One day Anni was twirling and singing one of her original compositions.
"It's my gift!" she declared.
Dizzy, she fell with spectacular gracelessness.
Laying on her back on the tile floor she began flapping her arms and legs
as if she were making a snow angel.
"Falling down is also a gift!" says she.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

a little feng shui here and there

Annika is doing fantastic. So far, eating has not caused the bleeding to resume. She's shown more interest in the world over the past few days than I've seen from her since before her shunt surgery back in November. She still can't get out of bed by herself, but once she's out she is more confident on her legs. Today she rearranged the room more to her liking. The first thing she did was find the paper on which we had written her name in pearlized paint and tape it to her door. "So Beata knows my name," she explained, referring to her nurse today, who's been taking care of her since she was a baby and thus supremely unlikely to forget her name. Then we got out several of the heavy hospital blankets and made a "picnic area" on the floor. (Although when lunch arrived and I suggested we eat it on the picnic blanket, she had to explain to me that, no, you don't have picnics with hospital food. It has to be food that you bring from home, of course.) Then she found a better place for the shoots of bamboo that the hospital garden lady let her "plant" and keep to celebrate Chinese New Year. Finally she dug out her Cinderella lithograph that she got from Irma at the Kohl's House (donated leftovers from Best Buy's Cinderella promotion a few months back). She gave it a position of prominence, and then located my little book light that I use to read at night after Annika's gone to sleep. She turned it on and positioned it to cast a warm glow up on Cinderella. Yes, accent lighting. This is what comes of watching HGTV (Home and Garden Television) non-stop while nursing your baby. It's like this stuff is ingrained somewhere in her sub-subconscious. I fully expected her to turn around and proclaim, "See how it makes the colors pop?" Or something similarly Christopher Lowell-ish. Then she snuggled in to the pull-out bed/chair provided for parents, with pillows stacked up higher than her head and surrounded by her current set of hospital snugglies. I saw that she had stripped her Groovy Girls of their Groovy Clothes and stuffed their legs into the latex-free hospital examination gloves. That touch seemed a bit daring, even for the likes of Hildi back when Trading Spaces was still fun and full of low-budget thrills and chills.* Groovy Girls new rockin' hospital fashion Annika, 2-11-06 Annika with snugglies She's been eating more, although I'm having trouble getting anything but Pringles into her. She used to call this treat, "Mustache Chips," in honor of the impressive handlebars on the man gracing the front of the can, but now she's moved on to calling them "Pringleschnitz" for some reason, demonstrating beyond a doubt that she did pick up something from her trip to meet the German side of her family last Spring.
The weekend has called a halt to our insurance wrangling, although Jörg is expecting a phone call from the university's president, who is currently on the road. Otherwise, some of the initial shock has worn off. When Jörg first called me to say that our insurance company was estimating that we would hit our limit on Monday, and that we weren't eligible for the program that the transplant financial coordinator recommended because we had only hit the yearly max and not the lifetime max, I had visions of bills for 10's of 1000's of dollars rolling in daily for the rest of the year. It was overwhelming, to say the least. Now that we know that there is another option for coverage available, albeit an expensive option, I'm feeling a little better that we can somehow solve this problem. Plus, all those amazing offers of help have me feeling buoyed by a safety net that I didn't even know existed for Annika. It's pretty amazing. So we'll enjoy this weekend and jump back into the fray on Monday. We'll put up a link to the COTA account once we have it set up. We need to get forms filled out by the doctors here in Chicago, so that COTA can confirm that Annika actually exists and has the medical condition that we claim she has. All part of their effort to keep it legit, which I appreciate. I hope that we can have everything taken care of by maybe late next week. *I know, neither of the designers I mention does a show on HGTV. The point still stands, though.


Blogger Jane Dark said...

Fantastic. The shadows under her eyes in the third photo make me sad, but I love the energy that shines through nonetheless. And that second photo is especially lovely.

Glad that you're feeling buoyed up, too.

2/11/2006 4:47 PM  
Anonymous Marisa said...

Get ready for a fantastic surprise arriving at your hospital door either Monday or Tuesday, my little minnow!



2/11/2006 5:12 PM  
Anonymous peripateticpolarbear said...

LOVE the second photo! It's awesome! As for the naked Groovy Girls with their legs mermaided into exam gloves.....hmmmmm.....don't you wish you could hear the thought process that went into that?

I'm also breathing a little happy sigh for the fact that your spouse works at a college small enough that the college president can be counted on to call over the weekend about an insurance problem. That's a good thing.

2/11/2006 5:30 PM  
Anonymous kathy a said...

it sounds like anni is doing great! please pass on best wishes and a high-5, from a secret and distant admirer.

2/11/2006 6:25 PM  
Blogger moxiemomma said...

sighs. of. relief. ahhhhh. anni is so beautiful and happy. i just want to give her a big "atta girl!" (actually to both of you).

2/11/2006 7:23 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

I always love to see pictures of that girl!

2/11/2006 7:29 PM  
Anonymous Rowan said...

I am happy to hear that Annika is feeling happier. My husband always knows when I'm feeling a bit out of controll in my life. I rearrange the whole house. In fact, I'm all but forbidden to watch Christoper Lowell or Trading Spaces.
The photos are great. Thank you so much for sharing them. I certainly hope that some of the insurance worry proves to be unwarranted. Wouldn't that be something. You so need a break right about now. I hope it comes soon...and in the very best of ways.

2/12/2006 12:54 AM  
Blogger Phantom Scribbler said...

I love Anni's smiles in these photos.

2/12/2006 3:10 AM  
Blogger Casey said...

She is beautiful.

2/12/2006 4:23 AM  
Blogger purple_kangaroo said...

The dolls with their feet in the gloves look like mermaids to me. Brilliant!

2/13/2006 2:45 AM  
Blogger Moreena said...

You're right, PPB and PK, they do look like mermaids. How could I have missed that?

2/13/2006 9:54 AM  

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