Sunday, November 27, 2011

Best Friend of Twenty Years

This is a little post for one of my favorite people of all time.
Tonee and I have been best friends ever since she invited me to her eleventh birthday party, 20 years ago! These are a few of our memories together, which pretty much sum up my adolescence....

Remember our childhood? 
We basically lived at the  pool (age 12).
(And we took tons of underwater pictures with your water camera!)

Some of my best memories with you are:

Sleepovers at your house

Making up a dance to the song "Never Gonna Get It"

Rollerblading on the boulevard while you pulled me with your bike!

Babysitting and cleaning houses together, for $4 an hour!

Our detail planned mall trips where we would blow all our money at Gap and Nordstrom (wish we could afford to shop there more now!)

Making home-video, fake commercials.
(Do you still have those? We were hilarious!)

Karaoke in your basement. To this day the songs "Under the Bridge" and "Brown Eyed Girl" remind me of our karaoke days.

Learning to shave my legs from you, but having to hide it from my mom.
Let's face it, you basically raised me. 

Of course things are different now than our care-free days together, but as Tonee put it, we are tied together at the heart forever. 

Sunday, November 20, 2011

This Weeks Happenings

I recently found this vintage trunk on KSL for cheap and went and picked it up with Justin.  Then he decided he can't trust that it's clean enough to take in the house, so it has been sitting outside while I decide what to do with it instead.  So far, a photo prop is all I've come up with. 

I also went to a play at the Hale Centre Theater with my dad.  He is taking all of his daughters "out" this winter and we get to choose what we do:). He is great company, and we had a wonderful time!

Caleb lost Rusty one morning and wouldn't stop crying and whining about it.  We had been looking for him all morning, and I finally told him we should say a prayer to ask Heavenly Father to help him find Rusty.  Just one minute after his prayer, he decided to look in the couch and there he was!  The way he was hugging and kissing that little dog of his, you would've thought he was real! 

Caleb had a friend over and they saw me cleaning the house and wanted to help. After they'd done the few things I asked them to help with, I saw Caleb doing this! All I could say was "whaaaaaaat?" (Something Justin always says).

This last post is for Justin, because he can't get over how funny it was when we went to drop off our big, old TV at the D.I . and Caleb looked out the window and saw a much smaller, but similar T.V. on a rack and asked "Why did they shrink our T.V.?" 
 Too funny.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Caleb's Favorites

These are some of Caleb's favorite things, and a few more old pic's I like.

Spending time with mommy or daddy.

Getting "Slippery's" with daddy from 7-11.

His animals: Bear, Lamby, Brownie, Rusty, & Snoopy's

Playing with his friends. He could do this all day.
Hanging out with cousins (where daddy used to hang with his!)

Wearing his Thomas sweats. He's wearing these in almost every other picture, and in the summer I had to hide them!

Playing in the snow.

His "girl" friends.  He has a lot of them.


And hiding from us, several times a day.
Posted by Picasa

Daddy's Favorites

The U of U.

Flying kites with Caleb (and this picture he took!)

Being funny. (Can you see what I mean?) 

Rough housing with Caleb several times a day.

Taking the family to Chick-Fil-A on Saturday mornings so Caleb can play.

His family, of course.

And being a father.  He is such a natural.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Mommy's Favorites

These are some of my favorite things...
(and an excuse to post some old pic's I like)

Answered prayers.

Anything funny. (2 months!)

A clean house and child.




A sweet child.

Bed head.
        These two.

 Holding babies, wearing hats, and family!


This is where I wanted to be today, but it didn't work out so luckily I got to catch my cousin Debbie's wedding on local news.  She won a really nice wedding that aired on Channel 2 this afternoon.   
Together Jon and Debbie have 8 kids!

I wasn't there but I still teared up. I am such a girl! 

This was my favorite part because we got to hear their "sweet talk"

Such a cute family. 
Congratulations Debbie and Jon!

P.S.  Don't laugh at me taking pictures of my T.V. Good times.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

That's Funny, Huh?

A typical conversation...

"Caleb, it's time to get your shoes on for preschool."

Thank You for Your Prayers

This blog post is not my typical. But I have been wanting to do this post for awhile now. Mostly I am doing it for myself so I can look back and see what I have learned from being sick and how I felt about everything.  But it may also be of interest to those of you who are close to me. I wrote it in question/answer form so it will be more interesting and you won't fall asleep! (I also included a couple of pics). Some of these questions are ones people have asked me, and some are just things that I want to  remember.  But first of all, I want to thank all of you who prayed for me to get well.  I am doing so much better lately, and I am sincerely grateful for your thoughts and prayers.

What happened?

About 4 years ago (when Caleb was a year old), I decided I wanted to become "healthier" so I stopped eating junk-food altogether, went vegetarian overnight and started a cleanse. I had no idea what I was doing, but I thought that I did! All of a sudden I started feeling really tired, and just altogether horrible. I became quite sick and things got really bad a year ago, when I lost a lot of weight and became really weak.  Because I kept seeming to get worse over time, myself and others worried if I would pull out of it.

What did you do about it?

I literally ran around for 3 years trying to find answers. I went to more doctors than I can remember, and had lots of blood tests, an endoscopy, injections, vitamin IV's, supplements, and medications to name a few. I even went to some interesting people that said that your negative emotions can make you sick. And I kept thinking how can my emotions be making me sick? I have been so happy in my life, especially before I got sick. Wonderful husband, beautiful baby boy...I just want to get my life back so I can enjoy what I already have to the fullest! I was willing to do almost anything to get better, and I didn't let myself do much else in my spare time except research and try to find answers!

What diagnosis did you get?

My gastroenterologist was convinced that I had "celiac disease" and wanted me to cut all gluten out of my diet. I did, however, I continued to feel worse over time, and kept finding myself cutting more foods that caused symptoms. After a lot of searching, I was told that I have "dysbiosis", which is a digestive disorder where you don't digest your foods well, meaning you don't absorb the nutrients you take in. I'm thinking that this is probably why I have lost weight despite the fact that I always seem to be hungry?!

Why do you think you got sick?

I think it's because I cut out meat, and started to eat too many grains for my system, which caused the digestive symptoms. This is because from the research I've done and my personal experience it seems that different body (or blood) types handle various types of foods differently. Blood type O's (me) for example, supposedly do much better with a high protein diet, but I didn't know or realize that at the time. Having gone vegetarian explains why I suddenly started to bruise easily and why I felt too weak to clean my house spotless and work out vigorously like used to. My system was having a hard time digesting so many grains, and I noticed I wasn't digesting my food well anymore. Not only did I feel weak and tired, I didn't feel well enough to do much or go anywhere. Like when you have a bad flu bug and you want to stay in your comfy home and your comfy clothes.
(PS..lots of people do extremely well as vegetarians though!)

What were some of your symptoms?

Obviously I was weak and tired/fatigued, which were the worst of all, but I also had stomach pains until I cut grains out of my diet (doctor's orders!) and body aches, likely because those muscles were so weak. Then my ankles started to hurt because they had weakened so much too. My eyes hurt a lot of the time, both because of bad sleep, and digesting foods badly. That's usually the first symptom that tells me that my system had a hard time with what I ate. It feels like really dry, tired eyes. There were also symptoms tied to bad digestion that you could see, including a bloated stomach, acne, jaundice, blah, blah, I hated it. However, when you feel terrible, you care much less about what you look like. You also care less about materialistic house and clothing that had always been important to me, suddenly were not. I was in "survival mode."

Why did you become so weak?

I started doing fun work-out videos after Caleb was born, but 6 months after I started feeling sick, it started getting harder instead of easier, and I eventually decided I felt too weak to do it at all. Looking back, I wish I would've pushed myself to do more in general. Not aerobics like I had been, but using my muscles more so they didn't become so weak. Like I've said, I feel like I had to learn how to walk again in some respects, because my muscles and joints became so weak. I went to physical therapy a few times and my therapists helped me work on my walking and my building my leg strength.  Now I am thinking about getting a membership to Gold's Gym so I can use their equipment to strengthen my
muscles more.

What is helping you to get better?

I think it's several things, including figuring out more about the foods that make me feel crummy, and eating less of those, and also cutting back on some of the "medicines" (mostly supplements) I was taking. I realized that I was taking these to help me feel better, but they were actually making me feel worse. Another thing that has helped is getting out of the cycle of "I don't feel good enough to do anything, so I don't, which causes me to feel worse because I am so weak and tired (lungs, heart, etc.). Starting to feel better physically helped me emotionally right away. Some nights I am so excited about life and what the next day holds, that I can hardly sleep! But I also realize that I am not out of the woods yet, and if I let myself think about all I still need to improve I can get overwhelmed, so I don't let myself do that. I try to just take it a day at a time and think about how far I have come!

How did you feel throughout all of this?

Suprisingly, I never felt depressed, just sad and frustrated about my situation. When doctors are having a hard time figuring out your health issue, they usually want to give you an antidepressant. But I knew I wasn't depressed! If I ever had a day where I felt a bit better and I had an increase of hope, I was on top of the world! And my family could tell you that given the situation, I stayed pretty positive. I am not saying that I never cried or felt hopeless, but I really tried to keep that to a minimum because I realized it only worsened the situation, or at least how I felt about it.

How did this affect your relationships?

This really affected all of my relationships, because I stopped going most places, and conserved my energy for doctors visits, etc. I felt less close to most people, but I felt close to my mom because she was so helpful when I needed her there for me. And I feel like I have a deeper bond with her now because of it. (I also feel more close now to a few individuals who helped me in one way or another).

I spent a lot of time with my husband and son, which is really what kept me going. I loved our happy moments together...watching them rough house or telling each other jokes and what happened during our day. I was heartbroken if Caleb went to a cousins house all day or if Justin left on a business trip for a few days. They are what kept me smiling when all I wanted to do is cry. And I always felt extremely grateful to have them in my life, which kept me motivated to fight for my health.

My experience has also strengthened my relationship with Justin, because trials typically do this for a marriage. We learned a lot more about each other and we now have a greater respect for one another because of how difficult situations were handled. For example, Justin did all of the housework (and more!) for those months that I didn't feel strong enough to do it. I love him and am so blessed that I have had such a wonderful person to help me through this.

What have you learned from your trial?

I have learned a lot of things, and although I am the same person, there are several things that I am or want to be more serious about. These include:

Health: Obviously, I will take my health seriously for the rest of my life. I think I will always try to eat healthier, make my body stronger, and take care of myself emotionally.

Sprituality: I am closer with my Savior and I have a stronger desire to do important things like reading the scriptures and going to the temple. Before, my desire to do them was mainly because I knew that I should. Now I do them also because these things (and others) help everything in my life to work out better. This is because I am living closer to the Spririt, so I can be guided in my life. We all need guidance in this challenging world.

Other: People are what matter in life. I had that thought a lot while I was sick, because I felt that I was basically stripped of everything that made me, me. And what I realized is that I still am me, and I wanted to feel like people still cared about me and what I was going through. I can remember almost every last phone call, card, visit, and kindness that was shown to me during this time. And the little things helped more than you would think. Because of this experience, I want to show other people that I care about them both because I do, and because I know how helpful it is to feel that.

I also had a couple of experiences where individuals didn't understand, or even try to understand what I was going through, and they were extremely unkind to me. Because of this, I lost more sleep, became somewhat anxious, and felt my health even worsened for a time. I share this only because I hope to inspire people to be more kind to one another. You never know what somebody is going through and it's likely that they can't really take anymore. I know that I have accidentally offended people before, but I would hope to never intentionally hurt somebody elses feelings. I know that my heart and mind wouldn't feel right in doing that. I have had to practice the principle "love thy enemy". (But I don't like the word "enemy" so let's say "love thy offender".) This has helped a lot!;

Do you have any regrets because you got sick?

Not really. I believe that things happen for a reason, and the cliche idea that our trials make us stronger. I know that I have learned, and am still learning many things that will help me be a better person throughout my life. Even though Justin and I would like to have another child, I don't regret not being able to yet, because I feel like there is still time and that things will work out according to Gods plan.

"Because it's preschool time and all the other kids will have their shoes on too, huh?"
"Yes, that's why."
"And preschool starts in six minutes, huh?"
"Yep, it starts pretty soon so let's hurry."
"Cause if we don't hurry we'll be so, so late, huh?
(This could go on for eons, until I finally say...)
"Yes, Caleb. Now put your shoes on!"
I get a kick out of telling Justin the funny things that Caleb said or did each day, and I have a bad habit of saying "that's funny, huh?"  So out of the blue one day, Caleb started saying "huh?" after everything he said.  My fault I realize, and now I'm trying to figure out how to reverse it.  Funny, huh?

Monday, November 7, 2011

Little Helper

Caleb and I woke up pretty early the morning of the first snow. Naturally he wanted to go outside and enjoy it so I said he could help me get the snow off of the car before I went to physical therapy. No time to change out of jammies. He wasn't exactly the best help, but at least he had fun...

Cousin Kortnie came into town with her parents and we got to celebrate her birthday.  I was laughing so hard when I saw what the boys did when they said "cheese" in this picture.
Caleb has been on cloud 9 playing with the princess balloons that Kortnie left at our house.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Spooky, Silly!

On Saturday, we carved pumpkins and took lots of pictures. 

Since Justin got a kick out of my wig the other night, I decided to wear one too and for trick-or-treating we dressed like this.  Mine kinda just looks like me, but Justin's is funny.  He definately got some comments from the neighbors, like "Wow, somehow you make that look work!"

    "Have to stop for pictures before candy. Waaaaa!"

The end.