ladynox25: (sad)
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

RIP, Mary Philomena Harrington Jones, July 13, 1911 - September 6, 2012
ladynox25: (Default)
Houston, we have a heartbeat! Estimated due date: March 22.
ladynox25: (Default)
‎2 positive home pregnancy tests + 1 missed period = 1 pregnant Jennifer (probably).
ladynox25: (Default)
Joanna pulled one of my old grad school chemistry texts off the shelf (The Organometallic Chemistry of the Transition Metals) and had her daddy read the Introduction to her.
ladynox25: (Default)
Once upon a time, a young woman sat in a small church in East TX, as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs, waiting to begin an adventure. She never could have predicted where she was going to end up or what she was going to learn along the way. The one thing she did know is that the path she had chosen was the right one; the only one she could choose. And the man she was about to meet was the only person she wanted to walk with.

After five years of walking that path, with choices and consequences, joy and pain commingled, that choice has proven to be eminently correct.

Happy Anniversary, my love. Here's to our next five year mission: to boldly go where we have not gone before, with as much uncertainty and yet as much resolution as we started with, five years ago.

Happy Anniversary. Today and always, let us celebrate where we have been, where we are, and where we are going, together.
ladynox25: (Default)
The most important family event of the year, of course, was the March 11 earthquake & tsunami, that thankfully spared our loved ones in Yokohama.

Work-wise, I started the year teaching OChem labs at UTTyler. John was teaching Special Ed at GW Carver ES. Around March he got the word that his position would be eliminated due to budget cuts and tendered his resignation. In late April-early May I got the word that my contract would not be renewed. So, at the beginning of June, we were both without work and with a 2 year-old to support. Not good. Immediately we started pounding the electronic pavement, and the first weekend of August I flew to Charleston for a face-to-face interview that turned into a job offer. For a job that started orientation 6 days later!

Three weeks later, I was teaching at Ashley Hall, where Joanna was enrolled, our stuff had finally shown up at our new apartment, and John was about to start teaching Special Ed at North Charleston HS. Talk about a whirlwind! Since then, life has been nothing but busy.

Joanna has grown so much this year, especially developmentally. She is so articulate for a 2 1/2 year-old. Her teachers love her, and vice-versa. She can be exhausting and aggravating, and her tantrums are, well, tantrums, but most of the time she tries to act like a "big girl". I couldn't be prouder of her, especially after the last road trip we went on. We were originally supposed to drive 2 days from Charleston back to TX for Christmas, and then back home. We ended up taking a detour by way of Boston when we heard that John's grandmother's health is fading. So, instead of 4 days on the road, we ended up spending 7!

On that last note, it is pretty evident that Baba will probably not last too much longer, and I am very glad we got a chance to see her, and she got a chance to see Joanna.

My four New Year's Resolutions:

1) Help John through what is probably going to be Baba's last year
2) Stay at AH more than one year, so that I can (finally!) spend a year perfecting a course, rather than running full-pace to catch up
3) Potty train Joanna
4) Try to conceive Baby #2


Jun. 7th, 2010 08:45 am
ladynox25: (Default)
Hubby: Home from school and ecstatically happy to be so.

Baby: Starting to stand on her own. Pointing at things and saying "Cha?" (Which I translate as "What's that?"). First official word: Dada. Generally getting into trouble whenever she can. 11 months old!!!! WTF?

Me: Interview today (4 pm) including 15 min mini-lesson. Working frantically.

Couldn't be happier.

Edit: Update on the update:

Interview over. Thought it went well. Should hear from them by the end of the week.
ladynox25: (Default)
If I (and [profile] hoya99, and the kidlet) were to happen to be in the D.C. area sometime around the 26th or 27th of July, would there be an interest in a DFS to meet the little one and confab? It would have to be something on the smallish side since we would be coming off of a lot of family meet-and-greet stuff, but I can't imagine being in the vicinity and not trying to hook up somehow.

Would anyone wish to take this on?

Busy week

May. 14th, 2010 11:09 am
ladynox25: (excited)
Had a great first Mother's Day, which included strawberry shortcake.

Finished the semester.

Had a great 3rd anniversary.

Looking forward to a birthday tomorrow.

Celebrating all three tonight. Parents are coming to watch the little one.

Only cloud in the sky is [profile] hoya99's head bump. Yesterday, while refereeing the tug-of-war at the school's field day, the kids pulled too early and knocked him off his feet. He's been evaluated and it doesn't look like a concussion, but he is stiff and sore. Poor sweetie.
ladynox25: (Default)
Scene: A Texas farmhouse; noon; [profile] hoya99 is serving himself dessert:

[profile] hoya99: "This last piece of apple pie is thoughtfully pre-cut."
Dad: "Here's a pie server if you want it."
Mom: "I have multiple pie servers. Multiple."
[profile] hoya99: "I like the existence of multiple pie servers. This suggests the existence of multiple pies."
Me: "However, multiplying by pi is a dangerous proposition."
[profile] hoya99: "It is certainly an uncertain propositon."
The baby: [Nom-nom-nom. Oishii pai pai][1]

[1] Pai pai being Japanese baby talk for breastmilk.


Apr. 27th, 2010 08:20 am
ladynox25: (Default)
Husband: Recovered from flu, pneumonia, and pine pollen, in that order. Has an interview for a closer teaching job first week in May. Job also pays more. Crossing fingers.

Baby: 10 months and starting to feed herself. Has 3 teeth and 2 more coming in. Starting to cruise the furniture. Beginning to respond to "no". Beginning to throw tantrums but can be so sweet at times.

Me: Finishing up the last of the semester. Have herb garden planted, am growing garlic this year. Put in application for full-time position at KC; would double income if I got it but require daycare for baby. Still, could really use extra income. Dying to get started on embroidery project I have in mind.

Family: Going to be going to family reunion (my dad's side) in Baltimore this summer. Side trip to Boston/Providence planned. Am very *VERY excited.
ladynox25: (Default)
What's been happening the past month or so:

Week #1: Husband seriously sick with the flu.
Week #2: Husband recovering from the flu. Attempting to clean the apartment for impending in-law visit.
Week #3: Husband seriously sick with pneumonia, including an overnight ER visit. Still cleaning the apartment.
Week #4: Spring Break. Husband recovering from pneumonia. In-laws visiting. Baby crawls for the first time.

It is now the end of week #5, both of us back at work. Baby is now teething for the first time (two teeth at once, no less!).

For some strange reason, I have not been sleeping well and been very, very tired lately. I wonder why.

In the good news department, at least Joanna didn't get sick.

Back to work.
ladynox25: (Default)
...that we will be in Japan for two weeks come Friday.

Very excited about it all. This will be the first sushi I've eaten since becoming pregnant. Hoshii, dammit!

Very stressed with the preparations. Trying to pack three people's worth of stuff (one of whom is a baby and seems to have more stuff than the other two of us put together) into two carryon roll-aboards, a backpack, and a diaper bag. Plus there will be her safety seat.

Happy holidays to all and sundry. Catch y'all on the flipside.


Nov. 10th, 2009 02:11 pm
ladynox25: (sad)
She was my husband's godmother, a former Mother Superior of the Little Sisters of the Poor. By the time I knew her, she had renounced her vows, for reasons that I never got the chance to ask her.

She came to our wedding. We went to Boston. This summer, she came to visit us for the last time, to see Joanna. To be her godmother.

She had fought and survived cancer before, but then it struck again. Just before she came down this summer, her doctors had taken her off the last of her chemotherapy, saying that it wasn't doing any good. Last month, they told her that if there was anything she wanted to do, now was the time.

She went to France, to a convent where she had lived for many years. To Lourdes, famed for its healing waters. After she came back, she came down with a respiratory infection. Pneumonia, bronchitis; to be honest I still don't know the exact diagnosis. Not that it matters.

The area around her lungs was filled with fluid. The fluid was drained, again and again. Her doctors put her back on one of her cancer meds, not that it would help the cancer, but in an effort to stop the edema, to buy her some more time. If not, they said, it was a matter of weeks. Last week, we talked over the phone, trying to keep it short to save her breath. She said that the only thing she regretted was not being able to live to see Joanna grow up. A few days later, we were able to set up a videoconference, so she could see Joanna one last time.

This morning, my husband told me that she had passed away. Tomorrow would have been her birthday, as it is his.

She was a strong woman, a brave woman, an intelligent woman, a caring woman, a woman of faith. I will miss her terribly, because I was only beginning to get to know her. Joanna, of course, will never know her at all.

I think I grieve more for that than anything else.
ladynox25: (Default)
We'll be at my folks' all next week...looking forward to getting away from the every day stresses and...gaining the family/holiday related stresses? *grin* Well, anyway, we're going. Not that I'll be out of touch here or anything, though.
ladynox25: (excited)
Today I scheduled an appointment with my doctor for a blood test tomorrow. Pending that confirmation, I can confidently announce that, if all goes well, [profile] hoya99 and I should be parents sometime in July.
ladynox25: (me)
Thank you to everyone who has expressed condolences. The viewing and rosary are tomorrow and the funeral will be Saturday.

Today is the bridal shoot. As I expressed in this entry, I have come to believe that my grandmother would want me to go on with my life, even as I grieve for her. That includes everything involved in my wedding preparations. I had scheduled the shoot for today months ago. It's just an unfortunate coincidence that it occurs today. So I will go through with it, because that is what, I believe, she would want.
ladynox25: (moon)
My grandmother passed away around midnight last night.
ladynox25: (moon)
I drove to HS this weekend. While there, I was planning to get my car inspected, since this needs to be done before the end of March. I go to start it on Saturday to drive it to the local place, and no dice. The alternator turns over, the battery is clearly engaged, and the car has a full tank of gas, but the car doesn't start. I suspect something in the fuel line. Unfortunately, the local place doesn't do fuel line diagnostics on Saturday so my dad & I towed the car to the service center & they will look at it first thing Monday. Meanwhile, I'm driving my dad's pickup. Oh joy, oh rapture.

Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful that my dad will let me drive his truck so I don't lose my transportation. But this is not a good time to be having vehicle problems, considering that I will be needing my Explorer's haulage capacity repeatedly in the next few weeks. Hopefully, it's just a clogged fuel filter. That's my guess, anyway, based on the symptoms, plus the fact that I usually top off my gas tank at between half and a quarter tank. This time, however, I wasn't able to make it to a gas station until I was on my way to HS, so my tank was down much further than usual when I filled it up. Then, too, my car's getting close to its next maintenance, so the filter was probably already dirty. Putting in 3/4 or more of a tank of gas probably stirred up the sediment that's been collecting in the tank and then, during the drive to HS, it overloaded the filter. Anyway, we'll see.

My grandmother is doing as well as can be expected, given that she's dying. They took her off the glucose because her kidneys shut down and all it was doing was making her edemic. She's peaceful, though, and they're giving her painkillers so she's in reasonable comfort. My parents and I talked about it (and they had talked it over before I came up for a visit) and we've decided that we are not postponing the wedding, whatever happens. We may end up postponing the bridal shower scheduled for April 1st, though.

All in all, I think her death is peaceful, and people are being given the chance to let her go. And once she is ready, she will let go. Any prayers, though, are of course appreciated.
ladynox25: (rain)
Wednesday night I talked to my dad on the phone. He told me that my [maternal] grandmother had had a heart attack. He didn't tell me how severe, but said that she was still in the nursing home. He also said that I would probably want to come to Daingerfield before I left, to see her, in case she wasn't alive when I returned. Thursday I left straight from work for Daingerfield and met my parents at the nursing home. She was lying in bed, half-propped up, on oxygen, and her breathing was labored. I stayed about an hour and a half, and then left.

What can I say? I couldn't understand, when I was talking with my dad, why they didn't move her to a hospital if her heart attack was that severe. After seeing her, I think I understand. It was a severe heart attack. She was stable, but she's not likely to recover from it. She could die at any time, or linger for weeks. Why cause her more stress?

What can I say? I was anxious all of Thursday, debating whether to go on my trip or cancel it. My mom told me to go. She was stable, and if she died, there was nothing I could do anyway. So I went.

On the way to the airport, something my mom told me long ago--and continues to repeat to this day--coupled with something [ profile] hoya99 said to me on Thursday night, as I was talking to him about this, made me realize something. My mom has always said that she does not want to be a burden to me. I think, having seen what disease and time can do to strong people, and knowing that I am an only child, I think she has decided that she does not want to tie my life down in some form of obligation or duty. She has said to me so many times that if she gets sick, to stick her in a nursing home and leave her there.

[ profile] hoya99 crystallized that for me by asking me what I thought my grandmother would want. I've never been very close to her, so at first I couldn't tell him. I didn't know. She's Victorian in her morals, and the idea of me spending a weekend in a NoVa hotel with my sweetie is probably not something she would approve of. But, then I thought about what my mom said, and I realize that that goes for grandchildren, too.

And I realized something else. Those of you who have read my journal from the beginning know that I went through a very hard time some years ago now. I realized that what I went through then would help me now.

I know my grandmother is going to die. In the abstract, sooner or later we all will. But now I know, she will die soon. How soon is soon, I do not know. But I do know that this is her time; this heart attack is the beginning of the end for her.

I hope she will last to see my wedding. I'm already anticipating the grief of her loss. Although we are not and have not been close, in losing her I will lose my only living grandparent. I already feel the burden of my mother's grief. And there is a bond, I think, for women, from mother to daughter, and from grandmother to mother to granddaughter. For good, or for ill, there is something there. And this loss will come soon. Tomorrow, next week, next month, I don't know. But after the grief, there will be a life to live.

My [maternal] grandfather's death, ironically enough, was a major step for me on my path to healing from my bad time. He was a fighter, and I realized at his death that I would dishonor his memory, if I let myself quit. Now, anticipating the grief to come, I can see that even so, when the grief too dies away, the life I live afterward will be something my grandmother wanted, even if she never knows it, even if she never said anything to me about it.

The only gift we can give our parents and grandparents is to go on. To not let ourselves be tied to our pasts. To not linger in the grief, weighed down by the burden. Grief is natural and cleansing, but beyond that, life must continue, otherwise what was the point of giving birth in the first place?

Life is a journey. But the journey is larger and greater than just one life. The life that I am living did not begin with me, and it will not, I hope, end with me. My life is a continuation of my mother's, and my grandmothers', and my father's, and my grandfathers', and the greatest tribute I can make to their gift of life within me is to live it.

So I went to NoVa, and enjoyed my weekend, of which more later, and when I came back, my grandmother was still alive. And is still alive. And so we wait, she and I, and my mother and aunts and uncles. But life does go on. So I plan my wedding, hoping she will be there, but knowing that even if not, she will be there inside me.


ladynox25: (Default)

September 2012

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