My Poor Little Emmie…

I’m writing this is in stealth-mode because my little Avie J is fast asleep next to me in my bed tonight. We’re having a little impromptu sleep-over these next couple of days because my grams, who usually takes care of her, is staying out at the hospital with my little niece, Emma. The poor thing has been sick since Christmas Eve and her useless mother finally got around to making an appointment for her to see her pediatrician this morning. They did chest x-rays and found some spots on her lungs that the pediatrician–who’s also useless, by the way–initially took for pneumonia. He ran blood tests as well and her white blood cell count came back unusually high–well over 28,000–which was particularly concerning. Initially, they were going to transfer her by ambulance out to Albany Med, but my sister suggested they bring her out to Golisano’s Children’s Hospital in Syracuse instead–in part because it’s closer for us out here and also because the last few times that Emma’s had to be admitted to Albany Med, they’ve essentially gotten nowhere. One of the twinnies, Jakey, was sick back in November and had to be admitted to Golisano’s for a few days and the staff and doctors were exceptional–so we figured Emma would get far better treatment there than she probably would at Albany Med. So my grams–who has pretty much been Emma’s caregiver since she was born because, like I said, her mother is too selfish to give a damn about either of her children and therefore totally useless as a parent–rode out in the ambulance with Emma. My sister–who has always been especially close to Emma and sees/treats her like she’s one of her own kids–had us drop her off to be with my grams and Emma at the hospital on our way to get Ava from my aunt so we could bring her back with us. After she was seen in the emergency room at Golisano’s, they said they were admitting her for, at the very least, two or three days. The doctors there looked at her chest x-rays and voided the pediatrician’s initial diagnosis that it’s pneumonia due to the fact that the spots aren’t towards the bottom of her lung–as they normally present in pneumonia cases. Instead, the spots are towards the top of the lobes, signifying some different infection/problem altogether. Taking that finding into fact and her alarmingly high white blood cell count, they decided to bring Infectious Disease into the case. They’re running tests to try and find out what it is that she has, but so far, they still aren’t sure what kind of infection it is or if it’s something else entirely. They’ve given her a couple different antibiotics in the meantime and plan on doing another chest x-ray in the morning to see if her lungs have cleared up any. They also ran a new set of blood tests when she got to the ER at Golisano’s and found out that her hemoglobin was really low, meaning she’s anemic again…which meant she’d have to have another blood transfusion. It’s not the first bout she’s had with anemia. She’s been hospitalized twice in the past year and a half with severe anemia (at Albany Med both times). Neither her pediatrician or the doctors there could give us a definite explanation as for what’s causing the anemia. Prior to those instances when she was hospitalized, she’d been coughing up brown sputum that only after the blood tests saying she was anemic and her being admitted did they finally realize that it was actually blood that she was coughing up. They ran tests and did GI scopes and claimed it was some kind of esophageal reflux issue…but it was more of a guestimated diagnosis than a definite one. They merely observed her for a few days, then sent her on her way with a prescription for some kind of reflux medication…yet ANOTHER med to add to her already long list of medications. They didn’t really do anything…and they seemed just as in the dark about the cause of the blood loss and anemia as we are. Like I said, those doctors were pretty much useless.

The poor honey just can’t catch a break, I swear. From her premature birth and weighing in at a mere 3 lbs. 14 oz., she’s had to face struggle after struggle. Being a preemie, she had to spend the first month of her life in the hospital NICU. She had a umbillical hernia that caused a long delay in her mobile development because unlike most babies, she couldn’t be put down on the floor for the typical tummy-time. She also had to have surgery on her eye before she was even a year old. And that’s just to start! umbilical hernia aside, she’s had serious developmental delays, both physically and intellectually. She just turned 9 this past November, but developmentally, she’s on the level of a 4 or 5 year old. From the start, her pediatrician would blame her delayed development solely on the fact that she was born prematurely. Whenever we voiced one of concerns about it, he’d just tell us not to worry and that she’d eventually catch up in a few years. Then, when she was just over a year old, she had her first seizure. I can’t even tell you how terrifying that was for all of us. It was horrible. Unfortunately, it wasn’t a one-time occurrence as we’d hoped it would be. After that, she began having these sudden high fevers that, more often than not, were a precursor to another seizure. After the first few panicked-911-calling-emergency-room-visits for a seizure, the doctors basically told us there was no use in jumping to concern when she had a seizure because they claimed the seizures were nothing to worry about and that unless she was having a Grand Mal (really serious) seizure, there was really no point in us even calling 911 or bringing her to the ER because there was essentially nothing they could do for her. Her pediatrician basically told us the same thing. He told us they were febrile seizures (a type of seizure that’s accompanied and preceded by high fevers) and that it it wasn’t necessarily uncommon for young children to have them. He claimed that she would grow out of them on her own by the time she was 5. He was wrong, by the way. It wasn’t until she was two years old and WE demanded further testing and answers to the seizures and delays (she didn’t start walking until she was 3) that he finally did something. He ordered genetic testing, the results of which showed that she has a rare chromosomal disorder that while they don’t know a great deal about it yet, they have found it to be associated with developmental delays and epilepsy, among other medical problems. After that (she was almost 3 by then), she started the necessary therapy regimens (PT, OT, Speech) that should have been ordered long before that point, but weren’t because her dumb ass pediatrician didn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground, as the saying goes. If he hadn’t dismissed our concerns so easily and for so long, she might not be as developmentally delayed as she is now. But he was a doctor who, of course, thought he knew it all…only he didn’t have the first fucking clue (I apologize for the crude language, but it’s true!).

From there, she was put under the care of a whole slew of specialists. She’s got a neurosurgeon, cardiologist, endocrinologist, orthopedic specialist, ophthalmologist…well, you get the picture. It’s insane how many different doctors she has to see. They diagnosed her with epilepsy and she’s been on meds for that for well over 5 years now. She still has the occasional febrile seizure here and there and also what they call absence seizures where she’ll sort of zone out for a few minutes, but not as often these days, thankfully. It’s sad because at this point, we’ve gotten the seizure routine down pat. The moment she gets a fever, we immediately start her on a back-to-back regimen of Tylenol and Motrin and cool baths to bring the fever down. Usually we’ll wrap her in wet, cool towels or one of us will sit in the bath with her and try to get the cool bath to bring her temp down. No matter how proactive we are, it isn’t always successful and sometimes she’ll still have a seizure anyhow. My grams still freaks out each time she has one. I, on the other hand, have seen her have so many of them that I’m pretty much the only one that isn’t fazed by them and can therefore stay calm and level-headed about it. Which is why when Emma had one, my grams would usually call me down to help. Basically what I’ll end up having to do is to hold Emma and make sure she doesn’t stop breathing (she’s turned blue a couple of times–super scary that is, by the way) and track how long the seizure lasts…all the while my grams stands there silently freaking out, and phone at the ready in case we have to call 911.

Aside from the seizures, the poor thing is constantly getting sick because she has such a weakened immune system. If it’s not one thing it’s another. You don’t even want to know how thick her medical charts are…it’s that bad. And now she’s sick again with we don’t know what. And her good-for-nothing mother–where is she you might ask? Not in the hospital with Emma, that’s for sure. The bitch didn’t even bother to leave work and go with Emma once she found out she was being transferred out to Golisano’s. She didn’t go out after she got out of work either. She claims it’s because she called and only 2 people are allowed in the room with Emma at all times–and with both my sister there spending the night and my grams, she wouldn’t be allowed. That pissed me off two-fold. One, because while I realize my sister cares deeply for Emma and wants to be there for her–especially in times like this–she tends to forget that she has two children of her own to think about. Not that I mind taking care of the boys in her absence, but it’s the principle of it all. She’s not Emma’s mother. And by her taking charge and stepping in, she’s essentially allowing Emma’s actual mother to shirk on her motherly duties and responsibilities. I keep telling them that they need to stop making it so easy for her to get away with doing nothing. My grams has let her do her own thing for years now and it’s absolutely ridiculous. I get that my grandmother doesn’t care what she’s doing or where she is as long as the kids are home with her and she has them, but it’s not right. She needs to face the fact that she has responsibilities…and at this point, that’s only going to happen if they force her to. This instance, for example, my sister should have left for the night and come back home and she should have been told to go to the hospital to be with Emma. But that didn’t happen. She claims she’s going to come out after she gets out of work tomorrow, but I doubt that’ll happen. It’s New Year’s Eve and she has plans to go down to New York City with this new loser she’s been seeing…and she’s so much of a selfish bitch that just watch, she won’t cancel those plans. Hell no. It’s all about her and what she wants…to hell with what’s best for her kids or the fact that her CHILD is so sick that she’s been admitted to the hospital. She could care less. That’s her. That’s ALWAYS been her. Honestly, I think it’s absolutely pathetic. She shouldn’t even be allowed to keep these girls. My grams or my sister should have gone for custody of Emma and Ava years ago. They keep saying they’re going to…but they never do.

It’s unreal. Seriously.

Well, I should stop here. I’ve got a long day ahead of me with the boys AND Ava tomorrow.



Down To The Wire…

Grrrr…why does packing have to be a total drag? And I thought the first time “college packing” sesh was bad…but this, this is sooo much worse. Who’d have thought that one person could accumulate so much extra stuff in the short time span of a few years? And by that, I mean me. I don’t know how it happened, especially considering how much stuff I got rid of or gave to the Bestie when I moved out of my last apartment. Now this whole packing dilemma has reached new heights on my this-sucks-o-meter, for I now have to go through everything and pick and choose between what stays packed away in my grams’ attic and what’s going to Tennessee with me. Oh, how I wish I could summon some magical little fairy to do it all for me. Time is literally wasting away here. I have exactly ten days left to get everything done and squared away–and it’s not enough time…neither literally or figuratively.

Moving on to another subject…I had a little “weak” moment earlier. I had to watch the Twinnies today while my sister and brother-in-law took my mother out to Roswell in Buffalo for her post-op and pathology appointment (good news–all her tests came back clean so she’s officially in remission!). So I brought the boys downstairs after they woke up this morning and Ty wanders over and puts his arms out, wanting to be held. So I picked him up and we did our typical morning cuddle. As we were doing that, I suddenly came to the realization that I’m going to be leaving them in ten days and probably won’t see them again for, at the very least, six months when the semester is over. And even that’s not definite because I have no idea what’s going to happen when I get down there…if I’ll get a job and settle there for good or come back to New York during the summer break. Hopefully, the former will happen…but unfortunately that means not visiting as much…which already makes me sad. All I could think about while Ty and I were cuddling and watching Jakey demolish the toy bin is that, even if I do come back this summer, they’re already going to be 18 months old…which means there’s a pretty good chance that they’ll have forgotten me. That’s what really got to me when I was thinking about it because those two boys mean the world to me. I’ve practically raised them this entire year and I know that six months is an awfully long time to expect them to remember me. It breaks my heart that that might happen, more so because I know there’s nothing I can do about it. I can’t change my mind and stay here in New York. I just can’t. I don’t belong here. Where it is that I do belong–well, I don’t have the answer for that. Hopefully, it’ll be Nashville…hopefully…but who knows. All I know is that it’s not here. I have to go. I have to get away from this place and all the memories and figure out how to function in the adult world on my own. I need to do this. Even if I wanted to, it’s too late now to back out. Everything’s already in motion, I’m registered with school and expected there on the 10th. I can’t just not go. Nor can I stay here any longer. Because I know that the longer I stay, the worse it’ll be. If I stay here, I’ll end up being pulled into my sister’s web and guilted into taking care of the boys until their school-age. I don’t want that. I love those boys, but I’m not their mother…and it might sound harsh, but I don’t want to spend the next four years of my life raising someone else’s children. I need to have a life of my own. I need to find myself. Maybe I’ll find those answers is Nashville…maybe I won’t. But I know that if I don’t go now, I’ll regret it. And I have enough regrets. I don’t need to add another to the list. Trust me, I really don’t.

And it’s back to the packing grind I go…

‘Til Next Time,


And the tidings were hung…

Well, Christmas came and went…and was–albeit surprisingly–(and thankfully I might add!) quite uneventful. I think that might have had something to do with the fact that my brother was absent this year for the festivities. I know it’s probably horribly wrong to say, but I was grateful for that. I’m sorry, but it’s just a heck of a lot easier to get through the holidays when he’s not there. Where he was exactly, well, that’s pretty much anyone’s guess. Knowing him, probably sleeping off a bender. As usual. You know, I just don’t get him. He’s got three children that absolutely adore him and think he hung the moon. At least, that’s the case with my niece, Angelina, his oldest. I don’t think I’ll ever understand her adoration for him, considering his notable absence in her life. Hell, he wasn’t even there for her birth. The first time he ever laid on her–his own daughter–was from across a visitor’s table in a state prison when she was already a couple of months old. If I recall correctly, he was incarcerated the entire first year of her life. You’d think that would have been a game-changer for him…or a wake-up call, at the very least. You’d think he’d want to do better by his little girl…be a better father to her than our father was to us. But no. She’s eleven years old and he’s still the same self-serving bastard he was then. He’s been in and out of jail so many times in those 11 years that I’ve lost count of all the birthdays and holidays he’s missed with her. As a matter of fact, he has to turn himself into the county in a couple of weeks to begin his 7-9 month jail sentence for his latest–though surely not his last–unlawful infraction. That alone considering, you’d think he’d want to at least be with his daughter and children this year on Christmas–but nope. He was nowhere to be found yesterday. To be honest, I almost pity him…because I know that it won’t be long until Angelina finally realizes the truth and sees him for the deadbeat father that he is…and she will. I know because she’s nearly the same age I was when I finally came to terms with the facts about my own father. It’s funny because people have never understood why and how it is when they ask that I don’t hate my father for not being there when my siblings and I were growing up. If anything, I’ve always just had this sort of feeling of indifference when it comes to that particular subject…which, if you ask me, is actually worse than if I hated my father. At least with hate, there’s emotion. Indifference, however, is a different story. There’s no emotion, no feeling…nothing. I don’t hate my father for not being there. I just don’t. It sounds like such a trite thing to say, but I feel sorry for him because–as my grandmother always says–it was his loss. He wasn’t there and that’s a guilt that he’ll have to live with for the rest of his life. And I know he feels guilty about it because he’s said so himself when we’ve talked. But honestly, even that revelation means nothing. Not at this point. I mean, it is what it is. He can’t go back and get those moments back…just as I can’t suddenly say that his absence overtly affected me. My father not being there was literally something that I always knew. That’s just how it was. I didn’t know any different, so naturally, I just adapted to that environment and understanding. As they say, you can’t miss what you’ve never had. I mean, I survived. All my issues aside, I think I turned out okay–despite him not being there. I mean, I had a good childhood–as far as I can recall it. I was cared for, taken care of, and most important–I knew I was loved. That’s all that really matters. As for my brother, he’s eventually going to realize what he’s lost…and unfortunately, he’ll be too late. If my niece is anything like me–and she definitely is–there’ll be no going back, no forgiving of past mistakes. Just because I don’t hate my father doesn’t mean I’ve forgiven him for not being there, because I haven’t. Abandonment–well, it’s not something that can be simply be forgiven. Especially when it’s voluntary and could have been prevented. My father wasn’t there and my brother hasn’t been–and honestly, that’s on them. It’s ALL on them. As the saying goes, we all make mistakes…and we have to live with the consequences of those mistakes. They’ll have to…one day. Again, and it’s probably a horrible thing to say, but I’m secretly glad that he wasn’t there. Knowing him, he certainly wouldn’t have passed up the opportunity to get in a few jabs and throw some degrading insults my way. He never does.

But regardless of the reason for it, the holiday went well. Angelina was thrilled with the North Face gear she asked for. She wasn’t, however, thrilled with the fact that she didn’t get the iPhone she also asked for. Which is just too bad because–at least for the time being–that just isn’t happening. I did find this one phone service called Kajeet that deals specifically with phones for children that would allow you to limit and track her usage, set other parental controls, and monitor her location in real-time—which pretty much covers  almost all of the concerns and misgivings we have with the idea of her getting a cell phone. Still, we didn’t cave. Not this year. As I’ve ranted in an earlier post, she’s just too young for a phone. I don’t care that the rest of her friends have iPhones and she’s the only one forbidden to have one. Those are just the breaks. She’ll get over it.

Avie loved the “Love You To The Moon And Back” personally engraved bracelet I bought her. She won’t take it off. Emmie wasn’t in the best of moods though because she was sick, the poor thing, but she didn’t let that get her down. She was still her typical, smiley and obnoxious-at-times self. The twinnies had a heyday with their gifts. Just like on their birthday, they loved sitting on their presents and then going to town with the wrapping paper. They are just too funny.

Despite all the “happy”, there’s also some melancholy because time is really running out. In exactly 2 weeks, I’m going to be leaving and moving 900 miles away. Now that it’s all really happening and it’s getting down to the wire, I’m a little anxious–that is I’m A LOT anxious. And sad. I can’t help it. I don’t want to leave everyone. The kids especially. It breaks my heart just thinking about it. But I have to do it. And there’s still so much to be done before then. I still have to pack–I hate packing!–but it has to be done. And I still have to figure out a time to get together with Erin, the bestie, because she’ll never forgive me if I leave before hanging out with her one last time. It’s going to be a stressful two weeks, that’s for sure.

Well, until next time…

Happy Belated Merry Christmas!


Family At Its Finest…

So it’s been a pretty idyllic weekend so far. For the first weekend since August, I’m not holed up doing homework and it’s great. I feel like I finally have a chance to breathe, instead of cramming in papers and reading in my every spare minute that I’m not taking care of the boys. It’s great.

My sister surprised us by bringing my Grams, Avie, Emmie, and Lena back with her for the weekend. My mother’s been here since she was released from the hospital following her recently surgery, so it’s definitely a full house! It’s crazy and loud and hectic, but I don’t mind it. The boys love having the girls here to play and Tyler has been stuck to my Grams like glue since the moment she walked in the house. I swear, that little boy has her wrapped around his little finger. It’s “shaking-my-head” worthy, but sweet. My grams has always been adamant about not having favorites, but we all know she dotes on little Ty. Though, in her defense, he’s a little cuddle bug, so it’s hard to say no to that cute little face. I should know. There’s a reason I spend 90 percent of my day having to hold him and his brother. They both want your attention–and all of it. There’s no halfway with those two.

I’m kind of glad my sister brought them all out with her. I really don’t get out to see them as much as I used to. Mostly because if I want to go and visit, that involves having to get the boys up at the crack of dawn that morning to get ready so my sister gets to the school on time (she’s a teacher) and that’s no easy task. Ty will literally wake up with a smile no matter what, but Jakey is NOT a morning person at all. And he’s especially cranky when he gets woken up. And now that both boys are mobile, getting either one to stay still long enough to change them, let alone get them dressed and fed and settled in the car–well, it’s certainly no easy task, that’s for sure. It’s a battle most days just to let them let me change them. If they had their way, they’d crawl around diaper-less all day. 🙂 And packing for twins?? That’s a job in and of itself. You’d be amazed how much stuff you have to bring with you just for a day trip. It’s crazy. Then there’s the hour and a half commute to my Grams (my sister teaches at the elementary school in our hometown)…which is no fun at all. I hate long drives, and the boys hate it even more. So, long story shot, it’s a heck of a lot easier just to stay home with the boys. That, and I’m not too keen on spending hours at my Grams’ these days. My brother’s back staying there and he and I don’t get along at all, especially this past year. He tried saying something to me on Thanksgiving and I brushed him off and so naturally, he lit into me about how I’m a bitch and dredged up the same damn insults he’s been throwing at me for years about whatshisname from the bar and how I supposedly got with every guy that walked in there. Honestly, as much as it bugs me that he won’t let bygones be bygones–I mean, come on…I haven’t had anything to do with whatshisname in well over 5 years!–I can’t help but find it quite amusing. You’d think he’d find something else to insult me with instead of 5-year-old OLD news. YOU’D THINK. But nope. And that whole bit about me getting around with everyone at that bar–well, let’s just say I wish my sex life was as padded as he seems to think it was. You know, at first it bothered me because well, I think it would bother anyone to be accused of things that you know aren’t true, but at this point, I really don’t even care. I’ve long since realized that he’s just trying to rattle me and get a fight started by throwing those same old accusations in my face every time I turn around–and I’m just tired of rising to the bait, so to speak. It’s one of those “you have to consider the source” kind of things and well, it’s my brother. He’s just a jerk. Always has been. Always will be. I think he just wants everyone else to be as miserable as he is. But fighting with him–it’s pointless. I learned that long ago. He’s just not worth it. I know the truth, and that’s all that really matters. So yeah, he’s part of the reason I avoid going to my Grams…him and the fact that there’s just too much drama happening there. And loud. It’s really, really loud there. I know it’s always been that way, but being away from that kind of household for the past year–it’s really noticeable to me now. I like the peace and quiet out here…not that it’s always quiet or peaceful for that matter when you have twins roaming around and getting into everything, but it’s far better than it is at my Grams. While I miss seeing my Grams and the kids, it’s really just not worth the hassle.

I’m glad I get to spend some time with them this weekend though. I figure I have to take advantage of this time that I do have to spend with them, considering I’m not going to be seeing them for another 6 months, at least, when I move in January. I literally only have a little over two weeks left until I leave for Tennessee, so things are getting close. I did get to spend some time with Lena Thursday night, one-on-one. She came back with my sister for the night so I could take her dress shopping for her field trip Friday with her class to see The Nutcracker. Spending time with that girl is anything but boring. For instance, as we were heading to the store, she tells me to turn on the radio. Since I haven’t really spent a long of time with her in the past few months–and she’s always in a hurry to get off the phone when I call her–I suggested instead that she fill me in on what’s been going on with her these days. I made the mistake of asking her how 6th grade and school was going…which launched her into talking to me for the 25 minute duration of the drive about the 6th grade dating scene. She really got into it, telling me all about who was dating whom and which boys are cute and which ones aren’t…and well, you get the idea. I mean, she was all animated and everything. It was actually quite amusing, hearing her talk about how her friend Carissa–who up until the start of this school year has been her worst enemy–is dating this boy in their grade. When I asked her what exactly entails “dating” for a bunch of 11 and 12-year-olds, she just shrugged and said, well he bought her flowers and chocolate for her birthday and asked her out, so they’re dating. Kids–they’re hilarious. Anyhow, that was the entirety of our drive. Not exactly the conversation I envisioned when I asked her to tell me what was new with her. But that’s what I get for asking, I guess. Still, I love that girl. She’s something else. She really is. She’s not too happy with my leaving though. She’s made it very CLEAR how mad she is about the fact that I’m going to be missing her birthday come April. I tried to reason with her, saying that I was there for the first 11 birthdays, which should count for something…but she doesn’t see it that way. Unfortunately, it is what it is. I’m leaving…there’s no if-and-or-buts about it. It’s something that’s happening…like it or not. As much as I wish I could stay here and be there for all her birthdays and every big moment in her life in the upcoming years…that’s just not going to be possible. I tried to explain it to her that this is something that I have to do for myself…she wouldn’t hear any of it. She may be really smart for her age and–having grown up surrounded mostly with adults, she’s been exposed to far more than most kids her age have…but it’s moments like this where I’m reminded that she’s still just a kid. She doesn’t understand why I have to leave. She’s too young yet to know that being an adult isn’t always as fun as it might seem and that there are times when you have to do things that you don’t necessarily want to do. It’s just a part of life. Someday she’ll understand that. I just hope that eventually she’ll forgive me for doing this, for leaving her. I love that little girl so much. Distance won’t ever change that. Ever.

Emma and Avie aren’t as aware as Lena is about my leaving. I mean, they know that I’m moving to Tennessee, but I don’t think they really understand what that means. I think Ava thinks it’s just temporary…that I’m just taking a little trip there like I did back in April. God, I’m going to miss her. So much. She’s just a joy to be around…and smart as a whip. Not to mention, she says the damnedest things that girl. She’s hilarious. She’s been shadowing me since she got here yesterday. If I have to go to store, she’ll stop whatever she’s doing to run out and grab her coat and boots–announcing that she’s going with me. This afternoon she insisted on taking a nap with me. I love taking naps with the kid. She looovees to cuddle up next to me and talk–she LOOOVEEES to talk. And she’ll keep on talking until you tell her to shush and go to sleep. She’s too funny.

My sister and the kids teamed up to give me a little surprise after dinner earlier. It was a real “aww moment”. Everyone gathered in the kitchen and then called me in. When I walked in there they all had cupcakes in their hands and starting singing a funky version of “Happy Birthday”–in which they changed the words to Happy 4.0 in honor of my perfect 4.0 GPA this past semester. It was so weird and they’re all little nuts for doing it, but I love them for it. It was the sweetest thing and I’m blessed that they cared that much about my accomplishment to celebrate it with me. Honestly, I’m kind of proud myself that I managed to get a 4.0 despite taking care of twins full-time. It was definitely a struggle…and probably one of the most stressful semesters I’ve every had. I’m so glad that it’s finally over…even though I know it’ll all be starting back up in just a couple of weeks…but a couple of weeks of relaxing is better than nothing, so I’ll take it.

I’ve got to say, I’ve had my problems with my family…disagreements, fights, moments where I simply can’t stand the sight of them or the fact that I’m related to them itself…but when push comes to shove, I know I’m blessed to have them. They loud and dysfunctional, but they’re mine and I love them more than anything. It’s moments like tonight that I’m reminded just how much. It’s going to hard getting in that car January 9th and driving away from them. Not to mention strange in that for the first time in 27 years, they won’t be with me. I’m so used to having them around or being just a short drive from them. But this is different. This is 900 miles. This is me…on my own…without them. It’s going to be a big adjustment, that’s for sure. I’ll be okay though because I know that they’ll still be there…having my back from here while I’m down in Tennessee, still loving me, and as tonight’s little surprise proved–still rooting for my success. That means everything. Everything.

Until Next Time,


Oh Dear, It’s All Really Happening…

Well, I just submitted my final paper for Western Civ…which means I’m officially and FINALLY done with the semester. I can’t even say how much of a relief that is. This semester has probably been the most stressful one I’ve had in my college career. I don’t know if its because of the fact that I was taking care of twins full-time while I took the classes or what–either way, all that matters is that I’m glad it’s over. I need the break…even if it is a short one.

The next few weeks are going to be absolutely insane. My sister and brother-in-law are closing on the house this week so this weekend we’re going to be busy moving and getting settled in the new place. Once we get that out of the way, it’ll be just in time for Christmas…then not even two weeks after that, I’ll be leaving for school in Nashville. Speaking of, I got my roommate assignments today…which is exciting! I was so worried they wouldn’t be able to fit me in for housing because I applied so last minute, but luckily they were able to…which is great news. I’m excited and anxious all at once. On the one hand, I can’t wait to move…and on the other, I’m totally flipping terrified. This is all going to be so new…new people, new places, new life. And no family around to fall back on. It’s scary. Really, really scary. It’ll be a switch living with roommates. We all have our own rooms in the townhouse, but still. The last time I had a roommate was years ago with the Bestie and before that, at Colgate. Since then, I’ve either been on my own or living with family, so it’s definitely going to take some getting used to again. I’m really hoping we all get along. I really don’t want this to be a repeat of Colgate where, with the exception of my roommate and my ex, I pretty much kept everyone else at a distance. I don’t want to do that this time. I want it to be a good experience. I want to go out and do things in Nashville…see places…meet new people. This is my opportunity to do things right. I don’t want to pass that up. Not this time around.

So, this is all really happening! My head is spinning just thinking about it. There’s so much to do before I go. On top of everything else, I have to try and find a time for me and the Bestie to get together. It’d be horrible if I moved and didn’t get together with her. She’d be pissed. It’s sure going to be weird though. I mean, we literally haven’t hung out in over a year and a half. Granted, we talk on Facebook now and then, but it’s not the same as having that face-to-face interaction. I feel like so much has happened that it’s almost too much to be able to catch up on in one sitting. But, it’s all we’re going to get–and even if we do get it, we’ll be lucky. I’m a little sad that I’m going to be moving so far away from her. I know this is something that I have to do and that this is just a part of growing up…growing apart. But still, it’s sad. It’s always been me and her against the world. She’s always been there. Now there’s going to be 900 some odd miles between us. God knows what that’s going to do to our friendship. It’s going to change it, I know that. It’s inevitable. I just hope it’s strong enough to withstand the distance because I know most friendships aren’t. Hopefully ours is an exception to that because I think I’d be lost without her in my life. She’s like my other half, in a strange, non-lesbian kind of way. Who knows, maybe she’ll wise up and decide to move down and say to heck with the Valley and her boy toy. Wishful thinking, I know. Oh well. A girl can hope, right?

Well, I’ve got a long day tomorrow–or should I say today–so until next time…


Twinnies Turn ONE!!

So my two favorite little monkeys are celebrating their first birthday today!

Tyler ❤
Jakey <3
                               Jakey ❤

It seems so completely unbelievable that it’s already been a year. It feels like just yesterday when my Mom called and said that after four days of waiting, the doctors had finally decided to go ahead and take the boys and were getting my sister prepped for a c-section and that I needed to get to the hospital ASAP. I remember sitting in that waiting room with my mother and my brother-in-law’s parents, on the edge of our seats, just waiting…and then hearing the chime on the phone indicating a new text message…and then there they were, these two little scrunchy-faced bundles of absolute perfection. Finally, after two years of trying, a year of fertility treatments and failed pregnancies, my amazing sister finally got her happy ending–she became a mother to two beautiful, healthy, incredible baby boys. I don’t know which moment was more amazing–seeing those boys for the first time, or seeing my sister in the recovery room holding one bundle in each arm, an exhausted but absolutely content and happy smile on her face as she showed them off. I don’t think I’d ever seen her looking so happy before…and it was just a wonderful moment. My big sister–the person I’d looked up to my whole life–was a Mama. Her dream came true that day…and I couldn’t have been more proud.

What A Difference A Day Makes...
  What A Difference A Year Makes…

I don’t know if I can even put into words how truly blessed I feel to have been such a big part of their lives this past year, but I am. SO, SO blessed. When I moved in with them back in January, I honestly never expected to stay. Or that I’d even want to. Looking back on this past year, I’m so glad that I did. Being a part of these little boys’ lives like I have been, has been incredible. I’m not going to lie, I’ve had my moments. Taking care of twins is HARD. I mean, taking care of one baby is one thing, but when there’s two–it’s incredibly difficult. People who say or think otherwise don’t have a clue what they’re talking about because it is hard. Oddly enough, it was easier the first few months. I got into a routine that worked well. And then they became mobile. That’s when the scale tipped, BIG-TIME. Now they’re crawling and standing and taking first steps…even climbing on top of things! They won’t sit still for any length of time and they’re constantly everywhere and into everything. And on ME. The past month or so, they’ve gotten into this phase where they both just want to be held–at the same time! And they’ll throw a fit if you don’t appease them. Think one baby crying and screaming is bad? Try TWO babies crying and screaming at the same time! Honestly, I don’t think I’ve ever questioned my sanity as much as I have in the past month.

Even still…I wouldn’t change it for anything. Not a thing. I love those two boys more than I could possibly convey in words. They have my heart. Leaving them is going to be one of the hardest things I’ll ever have to do, I think. I mean, I’ve practically raised them. I’ve been with them every day. I’m the first face they see each morning when they wake up–and more often than not, the last when they go to sleep.

They’re a huge reason why I know that I’m ready for this next step in my life…the move to Tennessee next month. They make me want to be better, if that makes sense. They do. My sister keeps telling me that I need to settle down and have a few of my own…but I think I’ll wait on that bit…for the time being. Right now, I want to focus on making something of myself. Something they and the rest of my family…myself even…can be proud of. Once I’ve done that and I’m ready for that next step…then I’ll do the rest. At this point, that’ll be the easy part. At least now I know that I’ll be ready for that, when the time comes.

I’m leaving in less than a month. Leaving my little monkeys and everything I’ve ever known. I’m excited–super excited, and a little scared. I think, more than anything, I’m just hoping that I’m not making a mistake. I’ve screwed up so much in my life…it’s time I finally did something right. Hopefully, this move is a start in the right direction. And yes…I’ll be a crying fool on that long drive come next month…but I have all these moments that I’m bringing with me. Memories and photographs…they aren’t the real deal, but they’re the next best thing. I can do this…because of them.

So here’s to my little monkeys. Happy Birthday baby boys. I love you more than you could possibly imagine.

xoxo MESSIE (aka Auntie Jo Jo)

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