Ten Days till Christmas!

I have decided to try and blog every weekend. This is when I have the most free time and I think it would be beneficial to stick to a schedule that my readers can rely on every week (My hubby’s great suggestion). I am also going to add a question at the end of each of my blogs that I would love if you would answer! You can remain anonymous or use your real name, whatever you prefer! This just gives me the chance to interact with some of my frequent visitors.

My family is finally getting over that nasty flu we have all had. It’s been a really long week and we have all been very tired and cranky. Casey generally sleeps through the night and has been for over a year, but this whole week she has been up several times a night. I am usually a very upbeat, positive person, but lack of sleep has definitely taken its toll and I found it hard to stay cheerful- my poor husband can attest to that. Not only did I miss a lot of INSANITY, I have also had to miss a day of work, James has had to miss two days of work, and we have been struggling to find someone to look after Casey the other days (since she’s been too sick to go to Dayhome). Luckily Casey has the most amazing grandmother who has not only watched her but also cleaned and organized my house for me. Big thanks to Jen and Cory, Casey’s Godparents who have been a huge help in taking care of our sick girl also. BUT Things are looking up and we were able to get most of our Christmas shopping done over the weekend! Just a few more presents to get and then we are all ready for Christmas! We were also able to get back into INSANITY again, and I have to say, I am not enjoying the second half as much as the first! I am finding I can’t do a lot of the workouts, with my ankles being so weak….I know it will get easier as I get stronger, but it’s still a little disappointing that I can’t get as good of a workout as I would like.

As for things going on with my book, well last week my story was published in the GBS Foundation Newsletter for those dealing with GBS to read about, and this week I sent another piece to the Canadian Paraplegic Association for their quarterly magazine! I was fortunate to have a connection within the CPA (my mom works there 🙂 ) who submitted it for me. The magazine, titled Spinal Columns is an Alberta based publication that supplies information and inspirational stories- it is not only for people with spinal cord injuries but also for people dealing with other mobility impairments. I am optimistic that my story will inspire those that read it. For those interested in getting an e-book version of “Happily Ever After” I finally have some available for sale – they are $3 – but if you are already purchasing a book for a keepsake and would like to have the e-book for your e-reader it is only $2.

Some other exciting news is that in just over 2 months we will be heading to Mexico!! James and I are going to Cabo, with my brother and his wife, my cousin and his girlfriend, my brother in law, and a few other friends. The reason why this is so special to me is that when I was lying in the ICU, struggling to make it through each minute, something that helped me was to picture myself lying on a beach somewhere tropical with my family. I often felt like I was on my deathbed, and I told my family that if I made it out of this alive, that I wanted to go on a family vacation to the beach. James and I have been on several tropical vacations, but always just the two of us. After realizing how short life is, what I wanted was to do a group trip with those closest to me. This ‘dream’ that I had really helped me get through some of my darkest times in the ICU. It gave me something extra to look forward to, and something else to work towards. It became common knowledge around my room for my friends, family and nurses to constantly bring it up – that if I worked extra hard to get out of ICU, that one day I would get to live out that dream and take that vacation.

Last year, when I was finally well enough to travel, we had an offer from one of my RT’s that we could not refuse, which was to stay at their vacation home in Phoenix for free. As most of you know, we went and spent three wonderful weeks there. We tried to make it work with other family members but due to timing, in the end only my mom was able to join James, Casey and I for a week.

We have been trying to make a family vacation happen for the last year and a half. Everyone has their own lives, and it is very hard to fit in a vacation that works for everyone. But finally we were able to make something work and I cannot be any more excited! Due to other plans, money, timing etc, not everyone that I would love to see come with us is able to go, including our parents and our daughter. But the fact that I will have my husband, my brother, my cousin who is more like my brother, my brother in law, and my sister in law who is one of my closest friends, is fantastic. They may not know this, but this trip is one that I already hold so dear to my heart, knowing that I am finally taking that trip that I longed for so badly in the ICU.

Of course I know that being away from Casey for a whole week is going to be difficult, but between being with my parents and James parents, she will be having so much fun she probably won’t even notice we are gone. Besides, after how hard I have worked in the last few years, I think I deserve that beach vacation!

Christmas is a little over a week away and I am SO excited! On Saturday we took Casey to see Santa, and although we thought she would love it (she did last year) she was actually quite hesitant of him, and cried for mommy and daddy the whole time. I’m actually shocked that the picture even turned out this good!

20121216-211600.jpgOur friends also had a little Christmas get together Saturday night, something they started a few years back that has now turned into a tradition, and it definitely got me even more into the Christmas mood. Christmas is a great reminder of the importance of family, and this get together is a chance to spend time with our friends as well. Casey was the life of the party and had an absolute blast coloring and dancing to Michael Buble with mom.

This year will be the first in a long time that we don’t head out to Drayton Valley for Christmas dinner…. Generally we have Christmas out at my aunt & uncles’, or my grandpa’s, but this year my mom will be hosting it – now that she has a big enough place to hold everyone. As much as I will miss our regular tradition of heading to my home town for the holidays, I will certainly enjoy not having to travel on Christmas Day! No matter where it is though, it will be amazing. I absolutely love Christmas time – the tree, the lights, the decorations, the smells, the Christmas mood, and especially the time with loved ones! Only 10 more sleeps!

What is your favorite part of Christmas?


About hollyaftergbs

Author of Happily Ever After - My Journey with Guillain-Barre Syndrome and How I Got My Life Back.
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