Saturday, December 31, 2011

To 2011, on the eve of its death

Dear 2011,

You are the suckiest year that has ever sucked, quite possibly the worst year of my life, and I hope you die a slow, miserable death. Not really about the dying part; I want you to go the hell away as quickly as possible.

2011, it's not (entirely) me, it's (mostly) you. The circumstances you have brought to me are completely unacceptable, and I'm going to have to ask you to leave and take them with you. You have brought nothing but difficulties, pain, and illness to me and my small family. There have been hospitalizations, financial difficulties, marital problems, struggles with the man (i.e. insurance and Early Intervention), depths of anguish and self-loathing I never knew existed, and more. I'm done with it. I'm ready to start fresh with a new year and try again to make life less craptastic. 2012 is looking far more attractive to me right now than you are. I hope you understand.

Of course, you haven't been completely without positive moments. You brought a trip to visit my bestie in North Carolina, some new bloggy friends, some measure of control over W's sensory issues (sort of), and my first (TWO!) crappy day presents. On balance, though, the good was far outweighed by the bad. I can't have that kind of negativity in my life, so we really need to go our separate ways.

It's not that I hate you, 2011. It's more like I loathe all 365 of your days and wish you nothing but ill. And I'm ok with that. It's time for both of us to move on. All that's left to say to you is good riddance.



P.S. (For my readers) - Sorry for not linking up to any old posts. Some of the stuff didn't get blogged about, some of it I'm not in a place to be reading tonight, and some, frankly, has been linked to death. Happy New Year! I hope 2012 is better to you than 2011 was.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

My 2012 word

I started doing the "one little word" thing last year because I really suck at resolutions. Last year's word was "peace." It didn't work out as well as I had hoped, though I do think having that idea to focus on helped.

I've shifted my focus a little this year, and have chosen "freedom" as my word. Because you can't have peace without freedom from your demons. Well, I don't think I can, at least, if my past performance is any indication. I'm going to order another resolution ring, too, because I loved having the visual reminder to focus on achieving my peace.

Doodle courtesy of the late Sarah of Gitzen Girl.

So there it is. My focus for 2012. Let's hope this year is the year I reach my goal.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Anxiety dream

I fell asleep last night feeling highly anxious about something. When I woke up this morning, the high anxiety continued. I think this happened because I dreamt about being anxious. My whole dream was flooded with the awful sense of panic and foreboding that come with my anxiety.

I don't remember much of the dream, but I remember being on a balcony or something that only had one support beam in the middle, and was tipping from side to side. There were a bunch of other people on there, too, who were wholly unconcerned about the possibility of falling to our deaths from the wobbly balcony. Every time someone moved, the balcony swayed, and I freaked out some more.

The strangest thing was how REAL the anxiety felt. I've been having very realistic dreams recently, and this was one of the realest. It's just so odd that a dream can affect me so much. It was completely a figment of my imagination,  but the feelings it evoked set the tone for my whole day. It was just weird.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Birthday boy

Today is the day B is once again the same age as me and the cradle-robbing jokes stop for another year. He doesn't really do birthdays, so I'll keep it simple. Happy birthday, B. I hope 29 treats you (and us!) better than 28 did.

Monday, December 26, 2011

All things Christmas

Now that Christmas is over (and my living room looks like a toy store vomited all over it), it's time for a recap of our festivities.

Not really from Christmas, but he's cute. It counts because he's in Christmas jammies, right?

Decorating Christmas cookies at Grandma's.
Believe it or not, he liked the cookie. He also thought cookie decorating required a party hat.
W and Daddy decorating the tree.
Working on the ill-fated gingerbread house.
Santa came! Never mind that he was a week early. The boys couldn't have cared less.
First picture from "Christmas" morning.
Playing Rudolph.
The actual Christmas morning.

Kinda looks like R didn't participate in any of the festivities, right? I think that was because I was in charge of the camera and of W. I spent so much time making sure W didn't open everyone else's presents that I only got a few pictures, and they tended to be of the kid who was sitting right in front of me. I'm hoping someone else was a bit more conscientious than I was.

Christmas was really nice. We spent Christmas Eve with my in-laws, and the boys got to play with their cousins from North Carolina who they don't see very often. They boys has an AWESOME time together. You've not experienced chaos until you've had a house filled with four boys, ages four and younger.

Christmas Day was spent at my mom's. We usually go to my aunt's for an extended family party, but it didn't work out that way this year, so we just had a quiet day at Grandma's. B made his first prime rib ever, and it turned out awfully tasty.

I got mostly money this year, but B got me a sewing machine and an ice cream maker attachment for my Kitchen Aid mixer. I can't wait to try both of them out. I've now decided that I need to turn my cloffice (the original closet in our bedroom that I decided when we moved in would eventually be my office, even though it's barely big enough for a desk and a chair) into a sewing room. I think it'll work if I swap out my desk for the sewing table my mom gave me, and get rid of the desk chair in there. I would love to have a permanent place for sewing. It'll work out so much better than busting out a TV tray and parking myself on the couch whenever the sewing bug bites.

The boys got approximately 368,713,640 toy cars and trucks. Seriously, assuming we don't lose all of them, these children will never need another Matchbox car or Cars 2 character as long as they live. They also ended up with a huge assortment of Melissa & Doug toys. Santa brought them the band in a box, which has been driving B nuts. He hates lots of noise, and the band in a box is pretty much all assorted percussion instruments. His favorite is when the boys use the maracas as drum sticks and the tambourine as a drum. I shouldn't laugh when they do that, but it's just too funny. The biggest hit with both boys so far has been the VTech Counting Fun Elephant. They both love the popping balls, especially when the balls hit them in the face while they're looking down the chute. My kids are weird.

All-in-all, it was a wonderful holiday. How was your Christmas (or winter holiday of choice)?

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Happy Christmas to all!

We just got back to my mom's after a full day at the in-laws', and we're all starting to wind down for the night. My mom JUST took W up to bed (holy way past bedtime!), and R went down only a few minutes before that. B put himself to bed early. So I figured I'd take advantage of the quiet to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

Card designed by ThePhotoMommy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Another year closer to old

Hey, it's my birthday! Today at 3:29 PM, I get one year closer to officially being old. ("Old" is 30, for those trying to do the math.)

As the husband doesn't really care much about birthdays, I don't expect much out of this one. It's already starting out lame:  no "happy birthday" from B when he kissed me on his way out of bed this morning, B has class tonight, so I probably won't see him, no cake, no presents (though I'm considering busting into my CDP stash just so I have something to sad is that?), and the quiet alone time I was hoping for when I woke up way before the alarm went off was ruined when W woke up the second I stepped out my bedroom door and has been replaced by the sounds of Elmo's Christmas/Holiday Special and a preschooler jabbering at the the goings on on the TV (at least I caught him before his yelling woke up R. I don't get why that kid can't wake up quietly, like normal people).

Birthday joy is one of the many things depression (or children, or life, or age and maturity, or something) has sapped from me over the past several years. The birthday just isn't as fun as it used to be. I kinda hate that (see, generally, "Ugh! Why can't I just be happy???").

Anyway, my extra morning time is gone, so I'll quit whining. Time to face the day. I hope you have a happy one!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Some updates

I'm not really in the mood to write tonight. First, because it's after 11:00 and I know I have to get up at 6:00. Second, my butt hurts, and sitting at B's desk chair isn't helping matters (and I can't blog from my phone. I just can't). Third, I'm ruminating on my abysmal life choices (small and large) and wishing I knew when to keep my damn mouth shut, and no one really wants to read another one of THOSE posts, amiright? And fourth, I'm plain old grouchy.

We had a fairly busy weekend. B worked both days, so I had to get up far before dawn with the boys who don't quite understand how to tell time yet (and when they do, oh, they will be confined to their rooms until at least 7:30. I'd shoot for 8:00, but there's no use dreaming that big).

My mom and I took the boys to a Christmas party on Saturday that turned out to be really nice. W got a talking Finn McMissile car (apparently this is one of the new characters in Cars 2? I haven't seen it), which was a favorite. We were supposed to go to a birthday party Saturday afternoon, but naps (mine included) didn't get over until an hour after the party started, and W decided he was going to be a shit not too long after he woke up. Going out in public would have been disastrous.

Can't really blame the kid, though. He's got a raging ear infection that probably been going on for better than a week now. I'm pretty sure when he started waking up three or four times a night, it was because his ear was bugging him. Now that we make sure to keep him drugged during sleeping hours, he seems to be doing better. One of his ear tubes fell out on Saturday, and his ear has been draining since then. Normally, draining is a good thing because it means all the gunk isn't in the ear causing pain. But W's been getting ear drops since Wednesday night, and his ear is still flowing like most kids' noses do with particularly nasty colds (yes, that's what it looks like. No, I don't feel particularly badly about providing you with that mental image. Welcome to my world...). I think I'm going to have to call the ENT tomorrow. The fact that he got an ear infection the millisecond one of his tubes shifted out of place gives me a very bad feeling that he's going to end up needing another set. That boy is whiny enough on the best of days...I can only imagine what he's like post-anesthesia.

Today was a friend's baby shower, which was really nice. I got to see some of my friends I haven't hung out with in a while, which is always a good time. The boys all went to another Christmas party, and all reports say it went well. The little ones loaded up on junk food and came home with new toys. Isn't that always the measure of party success?

I managed to not get any of my weekend projects completed. Again. Other than doing some laundry and getting a load in the dishwasher, housework once again goes neglected. The big ones I need to get done are inventorying/organizing/wrapping Christmas presents and putting ugly plastic sheeting up on our ancient windows. But I didn't. Maybe I'll get to it this week.

So there's the weekend. Nice, busy, and unproductive. Now I'm going to bed to try to sleep. Those babies wake up way too early.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

That was a great three days

There was a time in the not-too-distant past that I was actually feeling mentally well. I was confident in myself and my ability to heal. I saw a light at the end of the tunnel and thought the light was worth running toward. I wanted to keep fighting the ever-present demons. I wasn't so TIRED.

I miss that time.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

I'm glad I can't get fired for being sick

Good Lord, it never ends around here! It started with the hospitalization in June when I was off work for a week. (Side note:  I can't read those posts any more. I just about had a panic attack now because I reread them when I was linking to them. Gah.) I don't have any sick time built up due to having two maternity leaves and two children with ridiculous susceptibility to daycare germs within the first three years of my career, so I didn't have enough time to cover that absence. I think we made that work with me coming in early, staying late, and working a few hours from home (I don't really remember for sure, though. That whole period is a bit fuzzy).

Next, I have my surgery and only take a few days off because I just don't have the time, and unpaid time is never appealing. I end up having to take off an extra day that I hadn't budgeted for because I just couldn't go in. We worked that out, and managed to cover my trip to NC, which I booked long before I scheduled the surgery, and should have had plenty of vacation time for. It required me to come in an hour early for a week or so and do work over my vacation.

Then I get back from NC and get put on bed rest for two weeks because my ass isn't healing. And I literally only have about 30 minutes of sick time to my name. I figured I would have to take any time I couldn't work from home unpaid. Luckily, the administrator had mercy on me and advanced me vacation time to cover my time off (the boss was out of the country at the time and couldn't make that call). When the boss came back, he approved the vacation advance (because you can't advance sick time), and it almost made me cry when he realized he advanced me ALL of my vacation time for next year. I really, really, REALLY hope I don't have to use it all on my ass (or, frankly, any other body part).

So then, I get back this week. I've been coming in early (no easy feat when you have to get an adult, a preschooler, and a toddler up, ready, and out the door by 6:30 AM) and working from home to try to make up as much of the advanced time as I can (because, DUDE, that's my vacation! I don't have any grand plans, but I'd like to be able to take off, like, Christmas Eve or Good Friday or a random mental health day). And, of course, the boys start puking. I thought Will did it last night because he had choked on something, so they went to daycare today, where Rob barfed. Which meant that I had to leave work at noon to get them. I've got another hour and half to put in tonight to make up my time. Thankfully, B is staying home with them tomorrow (which is almost worse because all of him time off is unpaid), so I don't have to worry about that or about anyone at work thinking I'm abusing the system (though I'm sure there are some who do all ready).

I know I shouldn't bitch about having to work at home because I rarely have to do it - and I wouldn't if it were for some project that needed to get done or for a trial or something - but I hate that I'm constantly scrambling to cover my...I was going to say "ass" here, but I really wasn't going for literal...hours. I hate that the kids seem to get sick with stay-home-from-daycare stuff ALL. THE. TIME. and that I've been "sick" so much this year. At this rate, I figured I'm scheduled for my first unencumbered vacation day in August of 2014, when I'm bumped up a seniority grade and get an extra week of vacation.

This is nothing compared to those who don't have the luxury of paid time off, but it's still a pain for me and something that I have to think about and measure and calculate constantly now to make sure I can make it to my doctors' appointments or pick up sick kids. Thank God for FMLA (and for the fact that I haven't used up all my FMLA time for my twelve-month period), or I'm pretty sure I'd be out of a job.

Now if only I can keep him from firing me for non-health related things...