Monday, August 30, 2010

Washing


Recently, because of the cast on my leg and the PICC line in my arm, I've been limited to baths -- with my right arm wrapped in plastic and my left leg hanging out of the tub. Needless to say, washing myself has been an interesting experience as of late. Yesterday, I'd finally had it! My PICC was pulled Saturday so, minus one ball and chain (the other, my cast, should be off next week) I was feeling rather spry. I wrapped my cast up good and tight and told Adam I'M TAKING A SHOWER!

In my entire lifetime, I have never experienced such a wonderful shower. It was pure bliss I tell you! I let the warm water pound my back, my chest, my face; I took a deep breath and felt the humid air enter my lungs, enjoying every second. As I stood there in the downpour, I started thinking about the past several weeks and, to my surprise, I began crying.

I've been a little down lately. I've been feeling very inadequate and I've been pretty hard on myself for my inability to conquer even the smallest tasks. Because of that, I've been feeling like a terrible mother and an even worse wife. Last weekend, Adam took care of the girls and let me sleep until almost 1:00 in the afternoon. Do you have any idea how indulgent that felt? On one hand it was so incredibly gratifying (and honestly, my body needed the rest) but on the other hand, the specter of guilt that has been haunting me ever since has me questioning whether or not it was worth it. The added stress of my injury, followed by that surprise hospitalization and at-home tune-up, has been creating a lot of tension in our home and beginning to drive a wedge between Adam and I. We have both been irritable and short of patience, and we've been taking it out on each other. That's not fair, I know, and I've scolded myself time and time again for doing it. But isn't that human nature: to take our crap out on the people we love, the people who deserve it least? Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this...

These frustrations and challenges of mine are valid. They may not be as substantial or as grievous as what others may be dealing with, but they are real. I forget that sometimes it's okay to just cry. As I let go and allowed the tears to come, mixing with the water that fell on my face, I started feeling better... lighter, somehow. I was suddenly overcome with the realization that I'm okay. This time in our lives has been difficult, sure, but I've been through difficult things before. What's more important than the trials themselves are the lessons I've learned by overcoming them.


When the rain passes, after it's washed everything in it's path, the sun inevitably comes out and the world looks a bit greener, a bit more radiant. Standing there under the shower's stream, I was reminded that it's during these storms -- when the skies are dark and our burdens seem heavier to bear -- that faith is most important. It's during these hard times that it becomes necessary to extend perfect trust, knowing that somehow things will work out, and more importantly, that we'll be stronger for having made it through the storm.

I don't know if it was this little experience, the liberation I've felt since being off IV's, or the fact that my sister took Morgan overnight this weekend so Adam and I could have some much needed alone time (thanks again, Teresa) but something has definitely brightened my mood. I woke up this morning feeling bright, refreshed, and fully prepared to take on the day. The thunder is quieting and I can see the clouds starting to clear in the distance. And rather than cursing the recent storm, I now feel a curious sense of appreciation for it's showers.

I needed a good washing.

Friday, August 27, 2010

A little peek


A few of my bloggy friends recently posted a picture of their daily medications. At first I thought meh... but then as I was getting ready to take my meds tonight, I figured what the heck. So there you have it.

This isn't a completely accurate picture: some of my natural supplements aren't pictured and some of the things seen here aren't a permanent part of my daily regimen (I'm not usually on IV antibiotics) but you get the gist.

Mini road trip


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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The good... and the bad

The good news is: the Doc says I'll be out of a cast and off crutches in two weeks!
The bad news is: that means two more weeks until I can wash my foot.

The good news is: considering how quickly the muscle in my upper leg has atrophied, my calf was considerably larger than I expected it to be after four weeks of immobility.
The bad news is: it was also considerably hairier than I expected.

The good news is: soon, I'll be able to walk again (with some assistance).
The bad news is: that means physical therapy starts soon, too.

The good news is: I go back to clinic on Friday and if my PFT's are acceptable, they'll pull my PICC.
The bad news is: if my PFT's aren't significantly higher than last Friday, I'll be on IV's for another week.

The good news is: I'm feeling great, so my hopes for coming home IV-free are high.
The bad news is: besides the fevers I was having, I was feeling pretty darn good and had no idea I was coming down with something in the first place.

The good news is: (for those of you who have missed the boob talk) my boobs are entirely pain free at this point and Morgan has handled weaning like a total champ.
The bad news is: I still cry over having to wean her before I felt like we were ready.

The good news is: I got a raise at work!
The bad news is: it won't quite make up for all the hours I'll be missing for physical therapy.

The good news is: this is the end of this post.
The bad news is: I'll be posting again before you know it.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Days like today

I cherish days like today when I find myself surrounded by loved ones, good food and laughter.

Days when late birthday parties are thrown because a pesky hospitalization got in the way of a proper celebration for my little one.



When kids can walk around in nothing but a diaper all day long and nobody cares.


I love days like today when we eat too much, then sit around enjoying each other's company and soaking up the sunshine.

When sweet moments are shared between mama and baby.




I adore days like today when I have absolutely nothing to do except relax.

When uncles and cousins help open birthday presents.


When chubby cheeks are plentiful and there is just so much love in the air, you can almost taste it.


Then, to top it all off, I get to go home and play peek-a-boo with my sweetheart.

Days like today are good for my soul.


Days like today are the exact reason I need to be home instead of cooped up in a hospital room hours away from here.

Days like today heal me.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Home

I was intending to post something as soon as I got home, but once I got here I realized that I needed some time to wind down. Or, perhaps more accurately, to wind myself up. It seems like that's what I'm doing these days --simply functioning on auto-pilot, walking (crutching) around like a wind-up doll. I'm so exhausted right now: physically, mentally, emotionally. Things have been tough these past few weeks, but I know that this injury is only temporary and that given time I'll start feeling like, well, ME again. So, I just keep truckin' along, and heaven knows I'm trying to do so with a smile.

When I got in touch with my clinic last week, I was told that my doctor was going to be out of town, but that there were other very competent doctors who would be able to take a look at me. Now, I love my doctor. I mean the woman has literally saved my life, in return for which I vowed to name my next child after her. What? It's a boy? Sorry, kid. I promised Holly at the University of Utah. Anyway, as much as I love the woman, I had just the tiniest inkling that she'd want to hospitalize me, what with the recurring fevers and increased cough, plus the decline in my PFT's. I also happen to know that she is opposed to home IV's. (In theory? Not so much. But to replace a hospital stay? Definitely.) From what I understand she has allowed it maybe once or twice, but only because the patient cried, begged, pleaded, offered her their firstborn and threatened to jump off the roof of the hospital before staying there. Okay, I may be exaggerating but only a little bit, I swear. So when I heard that I'd be seen by a different doctor, I secretly hoped that would mean I could talk my way out of a full two-week hospitalization.

Well, what do ya know? I calmly and collectedly presented my opinions (yes, we need to treat the infection) and ideas (but why not in the comfort of my own home?) to the team, hoping that would be enough to persuade them. Okay, so there may have been some crying, begging, pleading and promises I didn't intend to keep thrown in there, but what really matters is that they agreed! The deal was that after my fevers were under control and home health had a chance to get everything set up, I'd be set free. I'm grateful they held up to their end of the bargain, but now I'm trying to decide how best to break it to them that I'm not really related to Bill Gates nor was I one of the original Spice Girls so I may not be following through with certain promised payoffs.

Three days into this home IV therapy, I'm feeling very comfortable and confident with it. I'm learning to navigate this new adventure well. I've been able to go to work, spend time with my husband and baby and see my sister who is in town from Ohio (and has been a HUGE help). All the while, keeping up with my treatments and with my GemStar IV pump right by my side. I'll tell ya, being home kicks being in the hospital's butt anyday!

My home health nurse happens to be someone I've helped at work before. We don't know each other very well at all, just enough that we both recognized each other immediately. (Welcome to a small town.) She is very competent and caring and sweet and empathetic. She has been an angel, and just minutes ago she called me and totally made my whole week. She said that she's been thinking about me this week and she feels like she has learned a lesson from my situation. She said, "Seeing you at your job, I never would have guessed you had a baby at home, had recently suffered a serious injury, had a chronic illness, are now dealing with a set-back from that illness and yet you're still smiling and trying to work as much as possible." And then she went on to say, "I guess you never know how strong the people are that you meet; you never know what challenges they are facing. You are my hero for fighting the way you do, and I will always remember your story."

Wow! I was really touched -- but even more dumbfounded -- by that! I feel so weak and vulnerable right now. I feel like I've been complaining entirely too much. I feel like I'm short with Adam, even though he's trying his hardest to help me in every way possible. I feel like my entire world has come crashing down because of this stupid foot injury, when there are so many people out there facing real challenges who hold themselves together so much better than I do. I've cried so many times in the past few weeks, but when I think about how minimal my problems are in comparison to so many others, I get upset about feeling sorry for myself. And this sweet woman thinks I'm a hero?

I haven't quite wrapped my head around that yet, but the more I think about it, I do believe there is an explanation for her kindness. Something I too, experienced this week. Something extraordinary and wonderful and comforting that made me euphoric for a time, as well:

SHE MUST BE WEARING CABBAGE IN HER BRA!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

How To (hospital edition)

HOW TO ANNOY ME:
- Tell me you need another sputum culture because none of the last three have made it down to the lab yet.
- Ask me to stick my finger in that pulse oximeter when I know darn well you haven't sanitized it yet.
- Wake me up at 4:30 am for a blood draw.
- Wake me up ANYTIME, EVER for a blood draw.
- Have me pee in a plastic hat for two days, then admit that you must have misread my chart because you never needed to collect my urine in the first place.


HOW TO WOO ME:
- Help me wrap my engorged breasts, bring me ice packs for them, and check in on me the next day just to see how my boobs are doing.
- Understand that I NEED a coke like no one has EVER needed a coke in the history of the world.
- Ask if I need some ice cream when I mention how much I miss my baby.
- Remember that I prefer cranberry juice to pink lemonade, apple juice to orange, and that I always, always want milk with my meal, then prepare my food trays accordingly. Way to go, food guy!
- Tell me I'm an "easy" patient and that I remind you of why you chose a career in the medical field.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

My aching boobs

The title of this post is very indicative of what it will be about, so if you're uncomfortable with that, you might want to stop reading here and now.

This unexpected hospitalization has brought about another unforeseen change: weaning Morgan. It was not my intention to do so at this point, even though she is "old enough" by social standards. (That's another rant for another day.) However, I will be discharged on Monday and I'll be doing home IV's for the next two weeks. Up to this point, I have been lucky enough that none of my medications have interfered with breastfeeding, unfortunately that is no longer the case. I've gathered as much information as possible, thought about it, weighed the options and ultimately I feel like this is what I have to do. Only you breastfeeding mama's will understand what I mean when I say that it is TOTALLY RIPPING ME APART INSIDE!

I know this is going to sound so ridiculous to some of you, but had I known the last time I nursed her would be THE LAST TIME, I would have taken a few extra minutes to really appreciate the moment. To let her play with my hair and explore my face with her free hand once more. To feel her skin on my skin and listen to her sigh with contentment. I have truly been mourning today. Mourning the passing of this stage with my daughter, mourning the loss of that chest-to-chest closeness, mourning the fact that I will no longer be able to provide her that stability.

Anyway, I suppose it's convenient to wean her while we are separated. I honestly think that it's the only way I could do it, because if we were at home and she looked at me and asked (signed) to nurse, I don't think I could deny her that. So my plan was to go cold turkey over the weekend. To wrap 'em up and let 'em dry out. In theory it sounds like a good plan, but I wasn't expecting the excruciating pain involved in this process. I mean, I'd heard it was uncomfortable, but I figured "Hey, I've given birth. I've severed my achilles tendon. How bad can it be?" And now I'm thinking "Just go ahead and sever that other tendon if it'll help take my mind off this pain!" Just hours ago, my breasts were beautiful, life sustaining vessels. But they're gone now and have been replaced with giant, granite-hard, agonizingly painful torpedoes.

If I were home, I'd totally have cabbage leaves in my bra. (Except they are so engorged that I can't wear a bra, so I guess the cabbage would just be in my shirt.) In fact, I've heard it provides such wonderful relief that I probably would have boobed my way through half a head of cabbage by now.  But for some reason, I haven't been able to talk my doctor into putting an order in for some boob-cabbage. The last time I was hospitalized, I regularly called my mom in tears--an emotional wreck, missing my baby, feeling so alone. This afternoon I called her in tears saying "Oh, my boooooobs....".

The good news is that I have a sweet little nurse (who I immediately fell in love with because she reminds me so much of my Japanese aunt) who has been very helpful. She gave me some suggestions, brought in a pump and some heat packs, and she even helped me wrap my chest in ace bandages. My boobs will remain on hooter lockdown for the next few days.  Earlier today, I was concerned because there was a slightly creepy CNA who stopped by my room with unusual frequency to take my vitals, and twice he came in my room to just sit and talk. I don't mean to be vain, but I really think he had a bit of a crush on me. I'm not a shy person, but I just felt like it would be a bit uncomfortable to ask him to help me wrap my engorged breasts. Luckily my nurse showed up before I became that desperate.

I pumped a few ounces out of each breast to ease some of the discomfort and when the CNA returned, the bottle was sitting out on my bed tray. I saw him eying it, but he didn't say anything so I finally said to him "That's my breast milk. I'm weaning my baby this weekend, so I'm in A LOT of pain. Do you know if I could find some cabbage in the cafeteria?"

Not only is he now questioning my sanity, I'm fairly certain he no longer has a crush on me.

It is what it is


Life has been kind of crazy lately. Somewhere between my injury, the horrible reaction I had to a tetanus shot, going back to work just one week after surgery, Morgan turning one, and Adam facing yet another layoff, my body up and said "You know what? I'M TIRED" like it has the right to need a break.

The fevers started a week ago. Every night around 6:30 I started feeling warm and by 7:30 I felt as if I'd just been hit by a mack truck. These symptoms were eerily similar to what I experienced last year. I had been playing phone tag with my CF clinic for a week at this point. I wanted to let them know about my injury and ask if there was anything I could or should add to my daily regimen to help work my lungs during all this down time. When I finally reached them and casually mentioned the fevers I'd been having, the mood of our conversation was suddenly very sober: "Jenny, you NEED to come see us."

So, I came in yesterday (just a little feverish at the time). My PFT's were down 14% (Eeshk!). And now, I sit here typing this from a hospital bed with a wicked view of the Salt Lake Valley. 

I wasn't hospitalized for almost a decade, and now this is my second hospitalization in less than a year. That concerns me. I'm having difficult time accepting the fact that my body may be a bit more delicate than it once was.

Well that's all I have for now. I'll try to write again and include more details later, but for now, I'm going to curl up in this bed and take a nap before respiratory comes in for my treatments.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Scrumptious

Someone got her hands on some pretty scrumptious birthday cake last night...







The strawberry frosting made my kitchen look like a crime scene, but we had a total blast!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

August 2010 Newsletter: 12 months

Dear Morgan,

Happy birthday, baby girl! You're one year old! I've been thinking for a while about what I wanted to say to you on your birthday. I've even sat down to write this a few times, but I've just gotten so overwhelmed that I've had to walk away, leaving the computer screen completely blank. See, I've known this day was coming and I've repeatedly assured myself that I was okay with it. But just this morning, I opened my inbox and found that the weekly email that used to be titled "Your Baby This Week" is now titled "Your Toddler This Week" and I lost it! I would never have guessed that I'd be this emotional, this sentimental, this sappy.


In the weeks before you were born I spent a lot of time preparing for you to enter our home, and by the time you arrived I was sure I had everything in order. The house was clean, the crib was made, your clothes were ready, there were bottles and blankets and tiny fingernail clippers just waiting  to be used. But, little did I know that our home wasn't what I should have been preparing, it was my heart. I had NO IDEA what having a baby would do to my life, my soul, my capacity for love and worry. I didn't know that I could learn so much from someone so brand new to this world. I didn't know that I would abandon every shred of dignity I have just to make you giggle. I didn't know that you would have such beautiful blue eyes and a smile so big and vibrant that it swallows up all the light in the room (along with the dog toys, your dad's shoelaces, the cell phone bill and whatever else happens to be within your reach). I didn't know you would take everything I thought I knew, roll it out like clay and mold it into something completely new... and so beautiful.


There hasn't been a single day this past month that has conformed to any identifiable schedule. Things have been pretty crazy around here lately, mostly due to an accident that has temporarily crippled me. I know there are so many people worse off than I am right now so I've really tried to keep the complaining to a minimum, but just between me and you, this has been REALLY HARD! And you, my love, are the main reason it has been so difficult. You won't understand this until you have children of your own someday, but it's nearly impossible to take care of a one year old when you only have the use of one leg. Your dad is doing all he can to help, rising to the challenge of being mom and dad for a while, but there have still been a few times that I've just gotten so overwhelmed by our situation and I've lost my patience with you. I'm very sorry for that Morgan, and I promise to do better.


Fortunately, you've been able to roll with the punches like a champ and out of all of us, you seem to be handling these rough times the best. When we all fall into bed at the end of the day, you're usually the only one who still has a smile on their face. In fact, with the exception of a few almost unbearable whining periods, you have always been such a delightful baby. You're generally just so happy about being alive and that attitude, along with your goofy grin, is dangerously contagious. I challenge anyone to spend a few hours with you and NOT walk away clicking their heels and whistling show tunes.


I love the way you make me smile. I love the way you sing to yourself. I love the way you shake your finger and say "No, no, no". I love how much you enjoy being outside. I love how you call Dixie by name and how you think all dogs are named "Di-dee". I love how hard you laugh when your dad swings you around in a pillowcase and calls you his sack of Motatoes. I love the way you can point to my nose and eyes when I ask you to. I love the way you giggle when you taste something really good. I love that your favorite place in the house is behind the couch and how you could spend hours a day crawling back and forth like it's a tunnel. I love that you like the same foods that I do. I love the way you take several steps then look back at your dad and I, waiting for our applause. I love your fearlessness and sense of adventure (even though it scares me half to death when I look away for a few seconds, then turn back to find you standing ON TOP OF your walker or sitting on the fifth step of our stairway). I love the way you try to climb into the bathtub with me when I'm taking a bath. I love that you're still my little nursling. I love how you repeatedly climb in and out of your Bumbo chair like its the funnest game ever invented. I love the way you try to drink mustard straight out of the bottle. I love the way you start to stir in your sleep, then calm down as soon as you feel me next to you. I love how you mirror your dad's expression when he pulls faces at you. I love the way you stand up in your carseat when it's sitting on the floor and rock it back and forth as if you're surfing. I love how you say "Me, me, me" when you want me to share my food with you. I love how quickly you learn new things and, even more than that, I love how much you are teaching me.


You have helped me recognize my own determination and strength. You've put me through patience boot-camp. You have taught me that no matter how busy or hectic my day has been, there is always time for a game of "This Little Pig". You've taught me to humble myself and accept help when I truly need it. You have helped me own up to and work at strengthening my weaknesses. You've taught me that I can function on surprisingly less sleep than I expected (thank you, by the way, for not putting that one to the test too many times). You have taught me that just about any task can be done with one hand when I'm holding you with the other. You have taught me how to give of myself, 100%... and then some.


I've heard people say that they don't ever want children because of the way having kids changes life, and do you know what? They're absolutely right, having a baby changes EVERYTHING! My life hardly even resembles what it was before you were born, and looking back I barely recognize the person I used to be. But instead of feeling nostalgic and longing for those care-free days before you were ours, I look at you and I feel so right. So blessed. So complete.

 

Thank you for this wonderful first year, Morgan. I look forward to so many more. Happy birthday, love.

Love,
Mama

P.S. I don't care what my email says, you will always be my baby.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The miracle of adoption


My beautiful sister, Teresa, and her awesome husband, Chris, have officially been approved for adoption again! (They adopted my niece, Halle, in 2008.)

You can view their profile here, and their new adoption blog here. Go ahead, check it out! And please feel free to share their information if you happen to know someone who may be interested.

That being said, I want to take a minute to express my deep gratitude for the miracle of adoption. I cannot imagine how difficult and heart wrenching it would be to place a child up for adoption, but I do know that I am eternally grateful to Halle's birth mother for making that decision. It is through her enormous sacrifice that Teresa and Chris have had the opportunity to be "Mommy and Daddy" and, seriously guys, I've never known cooler parents!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

A little too quiet for comfort

So there I was, lying on the couch with my feet up because, well, it's what the doctor ordered (not many people get to say that) when I suddenly thought to myself Morgan is being awfully quiet... maybe a little too quiet.

Every parent reading this is nodding their head and smiling because they know EXACTLY what I'm talking about! If you don't have kids, let me tell you what that silence means:












Looks like I'll have to make other plans for dinner since take-out is no longer an option.

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(I apologize for the terrible picture quality. In the moment, the only camera within reach was my phone.)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Be well

Hopelessness. Helplessness. Self-loathing. Uncontrollable negative thoughts. Despair. Dejection. Sorrow. To some, these are just words. To others, they are ever present and very REAL emotions that must be dealt with on a daily basis. These are the same kind of emotions that have pushed one of my loved ones to the very brink of insanity... and suicide.

I'm talking about depression.

Before tonight, I was one of those people who read those words and saw just that... words. I am fortunate enough that I've never had to experience those things, personally. However, during a discussion with that loved one tonight I was given just a small glimpse into the world of depression and I've realized that it is a dark and scary place, far more horrendous than I had ever imagined. Part of me wants to run and hide and never look back, but I won't. I'm going to stand my ground and help her fight those demons.

I imagine what things would be like if she hadn't been able to think things through and stop herself. What if she were gone? It would be devastating. I can't imagine what this world would be like without her. She is so loved by so many, and she doesn't see it--can't see it!--because she is completely blinded and debilitated by this depression.

So, here and now, I'm committing to learn and try to understand more about this disease and as I do so, I can guarantee you that I'm going to dance a little crazier, laugh a little harder, sing out loud more often, kiss a little longer, give Morgan that extra cookie, smile at strangers, say "I love you" more and hold my friends and family just that much tighter.

And now, will you do me a favor? Take a few minutes out of your day to find someone, anyone, who thinks they're alone in this world and let them know they're wrong.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Healing beautifully

Well... in the doctor's opinion, anyway. This isn't generally what comes to mind when I hear the word "beautiful":


Apparently, because it was a clean cut it was easier to repair. And since it's healing so well, the doctor says I'm looking at 4-6 weeks on crutches (as as opposed to the original estimate of 3 months). Great news!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Cleanest cut he's ever seen

At quarter-to-five the next morning we began our pilgrimage to the hospital. (Yes, pilgrimage. With a half asleep baby, a full diaper bag, my gigantic purse and a very unsteady me on crutches, this journey was nothing short of a pilgrimage.) Adam had gathered all the necessary paperwork and packed the diaper bag the night before, only stopping once to frustratedly ask "How do you do all this?". He first took the bags out to the car, then came back for Morgan, then made a final trip up the stairs, following behind me to ensure that I didn't trip and tumble back down them.

The very last thing I did before we left the house was take my antibiotics and pain medication with a few sips of water, as instructed. (This comes into play a bit later in the story.) On the way to my mom's house, where we were dropping Morgan off for the day, I began filling out some paperwork that the hospital needed before I went into surgery. I had glanced at the papers the evening before, but hadn't really looked at them until that moment which is why I hadn't noticed before that scrawled across the top, in bold letters, where my name should have been it read: Jenica Rachelle Shepherd. Um, last I checked, that wasn't my name.

When we arrived at the hospital, the first thing I did was make sure that I was in fact the one whose chart the nurse was holding; that they wouldn't put me under thinking I was Jenica Rachelle Shepherd and I'd wake up an hour later missing my spleen. The nurse assured me that everything was in order and even showed me the charts with my name on them. She told me she was going to go get everything she needed to start my IV, and in the few minutes that she was absent from the room, I started feeling ill. Really ill. It started in my stomach and soon turned into the worst heartburn I've ever felt. When the nurse returned, she assumed that I hated needles and was having anxiety about getting an IV. I assured her that not only was I completely un-phased by the sight of a needle, but that there's a really great vein in my left forearm that is just fantastic for IV's.

My before-surgery digs. Be jealous.

She got the IV started without a problem, but my heartburn only got worse. There I was, sitting there with a severed tendon, waiting to go into surgery and I'm literally crying over heartburn! I know it sounds ridiculous, but I rarely get heartburn. Even during my third trimester of pregnancy I didn't have it. However, on the unfortunate occasion that I do get heartburn, a couple Tums or a glass of milk usually takes care if it pretty quickly. Considering the circumstances (going into surgery in a matter of minutes) they wouldn't allow me to have either of those things.

The nurse still insisted that I was having needle-anxiety, but as soon as I told her that I'd taken my pills on an empty stomach, she nodded her head and said, "That'll do it" then added "you aren't supposed to take them without food, you know." Rather than telling her that of course I know that and that I've been taking pills--antibiotics in particular-- for as long as I can remember, and I only took them on an empty stomach because I had specifically been told to do so before I came in... I simply nodded and said, "Well, next time I'll be sure to eat something with them."

 Dr Z. poked his head in the room to see how I was and upon seeing my discomfort, he ordered some sort of medication to be administered through my IV. Twenty-five minutes later, my chest was still on fire, but the anesthesiologist was ready to get the show on the road. No more waiting around for me to feel better because once I was sedated, I certainly wouldn't be worrying about my heartburn. (I like the way he thinks!)

So then it was off to the operating room. Adam kissed me goodbye and as soon as the front wheels of my bed entered the OR, my heartburn was gone! Oh sweet relief! Now that that was over with, I was sure surgery would be a piece of cake. The anesthesiologist positioned me on the operating table and said "Okay, lets see if I can make you a little sleepy."

The next thing I knew, I was waking up in the recovery room. Adam came in just minutes after I awoke as the nurse was taking my vitals. Dr Z. came in, told us everything went well and that Adam did a pretty good job; that it was, in fact, the cleanest cut he's EVER SEEN! (What can I say? My honey is good at what he does.) And that was that. I was sent home and told to take it (super) easy until my follow up visit a week later.

Adam told me I looked drunk as I was coming out of sedation, so this is me trying my hardest to look normal. Oh, and I'm totally wearing Piper's shirt!

That visit will be tomorrow. Hopefully he'll be able to tell me a little more about what to expect as far as recovery time. But for now, I'm learning how to better maneuver on crutches and with a little ibuprofen, some ice packs (or, today, a pack of frozen hot dogs because we forgot to put both ice packs back in the freezer) and some rest, I'm actually feeling really good. Now if I could just figure out how to get that almost-one-year-old to take it easy as well...