Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgivings the way they used to be

One day I loved so much was Thanksgiving, even better than Christmas at times. From a child's view that is. Now, I love all the holidays just the same.

Thanksgiving was the day that all my family from Georgia, great aunts, great uncles, and cousins came to visit. Often times my mom's siblings one and/or the other would grace us with their presents. Throughout the years, other relatives from Florida or other parts of North Carolina would come. Everybody knew that we would all get together on that particular day at a specific (never changing) location once for day of food and fun with the family.

The food was absolutely amazing. Several tables in MY church's fellowship hall were covered with all kinds of food. I had many cousins just a little older than me that were a lot of fun to play with, well, when we were younger we played. When we got older, since 3 that were the closest to me were boys, there was a time we didn't have anything in common. I guess I was around middle school age. Surrounded by family but still feeling alone. That's actually the story of my life, surrounded by people, but feeling alone. Ok, this isn't supposed to be sad, it's supposed to be happy, so let me, back up to the FUN ones during childhood.

After we stuffed our bellies, played outside, played a special Thanksgiving Bingo, took many pictures of each individual family and all the cousins, the kids made Christmas countdown calenders with a piece of candy taped to each day, we called it a day. Actually I left one big thing out, Aunt Joann. She would always never fail, lecture all of how important family is, and tell us younger ones how important it is to be close knit with each other. She would always end up crying and talking through the tears and she wasn't finished until at least half the family was crying with her. Then, we would sort of called it a day. We gathered everything up and head to my great grandma's house. It was everybody else's grandma, but only step grandma. She was married into the family, but then widowed, so she was still in the family and the only grandma many knew. We would go to her house and rake the leaves into a big huge pile by the road so the city could pick them up. Us kids went out back to swing on a rope swing. There were 2 pieces of rope with a board between them, as the seat. The swing didn't go as high as a thrill seeker such as myself would hope it would. But, with the cousins there, I got more than my thrill. I sat on that huge wodden swing, and they twisted those 2 ropes together and bam, let go. That was so much fun!! I stood up and tried to walk a straight line as I was so dizzy, and it gave somebody else a chance to be in the hot seat. Then my turn again. One of the last times I remember, was rough though. It was the only time I got a litte scared. I guess they twisted it a lot or something. I thought for sure I was going to fall off or something. But, it was still fun. For dinner that night, we helped ourselves to some of the left overs, being sure to save enough for the next day. Not to mention we had such a huge lunch, who needed much. A lot of the time, it was just desert later we helped ourselves to.

The next morning, we were up bright and early, a little too early. We hit the pavements shopping. I learned rather quickly why nobody went with Aunt Joann. But, I still liked the one on one time with her and she always got me something really nice. Aunt Joann would stand at one rack for what seemed like an hour, carefully sorting through each article clothing, as if she's going through a mental list of each person she has to buy for with each thing. Before we even left the first section of Belks my feet would be hurting so bad. I knew when we got finished with that first section we were about 1/3rd down with that store. She spent another 1/3rd of her time in other parts of the store, then the other 1/3 of the time at the make up counter. She would have all these different shades of lipsticks on hand. Slowly but surely she narrowed the shades down. Often time it would take a good hour or more before she was set on the one she was going to get. After 3-5hrs in Belks, it was time to move on. She would visit some other stores, but none were even close to Belks for her. She loved that store and they didn't have one in Georgia. That was why she loved it so much.

Eventually we would all meet back at the grandma's house. We would share with each other the great deals we found. It was time for lunch, so the infamous turkey sandwich made it's appearance, with a couple side items such as stuffing, collards, mac and cheese, or some other casserole, and maybe a deviled egg. Yummy, yummy, just as good as the day before. We sat and relaxed and napped as we watched T.V. There were kids all over the floor, since the rule in our family was always the older ones get first dibs on the seats. Even if somebody was 1yr old and there was only 1 seat, that oldest got dibs first. It was an understood rule, that's hard for me to get over now. When I get together with a different family or with my husband's family and here a 50yr old man has to sit on the floor, but a 6yr old has a seat in a chair or couch, I just don't get it. It's a first come first serve, move your feet, lose your seat kinda thing. Back to the Thanksgivings, ones from Georgia would shower grandma with early Christmas gifts. If only they knew what I knew. She had closets full of old gifts with tags still on it, she didn't wear the stuff, she just put it in closets. It was still fun though.

On Saturday we would once again meet at the house, as everybody packed up to leave. Never a dry tear in the place. We hugged, we kissed on cheeks, until next year. Yet another Thanksgiving, come and gone. Children were told to be good. "I love you" was the line everybody said to each other We never knew when it would be the last for somebody, anybody.

Then one year, it was. My grandmother, my mom's mom that is, passed away. To some she was a sister, and to a few she was Mom, to me she was Mema, but to many she was Aunt Barbara. I honestly don't remember that following Thanksgiving. I'm sure some came for my great grandma, but I just don't know. If the family did get together, it was the last Thanksgiving. That August before Thanksgiving we had a HUGE family reunion in Georgia. For once all my Mema's siblings were together, all but her. The one from California was there, and I met many cousins I had never so much as seen before. It was huge. After one passed away, Thanksgiving was never the same.

I know even if we still all got together it wont be the same. I mean, we will never all gather at one small house the day after for turkey sandwiches. We wont go out and rake leaves, and throw people in them after. We are all much too big to get on the swing anymore. No matter how much I want to relive those past Thanksgivings, I can't. Last Thanksgiving, last minute the Georgia folk, a couple hours away from us got together. It was too last minute for us to join them. I asked well in advance this year, hoping they would once again get together. I guess many are still trying to "find" that way of spending Thanksgiving. One cousin and his wife and newborn son are going to Disney World for Thanksgiving. An aunt and uncle are going to North Carolina. Aunt Joann will be with her son and 4 grandkids. My mom is going to Chicago with her best friend. My aunt here in Tennessee will be going up on the mountain with her best friend. My husband and I will be spending the day with roughly 25 people in his family. It's a bittersweat day, as I would much rather keep it simple with a small group than spend it with a totally different 25 people. My heart is with my family on Thanksgiving. It's so hard to get used to another family's way of doing things. They pick at the food before the meal. If I did that growing up, surely some adult would correct me. If there is one day of the year, that I miss my extended family, it has to be on Thanksgiving.

My Thankful List:

  • My immediate family (my husband, and my mom)
  • My extended family
  • The little baby growing inside me
  • Our jobs that we have, it could be worse, we could have no jobs at all
  • My friends
  • Our wonderful and most awesome church
Happy Thanksgiving everybody. Safe travels for all who are traveling. Be careful on Black Friday and have fun.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Meeting the Monster 1st Memory

As I try to think of topics to blog about, I can't think of anything good. I mean, I live a rather boring life. There are some things in my current life I could blog about, but I would rather not. Some things are just personal and don't need to be shared on public internet. So, I figured I would start posting some topics that would let you know me a little better. Not the surface me, or the present me, but memories I have from early childhood and beyond. I think it will reveal a little about me that most don't know yet. I can remember what happened when I was 16months old, but I can't remember what happened yesterday. I may remember things before I was 16 months old, but in my mind I can't put a date on anything specific, until then.

You may be wondering how I can remember something from 16 months of age. It's easy, it was my first time meeting SANTA CLAUS. So, since my birthday was July, and I wasn't an infant, it was obviously when I was 16months old. Also talking to my mother about, she confirms when it was and is shocked that I can remember something from such a young age. My opinion, was when something is that traumatic, you tend to remember it.

My Mema took me to the K-Mart my Granddaddy worked in quite often when I was young. I remember her dressing me in these beautiful lacy dresses and putting me in the shopping cart seat. We wouldn't make it past the entrance before all these women came saying how cute I was.

This particular day was a little different. My Mommy was with us, and I think Granddaddy was on break. We went into the store, and since my Mommy was there I wasn't dressed in a fancy dress this time. When you went into the store, just to your left was the snack bar, that's where we went on this day. I'm assuming we got some kind of food or drinks, don't really remember. I do remember we were sitting at a booth, Mema on one side, my mom and I on the other, of course, me on the inside. To the right of me was ledge that if I wanted to, I could fall over and land in the store, just to give you a visual. We were enjoying our little day out.

Then it happened. This big, huge, scary man came. I still get a little freaked thinking about it. He had a lot of white hair on his face, big black belt, black gloves, and huge black boots. I was TERRIFIED. I screamed, I cried, for what seemed like forever. While I screamed and cried, the 2 people I trusted most in life, Mema, and Mommy, were trying to give me to him. I protested, kicked, hit, and did everything I could to avoid going any closer to the strange scary man. I couldn't figure out why Mema and Mommy wanted me to get closer to him, did they not love me? I remember thinking, if I go over this ledge, I may get hurt, but I would further from this monster, but if I don't go over the ledge, who knows what will happen. After careful consideration, I finally decided, that going over the ledge was my only option. At this point, my Mema and Mommy saw my decision, and finally told the monster to leave.

Lesson learned: Never trust!! This was the first time I can remember that the people I trusted the most let me down. I felt like they put me in danger.

If you like reading my early memories, keep reading my blog. I think my childhood memories and circumstances are more interesting than my current boring life. Trust me, my brain is going crazy thinking about the next things to write about. From preschool through high school, I have a lot of history I can't wait to share.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Wanna know what suck

My refrigerator broke. Fortunately we live in an apartment still, so we will not be financially responsible for it. I mean nobody wants to have to throw away chocolate ice cream, frozen foods, milk, cheese, and probably $50 worth of food in general. And until they get us a new refrigerator, nobody wants to live on canned food.

Again, fortunately, I have planned on visiting my mom tomorrow and spending the night tomorrow night with her. Women are getting together tomorrow night at her church for a soup dinner and something else. Whatever, it sounds like a lot of fun. Hopefully by Tuesday evening when I shall return, the fridge will be replaced and we can go restock. Unexpected expenses, don't we just all love them. As for Simon, well, ok, maybe I'm a little worried, as he will still be home, sleeping and working on Monday night and Tuesday night. I'm sure he'll be fine. Maybe before I leave tomorrow, I will get him a supply of non refrigerated items. If I don't I'll be worried about him while I'm gone.

So how is everyone doing? Got any good movies to recommend? We have and we have been getting some weird ones in lately. We go to the store to get another movie, and low and behold, 4 our 5 are terrible. We did watch Baby Mama, and thought it was pretty good, and Made of Honor was good too. That was mixed in with a bunch of yucky movies. So, any ideas for a good movie???

Saturday, November 15, 2008

More randoms

I have a few different things to say.

First, thank you Elana for the blog reward. I haven't even attempted to do anything with it, because well, I'm technological, well, stupid. I'm kinda afraid to try anything. This stuff scares me and I have no idea how people do the things they do. I'm a little jealous maybe. I'm upset because I can never get my myspace layout to do what I want it to do. I don't know, it seems things should be so easy. Maybe it's partially my dinosaur computer.

So, I said we are naming our girl Elizabeth Ellen. Would you believe the book of names/meanings we have does not have Ellen in it. It has everything else, but not Ellen. Crazy!!

My doctor said I had a 1 in 70 chance of Down Syndrome, he was wrong. The genetic counselor said I have a 1 in 108 chance, she even showed me where it said it. And there were no red flags on the u/s indicating Down Syndrome. Woosh, what I relief!! CF, isn't as bad as we originally thought either. The mutation I have to the gene is the most common. Simon has a very rare mutation, that unless it also has a different mutation, it's not as bad. Even if we did pass on our CF gene to our offspring it would not affect them like the "typical" CF. If a male, they would still be infertile, and either way they would still have respiratory problems. However, they probably wont have the pancreatisis and the digestive problems like others do. Again, what a relief!! I have decided against the amniocentisis, even though the office's rate of complication is 1 in 1500. I've figured, there's no red flags on the Down Syndrome, and we know about the CF. I am going to request the info for the CF doctor in town, so maybe we can meet with him/her before the birth so we are more prepared if Ellie does have it.

You read it right, if we have a boy with CF, he will suffer infertility. The genetic counselor said the only way he will be able to have a baby is by IVF. She also said there would be a chance that his sperm wouldn't even be vialable enough for that. If we have a boy with CF in the future, I'm not sure if I want to tell him from the beginning, you know during the puberty talk, or wait. If you tell a teenage boy that he can't have kids, then he may just decide to go sleep with every girl he knows. So, maybe wait and tell him about the infertility later when he starts dating more seriously. Oh, well, I don't have to figure that out yet. We are having a girl, and I'm just trying to figure out what age I need to tell her that she could start gushing with blood down there.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Quick Update

I found out we're having a little girl.
I'm now on moderate bed rest.
I have a 1 in 70 chance for the baby having Down Syndrome.
Still have the 1 in 4 chance for the baby having Cystic Fibrosis.
I go to the high risk doctor first thing in the morning.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Blood pressure update

My blood pressure is staying down pretty good, hasn't scared me half to death yet. It did look like it was going up some last night, but I had a horrible headache. I didn't feel well, so out of lack of anything better, I took my temperature. Sure enough it was a little elevated from my normal, even my pregnancy normal, but it wasn't real high. I took a couple tylenol, took a benedryl and slept it off. This morning, when Simon got home he crawled into bed with me. He claimed he was hearing something that sounded like my heart beating. I mean, sure I am pretty much hearing my heartbeat every waking moment now, but surely somebody else can't be hearing it too. I guess we'll never know if he was really hearing my heartbeat or if it was something else. But, I just wanted to say that things seem to be look a lot better right now.