Wednesday, June 19, 2013

My Pregnancy, So Far...

I suppose it's been about 2 years since my last post... and since then, a lot has happened!

I've been happily married and will be celebrating our 2-year anniversary this July 23rd. Marriage is... well... not much different from before. I think it is different for couples who haven't been together long... or haven't lived together before. Darrin and I got married after being together for 6 years, and we lived together for 5... so... let's be honest, nothing changed.

What HAS changed is the little bun in my oven (aka baby in my uterus, incubating).

Let's start with how this all happened, shall we? Wait... now get your mind out of the gutter... we all know HOW it happened... but to be honest... we were told by two separate specialists that I couldn't have children without medical intervention; and even with that... it was very iffy.

Without going into a lot of unnecessary detail, I was diagnosed with a small brain tumour on  my pituitary gland. Small enough not to worry, big enough to make a difference. Because this little growth was now part of my life... I took the initiative to name it. I figured, no woman would impose on another woman's life and make it hell... so I assumed the gender of this little being was a male. So that got me thinking... and then BAM... out of nowhere, the name Richard came to mind. It's perfect! When I'm referring to the little shit on my brain, causing a bunch of ruckus... I could refer to him as Richard without other's knowing. That way, it didn't make it awkward when I'd refer to my "brain tumour" but to "Richard". Also, when he was being bad... aka headaches, side effects of such a tumour - we'd call him "Dick". Perfect name for him. 

Richard basically made my body think I was already pregnant and didn't release the appropriate hormones to get pregnant. I wasn't ovulating and therefore, couldn't conceive. 

My diagnosis Doctor put me on medication that... let's just say... made me completely dependent on my hubby. I couldn't drive, I couldn't even wash my own hair - it made me so dizzy. So... with that type of affect, I decided to go off of it and deal with what life was to hand to me.

After a year of "trying" with no babies, I was then referred to the SOFT clinic - best place on the planet... this is where they baste you with sperm and whatnot if that's the route you have to go. We went thru our options and decided that it was just best to wait a little bit longer until we were aching for children (at this point, we were still house hunting, calming our raging dog, and saving up)...

All-in-all, we made the decision to just wait it out for a year or so... and go from there. They said that in order to get pregnant (aka knocked-up)... I would have to be on medication and do all this crap to help ovulate and yadda yadda yadda. It happens... whatevs..

So Darrin and I got over the idea of not having a child naturally. Although it was devastating at first (for me, at least... being a woman that can't do something she was put on this planet to do, naturally)... we actually warmed up to the idea of having complete control over when we have children!... or so we thought...

Sunday, January 13th McD and I went for dinner; which was a regular occurrence for us. I mean, why not? It's not like we're having a child to save up for! HA! Now... don't get me wrong... I enjoy my wine and martini's, but at no point was this an issue... I enjoyed my alcoholic beverages the normal amount... so there's no need to judge when I say that I was enjoying my favourite dirty, vodka martini on a Sunday night, lol. But my GOD was it fantastic.

... on the way home, I had mentioned to Darrin that the whole week beforehand that I was having weird cramps. Now... having been told for almost two years that I couldn't have children... as a woman, it just happens to be the first thing that pops in your head no matter what the symptoms. A woman can get a dream of babies and think she's pregnant. Or irregular bleeding and think she's pregnant. She can crave Fruit Loops and pickles with peanut butter ice cream and think she's pregnant (all, by the way, are side-effects of a period - we're lucky, us girls). But I felt that just to be safe... I'd take the test. Now... keep in mind, the cramps all week lead me to making an appointment with my family Doctor who I had an appointment to see on the Tuesday; at which appointment I would tell her I thought I was dying and ask to go back on the pill until McD and I decided it was time to pop out a child.

Now... I must say that although I went to the store, bought a pregnancy test and took it home - at no point was this a concern for me. I get that I took the time out of my day, and the money out of my bank account to do this... but it was really just the process of elimination. I literally said and felt that it's going to come back negative; which in turn, meant I was dying.

That comment may sound ridiculous... but when you're 18 years old and suffer from migraines and determine on your own that you have a brain tumour, have everyone laugh at you... and then 6 years later get diagnosed with one... you kind of think you're right on everything going forward, lol.

ANYWAY... I peed on the stick, as suggested (by the way... not that I did... but don't do this with your hubby or boyfriend in the room with you - there is nothing sexy or graceful about the pose you are about to do... there is no need for anyone to witness this, not even yourself).

I stood in the bathroom, with the door closed watching the light blue run across the "screen". Now, being a 25 year old woman, I've taken a few tests in my day... so I knew what to expect and expected to see... what I expected. But when I saw the horizontal line go across the vertical (indicating a + sign)... I nearly died. DIED. The feeling was heart pounding, hand-over-mouth, disbelief and "how the hell do I tell Darrin this?"

...the whole moment you see on TV of a wife coming into the room saying really excited "we're pregnant" or waiting for the perfect time to say this amazing news is complete bullshit... at least for me. Maybe I'm lacking the sentimental component to all of this, but I came out of the bathroom to Darrin pouring me a glass of wine, with a stick soaked in pee, and my other hand over my mouth (which... to be honest, I'm not even sure I washed my hands)... and said "I'm f***ing pregnant!" and he turned to me and said "no shit!". Needless to say, he was far more excited than I. We hugged it out while I bawled my eyes out in disbelief... and although my unborn child NEVER needs to know this... it was because I was scared shitless and knew there was no turning back... this thing had to exit thru my vagina and then I had to raise it.

I sound horrible, but let's be honest... finding out your pregnant, AFTER BEING TOLD YOU COULDN'T HAVE CHILDREN... is a scary friggin thing... not to mention the martini's I was enjoying!

Now, being pregnant for 6 months... I will say that I couldn't be happier and recognize that this little bundle of kicking, hiccuping, nauseating, joy is a true miracle and I'm so beyond excited to meet him, snuggle him, and watch him grow into a mini-McD.

So... that's how it happened... I have no idea how. I don't ovulate, and never went on any medicine to help with fertility... so... this is a miracle (not an immaculate conception - no no)... but still, it was clearly meant to be. Also, please note: I never drank that glass of wine McD was pouring me, and I haven't had any alcohol since - it just so happens... that I had a martini the night I found out. Bite me, many women have... I'm no exception.

With the above story... which I totally intended on being short and to the point... I will continue on with my pregnancy stories as they happen. Everyone has a different pregnancy... thoughts... feelings.

I may add that I hate every woman who has been knocked-up and didn't feel any nausea and walked around all joyful and glowing. For me... that was completely bullish*t and I envy all the woman who got to experience a wonderful pregnancy. Damn you.

The past 6 months have been interesting... meaning, barfing, migraines, barfing... and barfing. I've never spent so much time with a toilet... I actually started having dreams (when I was able to actually sleep) of falling face-first into a toilet bowl, that's how much time I was spending in one. The migraines were so horrible that I would lay in bed for days at a time and were so painful that the thought of just peeing the bed seemed better than getting out of bed to use the washroom. Note: I never actually went thru with the bed-wetting, but I did consider it. Luckily, the days of barfing became fewer, and although I'm 6 months pregnant now... I still have days of barf... but it's like... once a week. So... it's better.

Now... the newest thing is kicking... my belly moves! It's crazy but I love it. Now... again, maybe I'm different... but when women blow smoke up  your ass and tell you that it's the most wonderful, amazing, beautiful feeling... they're full of shit. Perhaps I'm wrong... but it's cool... and weird... and kind of "wtf!?" when it happens at times. Sometimes you're laying on the couch and suddenly feel a wave of movement in your belly... and at first you're like "awe... he's awake!" but then you're like "dear GOD there's a human being inside of me right now!" It can get to you, lol. It's a weird concept to think that I'm GROWING a person... inside my uterus, that has eyes, ears, fingers, toes, a brain... like... it's weird... let's be honest. Amazing... and weird. It's been a struggle, but I wouldn't change it for the world. It truly IS an experience... and is something you cannot explain... I just wouldn't use "beautiful" while you're barfing at the grocery store, or "wonderful" when the baby kicks your urethra and makes you pee... on yourself.

That's all for now.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Story of Our Wedding

I'm going to put some effort into not being sarcastic in this blog posting. Although it rules my life and personality more so than I'd like to admit... I think that speaking about a wedding should be sarcastic free and to simply tell the story of the wonderful day I had on July 23, 2011.

Let’s start with the rehearsal dinner on Friday, July 22, 2011. Everyone in the wedding party (minus Lennie due to working) showed up together at Boston Pizza in Kincardine. We ate.

The wedding day was a pretty good day. The night before all the girls (Laura, Anna, Sara, and Michelle and I) all stayed in the honeymoon suite at the Best Western. Laura, Sara, and I slept in the King sized bed. I felt bad for Sara since Laura and I refused to sleep in the middle. Sara graciously accepted that she would be stuck between two full-grown women, snoring and drooling in her face. Luckily for her, she slept like a baby that night. Sadly, I know this for a fact since I was the only one laying wide awake the whole night and in turn had her snoring and drooling in my face.

I'm unsure why this is the case. I wouldn't blame it on excitement, because quite frankly I wasn't excited. I think I'll confidently blame it on being nervous as sh*t (oh... there goes my sarcastic-free blog posting) about the day to come...

My 7AM alarm finally went off, after I lay in bed for a few hours wondering when it would go off and set me free from the sleep I was lacking and get started with the day. I actually became concerned that the alarm hadn’t gone off and it was actually 8:30 in the morning or something. So I picked up my phone to see 6:59AM, before I could set it back down the clock hit 7:00AM and my alarm went off.

I hopped in the shower so I wouldn’t wreak as I walked down the aisle and to shave my legs as it’s imperative that Darrin take off my garter with his teeth (who came up with this idea?!). Of all the days, and all the times and hours spent shaving my legs it is rare that I cut myself. And if I do its somewhere on my knee or a place unnoticeable. On this special day; however, I chose to cut the front of my leg, side of my leg and both ankles. I personally think that Gillette should have a warning on their razors letting the public know that you could die from loss of blood when you “nick” yourself in the shower on your wedding day. It looked like I was in the Vietnam War! Anyway, once I was done cleaning up the blood from my razor accident… I got out of the shower, threw on my “Bride” shirt and headed to First Impression’s to get our hair did.

There were pictures taken of us girls preparing for the trip to the hair salon, but I have been threatened, and my life would be on the line (more so than my incident with my razor) if I were to make these photo’s public. Four angry and tired women, up too early in the AM with no make-up on. It’s apparently like trying to make a joke about Hitler to Satan… don’t do it.

Once we got to the hair salon, Champaign and orange juice was poured while the girls got their hair put into curlers. Each girl would go and get their hair did while the rest were talked into getting fake eye lashes. Anna took the plunge and went first. We all gathered around her and watched a lady put what smelled and looked like tar on individual little lashes and brushed them into Anna’s eyelashes. They looked AMAZING, so we all fell in love and did them for ourselves. Each application for each girl took 45-60 minutes. I did mine while under the impression that they’d last me 1-2 months. I was extremely happy with them, so was Anna and my Mum. Now I didn’t have to worry about applying those God forsaken eyelashes that I bought at Sephora; which I knew would be a pain in my arse later on in the day when I would be applying my make-up.

Soon enough it was my turn to get my hair done. I made a joke about how much hairspray Rachel (the hair lady) was using and she admitted that when she does a wedding party she usually goes thru half a bottle of hairspray per girl. I nearly died. Not only myself, but that women should be wearing a face mask! You see all the acrylic nail ladies wearing masks because that sh*t can be poisonous to breathe in, but Rachel sprays adhesive around her face daily. Could just be me but perhaps hair salon’s are as bad as being a coal miner. But… that’s just me.

Finally my hair was done and everyone was happy with theirs. It was 12:30 now and my photographer was due at the honeymoon suite at noon, so I was slightly freaking out – but still a free record for any Bridezilla comments or actions.

We got back to the hotel room where everyone gathered in the room and helped each other put on their make-up. I think what I struggled with the most was getting my contacts on my damn eyeballs. I’ve done this before, but apparently that day was the day my contacts were meant to fall in the sink a dozen times. Luckily I was willing to get pink eye in order to be able to see for my wedding day. Luckily, no pink eye was had.

The wedding ceremony was scheduled to start at 2PM and the church is a good 12 minutes away from the hotel, so I had to take that into consideration as well. By the time my make-up was done, my contacts were in and my fake boobies were applied… it was 1:30. It was now time to discuss who’s car we’re going to take, get on my dress, finish pictures and oh yeah… eat. None of us had eaten… anything yet. Laura helped me get into my dress behind closed doors while the girls, Mum and photographer waited in the other room. I was just as nervous opening up the door for the “reveal” as I was for walking down the aisle. I knew my Mum would be a heaping bag of tears and God only knew how my bridesmaids would react… but I had to do it, apparently this was a big moment?... My sister opened the door and I distinctly remember watching everyone light up in excitement. Although I was extremely uncomfortable and actually wanted to cry from a form of embarrassment… it made me feel good to see that everyone loved my dress. My Mum started crying; which queued me to tell her to be quite and suck it up. Also, keep in mind I wasn’t completely serious… but maybe just a bit deep, deep down because I didn’t want anyone crying over me.

A few pictures were taken, a few discussions over whose car we’re taking and off we went. Before anything else… I also may or may not have taken a shot of vodka… from the bottle. Okay… I took two shots. Then we gathered up our things and… okay three shots of vodka… but no more than that! Fine… I had four. Anyway… we were on our way.

Of course it was necessary for me to say that I needed food. At this point I had Champaign, hairspray and vodka in my stomach but no food. So… Anna, Sarah (the photographer), my sister and I went thru the McDonald’s drive thru to fetch a cheeseburger. Everyone had their own… and mine was done before we got out of the parking lot. That was the best cheeseburger I’ve ever had in my life.

The drive seemed to have taken forever. Longer than I ever remember it being. Perhaps it was because I kept looking at the clock as we were running late. Not too late, I think we got there at 2:08.

As we drove up the road towards the church, I could see the steeple above the trees and I realized that that whole building was full of family and friends, waiting for Darrin and me to say our vows. A moment and thought I hadn’t considered. All these people drove and agreed to be there for us at this special time. It made me feel special!

The moment of truth was fast approaching me. I spent a full 365 days (proposed to July 23, 2010 and married July 23, 2011) planning this wedding. I spent an entire year of my life dedicated to the small, and what I considered, silly and expensive details to make this day special for us. It was all here, at this moment as I drove to the church. It’s how I imagined giving birth (since I don’t have a child, it’s still an image but…) your water breaks – there’s no turning back, that baby is coming out of your body in a painful and non-graceful way. My water broke… I was being driven to my destination. Although I knew it wouldn’t be a painful and non-graceful wedding with a widening vagina… I still thought of it as a “no return policy”. I was getting married, no matter how nervous I was.

I wasn’t scared to marry the man of my dreams, nor did I have any doubts in my mind that this was the best and most perfect decision I could have possibly made. It was a matter of walking down the aisle and showing my love to him in front of 100 people. If I could do this on a beach, just Darrin and I, it would be ideal. But the idea of having to present myself, walk down an aisle and say my vows loud enough for the huge room of people to hear made me feel like I was in a play, performing for an audience. It was really hard for me to wrap my head around something that is considered intimate and special to be broadcasted. Ideally, this type of setting was not for me. The fact that 100 people would be looking at me, walk down an aisle, all dressed up. All this effort for this moment was really hard to justify. I guess I’m just too realistic? I was more confused than ever, that I spent so much time, effort, tears, and money on this one moment. This moment was almost here and so many emotions were running to me. Excitement (for the first time thru this whole process) to marry the man of my dreams, to see my handsome fiancĂ© in his tux, to melt when he smiles and to promise my life to him. I was also nervous for the inevitable “water breaking” moment. Scared that I might fall flat on my face. And actually a little angry that my Dad wouldn’t be there.

So many emotions, so little time.

This was it, I was at the church. All the cars were parked outside and everyone was patiently waiting inside. Our minister was waiting in the hot sun with Michelle, Sara and My Mum. I watched them as they watched me in my white dress, pull into the parking lot. The second I get out, our minister met me at the car door asking “do you have the rings?” That moment I had no prepared for… now I’m not only feeling scared, nervous, excited, and angry but also “oh sh*t”. I forgot the rings. A moment of panic shot thru her eyes, but she quickly resumed to her patient self and said “no problem, we’ll take care of it”. At this point I was like “whatever, I don’t care… get me married and out of here!”

I walked up to the doors to see Jack waiting for me to arrive. He said Darrin was waiting in the basement and that he would go queue him to go upstairs and wait for me 

I got butterflies, flying around in my stomach excited to see my husband.

I could hear people talking in the church. It had a friendly and excited sound to it; which made me happy. It was a humming noise of laughter and talk. My girls quickly placed themselves on the stairs waiting for the pianist to start playing the song of which we’d walk down the aisle to. When the music started to play, I got chills as I could hear everyone stand up and prepare for that moment… my water breaking…

One by one, the girls started down the aisle. I could see them start their journey as nervous as I was for that moment. I actually felt bad that I made them go thru this and was hoping for forgiveness once it was all over. I never thought of this, but I made them dress up in pretty dresses, put on make-up, and sent them down an aisle with 200 eyeballs looking at them. Sorry, girls!

First it was Michelle, then Anna, Sara, and then my sister. All walking down to the music, avoiding the giant 150 year old grate in the middle of the aisle that would easily make you either A) break your leg, back or ankle or B) successfully plant your face on the floor.

Next was me. I was already holding tightly onto my Mum’s arm with my faux bouquet of flowers in my other hand, shaking and sweating. At this point, I think I was so nervous that I felt nothing. My face was numb – I had no control over my facial expression… I was worried about seeing pictures of me walking down the aisle as I couldn’t control how I looked at this point… luckily, my excitement to see my groom was more powerful than my fear of the “walk” and I had a smile on my face 

I walked up the final step, worried of stepping on my dress. I saw Jan, a lady I work with that I invited to the wedding (her and I are close and very supportive of each other). She was my first memory of this big moment… she smiled at me and I smiled back.

I let out a sigh and allowed my Mum to give me the nudge to start my walk. I remember looking down, taking a few steps and then looking up to a room full of people I knew and loved. All these people were here to see me… everyone had smiles on their face and camera’s in their hand. I wanted to see who was all there, but didn’t have enough time or enough brain power to scan the room. I needed to focus on my walk – one foot in front of the other. Right, left. Right, left. Now… where’s my groom?? I couldn’t see him and I needed him there at the end of the aisle to take my hand! Everyone told me that I should keep my eyes on Darrin to help me thru this walk, but he wasn’t there. The end of the aisle looked cluttered and busy to me. Too many people were standing there and the one person I needed and wanted the most wasn’t there. Before I knew it, I was in the front of the church. The minister then said “you walked too quickly” and that was my first moment of “shut up and let it be!” We did walk down the aisle a little quickly. To this day people keep saying that we “jogged” down the aisle. Quite honestly, I don’t know who lead, my Mum or myself and I am not going to sit and ponder whose fault it was… if it was me leading – it was me running the marathon… and I can’t be upset with my Mum if she was leading because I would have done the same. Clearly, without thinking, my mind was saying “get this over with!”

Then, in the corner of my eye… I saw my handsome groom. He looked amazing. He had a smile on his face that I had never seen before. I thought I knew this man, I thought I knew who I was marrying… but this smile was different. It was a smile of ease and love. A sigh of relief was beaming from his eyes and I knew that my presence there was his medicine to his nerves. You could tell that he was excited, you could tell that he was in love and it made it that much better to know that it was all because of me. At this point, I was fine. Nothing made me nervous, scared, or angry – all I could think about was “I’m here and ready to make this official”. It was weird for me to feel nothing at this point, as this was the most intimidating place for me to be… but it put me at ease standing next to him.

Every few minutes, I’d look over at him and we’d smile at each other. It was cute.

The minister went on and on about… I have no idea. We had asked her to say specific things, etc but she said none of what we had requested. I had noted this while standing for 45 minutes waiting for her to say something familiar… but nothing. A ramble here and there about us and how she perceived us; which were nice thoughts… but… whatever. Then the moment happened… the word that would create a dominos effect of laughter, second looks, and inside jokes… Darrin became a Darryl. This woman had met with us on a few occasions, knew our names, said his name four times during the ceremony and then suddenly threw in a Darryl. I don’t care, it was funny… but everyone snickered and she never noticed. Poor Darryl 

Then we had our kiss… which was quick because I don’t like public affection (overrated) and then we went to the corner to sign our life away. I liked it  I’ll sign it any day, 1,000,000 times for Darrin – as long as he’s my husband.

At this point, I think my blog posting is long enough. This part of the day was the most emotional and exciting time and I wanted to write about it. Everything else fell together perfectly (minus Lennie not having a tux and our first dance song cutting off right before Darrin dipped me) but without those glitches, it wouldn’t be a good story.

It was worth it…

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Things To Be Thankful For

My wonderful Mother-in-Law threw me a beautiful bridal shower a few weekends ago. She prepared quotes and speeches and this was one of my favorite:

Don't complain about having to pay taxes,
It means you have a job.
Don't complain about being overweight,
It means you have food on the table.
Don't complain about cleaning your home,
It means you have a roof over your head.
Don't complain about heating costs,
It means you have a home with heat.
Don't complain about having to go to the Doctor,
It means you have health care.
Don't complain about having to vote,
It means you have freedom of speech.
Don't complain about having to buy groceries,
It means you don't have to hunt for them.
Don't complain about your kids,
It means you have the ability to conceive them, care for them and love them.

... Some people aren't so lucky.

Re-evaluate your life and be thankful for living in Canada, be thankful you have fat on your bones to keep you warm and if not - that you have a house with heating in the winter. Don't complain about your job, because 9,000 people in London alone are still looking for one.
Look out your window and be glad you can see the sun, feel the wind and smell the air.

I've noticed way too many people are focusing on the wrong things in life. Facebook is crawling with negativity. Suck it up, buttercup - it's really not that bad.

Monday, May 16, 2011

New Car (and other crap)

Okay, okay, okay...

When I was 16 and got my G1 I had already seen people get their license, buy a car and then lose their car and be in debt for something they didn't have at such a young age. I witnessed my parents struggle for money to pay for the alternator to be fixed when I was 10 years old and always said to myself "not me".

From the age of 8 months to 13 years, I lived in good'ol Point Clark; a.k.a. the Pits of Hell. I call it this because this place really is what Satan would create for moderately offensive people to spend eternity in. The bottom of a hill, along a lake so scummy you can't swim in it on streets called "Adawandran", "Menomini" and the best of all "Kick-A-Poo". Guess what street name I grew up on?? Anyway, another reason for this hell-ish residential living situation - you had to drive 15 minutes to get to a store, work, school, play. So... my parents needed a car in order to provide for their family. Basically anyone living in Kincardine, Point Clark or Ripley need a car for survival.

Watching my parents struggle with car payments, car insurance and fixings made me realize that having a car is not necessary, especially when you live in a city with buses. So I made the choice that as long as it's my responsibility to care, pay, and maintain a car - it wouldn't be mine.

So I've lived a life thus far without a vehicle. Sure when I was 18 I drove around Kincardine like a maniac in the J-to the etta for a few years, listening to 50 Cent and creeping on my tattooo artist, but it was never MINE. I never wanted to take the plunge and pay for a car, I didn't think they were that important.

Since I've been in London, I haven't necessarily had the need to buy one. I either A) Take the bus (this is a whole other story) or B) Darrin drives me around in his sweet automobile. But all of a sudden I realized that I have no independence! Non! If I want to go somewhere I either have to wait around for 15 minutes to get on the bus and be molested (yes, a guy humped me on the bus and a lady also told me to keep my legs closed because she got pregnant and got fat - true stories) or ask Darrin for his permission to use his car. At a certain age - both these become rather saddening that I am 24 years old and cannot make these decisions on my own.

I felt as though I was a kid living with their parents again and asking permission to leave the house. It all made the difference for me when I was offered a full-time permanent position at Western (three weeks ago). All of a sudden I was aware of so many things: A) I'm 24. B) I'm getting married. C) I have job security and a career. D) I have a house. E) I can drink. F) I can be in porno movies if I wanted to. G) I can smoke cigarettes. and H) I can get pregnant and no one's reactions would be "you know you can do something about that", but I don't have a car! I sat and pondered about my situation... when Darrin leaves for his hockey I stay at home... when I want to go visit my family - Darrin has to either A) Give me permission or B) come with me.

It's a hassle for EVERYONE. Not just myself.

So I took the plunge and started looking for a car.

Lessons learned from this experience:

1) You cannot, no matter how hard you try, find a car for $2000 that has been saftied, e-tested and has good kilometres. It just won't happen.

2) A good car that'll get you from A-B without blowing up, costs more than you thought you could handle.

3) The car salesman guy will ask you 13 times in a period of 45 minutes if you want to sign the contract before you've even test-driven the car.

4) The bathrooms in the dealership are strictly for men and they do not consider that women have to sit on the pee-infested toilet seat (have you not been using that thing since you were 3? Learn to aime!)

5) Buying a car takes a minimum of 3 hours for paperwork, filing, questionaires and scenerio talk.

6) Earl, the guy I bought my car from has no front teeth.

7) To never bring your dog with you... he'll think the dealership is his and bark at everyone who walks in the door... for 3 hours... straight...

I feel like such a grown-up now. I walked onto the lot, asked to test-drive a car, was given the keys and went for a spin. And then I got to make the executive decision without consulting anyone. It was amazing! I have wheels now! Wheels of my own that is going to let me have independence!!! Yipee!!!

Friday, May 13, 2011



. . . Something To Think About . . .


In Washington DC , at a Metro Station, on a cold January morning in 2007, this man with a violin played six Bach pieces for about 45 minutes. During that time, approximately 2,000 people went through the station, most of them on their way to work. After about 3 minutes, a middle-aged man noticed that there was a musician playing. He slowed his pace and stopped for a few seconds, and then he hurried on to meet his schedule.

About 4 minutes later:

The violinist received his first dollar. A woman threw money in the hat and, without stopping, continued to walk.

At 6 minutes:

A young man leaned against the wall to listen to him, then looked at his watch and started to walk again.

At 10 minutes:

A 3-year old boy stopped, but his mother tugged him along hurriedly. The kid stopped to look at the violinist again, but the mother pushed hard and the child continued to walk, turning his head the whole time. This action was repeated by several other children, but every parent - without exception - forced their children to move on quickly.

At 45 minutes:

The musician played continuously. Only 6 people stopped and listened for a short while. About 20 gave money but continued to walk at their normal pace. The man collected a total of $32.

After 1 hour:

He finished playing and silence took over. No one noticed and no one applauded. There was no recognition at all.

No one knew this, but the violinist was Joshua Bell, one of the greatest musicians in the world. He played one of the most intricate pieces ever written, with a violin worth $3.5 million dollars. Two days before, Joshua Bell sold-out a theater in Boston where the seats averaged $100 each to sit and listen to him play the same music.

This is a true story. Joshua Bell, playing incognito in the DC Metro Station, was organized by the Washington Post as part of a social experiment about perception, taste and people's priorities.

This experiment raised several questions:

*In a common-place environment, at an inappropriate hour, do we perceive beauty?

*If so, do we stop to appreciate it?

*Do we recognize talent in an unexpected context?

One possible conclusion reached from this experiment could be this:

If we do not have a moment to stop and listen to one of the best musicians in the world, playing some of the finest music ever written, with one of the most beautiful instruments ever made . . .

How many other things are we missing as we rush through life?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Chernobyl and Other Crap

Yesterday as I stood at my desk waiting for the IT dude to finish his magic on my computer - the graduate chair of the department and myself were discussing where Darrin and I should go for our honeymoon.

I've had this discussion before with students in Civil Engineering, when I worked there. Why not? 90% of my students were International and have done more travelling that I ever will, why not ask!

First mistake: Don't say to an Egyptian student that you want to go to Egypt for your honeymoon. At first you'll think the world ended, but then realize that your comment is just so retarded that people forgot how to react, other than having their jaws hit the ground.

I get it, maybe Egypt isn't the most romantic place on Earth - but we're leaving that all for the night of the wedding, right? Haha... Anyone who's been married is on the same page as me "you'll be too tired".

Okay, anyway - we won't get into the nitty-gritty details of our wedding night just yet. I'm sure I'll have a blog posting about that too. Just kidding. Or am I?

So apparently Egypt is really not the place I want to go. I guess I imagined a not-so-romantic-get-away for my honeymoon. I just always imagined it being an adventure. I know couples who worked in foreign countries for months for their honeymoon - just for the experience.

Personally, sitting on a beach, drinking pina colada's all day, baking in the sun, listening to the ocean bubble on the coral just doesn't sound... well actually... F*ck... now I want to go!

That's besides the point... I want to go somewhere where I'm not bored on the first day. I get antsy when I can't do anything. I want to be able to go somewhere different every day, meet new people, see different cultures, experience other lifestyles. You're only on this planet once and you want to spend the entire time in one country? Eating the same food? Listening to the same laugage? I sure as hell don't!

I'm no longer considering Egypt because, quite frankly, I'm afraid of people's reactions when I tell them that I'm going there. So to avoid awkwardness (that sadly surrounds my life no matter what I do; if you read my facebook I'm sure you're aware that I've been in meetings with my shirt undone, gone to work with pee-soaked shirts and randomly run into walls)... I'm not going.

Yesterday I was having a discussion with a few people regarding my honeymoon. In my new position - people are trying to learn new things about me as the new person and my wedding always seems to be that topic of conversation. So honeymoon talk it is.

Guess where I want to go!!! I finally figured it out, I'm all gung-hoe about it, excited to tell the world. And when I say the name... people are stunned.

"What? Why would you ever go there?"

I get it, okay? I get that it's random, weird and quiet honestly - retarded.


UMM HELLO!!! You don't want to go to an ENTIRE city abandoned for 25 years?! How eerie would that be?

I'm sorry, but that's something insanely interesting for me. I go to run-down houses and take pictures and get a high off the eerieness. If those walls could talk, I'd listen for hours. I love that type of stuff. I love that it allows your mind to wander, the possibilities of the last person who stood in the same room, what they were thinking (and in this case) what they were going thru! I love untouched things, considering we live on a planet that is touched by everything, including people, buildings, farms, roads, parking lots, houses and radiation.

It's rare that you get the opportunity to see something that hasn't had the opportunity to be taken over by man (again, in this case). It's amazing.

Anyway, I watched some Youtube videos on this place and I almost died. I want to go so badly! I want to walk around the city and imagine what it was like when it was alive, busy and happy.

Now that my decision has been made. Now that I have said it outloud. Now that EVERYONE things I'm either insane, or retarded... my next mission is: to get Darrin to agree to this.

....Wish me luck!!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

Wedding Planning

Shoot me. Now!

I've noticed throughout my blog postings that I have made that request, perhaps, a few too many times. May I remind you that I'm extremely sarcastic and do not, in fact, want anyone to shoot me in the face... however, I will continue to make the request when I am in a need for a quick fix of release from this down-right, ridiculous wedding planning!

First thing I've learned upon getting engaged and starting to plan a wedding... no matter how often you hear that it's your day and that everything revolves around you... this is not the case. People's opinions start becoming heavier and heavier as the plans become more official. The closer you get to the day, the more opinions come out. At this point... I would prefer to run away, still...

The closer I am getting to this day, makes me worry about it. I want to make sure that I live the dream, like all young girls do when they have Barbie and Ken get married 118 times before their 12th birthday. Or was that just me?? Was it?! I thought it was normal! And yes... I also wore a wedding dress found in a friends attic... and married not only Keanu Reeves probably half a dozen times... but I also "married" someone I went to school with that I refuse to mention their name due to liabilities and black mail towards myself as it's shockingly embarassing. Yes, more embarassing than admitting that I did and still do wish to marry Keanu Reeves. THAT'S besides the point. If I could go back in time and change it... well... I wouldn't because Keanu Reeves in beautiful.


Yes, I dreampt of getting married for so many years. Tinker married my stuffed animals and I married imaginary people, enough times to maybe be considered psychotic...

Now that life isn't so simple, now that I actually have to consider a budget and re-think my spending habits, I realized it's not a perfect world. I realize that since I walked down the aisle 47 times before I turned into a teenager, 50% of people who say "I do"... don't follow thru. 50% of marriages fail. Sadly enough, although I truly believe that Darrin and I will grow old and die together in our sleep, holding hands... those true facts hinder my day.

I don't want people thinking of how young I am... I don't want them thinking it's just another waste of money... and I don't want people telling me to plan for an expensive divorce (yes, this has actually happened when I announced my engagement). I wish I could re-live the perfect idea I had as a little girl, how the whole day is about me... how I have the giant princess ball-gown, show up in a limo and have my Daddy walk me down the aisle. The smaller details don't matter to me, nor did they ever. I didn't care about the color of the bridesmaids dresses... I didn't care about the flowers or how much my dress cost... I just wanted those simple things to be done.

First of all: My dress, is not a princess dress. I tried them on, I attempted it and it was a major and epic fail. I looked like... I don't even know... a princess; which I guess I left that desire back when I turned 14. I'm not a princess... I'm hard working and I want to feel sophisticated and sexy on my wedding day... not a cake topper. Anyway... I'm not showing up in a limo... honestly - I could care less about that. Ideally I'd like Darrin's Dad to drive me to the ceremony in his 2001 Ford Mustang Cobra. You know, the beautiful shiney black car that has 612 horsepower and sounds like a jet just flew by when you put your foot on the gas?? But unfortunately that idea was quickly thrown to the ground because he doesn't want to park it near other cars. I suppose that's understandable. I mean, afterall, I try my hardest to park the van on the outskirts of the parking lot so it won't get hit by another vehicle (no I don't... I park it as close as I can to who I think is drinking and driving hoping that it will get hit). Anyway... that's beside the point...

The final thing on my list, that I always assumed would happen and never put another thought into it is my Daddy walking me down the aisle. This, I'd say, is the one and only important thing to me that I think all girls have in their mind on their wedding day.

I'm a traditional girl... I want my Daddy there, give me away and have that moment with him. I want to hold tightly onto my Dad's arm as I stare down the aisle at all my guests, patiently waiting for me to start my last walk as a single women. I wish I could stand next to him while my future husband walks towards me to take my hand and marry me. I want that bittersweet moment with my Daddy of letting go of him while he gives his blessings for Darrin and I to be together for the rest of our lives. This moment plays in my head... it brings tears to my eyes because at this point... there's nothing I want more... yet it's something I cannot have. This one day I have thought about since I knew what it meant. I always saw my Daddy there with me. I always imagined what discussion we'd have while waiting in line as my girls walk down the aisle. How tightly he'd hold on to me before letting me go. How handsome he'd look in his tuxedo. The smell of his cologne as I hug him one last time as his little girl.

My mind on this topic changes daily. It depends on what I am focusing on. I cannot give a consistent response if anyone were to ask me. Sure, I'm bitter about a lot of things... and probably will be until it's too late. But I have to remind myself before getting too upset about everything that has happened because I did try. I tried to maintain a relationship, I tried to do the right thing in inviting certain people... and I can't understand where I went wrong. I refuse to accept this is my fault, because I know, within myself - I did everything in my power to continue a civil relationship with my Daddy. I have no regrets and I have to remind myself of that...

Regardless of the history, or the reality of how it stands now and that I have no control over it anymore... I will always wish my Daddy was there. I can't even begin to explain the emotions I have when I think that I will not have that father-daughter dance with him.

He will be in my heart that day... no matter what.