Because… it’s awesome. I’ve also been visiting the 24 hours of happy website. It’s a 24 hour long video. It’s this song over and over, with pretty cool segments of people dancing and lip-syncing.
I’ve been involved in the departure of a close friend. She’s leaving very soon and I’ve been with her during her pack out, shipping her car, mailing things to herself in the States and at the next post, and her final mani/pedi. Soon, we’ll go to her final dinner, and I’ll be going with her to the airport.
Today when I was helping her, I was carrying something to her car, and I almost started crying. Mostly out of sadness that she’s leaving. She’s been a rock in my life the last almost two years (she arrived in Manila a week after us). She’s one of the closest friends I’ve ever had. But also because I just had it hit that we’re going to be going through all of these same things very soon.
The departure date that we’re trying to get is not long from now. It’s with-in sight and it’s scary.
It’s scary because there’s so much to do. It’s scary because I’ll be leaving friends who have become family. It’s scary because I don’t know how the children will handle it. It’s scary because I’m going to be moving to a country that I’ve never visited before, and even though it’s a tropical paradise for many honeymooners from the States, I won’t be living on the beach, now, will I?
The good news (because without the good news, how would we live)?
I will get everything done that I need to do. I will meet amazing people in Kingston. The children will see that we are excited to go to the US and to Kingston and they will be excited because of that. I will learn Kingston and the surrounding areas just like I learned the parts of Manila and San Jose and Falls Church and Dallas when I moved to all of them.
So, even though it’s scary, I know that we’ll be ok. We always are.
There may be some uncertainty, but there always is. It’s always hard, but we get past those times.
We will again this time.
I fell on my right knee shortly after the new year. Shortly after that, I dropped a large, mostly full, plastic jar of peanut butter onto my left foot bruising even my bones. Just last night I fell on my right knee again. I feel all…
These things on top of the carpel tunnels syndrome I had for a few days last month, plus the slowly and steadily increasing pain in my joints the last couple of years, I’m ready for a break with all the pain.
Speaking of the joint pain. I saw the Rheumatologist and he ordered a butt load of tests, most of them blood. I got those done immediately after the consultation. He also ordered some specialized tests that I’m still waiting to get.
Good news from the appointment is that he thinks I don’t have arthritis.
He did a blood test to test for inflammation, just to check.
Work is going well. I’ve finished the trainings that I need and have been scanning fingerprints, and doing some other fun stuff as well.
We are working on our departure date with the Department. Once we have it we’ll make some plans. We have so many things we want to do, and places we want to visit. We’re not going to be able to fit it all in.
I’m excited for time in the US though, and what ever we do get to do, I’ll be happy to see people and places that I miss.
and he barely stopped for the first hour.
He was my most difficult pregnancy and delivery. And he’s possibly been the most challenging to rear so far.
But the effort has been worth it. These last four years with Simon have been so full of joy.
Simon has proven himself to be creative, intelligent, energetic, violent (for a bit of balance and humility), and loves his family.
He's already great at building Lego's, playing with play-doh, coloring, and cutting paper, among other things.
We’ve celebrated a birth in Virginia, two birthdays in Costa Rica and another two in the Philippines.
He’s held a steady favorite color of green for quite a while.
As well as a love for airplanes. Luckily John made this years cake, and it turned out much better.
We’re so happy that Simon is in our lives and we look forward to many, many more birthdays to come.
I stopped wearing it. I’m not having any more pains and I figured it was time to try going without. So far, so good.
We found out that Malachi’s school in Jamaica starts the last week of August. This is great news!
It gives us more time to get there than we originally thought. Now I just have to send them all the information that they require for admissions. I recently heard someone lament that getting their kindergarten into an International School was like enrolling for college.
I can’t say from experience what enrolling in public school is like. Enrolling in AISK is very similar to enrolling in ISM. Here’s the list of Pre-School – Grade 3 application process (Step 2) taken from their website:
Completed Application part 1 and fee (US$50)
Copy of Birth Certificate/photo page in passport
2 passport photographs
Last 3 end-of-year reports
Elementary Confidential Reference
Any professional educational evaluations done by outside source
External Standardized Test Results (if available)
Personal Interview/Assessment and Campus Tour
This is all after an enquiry which is an email sent to the school to make your intentions of applying known. It’s an opportunity for us to introduce our child and family and give them an idea of what’s in store. Step 3 is admission decision (which is a given for us, and we’ve already been told he has a spot, even though we haven’t completed step 2).
This is what many families go through every two to four years to enroll their children in school. Some families have more to do, some less, I would think. It’s crazy! Right now I’m doing this for one child, but when we’re enrolling in a new school after Jamaica I will be doing it for three (3!) children. That’s a lot of paperwork to do for school.
Our departure date hasn’t been approved yet, but if we get the one we want, we’ll be departing in fewer than four months! That’s not very long from now. I’m excited to have some time in the States. I’m very ready for that.
Right now, though, I think I should work on that application…
with my wrist brace.
My wrist gets a little sore by the end of the day. I don’t know if it’s a nerve thing or if maybe I’m treating it weird through the day because of the nerve thing, and it therefore gets sore.
I got through the last half of January without feeling too sorry for myself. Though I did get a bit depressed. The pinched nerve wasn’t the only issue that we discussed at that fateful appointment. I’ve had joint pain in my hands, wrists, hips, knees, ankles, finger, toes, etc…for a long while. I’ve tried ignoring it because I don’t want anything to be wrong with me. It’s becoming too hard to ignore though. Jars are pretty difficult these days, and if I hold a pot or pan for any amount of time, my fingers are in the shape of the handle until I painfully straighten them out (this has been happening for a long time, think…at least a year and a half), being in one position for too long causes stiffness, pain, and/or popping of joints. Too long can be as short as 30 seconds.
The med unit gave me a number for a Rheumatologist. The one they recommend most is open on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 10-2. The three times I’ve tried calling I haven’t gotten through to make an appointment. I’m going to ask the MED unit to make the appointment. They offered, but I decided to do it since I know my schedule. I’ve recently decided to forget about it, and whenever they can get me in, I’ll reschedule things around it.
So…I’ll have blood tests, and who knows what else to see if I have arthritis. If I do, I’ll just have to…
I figure it’s better to find out now, then let it get worse. Or to find out I don’t have it, and figure out why I have so much joint pain. I don’t look forward to this, but I’m happy it’s happening.
On a (much) less depressing note, Coen is doing fairly well with potty training. He still has accidents, but more often than not, he’s peeing in the potty. He’s still wearing special night time underwear and fully taking advantage of them. I’ve tried Pamper’s pants, Huggies pants, and Pull-Ups. I think Pull-Ups are the best. However, a box of them here costs more than $50, so I might have to buy them online and use the Huggies and Pampers that I still have.
John was paneled by HR for our job in Jamaica meaning that it’s official now. We’re aiming to arrive there in August before school starts. The school we’re enrolling him in started the third week of August for the current year. We’re hoping that it does that again for the next one. We’d like to leave Manila shortly after he finishes second grade to make sure that we can get all the vacation and training that we/he’d like, before arriving in Kingston. If we find a schedule that works for all of us, I’ll be like Liz Lemon when she gets her hands on a great TGS schedule.
Pain in my right shoulder. Spreading from a point in my upper shoulder out to my neck, and down my arm. Pain so bad that Sunday I had someone come massage my shoulder and arm and practically thought that she was taking all last year’s anger out on me. It helped for about 15 minutes.
Monday when I woke up the tingly, numb-ish, and pain feelings reached my finger tips. I knew it was time to see someone about it. I knew deep down that it was probably a nerve. But I was afraid. In my mom’s side of the family we have had a lot of disc problems. In my Google research, I read that the type of pain I was feeling can be a sign of disc issues.
I was so afraid that I asked John to come with me to the clinic and basically hold my hand (though it didn’t quite go that far). We went into the clinic and after I explained my tingling and pain and numbness, and the very specific path it all followed, she suspected that it was in fact a pinched nerve. She had me hold my arms straight out with my inner-wrist facing up. She started tapping on my wrists and immediately my right arm starting tingling and numbing, after a little longer my upper-shoulder started hurting.
She explained that there are two places that this nerve gets pinched. The wrist (carpel tunnel) and the elbow (cubital tunnel), the stimulation on my wrist and the reaction I had indicated that it was compression was in my wrist. She said the muscle pain I was experiencing was caused by the pinched nerve. She prescribed some pain meds to take for a couple of days until the nerve was straight and the muscles stopped hurting. She also gave me a wrist brace to keep my wrist straight and relieve pressure and force the nerve to straighten.
And those words, “wrist brace.” I felt like my spirit was broken. I really, really didn’t want to wear a wrist brace. I felt like, and I know it’s not true, but I felt like only old people wear them. And I’m NOT old. ugh.
But…ok. That’s what she said I needed to do, so I was going to do it. I was one of the first appointments that morning. When I walked out I had a lot of time left in the day. We did some shopping at S&R after the appointment. I ate a churro and took the pain killers. By the time I got home the pain had ebbed. Not long after I got home the pain was gone. Like…gone, gone. I had to give it to her, she gave me good pain killers.
I wore the brace that day and had to admit that even after the pain killers wore off, it wasn’t nearly as bad as before. I went to bed with the brace on. And slept. I slept really, really well. I slept the best I’ve slept in a long time.
When I woke up at some point that night I realized I had no pain. Absolutely no pain. When I woke up with the alarm in the morning, I still had no pain. I was so happy. I didn’t take my morning pain meds, I didn’t need it. wooooohoooooo!
I went through the day wearing the brace and not doing too much. I did some driving, went to the dentist, took a nap, asked my helper to make the dinner (can I say that at times like these, I’m so, so happy that we can afford a helper here in Manila. Having her make the pork for our tacos last night was so helpful, I tried shredding it after it was done, and couldn’t, it hurt too much). And I slept and it was great.
I emailed her this morning and told her that the brace truly worked. yay! I thought she’d said to take off the brace during the day after a couple of days if it worked. I also asked if lots of iPhone-ing could cause the problem.
She emailed back, happy that we’d pin-pointed the problem and happy that the pain was gone. She told me to decrease day time wearing, but to make sure that I wear it during repetitive wrist motion - computer time (*cough* blogging *cough*), and iPhone-ing (which can exacerbate the problem, yes) being some of those times.
So I put the brace on, and began to blog. And you know what? My shoulder and arm and wrist hurt a bit.
So I’m done.