Tuesday, May 27, 2014

we got it

we henigins, we're an interesting lot...from the biggest to the smallest.  we are nerds.  we might deny it.  we might try to hide it from the outside world.  well, until i decide to proudly claim it on a blog.  let me give some examples.

1).  we wear socks with our keens.  in my defense, i do only do that when camping.  doug, however, might be caught at anytime and anywhere, in them.

2).  we wear sunglasses when its pouring rain outside cuz that's just the way we roll.

3). we wear headbands.

4).  we set up redneck water parks in our driveway

5).  we watch cartoons while wearing a watering can on our head.

6).  we take selfies while pretending to be asleep...well, at least the one with the camera is pretending!

7).  when we do sleep, we sleep...interesting.

8).  we wear the dog's muzzle when we can.

9).  and, most importantly, we are ready for the inevitable alien invasion.

you can't be taught this kind of cool, people.  you've either got it or you don't.  and the henigins?  yeah, we got it.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

biographies, cynicism, fantasies and a surprise ending

let's pretend i'm a consistent blogger and it is normal to find random blog posts about library books on this site. 

i actually got to go to the library by myself today, which means i actually got to visit the adult section.  a rarity when you have a toddler. 

my sister (corrie) had given me several recommendations of non-fiction and biography books to try out.  somehow, she always manages to find really interesting ones so i typically tap into that book source when i need suggestions.  as luck would have it, my library didn't have any of them. first, i wandered down the non-fiction area.  without a recommendation that's like looking for a needle in the haystack.  plus, sometimes i just have to have a break from my obsession with the Holocaust, survivor stories and genocides (macabre, i know). so, i started wandering down the biography section.

biography section:  (1) full of books of many, many, many, many people
                                  (2)  full of multiple books by multiple authors on the same people

cynical thought #1 while browsing:  it is amazing how many people that i could care less about have books written about them that i can't even feign an interest in (how'd you like that use of that book word, doug?)

cynical thought #2 while browsing:  well, i probably wouldn't read a book about my life, either

so, after my pointless wandering and wondering in the biographies section, i went to the fiction section.  i like fiction.  typically i like historical fiction, but over the last few years I've gotten into fantasy, as well.  it's fun to escape into a world that doesn't look anything like ours.  i mean, who wouldn't ride a dragon if they had the opportunity?  that's just a no-brainer.  the problem is that sometimes i want to feel smart and as though i'm actually learning something.  but, until corrie and my library can sit down and have a discussion about what books the library should stock, i guess i'm stuck riding dragons.

and let's be honest about books in general... reading anything after A Tale of Two Cities is just a disappointment, anyway.

surprise ending: it is probably one of the last times i'll be in the library alone or be able to read for awhile anyway.  there will be a Henigin again on October 6th!

Monday, December 10, 2012

a little surgery here, a little surgery there

WOW!!  it has been a crazy last two and half months...and i used capital letters, so you know i'm serious.

doug and i made our trip to california.  we were so blessed to have mia's grandparents and then her aunt come to keep her.  california was, i believe, beautiful for that time of year.  i wouldn't really know, not regularly being there that time of year and because my view of california primarily consisted of the hospital and a hotel room.

here i am, hoping for the best, right before being drugged and dragged wheeled away.

the good/great news is that it seems the surgery worked!  i confess that there is this little knot of fear in me that, once the surgery pain is gone, i will find that i still have the nerve pain.  i keep trying to make that fear go away, but it is rather tenacious! 

if you are squeamish at all, i wouldn't recommend reading further...or looking at the pictures! 

dr. chen cut into my left side and cut tissues towards my back in order to blow up a balloon the size of a small nerf football to have room to work.  that back area was quite painful for long time.  several times i was actually concerned that i had ripped out the stitches.  that being said, look at what a wonderful job he did with the incisions!

now comes the really interesting part.  dr. chen burrowed all the way down to where the mesh was put in three years ago (i had bi-lateral inguinal hernia repair, which is very rare for women, especially young women), and where i have had chronic pain and two other surgeries not counting the initial surgery and this latest surgery.  back to the point...he burrowed down behind the mesh.  by doing this, he was able to not only avoid all of the scar tissue from the previous surgeries, but he was able to sever the three nerves above where the nerve damage had occurred.   he was also able to see and photograph the work done in the initial surgery.  in the picture below, you can see a thin, very straight line (crease) above the silver instrument.  that is the top of the mesh.  now, do you see that thick cord going directly under and into that mesh?  THAT IS THE NERVE.  let me translate...the first surgeon anchored the mesh directly atop the nerve.  again a translation...nerve damage.


a friend of mine asked me if it was validating to actually be able to have proof of why i have had chronic pain and surgeries for the last three years.  the answer is yes.  i want to take the above picture to the original surgeon and say, "see, i'm not crazy."  well, okay, i am not crazy about this, anyway.

so, where am i now?  i am healing, but very slowly.  i thought it would be a quick healing, but it has proven rather difficult.  dr. chen did tell me that healing would take my body longer simply because it has been through so much.  but, we think it worked!  i can't run right now, of course (which i desperately long to do), and i can't deep clean my house (aw, shucks), and i can't grocery shop (a pain, actually), but...

i can now care for mia by myself, i can run errands cautiously, i can get through my days without hydrocodone (well, most of them), and i can tell that the pain is from surgery healing and not continuing nerve pain!

i am so very thankful for dr. chen, my incredibly patient husband, helpful friends and family and the prayers from all over the world that were said on my behalf.

so, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

poor earl

last week i had a conversation with my mailman (whose name is earl)...

while trying to hide behind the door...

while trying to keep rooney from barking so that the baby would stay asleep...

with earl trying to hand me packages...

with me trying to block rooney inside the house...


mia still woke up.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

a shot and a miss

this is what i get for trying to be a fun and funky mom.



 i'm not a fun and funky mom, i'm just a mom with messed up hair now.  sigh. 

though i do keep going back and forth on whether or not i like it.  i usually like it in the morning and hate it by evening.  i can't get it fixed for several weeks, though, because my hair will fall out...or something like that.

so, until i go blonde again, i will be a redhead.  this is what i get for wanting something different!  haha~sometimes life is just funny.

Friday, September 21, 2012

some thoughts on not knowing

a friend and her baby met mia and me at cartwheels and coffee this morning.  if you live in richmond with small children and have not yet found this little gem, i highly recommend you get there...as fast as you can run.  if it is a friday morning, you will probably see the henigin gals.  it is our special happy to celebrate the end of the week!  visit this place, people - www.cartwheelsandcoffee.com

this is what mia plays on almost the entire time we are there.  she's a climber, so it is like a little heaven for her, except when she falls - then we go home early.  and take a nap.  because sometimes that's all you can do.

so, back to this friend, who does have a name and it is amanda.  we are in that in-between stage of we know each other kinda, want to get to know each other better, but  our schedules just never match up.  she writes an awesome blog - living on grace - that is hilarious and very real, which i appreciate.  amanda has a one-year old little boy named david, so we discuss this thing called parenting when we get together.

anyway, we got to talking about my upcoming surgery in california and she asked a question only a new mama would know to ask another new mama.  how are you dealing with leaving mia for your surgery?  the answer?  NOT GOOD - the closer the leaving of my child gets, the more i try to press down the growing anxiety.  i get teary if i think or talk about it.  things can happen, after all.  bad things.  it doesn't matter that they aren't likely to happen.  they can still happen.  and they can be bad.

this question led into deeper questions and discussions about God.  we started talking about how one goes about trusting God with that which is most loved.  how do i do it?  i don't, really.  the thought scares me to death. 

the truth of the matter is that trust does not equate to safety.  just because i trust does not mean that something can't or won't happen, to me or to those i love.  i don't know how to trust...

because of this...

...and this is precious.  

i don't really know what trust looks like.  and i don't really understand it.  or how to do it.

you know what else?  it's okay. being a Christ-follower/Christ-seeker (i usually don't know which i am at any given moment on this journey) doesn't mean i have it all together - in fact, it pretty much means i don't, because He says He came to seek the lost, the weak and the broken.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Gardening and Growing

we planted a garden!  and by planted, i mean transplanted starter plants.  and by garden, i mean pots and window boxes.  you see, we need this garden to be moveable, because...

that's right!  our house sold - bittersweet b/c of all of the memories, but we are excited!  so, back to the garden - we have wanted to plant a garden for awhile, but our backyard is not conducive to an in-ground garden b/c we can't get full sun.


 this year, doug had this idea  >>>>>>>

since i am feeling a bit better with the nerve medication i am on, we decided to tackle the project.

we planted spinach, peas, cauliflower, 3 different types of lettuce, kale, parsley, oregano, cilantro, thyme, rosemeary and basil, with green onions to come.



i had a little helper. and by helper i mean a little person who liked to throw the soil out of the pot as soon as i put it in.  she also liked killing the spinach. it was mia's first real experience digging in the soil.  she had her bucket and shovel and absolutely loved it!  as a warning, i am one of those moms that thinks that if my one year old's knees and feet are dirty, that i must be doing something right!  so, if you are opposed to dirt and cringe when a kid's outfit gets ruined- read no further! 

she started the afternoon like this...

she ended the afternoon like this...

 the in-between went something like this...

buckets, shovels and rakes, oh my!


        helping mommy

don't let the face fool you...
               she kept returning for water hose sprays!

and, finally, i hear soil taste testers are in high demand these days!