Thursday, February 9, 2012

My baby's special heart.

For those of you who don't know, my oldest son, Khalil was born in 2005 with a Congenital Heart Defect.
He was diagnosed in-utero with Tetralogy of Fallot (TOF), when I was about 24 weeks along in my pregnancy with him.
TOF is also known as 'blue baby' syndrome and is 4 separate defects of the heart.
To date, he has had 2 open heart surgeries, 2 cardiac catheterizations, several echo cardiograms/ekg's and treatments to relieve a pseudo aneurysm that he developed after his 2nd open heart surgery.
The surgeries and caths were all performed before he was 7 months old, and he now goes to his cardiologist annually for echo cardiograms/ekgs.

We are awaiting his 3rd (and GOD WILLING, final) open heart surgery to replace his Pulmonary Valve. His cardiologist is thinking it may be in about 3-4 years.
Aside from all of the above, Khalil is a perfectly healthy 6 year old who loves life!

So, after a lot of thought, I have decided to post this video that I made a few years ago, but with a lot of reservation, because the pictures in this video are extremely personal to me and I rarely ever show them to people, let alone look at them myself. They are very painful to look back on, but also bring so much gratitude and thankfulness that my little guy made it through those rough days. It's a good reminder of how precious life is, and sometimes even though it's hard or too painful to remember, it's better to look back and be humbled and thankful.

So please, watch the video and then help spread CHD awareness to others by going out in your community and telling someone you know just how common CHD's are, and how much more research and funding is needed to help these kids out!

(Please, please, please do not share this video! That is how horrible internet/Facebook hoaxes get started, and I really do not want that happening with my son! Thank you!)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

My awesome neighbor.

So, I pretty much like my neighborhood and don't really have problems with any of my neighbors. Well, my next door neighbor is sort of OCD, and at first he came off as pretty rude. He once yelled at my brother in law for accidentally mowing like 3 inches of HIS grass. My poor BIL was mowing our grass to help out right after we brought Ibrahim home from the hospital, and he got chewed out by Mr.OCD for actually doing him a favor unknowingly. Anyway, turns out he isn't so bad and actually waves and says hello to us now (big deal for him, trust me!).

But, he is not the neighbor that this post is about.
This goody is aaaaall about the cool-dude-obsessed-with-cars-from-the-90's-still-lives-at-home-and-needs-anger- management-classes-30-something-year-old neighbor from across the street.

Yes, that is a huge run-on sentence, but I honestly can't help it, because he is all of those things, plus more I'm sure.

So, this afternoon, Ibrahim and I were headed out to go to the store, and as I was maneuvering my mini-van out of my driveway, I accidentally backed into his 1996 little Honda car that was parked in the STREET, facing the wrong way.

In my defense, I was trying to get around my husband's huge 15 passenger van that was parked crookedly in the driveway (my hubby isn't the best at parking straight, LOOOL), and also the garbage can that was at the end of my driveway still from the morning. I was also answering Ibrahim's million questions about the water company workers down the street who were fixing a broken water main and re-paving the street.

So, I wasn't paying attention as much as I should have, and I bumped into his car that was parked in the street.

I knew someone was in their garage, because I heard moving around coming from that way when I was first getting in my van. And, their garage is usually open because 'cool dude' is typically working on a car pretty much everyday.

So, I did the right thing and got out, and went to the garage to let someone know what happened. Here is how the conversation went. No exaggeration, no changing words. This was pretty much word-for-word.

Me, as I walk up their driveway: 'Hello?' 'Hi, excuse me'
Cool dude sticks his head out from under a car and just stares at me.
Me: 'Hi, I'm so sorry, but I just accidentally backed into your car that is parked in the street.'
Cool dude: 'You've gotta be f-ing kidding me' (throws down wrench onto garage floor)
Cool dude: 'You all always F things up' 'mother f-ers'.
Me: 'Umm, it was an accident, I am really so sorry' (I was also starting to freak out, because this obviously was NOT the reaction that I was expecting.)
*I was also wondering what else I've done to him to make him say that? In the 4+yrs that we've lived here, I've barely seen this guy let alone talk or to do something to him?

Cool dude: walks out to car 'Where did you F it up at?' (So, he didn't even see the dent as he was looking right at it, LOL)
Me, pointing at the dent: 'right here'
Cool dude: 'Well what the F are you gonna do about it?'
Me: 'Umm, do you want to exchange insurance information?'
Cool dude: cutting me off, he says 'F no, I want F-ing cash. This fender is gonna be $60 bucks to fix.'
Me: 'Ok, uh, do you want to discuss that with my husband?'
Cool dude: 'Is he home now?' as he starts walking towards my yard
Me: 'yes, I will go get him, let me get my son out of the car real quick'
Cool dude: ignores me and briskly walks to my door.
Cool dude: bangs on door.
Me: leaves Ibrahim in the car, follows cool dude, but by the time I get to him, he is already walking back.
Cool dude, literally 2 seconds after banging on the door: 'F this, I'm calling the F-ing FHP (florida highway patrol)

About a minute after this, my husband comes out and after I explain to him what happened, he tries to talk to cool dude, who is already on the phone with FHP.

Hubby argues with him a bit, tries to reason with him, he continues to use nasty language, even with the FHP operator.

So, he goes back into his garage, and me, hubby and Ibrahim wait in our garage for the trooper to show up.

While we are waiting, cool dude goes into his house (windows open), and I hear his mom yelling at him in Spanish. This is where I reaaally was wishing that I didn't forget all the spanish I used to know, LOL, but did manage understand her saying to leave us alone and not be so rude.
She ended up coming out about 20 mins later, just as the trooper arrived, and she was apologizing to us for his behavior and telling us how she was trying to get him to just work it out with us, because we are neighbors, etc etc. (yay, got my spanish right!)
And, as she is talking with us, he is over in his garage screaming at his OWN MOTHER to 'shut the F up'.
I felt SOO bad for her. The stressed look on her face was showing that he probably gives her so much trouble.

I know I probably grew up sheltered and probably still am a little, but I was absolutely FLOORED at how this guy acted, especially towards his own mom. It's really people like him that scare the crap out of me, because he has absolutely zero empathy it seems like. And those kind of people are the kind to hurt someone and not even feel remorse.

We actually put up with a lot from these neighbors too. About 3 or 4 times a week, at all hours of the day and especially night, there is always a big group of guys and their cars, and they always rev the engines over and over and over and over for houuuuurssss.
Also, a few weeks ago, two guys from over there were throwing some kind of ball at our big garage door, and EVERY 4th of July/New years, there are TONS of fireworks leftover in our yard from their annoying celebrations.

We have never ONCE said anything to them about, nor called to complain. So, that's why I was SHOCKED when he made that comment to me about 'always f-ing things up'????

Anyway, after the trooper came, he took one look at cool dude's car and asked why he didn't just exchange insurance info with me and why did he make him come out just for this. That made me feel better, until he finished processing our stuff and handed me a $160 ticket for improper backing.

Here's a picture of how he was parked in the street. The dent near the front tire is the damage from me.

I was really annoyed that I was even ticketed. I know, I backed into his car, but it really could have been handled differently on his part.

Seeing him and his behavior really make me want to raise my boys to be respectful, polite and NEVER speak to anyone like that.........and also makes me want to take all of their toy cars away. Yikes!!!