Monday, June 29, 2015

Summer is Here

Summer is here and with it, MANY changes.  So much has happened in the last few weeks/months that it could be considered chaotic to the 'normal' human being, however, for myself...this is just how my life is so I accept it and roll with it.  Over the last few weeks the most consuming reality for me is that my dad has been diagnosed with cancer.  He has endured the grueling staging process with scans, biopsies, labs and office visits.  He has completed one cycle of chemotherapy.  At this point in the game it is too 'early' to say how he will tolerate therapy, but for now we are simply glad that he is no longer in any pain. Having a career for nine years in oncology I am thankful that I have significant amounts of knowledge in regards to his diagnosis and treatment.  He has told me it is somewhat like having his own personal assistant to guide him through the vocabulary and expectations.  I simply have a hard time believing that this is happening--to my dad.  My best friend in the whole world, the one I trust with all my worldly stories and secrets, the one who has supported me since the moment I entered into existence. The one I want to protect from growing old/ill and the one I want to share many more years sitting on the deck, drinking Leinenkugels and shooting the breeze with -- has been given a diagnosis that could be a culprit in taking his soul from my presence. Being a nurse now, I have become incredibly familiar with the 'Stages of Grief' that a family or patient may experience due to illness.  I am in a state of naive bargaining at the time.  I know that I am blessed each day he is with me and for some reason a thought of him being ripped away from me in an untimely car accident keeps bubbling up.  I know that my time with him is precious and some are not given an opportunity to share with their loved ones just how special they are.  I have made it a priority in the past three weeks to make my dad aware how important and much of an impact he has been for me.  I share this information with you as my hope is that you share your true feelings of love and appreciation to whomever it may be that is on your thoughts as you read this. Don't wait one more second...share your thoughts now.

With all of these heavy words, it is still important to share things that make me happy and keep me calm.  Each day that passes I feel as though I am one step closer to having my dreams becoming reality.  For many years I have been what I call "survival mode." I was taking each step one at a time in order to reach a final goal.  I have reached my goal and have continued to reach passed it.  I have ideas, hopes, wishes, dreams which have been dormant through it all.  I feel I have reached a season in my life in which I can make realistic goals again and can meet them.   Conquering 'Nursing School Mountain' was a stepping stone for building my confidence back and my energy is renewed for living.   As of recent, I have completely eliminated 'pop' from my diet.  It sucks. Right now, it sucks...big time. I, along with my BF have taken a pinky-swear to not have any without each other. We also are committing to walking for exercise. It may not seem like a lot to you, however, we are greatly out of shape and need to get our grooves back.  Small changes will make a big difference and for now, these are the teeny ones we are making. I am encouraged, motivated and excited to see what else we can modify into the fall months.  I am already noticing that I am less fatigued and moody based on lack/increase of caffeine.  Don't get me wrong, I am still a coffee fan but I can't drink too much or my stomach hurts---it's a fine balance, folks. 

I am happy to say that I am working my dream job as well.  I am no longer working as I was in the previous post WAY back in February.  I look forward to going to my position when scheduled and sharing my hours with those who need rehabilitation in a physical medicine sense. Some people automatically think of drug/alcohol rehab, and that is not what I do. I work in rehabilitation in which those who have suffered multiple traumas, spinal injuries, amputations, strokes or hemorrhages come to in order to learn a functioning way of living as they have been affected.  I love my work. I get to see the same patients and families for many weeks (getting to know them well), I get to see improvement/results, it's not constant chaos at work.  I feel as though this job was made for me, for this time in my life... I couldn't be more blessed.

The boys are growing and changing every day.  They are healthy and happy.  Both boys are in summer sports and Nathaniel is in summer school as he prepares for first grade.  Carson gets to spend mornings with me and we have fun times together visiting the library, going to the grocery store, visiting the zoo.... I feel so blessed to have this time with him as I know in a few years he won't want to hang out with mom as much as he does now.  Last week I acquired a new living room set in which we can all sit on and snuggle when we have our ice creams in the evening... Things are good.    I will post pictures of the bedroom makeover soon, just haven't gotten around to it.

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