Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Veterinary Parade...Round 5

So...I need to elaborate on the whole veterinary crisis in the household.  Saturday, March 19th:  Tigra (the cat) has bloody looking pee.  Try to call vet and con my way out of an office visit by insisting she has a bladder infection and begging for a phone prescription.  Attempt fails.  Tell Prince Charming I have to get to work and pawn the office trip off on him.  Prince Charming heads to vet's office with feral cat and 3 year old in tow.  And the vet diagnoses Tigra with...a bladder infection.  Pay tab and pay off back tab from the previous household veterinary crisis (probably less than 6 months ago, but it hurts too badly to actually put a date to it right now).  Buy fancy new cat food that the vet recommends to prevent recurrence.  Of course it is also 2.5x the price of the pet store cat food I've been feeding the felines...and it's only available at the vet's office, which is inevitably going to cause a problem when my schedule doesn't want me to make it back to town in time to pick up cat food before the vet's office closes.  But hey, who can put a price on their pets?.  I get all motivated to promote pet health and well-being in my home and make Scout the appointment to get neutered that I've been putting off for months.  Promise Prince Charming an uninterrupted evening of television if he drops Scout off on his way to work.  Thursday, March 24th:  Scout gets dropped off.  Friday, March 25th:  I run out of excuses to avoid the vet and go pick Scout up (another 112 bucks).  Saturday, March 26th:  Check Scout's incision and discover that the stitches are gone.  Actually if I'm going to be honest, I noticed that the stitches were gone as I was going to sleep Friday night, but I reasoned that since the wound wasn't gaping open and he was sleeping so soundly I should sleep too and deal with it in the morning.  So, Saturday:  back to vet; Scout leaves with staples and a fancy new no-lick collar.  I leave 36 bucks poorer.  I also feel the need to add that the vet tech who returned my boy to me on Friday claimed he hadn't been licking and probably wouldn't need a collar, but to call if he started.  Monday, March 28th:  take pity on the dog and allow him to eat his breakfast collar free.  Out come the staples.  Back to vet.  Extra staples and condescending lecture from vet who obviously feels he is dealing with some seriously irresponsible pet owners.  No charge this time; buy three get the fourth one free, I guess.  As we are leaving, Prince Charming nervously asks me, "Is there a Pet Protective Service like there is for children?"  And that brings us to tonight, when Tigra wanders up to me and lets me know that we still have a problem.  I call the vet and beg for mercy, but the evil vet tech that answers is unsympathetic to my plight.  In the morning, it's off to the vet's office for Tigra and I.

In other news... I managed to go through the kiddo's room and get rid of old toys, clothes that she's grown out of, and the empty fish tank that has been sitting on her dresser.  The fish died more than three months ago.  I didn't know how to break it to her, and I didn't particularly feel up for another try with a beta so I dumped the fish and the water down the toilet while she was sleeping.  I filled the tank back up and put it back on her dresser.  The next day she asks why her fish is hiding in the castle.  I tell her he is probably tired.  It never came up again.  Today I figured I could just empty out the tank and put it away without her noticing.  I was wrong.

"Mommy, what are you doing to my fish?"
"Oh baby, I'm emptying the icky water out of the tank."
"Where is the fish, Mommy?"
"...I guess he swam away."
"Where did he go?"
"Maybe he wanted to live in the river."
"Can you get him back for me, Mommy?"
"No kiddo, I don't think we can catch him."
"Probably my Daddy can catch him.  Daddy will do it. Sure he will."

Since my daughter is already very aware of death due to her brother's passing, I just didn't have the heart to break it to her about the fish.  But in hindsight, her obliviousness to the fish's disappearance kind of indicates that a little honesty probably wouldn't have traumatized her.  

Nothing else to report except that I did conquer the laundry pile and I managed not to get dressed or leave the house all day long.  Also, I sincerely dislike my boss.  Tomorrow's post:  tales from the veterinary office (again).  Sorry.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

No Mountain too High to Climb...Except That Pile of Laundry Blocking the Bedroom Door

A few days ago, while perusing the dear old Internet, I came across an article that hypothesized about lifestyle habits that produce longevity.  One of the top qualities that the long-lived apparently have is conscientiousness.  You know, tidiness, cleanliness, good housekeeping skills and all that.  If this is true...I could go at any time, folks.  I do think there could be some merit to what this article was saying (sorry, I can't recall the name of the article--Google it).  I moonlight at an assisted living facility (you know--in my spare time) and the oldest residents are all neat freaks.  Still, I'm telling myself that this "longevity" is probably just a result of a reduced fall risk because the area is neat.  No hip fractures=living well into old age.  And since I have a detailed plan for old age that includes sitting in a recliner until the cushion has a permanent imprint of my ass and developing a wide variety of addictions to euphoria-producing medications, clutter isn't going to be an issue for me.

My mother in law is a funny girl.  This morning she called my husband and gave him an inspirational speech on her belief that the world is coming to an end.  I feel the need to add here that she is not particularly religious.  She had a whole schpiel prepared about how we should buy plastic totes to store extra canned goods in "if we were smart."  She is not the type of person that one would want to encourage when she heads down one of her quirky little roads, but I had a really hard time not peppering her with a few questions and comments of my own.  I mean, if the world is going to end, we won't really be needing those canned goods, right?  Tsunami?  Tornado?  We would never be able to locate those canned goods before we starved to death.  So if you live in Montana, and something disastrous happens in the near future--my mother in law has canned goods.  Nevertheless, I noticed that I did throw a few extra canned goods in the cart at the grocery store today.  God bless her.  I love my mother in law for a variety of reasons and one of them is her unique take on life.  Prince Charming's family makes me feel...refreshingly normal.  Also, my mother in law is generally helpful and not the intrusive type.  I love you mother in law!

My kitchen table is now the home of the "bad word jar."  This morning as I was circling towards consciousness, I heard my daughter playing in the hall.  She starts chewing out the dog for some minor infraction and through my sleepy haze I hear two choice words:  F****** D***head.  That's right, parent of the year right here.  In my defense, upon questioning she revealed that Daddy had used these two little gems while driving yesterday.  She and I had a long talk, and when Daddy came home we had a looooong talk.  And the "bad word jar" was born.  I enjoy a good swear word as much as the next overworked mommy, but something about the words coming out of my three year old's mouth and knowing she heard it from her parents just doesn't feel good, ya know?

My house is a circus.  Scout finally got neutered last Thursday; by Saturday he had pulled his stitches out and the vet put in staples and sent us home with one of those lovely elizabethan type collars.  He looks so pathetic stumbling around in it.  I took pity on him this morning and decided to give him a break...and ten minutes later I realized the staples were gone.  The people at our veterinary clinic think we are the pet parents from hell.  We have five pets, and when one has to go to the vet, inevitably another will too.  Early last week, the cat had a bladder infection, and in spite of my telephone pleas for an antibiotic prescription for her, we were forced to bring her in.  So I thought, why not make the appointment for Scout and get it all out of the way?  Famous last words.  4 vet trips in 7 days.  And it's not over yet--those staples have got to stay in for ten days still.  Tonight, I took the collar off so he could eat.  I was watching him, the phone rang, I ran to the kitchen to answer it.  By the time I got back to him he had made some pretty good headway on chewing off one staple.  Oh well, there's still 3.5 out of 4 left.

And in other house is still a disaster and no progress has been made.  If I don't suck it up and clean like crazy over the next few days, I will be faced with the prospect of school starting up again while everything is still a disaster.  And with April looming so closely, no one in my house needs anything that will produce more anxiety during a difficult time of year for us.  Hopefully, tomorrow I'll have some progress to report.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Recurring Dreams and Midnight Movies

Well...finals passed and I'm a week or so into SPRING BREAK, which mostly consists of me sleeping a lot and playing around with my kiddo instead of completing the to-do list I had carefully prepared for when school starts back up.   She is still awake right now; we have watched two movies and can't stop giggling whenever we make eye contact.  She was arguing with Daddy when he wanted to come to bed because there just isn't room for us plus her and at least one dog in a double bed.  So I came up with the idea of making her a bed on the floor and she is all about it.  

I continue to struggle out of the black pit I have been stuck in.  I keep having this dream...I'm in the house we lived in Miles City, moving around the tiny kitchen putting things away.  I can see the strange marbled pattern of the counters, the ancient fridge and the odd fan over the stove that opened directly to the outside world.  My belly bumps the counter; I look down and start to try to figure out what the hell is going on.  I realize it must be 2006 because my daughter isn't there.  I panic and check all the rooms for a sign of her, a toy, a blanket, a marker that's missing its lid.  I find nothing because in Miles City she didn't exist yet, but I miss her and wish for her happy shriek.  The baby kicks and it feels so familiar that my heart breaks.  I know exactly who it is.  I want him to stay so badly, but I can feel the inevitable pressing down on us.  I mostly just wake up somewhere in the middle of this panic attack, knowing I can't change anything, even in a dream.  Waking up is like someone just stole my sleeping son out of the cradle beside my bed.  Here one minute, gone the next.  That feeling of knowing its him and he is with me and safe and alive and thriving is so bittersweet because even in a dream state I know how the story goes.

A little extra time to do nothing and hang out with my daughter has helped a lot.    My house still isn't clean, but I finally got the puppy (now 10 months old) neutered.  I can still feel time marching inevitably forward, towards April and further from Miles City.  But I almost have a grip on myself again.

Monday, March 14, 2011

One Down, Two to Go

My Pharmacology final went magnificently this morning.  I needed to clock in at a 75% to pull a B in the class and I got a 100%!  There is a light at the end of the tunnel for me finally in both my personal and school lives.  The sore throat miraculously disappeared around Friday, but I didn't want to say anything for fear of jinxing it.  I still have Pathophysiology and Chronic Care finals over the next two days, but Pharmacology was the big one for me as far as finals go.  I have had the worst quarter ever at school; I feel like I've been beat with a board full of rusty nails.  It does appear that my nursing career will continue as planned though, and I am just feeling better, you know? I have been truly terrified that the depression wouldn't lift this time, that I wasn't going to be able to pull myself back up.  I miss my guy and my kiddo like crazy; I haven't gotten to spend any real time with them in weeks.  My daughter has been following me around constantly trying to "help me study."  She is just dying to spend time with me and I feel so terrible about it.  I've spent most of her life going to school--it's all she knows.  I can't wait for Spring Break!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Trying to See Some Daylight

I don't feel like ruminating today.  To say I'm in a very very dark place right now would be an understatement.  Baby envy, grief, Mommy guilt, PMS, a sore throat that's lasted like a month now, relationship issues, unemployment, parents that aggravate me, feeling alone, oh yeah and NURSING SCHOOL!  That pretty much sums it up.  Finals are looming and I have to study or die.  My GPA has taken a major hit this quarter, which is terrifying and I have to get a good grade on my Pharmacology final on Monday or I won't pass.  By good grade, I mean a C.  Normally a C would be a terrible grade for me, but this quarter I will take what I can get.  More on my blamey reasons for the grade dive later.  I'm focusing on positivity at the moment...

Let's I passed my final skills competency with flying colors.  Any clinical tests that involve drawing medications into syringes is usually a challenge for me.  It's not that I'm terrified of needles--I was a phlebotomist before nursing school.  It's that I always inevitably get a ginormous air bubble in the syringe that refuses to budge, and I look like a jackass trying to get it out.  In everyday practice, this bubble would likely be ignored by any pressed-for-time RN, but in checkoff an instructor is standing next to you with a clipboard to make sure you get everything exactly right.  And you can't see what they're writing either.  Anywho...on this magical day I drew up the medication and had a large air bubble on the plunger.  I took a deep breath and flicked.  And it just went to the top.  I looked like a pro.  Even better, it was the same instructor who saw my disastrous and futile air bubble flicking during the injections checkoff.  I never have the air bubble issue when I am giving injections at clinicals, so I was relieved to have proven myself competent.  What...a jackass.

My daughter is learning to ride a bike.  We jumped the gun a little last year and bought the bike, but she was only 2 and wouldn't peddle.  It was great fun for her to make us push her up and down the street on it, though.  Well today...she peddled.  She was so excited and impressed with herself.  I miss spending time with her so much when school/my annual depressive episode drags me under.  I have been so busy lately mourning all the time I don't get to spend with her that I mismanage the time I do get with her.  Note to self:  stop doing that.

Time to hit the books.  See you on the other side....

Friday, March 4, 2011

Missing My Baby

I want a baby so badly that it hurts. I'm terrified I won't ever get that chance.  It's not like they come easily to me; some people just seem to pop them out, no problems, no consideration, no base IQ level necessary.  It makes me wonder why God would put Jerry and I through so much. It's that very last part of winter, when I feel like spring is never going to come and nothing good will ever happen to us.  When I feel like I'm not going to make it:  through nursing school, marriage, or my life.  I feel so alone sometimes, so tired of fighting.  Next month would've been my little boy's fifth birthday.  I wonder what he would be like today, where we would be if he hadn't died.  What would I be like?  Five years later, I am still amazed at the complete fallout, the destruction that has ensued in the five years since.  That loss seems to epitomize every aspect of my personality, my daily life-and not in a positive way.  I wouldn't take knowing him away for the world, but sometimes I wish that loss wasn't always the first thing in front of me when I open my eyes in the morning.  It feels like longer than five years since I've seen him and much shorter--like five weeks--since he was taken from me.  I had fifteen days.  That's it! How can I miss someone so deeply who was here so briefly?  I miss him so badly that it hurts to breathe.  If I was able to apply the "break up rule" to this situation, I would've been over this in fifteen days.  It takes the same length of time you were together to get over it, right?  I figured out a long time ago that I won't be getting over it.  Everyone will just assume that I am and shrug and say, "What's her problem?"