Where to begin. Well, the real beginning is 1975 in Trail, BC. Accidental fourth child, teacher's pet, Catholic Italian, and all the other good things that come along with an uneventful middle class childhood.
Life moved along and so did I. Not long after losing my mom to cancer when I was 19 I flew the coop to Victoria, where I've made my home ever since. After a couple rounds of university, some travels, and a few Mr. Wrongs, I met Jordan and adulthood as I thought it was "supposed to" happen began. Marriage, mortgage, career, and baby all ticked off the list as planned. Life was good.
Then, without any ceremonious warning, life went a little off the rails. Second pregnancy ended in tragedy. Third pregnancy ended with two babies born prematurely. Then came Cerebral Palsy. And thyroid cancer. And Cerebral Palsy again. And pretty paralyzing anxiety through all of it. The "supposed to" life was buried; the life we never expected began. There was a lot of treading water with smiles pasted on our faces. Fake it til you make it rang pretty true. I gave up my career as a project manager and stayed home full time to manage the complex schedule of two little boys with special needs.
Through most of it, I blogged. It was my outlet and connected me with more friends who understood than I could have imagined. My blogging evolved to writing creative non fiction essays. I took courses in memoir writing and have now had several pieces published, including an essay in an anthology written by mothers of children with special needs. You can read about them here.
The blog has had an overhaul a couple of times since I started it - with the most recent changing the name from "Trousdell Five" to my own name. My time pouring out my heart about the ups and downs of my family came to an end as I realized that instead of just making it through life, we were finally actually living it.
So that's where I am today. Working, momming, writing when I make time, and still managing a busy schedule. Prematurity is a thing of the past, as is thyroid cancer. Cerebral Palsy is here to stay but so are endless piles of laundry and felts all over the kitchen floor - just a part of our life. In addition to work and family, I also like to eat good food, drink good wine, stress about the Vancouver Canucks, explore new places and waste time on social media. I also like to go to boot camp - I'll just keep practicing saying that until I really mean it, ok?
That's the jist of it I guess. If you've read this far, you'd probably like to know about the rest of the crew:
First there's big sister Rio. Coolest tween around. Bit of a junior achiever. Loves and mothers her brothers to the ends of the earth. Also loves soccer, snowboarding, art, and giggling with her friends.
Next came Cohen, the baby who only made it to 20 weeks gestation due to bilateral renal agenesis. She's our guardian angel.
Then there's Asher and Nolan. Funny, charming, strong, and brave. Survivors. Miracles. Lovers of lego and art. Each others best friend and worst enemy. They've been kicking ass and taking names since they decided to arrive more than three months prematurely. They have Cerebral Palsy but that's only a teensy tiny part of them. The other stuff is way more important.
And my main squeeze Jordan, AKA dad. He's a rockstar (in some circles, anyway), RN, chef, organic homesteader, handyman, artist, and all around good guy. Without him by my side? What a mess that would be.
And lastly, not to forget Jon Snow, our adorable Siamese Ragdoll, and Darryl, Layla, Remus, Little Jerry and Robirdo Luongo - our egg laying hens whom we've grow ridiculously attached to.
So that's me; that's us. Family of five who's always in search of happiness, creativity, food (always food), and laughter. Hopefully you'll stick around.
Want to get ahold of me? I'd love it if you'd leave me a comment right here! But you can also email me at traceytrousdell at gmail dot com.