Military and Veteran Life,  Miscellaneous,  Travel

April Showers

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Let me be honest, I have had a pretty difficult month…well, two months actually.

It began with Ezra not sleeping…for about six weeks straight he woke every two hours or sometimes even less throughout each night, and only took 15-20 minute naps during the day.

After suffering from intense exhaustion, as well as nausea and dizziness (which the doctors could not explain as my bloodwork was normal), I was quite in need of a break. I traveled the 7 hours up to my parents house in Illinois right around the first of April to spend a week trying to regain some strength and get some help dealing with the baby. During that week we learned a few things about Ezra’s sleep habits (quite by accident really), and were able to make some adjustments that helped us out. He began to nap better even though he was still waking quite frequently at night.

Upon my return home, I discovered that our annually reoccurring plumbing problem was yet again gracing my driveway with raw sewage. No sooner was the plumbing problem taken care of when I discovered that I had termites boring three holes in the drywall of my living room wall. This problem has been temporarily fixed with some termite spray, but has yet to be fixed three weeks later.

My husband and I began discussing the possibility of trying to get out of our lease and move on post. Thus began week and a half of inquiries, housing applications, talking with my landlady, taking pictures of on-post houses, and a plethora of emails sent back and forth between here and Afghanistan, as well as organizing, cleaning, and the beginnings of packing up our belongings. We were hours away from signing for our “new” house on post when God brought our plans to a screeching halt. After a week long 3-way miscommunication-misinterpretation debacle between myself, the housing office, and our double-tongued landlady, we decided that the best if not the only option was to remain in our legal contract, maintain any testimony we had left, and remain in our current location. I was quite disappointed and very upset at everything that had happened.

In the mean time…

On Sunday (April 17), I left an afternoon church picnic in tears (for reasons I won’t go into here), so upset that I dropped my iPhone out of the stroller, and proceeded to run over it with my car and drive away. I had to return ten minutes later to the picnic (not that anyone noticed), and retrieve my phone from the parking lot. The screen was totally smashed, but the phone still worked. I drove straight from there to the AT&T store, where I was informed that they would be unable to fix it. I would have to go to the “local” (50 minutes away) Apple store to see what they could do, but it would probably cost me $199 to get a new phone.

Later that evening, I received a phonecall from a friend of mine informing me that my email had been hacked into and was emailing everyone on my contact list inappropriate spam content. I spent the evening creating a new email address, apologizing to my contacts, inputting my new email address into all of our online accounts, and changing every password I could think of.

The next morning I got up early to take my phone up to the Apple store, and God gave me a wonderful blessing of a technician who appreciated my honesty so much that he replaced my phone for free. I felt incredibly blessed and thankful.

That brings me to last week. On Wednesday, I came down with a horrible cold, but seemed to be feeling better by Saturday. Since, we had made the final decision about not moving, I decided that I would proceed with my plans (which I had actually canceled when I thought we were moving) to spend Easter visiting my grandparents in Ohio. I hadn’t seen them in 16 months, and they had never met Ezra. I left my house half-packed in boxes and gave instructions to my landlady that I wanted her to fix the holes in the wall while I was gone.

My visit to Ohio began very well, with a Sunday morning spent at the church where I grew up and Sunday evening spent at the church I attended in high school. At both places I was received warmly and got to see a lot of people who have been instrumental in my past and making me the woman I am today. I was flooded with good memories and had a really great time.

However, that Sunday evening, Ezra began running a fever during the evening service. I knew that he was really warm, but as he was cutting a tooth that day, I just gave him some Tylenol and didn’t think much of it. I, on the other hand, was continuing to deal with congestion and coughing fits. We both had a hard time sleeping that evening, and Ezra was still very feverish when we woke up. I took his temperature around 9:30AM and it was 103.8. I called our doctors office back and home and they recommended that we take him to the emergency room. They gave him a chest xray and ruled that his lungs and ears were clear and he was negative for RSV. They said it was most likely just an upper respiratory infection (which made sense as I was still sick), and sent us home with a scrip for amoxicillin.

The next few days, between visiting with friends and family there in Ohio, Ezra gradually began to improve but still ran a fever off and on. It was very hard for me to be sick, dealing with a sick baby, and still trying to be a polite guest in my grandparents home. As wonderful as it was to be there, by Thursday morning I was very ready to go home.

My trip home took nine hours, and I arrived exhausted from the 1100 total miles logged during my trip. Due to the rain, our lawn care provider still had been unable to cut our lawn, there were small branches in our lawn due to the multiple severe storms that passed through while I was gone, and the holes in my wall had not been patched as I asked. I was so tired I didn’t even have enough energy to care. I fixed myself some soup and spend the rest of the night resting on the couch. I tried to do a few things on my computer, but realized that the touchpad on my laptop was stuck in the down position, and my computer was basically unusable.

At about 9PM, Ezra started having fits of screaming. I thought he was just tired and out of sorts from our trip, but I had to fight with him for quite a while to go to sleep, and he kept arching his back. The same thing happened when he woke to nurse at 4AM, and again in the morning…the screaming and back arching. I took him to the chiropractor at 10 and he has seemed fine ever since, although still a bit fussy.

I then drove back up to the Apple store (for the second time this month and after 9 hours in the car yesterday), to try to get my computer fixed. Once again I was met with stellar service, and even though my warranty was expired by 21 days, they put the order in to replace my touchpad free of cost. (Can I say that Apple is simply amazing?) I did have to leave my computer for a few days, but at no cost, I didn’t mind. Shortly thereafter I received a much needed phonecall from my husband. (We hadn’t spoken in several days, and the past few times he had called, my phone had dropped the call due to poor service.) I was feeling a LOT better and decided to do a little mall shopping hoping to find something special for myself.

An hour later I was empty handed, and Ezra and I were both tired and hungry. Somehow I completely missed the “normal” food court, but I found a California Pizza Kitchen so plopped down there. I ordered a kids sized pizza and tried to eat quickly before Ezra had a meltdown. I was mildly successful and ate 3/4 of the pizza before the tears began. I finished the last 1/4 of the pizza standing beside the table bouncing Ezra on my hip trying to keep him calm while asking the waiter for our check. I began to dig through my diaper bag for my wallet and was coming up with nothing. It simply wasn’t there. I begged the manager to let me go out and check my car to see if I had left it there, but when I went out, it wasn’t there either. So here I am having just eaten, screaming baby on my hip, with no way to pay for my lunch. On the way back into the restaurant from the car I got on the phone with our bank hoping that maybe they could authorize a charge to my account by giving the numbers over the phone. I verified our information through tears, barely able to remember my husband’s birthdate. I didn’t see the waiter or the manager, and the table where I was sitting had been completely cleared off and the check was gone. The bank put me on hold and while I was waiting I had to ignore another incoming call from Russ. By this time I was completely sobbing. The manager finally came back to the front and told me that I didn’t need to worry, they would take care of the check for me. I was free to go. I was relieved but the tears just wouldn’t stop flowing.

I hung up on the bank (as I was still on hold) and walked back through the mall crying to the family restroom and nursing area so I could take care of Ezra, hoping that I had left my wallet there. The wallet wasn’t there, but I was able to feed the baby and maintain composure, and Russ called me back and helped me calm down. I reported my wallet missing to mall security, froze our bank accounts, and headed back home. When I arrived home, I found my wallet there sitting on the dryer (at which point I remembered that I had put it there to get the money order out to mail out the rent which is due on the 1st, which I put in the mail, but the wind blew the flag down and since we didn’t get any mail the mail truck passed our house, which involved me unsuccessfully trying to wave down the mail man like a mad woman).

So now, it’s 5PM, I have a splitting sinus headache, a semi-fussy baby, late rent, no laptop, holes and termites in my wall, and my house is still half packed in boxes. I would watch a tv show but my laptop is broken. I’d watch a DVD but they are packed in boxes. I think it’s time to hit up a RedBox.

My Facebook status this afternoon read “Seriously, this isn’t funny anymore…” I really try to roll with the punches, laugh at myself when I lose things, find the blessings in the midst of trials, and chalk it all up to “deployment gremlins.” But right now, I’m just too darn tired. I just want a vacation from my life.

Here’s hoping May will bring some flowers, because I’m so over this rain.