Friday, July 25, 2008

Feh and Fun

Tuesday, July 22nd, a nice judge signed this big fat legal document. I am officially single. I have officially re-entered name-changing hell. It was all fun the first time. Wee! I'm Mrs. So-an-so!!! Not so much the 2nd time around. Feh.

Tomorrow morning...or looking at the clock...later this morning my boys and I will be hopping on a plane to Boston. Even though the full-on 100% EX is up there, it's still home-town to me and my boys. They haven't seen it since 2005. I want to show them off. I want to get my work laptop fixed. I want to eat seafood that was pulled from the ocean mere minutes before it flopped on my plate. I want killer Vietnamese and Indian food. And Thai, now that I'm thinking of it. TexMex rocks. BBQ rocks. But my taste buds are craving real New England clam chowdah. Wikkid yah!

I may or may not have access to my work laptop while up there. It will be getting fixed at some point. So I may not post again for a while. But bottom line is - I'm fine. Much better emotionally. Work has eased up a bit. I'm off the meds again and feeling stable. My parents rock. My church rocks. My neighbors rock. All y'all rock.

See you on the flip side when I'm craving some killer BBQ and authentic TexMex!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Fambly and Such

Good gravy! I have had NO time. I'm for serious, dude.

After Pokemon Boy's birthday, it was non stop. Work became hellarific for a bit there. To the point I started wondering whether I could quit and find a job and keep my house and current lifestyle. But God somehow kept me from doing anything stupid. He got me through it. Man, I have to tell you, he keeps putting me on projects with the most wonderfully helpful and supportive coworkers. Honestly, it's nuts!

I think I mentioned that I was split over two very intense projects. They are each the kind of project you really need to give 100% to. I was - in theory - 75% on one and 25% on the other. On paper, very nice. In reality, didn't happen. So a while ago, I think I sent up one of my myriad frantic prayers akin to "HELP!" Yesterday, I got news that the 75% people were letting me go. So now I'm 100% on one project. So I can finally start training, learning, ramping up and actually producing on that project. It was just a HUGE relief.

But on both projects, I found such wonderfully supportive friends. Everyone I have encountered on both projects is willing to stop and help each other. I know that's how it should be. But that's not how it always is. So when I get that, I am hugely appreciative. God keeps putting me with real cream-o-the-crop types.

So work has calmed to a dull roar for the moment. It's busy but not soul-crushing any more.

My sister was here over the last week. This is my half-sister from Oklahoma - Lil Sis Mom who visited back in March. This time, her hubby and step-daughter stayed home. The wee baby is now 7 months old, totally interactive and a giant drool factory. She was very into the boys. It was just great to have them all here. I had to work but Lil Sis Mom handled her three and my two like it was no big deal. I learned a lot about how to be firm with kids. She has a way about her where she can just snap those kids into action. So I took notes and have tried it out a few times. Just the "I am SO not kidding" kind of tone. My boys learned real fast that she wasn't kidding. And they now know that neither am I! It's amazing how far that can go. Without being mean or threatening. Just a no nonsense approach where you don't give them the option of negotiating. I think I have been a bit soft on them because of the whole divorce guilt thing.

Anyway, once again, I had a house full of guests and it was really awesome. Our two families blend really well. And Lil Sis Mom came to help me. She knows this divorce thing. She's been through one that makes mine look like a cake walk. She knows where I am in my walk. So she came down to help me. So not only did she juggle a nursing 7 month old, my two boys, her 9 yr old and her 13 yr old, but she managed to do laundry for everyone, keep dishes clean, vacuum my house, pick up the toy explosion that was my house, take the kids to the pool - by herSELF!....she amazes me.

They were here mostly for Pokemon Boy's party on the 12th. No one is ever around on the day of his birthday - July 5th. So we hit the next weekend. It was a fun time at a local inflatable place. My 42 yr old body had a rough recovery after a few hours on the bouncy things. But I had a great time.

I have no pictures yet. My camera was being repaired. Pokemon Boy's dad was there so I will eventually have some pix.

And on the divorce front, the papers will be signed in court on next Tuesday. Very odd.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Happy Birthday Pokemon Boy

Eight years ago, all the fireworks on the 4th of July were just to announce that Pokemon Boy would be born the next morning.

I remember when they handed me my little swaddled football, I couldn't believe I was finally seeing this little face. Nine months of wondering what he would look like. Tons of ultrasounds to make sure everything was ok showed us a very distinctive little nose. And here it was in the flesh. Just like in the ultrasounds. Too stinkin' adorable.

I remember feeling weird calling him by his name. Don't know why. So for a few days, I just called him "Baby". But with a capital B. I would hold him and smell the top of his head. I would hold him and and not want to send him back to the nursery. I was terrified they'd mix him up with someone else's baby. Or someone would take him. Fortunately, God erased that fear over the next few years.

He was tiny and a miracle. I wasn't supposed to be able to get pregnant. And if I did, I wouldn't carry full term. Those doctor's didn't count on God or my acupuncturist. We found out, in utero, that he had renal reflux - a condition allowing the urine to shoot back up into the kidneys. Untreated, it causes kidney damage and possibly failure. But God made sure we knew about it before he was born. The doctors warned us that this can get serious pretty quick. Or they can outgrow it. I had the same thing as an infant and lost one kidney. I doubted he'd outgrow it. Kidney issues can stunt your growth. Again, the doctors didn't count on God or my acupuncturist.

Over the next three years, Pokemon Boy thrived. He grew normally in the 75th percentile - so a smidge above average. His kidneys kept amazing the doctors. Just before his 3rd birthday, we saw a tiny bit of kidney damage in one of the tests so we had the corrective surgery done. We just happened to have one of the top pediatric urologists in the country assigned to Pokemon Boy. Yah...just "happened", eh? The surgery was successful and Pokemon Boy recovered quickly. He was off daily antibiotics by the age of four.

The kidney issues are done and gone. His diagnosis with Tourette's Syndrome in 2006 seemed so awful at the time. Visions of the worst end of the spectrum filled our heads. Even I didn't count on what God would do at that time. Pokemon Boy's Tourette's has been so mild. God has blessed him with a very keen awareness and control over his body. We are still praying for a full healing from Tourette's. Might sound crazy. But I'm resting in faith and also on what God has already done there.

Pokemon Boy is funny. He is so sensitive and loving. He is smart to the point of brilliance. He has a very strong faith in God and turns to prayer when scared. I love that most of all. He is a worrier. He wants things his way. He has big dreams of being a teacher or composer. He loves Pokemon, Ben 10, space exploration, numbers, and Calvin & Hobbes. Family is immensely important to him. He is handling the dumb divorce with grace and maturity that can only be from God. He still thinks I'm beautiful.

July 4th is always cool. This year I was very aware of my freedom. But July 5th will always eclipse that for me. It's the day I became a mom. It's the day God showed me I had no clue how deep love could be.

Thank you God for making me the mom of these two wonderful boys.

*Sadly I have no pictures. My camera died. I'll have some pix from his party this coming weekend.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Klergin Blats

I had to go read my last post to see where I had left you all with this.

Trusting God: I'm into this. Trusting gifts God has given others: I'm also into this.

Last week (and a few weeks before), I was extremely fractured. Emotionally. I was so scattered, I didn't have the clarity to figure out escape routes in life. I was flailing at work and entering panic mode because it didn't dawn on me to stop, sit with my managers and form a plan. Because I was panicked. And I thought I was flailing at work simply because my emotions were about to create a black hole from which nothing could escape.

Friday - when I wrote that last post - I was doing better than I had in weeks. Saturday was rough. I spent the whole day with the core of my church family learning about the gifts of the Holy Spirit - what they are, how to seek them and how to use them. So you can imagine that, in that context, I was feeling a lot of pressure to use God and not any meds. I wasn't being pressured by anyone but myself. But I felt the pressure, either way. I wanted to trust enough. I didn't want to lean on meds. I felt like I'd be showing a lack of faith in God if I went to my meds. Even after my friend GuitarDad sat down at lunch and said, "Look, I just want to tell you, if I broke my leg? I'd be in the ER asking for pain meds. And I'd take them. OK?" I knew what he was saying. Modern medicine had saved my life and Pokemon Boy's life. And the lives of tons of people in my life. But what to do. What to do.

And every hour, I got closer to freak out mode. Even though I had a wonderful time with my church at the seminar and learned tons and felt spiritually enriched, I was still faltering.

Sunday I woke up exhausted after a night of broken sleep and LOTS of prayer. Every time I woke up, I just started praying. I don't know what was going on. If you've ever had that nervous stomach just before giving a speech or presentation or performing? I had basically been having that almost every two minutes for about a week by this time. After a night of bad sleep, I was primed for who knows what kind of emotional meltdown. I woke up feeling kind of numb. Which is better than the anxious feeling. But every mile closer I got to church, I felt more and more oppressed. More and more panic. More and more feeling like crying.

I got there and set up the food. I was supposed to assist in the nursery. My wonderful friend TallGorgeousLady recognized my meltdown mode. She helped me find someone to sub in the nursery for me. It was heaven to just sit in the sanctuary listening to our guest pastor speak. And to just worship as part of the congregation.

Afterwards, I took Pokemon Boy up for prayer. He has been having some rather interesting spiritual experiences that leave him uncomfortable. If it makes your skin crawl, it ain't God. So I asked him if he'd let me take him up for prayer. I took him up to a group that was praying over some people and waited. Some of our most fervent praying people were there and I wanted their faith on my kid! We started out with about 5 of us around Pokemon Boy. We prayed for spiritual protection. We prayed for total healing of his Tourette's. We prayed for emotional healing and protection due to the divorce. As the prayer continued, I felt more and more hands resting on Pokemon Boy or me. By the time we finished, there was a nice little group surrounding us. Pokemon Boy is very special to a lot of people at my church. I think my little family as a whole is. My church feels very protective about us - especially because of the broken family thing we're dealing with.

I think Pokemon Boy was a little embarrassed but he stood still for most of it and I know he totally believes in prayer and was ok with it over all. I was really excited that he allowed that. I love that he really trusts in God and his people.

So after that, I talked to a friend and told her how I was wrestling with the meds or God thing. She was so awesome and told me her own story and how she takes meds and it doesn't dampen her link with God. I mean, come on - like some drug could block the Creator of All Things? Yah right.

Well, that night, I just couldn't take it any more. I cannot live with that panic at the base of my neck. I can't live with that constant nervous pit in my stomach. I can't take the overwhelming sense of mopiness. I couldn't formulate a thought. I couldn't think straight. I was terrified I would lose my job. I was terrified I couldn't get my tasks at work done. I was terrified I would lose my house. I was terrified of not being able to provide for my kids. I don't like living in fear. That ain't me.

I opened the CVS bag.

I took the meds.

I prayed a lot.

Monday, I was able to focus at work. I repeated the steps above.

Tuesday, I was able to put a few thoughts together that said, hey, sit with your bosses and show them your overloaded plate. That's their job, dude! Then I got one of the big tasks finished which made me feel like, oh yah, I actually have a brain! Lather, rinse, repeat.

Today, I felt the closest to normal I have in a long time. I'm about to go take my meds and get in bed with the bible again. I haven't been calm enough to do that since last week. This is a good thing.

I don't think God wants anyone to live in constant panic or depression. I think God was glad I asked him to handle it. But I think he gave me access to doctors and this medication because he knew I needed it. Just like I'd need a doctor to set my leg if I broke it. Yes, God can heal a broken mind. He can heal a broken leg. I don't pretend to know when and why he works those miracles and why sometimes we go to a doctor. I'm still asking him about that. We'll see what he tells me.

In the mean time, my doctor and her nurse rock. They've both walked this path. Sadly, so has my pharmacist. My church still prays for the protection and healing of my little family. And they support me whether I'm trying to rely on God for healing or I'm asking a doctor to help. And my mom is just so glad that I'm not spiraling down any more. I can see the relief on her face. She was worried. It is very hard to express that concern to your grown daughter. But she did - in her own way. Because she was there bailing me out every single day. Taking the boys, making us dinner, making sure she checked in with me every day.

God rocks. My mom rocks. My church rocks.

Not quite out of the woods yet. But I take comfort in the fact that I'm out of the cess pool.