The Week From...

What a crazy week it's been! I have so much going on right now. I'm being pulled in ten different directions and I have no idea where to start. Right now my focus is finishing plans for my sister's Bridal Shower. It has been very stressful lately and I feel like I'm running around like a chicken with my head cut off. I keep taking notes and making plans and depositing them everywhere. I decided it's high time I buy a day planner before I am buried in post-it notes. It's going to be big, 100 people were sent invitations and I'm an inexperienced party planner...any advice for the stress bucket? (I promise to post pictures of the event once I finish everything.)
Here's a breakdown of last week:
* Last Wednesday our good friends came up from Las Vegas to stay with us for our mutual friends' wedding. I had spent the previous 3 days working 10 hour shifts and I was exhausted. We were excited to have them so we stayed up way to late talking. I woke up too early Thursday and went to work my last four hours of a very long work week. After my shift we went to the Salt Lake Temple to be there after the wedding. They came out looking ecstatic and gorgeous and it was a whirlwind of congrats and pictures. The heat got to us after a while so we left and ran errands. Their luncheon was later that afternoon and we were running late. Then we got stuck in traffic on the way there and ended up being an hour late. We were so embarrassed our stomachs were churning as we walked in the doors. We were welcomed promptly and the churning stopped. It ended up being a fun, but very long day.
* Friday we took the day off to spend time with our friends. We were all tired and lazy from the previous day- not to mention the fact that our men went golfing at the crack of dawn and were exhausted the rest of the day. Since we couldn't get them up and moving us wives decided to get ready for the day. (We had been waiting because we were SUPPOSED to go swimming. Oh well.) We had planned to go out for sushi but, when we got to the restaurant, the baby wasn't having a good night so we left. The boys had pizza at home with baby and the girls went out to O1ive Garden for a night away.
* Saturday I returned a surprise phone call from my best friend, love squalor, saying she was in town!!! We made the short trip down to Orem and crashed her family reunion. We had a couple hours of catching up and had to be on our way back home for dinner with a group of friends. It was so great to see her and precious Esme. I hope I get to see them again when I'm in New Mexico next week for the shower.
* Sunday was a hard day. I have a sister, Shaina Rose, who died on July 1st, 1994 three hours after coming into this world. She was born with a condition called Trisomy 18, which basically means she was missing her 18th chromosome. Without it she was premature, her hands and feet curled in, and her diaphragm never developed. With no diaphragm her right lung never developed and she couldn't breathe. I was 11 years old when she came in and out of our lives. Thirteen years later I carry on a tradition my family started of writing her a message on a balloon and releasing it into the sky. Love has been kind and supportive of this every year. For some reason, her birthday hit me hard this year. I am not certain why, maybe because I so desperately want a baby of my own and, for a second, the thought of the loss my Mother must have felt that day hit me. Our lesson at church was focused on loss...not just loss of a loved one, but loss of anything. I believe all couples desperate for a baby know the feeling of loss you experience every month you don't conceive. I felt that loss very strongly on Sunday. After church we went to my sister-in-law's house for family dinner. I have mentioned my other sister-in-law before. She and I have been trying for almost the same amount of time. Her doctor put her on Clom1d and she announced her pregnancy on Sunday afternoon. As happy as I was for them and for the hope it brought me that it might actually happen for me, I was already very emotional and tried very hard not to burst into tears. After much hemming and hawing- because I was trying to hide my glassy eyes and red face- I finally went up and gave her a hug and told her how happy I was for her. The tears flowed promptly and she- being the wonderful sister she is and having experienced the same feelings I had- cried too. We stood there and held each other for a while. She admitted to being worried about telling me. I hope she truly does understand that I am ecstatic for them...just a little sad for me.
*Monday and Tuesday flew by, I worked and hung out with friends. Tuesday night we went to the annual family barbecue and watched a decent fireworks show. Wednesday it was time for our friends to leave. They packed up their car, we hugged them goodbye and walked back into our empty house. It was sad to see them leave. We really enjoyed having them here so long and remembered how much we miss them living here. I will admit that it was nice to get back to my routine...we all know I am structure and routine oriented...
*Thursday felt like another Monday. Having a holiday in the middle of the week really threw me off! After a long day at work I went to Love's softball game. After the game we invited ourselves over to the newlywed's house to see their place and hang out for a bit. They ended up making us the best spaghetti we've ever had and we left too late for me to write last night.
So that's it. After looking it over, I'm afraid I might have bored you all to death. Sorry. At least you're updated now...

A Monday Story

I stirred this morning, stretched my arm back and felt my secondary pillow. Instantly a thought came to mind, "An extra pillow means I need to wake up." (Don't ask...I'm still wondering myself.) I jumped up and looked at the clock. "Oh no!!!! It's 6:48!" (Supposed to wake up at 6:20.) Throwing the covers back I hopped lightly onto the floor and floated...uh stumbled to the bathroom. Blah blah, then turned on the shower, undressed and got in. Fastest.shower.ever. Afterward I yelled to Love, "Wake up!" "Moan" (love) I made my way to the closet, picked out clean clothes, threw them on and went back to the bathroom. My hair was quickly thrown into an (unflattering) up-do, a wet one, and my face was quickly dusted, colored, and mascara'd (??). Rushing to the kitchen, I threw some food in a bag and ran out the door.

That is how my day started. Here is what followed:

-Stress over money

-Love not in a good mood

-Anger towards lazy people

-Bridal shower grief

-Fighting about money

-Good sale turned sour

-Ate lunch at my desk while working

-Ten hour shift

-Didn't finish all tasks

-Didn't have time to pick up important package

-Traffic- while fighting about money


Thankfully things are better now. Still hate Mondays, money, and a few other things. Time to sleep and try again tomorrow.


Yesterday we went to West Fest, a carnival in West Valley City, UT. Here are a few captured moments:


The craziest ride, our friends M and A, and Love.


Some amazing fireworks taken by my silly little Samsung Digimax 4010.**


And finally, the "shrapnel" that fell on us through the entire show.

I got me a partner!

Well, I got one a long time ago...but Love has agreed to start getting up and running with me in the morning! If there's one thing I've learned about myself over the years, it's that I AM NOT a self-motivated person. I must have a reason, a friend, or a prepared task that gives me incentive to do something. If I have that, I'm great. I am a doer, a go-getter, a task...completer...??? Yeah, something like that. If not, I'm sunk. It's terribly sad, I know...but don't worry. If I don't have a motivator, I am excellent at complaining.

In baby news, well, there really isn't any. I don't know if I'm pregnant or not this month...and honestly...I am not really to worried about it. Maybe I'm in denial...maybe I have found some sort of peace about the whole thing for a while...maybe I'm just tired. Yes, tired. I'm tired of thinking about it constantly. Sick of letting it take over my life. I have so much stress in my life right now and sometimes I feel like if I could just get pregnant...a lot of it would be relieved. To me, stress may be something keeping me from getting there. So, I'm trying to take a step back. I want to start focusing on me, on Love, on getting in shape, finding more time for creative things. Maybe if I just try to step out of it for a bit...I'll conceive. Who knows? It's worth a shot right? Don't worry, we're definitely not giving up. We are still trying...still...well you know...on the right days and all that. Yet we're trying to focus on other things for a while. If that doesn't work by the end of the summer, then we'll look at our budget and see if we can fit in those (high cost, not covered by insurance- that's another topic though) options that the Doctor gave us. I want a baby soooo bad. I'm aching to be a mother and to let Love experience the fatherhood he never got to have with his daughter. I guess I'm just not ready to give up on nature yet. Has anyone else had this problem?

Screws, Pain, and Fatigue

Wow, it's been a few days huh? Well, I did go see the doctor on Thursday. After a significant amount of poking and prodding (which made my semi-pain-free arm hurt enormously), me worrying that I didn't know if I was pregnant or not this month (ha!) and an x-ray wearing double lead and sitting as far away from the x-ray table as my arm would allow...we know exactly nothing. The one screw that is bothering me seems to be slightly unaligned with the rest, but not enough to tell if it is actually loose. So, right now, I'm just waiting. The doctor wants to see if maybe it was hit and is just inflamed, or if it is actually coming loose. I have an appointment for a month from now, which I will keep if the pain persists. As of now, my arm actually feels fine most of the time. Let's all hope it stays that least until after summer.

My three major Monday complaints are:

* I woke up with a stomach ache AGAIN this morning. What is up with that?

* I had a relaxing, boring weekend. Why am I so freakin tired?

* Work

Let's all just get through today huh?

P.S. I haven't had one spare moment of time lately to go on a picture hunt for my header...please be patient with me! :-)

Drawing is NOT like riding a do forget.

Drawing talents before...(not even too wonderful then)


And now...the pencil is struggling to find it's way...


But I'm trying again and that's what is important, right? (sorry for the crappy pictures...they weren't dark enough to be really clear.)

A list...

Reasons why this is a terrible Monday:

* I went to bed late and woke up exhausted

* Not only exhausted, but with stomach cramps

* I have plates and screws in my left forearm from crashing on a bicycle 11 years ago. Saturday my arm started to hurt. Over the past couple days a bump has developed and I think one of the screws is coming out. Very painful. I have an appointment on Thursday to get it checked out, but most likely, I will have to have surgery to get them all removed- after which I will have to wear a cast (again) for 6 weeks.

* My fingernail IS indeed going to fall off

* I am already stressed out between work, functioning during daily activities, and trying to have a baby...along with Matron of Honor duties for my sister's wedding. Now, I have to get x-rays, have surgery and wear a cast- which probably means no baby for at least two more months and I will have a deformed finger to go along with it.

* The worst part? The arm, at least, could have been avoided if I had gotten the screws removed a year after the surgery (as my doctor recommended knowing this would happen eventually) and worn the cast then.

All I have to say is...grrrrrrr

Equipoise Beginnings: The final installment

I'm finally posting the third and final installment of our beginnings. You'll want to read part one and part two if you haven't already! :-)

Once Love graduated AIT, we packed up our things and made the long drive back to New Mexico. We were allotted 4 weeks to go home, pack up all of our belongings (most of which we left in Love's Parents' garage), and spend a little time with family before heading to North Carolina- where we were to be stationed.

While we were in Virginia, my Mom had spearheaded all plans for our reception. See, only a few people from our family were able to attend our ceremony with two days notice, so we decided to go ahead and have a reception as soon as Love was done with training. So, we arrived in New Mexico a few days before the reception. It was a whirlwind of dress fittings and last minute plans. My mom was pregnant at the time and, unfortunately, lost the baby right before my reception. It was very hard for her and for all of us, but invitations were out and plans were drawn. So, we took over. Luckily, my mom being the organizer she is, had everything drawn out, where the decorations were to be placed, she had people doing food and everything was set. When the day arrived, I took my sisters to get our nails, hair, and make-up done. We went to the church to help set up and get last minute things going. Then I went and got into my dress and the party started. It was a wonderful day and, even though I missed out on the bridal showers and bachelorette parties, it seemed so worth it.

We stayed for a few more weeks, then packed up and made our third trek across the country to Fort Bragg, North Carolina. We arrived there nearly poor, living off credit cards, and ready to settle into our new house on base and really start our lives together. Unfortunately, we arrived at a busy time and they wouldn't have a house for us for two months. They would allow us to stay on post in a hotel for a short time, but we would have to pay up front and they would reimburse us. This was the way of the army. Thankfully, Love's best friend in AIT already had a house and an extra room they offered until our house was ready. We gratefully took them up on their offer and moved in. The next couple of months were hard as tensions rose. It's hard to cram two newlyweds into one small house and work out meals. Soon, it was all over, though, and we got into our cute little townhouse.


Everything was going fine, I found a job working part-time and Love was doing well at his job. We'd made some friends and things were working. Then Love started changing...very gradually. His mood would change, we would fight a lot, he was turning into a different person. Finally, around Thanksgiving 2004 we were sitting on our friend's front porch talking and he said, "I think I might be depressed." His family has a strong history of depression and suddenly it all made sense. He went to talk to the Chaplain- kind of a religious advisor to soldiers- who referred him to a psychiatrist. After meeting with her a few times, they determined it was, in fact, depression and put him on meds. She also put in a recommendation for him to be medically discharged from the Army. We were promised it would be anywhere from a week to a month. So we put our lives on hold, I told my boss and we waited. And waited. Seven months later, after much arguing, tears, heartache, and a very angry visit I made to his First Sergeant, we were released.

It was a long and troublesome fourth trip cross-country that included several U-haUl breakdowns (don't ever use them!!!), a few crappy hotels, and our dog, Daisy and her two puppies Bella and Jack:


After a stop off in NM to get the U-haul fixed (twice), we finally reached our new home, Salt Lake City, UT. Love's sister and brother-in-law were kind enough to let us stay with them (making the fourth family we'd lived with during our short 1.5 year marriage) until we could find jobs, a place to live, and get back on our feet. We did and we've been doing great to this day!

So that is our story, at least the short(er) version.


Love started his new job yesterday and loves it! (YESSSSSSS!!!!!!!) He was excited because he got to order "anything he wanted" from the C0rporate Express catalog for his desk.

Brief conversation on the phone at work:

Love: "So, my stapler does twenty pages at a time!"

Me: "Twenty?"

Love: "Yeah, it's strong enough to staple twenty pages together!"

Me: "Great!"

Love: "I got a hardcore stapler!"

Me: (laughing) "A hardcore stapler?"

Love: "Yeah, it's like loading a handgun!"

Boys never grow up!

Equipoise Beginnings Part Two

No such luck, I'm not pregnant this month...again. Anyway, on with the story:

(You'll want to read Part One first.)

On February 8th, 2004, after spending a month and a half working, planning, and missing Love. I set off, by myself, on the cross country drive from Albuquerque, NM to Jackson, SC to see Love graduate basic training- after which we were supposed to get him settled in Richmond, VA and I would continue on to stay with Love's Aunt and Uncle in Springfield, VA for the duration of his AIT (secondary training). It took me four days as my family, and Love, didn't want me driving after dark or for too long each day. I made my first stop in Dallas, TX, where a nice LDS couple (strangers) let me stay with them for the night. They fed me grilled cheese and tomato soup. The following day I stopped in Jackson, MS and stayed in a hotel with damp sheets. The third day I stayed in Atlanta, GA with a friend of Love's Dad. He had a loud, obnoxious child and fed me pot stickers. The next day I waited for Love's parents to fly in from Atlanta, GA. I found them at the airport and followed them the short 3 hour drive to our hotel in South Carolina. I listened to a radio broadcast of a TV show...the name escapes me. It was my first cross country trip and the longest drive I ever made. Thinking back over the course of my trip, I listened, and sang along at the top of my lungs, to every CD I owned- twice- saw advertisements in french in Louisiana, the wide Mississippi River, and a city called Newton...while I was eating fig newtons.

Love's parents and I arrived in South Carolina, checked into our shared hotel room and fell promptly into bed. The next morning we arose, I was so excited to see Love I could barely sit still. We arrived on base and went searching for him. His drill sergeants were running them through a graduation practice. We would see them soon. Unfortunately, someone broke formation to talk to a family member. They were chastised and forced to drop and do push-ups, in front of their family, causing us to wait longer. Finally, they were released to spend time with us. I wanted so badly to embrace him, but couldn't because he was in uniform and it wasn't allowed. We were allotted a few hours to spend talking with him in the gym. It was wonderful to see him, but so dictated and very difficult. After what seemed like minutes, we had to go. The night was restless. Morning came and we prepared for his graduation. It was cold and overcast. We sat in the bleachers and watched the ceremony. I remember feeling so proud of all he'd accomplished so far...and waiting impatiently for it to be over so I could see him. After graduation the soldiers were released for the night. Once we got in the car and got off base, we were finally permitted to embrace, it was the best hug ever. We went back to the hotel where Love's parents left to give us some "alone time." After wards, we all went to Texas Roadh0use and ate a big meal. Then we took Love back where he would sleep, then catch the bus with all the soldiers headed to Richmond.

The next morning, Love's parents left early to catch their flight home. I slept in a little, checked out of the hotel, and was on my way to Virginia. When I arrived at Fort Lee, I didn't know where Love was, or where I could find him so we could spend our weekend together before I headed to Springfield. It was Valentine's Day. He had called me once from his bus, but I hadn't heard from him since. I parked in a hotel parking lot on base and waited- for hours. Finally, I decided to try and find his company. I drove all over base looking for company L. I finally located the company and walked in to try and find him, and find out what was going on. I was upset, I walked in a talked to someone at the front desk and they went and found Love for me. (They had to pull him out of a meeting.) They let him take me outside, my bawling was distracting the other soldiers, and explain the situation. I wasn't allowed to touch him except just hold his hand. I was frustrated and lost in a strange new place and had been alone for hours. I was angry and crying and wanted to know why he hadn't been released to spend the weekend with me as I thought. It turns out, there was a miscommunication between bases. Fort Jackson said we would get time with our soldiers, Fort Lee wanted the weekend to get the new soldiers ready to begin training on Monday. I was sobbing, Love was helpless, then they forced him to go inside. I told him I'd stay in a hotel just off base and leave the next morning to Springfield. I cried all night.

The next morning I made the short two hour drive to Springfield and entered the houseful of strangers I would spend the next few months with. I am not very good at meeting new people. I am very shy and put up a wall until I get to know people better. I spent the day unpacking with tears streaming down my face. They left me alone. Love was supposed to get a pass every weekend to go off base and do whatever he wished. He didn't get that for two weeks. That week, I got up early and drove down to Fort Lee to see him. We stayed in a hotel on post and acted like we hadn't seen each other in years. Best two days of my life up to that point. After the shortest time ever, I said goodbye again and headed back to Springfield. After a while we decided it would be better to drive back to Springfield each Saturday and spend our time there. This was our schedule: I got up, got ready, drove two hours to pick him up, he drove two hours back, we spent about 24 hours together, practicing the privileges of being married, eating out, going shopping, and exploring Springfield. Then we'd leave at around 1pm on Sundays to make sure he got back by his 4 pm curfew. I would drive home alone. Traffic was evil and I was often late picking him up or late getting back on Sunday. Some days they held them late on Saturdays and I would be left anxiously waiting for them to get out. Our lives were dictated, our 24 hours passed quickly, we said goodbye too many times. During the week I worked as a teacher for the two-year-old class at a day care center. I would go tanning, draw, read, whatever I could to to keep myself occupied until Love could call me. He called me every night...except a couple. I never knew when he would call, my phone was my constant companion.

It seemed there were to be many roadblocks placed by the army. A few weeks into AIT training- Love was training to become a parachute rigger, or someone who packs, repairs, and jumps with parachutes- Love was supposed to go to Fort Benning for Jump School. (To learn HOW to jump from planes.) It was postponed 3 weeks...meaning we'd have to stay three weeks longer. When he went to jump school, I flew home to see my family. The nights he was supposed to jump, I didn't sleep. I waited for his call to tell me he was OK. When he got out of Jump School, I went home. I saw him that weekend. The pattern continued. Luckily, I found out my best friend, Allison, was in Virginia. I was excited, I hadn't seen her in four years! She singlehandedly helped me get through those last six weeks, and I helped her with a few things too. It was amazing to see her and have someone I knew and loved around during the week. It was hard to leave her when it was all over, but I was also overjoyed to be done with being away from Love.

This story has gotten too long. I'll finish it tomorrow!

Equipoise Beginnings Part One

My goodness! It's like pulling teeth to get on here this week! (Not that I have ever actually pulled teeth, but it sounds hard.) I have just been a little crazy lately, sorry for my absence.

I fear I may have scared a few people by my- slightly- crazy post on Tuesday. I just want you all to know...I'm doing much better. Tuesday was a rough, frustrating day and I'm afraid I took it out on you, dear readers. I did feel a whole lot better afterward though...

In other news, today SHOULD be CD1. Not a single red drop so far, so let's all keep our fingers crossed huh? In my pessimistic and hopeless nature though, I did come prepared for...well anything. I'll keep you posted on this one.

Love is going on an overnight camping/ paint ball trip with family and friends (just the boys) and I am left home. It's funny how much you miss your hubby when he's not at home. I took him to work this morning and felt a little sad knowing I wouldn't see him until tomorrow afternoon. It seems a little silly because we've been apart for longer periods than that, but I did, just the same. In fact, now that I think about it, we've been apart a lot in our 3 1/2 year marriage.

We met in August 2003- and when I say met, I mean started dating, as we were friends for quite a long time before. (Actually, he dated my sister for a brief 2 months in high school, but that's another story.) I was working as a server for Red Robin at the time and his family came in to eat.  I recognized him and gave him a big hug. I took their table and got their food. Soon, everyone left. A few minutes later, Love came strolling back in saying he'd lost his car key. So, I started to help him look for it. After looking for a while, I asked if he'd looked in his car. He said he'd looked all over inside (funny because it was a Jetta and you can't get into it without the key because it locks on its own- but I didn't know that at the time). Finally, he went back out and "looked" and came back shortly, key in hand. Apparently, it took him all this time to summon the courage to ask me out. I told him yes. That was the beginning.

After dating for about 2 months, we were engaged, here in Salt Lake City, in front of the Salt Lake Temple. We planned to get married in June 2004. In November, he went off to Jackson, SC for basic training for the Army (our first separation). I was living with his parents at the time (moved there when a gas line broke at my apartments and we didn't have heat or hot water for two months...and they still wanted full rent). He was gone for 4-5 weeks and we wrote each other letters and cried a lot. He came home on December 20th (day before my birthday) for two weeks over the Christmas holiday. We spent Christmas with my family. As we talked more and more we decided maybe it would be best to get married while he was home. (For financial reasons, and a couple we'll discuss later.) Finally, after a lot of discussion we decided to go ahead with it. This was decided Sunday December 28th. That night we took his parents over to my parents' house to tell them we wanted to get married on the 30th. (Yes, two days later.) Unfortunately, well, let's just say they didn't take it very well. In two days I got the day off work, a dress, a cake, secured someone to marry us, got a few decorations, and called family- at least half thought I was pregnant- so they could come. It was a very nice little ceremony. My mom started speaking to me again about 2 hours before the wedding and my dad decided (seconds before I was to walk) that he would, in fact, walk me down the aisle and give me away. Afterward, we shoved cake in each other's faces, mingled with our guests, took a few pictures, and we were off to a hotel for the night- courtesy of Love's parents.

Our wedding night was great except I got sick with pink eye and strep throat and didn't sleep a wink. The next morning I got up and went to work. Three days later, Love went back to basic training, leaving me behind in New Mexico until February 8th. (The second time we were apart.) To be continued...