Monday, September 20, 2010

Good News

We have a diagnosis!  I have a vitamin D deficiency.  This was actually something that I suspected.  I have been prescribed 50,000 IUs of vitamin D a week for 12 weeks.  After that, I will have to continue taking vitamin D supplements, probably for the rest of my life.  I am fine with that.  I would rather have a vitamin deficiency than most other neurological problems.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Sunday Poem "Alone"

by Edgar Allan Poe

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were---I have not seen
As others saw---I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I lov'd, I loved alone.
Then---in my childhood---in the dawn
Of a most stormy life---was drawn
From ev'ry depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that 'round me roll'd
In its autumn tint of gold---
From the lightning in the sky
As it pass'd me flying by---
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that
we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most
frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened
about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are
all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory
of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And
as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission
to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence
automatically liberates others. - Marianne Williamson

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Today could be such a sad day for us.  9 years ago, the course of my family changed.  My husband has been to war twice, thanks to the terrorist attacks that happened 9 years ago.  We honor the ones who died that day, and have died in our defense since that day.

We are celebrating, too.  Today, a beloved aunt was finally able to receive a stem cell transplant.  The donor was a stranger.  The love of others that must be present for a person to literally give of themselves to a stranger is a wonderful thing.  Today we are thankful.  We are thankful for the selflessness of people who are willing to donate things like blood, stem cells, kidneys, and livers.  We are thankful for the selflessness of people who are willing to defend our country.  We are thankful for the ability to continue to live our lives in freedom, and normalcy.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


Ms. Hiller expresses so well the reason I feel the need to do handiwork.

Thank you, Rhythm of the Home!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Recently, my entire family was reading the same book, all 5 of us.  That meant we were all at different places in the book.  I don't know how many times someone's page was lost before we thought to use post-it notes as bookmarks.

The post-it notes are thin and don't make the book bulge, even with five of them in there.

You can use different colors, or write names on the post-its.  It is also easy to move a post-it from one page to the other while you're reading.  This keeps you from removing the bookmark to read around it, and forgetting to put it back in.  Also, the other bookmarks don't fall out while you're reading.

While you're reading, you can attach your bookmark to the back of the book, and reposition it when you're done.

This post is a part of Works for Me Wednesdays.  (I LOVE her idea for decorating with kid's art!)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Back to School

Today was our first day of the new school year.  Gary has agreed to teach the boys science.  I am very excited about this, as are they.  Since Gary had the day off, we finished the day off with a little science.  We wanted to share it with you.

The Aftermath

Funnel Cake

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Sunday Poem "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"

Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night
by Dylan Thomas

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieve it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


"Your life is an occasion; rise to it."  Mr. Magorium, "Mr. Magorium's Wonder Imporium"

Friday, September 3, 2010

Work in Progress

I've seen so many posts about works in progress.  There's knitting, sewing, planting, painting.  There's everything.  Well, this is a post about a family.  We're a family of five.  We became a family 13 1/2 years ago.  We're still a work in progress.

Six months ago, I started to notice problems with my memory, speech and fine motor skills.  The problems were subtle and I ignored them for a while.  When the memory problems began to get worse, and the fine motor skill problems more frequent, I mentioned them to Gary.  He immediately decided that I should go to the doctor.  In early June, the doctor ordered an MRI to rule out brain tumors and MS.  The MRI was ruled normal.  The doctor drew blood over and over, ordering test upon test.  All the tests came back normal.

After all the tests came back normal, my doctor decided that I must be depressed and the problems were a result of depression.  Now, I really didn't think I was depressed.  I've been depressed before.  I know what depression feels like.  Sometimes, it takes a couple days for me to recognize that I'm depressed, but Gary and I always recognize it.  However, I decided it was worth looking into.  My doctor prescribed me an antidepressant.  The first day, I was fine.  The second day, I was throwing up.  The third day, I was shaking the chair I was sitting in with tremors.  My doctor took me off that medication and ran more tests.  They came back normal.  So, he put me on another antidepressant.  This antidepressant made me nauseated and sleepy.  In fact, it made me so tired that, even though I was taking the minimum dosage every other day, I was sleeping 15 to 18 hours each day.  In addition to that, I had occasional tremors.  I lost 4 pounds in 5 days.  I was not happy.  It is hard for me to maintain my weight.  I didn't want to lose weight, and I certainly didn't want to sleep all the time.  My doctor took me off that medication and put me on another one that had a lower dosage.  I was only mildly nauseated, and a little more tired than usual, but the tremors were getting more noticeable.  During a trip to the emergency room, the ER doctor recommended that I stop taking the medication.  My doctor ran more tests.  In fact, my doctor ran so many blood tests that when I made a second trip to the ER, I was told that I was developing scar tissue on my veins and I needed to lay off that arm for a while.

After a month off medication, the tremors had worsened, and the fine motor skill and memory issues had not improved.  On the 26th of August, we were returning home from tae kwon do when I started having what the doctor called acute tremors.  Gary thought I was having a seizure and drove me to the hospital.  At the hospital, they gave me an IV and gave me two doses of anti-seizure medication.  After the second dose, I don't remember anything.  I was in the ER for four hours, and then Gary drove me home and put me to bed.  The next day, I was tired, prone to tremors, and stuttering.  I stuttered all day.

In the week that has followed, the tremors have almost returned to their pre-birthday (the 26th was Gary's birthday- I was just trying to make it memorable!) state.  They are more frequent than before, but they are no more violent or prolonged.  My speech has noticeably improved.  I only stutter or slur words when I am trying to think at the same time I am talking.  If I just talk (which I'm quite good at, thank you very much), I sound fine.

So, what does all this have to do with my family?  Well, it is always amazing to me how much our families can rally and support us.  My particular family is prone to dealing with things with humor.  As a result, all of my family has acquired an occasional stutter, and for some odd reason, Gary keeps having these weird spasms.  It makes us all happy.  My mother always said, "It's better to laugh than to cry."  My family exemplifies this.

Gary has changed his work schedule so that he goes into work earlier and returns home earlier.  This means that the boys don't have to miss tae kwon do.  All four of them have taken on more of the housecleaning duties.  Gary has made menus and gone grocery shopping.  Our crockpot has never been used so much.  I am watching my family grow through this.  We are all having to grow.  I am having to give up the control that I have always had.  My family is having to take over some of that responsibility.

We are still laughing.  We are still enjoying life.  In fact, I think we may be enjoying it just a bit more, because we understand how precious it is.  We've had a lot of deaths in our extended family over the last seven years.  We're not willing to give into the fear and gloom that could come from being ill and having an ill person in the house.  Instead, we will fight, love, laugh and enjoy life.  We're a work in progress, and I like how we're progressing.


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