Saturday, December 29, 2007


Well, it's a Saturday night and here I sit. I don't mind being at home, I'm just bored out of my mind! So anyway, it gives me an opportunity to write about our Christmas. It was REALLY good for everyone. The kids got everything that they wanted, plus a lot more. It has taken me until today to get my house back in order, and it's still not as good as I would like. But one day at a time, right? :)

My mom got me a laptop, which I'm on right now. I love it!! The convenience of it it awesome. I also got a new printer too, which I have yet to get out of the box. I've got to find a place to put it first. But I'm very grateful and happy about it.

It has also been really nice to be off of work for awhile. I start back on Wednesday, but I feel like I've gotten the breathing room that I needed, and I'm refreshed. I got a job offer today, which is always nice. However, my bosses at my current job have done SO much for me, there's no way I could leave them like that. They have gone above and beyond what they have to do. We've had our rough spots, but who doesn't? I'm just grateful for what I have and where I'm at right now.

Life is going well right now. I've put all the financial stuff out of my head for now so I can enjoy my time off with the kids. I will worry about that again in 2008. Have a wonderful New Year!!

Monday, December 17, 2007


Recently things have been good, which I guess is why I haven't blogged lately. Isn't it funny how we only blog when things are not going our way or we're down? And that's kind of an assumption because I'm sure everyone is not like that. But I certainly tend to be that way :)

My dad is doing so much better. He went back to the doctor for the first time since his surgery this past Friday, and he's like a whole new person. The doctor said to take advantage of this miracle because it's obvious God wants him here. In all truth, my dad shouldn't have made it through, but he did. So now he's going to make the most of it. He's finally past his bitterness, and he's got his sense of humor back as well. I can't ask for more than that. I'm just happy and thankful.

Some other things have not been so happy lately, but you've got to take the good with the bad. This time of year is stressful for everyone. We're struggling a little bit financially, but who isn't? And December always seems to be the worst for that because there's so much to do. However, I've only got a week left of work before I get a short break and I can't WAIT for that! I'm really looking forward to spending some time with the kids.

All in all, life is good. I can't complain about too much, and for once I really don't want to ;) I hope everyone has a fabulous Christmas and happy New Year!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007


So my dad had surgery last Thursday, Nov. 15th. They put him in the hospital on the 13th b/c he needed a blood transfusion, and that delayed the whole process a little bit. The surgery took longer than they thought b/c of scar tissue from his other heart surgeries, but he made it. He has hit some bumps along the way and we've almost lost him a few times, but God is watching out for him and brought him through. I still can't get rid of this feeling, though, so I've been making sure that I'm up there everyday to be with him and help out any way that I can. They finally moved him out of ICU last night, so hopefully he will be home by Thanksgiving.

I just still feel so helpless. I wish there was more I could do and it frustrates me that I can't. I've really just shut myself off from people, and I continue to wonder why I do that. I mean, how hard would it be for me to call one of my awesome friends and tell them that I'm struggling and I'm stressed? It doesn't sound like it would be very hard, but it is. And then that brings me to wonder why I'm such a private person. I mean, I want to share things with people but I just don't. I don't want to draw attention to myself or the things going on. I guess I just want to be seen as strong and independent. But in the grand scheme of things, I'm just not; I'm too afraid to open up.

Anyway, enough of that. I'm EXTREMELY thankful that my dad made it through and is beginning to recover. He still has a long road ahead, but so far, so good. Thank you to everyone out there for praying and sending thoughts his way. I truly believe that it made all the difference in the work and it proves that the power of prayer is real. I'll try to keep the updates coming and try to keep them more positive ;)

Thursday, November 1, 2007


So life has been incredibly busy lately. Some things positive, some things not so much. However, what I CAN say is that we had a great Halloween. The kids looked great, they had an awesome time trick or treating, and we had a good time hanging out with family. Who could ask for more than that?

As for the rest of my life, there are so many things going on. I got offered a job promotion. I am now Special Events Coordinator and Assistant Gym Manager. I'm excited about these things. There won't be many extra hours unless we have something special going on, but it should be fun to plan things and watch things happen under my supervision. And the raise can't hurt too much either, right? Anyway, hopefully it all goes the way I expect.

As for my dad, I'm still frustrated. We're about 2 weeks away from surgery. I'm so upset by the actions of his cardiologist right now. He won't be performing the surgery (thank God!), but insists on seeing my dad weekly until the surgery. Now this is the same man who said there were no leaky valves and that my dad's breathing a few months ago was no concern. After seeing a specialist, his breathing WAS an issue and wouldn't have lived if they had not admitted him to the hospital and gotten the fluid off of his lungs and heart. And he has not one, but TWO leaky valves. They are doing surgery to repair his tricuspid valve and replacing his mitral valve. Anyway, today he had an appointment with my non-favorite doctor who displayed (at least in my opinion) very unprofessional behavior. Let me just say that I'm scared and this is MY father, so I expect answers to my questions in a professional manner. He originally said there was no cause for concern in waiting on the surgery, as we have been for the past month or so. But today he says he has to see him every 5-7 days to make sure that he doesn't have a heart attack before they get him in. WTH is that?! Then when asked what exactly the procedure is for him, he makes a big joke about it. We have not had anyone explain what exactly they are doing, and after all my research on the Internet about it, there are several options. Would it be so hard to just tell us??? I understand that doctors use humor to lighten the situation, and that's completely fine with me. But after that, explain to me what I want to know. He did not even give us that courtesy. And unfortunately, I was not there. If I had been, I guarantee a completely different outcome. I have so many questions with no one with the decency to answer them. I'm mad, frustrated, scared, upset....and the doctors should care! If no one else out there does, they should! They give us these terrible odds of him even making it out of the surgery, and then it's a joke. I just don't understand it. *sigh*

Saturday, October 20, 2007


I know it's been forever since I've posted anything. I've just been frustrated with life, I guess. I have SO much going on and I feel like all my free time is tied up with every other part of life. But certain things are really getting to me and I just need to get them out of my head and put them down somewhere else.

My heart is just aching right now. FINALLY the doctors came to an agreement after about a hundred more tests. They are going to do the valve replacement surgery on November 14th. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad....REALLY glad. He's just not doing well and getting weaker and weaker. But because of all the stress his heart has been under in the last year, they only give him a 50/50 chance of even making it through the surgery. I just have that really bad feeling again, and I'm just praying that it's wrong. I can't stand the thought of losing my dad right now. It's just not a simply can't be.

Work is going really well. I've found my groove there once again and I'm really enjoying it. The kids are also doing great. They're growing up so fast; I really wonder where the years go. How in the world is already almost Christmas again?! That means that we're that much closer to birthdays again and Willie will be 4 and Brooklyn will be 6. That just doesn't seem possible to me.

I guess that's really it for now. There hasn't been anything overly exciting happening. Just the same stuff, different days. Let's hope it stays that way. :)

Friday, September 28, 2007

To My Daddy...

You chose me
You loved me without question
Opening your heart
As well as your life
All I could offer was me.

I was never perfect
Or even close for that matter
But you took my mistakes
Taught me how to learn from them
And forgave me, no matter how bad it was.

You are an incredible person
With compassion and grace
Opening my eyes to the world
Telling me it was mine for the taking
Believing in me.

I will always be your JennyBug
And your little girl
I still need you to comfort me
Assure me that life is never too much to handle
To always be there for me.

You have done your job
Taught me everything that I need to know
I am a stronger person because of you
My heart is open to others
My amibition to be something great
Is because of the man that you are
And the woman that you taught me to be.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Back to Square One

So my dad went back to the doctors at Vanderbilt this past Friday. They told him they were just going to lay it out for him. They have been reviewing his case for the past couple of weeks told him two things. 1. The medicine therapy isn't working as they had hoped, but they are willing to try a couple of other types. 2. They really prefer not to operate on the 2 leaky valves because his heart has been through so much in the past couple of years, that they don't believe he would make it through the surgery.

So where does that leave us? Am I just supposed to sit back and watch my daddy die? How is that fair? And not just for me...for my kids as well. I have SO many memories of my grandparents. They were there for everything growing up, and they continue to be a part of my life now as an adult. I want the same for my kids. I want them to have wonderful, fun memories of my dad, their "Pa". I can't imagine life without him.

I am a big believer in signs, even though that probably sounds pretty stupid. But I can't help but think that God likes to give us little clues along the way, to help us see what to is to come or how choices may play out. All I have seen today on TV is people dealing with the death of their fathers. I'm an emotional person anyway, but that's just too much. I have cried more this weekend than I have in the past 3 months. Insane, I know. I just can't help the feelings of loneliness and helplessness that have consumed me these past few days.

Now my next step is to write my dad a letter. To tell him everything that he has done for me and how much he has taught me. It is by no means a goodbye, but a reminder so that he knows what a huge influence he has been for me and continues to be on a daily basis. So that he knows what he has meant to me in my life and how grateful I am that God gave me him as a father. And how incredibly lucky I am that I was placed with him and my mom as opposed to someone else, where my life could have been completely different. I just want him to know how much I love him, need him, and respect him.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

So Hectic!

That's my life lately for sure. I feel so overwhelmed right now. I can't even get my thoughts straight or take a deep breath. But here I am; I'm trying to sort it all out right here so that maybe I'll feel a little bit better.

So my dad was in the hospital for this past week at Vanderbilt. After doing TONS of tests and me doing TONS of research on the internet, there was no surgery to be done. I was not agreeing with this at all at first. The doctors said "the damaged valves are not weak enough for surgery right now". My response was "Who cares? If they're weak, shouldn't we go ahead and fix them now before something bad happens?" Well, actually...that must be why they went to medical school and I did not. They do not like to do more than 3 heart surgeries on any patient if it can be helped. Now, I know there are exceptions to everything. For example, my friend Debbie's daughter Reagan. But her situation is a completely different thing. ANYWAY. So they are trying some medicine therapy and we're hoping that helps them get stronger without having to go in again. Whatever. I'm just tired of it all. I'm going to admit defeat gracefully here, and pray to God that these doctors are right. What else can I do? If my dad accepts it, then I suppose that I have to as well.

I just feel beat down lately. Mentally, physically...all the way around. I've had a few other things going on lately as well, and people keep telling me to go to the doctor. Well, first of all, that costs money and there are bills to be paid. I think that's a little more important. Secondly, I think I'm just a paranoid person and nothing is wrong anyway. My life is hectic period. That's it. And I'm getting old, right? ;)

My great aunt also passed away this week. She was 94 years old and truly an inspiration. I haven't seen her in quite awhile, but I have awesome memories with her as a kid. She was the sweetest lady and led an amazing life. It makes me sad that my kids never got to know her, but that is no one's fault but my own. We get so caught up in our day to day routines that sometimes we forget to step outside of the box. And that's exactly what happened with me. I forgot to extend the routine. But it reminds to me to make sure that my kids plenty of time with my grandparents, who are getting older. I want my kids to have memories of them so that one day we can share those memories and smile at them.

We are also coming up on the anniversary of my friend Courtney's death. One year ago, on September 10th, she was killed in a car accident. She was only 21 years old. It's so crazy for me to think that it was a year ago. It doesn't seem like it should be, but at the same time it feels like forever since I've seen her. It still makes me sad when I think about her, and I wonder if that ever goes away. Is there peace anywhere out there? Thinking about it always makes me wonder why it was her time. Why didn't she get a few more years to discover what love felt like or what it would be like to be a mother? Why didn't she get a chance to reach her dreams or REALLY experience life? I know I could go on all day with the "whys" of this situation, but I can't help it. I find it to be so unfair, even though I know that God has a greater plan. I just think the world would have been a better place with Courtney in it. She was still learning and still teaching. She wasn't done yet.

So wow. This blog was ALL over the place, but that's how my mind has been lately. I guess I should learn to stick to one topic per blog, but that wouldn't be very much fun, now would it?

Thursday, August 30, 2007


So tomorrow is the day, I guess. My dad is going to a specialist at Vanderbilt and has asked me to go with him. He's been really emotional this week and I see that every time I look at his eyes. I know he's scared, and I don't blame him. I just don't want him to give up.

My step mom had to take him to the doctor Monday afternoon because he was really confused about things and his breathing was really off. It started Friday night after he got home from those tests, but I just assumed it was because they had put him under two times in one day. That's a lot of medicine for your body to handle. But instead of getting better, it kept getting worse. They called it "hypertension". Because the mitral valve is not working, his brain isn't getting enough oxygen, and the confusion was the result of that. So here's my question, or my thought...whatever you want to call it. Since his brain wasn't getting enough oxygen, shouldn't they have kept him in the hospital ON oxygen? Or sent him home with some??? Just curious, but it makes sense to me. What do I know? I definitely have not been through medical school.

So anyway, that's the plan for now. See what this specialist says and hopefully schedule his surgery for next week. The kicker is we have to leave at 6:15am. So I'm working on figuring out a way to get Brooklyn to school without having to wake her up at 5:45am to get her somewhere. It will all work out, I know. So please pray for my dad, cross your fingers, wish on a star....anything at this point is appreciated.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Can't Get it Off My Mind

So tomorrow is the big day for my dad. He's having his arteriogram to see what's going on with his heart. It just scares me so much. An acquaintance of mine lost her dad this past weekend because of a heart related problems. Grant it, he was WAY worse off, but it just really hit close to home. My dad just isn't looking good and it worries me.

On a good note, there is no colon cancer. My dad has been taking aspirin for years for his heart, but there are side effects, which he was not aware of at all. He has 2 erosions in his stomach because of it and was bleeding internally. The doctor he saw told him he should have been taking something like Prilosec on a daily basis to counteract it. How was he supposed to know that?? It kind of pisses me off because I feel like we put our lives in these doctors' hands and some of them just couldn't care less. Why is that?

I'm not saying this is the case with them all because I've come across some incredible doctors over the years, but also some that don't care whether you live or die. Is it because they make money no matter what? I feel like you should be in your profession because it's something you are passionate about and because you want to make a difference. If you don't care about people, don't go into a profession that deals with people!! There are so many things that I want to do in my life and they all deal with people. However, I'm smart enough to know that I can't keep my emotions out of it or I would not be able to leave things at work. Therefore, I would be putting myself (as well as others) in serious jeopardy because of it. Not to mention my family. Anyway, the point here is...know what you're getting into!

I guess I kind of went off on a tangent there, but that's something I feel so strongly about. Anyway, as for the rest of my life...I'm just tired. I've been running around like crazy the last couple of weeks, trying to get things done. On top of that, my baby started Kindergarten. She's growing up, and it amazes me. She's loving school and that makes me so happy. I'm so proud of her and I'm excited to see the accomplishments that she will make in the coming years.

As for Wil, well...let's just say he's finally a big boy all the way around! We've been working on potty training for a big part of the summer, but I wasn't pushing him because I knew he would do it when he was ready. Well, this was his week. We've gone 3 days with no accidents and he's really proud of himself. My baby is no longer a baby. And as sad as that makes me, I'm so glad to be done with diapers and pull ups :)

I'm hoping to find some down time at some point to relax and unwind and not think about anything. And if all goes well tomorrow for my dad, hopefully I'll find that this weekend. I know that I was all over the place with this blog, but if you made it through it....thank you. Thanks for caring enough to read it and see what my rambling mind thinks about.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Thoughts on My Dad

So I have a lot on my mind today and I don't even know where to start. I guess I will just start with what is stuck in my head.

In October of last year, my dad had a heart attack. He's a very stubborn man and refused to acknowledge that something was wrong. That is until that one Saturday morning when he couldn't deny it. My sister took him to the ER, where he almost died. But luckily God was watching out for him. Then they moved him to Southern Hills for testing since that's where his doctor was at the time and it made him feel better being there. That was when they determined he would need open heart surgery for the second time. The first time he had it, I was in the 5th grade and he had quadruple bypass done. They then moved him to another hospital, but I can't remember which one at this point. That was a really hard time for me, and I think I blocked it out for the most part. I remember the day of his surgery I could not be there because of work. However, I figured it was better to be busy than to be there sitting and sitting and sitting. They estimated his surgery at being around 4 hours long. But when they got in there, they had to do a lot more repairing than they had originally thought. Almost 9 hours later, he came out ok. Of course he was on a ventilator so his body could rest, but he had made it. I went to see him a couple of days later in the ICU, and nothing could have prepared me for it. As soon as I saw him, I broke down. This was my daddy, my hero. The one person that I could always count on and I never doubted that he loved me. It was awful to see him like that and I prayed SO hard for him to pull through. At one point, the doctors didn't think he would make it, but he did. And after all that, he was still the same. Except he stopped taking things for granted. He's all about his grandkids and loves them with all his heart. And he calls me a few times a week to check on me as well.

So fast forward until now. He went to the doctor last week and he has to have another arteriogram and a colon scope. Ever since his surgery, he has had a hard time catching his breath. The doctor assured him that it was part of the healing process, but come on. It's been 10 months ago now and he should not still be having that problem. They think one of the valves in his heart may not be functioning properly and there's a chance of surgery again. As for the colon scope, well...that's another scary thing. His blood count is low, and my grandmother (his mom) died in 2000 from colon cancer.

I just hate this! My father is such a good man and I feel as though he's already been through his share of stuff. Why does it keep reoccurring? And I always know when he's worried because I get phone calls like the one I got on Saturday. "Jennifer, I just want you to know that I love you, no matter what happens. And if it does happen, you know what to do."

Know what to do?! Sure, some of it. He made a list of things to do if something happens to him and people to call and what bills need to be taken care of. But that's my daddy and I'm still his little girl, even at 26. I'm scared of him not being there. He's the one I turn to when I need advice about things in life that I'm still clueless about. And not only me, but what about my kids? They deserve to have the same relationship with him that I had with my grandfather, who is 79 years old and still alive. I feel a hole in my heart just thinking about it.

And I know this doesn't mean anything, but sometimes I get premonitions. Like when my grandmother was diagnosed with colon cancer. I knew she was going to die. I know that sounds morbid and cruel, but I did. I knew when my uncle got sick a few years ago and had a brain aneurysm that he wasn't going to make it. And I hope and pray that I'm wrong this time. I hope that I'm just thinking the worst and it won't happen. I hope that all my worries are silly and they just go away and everything is fine. I just hope period.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Pleasing Yourself

So something I hate about life is trying to please everyone, including yourself. It is just not possible. Someone will always get hurt or upset by your decisions. There is just no way around it.

Over the last few years I have learned that all you can do is make yourself happy. If they are truly your friends, they will get past the hurt and understand where you are coming from. If not, well....oh well, I guess. It sucks and it's not fair, but you should not be made to feel guilty for things that you've thought about, prayed about, and simply struggled with over time. If you KNOW the decision is for the best, stand your ground! Eventually they will understand. Hopefully, anyway.

Everyone deals with things in different ways. My personal way is to close everyone out and hide in a "hole". Definitely not the best idea. So I've been trying to stay away from my "hole" and deal with things head on lately. Unfortunately, it has hurt some people along the way. To those of you it has, I'm sorry. It was never my intention, but it happens. And I am striving to be a better person and learn from my mistakes. Actually, I WANT to be a better person. Not just for myself, but for my kids. I want them to learn integrity and respect. But I also don't want them to be afraid to stand up for themselves. Growing up, I always thought it was wrong to do that, but it's not. You have to take the good with the bad, because it is in everything.

So be proud to be who you are and what you believe in and stand for! I'm not saying that it's ok to intentionally hurt people. However, sometimes you have to do whatever it takes to make yourself happy.