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Those of us who were here over Thanksgiving are planning on having a Thanksgiving meal sometime later this year.  It was our Thanksgiving that never was.  We joke about it occasionally.  We picture Anissa sneaking things off the snack trays, and giving directions, orchestrating if you will, the perfect Thanksgiving.

That was actually one of the reasons we bought this house.

It wasn’t our first choice.  It wasn’t our second choice.  I think it was actually house #234049 that we looked at and decided to make our third and final choice.

We fell in love with it when we drove up.  The lot is deep and nicely landscaped, maybe a bit aged, and overgrown…but I’ve been busy people!  Actually I think some magic elves came and took down the Christmas lights last week, because I can’t find them and they’re not up.  The yard explodes with color at various times of the year.  The house is pretty too.  We did need to have it modified slightly due to a broken butt incident.  It’s the house we saw hosting many holiday dinners in.  We pictured friends and family coming from near and far to spend some time together politely arguing over how many games the Lions would win this year, 1 or 2.

I even went so far as to request the nameplate from my grandparents’ house.  The one our family sadly had to sell this past year after my grandfather built it himself 50 some odd years ago.

This was our version of a “perfect for us” home, and we could so see each other growing old in it.

Unfortunately though, we had to miss our first Thanksgiving here.  We had a packed house, but it wasn’t for the right reasons.  We’ll have our do-over sometime this year, and it will be awesome.

I’m wondering if we could do a do-over for the Super Bowl as well.


Because my brand new, bought this summer, HD TV broke this weekend.  I called for the warranty.  They sent me to the manufacturer.  The manufacturer told me it would take them a couple of weeks to come out and address.

I thought about that for .2 seconds and called the Geek Squad back.  The poor woman who took the call received the brunt of 70+ days of frustration.  I’d like to apologize now, publicly.  I get on my kids when they throw temper tantrums, and luckily it was late enough in the night that they didn’t see dad pop.  I always tell my kids that nothing good ever comes from a temper tantrum, and that they need to figure out more constructive ways to get what they want.

I guess technically speaking, I did follow my own advice.  I just threw a bit of anger behind it.

Because.  Um.  Ahem.

The Geek Squad will be out on Thursday.  Of course they’ll probably need to order a part or 3, causing me to miss the big game on the big tv.

I told Anissa about it.  She laughed because I’m going to miss the new Lost.  “Welcome to my world” she said sarcastically.  Followed with a “Oh no, actually I have a TV.”  Evil thy name is Anissa!

So this past week has been filled with some pretty awesome news.  I forgot to mention it last week, but Peyton’s last check up came back fine.  So fine, in fact, that we snuck into the rehab center to tell mom all about it.  Peyton was pretty excited that she got to see mom on her own, even if it was a brief visit.  The security guard asked if she was sick in any way, and I offered him her CBC paper.  I guess not many visitors can be that certain.  Also, a dear sweet friend, Heather Spohr, had their baby.  Anissa was pretty psyched about both.

This past weekend, we had several special friends come up and pop in on us.  Monday was Anissa’s birthday, but we celebrated it on Sunday to let the kids be there with her.  There were friends, some old, some new, and family around her, and we all got to just be a family for a little while.  Anissa did not miss a beat.  She was engaged in conversation, and quickly switched to disciplining the kids appropriately at one point.  At the end of the weekend, I sat down and thought about it.  It felt like I’ve almost got enough to buy that family in the Macy’s window…the one with that huge price tag.  We’re almost there.

On Monday, her birthday, I finally got to give her the perfect gift.  First off, I talked her therapy angels into wearing Team Anissa shirts.  She got the biggest kick out of that!  They hooked her up with a balloon and card.  I also got her something special.  I had to clear it through the medical folks and all first.  What Anissa wanted more than anything was Chinese food.  Something she couldn’t pronounce.  So last night, we shared a little chicken lo mein together.  She was ecstatic, and wanted me to leave the leftovers with her, so she could snack.  I opted not to go that far, and only let her have about half of it.  She was in her glory.  We simply hung out for the night, and talked, just like we’d do any other birthday night after the kids went to bed.  She finally asked me some details about what happened.  I told her she’d had two strokes, and that was why this one was taking longer to recover from.  She actually remembers a lot of detail from that day.  She remembers calling me, then nothing.  At some point, when we write the book, we’ll share what she remembers from the coma.  It’s pretty thought provoking stuff.

Ah yes, the book.  So, we’ve decided on a couple of long term goals.  Goals are good.  They give you something to shoot for, and surpass.  First off, we’ve agreed, verbally, to speak at a conference in August.  I’m still on the fence about that, because there’s travel involved, and we’ve already spent so much time apart.  We’ve also agreed to write a book.  Her recovery is going to take quite a while, and I figured what better way to remember the past than to write about it.  The day I came up with that idea, I went in to see her and before I could tell her about it, she told me she had a dream that we wrote a book together.  Anyone know a good publisher?

Ok, I’ve jabbered long enough.  There’s one more bit of business I’d like to share with you all.

For her birthday, Anissa wanted to write a little note to you all, and maybe take that first little step back into the blogosphere.  As part of her therapy, Anissa’s speech therapist helped her come up with the following.  This is Anissa talking and Erin typing:

Things I’ve picked up from being in the hospital

  • 8 year old underwear- don’t wear it.  Wearing underwear that doesn’t belong to you is bad for your health (it was my daughter’s).
  • The fact that my OT wants to kill me by zapping my arm. They’re onto me…and I’m onto them.
  • I wear glasses with tape on them because the OT tells me they will correct my vision. But I think they make me look like Urkel.
  • My “bra” (also known as an omotrain sling)- obviously an issue and meant to kill me.
  • The best thing that has happened to me is realizing that I can do more than I thought I could. I felt weak and I felt tired and I found out that I am able. I have things that I can’t do, but I can still try.

145 Comments on “Do-overs”

  1. #1 Jett
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    Crap. I’m in tears over here.

  2. #2 Sisterlisa
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    aww ((waving)) Hi Anissa!!! So glad to ‘hear’ from you.

  3. #3 amanda
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:11 pm

    This is just great!

  4. #4 MusingsfromMe/Jill
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:16 pm

    So glad to hear that you are having more good days. A book is a fantastic idea. Anissa…keep on keepin’ on!

  5. #5 Nanette
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    YES Anissa. You keep trying. You can do it!

  6. #6 Jessica
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:32 pm


    1. Okay, I suck, happy birthday two days late. My punishment: I will share my dessert next time you and I see each other.

    2. Wow. You’re recovery is incredilbe and damn right there is a book there. Sending you huge hugs, lots of love and okay, A BITE, just a bite, of my chocolate cake.


  7. #7 Stacey
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:35 pm

    Anissa is so ridiculously awesome. … a present to us on her birthday. Love it. Love her!!

  8. #8 Elizabeth
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:46 pm

    You can count on me to buy that book, and if the conference is BlogHer, I’ll be there! I hope Anissa is prepared for the standing ovation she’s guaranteed to get. I’m so proud of her for how hard she’s working at recovery! And thanks to you, Peter, for everything you’re doing as well. You both rock.

  9. #9 MommyNamedApril
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 8:51 pm

    still rooting for you!

    also… if you have a costco card, they have a no questions asked return policy on their electronics. you know… if you wanted to watch the superbowl on something awesome and the geek squad didn’t come through… just as a last resort 🙂

  10. #10 BlondeBlogger
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 9:00 pm

    Gooooo Anissa!! Just saw Anissa’s tweet tonight and I am smiling from ear to ear!!! And let me say that I will be first in line to buy the book once it’s published!

  11. #11 Petit Elefant
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 9:37 pm


  12. #12 Elizabeth
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    Hi Peter and Anissa,

    I’ve little doubt that someone FAR more important than I will come along and offer to publish your book when it’s written. But Anissa’s the kind of woman who inspires people to throw their hat into the proverbial ring. Therefore, I’ll throw out there that my publishing house, Finn-Phyllis Press, published my first two book and will release the third this spring.

    If it felt right on your end, I’d welcome the opportunity to chat with you about your book when the time is right. Even if only to bounce some ideas around. It would truly be an honor to be involved in any way.

    On all other fronts, you guys are on your way!


  13. #13 A Vapid Blonde
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 10:47 pm

    This is amazing..You both are amazing. Wow!

  14. #14 Maura
    on Feb 3rd, 2010 at 11:04 pm

    This is so encouraging and so wonderful. It always makes my day to read about the progress. Love to you all.

  15. #15 Diane
    on Feb 4th, 2010 at 12:54 am

    Hello there! You are amazing!!!

  16. #16 LisaUnfiltered
    on Feb 4th, 2010 at 10:08 am

    Peter, http://abc.go.com watch LOST. It was GREAT!

  17. #17 Alicia @bethsix
    on Feb 4th, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    Anissa is back! Woot!

  18. #18 Velma
    on Feb 4th, 2010 at 8:48 pm

    Wow! You guys are batting 100% in the “Make Me Weep When Reading This Blog” category. Strong work!

  19. #19 Lisa @ Crazy Adventures in Parenting
    on Feb 4th, 2010 at 10:19 pm

    Between her tweet and her note, I’m floating for you all!! AHH! Go Anissa!

    (By the way, respect knuckles for the ass-whoopin’ you dished for your TV, bro. Rock it!)

  20. #20 Mark (Dudge OH)
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 1:52 am

    Awesome stuff. *s*

    And a belated Happy Birthday, Anissa!

  21. #21 Sara Broers
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    You can do it, you will do it! As a Mom who spent 8 months in physical therapy at the age of 39 and had to learn how to walk again! If I can do it, you can too! I’ve been in shoes very similar to yours. i understand the needle prodding, but it’s so darn necessary to get those nerves awakened! Keep it up girl, you can do it! Hey, you are younger than I was- you can do it!

  22. #22 Jenny, Bloggess
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    I can’t wait to read that book.

  23. #23 Kathee
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    You know, Anissa, you are a true inspiration to so many people. I read the blogs your husband writes (I didn’t quite follow beforehand until my sister told me your story and told me you had disappeared and she was worried) and I am at some point throughout the blog thrown into tears of awe. I hope you both know that your yet-to-be-written book probably already has many buyers waiting in line…and I am one of the first.

  24. #24 Katie
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    Pete – I have several friends who are authors. I can check into publisher info, and, more importantly, information about agents. When you have a chance (in all your free time … ), send me a paragraph that sums up the approach you would want to take with the book, and I’ll see what I can do.

  25. #25 Christi
    on Feb 5th, 2010 at 9:03 pm

    So glad to read this, as always! You keep inspiring me, girl! I’m so proud to call you my friend! A year ago we met for the first time at Blissdom, and I feel confident that we will meet again someday. Much love and prayers!

  26. #26 Karen MEG
    on Feb 6th, 2010 at 9:26 am

    Happy belated sweet Anissa!

    This was such a wonderful post, Peter. I’m so glad that Peyton is doing okay too, and that you’ve got this great project (the book that shall fly off the shelves) to work on together.

    Amazed to hear Anissa’s “voice” again.

  27. #27 Rhonda
    on Feb 6th, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    You’re bravery. You’re wit. You’re family. You’re love. You’re inspiration.

    Team Anissa for the Win!

  28. #28 Helen
    on Feb 7th, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    Wow! Still praying – in Brazil!

  29. #29 Susan (5 Minutes for Mom)
    on Feb 8th, 2010 at 7:37 pm

    What an awesome update!!!!!

    I’m sooooo excited to hear you’re writing a book! Sign me up for the pre-order list.

  30. #30 MaNiC MoMMy
    on Feb 8th, 2010 at 7:51 pm

    I love Anissa’s note! Tell her the last time she and I talked on Twitter we chatted about her not wanting to put on a bathing suit – I think she was supposed to do a Disney trip. Tell her (if you think she’ll laugh, which I think she will), that this was one hell of a way to get outta putting on that suit, and also FML, which to me, at the time, I didn’t know what it meant, and I told her I thought it meant, Fuck Me Loud, which is what it should mean! God bless! Peter, you’re a Godsend. Anissa, you’re an angel!

  31. #31 Christina Gleason @ Cutest Kid Ever
    on Feb 9th, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    I don’t know how I missed this before, but this is such good news! Glad to see that Anissa had some things to say to us, and that she definitely hasn’t lost her sense of humor. 🙂

  32. #32 Gale
    on Feb 9th, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    Peter – I’ve been reading your blog since Heather Spohr wrote about Annisa in November. I’m commenting for the first time now because a friend of mine (mother of 3, about the same ages as your kids) went into a coma last week due to blood clots in her brain. After two brain surgeries, she’s still not awake, but she’s stable. Assuming she wakes up, she and her husband and kids will be on a journey eerily similar to yours – months in the hospital, months of rehab, etc. I’m wondering if you have any books, websites, or other resources that you’d recommend for families going through this kind of trauma.


  33. #33 Gale
    on Feb 9th, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    Oops, sorry I misspelled Anissa. My apologies.

  34. #34 Peter Mayhew
    on Feb 10th, 2010 at 10:28 am

    Gale, hopefully you got my emails last night.

  35. #35 Tracy
    on Feb 10th, 2010 at 10:31 am

    So happy to hear about your book! I can hardly wait for up-dates on here…….I’m sure the book will be a “can’t put it down until I’m done”, number 1 on the NY Times best seller list.
    Continued prayers, good wishes and love from Colorado.

  36. #36 jennster
    on Feb 10th, 2010 at 6:07 pm

    OMG THE BOOK and what she remembers while being in a coma has me OVER THE MOON!!!!!!!! i cannot wait to hear and read about it… and i think it’s an INCREDIBLE idea and i love and support it…. and AM SO HAPPY! 🙂

    hi anissa, you sexy bitch you. miss your fine ass and love you tons. 🙂 xoxoxoxo

  37. #37 anymommy
    on Feb 12th, 2010 at 12:22 pm

    I’ve gotten behind on my reading. But, I’m always thinking of you.

  38. #38 Angela at mommy bytes
    on Feb 12th, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    Go Anissa! Happy Birthday.

  39. #39 @JennyQ
    on Feb 13th, 2010 at 7:29 am

    Just dropping by to say “HI” and you are all being thought of — The Lord Bless you and Keep you — All 🙂 Jenn

  40. #40 Snarky Amber
    on Feb 14th, 2010 at 5:55 pm

    Happy Valentine’s Day, Anissa. Miss you so much. Peter, thinking of you and hoping to hear from you soon about our girl.

  41. #41 Motherofbun
    on Feb 15th, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    Am cheering you on Anissa!

    Thinking about you all very much! (And now I’m hungry for Chinese food!)

  42. #42 schmutzie
    on Feb 16th, 2010 at 10:03 am

    This is very belated, but Happy Birthday, Anissa!

  43. #43 Malia
    on Feb 16th, 2010 at 10:23 pm

    Awesome, simply awesome.

  44. #44 Becky
    on Feb 18th, 2010 at 9:47 am

    Big hugs and prayers for the Mayhew family. I hope everything is going well!

  45. #45 Al_Pal
    on Feb 18th, 2010 at 11:41 pm

    So inspiring. Happy Belated Birthday!