Thursday, May 31, 2012

Newspaper, newspaper...where THE HECK is the newspaper



So as my last few days have been very trying on my psyche, with Kenny's disability being cut all because of incompetent people. Then there's me fighting on the phone with computerized voice mails because the actual people that are getting paid big bucks to be helping you are taking a breakfast break, after breakfast break, lunch break, after lunch break, mid afternoon break, post break, break helping others or are not at their desk (at the moment). I've decided that I'm done allowing people to walk all over me...in any shape or form. Where is this all going? Well, this morning was Kenny's last day of special needs preschool and I was running around trying to get him together and make sure the other kids were ready for school...I just didn't want Kenny late on his last day of school. We get in the car, and to my surprise, the gas gauge wasn't even budging towards the lower part of the red line....in other words, I was screwed...the gas guzzler small bus that I call "The Green Giant", was gonna die midway to dropping the kids and then Kenny off at school. I made it to the older kids school...thank God. I pulled into the gas station, searched the black hole...also known as...my purse (remind me to get a smaller, more compact one) to get my debit card out. Not sure how much I had left in the account, I only put $10.01...yeah...that penny is gonna put me over the edge ;) I filled the van with a little over 2 gallons...woot woot...at least I'll be at peace knowing that I wont run out of gas in the parkway. OK...off to drop Kenny off. I was just a little late, but it was alright.
I drove off to reach my final destination...home sweet home...well, as sweet as it could be...with the remaining scent of incense that my lovely neighbors were burning all night long...ugh. As I was waiting for the cars to go by so I can pull into the driveway, I noticed a woman that was walking down the street, in front of (said) neighbors house. I also noticed that we got the weekly newspaper. It was laying on our driveway...just up a bit from the sidewalk. I took notice in it because I thought to myself that we needed more Pediasure coupons for Kenny and I was hoping they'd be in the coupon section. We pulled in, the woman walked past...I stayed in the car for a few minutes with Gina because we were listening to a funny thing on the morning radio show. OK...it ended. I got Gina out and in the house and I told her that I was just gonna go and get the newspaper laying at the bottom of our driveway. I walked down there...and it was gone. I thought...maybe it was stuck to a tire...or something...it was just gone...not even 2 minutes went by from pulling in and my newspaper is missing. Then it dawned on me...THE WOMAN WALKER! She was already 6 houses down and I yelled down to her..."Hey, did you take my paper"?...no answer...she just kept walking. OK...maybe she didn't hear me..or she didn't take it...but, there was no other explanation! Now...normally, I would just be like...oh well...I'll just get another one from the store....but not with the way my last few days have been going...
I told Gina to wait inside, that I'd be right back (Tony was home)....I get in the Green Giant and head east...where I pulled right into a driveway...cutting the woman off from going any further. I rolled my window down and politely asked her if she took my newspaper...then I notice that she had ear buds in her ears (which is why she never responded to my yelling down the street like a mad woman)...and in her hand...folded into a 6 inch block...was MY NEWSPAPER. She had it folded and drawn up inside her sleeve of her sweatshirt! She held out the newspaper as soon as I spotted it with my eyes (she was SO BUSTED and SHE KNEW IT), and just said..."I'm sorry" with an "I'm totally busted for stealing this" look and nervous smile). Held out her hand holding the paper and I snatched it right up. I then proceeded to lecture her...loudly...about stealing other peoples newspapers. I told her that I couldn't believe that a grown woman wouldn't know any better than that...I even called her a newspaper thief to her face. I told her that she should be ashamed for stealing and GETTING CAUGHT red handed...taking someones delivered newspaper! All she kept doing was apologizing with that stupid look on her face! After giving her a piece of my mind, I put my van in reverse and proudly drove up the street to my house! This was not just for me...it was for all the people out there that gets their papers taken by "walkers"! It felt good finally busting someone that could care less about how a person pays for their newspapers...hey, if it laying on the driveway in someones yard...DON'T TAKE IT...ITS NOT YOURS!!!
I will sleep a little better tonight knowing that maybe, just maybe...this woman has a clepto issue that I just brought to light for her!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

One interesting rescue...

This Mother's Day has been, well...one very interesting one. One that I never thought I would ever do. I rescued a baby raccoon after it got hit by a car. Sure...I know a lot of you out there are going to be scolding me (just like my hubby)...but I am a mom...when I see a baby...be it human or an animal, my first instinct is to take care of it...and that's what I did.
Keep in mind that I did NOT let any of the kids near it. I know how highly transmittable rabies is in the raccoon population so I made sure I wore heavy duty gloves.
I was very surprised that when I called a wildlife rescue preserve...well, actually 2 of them...they told me that they will not take raccoons of any kind. If I were to bring it in to them, they would gladly take it, but they would euthanize it.
I was floored. How in Gods name could anyone kill a baby animal not knowing if it has rabies or not. I honestly felt that this little one didn't have rabies. It was a very loving little creature...but then again, I honestly didn't want to take that chance. My sister and I let it loose in the woods...where we think it came from. Yes there were tears and I soooo badly wanted to go and bring it back home. It kept following me to the car. But we really had to do it. Its momma would find it and it would be alright. I just wish there was a blood test to see if an animal has rabies. I just think its so sad that this little fighter wanted to live and the so called rescuers (who are there to save wildlife) are more willing to kill it or "let nature take its course"...if that was the case, and I would have let nature take its course with my twins born too early...I wouldn't have a beautiful little boy who is now 5.
I have to say...it was a very cool feeling holding a baby raccoon. I really think I want to work with animals...maybe rehabbing those that no one wants.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

May God bless and keep you safe...

I used to think that I was so lucky that I never knew, experienced or witnessed a child that has died. I actually remember a conversation with my mom when I was a teenager. It went something along the lines of me asking my mom if we ever had any child die in our family. My mom told me that the only one she remembers hearing about was that of my grandpa Kowalczyk. His little sister was burned from a fire and died from her injuries...but that was about it (now I know why I have such a fear of campfires, grills, bonfires, etc...with kids)
That our family was extremely lucky that we never had to experience the loss of a child. Then...my brother passed away unexpectedly at age 24...I saw how devastated my parents were. I remember the long drive home from Bowling Green, we were visiting the college to see if we (my twin and I) wanted to go there. There is where they they were told he had died...yeah...way back then we didn't have cell phones. A police officer had to stop us and bring us back to the station where my sister was calling and told my parents. The look on their faces...the look of raw sadness...they just lost their only son. It was the worst day of every ones life. That day, our family was changed forever.
Fast forward to today. I never thought that I would be feeling the same exact feeling that my parents felt years back. The dispair, the sick, empty and lost feeling of losing your child.
Since losing Nick (along with several miscarriages) I have witnessed more and more sickness and death of children then I care for. I had to take a leave of absence from my roll as volunteer at the Hospice because of Kenny and his needs, but other than that...it seems like there are so many families that have lost a child in one way or another. I am so sad for the ones that are just starting on the journey of a life without their child and grateful to those who have been through it for quite some time and have helped me through tough times.
Yesterday a woman I met through another friend who lost her son, has started her journey. She and her husband lost their beautiful six year old (same age as my Kayleigh) daughter, Ainsley. She went in for surgery and all I know is that she passed away after her surgery. She had MITO, the same thing that claimed the life of my other dear friends son. This was very unexpected and such a shock to me. Here you have this beautiful little girl fighting for her life every day. Showing courage and just living life....you have her mom who is such a strong woman who does so much for the MITO community and for her daughter and for her friends....and now she is gone. Sometimes I just don't understand how life can be so cruel. I mean, we are NOT supposed to have to be a caregiver for a sick child let alone have to bury that child. It just is so...final. I know that life has no rules. You are to live it to the fullest because you never know...but as I get older, I am finding that I am not really liking this whole "getting old" thing. There is too much sadness and uncertainty...not to mention, the superficial aspect of it...the lines in the face, the grey hair starting, the weight that you have to work just a little harder to get rid of...
I find myself looking at everything with a little hesitation. I worry about the little things and big things. I guess my anxiety is getting the best of me...but after seeing so much sadness, sickness and death, who wouldn't.
I also find myself with much more compassion for those who are facing such as what I said above. I can relate...I may not have the right words to say to them at times, but I do understand the stress from taking care of a sick child, the not knowing what is to come, and the feelings you have when you lose a child. I don't care if it has been from a miscarriage, stillbirth, newborn or child....it hurts and digs down deep no matter what.

So today I am dedicating to all my friends who have a chronically ill child and to those who have lost their precious child. May we find strength to carry on and make it through the tough days. Love in our hearts for ourselves and for others that we know we did/are doing all we can for our babies...that we don't get into such a dark place where we cant function...because that is NOT what our little ones (who are here and who are angels) would want or need. And faith, that there is a reason that only God knows, why our babies are sick and fighting a tough life and for those who have lost their little ones, that our angels are in a safe, beautiful place and that we WILL see them again (yeah...sometimes I need reassurance of this).
God bless.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Give a kid a camera...

I was in the kitchen washing dishes...yeah...long story short...the dishwasher broke, I thought I fixed it but it is still not washing...so washing by hand is better than by machine.
Anyhow...so as I am washing the dishes, I hear Kenny and Gina laughing like crazy in the living room. I thought that they were just playing with their toys. I walked in there, and I find Gina taking pictures of Kenny. Telling him that he was posing good and that one was a good picture!

I thought I'd find pictures like these...


 and then I came across these on the camera...







I think I have a photographer in the making...and a little male model
(notice the tie Gina put on him) haha!

A celebration worth remembering

Over the weekend, I figured out what makes Kenny open up and finally be a normal child...DOGS!
My sister brought her dogs to the Communion/Birthday party we had for my great nephew and Kenny...he was a very happy little boy! I saw something that I never saw before, he didn't care about his shoes not being on, he wasn't in his own little world...he was communicating with the animals. He smiled, talked and walked the animals...he was having so much fun! video

Kenny walked the dog everywhere...and was so proud!
  We sang Happy Birthday...
 
 The way he looks at me...
 Melts my heart!
He's come such a long way...
From the NICU

 ...and when it was time for him to blow out the candle...
I just knew Nick was with us...
The wind blew out the candle, but I felt that it was Nick who blew it out!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Nicks angelversary

Notice the chapter and verse...todays date...Nicks Angelversary


It seems like five years was a lifetime ago...but the pain is as strong as yesterday.

Seeing him in the NICU and telling the nurses to keep an eye on him because I didn't like the way he looked. Walking back to my room and then the nurse came in and told me that there was a problem with him. She already called Tony to come down to the hospital. I cried so hard. Rushing back into the NICU seeing the doctors and nurses working on him. Ordering blood transfusion after blood transfusion. Sitting in chairs 20 ft away, unable to do anything but watch and pray. I wanted to throw up, cry, run out of there...anything to not face what was happening. the nurses handing me tissues and water. Just sitting there with Tony. It was three hours...three hours, maybe even longer. I knew in my heart that God wanted him to come home. I just knew it. But I just couldn't believe that my worst nightmare was happening. HOW could it be happening? When the doctors told us that there was nothing more they could do, we cried and cried. He was still alive, do something...anything...dont let my baby die!!!!

They handed him to me to hold for the first time. I held him. I was finally holding my baby. He was so little, so light, like holding a doll. But he was real. He was alive right now. He was our baby. Our baby that was leaving us. I looked and studied his face so I wouldn't forget any detail about our little Nick. The way he smelled, the cute little chin that looked just like Kennys, the perfect blond hair...I kissed him and kissed him. He was still alive....cant someone do something...anything. Don't let him die. I held his face against my face telling him it was alright. Uncle John was waiting for you with open arms. He needed a nephew, a baby up there to hold since he's missed out on all his kids growing up and all his nieces and nephews...and his own grandchildren. Nick was going to finally meet Uncle John. I told him that it was alright...mommy and daddy would be alright. Watch over us, your brothers and sisters, your twin. How could this be happening. It wasn't supposed to turn out like this. I wanted your brother and sisters to meet you, they were so excited. They never got the chance to see you.

I didn't even get the chance to hold my twins together, to get a picture of my twins together...the nurses then asked if I wanted pictures of my twins together...yes...God yes...but not like this. I wanted to be holding both babies, pink and fat, bundled up with little hats on their heads...crying and wanting to eat. I wanted pictures of them together playing, sleeping, the first day of school together...all the firsts...together. Not like this. It wasn't fair. My cheeks were red, from so much tears and wiping...I just wanted this day to have not happened...but it did. I miss you Nick with all my heart and soul. When you died, a part of me went with you. I wanted you to be part of our big, crazy family. You made me realize that life is a very special gift. I just wish that we had more time to spend together...but isn't that always the case. I at least got to tell you that I loved you very very much and I know you put up a fight to live...but now you are watching over your twin and helping him get through each day. Its hard, its very, very hard. A parent should never have to bury a child.

I miss you my angel...I miss you.


A few poems that I wrote on how I'm feeling today...

When You Lose A Child

I Visited You Today

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Happy 5th Birthday!!!

Five years...
It's been five long years since my twins were born.
Kenny's Milestone shirt...complete with a schoolbus, his actual footprint and his guardian angel, Nick.
Five years of mixed feelings, emotions, strength, laughter and sadness.


Being a mom of so many...especially of a son who is always sick, who has doctor appointments every week and just needs that extra attention really made these five years seem like they went by in warp speed! Almost like I have missed out on so much...but experienced more than most.
As I say every year, Kenny and Nicks birthday is extremely bittersweet
...am I supposed to be happy? Sure I am. I mean, I became a mommy to twin boys. I was ecstatic, scared and amazed at how tiny but perfect my twin boys were!
Am I supposed to be sad? Absolutely! I only made it just barely into the halfway point of a pregnancy!
I felt them kick and move over all parts of my belly, not just from one baby...but two! I talked to them every chance I had, almost like I had a premonition that my time with being their protector was short. I already knew their personalities, even at 18-19 weeks! Believe it or not, Nick (who was on my left side kinda in my ribs) was a very active little boy. And then you had Kenny who was on my lower right, almost in my hip/back area...he was the quieter of the two. I was just amazed at how I was actually carrying two babies...just amazed.

 I've always wanted twins, I mean...being a twin myself...my husband being a twin...I just thought it would be really cool to have twins...and five years ago, I gave birth to them...just waaaay to early!

I'm not going to lie, some days/months/years are better than others...and these last few weeks have been torture for me.The guilt of having them early, the role as not only mommy but caregiver is overwhelming.
I am so extremely happy that our Kenny is here and is doing well (minus some health and development issues). He is such a great kid...a little feisty, but that is what helped him overcome the NICU and all of his health issues. A bit playful when he gets going and definitely, a handful when it comes to feeds and/or feeding, but extremely loving and his little eyes and smile just melts my heart. But on the other hand, how exhausting he can be (yeah, still no respite). How stubborn he can get. How hard it is to try to understand a nonverbal child (but actually learning his own way of saying things).
Also, how paranoid I am in many aspects of life when it comes to him. When will he have his next tantrum...or worse, seizure? What happens to him in the future? Will he ever talk? Have a normal life?  When will get sick and end up in the hospital? How long can his lungs last? The questions could go on forever...but I guess I wouldn't be a mommy if I didn't wonder these things not just for Kenny, but for all my kids.

Like I said, its a bittersweet day. I WANT to be happy...and I am, at the birth of my babies. I want to celebrate their births....but on the other hand, how can I celebrate a day that shouldn't of happened for 17 more weeks.
me at 22.6 weeks in the hospital
How can I celebrate a day that has made my living child live with disabilities and uncertainties. How can I celebrate a day that eventually took the life of the other...

I will...I must. So, today I will honor my sons. My Kenneth John and my Nicholas Edward...born at 23 weeks gestation...five years ago today at 10:29 & 10:30 AM. The best and worst day of my life (that is until...well...that post will happen in a few days).
Nick
Kenny

I thank you my twins for showing me the true meaning of life. How fragile life is. How amazing God, doctors and nurses (along with technology) really is.
I thank you for giving me 23 weeks of being a mommy to twins, for giving your brother and sisters two more reasons to love. I thank you for being my babies.
I also thank God for giving you both to Tony and I. What a crazy run we've had these last 5 years.

Today we will be taking Milestones for Micro onsies to the NICU where Kenny and Nick were at. The nurses will be able to fill in the blanks on the shirts with fabric pens for miracles that are graduating from the NICU to home! I am also making and taking tons of cupcakes to different departments of the hospital in honor of saving my son who beat the odds...and is now 5, and also for doing the best they could do in trying to save our angel, Nick.


 So heres to year of more firsts, more overcoming and more memories. Thank you my sweet little boys...yes, I say Happy Birthday to my boys...one here with us and one in Heaven. I love you both.