Saturday, May 30, 2009

It’s not the house that makes the home…

Here’s hoping June is a better month than May. What a crazy, topsy-turvy month we have had.

We started the month with me at the doctor’s office over the hot-mess that has been going on with my girl parts. After a little medical attention, it seems to have calmed down and we may be well on our way to having less pain and cramping, and more importantly, fewer mood swings. Fingers crossed.

Then Brady went to the doctor’s office about some “spider bites” that kept returning. Turns out they were ingrown hairs and they became infected. By the time he actually went to the doctor because these "bites" were not leaving, and actually kept popping up in other areas of his body (therefore, creating his very own hot-mess), he was suffering from a pretty serious staff infection (Mrsa). More on this later…

May 15, 2009. Not a date I will soon forget. Brady was on the road all day for work and wouldn’t be home by 5 p.m., so I picked up Braden at daycare. We pulled up in our driveway and I noticed the front door wide open. Braden said, hey daddy must be home. I said no, he’s in Manhattan. I looked over to a light on in my crafty room window. I knew I had not been in there for a couple of days. Something didn’t feel right and I thought I might throw up. We backed out and “went to see what grandpa was doing.” Gma and Gpa live just 9 houses away from us. I immediately called 9-1-1. Long story short, we had a break-in while we were both at work. We both usually come home at lunch and this day we didn’t. Maybe that would have saved us from this very invasive, violating event in our lives. On the other hand, we may have come home to strangers in our house. Still not sure which is worse. I never want to have to explain this kind of thing to an 8-year old again.

You know, we don’t have expensive tastes. My friends will tell you, we live very simply – we don’t have a fancy house, or drive fancy cars. We own hand-me-downs, furniture we purchased on sale, or was given to us, etc. However, the very, very few nice things we had are all gone, including a couple of sentimental jewelry pieces. Of course, most of what was stolen was my son’s video games, movies, etc. He was so traumatized by all of it. Very sad to watch. He’s better now, but still misses his “things.” I miss my 42” TV, and, strangely enough, my Metallic Pink Nintendo DS that I had just received for Mother’s Day. Of course the lazy butts couldn’t have taken the 90 pound, 15-year old TV in the living room – noooo – that would have been too much work for them! Great – I get the finicky burglar (in other words, my crap isn’t good enough for them). What a waste. (Bitter, party of one!)

With all the issues with the insurance company, I have learned that you need to take pictures of EVERYTHING you own. Some even say to take a picture of each wall in your house so you can show what was on that wall in case of fire, theft, or some other disaster that you need to replace things. As soon as we start replacing things, that is EXACTLY what we intend to do! There will be better documentation. It's too difficult to try and figure this stuff out after-the-fact. We are still working with the insurance company and hope to have some resolution to this sometime this week.

Pardon me, but you know what pisses me off the most? We worked HARD to have the few nice things we have. Some deadbeat, who probably doesn't have to "work" to get these things, busts into OUR house and takes OUR kids’ things, OUR electronics, MY jewelry, and completely DESTROYS OUR bedroom and stomps all over OUR clothes. What gives these people the right to do this? Who does this???? How do they live with this? I have gone through various stages of shock, sadness and anger. I’m starting to get more angry about the added expenses we have had to incur because of this – alarm system for the house, increased homeowner’s insurance, and replacement of these “things.”

Then there's the emotional toll it has taken on me and my family. Just today I let myself be comfortable with leaving the house (of course with the alarm on) and coming home to an empty house. I actually kept the front door open for 15 or 20 minutes (with the screen locked) and enjoyed the sunshine today. I have slept in the recliner in my family room many nights just because I was too scared to walk thru the house by myself. All along, trying to be strong for my son so he doesn’t worry too much. I honestly think this has made us a stronger family, but it doesn’t mean that I can move past what happened. Not yet.

Speaking of the emotional toll - Brady has had quite the month too. He has been a rock for us. I'm not sure how he's kept it together as long and as well as he has. He had his 25th class reunion last weekend. That was fun to finally meet some of these people that he's talked about for 13 years. They were such a great group of people. I'm glad he had such a great experience growing up in a small town. I mentioned earlier his staph infection. Well 10 days into the medication (the Monday after the break-in), he decides to have a severe, allergic reaction to the antibiotic. He has hives from head-to-toe and went to the doctor. He had to have his blood taken because he had a funky rash on his calves and thighs. Yep, his platelets were low. One of his aunts is in the hospital with a liver condition that is not going well. Looks like she will need a liver transplant. He’s absolutely swamped at work and, yeah, he’s still reeling from the break-in.

Braden made it through 2nd grade with flying colors. He’s a genius, I’m sure of it. He did really well and We are very proud of him. We have been so fortunate with fantastic teachers since pre-school. I don’t have any idea about any of the 3rd grade teachers at our school. I hope we continue to have fun, fresh, forward-thinking, teachers for him. What a gift that would be! We are officially on Summer Vacation. Camp has started and we are knee-deep in baseball. It’s a fun time. I can't believe my baby is 8 1/2 and is going to be a third-grader.

As we finish out May 2009, I look back and think of that saying that it’s not the house that makes the home; it’s the people that live there…sooooo true. I believe I have experienced one of those “ah-ha” moments that Oprah talks about. I love my family and my friends. Without that, life would be very boring and uninspiring. The generosity is, at times, overwhelming. What a feeling!