Saturday, November 29, 2008

A Long Novel of an Update........

I probably ought to post something. I've been so groggy and helpless with all the painkillers I haven't felt much like writing, or doing anything else for that matter. But, for journaling purposes, I figured I ought to share my experience of the past week. It all began on Sunday......
I had to stay home from church because the boys were sick. I wasn't feeling too hot either. I made a big effort to just let everyone be that day. We were all tired, sick, and a little burned out. It was a nice, relaxing Sunday. The boys took 4 hour naps. (I know, I couldn't believe it either!) We had just put in a movie so everyone would be entertained while I threw some dinner together. All of a sudden, I felt this fever come out of nowhere. I was literally shaking, teeth-chattering, freezing high fever in a matter of a few seconds. I decided to lay down for a minute, hoping it would pass. I was thinking how horrible it would be if we all got the terrible stomach bug that's been going around. Then out of nowhere, I got this incredible, shooting pain in my right side. It literally felt like labor, the last stage of labor, on my right side, along with the fever and shakes and fear, because suddenly I knew something was not right. I told Wes to get the laptop and looked up ovarian cyst. It sounded like that could be it, but it didn't sound quite exactly what I was experiencing. Then, at the bottom of the page, I saw appendicitis. It sounded more like that, although still not exactly. I was really freaking out inside by then. I was scared we wouldn't make it to the hospital in time, but also scared of worrying my family for no reason. I have experienced many panic attacks throughout my life, not really sure why, and I wasn't quite sure if I was having one. I think I asked Wes for a blessing. Then I remembered that I thought my mom had had an ovarian cyst before, so I decided to call her. She thought I had a kidney infection, or a bad case of the flu. But she encouraged me to go ahead and go in if I felt I needed to. Suddenly the pain got a lot worse and I really got scared. I could really concentrate on what I was doing. I thought about packing a bag, and then I felt silly about it, and also worried we wouldn't get there in time. I grabbed my glasses and contact stuff, and we took off. We dropped the boys off at my parents house. They called me on the way there and tried to tell me different things they were looking up that they thought it might be. I was hoping they were right. But deep down, I knew they were wrong.
Ever since Wes and I got married I have struggled a little with my health. I always figured it was stress because we got married and 10 days later moved out of state and 4 days after that he started pharmacy school, and I started working 2 jobs before that. I thought that stress was the contributing factor to my illnesses, aches and pains, which was probably right. But I had off and on had some weird pains in my right side, which we checked out once (in fabulous Nevada, which has the worst health care in the nation) and found nothing. We didn't have health insurance at the time, and when it costed so much to try and find out what it was we decided to let it go. I had lots of extra pains during my pregnancies, especially my first, as well as back labors and posterior births. There were many other things in-between and since then. But I had decided that I would have faith in Heavenly Father that he knew of my struggles and that he would guide me through in the best way. Fast forward to the hospital....
Getting there was a blur. All I could remember is feeling like we were behind the slowest drivers on the road, and we were stuck on the one-way street in Lehi. I was trying so hard to get Wes to drive by on the shoulder and pass this one car, and he wouldn't do it. He thought I was overreacting, I think.
When we got to the ER, I felt so relieved we'd made it. It was pretty slow when we got in, but it felt like they took their sweet time. I was trying so hard to be patient when a boy who'd stuck a piece of corn up his ear got to go in before me. But I don't think they saw me well enough to see that I was in a lot of pain. When they checked my vitals my blood pressure was through the roof and my fever was over 103. They took me right back and hooked me up in Triage. Suddenly, the pain subsided a little and I got worried that I did have some kind of panic attack. The doctor and nurse were there, getting blood tests and such, and they were trying to talk me into morphine. If you know me well, you know I hate, hate, hate medicine of any kind. (isn't it ironic my hubby's a pharmacist?) I finally relented, and I couldn't believe the difference it made. Suddenly I was mobile. I felt the pain, but it was bearable. I decided I wanted to go home. Yeah, like that was going to happen. We waited in the room for the labs to come back. They all came back normal. Then they decided to do a CT scan and thought they saw something. Man, those things are scary! In a hospital, by yourself, totally helpless and alone with your thoughts. Then when they doc says he thinks he sees something and can we do it again with the dye....that was both horrible and scary. It took forever. Then they took me back to the room without telling me anything until the ultrasound technician came to get me. I bugged him until he finally relented and told me he thought they'd found something on my ovary. Maybe a cyst of some kind. They wanted to see it better. Two ultrasounds and another hour or two later, the nurse came in and said that the OB on call would be coming to the hospital to talk with me. I did not think that was a good sign if a doctor was leaving home at 2 AM on Monday morning to talk to me about my pain.
Dr. Allen came in while later and explained to me that I had ovarian teratoma. It was a 7 centimeter benign tumor on my right ovary. The pain had come from the size of the tumor being so large that it was twisting my ovary to the side. They had checked its blood supply during all the tests, and it had appeared normal. That's why he recommended emergency surgery first thing in the morning. He was worried that if I left it alone that the blood supply would potentially get cut off from the twisting and then they'd have to remove my whole ovary. He also said that due to the size of the tumor, they'd have to operate a little differently by making a larger incision on my abdomen. We decided that we'd just go with whatever he said, although I felt a little uneasy since I trust my OB so much, and I didn't know this guy. But we went along with it, and he arranged for the OR team to come in a little early the next morning. I called my parents and told them what was going on. My dad came up at 5:30 AM to give me a blessing with Wes, and on I went to surgery.
Boy was that experience surreal. I was so nervous, I fought the anesthesia for a couple minutes. But once I relented I was out, and I don't remember waking up, all I remember is waking up at 11:30 and having so much pain and not really being able to control my body. But I looked up, and Wes and my sweet nurse, Marci, were right there and I knew it would all be okay. I could not wait to drink some water! Wes had called my good friends, Michelle and Celest, and they had taken care of so much for me. They both came up and visited me, and so did sweet Charlotte and Stacey. My dad had stayed with me while I was in recovery, and that meant a lot even though he probable doesn't think so.
When I got home that night, Michelle had cleaned all my carpets, along with my whole house, and Denise brought by a hot dinner shortly after. I have received a home-cooked meal every night since then.
I was really bummed about the timing of all this. I can't life more that 5 pounds or drive for 2 weeks. For another 4 I can't lift more than 15 pounds. I've had to take more painkillers than I ever thought I would, and they really knocked me out. But I have felt many, many blessings come from this experience.
Wes's mom, Johanna, died of stomach cancer when Wes was only 6 years old. She left behind her husband and 4 little boys. I thought a lot about her and others who might have undergone something similar only to receive bad news that they are sick/dying and then have to face the recovery I have. How frustrating and heartbreaking it would be to feel like you can do so little when what time you have matters so much. I feel truly blessed to have a healthy body, all questions answered, and good friends and family to rely on.
The other thing that has touched me is going though this during Thanksgiving week. I've had to rely on others for practically everything, without being able to offer more than a thank you in return and the goal of paying it forward someday. I feel so blessed to have the gospel in my life, and a husband and father that are worthy Priesthood holders. I have received many blessing this week, and always, and I continue to feel so blessed for their power. I am so lucky to have such wonderful family and friends who have loved and supported and helped me though all this. Three of my friends that brought dinner brought it the day they left town for Thanksgiving, and I was truly touched by their willingness to serve and give during such a busy time. In my patriarchal blessing, it talks about me being very close with me Heavenly Father in my pre earth life, and it tells me that I will feel wrapped in his arms of love many times throughout my life. This has been one of those times, and that experience has been nothing short of a miracle.
This post is already too long, and I am tired and miserable. But tomorrow I will feel a little better than today, and one day I will feel normal again. Until then I will try to focus on getting through the holidays by doing as little as possible, enjoying the blessings I have, and the beautiful experience that has been given to me, and all that it's taught me. Thanks for all your prayers, love and support. We've truly felt them and appreciate them so much.

Friday, November 21, 2008

CrossYour Fingers For Me.....

I am so excited! I have always wanted to get into songwriting, but it has always seemed too intimidating and difficult for me to do. When I took my guitar class in high school, we had a songwriting unit, which I passed, but I didn't have to write a song with lyrics, and I really don't even remember what I wrote. After I graduated high school, I started to write one song, but didn't really like it, so I gave up before it was done and lost interest. But due to my sudden sparked up interest in music, I decided to try it once again. Then last night, when I got back from Twilight, it came to me. Part of a song, the chorus, I think. I will tell you more later, it's a secret now. But it was really awesome. I was getting ready for bed and suddenly there was this tune in my head and I knew I hadn't hear it before. I grabbed my list of different phrases and such that I was hoping would come together and headed down to my keyboard. I was only able to pick out the melody and write it down. I was too tired at 3:30AM to care about anything else. After that, I went to bed. I'm still too tired today to really do much about the rest, but I will let it simmer in the back of my mind and hope more comes. I am excited that I got inspired like that, it was really fun! I'll have to rip out my guitar when I feel up tovit. I can't wait to see how it unfolds. Wish me luck!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A Great Idea

Michelle and I have started swapping babysitting every week. One day, she drops hers girls off for three hours, then I drop mine to hers for three hours on another day. Right in the morning. It's been sooooo nice to have that time. I come back after cleaning my house, running errands, or having lunch with a buddy. I come home, squeeze my boys, play with them for a few, and they are ready for a nap. Then it gives me time to put away groceries, make dinner, work with the dog, etc. It's been wonderful. My boys look forward to playing with Brooklyn and Kenzie, and they always like leaving the house for a change of scene. It's been great doing holiday stuff too. Then when I get back, I've really missed my kids, and I can enjoy them more because I'm caught up a little. I won't elaborate. I thought I would just throw out this suggestion for anyone who may need this as much as I did. I also thought this would be great for a temple night or other date night. If anyone is interested, let me know. I've gotta get going, my turn is this morning. Ahhhh, swapping. :)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Music in My Heart

Many of you may not know this about me. But music, up until I got married, was a HUGE part of my life, and who I was. I grew up in a home where it was important and meaningful. My mom writes music, mostly church music, and one of my fondest childhood memories is falling asleep to her singing or playing the piano. I remember her recording her music. I remember going to her best friend, Wendy's, house and they'd practice together. My mom's brother, Jim, plays the guitar like a dream, and I remember him playing and singing also. I remember how joyful and peaceful and safe I felt inside when my heart was full of good music. My dad's side of the family was very musical also. When we cousins got older, we sang together as a family often, and we even formed a Croxford Family Orchestra for awhile. We all loved it. My aunt, Fay, is in the Tablernacle Choir. She's always made music a special part of family get togethers. I really feel that music brought our family closer together.
When I was younger, I took a few piano lessons. I taught myself after that. I signed up for the school band in 7th grade and played the flute. Then I tried the oboe for awhile. It was a lot harder, but I loved it. I wanted to try many instruments. My friend had a piccolo and we'd take turns playing the piccolo part. I took guitar in high school. That was the hardest instrument for me to learn but also the most rewarding. My cousin, Tim, and I took voice lessons for about a minute and it was fun. I remember how stunned my voice teacher was at my range of notes, the strength in my voice, and the flexibility and control I'd had on my own without lessons. He had high hopes for me and my singing abilities. I loved to sing, so that was very special to me.
Since the time I was 4 I was always in a play of performing group of some kind. I was the youngest cast member of our stake play, "Fiddler on the Roof." I was a part of Singing Connection for years, and I really enjoyed it. As I got older, I got involved in ballet for a bit, which eventually evolved into figure skating (which remains one of my all-time favorite passions). That brought me so much solace. I loved skating to the music, expressing myself and really feeling the music. I didn't really enjoy the performing or competitiveness of it as much as the challenge and self-expression. The rink and some music was where I went to figure things out. Dancing and skating still does that for me.
When I was a junior, I quit the volleyball team to be a part of an amazing performing group (singing and dancing) called Clayton Productions. (If anyone has kids interested in this kind of thing he is hands down the very best and comes highly recommended!) We travelled all over performing and learning about the power of music.
Looking back, there are many, many more experiences and things I did throughout my life that had to do with music. I can't believe how big a part of my life it was. Then I got married and Pouf! it wasn't anymore. Partly because I didn't have time, partly because I didn't really have the connections or ability to keep it up, and partly because it didn't mean as much to me anymore. I don't regret it. Music is a very personal thing to everyone, and at that point in my life there was no room in my schedule or my heart for it. But lately it's been on my mind, and slowly creeping into my heart. I've had several experiences in the past few weeks that have brought it front and center in my thoughts. I got the opportunity to teach some of the young women in our ward a song and dance that they performed at Evening of Excellence. It was so easy for me, and so fun. It was a fun, special way to connect with those girls and give them some good, wholesome fun. Then, I saw my cousin, Tim, and we got talking about singing for a split second. Have you ever had a tiny moment like that awaken something inside of you? It was amazing. I've thought about it ever since then. They my mom called and expressed her interest in getting back into music soon. That got me really excited. Then, this past week, I got an amazing opportunity to drive some of the youth in our ward to a New Year's Celebration that was being taped at the Conference Center. It was one of the most amazing, unique things I have ever seen the church put together. The spirit there was so strong and amazing. The youth performing were absolutely unbelievable. I am still in awe of it.
Then, late on night it hit me: music is one of my callings in this life. I have been praying to find a purpose. I know we're all here to get married, raise good children, share the gospel, etc. But I have always felt and known that everyone here on earth is unique and different, and has their special gifts and talents to share. I wanted to know what mine was. I've always known that one has something to do with animals, but I've never felt like that would be something I get too involved in until my children are older. But music never crossed my mind. I feel so overwhelmed at the intensity of my feelings toward my new purpose in life. I am excited and overwhelmed at where to start. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be doing, only that it has to do with music. So it's time to dust off the instruments, start singing, and see where it leads me. I am so excited to have music back in my heart! I missed it. What a special, amazing way to feel of the spirit. Music touches my heart almost like nothing else.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Halloween Fun

I forgot my camera on Halloween. What kind of mother am I? We sure had a lot of fun. Wes had the day off. We played with the boys most of the day. We carved pumpkins. I tried a new soup recipe and we had soup in pumpkin bread bowls. The boys love that. We headed to Wes' parents' house for dinner. His mom had the cutest Halloween dinner ever! We had a meatloaf shaped like a bat, mashed potatoes and gravy that were ghosts sitting all over the gravy, and yummy Brussels sprouts. (You've gotta know how to cook those or their gross.) I couldn't get the boys to eat much because they were too excited to trick-or-treat. We decided to hang around for a bit and trick-or-treat with Wes' family. His sisters are 8 and 9, so they are at that age...... His brothers, Andrew and Joseph came also. And of course, my future sister-in-law, Ashley. We had a lot of fun. We couldn't believe how warm it was. What a nice change from the norm. Rain instead of snow. Wonderful. It was a beautiful night, and the boys had tons of fun. Kolton was a diehard. He got the concept really fast. Micah wanted to walk in everyone's houses. After trick-or-treating and breaking our stroller, we decided to head back home and let all the little ones enjoy some time together. They loved "scaring" the ghost at my mom's. she has this little electric ghost that makes sounds and moves up and down a line hanging across the driveway. They loved that. They were wild. All on a sugar high. It was a blast. All in all, it was a great holiday. I'm so bummed I forgot my camera! Next time I will remember. But luckily for me, the boys want to put on their dinosaur costumes every day. That made sewing them totally worth it. They are really enjoying them. (I think it's time to throw together a dress up bin.) So here are some pictures I took last night.Here is a picture of them running around the house in their costumes. I have seen this every single day since Halloween. I love it! (By the way, thanks Mariann for helping me with those nasty pattern directions. I would've sewn the hoods shut if you weren't there to help me! I owe you one. ;) Micah's hood looks funny because for some odd reason, he loves to pull it crooked. Right when it goes on, every time. I'm just happy he wore it all all. This kid hates hats.
I love my big scary dinosaurs. They are so very precious. Holidays with kids are so special and fun and memorable!

Pumpkin Pickin'

We took the boys to the pumpkin patch a few weeks ago. They had a ball. I always look forward to the pumpkin patch. There's nothing like seeing hundreds and hundreds of big orange pumpkins everywhere you look. It's classic. The boys went nuts. They ran around everywhere. They picked up the pumpkins, rode in the wheelbarrow, sampled fresh produce, and just had a ball.
Okay, I tried uploading different picture sizes and locations. Obviously it didn't work. Someone needs to show me how. I loved Kolton's face in this one. It's all scrunched up because he's trying to pick up the pumpkin all by himself. He's Mr. Independent lately. It's so cute.
The highlight of the night for Micah of course! He loved the pumpkin patch too, but it was love at first sight when he saw the tractor. He was such a little doll. He waited so patiently for Kolton to have a turn. Then he went crazy making noises and driving. He just loves anything with wheels!
All of my attempts for a family picture were in vain. But I love my little Micah's face in this one. He's usually pulling a weird face at the camera. I think he was still trying to figure out is he liked the straw.
I've been attempting to take more pics of the two of us. I noticed the other day that the only pics we have of the two of us are our wedding and engagement photos. Sad! (I don't think we have a family picture either. It's about time I think.) We had fun. This is one of our little traditions every fall. One we will continue for a long time to come. Gotta love the pumpkin patch.

Friday, November 7, 2008

America the Beautiful

I took this excerpt from my cousin Jaci's website. Well said Jace, I agree 100%.

"Life in democracy lately seems so divided...when as Americans we really should be united. No, I did not vote for Obama in this election. But, I just want to declare that I will support him as president. America is America and we should be standing together. Unfortunately, it seems there is always one side that isn't happy. I just hope we can all continue feeling patriotic and support Obama, and all of the many people that work with him in keeping our country free and striving to be united. I was grateful for the closing speech given by McCain, and disappointed at all the people who were 'booing' every time he mentioned Obama's name. The election is over. America has spoken, and even if it didn't go your way, we still live in a free country and should be grateful for that. That's my two cents. Take it or leave it."

I would like to add that we have a constitution. And it will prevail. Every president we've had has brought both good and bad things to our country. Every president is human. Every president we've had is just doing his best to give us a better America, and to unite us as citizens. I don't love Obama's ideas, or even agree with most of them. I don't love the people he chooses to associate with, or even bring into office with him. But America has spoken, and it's time to stand together and be good citizens, and people. I also think we should be happy about Proposition 8, end every document like it that didn't pass this week. America is still a Christian country, and we have all chosen together to preserve our Christian values. For that I am so extremely grateful. We are so blessed to live in such an amazing country. America is hope, freedom, ambition, religion, love, kindness, inspiration, joy, and more. Change has come to America, and it's time to get excited.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

It's Election Day - Go Vote!

I love being an American! I love our country and all it stands for. Today is election day, and I am lucky enough to be able to vote. Not everyone has the privilege we do as American citizens. We have a god-given government that allows us, the people, to use our voices and select our leaders. We are so very blessed for that.
This election is very important to me (as they all are) because it will directly affect me in many ways. Weston works for an AMAZING pharmacy. They are very skilled and knowledgeable, kind and caring. They do many things that other pharmacies around here can't do like compounding and deliveries. Jeff Kirkpatrick, the owner, is a good man who is doing good business. They truly are wonderful people and I have been so happy Wes is blessed with his amazing job. I'm not sure what will happen with it come next year. This election is critical to small businesses, among many other things. I know many people in the military, along with myself enjoying the safety and freedoms we have because of our amazing military. I am affected by high gas prices, food, etc. and I have a strong opinion on moral issues such as abortion, marriage, border control, etc. I have done extensive research ad have loved every minute of it. I have participated in many political debates and discussions. It's always fun and interesting to see other people's political views. It can be a little frustrating when people don't seem to understand the issues. But I always remember the fact that we all want the same thing: a better America. We all want to be happy, safe, free, abundant, etc. We just all have different opinions of how to do that. That's what makes America great. So many people trying to make our country a better and better place to live, and using our voices to accomplish that. What a great blessing it is!
I'm not going to tell you who to vote for, or even who I am voting for. I am only hoping that you've done your research on both sides of the issues, and that you make the best choice you can after careful thought and prayer. Exercise your right to vote today. You won't regret it. Go do the right thing! Yay for Democracy!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

The End of our Trip

I won't bore you with too many more pictures. It was harder than I thought it would be to weed them out, but I think I pulled it off. Here's the last little bit I could justify putting up here:
I had to snap a goodbye picture as we left the park that last day. Vacation endings are always bittersweet for me. It's always nice to have a vacation from chores, responsibilities, and let go and have fun together. It's nice to have time together as a family, as a couple, and as a person to enjoy one another, set goals, and think. I am always sad to see it come to an end, but I am always refreshed (although exhausted) and excited to come home to "real life."
The boys konked out the minute they got in the car that last night. Luckily, we were clever enough to remember to pack their jammies and they were nice and cozy during the trip to Vegas. They slept most of the way. We slept there, woke up, and headed for home. Thanks Lori and Dave for letting us crash at your house! It was really nice to be able to break up all that driving with so many little ones. The boys had so much fun during their first Disney experience. I'm glad we did it and I cannot wait to do it again already! Family vacations are a blast!
Our only picture together. We need to work on that one. We were so happy to be heading home after a fun and memorable trip. Thanks Mom and Dad and fam for sharing such a fun and memorable vacation with us. We are so grateful to have such a wonderful family!

The Pixar Parade

Here's all the kiddies waiting for the parade to begin. They do the cutest parade with the Pixar characters in California Adventure. They loved it. They all know the characters better, so it was really fun. They were so excited!
Oh boy! Lightning McQueen is a favorite in our house. All the kids couldn't believe they saw him in real life! They were starstruck!
Kolton's face when he saw Lightning McQueen. Classic.
Micah watching the parade with his cute little thumb in his mouth (do we know him any other way? I tried not to worry too much about all the germs he came in contact with because of the thumb. Luckily we were able to keep his hand clean enough that he stayed pretty healthy!). He watched the parade a little further back with Wes. He did NOT like the squirting water. None of the kids did, but Micah the least. He had a lot more fun further back. What a doll!
I loved the parade too. The costumes were great! The neat little extras were amazing! They had these guys on special stunt stilts, and they were jumping 10 feet or so in the air! (Wes is crusading for them for his birthday. He's such a kid at heart. I love it.) I couldn't resist snapping a pic of this guy when he turned and posed for me.

More Disneyland Fun

I had to throw in one picture of the candy corn gardens at California Adventure! I loved them, and I might have to steal their idea for our fall decorating next year. Disneyland in the fall was beautiful too. There were all different colors and varieties of mums and marigolds. Fall colors everywhere. There were also pumpkins of all the Disney characters, and a giant pumpkin of Mickey Mouse. He was darling! This Disney characters also were running around in their Halloween costumes. It was a really fun time of year to go!
This is one of the only pics with me in it. I'm usually taking the pictures and can get out of it. But Wes took this one, and I think he did a good job! Kolton loved the fire truck. We stopped by it just about every day while everyone took turns in the potty. (Yes, potty training all 3 older boys continues with much success while we were there. Yeah boys!)
Gotta have a picture by the entrance. I wanted to get one with just our little family, but it was well over 90 degrees this day and we melted waiting for this one. Micah wouldn't even look because the sun was so bright. I bet it's fun to see everyone grow and change each time you go back and get another one of these pictures.
This is one of my favorite pictures of the whole trip. Favorite moment too! Kolton and Micah shared and ice cream cone on the really hot day. Kolton shared it all by himself without being asked. I loved it! They seem like they are really growing to love and enjoy each other so much these past few weeks. The close gap is finally beginning to pay off. Aren't they sweet?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...