better after he got that first big part in. The rest, however, would not budge. Plus, there was something else in there—roughly the same size and shape as his test*cle (no, not the other one…it WAS where it belonged, but that is why it looked like he had two on one side.). The surgeon was called.  He decided that surgery was necessary for an incarcerated hernia (basically, that means it was stuck and could cut off the blood supply to the intestine and cause that part to die and have to be removed—it can become dangerous) and a hydrocele (that other lump). I was comforted when I realized that the surgeon on call was the same one that had done Eli’s surgery for penile adhesions when he was about six months old.

The other kids went to grandma’s house and Sean came to help me. At around 1:30 am, Eli went in for surgery. Luckily, I had brought him in quickly enough that his intestine was not damaged so the surgery was a pretty routine thing that only required about a 1 inch incision. And, while he was at it, the surgeon decided to check up on his previous work and took care of the fact that Eli was starting to to develop adhesions again. That’s right—we got a two-for-one surgery (I wonder if THAT would happen under universal health care?). By a little past 3:00 am, we were in our recovery room.

You’ve all been in hospital rooms before, right? I’m assuming you are familiar with the concept of a “bed” for visitors. You know, those weird little chairs that have to be bent and folded like a Transformer until it creates a hard, flat surface to lay on. Yeah, we had ONE of those. I tried to lay down on it (despite the fact that I haven’t even been able to sleep in my own bed for over four months). After about ten or fifteen minutes of feeling like my legs were being ripped from my hips, I gave up and told Sean to enjoy his chair-bed. I sat in what was barely a step up from an office chair and read some of the Ann Coulter book, Godless. Of course, as much as I enjoy her reasoning and snarky delivery, there comes a point where lack of sleep turned my brain to applesauce and I couldn’t even do that anymore.

When Sean woke up at 6:00, I went back to the Transformer chair and “relaxed” in pain for about two hours. That was the totality of my sleep for the night. Which means that I spent the rest of the day feeling, well, about the same as I have for the past few months. But, at least this time I had a completely understandable reason, right? Not that that stopped Sean from spending two hours at the office this afternoon (I swear, dear, I’ll only be there for less than an hour…), then came home and immediately started mowing the lawn. Because I obviously would be able to nap through that. Bless his heart, it really is in the right place (even when he’s being totally oblivious).

We were discharged from the hospital right around lunch time. As soon as they took the IV out of Eli’s hand, he insisted on being set down so he could run around the recovery room. He has been amazingly happy and normal ever since then. I am just stunned by how little it seems to be affecting him. Other than a normal dose of Tylenol at 9:00 am, he hasn’t even had any pain medication. You would never guess that he just went through all that pain and surgery last night. For that, I am incredibly grateful.

If I can get a night of serious sleep, life will be good.

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Filed under Kids, Pain, Scary Bits of Life