Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I try not to let resentment get the best of me. I try not to dwell on the negative aspects of things. I even try to live by the tried and true advice, "Don't sweat the small stuff." I'd like to think of myself as an eternal optimist, one that chooses to see the glass as half-full instead of half-empty. I even believe that everything, yes everything, happens for a reason (even if we don't yet fully understand what that reason is).

But then there are days, moments like the one I had today, where I felt my resentment-meter starting to rise to the point where I could barely contain myself and had an uncontrollable urge to reach across the table and smack someone. Of course, I would never do that to anyone; however, this rant is a result of a conversation I had today that I must get out of my system before I explode.

WARNING: If you're looking to read a post filled with my usual "eternal optimism," you've come to the wrong place today. :)

For two months, there has been a blurb in our sons' school bulletin each week that has asked for parental volunteers to organize the end-of-the-year carnival for the elementary school. Each week, I'd look at the little ad and tell myself that I couldn't possibly take on one more responsibility. People who know me well also know that saying 'no' is not one of my strong-suits when it comes to volunteering for things. After two months of seeing the ad, I finally convinced myself to call school and ask if they had any parental volunteers; afterall, the carnival would not be possible without them. As it turns out, there were already two volunteers signed up, but neither wanted to head the planning. Naturally, I was asked to fill that role and couldn't refuse (failure 826 in the "saying no" department). A "good mother" would do this for her kids and their school, right?

I realized shortly after trying to orchestrate the first meeting of volunteers, that it would get interesting...FAST. I had set the first planning meeting for today, Wednesday, at noon. Frankly, it's the only time I could get away from work, school, and my other responsibilities long enough to get together. As I was calling the other mothers, two of them complained that the meeting was at noon, stating that it was too hard to get away from HOME at lunchtime. Interestingly enough, they both said, "Oh, you work outside the home, don't you..." in as snooty of a voice as you could possibly imagine.

So today we had the first planning meeting with the now 5 volunteers besides myself. One mother, whom I'd never had the pleasure of meeting until today, stormed in late, complaining about how busy she was. Her little tirade went something like this:

"Oh my God. I have so much to do. I have been running all over this week pricing flowers, driving back and forth to the cottage to get it ready for this weekend, planning parties for our friends, having our pool cleaned, and trying to get our golf cart fixed. Oh, and when am I going to have time to golf in the midst of all this? I am just so busy. I just have to give up something in my busy schedule. I'm just going to have to give up mushroom hunting. I'm just far too busy to do that anymore. There are never enough hours in the day. I am so exhausted."

Gag me with an effin spoon, lady. Honestly, I wanted to reach across the table and choke her. How can people be so self-absorbed? I wish I had that kind of "busy-ness" to be pre-occupied with. Instead, my weeks are filled with constant worry dealing with Christian's illness and its effects on our family in addition to a myriad of other concerns with things like GERMS, balancing working 50 hours a week with taking classes on my master's degree, GERMS, taking Nick to allergy shots, Nick's baseball games two nights a week, Rob working late one night a week, household chores, GERMS, doctor appointments, blood draws, medicine shipments, homework (for both me and the boys), and carnival planning. Did I mention GERMS?

I know this is our life; the good, the bad, and the ugly. I accept it (somewhat). I know that everything happens for a reason. I get it. I really do. But what I don't get is how some people can walk around being so oblivious of the struggles that others face, not even stopping for one second to think about people like Rob and I who haven't had time alone in almost SIX years for anything more than a dinner together. She's worried about her cottage being all messy when her friends come over and we worry about having time to do laundry and go grocery shopping. She talked about how badly she needed to get away to the cottage for a break, while we will never get a break from the things we have to deal with. More importantly, Christian will never get a break. While she's complaining about how hard it is to go up to her cottage every week, we're having a difficult time keeping up with monthly trips to Royal Oak for our medicine so our son doesn't get sick and die. While she gets three vacations a month (and complains about how much work they are to get ready for), Rob and I can never take a vacation because we're terrified to leave Christian with someone else, have used all of our vacation time for Christian's treatments, and have to stock-up on vacation days just in case Christian gets sick in the future and he needs us. She's exhausted from doing all these fun things, and we're exhausted from not being able to sleep while we listen to see if Christian is breathing well on a baby monitor, scared that something might happen to him in the middle of the night.

She would never survive our life. Thankfully, she and most others will never have to know what it's like to go through what we live every day. But just because you don't walk in our shoes on a daily basis doesn't mean that it's ok to live in your fantasy world with blinders on, oblivious of the struggles that others face. I feel as though God only gives people as much as they can handle, and I'm flattered (and humored to tears at times) by the amount that He's plopped onto our over-flowing plate. Then again, I also realize that there are others in the this world (like the mom from today) who this would likely be far too much for.

When I processed my feelings about this incident last night, I began to realize that even though I was initially angry at this mom, I felt more sorry for her than anything else. There are times (many times, these days) when I think about how unfair this is for all of us. It's so easy to allow yourself to go down that path of "Why me? Why us?" I believe this is a normal part of the grieving process when it comes to living with a child with chronic illness and we do our best not to let this "stinkin' thinkin'" consume us.

We know we're not the only ones that face this type of adversity on a daily basis. We're certainly no stranger to the struggles that a child/family living with chronic illness has to deal with. However, I can say that over the past five (almost six years) of dealing with this, we have never felt more alone in all our lives.

While some families have been living it up in the summertime and enjoying the holidays together, we have practically lived in hospitals and have spent two holidays there. Until recently, we were petrified to go anywhere with lots of people (including to church) for fear that Christian would pick up an illness that would put him in the hospital. While many kids have the good fortune of only having to go to their pediatrician 1-2x a year and hardly ever get shots beyond the routine ones, we practically lived at our pediatrician's office and Christian has gotten more pokes than most will ever see in their entire lifetime. For years, we were told by doctor after doctor that we were overreacting with Christian. More times than I could count I was told the same speel over and over; "Your son goes to daycare. It's common for children in daycare to get 10-12 colds/respiratory infections a year. He'll grow out of it." "Just be patient," they told me, though my maternal instincts knew better. I could go on and on.

I read a blog written by a mother who has three small children, all who have Primary Immune Deficiencies. The mom, Dayna, summed it up PERFECTLY by saying:

"There was a time, not too many years ago when I felt terribly alone. In less than an 18 month period all three of my kids were diagnosed as missing part of their immune system and then started their IVIG infusions.I felt isolated, and lonely and I wondered why no one understood. I hurt in ways I can't even explain. I worried about my children's futures, I worried about what they would be able to accomplish, would they go the places they wanted to without worry? Would they travel on planes and explore the world as they pleased or would they spend most of their lives tied to a hospital?

When I thought about what I wanted for my children, I wished that my children would never have to feel as alone as I felt when they were first diagnosed and sick, I wished that we could live with so much less worry, that we could be like anyone else. I wished that we could get explore without needing to sanitize what we touched first."

In those two paragraphs, Dayna easily articulated what I have been feeling for YEARS. When I read them, I instantly felt not quite as alone. I've realized that maybe my calling in becoming a counselor transcends what I initially believed it to be. In my heart, I truly want to be able to help children and families who are struggling with chronic illness, helping them to know that they, too, are not alone. Even in the midst of some of my worst days dealing with all of this, I often think about ways that I can help make a difference in the lives of others going through this. Maybe this is the fundamental difference between me/us and the carnival mom. I feel as though we're blessed, sickness and all, because within the struggles we face, I believe that we are also presented opportunities to help others. And, in the long run, those opportunities will help us heal.

Monday, October 6, 2008


"Welcome To Holland", written by Emily Perl Kingsley
©1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved.

I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability/chronic illness - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this …

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."
"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place. So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you never would have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around … and you begin to notice Holland has windmills … and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy … and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say, "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away … because the loss of that dream is a very, very significant loss.

But … if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to go to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things … about Holland.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Father I Wish I Didn't Have

It's true; the only father I've ever known for my entire life is a crack addict. I even have an entire blog devoted to that hell, A Daughter's Journey. Things have been quiet over there for a while because I haven't had a lot to blog about. Naturally, I knew it was an eerie calm before the storm simply because of those ESP factor "gut feelings" I tend to have.

Last Thursday, driving to show my mom our new house, my cell phone rang. It was a number that I didn't recognize, but thought that it was our realtor's broker calling because I expected him to. Unfortunately, it was my father, who I haven't spoken to in a very, very long time.

My first thought was that his speech sounded like he had a mouth full of marbles. My mom listened to him speak long enough to tell me that's exactly how he sounds when he is high. Despite my knowing better, I listed for 15 minutes to what he had to say simply because I could not get a word in edge-wise. I listened to all sorts of shit about how he'll take responsibility for actually smoking crack; however, it was because of things that we all did (mom, brothers, and I) that led him there in the first place. He kept pressuring me for a timeline as to how long it would take to forgive him, to which I responded that there is no timeline. He restated everything he told me in our last conversation many months ago, most of which I don't believe in the first place. I listened to him the entire way and finally hung up because I could take no more. He then proceeded to leave 2 voicemail messages for me, yet again restating the same things over and over.

I was instantly sick to my stomach. The not knowing is the hardest part. Maybe he was telling the truth. Maybe he is clean. Maybe I should give him a chance. Maybe he's just one of those people who are arrogant assholes at the core and they can't help that. Thursday night, I watched a TiVo'd version of Oprah that was all about forgiveness (which further guilted me in to thinking that maybe I should give him a chance and hear him out). The not knowing about his using status is the hardest part for my heart; however, my brain always knows better. I knew that if I gave it 2 or 3 days without calling me and respecting my personal space and my right to think things through before calling him back (if indeed I decided to do so), things might be ok. I also knew that his typical pattern is that if he does not receive a call back in 2-3 days, he leaves a string of messages on our cell phone voicemails that contain the most hateful words anyone could possibly hear.

In his typical fucking arrogant asshole fashion exactly three days from the first call, I had the pleasure of experiencing not one, not two, not three, but FOUR God-awful messages from the man I once called my father. Because I am so full of rage at the moment, I have decided to type them out here. These messages, although completely heartbreaking and full of hate, will help to keep me grounded and remind me why I have made the decisions I have to keep him out of my life and that of my husband and children. Most of these messages are barely understandable and probably make little sense to my readers here, but I had to get it out before bed tonight. All of this is just full of lies and hate.

Message #1 - Thursday, June 12, 2008 @ 4:44 p.m.

Becky, please call me back when you get a chance because I really need to talk to you. I really do love you and need to talk to you. At least we need to talk. I’m telling you what, when my mom and my dad passed away, I wished I would’ve talked to them, told them I loved them more, and spent more time with them. You and your brothers are making a big mistake by not talking to me. I want you to know the things I went through too, ok? I pray for your mom every day, I ask God to watch over her, and I forgive her for the lies she told about me that weren’t true.

How do you think it felt for me being in jail for 3 months for lies someone told about me? I wanted you to know that. You know, I used to keep a trash bag in my cell when I was in jail for when I had enough and I would just put it over my head.

Your Uncle Jimmy wrote me in jail and he said, “For someone being in jail for something they didn’t do, I never heard any words of hurt or revenge from you.” I don’t. I understand how mad your mother was.

I understand how you hurt, Becky. You need time to heal. I really would like you to call me back. I hope you call me back, but even if you don’t, I want you to ask your mother if it’s ok to call her and you can call and leave me her phone number.

I love you with all my heart. I want you to know the truth about everything. I did what I did. I’m sorry, I’m responsible, but that’s me. I know you cried about me. I felt like a butthead. I was hiding in a crack house when my wife and son were driving down the street looking for me. I was ashamed of myself. It was really hard on me too, ok. There were a lot of things said about me that weren’t true. I’m going to let your mom talk responsibility for that one.

I love you. I love you. I love you. Remember that always. I hope you’ll forgive me, ok. Thank you.

Message #2 - Thursday, June 12, 2008 @ 5:20 p.m.

Hey, Becky. I’m sorry to keep bothering you. I really did enjoy talking to you. I’d like to talk to you and listen to what you have to say and I’d like you to listen to what I have to say. It’s just between you and me. I never lied to you and I never will. I don’t want you to tell anyone what I say and I won’t tell anyone what you say. Everything I say is truthful. I asked Clyde to talk to all you guys and tell you that I never threatened any of you. I don’t know if he ever talked to you. I was really hurt too. I’m sorry I hurt you and anybody. I made a mistake. I do love you. You did try the best of everyone to help me and I really did appreciate it. I fell down, ok. The addiction thing is something that I didn’t understand until I did this stuff and that’s when I understood addiction and it’s something way different than you think it is. You really tried and I love you. If you get a chance, call me back. I really love talking to you, and I do want to talk to you. Please don’t yell at me and me and I won’t yell at you. What we say is between us. Tell the boys I love them. Tell Rob I said hi, too. There was never any animosity between us and there shouldn’t have been. I’m sorry I made you cry and that I hurt you. I can’t say anything more than that. It hurts me so bad that you guys don’t talk to me. I told the doctor the other day that I should just jump off a bridge or jump in front of the bus or something, but with my luck, I’d just get hurt more. Please just call me back. I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you.

Message #3 - Sunday, June 15, 2008 @ 8:58 a.m.

Hi, Becky. This is your dad. I just want to tell you, you know, I’ve never said anything to you, and I forgive you for writing the judge and telling him to give me the maximum time for a lie. I never did anything to your mother. You know, I knew you knew I lied all the time because I never lied to you ever in my whole life. You’re the worst daughter a man could ever have. You owe me an apology. You are mean to your kids; you don’t want nothing from me. Rob is still borrowing my tools and Joe for the cell phone that him and mom put in my name that they didn’t tell me about. I was real rotten to him too. I guess since he sends his presents back to me for his daughter, I guess he didn’t want nothing me. I guess he’s not using my tools or that shit, huh?

It’s about time your mother told everyone the truth. I forgive her. She’s rotting in hell for keeping my kids and grandchildren away from me. You’d better grow up in life. You know I love you forever. I never want to hear from you again until you apologize to me. You’ve been told a big lie and you believed it and wrote that crap bout me. How did I hurt your mother when I was the only one hurt? Oh boy, I guess I can’t beat up your mother, huh? I didn’t even ruffle her dress. If I would have stayed there, they would’ve arrested Michael because I was the only one who was hurt. Becky – it’s about time you grow up. Don’t be a hypocrite about being a Christian either, because you know nothing about forgiveness. I apologized for what I did. Your mom put us in this position. Did your mother tell you about a $3,000 bill that she never paid? Ask your Uncle Paul about it because I found the subpoena for it on the table. You need to find out the truth about some of this stuff. You think you know everything. You think she’s so innocent that you won’t talk to your father. I should’ve left your mother years ago for how awful you and Michael are. You’re rotten as hell and I hate you.

Message #4 - Sunday, June 15, 2008 @ 10:17 a.m.

Hey, I was just wondering. I’ll pray this doesn’t happen; that God doesn’t give you the maximum sentence for the lies you believed about your father and how you’re treating your father and the lies you believed that weren’t true. I hope your children will forgive you for being such a bad mother and keeping them away from their grandfather for lies you didn’t even know about. Maybe if someone said something bad about you I’ll never talk to you again and write the judge and tell him to give you the maximum sentence. You did it to me, Becky. I want you to understand in your wildest dreams, if you ever once decide your mother and how you and anyone in the world and how I could possibly attack your mother, you’re retarded. But I still forgive you and I love you, but you are rotten as hell.

Message #5 - Sunday, June 15, 2008 @ 10:18 a.m.

Oh, Beck. I just want to tell you, you know, how happy you would be if you saw Rob once a month but when he came home, he had to go help your mother. How trilled he would be. You did that to me every time, you and mother. I came home once a month and she had to go babysit for you or do something for you. Boy was I happy.

Message #6 - Sunday, June 15, 2008 @ 10:20 a.m.

Hey, Beck. Remember when they kicked you out of school and the teacher said all those bad things about you. I should’ve never listened to one word you said and told the principal to kick you out of school and that’s where you belonged! HA!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Top 10 Reasons Why Caucasians Shouldn't Use Hair-Care Products Intended for African Americans (no matter how in touch with your inner-sistah you feel)

So, I was cleaning out from underneath my bathroom sink two nights ago in preparation for our impending move and I happen across a bottle of "Smooth N' Shine Polishing Spray." I thought to myself, "Oh, Kymmie must've left this when she was here in December," and I put it back under the sink.

Knowing full-well that this was a black hair-care product but feeling desperate because my hair (in all of its 'whiteness') was just "more dull and unshiny" than normal, the "Smooth N' Shine Polishing Spray" was calling my name in a hard-core way. I think to myself, "Oh, what can it hurt?" and even decide to read the bottle to see if it strictly forbids "white people" from using said product. No warning on the bottle, so I go for it! So, the following represents the Top 10 Reasons Why That Was Not a Good Idea!

1. The bottle does not specify how many sprays to use of the stuff. So, naturally, I start with 1 or 2 sprays. 2 sprays is definitely not enough to fix dull, unshiny, white-people hair.

2. TEN (10) sprays certainly did the trick.

3. ONE (1) spray was definitely too many!

4. It's true - my hair did straighten better; however, my head also looks like I poured half a pound of bacon grease on it!

5. Not knowing what to do to fix the problem, it was necessary to call Kymmie for a "beauty intervention," realizing that she was going to pee her pants due to the hysterical laughter that was about to ensue.

6. Kymmie informed me that it was necessary to strip my hair of all impurities (including the "Smooth N' Shine Polishing Spray) using special Neutrogena shampoo. Kymmie warned me that this would really make my hair dry, dull, and disgusting, but that it had to be done if I ever had hope of getting rid of bacon grease head. This is the point where I realized that perhaps said product was really not intended for those who are Caucasian.

7. I had a further realization that 10 squirts of this stuff equates to washing your hair approximately 4 times with special Neutrogena shampoo that seems to have the same effect on your hair as say battery acid would have when on skin.

8. No amount of conditioner will EVER restore the moisture to my poor hair.

9. It is not a good idea, no matter how dry and brittle white hair now is after this beauty intervention, to reach for the "hair grease" also left under the bathroom sink, in a desperate attempt to put moisture back into hair and scalp. Even a little bit of that stuff on a white head is TOO MUCH.

10. Washing your hair with special Neutrogena shampoo multiple times a day for the next week might begin to get the hair grease out, but I'm thinking that there are no guarantees at this point. It might be a good idea to step away from the beauty products.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Out of the Mouths of Babes!

My children (and husband) are hysterical most of the time. These four guys are the funniest around and keep me laughing constantly. Here are some of conversations we've had over the past few days. Keep in mind that the youngest boys are 4 and 6, thus explaining the abundance of what my youngest likes to call "bathroom talk."

* * * * *

Conversation 1

Mom: Nick, do you have to go pee?

Nick: No
Mom: Then why are you holding your crotch?
Nick: Because it's sweaty!
Conversation 2
Mom: Christian, why are you grabbing your butt?
Christian: Because it's itchy!
Conversation 3 (in the middle of Olive Garden eating dinner)
Christian: Smell that stink?
Mom: Christian, SHHHHHHHH!
Christian: I tooted!
Conversation 4
Mom: Christian, I love you sweetheart!
Christian: I love you too, sweetie!
Mom: You make me laugh, baby.
Christian: You are as beautiful as a MagiKarp
Conversation 5 (the park)
Mom: Nick, it's not a good idea to ride the merry-go-round after drinking that 32 oz. red Slurpee
Nick: Oh, mom, I'm perfectly fine. What's the worst that can happen? Geez!
Mom: I'll tell you the worst that can happen - you can be puking up that Slurpee if you don't be careful
20 minutes later...
Nick: Mom, I'm not feeling so good
Mom: I told you, Nick. You should rest. We'll be home soon.
Nick: Mom, I'm REALLY not feeling good (*insert the 'puke is churning' cry here*)
Mom: Here's the empty Slurpee cup, Nick. Puke in this if you have to before we get home

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Grateful For...

I've had some degree of trouble lately sitting down to the computer. Yes, I often tout the excuse that "I'm busy" (and I am); however, my lack of sitting down at the keyboard has more to do with the fact that the things I want/need to write about expend a good deal of emotional energy, and most days, I'm just not prepared for that. It's definitely a character flaw of mine that came about within the last few years and I do recognize the need to work on that in the near future. Because I've been feeling a little down lately with all of the stressors in my life and could use a "pick-me-up", I decided to pen a "Grateful for..." list, yet another post inspired by Kym.

* * * * *
In no particular order...
1. I am grateful for Memorial Day weekend 11 years ago and for the two people I once called friends who left me in a situation that forever changed my life. At my expense, those people taught me what friendship is not.
2. I am grateful for the two true friends I have in my life now who make me a better person, and without them, I wouldn't be me.
3. I am grateful for Ricky-Roo because even though we are constantly at each other's throats (in a funny way), he always makes me laugh. His friendship brings out a side of me that I had forgotten was there.
4. I am grateful for Doozie's banana splits...even if it's 40-degrees and you have to stand in line for an hour to get one.
5. I am grateful for my baby, Christian, who continues to teach me so much about life and living, and despite his chronic health troubles, has a spirit that is truly inspiring and magical. I am also grateful for his "old soul" that knows just when I need a little cheering up because he'll take my face in his tiny little hands, look me right in the eye, and says, "Mommy, you are as beautiful as a flower stem." I.heart.him.
6. I am grateful for my Nicholas because he has such a fighting (and stubborn) spirit and has the ability to always make me laugh. Although he would deny it, he reminds me so much of myself. His drive and tenacity (and occasional temper tantrum because he got an A- instead of an A) inspire me to be a better mom.
7. I am grateful for the moments with Zach were I don't feel the need to pull my hair out because of an irrational insecurity that I'll never be the kind of step-mom that he needs or deserves. Without him knowing it, Zach and I have more in common than he realizes, and it's those unrealized bonds that will help us get through these trying teenage years.
8. I am grateful for the alarm on my phone going off to alert me that I should be at work in 15 minutes, yet I'm still sitting her in my robe with wet hair. More of my list later....

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Gut Feelings

I am the self-proclaimed queen of "gut feelings." I think this curse,, was passed down through my grandmother and my mother and then on to me. I seem to have this innate ability to have "gut feelings" about things well before they even happen. I'm convinced that it's a rather eerie form of ESP or something like that. I have correctly predicted many of my own life-altering events based on these gut feelings which others can even vouch for.

So, because of these gut feelings, I shouldn't be surprised about what transpired this evening.

After work, we drove out to the house we are/were planning on buying for a second round of inspections with our building inspector. The first round of inspections went ok, not stellar, and there was some work the seller needed to do as a result. I wasn't feeling great about this first round of inspections, but thought I was just worrying too much (like I have a tendency to do). As a result of the first inspection, we decided that the seller needed to do some work (like install an access to the attic for us to verify the type of insulation that was supposedly installed). There are many reasons more than this, but I have had a bad feeling about this house from the time of the first inspection. The feeling has been nagging at me for weeks, yet I have chosen to ignore it.

After our second round of inspections tonight, my gut feelings seem to have gotten the best of me. Not so suprising is the fact that the insulation was not what the seller boasted it was. In some places, there is only 4" of insulation (at most). This is on top of the fact that there is not a system in place to empty the water from the crock that is installed in the basement, and a whole host of other issues that, on their own, might not amount to that much, but when added all up, we're starting to talk about a considerable amount of money just to make this BRAND NEW house liveable.

Rob's at a baseball game right now, so I haven't talked this over with him yet; however, I am leaning toward withdrawing our offer on this house. My gut feelings have been telling me for quite some time now that this isn't the house for us, but I've been ignoring the nagging feeling in the pit of my stomach.

Moral of the Story: If you are cursed (or blessed) with these gut feelings, they really are there to protect and warn you. The trick is that they only work in that way if you LISTEN to them.