Thursday, August 20, 2009

Can I complain???

Ok so to start this I truly hate to be a whiner. I have always struggled with holding my tongue and I do know that it is not a good thing to be a complainer. However, I also know that sometimes one must vent the frustrations of life otherwise they will self destruct, or boil over! So that being sad I am going to dance around my frustrations so that I might be honest and successfully welcome you into my world so that you might truly understand a military wife's life, with five little children. After all, that is my goal in blogging (not to mention I just love writing!)

So this morning, after next to zero sleep, I "wake" up and look at my two sleeping daughters as Breya fusses and whines some more thus waking Avagrace. Gracie joyfully hops out of bed to go and join Aidan and Violet, my very early risers. My poor Breya had been up all night long, only dozing for a few minutes at a time. She was rolling back and forth, lifting her legs and swinging from left to right. She would moan and cry and I thought she had ingested some kind of poison from the way she was acting. She had a fever and this very unusual. She also was very clingy and this is most unusual for Breya. She is very independent and has never been an affectionate one unless it is on her own terms at her own time. So as I was reaching for my cell phone to call her doctor it began to ring. Mind you, it is very out of the ordinary that my cell phone shall ring before 9 am and even then it is rare. Thankfully it was my husband. I was wanting to tell him that Breya was having a hard time and that I would be taking her to the doctor.

The next thing that happened is truly magical and the best part of the day. My husband's voice was so lively. He was on fire with excitement. I knew instantly what it was but he tried to 'string me along'. "So V, I am looking at a list right now, it is a list of many names that the Air Force posted. And my name happens to be on it." He cheered. "You made it, Mr. SSGT Spencer!!!!" I knew he would, he was very worried, but I even got him a congratulatory present ahead of time because I knew he would make it. He is a very smart man and he loves being an Airmen. On his ASVAB, the military entrance exam, he got only one question wrong and he knew immediately what question it was that was wrong. Most people score between a 50 and 75 % on the ASVAB.

When I got done on the phone I called the doctor but unfortunately they could not get us in. I must say this was very rare for our doctors office, however, the doctor is amazing and so it is not surprising, just disappointing. Due to her symptoms they suggested I take her to the ER, which I of course was going to do without an appt. anyway. So I call Cassie, our wonderful babysitter, and ask her to come to sit with the other kids. Thank God she was available. So I get breakfast going and start to dress Breya. As I ask her to put her arm in she shrieks. Oh my, I have been here before. Last year on Mother's day Violet, who was just a month older than Breya is now, broke her arm, and it displayed the same way. Much shock filled me because I was so sad. I was not with her yesterday afternoon or evening, and nobody told me that she was hurt. Of course, I do realize that children hurt themselves all the time and nobody, including my perfect (jk) self. But this is part of that "work or not to work dilemma" that I do struggle with.

Anywho, I call the Dr. back and tell them my new found symptom to Breya's health. They tell me to still take her to the ER. At this point I was very upset. I wanted them to order an Xray outpatient at the hospital. But they wanted me to take her to the ER. So here is my plight. I mean, who enjoys the ER? Nobody really, unless you are an ER doctor who chose to be there. On top of that, I am taking a tiny little girl who is not even two years old, in for a a possible broken bone. So not only am I going to subject my poor daughter to a doctor who has no connection with her, and likely no heart in their medicine (sorry for the gross stereotype, but there is usually truth to stereotypes and from my experience with ER doctors, this is the truth to me. Now I also have to go and say, she is broken, not sick. This brings in a whole other slue of stuff.

When I worked at head start, I worked with Children and Youth daily. I also have been trained in behavioral sciences, that is my degree background. I know how they are trained to think and I know the protocol for a little one who has broken bones and has to go to the ER for it instead of a primary care doctor. To ice the cake, I was not with Breya yesterday afternoon or evening. I had no idea if or when she fell. So I tried to call Bren to get the DL on last night. He was on the flightline. At first I said to the kid who answered to phone, ok well please tell him I am taking our daughter to the ER and I need to talk with him. His shop is INFAMOUS for not delivering messages so with that and the fear of what was in front of me I started to worry. I called back and said that I didn't want to cause issues but needed someone to radio to Bren and ask him if Breya had fallen last night. I talked to the female Srgt in charge. I explained I was heading to the ER and I was at work last night and hadn't talked with Bren and needed to know if she fell so I could tell the Dr. "Is that all you need," she says in a very RUDE very 'oh my God you can't possibly be acting this way over a silly bump' kind of way. She says, I will do what I can but he is on the flight line. "Ok can you just radio to him and ask him if she fell, I don't want to pull him off, I just need to know so that I can be prepared." We end the conversation and I head to the ER with Breya. She cried every time I touched her. Even if it was on her side, under her ribs, not touching her arms. I was beginning to worry about her ribs too. When we get to the ER we check in and wait. An hour and a few minutes later my husband finally calls.

He says that yes, last night she favored her arm at bed and was very clingy. Now she is not a cuddler but she is a daddy's girl and clinging to him is not unusual. He did not think it anything other than her being tired. So he carried on and didn't take note. The other thing is, and I do truly say this with the utmost respect and love for my husband....he is not the most observant of anything home-like. He is a wonderful father and the fun in the family, but I am the nurse. So it never raised any of his flags. It takes quite a bit of drama to raise his flags which is great because mine never go down, lol.

Just then, we get called back to fast track ER. I asked him to stay available for a while so that when the Docs asked questions I could allow him to talk to them. Well of course 15 minutes later, when the questions began he was no longer available. So they look her over and question me numerous times about how it happened etc. Turns out that she has a throat infection so they give her antibiotics. Then we go on to X-ray. When we get there (you know two hours after our arrival lol) a kid no more than 20 comes over and gets right in Breya's face saying Hi cutie can you give me a high-5 as he reaches for her hurt arm. IDIOT! she is so shy, and her arm is very sensitive. "Oh I am sorry he says" So he sets up the machine for a standing chest X-ray. "I don't think that she will do this." I say, "oh she will be fine....as soon as they stand we switch to standing, no problem" "Fine, my other kids would have no problem and I have five, but not Breya and not today" He ignored me and I proceeded to help him out with her. I stood her in front of the thing. She was doing so well. Then the not-so-bright kid came over and said, "hey cutie, let me have that blanket" "oh no I said before he got to her, I will take it when you are ready" She was holding her beloved red blanket, 'her favorite color'. He didn't listen and kept coming. "Can I have this? he said reaching for it and touching it" "NO she screamed running behind me to hide from him" So at that point he ruined it I could not pry her from my arms. Another, much older tech came in, she was obviously a mom. She said to the kid, go behind so you can shoot when needed. She is scared of you. As soon as he was gone she and I laid Breya down and held her down to get through the shoot. She tried to cooperate but she was in so much pain and was so scared!

We went back to our room to await the x-ray results. Breya laid on my chest the entire time begging to go home, asking for her siblings and Ms. Cassie, and especially asking for Violet. It was so dear to me. It broke my heart. She absolutely loves her siblings. They all love each other. They hate to be separated. If they are with just one it is fine, but alone...oh my. They love date days but even then they ask about their siblings. It blesses my soul, it is my second largest most regular prayer, that they always remain close to each other.

Ok so the Doc comes in and says the X-ray is fine but she has a dislocated radius. She tries to get it back in several times but cannot. She goes to the Er to look to see if she can round up a Resident Orthopedic Doc. Sometimes they stop in she says. Well as usual God's hand had the mighty blessing pour down on us as a very cocky, very good, intern came in. He looked me square in the eye and said to hold her as tightly as I could and be prepared he was going to jostle her. He gripped her little arm, felt it a bit, and then jerked it around a bit. On the third try he knocked it back into place. She shrieked but then settled to sobbing quickly. He said to me again in his very cocky and confident way, in exactly 15 minutes she will sit up and say you "i am all better." So I watched my cell phone clock, intrigued by a competitive game that got my mind off of anxiety. 15 minutes later, to the minute, she sat up and said "i fixed". I cheered and when the Doc came back in I said, well she didn't say she was all better, and I chuckled! We got her prescriptions and headed home. They said she would be sore for a few days but would definitely using it and back to normal soon. They were right. She did wonderfully.

The day was full, exciting, stressful, but overall I just can't get over the lack of support at my husbands shop. All I needed was a radio to call out and ask him a simple question and for him to be available for a few minutes. Thankfully God protected us and we did not have crappy people who assume the worst. I was just so reminded today about the plight of a military spouse. We are "single moms, with baby's daddy's who are here and gone and here and gone but are hard workers that provide a great paycheck and health care and all things to take care of us....just not the commitment of time and emotional support." I use to resent this statement. I use to hate anytime I heard someone say this. It was offensive to me as if someone were insulting my life and my husband. But it is truth. I should not have called his shop. I should not have been afraid of what to say. Simply saying, "I don't know because I was not with her." This should have been enough. Knowing this will help his career and help me to. I will not be counting on something that is not mine. he will be mine upon retirement. But until then I must be strong and independent. This is in direct contrast to what a marriage is outlined to be, with us being one and all. However, if you look at it in the way that being one does not mean always being together in person or on items, well you can definitely succeed. You see success is goal, and the game has completely different setup when one is married to a warrior!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I have a gaurdian angel!

So tonight I was leaving work at 845. So my hands and arms are packed as I push open the door and hit a large fluffy black and white tail. YUP, it was a skunk. I quickly try to slam the door shut again as my purse gets stuck in the door for a brief second. I watch as the skunk scurries away with its tail in the air. Now, either it recently sprayed or didn't have a working sprayer and THANK GOD! If it had spray the stuff would have come in the cracked door and gotten me and the building. So I just barely escape a nightmare. Now I am standing inside the door surrounded by bushes at dusk and I already know that there is one skunk very close by. I kicked the large metal door in hopes of scaring off the skunk. I contemplated calling security forces for an escort, but quickly brought myself back to reality...no security forces person is going to have the time or desire to protect me from a skunk, lol. So I pray, squeal, and hurry out the door. Instead of heading straight on the sidewalk to my car, I go in the grass away from the direction the skunk scurried. As I am walking away from the chapel, not five feet away the skunk decides to face me and walk in my direction, YUP the opposite direction that it was going when I first scared it, BY HITTING IT WITH THE DOOR!

By this time I am totally freaking out. I run, yup, still recovering from my surgery, definitely not suppose to run, totally weighted down with full hands, running like a scared child across the grass. Cars are passing and I am sure looking at me as if I just robbed the chapel or something. The skunk picks up speed but thankfully crossed my path, behind me, and heads towards the building next to the chapel....not towards my car. However, when I hit the unlock button on my key chain the skunk stops, turns its tail up right in my direction and freezes. Thankfully I am several feet away so I jump in the car and slam the door. This makes the skunk aim again, but thankfully it never fired!

So, I have a guardian angel and an amazing God who created a skunk that didn't spray me, and I also am now the cautionary tale at the chapel as I am going to have to warn everyone tomorrow because tomorrow night Bible Studies will be leaving the chapel around the same time that I did tonight.

I can't believe I was so close to a skunk I could have stepped on it! Crazier still is that the skunk actually had a very pretty pattern....I am still shuddering at the thought of this story!

Monday, August 17, 2009

k Lup

We listen to Christian Radio and Thank God for Oklahoma because here we have a great variety of stations. We listen to three regularly. K Love, The House FM, and Air One. In Pa, where we like to call home, we got one station and it was static most of the time depending on where you were. So here, we are blessed! Aidan is adorable and sings along with the music as do most of our kiddos but Aidan is the oldest and definitely understands the lyrics and says the words correctly, most of the time. Yesterday we were listening to K Love in the car and when we came into the house he was still humming and quietly singing the song that we heard last. He did this for a good 10 minutes until he looked at me with a completely glowing face and said "I just love K Lupp, the music is so spiritual and Christian and it makes my heart soar!" He held his fists up like a boxer as he spoke as if to show how much excitement he had to contain within his seven-year-old-self! It is times like these that I am thankful for my husband and the warriors of this country the most. We are one of very few countries left that have the freedom to listen to such music on the radio daily. I pray that I never take this for granted. Just the fact that it is even hard to come by in this country is enough to make me wish I hit the huge lotto so I could better support Christian radio nationwide, so that every state, city, town could have one great radio station blasting contemporary Christian music for all the excited 7 year old's and hip-hoppin' 77 year old's alike!

Oh and the K LUPP, well that is not a typo. When we moved here Aidan was 4 and thought that the station was called K Lupp so it has stuck, even though we remind him often that it is called K Love. One day the switch will turn and he will call it by its rightful name. After all this is the child that called Music Moose-Nick for many years. I corrected him often, he learned the proper word eventually, and now I miss hearing him say Moose-Nick.....how time flies!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Girlfriends

Edited to say: My friend says that she lives 20-30 minutes away not 40....I say she is being modest but I did think she lived farther down into Norman vs. where she is in Moore/OKC....however, with 240 traffic and bringing food at dinner time, I do think she is being modest...Nikki you rock, just admit it LOL!!!

So as you know I have been recovering from a hysterectomy. At the age of 27 my female parts had enough. Five births in six years, plus four miscarriages, and quite a bit of hemorrhaging all adds up to a prolapsed uterus and bladder. Surgery is never fun, especially when this marks my fourth since January of this year! However, this surgery is not at the top of most women's to do list. Sure it will be great to not have a monthly cycle. I mean I have only had it one time since 2005 so getting it back is not on my dream sheet. Yet, it is that monthly issue that makes babies possible. I know I have five and all, but having more was never far from my mind. I knew I needed a break. So badly in fact that my husband got a vasectomy because of how hard the pregnancy's have been. I mean every baby came earlier and earlier and being pregnant and delivering while Bren was deployed, yeah that was not exactly easy. In all reality I probably never would have wanted to be pregnant again. BUT, vasectomy's are reversible and there was a possibility. Now, well it is final. I no longer have a womb. The first home of all five of my babies was sent to a lab and then an incinerator.

In the midst of this my husband had to take charge as I was on bed rest for 1.5 weeks and then on lifting and driving restrictions. For us, this is the worst part. Bren is not a house husband. He is an awesome father, a great Airman, but not a house husband. To clean is the last thing on his mind and something he doesn't succeed in very often. On top of that he hasn't cooked more than a handful of meals our whole marriage, and when I say cook I mean open cans and heat up stuff. So, as I lay in bed trying so hard not to get up and freak out he took control. Thank God I have girlfriends. As I have said on here before, the best kept "secret" of the Air Force/Army is PWOC. That is protestant women of the chapel. This has been my wellspring of friends and life. Not only was Liam born 8 weeks early during deployment, but he was born into a room with three PWOC ladies all by my side. This hysterectomy was no different. My family was blessed with two weeks of meals, home-cooked with love. Not only were they delicious and a tremendous blessing but they were for us. No really, they were FOR US. You see, they could have cooked their tried and true pot-luck favorite. They could have ordered us pizza. They could have sent us frozen dinners to heat in the microwave. They could have done nothing at all! But no. They went above and beyond. They looked up recipes that were compatible with our diet. Our gluten free, vegan diet. The biggest pain-in-the-you-know-what diet in the world and they rocked it! We were blessed with such incredible deliciousness! It made my recovery that much less stressful knowing that my family was being taken care of so wonderfully by these ladies that love us. You see, some of them are in the midst of deployment with their own children to care for. Some of them haven't seen family for over a year or more. Some of them missed a family members funeral because it was just too far away and plane tickets are not feasible on their warriors pay. Some of them only have one vehicle and live 40 minutes away from us but still managed to bring us a HOT meal! I really can't say enough about women who belong to PWOC. They are selfless and loving and for any military wife out there please find the PWOC at your base. It is the survival must have!

So now I will step off the PWOC soap box for a moment and share my weekend. It was my first weekend out since the surgery. I am still not driving but Lindsey drove and we went to see a movie. An awesomely incredible movie. Julie and Julia. What can a say, a story about a blogger that gets a book deal, it gets me right here! We laughed so hard I actually did my embarrassing "that is so funny I can't contain it laugh!" We had so much fun we stayed for a second movie! I have never done this, but often thought I could never sit that long. But with the right friend and a huge cherry coke (yes I cheated) anything is possible. What movie did we see? None other than The Time Travelers Wife. So first we laughed and now we cried. What an amazing night, two fabulous movies and a girl's night out with one of my best friends ever. Unfortunately, we are counting our days because soon she PCS's to Georgia and I to Japan.

To round out the weekend I got a recipe from one of my other best friends. A PWOC lady who made some fabulous muffins for us during my recovery. This is the lady that headed up all the meals and made four for us! Yup, four meals. Not to mention she is the one who drove 40 minutes to deliver a HOT meal for us and she also gave us some frozen foods to get by until I am 100% Yeah, she is a saint. AND she is a funny one too. This is my favorite recipe ever, I hope it makes you laugh as much as it did me! I hope you enjoyed your weekend as much as I did. Do me a favor. Call your girlfriends this week and tell them how awesome they are. Without girlfriends, life would be very grim!

Here is the recipe!

Go to the commissary's muffin aisle. Pick up the package of *said brand muffins. Take it home, open it up, mix in 1/2 cup of desired milk. Then mix and cook ;)

I swear to you her muffins tasted like the most amazing bakery muffins ever and this is the recipe I get LOL!!! It reminds me of the Nestle Toll House episode of Friends.