Wednesday, October 28, 2015

My husbands MS affects us all


I'm not even sure where to start. But I felt I needed to get this out.   As I sit here with my eyes welling up, once again today, there are so many thoughts and emotions, I really don't know where to begin or what to focus on.

The last...I would say...month....has been pretty rough in our house. There is just sooo much going on at once, and none of it can be put on the back burner and none of it can be "completed", and checked off the list. 

I am feeling so alone right now. And I can't even say that to my friends or family really, because they take it offensively because I haven't tried to reach out.I havent' because, they won't make me feel better...right now the only one who can make me feel better is my husband. And he isn't there for me...and I am trying my damnest to not be at him about it.
So lets just start from where the downhill spiral started, honestly.

About a month ago, a family member decided to surprise us, with bringing our twin daughters a bunk bed.  No notice, just showed up and started loading it in my house. Thought they were doing us a favor.   Appreciated, but I am one of those better ask me first.
I know this may sound like nothing, but keep in mind, I was sleeping in my twins room, for the last 2 yrs. Things weren't going well with me and Brian, and we both have our own habits that annoyed each other and it was just easier.  As time dragged on, it became the norm. However, over the summer, things were nice with us. We were getting along!! My mom had another fall and was in rehab and we thought that was it, and I was worried about my dad and all...and it seemed like he was trying to cheer me up a lot.  Little things he would do to let me know he was there for me. 

So when these beds came in... first, I never wanted my kids to have bunk beds and I didn' t think my kids really wanted them either. But I let it go, I let them be installed, all because my husband actually said to me "I just want my wife back".  Now my husband is very cold when it comes to emotions, so hearing those words being spoke sincerely, sent flutters straight to my heart.

For the first 2 nights things were great, although I did find something to complain about every night for about a week.  Then one day he said to me "You are like a drug addict right now going through withdraw. You will get over it."  Sounded mean and funny, but it made sense. So I chilled out.

Everything was fine for a few more days. Then it was our anniversary. He worked for some of the day, stopped and got me a gift on his way home, then took the kids out to the park so I could work. When he came home, he was pretty much in his room all night. And I realized he really wasn't saying much to me. By the time I was done everything, and went to bed, he was snoring. OK....happy Anniversary...

Over the next week, I had to deal with doctors appointments to get my own health issues analyzed (my doc thinks I have Fibromyalgia) and on top of it, my mother wasn't doing too well, all over again.  And this time we knew it was because something SHE was doing because she was fine while in the rehab home.  So we all kinda of needed to babysit her now.  I NEEDED MY HUSBAND. Even if it was just a random hug or sleeping next to me without crawling to the other side of the bed.  And he wasn't there.

He continued to ignore me. I kept asking what was wrong he would say "nothing". I slowly started growing angry. He needs to communicate with me!!  He thinks things, and starts to believe them, then I take the brunt for it. WTF did I do to piss you off??????  It turned into a big argument, and just for the sake of pissing him off, I threatened to get rid of the bunk beds and sleep back int he twins room. He said that if I did, our marriage was over.   Again..I stepped back & realized that I was upset about the same thing about 6 mos ago. Wondering if our marriage was over since neither of us seemed to care about sleeping separately.

I chose to not speak for a few days, to allow us both time to think. His actions showed me he was chilled out. So I tried talking to him...every night for about 4 nights in a row. "how are you feeling? Are you having new symptoms? Why won't you talk to me? Please don't be afraid to talk to me, I am here for you." etc etc etc   He finally admitted to me that he was depressed about his MS and the things he can't do anymore.  Hearing this, made me want to cry for him, as I often do.  He never admits to anything.

Over the next following week, his mood swings were soo up and down. I could ignore some of them, as he was just acting the way I do sometimes, but others were embarrassing. He would get highly agitated with the girls, in stores, and get really loud with them, for NO reason at all. I found myself having to try to calm him down a lot, and pretty much tell him to go to his room, while I handle things. I don't want our daughters to feel as though he is upset with them directly. And at the same time, he was giving them more attention than me, and I'll admit, I've been jealous about it. Why can't he be like that with me? I am the one putting up with this shit all the time?!!!

He finally broke down and called our doctor and was prescribed some medicine. He was put on one that should help with his MS pain, walking, and depression. I overheard him say today that he thinks its helping him walk better. (see, I have to overhear him tell other people how he's feeling so I know for myself). Great!!  But his moods are still up and down. I guess that will take some more time.

I did say to him last night, after I sent him to his room for unnecessary yelling, "I am really trying to ignore the outbursts, b/c I do the same thing. And I am really trying to help you get through this. But I can't help you if you don't talk to me & tell me what you are going through."  He simply said "I know."    I do have to say, in the 2 yrs we have been going through this, he has only praised me for being supportive. So I guess that is a good thing??

I feel horrible when I decide to take the girls somewhere that might require more walking then I know he can handle. I think to myself -- I need to at least offer to see if he wants to go. But if I do, and he declines, will that upset him? Should I just tell the girls we can't go, so that he doesn't feel left out? Why won't he just use his cane or a wheelchair?
its not so much that I feel like he is being left out of the event, its that I feel bad for him and our daughters that he is missing out on their lives.

I know that this was a long one, and that it was kinda of all over the place but...I just felt I needed to get it out.  I am just trudging through life right now, not knowing how things are going to go one day to the next (which is really NOT like me). Crying for my husband physical and mental pain. Crying for my kids who in a small way, have lost a part of their dad. And who at the same time, are all at pre-teen ages and having to go through that phase of their own lives. Crying for my mothers issues and for the weight it has on my father.

This is not how I imagine life would be like at 38 with kids, but......For better or for worse....I am here to stay.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

DIY photography

Hey all!

I lately have been trying my hand at some non-professional photography. It started with seeing some beauty in the Spring, while at a local park, and deciding to take pics of my kids frolicking in the beauty of the day. Then I decided to do a special shoot for Father's Day this summer. And I often got nice comments on the photos.

Recently, I have been doing our own Christmas photo cards as well, just with my own photography sense. One year I grabbed the camera, a few props and headed into the woods to see what happened. Last year, I had an updated phone, and I saw an opportunity last year, snapped a few photos to see how they would come out, and I loved what I captured. 

These were done with a regular 6 yrs old digital camera and generic editing programming:

This was taken with a camera phone and no editing, just Christmas lights doing their job:

Well, now its Fall. Our favorite time of year. So this weekend, I took the girls to this little event, at one of my favorite, childhood parks. While we were there, we decided to try to do a little photo shoot, in hopes I would get a perfect shot for this years Christmas card. Well, I am not sure about using any of the photos for our Christmas cards, but I still love some of the shots I got. (These were ALL taken and edited on my Samsung Galaxy 5)

And of course, I had to take a few shots of just the beauty of the Fall season in nature.

Yes this post is mostly a pictorial, but I wanted to show you, that with today's cell phone technology, you too can do you own photography.Not everyone can afford professional sessions all the time. Just grab your kids, hit a park, and snap away. You never know what you'll snap!

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Paris themed party??

Hey all!

So last weekend was my oldest daughters 12th BD. She originally asked for a Paris themed party. I thought that would be no problem.....but she wanted black & blue, not pink & blue. I challenge you all to go to any party store, or website and fine BLUE & black Paris themes supplies. Ha Ha

OK, challenge accepted. However, it ended up just turning into a blue & black party, with Parisian themed food. But all in all, it came out pretty good!

If you saw my last blog post, you will see that we made our own photo booth props. (link below) However, we also made our own frames. For the party, guests could take selfies or photos of each other, using the props, in front of our back drop. The back drop was simply 2 rolls of Dollar Tree wrapping paper, taped to the wall.

As for decorations, there wasn't too much....just about 50 balloons taped to the ceiling with silk ribbons hanging from them. And some streamers around archways and large furniture items.
I know you may be thinking, "Arent' all the kids going to be temped to pull those down?"  I was afraid of that as well. However, we made a positive mistake...we left an open bag of balloons on the couch. So...the kids just blew those up and played with them, which helped their temptation of the ones hanging down. Whew!  Also, just a note, if you decide to try this....we thought and analyzed how to do this with helium, and we realized that helium would deflate really fast, and we would have to tape the balloons up there anyway, so why waste the money. These are just regular, hot air from our lungs, with double stick tape. And 3 days later, they are still up there...

For a little entertainment, we decided to have the kids challenge themselves to be Parisian artists....on teeny tiny little canvas. And they got to take them home as a party favor.
I didn't get a chance to take photos of the food, but it was all Paris themed as well.  we had sandwiches on croissants, cheese and fruit, veggies with french onion dip, chips with french onion dip, mini eclair's, and we did make blue kool-aid for the kids as well. 

Last but NOT least!!! (I am so dang proud of this)  My daughter challenged me again, and saw this photo on Pintrest and asked for this cake design. I laughed at her "You're funny. I would need to go to a bakery for that and it would cost me a pretty penny. "  Well, after some research and watching YouTube videos, I thought, "I can do this!!!"  And OMG I did...yay!!! And she was soooo excited.
Blue rosette covered cake:

The topper was purchased off Etsy and was metal so can be used in her room a decor. But the cake...everyone loved it. I did make the inside blue and white swirled, and the outside is covered in blue rosettes. 4 cans of icing on that sucker!! Rich, but looked sooo pretty. And she was sooo happy, which is all I could ask for.

Hope this helps inspure your next BD party!!

DIY photo booth props

Thursday, October 8, 2015

DIY Photo props

Hey all!

I'm back!!!  Its been a busy week prepping for Madison's Paris themed birthday party that is coming up. We've been crafting away & I have one project finished, so I thought I'd share with you.

She wanted a photo booth type area, and she wanted photo props to go along with it. Well, time and money were running out, so we decided to tackle that ourselves.

First, get yourself some foam board from the Dollar Tree. Once piece can get you a lot of material.

Next, find some photos online of the props you want, and print them out. Then cut them out, to use as a template.

Next, trace the shape onto the foam board. Then using an Xacto knife, carefully cut out the shape.
Now I do want to warn you here, that the foam board is pretty much a sheet of thick paper adhere to the foam, and it may lift a little. I simply just took a thin paint brush, and got some Mod Podge (or glue of your choice) and place it where there was lifting.

Once your shapes are cut out, you can use a nail file or sand paper, to just smooth things out a bit.

From here, you can paint or decorate them as you choose. On the black ones, we chose to paint the edges black so it all blended. A few of them we painted a different color.

Last step, we coated all of them with Modge Podge to help seal in the paint and keep the foam from falling all over as well.

Lastly use some hot glue, and glue a wooden dowel or skewer onto the back side of the shape.

And your done! Now your photo booth props are ready and cost you only a few dollars.