About Me

My Photo
I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active eight year old (Robby) and an infant (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Anxiety

After a wonderful weekend, I was surprised to wake up at dawn experiencing an anxiety attack.  Although they are nothing new to me, they have greatly increased in frequency since my hysterectomy.  This morning's episode was rather intense, prompting me to send a note to my doctor.

I hate feeling anxious, especially when the cause is not known. It is such an overwhelming and helpless feeling, as if everything is spinning out of control and I have no ability to regain my composure. Logically I can know that none of this is true. However in the throws of an anxiety attack, logic is of little consequence.

After an hour of deep breathing and trying to clear my head, I am feeling calmer. As I write about the feelings I can sense them starting to return, so perhaps it is best if I just try to push it out of my mind and forget about it. Anxiety is such a weird beast!

During my meditation attempts, I was hit with waves of grief. Although I had a great time with my Mom, Sunday was a difficult day for me. The Indy 500 was so special to my Dad. He adored auto racing, and anticipated the race like a young child waiting for Christmas. I was surprised by the overwhelming sense of loss I felt, and worked throughout the day to keep it at bay. In retrospect, perhaps allowing myself to cry would have been more beneficial. 

Today will be busy, which perhaps is a good thing. With the end of the school year approaching quickly, and Robby's birthday on Saturday, my to-do list is growing. Hopefully Timmy will cooperate today by allowing me to knock a lot off of the list. I suspect if my to-do list were smaller, my anxiety would lessen.


Monday, May 25, 2015

Productive Weekend

Happy Memorial Day!

The boys and I spent the weekend visiting my Mom while Scott enjoyed some much needed bachelor time at home.  Yesterday was Scott's favorite day of the year, filled with non-stop auto racing.  The first lap ran at 6 AM and the festivities didn't end until 11 PM. Needless to say, I felt comfortable leaving him alone with his TV, safe in the knowledge that we would probably not be missed.

Although the weekend wasn't particularly restful, it was extremely productive.  I was able to help my Mom with her lengthy to-do list.  I'm leaving happy, knowing that we accomplished almost everything that has been frustrating her.

From laying down mulch to fixing bicycles, I was a Peggy of all trades.  Robby was moderately helpful, although he was content relaxing inside with his Nana. To my surprise, he asked to stay an extra day because he was having so much fun.

My sister and her brood moved in with my Mom over two years ago, but this weekend they were all off on different adventures.  This visit was reminiscent of our time before her family moved into the house. I think Robby quite enjoyed the quiet and not having to share his Nana.  My Mom and Robby spent a lot of time playing outside, giggling and talking. It was only while they were playing that I realized it has been a long time since they interacted in that manner.  Robby even noticed, grinning from ear to ear and remarking that it was like the "good old days." 

We are heading home today, and back to reality tomorrow.  Summer vacation is peeking around the corner, so close we are counting down. This weekend was a great kick start to the Summer of Awesome II. 

Friday, May 22, 2015

Breathing Treatments

This has been the first morning that I have felt a sense of optimism that Timmy is turning the corner fighting his little cold. He has been coughing and dealing with a green runny nose for weeks and, despite our best efforts, nothing was helping. Coughing during the day is one thing, but his constant hacking all night was beginning to border on torturous for all involved.

Yesterday he went to the doctor who prescribed a series of breathing treatments. Initially I was upset that the treatments were warranted, but I also knew that in the realm of things that could be "wrong" with my child, this was minor.  I quickly realized that his little body needed help, and and was hopeful that these breathing treatments would work. 

Holding the little mask up to his mouth last night saddened me, but Timmy was a trooper. His fears were quickly redirected by his big brother sitting next to him, reading him a book.  Thankfully the treatment was not nearly as traumatic as we had feared.

Yielding results that were almost magical, Timmy slept through the night without coughing! He woke up this morning happy and energetic. I feel a sense of relief that we have finally found something to help my little Hamlet.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Videos!

I am excited to share two separate videos in today's blog.  The videos are markedly different, yet both reflect my passions.

The first video is the speech I recently presented during the Congressional hearing a few weeks ago. I knew that cameras were present, but I didn't realize that my words would be saved and uploaded for public viewing. (Please keep in mind that this was the first time I presented to Congress, and I was both nervous and unsure about what was expected.)




The second video shows Timmy's first step!  He has been teetering on accomplishing this milestone for a few days, becoming braver and standing without support for longer periods of time. It turns out that all he needed was the encouragement of his big brother and motivation to try to get to the cat.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Embracing the Number

To put it mildly, yesterday morning was hectic.  I woke up early with Timmy, and almost as soon as I turned on my computer I began to feel overwhelmed. Instead of my inbox overflowing with birthday greetings, I was met with frantic emails explaining a diverse array of crisis that required my attention.  Even before I slurped down my first cup of coffee, I was feeling stressed.

After plugging away at the issues throughout the morning, I finally began to feel settled.  While everything was certainly not fixed, I felt that the situations were on track and out of meltdown mode. Resolved to make to the best of the remainder of my birthday, I decided on a whim to surprise Robby's classmates with ice cream during their recess.

Let me tell you, walking onto the playground with ice cream on a hot day instantly elevates you to hero status. I was met with squeals, cheers and smiles, all of which immediately boosted my mood. Hearing all of his friends enthusiastically sing Happy Birthday to me was one of the highlights of my day. 

As all of the friends were happily munching on their ice cream, one little girl asked me how old I was today.  Deciding to own my age, I proudly proclaimed that I was 41 years old.  I wish I had a camera to record how her face instantly morphed from excitement to shock.  ""Wow. That's close to being dead. Why are you smiling?"

Without missing a beat, another little cherub decided to chime into the discussion.  "Wow. You're as old as my Granny. She's really old too."
Before I could change the topic, another friend graciously offered, "My Dad can give you botox if you want. He does that a lot with old people."

I instantly regretted my decision to be truthful about my age. So much for celebrating and embracing the number!

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Happy Birthday to Me

Today is my birthday. For the past 40 years I've eagerly anticipated the day of celebrating and doting. This year is different because for some reason I just don't care. The day doesn't feel special; and celebrating feels more like an inconvenience than a joy. 

I'm not upset about turning 41. I think I'm at the point in my life where I no longer care about the number. Aside from doctors, who are quick to point out middle age whenever possible, nobody has cared about my age since I turned 21. This year, my birthday just doesn't feel important.

Scott has never cared about his birthday, and I am beginning to understand his reasoning. He has always contended that the date made no true difference in his life, so he refuses to become fixated on a number. Not caring used to feel like such a foreign concept.  Surprising even myself, I am now echoing his sentiments. 

Having the Birthday Blahs doesn't mean that I am going to forgo celebrating altogether.  I'm looking forward to not having to cook dinner and to copious amounts of cupcakes for dessert.  After all, I may no longer require constant doting and celebrating, but a few perks are always welcome. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

Farm Fun

Friday I resurrected what has been dubbed "Adventure Friday" by taking Robby and his friend to the farm for the afternoon.  In addition to being a working farm, the facility boasts numerous playgrounds, fishing ponds, climbing and jumping structures as well as variety of different size slides.  Robby and I have enjoyed our visits to the farm so much that this year we decided to become full-fledged members by purchasing a CSA membership.  In addition to getting a box full of freshly picked produce every week, we will be able to play and fish to our hearts content all summer long. 

My arms and stroller were overflowing with picnic lunches, fishing poles, tackle boxes, a packed diaper bag, extra bottles of water and Timmy, as I slowly made my way to the fishing pond.  (The friends took off at a full sprint as soon as we cleared the admission gate.)  Thankfully, I'm in a comfortable socket so, although I was a bit tentative about traversing the terrain with my vision obstructed by stuff, I was able to make my way safely.  Timmy seemed to thoroughly enjoy the four-wheeling experiencing of his stroller being pushed through a rutty field.

I did find it ironic that the two boys, who didn't really want anything to do with me when we arrived, suddenly became inviting and engaging when they needed me to bait their hooks. I also had to chuckle when the little men came scampering back to me to get help taking the fish off the line.

It turns out that having a prosthetic foot is a real benefit when fishing. I could gently step on the flipping fish without having to feel a thing.  Of course, unfortunate for the first few fish, it did take me awhile to figure out the correct amount of pressure I needed to apply to secure but not squish.  In my defense, I don't think I harmed any fish, but I certainly angered a few. I think I need to add a pair of fish gloves to the tackle box. 

Everybody (with the exception of a few fish) had a great time at the farm.  I suspect that the highlight was Robby catching a snapping turtle with his fishing pole. He was delighted to have caught a koopa and understanding when I simply cut the line and sacrificed his hook and bobber.  I was not willing to risk my fingers!
This was a wonderful start to Adventure Friday 2015.