Friday, January 15, 2016

2015 Reading

It's funny, I'm trying to "revamp" this blog and going thru old posts.  Keeping some, removing others.  In doing so I realized I've been trying to keep a reading list for about 4 years now.  I've tried to reach 50 books in one year and while I did get closer some years, others I came no where near it.  That is kinda disappointing so instead of setting a goal I'm just going to try and read as much as I can ..... hopefully this year I WILL reach my previous 50 books goal!

If you have any suggestions, I'd love to hear them!

Books Read
1.  The Girl On The Train - Paula Hawkins
2.  Moms On call

Currently Reading

Up Next at Some Point

The Ultimate Marriage Vow - Darlene Schacht
The Search - Nora Roberts
Mini Shopaholic - Sophie Kinsella
At the Water's Edge - Sara Gruen
Parenting Teens with Love and Logic - Foster Cline
Parenting a Teen Girl - Lucie Hemmen
Not that kind of girl - Lena Dunham
Miracles 32 True Stories - Joanie Hileman
Love & Respect - Dr Emerson Eggerichs
Wake Up Happy - Michael Strahan
Troublemaker - Leah Remini
All the Light we cannot see -
Where we belong - Hoda Kotb
The Last Anniversary - Liane Moriarty
The Virtuous Life - Darlene Schacht

Starting Next - Debbie Macomber
The Midwife of Hope River - Patricia Harman
The Vow - Kim Carpenter
Private Games - James Patterson
NYPD Red - James Patterson
Another Piece of my heart - Jane Green

Mothers and Other Liars by Amy Bourret
Imperfect, An Improbable Life by Jim Abbott.
The Peach Keeper by Sarah Addison Allen
Always Something There to Remind Me by Beth Harbison.
The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan
The Divorce Party - Laura Dave
The First Husband - Laura Dave

The Four Agreements - Don Miguel Ruiz
The Go Giver - Bob Burg
Eat That Frog - Brian Tracy
Good to Great - Jim Collins
Exception Service, Exceptional Profit - Leonardo Inghilleri
Good Strategy Bad Strategy - Richard Rumelt
EntreLeadership - Dave Ramsey
You are a badass - Jen Sincero

Monday, April 13, 2015

Helping One Person

I can't begin to tell you how many times I've read inspiration posts or articles where the write says "if I helped one person, then I've accomplished my mission".  Well today I felt like that when I posted this link on my FB page:  Judging Women Using IVF.  Before I was married and TTC I had no clue what was truly involved if you were having problems.  I had a friend, 11 years ago who struggled to have her second (her first there were no problems).   We were young and didn't know any better and said all the cliché things "don't try to hard" "it will happen when you least expect it" - all of the things I know now not to say.  You're trying to help but the reality is, it doesn't. 

Another friend was TTC the same time we were with Little Man, BEFORE we started with the RE.  I may not have said the same phrases but I still didn't know exactly how to help.  I cringe at the thought of what I did say.  Thankfully my BFF KNOWS I really did mean well.

I've been very open about our struggles in part because while we were TTC both times I craved someone to talk to who had been through the similar feelings I was having.  No one knows what its like unless you've been there.

Currently I have one friend who I would love to reach out to, but I don't know if its known that I'm aware there may be problems.

Back to my "aha" moment.  A friend who I haven't really spoken with in years reached out to me today after my above post.  They just had their first failed IVF and my heart breaks for them.  I truly wanted to reach through FB and hug her.  I wanted to call her and tell her all the things I so desperately wanted my friends to tell me - but lets admit it, since we haven't truly talked in years that would be stalker-ish ahahahaha.  I responded the best way I could, offered some advice and will keep them in my prayers.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Enjoy the Small Things

I follow Kelle Hampton's Blog with the same title as this post.  Today for some reason I've been feeling melancholy and wasn't sure why.  Still not exactly sure to be honest.  Could be pregnancy hormones, could be the weather, could be my first holiday without mom near me.  Yes she is still physically her but MY mom who I could talk to at any time and carry on a real conversation with is gone.  Alzheimer's is something that will haunt me for the rest of my life.

So through the bleh, through the sadness I'm trying to appreciate all that I do have.  I have an amazing family.  An amazing husband, who even though I kept saying "no its ok, you don't have to come to the office to visit with the kids", ignored me and showed up.  My heart skipped a beat as my Little Man ran through the building lobby to get to me.

Tonight I will say "eff it" to the laundry and cleaning the house.  We will order in dinner, color easter eggs, and then cuddle up on the couch watching some easter shows.  I need to enjoy my 2 littles before the 3rd make its appearance.

My 3rd little is something that even though the bean is making me sick as a dog, I am so beyond blessed and grateful for.  Its a dream come true.  And despite the puking, I'm trying to cherish every minute of my 9 months selfishly alone with it.

Happy and Blessed Easter to all.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Night One, the beginning of ALZ

Guilt is setting in - not sure if I can do this.  I know its all in my head.  I can and will pull myself together but my heart was breaking last night.

Anyone who knows me or my family will know that we are chatty - hell my mother would always talk to people standing in line near her when I was growing up and it used to mortify me.  Now I do the same in return to my daughter!  To sit next to her and have her quiet kills me.

Any caregiver will tell you that you will always second guess yourself - and officially a month into this and I can't count how many times I've done it.  Its a full time job and I wonder how I'm going to pull it off with a FULL TIME job, two kids and a husband.

We saw a second nursing home yesterday, one that also has a day program and I felt like God was leading me to an answer.  I was desperate and K suggested looking up the home he used to work in (doing security at night to pay for our wedding) - two clicks and the adult program was staring me in the face.  A possible answer to my prayers.

After leaving the home we picked mom up and brought her to our house - she was quiet all evening.  Went to bed, got up.  Went to bed, off to the bathroom.  Repeat.  Repeat.  Sat on the couch and told me maybe this wasn't a good idea and she should sleep at home from now own :(  Her knitting does seem to be a life saver and helps alleviate the anxiety.  I don't want to see her doped up but I think that the doctor needs to give her more anti-anxiety meds, especially if we do end up moving her to our home.

It sounds cruel to say, but since things are progressing so fast I almost hope she'd qualify for the nursing home sooner rather than later.  Anything I've read has said keep to routine, keep to the familiar.  Could moving her to our home only to go to a nursing home be harder? Unfortunately there is no way to know - there goes that second guessing again.

I'd like to say maybe tonight will be better, but I know not to get my hopes up.  I'm reading Staying Afloat in a Sea of Forgetfulness.  The author was his father's caretaker and talked about how he had to become such a light sleeper because dad would wonder.  Last night I had a glimpse of that world ....

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Blessed With The Family I Have

In spite of all the craziness in life, the craziness of the holidays, I need to take a minute to recognize how truly bless I am, and we are, as a family.

This blog was started to chronicle TTC our first child together.  H was a surprise in a previous relationship - but the best surprise one could ever ask for.  I know we were blessed in that it did not take AS long as it has taken some others, but that didn't make each negative pregnancy test any easier.

Little Man was born and we were overjoyed.  Thing is, he was supposed to have a twin so that first Christmas was so hard.  It was amazing to see him watch the lights and all but my heart continuously looked around for that other baby.  Our "B".  Each year has gotten a little easier but the ache is still there.

But I know I'm lucky and blessed - I get to shop for and watch two children enjoy opening presents on Christmas morning.  Not every woman gets that.  Too many have empty arms and hearts that are just waiting to be filled with the joy that only a child can bring. 

So this Christmas when you see a couple without children be extra nice to them and never assume they have chosen to be childless.

For more information check out this blog:

Monday, December 15, 2014

Switching Places With Your Parent

As an only child you know the time will eventually come where you have to carry the load yourself and switch roles from being the "child" to being the "parent".  But its not something you can ever truly be prepared for.  Even as the parent gets older, you know the time is sooner rather  than later, yet you don't want to believe it will happen.  It does.  And let me tell you, this is when being an only child truly sucks.  More than you'll ever know if you aren't an "only".

My mom is in her early 80s (she'd kill me if she knew I wrote that so I REALLY won't write the specific number lol) and over the last five years I've noticed changes.  She'd forget things here and there but it was nothing major.  In the last year there has been a big difference and "the switch flipped" about a month ago.  I seem to be always referring to the switch to place a time on when things drastically changed.  Its something that has always been my fear because her sister was recently diagnosed with Alzheimer's (and not the only one in the family).  I write about the family connection because I really wonder about genetics.  "They" say it doesn't play a part, but I don't know that I believe that.  Of  course that leads me to worry about the position my kids will be in with me down the road.  Those are thoughts I have to put out of my head for now.

The "switch" happened like this .. I was at a doctor's appointment and missed a call from her.  When I called her back she said she had been feeling "weird" but was ok now so never mind.  K and I tried to call her back and she never answered which obviously scared the hell out of me.  Eventually we found out she went for coffee with a neighbor/friend who was helping calm her down.  A call was made to her primary doctor who asked her all the "usual" questions to see how far along she was with things.  An appointment was then made for 12/23 with the neuro institute at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital - a day which can't come fast enough for me. 

Since then there have been good days and bad days, although lately it feels more like bad moments and good moments.  We have had a few times where she's called me very upset and confused.  I can't imagine what that must feel like to her.

I get to make all the decisions and I am constantly second guessing myself.  K suggests we move her to live with us but everything I've read says that could do more harm than good.

We looked at a nursing home recently.  It wasn't bad.  But I couldn't believe this is where we are headed.  My mom has always been so strong and independent that the idea of being dependent on me is so foreign.  Once we were outside and on our way back to the car I had a break down.  I have to say I'm truly blessed to have K as my husband because he quickly stepped up to the plate and said everything I needed/wanted to hear.

I'm checking out another home this week - it has an adult day care program that provides transportation.  The idea of having someone in for a few hours in the evening hasn't gone over well but I need to keep pushing that.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Christian Wife

You expect to change as you grow older but I never envisioned how my faith would change. I grew up in a typical Irish Catholic household. We went to church every Sunday (although my dad didn't because as he put it, it was HIS day of rest since he worked 6 days a week. I went to Catholic school. I had God "shoved down my throat" or at least that's how it felt. I have to say in reading about Christian's upbringings I wish Catholics were more that way. God was to be feared, you didn't really hear "God loves you" often. It was more the nuns drilling into you how you would be punished if you sinned against him.

As I got into my teens years my faith waivered. I didn't have a desire to go to mass anymore. It didn't make sense and I never felt like the priest was talking about anything that had to do with ME.

When I had my daughter I tried to change how I did things and started to go to mass every Sunday with her. We said our prayers before bed and that was about it. There were no (obvious) books out there about how to raise your child believing in the good in God. Ok well maybe there was but I wasn't really looking for them and to be honest, I felt I had so much time ahead of me to instill faith in my child.

Fast forward to almost 5 years ago when I married my husband. I thought thing were going to be amazing. Here was a man I finally felt was my partner. Who acted like we were in this together, unlike how I'd felt in previous relationships. The wedding was everything I dreamed it would be.

Everyone talks about how marriage is hard work. Boy is THIS an understatement.  I don't think I've ever worked harder at anything in my life.  In the beginning things went smoothly, but as time went out we showed our true colors.  As anyone knows, in the beginning of any relationship we are always on our "best behavior" and what the other person to see our best side.

Within the last year I've found myself turning back to my faith and praying more and more.  Just after we did our precana requirement we accidentially rented Fireproof.  My husband saw it in Walmart and bought it purely based on the cover, not knowing what it was TRULY about.  It was probably one of the best mistakes we could have made.  The moveie, and the Love Dare in particular, have stuck with me since.  A few times since then I have worked on the Love Dare.  Unfortunately, I've never made it through the entire way because at some point we've ended up fighting or he did something that made me mad.

Because I enjoyed Fireproof, I liked the page on FB, as well as Kirk Cameron's Page.  That led me to Candace Cameron's page ... it was right around the time that Balancing It All came out.  I was drawn to the book in a way I could never described.  It resonated with me.  Could I do this?  Could I be THAT kind of wife?  I'll admit it did feel very 1950s.  But the more I read, the more I realized that wasn't true.  It had more to do with putting your marriage and husband first above anything else.  Maybe that's why I struggled with the Love Dare because I wasn't fully giving myself to God and my husband.  Like Candace, I struggled with HOW to pray.  No one every truly taught me that, aside from actual prayers to be said.  I've since learned how put myself and what I "need" into prayer.  I've learned to tell it like it is, so to speak, in my prayers.  I've learned to be specific, which is hard because it almost feels like I'm being selfish.

Candace's book lead me to the The Time Warp Wife and again, at first this seemed so foreign.  I'm a very outspoken person so it didn't feel natural to let my husband "lead" without giving my opinion.  But maybe that's what was wrong in our marriage.  Two people can't be leaders.  Its hard, so very hard to follow his lead.  Follow his direction when I don't always agree 100% with it.  I need to remind myself that he has our best interest at heart.

I'm currently reading my way through Courtney Joseph's Women Living Well.  Its hard, but marriage is hard work.  Its helping change the way I approach my husband.

That said, it doesn't mean I'm perfect now.  That everything I say or do is right.  I sruggle day in and day out. 

Last night I was at my breaking point.  We have been in the midst of moving for the last month.  Intially my husband was working his day job and then coming home at night to do the reno on our new apartment.  Then we dealt with the actual move.  Because of the time spent on the apartment he had to play catch up at work.  We barely see each other.  I'm left to finish moving the remaining small things, care for a 3yo and a 14yo, try to keep our new home clean, make dinner oh and did I mention I have a full time job outside of the house?   I feel like I'm doing everything on my own.  I get no help from anyone and especially no thanks.  I blew last night.  I bit my tongue to a large entent but my 14yo had to bear the brunt of my frustration. 

I'm not proud of myself.  I wish I could give her everything she wants, but when I do, I feel there is no appreication for it.  We are struggling with various things.  Struggling to give her the best life possible and I feel like (as any normal teen would I guess) she doesn't appreciate it. 

Now I go back to my reading.  I can't necessarily fulfill the Challenges in the book at this moment (seeing as how DH isn't HOME lol) but I'm still reading and praying.