Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Lemons and Lemonade

Oh come on, you know you've all heard it!

I know this quote is about optimism, but can anyone really be optimistic all the time?  Isn't that kind of person really a pain?  I mean, sometimes life just stinks, right?  It isn't perfect ALL THE TIME!  This post has been a long time in the works because I really hate being a downer.  I hate not always being able to see the bright side; however, I decided that I can still try to have a positive outlook because I know that even though life has handed me a lot of lemons lately, things are going to get better and good things will still happen.  I have started writing this in my head a dozen times, but I just always stop short of putting it “on paper.”  I am going to take some wise advice from a friend to just put this out here and not feel guilty or bad if it isn’t all sunny and cheerful and positive.  Life isn’t always positive, and I do think it is an important lesson for my children that we can get through the tough times too if we stick together and support one another.  There have been several things that I may have alluded to in the past that have been going on “behind the scenes.” 


For the last few months at least, I have been feeling increasingly tired with a myriad of other symptoms that have been an increasing cause of concern.  Actually, I may have exhibited some earlier signs that I was not aware of because I just chalked them up to being pregnant and working full time and being in law school. Until recently, I just thought it was lingering symptoms of pregnancy and grief, but when I just could not see an end to the problems, I knew I had to find out what was going on.  At the beginning of February, I decided it was time to figure out what was going on, and I drug my sweet husband with me to the doctor.  I knew they would likely want to take some blood tests, and I am not good with those at all.  After a lengthy discussion with my primary care physician who was so nice and will sit and chat with you for hours, we proceeded with the blood draw.  The nurse (vampire?) needed quite a bit so as expected I needed to lie down halfway through it to keep from passing out.  This appointment was on a Friday so I knew I would likely have to wait until the following week for some answers.  I did not hear anything until the following Tuesday.  Tuesday, February 4th was a pretty crazy day.  I got two calls that day that pretty much changed my life.  First, my dad called to give me the status update on my mom.  She wasn't improving at all on the ventilator and her condition was worsening.  She wasn't breathing at all on her own, and her lungs weren't healing as we hoped.  We had a choice to either intubate her so she would be more permanently attached to the ventilator or we could take her off the ventilator and let her pass since she was no longer conscious.  My dad felt that he was honoring her wishes by letting her pass away as peacefully as possible by removing the ventilator so he ultimately made the choice after consulting with her physician.  After receiving this call from him, I received a call from my physician’s nurse.  She left a voice mail to call her regarding the results of my lab tests.  I attempted to call her back, and we played a little phone tag game until she finally called me on my work phone.  She gave me the abbreviated version that I was severely hypothyroid and would likely have to take a lifetime hormone replacement medication.  She had already called in my prescription to my pharmacy for me so all I had to do was pick it up and start taking it.  My physician did send me a thorough explanatory letter about the condition and treatment, and it really isn't the worst diagnosis I could have received.  I have done a little more research into the condition as well.  So far, I haven’t seen a lot of improvement in my symptoms, but I am hopeful that once we get my medication dosage correct, I will see very positive results.  I do still have some questions for when I go back to the doctor this month.  I think my questions are causing me more anxiety than the actual condition so I hope to get some peace of mind at that time. 


I am so thankful that the boys have been doing very well aside from Brody’s recent facial injury.  Unfortunately, he did sustain a pitiful little cut on his cheek that required a trip to the urgent care.  It is still not looking great, but it seems to be healing well with no signs of infection.  The urgent care was able to just use glue to hold it together with no stitches.  I hope we can minimize the presence of a future scar on his sweet little cheek.  

Evan has been doing well with no adverse health problems.  He finally got a new teacher for his class so I hope he will have a successful ending to his first grade year.  He is really loving to read now, and it just amazes me how he loves to sit and read instead of playing video games and his other favorite activities.  Of course, if the weather is nice, he still loves to play outside.  He is very excited about beginning machine pitch baseball this month.  I admit I am a little nervous about the experience as this feels like the first real experience with competitive sports.  The players were evaluated on their skills, and the coaches actually got together and conducted a draft-like meeting to select their teams.  Eddie will be assistant coaching Evan’s team so he got to be a part of the meeting, and he said some of the coaches were pretty hard core.  I pray it will be a fun experience for Evan and will help him increase his skills. 

Also, we will be assisting my dad with the process of moving to Charlotte this month.  He has already found him a place to live close to us, and we hope we can help him get involved in the community and develop a routine to keep him active, healthy, and happy.  He may be helping us for a few weeks or months with the boys’ after school care too. 

Brody’s speech has just been exploding lately.  He can actually be quite the little chatterbox some days.  His grandma is staying with him this week, and he just loves “praying with grandma” (praying = playing).  I have to do a full update on him soon because he is just saying and doing so many cute things lately.  He has become a little video game addict as he loves playing big brother’s Wii, especially Super Mario Bros.  I can’t blame him there as Super Mario Bros. is pretty addictive.  A few things I love hearing him say are: 

1.  “I want to ride in the blue car.”  - Blue is obviously his favorite color although almost everything is blue these days, even if it is red!  The blue car is our van which he always prefers to ride in as opposed to our red Jeep.  Mostly, he chooses the blue car because he wants me to take him to school in the mornings, and I drive the blue car.  The red car is our spare car that our nanny usually drives to pick up the kids. 

2.  “I want movie.” – He loves watching movies in the van. 

3.  “I want the B.I.E.”  - The “B.I.E.” is his way of referring to his favorite song from preschool “The B.I.B.L.E.”  It is the first song on the little CD his teachers gave us for Christmas.  It is always in our car’s CD player. 

4.  “my boppy and my silky” – I love that he is actually referring to his silky blanket by name now.  Silky blankets have been his favorite soother since he was a young infant.  I usually hear him referring to these items at bedtime or more frequently in the middle of the night when he comes in our room to get into our bed.  He usually drags his boppy pillow (yes, this was my nursing pillow that he still likes to sleep on) and his silky blanket with him and hauls them up onto our bed. 

5.  “I want to go to ool.”  - “Ool” = school.  He loves school!  On Monday, daddy was going to take him to school, but before they left the house, Brody informed daddy, “No, grandma ool.”  He wanted Grandma to take him.  Unfortunately, she was not dressed to take him so he didn't get his way, but it was still so cute.

6.  "Good to go!" - This one needs a little explanation.  Brody is totally addicted to playing Super Mario on the Wii, and this phrase is often repeated by Mario on the game.  Similarly, when Evan was about this age, he liked watching his daddy play a football video game on his Playstation and would often repeat the little intro "EA Sports.  It's in the game!"  Haha!

7.  "I go night night!" - Brody is a pretty good pouter!  He will pout whenever something doesn't go his way or when he isn't given something that he wants.  He will proceed to poke out his little lip, lay his head (and often whole body down with his booty in the air) on whatever surface is available, and will obstinately proclaim, "I go night night!"  Oh if only it were that easy to get him to go night night at actual bed time!    


We are really looking forward to many good times ahead, including some lovely Spring weather.  I know many of us have been feeling like this winter is never ending.  We did get a nice little taste of Spring this past weekend, and I think we are supposed to be getting more warm weather this weekend.  We do have some fun things planned for this year.  We are planning to take the boys to see Washington, D.C. for Spring break week.  Evan has been wanting to see the dinosaurs at the Smithsonian for quite a while, and I am hoping that the cherry blossoms will still be in bloom although we will not be there until the week after the Cherry Blossom Festival ends.  My favorite holiday, Easter, is just around the corner as are the boys’ birthdays.  I am looking forward to better days ahead with my health and to getting my energy level back to normal so that I can enjoy another fun summer with the kids. 

To all my dear friends in the blogging world, I am so sorry if my blog seems to have been hijacked lately with many depressing life events happening.  Life is not always a smooth road to travel.  You never know when you are going to be facing a bump in the road.  I hope that when I look back at this year of our lives, I will be reminded of how God carried us through and blessed us even after the stormiest and hardest times.      

And just for laughs and to end things on a good note:

And for all of you feeling depressed by the weather lately, here is a reminder that Spring is coming:

So when life hands you lemons and good weather, drink lemonade and go to the park!  :-) 


  1. Thank you for being so real! As I read this post I imagined sitting across the table from you enjoying a sweet tea as you shared your latest news. I am glad you finally went to the dr and hopefully you will feel better soon. Life is full of ups & downs and the past month has just been a roller coaster. I have been anxious and much so that some days I don't like myself very hearing people talk about what they are giving up for lent, I realize I need to give up my bad attitude ;) sounds funny, but when I think about it....its sort of sad that I have let my circumstances rob me of my joy. Thanks again for sharing your heart...didn't mean for this comment to become a post.....but when 8 sit & talk with a friend I tend to get prayers for you!

  2. Oh yea.....I am SO over the cold! Bring on spring!!

  3. Sherry,
    I really wish I lived closer to you! I'd love to go have a Mom Date with you so that we could talk.
    I'm glad that you got some answers as to why you are feeling bad. My friend Kim has the same issue and has also had part of her thyroid removed when she had cancer. Over the years, there have been times when she has to adjust her medicine before she starts feeling better. There have been times when it takes a while to get just the right combination so that she feels her best. I'll be praying for you!
    I'm so sorry about you mom. I can't even begin to imagine how painful that must be. I am sure that you will really enjoy your dad living close by.
    I'm so glad that they boys are doing so good. We never made it to machine pitch when my Evan played baseball, but I'm sure it is VERY competitive. It'll be a lot of fun with Eddie being his coach. I love that Brody has had a word explosion. I can't wait to hear what all that little guy has to say.
    We're going to see dinosaurs over Spring Break too, but how amazing it is that you all are going to the Smithsonian!?! You all are going to have a blast! I'll be looking forward to your posts about your trip.
    And please remember that if you ever need someone to talk to, I'm always here for you. Sometimes, just getting things off of your chest can make you feel so much better.

  4. Oh honey, what a beautiful and honest blog post! Your strength inspires me!
    I had to have blood drawn at the doctor the other day. I was nervous but ok. I explained to the nurse that I am actually a Red Cross blood donor whenever I'm not pregnant, but that I was still a little uneasy. I did good but forgot to drink lots of water that day. I woke up the next day with an awful headache.
    Anyway, I'm so glad we're friends. You are constantly in my thoughts.

  5. I really, truly and honestly didn't find one bit of this post to be a downer. Like I said before, it's just real and it's just life. I'm sorry to hear about your hypothyroid, but at least you have an answer. And it really is a very manageable condition. My mom had a huge tumor taken off her thyroid when I was 15 and she started taking medication at that time since she lost 1/2 her thyroid. Then the tumor came back about 15 years later and they took her whole thyroid. She's been on the medication for almost 20 years (at different dosages) with hardly any side effects. Your thyroid regulates so much so hopefully you will be feeling so much better now.

    Also, as a speech therapist, I love to hear how much Brody is "blooming" and I love the little transcript of what he is saying. Obviously, I am a big fan of language development.

  6. Sherry, this is a truly honest post about your life right now. I am so thankful you have shared it with us, as we want to pray for you and support you in the ups and downs of life. I am just so sorry that life has so very many downs for you right now. I pray that soon you will see a lot of ups to make up for it. I too am eagerly waiting for Spring and hoping for a lot of renewal and growth in my own life. I love you friend.


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