I know it’s Friday Five day, but I got nuthin’ today. When I mentioned this to a friend, he said, “Just write about what’s been going on.” I replied that I wasn’t sure anyone wanted to read about that. But then, when I sat down to write, the DIY projects and ideas didn’t come, and instead my brain flooded with everything that’s been going on. So, here’s the Friday Five: five things that are swirling around my brain today.
1. My daughter, M, has been diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease. Well, the doctor is almost certain that’s what it is. We’ll know for sure after some tests next week. When I’ve told my friends this, they say, “Oh no!” or something similar, but I’m actually sort of grateful for the diagnosis. We now know what’s making her not gain weight (she’s lost 7 lbs. in a year, despite the fact that she’s eating like they’re going to outlaw food). There are some rough adjustments ahead, but nothing we can’t handle.
I can’t thank enough our pediatrician, who recognized the symptoms early and expedited our appointment with the GI specialist. The nurses and doctors at Children’s Healthcare and North Atlanta Pediatrics are the very best and have been amazing to us, especially to M (who is a tough nut to crack).
2. Our house is kind of sinking. OK, that might be a bit dramatic, but there are some beams that are moving and/or sagging, causing the floor to droop. Also, our property needs to be regraded on one side of our house to get the water away from the foundation. Not fun, but necessary, and I’ll be glad when I don’t feel like the house is lopsided.
3. I love Dear Husband. He is working like a dog right now and yet still has time to give me a hug when I need it (i.e., often) and be there for the kiddos. He’s amazing. As my friend Dana would say, I “out-kicked my coverage” when I married Dear Husband.
4. I miss Bear. I wonder if there will ever be a time when I don’t cry at the mention of her name, and yet I don’t really want that time to come. She’s still so there for me, if that makes sense. I think Brene Brown said that people treat grief like it’s something you have to get over. But really, grief is just the natural result of loving someone unconditionally. So, that’s where I am. M’s diagnosis and doctor visits have distracted me from thinking about this, but it’s kind of lurking there, under the surface.
5. I’m just so grateful. The #1 feeling I’ve had lately is gratitude: Grateful that we are getting closer to knowing what’s up with M and for the amazing doctors and nurses who are helping us with this. Grateful for Bear’s long, beautiful life. Grateful for Dear Husband who is clearly my better half. Grateful for my awesome kids with hearts of gold and lots of hugs. Grateful for my lovely and loving friends who have helped and supported me all.the.time. Grateful for Hank, who is dealing with his own grief and hangs close by because it helps us both. Grateful for my mom who taught me how to ask the right questions to get the right answers. Grateful to YOU, lovely readers and friends, for listening and supporting me and sending virtual hugs. Grateful for it all and feeling the love.
So, that’s my Friday Five for today. It’s not DIY, but it’s what’s in my world right now. At least one of these things is leading to a DIY project, though: I have decided that I’m going to finally give M what she has always wanted and paint her whole room green. She’s asked for this repeatedly and I’ve balked, because it will just be very, very green (and, I’m afraid, dark and cavernous). But this girl is one tough cookie and is about to deal with some big life changes, and she should have the room – and pretty much anything else – she wants. After all, it’s just paint, and it will make her immensely happy. That’s all I need.
Have a great weekend, all.
Cheryl @ Artzzle says
Karen, my mother had Crohn’s decades ago. I’m sure research and treatment options have come a long way by now. Tell M. to hang in there! And remember, you need to take a little time for “YOU” in the midst of all the hullabaloo! Course, all those “Hank, Hubs and Kiddo Hugs” are always a big help too 🙂
Karen Cooper says
Thank you! Yes, research and meds are much different and better now, from what I understand. It’s funny – my mother-in-law called me today and said, “But how are YOU? We’ve all asked about Bear and M and everything, but how are YOU holding up?” That was really amazing, because, until that point, I don’t think anyone had asked. Thanks to YOU for asking and for telling me to take time for me. I’m not good at that, so I’m going to work on it. 🙂
Hope Williams says
Oh Karen, I walk every day in M.’s shoes. When you don’t see a post from me in a while, it’s because I’m in a flare and can not leave the bathroom. I really understand more than you could possibly know, the emotional toll this takes on a family. Please know, none of you are alone in this.
Bear, there is no way to ever get “over” the loss! Period! I have come to this perspective; all our kids, whether 2 or 4 legs, require the same things. Love, food, water, shelter, toys, training, rules, boundaries, baths, yearly checkups, shots, unexpected illness Dr. Visits, and the list goes on and on. My perspective is that with 4 legged kids, their time with us is shorter, whice leaves us a time from of human life left. We get more years, but we get EVERY one of theirs! Perspective, God gives us time to love another 4 legged kiddo! Once you have truly loved, you know what your heart needs. And that is to keep loving!
The house, it will get done when it gets done!
It sounds like you need some down time girl! Get your daughter on her new life plan, meds, food list-yes and no’s, triggers, and eating 10 times a day instead of 3! Yeah, sounds like a lot but they are very small meals. You sound like you have the right doc so you are 1000 steps ahead of most folks in this dept!
Take your time, relax, hug, cry, scream, nap, do what you need at that moment and don’t force any feelings right now!
If you got nothing right now, just share that feeling! Life has given you a full plate right now, you will get past this and life will return to a norm soon enough.
Sending hugs, love, and puppy smooches, hope and pooches!
Karen Cooper says
Hope, You were aptly named, friend. Thank you for your sweet message of hope and friendship. I really appreciate it. We’re taking it a day at a time and seeing what comes next. I’m sorry that you’ve had this, too, and I’m so grateful for you telling me that you have it and your experience. We won’t know for sure until next week, but the doctors are pretty sure that’s what it is. Everything in good time, right? Thank you again!!
Family first! Your Family “Friday Five” couldn’t be more appropriate. Everything else can wait, and we all completely understand! You and your daughter can make the green room project a visual sign that you two will “keep calm and carry on” in the face of Crohn’s disease! Best wishes to All.
Karen Cooper says
Thank you, Karen! Green room is coming soon – I got paint samples and we’re going to slap them on the wall tomorrow to see what she likes best! (Ack!) Thank you!
“It’s not DIY!” What is not DIY about teaching people to be grateful for the good things they have in life??? Karen, give yourself some credit for showing others how to cope in the school of hard knocks. Being grateful and sharing problems is therapeutic. While your readers can’t physically help, they will have some gems to share with you and you will not feel “alone”. As women especially, it helps us just to “talk” things out. Rock on Karen!
Karen Cooper says
Pam, This made my whole day. Thank you for saying this. It means so much. You’re right – it’s just a different kind of DIY project! Thank you! Rock on, friend! xoxo
Robin P says
You know I am there for you on the medical, canine and old house fronts. We lead such parallel lives! Don’t tell Craig about Maddie’s room! Did I tell you how he went nuts over Sasha’s wisteria purple room? He and the painter made me physically come over to the house and approve the first coat before he would put on the second!! I believe it’s their space and they should be able to have whatever color they want surrounding them. Ava’s is bright sky blue and she loves it. She danced around the room and said she thought it was the prettiest color in the world. Small price to pay give them freedom of choice and happiness. 🙂 Hang in there. Life will calm down soon!
You are right. It’s just paint. There are do-overs with paint, but not always with other things.
Mickey Wood says
. . . Love never fails . . . ST. Paul
Karen Cooper says
So true. <3
Friday, September 4th Everything okay? Looked for Friday Five. You’re just busy, I hope.
Karen Cooper says
Hi Karen – Thank you for checking in. I have been dealing with my daughter’s testing for Crohn’s Disease this week, so I took the week off. I’ll be back to our normal programming next week! Thanks, friend!! Hope you are well!