Monday, October 11, 2010

We might be a little bit crazy...

Our youngest daughter was born less than seven months ago. The pregnancy was a hard one. I went to the emergency room three times during the first trimester, due to heavy bleeding. All they could tell me was that my uterus was the source of the blood. There was no explanation as to what was happening and why.

Less than halfway through the pregnancy, I was placed on the "high risk" list. I had to become more aware of everything I was doing, eating and so on. Ultrasounds were done at every visit by this point.

When test results came back positive for Trisomy 18 (Edward's syndrome), we made a trip to Augusta, GA to see a Perinatal specialist and have an amniocentesis done. After a mind numbing week of waiting, the results came back crystal clear: our baby was perfectly fine.

Labor was mostly uneventful, until a second does of Stadol caused the baby's heart rate to drastically spike and then drop. During delivery, it was discovered that the umbilical cord had been wrapped around her neck. Twice.

Despite all of the crazy things we've been through, we're ready to do it again. (I think)

We might be a little bit crazy, but we are officially trying for another baby. We have decided that now is a much better time to do it, rather than waiting until I am finished with school. Not to mention, with all of the problems we had before, we want to do it before it's too late.

So, here's to hoping that we're not getting into anything too far over our heads. Wish us lock and think BLUE thoughts!

Sunday, October 10, 2010

It doesn't hurt anymore

Seven years ago (today), I had a D&C to remove the baby boy I'd lost. The pregnancy had come as a major surprise, but was amazing, nonetheless. I was around 15 weeks pregnant and had started spotting around lunch time. I called my doc and was told to take it easy for a day or two and if things changed, to give him another call.

By that night, the bleeding was much worse. A second call to my doc resulted in a trip to the Emergency Room. As I waited for the ER doc to come back into the room to tell me what was happening, I stared at the clock. It seemed like hours before he finally walked through the door. The look on his face told me it was bad news. He explained to me that I was having a miscarriage. Not that I had had one, but was having one. It was not yet completed. I begged him to do something to stop it, to make things better. According to him, there was nothing to be done and it would be a few hours before it would finally be complete.

He spent the next several minutes reassuring me that this was not my fault, that things like this happen all the time and I should understand that my body had a way of knowing that it was not ready to go through birth again. I went home that night and cried for hours. Naturally, I did not sleep a bit. I was losing my baby. He wasn't gone yet, but as I lay in bed, he was dying. And there wasn't a damn thing I could do to stop it.

Two days later, I walked back into the ER for the D&C that had been scheduled during my conversation with the ER doc. My mother was with me as I checked in and stayed with me until they took me to the Operating Room. The procedure, I am told, went just as expected. Recovery would be minimal, a day in bed, then light duty the next day.

As I lay in the bed, just after surgery, I felt empty. He was gone. They had taken him from me. For a moment, I thought I heard someone else in the room with me. It sounded like someone told me "He's ok now, you don't have to worry". I looked around, but never saw anyone. I closed my eyes and cried.

Since then, this day has been a painful one for me. Until this year, that is. Today, I feel no pain. As I watch my two little girls laughing and playing together, I realize that I have something a lot of people wish they had. I now know, that I wasn't ready for another baby seven years ago.

So even though I remember the pain losing Joshua caused, it doesn't hurt anymore.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Product Review- Klever Koncept

I'm not sure I'll do this too often, but I had the opportunity to review a new product, so I jumped on it. Here are my thoughts. You can let me know in the comments if this makes me too much of a sell-out or not :-)

The other day, while I was catching up on my outdoorsy type news on a hunting site I post in regularly, I was contacted by another one of the forum members. He designed a handy new product and wanted to know if I'd be interested in trying it out. I asked him for some more info and he told me it's a new design on an old, commonly used product. Seeing as how I'm not your average girl (I hunt, fish and do all sorts of not very girly things) I decided to help him out.

The product is called Klever Koncept, and it's a safer version of a box cutter. He offered to send me one, free of charge, in exchange for spreading the word. If I liked it, of course.

I received the Klever Koncept in the mail this afternoon, and have already used it a few times. It's a very handy tool, indeed. Normally, I have my pocket knife on me at all times, but just to make sure I wouldn't reach for it out of habit, I stuck it in my purse. I want to make sure this little tool can do all it claims to be able to do. So far, it does.

It's pretty light, so you don't have to worry about balancing an awkward amount of weight in your hand while using a sharp blade. There are safety edges on the blades as well, to help protect your fingers (and anything else that could end up in the blade's way!) True story: many years ago, while slicing open some moving boxes, I ran a box cutter through some tape (going towards my leg instead of away from it) and wouldn't you know it, the darn thing slid right off the edge of the box and right into my thigh! Man that hurt. It also happens, that I was wearing my favorite pair of jeans...

They're very inexpensive and so far, a great tool to have on hand. You can check them out here. Thanks guys, for sending me this neat Klever Koncept! Now I don't have to worry about ruining any more jeans, or you know, cutting myself!

Monday, October 4, 2010


On Tuesday, Sept. 28th, I had surgery on my ear. This is what my head looked like after the surgery. Fortunately, they took the bandages off the day after. It was a rough night.

The technical term for the procedure is Tympanoplasty with Mastoidectomy. What does that mean, you ask? They replaced my eardrum (tympanoplasty) and removed a small cyst from my ear canal (mastoidectomy). The end result is supposed to be amazing. I say 'supposed to be' because we are still a while away from the actual result. It's going to take a few weeks for everything to completely heal up. And at least 2 months before I regain all the feeling in my ear.

The surgeon, according to my husband, seemed a bit surprised when he actually got into my ear. He had noticed the scar tissue from the previous surgery (did I tell you that I've had this done before? I have. It didn't work.) on prior visits to his office, but did not realize there was so much of it. Because of this, he had to remove a lot more tissue than planned, but it was all taken care of.

The doctor is an expert at what he does. He's won awards and patients fly in from all over the country to see him. He's good. He's so good, that they invite him to speak and teach at conferences all over the country as well. Because of this, every patient ends up being "research". He takes pictures of the entire procedure, and makes sure you have copies when everything is said and done. Yep, I have copies of the bloody mess inside of my ear. Yuck. Before you decide not to finish reading, I won't be posting them. They're yucky.

So far, the week after the surgery has been a painful one. I expected as much. What I didn't expect, though, was for the antibiotics to make me so dizzy and sick. After calling the doc, I was assured that it was normal, he prescribed some pretty heavy medicines to make sure we don't run into any infections. At least I have some pretty strong painkillers to help me deal with the pain, I would be a complete mess without them.

I have already noticed an increase in my hearing on that side. It's amazing. Annoying too. I'm not used to everything being so loud. I hope that changes soon. By the end of the night, I'm going on noise overload and want to cry.

Also, I start school tonight. I really want to wear my hair down to cover my freaky looking ear, but I hate when it hangs down in my face. So I suppose I'll just point it out and explain the situation real quick so everyone can have their stares and be done with it. It'll make for a less awkward few hours in class.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


On Monday, August 27th, I have to check in at the hospital in Augusta, GA for my surgery Tuesday morning. I will be there through Wednesday, the 29th.  I've had problems with my right ear for many, many years and I'm finally going to have it taken care of. And I'm nervous as all get out. It's a fairly routine procedure, according to the doctor I met with last week. He assured me that he's done thousands of these operations and could do them with his eyes closed (hope he doesn't start with me!).

Surgery, in itself, tends to make me more uptight than it used to. I have children to look after now. What if something happens during the procedure? Am I going to be able to take care of them? Am I going to be around to take care of them? All of this flashes through my brain every second of every day leading up to the surgery.

My husband,  is constantly trying to get me to "chill out" about the whole thing, but it's hard. I have dealt with so much pain and general crap associated with having a hole in my eardrum, that I'm almost used to it. And, in a way, I might be willing to deal with it if it means not having to have parts of my head cut open. That sounds kinda silly, but that's how terrified I am.

The recovery process, according to the doc, is around 4 days. Much shorter than my previous encounter with this type of surgery. I was laid out for close to a month then. I can deal with a few days. I sure hope Rob can. I won't be able to do much more than look pitiful and moan about how I wish I had never agreed to the whole thing, so he'll be in charge of raisin' the babies during that time. It should be interesting, to say the least.

The one thing that has me super excited about this procedure, as well as the expected outcome, is the fact that one day- I might finally be able to see things like this:

I think I just might be a little more willing to go through with it.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

It's been a LONG week...

So, my husband has been out of town since Sunday afternoon. He'll be home tomorrow (Thurs) thank God. Since he has been gone, everything that could happen, has happened.

I have a bad habit of letting my imagination get carried away (burglars and murderers and stuff) and usually end up not sleeping the entire time he's gone. By the third day, I'm so wound up, I end up crying every time the baby does. Even with my gun and the dogs in the house for added protection, I still end up a major wreck.

Last night was the first night I actually got some sleep. It was only because I missed so much the first few nights. I'm exhausted tonight, but there's a massive storm hitting us right now and all I can think about are the dead pine trees surrounding the house. No, I'm not just paranoid...we lost 28 during a recent storm. Several of those blocked the driveway and took a few hours to clear up. It was a mess. So now I'm worried about something hitting the house. *sigh* I just want my husband to come home...

In addition to all the crap that's been happening. I've neglected the school work I was supposed to do while I was at home this week. I just haven't had any time. The baby is teething and it's been pure hell. Nap time is non-existent these days. At the end of the night, when everyone is in bed, the last thing on my mind is school work. I'm usually trying to decompress from the day's activities.

As I type this, the dogs are whining because of the thunder, my 8 year old is trying to convince me that she can sleep with her lights and TV on (she doesn't like storms either) and the baby just woke up. AGAIN.

Have I mentioned that I can't wait for my husband to get home? *sigh*

Monday, July 26, 2010

Going back to school. I think.

Well, I did it. I took the first step in going back to school today. It wasn't easy, mostly because it required getting up before dawn, but it's been done. I took a placement test of sorts today, to see how stupid I've become in the 10 years that I've been out of school. I'm almost afraid to go back tomorrow to get my results. Why, you ask? (*sigh*) I'm almost ashamed to admit it, but I put my first name in the "Last Name" box and the teacher handed the form back to me to be fixed.

The rest of the time in the classroom went by slowly. This, of course, was due to the 500 question test in front of me. Broken down in parts, and each part timed. I finished the first section pretty fast and had time to look around. A few other people my age smiled back at me. A much older woman was struggling with her answers and kept tugging on a bit of hair hanging from her ponytail.

Moving on to the math section, the knot in my stomach turned into a fierce sinkhole. I was never very good at math and had a hard time just reading the questions. We were given 50 minutes to answer 40 questions. Along side my answer booklet were 3 sheets of scrap paper. I immediately knew this would not be enough scrap paper. I was right. I was only halfway through the questions when the timer went off. Man, I suck at math.

I was able to finish the rest of the categories quickly enough to go back to the math test and complete (attempt to understand the weirdness on the page is more like it) the other half. I'm pretty sure I'm going to need some extra help with my math type studies.

I have to go back in the morning to get my test scores and find out which classes I'll need to take in order to do well on my entrance exam.

What? I forgot to mention what I'm going back to school for? Sorry. I'm interested in becoming an LPN. It's a good starting point and it's only a 2 year degree. I can add to it if I decide to continue with school after my time is up. Or perhaps, after I work for a while.

Wish me luck. I'm going to need it. Oh, tomorrow is my first wedding anniversary. And I have to spend a few hours in a classroom, then take my 4 month old daughter to the doctor to get routine vaccinations. Yay!

**The picture at the top of the post was taken the morning after my husband proposed to me. We were camping in the mountains and got up super early to go fishing. It was a gorgeous day.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Allen (aka: the old people two houses down)

Dear Mr. & Mrs. Allen,

First, I would like to say that your fireworks display last night was beautiful. Absolutely stunning. That being said, lets move on to the real issue.

I know we live out in the middle of nowhere, and I am aware that it is, indeed, the 4th of July (America! Hooray!). But it would have been most kind of you to give us some sort of notice before setting off such an amazing display at midnight. When I heard the first boom, I assumed- as I'm sure most of the people in our usually quiet neighborhood did, that it was a single, celebratory spark to announce the anniversary of our independence.

Little did I know, that it would continue on until around 1:30 am. Had I been aware that this event was to occur, I wouldn't have tucked my sweet little 3 month old daughter into bed. I would also have let the dog come into the house so that he would not, in a frenzy of sheer terror, break the cable that keeps him safely put in our yard and end up trying to scratch our front door open. You see, that poor dog (in said frenzy) had no idea that the great terror in the sky was harmless. To him, it was some big, giant, noisy monster, trying to kill him.

I would also like to bring attention to the other dog that was already in the house and was now barking like a wild banshee. She, being the good little guard dog she is, was alerting us to the demons that were attempting to take down Earth. Those poor dogs...

It wasn't a total drag, however...I managed to see a shooting star in between colorful showers of ash and silently made a wish. I wished for you and your guests to grow tired and go to bed. You did, after another 30 minute round of blasts.

Thank you so much, again, for keeping us up all night. Tonight, we will be ready for the noise. And, perhaps, we will get to enjoy the show without being so aggravated.


Cortney B

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Emily Gift Brown

Born on March 26th 2010 at 3:06pm. 8 lbs 13 oz. 22 inches long.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Becoming a mother for the second time

September 12, 2009...been a long time since the last post. A LOT has happened since then. Mostly issues with the pregnancy. There were a lot of health scares and we almost had to make a very serious decision regarding the life of our child. Fortunately, everything came out just fine and we were able to continue on with the pregnancy. It's been stressful, but a blessing at the same time.

As I sit here, I am about an hour away from being induced. My little one has decided that she'd rather stay inside where it's nice and warm. She's 4 days late today, so my doctor decided to have some mercy on me. It's going to be a long hard day, but I feel a little more comfortable knowing that it'll all happen in a very controlled situation.

I'm terrified of becoming a mother for the second time. I haven't told many people. Their immediate reaction to any comment I make is "But you've done it before, you'll be ok!". Maybe I will, but it's still scary as hell. It's been a long time since I've done this. And to be honest...that's not the part that scares me. Being responsible for another life is. For the last 8 years, I've been responsible for myself and my daughter. Now there will be one more.

It's a terrifying thing and I know the road ahead will be a challenging one. I can only hope to make it to the end in one piece. Wish me luck...