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Wednesday, March 25, 2009

(Almost) 16 Months

Shay had a doctor's appointment last night. Really, it was supposed to be her 15 month shots, which means that Ben was on duty to take her. I absolutely hate shots, and I can barely handle them in myself, which means that I am WAY too much of a wussy to hold my darling little girls still while the big mean doctor (or nurse) sticks them with needles. Anyway, Ben's work this month has been kind of crazy, so he ended up having to reschedule twice before actually getting there--which wasn't a big deal, and I only mention by way of pointing out that while it was her 15 month appointment, she will actually be 16 months old in 2 days. So big!

Anyway, she is now officially up to 23 pounds (and 1 ounce!), which puts her in the 50th percentile. She is 31 1/2 inches long, which puts her in the 75th percentile. Looks like she's still on track for that tall and skinny thing.... Mommy is so jealous! It's definitely not for lack of eating though! Shay still eats way more than Bryn does, and often more than me or Ben. The other night she chowed down on empanadas (jalapenos and all) and had the biggest portion of all of us. Not to mention the endless bottles of milk that she chugs down. Little big girl!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

First Conversation

Shay and I have officially had our first conversation!

Shay: (much crying)
Me: I don't understand! What do you want?!?!
Shay: Bod-dle! (bottle)
Me: Oh!!!! (fills bottle) Here you go, sweetie.
Shay: Ah-ooh! (thank you)
Me: You are such a big girl!
Shay: (smiles through milk mustache)

Pretty soon we'll be discussing philosophy and literature, I'm sure. :)

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Uses of Time

This post is to give you all a brief update on how we at the MeyPfan household have been spending our time lately.

Amy: I have, in essence, been chained to my laptop, grading, and texts. I have spent what I consider to be an obscene amount of time on schoolwork lately. I seriously cannot wait for my spring break (2 weeks from now) and some "down time" to relax with Ben and the girls. I am feeling mildly better with the dizziness, but still not fully healthy. This gorgeous picture is compliments of my husband....
Shay: She has drunk many, many bottles. Although she is now a "big girl" and is fully capable of drinking out of cups, she still prefers her beloved bottle. In fact, she loves it so much that "bottle" is the only two-syllable word she knows. When she's crying and I ask her what she wants, she can even respond "bottle!" She has also developed quite the fondness for playing with all of Bryn's favorite toys.... a habit that does not sit so well with her sister.

Bryn: A girl after her father's own heart, she has developed quite the love for board games. Her favorite kids' game is Heigh-Ho Cheerio, which she refers to as "the apples." She doesn't understand the rules, but she delights greatly in putting all the little cherries/apples in their holes and sorting them. Her favorite overall game, though, is "Mommy's blocks game," which means Blokus. Her nursery school teacher told me that Bryn is the most linear thinker she has ever encountered in her 30+ years of teaching, and this is clearly evident in her love for Blokus. She delights in fitting all of the pieces onto the board, rearranging as much as necessary until they all fit (a feat that even Mommy and Daddy struggle with), then taking them all off and doing it again.

Ben: No good pictures for this one, but he's been keeping plenty busy with work as well. He has also had several major orders for Higher Ground Games as of late, which has kept up him for long hours in the basement. He did manage to have some fun last week, though, playing frisbee golf, running a demo at a gaming convention, and attending a concert by one of his favorite bands.

We hope all of you are doing well! More updates to follow....

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Amy + Ben

Yes, I know this is just another survey, but it will have to tide you over until I've got time to write out a real post.  And for those of you who tell me that I'm spending too much time doing surveys, in my own defense, I filled all of them out in about an hour two weeks ago and have just been saving them back to post during dry spells since then... although, really, you're probably still right about an hour being too much spend on it. :)

This survey is supposed to be about me and my significant other....

♥ What are your middle names?
Me: Marilyn Meyaard. Him: Scott Pfanschmidt. We added each other’s last names as our middle names when we got married.

♥ How long have you been together?
Married 4 and a half years, together for eight and a half.

♥ How long did you know each other before you started dating?
We met and (I guess) saw each other regularly in marching band a year before, but we never actually spoke to each other until the day before our (questionable) first date.

♥ Who asked who out?
It seems that I asked him out, although I didn’t intend to. A group of friends and I were discussing going out that night, and he walked up and was being all friendly, so I assumed that he had become friends with some of my friends while I had been studying abroad the previous semester and included him in the invitation because he was standing there while we were making the plans. About five minutes later, I learned that none of the rest of them knew him either, and that he was apparently just this really friendly stranger that I had just agreed to give a ride to, and I was pretty freaked out.

♥ How old are each of you?
I’m 30, and he’s a baby of 28.

♥ Whose siblings do/ did you see the most?
My sister—she lives with us.

♥ Do you have any children together?
Bryn Elizabeth, age 3, and Shaylee Grace, age 1.

♥ What about pets?
Two dogs, Dagny and Tela

♥ Which situation is/was the hardest on you as a couple?
Fertility problems, primarily featuring three miscarriages.

♥ Did you go to the same school?
Yes, for two years. Go B.U.!

♥ Are you from the same home town?
Nope, not even the same state. I’m from Dunlap, Illinois, and he’s from Elkhart, Indiana.

♥ Who is smarter?
Depends on the subject, but I’d like to flatter myself and say we’re both pretty smart. ☺

♥ Who is more sensitive?
Me!

♥ Where do you eat out most as a couple?
Not really sure… maybe some variety of Mexican food?

♥ Where is the furthest you two have traveled together as a couple?
Ireland, during our “second honeymoon” during November of 2004 (we got married in June of 2004)

♥ Who has the craziest exes?
I’ve never met any of his exes, so I can’t really say.

♥ Who has the worse temper?
Me. I get mad far more often.

♥ Who does the cooking?
Both of us, but he does dinner more often, since I’m afraid of touching raw meat. ☺

♥ Who is more social?
Depends on the situation, but we’re both pretty social. I think he’s more outgoing than me though.

♥ Who is the neat-freak?
Definitely me. I’m trying to bring him over to my ways though. ☺

♥ Who is the more stubborn?
Uh, that would be me again.

♥ Who hogs the bed?
Our dogs. And Ben, after I get up, because he transfers over to my side to cuddle Dagny.

♥ Who wakes up earlier?
Me, because I have to be at work earlier. He goes to bed far later though, so it’s good that he can sleep in later too.

♥ Where was your first date?
We went to the Brew Pub in Broad Ripple with a group of friends (see the question about who asked who out).

♥ Who has the bigger family?
Me.

♥ Do you get flowers often?
I wouldn’t say “often,” but a few times a year.

♥ How do you spend the holidays?
Usually with family

♥ Who is more jealous?
I don’t think that either of us really is very jealous.

♥ How long did it take to get serious?
It took us three months of spending all our time together before we even admitted to ourselves that we were dating, largely because neither of us wanted anything serious at that time but realized that was where we were headed.

♥ Who eats more?
At dinner, usually him. But I eat three meals a day, whereas he only eats 1 or 2.

♥ Who does/ did the laundry?
Me usually, but he steps in when the washing machine gets dysfunctional.

♥ Who’s better with the computer?
Probably him. He’s an Excel guru and a pro of efficient internet surfing.

♥ Who drives when you are together?
Me, upon Bryn’s insistence

Friday, March 06, 2009

A Return to Friday Fill-Ins

Mine is the bold text.

1. Folding the laundry  was my last random act of kindness. I know this doesn't sound like much, but considering how dizzy I am, this was a Herculean effort.

2. Another place would be wonderful; I'm sick of sitting in my bedroom and waiting to get well.

3. Patience is required in matters of the heart.  God has really been teaching me this lately, as I am so anxious to be moving forward in the direction that I want, but He keeps telling us to be patient.

4. Coffee, tea or me.  My mom had an apron that said this on it while I was growing up.  I think it was lime green with little turquoise dots.  I'm sure it was very cool in the 1980s.  :)

5. Time, distance, and lifestyles separate paths.  I've lately been thinking about some very dear friends that I have largely lost touch with.  Nothing went wrong; we just grew apart over the years and as our lives took different directions.  I miss them.

6. Our girls remind me that there is loving and cuddling to do.  Bryn desperately wanted to sleep with me the other night, and my gut instinct was to say no, but then I started thinking....  She's 3 now and wants nothing but to be with me.  When she's 7, she won't want to cuddle anymore.  When she's 15, she won't want anything to do with me.  When she's 19, she'll be gone.  So sure, sweetie, hop on in, I'd love to cuddle you.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to continuing to sit on the couch and wish that the dizzy would go away (but at least at night I get to do it with Ben, Bryn, and Shay), tomorrow my plans include a visit from my mom and hopefully an end to the dizziness (I can hope, right?) and Sunday, I want to be healthy enough to go to church and my school's open house !

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Health Update

Since I alluded to my many illnesses several times in my previous post, it's probably time to actually give an update on that.

I started the month with a round of a fertility medication.  The idea is that should I eventually get pregnant again, we want to avoid another miscarriage, and my doctor tells me that this is the way to do it.  The medicine made me feel incredibly gross, and while I did manage to power through my school days, I spent most of my evenings parked on the couch or going to bed insanely early.  This encompassed the first two weeks of February, although the first week was far worse than the second.

When I did eventually ovulate, let's just say that I had a rather unexpected reaction to the medicine, and we were instructed that we were under no circumstances to attempt to get pregnant this month.  I was devastated by this and spent two full days in bed crying before managing to pull it together.  To make it all worse, the doctor did not reach this conclusion until after I had been given a shot of hormones.  The hormones then had nowhere to go, causing me to feel really loopy for the next couple of days, and my hip got so sore from the injection that I had difficulties sitting down, sleeping, and buckling my pants for the next five days.

Less than a week after that debacle, I started feeling insanely dizzy.  I actually missed a half-day of school for this, since I could hardly stand because the room was spinning around me.  I assumed this was due to the many unused hormones running rampant through my body and continued on.

A couple of days after that, Shay developed a nasty cold and shared it with me.  She's doing much better, but it is now over a week later, and I'm still carrying my Kleenex box around with me.  I've also developed a nice juicy cough to accompany the constant blowing of my nose.

I then got to have my period, which was particularly terrible both before and during, thanks again to the many extra hormones.

Through all of this, the dizziness persisted, worse some days than others.  I largely ignored it when possible, assuming that it was a side effect of one my other issues instead of its own problem.  I figured it was because of all those extra hormones, or because my head was stuffed up with a cold, or because I was adjusting to my new dosage of syntheroid.  After the dizziness persisted for a week and a half, my fertility doctor called me the "mystery woman" because there was apparently no reason (from his perspective) that I should be feeling this way.  So I decided that a visit to my general practitioner was in order.

After looking at me for about three seconds, he declared that I have a raging sinus infection in my middle ear.  Who knew?  I always thought that ear infections were supposed to hurt, which is about the only symptom I don't have.  But apparently not.  He prescribed me many more medications but warned me that because I had let it go for so long with no treatment, he might not be able to fix it and I might have to see a specialist.  So I'm waiting anxiously to see if I improve.  He also told me that I have to stay out of school for a whole week to get better, which seemed horribly excessive to me for an ear infection that I'd already been teaching with for a week and a half.  This is my second day of staying home (thus why I have time to catch up on blogging), and I am beginning to suspect that the instructions to stay home are less because of the actual ear infection and more because of the miserable effects of the many medicines he has me on.  He's got me on very aggressive dosages, and my body is not enjoying it.

To top it all off, today starts my second round of fertility medication, so I'm bracing myself to repeat the cycle of feeling gross.

I feel like one of those old people who takes medications and vitamins by the fistful every morning.  I am currently on eight different medications, so that's a lot of pills every day, especially considering that the three for the ear infection can involve taking up to 11 pills a day.

Hopefully all of this explains my utter lack of progress on my resolutions, lack of blogging, lack of socialization, etc, for this past month.  Let's hope that March is better!

February = Fail

I've sort of been dreading this post.  I know I said that I would post monthly updates regarding how I'm doing with this year's resolutions.  While I did a pretty good job in January, it seems that was mostly due to my flexible schedule, since I was not teaching a J-term class at school and had the freedom to come and go on my own time.  Now that I'm back to the actual grind of a daily job, not to mention taking care of home and family, many of my goals seem to have fallen by the wayside.  Of course, it doesn't help that I've been sick for nearly all of February as well.... Post on that to follow.  Without further excuses, here's the update:

1. Get my thyroid under control.
I had my levels checked two weeks ago, and there was both good news and bad news.  The good news is that the new medication (cytomel) is working beautifully, and both my T3 and T4 are regulated.  The bad news is that we still haven't found the right dosage for my old medication (syntheroid).  My TSH is at 4.97, which is very high.  So we've now increased my syntheroid dosage yet again, putting me at the highest level of that I've ever been on.  I've got another two to three weeks on this dosage before we can do the bloodwork to see how my levels are adjusting.

2. Lose some weight.
My less pathetic excuse:  I have been sick and my thyroid is out of whack, and my body needs all the sleep it can get to fight off these conditions, so getting up early (at 5:00, since my usual wake-up time is 5:30) to exercise on the treadmill has not been working out.  
My far more pathetic excuse: It has been a rough month around here.  And when I'm stressed out or sad, I eat.  Yes, I am a sympathy eater--primarily sympathy with myself.  So there was been much dining out this month.
All of that being said, by some miracle, I have actually managed to hold steady at my weight from last month.  I haven't gained anything, but I haven't lost anything either.  All things considered, I'll take it.

3. No miscarriages in 2009
So far, so good.  But there haven't been any pregnancies either.  This is particularly discouraging, as we racked up many very expensive medical bills in February while I underwent some fertility treatments.  More on that at a later time, but suffice it to say that this was a large part of the reason that I felt so deathly ill for most of the month.

4. Expand our family.
Utter fail.  No pregnancy, and we have not completed either of the 2 remaining foster parenting classes.  Several of our pregnant friends have delivered their babies this month though (which means we have now been trying--or wanting to try--unsuccessfully for more than nine months), and several others announced their pregnancies.  So other people are succeeding, even if we're not!  (Reading over this, it sounds far more bitter than I intended--really, truly, we are very happy for all of these friends; we are also just sad for ourselves.)

5. Blog.
Even with the many surveys, I didn't do so well this month.  Largely there's just a lot of discouraging stuff going on around here, so I'm not sure what to write about.

6. Read.
Another utter fail.  I have not read a single page of The Book Thief this month, although I did start it and enjoy it very much in January.  In fact, I haven't read so much as a magazine article for pleasure this month.  I have read MANY papers for school though.  And if it's any consolation, I read (and taught) both Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare) and 1984 (Orwell).  Next on the docket are Of Mice and Men (Steinbeck) and King Lear (Shakespeare), so you can look for them in my March update.