2015 fin.

I had wanted to finish of the story of the transplant… well it’s ongoing but finish it up until now, I’ve just been too busy to write.

Ki got discharged from the hospital on the 23rd. It was literally our Christmas miracle (well, one of them lol) because previously that morning they had told us he wouldn’t be going home. The post op swelling was causing a lot of issues, mostly pain and he wasn’t really pushing himself through it to do what he needed to do. I’m not blaming him, I can’t even imagine how great the pain is and was, but it caused a major setback initially. But when he realized that he was going to end up spending Christmas in the hospital and there was a possibly they would medically clear him before physical therapy clearing him and he could end up in an inpatient rehab center that motivated him to push through the pain and physical therapy cleared him that day. It turns out he could do the things they wanted him to do really well, he was just scared more than anything.

Going home was a bit scary but we are kind of settling into some sort of routine although I don’t think it will be a new normal anytime soon yet, there’s still a lot of unexpected things to be on the look out for but I am oh so glad that he is out of the hospital because he started massively improving once he was home. I’m always afraid of him ending up back there before he’s really turned a major corner and it setting him back further so I really pray that that doesn’t happen.

Overall we’ve just been massively blessed. I can’t believe that this all happened before the end of the year and we will go into 2016 healing instead of getting sicker… moving forward instead of waiting. We really truly thought there was no chance of a transplant before 2016 and yet here we are. I still can’t believe it’s real sometimes.

This year seems like a whole blur of randomness but I am going to try to fill out my little end of the year review questions I normally post on this day.

What did you do in 2015 that you’d never done before?

Painted a room in the house.  Finally attained the blue and purple bedroom I have wanted all of my life.  Went through transplant evaluation with my husband.  Went through a liver transplant with my husband.  Went to therapy with my husband.  Let go of the idea that I need to be perfectly put together at all times before interacting with other human beings… I am okay with no makeup and undone hair.  Binged watched a complete tv series (it was Breaking Bad.. omg if you haven’t watched it, you must!).  Lost a cat that I had longer than 10 years.  Made a dream catcher.

Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

I don’t think I had any.  The only thing I want this year is for HEALING to take place.  I want my husband to heal. I want to heal.  I want our lives to heal.

Did anyone close to you give birth?

Nope.

Did anyone close to you die?

My aunt Kim passed away after a very long battle with breast cancer.  I am sad she is gone but there is comfort in knowing that she is no longer suffering, because she suffered greatly for a very long time.  It was a testament to her spirit though to keep going.

And I sadly found out this year that last year the father of a childhood/teenage best friend passed away.  I have a lot of memories of him and had I known he had passed I would have been there to pay my respects.  It fucks with me heavy that I’ll never see him again.   Let it remind you that you never know when the last time you’re going to see somebody is.

What would you like to have in 2014 that you lacked in 2013?

Health for myself and everyone around me.  It is time that we all heal together.  I truly believe we should get to bask in some sunshine after such a storm that the past few years have been.

What date(s) from 2013 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

  • The day we knew our second IUI failed.  It was a clusterfuck of “hey your IUI failed, your have bronchitis, and a heart murmur.  Fabulous day let me tell you.
  • The day we went to Indy for Ki’s transplant evaluation.  Everything about our future hinged on tests from that day.
  • The day that his case was presented to the transplant board and them calling us to tell us that he had been accepted and listed. So much hope finally came sprawling back into life.
  • The last ER visit/hospital stay pre-transplant.  It was the moment where I knew I was losing my husband to the disease and I was so terrified and honestly was so afraid of how much longer we could do this.  And then it was like the universe heard my cries because
  • December 11th they called us at around 6:30-7pm and told us there was a liver and if would be interested in coming in as a back up and then
  • December 12th at 3am they took him back for surgery.
  • December 23rd… he got to come home from the hospital.
  • December 25th… the best gift I could have… having him home with me for the holidays.
  • December 31st/January 1st… leaving 2015 in the dust by his side.

What was your biggest achievement of the year?

All my achievements this year has been a lot of work internally.  I was really broken down this year.  I had to do a lot of soul searching to pull myself out of a very dark place.  It was a lot of mental health stuff.  I truly advocate that if people need help, ask for help!  But I kept running into the terrible experience of asking for help and ending up worse than I was.  Deep down inside, I know what I need to do… I know what is best for me and I felt like I really had to stop running from that and work on myself.

  • I accepted my OCD.  I was going to make a post about this at some point, but yes, my whole life I have suffered from OCD  (almost literally, it began when I was 4 years old).  I know it’s hell and I want to punch people who think OCD is just liking a clean house.  It can be a personal prison you can’t escape from at times but to stop running from it and actually confront it was a huge achievement for me this year.
  • I confronted my negative thought cycles.  That’s still an ongoing battle but when you have been feeding yourself horrible negative thoughts for a good part of your life, it’s a very hard cycle to just break over night.  But it was just like wow… I tell myself such awful things and expect to feel better?? What would happen if I spent that much time feeding myself beautiful positive thoughts?  I intend to fully find out.
  • I’m beginning to understand that I can’t sacrifice myself for other people.  I deserve to love me and there is nothing wrong with that.  I think a lot of what is wrong with this world is that people are made to feel that loving themselves and having self worth is wrong so they are constantly looking for fulfillment elsewhere.
  • I can’t keep ignoring my spiritual side.  It needs to be incorporated into my life.

What was your biggest failure?

I really let my mental health go there for a while this year.  Was in a really bad spot once again.  It didn’t have to get that bad, but as we all know with mental illness… sometimes you don’t get a say.  I don’t think of it being a failure in and of itself struggling with it, but there many things I did and didn’t do that was me being lazy and not helping myself… and it didn’t have to get the point that it did.  I just think I kind of failed myself for not thinking that I was important enough to get better there for a while.

Did you suffer illness or injury?

Heart murmur which thankfully turned to be benign.  A wicked ulcer that concluded with some of the worst pain of my life. And then of course the brain going awry.

What was the best thing you bought?

  • Batman Arkham Knight for PS4… the last Rocksteady Batman game *sniffle* but I’m only just now starting on all the DLC so at least I still have that to look forward to.
  • My blue hoodie that I am addicted to wearing
  • These awesome super soft leggings that look like skinny jeans that are the most comfortable things I have ever worn in my life and I need 3094283 more pairs even if they all look alike so that I have a pair for all eternity.

Whose behavior merited celebration?

My brother is really a pretty awesome dude.  He was so supportive during Ki’s transplant and hospital stay.  It just warmed my heart so immensely that when Ki was still unconscious after the transplant my brother was there talking to him.

Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

I’m having MIL issues as we speak y’all.  I don’t wanna speak on it right now but she has not dealt with our current reality very well.

Oh and my sister when I found out she was a fan of the 50 Shades of Grey lineup lmao

Where did most of your money go?

We don’t really have any money right now lbci (laughing but crying inside lol)  Moving houses, medical and travel, and the post transplant stuff along with bills and everything else has had us drained.

But you know, I really learned that no state is permanent.  Yes sure you can do things to ensure that you may be better off for a longer period of time, but sometimes life happens.  And life happened to us.  We have been flat broke, we have been well off, and we have been flat broke again.  I fully believe that we will be well off again and this time have the foresight to understand that you never know what could happen in the future so plan better for it.

What did you get really, really, really excited about?

It happened so fast that I didn’t really get much of a chance to even be excited but obviously the transplant.  Right now I’m really really excited about the hope of a life where disease isn’t an everyday factor.

What song(s) will always remind you of 2015?

  • Alessia Cara- Here
  • J. Cole- Love Yourz
  • J. Cole- No Role Modelz
  • too much fucking Drake
  • Nicki Minaj & Beyonce- Feeling Myself
  • Big Sean, Drake, & Kanye- Blessings

Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. Happier or sadder?

So much happier. Amazing what can change in life in just a few weeks.

iii. richer or poorer?

So much poorer financially but so much richer in other ways.

What do you wish you’d done more of?

Staying in moment.

What do you wish you’d done less of?

Worrying.  Indulging in hopelessness.

How will you be spending Christmas?

I spent Christmas at home with my love and it was the best Christmas ever in all existence.

What was your favorite TV program?

  • Breaking Bad… better late than never!
  • Empire
  • Gotham (but then Gotham went off the deep end when it came back this fall and I’m having trouble trying to keep giving it second, third, and fourth chances)

What was the best book you read?

  • War and Empire: The American Way of Life by Paul L. Atwood
  • Jesus Against Christianity: Reclaiming the Missing Jesus by Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer
  • Hyperbole and a Half: Unfortunate Situations, flawed coping mechanisms, mayhem, and other things that happened by Allie Brosh

What was your greatest musical discovery?

Creating a women in hiphop station in my digital music apps.

What did you want and get?

Guess? =D

What was your favorite film of this year?

The only film we saw in the theater this year was Straight Outta Compton. It was decent… I think only hiphop fans can truly appreciate it though.

What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

I…. seriously have no memory of my birthday?

How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2015?

I will wear this hoodie every day of my fucking life and no one can stop me.

What kept you sane?

Hahaha I wasn’t sane for a good chunk of the year.  Once I regained some of it I kept it on track by rereading Claire Weeke’s Hope and Help For Your Nerves, the parts I needed over and over.  Journaling. And honestly just letting it out.  I realized it was time to stop lying to myself and everybody else.

Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

My Breaking Bad binge gave me an Aaron Paul crush lol

What political issue stirred you the most?

Oh god.  Isn’t there just too much fuckery going on to even pick one?  I really can’t.  Shit’s crazy out there.  We have got to do better y’all.  As members of the human species we have got to start doing better for all our brothers and sisters the world over.

Who did you miss?

Mango.  God I miss him so much.  He was always the constant in my life.  I don’t know if I’ll ever not miss him.

Who was the best new person you met?

Can I just lump all the people who have helped get us to and through this liver transplant stuff… they’ve been phenomenal.  My husband has such a wonderful team behind him.

Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2015:

Nothing is permanent.  Life is cycle of haves and have nots.  Illness and wellness.  Loss and gain.  And in some weird way, it’s almost comforting.

Advertisements

small miracles.

Last year was the first time I missed Holidailies since I started doing it back in 2008.  I guess it was because last December was so stressful.  This month marks the 1 yr anniversary of Ki having his TIPS procedure done, or as he calls it, his robot part (because it is made of metal mesh).  It was a very scary time with a lot of unknowns.

Well things haven’t changed much.  Life is still a scary thing with a lot of unknowns but at least there’s a lot more hope.  Actually being on the transplant list, as surreal as it is, makes for a lot of hope.  It allows for a little room to breathe and a belief that just maybe there is an end to this journey through hell and a happy ending.  By no means will any of it be easy but I am so ready to get off this ride that is basically a descent into darkness and hop on the next which will hopefully take us back into the light.

And we might just get there a whole lot sooner.  The other day UNOS announced that the new MELD score calculator that adds sodium to the overall score will go into affect on January 1st, 2016 and our transplant nurse coordinator confirmed this for us.  This is huge for us.  I have now officially lost count how many times Ki has been hospitalized for chronic low sodium.  Despite every thing they have done to attempt to raise it, it stays low and is a constant battle to keep him out of the hospital.  His MELD could raise as much as 10 points when this goes into action and it might even be enough to push him to or near the top of the list.  I keep having a strong feeling that his transplant will come between Jan-March of next year.

So that’s our little Christmas miracle I suppose… for that to finally be happening.  I know it was debated for some years and I feared it would never happen, but yes… finally.

**

Tonight we went and got a tree finally… a beautiful real fir tree (no more pines here bah).  But… we got it home and found out our tree stand from last year is broken so it is out chilling on my porch and I swear to God if anybody steals my Christmas tree there will be hell to pay.  I’m trying to get lights up outside as well… Christmas is just starting to sneak up on me too fast this year!

Living across the street from Dad is certainly an adventure at times.  Tonight he sent me a text that we could come over and watch Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer with him if he wanted… now how are you going to say to no to your 59 year old father when he wants somebody to watch Rudolph with him lol

I’ve heard other people say that Christmas feels weird this year.  I expected mine too seeing current life circumstances but something else about it all feels weird too, so I guess I’m not alone.  I guess it seems sort of like it just snuck up this year.  Perhaps it was Thanksgiving being so late?  I don’t know but now I’m desperately scrambling to get Christmas shopping finished and all I really want to do is sit in front of  my computer and listen to music. (No I’m seriously on a music binge tonight, it is doing good things for my soul.)

This past weekend we were supposed to have a Christmas gathering at my mom’s house but instead we got 7 inches of snow, so that killed that.  Usually when they call for 7″ of snow we get 1″.. this time we got it all.  I only like snow when it is falling because it looks pretty, after everything is blanketed in white for a few and the snow stops falling it can just gtfo, I’m done.  But at any rate we now have to reschedule Christmas at mom’s.  This weekend is the gathering at my sister’s but time will tell if that pans out since they are once again calling for snow. Unfortunately not being able to make it to mom’s left me with a whole pan of 3 cheese garlic potatoes and a whole sugar cream pie, which…yeah…. not good for my ever continuing weight loss efforts.

I actually can’t believe I’m currently awake, I’ve been falling asleep way too early and awaking way to early.  Tonight I would like to accomplish to task of ordering the rest of dad’s Christmas presents but I am now battling a ROES photo ordering system that I have never used before and don’t have much patience.  Grr.

Ki went to a meeting with his business partners tonight.  I like seeing him go back to the routine of things.  My fingers are always crossed that maybe things can stay as normal as normal can be at this point and maybe we can get to the transplant stage without a bunch of horrible shit happening.

Well perhaps I will be able to post something of substance soon.  Still working out the kinks of this whole seasonal depression added to life depression bullshit.

Aside

Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving was bittersweet I suppose. On one hand I felt extremely blessed for many reasons. Such as having my family all come together to celebrate the day, my MIL visiting for Thanksgiving this year, Ki feeling good, having lots of yummy food that didn’t feel rushed at all this year, forgetting momentarily the difficulties we are facing.

And on the other hand… that deep well of grief lingered. Realizing that compared to my thankfulness for this year, I had somehow taken for granted the Thanksgivings of previous years. The realization that I had just always assumed that it was going to be a certain way, that every thing would be the same every year. I suppose we all do it. But then things happen in life that remind you that you do it and it feels like you somehow missed the importance of every previous time you had a chance to hold something really dear. It just feels like no matter what, now that you know, you couldn’t go back and do it enough if you tried to.

I had to stop myself, reminding myself what difference did it make to wonder/worry what next year’s Thanksgiving would be like. In fact, beyond the next day or so, if I think any further.. it feels like somebody punched me in the gut because I truly do not know what is going to happen and how things are going to be. I have realized that I have always taken for granted this idea of thinking of the future as being okay and secure and now I truly realize that it is an unpredictable force. And you can’t live in it because it will terrify you constantly.

Every single day that is “good” I send a prayer of gratitude to the universe. It means more than it ever has, although it always should have meant so much. I am happy that the walls of my house were awash with happiness and laughter that day. I truly believe the energy we carry and others bring penetrate the walls of where we call home. I want as much happiness and laughter in mine as possible.

I also find myself thinking, that the people we love in our lives, it doesn’t matter how many times we tell them that we love them, how much time we spend with them, how much gratitude we have for them you always feel like there should be more love, more time, more showing them how much they mean to you… even if you did it every second of every single day, it would never be enough. Life now has an even more sacred quality to it that it didn’t have before. And now it always will, no matter what happens. I guess if there is any gift in all of this, there it is… I no longer find myself taking average ordinary days for granted. I have so much gratitude for all that is around me.

Thank you so much for making this a Best of Holidailies 2013 selection!!!

Christmas Pics Pt. II some crafty stuff.

Okay, so not a lot of crafty stuff.  But for one gift I did teach myself an entirely new skill set so that has to count for a little something right?

First off, I made this for me.  I had the parts for it in storage from last year since I never got around to it.  Sadly I didn’t find anymore of the wooden trees or I totally would have made some for gifts.

The frostier paint looks weird in both pics thanks to the flash but it looks great in regular light.

This project was actually one that almost went very wrong and then turned out great because it went wrong.  I originally just had it painted with a deep green and then the frostier green brushed here and there for some contrast.  Then I found this glitter spray paint stuff at Michaels and thought “jackpot”  (You see, I am obsessed with glittery sparkly things).  Well it turned out the spray on glitter really really sucked.  It came out all clumpy and some of it was mixed with the stuff that propelled it and some wasn’t and it just looked terrible.  So I took it outside on a cold night and stuck it under the hose and scrubbed as much as I could off figuring the damn thing was ruined.  But once I got it back inside and took a look at it, I loved how it turned out.  It looked kinda rustic and intentional.   So I stuck the lights in the holes and wrapped around the berry garland I had also purchased last year and voila.

**Note:  Kittens like to try to stalk and eat fake berry garland.  Also, kittens are annoying at Christmas.

Secondly… I made one of these for my MIL, mom, & sister (still need to make one for myself!)

This was my first time folding cranes that small… I don’t think I did too bad considering.  I want to perfect my technique on these and maybe eventually sell them and some other origami ornaments on Etsy.

And then this is the one I taught myself a new skill for…

I taught myself jewelry stamping in order to make this for my sister.  It is something I had been wanting to learn for a while so I took this as the opportunity to do it.  I was going to just buy her one, but for the price I really thought I could learn for cheaper than the cost of buying one and I was pretty much right.  For my first completed piece, I don’t think it turned out too shabby 😉

it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas… a little too late (and pic post Pt. I)

Well we finally got our snow!  It started Wednesday morning.  It’s wasn’t as bad as they were initially calling for, the grand majority missed us which is a teeny bit sad but also a good thing I guess.  I don’t like the idea of being stuck in my house due to snow, although Wednesday it was exactly that.  More snow last night and today.  Last night it was falling steadily and I kept staring outside looking at the snow falling on the pine trees illuminated by the Christmas lights, it was so beautiful.   The temps have finally been staying cold.  This is all the stuff I needed leading up to Christmas.  It feels like we should only now be starting to prepare for Christmas with the snow on the ground and icy nip in the air, but alas… it is gone for another year.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were wonderful.  I feel extremely blessed for so many reasons.

Christmas Eve we went to my sister’s house early in the afternoon since we got our mom to show up early so we could get that out of the way.  Everything is just so weird and awkward when she is around.  We all try so damn hard and she just doesn’t.  I guess she complained to my brother later on that she didn’t understand why we couldn’t have a “normal” Christmas with her.  Umm… we invite her to our rather normal events and she absolutely refuses.  The problem is that her “normal” is everyone else’s “abnormal” so by default we are always wrong.  That is why we all stopped trying to be right.  The end.

That issue aside, the rest of Christmas Eve was great.  Yummy food and lots of laughter.  My dad was there and even though he can barely walk anymore because of his back, he didn’t quite look on the verge of death as he normally does.  It’s hard for me to see him when he looks so bad so I’m glad he looked a bit better Christmas Eve.  My brother unfortunately showed up late due the fact that his stupid employer made them work until 6pm.  I swear, I really hate these stores and restaurants anymore who don’t give a crap that people want to be with their families on holidays, not squeezing the last few dollars out of somebody’s pocket who decides they need to be out buying or eating when employees just want to be with their families.

Christmas Day was really nice as well.  My husband spoiled me a little bit more than he should have.  I know I should just enjoy it but sometimes I feel guilty when he does that.. don’t ask me why.

So all in all I would say we had a wonderful Christmas all around with family and within our own little family.

I wanted to make this post a little more detailed but time as been getting away from me so I’ll just go ahead with some pictures to sum up our Christmas.

We decided to put the big tree in the living room this year and put the small tree (which for now has been designated the peacock tree) in the dining room/kitchen.  This was more of Ki’s idea than mine but whatever, it worked out.  I wasn’t sure this year if I would still love the peacock tree idea but once I got it up I fell in love with it all over again.

The big tree was then in the living room, everything has been a little cramped but you work it out when you live in a small house.  Better small house than tiny apartment!

And then this year I had an itty bitty 2 ft tree in the bedroom because I found these awesome hippy/psychedelic ornaments and wanted my little hippy tree!  They nearly overwhelmed the tiny tree but it worked out.

I mean just look how groovy Santa is!

I didn’t take pictures of all my treats this year.  There’s kind of a group shot of them in the tins.  And sadly my baklava tasted like crap this year =/  I had tried something a little different this year and it was just a no go… my BIL claimed it was good but I think he was lying to me lol

Treat tins for people!

I can’t remember everything I put in them but I think for the most part it was

  • White Christmas “trash”
  • Rolo Pretzel Bites
  • Chocolate Dipped Shortbread with Peppermint
  • Chocolate Dipped Shortbread with Sea Salt
  • Chocolate Dipped Matcha Shortbread
  • Oreo Fudge
  • Chocolate Dipped Peanut Butter Ritz Sandwiches
  • Haystacks
  • Pumpkin Pretzels

Yeah… that had to be about it

This is a picture of the White Christmas “trash” which is a mixture of Crispix, Pretzels, Peanut Butter M&Ms which is then coated with white candy bark.  I sprinkled some festive colored sprinkles on top just to make it well…extra festive.

Rolo Pretzel Bites… so good and so ridiculously easy!  Just place pretzels on a baking sheet, top with Rolos, let them melt for 3-4 minutes in the oven and then put a pecan half on top.

Peanut Butter Ritz Sandwiches… so good, so easy.  I just wanted to use up some extra crackers and this worked out so well.

My truffles… and I didn’t even get one this year! =(  I left them at my sisters.  I bet they were so good…heh.

And then, as a total experiment this year

I made fortune cookies for my MIL.  It was the first time busting out my fortune cookie maker so I had to give it ago.  Because I had already made so much I decided not to make fortune cookies for the rest of the family but it was fun to do it once for the holidays.

It’s probably not hard to imagine that I still have a ton of sweet sugary stuff left over in the kitchen, but I love making holiday treats.  I’m actually don’t care to eat a whole bunch of them but making them… yup gets me into the holiday spirit.

Next pic post… a few things I made as gifts.

let the festivities begin!

Happy Christmas Eve!

Well I called the post office this morning and apparently all undeliverable mail had been processed and sent back.  Let down but I am not letting it ruin my mood.  Print hasn’t been done at my local lab either.  I guess these pics just weren’t mean to happen in time.  I am letting it go though.  I emailed the printing company that screwed up and told them I wanted a full refund. If I don’t hear from them immediately after the holidays when they reopen they can have a phone call.  They lost a customer out of this.

***

I spent all yesterday finishing making Christmas treats…making the last 2 of my origami ornaments for people… and yeaaaaaaah…I’m still pooped lol

Heading to my sister’s early today since we convinced my mom to come down there and we could have Christmas with her before my dad should up in the evening.  No, this isn’t really normal but I have no desire to make all these separate trips down there because people can’t get their heads out of their asses and get along 20 years later.

And hopefully we beat any winter weather home because right now the storm they are predicting might actually give us a white Christmas!

 

Previous Older Entries