Month: October 2014

Magic

I grew up hearing my dad’s AM transistor radio on the weekends blaring the SF Giants games as he did yard work, and going to games at Candlestick.  But I don’t think I became a big fan of the game until I watched my own kids play.  I was not an athlete.  Active yes, athlete, no.  So watching my kids accomplish feats at young ages has put me in awe, and a new love for the game began.

2010 was a magical year, it was the year my son became over the top in love with baseball.  He was 10, and the Giants were on their way to winning the World Series.  Watching those games through his eyes, the excitement, him FaceTiming his cousin between plays, it was magical.  My then 4 year old daughter had watched so many 7th inning stretches that there were times I’d observe her playing in her room singing God Bless America to herself.  Possibly one of the cutest things ever.

I heard Journey’s ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ on my iPod today while riding my bike, and below is what has made me so nostalgic.  This video still gives me the goosebumps remembering all five of us singing it at the top of our lungs:

2012 brought more magic.  After going to about 10 home games, none being victorious, my son got to see his first live SF win at AT & T park, at a World Series game with dad and grandma.  Unparalleled magic.

2014, kids are a bit older, and with that comes new questions.  Such as my 11 year old daughter walking in while we were watching a game a while back, annoyed, stating ‘the Giants 10 runned them, why are they still playing?’  Love it.  There is still magic in my kids eyes, along with lots of getting out of our spots on the couch and chairs to high five after a play, and neighbors quite used to the yelling and cheering that comes from our house during Giants season.

Let’s go Giants!!!

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Block Parenting

Two out of three of my kids respond the same when it comes to reasoning or explaining about something, and discipline.  The other child marches to the beat of their own drum.

As I try over and over without success in the same ways with this one child, as I do the two others, it is often left unresolved, and there are feelings of frustration, and at times tears (usually mine).

Today I feel like I may be on to something…

I pictured one of those baby toys that my kids had when they were little, it was red and blue, and had yellow shaped blocks that you placed inside.   You could only put the correct shape in the correct hole, or else, of course, it wouldn’t fit.

 

In using a block toy as an analogy to parenting my kids, I subconsciously continue to fit lets say a triangle into a circle shaped hole.  I continue to get frustrated, and it just doesn’t work out.  In the end, I get afraid that the triangle edges may even get a little chipped along the way as I try to fit it into the circle shaped hole.  Not a good plan.

I feel like maybe some curtains have opened up and I am seeing a little clearer all of a sudden.  That I need to really be conscious of the fact that one out of three of my kids may best respond in a way that the other two do not.

I have three really awesome kids who are funny, full of life, and kind.  We all try to do our best at this job of parenting with the end result hoping to be a kid with the least amount of (theoretical) chips on their blocks.  Here’s to keeping the curtains open and trying to see what fits best.

Don’t Stop Dreaming

About two years ago, I had a 1-1/2 hour drive where I dreamed the whole time about playing the drums.  (Sidenote:  no idea how I had a 1-1/2 hour quiet car ride by myself where I could be lost in my own thoughts.)  (Second sidenote:  I have no musical talent whatsoever.)  I imagined that playing the drums, hard core rock and roll drums, would just be so bad ass.  I thought about taking up drum lessons, and then thrashing on them during jam sessions in my barn.  Every song that came on the radio, I pictured me whaling on the drums to.  I pictured Tommy Lee in his cage playing the drums while spinning in the air upside down in concert.  I remembered loving Alex Van Halen’s drum solos during my numerous trips to Van Halen concerts.  Their energy and concentration was just crazy!  I loved it!

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Did I take up the drums after that 1-1/2 hour drive by myself, no.  Am I sad or incomplete?  No.

I have dreamt of taking up dance lessons.  I’ll admit, listening to Enrique Iglesias’ Bailando on the radio real loud gets me dreaming about learning some crazy Latin dances and cutting up a rug.  Have I, no.  Do I feel like I’m short changing myself?  No.

When I’ve presented at a workshops, or in front of groups, I usually start with handing out name tags and asking everyone to write down their dream job on it.  (This activity actually relates to my presentations, but that’s not my point here.)  My point here is that I almost always write down farmer as my dream job.  I have dreamt of being a farmer for a ridiculous amount of hours that can not be returned for more productive things.  This is one dream that I’ve kinda gotten a taste of, living on an acre with 2 dogs, 3 cats and 4 chickens as well as my garden of many different fruits and vegetables has given me enough of a taste to be satisfied.  I still dream of driving a tractor, and walking through my rows of crops, but I’m ok with what I have going on for now.

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I love to dream, I think I’ve always been a dreamer.  I’ve been able to get wrapped up in the what ifs for hours.  Usually, it’s fun stuff, like drums and dancing.  Other times, it may be dreaming of punching someone in the face.  Sometimes I get caught up in dreaming about worst case scenarios (these I try and stop, I can get way to carried away and scared).  The point is, I don’t necessarily end up doing the things that I dream about.  Especially the punching someone in the face, that would not be good.  (But honestly, who hasn’t thought one of those scenarios out!)  I don’t feel like I’m short changing myself for not going after all of my dreams.  I dream all the time, its different than a yearning, or a drive.  If I dream about something long enough, that becomes important, and turns into a drive, I’ll go for it.  But dreaming is different, it’s daily.  I think that if we don’t dream, we don’t grow.

My kids asked me when I was a kid, what did I want to be when I grew up?  I tell them a veterinarian.

They seem to slowly look around, and you can see the wheels turning:  Stay at Home mom, Recreation Therapist, Substitute Teacher, Bookkeeping for our home business, Volunteer at more things than can be counted…..no veterinarian in there.

Then I get the question “Why didn’t you become a veterinarian?”  And I explain it that as my life went on, I discovered new things, things that led me to new paths.  Not lesser paths, different paths.  I am fully grounded, fulfilled, and happy in the roles that have become my life.  I’ve learned to adapt to changes.  I’m not always graceful with it, but in the end I’m pretty good at making the most out of situations.

When we ask our kids what they want to be when they grow up, professions such as Marine Biologist, Teacher, Sports Statistician, trainer for Shamu the whale at Seaworld, and SF Giants Announcer have all been thrown around as ideas.  A couple say they want to play professional sports.  As an adult, I could easily look at the probability of one of my children being a professional athlete, and point out the small percentage of people who get the opportunity to play even at high school levels these days, let alone college, and then professionally. But my job isn’t to shoot down their dreams.  I feel that once they stop dreaming, they may stop living what can be an incredible life.  It’s up to them to decide where their lives will take them.  If kids don’t dream, they are stifled, there is nothing to reach for.  The reality of life will hit them sooner than they know it.  I love watching them be kids, and seeing where they want their life to take them.  I want my kids to keep dreaming to lead them to one of the many ‘right’ paths of their lives.

So, even as a “grown up”, I will continue to enjoy dreaming.  If there are no dreams, where is hope?   Someday, when a dream sticks with me and won’t let me go after a 1-1/2 hour drive, I’ll go and chase it as I have with so many!!!  Dream big and dream often.  Even though I’m not living my younger self’s dream of being a vet, I’m happy.  And that’s what I dream for my kids.

 

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 Looking through my old ticket stubs had me dreaming of younger years where $20 for beer and a cab ride home from the concert was all the worries and needs in the world for that night!!!

Good times.

‘Are you high?’ is what I’m sure was going through people’s minds.

What I refer to as my first migraine happened 11 years ago.  I was in Picture People with my then 3 year old son and less than 1 year old daughter.  Picture People was only for when I had two kids, by the time I had my third, going to the mall to take pictures was no longer a fun idea for a day outing.

As I was paying for my pictures (which had no theme or reason, probably just because I hadn’t gotten them done in the last 2-3 months) I looked at the cashier/photo lady, which was a young girl in her early, early 20’s, and I said “I can’t really see you right now.  I mean, I can kinda see you.  You’re all cut up.  Like I only see bits of you.  I’m not sure what’s going on.”  And this is where you can insert the phrase “Are you high?” that could have come out of her mouth to match the look on her face.

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I don’t remember being scared until I reached the car and started driving home after my eyes seemed to come back to me.  By the time I got home, I was in full panic mode.  My husband brought me to the emergency room, along with both kids who we had no one to watch at such a quick drop of the hat.  At the time, I had no idea what a migraine really was, I thought it was a bad headache, and I had claimed to have had one before.  That day there became a new definition for migraine.  One that was scary and in the ER, but was not as scary as the things I had going through my mind when we arrived with my vision all screwed up.  I now know how common ER migraine visits are.  According to Migraine Research Foundation  http://www.migraineresearchfoundation.org/fact-sheet.html ‘every 10 seconds, someone in the United States goes to the emergency room with a headache or migraine.’  I was that person for that 10 seconds.

I laid on the exam table, and cried.  I thought something was so, so wrong.  The doctor asked me a ton of questions, I couldn’t stop crying, not like crazy crying, no ugly cry, just constant tears.  I was scared to death.  When in the end he told me he thought I was having a migraine, I was so surprised, and relieved, and scared, and confused.  I’m a why person.  Why did I have this?  (Notice 11 years later, still no clear answer).  Oh my gosh, is this going to happen again?  When can it happen again?  Why?  (11 years later, that’s where the anxiety began.)

I don’t remember much excitement with migraines, or any regular occurrence after that.  I wanted to find a correlation with altitude and motion since that first one had happened a couple of days after an airplane flight, and the next one that I can remember happened the day after riding the roller coaster at California Adventure in Disneyland.  We were still in Anaheim, going into Medieval Times with a large amount of our family, including five kids 5 and under, one kid under 10.  I remember the parking lot where my vision left, and I still clearly remember the dark of the night as I laid in the car while the rest of my family and extended family were watching knights duel on horses and eating drumsticks and the rest of their dinner without utensils, which was what I wanted to do.  Sucked.

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That all seems so long ago.  And the ability to separate migraines so clearly by large amounts of space and time.  Different times.

I mentioned above that the Picture People episode is what I refer to as my first migraine.  When I looked back, I realized that I had experienced what I think was my first migraine the day before my bridal shower.  I was at the end of my 12 week full time internship at a lock down mental health long term care facility.  Amazing experience, I learned so much, but wow, days at work for me were not similar at all to anyone else’s that I knew!  On a Friday of one of my last weeks, I did not feel well.  My dad always warned me of not calling in sick on a Monday or Friday, but by mid day, I knew I had to go home, something was not right.

As I drove my 15 minute drive home, I remember pulling over on the side of the road.  A lady pulled up next to me and asked if I was ok.  My response went something like this, “I can’t see real good right now.  I can’t see you.  I feel dizzy and I’m kinda seeing black spots.”  She asked if she could help, I said “No, I’m fine, I’ll be fine, just can’t see right now.  I’m just going to sit here for a while.”

Insert “Are you high?” look right here.

I made it home, I remember feeling rough the next day at my bridal shower.  But cracking up with my Matron of Honor about that poor lady that pulled over to ask me how I was and to wonder what in the world she thought of me, the laughter made things better!

Fast forward to today.  It’s been 31 days since my last migraine.  Going for that long of a time span between migraines has only happened about twice in the last two years as I look through my ‘migraine notes’.  Again, so much of an improvement than the twice a week that were coming just two months ago.

I have to think something in my daily anti-migraine potion of B-2, Feverfew, Butterbur and my migraine smoothies has to be doing me this favor.   (recipe and specific details listed in my first post here:  https://youcantarguewithcrazy.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/winning-charlie-sheen-reference-of-course-the-endless-game-of-migraines-for-this-quarter-at-least/)

My anti-migraine potion isn’t getting me high, but hopefully with it, I’m not getting as many questionable looks these days!!