Gino’s home from rehab!

You know from this post that my brother-in-law, Gino, was stricken with Guillain-Barre Syndrome in February. What started as numbness in his hands and feet turned into full-body paralysis over the course of a few days. He was in intensive care for several weeks as machines kept his body functioning.

He’s spent the last three months in rehab, learning again to speak, eat, move. (An aside: Gino and I have watched 2+ seasons of Six Feet Under during the nights that I sat with him — we’re addicted. Not sure how we’re going to work in this f-bomb-dropping show anymore, with our kids being around.)

Well, they kicked Gino out of rehab yesterday — he’s well enough to come home! Friends contributed countless hours to making Gino and Tami’s home wheelchair accessible. We hope his muscle functions continue to progress and that the wheelchair is soon discarded in favor of leg power.

So Tami is now nurse (giving meds), therapist (working what needs work) and tech (getting Gino from bed to chair to car, etc). On top of taking care of Gino, she will continue to take care of their adorable 2-year old son.

Tami’s glad, I think, to be finished with the long drive to the hospital that she made sometimes twice a day. She’s glad, too, to have both her boys in one home (they’d turned the hospital room into a home away from home).

But the idea of being the primary caretaker is daunting. I am so proud of how my sister has remained positive and energetic throughout this ordeal, an ordeal that might have broken a lesser person. Both she and Gino are inspirational as anti-victims — never once did either ask “why did this happen to us?” They just kept the faith and moved forward.

Right back into their home.

Mojito Friday and shameless plug

Had that adoption profile out there awhile? Not sure why you’re being passed over? Tired of waiting?

Periodically, I offer a do-it-yourself adoption profile makeover workshop through Colorado Free University, and there’s one coming up soon.

  • Date: June 25 (Monday)
  • Time: 6:30 – 8:30 pm
  • Tuition: $24/single or $39 couple (slightly more for non CFU members)
  • Offered again: September 8 (Saturday), 10 am – noon

If you live near Denver, visit Colorado Free University for information or to register.

P.S. Belly on up for your Friday cyber-mojito. With or without fresh lime?

For my Daisy companions (with help from kd lang)

I’ve spent the last few days travelling. From my desk. Seeing a book, Waiting for Daisy, from multiple viewpoints. It’s been entertaining and emotional to experience same object by myriad subjects.

Many on the tour are in the throes of infertility. Some will conceive and bear a child. Some will not. Some will adopt a child. Some will not. Some will reconcile themselves to a childfree life. Some will not. Many will rejoice and many will sob, and most will probably do both.

Fellow travellers’ tales took me back to our Dark Time (ttc). I could bring up all the ache and the angst, but nowadays they do not have any power over me. While gardening this afternoon, I heard a song that made me feel the emotions of those days deep in my being.

Like a corny Casey Kasem dedication, I am sending this one out to others in the BBBB.

Constant Craving (kd lang/ben mink)
Even through the darkest phase
Be it thick or thin
Always someone marches brave
Here beneath my skin

Constant craving
Has always been

Maybe a great magnet pulls
All souls towards truth
Or maybe it is life itself
That feeds wisdom
To its youth

Constant craving

Has always been

Craving

Ah ha
Constant craving
Has always been

Constant craving
Has always been
Constant craving
Has always been

Craving

Ah ha

Constant craving

Has always been
Has always been
Has always been
Has always been
Has always been
Has always been

My stop: The Waiting for Daisy book tour

Disembark here for the blogosphere book tour, the Barren Bitches Book Brigade. We’ve been reading Waiting for Daisy by Peggy Orenstein.

1. Peggy struggles with questions of heritage, genes, and religion. How important is it for you to have a child that is biologically yours and why? What feelings go into that decision/choice for you if you are still trying to have a child?

We took a different route than many on this book tour. We turned right at ICSI and ended up in Adoption Land.

At one time, it WAS important to have Roger’s brilliant blue eyes, my long legs, our musicality and our love of books. But ultimately we came to the conclusion that our dreams had more to do with becoming parents than with becoming pregnant.

In Adoption School (part of our agency’s process), we had to write a good-bye letter to the biological child we’d never have — in order to make way for the child we WOULD have. What a tear-jerker of a day THAT was.

It can seem that adoption is a second choice. And that may be true until it actually happens. Even if I could go back and wave a magic pregnancy wand, I wouldn’t. My children were meant for me all along — I just didn’t know it at the time. I hope they one day feel the same.

And, by the way, we are passing on our love of books.

2. Peggy’s husband, Steven, says things to the effect of “Get over it,” and expresses the wish to return their marriage from the uni-dimensional land of Infertility. How typical were Steven’s responses to your own partner’s?

It was definitely easier for Roger to “get over it.” Biologically, men are more removed from the ebb and flow of fertility, the monthly reminders of failure. I liked Steven’s sensible yet sensitive approach with Peggy — it reminded me of Roger’s ability to empathize with me but not drown with me.

3. Orenstein struggles with the feeling that she “waited too long to start trying to conceive”. How does this compare to your feelings about the timing of your journey to parenthood?

Not an issue. I didn’t meet Roger until I was 31, and we married a year later. We wasted no time trying to begin a family, and after a year we moved overseas (a third world country) for two years. Coincidentally, we lived in the same apartment complex as a Lebanese, German-trained “embryologist.” Hence our pitstop in ICSI.

So no wasted time, unless you count the years it took to meet Roger. And I definitely don’t count those years as wasted.

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Hope you will come back for a visit! I serve cyber-Mojitos every Friday. And cyber-Advils every Saturday.

Want to check out more Waiting for Daisy questions? Hop along to another stop on this blog tour by visiting the main list at Stirrup Queens. You can also sign up for the next book on this online book club: The Kid by Dan Savage.

Open adoption & adoptive parenting