Monday, June 30, 2014

If I Stay... book review

I just completed reading If I Stay by Gayle Forman.

There are are two books. The second one is called "Where She Went" ~ I haven't started reading it yet.

The book will soon be a movie. Which in the theater it looked amazing and heart wrenching.

The Overview is ...

A 17 yr old girl named Mia is in love with her cello. She is different then her 'punk rock' family and struggles to find her place. Her second love is Adam, her boyfriend, who is also a musician in a up & coming band "Shooting Star". On a snowy day her family takes a road trip and it ends in a fatal crash. Not yet dead but not quite alive Mia watches everything move around her. Mia is aware of everything; the people who are with her at the hospital, what has happened to her parents and brother and she can see her self laying in the hospital ICU bed.

She must make a choice to stay - continue to live or allow her self to go - die.

My rating:
I give this book a generous 2 out of 5. It has a good story to tell. The problem is it's all jumbled together. It doesn't have chapters but it is separated by time stamps..  The beginning of each 'time stamp' tells about how Mia is doing after the accident. Then a little ~ symbol appears and she starts talking about the past. You learn about her Mom, Dad, brother, boyfriend, bestfriend, parents friends.... all after reading about the gut wrenching accident she just endured.
I think this book would have been 100% better if the information about all of these people were told before the crash. I think it would have made a bigger impact, on me, to read about her decision to stay or leave if it had all been together.
I wanted to keep jumping ahead to follow the emotional roller coaster of stuff that went on after the car accident. Sure the other stuff was great to know but again I think it should have been told before the accident.

Final Say:
I think it's a good book worth reading.. it's an easy 1 day read.. It was very touching and emotional. I felt very strongly for Mia and the choice she had to make. I just think it could have been organized a little better.

I'll start reading book 2 "Where She Went" next week & I'll be sure to give you a review.

I've also preordered "Before I Fall" by Lauren Oliver on Amazon.. it should be arriving here any day now. Hopefully I'll be able to get some reviews to you after I finish them.

Monday, June 23, 2014

I'm a beach bum

These words couldn't be more true.
I decided that my knee couldn't get any worse and took myself to the beach this week... four times. 
I plan on going back as much as I can until my knee surgery. 
I haven't been this relaxed and this centered in so long.. it is just amazing. 
The sound of the ocean, the wind, the sun.. I could just live on the beach. I'm a complete beach bum!
My favorite beach here in San Diego is Coronado beach.
Here are some pics that I've captured to share with you..
hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Fun Facts

Lets get to know one another and have some fun!!

What to do:
Grab the code below and create a post about 10 fun facts about yourself. 
Leave me a comment to let me know you've passed on the fun so I check it out! 

Lat n Long of the Heart

1. I'm a Victoria Secret aholic.. no seriously I could open my own store. 
"bra & undies anyone"?

2. I just spent $200 at the bath n body works Semi Annual sale.. 
"mmmm the new 'beach day candle!"

3. I'm a horrible theater buddy if I have read the book first 
"umm that's not how it happened!"

4. I have a major addiction to Starbucks
"Venti Vanilla Machiatto or Caramel Frap.. I can't decide!!"

5. I'm a brand snob - once I fall in love with it; it's all I want to own.
"Coach, Miss Me Jeans, Victoria Secret, Nike....."

6. I love books.. love novels mostly.
"ooo will they end up together or not?!"

7. If I could I would own a dog farm to save all the homeless dogs
"that's a whole lotta barkin' going on"

8. My favorite smells are fresh cut grass and suntan lotion
"summer time anyone?"

9. I'm obsessed with Italian food
"pizza, pastas, bread sticks"

10. I like to live on a schedule
"Sunday's are reserved for laundry!!"

Monday, June 16, 2014

Knee answers.

I've been talking a lot about my hurt knee and all the crazy crap that I've had to deal with. From being in pain one day and not the other ... the lack of activities I can't do anymore... and having no idea what was really wrong. I finally got my MRI; which I talked about here. I got a copy of the MRI disk and have watched about 1,000 times because it's cool and I wanted to kinda self diagnose myself. Friday I met back with the orthapedic to get her medical opinion on what I was looking at {and was anxious to see if my self diagnoses was correct}.

Here is what she said {MRI pictures will be included}

 photo f630c309-2c88-4724-b72d-f90ac1818509_zpsd380ec0c.jpg
Do you see the little tail in between the knee bones? That is a meniscus tear. So what is a meniscus you may ask .. read here. It's a pretty good tear & you can see that it's only on one side.

I also have a torn MCL (Which I don't have a good picture of) that will heal on it's own. It will take about 6 weeks to fully recover and heal. What is a MCL? you can read about that here.

The biggest thing that the MRI techs and the ortho questioned was this little guy..

 photo 3b5fa52d-ef77-4626-8fd9-e941deacac39_zps929fc57a.jpg

This gigantic hole has everyone questioning what the heck it is.. it's a very long and deep hole that goes through my knee cartilage area. Which you can see here is also next to the meniscus tear. 
Here is a different view of the same hole.

 photo 2a28a65e-630f-4c10-8391-81b78ec226bd_zpsc3b18df1.jpg

So if you look at the last picture and see that white around the hole? That is a cyst. I have about four behind the knee and two that have already ruptured. The ruptured cysts fluid just moved into my calf muscle; which explains why my calf is swollen and hurts so much. I was told that the cysts form because fluid has been sitting on my knee for so long - the fluid eventually forms little pouches. When they do surgery and remove the fluid the cysts will go away over time. 

All in all the end result is surgery. Surgery for the meniscus tear and surgery to correct that hole. The MCL and cysts will heal themselves with physical therapy and my knee being confined in a brace after surgery. I meet with the surgeon on the 30th so that he can check out this hole and set up a surgery date. I'm hoping that surgery is the second week of July and the surgeon doesn't the keep procrastinating ... I wanna heal before I throw myself into baby making appointments in August. 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Movies & Books

I know I've posted a lot of dark things lately.
I just keep saying that my life isn't all butterflies and rainbows.

Through all the stuff going on I've made it a point to find some good.
First I've seen two movies that are just amazing and that I recommend that you go see.

1."The Other Women".
Cameron Diaz is amazing!! It's awesome, funny, sad.. but overall it's a great women impowering movie. This will definitely be a movie that I own after it is released.
A couple of days later I saw another great movie.
2. Maleficent. 
This movie is amazing! I've heard so many different things but in my opinion - it's amazing. Angelina Jolie did an amazing job! I seriously can't say "amazing" enough. Here is a preview clip: 

I promise you won't regret this movie choice and I also believe that it's a good 8 & up kid movie. 

Aside from running to the theater when I can.. I picked up a couple of books. 

I've got a membership to the Y and my VS bathing suits came in .. so I'm going to start going to the Y and tanning for a couple of hours. During that time I plan on getting a couple of books out of the way. The first one I bought was "The Fault of our Stars" by John Green. Thanks to my friend Raven over at Don't Quote The Raven I finally broke down and bought the book before seeing the movie.

I also bought book 1 & 2 of the new Nora Roberts trilogy.. 
"Dark Witch" and "Shadow Spell". Book 3 hasn't been released yet but I can't wait to dive into this series.

I love Nora Roberts and if you haven't read her trilogy.. 
Black Rose, Blue Dahlia and Red Tulips - promise you'll thank me!! I just saw that whole trilogy on sale at Target today and I read it a couple of years ago. 

There ya go. A happy post before the weekend and it's full of weekend stuff to do. Grab some books, a memebership at the Y or just watch one of the movies above.. promise you won't be disappointed by any of these options! 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

I'm not ready.

If you follow me on facebook or instagram then you already know that I got heartbreaking news yesterday. For those of you who don't allow me to share more heartbreak with you.

My little dog.. my furry son.. my world.. started coughing. It started while he was barking for a while.. then it got to where it was every time he barked. Now his bark has been replaced with a cough. Then we started to notice how he would be laying down and just jump up .. like something bite him. He would look panicked and run to one of the adults in the house. IF that adult paid attention to him then he laid on them .. completely freaked out. I finally decided to take him to the vet.

Why did I wait so long? I waited because we currently have five adults, two kids (one who is autistic), three big dogs and two cats. Our house is overwhelming.. at best. His changes weren't that alarming to me because of all the bodies, all of my stress, and all of the constant movement. I figured he just felt uncomfortable in the house at times & brushed it off.

Nothing changed. The household, the stress, the constant movements.. and his cough got worse. I took him in. When Grizzly was younger he got attacked by a bigger dog. That attack led to three surgeries and also caused a collapsed lung. I thought the coughing was associated with the collapsed lung in the past. It's not like the cough is new it just got worse.

The vet requested a X-ray after listening to his chest through a stethoscope.. said he wanted to rule out heart & lung disease. After that we could talk about treatments. I started to panic. You know that gut wrenching feeling in the pit of your stomach. That moment when you know something is wrong. They took my little man back for an x-ray and I almost lost my mind. I posted "I'm not ready for this.. I'm not ready for this.." on facebook. I knew in my dog mommy heart something was wrong. They came back to get me to view the x-ray. He said the machine was having issues and couldn't print it off.. so I followed. I walked in the x-ray room and he said.. "I'm sorry it's not good". I felt my knees go out. "He has a grade four heart murmur.. meaning blood isn't going into the chambers of his heart correctly. The swooshing sound i heard is trapped blood". more panic "You can also see here that he has an enlarged heart and when he gets excited it's pinching off air flow to his lungs".. I heard myself ask.. 'What does that mean?' "It means that he'll have to be on a heart pill for the remainder of his life. If the pill can shrink his heart a couple of inches then he'll be ok for a while.. otherwise he's not going to live much longer". At that moment the room whirled around me, I grabbed the table for support and I fought back the tears in my eyes. this can't be happening.. i'm not ready for this.. oh my god please no.. he must have seen me zone out because he called my name "Mrs. P I'm sorry but there is more. He has a collapsed trachea which means he already has a restricted air flow issue. This isn't a new injury and has been there for some time. This could be why you hear that 'honking' sound you explained". 'Ok.. what do we do for that?' "Mrs. P there isn't anything we can do.. I suggest child cough medicine twice a day to relax the trachea but there is nothing we can do but make him comfortable".

Everything past that was a blur. I was lead to the front desk. I was handed pamplets on heart failure and collapsed trachea's. I was handed some pills. Told about cheaper routes for his meds. I was told he wasn't in pain and that he was a happy dog who seemed very healthy. I paid my bill and walked out the door. I got in my car, buckled Grizzly in, and started my car. Two seconds later I was balling my eyes out.. looking back at my world and wondering how in earth I was going to handle this. How on earth I could make it through the rest of my life without him next to me.. how in this world I would make it without his little face, his little kisses and his little loves. My heart broke even more.

Pull yourself together he's just a dog

That is where you are wrong. He's not just a dog to me. He's my baby, he's my best buddy, he's been through so much with me and vise versa. I love my husband but I love Grizzly. If you know me then you already knew this.. you felt the heart ache and my you could see my tears .. the moment I posted this on facebook.

I can't do this.. I just can't. I'm not ready to let him go. He's got years left with me.. he just does. If I never have a human baby ... he's my baby. He's my world. He's the first thing I see in the morning and the last thing I see at night. He is my shadow, my protector, the reason I make myself get up some mornings and the reason I pursued a new life. I'm just not ready for this.

He is on heart meds twice a day to help his heart go down a size or two. He's on childrens robotussin twice day to help with his cough. This will continue for the rest of his life. Next month, if there is a next month, he'll get another x-ray to see if the heart meds are working.

I know to some this seems petty.. he's a dog. Right now he is my baby. I would move mountains for him... I would. With everything else going on the compact is just so overwhelming.

I'm just not ready to lose him... I'm not.

Friday, June 6, 2014

infertility train

The infertility train never really stops. Not really. You either get off for a pit stop or you ride the rails as long as they will take you. Each journey is more exhausting as the next. It's a emotional, expensive and sometimes heart breaking ride.

We are moving forward..The IUI train has left the stations and we are about to board the Invitro train. I'm terrified. I joined a 'military infertility' group on facebook. It's nice. It allows me to ask questions to women who are battling the same insurance and, in some cases, the same Dr's. Again ~ I'm terrified.

We always fear the unknown. I know every hug and turn of the IUI's. I know what to expect, taken all the meds.. so it's a comfortable place now. Now we are venturing in the world of the unknowns....
Currently I'm looking up all the information I can. It's a daunting task but I like to be prepared.

I think I'm ready for this. I think I'm able to face my 'invitro' fears. I think I'm ready to handle the fear of "what if my body doesn't take the embryo's?" that is honestly my biggest fear. Not that they wont make or not that they wont be healthy but that my body wont take the transfer. I guess it's time to just face the fear and board the crazy fertility train again.

I just hope that I can get healthy enough to handle this adventure. I'm praying I can find a way to stay stress free and relax during this process. I'm also praying that the fact that my knee will be healing at the same time will allow myself to take the pressure off.

Here is to another couple months of drinkin' like a fish while I still can...

If you have any personal stories of invitro please share with me!! I'd love getting all the info I can...

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

just an update

Wowzer is it really the first week of June?! I mean time is just sailing past us....

Today I get my MRI! I'm so nervous, excited and anxious too.
I shouldn't be that excited for an MRI. I mean it's a huge metal machine that is going to make a whole bunch of banging noises. I'm going to have to strip off all the metal I wear (which is a lot) to lay perfectly still for half an hour. It sounds glamorous I know.. MRI's are the new rage didn't ya know?

I'm just excited that in a week from now I'll be able to know exactly what is wrong with my knee. I'll be able to gear Physical therapy to my injury and I'll be able to find out about surgery. Is this a meniscus tear or a MCL? Is it both? Will it heal on it's own? Can they see the fluid around my knee? What is that from? and the million dollar question "Will I have to have surgery?"
Last week was the semi annual sale at Victoria Secret. Who else participated?? I love this sale. I swear I save up, correction I prepare the husband, twice a year for this huge sale. I bought a really fun bra this time around - IMO - I ordered the Push Up bra #CZ-312-845 in 'Call my Paisley'.  I waited too long for the 50% 'dorm' collection. I really wanted a set of the lavender/cherry blossom sheets. Anyway I got a couple of bathing suits and some other stuff so I'm happy I got a chance to buy some of my favorite things - on sale.

Last week my hubby had Lasik surgery. He is doing great and he's so excited he got it done. I, personally, will never do it. His eyes were getting worse and his prescription was already really strong. I'm so happy he is starting to do more and more for himself. The car.. the Lasik.. I'm proud of him. He gives and gives and does very little for himself.

I've got a couple of projects in the works. I need to finish my besties blankets - I'm running out of time. Hopefully I can get them to her Mom's before the baby shower.. 'fingers crossed'. I also bought fabric to make a dress for my friends little girl. Ok I bought a lot of fabric to make a couple of dresses for her little girl. Hopefully I can get myself to sit down and get this stuff done. I'll elaborate more on this project in a later post.

That's the highlight of my past week. Exciting I know. Hope everyone is having a great first week of June.