What a year so far……. My motto is "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!"

It's been quite a year so far. For those wonderful friends I don't see very often, here's a brief summary of 2005 to date for me:

* I accepted a position created for me at our competing “Blue” plan after about 6 months of interviews and thinking about it. It was a BIG decision for me and I thought long and hard about it. Began that new job late April as Manager of their Medicare products. Very challenging, and stressful but I like the company's culture and the people I work with. They provide an onsite gym so now I'm working out at least 3 times a week and I've already lost 22 pounds. I feel much better and am well on my way to my goal of weighing what I did when I got married in 1980.

* My 'significant other' of almost 7 years – who I believed truly loved me and was committed to our relationship – out of the blue and with no reasonable explanation or discussion – ended our relationship on Friday, May 20, 2005. The shock of that has resurrected the Abandonment Demon (“AD” for short!) in me and I've been fighting that ever since – although it's much easier now because of my previous counseling and spiritual direction work with Claudia. The relationship wasn't really a relationship anyway but it was the idea of being left (aka 'abandoned') by someone I trusted and believed loved me. God has a wonderful way of allowing us to experience that which cuts most deeply so we can grow in Love and Consciousness.

Thank you, God!

* My pugs 'got married' and Xena became pregnant right around the time Steve ended our relationship (I think?)

* We noticed Xena was getting a little bigger around the middle about 3 weeks ago so went to the Vet – who confirmed she was probably pregnant and most likely going to have 3 puppies.

* This past Monday night, while I was traveling to Salt Lake City for work, Xena went into labor and Matt, my oldest, acted as midwife. I was coaching him on my cell phone from my hotel so I got very little sleep that night (and Matt got NONE). First baby was born at about 1 AM and the last baby was born at about 5:30 AM. She had 5 boys and 1 girl and the girl is one of the tiniest. Matt – who had been up for almost 30 hours began having Janz Myoclonic seizures so he called our wonderful vet (who by the way predicted only 3 pups!) and she said to bring Xena and litter to her. Her wonderful daughter took care of them all day and kept them alive as Xena is NOT a good mother. This gave Matt much needed sleep time while I finished business in Salt Lake City and flew home that evening.

* I canceled work meetings in Salem and Portland on Wednesday this week so Matt and I could tend to babies before I had to head to Portland Thursday for meetings. Babies have to be held to Xena to nurse as Xena isn't very helpful and they are so very little. Once nursed they have to be cleaned up (they can't poop or pee without manual stimulation) and then put on a hot pad to sleep. This is repeated about every 2 hours. Matt is a terrific 'wet nurse' and because of his devotion, these little guys have a fighting chance! Ryan has also been very helpful keeping 'Dad' Joey busy.

* On Wednesday morning I noticed the two littlest weren't strong enough to suck (aka “fading puppy”) so I rushed them to the Vet and she taught me how to tube feed them. Matt and I started supplementing all the puppies with tube feeding. Happy to say they are all doing OK now (it's Saturday when I'm positing this so they are 4 days old!). We also don't have to supplement as much because they are all nursing very well (when I'm right there so Xena will lay still!)

* Last night (Friday), was the first night of a little sleep for me and I feel much better. Sleep deprivation is a powerful thing and I can't remember when I've been so sleep deprived! Even my own babies didn't take this much out of me!

* I have also decided to fulfill a long-time dream of buying a touring motorcycle so after much research, I bought a 2002 Harley-Davidson Road King with lots of accessories. I'll be picking it up early in August from a wonderful family in Oklahoma who are selling it because they've adopted a daughter from China and need the $ to add on to their house.

That’s it so far………

Always remember – what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger!

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