Monday, June 24, 2013

Dipping our toes

One thing my nieces and nephew enjoy over the summer is their pool.
They spend hours and hours swimming or just dipping their toes in the water.
This is the youngest little guy in our family.  He doesn't wear diapers anymore and is very proud of his 'big boy' swimming trunks.
On this particular day, it was a bit chilly. Thie kids were content hanging poolside.
Little M is the middle child.  She is a beautiful spitfire with a little bit of devil in her big brown angel eyes. 
Big M. was brave enough to test the waters. She wasn't in long before she wrapped herself in a towel.
 Summer is just beginning and I am sure the kids will doing more than dipping their toes in the water very, very soon!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Bipolar in his eyes

Yes, yes… you have heard me talk about Bipolar and how it has affected me.  Our society often talks about bipolar and how it affects the person who has it and tends not to think about the spouse or family member who takes care of someone with bipolar.  I often wonder, what does my husband think of my illness?

Letter from Todd:
I have been with my wife over 20 years now. We have three children. Our relationship has had some hurdles but we have a bond that keeps us going. My wife is a beautiful person who has lots of life and that is what attracted me to her when we first met. Soon after we were married her behavior was like Dr. Jeykll Mr. Hyde.  I couldn't help but notice she had days that she would rage and then crash, crying hysterically. She blamed her dysfunction childhood for the rages she couldn't control.  She lashed out on me and I felt as if I was walking on eggshells, that I could not do anything right.  It was like living with a monster.

After we had baby #2 she got a lot worse. She blamed me for everything and no matter what I did to I still got the same responses.  I try not feeling like I am the person causing all this as I am her target 99% of the time. I go to work and drive 45 minutes to get home and wonder who I am going to face tonight.  It isn’t always like this there are days that remind me of who I loved but when the dark side pops up and she say’s such hurtful things, I wonder why I haven’t walked away from her. 

It was around this time that my wife sought counseling. I could see her working through her childhood issues and trying to become a better person.  She was trying to control her rage, but wasn't always successful.

After baby #3 the depression was at an all time low. She was having panic-attacks and slept all the time.  Once our son found her in the bathroom in the fetal position, crying uncontrollably. As time has gone on I began seeing less of the beautiful woman I know and more of a demanding , hurtful person who had days of depression with strong guilt and talks of suicide.  I do love her but the verbal abuse and roller-coaster emotions were taking its toll on me and I was wearing out, loosing myself, thought soon there would be nothing left.

She sought help of a psychiatrist, was diagnosed with bi-polar and began medication.  For 15 years my wife has tried many, many different medications and combinations (all under the doctors supervision).  Nothing really seemed to work well.  Last year she began seeing a new doctor that she really likes and he put her on a new medication. Since then the mania has subsided and the depression has been manageable.  She still has her ups and downs though and I wonder if it will ever end.  

My wife is beautiful, my wife is strong. She refuses to let this illness get the better of her. Our marriage is a team effort.  It isn't an easy road, but what relationship is?  Life is a journey and I will be holding her hand along the way.

How did I get so lucky?  He is my prince.  You can read more about my bipolar story HERE.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Old School Blogging… The ABC's of ME

It's old school blogging time!

I was tagged by Audrey  and I am so excited to play!

A. Attached or Single? Happily attached to my husband of 20 years.
B. Best Friend? Other than my husband, Heather F. Heather walked into my life right when I needed a friend to lean on.  She hasn't let me fall yet! 
C. Cake or Pie? Chocolate, double chocolate, double fudge chocolate CAKE!
D. Day of choice? Saturday
E. Essential Item? My purse.. it must weigh 5 pounds.  I keep min-first aid kit (my youngest plays ice hockey), wallet (usually empty of cash), makeup, iPhone, sunglasses, Nook, pens, checkbook, notebook, keys, brush, gum, granola bars (for the hungry hockey player), contact lens case and solution, Colgate wisp mini-toothbrush, floss, motrin, *ahem* feminine products… Do I really have to go on…  I could, ya know.
F. Favorite Color? duh, PURPLE!
G. Gummy Bears or worms? Bluck. Neither.
H. Hometown? Pottstown. Not a town to be proud of. We moved out when the boys were small.  Best choice we ever made!
I. Favorite Indulgence? Snickers bar
J. January or July? July because it's hot, my anniversary and my oldest son's birthday.
K. Kids? 3 wild and crazy boys (if I can still call them boys). 1 is 23, 1 is 18 and 1 will be 16 next week.
L. Life isn't complete without? Love
M. Marriage Date? July 23rd
N. Number of Brothers / Sisters? 2 younger sisters, 1 step-sister
O. Oranges or Apples? Apples (Granny Smith are my favorite). I can't have too much citric acid. It brings out my stomach ulcer and hurts like a capital-B!
P. Phobias? Being buried alive or drowning.
Q. Quotes?    "If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read more fairy tales." ~Albert Einstein
R. Reasons to Smile? My boys, my husband, my BFF, the beach and Adam Levine.
S. Season of Choice? Summer, I love summer
T. Tag 5 people? Heather, Kerry, Les, Laura, Rebecca.
U. Unknown Fact?  Sometimes I will eat a Snickers Bar for dinner.
V. Vegetable? I rarely eat meat, so there really isn't any vegetable that I wouldn't eat.
W. Worst Habit? Eating a Snickers Bar for dinner.  (Do you see a theme? LOL)
X. X-Ray or Ultrasound? I had a few Ultrasounds when I was pregnant. The only x-ray's I remember having is the ones at the dentists office.  Neither one really bothered me.
Y. Your Favorite Food? Snickers and Sweet Tea.
Z. Zodiac Sign? Scorpio


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Things that make my children's father a hero!

  • loves God
  • loves me
  • loves our three boys
  • loves his parents
  • loves our friends
  • works hard
  • sacrifices for his family
  • is dedicated to his family
  • desires to improve our family’s life 
  • makes time for questions
  • tries to fold the laundry
  • takes out the trash
  • is a wise teacher
  • makes time for our son's sporting events
  • plays golf with our boys
  • is trustworthy
  • is an honest man
  • makes me feel safe
  • sees the best in others
  • values commitment
  • values life
  • hopes for the best
  • is here
  • is different from me
  • encourages
  • he understands when I need to be alone
  • says ‘yes’ more than ‘no’
  • is flexible when I need something
  • is flexible when our kids need something
  • loves to play cards
  • loves photography
  • buys diet pepsi for me

These are just some of the things that I am thankful for my husband and the father of my children. 
Looking at the things that I am thankful for, makes him a hero in my eyes and the eyes of my children.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday Fragments

Good Friday Friends
Half-Past Kissin' Time
Friday Fragments is taking a summer vacation to SAN FRANCISCO! That's right! FF is going to stay with her Aunt Claudya for a while. (Yes, FF is a girl!haha) Unknown Mami Claudya has invited FF and promises to take good care of her during the summer. That means that she'll be hosting Friday Fragments.
This past week has been crazy busy with Zachary's high school graduation.
Buying kakis, shirt and tie.
Ironing the gown.
Getting his hair cut (1/2 hour before we need to leave for graduation - his idea, not mine).
Preparing for the party (which took a month's worth of planning).
And if that wasn't enough
Zach's drivers license test was scheduled the morning of the party.
This upcoming Sunday is Father's Day.
Brandon's 16th birthday is approaching too.
My dog, Ellie has discovered she can jump over the wire fence that surrounds the garden.
She now digs holes trying to find the phantom rabbit that lives there.

I found a new TV series that I like love!
The story line reminds me of Robin Hood but is based on a comic called The Green Arrow.
The main character is… well... let's just say very 'fit'.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Zachary's Graduation Party

We celebrated Zachary's Graduation with a P A R T Y!
It was a small party consisting of family and friends.
My BFF made the coolest cake EVER!

Krista & Zach
Brandon & Great-Mommom 
Zach & Mommom



Wednesday, June 12, 2013

My Graduate

My son did it. 
He graduated High School!
Graduation day was hard for me.  It was a day that I went as a parent of a high-school student but came home as a parent of a future college graduate… a parent of a man who has his whole life in front of him… a parent of a person who thinks he has all the time in the world… a parent of a person who doesn't yet realize how quickly time flies by.
 As Zachary got closer to receiving his diploma, his smile became wider...
and wider...
and wider!
At the end of graduation the physical education center that the program was held in didn't have air-conditioning and was so ungodly hot.  
It was disorganized and too many people trampling over one another, trying to find their graduate.
Zach took off his hat and wouldn't put it back on for pictures.
I really wanted to tell him 'if he got his hair cut maybe he wouldn't be so hot'.
HOWEVER - he DID get his hair cut a few hours before graduation.
Zachary did semi-smile for his grandparents.
It was raining for two days straight, so the graduation ceremony had to be held at Alvernia College Physical Education Center instead of the football field at Zachary's school.
Each student was only allowed four tickets.  I thought it was wonderful that the school set up a live-feed for other family members watch graduation. 
Todd and I are very, very proud of Zachary.
It was a tear filled good evening, dragged out  motivational speeches and a somewhat happy graduate!