Category: The Family

DNA

Anyone that knows me very well knows I didn’t grow up with my biological father. Being that he and my mother were both 17 when I was born it stands to reason I may not have grown up with him around; how many children born to teen fathers do? It was never a secret who he was or where he was. My mother never kept me from him in any way. I even recall him coming to our home when I was about seven years old and giving me a birthday gift. I saw him again when I was 18, when I went looking for him; that didn’t go well. Then again when I was 22, pregnant with my oldest son, I was introduced to his wife and four children; my half siblings. It still seems strange to think I have four siblings out there that I know virtually nothing about, but anyway, that’s a story for another time. There has really been very little contact between us and almost all of it initiated by me.

When I was diagnosed with Amyloidosis in 2014 I reached out to him again. I mean really, he couldn’t ignore me anymore, could he? I was dying! I had just been given this awful diagnosis, and told that the mortality rate was about 6 to 18 months. Certainly he would have more than a few words to say to me, but no. When I spoke with him I didn’t know what kind of Amyloidosis I had and the only time he called me back was three weeks later to find out if the disease was hereditary or not, I didn’t hear from him again. Really, he didn’t know if I was alive or dead, and that’s when I decided I would just be fatherless. It would be easier to just not have a father (in the human sense, God my Father is a whole different story) and pretending he didn’t exist might shield me from the hurt I felt knowing, finally, that he really didn’t care!

During that last contact with both he and his wife, I was surprised by a speculation on their part that I was not his daughter. Now keep in mind I’m 43 years old at this point in time and this is the very first time I am ever hearing that he has any doubt that I may or may not be his offspring. His wife spouted off something about blood type, that was wrong, but otherwise no one gave me any information about why they doubted my paternity. Of course my mother has never wavered as to who my biological father is, and I believe her wholeheartedly. I don’t think a mother would lie to her daughter for 40+ years about something like that and I have never thought she did. But the lack of contact after knowing I was diagnosed with a terminal disease and the speculation that I wasn’t his child certainly explained why he didn’t appear to care how I was.

Fast forward to 2019 and me sitting around a little apartment in Salt Lake City almost four years in remission from that nasty disease that should have killed me, healing from a heart transplant. I get to thinking, does he even know if I’m alive, and does he really doubt I’m his daughter? Again, I tracked him down and called. Again, I was told that he doubted it, however this time I was given a name of a possible “alternate” father. Ultimately you have to love modern medical technology! Why don’t we put this all to rest once and for all. I don’t know that things will be any different once we have definitive proof, but a DNA paternity test would put this whole thing to rest. Assuming he is honest on his end and swabs the inside of HIS cheek and not his co-worker’s, we should get the results I’ve always known, and I think he has too, and that is, he’s my biological father.

So, you want to know the results, yeah, so do I! We’re still anxiously waiting. It shouldn’t take long, we both sent in our samples right away and it only takes 2 to 3 business days to process. Assuming the lab got our samples about the same time we should know by tomorrow, Monday at the latest, what the results are. Until then, we tentatively text each other in this weird kind of way, I’m not sure how to explain it. I feel like he’s texted me more words than he’s spoken to me in 47 years. Unfortunately, his contact is still for informational purposes, and not really an inquiry about me. Any results yet? I’d be lying if I said it didn’t hurt. I don’t know him, and I don’t know what his life has been like, or what he’s been through. There may be perfectly valid reasons why he’s stayed out of my life, I don’t know. I hope once these results are in he’ll tell me.

UPDATE 3/12/2019: Probability of Paternity: 0% – I guess I’m on the hunt for a new “baby daddy”

A 365 Day Challenge

Glenn and I – January 1, 2019

I’m going to try the 365 day photo challenge again this year. So here is photo #1, my husband and I in one of our favorite places to hang out…in bed. I’m going to have to get use to having my photo taken, OY! This Prednisone face with bullfrog neck is driving me crazy, but it is what it is. At least my hair looks good. Thankfully, I won’t be on this dose of Prednisone forever so the size of my face will go back to normal, eventually.

I got the results of my December 27th right and left heart biopsy and blood tests. My white blood cells are back to normal, which means my bone marrow is finally doing it’s job. All of my other blood work was good, just needed some minor tweaks to my medication. I was finally cleared to drive, so I got to drive myself to cardiac rehab on Monday. My biopsy came back with no rejection…EXCITING! Even more exciting my Kappa and Lambda Free Light Chains which would be a measure of the amyloid in my system were the lowest they’ve ever been, meaning I’m still in complete hematological remission.

I’m so happy I’m starting to feel healthy again…

View the entire 365 Day Gallery.

I Survived…

…and so did my family!

Detoxing off of Zoloft was definitely not what I anticipated, and I can’t help but feel a little misled. At no time did my Psychiatrist ever mention that in the event I had to stop taking the medication I should wean off over a 90 day period. And when my cardiologist gave me a weaning schedule of 28 days, no one mentioned I would nearly lose my mind from weaning off the drug so quickly. But hey, I don’t have enough going on, what’s a little extra crazy to add to my life’s entertainment value.

Thankfully the crazy has passed, as have the withdrawal symptoms, and I’m starting to feel a little bit more normal (hey no laughing!)

I’m off to Mayo in Rochester again next week…I pray this trip is better than the last.

My Sweet Dotty

It’s been a rough week going back and forth to the vet. It started with Dotty getting her teeth cleaned. She had a cough for about four days following but otherwise seemed ok. Upon calling the vet about the cough I was told this was normal and it it continued over the weekend to bring her back in. Yesterday we noticed that her breathing was very labored, then today she started shaking uncontrollably. Thor was already at the vet for his teeth cleaning so they asked me to bring Dotty in when I picked up Thor. After a thorough exam and a couple x-rays the vet discovered the problem.

Dotty is in Congestive Heart Failure and her heart is very enlarged. In addition she has pockets of water she retaining all over and she has a mass in her gallbladder that they aren’t sure what it is.

The vet has started her on some medication to help get the water out of her system as well as meds that will help her heart. The prognosis isn’t great though. If we caught it in enough time we may have 24 months with her, but if we didn’t it might be as little as 12 months.

I’m just heart sick over all this. She is my first dog that was all mine. I’ve had her since she was seven weeks old and she’s been by my side for over eight years. She’s such a sweet girl with an amazing temperment, always gentle, always happy to see you when you walk thru the door. She’s can be sassy at times and has a feisty little attitude. I don’t know where to put these feelings about losing my little four legged companion, but I do know that she has had a wonderful life, has been loved deeply, and spoiled like a princess. All of those things will continue until she takes her last breath.

Last Day As A Civilian

Leland’s last day as a civilian…

Today, Easter Sunday, was our oldest son’s last day as a civilian. At 6 am Monday morning he leaves for Boot Camp at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. It seems so surreal that my baby, who is not only 22 years old, but married, has gone off and joined the Army. As a family we’re so incredibly proud of him. We know he’s going to do great and that this is just the start of another incredible adventure in his life. It’s going to be a long four months without him but we’re excited for his future in the Army and with his new wife.

We love you Leland, we’re proud of you, pray for your safety, and are thankful for your willingness to serve our country.

GO ARMY!