October 22, 2010

The Lump, The Bump, And A Resurrection: Part II

Part 2: The Bump

So, on with the story....the bump.  Smack dab in the middle of the Lump crisis.  Car trouble.   Who needs that?  It is something you know will be coming at some point, sometimes there is even a hint or a light to warn you, but we are still  just never prepared.  I know we all find ourselves praying that it's something "small", and not an overhaul, or heaven forbid a new car.  During the diagnosis period I find myself stressing over my bank account, public transportation and my million obligations (as which I can squeak out of without too much upset).

That morning, my 5 year woke up with the stomach flu.  Vomit about every half and hour.  Joy.  I HATE puke.  I don't think anyone likes it, but I'd rather clean up poop or snot any day than puke.  I had to get the boy to Day Treatment (as you know, a 60 mile round trip).  So I made lunch, took temperatures, got ready for work, and begged the kid's Dad to adjust his schedule to care for my little sick girl while I went to work.  I had already missed a day of work the previous week due to a random 100 degree temp.  I carried the drama queen to the car, Tupperware puke bucket in tow, and strapped in the boy and we were off. 

We made it to school, the boy was in.  Now back home to get this little girl into bed.  I pulled out of the drop-off spot, slowly rolled over the speed bump; at which time heard an unfamiliar noise when I accelerated, and trust me, there was no acceleration to be had.  I rolled into a siding, said a prayer aloud, and turned off the car, in hopes starting it up again would miraculously fix everything.  The old turn it off and on again fix-it method, often also referred to as "reboot and hold your breath".  Not so much.  Crap.  That's putting it nicely.  I was surprisingly calm...and then said, "you've got to be kidding me".

I put out the S.O.S. to anyone I thought would be of service.  Might I just add, thank sweet Jesus for cell phones.  What would I have done if I had to find a pay phone, or carry my puking kid back into the school to use the phone.  My poor little girl was laying in the backseat throwing up.  Long and short, God was looking out for us.  My sister had a mechanic friend who worked only 2 miles away and came directly to me to see if he could tighten a belt or hose or pump or something.  Please God make it something that easy.  And by the way, when was the last time any car repair has been something minor?  I should go to school to be a mechanic, now that is permanent job security!

The news was not good.  The "T" word.  Transmission.  But, but, but...no warning light...no weird sounds...no nothing...just a speed bump!  I got a ride home with my little one and put her right to bed, I reluctantly called into work....again.  And my ride was towed to the shop. 

My day was filled with stress.  How was I going to do this?  Get my kids to school on practically opposite ends of the state and get to work?  I have our whole transportation schedule worked out to the minute.  (I don't even want to think about what I'm going to do when the snow begins and adds another 30-45 minutes of drive time).  I'll just ignore it and it will go away right?  Why do I live in Minnesota again?  It is suppose to snow on Halloween, sigh.  It's not El Nino or global warming, it's just Minnesota.

Long story longer...the transmission is rebuilt and good to 350,000 miles.  It will no doubt outlive me I'm sure.  I am grateful to my parents who just did what needed to be done, and took that big chunk of stress right out of my hands.  I'm back behind the wheel, and back to the old routine, and everyone is healthy again.

My near breakdown is to come in Part 3, where yes, there is something else.  Seriously?  Like I said, I need a reality show.  If I had a reality show, would they be able to give me a ride home?  When my son takes off running in Walmart at least I would know where he is because I'd see the camera person filming him doing the 50 yard dash.  And then I'd be able to afford to get my transmission fixed.  Okay TLC, hook a single Momma up here:)

October 20, 2010

The Lump, The Bump, and A Resurrection: Part One

Part I: The Lump

So, I've come to the conclusion that I should get my own reality show.  Really.  What would I name it?

Cari minus six with a lot less money

Stupid People, Cruel World (okay that's a bit harsh)

Cari's Believe It Or Not


I don't know, but I swear I couldn't script this stuff.  So I'm going to break the last week down for you into three parts.  Part One, The Lump.

If you're a woman, 'nuff said.  You know when someone says the word "lump" it triggers a myriad of visions and fears, exams, mammograms, and well simply put, breast cancer.  Well, I've been slacking off and haven't done a self-exam in a year.  {Now mind you, I am sharing this in hopes that I will inspire some other woman to do a self breast exam and catching the C-word early, if breast cancer is detected early, it can be treated, cured, and so on; so bear with me, it's personal}  So it is October and it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, it's all around us, so I said, "self, haven't done that in awhile, I'm not getting younger, better check out the girls".  After my moments of pity during said exam where I realized that I no longer had "can go with or without a bra" boobs to National Geographic status, I felt something I can only describe like an orange circus peanut piece of candy in girl on the right.

Something was not right.  Something was there.  I was petrified.  I think I rechecked a million times.  It wasn't familiar, was it a lump?  Who even knows what a lump feels like?  We hear it all over the media like when you find a lump you'll know immediately, like it has twinkling red lights and a buzzer or something.  Boy Susan G. Komen, you sure know how to hyperventilate a girl.

I made an appointment immediately.  And while I waited...while I waited for that appointment, in the car, in the shower, at work, in my sleep, I thought about everything I could lose...if.

Suffice it to say, I was terrified.  I confided in my sister, who lovingly accompanied me to the doctors office should I need to be scraped off the floor from my puddle of blathering tears and denial.

Everything was fine.  Indeed there was need for concern, as assured my my doctor.  But after a VERY thorough exam, no lump, just a "dense ridge".  Babies and Breastfeeding change a girl forever.

So I inquired then, how will I know?  Apparently a "lump" feels almost like a pea or marble.  You can get your fingers all the way around it.  Well, good to know, I was clueless up to this point. 

I am so thankful.  An answered prayer for me, but probably not for some other Mom out there.  Right now, someone is finding a lump and thinking what if, right now, someones doctor is relaying some life altering news, right now someone....

The whole experience was enough to shake me to my core.  I encourage all you ladies to do an exam, my prayer for you is that you are healthy and marble free.

Next, Part 2, The Bump.

October 19, 2010

Knock, Knock...

Hi Friends.

I am here.  I miss my blog.  I am in process of drafting my next post, which I think is going to have to been split into chapters, and so titled....A Bump, A Lump, and a Resurrection.

I have suited up my armor and have been fighting Blue Cross Almighty on my son's behalf.  I'm about to submit some health care reform of my own, but it would have to many expletives, so I will wait. 

The hurdles as of late have been getting closer together and higher....{sigh}

Both kid's school conferences today, they are pretty much perfect, except for when they're not, and it should go well, unless it doesn't. ( How Dr. Seuss of me.)

Stay tuned, day off tomorrow, and I'm dedicating so time to blogging....unless....:)

Hope you have a wonderful day!

October 05, 2010

Whose Life Is This Anyway?

Hi Friends.

I just erased my draft, and am starting over. Previous blog post, to be, if you will, was a catch up on the family, school, etc. Boring. I'll have plenty of time for boring; right now I have a few things to get off my chest. Warning, it may still be boring. I promise nothing.  I have been so busy the last few weeks. It seems like its one thing after another, housing issues, insurance issues, co-parenting issues, and in the midst of it all, the boy decides to potty train. I was near a nervous breakdown. Perhaps had one?  Not sure, to be continued...Things are leveling out though....I will find out this week if the boy will be able to stay in Autism Day Treatment (%^&^ insurance) or be asked to leave. Prayers and positive thoughts welcome, I will go into insurance tangent another day. While I'm waiting to hear from Blue Cross Almighty there are some things I won't be doing....

I certainly will not be eating cookies while watching ThinTervention.

I will not be reading a book while I should be filling out more freakin' paperwork. SOOO glad I won't be doing that!

I would never feed my kids pizza three consecutive nights in a row (their choosing) instead of cooking a nourishing vitamin packed meal.

I wouldn't contemplate some road rage-esque stunt (no Thelma and Louise, just maybe a little Towanda from Fried Green Tomatoes) as I travel my 110 mile trek to schools and back hitting rush hour which equals 3 hours in the car.  Keep watching local news, hopefully mugshot photo will be on a good hair day, although I'd wager ponytail.

I could never even conceive of not calling my friends back, who are just checking in on me because I was feeling too sorry for myself.

Never. But I would find myself often thinking, "whose life is this anyway?” This isn't what I signed up for. I know life never is. I know I've got to weather the storm here, but I've lost me sea legs (arrr). When I am at parent pick-up for school, I see who I used to be. I see the person I was, the one I signed up to be. I see the stay-at-home Mom, with her baby in tow, wonderful husband who just told her to have a night out to herself, beautiful suburban house and weekly play dates with time to volunteer and go to coffee with the other Moms. I used to be her. Now I feel like I'm an outsider looking in to what my life used to be. My sweet little protective bubble in the burbs, burst. My son has Autism, and has an extraordinary time with transition. Me too, maybe I have Autism? I don’t look like I have Autism. {Insert Sarcasm here} I don't know how to be this new person. I don't know how to fill these new shoes, and be a Single Mom, and do it all. I didn't sign up for that and it makes me angry. Angry that someone else made those decisions for me, and I had no say. I had no voice in the direction my life has gone, because someone else was too selfish, someone else always put his needs above that of his family and obligations. Everyday, I think I get better at this, being the new me, picking up pieces of my broken life, and pulling the glue out of my back pocket. The least I could hope for is to get a good high off the fumes of the glue right? Nope, I’m too responsible for that, and it’s not my thing.

So I wonder. Is there anyone out there who is really content? Is that achievable? For your average suburban Mom I mean. I know lives never work out as we plan them; there is a greater power at the wheel. We Mom's work so hard at making our lives "look" perfect, our homes, our families, even ourselves. Only a few extremely strong women I know have willingly put it all out there, and I admire them for that. In fact, I like them more. If I thought back to all the times I apologized for my house not being tidy enough, or my food good enough, or my car, child' behavior, or my unshowered disheveled self running late...again.

I feel I am getting braver. I am going to try hard to be more honest and not so apologetic. Although, I have to say, I’ve put a lot out there in the last year, and it is freeing. That has been a great lesson learned in this experience thus far. Perhaps I should have renamed my blog, Dirty Laundry 101.  Right now, I am what I am; I'm giving all that I can give, my circumstances seemingly dramatic are real, and for that I won't apologize. I have found great support in becoming a single Mom, groups, blogs, networks, you name it; same thing found in being a parent to a child with special needs. I just think that the old suburban "perfect" Me could've used a support group too. Sometimes, even though our circumstances may not seem that bad, heck maybe a bad trip to the grocery store with tantruming kids has almost pushed you to the brink; in that moment, nothing else seems as big. And that Mom leaves the store, screaming child in hand, feeling judged, embarrassed, and maybe even alone.  Or, maybe I just did.

So, I guess this is my life. Correction, no guessing necessary, it is a fact, this is my life.  Crazy, upside down, pathetic. But mine. I make the decisions now where I go from here, and that's a pretty good starting point.

Up a creek without a paddle.  Thank God for the glue in my pocket.