Thursday, March 31, 2011

Worst Possible Ways to Wake Up

The first being, in my opinion, waking up to a phone call saying a loved one is dead or in the hospital.

The second is how I woke up at 1:50 am this morning.

I woke up shaking and sweating even though I had a fan blowing directly on me.  I tried to sit up, but I was dizzy.  Then I got nauseous.  And proceeded to throw up for ten minutes. 

Puking is so horrible.  And the stomach spasms just add to it.

Anyway, enough details.

All I can say is thank heavens I made it to the bathroom.

Also, I am seriously grateful that my 9:00 class is canceled tomorrow.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Today was pretty sweet.

I consider "pretty sweet" a day where I can easily think of more pluses than minuses.

Plus 1: My headache was minimal all day, until after Bible Study.
Plus 2: I had Bible Study.
Plus 3: CUW was canceled because the speaker didn't show up.
Plus 4: Lifetime Wellness was canceled because it was pouring outside.
Plus 5: Dr. Patchell answered his phone when I called him which stopped me from walking all the way across campus to the track in the rain.
Plus 6: I managed to get through translating this French paragraph out loud in class today, even though I completely forgot to do it like I was supposed to for homework.

So yeah.  I'm pretty good.  And feeling more peace than I did yesterday, which is nice. 

Um...that's about all I can think of other than I MUST GO TO SLEEP NOW and PAIN PAIN PAIN BIG PAIN.


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I know Batman and Robin.

Or at least...the Batman and Robin that set the boat on fire.

I also know the reason why Tyler wouldn't tell me who it was when it happened.

Because they're two kids in my (very small) French class.

And two of his good friends.


So here's the story: I was supposed to meet with Tyler to study tonight, like usual.  Well, I went over to Shouse early to eat beforehand, and I got a text from a mutual friend of ours (she's in my Bible Study).  She's a French major, and she had to kill time on campus for another hour and a half, so she asked if she could come hang out with us.  I said sure.  We talked for about an hour, because I texted Tyler about 5:20 (he was supposed to be there a little after 5) and found out he wasn't coming (which he apologized four times for, and called himself a horrible person, and really, you can't be mad at that) so we just kept talking.  Just before 6 as we were both leaving, she and I were talking about the class and how three of us are pretty good at French, and three are bad.  She asked me who the other two good ones are, and I said "The soccer player and the guy who sits behind her." (She's visited our class before so she knew just who I was talking about.)  Then she went, "Oh, you mean Batman and Robin?"

Ha.  My jaw dropped.  Of course I'm not gonna say anything to Tyler or them about it because it is a month later and that's just pointless, but for some reason I'm really happy that I know.  What can I say - I've never enjoyed being out of the loop. ;)

So yeah.  That was my humor of the day. Well, that....and this:

Monday, March 28, 2011

I wonder if frustration can induce migraines.

Not sure about that one.  But I know stress can.

Right now, to put it simply, I'm just mad.  Mixed in with a little bit of hurt.

I can't really give details, because it's a very twisted story that involves my family, and a friend of mine.

And frankly, it just currently feels a little too private and painful to share.

But I need to find peace.  I know that much.  I can't do anything else with this till I wrap my head around everything that happened, and how I feel, and...yeah.

I know it's weird for me to be so elusive about details, because I know I'm usually very open about things going on in my life, but for some reason, this feels different.

For now, I'm just going to try and focus on calming down and finding peace and coming to terms with whatever the heck it is that is going on right now.

(That aside, though, my History test was a lot better than I expected.)

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Just what I wanted.

A new migraine symptom.


I got the worst migraine I've had in a really long time tonight.

Granted, it was after 3 hours of studying for my History test tomorrow, so I knew why it was happening, but still.

About 20 minutes after it hit, I was taking a shower because I just had to, when my left eye freaked out.  I started seeing this dark brown circle only in my left eye.  It was like someone was showing me my eye's iris.  It was freaky.

Luckily, after I got out of the shower, I called my mom and she said that her migraines almost always mess with her vision.  So at least this is a "normal" symptom, right? :P

Now I'm going to go collapse and try not to stress out about this test.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Not sure when this happened!

That title can apply to two things...

1.  I went into this NCAA tournament not really caring much about it.  I'm not a big sports fan, unless it's NC State playing.  Of course, we suck this year so we were nowhere close to being in the NCAA.  Thus, the only team I remotely cared about was Duke, and that's because my grandma graduated from there.  Well, on Thursday, Duke was kicked out of the tournament after losing to Duke.  I thought, Oh well.  At least I don't have to bother with this anymore.  And yet, yesterday and today, I have watched almost all of the tournament games.  And I actually enjoyed it!  I have no idea when I started becoming a sports freak.

2.  I've said many times how much I both like and love my mom.  During my freshman year, I had such a rough time adjusting to college (you can pretty easily figure out why), that I called my mom pretty much every day.  This semester, though, I stopped.  Yes, we still talk, but not nearly as often as we used to.  We've barely texted at all this week, and I can't even remember the last time we had a real phone conversation.  Part of the reason this week is that I just can't be bothered in dealing with whatever drama is going on there.  Plus, I don't know, I'm just busy!  I think I'm finally growing up. ;)  Matt told me he's been waiting for me to figure this out.  :)

Today is good.

Friday, March 25, 2011

I. am losing. my mind.

There's so much stuff I have to do.

I know there is.

But here's the problem.

I can't remember any of it.

It's like I've been drugged or something.

Maybe that joke I used to make about college making me dumber isn't such a joke after all.

Not having a migraine all day today might help things, but alas, that's not the case.

Something surprising did happen today, though.

There's a girl named Ryann (pronounced like Ryan) in my History, Statistics, and French classes. (Yeah, freaky how that worked out.)  I used to think that she didn't like me very much.  Don't know why.  Well, today before French we were waiting and talking about our History test on Monday and Statistics test on Tuesday and how we hope our French test isn't before next Friday otherwise we'll be way crammed, and before I knew it, she asked me if I wanted to study with her on Sunday for History (both of us have aced both of the Statistics test, so we're not worried about that).  I wasn't expecting that at all, but of course I said yes.  I love studying with people who actually want to put in the effort, and I know she will because she's stressed about doing well on it.  I guess I haven't been giving her enough credit.

Plus, after that, she asked me what year I was, and when I told her I'm a first-semester sophomore, she asked me why that was, and that turned into a huge conversation about all my medical stuff, like the 2009 brain surgeries, and she surprised me again by seeming to be genuinely interested and caring about all that I've dealt with.  I always worry about talking about that stuff because I don't want to come off like I want people to feel sorry for me, and I said that, and she was like "Oh no, definitely not, I asked!"  :)

So yeah, today has just made me happy. :)  Maybe people aren't so bad after all. ;)

Thursday, March 24, 2011


That's how many weeks I have left.


That's 42 days!

That's just crazy.

This semester has FLOWN by.

And today was also the first day that I was able to look at classes for next semester.  I can't officially register for two more weeks, but you can go on Campbell's site and look at available classes beforehand.  I think I created a totally awesome schedule.  I won't have class till 12:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays!  And while I'm not done till 3:20 Monday - Thursday, I'm done at 11:50 on Friday.  At least as of now, my French class details weren't up.  My guess is that will change.  Even still, I'm very happy.

I'm so glad tomorrow is Friday.  I'm still waiting for them to turn on the freaking air conditioning, though.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


Okay, scratch that.

More like on fire.

The high was 86 today.  Hot.

Our first day of exercise in Lifetime Wellness was today.  Hot.

Campbell still will not turn on the air conditioning.  HOT!

So I'm kinda freaking miserable right now.

The one highlight of my day was getting to spend time with Amy.  She drove me to WalMart, and we had Bible Study tonight.  We talked about the Vespers show in three weeks, and she told me that she looked up their website and listened to some of their stuff and she likes it, so it won't be torture for her, which made me feel better.  Bible Study was just as wonderful as all the other times have been.  I adore every girl in that group.  :)

Here's hoping that I can sleep tonight, despite it being so dang hot.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Sometimes even though I try and be all strong and not let my health issues get in my way of simply living my life,

sometimes, they do anyway.  And it sucks.

Like tonight, the OneRepublic concert.  They stuck me outside the arena, on an admittedly comfortable couch, but it sucked because I could barely hear the music, and definitely could not understand any of the lyrics to any of the songs.

So I left.  There was no point in sitting there for God knows how long if I wasn't even enjoying it.

But then, God surprised me.

The girl manning the door to stamp people who left and wanted to return saw me in tears (totally unintentional, by the way. I rarely, if ever, go looking for pity.).  Turns out, when I emailed the Campus Activities Board about special accomodations for tonight's concert, she was the first person who saw the email.  She begged the head guy to get me a meet-and-greet, but he said no.  On top of that, she also has seizures, so she is often stuck in the same predicament I am in.  You know what she did?

She gave me her signed poster that the band gave her.  They gave one to all of the CAB members who had been there working all day, and she doesn't even really like OneRepublic that much anyway.  She just gave it to me.  All because I was missing the concert and they didn't have any more extras.  How awesome is that?!?!  Goes to show you, God can always put a bright spot into a crappy night. 

One thing is for sure, though.  After all the drama tonight, I am looking forward to seeing The Vespers in Charlotte just that much more.  A concert with no strobe lights.  How refreshing.

Monday, March 21, 2011

I should've been named Grace.

Here's part of a text convo between Mom and me today.

Me:  So would you like to know my genius move of the day?  Twisting both of my ankles in a two-hour span.
Mom:  Wow!  You're awesome!  Should've named you Grace.
Me:  Ha.  Like I haven't heard that before.  In my defense, we were outside on uneven ground.
Mom:  Guess what?  Almost all ground is uneven.
Me:  Thank you, smart alec.  But this was in the forest.
Mom: the forest?  Were you dropped off there after an alien abduction?
Me:  No.  Science lab.  We had to walk through the forest to get to a creek.
Mom:  I hope the instructor knows you deserve wilderness survival extra credit points.
Me:  Ha.  I wish.  That'd be lovely.

I love my mom.  I, however, do NOT love Science.  We went out to a creek, and the path we had to take from the road to the creek was rocky and covered in twigs and pine needles so you couldn't see where the bumps were. 

Now, my ankles are MAD.  Infuriated, really.  Walking everywhere tomorrow is gonna be torture, but I'm gonna have to just suck it up.  Why's that? 

Because tomorrow ONEREPUBLIC is coming to Campbell!!!  Every year, Campbell hosts a huge Spring concert, and I'm SO excited that I actually like the band that's here this year. :)  Of course, I can't actually be in the arena where the concert is held because the lights the band uses will make me have a seizure, but I've talked to the campus board who's set up and is organizing the whole thing, so I have permission to hang out in the upstairs lobby where I can still hear the band.  I'm excited! :)


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Being a girl is hard.

Exhibit A:  Right now, all I want to do is go to bed because I am just freakin exhausted after that stupid Lifetime Wellness test made me feel completely incompetent.  But I desperately need to pluck my eyebrows.  And because of the nerve damage and lack of coordination in my hands, that takes a good 30 to 45 minutes.  Why are beauty standards so much higher for girls?  Ha!

Seriously, though.  I really am tired.  Spending all weekend doing homework drains the energy right out of you.

Chelsea went back home yesterday.  Of course.  Mom tends to break like glass when stuff like this happens.  I still don't know what's been going on, and frankly, I don't know how much I really care at this point.  *shrugs*  As long is Blake is safe.

And so begins another week.

Naming Names

For years when I was little, I was absolutely obsessed with baby names. (I still am, but not quite to the same almost-creepy extent.) I was the girl who would sit around dreaming up names of all my future children. If I was bored, I could entertain myself by finding an empty notebook and creating lists upon lists of fictitious family trees, just so I could think about what names I thought sounded good together.
So I think it's safe to say that names have always been very fascinating to me. Something that has become of greater importance I get older, though, is the meaning behind the names. I started, naturally, with the meaning of my own name.

Mallory: of French origin (which I knew that mal means 'bad' in both Spanish and French, so this makes sense), meaning: ill-omened (from

Ann: of Hebrew origin, meaning: full of grace (something I learned from Ann Voskamp)

Put those two together, and essentially my names is Ill-omened, full of grace.

It kind of seems like an oxymoron, doesn't it? Ill-omened = bad. Full of grace = good.

But more than that, what that combination means for my life is astounding.

Taking a look at an outline of my life, and it could easily seem like I have a bad omen who has taken residence over my head. My dad dying. The endless health problems. Numerous surgeries. The lack of contact with my dad's family. My mom and her brother fighting because my cousin and I couldn't get along. Chelsea issues. Yeah, I think it's safe to say I've had more than my fair share of issues to deal with.

But then...bring the second half of my name into the picture. Full of grace. I may have problems to deal with, but my goal is to be forever full of grace. When satan wants me to focus on my problems, when the world expects me to be and tries to make me depressed, when my health problems are raging full-force, I want to face everything and everyone with boundless grace. It makes the fighter in me want to prove the world wrong and show them all that I am bigger than the surgeries. I am worth more than the family drama. I am stronger than depression.

Of course, I screw up. Repeatedly. Sometimes I act more ill-omened than full of grace. I'm a work in progress, and I will be until the day that I die. The important part, though?

I am a child of The King, and that King is far bigger than any title a name can give me.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Just another typical weekend.

Sleeping in a little.

Not getting out of my pajamas.



More homework.

And a little more homework.

There's really not much to say.  I'm trying to stay out of whatever is going on at home because I frankly just don't have the energy to deal with it.  It's just too bad my dorm phone doesn't have caller ID; it'd be way easier to avoid Chelsea's incessant phone calls.  Because apparently I can do something about it all from 2+ hours away?

Agh.  Whatever.  As soon as my laundry's done, I'm going to bed.  I can't do anymore homework tonight.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

No Words

Right now, I feel like my family is falling apart at the seams and I'm just a bystander who can do nothing to stop it.

All I know is that Mom kicked Chelsea out last night and she took Blake with her because Mom said if she didn't, Mom would have her arrested for abandonment.


So needless to say, I have no words.  But I did want to share a picture of Blake's 1 year photo shoot taken on his birthday.

Isn't he cute?  :)

Hope y'all are well.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Holy pants, Batman!

We have to do another French dialogue.

Last time, I got stuck doing it with Ian and Teri, who both suck at French and forgot to study their lines so we looked like a bunch of idiots, and I really didn't want to do it again this time.

So I asked Tyler, and he said yes.  Another plus was that Steegar didn't want us to do the same groups again.

Our dialogue is a parody of the boat fire incident, hence the whole Batman and Robin thing.  I, for one, think it's hilarious.

Too much to do, too little energy.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I usually avoid these types of things.

Things that the general population freaks out about.


Books. (I've still never read nor seen Twilight.)

TV shows.

Exhibit A:

Oh yes.  I went there.  Glee.

I used to think it was creepy that people were so obsessed with this show.  The idea seemed mediocre, and yet I can't even count how many of my friends rave about this show every Tuesday. 

I usually try to stay away from things that I know massive amounts of people are obsessed with.  I avoided Twilight like the plague.  I also stopped reading/watching Harry Potter.  Don't ask me why I do it, but the fact that this show was such a phenomenon made me repulsed by it.

Until last week.

I don't know what got into me, but last Tuesday, I decided to just watch one episode to see if I could take it.  I'm pretty sure I fell in love faster than a 13-year-old girl does with her middle school "boyfriend."

Before the one that just aired a couple hours ago, there were 37 episodes of Glee.  Guess how long it took me to watch all 37.

One week.

I started last Tuesday night.  By Sunday night, I had 13.  I finished the last one approximately 50 minutes before tonight's new episode came on.

I can honestly say I've never ever done that before.  But it's nice to be caught up.

Also? I love this show.

Like seriously.  I had no idea what I was missing.  Granted, the bazillion different couple combinations and love triangles (and squares and pentagons) could make your head spin right off your neck, but it's still amazing!  And I appreciate that they don't just do a bunch of Top 40 hits and Justin Bieber and stuff like that.  In fact, two of my favorite performances are a KISS song and a Billy Joel song.

Both of which are performed by this fine man.  Which leads me to my next point of positivity about this show.  The good lookin' guys.  Granted, they're all in their twenties playing high schoolers and I still don't believe that five football players, especially one with a mohawk who ends up in juvie, would ever join the glee club, but my point is that the characters are very realistic.  The school is realistic.  The topics they deal with are realistic.  All around it's just awesome.

So my point is this: first, thank you iTunes for the ability to rent episodes for a buck each.  That's the only reason I could get caught up on this show; second, if you don't watch this show, don't be as stupid as me and start. Immediately! :) has the most recent 5 episodes for free.  And Wikipedia has good recaps of the show. DO IT.

And if it helps, they have cool guest stars like Gwyneth Paltrow come on. ;)

Monday, March 14, 2011

Today was nice.

I got back to school about 11:30, which meant I missed History and Lifetime Wellness, but I made it to French and my Science Lab.

Chelsea had to go to Jacksonville this morning to get more meds from the psychologist (hallelujah that she remembered before she ran out completely), so my grandma just picked us both us, and we stopped and got Chelsea's meds and then drove straight onto Campbell.

This worked out pretty nicely.  I apparently didn't miss anything much of importance in History according to a girl who is in both that class and my French class, and Lifetime Wellness power points are on Blackboard.  And Chelsea slept the entire way there and I had my iPod, so I didn't have to listen to Chelsea's incessant questions or my grandmother's massive road rage for 2 hours.

I did have to have Mom call my History teacher though, so that she knew my excuse for not being there this morning wasn't fake.  We had a quiz, and you're only allowed to make up missed quizzes if you have an excused absence, so this was the only way I could think to prove to her that I was telling the truth, despite how immature it is to have your mommy call your college professor. ;)

I'm tired.  I spent way too much time watching Glee last night.  (More on that later.)

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I'm still at home.

I was supposed to go back to schoo ltoday, but of course, something had to get in the way of that.

Chelsea was holding Blake this afternoon and dropped him.  He banged his head so hard that Mom was too scared to leave and my grandma had stuff to do so I just couldn't leave.  Thankfully, and most importantly, Blake seems to be okay, but it was really scary for a while.

Luckily, I've been doing really well with absences and such this semester, so I can afford to miss tomorrow's classes.  My grandma is driving me back tomorrow.

I'm ready to go, though.  That is for sure.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Exactly What I Needed

I desperately needed a reprieve today.

I will admit that I think I'm PMSing right now, so I'm a little more irritable than usual, but I'm just seriously fed up with this house.

All the bad moods.

All the arguing.

All the Mom taking her frustrations out on me despite me trying to be the bright spot in her life while she and Chelsea go at each other.

(Needless to say, I'm very happy to be going back to school tomorrow.)

So when I found out a few days ago that Matt really was coming home for Spring Break, I prayed that I would be able to see him sometime between Friday night when he came home and Sunday afternoon when I left.  I was desperate for the reprieve he offers.

Well, he came over tonight for about an hour and a half.  It was exactly what I needed

We spent most of the time just laying on my bed talking. 

Okay, I spent most of the time talking.

But he listened.  Which is something I feel like I've been greatly lacking in lately.  Someone who hears me.

And you know what he said before he left?  "Let me know if anything else happens, if you need me."  He. cares.  He honestly cares.  I will never understand why I questioned him so much.  And he understands that I have no idea why I did it, but also that I couldn't help it.  This is why I love him so much (and this time I mean it as my best friend).  He just gets me.  He gets how I feel.   He gets how I think.  He gets how my mind and my heart work and process things and react to things.  And he doesn't get mad about it.  He truly is the most understanding person I know.

I am so lucky.

And you know what?  Despite my crazy ugly sweaty hair, I LOVE this picture.  Because it's us.  Real.  Not concerned with what we look like.  Just us.

Friday, March 11, 2011

This is why I hate migraines.

It's Friday night.

On Monday, I have a quiz in History and a lab report due.

I was planning on waking up at a ggood hour and getting everything done for those two classes, plus maybe some grading for Mom done.

That plan went down the toilet when I woke up with this horrendous migraine.

The new medicine I got prescribed yesterday won't be ready till tomorrow because it's a 3-month supply and our pharmacy won't have all of the pills till then.

So I've had to just suffer through it.

And now, I've got to try and suffer through this 38-page chapter, and then I'll probably crash.

Tomorrow, instead of spending time out with Mom, I'll have to work on my lab report.

The good news is that I (finally) started my 1000 Gifts list today, so I've got things to remind myself of how lucky I am. :)  The weirdo in me is kind of excited to see how long it will take me to get to 1000.  I wrote down today's date in my notebook so I won't forget.

Um, that's about it.  Right now, I'm kind of just praying this reading won't hurt too bad.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Tonight, I'm struggling.


To be happy.

To not be angry.

To feel wanted.

To feel appreciated.

And the weird thing is?

I'm not even completely sure why.

I think it has to do with the fact that every day I spend in this house is another day wasted with me being either completely ignored or yelled at when all I'm trying to do is be a good spot in my mom's day when she and Chelsea are at each other's throats.

I feel like I don't belong here anymore.  Don't get me wrong; I love my family more than anyone in the world, even when they drive me absolutely crazy.  I just feel...out of place.  Like there's nothing for us to talk about.  My mom and I haven't had a remotely important conversation in ages.  It's like I'm a visitor in my own home.

I love my family.

I just don't like them very much right now.

I don't like how they make me feel.

How being home makes me feel.

I feel very alone right now...

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

One stupid tooth.


That's how many teeth kept me from getting my braces off today.


I was really looking forward to today for that reason.

Oh well.

Tomorrow, I am off to Raleigh to see my migraine doctor.

I really, really hope that she has a new suggestion for these headaches.

They are, admittedly, a little better since I ran out of Propranolol last week, but it's still a big problem.


Onward we go...

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

More of the Usual


I should've seen this coming, too.

Today was......hard.

Chelsea was especially ornery, so she and Mom were at each other's throats all evening.

That meant that every time I tried to speak to Mom, I got yelled at because who better to take your frustration out on than the one who hasn't done anything?


The time at home with Blake is great, but I don't know that it's worth it.

That it's worth how I feel right now.

This house is so toxic.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Focus on that.

It seems my usual state of "OH MY LORD I AM ALLERGIC TO THIS HOUSE" has kicked into high gear.

I can not. stop. sneezing.

And it's driving me absolutely nuts.


Today is awesome.

I saw Dr. P.  He said my feet look awesome.  In fact, my right foot (the one that had to deal with the MRSA and having the steel removed) looks better than my left foot (which still has the steel in).  In his words, "You lucked out, Mallory. You lucked out."

Plus, Mom made lemon rosemary chicken for dinner.  Which was really icing on the cake of an awesome day.

Good reports and chicken.  I'm gonna choose to focus on that.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Keeping the Peace

Today has been a true test of my commitment to my "year of peace".

It's been a stressful day, to put it lightly.

Trying to comfort Mom while dealing with Chelsea has left me emotionally spent.

So if you could say a prayer for all of us, I'd appreciate it.

The highlight of my day is finding out that Matt is coming home for his Spring Break next weekend after all, so I should get to see him. :)

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Dear my beautiful Blake man,

Today is your first birthday.


I honestly can hardly believe it's been an entire year.  I remember your birth like it was yesterday.  Waiting all night long for your arrival.  (I'm the only one who didn't sleep all night.)  Watching my sister, your mommy, push you out and bring you into this big, crazy, beautiful world.  Not wanting to sit down even though my feet throbbed because I couldn't stop staring at you through the nursery window.  Holding you. 

This was taken when you were about 12 hours (give or take a few) old. March 5, 2010 

It's safe to say that I was in heaven.  I've always loved babies, but you are special.  I immediately fell in love with you that day.  It was (and still is, kind of) like you were my own child, not just my nephew.  By the grace of God, you were born just before my Spring Break, so I had the entire next week off to do nothing but snuggle with you.  Leaving you at home as I left the next weekend was so hard.

As any good college student does, I counted down the days till the end of the semester.  Making it through the first week of May meant not only summer and freedom from classes, work, and tests, but it meant that I finally got to go home and see you.  Between your birthday and the time I left college for the summer, I only saw you for three days when I got an extra day off the weekend of Easter.  It was far too long for this proud aunt.  I had your birth announcement taped up on my wall so I could look at you.  But I knew babies change so much every day, that I needed to get home and see you again.  You were the best reward imaginable after a long semester.

Two weeks after my summer started, I had foot surgery.  That left me unable to move very much, which meant that I could sit and hold you and play with you and feed you.  Your mommy was thrilled with the extra help, and I was thrilled for a totally inevitable excuse to do nothing but soak in your babyness.

This is you on June 6, 2010.  You were 3 months old.

That summer, because of my surgeries, I spent pretty much 24/7 with you.  And I loved every second of it.  I couldn't, and still can't, get enough of you.  I got to sit around and play with you and didn't have to change any of your diapers; I couldn't ask for anything else!  Every day your looks changed a little, and every day you amazed me with the newest thing you showed us you could do.

This is you on August 5, 2010, your 5-month birthday.

As much as I absolutely love my university and my life there, I was so sad to leave to go to college on August 14 because it meant that I would be two and a half hours away, and not spending every possible second with you like I had for the last 3 months.  I came home in September for Labor Day for 3 days.  As a blessing in disguise, at the end of September, I ended up having another emergency surgery on my foot and got to spend two whole unexpected weeks with you.  You made my illness so much better with your laughs, smiles, and goofy personality. :)

I went back to school on October 10, and starting that day, I was counting down the days till Thanksgiving Break just so I could see you again.  I loved college, and still do, but I missed you every day.  It was so weird every time I left to go from the light you bring to our house to the silence of my dorm room.  Before I knew it, though, it was time to go home again. 

This is you on November 27, 2010, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, at eight and a half months old.  I remember being so excited because you'd gotten really good at standing during that weekend.

One of the plus sides to a college schedule is that it was less than two weeks from the day I went back to school (November 28) to the day I came home for my month-long Christmas break (December 9).  Because of my exams, those 11 days flew by in no time.  You battled many ear infections (and subsequent allergic reactions to the antibiotics for the infections) so you spent much of November and December very, very sick, but you had ear tubes put in on December 20, and after that, you were practically a brand new baby!!  We were all so relieved.  Your first Christmas was one of the most beautiful days in my memory.  It made me realize that I have absolutely no idea what life was like before you were born.  We spent Christmas morning at your great-uncle Kirk (Mimi's brother) and great-aunt Donna's house, and every single one of us, when we weren't eating, spent the whole morning either watching you play with your toys or playing with you.  Cousin Dusty was your favorite.  We always knew he was a goofball, but you turned him into a little kid all over again.  It was such a precious sight to see.  You've changed all our lives, sweet boy.  That day was just the first concrete proof of it.

This was you on Christmas morning December 25, 2010, at nine and a half months old.  It's amazing how much you change month-to-month.

You, your mommy, Mimi, Mommom, and I went to South Carolina for New Year's.  Your first overnight family trip, and you did amazingly well.  I love how easy you are (and I know your mommy does, too!).  On January 13, I went back to college for the start of a new semester.  I had plans to come home for a weekend in February, but because you, your mommy, and Mimi were all sick, I had to stay at school.  I was so sad, but knew it was for the best.

I came home for the first time this semester yesterday.  Which brings us up to today.  Your birthday.

You today, your first birthday, March 5, 2011.  Even more beautiful than the day you were born. :)

Today was a low-key day.  Your Mimi is a little heartbroken that she couldn't afford to do more, but if there is one thing that you never ever ever have to doubt, darling Blake, it is that your Mimi loves you as if she gave birth to you.  Because of special circumstances in our family that you will one day learn of when you're older, Mimi has had to do a lot more than your typical grandmother.  Don't get me wrong, your mommy loves you, too, the best that she knows how.  But your Mimi....let's just say you are a lucky, lucky little boy to have a Mimi as wonderful as she is. :)

I love you, too, my little Blake man.  I was so nervous when your mommy found out that she was pregnant, but now?  It's completely impossible for me to imagine life without you in it.  There is nothing I would rather do than sit on the floor playing with you and making funny faces at you, just so I can hear you laugh.  You are the cutest, happiest, goofiest, most all-around wonderful baby I know. 

I hope you always know that no matter what happens, I will be here for you.  Even when I have my own kids one day, I want you to feel comfortable to come talk to me.  (Let's face it, you'll one day want to talk to anyone but your mom!)  I will do my very best to help you, to love you, and to guide you.

I pray that you learn to love God.   I worry that I may be the only source of light to show you how amazing and wonderful my God truly is, and I pray that He gives me the strength and the tools to help you want to love and follow him with a passion.  I pray that you always keep your sense of humor.  I pray you'll always want to hug the way you do now.  I pray that you keep your curiosity.  I pray that you grow into a respectable man, husband, and father.  I pray that you fight and stand up for what is right, even when it's not popular.  I have so many prayers for you, I'd be here all night if I tried to list them all. So I will sum it up the best I can with some lyrics from one of my all-time favorite songs.

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger
May you never take one single breath for granted
God forbid love ever leave you empty-handed

I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance
And when you get the chance to sit it out or dance

I hope you dance.

I love you, Blake Richard. 

Friday, March 4, 2011

Home sweet home.

I am home.

It is late.

I'm grading for Mom.

I am exhausted.

Blake's still cute.

Birthday post to come.

Good night.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

It's 10:17 pm.

Which means I have exactly 16 hours 13 minutes until my grandmother's anticipated arrival (and knowing her need to be early for everything, probably less than that).

This also means that I have 16 hours 13 minutes, 2 classes, and 1 French test standing between me and my beautiful Spring Break.

I can say with absolute certainty that I have never been so excited for a Friday in my entire life.

Completely cliché, I know.  But very, very true.  Especially after my two tests today.  I have officially hit burnt out. 

I don't just want this week off, I need it.

I don't mean to sound full of complaints.  I really don't. 

I'm just tired.

I'm ready to be home.

In my own bed.

With my family.  (Yes, even Chelsea.)

To be able to think about something that doesn't have to do with Buies Creek.

People ask me if I have any big plans for the break.  I tell them, "NOPE. And that's exactly the way I want it."

Of course, I do have a bunch of appointments:  Dr. P in Wilmington for my feet on Monday, dentist and hair on Tuesday, orthodontist (braces off!!) on Wednesday, and migraine doctor in Raleigh on Thursday.  My poor grandma, she's going to be absolutely sick of me and of driving by the end of next week.  This is what happens, though, when you only have one week to fit all your appointments into.

But oh yeah, my Statistics test was fine.  I got a 99, which means I missed one out of 18 (got 4 extra credit points), and I have no idea which one I missed, but oh well.  I got a 104 on the first test, and since test grades are the only things that make up our overall class grade, my average is over 100.  So I think I'm good. ;)

The Science test was...meh.  Average.  I probably got a B like I did last time.  If I get a B I'll be happy.  Science is just not my thing, you know?  And last semester, I got B's on all the tests (also the only thing that makes up the semester grade in this class) and I guess because of my A in lab got an A for the semester, so I'm not concerned.

The French test should be a piece of cake, of course.  I'm not concerned, really.  I'll review before class tomorrow, since I have a huge break between History and French, but really, I just see it as a roadblock between me and Break.  Just one more thing I gotta do.

So yes.  I am packed, save for what I have to use in the morning.  I'm about to hit the sack.  And when I go to bed, I will be smiling. :)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

People fascinate me.

One of the many fun perks about Campbell is that the Campus Activities Board plans various activities.  Most of them, granted, are pretty corny, but this past Monday was the annual Cardboard Boat Race.

And yes, it's exactly as the name implies.

Kids get in groups, make boats out of nothing but cardboard and duct tape, go to the campus pool, and race them.  "Awards" are given out for fastest boat, best design, best sink, etc.  People get really into it, too.

Well, apparently, something unexpected happened this year.  Someone dressed up as Batman, went to the race and entertained people before the races started.  Somehow, without anyone noticing, Batman managed to sneak into the water after the races were over, and light a boat on fire.  And then snuck off.


How someone dressed as Batman can sneak out unseen in a pool full of people is beyond me.

And more importantly, why on earth would anybody expel the energy to buy fireworks, sneak them into the area, and then light a boat on fire when no one was looking? 

I mean, aside from the fact that it was completely stupid, it fascinates me that they found any point in it.  And apparently someone turned Batman and his co-conspirators in, so the enjoyment lasted not even 48 hours.

People fascinate me.

I guess the lesson to be learned, if anything, is that chlorine ruins the fire-extinguishing properties of water.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Say it.  I promise you'll laugh.


See?  You laughed, didn't you?

And to make myself seem a little less bizarre, it's the name of an actual place.  But most call it "Lake Webster". (I wonder why.)

Whew.  Another day down.

It was an easy day, thank heavens.  Only have Statistics and Science on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and since both classes have tests this Thursday, all we did was review. 

I'm excited for tomorrow.  Bible Study time!  It's amazing how much I already look forward to that. :)


But really, I don't have much else to say than that, so I'll leave you with this beauty:


That is the longest place name in the world.  And no, don't ask me how to pronounce it.