Monday, December 27, 2010

Following up

First off, I want to thank you all for all of the positive remarks and kind words I've received about my last blog entry.  I've always done better "on paper" than I do verbally, so to sit down and finally get it all out, it felt good.  I've also been thinking alot about perhaps taking the necessary steps to becoming a writer.  I do love to write, I always have.  I don't write stories very well; I have about 6 started in my saved documents file on the computer.  But, I love to write about my life, my experiences, know, 'from the heart' kind of stuff.  So that's something that's been whipping around in my brain for a few weeks.

Alot has happened since I last wrote.  Setback, after setback, after setback.  If it wasn't so devastating, it would almost be comical.  How much can one person take in such a short amount of time?  Infection, unexpected (but hopefully temporary) life-changing surgery, more infection, another procedure.  It's enough to fill up a lifetime, and he's done it all in the matter of 3 weeks or so. 

The attitude that I wrote about last time; that inspiring, amazing attitude seems to be dwindling quite a bit. It's been rough for everyone.  In the beginning, since his attitude was so great, we had no choice but to be optimistic and upbeat.  Now we are all fading.  I think this is where I say something about things getting better, or something about bootstraps (all of 3 people will get that reference)...but that's all easier said than done.  Words are hollow in these times.  It's all about the action.  I think this may be the time where he needs his friends and family the most, to help bring him out of the funk before it gets too deep.  His ordeal is just beginning, and it will be a long road so a positive attitude is a must.

Again, easier said than done...

Time to change gears for a minute.  I want to write about The Christmas Miracle.  Oh no, not THAT one, the one that happened on Christmas a few days ago.  Upon going home, my parents made a discovery on their front porch.  An anonymous envelope with a very simple inscription, " To the D'Imperio Family, Merry Christmas", and inside was a donation to what will most likely be the "medical fund."  Completely anonymous.    Who does that?  I mean, really. There have been a few guesses as to who it was, bit I doubt we will ever find out.  My faith in human kind has been restored a bit, that's for sure.  If by chance the angel who left it is currently reading these words...let me say thank you.  From the bottom of my heart.  Your gesture was a source of light during these dark times, and it bolstered my belief in all things good.  Thank you, thank you, thank you...and thank you again.

I could probably go on forever, so I will end this now.  Thanks again to all of you for the support, it has meant SO much to all of us.  Things WILL get worse before they get better, so keep the thoughts and prayers coming.  If you're close to 'the patient', go see him.  He needs the support.  If you want to leave him a message, do so here or Facebook message me and I'll print it out so he can read it. 

Until next time...

Friday, December 17, 2010

I've been trying to figure out how to write this blog entry for a while now.  I always try to remain somewhat eloquent and make some sort of sense while relaying the thoughts that are constantly racing around my brain like the Indy 500.  My brain never turns off.  I'm always thinking.  When I'm awake, I'm thinking.  When I'm sleeping, I'm thinking.  When I'm awake but should be sleeping...that's when I think the most.  I've had alot to think about in the past couple of weeks or so, too.  Oh so much to think about.

When you hear the word cancer, what's your first thought?  Heartless monster.  That's mine.  I would never wish cancer on anyone, not my worst enemy and certainly not a family member.  When you hear the news that your younger brother has an advanced stage of cancer, it kind of takes your breath away.  Immediately you think the worst, and no matter how hard you try to think about something else, it consumes you and becomes all you think about.  Trust me, I know.  Sadness, anger, asking why, yelling at anyone or anything that will listen...who could I blame?  Certainly this is someones fault, no?

Let me stop and explain a few things.  I know this is not about ME.  Never will I try to make it about me, when certainly the battle does not lie ahead of ME.  But, this is about to fight, fight, fight; he's my brother.  My younger brother.  My first best friend.   He's my family.  And for those who don't know this by just don't mess with my family.  I don't care who or what you are, that's just a HUGE 'no-no'.

After the initial shock and "oh my God, he's going to die and I'm going to have to be sedated for the rest of my life" 'about me' "moment, I then want to fix it.  What can I do to fix it?  There has to be something, right?  Guess what sister, there's nothing you can do.  Not. One. Thing.  Or is there?  You can pray.  And boy did I pray.  Oh, wait, there's another thing I can do, I can tell others and get them to pray.  And they can get people to pray, and they can get people to pray, etc...I may not be the most religious person you'll ever come across, but damn it, I believe there is something to be said about the power of prayer.  Not everyone believes, and that's fine, but it's what makes ME (about me, again) feel better, makes ME feel like I'm doing something that can help my brother, and that makes ME feel good. (me, me, me)...For those of you reading this who joined me in praying for "the patient", I thank you and my family thanks you...and keep it coming.

There was good news in all of this.  The cancer, even in it's advanced stage can be treated.  Prognosis is good.  His surgery to remove the tumor was a success.  He was released from the hospital a day or so early.  He won't start chemo until after Christmas.  All things considered, this boy is so lucky.  Lucky in so many ways.  Lucky that there has been charitable people who have been made aware of his story, people who wants to help.  (more on this later)  I think he realizes how lucky he is, and that makes me so happy.

Chemo scares me.  This part is about me.  I know what chemo does.  It sucks.  It's a necessary evil that will keep my brother around to play with my children and watch them grow up. Yes, please and thank you.  But I have a feeling it's going to be ugly.  My biggest fear is that my kids won't recognize him.  How do I explain all of this to my young, but so not dumb 3 and a half year old who notices everything?  How do I remain strong for them?  How do I remain strong for HIM?  I think I've done okay up until this point (excluding the meltdown of epic proportion when I was first, me, me), I just hope I can continue it.

His attitude is amazing, I will say.  He's kind of over this whole 'waiting' thing, and just wants to get it started so it can be finished much quicker.  His optimism is inspiring, and I hope it continues.  However, it's okay to be scared.  It keeps you humble, hell, it keeps you human.

I've been thinking alot about other ways I can help.  A fundraiser, perhaps?  Financially, he's been blessed in a few ways, but there will still be expenses.  Then I started thinking about starting an actual charity foundation, to help people who need financial assistance due to cancer treatments.  It's something I've been thinking alot about, actually.  Then I remembered I know nothing about starting a foundation, so advice would be greatly appreciated if there's any to share.
I think I may have rambled enough for now.  The next 6 months are going to be a trying time for all of us, so keep us all in your prayers.  This will be the fight of his life and there is nothing any of us wouldn't do to help him during this journey. 

Love you, Joge. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Well, the secret is out.  The secret that wasn't a secret for very long.  People may be critical of us for announcing a pregnancy so early on, but I look at it this way...if, God forbid, something DID happen, I would want that support from friends and family.  So, we are happy with our decision to tell.  And, to be honest, I couldn't keep it a secret much longer, my "mask of pregnancy" has already started coming in, and I can't go 15 minutes without dry heaving.  Fun times.  #3 will be here in June of 2011.   We are trying to come up with some names...4 letters, of course!  Unfortunately, I can't come up with any that I like.  Once we find out the gender, (sometime around January) it'll be easier (hopefully) to come up with something.  We are thrilled to be parents again, our children bring such joy into our lives. 

The holidays are rapidly approaching.  I hate it.  Why does time fly by so quickly.  I remember when the years would d r a g by, but as I've gotten older, especially after the kids were born, they fly by.  Months fly by when I blink; that's not quite fair.  But, such is life, I suppose.  I still hate it...

We are taking our house off of the market.  We've had no 'bites' and there is still work to be done.  We actually just ripped up the carpet and put down pergo.  It looks AWESOME.  Next step is fixing the kitchen.  So, we will be here for a bit longer.  It sucks, but it is what it is.  We've always been fortunate to have things just work out, so hopefully it will 'just' work out this time around. 

For the 3rd year in a row, we've received notice that there are going to be layoffs with Greg's job.  Merry freakin' Christmas.  Whoever is in charge of the finances of the town needs to stop drinking.  So there.  I'm sick of spending every year unsure of whether or not Greg will have a place to work. 

I try not to talk too much about the babies on this blog because I have a blog that is solely dedicated to them, but this is important.  EMMA IS GOING TO BE 2 in less than a month.  HOW did that happen?  Gosh, I remember finding out I was pregnant with her like it was yesterday.  I remember being so afraid that I wouldn't love her like I loved my Jack.  Hah!  Little did I know.  That little girl is my star.  She is such a special kid.  I could go on and on...and on about her, but I'll spare you.

I need to stop forgetting that I have this blog.  I have fun writing in it.  I hope you have fun reading it!

Monday, October 18, 2010

And, again...

We had two showings of our townhouse this past weekend.  We haven't heard anything back.  At what point do we just take it off the market, fix it up a bit more, and put it back on the market?  I shouldn't be this frustrated, but I can't help it.  Keeping a house "show-worthy" clean with 2 little buggars running around is ALOT of work and it's getting old.  I can't even imagine how hard it's going to be with the Holidays approaching.  *shudder*

We went to the pumpkin patch this weekend.  My husband of course had to get a 30 pound pumpkin.  It's HUGE!! He makes me laugh.  The kids had a great time.  Emma seemed to not feel so well during the hayride (which was extremely bumpy), however.  She looked green.  Grrreat, I'm going to have a kid who has motion sickness.  Guess she won't be going on roller coasters with me!  I do want to take them apple picking soon, as well.  I think they would enjoy that.

We are going to be selling some things soon.  Greg is selling his laptop, and I'm thinking of some things I can get rid of.  Money is tight, so any little bit helps.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Monday, September 20, 2010

House follow up

So, we were told yesterday that the people who came to see the house this past weekend won't pay a dime over 200k for this house or any other house in the complex.  Dumb.  So, we are lowering the price slightly to see if that garners interest, and if not, we are taking it off the market and sticking to the original 3 year plan.  The house could use a bit more work to make it perfect, so maybe doing that will help sell the place.

I have mixed emotions about the whole thing.  I wasn't too keen on putting the house on the market in the first place; just didn't feel right.  But as time went on, I became more find of the idea, obsessively looking for houses.

The end of the 3 year plan is March 2012...not too far off.  Could we hack it another year in the incredible shrinking townhouse?  I really think we could.  I really think we may have to...

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Oh hai interwebs,,,

So the house is up for sale.  I don't know who knows it, and who doesn't, so I figured I'd mention it here.  Do I want to move? Nope.  I love our neighborhood.  Love the people here.  Love that it's a little community.  However, do we 'have' to move?  Yuppers.  The kids are growing rapidly, and our townhouse seems to be shrinking just as rapidly.  The kids seriously need their own rooms.  They wake eachother up all of the time...way before the other is ready. 

We are looking for a 4 bedroom home in a specific price range.  Hah.  It's comical, almost.  We both love this area, but it's freakin' expensive!!  We've looked in PA, but neither of us really, really want to leave the Jerz.  We've looked about an hour South and there are nice, affordable, BIG houses there.  We are saving that for last resort.  There has to be something here, there just has to be.  We are looking in neighboring cities, too.  The house that we truly fell in love with has been sold, and even though I knew that us getting it was a long shot, it still makes me sad that it's no longer available.  Oh well, c'est la vie.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

It's been a while...

It's been some time since I posted anything of substance here.  I have various journals, documenting various goings on in my life, so trying to keep up with all of them is rough. 

Here are some recent goings on~~

I think I want to move to the beach.  It's always been a dream of mine.  It's to the point now where I'm actually researching homes in the area I would like to relocate.  I'm a Franklin girl, through and through, but it just ain't cutting it for me anymore.  I get bored easily, and maybe it will take a huge change to shake things up a bit.  We aren't seriously considering anything quite yet, as we are going to be here for another couple of years minimum, but it's nice to dream.

I want to find a photography class.  I want to learn how to really utilize my camera.  I don't just want to know how point and snap pics of the kids, I want to learn how to make pictures look awesome.  I'm not an awful "picture taker" (I will never refer to myself as a photographer) but I would love to be so much better.

I also would like to take a writing class.  I think I truly missed my calling in life, because boy, oh, boy do I LOVE to write.  I've gotten many a compliment on my writing as well.  The proof that I love writing goes back about 8 years when I started my first online journal.  8 years later, I still can't get enough of it.  I know that sometimes I mince words, or something might not sound as eloquent as I would like and I want to work on that. , Writers have my utmost respect.   I've been working on everything from screenplays to novels throughout the years and never do I finish.  To be a published author or a famed screenwriter...oh yeah, the stuff that dreams are made of.  At least for me. 

I would like to get Jack in some sort of preschool program.  He needs interaction with kids his age.  He needs to learn how to share.  And coexist with other kids.  Contrary to what he may believe (and what Mommy may believe) he is NOT the only little boy in the world and he won't get far in life if he can't share.  I won't go on about the kids here, though.  That's what the baby blog is for...  (Yeah, ANOTHER blog)...

I need, need, NEED to lose weight.  I need to really start exercising.  That is what will work, so I just need to do it. Yesterday.  Well, I have to wait for the knee and ankle to get better (small incident that involved my slipping on a slippery surface) then I can start.  I was losing for a while, but I've probably gained it all back.  I'm talented like that.

Greg and I are going to be married 5 years this year.  I can't believe it.  It's been an interesting 5 years (7 years) to say the least; filled with ups and downs.  When all is said and done, I wouldn't change a thing.  It's made us who we are today.  To be still in love and happy is a gift, and it's not something that I take lightly.  Here's to 5 more...and 5 more after that...and 5 more after that....

I guess that is it for now.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Johnson Park-revisited

A little less than a year ago, I visited Middlesex County's "Johnson Park."  I was appalled and disgusted by my experience.  I recalled the visit in a letter to the editor of the Home News Tribune.  It garnered enough attention to receive a reply via a front page article of the News' "Community Living" section.  In the article, it was implied that I was uneducated and that I had no clue what I was talking about.  I've sat on that for a year.  I, of course, wanted to reply, but who am I to take on Middlesex County?  So against my hard-headed "Italian/German" nature, I let it go.

Today, I decided to revisit the park; a follow-up visit if you will. 

It was clean.  Maintained.  There was signage hung where it hasn't been before.  The areas where the animals are kept were beautifully landscaped, and you can really tell that they are making more of a concentrated effort to keep it neat and presentable. 

Not to sound overly confident, or full of myself, but I think I won.  My article did just what I wanted it to do, it got people talking, it got the park noticed, and where I could have done without the multiple insults to my intelligence, I'm glad my point and message got across.

Kudos to you Middlesex County for making an effort.  I thank you, my children thank you, and most importantly the animals that you display thank you.