About Me

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I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (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.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Sick Little Boy

With the exception of "The Great Poop War" and the ensuing rashes, Robby has been an extremely healthy child. He has only been on antibiotics twice, both times for infected toenails as a newborn. I still find it ironic that my child was born with infected toes, but I digress.

Robby has been battling a cold since Christmas. The past few weeks he has been a constant mucus factory. In retrospect, I think that some of his misbehavior during the past few weeks might have been partly due to his not feeling well. At least, that is the excuse I'm going to give him!

Wednesday night my poor little guy became sick in the middle of the night. He began crying out for me and sobbing in bed. (Of course, I cursed my dependency upon a prosthetic as my response time was yet again impacted.) When I found him he was curled in the corner of his race car bed, sweaty and pale. His fever was 103 degrees.

Logically, I know that children spiking fevers in the middle of the night is not uncommon. However, there is nothing "common" when it is your child! I spent the rest of the night trying to keep Robby comfortable and calm. I then spent the rest of the morning trying to calm down Scott who was in a full blown panic about Robby being sick!

I packed up Scott and sent him to work. I then packed up my little guy and took him to the pediatrician. He was too sick to complain. In fact, this was the first visit since he was a newborn that he did not voice his displeasure. Although I appreciated my quiet little boy, I also knew that his compliance was a signal that he was sick.

After listening to his chest and completing a thorough examination, Robby has been diagnosed with pneumonia. I was assured that it is still relatively "mild" and he should be feeling better in three or four days. We were given a prescription for antibiotics and sent home to recuperate.

On the way from the pediatrician's office to the pharmacy I phoned Scott to give him the news. Robby must have realized who I was calling. As soon as I began to speak on the phone Robby began to lament missing his Daddy. "I wish that Daddy was home so we could cuddle and watch cartoons. Momom I don't feel good. I miss my Daddy."

After picking up the antibiotics, lollipops and ice cream (Robby assured me that ice cream and lollipops help the coughing go away) I was finally on my way home. I knew that Robby was beginning to wear down and I was looking forward to tucking him into bed. Imagine my surprise when I opened the garage door to find Scott's car parked inside!

Scott came home from work early "to cuddle and watch cartoons" with Robby. He explained that Robby will want to snuggle with his Mommy longer than he will want to curl up with his Daddy. Since his schedule was flexible, he didn't want to miss the opportunity to take care of Robby.

The two boys stayed in bed most of the day, napping and watching cartoons. Robby seemed happy to be curled up with his Daddy, and Scott seemed just as happy being needed by his little boy. I took the break as an opportunity to catch up on some work and to attempt a nap. I wish that Robby wasn't sick, but I do have to admit that it was refreshing having a quiet day.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Giveaway! This might be fun...

When I started my blog nearly two years ago I had no idea where my venture might lead. Since my first post, my life has taken turns that I never imagined. I have become a Spokesperson and a professional blogger for my prosthetist. I have rediscovered a part of myself that I thought was gone forever. During this journey, my reader base has grown and has remained steadfast.

I often tell my friends and family that I have, without a doubt, the best group of fans. Although my readership isn't massive, I consider myself lucky to have formed cyber relationships with many of you. When I am having a bad leg day or struggling with Robby Rotten, comments and messages of support (or commiseration) lighten my mood.

I have been contacted by a company that offered to sponsor a giveaway on this blog. Although I was initially hesitant, I began to realize that this might be a great opportunity to pay some of you back for the time that you take to read my thoughts and words. CSN has offered to provide a $35 gift card which can be used for anything from tv stands to cookware. (Unfortunately this opportunity is only available for readers in the United States and Canada. Sorry!)

Since receiving the offer I have been perusing the selections, and, of course, I was drawn to the cooking section. I uncovered an entire line of cookie cutters that I desperately need! Check out the entire selection from the CSN store family.

To enter the drawing simply send me an email through the "contact me" link on the blog. Please mention the drawing in the subject line and be sure to include your name in the message body. You may enter once per day.

On January 21, 2011, at 6:00 PM EST I will close the drawing. The winner will be selected by random.org. Good luck, and thank you again for reading my little blog.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Holy Sh*#!

This past Saturday, in lieu of going to "the wedding," I slipped on my "Greatest Aunt Ever" hat. I packed up my sister's three children and Robby and headed to Monkey Joe's--an inflatable play zone similar to House of Bounce. I knew that Robby and his cousins would love running, jumping and playing the afternoon away. I also knew that my mom and I would equally relish sitting down and relaxing!

As I was walking from the Monkey slide back to our table, I passed a woman whom I noticed was staring at my leg. I smiled and continued to pass her. I heard her loudly remark, "Holy sh*# look at her leg!" I turned and looked at her, but she was not phased by my visual contact. She continued to gawk.

Instinctively I wanted to respond, "Holy sh*# look at that ugly woman" but I opted to be the better person. This woman was brash and rude and, to be honest, I knew that she was not worth my time. I have become accustomed to glances, stares and comments concerning my prosthetic. Most of the time I am oblivious to the onlookers. Every once in awhile I find myself offended. This was the situation on Saturday.

I told the story to my mom when I returned to our table, and a few days later I retold the story to Scott. I made a drastic mistake in my decision to recount the incident. I forgot that I was in the presence of a little parrot!

Yesterday when we were visiting with our neighbor Mr. Bill, Robby lifted my pant leg and emphatically said, "Holy sh*# look at Momom's leg, Mr. Bill." The timing of this observation was odd considering that we were discussing sodding the lawn at the time. I explained what occurred a few days earlier, packed up Robby and headed home.

I proceeded to engage in a lengthy conversation about not repeating "that statement" because it was rude, hurtful to Mommy and inappropriate. He promised me that he understood and that he would never say it again. Foolishly, I believed him..

Yesterday during a trip to the grocery store, Robby lifted my pant leg and repeated the statement to the butcher, the man stacking bananas and an unsuspecting man buying toilet paper. Although the look on the faces of those individuals was priceless as my little cherub faced angel pointed to my prosthetic, I felt badly that they were put in such an awkward situation. Apparently all Robby seemed to gain from my lecture was that repeating "Holy sh*# look at Momom's leg" gets a reaction.

As he was strapped into the car seat on the drive home I scolded his behavior. I resorted to crying, explaining how that statement hurt my feelings and my heart. Yes, I was dramatic. It's amazing what a parent will do out of desperation!

Hopefully he will stop parroting the phrase, but only time will tell. I am not going to bring it up again for fear of sparking any ideas in his little mind. Today is supposed to be snowy and we won't be going anywhere. Perhaps it is a good day to make a "Sorry about my kid" sweatshirt just in case the lecture didn't stick.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Uplifting News

Yesterday I was having a rough day. I was feeling stressed, under-appreciated and overwhelmed by nearly everything. Financial worries and personal anxieties converged to make me an emotional wreck. Although I went through all the motions during the day, my instinct was to hide under my covers and cry.

Making dinner nearly drove me to my breaking point. An hour before dinner I discovered that we are out of flour, sugar, butter, baking powder, onions, potatoes, eggs, cheese and tomato sauce. Every time I came up with a menu idea, I realized that I didn't have what I needed. Frustrated, I slammed the freezer door, tossed a chicken in the sink and grabbed my laptop to search for a way to cook a frozen bird quickly--with no ingredients!

My foul mood evaporated as soon as I logged into the Internet. My home page is Facebook (please don't judge me) and I saw a post from a former teacher colleague of mine about a student whom Scott and I both taught.

To say that Kai is orthopedically impaired would be an understatement. In a wheelchair and unable to fully use her shortened arms, teaching Kai was a challenge. Despite her physical limitations, her intellect was intact. She was always smiling despite the taunts from other students and the obstacles that she faced every day.

I had the pleasure of working with Kai to help determine an appropriate computer technology. Scott taught her how to use the programs, providing her with the ability to pursue her passion: Kai loved to write poetry. Scott eventually helped her set up a blog so that she could share her thoughts and talents with others.

Kai has since graduated from high school, and like many of our students, we had lost track of her. I've often wondered how she was doing, saddened by the prospect of her being limited by her disabilities.

Yesterday I learned that Kai has continued writing and has been "discovered." She has evolved from writing poetry to creating lyrics, and one of her songs has been produced and recorded. Hearing her words being sung brought tears to my eyes. You can listen to the song and read her story here.

Learning of Kai's successes warmed my heart. I had lost sight of the "bigger picture." No matter how overwhelming life can feel, there is always a way to rise above the obstacles. Yesterday I needed to be reminded that sometimes good things do happen to good people!

My mood instantly lifted. None of my problems were solved, but I don't feel nearly as overwhelmed. I didn't even become upset when I realized we were also out of macaroni and cheese. Instead of crying, I improvised. We had pressure cooked chicken with popcorn. I spent the rest of the night smiling as I clipped coupons and made a grocery list!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Cake Love?

During that past twenty years I've made the wedding cake for every member of my family and most of my close friends. The cake has become an expected wedding gift that I am happy to provide. Although I enjoy baking and custom decorating each masterpiece, I doubt many know the time and expense I invest in each cake.

Last week I spent a full day baking cakes from scratch for a cousin's wedding. I then spent three hours that night cleaning up the mess that was created in my kitchen! Thursday, the cakes were loaded into the back of my car along with all of my decorating supplies, the cake stand, clothes for Robby and me and various toys for a several day trip to Pennsylvania. I planned on decorating and assembling the cake at my mom's house since she lives close to the reception site.

I spent nearly four hours on Friday whipping up icing and decorating the three tiered cake. Although I had a wonderful time decorating the cake, the experience was bittersweet. Since children were not invited to either the wedding or the reception, I was not going to be able to witness the ceremony or attend the festivities.

Although it is not uncommon for weddings to be "no children" events, in our family this was the first time this designation has occurred. We have always embraced the little ones and include them whenever possible. As a family, we respected the Bride's decision to keep this an "adults only" event. (Privately we did find it an odd request considering that she was marrying a soon-to-be Minister and vows to love and adore children.) Unfortunately, the majority of our family was not going to be in attendance because of childcare issues.

Despite a precarious drive through the snow, the wedding cake was delivered and assembled at the reception site on Friday afternoon. I was pleased with the result as I feel that the cake reflected the Bride's vision and style. I felt a sense of relief that the cake which traveled through three states was finally out of my hands and safely delivered!

After spending hours and incurring a considerable expense to prepare a wedding cake, imagine my shock when I learned that I was misled. Children were invited and were in attendance from the Groom's family. Instead of our invitations reading "no children" perhaps the Bride should have stipulated "Not your children."

I feel used and manipulated in order to receive a wedding cake. I am disappointed in my distant cousin. Apparently I am good enough to bake and drive a wedding cake 150 miles through three states in the snow, but I was not wanted at her wedding or reception.

I remain angry and frustrated that I was misled. I witnessed her discussing the no children rule with many of my family members on Christmas. Not once did she or her fiance mention that the rule was only for her family. She knew that children would be in attendance, even included in her wedding party, yet she led us all to believe that the request was issued to all guests.

For whatever reason, my distant cousin did not want to include her family in her special day. We would have loved to have been a part of the celebration as she embarks on this new journey in life. I wish her all the luck in the world in her newly assumed role as a Minister's wife. It is ironic that this will be her vocation considering that she started out her married life by lying to her family.