Category Archives: planning and preparing

Guillain-Barré Syndrome {part 2}

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January 30, 2013

Left you all a couple weeks ago with some of the most grueling parts of our family situation. I am currently back home in Huntington for a couple days, catching up on chores, taking care of myself (MOPS, The Wild Ramp, River and Rail, Studio 8, bike ride, friends, food, sleep) and my other three children. Brent is with Avery in Columbus. You can read the first part of our crisis here, and continue on with the saga below.

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Avery, our six year old, was admitted to Nationwide Children’s Hospital February 5 near midnight. He was met by a team of doctors, nurses and therapists and sent to the neurology unit. Without having my journal in front of me at this time, I estimate he spent another five days with intense pain, extremely high blood pressure and other very misaligned autonomic systems. The pain team was able to do their best, but cautious to using heavy narcotics which could cause respiratory suppression.

In order to confirm/deny the diagnosis of GBS, the doctors ordered an MRI of Avery’s spine. A couple days later, there was a nerve conduction study/EMG. Both tests confirmed inflammation of the nerves and disruptions in the nerve communication. The EMG also helped identify this as a second isolated case of GBS, not a flair up from the first case. This case presented very differently from his 2010 episode. In 2010 his motor neurons were heavily effected, in 2013 it was his sensory nerves, which led to the frightening pain.

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EMG
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Taking his own vitals.
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Controlling pain and sensations through cold compresses and massage.

Given all this data, the progression of the illness and the introduction of Bell’s Palsy on the left side of his face…and a slew of other symptoms, we accepted the GBS diagnosis and added to it the Miller-Fisher Variant. Following the week and half period of pain, which included two additional treatments of IVIG (first was at our home hospital), he was assessed for rehabilitation. He was slowly taken off many IV drugs, transitioning to oral, and monitored for stability with respiratory function. When we had gotten clearance from our insurance company (a story in itself), we were moved from neurology to the inpatient rehab unit at Children’s on February 14.

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Nationwide Children’s. Avery room is the left side, third from the upper floor.

A couple days prior to the rehab move, Brent went home to Huntington with my sister and two of our other three children who came up to Columbus for several days. The hospital has a very strict, protective visitation policy during influenza season. The 2012-2013 winter was especially difficult for the flu, so children under 14 are not permitted on patient floors, and we can only have four visitors to his unit the entire duration of his stay. Those spots were taken by a couple in laws, my sister and a dear family friend (at Avery’s request), leaving my own parents, and other family unable to visit. This of course made it exceptionally difficult to have our children with us in Columbus, unlike the 2010 GBS case, where we felt we could be together more often during Avery’s hospitalization, despite having a new born.

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We understand the restrictions, and if it wasn’t for the grace of Avery not being under any type of contact restriction, it would have been even more challenging. On the Sunday before they left town, Avery had been fitted for a wheel chair and granted 30 minutes to visit with everyone on the lobby level. This was his first transition out of bed, into an upright position. He was unable to do any of the moving himself, but once upright, with proper harnesses and belts, was able to remain so for short periods of time. His duration of chair time has gotten long with time.

Such a bitter sweet moment in our journey. Avery was finally able to be with us all, and they all had to leave. Thirty brief, precious minutes.

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Insisting on waiting on the washer to finish in the family resource (Blue Jackets) room.

With Brent, my sister Shannon, and the three children in Huntington, and Avery and I transitioning to rehab in Columbus, there was a lot of texting, phone calls, email researching, and a little FaceTime. It was during all this time that people were filling countless needs on our CareCalendar (Id: 139535 Code: 4009). We simply could not function without the work of dozens of friends and community members. I am continuously surprised and impressed (when I really shouldn’t have been, b/c everyone is always so selfless and amazing).

Brent and I switched places the weekend of February 16th. It’s a 150 mile drive each way, without any interstates until you reach each city. The parking has been covered by the social worker, due to our long term stay, and free when we utilize the Ronald McDonald House across the street. We have three family/friends in the Columbus area who have come to our rescue with groceries, special clothing and activity/book requests for Avery, and some child care. This has made being with Avery, and caring for him around the clock, a manageable task. Our other needs, outside of the need for being together as a family, and desiring Avery to be healed, have all been met with love and efficiency. Thank you.

When I returned to the hospital February 18th at 8am, Brent immediately left for work. He managed to fit in a week of classes, then the family returned to Columbus together, utilizing the RMH once again. Brent, Shannon and the children returned home on Sunday night, February 24, then this weekend Brent and I made a swap once again. I leave for Columbus in a couple hours, Brent comes back to Huntington Monday morning. And back and forth we go.

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“Boots” for flexing his feet to 90degrees. Worn while sleeping.

During Avery’s stay in rehab he has developed new symptoms. He had something called a convergence insufficiency with his eyes. He became incontinent. The sensations in his limbs went from pain to feelings of intense tearful itching or sharp grains of sand between his toes. There was the feeling of things in his eyes, the sudden onset of cold sores. He lost the ability to move his ankles and toes completely. Many of these things would disappear, and some of them would reappear. Some remain gone. His vitals slowly became normal. With medication they have been able to bring his blood pressure down (to slightly above normal). He is taking three doses of neurontin everyday and a dose of elavil before bed.

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The view that Avery narrated to me.

The facial paralysis spread to both sides and has recently subsided. This affected his respiratory tests and his ability to swallow. The first barium swallow test showed aspiration on thin liquids so he was placed on a nectar thickened diet. A second test on Friday showed aspiration on nectar thicks and he was elevated to honey thickeners. This morning he was given a chest x-ray for wheezing that may have been caused by aspiration, but it was clear.

We are often, as you can imagine, asked how is Avery doing. Everyday has been so different from the one before it that it was difficult to say if he was better, worse or the same. We just told people he was different. We were also cautious to say he was better when in a couple hours he might not be. Since I have been home this weekend, Brent reports he is getting better. He is making progress in his therapies, as you will see in the following videos. His ability to write and control his hand was improving, his endurance is increasing, his attitude is brightening, he is sleeping for longer periods at night. Some of his symptoms are worse, like the swallowing, the return of incontinence, and no changes in strength. I don’t wish to downplay his progress or over represent it either. The information sharing is a delicate thing.

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Tilt table to help with weigh baring.
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Family time in the Blue Jackets room.
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Using the knee stabilizers.

Check out these clips from this most current weekend. He was fitted for special ankle to calf braces on Friday, so he could stop using the knee stabilizers he was utilizing for the previous week. The clips show the very first “steps” and other firsts I wasn’t able to be present for. These are tremendous improvements and I do wish I had video of all he couldn’t do prior to this for comparison.

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A frozen yogurt treat before I left this most recent time, in the “magic forest,” lobby level.
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Our Summer Excursion: Days 30-32 Home Briefly & Elkins, WV

This is Our 2012 Summer Excursion series recapping our experiences from June 3-August 3 by time and location. Please let me know if you would like more details about anything and I will do my best to work them in or reply personally. Follow the TAG to get the full story.

Days 30-31: June 30th we wandered our way home after the derecho storm that brutalize a swath of Appalachia. July 1 we were still without electric in 100 degree heat, but the children played and we enjoyed the leftover groceries we had been hauling around.

We had coffee beans and a french press. Brent was desperate. He ground the beans by hand, thankful for a gas range to boil water.

We spent all our travels without a cooler or a stove/oven. The cooler would have taken up precious space and require the purchase of ice constantly. We did carry a camp stove with us (borrowed from a friend), but never brought it out. We thought we were going to use it, but found that with the quantity of food we needed to prepare, it was going to take a pot too large for the stove, or too much time, and too much fuel. We ate from the grocery. If we purchased dairy, we consumed it straight away. The vegetable peeler and the can opener were essential tools. I had one plastic container with a tight sealing lid we made an ever lasting and forever changing trail mix in, dumping new goods into it all the time. There was always peanut butter. We started with bread loaves, but then moved to tortillas. Those lasted longer, didn’t crush and took up less space. We tried to stay close to real food as much as possible, but understood the grain hungry children and bought crackers, pretzels and such on occasion. We never ate fast food, we ate out occasionally for a meal, and always for ice cream.

Not many people knew were were back in Huntington, so we saw the neighbors, and little of anyone else. I cleaned the house top to bottom, washed the van, caught up the laundry, and read a couple months worth of magazines in our mound of mail before the electric returned at 4pm.

Many people in the area wouldn’t see relief from the heat or refrigerators with power for another week (some longer).

July 2, a Monday, I spent a great deal of time ‘catching up’ online. I checked on bills, checked in with social media. Brent rode to work and to get groceries and we made a hot meal for the first time in a month. Scrambled eggs and veggie rollups and pasta with sauce. Quick and easy.

Day 32: Fortunately Elkins, WV returned to the grid well enough for us to head that way on Tuesday July 3. We wrapped up laundry, repacked, leaving behind the bike trailer, the camping stove, pot and cooking utensils, and anything we felt we might not need on the second half our summer. We were scheduled for three weeks in Elkins, followed by some undetermined travel (options included the Greenbriar trail for bike camping, Charlotte, NC, extended time in Elkins, Washington DC), then a week in South Carolina with friends at the beach before return home to start school and classes.

We left our drive way one more time at noon thirty, July 3, with 2837.9miles on the trip-odometer. It took $53.30 to fill up the tank before leaving the city limits. We managed a non-stop drive to Elkins in 3 hours. Brent checked us in to the Graceland Inn (inn side, not mansion side), where the faculty had accommodations and we ended up crashing piling in as well (we tried all year to find another place). He attended a faculty meeting, then we all went to a family and staff dinner at the program chair’s house.

View from the back porch of the Graceland Inn. We ate breakfast with this view everyday.

It was an interesting discussion. We had driven all the way to Elkins, parked at the inn, looked at the map to the hosts house and decided to drive there. Being such a very small town, in hindsight, we should have ridden bikes, however, we took a tour around town in the car to scout out possible bike routes and find the grocery. It’s all about access to food with me.

Staff party.

After we returned to the inn, where we would set up ‘house’ for the following three weeks, we re-introduced the children to geo-caching. Tina and Matthew had taught us all about this scavenger hunt like hobby in Yellow Springs, OH. It became our go-to activity in Elkins, filling little voids of time and making for some interesting adventures. I surprised myself by paying $10 for the app (I’ve never paid for apps). This small purchase was an indicator for more frivolous spending to come. The gateway way saying of “it is just/only” $10.

The Graceland Mansion at dusk.
Caching by flashlight. This helped us explore campus.

Davis and Elkins, the campus we were staying on, had three caches. We searched for two, and found one. It was the beginning of what would be three wonderful weeks in the mountains.


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Our Summer Excursion: Days 26-29 Jersey Shore, Shenandoah River, Home

There’s a huge gap in posting Our 2012 Summer Excursion series that recaps our experiences from June 3-August 3 by time and location. Thanks to a friendly nudge, I thought I might try to wrap up our 2012 events before we all turn in to toads in 2013. Or is it royalty? Who has been kissing who around here?

Don’t hesitate to be confused, or lost as to where this story started. Ask questions, or if you care to, go back and read all about it! It’s tagged.

NYC petrol. Roadside.

D26: The whole while we were in Deep River, CT with my aunt and family we envisioned making an overnight stop in NYC. We thought we could catch up with my cousin in Brooklyn, make a stop into Rolling Orange, and show the children a truly enormous city. As we took stock of our days and nights, we opted for driving through, waving at the tall, tall buildings, on the most economic route (some bridge tolls were $25, we avoided those), and staying in New Jersey.

Toll anyone? We doled out about $12 to get from CT to NJ that day.
This is no way to experience NYC. Shameful. We must go back, without the minivan.
It was the pits. So close. So far.

We had arranged to meet up with Megan, her husband and two boys (and now one girl, it’s been too long!!) in Ocean Grove, NJ as a part of the interviewing we were taking on for Liz Canning’s Less Car, More Go documentary about the cargo-bike revolution. If you have been following along with our involvement, you may also recall that it was formerly under the working title (R)Evolutions Per Minute.

Megan recommended Allaire State Park, so on our way through the Bronx, I called and made reservations for the night. Putting that cell phone to work. I have a whole rant about that iphone for later. Remind me to fill you in.

Brent recording video of Megan and Brain on the boardwalk during that “golden light.”

We felt at home with the Soul Learning (Now Days with the Grays) family and were quite smitten with the Jersey shore. It was the deepest beach I had been on, with a wide public, pristine boardwalk, and homes set back behind the front road that angled inward so every front or back porch had a view of the ocean. None of the homes were on stilts, another beach icon I was accustom to. There was a small carnival flair about the shops, not a touristy, buy here, buy now demanding atmosphere. It was hometown meets vacation destination. Ocean Grove earned its place on our “must return for a visit” list. So far, what and who hasn’t?

Oliver left, Gray boy right, at sunset.
Ice cream pallor, our souvenir of choice, and a super treat from the Grays! (thank you again).
They still make these! Excited and horrified.

 

The calm before the storm at Allaire State Park.

D27: Brent nudged me awake at 6:00AM to help decide if we should strike the camp or throw the fly over the tops of our open air tents. My intentions were to head back to the beach and pow around with Megan, but that wouldn’t be for several hours, and if the tents get wet from the incoming storm, then we would have to pack them up wet and drag them out later.

We chose to pack up and shove off. Who knew how long the rains would last? It was a 20 minute clean up, carry the sleeping children into their seats, finish tearing down the tents and drive away moment. We weren’t even to the park exit before the sky opened up and the rain came pouring down.

We finished out our route through NJ, crossed into Delaware for our first ever Waffle House experience. Brent still gets a chuckle out of the idea that I asked our server what fruits and vegetables they could serve. “This is a grits and grease place, hun.” Thanks. Feeling better now about having never taken my family to Waffle House.

Does a Waffle House stop in Delaware really count as having been to Delaware?

The Delaware stop was intentional. I had never been to Delaware.

We picked up some groceries then kept on trucking. The skies were clear, having driven away from the storm, and we started the process of determining where to go next. I was thinking we might go to Washington DC. There were several people I emailed about visiting as we passed through. We had two nights left before we were to report in Elkins, WV for a three week appointment Brent had taken. If we spent one night in DC and one night in Virginia, or two nights in DC, or what if we spent two night in VA? And so it went. The closer we edged to DC the more we wanted to keep driving. There was a lot of traffic. It was still very early in the day, considering our early start, and staying in DC would cost a lot more money than camping in hills along the Shenandoah River.

We eventually settled on Watermelon Park, south east of Winchester, VA. This place was nestled on the river, down a dirt road. Seeing that it was 100F we found a small shady spot, striped down and climbed into what we hoped would be a cold river. It wasn’t. Brent set up camp, the children and I squinted into the noon day sun.

Shenandoah River. The river bed was solid, slimy rock. Not much deeper than what you see here, even half way out. Strong currents in places, but very soothing.

In setting up camp, Brent assembled the bikes to get around the grounds. We made a few camp store trips for all the necessities (and the air conditioning). We were going to do this camp thing “right.” Fire wood. To go along with the chocolate, Jiffy Pop, marshmallows and graham crackers we picked up earlier in the morning. Our other two camping nights were just for sleeping, this one was for playing. We kicked around the water, skipped a few stones, and burned things.  Oh, and we used a pay shower. Cool. Nothing like depositing quarters to conserve water and time. It was better than any gift giving holiday. Childs play.

Camp mobile.
The main event. Jiffy Pop.

With everyone clean, fed and waiting for some drop in temperature before attempting to settle into tents, Brent checked the forecast. Could we leave the fly off again tonight? It really is great to fall asleep and feel the dewy air settle around you. That is, it is great for me. Brent can’t tolerate what he calls “noises,” fly or no fly. He never sleeps well.

There were forecasted storms at 1AM. Move the tent away from the tree? Closer to the tree line on the west side? Pack up and find a hotel? It was a subtle argument. If we stayed, which I wanted, he would be nervous, scared, miserable, which I didn’t want. If we left, I would be bitter about money and the loss of opportunity to camp, which he didn’t want. I didn’t care to camp in a storm, given that one of our tents was bound to leak buckets. I was unsure of where to put a tent during a storm, under the tree? Out in the open? It didn’t really matter. We rushed around again, without inciting panic in the children, and stuck yet another camp, for the second time in one day. All before sunset (9pm ish).

As we headed back out that dirt road I started looking for hotel vacancies. There were few. Then it began to rain, far earlier than forecasted. As we approached Winchester a wall of wind rocked the van. We pulled over immediately. Flipped on the hazards. We held hands. The wind was pushing everything over a ridge above us. A perfectly horizontal force beating rain, sticks, dust, and debris. We watched trees bow down. Minutes passed as we whispered “tornado?” “do we drive?” “get out and lay in the ditch?”

Everyone around us was stopped as well. The sky was dark, so not knowing what was happening up and out there was intimidating. There was an interstate on ramp and over pass in front of us. We saw a break in the wind and headed straight for town. I knew there was a hotel on the other side, without vacancy, but with resources. We pulled into the hotel overhang, driving over branches and fallen glass lamp covers. Wind still racing. Rain still falling. A man was in the hotel door way. Initially we couldn’t open our van doors. We took stock of how many children to carry at once and who could/would run on their own. I yelled at the man for some help (not very politely), grabbed the baby and Avery as Brent carried Elliot, who was terrified and crying.

Hotel lobby. Weather channel.
London, mildly unphased by the event was using the camera to entertain herself. We really did cower right here for a while. Elliot was terrified, the rest of us were very shaken.

Anyone else remember the night of June 29th? We hunkered down in that lobby for a good while, with a bunch of other great people. The desk clerk found us a hotel room the next exit down, for when the derecho had passed. We drove down an interstate littered with trees that had been broken apart by barreling through semis. We slept light, and thankful, that my stubbornness relented and we made the decision to pack up camp.

Happy hotel guests. This was our second stay at a hotel during the trip. I sent a bill for both those nights to host institution in Rochester as part of our travel costs for Brent’s lecture.

D29: With the intention of driving onto Elkins for our three week stay, we check out of the hotel and went into Winchester the next morning to do laundry and play at another children’s museum (reciprocal pass member!). It was difficult to see where there was no electricity, but there were trees uprooted everywhere. We didn’t realize the devastation of the region until later. The program dean in Elkins called to say the town’s electric and municipal water was down and we couldn’t come to town just yet.

Discovery Museum. Again, free admission with our reciprocal pass.
These small galleries are perfect for spending a couple of hours. We enjoy them more than the large institutions where you never feel like you get to see and enjoy everything. Not that they are not spectacular, they are just massive.
First laundry mat experience. They did all the work. Love it when chores are fun! Laundry cost us about $7 to wash and dry. We had a car seat with vomit on it, so it was not something we could put off.
So entertaining. The establishment also had free popcorn! Perfect, no?

We spent the next many hours calling for hotels, camp sites, anything along I-81. There was either no phone, no cell service (towers knocked down), no electric, or no vacancy. While I understand some of those rooms were full of people who truly needed them. With the extensive heat wave, many of them were full of people who just wanted air conditioning, and it irked me, quite a lot. We drove for nearly 400 miles trying to find a place to stay and then it occurred to us that we could and probably should just go home. We were in our drive way at midnight.

Stopping at the West Virginia welcome center at sunset. This tree suffered from the derecho. Thousands of trees met similar fates. I can’t describe how many downed trees, lines of cars at the only gas pump open for counties, or pitch black mountains and towns we saw. It was an eerie devastation that was trumped by Sandy months later. There needs to be a talk about Disaster Relief with bicycles. These regions could have used some community cargo bike power.

Our house sitter took air conditioned refuge with his own family, who left us a cooler of fruit, drinks and ice, and a battery lantern. We camped under our own roof the night of June 30th.


View Larger Map: As best as I can recall the route

From Stagnate to Ecstatic

Left you all hanging with a Bah Humbug post and all these other great winter holiday things have been going on. We have been trying to host weekly friend dinners or outings, there has been tinseling and lighting of my Yuba, scheming of birthday parties eminent, planning of ‘cards,’ and a last minute review of the gifting budget. We do a daily snow dance, that has yet to work. I have certainly been more active on quick social media (go ahead, follow or like) than on the blog, and it’s the blogging I miss most. It’s also the blogging that requires more time, which some how, I have plenty of, but not in the right places. Which would be the perfect segue into a review of Stealing Time magazine…but I loaned it out to a friend before I could finish reading it (I was very excited to share!), and again, with that time thing…it’s been all over the place.

We have been doing our general bicycle riding, and still commuting to school by bike more often than by car. Brent always bikes to work. There have been Plan2025 meetings, Kyova transportation meetings, Friends of PATH creation, a little bit of arts fartsy stamp and print making for The Wild Ramp, typical avoidance of household chores, cuddling of children, and fixing of flats. Oh so many bicycle tire flats.

We keep rolling.

The check arrived from the Cafe award and it’s in a pile, in a bag, in my closet, and written on a list of things to work on, somewhere in a drawer, in my room. The interviews we set out to cover for the Less Car, More Go documentary over Thanksgiving break didn’t so much as get talked about. There’s an excuse for that as well.

My frustration with the daily grind continues. My yearning for adventure wages on. The ability to do anything about either is stagnating. I try really hard to be happy with the here and now, and I am thankful for what I have, but I have this personality of dissatisfaction and a need for constant change. I’d say there was something wrong with me, but I know their is not. I am your average crazy in a town of content. If there is something going on in town that I’d like to attend, I have championed excuses for avoiding it. If it’s at a set time, I dread it (i.e. school). That’s if a child isn’t sick, dragging their feet, not doing their homework, etc. Classic depression that I feed and allow to grow. (Feed me, Seymour!)

This muscle in my skull seem defunct. I type things then minutes later read them to find I left out entire words and misspelled the rest. My comprehension to what others are writing or saying is nearly neanderthal. Incredibly slow. Almost fitting to call it, simple minded. There have been some really crazy, awkward and sometimes rude things coming from my mouth when I do have a chance to interact with others. My self absorption is growing. I feel like I annoy everyone I come across in person or in the web.

Then something happens. Make sense of this if you will.

I must pick up the children from school. My ride-share friend moved to Hawaii (I know…the nerve!), and my husband has to teach. The thought of letting them figure out how to come home on their own, does cross my mind. I dread getting Oliver and I ready. Gathering the things, leaving the warmth of whatever we have collapsed into (nap, reading, noshing on chocolates…), and climbing those hills. I am a codependent, introvert. It’s true. Except when I am not, then I am really not.

Then we do it. We settle our helmets. He buckles up, wraps on a blanket when necessary, opens the garage door and we breath deep.

Deeper. Solid breaths. We leave the insulation of home and regain consciousness and intention. A mindful moment.

The excitement of pedaling floods through my entire body. It doesn’t matter what the weather might be, or how the traffic is behaving. It feels amazing. After those four miles are through, I come alive. All those things I put off are suddenly desirable and completed. There is dancing. Sometimes I turn on music. The chaos that always happens when three children simultaneously bombard this house with their days adventures and their afternoon must-dos becomes rewarding. My mind is clear and focused, on them. I make plans for the future, tackle projects, return calls, seek out excuses to leave yet again, for another ride. Some days the opportunity occurs in the form of violin practice or art walk. Most days, there is just too much homework, diner making, uniform finding, lunch packing, and child prodding to be done. Those four miles of bliss get tucked into a special place in my heart and the brooding and longing begins again, until next time.

I might not have the motivational memory I need, but I have the perspective and understanding to appreciate the ride. Everytime.

Go figure.

Ok. Done brooding. Going to tuck the boys back into bed and make cake. Avery turns 6 tomorrow. If no one is vomiting in the morning (two were today), then we shall have a party after school! I will certainly post something on one of those quick social media outlets, tune in, there will be flashlights and camo.

Bah Humbug

You know what, I don’t like the winter holidays, despite loving winter as a season. I don’t like all the “so have you started shopping?” “what are you getting the kids for Christmas?” “do you have any plans for Thanksgiving?” “are you going out for Black Friday?” “hey mom, can I have absolutely everything I have every heard of, seen, or my friends and classmates have?” Bah humbug.

So I get crabby. I am grouchy because my vegetarian husband and my picky children won’t eat the traditional foods. My 10 year old says she loves pumpkin pie, but darn it, that’s not a meal. More than all the gimmes and consumerist onslaught, I am bitter because my parents and in laws are divorced. This means that during the days when we actually traveled for holidays we were bound to disappoint someone and we spent the day shuttling back and forth between homes and meals, too full to eat at the second or third stop. Arriving late, having to fit it, whatever it maybe, all in to a time crunch, that one day, or abbreviated trip. Bah humbug.

There is no doubt that I am grateful for what we do have: the family, the friends, the lifestyle, the stuff, the freedoms, education, and opportunities. Even the debt, injury and illness. They are my world, my rhyme and reason. The whole bombastic idealization and promotion of tradition just gets me down. I don’t want the pressure of a day on the calendar to rule my world, and yet it is…or rather, it’s impacting my mood.

Emily Finch says it best, “Big shin digs a few days a year are meaningless to me. I’d rather have a lovely everyday.”

That was my “ah-ha!” moment. We are not alone in this sentiment! We love celebrating good cheer everyday with everyone, and come those special days on the calendar, we get a bit bogged down with the Joneses. We get bah humbug about everyone else’s doings and what haves, loosing sight of the many wonderful things we do have, the fabulous experiences we enjoy with everyone around us.

While our holidays are not filled with tradition, or family; our holiday season is overflowing. We keep it interesting everyday, Thankgiving, New Years, 4th of July or not. Keeping our focus is the challenge.

How do you keep from feeling Scroogy, when social and media pressure bares down?

 

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