A Week in Review...Just for You

I'm sorry for not dropping or replying -
I promise to get back at it as soon as
my problems stop multiplying!

This has been the longest week

and I need some therapy.
My state's health system is single-handedly
being supported by only me.

You may have noticed
I have not been around -
And it isn't because
I've been polishing my crown.

I knew we were facing
a full week of craziness
with appointments, school
and just life business

But I had no idea, really
how exhausted I could get
between the absurd schedule
and my sleep deficit

You heard from me Monday
which was my last day of sanity
before the week took off
and knocked the wind out of me.
(Sanity, as used in this case, refers to my schedule. Don't worry. I'm not crazy enough to use it to refer to my mental status.)

So Monday was pretty normal
or as normal as it can be
in this queen's noisy castle
which houses 3 wild banshees.

Tuesday started with a loud alarm blare
at an hour so early it should be a sin
People were actually out and about (and functioning!)
when we arrived for our 7:10 check in.

We spent that day at one
hospital for over five whole hours
while the oldest 'beast ate breakfast
that was full of nuclear power!

Each hour there was an x-ray
of my son's glowing belly -
they were viewing the placement of
the toast, eggs, and jelly.

When they had all their pictures
and we were (finally) free to go
We had to bust a move and boogie
since the morning moved so slow.

It was off to do my errands
and run all around town
Before it was my turn
to rock the hospital gown.

I was so burned out
by the time that we got home
All I could do one thing
and that
was sit upon my throne.
(I don't mean the "throne" found in most commoner's homes.)

Wednesday, again began with a jolt
I rushed the 'beasts out the door
I was to check in at another hospital
at 11 o'clock - on the third floor.

My doctor had scheduled me
for what's called a myelogram
because my leg keeps swelling up
like I'm Elephant Woman*.
* WARNING: The picture in the link is really disturbing. If you can't stomach images of gross disfigurements, please don't look. Also, my leg doesn't look like that...I'm just making a point. lol)

(This is not so good
on the dating scene -
it isn't so attractive
if know what I mean.)

Before I go on any further
I should probably explain
exactly what is making
the royal family so lame.

The oldest beast of mine
has a really bad gut
every morning without fail
the kid throws up.

This has been the case
for several long years
but he refused a doctor
I suppose out of fear.

Then I told you about
my grossly swollen leg
I just want to make sure
I don't have the plague.

So for the last few weeks
we've had doctor appointments galore
I don't think it's possible
we could have had any more.

I hope the short explanation
I gave you here
helps to make
all this craziness clear.

Ok. So Wednesday was full
of nurses, needles and x-rays,
and of thoughts of me
getting up and running away.
(The lackluster, openbacked gown
convinced me to stay.)

After a day of injections and contrast
slid deep into my spine
"I wanna go home!"
was all I could whine.

I'll admit I silenced my whining
and did not complain a lot -
you'd have done the same
with a doc that flippin' hot!

It was onto the next phase in my fun
a ride on the bed of the CT scanner.
I was glad to be alone and almost done
because I had all but lost my bedside manner.

Wheeling me back down
to the safety of recovery
Every time I moved
it all but killed me.

I declined all the pain meds offered
trying to be brave, tough and strong.
"Why didn't someone examine my head?"
I wondered before too long.

My aunt drove me home
and I hobbled - slowly - up to my bed
and so began 24 hours of
keeping my body as flat as my head.

Thursday rolls around
and I wake up to discover
my uvula is totally huge -
it's swollen as a mother!

Why can't I swallow?
OMG What's the deal?
I can hardly breathe
Are you kidding - is this for real??

Then I realize it must be
a reaction to the contrast dye
so I push the panic down
to a level a little less than the sky.

Wait...Die? DIE? Did someone say die?
I thought the releases were just formality
I thought those were...just...
for protection - you know, a legality.

It was then I chose to roll over
and felt a painful ZING! everywhere
"I will be in bed all day!"
The Queen did loudly declare.

I called the hospital about my uvula
and they confirmed it was a reaction
so I laid back down and settled in
for a day lacking any action.

This brings us to Friday
which, sadly, was just like Thursday
except for the swollen uvula
and I could sit up all the way.

Oh - on Friday afternoon
I did go out for a bit
it was so exciting -
how could I forget?

I went to the medical supply store
to get something special, just for me...
I got to buy compression stockings
they are beige and go up to my knee!

Now I know that's exciting
and you wish you were so cool
but unless you have Elephant Woman leg
you will only get to drool.

And this sums up my week
and why I haven't been here
I'm sorry for the absence -
now someone please pass me a beer.

Even tho it's true
that I really don't drink
I think I've earned one or two this week -
what do you all think?

(And to think this very next week
I get to repeat the same routine
going between two hospitals...
I think I'll need caffeine.)


Make It a Great Day - I Love You!

We have lived in the Littleton, Colorado area for about 16 years - and I very clearly remember where I was and what I was doing exactly 10 years ago today.

It is hard to believe it's been that long since the Columbine massacre. April 20, 1999. That one day changed many lives...it ended the lives of 12 students and a teacher far too soon*. Altered the lives of an additional 23 students who were injured. Damaged the families of the 26 people injured or killed. Impacted a community - a country. And forever changed the way Colorado schools operate - and most probably the way schools all across the nation function. I don't know that anyone could foresee how the tragedy at Columbine High School on April 20, 1999 would impact an entire generation of kids...kids who were doing what millions of kids in the US do every day.

When you send your kids off to school in the morning, you don't think something so incredibly unspeakable can happen. Trust me, no one in this great community thought anything like this was possible. It never crossed the minds of local parents just how helpless we all are when our children leave our care. Even to go some where as safe and benign as school. We know the people our kids go to school with. We expect our children to return safely to us at the end of the day. We do this day after day, without giving it a single thought.

That is exactly the feeling and sense of security we, as parents, had the morning of April 20, 1999. No one had any inkling of the horrific disaster awaiting the kids of Columbine High School that day. No one could foretell how the destinies of so many would be irrevocably changed - or how the innocence of our most precious possessions would be lost forever. It was scary enough to be less than a mile from Columbine that day...I cannot imagine how it must felt to have actually been on the campus.

Please take a few minutes today to say a prayer for the lives tragically affected - and families totally shattered - ten years ago today. Please spend just a minute sending positive vibes and well wishes to those directly affected by the inexplicable violence that occurred at Columbine High School exactly ten years ago. Today cannot be an easy day for the families directly involved - I'm sure we are all aware of how anniversaries can bring up strong memories. And these families have been through more than most of us can imagine. They definitely deserve a few moments of strength, peace, and comfort.

Also, take an extra minute to hug your kids. They make look at you like you're nuts (if you have teenagers, you're used to it!), but you can never love on your kiddos enough. Make a conscious effort to send them off with warmth and love in the mornings. I know that's harder some mornings than others - but try to make it a habit. Even though my kids were young when the Columbine massacre occurred - one son in kindergarten and one son in preschool - I promised myself I would never send them out into the world without knowing how much I love them. No matter how chaotic, crazy, or outright disastrous our morning has been, I never let my kids get out of the house without a hug, a kiss (or a pat on the back, in my teenage son's case), and an "Make it an absolutely wonderful, fantastic, amazing, and incredible day today! I'll be thinking of you - I LOVE YOU!!" from me. I tell them those exact words every single time they leave for school in the morning. Even if I was ranting and raving two minutes before. I don't want them to leave without knowing I love them - and I will not send them out into the world without those words being the last words they hear from me.

If you don't end your mornings (or any time you are heading in different directions) like we do, try it. It definitely makes for a better day...for everyone. You just never know what the great big world has planned for them that day. I hope to God it won't ever be something as tragic as Columbine - but even if it's something like no one wanting to sit with them at lunch or they didn't do well on their math test, they will remember the last words you said to them. And that reminds them you are in their corner and love them no matter what. I wish my mom had practiced this when I was a kid.

Who knows? Maybe doing that can prevent a future Columbine-like tragedy...and all our kids deserve that. Oh - and just in case no one told you this morning,


(*This does not include the lives of the two lives of the gun-toting boys who also died.)

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