Things I Love Thursday

There is only one thing I can think of loving this week.

Him.

 

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Everything is Different

If people would’ve told me three months ago when I started this blog that my life would be totally and completely different in just a few months, I would’ve laughed at them and rolled my eyes. My life was JUST fine and did not need to change, thank you very much. Then again, I probably would’ve believed them, but would never admit it.

I’m having a hard time adjusting. I didn’t want to change before the baby was born, but now that he’s here, I want everything to change. I’m alright with things being different, but I don’t know how to change the things I want to change.

After shit hit the fan in August I started counseling. It’s free from my work (they offer it to avoid problems and lawsuits) and my counselor is able to work with me on all issues, work, family, life, and what makes me tick. In the past I’ve tried it, but it didn’t seem to help me much. Reluctantly I started, and was pleasantly surprised at the turns that it took to help me find myself. The problem was that my counselor kept telling me I needed to paint the life I wanted and go get it.

Problem was, I had no idea what I wanted. The life I had was beautiful and perfect enough at that time. I didn’t think I wanted a change.

Then baby boy came. As soon as I held him in my arms I realized that I wanted everything to change. I knew my life had just changed for the best. My mind was flooded with all the things I wanted and needed to do. I realized that things were going to be okay, but I still felt overwhelmed.

I’ve been making lists. Trying to come up with ways to write out or verbalize what I want from my life. When I get online and check Pinterest and other blogs I feel overwhelmed. There is so much I want to do, so much I want to become.

The other big thing keeping me back is where I feel totally miserable and hateful towards myself; I’m starting to exhibit signs of postpartum depression. My mother had it. My mother-in-law had it. I’ve struggled with depression for years. I know I’ll probably get it, but I hate myself when I start showing signs of it. My husband doesn’t get it. He looks at the baby and is totally in love. I’m totally in love too, but I struggle so much with trying to be happy all of the time.

Husband is awesome. He lets me sleep at night and tends to the baby, then goes to work the next day and even offers to let me nap when he gets home from work. He helps me cook dinner and when the baby is fussy he lets me do what I need to do to clear my head. My husband is amazing. Me? Not so much.

Everything is different. That’s not a bad thing. Everything needs to change, and I hope that I can handle the changes that come.

Why I Blog

About four years ago now I started a blog called “Dani’s Anatomy.” I remember setting up the template and staring at a blank screen for hours, unsure of what to write. Originally inspired by my best friends blog about working in the ED, I too, wanted to share the stories from my job and my life. I just had no idea where to start.

Finally, realizing that it didn’t matter, that I had no readers anyways, I took the plunge and posted that first post.

Everything after that came easy. It became therapeutic. I followed all of the HIPAA laws, protected privacy, and gained followers as time went by. Things became fun with work, because I was focused on making the best of my shift, making it one worth writing about. Before I knew it my blog was popular in the mediblog community, and I was getting invites to participate in podcasts, I had guest bloggers on my blog, things were going well.

I changed from blogger to wordpress, gained more followers. Changed layouts. Changed job positions. My blog posts got more personal, longer, more popular. Things were going well til they weren’t.

After awhile I quit blogging. I was sick and tired of it. Of the attitudes from other  bloggers. Of the stress of blogging. So I shut it all down. Blocked the URLs, deleted the blog posts, and password protected everything. I walked away without notice, I called it quits.

I tried to start again under the blog name “Cicatrix”. It is latin for “healing over a wound”, commonly known as scars. I blogged about my life, my job, but this time something even more raw and painful- my depression and my history with SI. The community I thought I had returned to did not accept this, and again, I quit blogging.

This last year I started again, in November. I started because I missed having a place to share my thoughts, emotions and stories. I missed having something to help me. I missed the therapy of being able to write. That’s who I am, it’s what I’ve always done. I’ve always been a writer, a blogger.

Now, I blog strictly for me. I post what I want, when I want to post it. I post about my life, my likes, my dislikes, my family. It’s my space, and I’m taking this space for me.

I blog for me.

Fashion must be in my Blood

Maybe it is just because my Grandma is an artist- but she is so totally fashionable! I found some photos from the 60’s-80’s with my family in it, and discovered that her fashion sense has always been fabulous! I was lucky enough to get copies of the slides (my grandpa is also an amazing photographer) and wanted to share them with you!

This first photo struck me as funny- this is my sense of style as well! Sport jacket, jeans and fun socks! I absolutely love that grandpa was able to capture this on photo!

This photo just stuns me. Not only am I totally in love with her outfit (a white, lacy top and the pink and white chevron skirt!), but that shes on the floor cleaning up just makes me smile. Also, the fact that grandpa thought that was photo-worthy made me smile.

I love this sweater. This whole photo had to have been planned, the perfection of the sweater, the colors, the background, it is all so perfect! I also love that this is such a calm photo- no evidence of the chaos I know my mother and aunt were causing for her.

This has to be one of my favorite photos EVER. I love all of their outfits, but the facial expressions of everyone fits their personalities so well! (Suzanne is like me, happy to sit on the sidelines and watch everyone else be silly.) Again, grandma and I are sharing style, (jeans and a t-shirt!). My mom’s red hair? I’ve been considering going that exact color for a while now. I may just do it soon!

Farrah Faucet hair! That mixed with the cute knitted vest and blouse is adorable! LOVE IT.

I adore this photo of my mom and my Aunt. This is from the early 80’s, but is so totally adorable. (I probably love it so much because this is who I see whenever I look at them!) There is an entire photo series that grandpa took of these, and this one is my favorite because we all know they were cracking jokes and laughing at grandpa, who is behind the lens.

Now for a lack of fashion sense. This is a Christmas morning photo. Everyone looks so cute- however, look at my Uncle in the right hand corner. I’m pretty damn sure he borrowed that robe from Huge Hefner. He is the fashion black sheep in our family.

Is your family full of fashionistas? Have fun photos to share?
If you post them send me a link- I love looking at old photos and of fantastic fashion!

10 Weird Things About Me

I LOVE lists (and according to all the great articles out there on gaining readership, you do too)!  I am a VERY unique person and figured that it would be fun to do a list about the 10 best things that make me unique!

  1. Believe it or not, I can lick my elbow. I’m sure you’ve read that it is physically impossible, however, I have a torn shoulder and can dislocate my shoulder, making it totally possible to cross my arm over my chest and lick my elbow.
  2. I can play the piano, however I cannot read sheet music. I learned how to do it by ear, making it even more fun to play, but very frustrating for everyone who tried to teach me how to play.
  3. Once upon a time I was a Girl Pro (Cruiser) BMXr. People don’t believe me most of the time- but that’s how I broke my hand, my collarbone and managed to tear the muscles in both my shoulders, making it possible to lick my elbow.
  4. I am freakishly good at first person shooter video games. Girls shouldn’t be as good as I am at games like Halo and MW3. This does get the attention (and lots of fan mail) from guys when I play online, but I only enjoy playing with my husband, so the fans can only do so much.
  5. My two best friends are my husband and my little brother. Both of whom go by the nickname “Bubba.” They both can quote movies like no one I have ever met and can make me laugh til I cry.
  6. I am one of the only people who can admit when something I like sucks. For example, my sports teams. I can admit when they suck, even though I hate it.
  7. I HATE taking medications. This drives my doctors nuts because they will write me a prescription and I refuse to take it, but I just don’t like taking them and if I can live without it, won’t do it.
  8. As “normal” of a life as I live, I am fascinated and adore the New Age lifestyle. I find it all quite fascinating and do lots of research on it in my spare time. This ties into my belief that I am my zodiac- I even have the Aries tattooed my hip.
  9. I’ve broken over 7 bones in my body without knowing it. Don’t even get me started on listing the muscles I’ve torn without knowing it. We discover these breaks years later, after they’ve healed when checking another issue (or preventative for work, a doctor ran over my foot with a gurney and I had to get an X-ray or my foot and discovered that I had broken 4 bones in my foot without knowing it!)
  10. I feel most comfortable in a black tee and jeans. No matter what, I love that look and will always fall back on it.

Bunny Love: Tips People Never Told Me

Taz at 8 weeks old

I’ve mentioned before that I am the mommy of a fur-baby; this is my baby boy Taz. He is a mini-lop/lion head breed bunny (75% mini-lop and 25% lion head- you can see the lion head when he lies down and when he was really little). We got him as a therapy animal for my depression, it was a suggested treatment for both of us and has worked quite well.

There are lots of things no one told me about bunnies and bunny care that I had to learn for myself. Instead of making you guys do the same, I figure I’ll post my best tips and tricks and share them with you.

  1. Yogurt treats from the pet store have been a waste with my bunny. He wont even give them the time of day. If you buy a cage kit from a pet store they may come with yogurt treats. Use that as your guide- he never grew into them and won’t touch them. He has also been given other snacks from the pet store that he just isn’t fond of, don’t buy a big pack if you can help it.
  2. Paper. My bunny LOVES paper! He has an “OCD” personality (each bunny has their own personality, and you have to decide which personality fits your bunny best), and he organizes his cage often. When we give him paper, he is a happy man. He will organize it into piles (stuffing it into corners, his log, or simply playing with them by tossing them around), shred them, or simply use them as extra bunny bedding. We use old phone books- they last forever!
  3. Salt Licks. No one told us to get one, we just kind of assumed that we should get one when we found Taz licking Bubba’s feet one night. We figured he didn’t have a foot fetish, so we got a salt lick for him- he hardly uses it but has helped his diet.
  4. You can potty train bunnies. No joke. Give them a bowl simply for feces and watch where they go potty in their cage. Put the bowl there and they’ll use the bowl just for potty trips. You need to change it out daily or they’ll quit using it, but it definitely helps with keeping their home clean and stink free.
  5. “Free range bunnies.” Lots of people let bunnies roam through the house. If you choose to do so, you need to keep them out for quite some time. We have to keep an eye on our furry one to make sure he doesn’t get into things he shouldn’t; wires, small spaces, behind big furniture (Where he could get stuck). We discovered early on he likes to nibble on the carpet, so we proactively play with him to avoid damage to the floors. We have toys for him simply for when he is out of his cage – empty coke-cola containers, lids, socks (he likes to play tug of war with them) and a bunny ball (a wicker ball with a bell in it).
  6. Snacks- fruits and veggies are the best. We did find one pet store treat he likes, its popcorn for bunnies! We heat them up in the microwave for 45 seconds and he loves it. Otherwise we give him oranges (we cut it into small slices so he doesn’t eat the peel), green beans, broccoli, celery, carrots and apples. He loves fruits and veggies and its helpful to us, because they smell good!

    Taz after a bath

  7. They say that bunnies need noises to help stimulate their minds and keep them from going stir crazy. If I’m not home for a few hours at a time or going to lie down for a nap during the day I turn on the television or my Itunes and put something on for him. It keeps him from acting up and misbehaving later.
  8. Get a bunny bath that you just need to spray and rub into their fur. We tried bunny bath (for the bathtub- THAT was a joke), we tried letting him bathe himself (the advice from the pet store we bought the cage from), but per the guy we bought our bunny from the spray and rub spray worked best for these little guys. Taz loves this because we cradle him, spray him, pet him to rub it in and then I give him a good, long brushing. He usually falls asleep, but loves it. He smells good all week!
     If only I would’ve known all of this when we first got our bunny I think we all would’ve had more fun sooner and enjoyed our times together instead of the ‘what is he doing?’, ‘what does he want?’ phases. What bunny advice did I miss? Do you have anything to add? Add your best bunny advice in the comments below!

Baby Update: A Crazy Afternoon

The last few days have been tough on me and my body. I’ve been cramping a lot, feeling lots of fetal movement and generally not feeling well. While I haven’t been able to get much sleep at all, I have been able to lie down from time to time, in the hopes of easing the pain. No such luck.

Today I ended up calling in sick to work per my OB. She wanted to see if it was Braxton-Hicks or if it was true contractions and wanted me to rest, sleep, drink lots of water and go to see my specialist as per the original plan. I did just that and went into the office at 4pm for my Non-Stress with AFI. (Not sure what exactly that translates into in English).

They listened to the baby’s heartbeat for 30 minutes. In that time he was supposed to have two changes in rhythm from slower to faster. He had twelve. They checked me for contractions but I only was feeling back labor at the time, so it didn’t show up on the screening. They did another quick fluid check, found his fluid levels were low again and checked him quickly. He was not only sucking his thumb again (he’s done it every ultrasound for weeks now), but also has hair that is visible on the ultrasound!

The tech noticed I had elevated blood pressure and checked my ankles and legs. I knew my ankles got swollen when I stood for long periods of time, but today I had quite a bit of swelling. She called my doctor and they wanted me to come over to their office right away so I could get a 24-hour urine test (whoopee- NOT).

We finished the heart test and got the results on paper and headed over to her office. While I was there I talked to the nurses and the doctor about the pain I had been feeling and let them know my methods of trying to get it to settle. My doctor asked me to get changed so she could evaluate me, even though my last eval was last week. I changed and she checked everything out- I was having real contractions and I was already 1cm dilated.

She gave me the clear to go home for the night and asked me to do the test. I’m to return to her office tomorrow for a followup and am a nervous wreck. Lots on my mind, no energy to get anything done (no nesting now), and lots of worries and woes. Until then, I’ll keep distracting myself in bed with my laptop and blogging lots.

 

Meeting Bubba – A Road Trip Story

Believe it or not, I met my husband for the first time while on a road trip. We were driving from SLC to Phoenix to visit a friend who was going to college down there. It was five years ago last November, over Thanksgiving break weekend. Bubba packed the car full of mutual friends of our friend and was kind enough to drive. There were two other girls, both of which were exceptionally annoying, and a friend from high school that I only knew from seeing in class. I hadn’t met anyone in the car before that afternoon, making the trip that much more exciting and making the experience very fun!

We had the chance to bond that trip, and on the way home the girls and the friend from high school passed out in the back seat (they were hung over so they slept like rocks the whole drive home). We utilitzed that time to talk, to learn more about each other and listen to music. We discusssed a mutual interest, which is the pure art of music, him being a musician and me being raised heavily in music. We talked about how we were raised, our parents, and our lives. We talked about our hopes and dreams and giggled when the girls snored loudly from the back seat.

On the way back home we stopped off in Vegas and spent enough time to eat lunch. Before we knew it we were back home in SLC and dropping everyone off at home. We were exhausted, we were tired, but we were happy to be back in our homes. After that we were very close friends.

Bubba and I have always been big fans of road trips and use it as time to reconnect. Whenever I’m stressed, he gets me in the car and we hit the asphalt. Whenever we need to dream or talk about life, we need to think or work something out, we get in the car. We’ve been to Denver, Las Vegas (a few times), Idaho (a few times) and Wendover within the last few years. We manage at least one big road trip per year and love it.

He thinks its funny that we love road trips as much as we do. I think its fantastic, because we have something to always fall back onto. I love the road and the fun of road trips, and knowing that all of my big adventures in life have been on the road with my husband, makes it all that much more fun for me.

 

 

 

So Many Things I Want to Do…

… so little time!

Would you believe that our baby is due in 38 days?! I cannot believe it either. We are almost down to a month before the little man arrives.

In the next two weeks I am going to have TWO baby showers (the perks to working with people with nothing to celebrate- they celebrate everything!), lots of trips to the stores to get those odds and ends and pack up our apartment even more for our big move (the lease is up during the summer so we will be moving when the baby is a few months old).

There are so many things I’d love to do before the baby comes. I’ve been trying to find recipes and cook more. I’ve been trying to write more and better content, HA! I’ve been trying to be inspired and prepare to be a mother. But with 38 days left? I’m not sure if I’ll be able to accomplish anything…besides another third trimester nap.

Thankful For . . .

I am thankful for my spouse.

When Bubba and I met, I don’t think he knew what he was getting into. He however was very kind, compassionate and helpful. He helped me through the good and the bad, with my divorce, with my crazy family and with my struggles with depression. He has saved my life in more ways than one and I don’t think I could ever thank him enough for all he has done.

When my depression got out of hand and I was struggling to keep my head above water he suggested I cut my hours at work, giving me time to focus on things that were more important to me and to my well being. He has encouraged me to work on and continue blogging, even though I have quit multiple times due to the stress it can bring.

I am a mess of a person, and without the support and love of someone like my spouse, I don’t know If I would even be around any longer.

I am so thankful for you Bubba. You are my best friend, the love of my life and my baby’s father. You play the biggest role in my life and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love you.