Tuesday, August 30, 2005

In Case You Were Wondering

I believe Shannon and I were probably separated at birth. I read this recently on her blog and decided to play along:

10 Years Ago: I was 24 and working at Waldenbooks in a really dead mall. I was losing an enormous amount of weight on Fen/Phen and basically was melting. Depression was pretty deep because I had a degree and was still in retail. I finally got a professional job about halfway through my 24th year. I became a case manager at a behavioral health center that is now bankrupt and defunct. I also had a boyfriend who was younger than me, but could be a lot of fun. We both were film fanatics. Had a cervical cancer scare and had surgery. It was taken care of with one surgery and my cervix is fine.

5 Years Ago: I was still working at the behavioral health center and slowly watching the ship sink. I was in my Master's internship, and felt stuck. I graduated and was hooded in April and was so proud of myself I was unbearable. Even though I had gained back all of the weight I lost with Fen/Phen, I felt pretty okay with it because I didn't have any of the scary side effects that got it pulled off the market. I was going into my first year of marriage with B and feeling very in love and happy. C was adjusting much better than I to the whole stepmom thing. She was only four and seemed to be okay with me. Sometimes if she got mad she would threaten that her mommy would put me in jail, but otherwise we were all right. Had another surgery on the nether parts to determine if I had endometriosis. None detected, but I later found out that the cyst removed from my ovary contained "boy parts" EEEWWW!

1 Year Ago: B and I were preparing to continue with fertility treatments and I began Gonal-F shots. This would turn out to be our final two attempts at IUI with medication after I switched from an OB/GYN to an RE. Neither worked, I gained 20 pounds, and we made the decision to adopt from China. We had hit the $30,000.00 mark and were finished. Also, I applied and was accepted in my doctoral program, which is a pretty big accomplishment for the lady who was told by her fifth grade teacher that she would be lucky if she graduated high school! Take that Martha Collier - you old bitch!

Yesterday: Worked all day and then went to my research class. Finally got home around 8:30, ate dinner, and immediately went to bed. Laid in my gigantic bed and fell asleep with the remote in my hand listening to the soothing sounds of Napoleon Dynamite.

5 Snacks I Enjoy:
  • Doritos - Old School Nacho Cheese
  • Triscuits and Laughing Cow Cheese
  • Frozen Grapes
  • Slim Jims - I know they're gross
  • String cheese

5 Songs I Know All The Words To:
  • Bohemian Rhapsody - Queen
  • Greek Song - Rufus Wainwright
  • 1983 - John Mayer
  • Come Sail Away - Styx
  • Sing - The Carpenters

5 Things I Would Do With $100 Million:

  • Buy an enormous amount of land and build houses for B & me, my parents, my brother, Alicia, and my FIL - but they would be so far apart we would have to ride golf carts to visit. I would also give them annual allowances.
  • Adopt more than one child which is all we can afford right now.
  • Invest
  • Retire from social work, finish my doctorate and teach part-time
  • Hire a personal trainer, chef, and basic staff for my house and my family's houses if they wanted.

5 Places I Would Run Away To:
  • Alaska
  • Las Vegas
  • Vermont
  • Ireland
  • China - get my Ruby

5 Things I Would Never Wear:
  • A thong (bathing suit or underwear)
  • Sleeveless tops - the Oprah's are a little too loose
  • Leggings
  • A Banana Clip
  • A size DDD bra ever again!

5 Favorite TV Shows:
  • The Apprentice
  • Lost
  • Alias
  • Scrubs
  • Arrested Development

5 Biggest Joys:
  • Laughing with B and C
  • Talking with my nephew Noah, he is too smart and asks really cool questions
  • Getting an "A"
  • Hanging out with my family and friends
  • A great movie I want to see over and over

5 Favorite Toys:

  • Game cube
  • DVR - Charter Rocks
  • My new cell phone
  • Old School Crossword puzzles
  • My Dell

5 People I Tag To Do This : Anyone who wants to play - have at it!

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Busy Bee

So I've been kinda busy lately, and as you can see from previous posts, I can make up excuses until the cows come home. Outside of the Brand New Job, which isn't so Brand New anymore, everything has been neglected trying to plug ahead on the homestudy autobiography. Neither Brian nor I are very enthusiastic typers (I think the sporadic dates on this blog say enough), so we just have to keep telling ourselves it's for the Rubster and keep on keepin' on. So tonight while watching BB6 and Rock Star INXS, I will be typing away my life history.
School has started and I believe I am at a crossroads. It is time for me to start establishing a chair and a committee as well as take some Area of Emphasis classes. I decided my AOE would be Special Education, because I work in the field of disabilities and I am an Ethics and Human Rights Nazi; however, after tonight's class I am not so sure. I jotted off a quick email to my advisor begging for help, so we'll see. I don't think anyone will be happier than her when I finally choose a chair and they accept me. I believe I'll send her flowers to celebrate. Other than that, I am just busy, busy, busy trying to get my house and life situated. Please be patient.
Oh yeah, since I love trashy novels so much, and I consider myself a smart bitch, I have decided to add what I am reading, or have read in between blogging, to my blogs. If you want to read reviews check out this website.

Undead and Unappreciated by Mary Janice Davidson
Hot Number by Carly Phillips
The Waitress by Melissa Nathan (currently reading)

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Raise Your Hand if You're Sure

I am currently what could be deemed as a stinky person. There are many reasons a person may be stinky: exercise, bad day that effects the mood so you're mean to everyone, clothing mildewed in the wash, stepping in dog shit, eating too much garlic (Karen), etc...
Well, C and I, the ladies of the house, are having deodorant issues. Surprisingly, B smells great; he finally found the deodorant that works for him and he's the most olfactory pleasing of the bunch. C and I on the other hand are nasty, hormonal chicken soup smelling gals who just can't seem to get it right. We are both experiencing hormone issues that render our pits toxic areas that no brand of deodorant can seem to touch. Hers is much more excusable than mine - she's 9; it's to be expected! Me, on the other hand, must get it under control before I scare small animals into hiding.
Right now there are 4 different kinds of antiperspirant/deodorant sitting on my shelf: Dry Idea gel, Ban stick, Adidas stick, and Secret Olay platinum gel. None of which make it through a day of me sitting in an air-conditioned office where I read manual after manual and the only exertion I get is my trek to the bathroom or coffeepot. How can this be? What really pisses me off is the fact that I am not that sweaty. I don't like to sweat, I am very lazy, and I sit on my ass all day! I have a friend who has excessive sweat production and has even gone to the doctor because of it - she uses Secret and is fresh all day! We've discussed.
Nevertheless, I repeatedly ask my confidants - Caroline, Lori, and Angie if they can smell me because I can smell myself. The answer is always a resounding "NO!" It has gotten so bad at home, that B will randomly call out "You smell good" whenever I am doing anything that remotely resembles a nostril flare or the subtle " reaching-for-something-off-a-really-high-shelf-so-I-can-do-a-check" move. Just the other night I rolled over and woke up to B mumbling in his sleep, "you smell good." I realized then that I was laying on my back and had thrown my arm over my head.
My mother and my friend Angie, who are both in "The Change" are convinced it's residual hormone imbalance from Gonal-F shots back in November. I think 8 months is a long enough time to not have any lingering Gonal-F. Truthfully, I think they are convinced I am peri-menopausal and don't have the heart to tell me.
If anyone has any suggestions, please let me know. Otherwise I may become Howard Hughesish and be more self-conscious than I already am.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

I've Got to Let You Know....You're One of My Kind...

I just got an email from a high school classmate this morning - Class of 89. Later today I bought INXS' greatest hits. No real connection, but I started thinking about what I was doing back then.
In 1989 I ...
  • Was one of the few girls in my senior class that did not have a perm. This was because my mother refused to "ruin" my hair. I think she just didn't want to drop 80 bucks on a spiral perm. I finally paid for one myself right before graduation and I hated it.
  • Had a great BFF Kathy who was skinny and super smart. I slept over at her house almost every weekend and we would read cheesy teen romances, gossip about everybody on the planet, do drive-bys past boys we liked houses in her mom's Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme (with a sun roof) while listening to INXS, think pretty deeply about religion, steal sips of her mom's liquor and replace them with soda, drink icy cold Diet Pepsi and 7UP, and hang out all of the time without ever really getting too bored of each other's company.
  • Was very into Children's theatre and really thought I was the shit because I had a decent singing voiceand would get pretty big parts in the musicals. Later I realized I got the parts because I was so loud I didn't have to use a microphone. Regardless, it did wonderful things for my self-esteem so no regrets.
  • Had my first fender bender right in front of Kathy's house. I was driving a 79 Ford Fairmont so of course there was no damage to my car.
  • Worked at the local movie theatre and had a true Hollywood kiss right in front of the marquee. The wind was blowing my hair, leaves were sweeping down the deserted street at night, he dipped me Tom Cruise style, and I swear to God I could hear the swell of the orchestra. His name was Rob and he was really hot, had a manly moustache, and had both ears pierced. He was a football player at another school and drove a vintage Mustang. He dumped me for a beauty pageant queen named Bambi. I was devastated and cried in the popcorn storage room for hours.
  • I started college without any of my friends from high school and met my "first" (which did not happen until 1990) who was funny, stress-inducing, and made me feel very grown up. He is now married to a woman I went to high school with and they have three daughters.
  • Went to two funerals for guys I went to high school with. Doug and Jimmy were really nice boys who will never be forgotten.
  • Wore contact lenses for the first time. I still hate them to this day, but vanity will show it's ugly head occasionally and I will break them out on sunny days.
  • Used tampons for the first time - my mom always said no and when I would try I would be so tense I couldn't get it in. Once I got it I never went back to the mattress.
  • Read To Kill a Mockingbird for the first time and truly understood the power of the written word.
  • Called my brother "Ugly Boy" on a regular basis. I don't know why, just typical big sister bitchiness, but it stuck for several years and was eventually shortened to UB. If call out "Ugly Boy" or even UB, he will still answer today; however, I now mainly call him Brother.
  • Had a wonderful boyfriend named Mark who is Filipino. He had the most beautiful legs on a boy I had ever seen. He would bring me a gift before every date, call me daily, always hold my hand, pay for every date, and took me to my Prom. I dumped him because he would not kiss me even though I could have laid one on him and he would've responded. Now this seems silly, and truthfully, I think he was so perfect he scared the shit out of me.

Okay, just a few flashbacks to 1989. What are some of your memories of the year that brought us U2's Desire, Keds (without socks), pegged pants, and big, big hair?

Sunday, August 07, 2005

Spiritual Hoo-Hah - An Answer to the Why China Question

Man, people can be mean! Even though I should be cleaning my house, I just spent way too much time reading comments on The Naked Ovary. Talk about a flame war! I've been reading K's posts for a while, and on one really slow day at work (old job) managed to skim the archives. TNO is a blog about infertility that is honest, funny, and oftentimes pretty damn sad. K and D have had it pretty rough with IF and have begun the process to adopt from China. In reading these comments I began to think about the comments and insensitivity B and I have endured over the course of our IF and subsequent decision to adopt. The number one question is "Why China? Why not here?" Depending on the tome, sometimes this question is true curiosity, but, sadly to admit, most of the time it's really a "Why not White?' question. We live in a rural state that is 98% Caucasian. Racism and ignorance seemed to be served for dessert in many homes, and being a somewhat educated person, have often tried to see these types of questions as an opportunity to educate. Sometimes it works, sometimes I walk away angry and hurt.
B and I did a lot of research before we started treatment for infertility. Because B has lupus and a history of intensive chemotherapy, we knew we would have to do IUI with donor sperm. We also knew from the beginning that there was a very good chance that we would not be able to have a "pregnancy." In knowing this, many family members and friends wondered why we ever tried. I can't really explain it. I wanted the baby way more than I wanted the pregnancy; however, in retrospect, I think I wanted the biological baby in order to ease the minds of our families. Like I said earlier, our rural culture is not very accepting of differences, and the adage of "blood is thicker..." really means something here.
My family was aware we were using donor sperm, but we kept it from B's family. My parents were open-minded and okay because, if there was a baby, he or she would still be "theirs" seeing as the baby would share my DNA. Because of B's mother's religious beliefs we chose not to tell her, and she never knew. I hinted to her once prior to her death that we may have to use donor sperm, and her comment was "Let's pray that you don't have to do that." I knew then we could never tell. In many ways it was a relief that it didn't work. That kind of secret is a biggie and I am glad I won't have to explain it to my child.
Although I am not a spiritual person, I think I have known all along I will never give birth and adopting was what we were meant to do. When I dream of having a baby, I never dream of being pregnant (I may have and just don't remember). I always dream of a girl baby with no face and black hair. I am always happy in the dream, but most of the time the baby's back is to me. I am not chasing her, just watching. It's kind of strange. B and I both have blonde hair and light eyes. If our DNA were to ever merge, the chances of us having a dark haired baby are pretty damn slim. Sometimes I think this is spooky and spiritually my body is telling me something, but oftentimes I think it's all a bunch of hoo-hah crap and I am subconsciously projecting my daily thoughts and reality into my dreams. Who knows?
We chose China because it seemed like that was where we were supposed to find our child (now who's talking spiritual hoo-hah?). We did the research, talked a lot, and decided China prior to ever doing the first IUI in 2001. We know most of the arguments, and have answers for all of the questions that have come our way. Answers to questions that are sad, truthful, and sometimes hurtful. Answers to questions I will not subject any readers to. Take my word for it, that we chose the best fit for our family and are making my dreams our reality. That's "Why China."

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Please Excuse Debra From....

One week into blogging and I am already lagging behind on my posts!
My excuses (in no particular order of lameness) are:
  1. This past week I started my Brand New Job. I can't really discuss it, but I will tell that it is corporate, different, and I have two great friends who are with me to ease the transition. One of my best friends, Caroline, and my new friend, Lori. I met both of these women through work. Caroline and I have known each other almost 10 years - yikes! We endured graduate school together, which is a bond that will never be broken. Lori and I met about 2 1/2 years ago through a mutual client. I also provided her with many, many continuing education credits; therefore, I take undue amounts of credit for her obtaining her license. I am really liking my new position and I am looking forward to learning more about the job. My only two complaints are that I have to get up an hour earlier, and I have to dress up every day, which includes big shoes and make-up. Dammit!
  2. I had my 34th birthday on Wednesday. This was the first time in over 10 years I worked on my birthday, which was sucky. My Honey B made it much better by hand-delivering 2 dozen yellow sweetheart roses to me at work. He says he was being romantic, but I know he was trying to impress my new co-workers. It was an attempt to rally new troops on the "B is a great husband-he's soooo romantic-how can you ever be angry at him" front for when we have divorce days. He totally schmoozed all of the women at my previous job, so now he has to start from scratch. Imagine his disappointment that only two people witnessed his romanticism because everyone else was in meetings. It was also exacerbated by the fact that my new AA thought he was the flower delivery guy. I have to give him credit though, he is a great guy who is v.v. romantic (much more than I will ever be) and his schmoozing works on me about 90% of the time. So even though I think romanticism is overrated and I am a withered heart cynical crone, B makes up for us both. It's actually kind of a relief.
  3. On my birthday, we also went to see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which confirms Johnny Depp's position at the top of my Top Five list joining Julian McMahon, Russell Crowe (as Gladiator only), Dave Matthews, and Rodrigo Santoro. Yum-Yum. I loved, loved, loved this movie. Johnny Depp is the best actor of my generation even though he hangs out with a skinny supermodel who is a rock star wannabe. Her song Commando is so bad I thought it was a joke the first time I heard it.
  4. We also celebrated my birthday at my parents house. My mom is the greatest cook ever! Mom always makes the birthday dinner and birthday cake of our choice. The menu was fried chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn on the cob, and macaroni salad. Total carb and fat fest! She also made Sunshine Cake, which is yellow cake with mandarin oranges, pineapple, cool whip and lots and lots of love. Along with my parents, my Honey B and C, my brother and sister-in-law with the crazy/beautiful kids were there, my cousin Stef and her new boyfriend, my Poppaw Kitty-Kat and my stepgrandma Helen, and my great- aunt Mommy Gay. I got a Target Card (yay), a lovely perpetual desk calendar, and a picnic kit. I am still figuring out what I want from B and he's getting frustrated. Good food, good presents, good birthday.
  5. We finally decided on an agency, and are currently filling out the paperwork for application. Also, I spoke with our homestudy agency and received the packet for application as well. My friend Ashley is a social worker there, and even though she can't do our homestudy, she is able to answer all of my neurotic questions. I love it that she's there because she knows my personality and can handle it when I get demanding, snippy, and crazy. We both have to write huge autobiographies - great more paperwork. Guess what we'll be doing tomorrow.
  6. I finished my summer class. I had to take a multiculturalism class (my 3rd!) this summer and we had a final paper. Me being me, I waited until the last minute and cranked out 20 pages in APA format with reference on the last day. I received a 299 out of 300 because I couldn't get my table of contents to hyperlink which gives me a 98% in the class. Nevertheless, I am not encouraging anyone out there to wait until the last minute to write a paper. I swear I developed chronic Carpal Tunnel in the span of 8 hours.

So those are my excuses, and if I sit here any longer I could probably think of many more. I will try to post as often as I can. But you see, I have to.....