24 May 2008

100 Things - Family

You all know me. Mother, wife, blogger, geek, and thief of all great blog ideas. Since we're out of town this week, I needed blog ideas, things to write about ahead of time. With much thanks to Miss Britt and her take on 100 Things about her, I've decided to update my 100 Things list and heck, there's no time like the present! I'll break this up into ten different posts for your reading enjoyment, because it is all about me!

10 Things About My Family

1. I am, technically, an only child. I'm the only child of Tom and JoAnne. My mother had, seven years before my birth and four years before her marriage to Dad, an affair. Since she was an unwed mother in 1965-1966, my grandparents did what any loving parents of the 60s with a 25-year-old daughter would do - forced her to go to a home for unwed mothers and give her child up for adoption. My half-brother, born April 6, 1966 (and called Sean by my mom), is out there somewhere. I would love to meet him, but won't actively pursue finding him while Mom's alive. She wants him to love and know only his adopted parents.

2. I only knew one of my grandparents. My father's parents died before I was born, as did my maternal grandmother. My maternal grandfather re-married and I always knew her as my grandmother. Simeon and Thelma were, and are, odd people who never truly knew how to love. Summers on their farm were fun until I grew up and realized the extent of dislike, and just downright hate, between my mom and her parents and siblings. Then? I was just uncomfortable.

3. I never went to my grandfather's funeral. I didn't want to remember him dead. From what I understand, my cousins and step-cousins were pissed with me for not attending. As it is, I saw him five months before, a shell of a man in a morphine haze having battled bone and prostate cancers and slowly losing. That was bad enough. I didn't need to see him embalmed.

4. My mother's family is descended from the Berkeley family of England. Just about every Caucasian-American can trace their roots back to royalty, a president, or some other notable figure in American or European history. My family claim to fame? The Berkeley family of England. Yep. We killed King Edward II. Fear us.

5. I'm closer to Ty-man's family than I am to my own. Ty-man's family is the perfect, sweet, loving family of 1950s-60s TV. They are all well-adjusted, loving people who welcome any and all into the fold. I can't get enough of them. No twisted, freakish abuse (Mom's family). No nitpicking, wasteful "I deserve this. I get that. Give me or else." (Dad's family). They're awesome. There are no other words.

6. In order to have my own family, I had to go through fertility treatments. I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) in June, 2002. One month later I had surgery to remove endometriosis and ovarian cysts. I then began taking metformin to control my out-of-control insulin levels (the cause of PCOS). In January, 2004, I started four rounds of fertility drugs and artificial insemination with no success. After six months off from the endless and tiring rounds of needles and planned sexual intercourse (blame my doctor for the technical babble), I had given up and was filling out the adoption paperwork. Finally, in January, 2005, at the insistence of Ty-man and my doctor, I agreed to one more round of artificial insemination and, whaddaya know, it took! Eight months later we became the parents of our twins, Bubba and Miss-Miss. A week after their first birthday, I took a pregnancy test and was shocked to learn it was positive! No fertility treatments, no doctor intervention, just me and the Ty-man and some old-fashioned nookie. Nine months later, the J-man arrived and that's my little family!

7. I consider my close girl friends and their significant others to be my sisters and brothers. I think it's a side-effect of being an only child that my life-long friends have become my siblings.

8. My father was a veteran of the Korean War. Obviously, my parents waited until their 30s and 40s to have their one and only child. My father was drafted into the Marines during the Korean War. He was a telephone line repairman. He never saw action, but always told stories of the Korean women leaving the squid, at the bottom of the telephone poles, to dry in the sun. The stench? Special.

9. My father-in-law almost has a Ph.D. in physics. My mother-in-law was upset, early in their marriage, that he was spending more time on his thesis than with her. So, he threw it into the fireplace and that was that. Yeah. Makes my stomach lurch, too.

10. My mother-in-law was a nurse and my mom nearly found fame as a ballet dancer. Yep, you read it right. Betty was a nurse and my mom danced with the Charleston, WV Ballet Company. Such talent in this family!

So there you have the first 10! Tomorrow? Get ready for the next round - the ten most memorable moments in my life!


Miss Britt said...

Purely selfish comment:

I knew you had undergone fertility treatments to have your kids. But somehow, knowing you were actually going to adopt... makes me feel good.

Because you clearly WANTED motherhood. Badly. And it is STILL hard for you some days.

I always assumed the fact that I struggled was a sign that I was a bad mom who never wanted kids and should never have even tried.


Not Afraid to Use It said...

These were really interesting. I love that they are a bit of a story rather than the traditional one sentence. I cannot wait for tomorrow's installment.

Avitable said...

Those were interesting - #9 made my stomach lurch, too!