Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Thirty Shmirty

I have never been a big fan of numbers. And not for lack of opportunity since I found myself in the same math classes over and over again in high school and college.

I have just never understood the way the darn things worked together so easily for some (obviously odd) people. As for me, I enjoyed other parts of academia. English...no problem. History...fascinating. Science...all good until chemistry reared its ugly, complex, and often numerical head. Surprisingly, I can still count in Spanish but I think its simply because I use words to do so.

Even twelve years after graduating high school with good grades in everything but math, I still find myself dumbfounded by simple multiplication tables at times. And I have been known to count on my fingers and if necessary, my toes. When I lived in St. Petersburg, Florida for a season I often found myself driving aimlessly down their numerical streets and avenues. I never could get the gist of going down 31st Avenue and taking a left on 63rd Street...give me Smith Road to Azalea Lane any day. During a brief stint in cosmetology school I was being taught to add a third of this to a quarter of that and my thoughts would immediately begin contemplating what new color I should paint my toes or if I thought I should bring a book to the beach later that evening.

Have I made my case yet?

Obviously there are few things that I relish about numbers and the things one can do with them.

But while numbers are so not my thing I am pretty proud of my new one, "thirty". A lot of my friends fought turning thirty. Some said they felt old. Some said they didn't like the way it sounded. Some aren't where they wanted to be at thirty.

Me? I'm cool. Its a nice and even number. It wont have me failing a test or getting lost. It will serve me well, I believe. I had big plans to make a list (I dig lists) of 30 things that I want to do when I am thirty so...

1) get lots of duct tape for this marriage of mine
2) special bonding with my sweet six year old
3) the beginnings of a lifetime cancer free for my almost 2 year old
4) more babies? perhaps? pretty please?
5) an apartment with two toilets.
6) the ability to drink coffee without grimacing.
7) a hobby that brings in a little money.
8) knowing my God a little more every day.
9) patience. lets get lots of that.
10)learn to say "no" to Edys Rocky Road ice cream...just once in a while.

Obviously, I have not reached thirty goals for spending this year of thirty. You know, numbers and all. Plus I don't want to be a blog hog and I feel like my point has been made. I had a birthday and I am okay with being 30, especially if I can spell it out like this, "thirty"..

Thursday, May 19, 2011

1 year down, twelve to go.

Remember this sweet Linley?

This was way back when. You know, when you were 5 instead of "almost six and a half". Back when you liked your hair short because you so disliked brushing it out. Back when you could read a few sight words and count not so high. Back when you had not yet met your classmate Darius and learned all about Micheal Jackson. Back when pink was the only color you wanted to wear and when your favorite snack was go gurts.

Flash forward about 8months and you are so very grown up. No longer tied to a pink fantasy you now love turquoise or better yet, fushia. You have shown an incredible aptitude for reading. You have been known to write a very detailed description of a rough morning when mommy threatened to sell you at Walmart. You have found science to be much more interesting than I ever did. You have told the faculty at your public school all about Jesus's Birthday, aka Christmas and let them know we dont like magic. Your confidence is growing by leaps and bounds and your compassion is as deep as those sweet blue eyes.

You have proven to anyone watching just what I have always said, Linley Coe Needham is Especially Special!

(Next up, First Grade)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Clinic Visit 5/16

Today was Pipers monthly clinic appointment. Of course, I say monthly with a smile on my face because we are more often than not there each week, often two or three times a week. But thankfully, things are most definitely on the up and up. Piper is doing wonderfully. All of her counts and numbers are beautiful and show no signs of anything worrisome. Her CMV results will be back in about 48hrs and we will surely see her virus levels staying suppressed.

Pipers monthly clinic visit is always the same. Vitals, blood work, chemo: sometimes spinal and sometimes not, and then a 4 hour transfusion of IVIG. And today was the same. All went smoothly, so smoothly that Piper is restarting her original protocol.

The maintenance protocol for most leukemia patients is typically the same. Clinic visit every month with a port access for chemo and blood work. Every third month she has sedation with spinal chemo and the other months she has Vincrisitine in her port. After each clinic visit the patient has 10 doses of Dexamethasone given over 5 days and then the patient finishes up the month with oral 6mp each night and an oral dose of Methotrexate once a week. Then it all starts again.

Piper has been held off of steroids since January. She has been off of 6mp and Methotrexate since March and has only received her monthly chemo in the clinic. This has made me very nervous because I want her little body to receive all the chemo it can handle until this September when please Jesus, she is done forever.

Thankfully today, Dr B made the decision to restart all of her chemos and steroids. I am certain that by Wednesday I will be rethinking my excitement over it in the midst of some serious steroid attitude but until then I just continue to pray that each little dose is doing big damage to any little cell that has dared to hide out.

As for today, she was a joy. At almost two years old we are only just beginning to see what type of a little girl we are raising. She is sweet and silly and I am impressed daily with what she has already overcome.

Have I mentioned how very much I love this little one?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Mothers Day 2011

I love my husband. I love my children. Because of those three beings in my life, I have a new respect and admiration for my lovely mother.

You see, my mom is quite possibly the best thing since sliced bread.

She has been the most selfless and encouraging soul to walk besides me. She builds me up and shows me my strengths when I feel empty. She lovingly chastises me and shifts my mind when I am wallowing in the mire of my feelings. She rejoices with me when my life feels blessed and sobs with me when I am kicked to the floor. She finds the itsy, bitsy silver lining in the sky of dark, dreary clouds and sets her gaze on that. She is the epitome of a Proverbs 31 woman and her faith in God is the anchor to which I tie my recent wandering ship. She is lovely.

I am a wife. I am a mom.

Someday I hope to have half the grace my mother has.

Today I will prove that I do listen to you, mom.

Being your daughter has taught me...

1) That yep, cleaning the kitchen before bed DOES make the next day begin more smoothly

2) That "sneaky" is indeed a very annoying trait to see in people.

3) That my daily chai also tastes better the color of the coffee table.

4) That midnight is the best hour of the day.

5) That 6am is an ungodly hour.

6) That I should have gotten a hobby when I was a teenager.

7) That a stash of sweets are best hidden above the oven/stove/range.

8) That parenting is best done with a mix of conviction, prayer and grace.

9) That gardening is salve for the soul.

10) That life is best lived as an opportunist in every way.

11) That beautiful bed linens are a worthwhile splurge.

12) That knowing all the locations of local bathrooms will make my life much easier.

I love you mom.