Monthly Archives: June 2014

Something Inspiring – blah blah blah

When I started this blog, things in my life weren’t really going swimmingly. I had just had my heart broken (crushed? shattered?), and I had also just turned 30, so I was feeling very old and lonely, but still hopeful. I figured 2013 would be the year I turned it all around – started an amazing blog that I would actually keep up with, probably become famous, and of course meet a man, get married, have babies, you know, normal stuff.

But, as you might know if you’ve been hanging in there with me for the last year and a half, it did not go as planned.

This year, I’ve been having a great June. My schedule is packed full with fun events – bridal showers, baby showers, birthday parties, concerts, soccer games, and I’m planning an 8 day vacation to South Korea in early August to visit my sister.  But as I’m bopping around, having all of this fun, I’m reminded how much things have changed (for the better!) in the last year, and I really can’t be more thankful. Last June, I was being admitted to the hospital for a Myomectomy. Although I wrote about it briefly here as I was recovering, I’ve been thinking more lately about the experience – how scary it was – how it could’ve been so much worse – and mostly, how thankful I am that it’s all over.

The type of tumor I had is pretty common – a uterine fibroid – non-cancerous, and often no big deal, but mine was giant, which complicated things. When I first noticed it, I thought I was just getting fat, but the thing grew so quickly that pretty soon I knew there had to be something wrong. I told my mom that I thought my organs were sticking out of my belly and knowing well my flare for the dramatic, she sighed and told me to stop being silly. Then I sent her a picture of my stomach, and she wrote back right away with just “GO TO THE DOCTOR.”

As the tumor grew, I also got increasingly sick. Although it wasn’t cancerous, it was invading my body and messing everything up.  I had horrible cramps pretty much all of the time, I was throwing up, I had trouble sleeping, and I had pretty terrible lower back pain.

I wanted the thing out of course, but I was also really worried about what this would mean for my chances of having kids one day.  I’m not a huge kid person, but I have always wanted to start a family, and the possibility that I might not be able to was a little hard for me to wrap my head around. It wasn’t that I was desperate to have children, but I desperately wanted it to remain an option.  My first doctor painted a pretty bleak picture. She told me that surgery would most likely damage my uterus so much that kids would not ever be an option. She recommended that I leave the tumor there – although she told me it would continue to grow and make me sick, and that I still might have trouble delivering a baby. She basically suggested that I get working on getting pregnant right away, and then have the tumor removed after I have the baby.

Needless to say, I left that appointment in tears. I was panicking a little – I had gone from not even being completely sure if I wanted to have kids to trying to figure out if I had any friends who could hurry up and inpregnate me. It was ridiculous. After I calmed down a bit, I realized that this had all gotten a little out of hand.  I’m lucky enough to have a tremendous family and ridiculously awesome friends who all helped me to think and talk it through. My nurse friend helped me find a very talented surgeon and fertility specialist who assured me that the tumor really did need to come out, and that he would do his best to preserve my uterus. He was kind and gentle and most importantly, very good at his job.

Before and After:  

Uterine Fibroid - before and after surgery

 

Ultimately, everything went as well as it could have. It’s been a year now since the surgery, and physically, everything is different. I’m healthy. I’m not visiting doctors every week. I retired my heating pad, and I’m sleeping through the night. What I want to be able to tell you is that since the surgery I’ve met a wonderful man, and we’re going to get married, and start a family and everything happens for a reason, blah blah blah.

Some things change. Some things stay the same.  I’m still single, and I don’t know if I’ll ever have kids.  I’m still fumbling my way through awkward dates, baking and eating my feelings, being a little bitter, and a little optimistic.  I’d like to say some inspiring thing about how the tough times make you stronger, and you only get what you can handle, and all that stuff, but I think what I really want to say here, is that things happen. Bad things. Good things. Medium things. And all we can do is try to get through them. Sometimes things seem bleak and horrible and ridiculous and then, before you know it, you’re planning a trip to Korea and training for a half marathon, and you realize that while you’ve been chugging along, things have some how gotten better. And that’s where I am right now. I don’t have an epic, inspiring story to share, but things are better, and I am happy.

 

 

Day after surgery last June:

0612132048a

 

 

 

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Cynicism, Sarcasm, Desperation and Blueberry Cookies

Full disclosure: I am writing this from my bed while drinking a beer.

I realize I have not been the most consistent blogger.  I’m not sure if it’s laziness or writer’s block or a combination of both. Or, maybe it was that I had no recipes to share as I’ve been baking the same chocolate chip cookies over and over again.

Well, I’m back. The laziness problem has been solved by doing this from my bed, the writers block cured with some alcohol, and now that summer is finally here I’ve been inspired to make something other than chocolate chip cookies.

Speaking of summer… it’s finally here! After 8 months of Cleveland winter, it’s finally warm (ish) out! This means it’s time for flip flops, margaritas, evenings on my balcony, long walks to the beach, and the hope that comes with the beginning of summer that my life will turn into a romantic comedy and I will find love. Hope springs eternal (well, let’s be honest – hope curls up and dies in the winter, but right now I remain optimistic.)

So, this past weekend, I joined two other vaguely optimistic single girl friends, sundressed up, and we hit the town.

We hit our first roadblock pretty quickly when we realized we had no idea where to go. We knew where all the 21 year-old sequined tube top wearing girls would be, but there’s no way we could begin to compete with that at 31.  So we set off to find where the chubby, funny, slightly desperate older guys hang out.

Although we had a lot of fun, ladies nights aren’t exactly what they once were back in our 20s. Youthful exuberance has been replaced with a lethal mixture of cynicism, sarcasm, and desperation.

The night started out hopeful with this gem from one of my friends:

“Sorry I’m late, I had to clean up the empty wine bottles and underwear lying around my apartment just in case I fall in love tonight and he ends up at my place.”

Then, it turned a little bitter with this quote from the same friend, “I swear, if another one of my friends in their 20s gets engaged, I’m blowing up a Jared’s.”

There was a middle period where things looked hopeful. We had a fun guy and his friends join us for dinner, there was witty banter, flirting, and the exchanging of numbers. At the second bar, I beat a guy in darts and got his number (win, win!). But by the end of the night, we somehow found ourselves at our neighborhood bar, with our married friends, playing pinball. It actually was a nice ending to a fun night, and I called it quits at about midnight.

Then, around 3am, I got a text from my friend that said: “I took him home, but told him we weren’t hooking up. He fell asleep on my couch, and is now puking in my bathroom. Do I know how to pick them or what?!”

Well. At least she didn’t have any empty wine bottles or underwear lying around.

Also perfect for summer?

These Blueberry Lemon cookies with Almonds and White Chocolate

(Loosely adapted from The Spiced Life)

Blueberry Lemon cookies with Almonds and White Chocolate

Ingredients:

1 1/4 cups All-Purpose flour
1 1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 t. salt
1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
zest of 1 lemon
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
1 c. unsalted butter
1 egg
1 t. vanilla
the juice of 1/2 a lemon
1/2 c. fresh blueberries
1/2 c. dried blueberries
1/4 c. white chocolate
1/4 c. chopped almonds

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a medium bowl, whisk together both flours, baking soda and powder, and salt. Set aside.

Place your butter in a large mixing bowl and add half of the zest. Mix on medium speed for about 3 minutes until light and creamy. Take the remaining zest and rub it into the granulated sugar. Add the sugar/zest mixture to your butter mixture and mix for another minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the brown sugar. Beat another minute and scrape down the sides again. Add the egg, vanilla and lemon juice and beat another minute.

Add the flour mixture all at once, and stir at the lowest speed possible until just barely combined. Stir in both kinds of blueberries, the white chocolate and almonds until combined.

Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper and scoop the dough in tablespoon sized balls.  Bake for 10-14 minutes. The cookies should barely be browned on the outside (golden really) and still soft in the center. Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet 3-5 minutes. Remove to a wire rack and let cool completely.

 

 

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Filed under Cookies, Feelings, Recipes