Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Die a thousand deaths!

After my last post, it only seems fair to give an update on the situation. My mother ended up having a second colonoscopy and finally, finally some answers were found. The surgeon fixed the problem while doing the colonoscopy so there was no need for a second scope or surgery. It was a blood vessel causing the bleeding that is apparently linked to liver issues. My mother will have a liver biopsy soon to assess her liver function.

She was released from the hospital on Saturday, May 21st at which point I promptly took her to Golden Corral, per her request, because the poor woman had not eaten solid food for at least a week at that point. On Saturday, I also drove to the airport to talk to the ticket agents in person about changing her tickets. I took a note from her doctor explaining that she had been hospitalized (again) and that is why she missed the flight. The agents were wonderful and quickly dealt with the re-ticketing at no charge. THANK GOD!

Mom went home on Monday. I drove her to the airport because I too was flying out to Cozumel that morning. I got mom in the security line safely and then my father, who was going to Cozumel too, called me to say he'd missed his flight because he'd been sent to the wrong gate. He was flying out of San Antonio while I was in Houston. At that point, I just thought "Well, sure." Because really, May had been the month of whatthehellweirdshitenoughalready.

I caught my flight and arrived in Cozumel in the afternoon, at which point I promptly went to the hotel and went to bed. It was around 5 p.m. and I was beyond exhausted. I had spent the last night of my mother's hospitalization in her hospital room, sleeping on a "couch bed" they had brought in for me. Sleeping is too strong a word to describe the experience by the way. It was more fitful napping.

I was finally getting into good sleep mode in Cozumel when housekeeping knocked at the door around 7:30. They were there to deliver "welcome chocolates" to me. Now, chocolate is usually a welcome gift, I don't dispute that. But seriously? The first time I was hitting the groove of good sleep in weeks and I'm awakened for that? Die a thousand deaths housekeeper!

Dad finally arrived on Tuesday and we spent several fun days in Cozumel. We left on Friday having eaten at Ernesto's Fajitas and Casa Denis, gone horseback riding, shopped, swam, snorkeled, and scuba dived (Dad did this as he's a certified diver). I slept in on the mornings he was diving and then happily wandered around aimlessly. It was great. We are planning to return in August for a longer stay in Cozumel.

Until then, I have other things to accomplish. I will be taking the NCE exam for my counseling licensure in July. Studying for that is the priority right now, along with job hunting. Never a dull moment.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Graduate: Drained

I am drained. It has been an unbelievable two weeks. I am now the proud owner of a Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology. I started the program in August 2007 and went part-time for the most part. Finally, after a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, I received my degree on Saturday, May 14th, 2011. This was my final stint in college. In 1998, I earned two B.A. degrees from the University of Oregon. I took four years off and then pursued my law degree (J.D.), earning that in 2005. I have been practicing law on and off for the last six years, but counseling is my real passion and I am excited to be able to pursue this profession.

I've already had to exercise my own set of coping skills this last two weeks. My mother came from Oregon to spend time with me and attend my graduation. She arrived on Saturday, May 7th and we spent a few fun days together before she started bleeding internally. She knew that was happening because it has happened before and she knew the signs. I took her to the ER and they admitted her on May 11th. She had blood transfusions, an endoscopy, and a colonoscopy to try and find the source of the bleeding. They could not find it (which is also what happened when this occurred in 2008) and they released her when it stopped on Sunday, May 15th. 

She was out of the hospital for two days and started up again. I brought her back to the hospital on Wednesday of this week and they admitted her again. She had an endoscopy again today, which did not provide any answers and tomorrow, she will have another colonoscopy. She was supposed to go back to Oregon on Wednesday, but clearly that did not happen. I will have to go wrangle with the airline to see about changing tickets for whenever it is we're told she can fly.

I was supposed to leave on Monday for Cozumel, Mexico, but I don't think that is going to happen. It's OK because I've been there three times before, but I was looking forward to some relaxation after a very difficult last semester. However, I am counting my blessings because there are many:

1. I have my Master's degree and I am done with school. I did not set out to get four degrees, but that is what happened and I am proud of my accomplishments and grateful to God for allowing me the tools and opportunities to pursue my education.

2. I have amazing friends. AMAZING! They have all been supportive, loving, caring, and given of themselves throughout the process of my education and my trials in life. They have shared my joy and I am forever grateful for them.

3. My parents are incredible people who love me beyond measure and have stood beside me in the gale force winds of life. 

4. My mother is receiving excellent medical care, which is far and above what she would get in my small home town. 

Much to be grateful for and those are the things worth concentrating on.

Sunday, May 1, 2011


I'm feeling the need to retreat into hermitdom. This is usually the case when I am overwhelmed and stressed, which has been true for quite a few months now. If anyone needs me, I will be in a cabin in an undisclosed location with all the amenities of modern life, but none of the hassles. OK, so not really, but oh how I wish!