When I first heard the topic of Tell Your Story, I immediately thought about writing about my life story, but I am thirty-six, and that would be one long post. Plus, though some of it would be interesting, it would also have some very boring parts. Shortly after I ruled that idea out, I went through something, and I immediately thought I would tell you all the story of that event, and my feelings and opinions about it. The truth is, I was very upset, and I realized the entire post would be me ranting, and I did not want to write a totally negative post. That did lead me to the approach I want to take.
I want to tell you guys things about myself, enabling you all to get to know me a bit better. Some of the things, some of you may already know, but I am also including things that most people do not know. I am not necessarily telling my secrets, but I am just choosing to be open and honest, and tell my story.
1. Of course, I decided to start with the rant that I had originally wanted to create the post with. I have been terrible about updating my Facebook page, since my Daddy died, and I am sorry for that. I do promise you that I am planning on changing that very soon. It was partially due to the depression I was experiencing over losing my dad, and partially because life was hectic. It is funny how having Gigi start school, made life so much busier, when I thought I would have so much more down time. Do not get me wrong, I took plenty of naps during her Kindergarten year, but I also did a lot more than I usually did, and it was a huge adjustment for all of us.
Towards the end of the year, Gigi was having some health issues, and we were very busy with doctor visits, and just taking days off to help her feel better, that I was stretched thin. Getting her better is still something we are working on. She is seeing an endocrinologist and a Gastroenterology specialist, and we are working on getting her back to pristine health. It was particularly stressful at the very end of her school year, and I was so laser focused on her and her appointments, that I really could not be bothered with anything else. So, when I fell in the shower, and my leg hurt afterward, I decided it was just a fall, and I did not have time to worry about seeing a doctor. It was apparent a few weeks later, that sometimes, you just need to make time for seeing a doctor.
My doctor told me he felt I had most likely torn my ACL, but he wanted to try a few things, before rushing to that conclusion and an MRI. So, I went onto bed rest, no lifting, icing it regularly, and just trying to give it a chance to heal. Something I should have done from the beginning, rather than running around trying to do all the things. It only got worse, and it was really becoming bothersome. So, I made an appointment for when my doctor was back from a short vacation, and just tried to survive. Unfortunately, my knee started bothering me more, and not just pain, but it started popping and giving out. I went to the ER, to try to get some help, but all they wanted to do was shove pain medication into my system, and tell me I had most likely torn something.
I was frustrated, and told them I had pain medication at home, and what I needed were answers and solutions, not a band aid. I have never begged so hard in my life for answers, but they were adamant, that I was not about to die, I just needed to take pain medication regularly and push through. They said my insurance would use the excuse the an MRI is not an emergency exam, and they would not get paid. Meanwhile, I was barely able to walk, I was in excruciating pain, my leg was swelling, and I was not handling any of it well. Not to mention, I was struggling to not fall, and was becoming quite a danger to myself, and was convinced I was going to fall and break my neck.
I didn't, thankfully, my neck is still in tact. I did however fall, and firemen and paramedics had to lift me off the ground, and take me to the emergency room. I hurt my knee further, and it became more swollen, but most unfortunately, I also split my hernia open a lot more. They could tell from the CT, that I had made it quite bigger, and would now need intervention. Again, they just wanted to fill me full of pain medication and send me home to cope, until my doctor could get me in for an MRI.
My hernia became quite the problem, and at one point, I could not get my insides back inside, and ended up back in the ER in a panic. My insides returned to the inside of my body, and they again offered to pump me full of pain medication, and got angry when I declined, and then sent me home. By the next day, after another mini fall and several times of my insides being stubborn about staying inside, I became determined to get my knee fixed. We went to three emergency rooms, and honestly, I hope I never need to be in one again ever. Each one complained about insurance companies being finicky about paying for MRIs, and offered to pump me full of pain medication, and two even lectured and chastised me for not taking my prescribed pain medication much more often. They did not even care that I have valid reasons for not wanting to take them.
The whole process really ruined my view of the medical system, and caused me to think that the concern over the opioid crisis is fake. If there was such concern, why were they trying to force them down my veins, and why was their anger over my refusal of the medication, and the fact that I do not take my prescribed medication much more often!? I am telling you, I am very heartbroken over this all. In the end, my doctor returned from vacation, and he got me in for an MRI immediately, and told me to talk to the On-Call Doctor next time. I wish I had thought of that.
So, I have a torn Meniscus, and will be seeing the orthopedic specialist on July 15th, to set up surgery to fix it. Once that is fixed, I will be getting surgery to fix my hernia, and keep my insides on the inside. I am especially excited for that one. I have had this hernia for years, and it really never bothered me much, but since tearing it open more, and my insides now venturing outside frequently, I cannot wait to just get rid of it.
2. This is random, and probably not very interesting, but it is something that I think is interesting about the last year of my life. Last March, I sat in on a Facebook live with Michelle (Juicebox Confessions) and Madelyn (Under the Momfluence), and they talked about Fresh Apparel for a bit. Michelle had shown off some mugs/cups from Fresh Apparel over the previous months, and I loved them. So, of course I followed the page, and enjoyed looking at all their cute graphic tees. Most fit mom life so perfectly, and just simply life, that I secretly hoped to wear them one day. I never actually tried to order, because I just assumed they would not have bigger sizes, and if they did, they would cost an arm and a leg. Well, during the live, I discovered that the owner of Fresh Apparel (Amanda) works hard to be a very inclusive brand, and she also doesn't overcharge at all. So, I made an order, and I was hooked. The clothes are amazing, the cups and mugs are fabulous, and just everything about the brand is wonderful. I fell in love with the Insiders group (a group that huge fans of the brand hang out and get access to sales first and overall just talk and support one another), and I even applied to be a Brand Rep for a season. I was shocked that I was chosen to be a rep, but honestly, I would spread the word about FA whether I were a rep or not, simply because I genuinely love the brand and the merchandise. So, of course, me putting myself out there and applying to be a brand rep was weird, but there is more.
If you are linked to me on Facebook, or if you have paid attention to my most recent posts on my Facebook page, you may have noticed a change in me. I am more colorful. I wear colorful clothing now. I mean, I even own some tie dye pieces. I know. So. Very. Weird. There is even pink in my closet! I realized a few months back, that Fresh Apparel has brought me way outside my neutral/black/brown/gray/navy/beige comfort zone. Actually, I am sitting in shorts, as I type this. Shorts that I LOVE. Also, I recently bought dresses, and I wear and love them. I know. So incredibly weird. I love it though. I truly do. I love the clothes, they are comfortable, and I actually enjoy the color in my life. So weird how much a person's tastes can change in a year. In fact, I just applied to be a brand rep for another season. They haven't announced the chosen reps yet, but my fingers are crossed.
Just two side notes... They have frequent sales, that are awesome, and if you even want to order, let me know! I will find the current discount code for you! Also, if you want to join a group of really amazing moms (and a few cool dads), and be in a supportive and fun environment, search for Fresh Apparel Insiders on Facebook, and join the group!
3. Since my Daddy died in September, I have been taking many trips down memory lane. I have been thinking about things, I had not thought about in years. I was sudden clinging to every memory I could think of. I actually considered starting a Facebook group, for my family and friends, who knew my dad, and just have a place where we could all share memories of him. Mostly because I want to remember as much as I could. I used to imagine that once my Daddy died, I would write a long blog post, venting about him. About all these things I spent years dwelling on, and the moment I found out he was gone, those things were the furthest things from my mind. All of a sudden, I was focused on all the good and funny things, and I realized there was so much goodness. I really stole the last years my dad was alive, away from myself, because we could have been even closer, had I not been so focused on negative things in my head.
Gigi always asks me to tell her things from my childhood, so I am always trying to think of things to tell her, and since September, that has been particularly bittersweet. Recently, I was talking to her about how lucky she is. We really do cater to her, when it comes to her eating, and we do our best to accommodate her likes. She asked why she was so lucky. I told her when I was growing up, I had two options... Eat whatever my dad served me or starve. In reality, it was really only one option, because my Daddy was not a fan of food not getting eaten, so I realized really quickly, the best thing to do was to just eat. Now, I will tell you, that I was lucky. My Daddy made delicious food. He could truly cook so well, and I wish I had inherited that ability.
Now, recently I told Gigi how sometimes dishes would have weird names. Poop on a shingle or Birds in a nest or brains and eggs, and we giggled at the names. I explained the dishes to her, and then I explained to her, that growing up I would always giggle when my dad would make brains and eggs. I thought it was such a funny name. Once I was older, I discovered it wasn't a silly name, it was an accurate name. It really was brains scrambled with eggs. I think I am still traumatized. I remember it was a delicious meal, and my Dad really enjoyed it, and I just figured it was some funny name he came up with, based on how scrambled eggs look. Since I had no real option, but to eat what he made me, I think it is truly best I did not learn the truth until I was much older. So, now you know the weirdest thing I have ever eaten.
4. If you have kids in your life, or if you pay even just slight attention to what is going on with kids these days, you know that slime is popular. Not just slime, like the little jars of noise putty/slime, we would buy as kids, but making slime. I immediately banned slime from our house, when I heard of the fad. That was that. I hear slime, and I think huge mess. So, that would be a hard pass. Well, Gigi has become obsessed with the lady named Doctor Squish on YouTube. I am very picky about what YouTube she is allowed to watch, and she is forbidden to watch many of the more popular channels, but somehow Doctor Squish made the cut. She is obsessed with squishy toys, and Gigi happens to love them, so I let her watch this lady. She does this thing, where she will show you a squish toy, critique it, and then cut it open, to see what is inside making it squishy. Gigi and I actually enjoy trying to guess the insides correctly. She also loves making slime. After watching enough of her videos, I was actually open to slime being in our house. We have strict rules about where the slime can be played with, and I limit the amount of slime in the house at any given time, but I have actually had fun making slime with Gigi. I know... Who am I, and where is the old Jules?!
5. I am having anxiety lately, because we have had a very boring/relaxed Summer. My knee injury has really been a curve ball. I am on bed rest, and I have been in so much pain, that I have really been miserable. Plus, I have had so many doctor appointments. So, it isn't until now, that I am actually going to start doing Summer workbooks with Gigi, and I am so nervous. I am not sure why. I think part of it, is that I have enjoyed our down time somewhat, and that is going to be much less for the rest of Summer, but part of it is that I am scared I am going to really be terrible at teaching her. I tried teaching her to write her name and stuff, before Kindergarten, and I failed. I was worried she would struggle in school, and nope. She did great in school. I was just a terrible teacher. So, now it is time for me to do workbooks with her, and I am nervous. I keep telling myself it will just be like doing homework with her. I hope I am right. If I am wrong, there may be a vent post in the future, about how terrible I am as a teacher, and how great it is that I did not follow that career path.
6. My Dad's house number was 633. Since he passed away, I frequently look at the clock, and find that it is 6:33 am/pm. It makes a feeling of peace wash over me. I have also run into the number in other random places as well. Maybe it is just one big coincidence, but I am a firm believer that our loved ones can send us messages/signs. So, in my mind, it means he is watching over us.
7. I went to live with my Dad when I was four. I started having chores immediately. Before I was six, I was doing laundry all by myself. All the steps... Sorting, putting into the washer, putting in the detergent and turning on the washer, removing the clothes from the washer, carrying them outside and hanging them on the clothesline, bringing the clothes in, folding, putting them away. I even did the dishes all by myself, even the knives. Gigi just turned six and she has no real, set in stone chores. I still have the yellow stool I used, to be able to put the clothes into, and take the clothes out of the washing machine. So, I am going to give Gigi official chores. I am still working on what chores to give her. I know one of them won't be doing the laundry all by herself, but I do think she can help fold. I also think she should be capable of putting her clothes into her own drawers. She helps out already, probably not as much as she should (especially in regards to picking up her own toys), but I think it is time to make it more official. There is this small part of me, that cannot wait to figure out a chore to give her, where she will need to use the yellow stool. My yellow stool. I am thinking maybe she can clean the table off after meals, and since we have a taller than normal table, the stool may just be the best way for her to reach the entire table surface. I really want to do a magnetic chore chart, even if it is just a piece of paper, we hang on the fridge with magnets. So, I am going to make a post on my Facebook page some time this week, about chores and chore charts. If you have some great advice or a great system, please chime in, when you see my post. Yes, I know it is ridiculous that she is six and doesn't have official chores yet. She has just always been a really good helper, that I never did anything official. I just know that with my knee hurt, and the increase in homework that comes with first grade, and just life in general, we will be needing more help from her, and I think doing it in a structured manner is going to be the most successful approach. How old were you when you started chores?
8. I have an irrational fear of a snake crawling up into the toilet, while I am using the restroom. So, I frequently look down into the toilet, while I am going potty. I know it is random and weird, and I have no idea what caused this fear, but I have had it for as long as I can remember.
9. When I was about eleven years old, I stole a jar of nail polish from Walmart. I do not think I have ever told anyone this. Well, I have never forgiven myself, and I often think about it, and will lecture myself about being an idiot. It was so stupid. I did not even use the polish. My friends and their mom, had brought me to Walmart with them. I was walking around carrying it, and was trying to work up the nerve to ask their mom to buy it for me, and tell her I would pay her back, after I did some extra chores for money. Then they checked out, and I was still holding it, and then I just left with it. I left it in my friend's bedroom, on her dresser. She never said anything about it, and I did see her wearing the color a few weeks later. This is probably one of the hardest things I have had to live with. I have already taught Gigi that we do NOT steal. I plan on continuing to really drive that fact home with her. I don't ever want her to get in trouble, or to feel guilty for the rest of her life.
10. I love myself, exactly as I am, flaws and all. However, I hate that I am fat. I hate it so much that I often lecture myself in my head about being fat. I say some pretty nasty things to myself. I have never understood how I can love myself so very much, and hate myself so much, at the same time. It is such a weird thing. I think most people do not even realize how much I hate myself for being fat, because I am so confident in myself, and accept and love myself. So, I think it is just another odd coincidence about myself. Lately, it has definitely gotten worse. I worry that I will end up causing Gigi to either be fat or to be obsessed with never getting fat. I just pray that I can teach her, and guide her, into having a confident and healthy self esteem. I want her to genuinely love herself completely, and I want her to be healthy. It is one of my biggest concerns and stresses as a mom.
Okay. That is enough about me for now. Do not forget to go check out the rest of this month's Blog with Friends posts, and see how each blogger turned "Tell Your Story" into a post!! I am so excited to read them myself. I have been excited ever since this topic was chosen. I will meet you there, I just need to grab a quick refill. I am drinking "Not a Morning Person" from Dark Side Roasters, and I am loving it. I am currently using S'mores creamer, and I give it three stars. It isn't too sweet, so I like that, but it does not really taste like S'mores. Just tastes like I put a couple of spoons of sugar in my coffee, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, since it allows me to really savor the yummy flavor of my DSR coffee.
Find the other Blog with Friend's Posts here:
Karen of Baking In A Tornado
Melissa of My Heartfelt Sentiments
Dawn of Spatulas On Parade
Lydia of Cluttered Genius
Tamara of Part-time working hockey Mom