Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Anniversaries are supposed to be happy

We've never really celebrated Elise's diaversary. Not for lack of wanting to, but because it comes two days after her birthday, the day before Mattias's birthday, a week after mine, plus it's mashed in there with school starting. There's just a lot going on in a span of a few weeks.

We always acknowledge it; praise Elise for how brave she is, talk about how far we've come, and how thankful we are for discoveries and technology.  The day is bittersweet, because it is not only the day our lives irrevocably changed, but also the day our daughter's life was saved.

Today marks a year since we lost Nicolas.  I have been dreading its coming for weeks, because slowly I was being transported back to a time of such intense bleakness and pain, I was afraid I would never emerge.

How to you acknowledge the passing of a life you never knew, except for the 17 weeks you carried him?  One that you loved from the moment you discovered he existed, but you never got to tell him? A life you've always wanted, but was never meant to be? 

Today he would be almost 7 months old.  Learning to crawl.  Discovering solid foods.  He would have attended his first FFL with us.

Just like with Elise's diagnosis, I get mired down in the "what ifs". And it's a dangerous spiral.  So just like with Elise, I want to try and look towards hope.

I know where he is.  I know I will see him again.  I know that he is not in pain and will never have to suffer the sadness of this world.

And I am thankful to the kind friends who have already reached out today.  Remembering that my son was here and will always be a part of my family. Acknowledging that his life had meaning.

It is this hope that will get me through.  And knowing that if Nicolas cannot be in my arms, then resting in the arms of Jesus is not a bad place at all to be.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

FFL 2015... was it worth it?

Due to mountains of laundry, a sick kid, Blogger eating my first post, and me not wanting to admit that FLL 2015 was over, this post has taken awhile to write.  But here it is, in all it's bullet-pointed glory.
  • Don't congratulate yourself on the foresight of planning your flights around your little one's nap time.  Because even though you may (or may not) have given him lunch, followed by a benadryl chaser, he will choose NOT to nap during his regularly scheduled time.  In fact, he will finally fall asleep just as the plane lands.  And then shriek at you when you wake him up as you get off the plane.
  • Forgetting a suitcase at home sucks.  Forgetting the suitcase that has all the diapers at home really sucks.
  • Thankfully, you have awesome friends (for life), that will drive you to Target. And put up with you as you scan every item with your cartwheel app.
  • Are we the only family that brings one suitcase solely dedicated to food?
  • Watching fireworks from the comfort of your hotel and not have to be in a crowd of people is the best.
  • I love it when registration finally opens and people start wearing their green or orange bracelets.  There is nothing like looking at someone and not having to say a word.  The "me too" echoes back loud and clear.
  • I didn't get any pictures, but my kids (and Fred) love to hang out at Sports Central whenever it is open. Thanks to all the great staff that make it happen!
  • I love meeting a friend that lives in my computer for the first time in real life.  I had no idea that Denise, Mom of Bean was going to be there, but I'm glad we got to meet.
  • Florida in July is stupid hot.  That's why even I will go to the pool.
  • I know this is only our third year at FFL, but going there makes me feel like I'm home, and the people make me feel like I'm with family.
  • Let's not forget how awesome it is to have someone else carb count the food for you!
  • One of Elise's favourite things every year is the Exhibit Hall, and the SWAG.  There were some fun booths this year! Unfortunately I can't really tell you about them because I spent most of my time chasing children around the hall.  And losing them. 

  • Sundaes from Ghirardelli are always a good idea.  Blood sugars be damned.

  • I loved seeing some of me old favourite presenters (Joe Solo), and some new-to-me peeps (the Osers). I did miss the Stress Management session though... I can always use some mediation.
  • I love these guys and all they are doing to make the Bionic Pancreas a reality.
  • Speaking of which, I was in the session where they unveiled the iLet (hee), and the collective gasp of delight from 300+ people was amazing. I just might have teared up a little.  Or a lot. Plus it was fun to see Elise's picture in the slides during the presentation... couldn't have picked a cuter poster child.  Just my opinion!
  • I got to hold it!
  • The banquet and dance was fun and I loved shaking my booty with my little girl on the dance floor.
  • Loved seeing Elsa with a green bracelet!
  • Dexcom threw a fun movie night for the kids.  They got soft comfy blankets to lie on (and keep!) as well as popcorn (5 kinds!) and drinks.  And of course, ice cream after the movie.  
  • Of course there's the breakfast with the characters before the CWD day at the Magic Kingdom.

  • Disney is NOT the happiest place on earth.  In fact, I think I met some of the most miserable people ever there.  I was afraid one guy was going to take a swing at me.  Nevertheless, as much as I don't like Disney, I love seeing it through the eyes of my kids.  I love that THEY love it.  And that's enough for me.

  • Did I mention Florida in July is stupid hot?
  • What do you do when you bolus your child for a Dole Whip float, and she takes one sip and decides she doesn't like it?  You get her some ice cream.  And what do you do when half that ice cream falls off the stick and onto the ground?  You buy her a churro.  Thankfully there is no shortage of carbs at the Magic Kingdom.
  • Elise spent most of her day at the MK low. At one point we were searching for some lemonade and we went to the Pinocchio Haus. We asked a guy if they had lemonade, and he asked fresh or frozen?  Elise wanted frozen, so he told us to sit down.  A few minutes later he brought a try with three frozen lemonades, and two bottles of water.  When we asked how to pay, he replied, "it's the magic of Disney".
  • We spent part of our time at MK with another FFL family Elise and their daughter H had so much fun together.  And H's parents were fun for us to hang with too! Nothing like another D-family to have your back when you're dealing with Disney and BG craziness!
  • If my husband ever keeps my two older kids at the MK until 2:00 am, I will kill him.  Or seriously maim him.  Especially when we have to get up at 7:30 the next morning.  And fly home later that day.
  • Best Disney picture ever
So... Is FFL worth it?  It is.  Every child-tantruming, over-priced food, sleep-deprived, burst-into-flame hot, BG rollercoaster, friend-making, I-got-your-back, me-tooing, same-same moment of it.  Try it for yourself and see. 

See you in 353 days.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Happy 148th Birthday Canada!

It all started with a simple picture of my 10 month old daughter holding a Canadian flag.  Now 7 years later, all 3 of my kids proudly wave the maple leaf on Canada Day. 

Tell me what’s a Douglas Fir

Betcha never heard a bobcat purr

Have you ever seen a lobster crawl?

In Canada, we get to see them all.

We get to see the maple trees, maple sugar and the maple leaves,
We got the biggest wheat fields growing tall

In C-A-N-A-D-A, where we see the reversing falls
In Canada, we get to see them all.

Tell me, what’s a tidal bore,

Have you ever heard the ocean roar?

Just listen to that wild goose call.

In Canada, we get to see them all

We get to see the maple trees, maple sugar and the maple leaves,
We got the biggest timber woods so tall 
In C-A-N-A-D-A, where adventure ever calls,
In Canada, we get to see them all.

Have you ever heard a maple creak?

Betcha never seen a mountain peak.

In the land of the big snowball.

In Canada, we get to see them all.

We get to see the maple trees, maple sugar and the maple leaves,

We got the biggest wheat fields growing tall

In C-A-N-A-D-A, where we see the reversing falls,
In Canada, we get to see them all.

Have you ever seen a magnetic hill?

Or a lady on a dollar bill?

Betcha never seen the autumn fall.

We get to see the maple trees, maple sugar and the maple leaves,
We got the biggest timber woods so tall 
In C-A-N-A-D-A, where adventure ever calls,
In Canada, we get to see them all.

*Lyrics from the song C-A-N-A-D-A by Raffi

It's a day late, but Happy Canada Day to all my Canadian peeps out there.