Friday, February 13, 2009

It's Been Just A Little While

Well, life has been, in order of crazy things happening in life:

November brought us Thanksgiving and Ken asking to come home to stay. With lots of counseling things were beginning to look hopeful so we (me and the girls) said YES and he moved home.

I started my job at the hospital inpatient pharmacy. I have many feelings about's certainly not the military, and for the most part it's a great crew of people and I enjoy the change of pace. It seems like there is always something new in pharmacy, maybe that's why I like it.

We started house hunting...I couldn't take another minute in the hobbit house!! I will extoll it's virtues and lack there of at a later date.

December 1st Aspen had another MRI.

We found a house, made an offer, celebrated 5 Christmases with all our various family combinations except my biological father who probably thinks I fell off the face of the earth.

And then we moved. Still no test results...not too concerned, if it was terrible they would call us.

Got a very cool package from everyone for the girls...thank you everyone!! Aspen is thrilled with her Nintendo DS, Ciera loves the Irish Dance clothes for her American Girl doll and we appreciate the Vitamix and all the grocery cards. We feel like we have our heads above water so we are regifting the cards to others at church who are trying to make it though hard times. It's SO nice to be on the giving end again, it's humbling to receive, but it makes us better givers!

We got test change from September. I think we will get another doctor...we wouldn't be able to live with ourselves if they missed something. Aspen has started to seem tired again and looks rather pale. She gets really flushed after eating meals and woke up last night with a bad stomach ache over on her left side.

I really thought we were done, we paid the last of the medical bills...I'm ready to be done in so many ways.

On to better news...we love our new house. We are still burried in boxes and we didn't sort anything before we moved since it was such a quick close. Lots of things we haven't seen for 8's been in storage since we left Georgia! We had an amazing crew of people from church come whisk boxes from one place to another...they even packed things I didn't quite have in boxes....WAY above and beyond the call of duty!!

Cierra is doing Junior Toastmasters and working on her public speaking skills and having a great time.

Aspen is anxiously awaiting the next pottery class to start and starting to prepare things for the fair this summer...she wants to enter some of her photography and pottery.

They just completed earning their Girl Scout Bronze Award...they visited Medical Teams International and put together over 100 Hope Kits for people around the world.

I think it's time to separate this blog from my life and have this be just Aspen's I will post another blog link on the side if you'd like to follow my wild life on the side.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Busy Days

Cierra is competing in a Feis on Sunday at the Red Lion at the Quay in Vancouver, WA at 9:30am...all are welcome to come see her dance!! On Monday she has the opportunity to be "graded" on some of her dances...there are judges here from all over the world for the competition, so they will grade dancers while they are here. She will go for her first 3 grades. If she passes all 12 grades she will have earned an Associates Degree of Dance!

Aspen started a pottery class this week and is absolutely in love with building things out of clay...there wasn't much doubt that she would. She built a castle. If you haven't heard about it she would love to tell you all about it...she has told us all about it multiple times...someone else, please ask her about her castle!

Aspen will have another MRI the first of December...we are working on scheduling that. Orders aren't in the computer, then the orders are in but the computer is down, etc, etc. We'll get it on the books eventually!

I accepted a job with the inpatient pharmacy at Good Sam here in town. I am waiting for my license to arrive in the mail before I can can't legally enter a pharmacy to work without a license in this state. I hope it's a nice position with professional people.

Well, that's just a taste of what's keeping us busy...the usual is still happening, lots of family, church, Folk Dance, friends, and we are starting the wonderful Fall holiday season. I love the season of settling in for the winter.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

20th Anniversary

I thought I should post an update, but I'm not sure what to say. One day I am elated that I only have myself and the girls to worry about, and the next I am so angry I could spit.

Saturday was our 20th Anniversary, not much of an anniversary. It was a horrible, sad day that broke my heart multiple times. I still cry thinking about it.

I am job hunting. I am trying to convince myself it's for me, but it's's really because we can't make ends meet living separately. Ken has always said he would take care of us financially, but if he gets a part time job he won't be able to see the girls. Part of me says that's the price you pay for up and leaving, the other part says it's not fair for the girls. Either way I will walk into work and be sad every day because I have to be there because of this.

We saw a counselor on Tuesday...he's really good, but all I could think about was, "It's a dollar a minute, can't you talk faster?!!" I guess we can't not afford it right now. Ken did agree to try to work on his heart has changed a little.

The girls are doing really well...we actually do stuff together with them. We just don't talk to each other about anything serious, so the girls think it's all good. We've gone for bike rides and bowling and as long as we only talk about bike rides and bowling everything is fine.

Part of me always wants him to suddenly be nice and apologetic, and the other part can't trust him at all because he's broken every promise. It's a frustrating stuck place to be...just waiting...I think I've said that before. Nothing like rounding out a year of waiting with a little more waiting...waiting for Ken to make decisions, waiting for the hurt to go away, waiting to see what happens.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tribute to Friends & Family

It is so far a wonderful weekend, my sisters, parents, Ken's step mom and lots and lots of church family have rallied around us whether in prayer, coming to visit to keep care over us, just calling to check in, offering any kind of support and so much more. We feel very loved and cared for and I know people are praying...thank you so much!

I wanted to post a little tribute to my Uncle Bill today...he called me Eli, was always making funnies, canned the best Tuna (that he caught) that you ever tasted, helped me to appreciate the ocean and sunsets as a child and I always remember him having a curl in the middle of his forehead and wearing a bow tie every day...he was dapper!

Here is the official obituary: William A. “Bill” Cook of Coquille died September 24 in Coos Bay of age-related causes at the age of 93. At his request, no service will be held.

Cook was born December 1, 1914 on a homestead in Silver Lake, Oregon to Frances E. and Olive Whitney Cook. He married Ora Dell Reed on June 9th, 1940 in Clatskanie, OR. She predeceased him in February 2005.

He attended public schools in Bend, Southern Oregon Normal School in Ashland, and graduated from the University of Oregon.

He served as a pilot in the Army Air Corps and flew the China Burma India “Hump” during World War II. Cook taught school in Junction City in 1941 before becoming a flight instructor in Fort Stockton, Texas; Wickenburg, Arizona; and Eugene, OR. He later managed radio station KWRO in Coquille, KCOY in Santa Maria, CA., and KOOS in Coos Bay, Oregon. From 1958 until his retirement in 1981 he was the general manager of Coos-Curry Electric Cooperative serving the southern Oregon coast. During his life he was active in the Chamber of Commerce, Elks, Lions, and United Good Way.

During his retirement, Cook enjoyed ocean fishing, crabbing, gardening, current events and spending time with his family.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Better News

Well, in better news, the girls will be folk dancing at the Fall Festival at 3pm on Saturday. The dancing is next to the Art Center. They have a booth in the Kid's Tent (across from the Art Center) where they are selling things they have made this summer to help them go on a trip to Savannah, GA to learn about our country's history, Girl Scout history and their personal history since we lived in Georgia for so long.

Stop by and say HI to make their time pass more will be hard for them to sit in a booth for 7 hours a day two days in a row!

Thursday, September 25, 2008


We'll all be talking about 9-11 for years to come, but really for us it will be 9-24. Yesterday was a doozie....

My washer died.
My Uncle Bill died.
Ken left.

I'll be needing a job...maybe I can write Country & Western songs...good thing we don't have a dog, it might have died too!

I am mostly feeling abandoned, sad, not good enough, and ashamed. This isn't how my life was supposed to turn out...ok, so throw indignant in there too. I figure if I just throw this out there for the whole world to know then maybe I can avoid some of those awkward invitations for the two of us, questions about his job hunt, etc.

In the mean time life goes on...the girls are doing school in preparation for what they want to be when they grow up. Now I wonder what I will be when I grow up.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Decisions, decisions....

Well, I have been putting off posting...mostly because we have had some big decisions to make. It didn't become clear until I spent today at church talking with people who have been praying like crazy for Aspen. They just have such objective's nice to get those from folks who aren't emotionally involved in the situation.

So the biopsy came back with ALL NORMAL TISSUE!!!! Hurray!!!! That rules out a huge gamut of horrible things....cancer, cysts of all flavors, necrosis, etc, etc. We actually have two doctors who agree for a change...they think she had an acute case of pancreatitis and that the shrinking of her pancreas is the pancreas just returning to normal size. They now agree that there is NO TUMOR, that the head of the pancreas is very enlarged (still) and that is what we are seeing on the MRIs. But they don't agree on why....

The one thing the biopsy doesn't rule out is Cystic Fibrosis. We have one doctor who says it's definitely what she has and to not get tested for it.. because you will know she has it when it goes full blown if (it ever does...such compassion!). We have anther doctor who says she doesn't have it. And we have a third doctor who says she should be tested and to get ready for a bizarre litany of genetic tests...apparently if it is what she has it could be a mutation of her DNA in just the pancreas, that her DNA could be different in her pancreas than anywhere else in her body (so her pancreas could rob a bank and we wouldn't be able to trace it back to the rest of her...hope it doesn't go on a crime spree).

So in light of the fact that she seems fine right now, that we will be getting an MRI every 3 months for a long time anyway, that if she gets the tests and they are positive that she may not be eligible for insurance as an adult, that if she has CF she may have fertility issues as an adult and they wouldn't be covered, the fact that the savings account is empty, the fact that the bills are still rolling in and genetic testing is barely covered by insurance (we just got April's bills from the Children's Hospital...they're a little behind, but it has allowed us to pay things gradually which is a blessing), that she could get hit by a bus tomorrow (do I really need to know her life expectancy?), that Aspen is done being poked and prodded (she didn't get any immunizations this fall because she didn't think she could follow through on the series for Hep A and HPV), and as Pam says...humanity won't make it until Aspen is 70 the way the world is going. So, in short, we aren't going to get her tested.

I know there are going to be a lot of people who might disagree (like all the grandmas and aunties out there)...that think we need to know. That want to know for themselves. But please know we have agonized over this and sometimes the right choice is the hard's hard to not know, to think that we could get a ferociously unpleasant surprise at any time...but couldn't we anyway? And at some point we have to get on with life, quit wallowing in this mess and just keep living like today might be the last day or hour or minute, because it might be for any of us!