Friday, January 30, 2009


one* curious black cat + one hubby painting white trim = ?

skunk cat

*As I was brushing the paint out of Frank's fur Winston comes trotting by and I notice he is painted too...


My friend Lori had something like this on her blog and I figured it would be helpful to my peeps too since we're starting our own adoption journey. (She has since posted a little more here) There are so many misconceptions about adoption out there. When we first started thinking about adoption I went online for advice and support...I found MUCH of the opposite. Adoption has changed a lot over the last decade or so, yet most people's views are based on the old stereotypes.

Back in the day if a woman found herself with an unwanted pregnancy she would be taken away from family and friends, live in a group home of sorts until she delivered the baby. She would deliver the baby and never get the option of seeing them. She was counseled to forget the child and act like the pregnancy never happened. Agencies were the ones matching babies with waiting couples, and most of the time the birth family and the adoptive family didn't know much of anything about each other. Couples who adopted children were counseled that it was best to keep it a secret, to hide the adoption from the child.

Nowadays a woman who finds herself pregnant approaches an agency and they counsel her on her options. If she chooses adoption she is shown profiles of couple and families who want to adopt. She is given counseling the whole step of the way, especially after placement. Between her and the couple they decide on a level of open-ness. It could be letters every year all the way up to daily visits. The child who is adopted is told about her adoption from the very beginning.

When we first started looking at our adoption options Nathan and I wanted a 100% closed adoption. We wanted to get the baby and never 'deal' with the birthmother again. (I cringe reading that now...) We saw the whole situation as messy and complicated. We thought that would be the best for us, the baby and the birthmother. Boy, how wrong we were. In the process of my OCD information gathering, I rented a book from the library called Dear Birthmother, Thank You For Our Baby. More than once the book brought me to tears. I think any person involved in adoption should have to read it. It helps clear up a lot of common misconceptions surrounding adoption.

A lot of the negative thoughts about adoption can be overcome if you can throw out all the negative adoption language. Here are some examples:

"I don't know how that girl could have given up her baby."
"Where is her
real mom?"
put up her baby for adoption."

All the above examples have such negative connotations. A birthmother does not GIVE UP her baby. She chooses adoption for them. She places the baby in a home that can give that baby everything she could ever want for them. Saying put up makes me think of an auction (and buying babies IS illegal). They make it sound like the birthmother is being selfish and throwing away something she doesn't want. The opposite is true. Birthmothers love their babies so MUCH that they can see what is best for the baby and chose that, no matter the heartache it will bring themselves.
Using the term real when describing parents implies that there are fake ones. Adoptive couples are some of the best parents out there (not that adoptive parents can't be psycho, or not that you are not good parents if you give birth to your children). They have longed for children for so long. They have fought heartache and pushed through nosy social workers and long questionnaires all because they want to be parents. Nathan and I have thought many times that maybe all the hassle isn't worth it, but we want to be parents so bad we keep working towards it.

This doesn't even scratch the surface of all the complex issues surrounding adoption and I don't know hardly a drop in the bucket of all there is to know. But I figured knowledge is power and even a little bit is helpful, right? My friend Amanda let people ask her all sorts of questions about adoption and she answered them here and here. I also regularly stalk this blog.

So there you have it...well at least a small piece of it.

Oh and I almost forgot this:
Adoption isn't giving a
It is giving a

Sunday, January 25, 2009

I think I may snap

Nathan didn't go to MEPS on Friday....why you ask?  Our {brainiac} recruiter forgot ANOTHER form that needed to be filled out and sent in for processing...he didn't even know he missed it...MEPS had to CALL HIM and ask where the form was...  grrr

So now we wait, again.  Hopefully the form got processed ok and he can get down there this week...cause if not I am going to lose it and it isn't going to be pretty. 

Changing of the Guard

This is a few days late...but I have been a bit incapacitated...and if you don't buy that I'll blame it on the drugs.  

I watched the Inauguration on Tuesday.  Granted I was on Lorotab, cold medicine, and anti-biotics...but I actually remember a good chunk of it.   I thought it was neat to watch the past presidents make their way to the grandstand.   I have to say that Jimmy Carter looks pretty good for his age.  As former Pres Bush was making his way down the red and blue carpeted stairs he was shaking hands and making small chit chat he said to someone: "Good day for our country."  I saw him talking, but I didn't catch what he said, but the ABC commentator did.  He read Bush's lips and passed along what he saw.  It must have been an emotional day for him...end of his term, excited to move on, but sad to leave.  I was proud of him for realizing what a tremendously important day it was for our nation.  

I loved the musical number that was played right before President Obama was sworn in.  I love Simple Gifts and I thought the words were appropriate for the day: 'Tis a gift to be simple, tis a gift to be free.'  

As the camera was panning the crowd during the proceedings, it paused a moment on a woman holding a child of another race.  I know it could have been a neighbor, a stranger, a nanny...but I like to think that this was the child's mother.  I teared up thinking that someday I too may be a mother to a child of a race different than my own, and now I can honestly tell my children that there is no limit on their dreams.   

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Fun Stuff

So I still felt like crap today, yesterday...whatever...I'm up waiting for the pain meds to kick in.....stayed home again.  I woke up at about noon and found a pretty good sized bloodspot on my pillow.  Not just blood, but clotty blood.  I guessed that it had come out of my mouth because I could still taste blood and I could feel something running down my throat.  I called the Dr's office and they said to come right in...bleeding shouldn't be happening.  Just as we were getting into the car to leave my sweet friend Marci pulled in the driveway with a cute bag of some of my favorite treats...I can't wait to eat them...may have to wait a couple days though.  

So we head off to the Dr.  I brought the bloody pillowcase too, because I didn't want anyone to think I was not being honest...or exaggerating.  They took more blood, swabbed my nose for the flu and then made me wait for what felt like FOREVER.  This Dr (third one) seemed the most concerned with getting me better...maybe it was because I had been in three times in ten days.  I was so frustrated and tired and sick to my stomach from tasting blood that I got teary.  She came back in and told me I didn't have the flu (um, duh) and that my white count had stayed the same (which I guess it shouldn't have because of the anti-biotics).  So she thought it wasn't bacterial...but she didn't want me to stop the antibiotic...just finish them out.  But she did give me some steroids to help...something?  The one thing that caught her eye was that my mono something-or-others(?) jumped WAY up...which she took as a sign that whatever I have is being compounded by mono.  fun Stuff.  

Oh and the throat bleeding?  She thinks while I was sleeping my throat/tonsils/hangy down thingy dried out a little...then I swallowed and tore some of the skin(?) off.  Yummy.  (Not sure if any of this makes medical sense...I was a little dazed while talking to her)  The one good thing about all this?  The makes me crazy dizzy and nauseated but I sleep like a baby when I'm on it.  

(You might think it is weird, blogging when I don't feel well...but it is WAY easier to type it once than tell it 5 or 6 times over the phone...especially when my throat hurts as bad as it does) 

Bad news

Nathan got laid off.  Good thing we have the Navy...well, hopefully, Nathan still has to pass his physical and score good enough on the ASVAB.  He goes to MEPS this friday for all that.  Keep him in your prayers and keep your fingers crossed for us. 

Anybody want to buy a really cute house? 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


I am home sick today.  I went to the Dr yesterday...they tested me for mono, it was negative.  The Dr didn't think getting my tonsils out was necessary...which I can agree with, for now, because until this nasty bug I never had tonsil problems.  Well that and I don't have time to have them out right now.  I got an antibiotic, but I still feel like I decided to stay home, get some good rest, take lots of drugs {none illegal, I swear} and kick this thing's butt.  Hopefully. 

Sunday, January 18, 2009


I am alive.  I am reaching out to you, fellow humans, for some assistance.  I have been sick (this has been happening A LOT lately...too much for my is like I catch EVERY bug I get exposed to...) for a while (since just after Christmas) and the Dr doesn't have a I was hoping one of you might have an idea of what is going on with me.  

-Sore throat for over two weeks...strep culture so sore I have trouble drinking anything.
-Right tonsil swollen with white gunk on it (sorry, hope you aren't eating right now)...this causes me terrible nights of sleep because I feel like my throat is closing off.
-Weird nausea/dizziness.  I get car sick, but the last couple weeks it has been ridiculous...just to give you an idea...I got myself carsick while sitting ON MY CHAIR at work...
-Tender, swollen gland just under my jaw bone on the right side (same side as the icky tonsil)
-I had no other cold symptoms until thursday-ish...then I started coughing...but not a lot.  Deep barky coughs...and they HURT my chest.  
-Not stuffy
-Not congested
-No sinus pressure  
-Not pregnant (I know what some of you were thinking...)
-Fatigue...I come home from work, eat (maybe) and go to sleep.  Well....try to anyway. 


Saturday, January 10, 2009

You found WHAT...WHERE??

Our dishwasher has made strange noises since we moved in.  We just figured we got a noisy model.   Well Nathan had yesterday off and had had enough of the noisy thing so he decided to tear into it and see what was causing the racket.  You'll never guess what he found...

Yes folks, that is a nickel...he also found what looks like a broken off tip of a crochet needle...I don't crochet.  The nickel actually had burn marks on it you can kinda see one of them in the pic, it is right on the edge right by my finger.  When I asked Nathan to see it and I took a pic of it using my BB he said 'Is that going on the blog?'  He knows me too well. :)

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Certifiable Part II

Remember this from last year? Ya, well I got the letter AGAIN in the mail about a week ago. I called the Driver's License Division and asked if I was going to have to go through this every year...bad news: probably. Do you think that if we move and I change my license to an Illinois one the 'black mark' will transfer and I'll have to do it every year for them too? Hmmm...

All of this is just one big pain in my behind...and it is all because I was just being HONEST and checked 'Yes' on a box. Last year I had a heck of a time finding someone who takes my insurance and who would see me when I don't intend on becoming a long-time patient. I finally found this one guy...Dr. Johns (I think), and I went to him. I tell you what, after I left that session with him I felt like driving off a bridge. He was horribly condescending and made me feel more depressed about my life than I had ever felt (which was a pretty amazing accomplishment for him, because I have had some DARK times). Good thing there were no bridges nearby...seriously.

So now I have to find someone ...again... When I tried to explain my situation to the woman on the phone at the Driver's License office she was not very sympathetic to my situation. So the search begins...wish me luck. Oh, and a little note to all of you: NEVER CHECK YES on a government form.

Saturday, January 03, 2009


I found an envelope this week that had 'Holly: Open Dec 31, 2008' on it.  Once I saw it I remembered writing the letter contained in it.  It was a letter to myself that I had writted in January of 2008.  I hadn't set official 'resolutions' but I had a couple things I wanted to have accomplished by the year's end.  Most I didn't fact, I mended the rocky relationship with my SIL and that was it.  At first when I read the letter I felt I had failed myself.  But then I thought of all the things I DID do this year:

I worked two jobs for nine months to put Nathan through school.  
I played the piano and flute again at Nathan's recital. 
I read a new book every month.  
I went to a city I had never been to (Seattle).  
I dealt with the grief of accepting infertility.
I got more excited about adoption. 
I started honing my photog skills. 

So I may not have run a marathon or lost the weight or gotten pregnant...but I did do some things.  I thought a lot about whether or not I should set some resolutions for 2009.  On the one hand, if you set them and your goals are not accomplished you experience failure...BUT if you don't set the goals, you might just be complacent with the current version of you...never wanting to get better.  So I decided to do it.  I have really thought about them the last few days.  I thought long and hard about the type of person I want to be and the type of life I want to lead and I based my resolutions on that.   So here it goes.  

In 2009 I want to:
-Do something nice for someone everyday
-Read a new book each month (you can join me here)
-Take a photography class
-Do everything we need to do to get our end of adoption all set up
-Go back to church
-Read the BOM & DnC again by year end
-Learn at least one solo/concerto on piano 
-Learn at least one solo/concerto on flute
-Do 100 scrapbook pages
-Be better at remembering everyone's birthdays
-Do one thing a month that scares me
-Be more grateful

I am going to do a check-in post once a month as a way to hold myself accountable and hopefully help me realize my goals.  Wish me luck!