pain: a blessing

when i first heard of a girl who had congenital insensitivity to pain, i have to admit i was a little jealous. my thoughts drifted to what life would be like if i didn’t have the pain in my joints from arthritis. how lucky she must be to not be able to feel pain, i thought.

but then i did some research. congenital insensitivity to pain with anhidrosis not only prevents pain but also heat and cold. i read story after story of children who would put their hands on hot stoves, severely burning their hands, and not even blink. children who have to be followed around on the playground during recess and thoroughly checked by the school nurse before going back to class. one girl chose to have her appendix removed since she wouldn’t know if it ruptured. another young girl went blind in one eye because she rubbed it raw when it was dry. she couldn’t keep it moistened. most cipa patients have to use eyedrops frequently to keep their eyes from drying out.

the stories opened my eyes. i felt so sad for the children whose stories i read, and i felt so naive. i couldn’t even begin to imagine what they and their families go through on a daily basis. it was ridiculous to even think that it would be nice to live without pain. pain is essential. it’s amazing to realize what can happen to you if you can’t feel pain. so, it’s ok that my knees are sore a lot, especially with the recent cold spell. pain is a blessing.

i love you day

the alarm went off at midnight yesterday morning.

“why is it going off?” i mumbled in my grumpy, semi-concious state.

“valentine’s day starts now,” joe said. “every hour i’m going to tell you something i love about you.”

and he did. i smiled as i fell back to sleep.

at 8 a.m., joe woke me up with breakfast in bed and reasons 2-8. throughout the rest of the day he’d call me and give me a reason. it was the sweetest thing anyone has ever done for me, and it made me so happy to hear the different things joe loves about me.

after work we scrapped our plans to have dinner at olive garden. we didn’t feel like waiting for several hours for a table, so we got takeout at applebees and curled up on the couch. i enjoyed it much more. he got me a gift certificate and the movie “in good company,” which is what we were watching last valentine’s day when we first said, “i love you.” it’s going to be our traditional valentine’s day movie. i gave joe the second season of arrested development (one of his favorites!) and a large hershey kiss container filled with chocolate.

for my final surprise, joe put tea candles all around the room and lit them and had a bottle of pinot grigot, one of my favorites. it was a fabulous day.

and tonight? dinner at olive garden. 🙂

anyone know where i can find a curling rink?

dried seaweed, anyone?

we had such a busy, yet fun sunday. we were *supposed* to have our engagement pictures taken, but it was snowing, so our photographer wanted to postpone it. that afternoon, we met rachel in gwinnett county, about an hour from here, to shop for her bridesmaid dress for the wedding. for the next week the dresses are marked down from $110 to $79.99, plus a $20 bridesmaid discount on top of that. none of my friends are wanting to let that deal slip by! hehe.

after ordering rachel’s dress, the three of us went to lunch at ledo’s pizza. this was definitely my choice. ledo’s is a maryland chain that has started to expand. it is *the best* pizza in the world. it’s made in the shape of a rectangle, so all the pieces are square, and it has the lightest, flakiest crust ever. it’s not oily, so it doesn’t weigh you down as much as pizza from places like pizza hut and dominoes. joe has never had ledo’s, so i was excited to share it with him. he *loved* it. and it was fun just hanging out with my future sister-in-law.

after lunch, we headed to the super h mart, which is basically an asian walmart. it was really cool. i saw things i’ve never seen at a grocery store before, like dried seaweed, rice pops and containers of blood. they also had neat things like chinese and japanese cookies. i wanted to get a box of japanese cookies for my grandpa, since he and my grandma lived in japan when my dad and uncle were young, but i couldn’t tell which was which! hehe. it was a really neat experience though.

and then we came home and collapsed. ah, the weekend. 🙂

dining with the braves

we hobnobbed with the braves last night.

as a writer for choptalk, the atlanta braves’ official magazine, joe was invited to the braves’ 400 club’s annual banquet, and i was able to go as well. it was at a really nice hotel in atlanta and, despite my toe poking through my hose (i *hate* pantyhose…if it hadn’t been 30 degrees outside i wouldn’t have worn any!), it was a fabulous night.

we paid $13 for a beer and glass of wine (yes, $13 freakin dollars. man.) and perused the silent auction items. i was hoping for something signed by jeff francoeur, my new favorite brave, but he was not among the players’ autographed items up for bid. we bid on several items, including hats signed by three players (joe really wanted one to give his friend tim as a wedding present), a baseball signed by pete orr and a baseball signed by sid bream. i staked out the hats at the end of the auction, but an old man hovered over the bidding sheet, spending two minutes writing his name and bid amount so no one else could bid. sigh. at least we won the two baseballs. or so we thought.

after the program, we headed out to claim our balls, but after joe paid we realized the sid bream ball was missing. “someone must have walked off with it,” one of the men said. not surprising. no one was watching the two tables the items were on, so it wouldn’t have been that difficult. we took home our pete orr ball, but joe was still bummed because he’s a sid bream fan, and he was really proud to have won the ball.

this afternoon, however, while we were at david’s bridal getting rachel’s (his sister) bridesmaid dress for our wedding (one down, five to go! they all opted to get the dresses now because they’re on sale until next weekend, saving them about $30), someone from the 400 club called joe and said they had his ball! apparantly the person who won the chris reitsma ball picked up the sid bream ball by mistake. it should be in the mail to us in the next day or two. yay!

there were two braves players at the banquet, and after dinner we had a chance to meet them. brian mccann is a rookie catcher who ended up starting most of last season because starting catcher johnny estrada (now on the diamondbacks…sigh…) was injured.

we also met kyle davies, a rookie who ended up being one of the braves’ starting pitchers last season as the regular starters were plagued with injuries.

they were really nice. we got our tickets signed, and we’re putting one in our scrapbook, and we’re going to frame the other with their baseball cards. once we get a house we’re going to start a “sports room” of memorabilia, such as the baseballs and pictures.

and rachel was right…baseball players *are* taller in person. hehehe. 😉


i thought i’d share some jokes with you all. i thought these were hilarous. what do you think?

don’t mess with women
Marriage – Part I
Typical macho man married typical good-looking lady and after the wedding, he
laid down the following rules:

“I’ll be home when I want, if I want and at what time I want and I don’t expect
any hassle from you. I expect a great dinner to be on the table unless I tell
you that I won’t be home for dinner. I’ll go hunting, fishing, boozing and
card-playing when I want with my old buddies and don’t you give me a hard time
about it. Those are my rules.

Any comments?”

His new bride said, “No, that’s fine with me. Just understand that there will
be sex here at seven o’clock every night whether you’re here or not.”


Marriage – Part II
Husband and wife had a bitter quarrel on the day of their 40th wedding

The husband yells, “When you die, I’m getting you a headstone that reads:

“Here Lies My Wife – Cold As Ever”

“Yeah?” she replies. “When you die, I’m getting you a headstone that reads:

“Here Lies My Husband Stiff At Last”


Marriage – Part III
Husband (a doctor) and his wife are having a fight at the breakfast table.
Husband gets up in a rage and says, “And you are no good in bed either,” and
storms out of the house.

After sometime, he realizes he was nasty and decides to make amends and rings
her up. She comes to the phone after many rings, and the irritated husband
says, “what took you so long to answer the phone?”

She says, “I was in bed.”

“In bed this early, doing what?”

“Getting a second opinion!”


Marriage – Part IV
A man has six children and is very proud of his achievement. He is so proud of
himself, that he starts calling his wife, “Mother of Six” in spite of her

One night, they go to a party. The man decides that it’s time to go home and
wants to find out if his wife is ready to leave as well. He shouts at the top
of his voice, “Shall we go home ‘Mother of Six?’

His wife, irritated by her husband’s lack of discretion, shouts right back,
“Anytime you’re ready, Father of Four.”


Marriage – Part V – The Silent Treatment
A man and his wife were having some problems at home and were giving each other
the silent treatment. Suddenly, the man realized that the next day, he would
need his wife to wake him at 5:00 AM for an early morning business flight. Not
wanting to be the first to break the silence (and LOSE), he wrote on a piece of
paper, “Please wake me at 5:00 AM.” He left it where he knew she would find it.

The next morning, the man woke up, only to discover it was 9:00 AM and he had
missed his flight. Furious, he was about to go and see why his wife hadn’t
wakened him, when he noticed a piece of paper by the bed.

The paper said, “It is 5:00 AM. Wake up.”