Thursday, May 1, 2014

The year that everyone went to the doctor

I swear, when it rains it pours around here. I guess I have taken for granted how healthy we normally are, because in the last few months I have done nothing but take people to the doctor and it's really throwing me off a bit. My kids hardly ever get sick and have never really had medical procedures done. No ear tubes, no tonsils, nothing really. They go for checkups and every now and then someone gets the flu or something, but in general we just rarely have a reason to go to the doctor.

And I guess this time around it's not like everyone is sick, everyone just needs medical procedures done, all at the same time. I've been back and forth to the orthodontist several times in the past few months getting the braces situation figured out, and that will continue for the rest of this year. Josh gets his on in a few weeks and Matthew starts the process this summer.

Clarissa has had absolutely horrible allergies for the past few months and after going to our regular doctor and trying every allergy medicine available with no success, they finally referred us to an allergist for allergy testing. Turn out, it's cats. *sigh* They gave her a nasal spray that has helped a ton though, but we have a few follow ups with the allergist coming up to make sure that solves the problem.

Matthew has had a weird bump on his neck for a few months. It seemed to be going away and we thought it was getting better, but now it's back and worse than ever. We took him to our regular doctor and he didn't want to mess with it, so he referred us to an ENT and this morning Shawn took him over there to have it looked at. The ENT is 99% sure that it's just a cyst and nothing to worry about,  but it's not going to go away on it's own, so it's going to have to be surgically removed. Like, day surgery, anesthesia, stitches and the whole thing. Ugh. We hoping to wait a month to have it done, after school is out, so he doesn't have to miss school for it. It doesn't seem to be anything urgent, but Matthew is a bit freaked out about the idea of surgery. So he's got braces and cyst removal happening this summer. Not the way a 10 year old really wants to spend his summer!

And I'm still getting over whatever has invaded my body these past few days. I feel slightly better today. I'm on a week of prednisone for the asthma issues though, and the side effects of prednisone aren't my favorite thing. Whatever, I can sort of breathe now, so that's something.

Also, my dentist keeps calling to try to schedule the crown I need done. I just can't even with that night now. I'll get to it after everyone else's issues are taken care of.

So anyway, that's what is keeping us busy lately. I wish it was something more fun than constant doctor appointments. Because any thing doctor related tends to be an anxiety trigger for me, it's kind of exhausting to keep it together and not stress about it. I have to work hard to keep the anxiety in check. Plus, now I have a pile of doctor bills to contend with, and I assure you, that is NOT my favorite thing!

But because I'm trying to make an effort to find happy things, here are a few happy things that have been going on here lately.

I read two books last week. I read an entire book from beginning to end on Friday and another one on Sunday. That felt really good, actually. I haven't done that in a while. In my quest to make more time to do things I enjoy, I have really enjoyed spending more time reading.

Another thing that has made me happy lately is that Shawn and Josh have started going to the gym together every morning and they love it. I can't believe what a change I have seen in Josh this past year. Josh is not a sports kid. He never has been. He hates team sports, he has always hated PE, and he hated running. Basically, physical activity was not his thing, lol. That has always worried me, and over the years I have tried different things without success.

Then last spring when he was registering for his 8th grade classes, a friend talked him into signing up for a really hard core PE class called Multi Fit, which involves lots of cardio, weight lifting and running. He signed up because his friends talked him into it and then immediately panicked over his decision, lol. None of the things in that class are things he liked. Like, at all.

So last summer he decided that if there was any way he was going to survive that class, he'd better start training for it over the summer. He started running on our treadmill, which he hated at first, but he stuck with it. Then the class started in the fall and at the beginning of the year they did a whole bunch of fitness testing to see where they were at and Josh pretty much came in last in most of it. There are a lot of athletes in the class, and Josh just couldn't keep up.

But Josh being Josh, plugged along, has worked incredibly hard and I'm telling you, I have watched a completely different person emerge this year. He LOVES that class! The kid who couldn't run from the front door to the mailbox last year is now running laps several times a week. They run the perimeter of the school on a regular basis, which is a mile and a half, and over the year he has improved his time by 8 minutes! He was in the back of the pack at the first of the year and now he's keeping up near the front.

Seeing that kind of helped inspire Shawn to decide to go back to the gym and Josh signed up too. They planned to go three times a week, but Josh has convinced Shawn to go pretty much every morning. They get up at 5:45 and get it done before work and school. They love it.

And along with that they're also hiking on Saturday mornings. Josh has to do a series of pretty long hikes to get his Eagle Scout, so they've been doing them together. They have to do five 10 miles hikes and then a 20 mile hike, and they're hoping to get them all done this summer.

And Josh loves all of it! The kid who used to hate any sort of physical exercise is now begging Shawn to hike with him and dragging him to the gym every morning. It has been kind of amazing to watch his transformation. That has been a great source of happiness for me this year. Watching my kids work hard at something and succeed is one of my favorite things about being a parent.

Another thing I have loved lately is watching Matthew become such a voracious reader. He has always liked to read but this year it's almost been amusing to me how much he loves it. He gushes over books like they're they greatest thing in the whole world. If I buy him a new book I'm his favorite person ever. And I love that he loves to read, so I DO buy him a new book practically weekly. I can't resist. He just finished reading the second book in a new series he started and this morning I got a quite a presentation on why it was the best book ever. Every book he reads is the best book ever. It makes me smile. :) I love that kid.

In Clarissa news, she has found a best friend. She has finally reached the age where she enjoys playing with friends and there is a girl that goes to our church who Clarissa is pretty much obsessed with. She begs to play with her all the time, and talks about her all day long. Sophia has a teeter totter in her back yard. Sophia has lots of princess dresses. Sophia has a big dog. Sophia has a little brother. It's all Sophia, all day long. It's been fun to watch her grow and change and hit so many new milestones. I still can't believe she's starting Kindergarten in the fall!

So there. There is some good and some bad going on in my life these days. I'm grateful that I have so many good things to balance out the not so good things. We'll get all these doctors appointments out of the way and go back to doing something more fun!

I'll be back later with my daily happy post. I'm always on the lookout for happy things these days! :)

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