Being that it's Christmas (for me it is, otherwise, insert holiday of your choice here) I thought it was a good time to share my Dad/Guy LaFleur story J. I originally sent this out as part of an email to family & friends shortly after dad died. Hard to believe it was already over 3 yrs ago!
Shortly after finding out dad was sick, I started to plan a Christmas surprise. I wanted to do something really "special" for him. I'm the type of person who tries to put some thought into what someone might actually LIKE to receive, so not knowing what the next year might bring, I wanted to give him something extra special, something unique that Christmas.
So, I got it in my head to give him a phone call from Guy LaFleur. Those of you who knew my dad, you know exactly what that would have meant to him. For those of you who didn't know him, I could say, "just imagine you're all time favourite sports hero', and you would have what that icon on ice meant to my father. But let me also give you a bit of background ... all my life dad was a Habs fan, and Guy LaFleur was definitely "the man". I was told many times that the night I took my first steps, he was here in Halifax watching Guy play at the Metro Centre. Later that night, he managed to get his autograph at the hotel. I'm still not quite sure of which event he was most proud my first steps, or that autograph lol. I can remember he used to have these habs team pictures, torn off from hockey calendars over the years, hanging in the basement...
Anyway, when my wonderful father in law heard of my 'operation xmas call' mission, he provided me with the name of the PR Rep for the Canadians, so I gave her a call and explained that I wanted to give my dad a phone call from Guy LaFleur for Christmas. She said she couldn't make any promises, but that she'd pass the message along to him.
I told my mother about this surprise, and asked her not to mention anything to dad. BIG mistake!
The day we arrived home for Christmas vacation, dad had a surprise for me. That afternoon, mom had run out to the store for maybe 20 min, and while she was gone, the phone rang. Dad didn't recognize the number, and because he was quite sick at the time, didn't really want to be getting on the phone anyway, but he it picked up to find someone who was "supposedly" Guy LaFleur on the other end. Knowing that Montreal hadn't played very well their last few games, dad thought it was just someone in the family or one of his friends who was playing a joke on him. So, dad chatted politely for a couple of minutes, then said abruptly, "Well, I've gotta go".
He only found out later, much to his surprise and absolute DISMAY, it really was Guy LaFleur on the phone! When mom got home he told her about the phone call and she said "Uh...Jim... that really WAS Guy LaFleur. Kimberly arranged that phone call as a surprise present for you". Poor Dad! It's not often I've seen him REALLY disappointed, but that was definitely one of those times. I tried to get in touch with the PR lady again, to explain what happened, but being Christmas and all, I didn't have any luck.
Even though the surprise sort of backfired on me, I know he was still proud to have received that phone call ... despite the fact that he didn't realize at the time that he really was talking to his longtime idol. It was always his first reply when asked that year "so what did you get for xmas? lol But more importantly, I know that he was proud of me, for making the extra effort to try give him something memorable, and for making what turned out to be his last Christmas, a pretty cool one.
Happy Holidays Everyone! And careful how you answer the phone this season, it could be someone you least expect on the other end of the line ;-) (in a good way ... not in an overdue bill collector way!) ;-)
Thursday, December 14, 2006
Monday, December 11, 2006
Another 'tale' I just had to share
On Saturday I took the boys to the kids xmas party being put on by my work. It was held at the Fleet Club , a facility that caters to all types of social/corporate events. They had a great time! Food, drinks, games, Santa, presents, all the good stuff.
About 10 min before we left, Adam went into the bathroom. He came out a few mins later, and handed me something saying, "What's this Mom?"
"Where did you get that?"
"I bought it in the bathroom" ........................
Yup, my 6yr old son came out of the bathroom with his first package of condoms!!!! YIKES!!!!!
I took them from him, explained they weren't for him but "for GROWNUP'S only!!!" and he was quite distressed that he had wasted his loonie on something he couldn't keep. I'm sure to him, the dispenser in the bathroom looked like one of those blasted candy/toy dispensers (money grabbers) that are usually at the entrances to and throughout the malls. I can just hear his brain now as he looked up at the box on the wall .... "Ohhhhh .... I wonder what you get out of THIS one!" LOL
I stuffed the package into my back pocket, and told him not to worry .... I'd replace the loonie!!!!! and thanked him for bringing it to me, but I was confiscating this one lol.
On the way out, I told a couple of co-workers what had just happened, and shopped around the free condom, but no takers.
Never a boning day when I'm out with the kids huh? Man .... go to a xmas party ... come out having to give a readers digest version of "The Talk" .... on the way home. Sheesh!!!!!
I suppose it could have been worse ... he could have just opened it on the spot, blown it up and announced as he walked back into the party room "Hey Mom! Look at the cool balloon I bought in the bathroom!!!" as he loses it and it bounces into a Sr Mgr.'s lap ........ can ALWAYS be worse right
Have a great night all!!!
Friday, October 13, 2006
The accident on the 102 last night, which held up traffic for hours, taught me (the hard way), the importance of having a cell phone. I'm 35 and never owned a cell phone. Until today.
I consider myself technologically inclined and 'in tune' with the world ... to a degree ;-) But owning a cell phone (or not owning one lol) has just been one of my personal 'quirks' that I didn't want to let go of. At first I didn't jump on the cell wagon because of the cost. Plain and simple :-) It was a luxury item. But then, as I watched literally EVERYONE around me begin to flip their phones, having to answer them, set them to silent/vibrate, having to turn them off, having to change their ring-tones regularly, answering them sometimes when they shouldn't ... but more importantly, it was another way to be 'reached'.
Yes, in general that's a good thing. However, as a workin' mom, there are so many demands on the time; kids, work, travel for work, travel with kids lol, dishes, laundry blah blah blah ;-) that it was kind of nice knowing that if I was out, I was out. Sorry, but I'll call you when I get home/in.
Yeah I know, 'you could get one just for emergencies'. And how long would that last .... really ... :-) Eventually it turns into an everyday phone and without even knowing it, I've morphed into one of the Cell-ford (ex)Wives :-)
But yesterday, I realized that one of these days, that 'emergency' just may come along ...
I actually left work a few mins early yesterday afternoon. I had to make a quick stop on the way home, and I was hoping to avoid the idiots who forget how to drive in the rain. Sometimes just 10-15 min is just enough to avoid that 'after work flood' of traffic out of not only downtown, but the entire city itself. I reached the Bayer's Lake exit heading home around 4:30, in time to get both kids at two different places, for 5:30. That's where I hit the standstill in traffic. And sat there for about an hour and didn't move more than 20-30ft past the exit .... but far enough there was no way to go backwards, the cars were already behind me in both lanes (and of course I was over in the other lane by then anyway lol).
Then the traffic just crawled at maybe 5km/h. Sometimes 10. It was painful. Absolutely painful! When it was after 5, and I still hadn't reached the next exit (which would have been a min or so away, but nowhere near getting me closer to home), I started to stress. It was frustrating, not being able to go anywhere, knowing I had to pick up the kids in about 20 min, and there's no way I'd be there on time, and no way to call them and let them know, because I don't have a cell phone. And no way to call anyone else to go pick them up, because I don't have a cell phone. Damn! Did anyone catch the make of that phone that just came back to bite me in the ass after all these years???? ;-)
We literally crawled along and there was absolutely nothing I could do. All the exits were backed up anyway, because there were 'problems' with both bridges, two other highways had issues, and another major road was closed and they were at a standstill also I believe. It was a nightmare everywhere. At 6pm I resigned myself to the fact that I wasn't going anywhere, and wasn't close to home. I hoped that the after-school workers had reached their dad or my good friend Kim, who I have as an Emergency contact ... then I just sat back and pulled out the magazine I had bought earlier in the day and checked out if Jen Aniston had gotten herself a boob job last month :-)
When I finally got past what was left of the truck, I reached the after-school care program just after 6:30. I went there first in case they hadn't been able to reach anyone and someone was still there with him. Nope. Drove by the ex's on the way to where Alec was and there were no lights on ... maybe he had the boys and had taken them out to dinner. When I got to the sitter's, I saw Alec's jacket and sneakers right away by the door. Damn. OK, so Alec's here ... where's Adam.
Leave the sitter's and head home. Voice mail, email and msn msg from Kim. Adam's with her :-) PHEW! Kim came to the rescue. And 'the boss' even drove him over there because her husband was gone with their vehicle, so she had no way to go get him. She dropped him off at 6, but I'm sure I definitely made the sh*t list for that one :-(
After we got home and Alec was fed (Adam had eaten at Kim's) and both boys were 'settled' for the night, I called and left a message at the 'after-school place' explaining what happened. I realized there wouldn't be anybody there, but I wanted them to hear it first thing in the am. I also sent 'the girls' down there flowers and Sorry/Thanks' note today :-) No, I don't like being on the sh*t list lol.
And also today, I got the cell phone. Even though I knew I had people down as 'back-ups', there was still the worry of whether or not the girls were able to reach them, and what did they do with Adam if they didn't and would they still be there and and and ... why hadn't I gotten a cell phone years ago so I could have just called both Paul and Kim myself when I hit the traffic at 4:30 and everything would have been fine ... I could have actually enjoyed those pics (of the guys ... not Jen's new boobs ;-p) and articles in that magazine ... instead of staring tensely through the paper, into red tail light space.
So there ya go. Get yourselves a cell phone. Accidents happen. Not necessarily TO you, but they may still affect you. You may need to just 'let someone know ....'.
Nite all! I'm going to play with my ringtones now :-D
Tuesday, October 10, 2006
I originally sent this out as an email over the weekend. Thought I'd share here for the dog lovers in the crowd
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!!!!
I woke up to unexpected home repairs this morning ... but I'm thankful it wasn't worse ;-)
It was just after 1pm yesterday when Alec started banging on the living room window. It was such a beautiful day that Adam and I were outside. I was cleaning out the vehicle, and Adam was sitting on the walkway, glue gun in hand, keeping himself busy doing crafts. Next thing I know, I hear the banging and Alec motioning for me to come inside.
I walk into the living room to find Alec leaning over the couch looking at the dog. He said "Something's wrong with Hershey Mom! He's shaking and won't stop staring at this spot in the wall!". Sure enough, *something* had gotten the dog's attention.
I have never seen him do anything like that before. He was just beside himself. Staring at one particular spot in the wall right under the window. He'd paw at it, sniff, whine, paw again and just stare. Trembling the whole time. When you'd say "What's there boy? What is it?" He's start to shake even more!" Now ... keep in mind, there were no holes in the wall or anything. Sure, a few scuff marks from the kids and pets (the maid wasn't in this week lol) but NO HOLES!!! No cracks in the wall. Nothing for any type of 'creature' to have crawled through. Just a plain old wall. And I've never seen the dog react that way to a bug of any kind. Heck ... I've never seen him react that way (so ultimately fixated on something, before) at all!!!!!!!!
So, since he wasn't about to move for any of us, and he wasn't really doing anything 'wrong', we left him staring at the wall and went about our business of the day. I figured he'd move on to chasing the cat again once he got bored staring at the wall.
When we returned home from running errands about an hour and a half later, the dog was in the same spot. He was in the SAME spot when I went to bed after midnight also!!!! He stayed in the SAME spot for over 12 hrs yesterday. By this time, he had gotten more aggressive with his 'wall watch' and had started clawing the wall.
He went out once to pee last night, then took up his spot at the wall the minute he came in again.
Then, this morning, I woke up to "MOM!!! Wake up!!! Hershey chewed a hole through the wall!!!!!
This is what my wall looks like now.
Yup. He did that while we slept. And even after moving the couch so the dog can't get to it anymore (did that last night too!!) the freakin' dog is STILL sitting there!!!!!!!!! The shaking has stopped, but he's STILL fixated on that wall!!!!!!!!! Where the heck has his mind gone!!!! And what the heck is in my wall that's got him sooooooo freaked out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anyone know anybody who does exorcisms on Dogs ... on a Sunday?!?!?!??!
Have a great day everyone! I'm off to try and deal with my now demonic dog!!!! :-)
P.S. The good news in all this is .... I had already invited the ex over for Thanksgiving dinner tonight. He's now offered to fix my wall for me while he's here, so at least I don't have to worry about whatever might be in there, crawling out while we're asleep tonight!!!! I told him to dress for dinner as Indiana Jones and bring a weapon!!!! LOL
Update: The ex fixed the wall. There was absolutely nothing in that particular panel. Go figure. The dog has since regained his senses, and is no longer eating the house. Due to the fact this was the first time he committed an offense of such .... destruction ... the kiddie jury has demanded leniancy, and therefore the pooch is no longer a candidate for exile, but is on the list for psychological examination.
Sunday, October 1, 2006
On Monday I left for Montreal. Business trip. Spent the week in a meeting room(s), discussing requirements, schedules, plans, swimlanes ... and all that other fun 'stuff' business analysts do lol. Topic of conversation being the internal systems of helicopters. Interesting yes, stressful yes, fun at times ... did I mention stressful ;-)
Anyway, to decompress, a couple of evenings after dinner, I ventured down to the spa area of the hotel, and enjoyed the jacuzzi for awhile :-) I had the whole place to myself the first night, tried out the jacuzzi first, then the steam bath, then back to the tub again :-) absolutely AWESOME! Definitely my favourite part of traveling. Then, the second night I went to the spa, after I'd been soaking for about an hour, enjoying the bubbles, total quiet and Cosmo, the timer on the jets turned off, and I was getting out just as a couple came in. They were mid thirties I'd say, french, both on the Plus size side. I don't say that to be rude, simply trying to give you an accurate visual of their overall appearance. They walked over to the Gym area first, and I noticed they were checking it out as I went into the change area to get out of the bikini and into some sweats for the trip back up to the room.
About 5 min later when I came out, there's the couple, standing next to the tub, right in the middle of the 'family spa' area, him preparing to strip and she was already stripped naked to the waist, in front of the video surveillance camera! People! There are change rooms designed for this!!! I don't consider myself a prude by any means ... but it sort of took me by surprise, seeing the naked chick just standing there lol. Being the polite Maritimer that I am, I look her in the eyes and smile and try not to notice the fact her boobs 'n all were ... well ... right THERE as I walk on out of the room and try not to sprint to the elevator lol. I'm really kind of glad I got out when I did ... It's one thing to be naked in a hot tub with someone you know ... it's something entirely different being in the bubbles with naked strangers lol.
That would have to be one incident I'd offer up for 'interesting highlight' of the trip :-) Well, that and the image of the new employees at the facility we were visiting, forced to do a karaoke version of My Cubicle as their initiation welcome in front of the rest of the entire staff , using bananas as microphones lol.
Friday night, after being up at 6am, a full day of meetings, dinner at the airport, delayed on the runway, my plane finally landed home in Halifax at midnight. I had promised my best friend that I'd help her move yesterday. She is moving out of her house into an apartment with her son after a separation, so before I left, we made plans that I'd go there instead of home when I arrived back in town. By the time got my luggage, got out of the airport etc, stopped for coffee and had to wait for a passing train (yes, at 12:45am!!) it was 1am right on when I arrived at her house.
Unfortunately, she had just started a new job this week, and hadn't been able to get much packing done before I got there (and we're talking packing up an entire 3 bedroom house!). So ... we chatted and caught up on the week's events until 2, then started packing up the house and did so until 6:30 am slept for 3 hrs, then continued to pack for the rest of the day, while others loaded the truck as boxes were ready. I finally dropped her off at her new apartment at 5pm, was running entirely on fumes at this point, drove an hour home again, and crawled in the door last night shortly after 6:30pm. Exhausted!!! My body ached, and naked strangers or not, I'd have given anything for that jacuzzi right then ;-)
One interesting side note about Fri night ... On my way to her place, I was debating on whether or not I should have just gone home and started out fresh for her house the next day, but I decided to keep going anyway. I got to Tim's and ordered a couple coffee's for us each, figuring it would be a late night, the total of the order came to 666 (Damn! I knew I should have thrown in the timbits!!). Uh oh ...maybe that's a sign I should have just gone home LOL. About 30 seconds after I left the coffee shop, I came upon the "Stop" "Stop" "Stop" flashing red lights of the train crossing warning. Which at 1am, with an overtired imagination, looked eerily like flashing red eyes after just paying 666 for the coffee lol. I had to wait about 10 min for that freakin' train, so of course the imagination kicks in ... "666 ... red eyes flashing at me ... maybe I SHOULD just go home" LOL. Then last night, when I dropped my gf off at her new place, I got out of the truck, turned around and there's this black cat sitting there looking at me. Wasn't there when we pulled in. That third creepy 'event' was enough for me that I pet the little sucker for a few minutes, and on the way home, stopped at the corner store and picked up a lottery ticket on the 24 million LOL.
Hmmmm ... that reminds me ... must go check those tickets now and see if I get to retire from further business trips :-)
P.S. and one of my biggest peeves of traveling .... those pretentious little snots that you get stuck sitting next to on the plane, who can't help but discuss in loud voices with their travel companions all the important work (NOT!) they're doing on their blackberries, and the important meetings they have .... give it up a-holes ... it's really not that impressive and we, the passengers stuck sitting around you having to listen to your frivolous bragging, don't give a crap about what you're doing ... you only annoy us, you really don't impress us .....so perhaps the next time the pilot tells everyone to turn the electronic devices off ... perhaps you'll include your mouths along with that too and let the rest of us travel in peace! (yes, I used headphones to tune them out for the most part ... but unfortunately you have to have those off for periods of time too ... and can't block out the 'noise' at all times).
Sure, I could have shut them up in a heartbeat discussing what I do .... building and supporting information systems for military helicopters is a pretty cool job ... but I don't feel the need to brag about my work .... I'd just rather travel in peace!
And now ... I'm going back to bed until my kids get home! I'll unpack later .... :-)
Thursday, September 21, 2006
So Monday night I make a chicken. Usually I don't do leftovers. They never get eaten so I don't even bother taking up the fridge space with food that's never going to get eaten. Tuesday night, I thought I'd try something new and do 'leftovers'. Lots of chicken left, great for hot/cold chicken sandwichs. Perfect ... healthy, easy supper ... done! Or so I thought ....
The first question every night when I pick up the boys is "What's for supper". When I announced on Tues that we were having chicken sandwiches, both boys let me know that they didn't want chicken sandwiches. They wanted something else. To which I replied ... "I'm making chicken sandwiches for supper ... you like chicken, you like sandwiches, you'll have a chicken sandwich, or make something else yourself ... cause I'm not going to do it".
About 10 min later I got a huge dose of "Careful what you wish for!!". I had gone downstairs for something, when Adam yelled from the kitchen "Mom!!! I made my own supper!!!! Come see!!!!!"
I arrive in the kitchen to find ..... an icing sandwich. On one side of the bread he put white icing ... on the other side ... chocolate icing ... both halves covered in sprinkles. He put both pieces together, took a bite and gave me a huge icing sandwich with sprinkles grin.
Well ... I DID tell him to make his OWN supper if he wasn't eating what I made LOL. Next time I guess I'll have to also give him the choices of WHAT he can make instead ;-)
Monday, August 21, 2006
This was originally written back in Jan 1998, for the 'Stories for Alec' that I've been keeping for him over the years.
When I left work yesterday afternoon, I knew I wasn't going to make the 5pm ferry. As it happened some days, I'd have to take the 5:15. On my way out, I realized another girl from my dept. was taking the same ferry, so I offered her a ride home when we got to the other side.
Depending on what's happening at work, there are days when I can't leave in time to catch my ferry, so my husband and I have a system. If I don't arrive on the 5pm ferry, something came up but I'm definitely on the 5:15. If I'm not on the 5:15, I had to work late, couldn't get in touch with him so he'll call me at work. That's our system ... works well.
So, Chris & I get off the ferry... Paul, my husband, is not there. I'm a little embarrassed as hes usually waiting in the parking lot with our 18 mo. old son Alec, but I tell her that he probably left the sitters late and he saw I wasn't on the 5pm ferry, so he went for coffee before the 5:15 got there. So we wait.
The 5:30 ferry comes, still no Paul. Now I'm really embarrassed, Chris could have taken a bus and almost been home by now, so I'm saying "I'll Kill Him!!" He KNOWS I hate to wait. However, in the back of my mind, there was this little voice saying, "you're right, he knows you hate to wait...so...where IS he?" Chris says she doesn't mind waiting with me, I think she knew I was starting to get a little worried. So we continued to wait together.
The 5:45 ferry, no Paul. By this time, we had walked all around the building (outside in the freezing and I mean FREEZING cold) thinking he may have parked around front (not there), and had made our way back to where we started. We decided to go up to the second level of the building where there was a wall of glass windows overlooking the entire parking lot and entrance. We'd definitely see him come in from there. At this point, I called the sitter to see what time they had left her house. She was surprised they weren't there because they had left at 4:45 and all was well. Now I was REALLY worried. I called work and told the girl on night shift, if my husband called there for some reason, to please tell him I was still at the ferry terminal waiting for them. Then I went back to where Chris was watching at window.
The 6:00 ferry arrives, no Paul & Alec. I'm still not frantic but extremely worried. Chris and I are looking out the window and see a police car cruising the parking lot. Paul and I have seen them doing this often so it didnt hold our attention for long. At this point, I start telling Christine about the night we had one of our housewarming parties and how Paul had taken his mom's car to get the food and drinks and had an accident. While I was getting ready at home, I heard the sirens and thought, That wouldn't be for Paul, and shrugged it off, and it turned out it was. It was the ambulance on the way to get him at the accident. While I finished my story to her, the police car below left.
A few minutes later, we noticed an ambulance drive through the parking lot. In the back of my mind, I was thinking, they wouldn't be looking for ME?! And shrugged it off, Paul would be here soon, and boy would he have an exceptional explanation!!!! By now I had already called home a few times, thinking we may have gotten our wires crossed at some point and he went home to wait for a call from me.
6:15 ferry. No Paul. I'm panicked now. All I could say was, He has to be home soon, he has to feed the baby!!! I went to call home again. As I was on the phone, I saw a police officer walk into the building. He looked around, walked up to a woman and asked her a question. She shook her head no. He looked up to where I was on the phone, we made eye contact, I hung up the phone and turned away to walk back to my post at the window. When I got back, I told Chris what I saw and said JOKINGLY, I wonder if he was looking for me?
Part of me wanted to run down those stairs and ask him. Part of me didn't want to know. By this point, the only thing running through my mind was.... car accident. Then I thought, that woman looked nothing like me, I'm losing it here. What I did instead was go to the info booth to see if anyone had called or left a message for someone fitting my description. The guy looked at me like I had two heads and said no.
Finally, Chris was able to talk me into going home. She knew I was getting ready to snap and thought I might be more stable in my own environment. At least there, I could freak in the privacy of my own home. She was going to take the bus home and because I didn't have a cent on me, only my bank card, and there was NO bank machine in sight, she gave me $10 for a cab home. This actually meant alot to me coming from a girl I had only worked with a couple of months and didn't yet know really well. On impulse, I gave her hug, thanked her and she was off.
She hopped on the bus and I went to the payphone to look up the number for a cab. I'm standing there with the phonebook in hand, phone to my ear and the guy from the info booth comes over and says...
Excuse me; are you waiting for your husband?
Do you have a little boy?
YES (my heart stops)
He had a seizure while they were waiting for your ferry. The police have been here looking for you. He's been taken to the IWK.
I drop the phone.
At 5pm, Paul & Alec are sitting in the car at the ferry terminal waiting for me. That morning, he (Alec) had woken up with a fever. He had been showing signs of teething all weekend. Rash on his chin, diaper rash, diarrhea, and he hardly ate, so we added the fever to the list of symptoms. We decided to bring him to the sitter's with the strict instructions of: No milk, no going outside and if the fever gets any higher, call us and we'll come and get him. Throughout the day, Paul had called and he was doing fine.
Now however, at 5pm, while waiting for me, he wasn't drinking his juice or eating his snack, so Paul figured, as on many other nights, that Alec was getting ready to fall asleep.
Paul turned back around, checked to see if my ferry was on its way, picked up his book and started reading. That's when he heard the strange noises coming from Alec.
He whipped back around again and saw our beautiful, almost two-year-old son, stiff as a board in his car seat, twitching, his eyes rolling back in his head and frothing at the mouth. Although he had never experienced one before, our baby was having a seizure. Paul grabbed his hand and called his name, Alec was un-responsive. For a split second, my husband panicked.
He could see my ferry 3/4 of the way across the harbor, almost there. There were people standing around. Should he roll down the window and ask them to look for me and tell them what was happening? Was I even on that ferry or did I end up having to work late? Then he threw the car into gear and sped to the hospital. Trying to keep an eye on Alec and drive at the same time, Paul drove over curbs, had the four way flashers on, the headlights flashing and he was laying on the horn. Not dangerously, but the fastest, most direct way possible. Most people pulled over for him but when he passed one guy, he gave him the finger. If only he knew...
When they reached the Dartmouth General, Alec was unconscious and not breathing. Paul ran through the doors and said, "He's having a seizure". A nurse came out of nowhere, whisked Alec away and told Paul to give the other nurse the information needed. After a couple of minutes, he asked if he could see Alec and was told where he could find him.
When Paul got to Alec, he was stripped down to his diaper and they were trying to control his fever, which had spiked to 105, and debating whether or not he needed an IV. This fever was the cause of the seizure he had, which is known as a Febrile Seizure. My husband laid his head down next to our little guy and finally broke down.
The nurses were a bit concerned about Paul also, so they had him hold Alec while giving him oxygen and also using a bit for himself. They then decided he should be taken by ambulance to the IWK Childrens Hospital over in Halifax. So off they went. Paul rode in the ambulance with Alec.
While at the hospital, Paul had called the police to let them know our situation. They said they would send someone over to the ferry terminal to find me. They went twice. These were the police cars and men I had seen at the terminal.
While on the way to the IWK, the ambulance did a circle around the parking lot of the ferry terminal, it was on the way and Alec was stable enough to take the extra few minutes to do this. They were looking for me. This was the ambulance I had seen from the window.
After speaking with the doctors and being reassured that this was not an epileptic seizure and that he did not have brain damage, Paul began walking with Alec (still only in his diaper) through the halls, singing to him his favourite song. All the while... waiting for me...
My heart was pounding. This wasn't happening. I had not been waiting there for an hour and 45 minutes for Paul and Alec and I had NOT just been told my son had had a seizure. I started crying immediately. The info guy called the police. The officer told me the readers digest version of what had happened, and told me they would send another ferry over for me, send a police cruiser or I could take a cab to the hospital, I opted for the cab.
While the info guy was calling me a cab, I called one of my best friends, to tell her what had happened and to ask her to explain to my manager that I wouldn't be in the next day, (we worked together at the time) and I wasn't sure when I would be back. Then I called mom and dad. Not that they could do anything being 4 1/2 hrs away, but simply to share my moment of fear. I needed to hear my mom's voice.
While I was on the phone with them, my cab arrived. I jumped in and immediately told the driver what happened and where we needed to go.
Needless to say, I was a mess.
So, we're off to the hospital. A couple of minutes into the drive, the cabby says, "I haven't driven a cab in six months, where exactly IS the IWK? What street is it on?" I almost lost it. I leaned over and said "Listen, you're not talking to someone who's in her right frame of mind right now, I DON'T KNOW what street the hospital is on, JUST GET ME THERE!!!" He then proceeded to tell me about how the Virgin Mary keeps appearing all over the world (like I need to hear this) and after asking if Alec had been baptized and I said yes, assured me he was going to be fine!!! I couldn't believe this guy!!!
He manages to drop me off at the wrong part of the hospital, but I'm still able to get to the children's emergency through the building. I finally approach the nurses station, drop everything and ask, "How can I find my son?" The nurse asked for his name and when I told her, all the nurses gathered there turned and pointed to Paul and Alec and said, "He's right there". For the first time since this nightmare had started, over 2 hours ago, I saw my husband and my little boy.
I ran to them, buried my face into my husbands chest and just sobbed. He managed to guide us into a corner and after I'd calmed down a bit; I finally had the chance to take a good look at Alec.
He was still only in his diaper. His little eyes were drooping; he looked disoriented and utterly exhausted. I immediately took off my winter coat and held my baby. The doctor very quickly reassured me that Alec was going to be ok. He gave us some quiet time alone.
I took my son to a rocking chair, while Paul called my parents, and there Alec and I sat, him looking up at me and me looking down at him. Every now and then he'd reach over and hug me and this would bring on a fresh batch of tears. I was so devastated that my baby had gone through this, but even more so, because I wasn't there for him when it happened. I can only thank God that his father was.
Paul's mom arrived around this time and then the doctor asked if we would watch a slide presentation on Febrile Seizures to hopefully answer any questions we may have and to inform us of signs to look for if it should happen again. As long as Alec has the fever, he has a
50% chance of it happening again. It seems that Alec had a viral infection very common in children. This caused the high fever, which in turn, caused his seizure. The doctor also said to keep a close eye on him over the next few days because just because he was currently doing ok, that didnt mean he wouldnt get worse. He even said there was a possibility of pneumonia or meningitis.
By 8:30pm, they let us go. Since I had arrived at the hospital, Alec still had not said one word. Paul and I talked to him constantly but he wouldn't respond. Just before we left, as we were dressing him, I whispered to Alec "Mommy's going to stay home with you tomorrow and we're going to do something you really like." At that moment, Alec looked at me and said in this tiny little voice "Barney?" I was never so happy to hear that blasted purple dinosaurs name.
Betty (Paul's mom) drove us back to the Dartmouth General to pick up our car and from there, we headed home.
On the ride home, Paul told me something that went through his mind while getting Alec to the hospital "Kim will never forgive me if this boy dies while he's with me". It just tore at my heart to hear him say that, and at the same time, made me love him all the more.
Today, Alec was better; his fever had gone up and down all day, but never surpassed 100. That is, until 4:30 p.m., then it went to 101. By 5:30 p.m. it had climbed to 102, I started getting nervous. We stripped him down to his undershirt and looked for the signs that had come with the last seizure (now that we knew what to look for), rosy cheeks, and a rash over his stomach and back. He definitely had the rosy cheeks and what looked like the start of a rash.
Paul and I decided to give him his Tylenol and put him in a lukewarm bath. If, after the bath, he still had a fever of 102, we were calling the IWK.
It is now 12:47 am. Alec's temp has been fluctuating all night, I just checked on him and he's still warm, however the thermometer reads 99.7, much better, but still not out of the woods yet. I don't think I'll be getting much sleep again tonight. Paul has set the alarm to get up at 4am to check his temp and give him more Tylenol. If this fever hasn't broken by tomorrow he'll be back at the IWK.
Epilogue: Its been five years since Alec had that febrile seizure. Although hes still prone to high fevers, hes never had another one. I realize that Alec is a very lucky boy, things could have been much worse had it not been for my husbands quick reaction. I also realize that there are many other children, who go through much worse than what he did every day of their lives. I guess the reality of how easy it is to lose a child really only hits home, when that child is one of your own.
As promised, here is one of the expanded versions of an 'adventure' mentioned in my 'Most $hit' Blog. It was originally sent as an email to family and friends back in 2002. Adam was around 2yrs old.
Just wanted to share a little experience we had last night, if nothing else, to remind you to keep your first aid skills up to date :-) After supper, Adam was eating an apple. He was just strolling around the kitchen and taking a bite now and then, holding it more so than eating it. Normally I cut it up in little slices and he eats those, but last night was just one of those nights when I thought "ah, he's been eating everything really well lately, he'll be fine". He has pretty well a full mouth of teeth, so I guess that sometimes gives me a false sense of security.
I was standing at the stove and Adam was next to me at the fridge when I heard him gag. I looked at him and thought "is he choking?", and I watched as he tried to get the apple piece out of this throat, then was thinking "don't panic, he'll get it". All of a sudden he started turning red and was not breathing, then it kicked in, "my God he IS choking!". I knelt down right away, scooped his mouth with my little finger and couldn't feel anything. When I had knelt down, I had placed my other hand on his back just out of habit, when I took my finger out of his mouth, I slid my hand down along his chest and had my fingers resting just at the bottom of his ribcage. I yelled for Paul who was downstairs, but without even thinking about what I was doing next, I braced him with my hand on his back, and pushed 2-3 fingers (don't even remember how many for sure) into his stomache... and out popped the apple. One push was all it took and it popped right out into my hand.
Adam started breathing, coughing and crying all at the same time. I think he was more scared than anything. His color returned right away and a few mins later it was like nothing had happened. I on the other hand became more stressed the more I thought about it. Man, that could have had an entirely different ending. I never thought I'd be able to do a Heimlich type manoever on Adam... or even Alec for that matter, but I guess when the situation presents itself, you don't think... you just do.
Anyway, he's fine, I'm fine, just wanted to share another mom moment from the PAAK Shack.
Friday, July 28, 2006
So I brought the boys to a pub for supper the other night. I've managed to get myself into a singing competition here in Halifax, and my youngest isn't crazy about the idea of his mom getting on stage to 'entertain' someone other than he and his brother ... so I brought them to the pub where I'm singing in order to give them an idea of where and what I'll be doing and they were also able to watch those who were auditioning for next month's competition. They thought it was pretty cool :-)
I have to admit, the boys were on their BEST behaviour all night. VERY well behaved. Until we were almost ready to go ... then they started checking out the waitresses!!!!! They're 10 & 6 and already checking out the waitresses!!! When ours came to the table to see if we wanted dessert, and my youngest said "My brother thinks you're hot!" ... I knew it was time to go!!!
As we were leaving, this man walking out in front of us got a great laugh ... the boys had asked me if they had been good in the pub. I said "You guys were absolutely AWESOME!!! Very very good! But next time ...... don't be telling the waitresses they're hot!!!!" The guy in front of us just lost it laughing :-)
And yes ... having a 6yr old tell you you're hot, can still make a grown woman blush LOL. ;-)
I had another adventure after work yesterday! Leave it to me to find an adventure from my office to my car a few blocks away LOL.
I'm just about to head into the parking lot and I see this little boy, definitely looking LOST. Not crying, not panicking, but definitely had that 'look' about him, and my mommy senses were tingling and kicking in .... lost! So just as I'm about to approach him, he said "MOM!!!". That cinched it! I walked up to him and asked him "Did you lose your mom Bud?" He was whipping his head all around and said "Yeah ... I can't find my family ANYWHERE!!!!!. I just wanted to take a picture and they were gone!!!" My heart just sank for the poor little guy!
For anyone who's been on the Halifax Waterfront at end of day rush hour, you know how many people are walking around down there ... to the buses, ferry terminal, parking lots ... then there's the tourists .... EVERYWHERE! How was I ever going to find his family in that crowd, .... especially since I had to go pick up my own kids at day camp ....I didn't have alot of time ...
Turned out ... here's this little 6yr old boy ... from New York, here on a cruise ship, and they made a port stop in Hfx, and he lost his family, wandering around the waterfront alone :-( Thankfully us Nova Scotians are such nice people ;-)
I wasn't sure if I should try and find his family in the crowd, or take him directly back to the ship. I asked him if he was supposed to meet his family anywhere if he got lost (did they say he SHOULD go back to the ship, meet elsewhere???) did they have cell phones? Yes, they all did (Mom, grandma and uncle, who he was travelling with), but he didn't know any of their numbers. Then he said "I HAVE to be back at the ship at 5 ... it's LEAVING at 5!!!!" It was after 4:30 when he said that .... So ... on the chance I was going to be VERY late getting my own kids ... I made a quick judgement call and I decided to walk him back to the ship, and hand him over to security. Which is what we did :-)
We walked the 5-6 blocks to where the cruise ship was docked and I just kept talking to him the whole way. What was his name, where was he from? Telling him about my boys, going to NY for March Break, talking about the Pokemon Centre ... trying to keep him distracted I guess. Then, just as we were approaching Pier 21, a couple of 'ship dudes' came walking towards us. I stopped them, checked their ID and made sure they were from the Carnival Cruise, explained what happened, and then we all went to the ship. I went as far as I could with him to the security gates, and the 'ship dudes' took him from there onboard.
I was glad he was safe ... but I felt bad for his family cause I knew they were probably frantic!!!! But there wasn't much I could do about it at this point, so I headed back to my truck, and just kept scanning the crowds along the way for anyone who looked like they were frantically looking for something/someone.
I finally pulled out of the parking lot, drove maybe a couple of blocks and I saw a few people standing around looking 'off', and again ... the mommy senses kicked in and I thought "That's them!!!" Turned out it wasn't ... it was a few people who were helping look for him. Turned out the grandmother and uncle were stopping everyone asking if they'd seen a little boy, so some had stopped to help look ... and the mother ... she was 7 months pregnant :-( There was a rickshaw driver taking her back and forth between the ship and waterfront, all over ... looking for him. (for those that don't know, a rickshaw is like one of those carts a horse pulls, but this one's pulled by a human ... usually some 'hot', well built guy lol, a tourist 'thing') So I rolled down the passenger window and yelled at them. Asking if they were looking for a little boy, when they said yes, I said "I found him, I brought him back to the ship, he's fine!!!". Traffic was building up behind me and they're yelling "Pull Over!!! Come tell the Mother!!!" so I did :-)
Someone yelled to grandma (This lady found him!!!) and she ran up to me first and OMIGOD I thought she was going to break me she hugged me so hard :-) My heart was just breaking for them, she was crying and crying :-( Then the mom appeared out of nowhere in the Rickshaw and she couldn't even speak, didn't move ... just cried and cried. I went over to her and just gave her a big hug and started crying myself ... (those darn mommy senses!!! lol) Told her not to worry, he was safe, back at the ship with security, and he was aVERY brave little boy! Then ... with their tears and thanks still in my head, I disappeared into the crowd, off to get my own kids. And let me tell ya ... I hugged them extra hard when I picked them up last night :-)
I thought about that poor mom alot last night. I can't imagine what she was feeling ... knowing your child was lost in a strange city ...and of course I thought of my own kids ... I've always told them never to go with strangers ... just as I'm sure this little guy's mom had always told him ... but he came with me anyway ... I could have been lying to him about taking him back to the ship and just whisked him away instead .... how are our kids supposed to know who to trust if they ARE lost ... especially in a strange city :-( There were no police officers around yesterday. What would my own kid do if he was lost and couldn't find the police ... go with a nice stranger?
I know I could drive myself crazy thinking about all the 'what if scenarios', so I guess I just have to let it go, and know that what goes around comes around, and god forbid, if either of my boys ever gets lost, I've done my good deed, hopefully someone would do the same for them.
Hey!! It's Friday!!! Have a great weekend everyone!!!
P.S. If ya got 'em ... give 'em an extra hug tonight ...cause we all know, it only takes a second and they're gone!
Monday, June 26, 2006
Have you ever been reading, and either listening to the radio/cd or watching tv and at the exact moment you land on a particular word, you hear that same word on whatever it was you are listening to/watching? For example, as you read "... in a moment of terror ..." you hear " ... and the moment you've all been waiting for!" Reading and hearing the word 'moment' at the same time.
Being the type of person who likes to read in the down time, but also likes to have 'background noise' ... this happens to me all the time. I never really thought of it as unusual until ...
I asked my ex husband this question one day, and he looked at me sort of strangely and said simply ... "uh ... no." I've since asked a few other people, and I'm surprised at how many more no's I've received than yes's.
Guess it's just one of those freaky little quirks some of us are born with ... and just don't question lol ;-)
Monday, May 15, 2006
I've decided to board the blogging bus to keep the family and friends updated. If you're here because I've invited you, glad you could make it! If you've wandered into my blog spot ... welcome! If you like what you read, feel free to come back. For some strange reason, 'things' always seem to happen to me. (which is probably why I like the phrase "everything happens for a reason"), so there'll always be new adventures to follow .
I really do own a Most Sh*t trophy. One of my friends gave it to me a couple of years ago, because she said I was the friend who had been through the 'Most Sh*t' than anyone else she knew ... not sure if I should really be proud of that title or not ... but I do display my trophy proudly, and if nothing else, it's a great conversation piece .
So ... what type of 'sh*t' have I been through that I deserve a trophy for? Well, nothing as serious as being a true 'survivor' of any sort, I haven't been through anything really horrible or heroic, not to me anyway. I just see it as .... life ... life happens right and you've just got to go with it. And it doesn't necessarily have to be something 'bad', but I guess I've had a few interesting incidents throughout my 20's, and into my 30's (so far), that not everyone goes through ....
Off the top of my head I can think of ...
- Separated Single Mom. A very common experience these days yes, but anyone who's been through it knows that's an adventure in itself lol
- Went back to work for the same company that had laid me off a year and a half previously. I had worked there for four years, so in some ways going back was strange, but in others it was sort of like coming home
- Working on a cool project at the office now. But it's under security ... so if I told you, I'd have to send some big scary guy looking for you afterwards
- In a three month period, I had one lung collapse, then the other, then the first one again. I had a lung disease and didn't know it
- The second lung collapsed at the funeral home. My dad died and I moved (actually my ex and two kids moved us into the new house, then drove 5 hrs to where I was) the same day and then my lung collapsed at the funeral home the next day
- I eventually had a double lung surgery. 15 percent less lungs now, and they're now stapled to the chest walls, but I'm still here lol
- We moved three times in three months one summer. The house we were renting went up for sale and we wanted to stay in the same school district. Anyone who has had to move two adults, two kids, two pets and the entire contents of a house knows this isn't a fun thing to do
- We all received mild - high arsenic poisoning from the well water at a house we rented. Never from drinking. But through cooking, washing etc.
- My youngest was standing next to me in the kitchen one night eating an apple, and choked. I had never done the Heimlich, which he was too young for anyway, but put one hand on his back and slid two fingers of the other hand down his chest and when I felt that spot under the rib cage, pushed and out popped the apple That was pretty cool! At the time I just did it (just 'life' right?). After wards, when I knew he was ok, I fell apart lol
- My oldest son had a Febrile Seizure (which I had never heard of before that day) when he was 18 mo old ... in the car, with his dad, waiting at the ferry terminal while watching my boat coming across the harbour .... They immediately left for the hospital, I didn't have a cell phone ... had no idea what was going on or where they were
- I hemorrhaged 10 days after having my second son. Dr hadn't removed all the placenta during birth. Lost over half my body's blood, went into shock etc. they did a minor surgery and all was well. Guess they gave the ex the "Sir, you should prepare yourself for being a single father" speech a little too soon. I was a new mom again and wasn't going anywhere lol
- Back in the days before Kids ;-) Our dog saved our lives one night Our kerosene heater was throwing off carbon monoxide all night. He woke us up barking. We woke up black, covered in soot (really ... any body part that hadn't been covered during the night was literally black!) and according to the fireman, we had about another 5 min or we wouldn't have woken up. Never used a kerosene heater again!
- A few years before we were married, the ex was operated on for a brain tumor, that it turned out the doctors didn't find, and then said he never had to begin with ... go figure
- When I found out my dad had cancer, I arranged for him to have a surprise phone call from Guy La Fleur, his all time hockey idol, for Christmas. I probably should have let him in on the surprise though, since he didn't believe it was him, humored 'him' for a minute then basically hung up on him (ohhhh I heard that collective cybergroan!) My mom explained everything when she arrived home a few mins later
I'm out for a walk with the kids at the lake and my purse is stolen out of my vehicle! ok ... so LOTS of people have had this one happen to them lol. Then the fun began! We were at the lake/trail with my friend and her two kids. When we left, we were on our way to a movie. One of my kids was traveling with her, and they didn't know my purse had been taken. I head to the theater to find her, so I can get her keys and check her house to make sure I hadn't forgotten it there, before I went through the process of reporting it stolen ... unfortunately, after discussing several movie times/theaters earlier in the afternoon, when we left the lake, she went to one theater, I went to another .
About 25 min later, I find her seated with my son and hers in the row in front of her and her daughter. I'm doing the 's'cuse me, s'cuse me, s'cuse me down the row to get to her, trying to quietly tell her what happened and ask for her keys, and my 6yr old leans over and LOUDLY whispers to his brother "HEY! Some bad guy(s) stole mom's purse!!"
So if I wasn't embarrassed enough before, I certainly was after that! Got the keys, checked the house, no purse. Went back to the lake in case they had only taken the money cards, and ditched the purse nearby ... no such luck Off to my place to call the credit card people, bank, and the police (yes, in that order lol).
Turns out in the half our between when it was stolen and when I noticed it gone, they managed to swipe $100 worth of gas at a gas station, with my credit card. There's no other identification required at the pumps, just the card swipe. And unfortunately, this station doesn't have cameras outside. Inside yes, outside no .
However ... the buttheads also tried to use my bank card, at my branch So the police will be looking into the footage from that video tape. I was able to give them the time of the attempted withdrawl(s), as well as the identification # of the exact ATM so hopefully they'll find them.
Last I heard from the police, they were waiting on the video tape and I should hear from them again this week. Sure it was only $100, and ultimately, after I go through the appeal with the CC people, I won't be responsible to pay it. But it's the principle of the thing. You just DON'T steal!!!! They freaked out my 6yr old!! That in itself deserves a "YES officer, I'm pressing charges!" Buttheads ticked off the wrong mom. I should also send them the bill for the replacement costs of the drivers license, birth certs, health cards etc. LOL!!!
There ya go. Welcome to my world Come back to find out what happened in each of the events mentioned above, (even the scarier ones usually have an element of humor to them lol) and read about the other adventures that helped earn me my Most Sh*t trophy!
Later Family, Friends, and anonymous Blog Readers!