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I'm just a guy trying to make it through life one day at a time.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Yeah.... Wrong again.

So my son is like a dog. He likes to squirrel things away to find later.  This can include sippy cups with milk in them.

Yep.. you guessed it.  He found one yesterday.

He took a couple of good pulls from it before Beth or I could get it away from him.  This was about 3pm yesterday.  After going all day without puking, crapping, or mixing the two... we thought we had dodged a bullet.

Yeah... wrong again.

About 3am I woke up to the Little Man crying.  It was no big deal to me... he's been pushing a molar through for the past couple days... so I went in to pick him up, give him a pat on the back, turn Pooh back on and go back to bed.  I knew something was wrong when I walked in the room and smelled what I thought was a ripe diaper.

Yeah... wrong again.

Turned the light on and noticed what looked to be cottage cheese on his forehead.  Upon further inspection, found more of this unidentifed cottage cheese on his sheets.  VOMIT!!!

Oh no!

Now... you can poop on me, pee on me, leak your bodily fluids on me, and I'm fine. A little digusted, but fine.

Puke on me?!? There's gonna be trouble.

So... 2-3 taps later on the wall and Beth had joined me in Jr's bedroom.  I left Little Man in her care, stripped his bed and brought it downstairs to rinse in the sink and start laundry.  She started a bath and put him in it.  After the bath was over, we diapered-dressed him and brought him into the living room with us.  He immediately got off my wife's lap and began playing with his toys.  After 20 or so minutes of watching him play - chase the cats - laugh/smile, we thought it was a one time shot and he was doing better.

Yeah... Wrong again.

About an hour later I woke up to what I thought were intense coughing sounds.

You guessed it - wrong again.

More cottage cheese looking stuff, mixed with the mandarin oranges and some of the noodles we had given him the previous day.  I'm thinking by this time... "I'm pretty sure I'm gonna puke soon.  I better find a recepticle for this so we aren't cleaning up a bigger mess." Luckily, I was able to get through this second episode with only mild gagging, however I was quickly losing my reserves.  So... another sheet/pajama change later, he was back in bed for what I was hoping would be the last time that night.

Yeah.... Wrong again.

One more puking episode... One more change of sheets... One more change of pajamas... he was back in the living room playing with his cars.

After a few minutes of playing he began showing signs of being tired, so back to bed we went.  Again... hoping this would be the last time.

Yeah... wrong again.

I woke up to the most horrible noise a father could wake up to.  Some one had snuck into my home, grabbed a dull knife from the kitchen, and was torturing my son with it in his bedroom.  I quickly threw off the covers and raced to his room.  I found my wife attempting to hold a squirming little boy who wanted no part on either one of us.  He was kicking, squirming, screaming, and just causing general mahem.

We brought him to the livingroom and put him down on the floor, where he continued to wail and thrash around - something I had never seen before.  He would not respond to my voice and was acting like I wasn't even there.  After several more long minutes, I was becoming quite concerned.  Then... just as quickly as it started, it stopped.  My wife and I looked at each other, looked at Reece and thought, "well, what ELSE could happen tonight?"

After putting him to bed once again, we began digging into the "What to expect - toddler years" book.  Turns out Reece was having a possible night terror.  We learned from the book not to interact (that includes any touching except to keep him safe) with him as this will prolong the terror.  The child will seems awake, however will not recognize you and will attempt to "get away" from whatever is spooking him.

It is now about noon and he is still sleeping.  Beth and I are exausted but are afraid to go back to sleep due to the fact every time we do, he pukes, craps, or has a night terror.

Its gonna be a looooong day.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Vehicles suck!

Good morning, readers....

Thought I'd fill you in on my vehicle situation.

About a month ago now the oil light on my wife's Expedition began flashing on and off.  So... I checked the oil... or so I thought.  Ford at some point switched to a different dipstick (looks like heavy wire with a lead weight at the end)  By the way... here's a tip for ya... it doesn't wipe off well with just a towel.  The raised lettering on the tip holds oil gunk.  Use a paper towel and press hard.

So anyway... I checked the oil, thought there was plenty in there, and decided that it was a bad sending unit going to the gauge.

Well... it wasn't.

As my wife was turning into the station running a fire call, the engine seized.  Yeah... I know... whoops.  My bad.  So there my truck sat for a week while we shopped for motors to put in it.  We now have the motor - good deal by the way... 1000 bucks for a '04 with 53000 miles on it - much better than my '98 with 240,000 miles on it.  The bad news is - it's hunting season and I can't find anyone to put it in for less that a bazillion dollars.  I'd try it myself, but I always end up with leftover parts.

So there my truck sits, patiently waiting for someone to replace her insides.

Now... on to my car.

Shortly after the truck died, my car began shaking.... and shaking... and shaking.  At first, it was like hardly noticable... noticiable enought to me who drives 70,000 miles a year in it, but probably not to the regular passenger.  However... it kept getting more and more worse as the days went on.  At first it almost felt like a miss in the engine, leading me to believe that I had a bad plug or wire.  And it would only miss upon acceleration, further leading this belief to be true.  So.... 47 bucks in plugs and wires later, the car still shook.  And I MEAN shook.  The next time I drove it to work, it shook so bad I thought my brain was gonna rattle right outta my head. 

It finally got so bad that A) I actually started wearing my seatbelt cuz I was SURE the front end was going to fall off and B) I borrowed another car to take to work so my wife could take my in for repair.

So in it went to McCalls Garage in Lowell (if you ever get the chance to take your car there, do it.  They don't charge for inspections, and they are CHEAP.)  Good people.  After a short test run, they tell me they think it's something to do with a motor mount or somethin', and that it wouldn't be too expensive to fix.  I thought, "cool!  sounds good to me!"  Upon further inspection, it was found to be a bad front axle.  I thought, "this is going to cost me a bunch of money I don't have."  However.... $125 later, it was out the door runnin' just as smooth as the day I got it.

So anyway... I'm going to sell my car, my truck, and anything else with a motor and buy me a horse.  If the horse breaks it's leg, I'll shoot it and buy me another horse.  Much simpler method, don't you think?

Monday, October 19, 2009

Is 8 Ounces Enough?

So what is it about Homecoming that makes teenagers think they need to get dressed up, rent limos, and eat at 5 star restaurants?

My wife and I went out with SlackerMom and her husband the other night to a very nice eatery (and when I say nice, I mean they have someone who's job it is is to walk around with one of them tiny broom and dustpan sets to clean the crumbs from your table between each course). In short, it's fancy.

My wife and I were there first, so we seated when J and S walked in.  The atmosphere was nice.  Lighting was good... sound level was good...  everything you'd expect in a 5 star place.  We were seated close to one other couple in our side of the restaurant.  All was good.

And then THEY showed up.  You know who I'm talking about.  THEY.  The 17 year old, loud, obnoxious, uncouth, no mannered teenagers. 

They began walking in 2-3 at a time, not waiting for a hostess to seat them.  Of course, this causes those already seated to shout out the names of the wanderers from across the room.  The dB level has now gone up at least 3 fold by now. 

Once THEY are finally all seated (12 in all), THEY began looking at the menu.  Obligatory comments made regarding the prices of the dinner selections were now being shouted from one end of the table to the other.  Apparently adequate research into the dinners prices was not done by the group so not enough money was brought to cover the cost of the check.

And then she said it....

"Is eight ounces enough?"

I'm not sure which one of them said it.  All I know is that it sent everyone in our group into hysterics.  S and I looked at each other and began making comments who would be blogging about it first.  (She won, by the way... only because I had to spend the entire day yesterday working on my car.) 

"Is eight ounces enough?"  I guess it must have been.  Four of the girls ended up ordering one (1) twelve ounce filet and splitting it four ways.  Three ounces apiece... thats like an appetizer to me for pete's sake. 

After they had placed their order, of course the cameras HAD to come out.  I don't know about you, but I try to avoid picture taking (especially with a flash) at a nice place to eat. (Unless of course Carrie Underwood were to walk in... I'd be stealing someone's camera for photo frenzy... especially if she were wearing tight fitting jeans with a white t-shirt and a hat with her pony tail sticking out of it - but I digress...) I understand that you want to remember the evening, but c'mon... turn off the flash!  Take your pictures outside of the restaurant.  Or the limo.  Or at the dance.  And if your camera has one of the features that sends lit design aross the room so the flash can adjust itself, turn that off too.  I spent the evening watching different shades of green checkerboards and red balls flash themselves against the wall.  I thought I was in a disco with as much light that was displayed. 

And then the fun REALLY started.  I guess the girls were getting bored, so they began putting the fake tealight candles between their breasts.  (Which had they been a little older, might have been fun for J and I)  More pictures of course.  I mean, who wouldn't want to remember that they went to a 5 star place and put fake candles between their boobies.  The guys were hoot'n and hollerin' for more.  The atmosphere was now that of BW3's. 

OK... I'm really not trying to be judgemental.  I'm trying to be understanding that it was an important night to them and they wanted to celebrate.  However, until you have the class on how to behave at a nice place - perhaps you should stick to TGI Friday's.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


Ok.. one more quick post this morning.

So I have gained two followers over the last few days.  (Hope to gain more, spread the word  :-)  )

I'm trying to see the followers own blogs, however I seem unable to do that.... anyone know how? I have slacker-moms blog already, but I can't seem to find Kristens....


Good morning, readers!

So.... I get to be a security officer again.  SlackerMom (confessions-slackermom.blogspot.com) signed me up to be security at their annual MOPS (Mothers Of Pre-Schoolers) sale.  The job is unpaid, however she promised me a trip to one of my favorite restuarants downtown (Louis Bentons Steak House) if I were to sign up.  Now... anyone who knows me knows that I'll do just about anything for a good steak.  (What I didn't tell her is that I'll also do just about anything for a good cause, paid or not... but TOO LATE!)  From what I've heard, MOPS is a great program and worthy of my time.  I'm even trying to get my wife to join.

Now... here's my issue. 

Once (maybe twice, I'm not sure) a year, MOPS has a large garage style sale to raise money for their organization.  They get people to donate lightly used items and put on a great sale (think "Day After Thanksgiving") that has people lined up outside the door for hours to get in.  They have great deals on clothes, appliances, you name it, they got it.  The prices are VERY reasonable and affordable.

So... why the need for security?

Apparently there are some moms out there who feel they are entitled to some of this reasonable and affordable stuff for free.  They believe that they don't have to pay for these donated items.  They think the world owes them and they are going to take what is due. Sad, isn't it?  Its sad to me that a non-profit organization who needs to have fundraisers to stay open (to these very moms who are shoplifting) requires security officers at their event.

So thats where I come in.  I get to roam the halls looking for people who feel they are better than everyone else so they don't have to pay for their merchandise. 

Now I know that times are tough right now.  Michigan has a large unemployement rate, and people are looking to scrimp by wherever they can.  But c'mon.... there are programs out there to help.  I'll bet that if you seriously needed help, and talked to the person who runs the MOPS sale, explained that little Jimmy hasn't a stitch of clothes to wear - that he was going to go hungry if you had to make a decision to buy clothes or food, I'll be you would leave there with at LEAST one good outfit, a good pair of shoes, and a winter coat.  I mean, there is no mom out there who likes to see little Jimmy suffer.  (However... please do not show up in your BMW sporting your Rolex watch and $400 dollar Coach purse.  Yes I know that even rich folk can have a hard time, but sell your B'mer, Rolex, and Coach and buy a Buick, Casio, and knockoff)

Whew!  That feels better to get off my chest.  Sorry if I seem mad or jaded.... I just don't like to see this kind of crime at a fundraiser.  If you're going to steal... go steal a laptop from Bill Gates.  He can afford to lose a laptop or two.  I kid! I kid!

So watch out ladies... I have brought my handcuffs, flashlight, and pepper spray out of retirement.  Well OK... the handcuffs were never retired... just relegated for uhhhhh other uses.  Oh... and I've gained a few pounds - so when I tackle you to the ground be prepared to have the wind knocked out of ya. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


I have been contemplating some changes to my life recently.

For 18+ years I have been a firefighter.  I have walked around with a pager strapped to my hip, ready to respond at a moments notice to my neighbor who needs my help.  I have saved peoples' lives by preforming life saving CPR.  I have cradled the child that has lost everything in a house fire on Christmas eve.  I have given the bad news to parents that their son/daughter is not coming home because they were killed by a drunk driver.  I have also gotten up at 3am for the 80y/o lady stuck in the bathtub.  I have done all this without looking for thanks or limelight. 

But at what price am I or my family paying for this?  I cannot count how many times I have had to turn down dinner invitations, ball game tickets, golf outtings, invitations to visit family because of fire department related issues.  (Duty weekends, training, large calls)  Last night I had to turn down (again) what I think would have been an excellent prime rib dinner and a good time with some friends because it was fire department training night.  And it wasn't even a good training... it was "check the trucks" nights.  Do I really want to continue missing opportunities?  What about when my son is in school and I have to miss the school play because of a fire call...  will he understand?  Or will he just know that his father wasn't there. 

I keep telling myself...  "dude... you've dedicated over 18 years of your life to the fire service.  Isn't that enough?  Thats over half your life!  Maybe its time to let some of the younger folk take up the cause for awhile.  You've pulled your weight.  You've done your best.  Now move on and enjoy your friends and family for awhile."  Each time I have these thoughts, I hear from others "you can't quit!  You'll miss it too much. It's who you are."  Maybe who I am and who I WANT to be are two different people.  Maybe I no longer WANT to be the guy that gets out of bed at 4am because someone has flu-like symtoms (who has had them for two days and decides at 4am that thats the best time to go to the doctor, but instead of waiting till 9am when the office opens instead calls 911.)  Maybe I no longer WANT to get up at 2am because some drunk guy who just closed down the bar runs his car into a tree.  Maybe I no longer want to work with some of the guys who aren't happy on the department unless there is controversy and strife.  I don't even remember what normal life was like BEFORE the deparment.

I guess I need to think about it for awhile....

Monday, October 12, 2009

60 Things

Yes... I copied these from another site.  However... I find that most of them are true. 

1. I wish Google Maps had an “Avoid Ghetto” routing option

2. More often than not, when someone is telling me a story all I can think about is that I can’t wait for them to finish so that I can tell my own story that’s not only better, but also more directly involves me.

3. Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you’re wrong.

4. I don’t understand the purpose of the line, “I don’t need to drink to have fun.” Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they’ve invented the lighter?

5. Have you ever been walking down the street and realized that you’re going in the complete opposite direction of where you are supposed to be going? But instead of just turning a 180 and walking back in the direction from which you came, you have to first do something like check your watch or phone or make a grand arm gesture and mutter to yourself to ensure that no one in the surrounding area thinks you’re crazy by randomly switching directions on the sidewalk.

6. That’s enough, Nickelback.

7. I totally take back all those times I didn’t want to nap when I was younger.

8. Is it just me, or are 80% of the people in the “people you may know” feature on Facebook people that I do know, but I deliberately choose not to be friends with?

9. Do you remember when you were a kid, playing Nintendo and it wouldn’t work? You take the cartridge out, blow in it and that would magically fix the problem. Every kid in America did that, but how did we all know how to fix the problem? There was no internet or message boards or FAQ’s. We just figured it out. Today’s kids are soft.

10. There is a great need for sarcasm font.

11. Sometimes, I’ll watch a movie that I watched when I was younger and suddenly realize I had no idea what the f was going on when I first saw it.

12. I think everyone has a movie that they love so much, it actually becomes stressful to watch it with other people. I’ll end up wasting 90 minutes shiftily glancing around to confirm that everyone’s laughing at the right parts, then making sure I laugh just a little bit harder (and a millisecond earlier) to prove that I’m still the only one who really, really gets it.

13. How the hell are you supposed to fold a fitted sheet?

14. I would rather try to carry 10 plastic grocery bags in each hand than take 2 trips to bring my groceries in.

15. I think part of a best friend’s job should be to immediately clear your computer history if you die.

16. The only time I look forward to a red light is when I’m trying to finish a text.

17. A recent study has shown that playing beer pong contributes to the spread of mono and the flu. Yeah, if you suck at it.

18. Was learning cursive really necessary?

19. Lol has gone from meaning, “laugh out loud” to “I have nothing else to say”.

20. I have a hard time deciphering the fine line between boredom and hunger.

21. Answering the same letter three times or more in a row on a Scantron test is absolutely petrifying.

22. My brother’s Municipal League baseball team is named the Stepdads. Seeing as none of the guys on the team are actual stepdads, I inquired about the name. He explained, “Cuz we beat you, and you hate us.” Classy, bro.

23. Whenever someone says “I’m not book smart, but I’m street smart”, all I hear is “I’m not real smart, but I’m imaginary smart”.

24. How many times is it appropriate to say “What?” before you just nod and smile because you still didn’t hear what they said?

25. I love the sense of camaraderie when an entire line of cars teams up to prevent a dick from cutting in at the front. Stay strong, brothers!

26. Every time I have to spell a word over the phone using ‘as in’ examples, I will undoubtedly draw a blank and sound like a complete idiot. Today I had to spell my boss’s last name to an attorney and said “Yes that’s G as in…(10 second lapse)..ummm…Goonies”

27. What would happen if I hired two private investigators to follow each other?

28. While driving yesterday I saw a banana peel in the road and instinctively swerved to avoid it…thanks Mario Kart.

29. MapQuest really needs to start their directions on #5. Pretty sure I know how to get out of my neighborhood.

30. Obituaries would be a lot more interesting if they told you how the person died.

31. I find it hard to believe there are actually people who get in the shower first and THEN turn on the water.

32. Shirts get dirty. Underwear gets dirty. Pants? Pants never get dirty, and you can wear them forever.

33. I would like to officially coin the phrase ‘catching the swine flu’ to be used as a way to make fun of a friend for hooking up with an overweight woman. Example: “Dave caught the swine flu last night.”

34. I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t at least kind of tired.

35. Bad decisions make good stories
36. Whenever I’m Facebook stalking someone and I find out that their profile is public I feel like a kid on Christmas morning who just got the Red Ryder BB gun that I always wanted. 546 pictures? Don’t mind if I do!

37. Is it just me or do high school girls get sluttier & sluttier every year?

38. If Carmen San Diego and Waldo ever got together, their offspring would probably just be completely invisible.

39. Why is it that during an icebreaker, when the whole room has to go around and say their name and where they are from, I get so incredibly nervous? Like I know my name, I know where I’m from; this shouldn’t be a problem….

40. You never know when it will strike, but there comes a moment at work when you’ve made up your mind that you just aren’t doing anything productive for the rest of the day.

41. Can we all just agree to ignore whatever comes after DVDs? I don’t want to have to restart my collection.

42. There’s no worse feeling than that millisecond you’re sure you are going to die after leaning your chair back a little too far.

43. I’m always slightly terrified when I exit out of Word and it asks me if I want to save any changes to my ten page research paper that I swear I did not make any changes to.

44. “Do not machine wash or tumble dry” means I will never wash this ever.

45. I hate being the one with the remote in a room full of people watching TV. There’s so much pressure. ‘I love this show, but will they judge me if I keep it on? I bet everyone is wishing we weren’t watching this. It’s only a matter of time before they all get up and leave the room. Will we still be friends after this?’

46. I hate when I just miss a call by the last ring (Hello? Hello? Dammit!), but when I immediately call back, it rings nine times and goes to voicemail. What’d you do after I didn’t answer? Drop the phone and run away?

47. I hate leaving my house confident and looking good and then not seeing anyone of importance the entire day. What a waste.

48. When I meet a new girl, I’m terrified of mentioning something she hasn’t already told me but that I have learned from some light internet stalking.

49. I like all of the music in my iTunes, except when it’s on shuffle, then I like about one in every fifteen songs in my iTunes.

50. Why is a school zone 20 mph? That seems like the optimal cruising speed for pedophiles…

51. As a driver I hate pedestrians, and as a pedestrian I hate drivers, but no matter what the mode of transportation, I always hate cyclists.

52. Sometimes I’ll look down at my watch 3 consecutive times and still not know what time it is.

53. It should probably be called Unplanned Parenthood.

54. I keep some people’s phone numbers in my phone just so I know not to answer when they call.

55. Even if I knew your social security number, I wouldn’t know what to do with it.

56. Even under ideal conditions people have trouble locating their car keys in a pocket, hitting the Gspot, and Pinning the Tail on the Donkey but I’d bet my xxx everyone can find and push the Snooze button from 3 feet away, in about 1.7 seconds, eyes closed, first time every time…

57. My 4year old son asked me in the car the other day “Dad what would happen if you ran over a ninja?” How the hell do I respond to that?

58. It really pisses me off when I want to read a story on CNN.com and the link takes me to a video instead of text.

59. I wonder if cops ever get pissed off at the fact that everyone they drive behind obeys the speed limit.

60. I disagree with Kay Jewelers. I would bet on any given Friday or Saturday night more kisses begin with Miller Lites than Kay.

Friday, October 9, 2009

It should...

...be illegal for your wife's alarm to be set at 95dB to a country radio station. On top of that, it makes it a felony to hit the snooze bar 4 times. Punishable by flogging at the town square. Afterwards your husband gets to throw rotten tomatoes at you.
Sent on the Now Network� from my Sprint® BlackBerry

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Dead tired

For the past four days, I've gotten an average of 4-5 hours of sleep. (No, I'm not looking for sympathy :-) ). My eyes feel like they are going to fall out of my head. I swear there is sand in them. On top of that, my allergies are acting up. I thought that was only a spring thing...

Beth has got tummy issues.

Now Reece is waking up with the "ouchy" cry. The only thing that seems to soothe him is The Baby Channel's "Harry the Bunny."

I think my house is possessed.
Sent on the Now Network� from my Sprint® BlackBerry

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

So today...

...I get home from work after my 12 hour shift. We have a wind advisory and a gale warning for the lakeshore areas. The wind is blowing my car from left to right all the way home. I actually got carsick driving home, and that never happens. As long as I am driving, car sickness is not a problem. But, I digress...

So... I get home from work. Beth is pulling dinner from the oven... my son meets me at the door... the dogs are laying on the living room floor... perfect setting, right?

Wrong. Little did I know that Reece had less than an hour nap today and had been driving my wife nuts all day long. The only reason she had any hair left on her head is because she had collected it and superglued it back on. I didn't notice it at first, but her hair was disheveled (probably from the superglue), Reece had tear streaks down his face, and the dogs were just too scared to move.

As she placed two pieces of pork roast on my plate, I mentioned that two was one too many and put one back. She slammed down the serving fork and said, "I don't even know why I cook!" and started huffing around the kitchen. It was just about this time when I noticed the superglued hair, which caused me to whirl around and look at my shirtless son sitting in his high chair tear streaked face, and the dogs cowering in the living room. Suddenly... it clicked.

"Two would be fine, dear. Sure looks good."

I love you, sweetie. I hope you have a better day tomorrow.

Monday, October 5, 2009

A Day To Remember...

Last Saturday was the annual "Walk To Remember." http://www.westmichiganwalktoremember.com/ It's a day that we take to remember when the earth stood still. I remember the events well. They haunt me to this day. The amount of guilt I still feel is enormous.

March 2, 2007

I was excited. I was picking up my new (used) car from my brother-in law. Well... OK.. I wasn't excited. After all - it was a car. I am not a big car fan. I have always driven trucks. However, my truck was falling apart, I drive 56 miles each way to work every day, and I needed something a little more reliable with much better gas mileage. So... I was picking up my car. It was later in the afternoon, so by the time I got home there wasn't a whole lot of time for me to switch everything over from my truck to my new (used) car. I just threw a few things in there that I would need and called it good. Later that evening my wife, Beth, began complaining of a migraine headache. Those of you who know us know that Beth and I get these all the time. As the evening progressed, the headache got worse and worse. No amount of aspirin, prescription drugs, cold packs, hot showers would relieve the pain. She couldn't even sleep. She told me that this was the worst headache she had ever experienced - that her eyes would not focus. I took her blood pressure. It was a little high, but I wasn't too concerned. After all, she was almost 7 months pregnant. But... she wanted to go to the hospital. "Better drugs there" she said. So.. off to the ER we went. When we arrived, she was taken back to "MOD A" where she was poked, prodded, asked the same questions over and over again by different people. Good grief... they have a computerized charting system. I watched them put the notes in the charts... does anyone know how to read nowadays? Anyway... each person as they came in asked if she was pregnant to which she answered "yes." I wanted to answer "HEY!!! READ YOUR STUPID COMPUTER BEFORE YOU COME IN HERE!" but she wouldn't let me. They finally decided that a cocktail of Compuzine and Benedryl would be OK to give her. No monitoring of the baby... no fetal tones... nothing. After they administered the drugs, she became a little drowsy, so I left her alone to take a little snooze and went to the cafeteria. While I was eating my slice of 5 hour old pizza, my phone buzzed. Odd, I thought. Who would be texting me at this time of night? I looked at the message... it was Beth - "come back now." So... dropped the rest of the pizza in the garbage and hightailed it back to her room. She was up and getting dressed. I said, "what 'cha doin'?" She said, "I don't feel right. I feel jittery, antsy. I have to get home." I asked her if she was sure... if she was really ready to leave yet. She was still hooked up to the IV drip getting some much needed fluids. She was adamant that she was ready to go. I went to find the doctor to sign the release forms. (trying to find a doctor in the ER at that time of night is nearly impossible) I finally found him, signed the appropriate paperwork and we got out of there. Beth kept saying she just felt like she had to be home, something just isn't right. We got home, I put her to bed and she went right to sleep.

March 3, 2007

We woke up the next morning; did our morning routine of talking to Emily.... tried to get her to move... just cuddled her in general. We talked about what it was going to be like to have a little girl running around the house. We ran a few errands. We were just another happy family waiting for the arrival of our firstborn. Around 5pm all my friends were getting home from work and a couple had agreed to help me take all the equipment (lights, sirens, radios, gear) out of my old truck. We were going to meet at the station at 6pm. I was convinced it would take about 3 hours to remove all of my gear. About a half hour before we were to leave, Beth called me into the bedroom. She told me that she hadn't felt Emily move all day, and she wanted me to try and wake her up with my voice. I tried talking, singing, humming, everything that I could think of. I even tried jiggling Beth's belly back and forth. Nothing worked. We looked up the FAQ part of the book "What To Expect When You Are Expecting" and found the question, "What do I do if I don't feel my baby move?" It told us that if you haven't felt any movement in 24 hours to call your doctor. Well... Beth had felt movement the night before, so in my book it wasn't 24 hours yet. I told her we would keep an eye on it, and if she hadn't felt anything by later that evening, we would go to the hospital. She agreed to this, so off we went to the fire station. As I suspected, it took about 3 hours to complete the job, and by 9pm we were home. I asked Beth if she had felt anything yet, to which she said no. Nothing yet. I asked her if she wanted to go to the hospital. She hemmed and hawed around for awhile. I understood what this meant. We had just been there the night before, and she didn't think that I really wanted to go back... again. And I didn't. I knew this was going to be a false alarm and that nothing was wrong and I really didn't want to spend another night at the hospital. But.. for her sake, I said, "C'mon... let's just go." We arrived at the hospital, and were ushered up to the second floor. She changed into her gown and got into the bed. I picked up a magazine and started reading an article. She began watching a TV show. A nurse came in to hook her up to the fetal tone monitor. She had difficulty finding Emily's heartbeat. This is normal in a pregnancy. Babies like to play hide 'n go seek all the time. She tried coaxing her around. all to no avail. She left, stating the Resident would be in shortly to complete an ultrasound. I picked up my magazine again.. only this time I had trouble concentration on the article. Little thoughts kept creeping into my head... "what if there's trouble? What if Emily is sick... what if she's dead?" The Resident came in with a nurse about 5 minutes later, got Beth's belly all gooed up and began trying to find Emily's heartbeat. 1 minute... then 2... then 3. She kept moving the wand over and over Beth's tummy, looking for any sign of a heartbeat. Wait!! There it is.... oh... nope.. just a tummy sound. There it is again! Oh... nope.... just reverb from the wand. She finally gave up, apologizing that she was just a Resident and was having issues finding the baby. Probably nothing to worry about, but she was going to have the Specialist come in and complete the job. This time when everyone left, I left the magazine on the table and just held my wife's hand. I knew deep down inside that something was wrong. Terribly wrong. But I kept a brave face for Beth and told her it would be alright.... everything would be alright. The Specialist finally arrived. He introduced himself to us and I knew that everything was going to be OK. He had been in this field for 30 years and had many years experience with ultrasound equipment. I knew that if anyone could find Em's heartbeat, it would be him. So... I watched as they lubed her all up again. He placed the wand on her belly and began moving it back and forth, back and forth.... 1 minute... 2 minutes.... then 3. As he kept going over and over her belly, I began to understand that this was not a good turn of events and that I should begin to prepare myself for the worse. I turned to look at Beth, and we both knew that the end of our road with Emily had come. The doctor stopped his exam and in his doctorly way said that he was sorry, but he could not find a heartbeat and that the baby had passed.

March 4, 2007

We had been transferred to the 3rd floor of the OB department. It was 12 hours since we had been told the news. Many things had transpired during that time period. Phone calls to families had been made, consults with OB docs, Beth had been given a drug that induces labor, a couple naps, I had gone home to get her some stuff she needed to make the room more comfortable for her. I was walking around in a fog. I couldn't believe this was happening to us. Hadn't we suffered enough with the two previous miscarriages before? Why was God bent on taking all of our children away from us? Why was he teasing us with these little babies, then yanking them away from us? What had we done that was so terrible? I became bitter towards Him. I hated Him. I lashed out at people who said, "He knows how you feel. He sacrificed his only Son." Sacrificed? Sacrificed?!? What a load of crap! He doesn't know how I feel. He lost his Son for 3 days! Big whoop-tee-doo! And.... and.... He was risen and is sitting next to Him right now! How could he know what I feel like? The next few hours were a blur. Many family members came in from out of town. Doctors and nurses in and out of the room, checking Beth progression. I was numb from grief. I knew that I had to keep going for Beth, but I just didn't have too much more to give. Around 11pm most of the people had gone home. She had began having contraction earlier in the day, but was not progressing very fast. She had been stuck at 5cm since about 4pm, and we were digging in for what we thought was going to be another very long night. At 11:30pm she began having another contraction. This one was by far the worst... and she said, "I think it's going to happen!" We punched her nurse call button and she came running in with her doctor (who is still a good friend to this day. We love her to death.) Since the last check, she had gone from a 5 to a 9cm that quick. Beth wanted to wait until her father could be there before she would deliver. I told her just to let it go, but she was determined to wait. Her dad walked in at 12:13am and our beautiful baby daughter was born at 12:15am, March 5, 2007.


To this day... I blame myself for her death. Why didn't I just pack Beth up and take her to the hospital when she first told me about it? Why didn't I feel a bigger sense of urgency to get her there? The chances of Emily surviving outside of the womb weren't horrible... and the hospital had a great NICU department. If only I had gotten her there earlier. Everyone tells me that most likely Emily had passed away even before that... that she was gone before Beth even mentioned it to me.... but my mind still wonders. Later Beth mentioned to me that she knew even before we got to the hospital that Emily was dead. This is what really hurts me. Here she is, sitting at the station for 3 HOURS while I take my old truck apart knowing that inside of her, our daughter is dead. I just can't imagine. I just can't imagine. Emily Elizabeth... I love you. I have always loved you. I will always love you.


Weeeeeeeeeelllllllll... I thought before I did any serious blogging that I should introduce myself. I'm 36 years old, married to whom I think is the most beautiful woman in the world, am a proud father of a 17 month old, and currently have 2 dogs and 3 cats. I currently work at a paper mill as a safety coordinator (no I'm not a security guard) and am also a part time firefighter with a local fire department.

I'm a little overweight. Ok.. maybe more than just "a little" but I attribute it to my wife's cooking. I could stand to lose a good 60 pounds, but hey... when the price of gas goes back up to 10 bucks a gallon and no one can afford food, I have some extra around the middle to pull from. The skinny people will be dead, and the fat shall inherit the earth.

I am a self-confessed lightbar and radio geek. Anything having to do with these two subjects, I am an expert on. Don't get into an argument with me... you won't win. :-)

That me in a nutshell. I look forward to sharing with you the bits of chaos that erupt in my life on occasion.

Kent County Scanner - Scanning Fire Dispatch, Ada F2, Cascade F2, Cannon F2