Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Just a quick note...

We may possibly be a couple of the worst bloggers in cyberspace!  I just noticed that it has been over four months since our last post, yikes.  Anyhow, just a quick recap of the last four months...We've been having a great time.  We have been taking little trips here and there, Starkville/Jackson, MS for Thanksgiving and a wedding, then a weekend in Austin, TX for another wedding, next we were driving back to Starkville for New Years then down to Pascagoula, MS (on the coast) for yet another wedding.  We have certainly put some miles (actually kilometers) on the car and got to do lots of visiting with family and friends.

I would like to promise that we will blog more but it looks doubtful.  Trey is very busy with work, school and other hobbies.  We have also been getting more involved at church with different volunteering projects and such and taking the Bradley childbirth classes.  There is some commitment just about every weekend, and at least two weeknights every week!  

There is also the fact that we have only three and a half months to get ready for this fast growing baby, which I have big plans for!  Some of which include renovating his room with wainscoting, new trim and paint, and making curtains, bumper pads, a quilt and other bedding type stuff with a more classy than cutesy baby look.  The whole "eating right" thing has also proven to be quite an effort on my part too.  Getting enough protein, chocking down the leafy greens, and figuring the quickest way to eat veggies without really tasting them.  I used to think I ate fairly well with all the fruit, whole grains, milk and cereal, but now I am eating to grow a healthy baby which means the emphasis has to be on protein, and leafy greens (ick.)  I am sure my Dad would be so happy to see my daily food intake now!

So that's about it for now.  I'll let Trey take the next post and put some pictures up here, since he has become quite a good photographer!  I hope this post finds all of the people reading it (if anyone is reading it) in good health and happy times!  

Friday, September 26, 2008

162 Beats Per Minute, Impressive! By Mel

We got to see our little utero bean for the first time today, after much commotion, stress and crying, but it was amazing. We saw it's little heart, racing at 162 beats per minute, which is probably about what mine was when I got up this morning. I already know he or she is going to be just like Trey, fidgety and can't stay still. I am also pretty sure that once the little bean gets big enough, my belly is going to be moving all the time!

So now that we know things are looking pretty good right now, I'll explain the details leading up to the unscheduled sonogram. I got up with Trey this morning at 4:45 Am to make his lunch and see him off to work. Guys, you may want to skip this part. I went to pee and immediately began to panic at the sight of so much blood. When I say panic, I really mean panic, the scariest thing that has ever happened to me. After the hysterical crying, so much that my poor sweet dog was on the floor licking my face and crying with me, we gained a little composure, got Trey out of the shower and headed to the ER.

We were greeted at the entrance with helpful, friendly faces. There was no sitting in the waiting room for 5 hours, like I have grown accustomed to in Newfoundland and Alberta. It may have had something to do with the fact that people around here don't run to the doctor with a sniffle or a paper cut, but was probably more that it was 5 am and most people were still sleeping. I immediately went in to have my blood pressure, heartrate and temperature taken. They have this fancy thing they roll across your forehead to check your temperature. I think they still use the good ole trusty mercury thermometers back in Canada (slight, but only slight, exaggeration there). I sat down and waited a whole 2 minutes for my room to be ready, an actual room, with a door and everything, not just a slightly opaque curtain that ends 3 feet off the floor.

We sat in there and the nurse came in right away, my nurse, not one of the two taking care of 12 patients, one nurse assigned to each room. She was very sweet, until she said "We are going to do some blood work and a Cath UA to start." Blood work is fine, but I was wondering what a Cath UA was, and hoping it wasn't what I was thinking. I finally swallowed that lump in my throat and asked. She answered and I was thinking I didn't really like her that much anymore. What do I need a catheter for? I can pee just fine. But they had to be sure it wasn't "contaminated" with blood. Being that I have never actually had a catheter and only hearing how horrible they were, I was sweating bullets at this point. She reassured me that it isn't as bad as I was thinking, and surprisingly it really wasn't. It is kind of weird that someone else can make you pee without any help from you.

Next up, IV, though I only heard blood work, which I have had a lot of and was totally fine with, then she said "You're going to feel a BIG pinch," and she wasn't lying. I never really feel the 'pinch' they warn you about, but I did this time, it wasn't serious but I knew I was getting stuck! My first response was, "wow, I felt that, is that normal?" She said it was and then asked me what kind of needles I had before, I told her normal ones, blood work, vaccinations, stitches etc. Then I was informed that it was an IV, much bigger than a "normal" needle and it gets threaded through the vein, not just stuck into it. She was very gentle and got it right in there on the first try, there isn't even a bruise. She wanted to leave it in in case they needed more blood or had to give me meds, then came the worst part, medical tape, one of my biggest hospital fears. You can stick me, draw blood, vaccinate, cut and stitch, but please, not the medical tape. It just doesn't co operate with my unusually hairy arms. Being the super nurse she was, she gave her best effort to avoid the hair, my hero!

She cleaned up and told me it would be about 30 to 45 minutes for the results. I was quite confused about that. For the past 27 years I knew that test results never come back the same week, never mind the same day! What kind of top-secret, super high tech devices do these American hospitals have that can produce test results in 30 minutes! As I was sitting there with visions of flying cars and The Jetson's cartoons running through my imagination, she stunned me again! She asked me if I needed anything? I wondered if I had walked into a 5 star resort that just happened to have doctors and nurses on staff. I didn't even answer, I just looked at her in bewilderment. Then she gave me examples, would you like another pillow, a blanket, some water, a newspaper? I just sat there and said "No thank you" and looked around for the hidden cameras, trying to figure out who was playing this joke on me. She then proceeded to get a TV, a remote and a pager in case I changed my mind and wanted anything. She was even sweet enough to go get Trey so he could wait with me. He stepped outside my room (with walls and a door) before the whole catheter thing.

So we waited. They didn't just leave us hanging either. I am sure at least 5 people came to check on me in less than an hour, giving us updates, test results as they came in, and reassurance that we were not forgotten about. When all the results were in the doctor came in and said everything looked fine so far. I was all ready to leave when he threw another wrench into my idea of what hospitals were like when he said, "I am going to do a couple more tests, just to be sure." Wow, he didn't just send me home with antibiotics and instructions to visit my family doctor if it didn't get better! Amazing!

After all the poking and prodding came the best medical procedure I have ever had, a sonogram! We got to see the baby in it's little sac, heart racing and fidgeting all over. It was the coolest thing ever. I arrived with tears in my eyes and now they were back, but completely different. The look on Trey's face was also priceless.

We left there with instructions for me to do nothing but sit on the couch or bed, except to go to the toilet or to get something to eat, a bleeding hole in my arm which the nurse was nice enough to leave unbandaged, and a peace of mind that I haven't felt in quite some time. Thanks to God for everything being OK. What a day and all before the sun came up!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Actually Earnin' the Check Now by Trey

Well Cinderella...it's midnight. No more cush job with short hours. Well the job is probably still cush, just the hours are longer now. I was no longer able to dodge the freight train of responsibility that goes by the innocuous term "flight commander." Instructor pilots at my age are expected to serve their time pulling the cart of students that make up a class of brand-new-bright-eyed-and-eager-but-don't-know-much-of-anything lieutenants aspiring to become steely-eyed-rough-and-tumble-kick-it-and-take-names-apex-predator fighter pilots. It's a long road (trust me, I've been down it already) that basically takes two and a half years. And you guessed it...I get them right at the beginning. Great. And I got all thirteen of them this week.

Actually, they seem to be a fairly decent group so far. They have a long way to go over the next six months before I can hand them off to the next group of instructors, but they'll all make it if they work hard. Unfortunately for these gentlemen -- they have me driving their pilot training bus. For the most part, I have to be the first instructor (IP) there in the morning and the last to leave in the evening. Amounts to a ten to eleven hour-shift most days. Nothing like the last assignment's ten to fourteen-hour days plus weekends and deployments...but let's just say I've encultured over the past couple of years here in North Texas. My previous "easy" job never demanded much more than an eight-hour shift and most often it was somewhere around six. Seriously, it was. Not too bad. I'm probably letting a good secret out of the bag here, but I never deploy, the flying is plentiful and simple, night flying is non-existent, getting days off is no sweat, and I'm in Texas. Okay, so the last one may not appeal to some of you. But to my fellow Texicans...you know where I'm coming from! Not that any of that has gone away, I'm just feeling a little sorry for myself and most importantly, Mel and Bear! They actually have the bad taste to want me around most days. No accounting for anyone's taste around here but mine!

So for all of you guys, pray for me in my new job. I'm in the position to make a difference (good or bad) in the lives of some sharp young men on their way to flying the world's finest fighter aircraft. I still remember lessons that my IP's taught me when I was in their shoes six years ago. The coolest part of the whole gig is that I'm commanding E Flight, which was the flight that I was in as a student. As I took over this week, it marked six years to the day from my first flight in the military and two years to the day from my first combat mission in Iraq. The Lord's plan for us all is revealed in the strangest ways!