Friday, February 28, 2014

an abundance of snow days

just a few photos of our snow days this year.  we've had our share, with the extreme cold temps and the mounds of snow.  i've enjoyed the days home with my girls, so i don't mind the snow day phone calls at all.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

labor of love

before 2014 got too far away from me, i took the time to turn the harper and crosby 365 project from last year into a photo book.  i have pages of each month for each girl.  i went back through all my posts and wrote down my favorite quotes, favorite memories, any milestones that were reached.  i wrote a page all about each girl- all that they did and said and wore.  i picked out my top ten photos for each of them.  it was several nights and mornings of pulling it all together.  but so worth it. 

i.  am.  in.  love. with this book.

i gave it to the girls for valentines day and we spent a bit of time looking through it and recalling so many memories.  i see this as something i will be looking at quite frequently.

Monday, February 24, 2014

the petrous project january

as i've said before, i chose this year to document one thing in our family daily.  something that summarizes that day.  january was a tough month.  a surgery.  lots of snow days.  lots of indoors play as it was much too bitter cold outside most days.  but what i love about this type of project is even though a day may have been a downer, i can't not look at these photos and feel happy and love and pride and family.  here is our january.

Saturday, February 22, 2014

happy birthday, my forever.

to my michael,

i didn't get you a gift.  heck, i didn't even get you a card.  but this experience has taught me that birthdays are so much more than that.  today, i got to celebrate you, with you.  we had several hours of just us, celebrating our lives, your life, our life together.  and with each passing birthday, i realize just how important celebrating our life is.  it's kids and craziness, happiness and joy, sadness and tears, ups and downs, you and me.  always.  happy birthday, my love.  i love you forever and for always, for you are my everything.

love, emily

Friday, February 21, 2014

butterfly and a goldfish event

i missed swimming yesterday.  i never miss swimming.  i hate missing swimming.  but maggie caught my girl learning the butterfly.  and i was impressed.  this girl can do anything she puts her mind to.  and given the support and guidance from the awesome staff at goldfish, she rocked her first fly.

goldfish has an awesome event coming up this weekend on february 22nd...namasplash.  it's their first yoga and swim family event.  this combines 2 of my favorite activities, and if i could be there, i would!  but you can be there!  time is 4:30-6:30.  kids and parents start out with a 30 minute kid-friendly yoga class followed by a 45 minute family swim.  cost is $30 per child, and is appropriate for ages 3 and up with a parent to accompany them.  sounds super fun and if i were you, i'd go.  sign up by calling goldfish at 734-864-5555.  find more about the event here on their facebook page.  now go sign up!

Thursday, February 20, 2014

18 days, plus or minus

what would you do if you were given a gift of 18 days?  as a parent, i often think of what i could accomplish if i were given a day or 2, even just an hour or 2, by myself.  but when it's forced upon you, and in order to get it you have to give up a thyroid and hear the word cancer, it's a completely different story.  i'm trying to find the positive in this time.  learning to love my individual me time.  but gosh, it is so tough.  i've skyped with the girls each morning and evening.  i get stories through michael and my mom, and pictures through emily, the preschool teacher, and maggie, the swim coach, and heidi, my friend and neighbor, who took care of harper on her snow day.  they realize that i need as much of my littles as i can soak up, since i can't be with them directly.  and i am so appreciative of that.  i cry tears when i see them, but i crave it.  knowing i can't be with them for 16 more days is killing me, and i see it affecting them a bit, too.  but i can't for good reason, and harper knows that.  she tells michael that i can't be home because then she and crosby would get sick.  and basically, she's right.  that's not a chance i'm willing to take.  so michael has started a countdown and the girls have a visual to know just how much longer until i can love them up close again.

and as of today, i have 17 days of that low-iodine diet behind me and said goodbye to it last night with cheese pizza after i took my first dose of synthroid yesterday, which is finally putting me on the road to recovery and being back to normal.  the diet wasn't horrible, but i'm for sure done.  thanks for working your magic, low iodine, but i've moved on.  that last day at home, i was scooping peanut butter from the jar and topping it with jelly.  i couldn't do the matzo anymore.

i thought a lot about that first meal and what i would choose to eat.  i didn't want to overdo it, being 2 weeks off of dairy and processed and all things not bland, but i couldn't help it.  i went for gusto.  and felt a bit of a stomach afterwards.  could also be due to the radioactive iodine working its magic.  or it could be slightly contributed to the amount of sourness i've been consuming.  my cousin's husband went through this 5 years ago, and the 2 of them have been such a help in helping me navigate through this process, through the diet, through the radioactive iodine process, through the first few days afterwards.  they sent me a huge box of sour goodies to give me some variety.

so today.  today was crappy.  there is no way to sugarcoat it.  there was no sunshine out my window.  there was snow, there was thunder, there was lightning, there was ice and rain and slippery roads, from what i hear.  and in my solitary confinement, there was a headache, an upset stomach, extreme tiredness, a sore neck and difficulty swallowing.  all dang day.  today sucked.  it sucked big time.  there was a lot of sleeping.  there was a bit of eating because i felt hungry, but then felt sick afterwards.  there were showers with tears because i missed my girls badly. 

but...i get to snuggle with them in some little way.  my brother and sister-in-law, chris and stephanie, went to build-a-bear last week and created mini versions of my family in bear form.  michael, with his hipster glasses.  harper, pretty in pink.  crosby, with her perpetual missing shirt.  and maximus, our golden retriever.  the gift tag said "being apart from your family, we decided to create the things you hold dearest in your life in a cuddly way."  it was an awesome gift and surprise, and these 4 have hung out with me all day, helping me feel at least a teeny bit better.  and bringing a smile to my face.

until tomorrow, good night.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

i'm radioactive, radioactive

{cue the imagine dragons.}  

it's wednesday and i am currently 25 hours into my radioactive status.  which means i've also had 25 hours of solo time in the lower level of my parents condo.  precautions primarily include that no one can be within 6 feet of me for 3 days.  it is preferred to have my own bathroom, my own space, which i do.  i have to be overly cautious of what i touch, keeping my hands from my mouth and my eyes, and not touching anything afterwards.  i have to flush the toilet twice each time i go, which is a lot because i have to drink and drink and drink and drink some more to flush the unnecessary radiation out of my body that's not doing the job of burning away the remaining thyroid tissue.  i have to wash my hands and shower whenever i remember to.  i have bags of sour lemon candies to suck on in order to salivate and avoid swelling, as the radioactive material can hang out in the salivary glands and the longer it stays, the more likely to affect my taste buds.  i have to eat off of paper plates and use plastic utensils that i just throw away.  so much to think about, between making sure i consciously keep others safe, missing michael and the girls, deciding what to do next with my individual time away, and keeping my mind on the positive, always.

monday morning, 8 am, i arrived to the hospital for my appointment.  it pretty much went something like this.  check in.  sit and wait.  get a blood draw.  sit and wait.  meet with nuclear assistant for baseline scans of neck area and neck to abdomen area.  sit and wait.  back with nuclear assistant to drink a scanning dose of radiation housed in a nuclear container that looked as if it should contain a bomb for which no precautions needed to be followed afterwards.  sit and wait.  for an hour.  back with nuclear assistant for final scans post radiation dose settling in my stomach.  go home.  that took about 3 hours.

and then i was able to enjoy the rest of the afternoon home with the girls.  since michael's car decided to throw a wrench in this whole journey last week, he took the afternoon to test drive a few cars.  i tried to soak up play time with harper and crosby and very little else.  i didn't clean, other than typical day of dishes.  i didn't cook, we just ordered pizza and i ate low-iodine leftovers.  i didn't hang out on my phone.  but mid-afternoon, i started to feel funky and wondered if i was hungry, anxious or nervous, or feeling side effects from the minuscule dose of radiation i received.  by 6:30, it was evident what it was.  i had the stomach bug that had been going around, and i tossed all my cookies.  it happened again a few hours later, and i was so worried that my treatment would have to be pushed back.  i just wanted it to start, to feel like i was doing something about this cancer, to finish off my journey.  i went to bed early and let michael take care of everything else that needed to be done.

i slept fairly well, but it took me a while to get myself up and about and dressed tuesday morning.  i didn't appear to have the stomach bug any longer, but i was drained and achy and not feeling my best.  on top of it all was knowing that i had to say goodbye to my girls for an unknown amount of time.  and still wondering if my cookie tossing messed up the scans and dosage and what they would tell me when i arrived at clinic.  and throwing in a few inches of snow which meant another school snow day for harper and a delayed start for crosby's preschool, so we were figuring out where our girls would go that day and trying to allow ourselves the additional time it would take to get to the hospital.  it could have been enough to throw me off the edge, but i actually found myself doing nothing else but focusing on what i needed to do and what needed to be accomplished and not letting emotions take over.  not yet.  

about 5 minutes before we had to leave, i felt the tears burning my eyes.  i gathered up my loves and hugged and kissed and kissed some more.  i couldn't give them enough.  harper was snuggly and lovey and kept telling me she loved me and would miss me.  crosby was a mixed bag.  she cried and didn't want me to hug her, and then she'd give me a kiss, and then she would lie on the floor and kick and scream.  i told them i loved them and loved them and loved them and would see them over facetime that night.  harper gave me one last snuggle, then looked up and said "mom, can i have a popsicle?"  thank goodness she knows how to lighten the situation.  of course, i said yes.

michael ended up driving me in to the hospital while my mom stayed back and got the girls where they needed to go.  because we were late from the snow, we didn't have to do a whole lot of waiting.  we were moved in the scanning room, where i had 2 20-minute scans, 1 35-minute scan, and a 1 -minute ct scan.  the whir of the machines, the warm blankets they layered on me and knowing i couldn't move for that amount of time pushed me immediately into slumberland for several cat naps.  michael was able to stay in the room almost the entire time, and watched the screens while i slept.  after those were complete, we were ushered into a clinic room to meet with the doctor.  this doctor was AWESOME (and on this blog, i don't use capitals lightly).  she was so thorough, so knowledgable, so at ease that this treatment would cure it all.  via the scans, she could see that there was still residual thyroid tissue that needed to be radiated, because no surgeon is truly able to remove everything surgically with how close to the esophagus and vocal cords the thyroid is, and also noted some metastasis to a lymph node on the right side, the side that was removed in the january surgery.  i had a brief moment of panic within myself.  you hate hearing the word cancer.  you hate even more hearing the word metastasis.  she was confident that a moderate dose of radioactive iodine therapy would take care of it all.  apparently, when and if thyroid cancer metastasizes, it goes to the lungs.  through the scans, they noted that my lungs were clear.  thank God for a positive piece of information.  she reviewed all the necessary precautions and restrictions i would need to take, and finally gave me the one bit i was waiting to hear.  you can't be the primary caregiver for your young children at home for 18 days.  it was what we expected and what we were planning, 3 days less actually, but still hearing it definitively was gut wrenching.  

when the doctor left, the nurse came in to go over all the side effects, all the restrictions once again, how this would all go down, and give me my script and a pill for zofran, to help with any nausea that may occur.  i have a fairly sensitive stomach, so i had no doubt on taking it.  when she left, i gave my last kisses and hugs to my mom and michael, shed some more tears.  the nuclear assistant came to get me and walked me back to a small enclosed room with a chair and floor that were lined with paper padding.  she put on her gown, double gloved her hands, and brought out, once again, the heavy, metal nuclear-looking cylindrical container that housed a small vial of my treatment.  without taking the vial out, she pushed a special straw in, then a syringe with water.  she pushed in the water, and told me to take the straw in my mouth and continue sipping until it was all gone without taking a break or letting the straw go.  it had no taste, and yet, my stomach was doing back flips and my mind was racing.  i was actively ingesting a powerfully potent medication that would kill my cancer within my body.  others had to wear gloves and gowns and be over-the-top careful with handling it, and here i was putting it in my body without any protection.  i trusted the process and allowed it there to do its job.  

i got up from the chair, went back to the clinic room to gather my bags and my entourage and walked down the halls, up the escalator and out to the car, all the while leading the pack with 6 feet between us.  what was scary and unnerving was that no one else had a clue that i was emitting radiation.  i was walking like a regular joe through crowded hospital corridors, potent and potentially dangerous.

i drove myself to my home-away-from-home for the next 18 days- my lower level bedroom in my parents condo.  i waved hello to my dad as i walked downstairs.  i hopped into bed and sat.  i had 18 days lying before me.  where the hell was i going to start.  it's almost (though not really) like a vacation.  you arrive at your hotel room, drop your bags, and wonder what to do first.  do you swim?  do you explore the hotel grounds?  do you take a nap from the exhaustion you've endured from a long flight?  i checked instagram, played words with friends, texted a few people, answered some e-mails, ordered some shoes for the girls on zulily, wrote out little love notes to include in their lunch boxes for the next 2 1/2 weeks, skyped with family and in between all that drank a ton of gatorade and water and sucked on some lemon war heads (which are disgustingly nasty and i can't believe that kids actually like those things, but it was the only thing i had at the time).

my plans include rest and recovery and following my doctor's plan exactly, to get rid of the cancer quickly and effectively, including waking every 2 hours at night to make certain i'm eating that lemon candy and drinking a big glass of water...

...and a whole lot of organizing and items on my to-do list that never get done.  my parents have cleared their schedule to support me and michael and the girls, getting them to and from school, dance, music and swim.  our family plan is to face time morning and night, and anytime in between on the weekends.  michael is handling everything else and telling me not to worry (which i'm not), with the support of amazing neighbors and friends delivering meals and cleaning our house.  my heart broke last night when crosby told me she wanted me to come home and lie with her for bedtime.  and this morning when harper told me she just missed me so much and repeatedly sent me kisses over the phone line.  i'm hesitant to cry and shed my radioactive tears anywhere other than the shower, so there will be plenty of showers.  and blogging.  yes, there will be blogging.

Monday, February 17, 2014

week 2 we go.

so over the last 8 days since i posted, a whole lot has been going down.  and it's 5 in the morning on day 1 of treatment, so i'm going to try and summarize as best i can.  my mind is on fire right now.  my insides are churning.  i am nervous and scared as all get out.  i'm also super positive, because i have a family who is behind me 200% who is giving me the strength to take the necessary steps through this process, i have a million prayer warriors out there (thank you all!), and i have my mind and my heart telling me i can't be anything but positive.  no choice.

so here's week 2 in bullets and photos.

*i have consciously made more of an effort to be present with my family.  a friend suggested turning off the text message bing on my phone, and holy crumb, did that ever make a difference in my stress level.  if i didn't know a text was there, it wasn't on my mind to check it.  i could put away my phone, be with my girls and my husband and found myself a bit less stressed.  i'm leaving it off.  

*i continued to be gifted so many amazing things this week. 2 friends from work spent their sunday cooking from the thyca cookbook of foods i can eat and brought the mother load of meals and treats to work on monday.  and it was so helpful.  i was gung ho week 1 to make so much, and week 2 just started getting repetitive and with less energy.  they boosted me back up.  black bean dip, tomato sauce, walnut milk, blueberry muffins and cookies.  i also received and a basket packed with things to keep me occupied from the teachers at crosby's preschool, and so many snail mail cards that kept me smiling.  so truly amazing.

*i remained an ice box, sleeping often times in my hat and hooded sweatshirt, fleece socks and pants.  my body was tired not to the point that my heavy eyes were closing, but that i felt like i was walking through sludge.  i found i had difficulty holding my pen and writing.  i had tingly fingers and hands and the dryness, holy guacamole.  i couldn't bathe myself in enough lotion to keep my hands from becoming over dry.  

*crosby so nicely followed up her sister's strep throat the week before with a 24 hour tummy bug this week.  luckily she only threw up 5 times in 2 hours and then was done.  but we kept her home wednesday and i stayed right with her.  so i lost a sick day for myself, oh well.  i had just heard a quote only a day before that reminded me...when i doubt, choose your children and family.  there will always be time for work.

*we skyped with my sister and her family a whole lot.  the morning i was off with crosby, we face timed for close to 2 hours.  drinking our coffee together, cooking soup together, deciding which etsy items to order, planning the time when she would be back home.  i miss her so much, and i cannot wait until they're home in april.

*i took the first step in this process last thursday by getting my blood test to check my thyroid levels. and they gave me my frequent blood draw card.  my lab apparently is a standing order, so now i just have to show my card each time i come in.  i asked if there was anything i received after 10 visits.  nope, just another draw.

*so the food...this week was definitely more of a groove.  i had less cravings for things i ate before, but it was still tough to remember i can't eat cheese and dairy and bread and have to check for salt and iodine in everything.  i had three events i attended that i needed to bring my homemade food too.  one at school, one family party and one mama night.  and i realized how difficult this would be to do if i had to do it all the time.  double checking the host for the ingredients in everything, making sure no butter or salt was added.  it was tough.  and those brownies and cakes and ice cream that just sat there staring me in the face.  if it was any other diet by my own conscious doing, i likely would have caved just a bit, but knowing the reason that i had to stay on this course, i kept at it and felt amazingly powerful.  i enjoyed my fruits and veggies.

*i met with mama friends for our monthly book club to discuss a surprisingly very timely novel, the fault in our stars, which just so happens to be about a 16-year-old diagnosed with stage 4 thyroid cancer that metastasized to her lungs and the love story that ensued from a support group.  before choosing it, my friend, megan, who hosted, check and double checked and triple checked that i was ok with reading this book.  and i was.  and i'm so glad i read it.  it turned out to be so much beyond the cancer to an amazing young love story.  if you have not read it, run to your library or book store.  and the discussion that resulted around the book was empowering and humbling and sad and happy and lovely.  this book club has been together for almost 4 years.  we've read so many words, and we've shared so much of our lives.  it is one of my favorite things and i look forward to sharing with these women monthly.  you can read how we started here.

*thursday afternoon, michael called me on his way home from work to tell me he hoped he would make it home.  apparently, his car lost power and it looks to be related to a transmission on her last leg.  after almost 10 years and 255k miles, we're surprised it has lasted this long.  he drives 100 miles a day to work, and we've maxed this car out.  yet we were hoping to pay my car off and get his through december and not have to look for a new car now.  but alas, things happen and it looks as though for his birthday this saturday, i am gifting him a new car.  i can't get upset about it.  it's just what happens.  luckily, i will be off the driving grid for a few weeks and he has my car to use, allowing us time to look and purchase one, leaving his car idle in the driveway.  in that sense, it happened at the perfect time.

*i had read somewhere a while ago that people who have passed on leave signs for those still living that they are with them, that all will be well.  one of those signs that stuck in my head was a feather.  my uncle passed away in 2010 (read about it here and here.) my uncle's birthday was tuesday, the day crosby got sick at school.  i got that call that she threw up and went to my office to pack my stuff and call my mom.  i lost it.  it was too much and i couldn't take anymore.  she had gone to church that morning and told me she sent a whole lot of prayers up to uncle john.  i took my bags to preschool, checked in to make sure crosby was ok, and left her with her teachers to start the car and put all the bags in the trunk.  as i slid in the driver seat to move the car closer to the building, i saw it.  a feather.  sitting right on my seat.  right away, my mind went to uncle john and my grandparents living beyond this life and i knew they were with us making sure all was well.  i proceeded to find 2 more feathers that week, whose reason for being could likely be explained, but happened to find themselves right where i needed them to be.

*we celebrated valentines day, and did it up big.  heart day is my most favorite holiday and it deserves it's own post, which it will get this week.  but either way, here are my little loves at our annual valentines day photo shoot.

*michael and i watched a beautiful movie friday night called about time.  it spoke volumes about savoring every day, finding the beauty in all that we're dealt and the reasoning behind it even if it's not what you want to happen, even if its tragic.  it's right where i am right now.  i highly suggest it.

*this weekend, i said yes a lot, we spent a ton of time face-to-face with the girls and taking them to sesame street live and the lego movie.  we made shrinky dinks.  we played games.  we snuggled just because.  we gave in to popsicles for breakfast, chocolate with snack, cookies at lunch.  we whipped up homemade body butter.  we drank coffee with homemade almond milk.  we made minestrone soup.  we read books.  we built legos and played with characters.  we played dress up.  we practiced sight words.  we answered questions and more questions.  we talked about this week.  we laughed and we loved and we soaked up family time.

and now, i'm nervous.  closing this post means i head off to get ready for my 8 am appointment.  updates to come.  stick around.  here we go.

Friday, February 14, 2014

my loves ♥

valentine's day has got to be my favorite holiday.  all about love and lots and lots of pink.  we found some photo booth props, and set up shop for a few snaps.  if only you could witness the occasional tears crosby had because she was tired, the {ahem} coercing by mama to just get one more photo or position, the scramble to get it done in time before all the afternoon lighting disappeared.  still, i caught smiles.  and hopefully, only i will remember the behind-the-scenes dramas.

here is our heart day in photos...

the hearts we posted on the girls' doors tell them things we love about them.  to you, my girls...

*you are fun!
*you have a winning smile
*you are a great reader
*you are brave
*you are a rockstar swimmer
*you make us proud
*we love your stories- you tell great ones
*you have a beautiful heart
*you are a great dancer
*you are strong
*you are a whiz at spelling
*we love you

*you make us laugh and smile
*you are an awesome swimmer!
*you are fun
*you are brave
*you make great music
*you have fast, strong legs
*you have a radiant smile
*you have a beautiful heart
*we love you

Sunday, February 9, 2014

week 1 funk. {low iodine diet}

life is all about balance.

one day, you are walking on sunshine, riding high, rocking your day.  a few days later, you're just in a funk.  i feel like so much lately, this blog has been a dumping ground for my sorry emotions.  i used to write about lots of happy things.  and there still are lots of happy things going on.  it's just that the sad things and the overwhelming things and the emotional things are taking charge right now.  i've had a whole lot on my mind, and need the space to fill it.  and that happens so much here.  because i can write more than i can say.  it's somehow easier when it comes out on paper.

the week started out rough.  days 1 & 2 on this low iodine diet were pretty tough.  i was so afraid that i would unconsciously cheat and eat something i'm not supposed to, thus ruining my scans and treatment, that i panicked and had nightmares about it.  thankfully i didn't.  days 3 & 4 got a little better as i got more into a groove, but wow, does this require planning.  i can't just grab something convenient if i'm hungry.  if i didn't pack it in my snacks or lunch for the day at work, i can't bank on the fact that it's safe.  so i overpacked, and felt prepared.

day 5 and the weekend were way better in terms of food.  but to balance that, i've had the sads since friday.  i feel like i've had a dark cloud hovering since, not so much as to pour down every minute, but to let loose here and there when least expected.  maybe it was because i realized how very close to this treatment i am getting, increasing my nerves and making my mind wander to the ever-so-slight possibility that this thing has spread.  maybe because i have less than a week now with my girls before i have to leave them (in very loving, capable and amazing daddy hands) for up to 3 weeks.  maybe because being in this hypo state can cause very dark mental and emotional feelings.  maybe because i'm scared and right now i just feel like i'm waiting in limbo.

since it's late and i'm pretty tuckered, and i'm certain i'm rambling with little sense or organization to what i'm typing, i'm writing this in list format...

what i've learned this week and what i'm thankful for...

*this afternoon, nana and papa took the girls to lunch, a play and to get ice cream, and that allowed michael and i several hours to finally finish hanging pictures and wall hangings upstairs, as well as the huge undertaking of purging and organizing the stacks of paperwork in the office that we've been slowly chipping away at since we moved in.  this did wonders for my well being.  it's refreshing to walk in there now, not a headache.

*that friends often know what you need before you know what to ask for.  case in point...the homemade chicken bone broth hand delivered with a hug and the trio of chick flicks that arrived at my door this weekend, both courtesy of my dear friend, kellie.  the adult, fleece, ridiculous-on-purpose onesie feeted, zippered, mickey mouse pajamas sent via mail, courtesy of my college roommate, colleen.  the text message received on this sunday morning that 2 of my co-worker friends were cooking together, following the thyca cookbook online to make me tomato sauces and salsa and treats.

*that dried fruits, including mango, blueberries and mixed berries, are my savior and sweet tooth buster.  so is homemade raspberry sorbet, topped with toasted coconut.  butterfinger who?!

*that the coconut milk i thought was my saving grace because i could add it to my coffee turns out to not be due to an thickening ingredient that is made from seaweed, and thus, not allowed.  amazing what i've learned during this process.

*that unsalted matzo cracker pb&j's are actually pretty darn tasty.

*that store bought almond milk contains sea salt, but homemade does not, and that it is super duper easy to make, kind of fun, and pretty tasty.  this might be a regular thing in our household.

*from the girl who hates eggs came sunday morning breakfast of egg whites (no yolks allowed) + green and red peppers cooked in coconut oil, served alongside avocado slices and homemade multigrain bread, which when cooked by your husband, made a very filling and very satisfying breakfast.  and like i said, coming from the girl who hates the taste of eggs, that is a huge accomplishment.

*that a pretty decent no creamer substitute in black coffee is just a spoonful of raw honey.  surprisingly, pretty good.

*that both our meals yesterday, sesame chicken nuggets and black bean soup, would be repeatable.  the other dishes we made this week, not so much.

*that facetime sessions with your siblings hundreds and thousands of miles away does wonders for your soul, when you can ugly cry and not have to be ashamed or explain.

*that maybe teaching spinning 3 out of the last 4 days wasn't the best idea.  i'm wiped.  and achy, and i'm certain i can attribute some of that to spinning, but most to being hypo.  my aching wrists and fingers, for example.  not from my spin bike.

*that having support is huge.  after almost giving in to just a tiny bit of creamer in my coffee saturday morning, but admitting it to michael first, he gently offered up that he would much rather have the iodine treatment be of utmost effect and work the first time than for me to have creamer in my coffee.  even after i gently suggested that this was a low iodine diet and not a no iodine, he wasn't buying.  point taken.  he won.  and he was so right.  i can do this.  but having him behind me 110%, well, that takes the cake.  literally, because i can't have cake.

*that tiny little just knows all the right things to say and do.  i was crying this evening, and crosby came to ask what was wrong, gently climbed into my lap and told me she would "clean up my tears," as she wiped them away with her owl lovey, poppy.  later, as i laid in bed with her and thanked her for that, she asked "why were you crying?  who scared you?"  i laughed.  blast you tiny rain cloud over my head; i've got crosby on my side.

*that bigger little responds in her own way.  i told harper tonight, told her that mommy needed medicine to help get me better, and luckily i didn't have to be in a hospital, but that i would have to go away for a little while.  she said, "because you can't be around us girls?"  she knew, she had overheard my conversations somehow, as hushed as i had tried to keep it.  she was sad for a second when she realized i couldn't give her hugs and kisses every night, but i told her that daddy and nana would give her lots of extra hugs and kisses from me and that we could skype and facetime every day.  that lead to her making sure that it was safe to skype, making sure my meds couldn't affect her through the phone and we could get as close as we wanted over the video.  and then, when i thought she'd ask more questions about all this, she said "so am i busser or pick up tomorrow?"  this is harper.  she will process this and ask tons of questions throughout this week.  i had to give her an early heads up.  she hates last minute schedule changes and surprises.  she needs the time to think, to ask, to learn.  she needs this week to adjust.  but i know she will be ok.  they both will.

me i'm not quite certain yet.  but all i can do is continue to chug along, low iodine and hypo,  emotional, cold and tired.

and on that sorry, sad and pitiful note, off to slumber.  stick with me.  this blog is rocky and emotional right now, but the sun will shine soon.  very soon.  i can feel it.  happy sunday.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

{low-iodine diet} day 1

in preparation for this diet, i spent my sunday morning at trader joe's.  i brought along a cohort, who knew just how to fill a cart and keep this task enjoyable.  noshing on an orange pepper, adding items to her cart she thought we might need, and keeping a smile on my face.  

we spent an hour-and-a-half there, and 300 bucks.  but we loaded up on unsalted peanut butters, tons of nuts and seeds, dried berries, fresh fruit and veggies.   

monday was day 1.  i ate buckwheat topped with raw almonds and dried fruit mix; a smoothie made with water, oj, spinach, red pears & frozen blubes; homemade granola with syrup drizzle and bananas; fresh strawberries & raspberries with raw cashews; coconut oil popcorn; dried mango slices; and crock pot pot roast with veggies and potatoes for dinner.  i went to bed at 7 pm, utterly exhausted, and with a killer headache, which i blame highly on caffeine withdrawal.  i was obviously consuming way too much coffee.  

overall, i felt like everything i ate, minus dinner, was sweet.  i tried to avoid salt and iodine so much that i overindulged on the sweet side.  and this morning, i just don't feel like i can eat like that again.  it's not that the food is bad at all.  it's tasty, it's very healthy, but in abundance and with this headache, i am not feeling motivated to eat anything really.  but this is a mini hurdle, and just as with any other diet, the first few days are the most difficult and then it gets easier.  today i've packed up popcorn and  apples and carrots with unsalted peanut butter for snacks, and leftover pot roast for lunch.  i also made some orange muffins last night that are tasty, and were my breakfast today along with my other half of the smoothie from yesterday morning.

here's to day 2.