Monday, September 5, 2011

Playing Catch Up

Since the wheels touched down on that 757 in August, I have barely had time to catch my breath, which is opposite of what I expected. As you all saw, the trip was AMAZING. Thank you to everyone who followed the blog and posted. My face lit up every time I saw a new comment!

As soon as I got back I found out that my super brilliant and beautiful roommate has passed her comps!!!!!!! She is now ABD and ready to work on the dissertation this year. I can't even tell you how proud I am (though not surprised). I think everyone knew she had it in her, except for HER! I hope this gives her the confidence boost that she deserves to keep doing great. :)

I had great intentions of relaxing, cleaning, prepping for the new semester and celebrating my 26th birthday with friends. The Gods had other plans for me... and more specifically for my Dad.

Not three days after Dad and Joan arrived home did Dad have some serious pains. Serious to the point of being driven to the hospital. I promised him not to blog about what was going on during the "event" but I'll just give everyone an overarching idea. Dad spent over a week in the hospital at home on the Shore... a few days of that in ICU. His gallbladder was gangrenous and life-threatening. Thank GOD he had the gallbladder attack when he did. If we were still in the islands, I don't know what would have happened. Anyway, instead of the standard laproscopic surgery they use now, they had to do an open gallbladder surgery that is a pretty big deal. He was in surgery for almost 5 hours and left with a nine inch scar across his torso. He is still on the mend... it takes up to six weeks to be back to normal after the surgery. I really feel for him. I could see how much pain he was in, but above that, see the discontentment in not being able to do ANYTHING. My father is a very active man. He is always working or fixing things, reading, cooking etc. So to not be able to do anything for yourself is just the ultimate power loss. I am happy to say that he is well on the road to recovery now though.

Because of the gallbladder episode, I repacked my things and went straight back home, with Arie (my cat) in tow. I'm not really sure what I expected to do aside from offer social support and pick up around the house (cook and clean etc) while Joan helped Dad. It was good for me to just be around him so I wasn't out here in NoVa worrying. The experience was terrifying from an outside perspective though. I never want to feel powerless to help, and I never want to think about the possibility of something bad happening to my Dad or Mom or anyone! It's very sobering. While I was home, I had Arie get surgery on her kitty mouth to remove cavities. Since she has a lot of digestive and allergy issues, her teeth/gums are really bad. They had to remove 13 teeth in total. Poor gummy bear. <3 She's doing well though. I'll take her back to the Shore this coming weekend for her checkup and to spend Sept 11th with Dad.

By the time I returned from the Shore, my birthday had passed. I was lucky enough to see my grandparents that day, along with spend time with Dad and Joan. But to me it still felt like a normal day. My birthday celebration was in the islands. :) All the same, it will be nice to get together with friends in a few weeks to have a very belated birthday dinner. The upside of my birthday here in NoVa was due to Kris. She got me an AWESOME Kindle for my birthday so I've been busy catching up on summer reading.

Classes started this past week, so to me "summer" in its traditional sense is over. I'm sad because aside from a few hiccups, this has been an amazing summer. It just flew by. I am excited for the semester though. My students seem great already and my classes look promising. Not to mention the Fall weather will be here soon enough and I can pull out the pumpkin decor. :) I regret not being able to spend Labor Day weekend with Joe as originally intended, but with the surgery and school it just wasn't in the cards. I'm hoping for Columbus Day weekend.

The last thing to catch you all up on are my photography jaunts! I just did a photo shoot for my friend Stephanie and her charming hubby, John. They were so great! They were natural and didn't need to be posed. I think the shots came out really well too! It was a rush to have a paid photo shoot. I would love to make this a regular hobby. I think I want to/need to review some good photography books for portraits as well, to kind of hone the skills I have. I am good at landscapes, but I do still worry that I'm not taking the best shots I can. With a newborn shoot coming up in the next month or so, I have some research to jump into. :) Regardless, I'm excited. I need to get my camera fixed (after it's fall in St. John) and I'll be set. I killed my point and shoot via Coke spilling on it in the hospital when I was helping Dad up out of bed, so I used the money from the photo shoot yesterday to buy a new Kodak. :)

Whew! I think that's all for now!

Cheers and Happy Labor Day!