Monthly Archives: July 2012

Something So Sudden

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I will freely admit that I am a paranoid passenger.  I hate to drive, but as Kyle would tell you, I can get antsy and dramatic when sitting in the passenger seat.  The best thing for the driver is for me to mess around on my phone,  take care of the baby or read.  I just do better when I don’t pay attention to the road when I am not driving.  Usually when Kyle and I go out he drives and I make myself busy, but when I am out with friends and I am not the driver I try my hardest to silence my inner-paranoid.

Kyle was home and free so Nicole and I went out without Reece today.  It was so strange to load up in the passenger seat -she drove since we didn’t have a need for the car seat- and go without my little noisemaker.  I don’t want to be on my phone when out with friends, so the best option is to keep up conversation.  Nicole and I BS’ed like only we can and I stayed sweat-free.  Nearing our destination, we came up to a few traffic cones but nothing that would interfere with where we needed to turn.  Nicole merged into the lane we needed after the cones ended and started the turn to get into the Target parking lot.  As we tried to cross the side access road to get into the parking lot a UPS truck came pummeling down, nearly T-boning us on my side!  Nicole slammed on her brakes and he slammed on his.  Where both vehicles stopped he was just feet from her truck.  He should have had a stop sign but it was mysteriously missing.  We continued into the parking lot and both Nicole and I breathed a sigh of relief.

We joked after parking that this little incident could have pushed me into labor.  I was happy I didn’t wet may pants!  It’s not like he was driving a little two-door car, it was a full size UPS box truck.  It would have done some serious damage to Nicole’s truck, myself and Nicole.  He was chugging right along too with what seemed like no intention of stopping.  She did nothing wrong and had the right of way but without Nicole’s great defensive driving and the sense of this UPS man to slam on his brakes when he did, it could have ended in an ugly mess.

It is crazy how something so sudden can change so much.  What if he hit us?  I am so close to meeting my little girl and she could have easily been taken away from me because of a missing stop sign.  I know that is thinking ‘worse case scenario’ but that is what really ran through my head as Nicole and I were face to face with the grill of a UPS truck.  I am probably blowing this way out of proportion but as I admitted at the top of this post, I am a paranoid passenger.

Miss Reading

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I used to read like it was going out of style.  I would carry at least one book in my purse and have and ’emergency’ backup in the car.  I wanted to be sure I would always have literature at my fingertips but lately I am slacking in my literary prowess.

This blog got it’s name from my love of reading; novels in particular.  As I developed this page I had high hopes for a weekly book review and even hoped for a little publicity in the future for my honest -and regular, if not frequent- critiques.  The problem is, I am in a reading dry spell.  It’s not that I don’t have access to books I want to read -I have stacks of good books everywhere- I just don’t feel like cracking open a book when I finally have some free time.  A little last night and a lot more today I forced myself to read when Reece was napping and I was off my feet.  It felt great and when I heard Reece come out of his room after his nap I was a little bummed that I couldn’t finish the chapter I was on.

I think I may be anticipating and preparing for how little ‘hobby time’ I will have here pretty soon and that is why I am not interested in getting too vested in a book.  My house is baby ready and is only waiting on said baby so why would I not utilize my free time accordingly?  I try to spend any free time cleaning, preparing or planning.  Reading just isn’t on the baby list.

I miss it though.  I miss the little escape it allows at the end of a long day.  I miss guessing what is going to happen next.  I miss the characters, plot, dialogue, settings, etc.  If I miss all those things I don’t understand why I am not pulled into a book every free second I have?  Why can I understand what I miss, acknowledge that I miss it, want to get back into it, but still not?  Why do I have stacks of books that taunt me on a regular basis and I do nothing about it?

I have two books that I have a true desire to read.  The others can collect dust for the foreseeable future while I get back into the swing of things with something I look forward to reading.  I hope these two have enough power to keep me going after Kylee comes or I might as well change the name of this blog to “What a Thought”.

 

Who Cares About the Other Guy?

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Ryan Lochte won the 400m Individual Medley.  He claimed the first USA gold in swimming but it wasn’t his win that the news seems to be interested in; it is that Michael Phelps didn’t make it to the podium at all.  

Maybe I am just sick of hearing about Phelps.  Maybe that is because of the news’ crazy-fascination with the man but I am glad he has announced this is his last Olympics.  He is a great swimmer and although I am no psychologist I believe he hates the sport.  I think his sudden rise to super-stardom in the 2008 Olympics was too much for him to deal with.  Every interview Phelps does shows a guy ready for the games to be over.  He doesn’t have the passion for the sport anymore.  In an interview with Bob Bowman, Phelps’ coach, Bowman admits that he isn’t a better or more prepared swimmer this year than back in 2008.  He has only been training for the last year after taking a lot of time off following the Beijing games.  Bowman did say, however, that although Phelps is not a better swimmer, he is a better man who has come to terms with what his stardom and is now using it in a positive way.  I am happy for Phelps.  If he wants to be done with swimming then let him be done.  If it isn’t his passion anymore than why should he continue?  Just because he is good?  Absolutely not.

But this was a win for Lochte.  He loves the sport and I love watching him win.  I think the focus should have been on Lochte’s big win rather than Phelps’ big loss.  Not only did Lochte make it to the podium but he stood in the top position.  It was his win.  I wish I could have seen his race in Prime-time and not have known the results, but every news made such a stink about Phelps’ loss that I couldn’t avoid the results if I tried.  I actually opened an article about Phelps not winning only to find out Lochte won.  What a bummer.  One of the happiest moments in his career, if not life, was overshadowed by someone else’s failure.  How is Lochte supposed to feel about that?  In interviews and press-conferences after his win he was asked about Phelps.

Here is how I see it.  Ryan Lochte rocked it!  An American won it for us!  I have already forgotten who got second and third because they weren’t Americans.  I wish another American was on the podium with Lochte and if there were I would remember his name but I will not focus on the man who came in fourth because he was America’s golden boy -pun intended- in the last Olympic games.

And on one final note; Go Lochte! Go Gators! (Mr. Lochte is a Florida Gator!)

 

To give credit where credit is due, image stolen from www.usatoday.com

Sick, Emphasis on the ICK

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I am no good at being sick.  There was always a silver lining being sick as a kid because you got to stay home from school and someone would take care of you.  Before kids, sick days meant staying in your jammies, hanging out in bed and doing nothing productive with your time.  With kids, it means hoping your spouse isn’t sick at the same time so you can relax a bit.

I knew it was coming.  Yesterday, I woke up with a bit of a sore throat but it went away as the day went on.  This morning though, I woke up feeling like I had been hit by a truck.  It doesn’t help that I can only take certain -weak- medicine and that I have to wrestle this big belly to get comfortable.  Reece woke up with the same thing I have but he is taking it like a champ.  Granted his nose is running like a faucet and he is being extra cuddly but take away that and you’d never know he is sick.  If my baby is the example, I would love to act like a baby when feeling this crappy.

I am not going to gross you out with all the phlegmy details so I will end this ‘pity party’ with this little wish.  Please don’t let me go into labor today.

Congrats, Kyle!

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It has been a long and tough year but the goal has been attained; my husband has received his Bachelors!

Getting his degree was something Kyle has wanted for such a long time so he jumped at the opportunity of a special program that allowed him to cram two years of classes into one year’s time.  Not only did he have to work towards the requirements of this particular degree but he also had to take additional classes to fulfill requirements or credits that did not transfer.  This last year was hard.  Weeks would go by where I would only see the back of my husband’s head because his nose was buried in a book or the computer.  Reece and I would clear out of the house so Kyle could work in quiet.  I was never sure when he’d come home because there were group projects and research that could only be done in the office.  I took over most of the daily responsibilities so that he could focus on his academics.  

Each quarter -eight weeks of hardcore studying- I would see an evolution in my husband.  It always started with calm apprehension and quickly transitioned into focused stress.  After finals, relief would pour over him and I would have my husband back.  He would be carefree, relaxed and cool.  I think he fed on this roller-coaster of emotions because he always did well no matter the coarse load.  Don’t get me wrong, this academic program is no walk in the park, but Kyle is a ‘hooah’ guy so no matter how hard the work would get I could see he would always pull through in the end.

But throughout this last year, no matter how much I think I took on extra weight so he could stress a little less, I realize he had taken on more too.  Not only was he focused on his academics but he still took the time to be a great husband to me and amazing dad to Reece.  He could see when the days began to wear on me and he would step in to help and after everything was back to normal he would return to his studies.  During my first trimester being pregnant with Kylee I could hardly get off the couch at times; Kyle would come home and take on the super dad role for Reece.  I did what I could to make this house run smoothly without bothering Kyle but he never once missed a cue to step in and help when times got tough.

I have tried in this post to avoid becoming a sappy puddle but the truth is my husband really is a hero.  He is a husband, father, soldier and now an academic.  He filled all of those roles this last year and is somehow able to wipe away the sweat and keep on going.

I was so proud as I watched him walk across the stage today.

 

Olympic Time

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Hi.  My name is Jessica and I am an addict.  I cannot resist anything Olympic.  I am about two years sober but starting tomorrow I will probably succumb to my addiction.  

I “LOVE” the Olympics.  I especially love the summer games but I am still glued to the TV during the winter ones too.  There isn’t a sport I won’t watch.  Of course, I like watching gymnastics, swimming, track and field and basketball, but I if someone is competing for a medal I am probably watching.

I have been watching the trials and following the news on London’s preparations.  It is great that as the years go by there are more and more channels dedicated to the games.  I could be watching anything at any hour of the day.  Live coverage, highlights and delayed airings!  24hour coverage!

I love watching/reading features on our athletes and learning their stories.  As an American, we all have a team we should be rooting for.  This isn’t about what college team you like, what city you’re from or what social/ethnic/religious/regional/economical background you most relate to.  This is America and as a country we root for our own!

I foresee very little sleep in the near future and not because Kylee is due soon.  The opening ceremony is tomorrow and I just can’t wait.

To give credit where credit is due, image stolen from www.london2012.com

Don’t Light the Bat-Signal

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Christian Bale visited some of the victims of the Colorado shooting on Tuesday.  He slipped into the hospital via ambulance to not bring attention to himself.  He met with five victims who were receiving care at the Aurora hospital and two whom were transported back from Denver.  He stayed for over two hours spending time with those injured and the hospital staff who were treating them.

After such a senseless act of violence, I find it heartwarming that a famous actor took the time to visit the victims.  He is the hero of the movie.  The character the movie is named for.  The man who fights the Joker.  He, in the end, saves the day.

I am a little bothered by a campaign I saw on Facebook trying to persuade Bale to make the visit.  Withing 24 hours of the incident I saw more than a handful of friends ‘Liking’ a post where someone suggested we on Facebook “should make enough noise” to convince him to show up to the hospital dressed as Batman.  I think it would be awesome if he did but I do not think pressuring the guy is the way to go.  The open letter to Bale asks him to visit the children and says “…you have the power to be a Hero right now, not a movie Hero, a real life flesh and blood one.”  To that, I agree.  It would be awesome for Batman to show up and meet the victims but there may be factors -that we do not know about- that wouldn’t allow Batman to show up.  Batman is a trademarked character and although he wouldn’t be showing up as a promotion piece, arriving as Batman would probably incur a lot of hoop jumping by multiple companies or organizations.

Christian Bale did the best thing he could do on his own, he showed up.  I hope he didn’t feel pressured.  I hope the ‘noise’ made on Facebook and any other social media sites didn’t make him feel forced to visit.  What if he couldn’t go to Colorado?  What if there was something keeping him from going?  What if he didn’t feel like it was his place to go?  What if the victims didn’t want to see him?  If he didn’t go, would people think any less of him?  He didn’t go as Batman, do people who shared this ‘Like” campaign think any less of him?

I think the best part of his visit was that he arrived under the radar.  He entered the hospital via ambulance so that any media camped outside wouldn’t see him.  To me, that shows he had no interest in the publicity this might incur.  He didn’t want to take away from the victims, he wanted to be there for them.  Bale wasn’t dressed in anything flashy, didn’t have and entourage and didn’t pull for attention.  In the articles I’ve read, all say that they didn’t even know Bale was in town, let alone the guy standing next to them at a makeshift memorial or in a prayer circle.  He was just a guy saddened by what happened and doing what he could to make someone happy in such a dark time.

So here are my thoughts.  Don’t light the Bat-Signal.  If Christian Bale wanted to go, and could go, he would.  Doesn’t it lose a little sincerity if he feels pressured to make an appearance?  I chose to believe the guy who started the Facebook ‘noise’ campaign did it with the best of intentions, but I could be wrong.  He may have wanted a few seconds of fame as the guy who rallied Batman to visit the victims.  I want to believe in the good in people and I believe even if there wasn’t a campaign, Bale would have gone on his own.

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The shootings in Aurora, CO were senseless.  I do not care about this maniac’s reasons or motive.  I hate seeing his name used and you will not read it in this blog.  I think a time like this we need to focus on the victims and not promote the asshole who did this to them.  He needs to disappear.  To be forgotten.