every moment matters.

Posted by on Nov 3, 2014 in babies, blogging, family, healthy, life, lupus, personal | 10 comments



So, I never thought the day would come where I got a big fat positive on a pee stick. One that stuck around, anyway.

Naturally, it didn’t happen the way I expected.

The happy news was presented to us in the emergency room by a doctor with a heavy European accent. See, I arrived earlier that evening with suspicion of a stroke. The left half of my body was numb, the left side of my face slightly drooping. After blood tests and a CAT scan, we were glad to find out – obviously – that it was due to migraine paralyses, not a stroke. (Yay, lupus!) In the midst of all these tests, the doctor said, “And did you hear the results of your pregnancy test?”

“Oh negative, I’m sure,” I said.

“Uh…no. You’re test was positive,” he replied, and with a smile, “It is good to get some good news during a not so good time!”

And it was good news! Great news! But I was still skeptic. So much so, when we got home, I ended up taking several more tests. After about four of them, I started to believe this might be for real. Whoa.


Sudden panic hit me like a brick. What about all the drugs I’d been on for lupus? What if this didn’t stay, either? Was I allowed to be excited? Before I even uttered a prayer, a sense of peace washed over me. I don’t know how else to explain the sweet calm, the bit of reassurance I had in the moment that things – however they turn out – will be okay. Things will be okay. 

Fast forward to last week when, for the first time, I watched my little baby’s heart beat on screen. I think I had a grin ear to ear that entire day.

Yes, I am high risk. Yes, the baby will likely need to come early.

But life is beautiful and precious and meaningful. Every moment matters.

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the person i want to be.

Posted by on Oct 17, 2014 in blog, life, personal, random, thoughts | 6 comments

winter roses.

winter roses.

in my mind
in a future five years from now
i’m one hundred and twenty pounds
and i never get hung over
because i will be the picture of discipline
never minding what state i’m in
and i will be someone i admire
and it’s funny how i imagined
that i would be that person now
but it does not seem to have happened
maybe i’ve just forgotten how to see
that i am not exactly the person that i thought i’d be


Confession: I am 31 years old, and my life is not what I planned.

If you asked me, 13 years ago, what I’d be doing right now? I would tell you this. I would say I traveled the world: climbed the Great Wall of China, ate curry in India, walked the great cliffs of Ireland, and tried to make a guard smile in London. I’d say I majored in British literature, which sounds snooty and pretentious and basically worthless, but it’s okay because I’m now a published author with a best seller under my belt. I’d explain that I’m blissfully, happily married with three darling children; we live in a comfortable home, where we eat takeout once a week and laugh every day.

You would envy my organizational skills, because my comfortable home, where we eat takeout once a week and laugh every day? Is spotless and a designer’s dream.

I am the epitome of physical health. I mean, my butt? Looks fantastic in those jeans!

I play guitar, write my own songs, go to Europe once a year, have a bazillion friends, and people wonder how I have it all together. Really, my life is a dream.


and in my mind
in the faraway here and now
i’ve become in control somehow
and i never lose my wallet
because i will be the picture of discipline
never f#@!-ing up anything
and i’ll be a good defensive driver
and it’s funny how i imagined
that i would be that person now
but it does not seem to have happened
maybe i’ve just forgotten how to see
that i’ll never be the person i thought i’d be


13 years ago, I was naive. I was shallow and silly.

I thought things would just…happen.

Things never just happen. Even when we work hard, there is no guarantee that life will turn out the way we imagine, the way we want.

And things aren’t what I imagined. I am not what I imagined.

And the truth is? That’s okay.


and in my mind
when i’m old i am beautiful
planting tulips and vegetables
which i will mindfully watch over
not like me now
i’m so busy with everything
that i don’t look at anything
but i’m sure i’ll look when i am older
and it’s funny how i imagined
that i could be that person now
but that’s not what i want
but that’s what i wanted
and i’d be giving up somehow
how strange to see
that i don’t wanna be the person that i want to be


I am 31 years old: I haven’t traveled the world, I didn’t finish my degree because of my health, I’m still not published, I don’t have three darling children; I’m not the organized type, my butt has it’s own plateau, and most people wonder when I’m gonna get my act together.


I am 31 years old: I am married to my best friend, who makes me laugh every single day, I have a dog named Thoby, fish in a fish tank, and a great family; I am a photographer, the occasional writer, and an avid reader; I am fiercely loyal and compassionate, and because life did not turn out the way I planned? I am a better person than I was. I am a better person than I thought I could be.


and in my mind
i imagine so many things
things that aren’t really happening
and when they put me in the ground
i’ll start pounding the lid
saying i haven’t finished yet
i still have a tattoo to get
that says i’m living in the moment
and it’s funny how i imagined
that i could win this, win this fight
but maybe it isn’t all that funny
that i’ve been fighting all my life
but maybe i have to think it’s funny
if i wanna live before i die
and maybe it’s funniest of all
to think i’ll die before i actually see
that i am exactly the person that i want to be


The older I get, the more I begin to see that life is better when it’s not what I expect it to be.

It’s not easy. But it’s better.

Because of all of the hard moments – those moments that tear into the soul, that threaten to defeat – those moments have allowed me to live: my mistakes have allowed me to grow to change to become someone who continues to try, and I’m okay with being that someone. Everything that has gone wrong has helped me embrace everything that has gone right.

I guess what I’m trying to say is…it’s always beautiful.

f#@! yes
i am exactly the person that i want to be

(Lyrics by Amanda Palmer)

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slc comic con, a recap.

Posted by on Sep 8, 2014 in life | 0 comments

So, we went to the SLC Comic Con.

Man, oh man. I wish I could write a rave review. I wish I could tell you it was absolutely amazing, but there were some not-so-amazing things that happened. First and foremost? The VIP tickets? Worthless. Basically, we paid $400.00 for 2 T-shirts.

VIP members are supposed to get into panels early, but this was a joke. Comic Con never cleared out the panels when they ended (like they did at Fan-X), so people stayed to save seats. I mean, they basically camped out, and hijacked the entire first half of the main ballrooms. This wouldn’t be such an issue, except that I was in a wheelchair, which is a whole other issue all together because their ADA system was an even bigger joke. Believe me, I have a new appreciation for the perpetually disabled.

Also, Comic Con, just because you can fill a building to maximum capacity? Doesn’t mean you should. When the fire marshal shows up and boots people out or refuses to let them in, it’s a good sign you have made a comfortable space uncomfortable.

Basically, SLC Comic Con promises a lot of things, but they fail to deliver. I could write an endless blog post on all of the issues we had, but just hop on over to their FB and check out the insane amount of 1 star reviews. You’ll get the gist. I’m not so cranky, and I give them a solid 3, because (despite SLC Comic Con being completely disorganized) I enjoyed the vendors, as well as the panels we got into.



I got some beautiful henna done by Mountain Mehndi. I love their work. This is my second experience with them, and it was even better than the first. They are quick and polite, and they spray the henna with glitter! (I used to worry about getting henna done, because I’ve studied mehndi a bit, and have friends who hold this practice as sacred. After speaking with a couple of them, I was happy to hear they aren’t offended and glad I take an interest in their culture.)

waiting for Grant.

waiting for Grant.

One of the first panels we went to was with Grant Wilson from Ghost Hunters, (which was virtually empty because of Comic Con’s lack of understanding how to form proper lines outside of the event center). We decided to take a selfie before it began. The little guy on the right is our cousin Heath, who spent the first day with us. He is a witty 10 year old, who was as “excited as a cheetah getting ham” to come along. He made the day fun, and I got to see a lot of what we did from a kid’s point of view. It was terrific!

the doctors!

the doctors!

After Grant’s panel, we headed on over to hear Colin Baker and Paul McGann talk about their Doctor Who experience. On Saturday morning I got to meet Paul McGann, who took a photo with me and told me I was lovely. As you can tell, I’ve been on prednisone. My face has swollen up like a balloon. Damn lupus. (Also, I decided that photo ops with celebrities never look awesome – kind of like the mandatory cruise ship photo.)

paul mcgann and my swollen face.

paul mcgann and my swollen face.

My face looks just as swollen in my photo with Giancarlo Esposito. Oh, yeah. Didn’t I tell you? I also met Gus from Breaking Bad! Tyson and I thought about putting a bell on my wheelchair, which I would promptly chime as we entered the photo area, but for one reason or another it didn’t happen. I told Giancarlo about our failed plan, and he laughed, “Oh man, that would have been classic!” He’s a very down to earth person. It was a pleasure to meet him, and even better to hear him speak at his panel.

gus fring and my swollen face.

gus fring and my swollen face.

I was never “star struck” until I met up with Dan Wells, who is my favorite author. We went to his panel, and the whole time I was giddy and fluttery and on cloud nine.

In fact, I got to meet up with a lot of amazing authors, who took the time to speak with me one on one. They offered some great advice, and (unexpectedly) I was told to join their group. This is a big deal and great opportunity for me, so I’m totally psyched. Woot!

Also? I got some great Doctor Who art, and some nifty pins for my bag.

The oddest panel we went to was not the panel on Big Foot, but Charisma Carpenter’s. She wouldn’t allow anyone to take her photo (until the very end), and basically she is Cordelia. Really.



My favorite panel, by far, was John Barrowman, which you can read about here. His best piece of advice was, “Care about other people, but not about those who don’t like you. Live your life how you want to.”

The end.

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learning to live.

Posted by on Aug 21, 2014 in blogging, life, love, ramble, random, thoughts, Uncategorized | 6 comments


That photo up there? That was me four years ago. I was trying on hats in a quaint store in the French Quarter of New Orleans, and I felt, not only happy, but pretty.

Like a majority of women, I’ve struggled with weight and outward appearance, (among a boatload of other things). In middle school I was the weirdo kid with a lazy-eye and freckles, and junior high wasn’t much better. By the time I hit high school, I was used to bullies, but one night during my shift at the local Carl’s Jr., my boss told me customers were confused: was I looking at them or the wall? Hardy hardy har. Comedic gold.

I hid the backroom and cried.

“He’s a model asshole,” my friend, Mike, assured me with a giant hug, but the damage was done.

Believe me when I say it took years - years – for me to gain confidence in my psychical appearance, let alone my inner one, and let me tell you, if there is one thing I’ve learned through it all? No matter how many compliments you receive, no matter how many people say you’re beautiful inside and out, it means nothing until you believe it. We are our own worst critics. Oh, sure, there are outside influences, but the inner-struggle, the fight against our inner-demons is the one that matters: it is the one that determines who we really are in an eternal sense.

Sometimes I forget this.

It’s easy to be swept up by every day emotions. It’s easy to forget all the things I do right, when there is a proverbial pile of mistakes pushing me into madness. I forget that it’s okay not to compare myself to other people. I forget that it’s okay to be okay with my lazy-eye and plumpness, because there is more to me: I am intelligent, loyal, and hopeful; I am a wife, a sister, an aunt; I am a person, an individual who breathes and feels and loves.

The thing is, when I remember who I am and how far I’ve come? It’s easier to love the people around me as well. It’s easier to forgive, to grow, to see differently, and laugh.

The world is a small place, where all of us are learning to live.

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a better light.

Posted by on Jul 30, 2014 in babies, blogs, life, love, personal, philosophy | 5 comments


I want the thrill of saying to Tyson, “You’re going to be a daddy!”

I want to feel that first flutter. I want to hear a healthy heartbeat. I want my tummy to grow round and taut, while I crave strange foods and read books about what to expect while expecting.

I want to count little fingers and toes. I want to give kisses and cuddles. I want lullabies in the evening, with smiles in the morning, and storybooks in between.

I want our little heaven on earth to be just a little bigger.

Every month that passes is harder than the last, every false-hope more disappointing.

“Why can’t something just happen for once, without the difficulties?” I asked last night, though – truth be told – I wasn’t asking my husband, I was asking God.

I’ve joked here and there over the years, saying my life could play out like a really bad Lifetime Movie. “Oh, gosh!” a friend laughed, and patting my shoulder, added, “But, really? Your life is, like, stranger than fiction.”

Joking aside, I know I’m not the only one who feels like they’re constantly running uphill. I know I’m not the only one with hopes and desires unfulfilled. I know I’m not the only one who cries in the shower, or eats more chocolate than is necessary because…emotions.

For example, I never thought I’d find love. Real love.

I grew up in a culture where most of my girlfriends were married by their early twenties, and popping out babies shortly thereafter. When I turned 27, people began to explain that not everyone finds a special someone but I was a great gal, which was really just the polite way of saying, “We don’t know what’s wrong with you.”

But love found me a few years later. He came with a beard and dry sense of humor. I just had to be patient. I had to live my life without daydreaming about another.

I guess when a person wants something really a lot, and said something refuses to cooperate? You start to see everything that is wrong, not just with the world around you, but with yourself. You list the things you could have done differently. You knit-pick your flaws, until they are no longer flaws but gigantic plague-like blemishes on your very soul, and you begin to picture how life could be if you were just different, not just changed – completely different. If that makes sense.

But this way of thinking never amounts to more than sorrow.

At least for me.

So, I look around me, and I see my husband, who I love more than anyone or anything, and I know he was worth the wait. He was worth every painstaking moment of self-discovery and over indulgence with chocolate.

And like my husband, and many other things in my life…

I don’t know how long I will have to wait for a baby.

I don’t know if I will ever have the pitter-patter of little feet on my kitchen floor, or the whispered words, “Mommy, I love you.”

I still hope. Very much, I hope.

Some days are much easier than others.

But every day, even on the days I choose self-pity over gratitude, I recognize that all of the difficulties I faced have helped me view life and the people around me in a far different light, a better light.

We all have our challenges, some more than others.

Whatever our path, I like to believe we all manage to reach the same place in the end: one with warmth, empathy, and love.

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Posted by on Jun 9, 2014 in blogging, depression, happiness, health, life, lupus, personal, random, thoughts | 2 comments

Practice-11 (640x447)

per (“through”) + maneō (“I remain”)
1. I stay to the end, hold out, endure; last, survive, continue. 

I was born early, a bird-legged baby fed with a dropper.

The doctors said I wouldn’t survive, but I did. I like to prove people wrong.

Throughout the years I’ve faced many challenges, some physical – many emotional. When met with the options sink or swim, I’ve always found myself choosing (even if at the last moment) to swim: paddle hard as hell, darling, and keep your head above water. Tears, sweat, scars – all worth it, really, but you never see the worth of adversity when you’re in the middle of the haze; you rarely see your inner-growth while still tossing to and fro about the waves; you don’t catch the sun until there is a break in the clouds.

But it comes. Always. 

When we choose to stay to the end, hold out, endure? We can do nothing but last, survive, and continue.

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choosing my confessions.

Posted by on Jun 4, 2014 in blogging, confession, cryptic, depression, happiness, health, life, lupus, lupus flare, lyrics, personal, philosophy, ramble, random, thoughts, vulnerability | 8 comments

Photo by Zole4 @ Free Digital Photos (Click image to go to their site.)

Photo by Zole4 @ Free Digital Photos (Click image to go to their site.)

oh life, it’s bigger
it’s bigger than you
and you are not me
the lengths that i will go to
the distance in your eyes
oh, no i’ve said too much
i’ve said enough

Sometimes life gets too personal to share. I suppose that’s what happened over the last while: stuff that’s too personal.


See, I used to be more open about my struggles with health and wellness. I was open because it was cathartic for me, sharing my story, shouting out to the world from my own little corner that, dammit, life is not fair (but entirely livable and lovable). I shared to remind myself that there are hard moments, but – in the end –  they’re only moments. I shared because I wasn’t alone, because other people suffered just as much, suffered more, or simply suffered somehow, and I wanted them to know it was okay: suffering is inevitable for all of us, but it’s how we choose to suffer that matters.

But I lost sight of that.

I lost sight of myself.

that’s me in the corner
that’s me in the spotlight
losing my religion
trying to keep up with you
and i don’t know if i can do it
oh no, i’ve said too much
i’ve said enough

I didn’t lose faith in humanity (though tempting at times).

I didn’t lose faith in family or friends.

I didn’t even lose faith in the medical professionals trying to help me, with their pokes and prods and endless questions.

But gradually, over the days and weeks and months, I lost faith in me. When I sat down to type out posts of hope and the fighting spirit and such – even when I sat down to type out posts of angst and disgust, I found I was empty.

i thought that i heard you laughing
i thought that i heard you sing
i think that i saw you try

The thing about emptiness? Sadly, we all experience it. Some more than others.

And most of us don’t like to share that emptiness, because we get it into our heads that no one else will understand what it’s like because emptiness is, like, way empty, you know? Or something lame like that. We become guarded and superficial and weepy behind closed doors; we wear a smiling mask, while our heart is as dry as a fig; we go about our business as though nothing is wrong, nothing at all – when inwardly we’re giving a big fat middle finger to every. single. minute. of the day, because it feels so damn meaningless…

Until one day you look in the mirror and see that you’re not just broken, you’re shattered.

every whisper of every waking hour
i’m choosing my confessions
trying to keep an eye on you
like a hurt, lost and blinded fool
oh, no i’ve said too much
i’ve said enough

“I don’t know how to write anymore,” I said.

“Why? What has changed?” she asked.

“I’m no longer capable of vulnerability. There’s nothing left to give.”

“Maybe it’s not that there’s nothing left to give,” she offered, “Maybe it’s just about healing quietly for while.”

So, that is what I did. Done.

Quietly healed.

consider this
consider this, the hint of the century
consider this, the slip that brought me to my knees, failed
what if all of these fantasies come flailing around
now i’ve said too much

And though bits of me are still mending, I find the words slowly returning: my confessions of a simple life stringing together, letter by letter.

i thought that i heard you laughing
i thought that i heard you sing
i think that i saw you try

but that was just a dream
that was just a dream

(Lyrics by R.E.M.)

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