Thursday, January 31, 2008

Thank you soooo much!

Paul and I wanted to thank everyone for all of your support and prayers through this crazy time. Everything went way better then planned and I couldn't be happier that this initial phase is over. It doesn't mean there won't be more to come, but at least I can expect what could come.
I apologize for not being very "outgoing" right now. I've avoided phone calls, just because I've been exhausted and my throat hurts. My in-laws are here, and I have to give my mother-in-law huge props! She's done all of our laundry, cleaned up after the kids and changed some yucky diapers...all the while trying not to get sick.
Both girls are sick with ear infections and chest congestion. Runny eyes and noses, and horrible coughs. Just what you want to come home to, but I LOVE being home none-the-less.
I hear the big wee one trying to settle back down now, soon, we'll all be feeling better and back to normal!
Good Night!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Day 2

Well everyone day 2 is now over. And all the thoughts and prayers must have worked with the science of it all cause the AVM has already started to get smaller. Tina's shunt was removed last night around 11:30 which is bruised in her groin area. They removed her breathing tube this morning around 8:30am we were cleared at 5:30 tonight of any possible problems with the AVM. I know by looking at Tina last night she was scared but all of that went away when here ENT Dr. cleared her. She is leaving in the morning after her groin is checked out just because her right leg is weak, but you would have never known as we walked the halls tonight before I came home. I have been injured all over my body playing sports and thought I was pretty tough to come back on a few of them as quick as I did but I must say Tina is the strongest person physically and mentally that I know. She is a true warrior to go through everything in Dec and this without much of a weamper. I couldn't be more proud of her so I know where Riddy gets it from now. I want to thank everyone for their kind words and thoughts as I know Tina well update more of this tomorrow. But when Tina reads this I want to say to her..."Honey, I love you with all my heart and soul, and I couldn't have been more scared on the inside during this but knew I couldn't tell you. Now that this is over, your really the rock and not me. I love you more everyday and every hug and kiss means more to me than it did yesterday".
Thanks everyone,

Monday, January 28, 2008

The Big Day

Well I wanted to update everyone on Tina's progress.
We got to the hospital at 6:30 this morning, she got into the OR around 8:15 for what was going to be about 2 hours-turned into more like 7 hours. She was transported up to the ICU where she will be on a breathing tube until sometime tomorrow morning. Tina is asleep and very well taken care of. She can not have visitors or balloons from what I was told. The good news is that 50% of the AVM was blocked off and over the course of the night the swelling will be watched, easier to leave in the breathing tube than to try to put it back in later. If all is well she will come home tomorrow sometime with no real restrictions other than weight, like picking up the kids. My parents are here with the girls and Rachel was a huge help in picking up Riddy today and Sue, Tina's mom will get Riddy on Weds.
I will update at some point tomorrow, hopefully with Tina sitting right here. She is the most wonderful women in my life and I'm very greatful for everyone's thoughts and prayers.

Thank you,

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Pics of AVM/Neck

Here are some pics I took this evening, showcasing the STAR of the day! Please, don't judge based on my beauty...its been a long weekend ;-)


I'm getting things ready tonight to leave the girl's for a few days. I'm nervous and sad. I'll miss the girls...a LOT! I did explain to big wee one that when she woke up in the morning that I wouldn't be here, that I was having surgery. She told me she would get dressed in the morning and brush her teeth, eat her breakfast and wait for Ms. Monwhine to pick her up for school.
We are so blessed! I have some of the most amazing friends I have ever had! I didn't want to move to C-burg, away from the comforts of our life in KoP, but now, I LOVE it here! I love my job, I love my friends...I just love it.
We met my in-laws at a house today, they wanted to check it out, they are thinking of moving to the area; and afterwards, when we got home, I had two little bags sitting at my doorstep. Two good friends of mine left me little treats. One was a snack bag for Paul, with his favorite Jellybeans! And the other had a decorated dry-erase board and a COOL rubber "bracelet" like thing that I can put a picture of the girls in...THANK YOU SO MUCH!! Ms. Vanillla and Ms. HeBran ROCK!
Oh, by the way, the back to back nights out with the girls were AWESOME! I laughed so hard with Ms. HeBran (and the other moms from MOMs club) at 27 dresses and then laughed my azz off the next night with Ms. & Mr. Vanilla, Ms. Cutie and Ms. Snecker...we went to a comedy show and it was soooo much fun! I even got to (briefly) stand infront of everyone and pick a topic for was FUN! Afterwards, people from the show were coming up to me and saying, "Hey Tina"...too much fun! I can't wait to have another fun night like that! Thanks Ms. Cutie for driving, hope I didn't annoy you too much (since I drank a little) :-)
I have shown Paul how to update the blog, so hopefully he will do that. We'll be sneaking out of the house super early tomorrow to be in Hershey by 6:15 am. Everything goes down around 8:30, but you know how dr's go...
Thanks for all the awesome thoughts, prayers, emails and phone calls!! The support during this ordeal really means a lot to me! I'm confident that everything will turn out smoothly and all the fuss will be over and done with!
Hugs...The Flohr's

Thursday, January 24, 2008

2 Girl Nights in a Row...

I do have the best husband in the WORLD! We have our moments, like any married couple, but he lets me do a LOT! I'm very lucky, he's also excellent in the home. He cleans up after dinner (and while I'm cooking dinner, which can get a little annoying at times...but I love him!), he's the laundry pro (we almost got on the Rachael Ray show for his laundry skills), and he's so calm with the girls. When big wee one is pushing me to throw down limits, he steps in and totally calms the situation (how does he do that?)...soooo anyway...
Tonight I'm going to the movies with the MOMs club I'm in. We are going to see 27 Dresses and then heading to Ruby Tuesdays for appies. Tomorrow night I'm going to a comedy show at a local restaurant/bar/reception place and I am really excited! I've only been to one other comedy show before (about 6 years ago) and I had the most amazing time! If you know me, then you know its no surprise that I was on the stage with the was the BEST time. That was also a girl's trip that my mom and I took...good times, good times.
All of this is greatly needed. With the inpending date approaching, my stomach has been a MESS! Last night, was the FIRST time I actually cried...felt emotion about the whole situation. I have been so blasse about it all, but its hitting me. I'm not going to lie, I'm a little scared. All the little things are starting to set in (especially after my "outpatient" procedure). I don't want anything to go wrong. And though I know some things will happen, I'll be sent directly to ICU (so Paul won't be able to stay the night with me) and the possibility of a trach tube, I'm also scared about the small chance of stroke. Basically, all the "normal" stuff that come along with surgery.
I've gotten some emails about what exactly is going on, you can click here to read more details about it, or you can read on a little more for a brief description.
Basically, I have an AVM, which is a rare vein malformation. Most people who have them have them in their spine or brain. AVMs are also more common in young children (sometimes you see a toddler with a large mass pretruding from their face or neck...that could be it)...BUT, mine is even more rare because its based in my neck, under my tongue. Its connected to my tongue, the portion that controls swallowing and speech, like the letter R or W comes from that section. Looking at me, you may notice I have a lump on my left side of my neck that looks like a small golf ball right under my jaw. Some notice, some don't. Otherwise, I'm a perfectly "normal" person. It doesn't really bother me, but it is slowly cutting off my air supply. Why not remove it? Doing so would involve removing that portion of my tongue that I mentioned above. Which opens a WHOLE new box of, we are doing this embolization procedure (the link gives more infor) which is a pretty normal procedure...but again, due to the area of my mass, its likely my air supply is going to be blocked completely. Hence the breathing tube, ICU and possible trach.
After its all said and done, my AVM won't be "cured" but it will/should be smaller and we'll continue to watch it and montor it. If another procedure needs to happen down the road we'll cross that bridge when we get there. The whole point of doing this now is that we have better control over the size of this mass, instead of letting it go and it getting larger and then it will be more difficult to work with.
So, there you have it. I'm freaked about the whole thing, mostly because everytime I meet with a new dr. they let me know that they have never seen anything like this, especially in someone my age! If I end up in the a medical journal, I'll let you know ;-)
Which in return, is why I'm really excited about my girly nights :-)
Happy Day!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Surgery countdown...

This time next week, I'll be in the hospital. If all goes as I have it planned (which NEVER happens...just and FYI) maybe I'll be just about ready to get off the breathing tube? Who knows, I just hope that the swelling that occured when I had my wisdome teeth removed is no indication of the swelling that might occur. Keep your fingers crossed!

I had a pre-opp appointment at the anesthesia clinic in Hershey yesterday morning. What a day that was! I dropped big wee one off at her boyfriend's house and then headed on my way. About 8 miles outside of the hospital I got pulled over!! What is it lately...this is the second time in a month I've been pulled over! The first one was for an expired inspection sticker (which I immediatly got taken was on delay due to having to replace my breaks) and yesterday I was pulled over for going 70 in a 50!!

I DIDN'T EVEN REALIZE I WAS GOING THAT FAST! I seriously almost upchucked the coffee I had that morning...I felt so horrible! While I'm waiting for Mr. Cop to come to the window, I start digging through my purse to get my license...only to find I DON'T HAVE IT!! Holy crap...could this moment get any worse! Add to it, that I'm now going to be late for my appointment...Mr. Cop took my registration and said he would look up my license info (not sure if he did or not). In the meantime, I called Paul (crying of course, any woman in that situation would...I'm literally holding back the coffee trying to keep my nerves down!), explain my situation, and he says, "Oh look, there's your wallet right there". Nice.

I call Hershey to let them know I'll be late, and wait for Mr. Cop to come back...after I swear an hour of looking in my rearview to see if he was coming...if he was going to arrest me for my (still upaid) ticket, and seriously scold me for not having my license on me, Mr. Cop walks up to the window and says, "Mam, I'm gonna let you go with a warning" HOLY CRAP...WHAT?? I'M NOT BEING ARRESTED, I'M NOT GETTING A SERIOUS A$$ FINE FOR GOING SO FAST OVER THE LIMIT....THERE IS A HEAVEN ABOVE!!

After a very short and brief lecture on carrying my license incase of an accident, Mr. Cop wished me well at my appointment and sent me on my way. Soooooo...Mr. Cop, if you are out there, THANK YOU!!!!

My appointment went well, just medical history, brief exam type of thing. I met with one of the dr's of anesthia to go over the logistics of Monday, and she was pretty much shocked to read about my "out-patient gone crazy" procedure. She kept telling me how sorry she was that that happened. I'm beginning to think it was more serious then I ever thought it was, but what would I know? I had drugs (good thing).

Friday, I'll get the "call" with details for Monday, then Paul's mom and step-dad will be coming in on Sunday to stay with the girls. I just hope the girls are SUPER good for them! I know they'll be fine, but I hope they are good. Angelic like :-)

To finish, here are some pics of a recent evening Paul and I had out. Can you tell who had a really good time?? HA! Thanks to Mr. & Mrs. Snecker for your gracious wine contribution :-) We had a great time!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Crazy busy...

We, the Flohr's have been extremely busy the last week or so. Between Riddy's birthday and work events for myself, I've barely had a free second to breath! We started last week with a BANG! Little wee one got sick on her babysitter :-( So, I dropped her off at the babysitter, dropped big wee one off at school, got the call from the babysitter and went to pick her up. So much for getting any work done! Oh well...that's life with small people.

The rest of the week was pretty mild, just busy. Big wee one's birthday was Friday...she's THREE!! I can't believe how fast 3 years has flown by! I remember sitting at Red Lobster with Paul and our friend Greer, thinking I was going into labor, only to be sent home a couple of hours later. What a bummer...obviously, she eventually made her grand appearance and has pretty much kept us on our toes from day one.

We had a small celebration at Chuck E. Cheese's and then opened presents and had cake at home. Big wee one finally got her doll house and has played with it non-stop! I constantly hear her in her room talking for the dolls...what an imagination she's got! Big wee one also had her 3 year check up and did great. It was the first dr's appointment I didn't have to do anything! I just sat and listened. She's growing in soooo many ways! She can count to ten in spanish and she can write her name. She knows all of her colors and shapes and is very sensitive. She's not an aggressive child, more of a do you put it. If another little person "offends" her in whatever way, she'll complain about it, but she's never hit or pushed (that I know of) another child, besides little wee one, but hey, isn't that what sisters are for ;-)

Paul and I are good...lacrosse season starts soon, so Paul has been going to the field on Sundays. Its good for him to get out there let some of his stress out in that way. I have a pre-opp appointment on Monday, so big wee one is going to head to her best little boyfriend's house and play. She's been talking about him for weeks now, she doesn't get to see him too often because they just moved about an hour away. Today she told me she wanted her boyfriend (name witheld) to wear her pj's...goofy girl!

I spoke with Dr. Rugg last Friday, and he helped to ease some fears. He let me know that I will have the breathing tube in for the first night (and as long as I need it), but after day two of the breathing tube, we'll discuss the trach. Honestly, I am feeling a little better, like maybe this won't happen. I guess (maybe) it depends on if I'm a "sweller" and if my wisdom teeth are any indication of swelling...HOLY SMOKES! haha! If I had a digital picture, I would insert it here, but thank goodness I don't!

Off to scrap and work on some photos for a friend...have a great night and I'll update more soon :-)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Thank you, thank you, thank you...

Sometimes, you come across people who you may never physically meet in your life, but you form incredible bonds with them. You may not talk to them (via email) for months at a time, but you know you can turn to them at any time and they'll understand everything you are going through.
What an incredible feeling to know that I have a group of friends, that I haven't met face to face, but I do share a bond with. Three years ago, when I was pregnant with big wee one, a group of ladies and myself formed an online mom's group...all of us had babies due in the month of January. We've celebrated births, birthdays, births of siblings, losses, new jobs, moves, struggles, happiness, anger, laughter, phone calls, pictures...well, we've celebrated everything together.
Everything that best friends share together in the physical form, we've shared over the internet. Crazy? Maybe, but when I have no one else to vent to or talk to, I know I can turn to judgements made what-so-ever. It's a relief.
During this crazy time, they've been there for me. Sending encouraging emails and notes...thank you ladies! Thank you for the warm and fuzzy pj's, I'll be bringing those to the hospital. What a special surprise for a crazy week! Thanks for being my best friends :-) For knowing exaclty what I'm going through, because you are going through it to (well, most of the time..hehe).
Moral of the story...don't be afraid to let people in. Strangers can be more then just strangers.
Thank you to my far-away friends!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Scheduling a Headache

Surgery is rescheduled for the 28th of January, at the butt-crack of dawn. Lovely.


After getting everything settled for surgery, who do you think called me as I was walking into work this morning???
That's right, the dr's nurse! Now we are playing the run-around with dates...Can't do it one weekend because I have a work event, can't do it the next because Paul's out of town, I don't want to do another weekend because its Valentine's day, and then lacrosse season starts. Not only was I starting to get a little nervous, but I was ready with work and life in general, just to get this over with...along with anything that came with it. Now I have to worry about getting it all figured out.
Apparently, one of my dr's that will be keeping watchful eye on me is going out of town, and he wants to make sure he'll be in town during my stay in the hospital. I know they have lives, but man so do I!
I'm frustrated, and I feel like I could cry. But I'm not...what's the use?
More later......

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

All Systems are a Go...

Surgery is set for the 17th at 11:30 am. I'm getting a tiny bit nervous. I'll be discharged into the ICU for atleast a night and then I was told I would be in the hospital till Saturday. Tuesday, the 15th I head back to Hershey for a 2 hour pre-op appointment...checking everything out to before hand. I still don't know anymore about the trach tube, and I don't think I will until the 17th...that makes me get a little weasy in the stomach.

Many people have asked me how I'm keeping so calm. I guess on the outside I am pretty "normal" but I am a little scared, nervous, anxious, but really, there isn't too much I can do about it, so I'm just going with the flow. Take one day at a time, and after surgery, I'll do the same. There's a chance that everything will go way smoother than anyone expected, but honestly, I don't know what anyone expects, except that swelling will occur. So yes, folks, I am slightly racked in the nerves department, but I'm gonna stay strong, I don't need any wee ones feeding off of my apprehension and getting all worked up.

Other recent activities for the Flohr house include little wee one getting a "bug". Just the call you LOVE to get from the babysitter on a Monday morning, gearing up for a pretty busy week. She is fine now, she basically got it out of her system, slept for awhile and then was back to normal. So good that this evening the little knucklehead bit me! She got her first taste of time-out, and she didn't like it! I think she thought she was being funny, but it wasn't! She drew a little blood blister on the back of my thigh, very sensitive area!

Big wee one is gearing up for her 3rd birthday!! We are all getting pretty excited! She can now write her name (only when she wants to though...can't force her or let her think you want her to, she has to do it on her own), and is really interested in what everyone's "number" is. She's funny! Still sleeping great with the addition of Rina the Ballerina and her princess blanket :-) We are all very happy about that! Tomorrow we are going to pick up munchkins so she can celebrate her birthday at school. Good times, good times!

We found out that Paul will be heading to Miami for a business trip soon...lucky duck. I'll be hitting up the MOMs club for HOOT OWL (Husbands Out Of Town or Working Late) that week. I always sleep so bad when he's not home with me, so I'm not looking forward to that part, but maybe I'll just go to sleep when the girl's do and catch up on tons of extra sleep :-)

Big bro called today and he has an interview in York/Lancaster area...wish him luck!

I'll keep the site updated with info on the 17th as the date nears and news happens :-) For now, enjoy some pics from this past summer at Bald Head Island...we LOVED it there, and it was so beautiful!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Two Margaritas and a Hug Goodbye

Well, its that time say goodbye to the 'ol big bro. He's been called back out to sea again, and I'm bummed. Whenever he comes in we don't get to spend a whole lot of time together, but the time we spend is pretty fun...unless big wee one is acting like a "princess"...I think she scares him from ever wanting to have kids! ha!

Big bro's girlfriend has been in town for a week, and we got to hang out some as well. We really like her a lot, hopefully they can make it through this LONG distance thing and we'll see more of her around :-)

G-Pa and Mimi took us out to eat to say goodbye, and we got a was nice enjoying my 2 margaritas without a little person throwing food or not eating or doing whatever might pocess her at the moment. I hate to sound like my kids are bad, because they aren't bad, infact, I've had a lot of people comment me on how good they (if you are a parent) know how it goes, you see everything they do as bothering someone else, because its bothering you. I'm trying to learn to be a little more lax with them, but again, its hard. I don't want people to think that my kids are bad, and usually in public I let them get away with a tad more, just because I hate to yell at them in public, and its not really yelling, its the scolding...because then everyone looks at you like your the bad mom and you made the wee one cry. Ok, enough about that, we are saying goodbye to Big bro...

Not really goodbye, just a, "See ya"...but I'm not sure when I'll see ya again. Either way, keep in touch, love & hugs!

Safe & Happy Travels brother!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Cappacuino Muffin & Blueberry Coffee

What a great way to start a great day, that will inevitably start our weekend, which I am planning to be guessed it, a great weekend :-)

Big wee one has been sleeping beautifully with the new addition fluff and comfort to her room. She goes to bed without any problems and wakes up chirpy...LOVIN' IT! She did get her flu shot yesterday and was pretty upset about it the rest of the day. Gimping around on her leg that was "so hurt". She took it like an almost 3 year old would, cried and complained, but she did relatively well. While she was getting the shot, little wee one decided to pull every pamphlet out of the display case and then run around and laugh. She's a knucklehead! Sneaky little thing!

She likes to walk by big wee one, grab whatever it is that she might be eating or drinking and RUN! She's fast too! We are very lucky though, for the most part the girls get along beautifully!

Tonight, I am spending the night scrapping with my girlfriends...and a new addition, my brother's girlfriend. He's being shipped back out to the deep blue, so Paul is going over there for man time, and she is coming over our house for some quality memory making time! I expect it to be a fun filled evening...filled with laughs, my girlfriends coming over are HYSTERICAL, always makes for a good time.

Not much else on the agenda for the weekend...a little R & R after the crazy and sleepless holidays. Big wee ones 3rd birthday is a week away, so we'll probably do a little preparing for that...pick out if we want a Cinderella cake, Dancing Princess or another object adourned in pink that sings and dances :-) We are getting her a dollhouse for the big day, and I know she's going to LOVE it! She's been carrying around the catalogue with the picture of it in it, for about a month now. Almost daily she shows us the dollhouse and says, "I want this for my birthday, and my Daddy is going to get me the all these little things to put inside."

We had a Chuck E. Cheese birthday planned with her friends, but with everything going on, we decided to postpone the big brew-haha and go with a more low key celebration...cake and presents and Chuck E. Cheese later.

Have a wonderful first weekend of '08!!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Dear Target,

We, the Flohr family, would like to thank you for carrying the princess fuzzy blanket, the one with Cinderella, Belle and Sleeping Beauty. Due to the coziness and comfort of this wonderful blanket, our oldest daughter, sucessfully slept through the night! We would also like to thank you for selling the bean bag stuffed ballerina pig, you know, the one with the tutu and tiara, she has provided strength to my daughter during wee hours of the morning. Without these two wonderful creations, we may still be fighting our way through the night! We have named our ballerina pig "Rina" in Rina the Ballerina Pig. :-)
Happy selling, and we hope that your store continues to bring our big wee one lots of comfort and safety during all tribulaions and trials through life!
Thank you sincerely, from the bottom of our tired hearts!
Paul & Tina