Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Happy Birthday!


My first son, Zachary James turns 6 years old today. My how time flies. Of course I only remember him as pictured above. His sweet chubby face and infectious smile. He is deeply missed and never forgotten.
Zach, where ever you are, I hope you are having a wonderful birthday surrounded by family and friends who love you dearly. I love you and miss you very much.

Monday, August 30, 2010

You Will Be Missed

Today my dad had to put down his dog, Jessie. Although she was my dad's dog, she had been in our family for over 9 years, including years that I lived at home. We got her a puppy in the summer of 2001 and she was full of 'spunk' from the beginning.
Jessie, a beagle/hound/lab (???) mix was an extremely loyal dog to my dad. She loved him dearly and followed him wherever he went. She loved going to the cabin. When there, Jessie came alive. She was a very noisy dog with her howling, barking and whining, which meant she was always on my crap list...but she was ours.

The last year she had been having some urinary problems. We kept thinking she had bladder infections but it never got better. Today the vet x-rayed her and she had a massive bladder tumor. While usually vets tell you your treatment options, this vet went right to putting her to sleep. I guess it was that bad, and he felt that Jessie was probably in a lot of pain. My dad made the decision to put Jessie down and stayed with her while they did it.

My dad is a very strong person but I could hear the pain in his voice. Please keep him in your thoughts over the next few days. He lost his shadow today and I'm sure a piece of him as well.

Here is a recent picture of Jessie. She is the black and white dog.

First Day!

The twins had their first day of school today.

This morning I set my alarm a little early so that I could do some stuff before getting the kids up. When I got out of bed K woke up and started running around her room, getting dressed, and yelling "school! school!" It was so stinking cute. S took a little longer to wake up, but once he did, he was super excited too.

I dropped them off at 8am and they barely noticed me leaving. In fact, they were probably happy I was going because they complained several times about all the pictures I was taking. S went to one class and K the other and neither of them ever looked back.
I arrived a little early to pick them up and both had good days. They both had just woken up from their naps and were having snack. They both got their book bags and came home. I have heard them sing a few new songs today and every so often they come and tell me a story about their day. When I picked them up I asked them if they were ready to go back. K took a few seconds and then said 'yes' and S declined to comment. I think they had fun, and want to go back, but their first full day of routine and structure just wore them out.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

We are School Bound!!!

On Tuesday I got a call around 11am. The twins had gotten into the More at Four program, their open house was that night, and they start Monday. Wow. Talk about little notice.

On Monday the twins will start their first year of school. It's a full day program that runs from 8a to 2:30p. They will get breakfast, snack and lunch there and will follow a state regulated pre-K program. The school is right down the street from us so it's very convenient.

My only problem is they separated the twins. Since I had so little time to even deal with the twins starting school I didn't even have time to talk to anyone with my desires. When I walked in the door to the open house, the director saw me and the first thing out of her mouth was...'I separated them'. I explained to her my dissatisfaction with that choice but didn't push to have it changed because I didn't want to be 'that mother' on the first day. We will see how it goes...but I'm thinking it will be a pain.

So far I am not sure on S's teacher. She is very quiet and from a first impression she seems kind of snotty. She didn't seem to make any true attempt to talk to S and didn't seem engaged with the kids much. We will see. I have been surprised on how off first impressions can seem and HOPEFULLY this is the case here. I am SUPER happy though that S's speech therapist from the last year will see him at his school. She was wonderful with S and he loved her.

K's teacher is actually a man, which I kind of like, and actually feel S could benefit from too. He was great with the kids, trying to engage them and talked to each of them one on one vs just talking to parents. He is actually the fiancee of an acquaintance of mine through the local mommy group. I had met him several time before but it took me a few minutes to place him when I saw him. My biggest concern for K is the food. They feed them, and I am not allowed to bring in outside food. Anyone who knows K knows that she is an EXTREMELY picky eater. I worry that there will be many struggles with food, but I guess it's something K will have to deal with.

I will take and post pics on Monday. Thankfully I am off their first 2 days of school so I will be able to see them off and pick them up. K and S are so excited and after the open house ask every few hours when they are going back. I hope the enthusiasm sticks with us for most of the year :o)

...I Gotta Wear Shades

S also likes to dream about the future, although a lot less then his sister. For about the last year S has had a 'girlfriend' in his gymnastics class. He talks constantly about R, and even when other girls seem to crush on him, he is steadfast with his devotion to R.

The other night S was talking about when he grows up. I asked him what he was going to be. His response "I am going to build things. And I am going to build a pink house for me". I asked him why a pink house and his response was "R likes pink." :o) I asked him what R was going to do when she grew up and he said "Stay at home and be the mom" How cute!

He too talks about having two babies but is much less specific than K. I haven't heard him mention genders or names. The only thing that stays constant, is marrying R.

Monday, August 23, 2010

The Future's So Bright...

Both of the twins talk a lot about the future. I have been around kids my entire life and I have never heard children so young constantly plan and speak about what like will be like when they are older. Maybe I have just forgotten, or maybe the twins are more mature in this area.

Today I will share K's plan for the future. I will post S's tomorrow.

K plans on being a nurse or doctor. When she was in the PACU after her surgery a few weeks ago, she said that she would like to help kids, so right now, we are looking at pediatrics. She often asks what she needs to do to become a nurse and how will she get there. I just remind her that she needs to finish 'regular' school first.

She is going to marry a brown haired boy. He is going to take care of her. Together they will live in a pink house that she is going to have built next to my house. It's going to have a trampoline and a pool. There will be four bedrooms. The outside will be pink along with most of the furniture.

Her and her husband are going to have 2 kids. The way K talks these kids will be twins. One will be a boy and one will be a girl. The names change but this week they will be called Matthew and Sara. I will come to the hospital with her and stay with the babies. I will then move into her house and help take care of the boy baby...because she only wants to care for the girl baby. I will then be her nanny when she goes back to work.

She will let her kids watch scary TV shows and stay up late. They don't have to clean up or be quiet at night. They can eat what they want.

The above story has been repeated to me for months now. A few details may change, but the overall story stays the same. I find it very cute that K is already planning her life. I have to smile and wonder just how much of it will come true :o)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Random Stuff

Just a few things going on here...

  • Will start with the positive. K has had no pain medicine for a week as of today. This is incredible. I am beyond thrilled that the surgery went well, her recovery was quick, and everything seems to be a complete success. It's so wonderful when everything goes the way it's supposed to.
  • For some reason my milk supply has dropped significantly. Different reasons could be the stress of the last few weeks with long days at the hospital (work and with K) and not being able to pump the way I should be. Also M's thrush could have affected it as well. I went and saw my lactation consultant and have started taking some things. Fenugreek (smells like maple syrup and will help in production) Supplements (with garlic and probiotics to help treat any potential thrush in my breasts) and a yummy batch of lactation bars (like granola bars with ingredients known to help production.) It seems to be working as I am pumping more milk. The pills are causing horrible heartburn though and when you are burping up pills that taste like garlic and maple syrup...well, let's just say it's interesting. I need to work on my feelings of guilt though, because I really only pump to donate milk and I am doing all this work to keep up a supply for the family I donate to. Sometimes I just need to take care of us.
  • I work this weekend - boo. My mom is here spending the weekend and watching the munchkins. It should go well since I will be spending most of the waking hours at work. I really do appreciate her help like this though since it saves me a ton on babysitting.
  • Next week will end on a busy note. Our twin consignment sale is next week and I have a ton of stuff to get rid of. I would love to sell everything because (1) I need the stuff out of my closets. I think I have 5 large containers plus big baby gear items, and (2) I would love to make enough money to pay for M's nine and twelve month portraits.
  • And on a bad mommy note...M fell of the chair tonight and hit his head :( He got a big bruised goose egg right away. This is his first major injury and he was pitiful. Makes me feel so horrible to letting it happen. I hope when he wakes up in the morning it doesn't look too bad.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Just a Picture


Not much to say today so I thought I would just share a picture :)

Monday, August 16, 2010


The past few days I have felt kind of lost. It actually started when I got one of those stupid chain emails where you fill out answers to silly questions. One of the questions was "Who is your best friend?" and I didn't have an answer. It kind of hit me like a ton of bricks that I don't really have a 'best friend'. I have lots of good friends, but no one friend who I can count on anytime to help me out in a pinch; no one that I can share my deepest secrets with and not worry about being judged; no one who I regularly hang out with and feel connected to.

There is one person who comes close...but she is 1000's of miles away and therefor it isn't really the same.

I don't know why this is the case. I know many people form their life long friendships in high school and I of course moved to a different country after I graduated high school. I went to a technical college so didn't get the dorm life or sorority experience. I am not one to go clubbing or to large social events so I guess my opportunity to meet people is limited.

Maybe this is more important to me since I am a single mom by choice. I have made the decision to parent alone and it's not a decision I regret, however I think it makes me need a close friend all the more. I need another adult that I can share things with and have adult conversation with. Someone who when the kids drive me nuts and I need an escape completely gets it and lets me spew my emotions all over them.

Since having kids I have made more friends because I do put myself out there for the kids. I participate in many groups and attend many play dates. I have relationships with people at work. I have met some really great people but I've never gotten that big connection with anyone. Maybe it's because they are all married; maybe because at this point in life most people have already established their close friendships; maybe it's because I tend to have a hard time trusting people and allowing myself to be vulnerable.

I'm not sure how to fix this, now at 30 years old. Part of me thinks it too late and I need to be grateful for the group of friends I have and not worry about having one or two 'best' friends. But part of me really yearns for that best friend relationship.

Saturday, August 14, 2010


I think it's pretty safe to say that the surgery was a success. It has been 42hours since K has had anything for pain. She is walking around and her limp is definitely less noticeable. This is amazing since right up until her surgery she was requiring meds every 4-6 hours; waking during the night in tears; limping pretty badly at times; and pretty miserable at times.

I am beyond relieved to think that in a few days we may be able to put all of this behind us. She says her leg is hurts a little, but only if I ask her. She states that it's not her 'spot' that hurts, but rather the 'hole' where they fixed it. She still gets her band aid changed everyday, but I'm thinking this will stop tomorrow or Monday.

Overall things are great right now with K. I am so happy for her and her relief from misery!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Good Day!

K has done great today!

This morning around 2am K woke up crying saying her leg hurt. This was about the time that all the meds she received in the hospital were wearing off, so her pain was very understandable. I gave her meds and we both went back to sleep. I re-medicated her just before I left for work today at 8am.

With her sitter K seemed to have a good day. She was very active and often had to be reminded to slow down and take it easy. She never complained of pain...not one time! She was in a good mood and seemed to be moving well.

When I got home a great friend of mine brought us some dinner and then we ran out to Walmart for some groceries. It wasn't until 8p tonight that K asked for meds again. That's 12 hours in between doses!!! That is great!!! K had been taking meds every 4-6 hours.

I am hoping this means the surgery was a success and that once she heals from the surgery itself, she will be pain free and back to normal!!

Update on Baby Charlotte

Yesterday while K was in surgery I was able to go visit my friend and her sweet baby girl Charlotte. On Tuesday morning it was confirmed that the baby had hirschsprung's disease and required surgery. Late Tuesday Charlotte went into surgery to try and fix her colon.

Unfortunately when they got in there, they found more damage then they thought and now the baby has a colostomy. Hopefully in a few months, once Charlotte is stronger and grows bigger, they can re-operate and reverse the colostomy.

Please continue to keep this family in your thoughts as Heather is under so much stress and pain right now. I hope that baby Charlotte continues to heal and will be sent home by the end of the month.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

The BIG Day

Today was K's surgery. I think it went as well as could be expected.

We left the house for the hospital at 7a and got there about 8a. They took us back fairly quickly and got K into a hospital gown and seated us in the holding area. K has her blankie and her new Pillow Pet (she got this to 'help' her through surgery). Up until this point K had actually been quite calm, but while waiting in the holding room, she started to get nervous and a little tearful.

After talking to a few docs, they administered an oral dose of Versed. Wow. Within 10 minutes K was laughing, talking out of her head, eyes rolling back, and in and out of sleep. While it was kind of funny to see her act this way, it was also a bit scary to see my little girl this out of it. I held her like this for about 10 minutes and then they came and took her from me and into the OR. She didn't seem to mind, and although nervous, I was okay too.

When K went back it was shortly after 9a and the notified me of the procedure start at 10:15a. I went down to the cafeteria and had some breakfast and worked on things from work. At about 12:30p I got called back into the PACU to sit with her while she woke up.

At first she was asleep but within 10 minutes woke up. She woke up really well and although she didn't like the way her leg felt - she said it felt like rubber - she seemed okay with everything...until she saw the IV in her hand. OMG. She hated that thing and would not let anyone near it! In the PACU she sat up, talked the nurses ear off, ate graham crackers and a popsicle. She seemed really awake and calm.

At 1:30p we headed to our room and this is when K seemed to get overwhelmed with everything. She started to cry and became very restless. I couldn't calm her very easily and she was upset with everything the nurse or I tried to do. The staff gave her some toys, which calmed her for a moment, but she quickly returned to her restless state. She stayed this way until about 3pm when she fell asleep (and I think mommy did too).

At 5p K woke up and seemed to be in a better mood again. She was hungry which was good since dinner was being delivered. Well, you would have thought that being a childrens hospital, there would be children friendly meals, but not so. Her dinner was beef stew, broccoli, side salad, roll and sweet tea. One look and I knew K would have none of that. She kept asking for pizza...so I found pizza (I got lost a few times and almost gave up at one point).

After dinner the doctor made his rounds and said we could go home. K was excited as was I. After a miserable, screaming, thrashing ordeal with removing her IV, K got dressed in her PJ's and we headed home. I think we left there right about 7pm.

When we got home K was excited to show her brothers her new toys and battle wounds. She received a nerve block in surgery, so she is still unable to move her leg very well, or have much feeling. Due to this, I will be carrying her around tonight. Tomorrow all the meds should be out of her system and she will have normal function and sensation of the leg.

Here is hoping to a quick recovery, a successful surgery and a clean biopsy report!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Please Keep Charlotte in your Thoughts

I have a friend who just had a baby on August 3rd. Baby Charlotte was born seemingly healthy and was the second daughter to join the family.

On Friday it was noticed that Baby Charlotte wasn't eating as she should, and on closer inspection they found she has an intestinal blockage. Charlotte was transferred to the Children's Hospital - the same on K will be at on Wednesday - for further work up and possible surgery. From the little bit I know, it sounds like the baby may have Necrotizing enterocolitis which can be quite serious.

Please keep this family in your thoughts. I can't imagine the level of stress they are under.

When it Rains, it Pours

This week is K's surgery. I have been getting more anxious as time goes by and the date gets closer. I was hoping for busy, but calm days leading up to surgery but life had other plans.

Friday night while looking in M's mouth I see some small white patches. Great. Thrush. The twins had it horrible as infants. Two rounds of Nystatin and then Diflucan to get rid of it. It was miserable. I didn't want to go through that again, so I decided to call the pediatrician first thing Saturday morning to get an appointment to get started on treatment early.

So Saturday morning I wait for 9am so that I can call the doctor. While waiting K comes into my room and says 'my toe hurts'. I look and on K's right big toe there is a huge grape size blister filled with pus. Great. An Abcess. I call the doctor and make appointments for both. While we were getting ready, the abcess breaks and (TMI) a huge pool of pus drains out.

We get to the doctor. M does have thrush. It's early though and very mild (Yeah!) He is started on Nystatin Mouth Wash and I am started on Nystatin Cream - since he is still breastfeeding. K does have an abcess. Since it's already broken, no need to drain, but we do get 10 days of antibiotics. K has a slight temperature but I'm told as long as it doesn't get worse, she should be fine for surgery.

And, you would think that would be enough. But no. Tonight (Sunday) N is complaining that she is in so much pain she can't walk. She is using her walker, the one she hasn't used since the twins were born, to help her around the house. She has intense pain to her right side, she denies she ever fell, but I don't know what else would have caused this. So while I am at work tomorrow, a friend will be taking her to the urgent care to see if we can figure out whats wrong with her.

Please...no more...I can't handle it.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

I Want to Hurt N

Back Story...

When the twins were one I made them each a small quilt with squares from memorable outfits from their first year. While K liked hers, but never really carried it around, S became super attached to his and it became his 'onnie'. He has carried that thing around from the age of one to present day. He sleeps with it, he plays with it and there is a fight every time we leave the house about how onnie needs to stay home. S even refers to it as 'he'. Like as in 'onnie needs to come in the car or he will get lonely'.

Well needless to say, this onnie is not in great shape. It's no longer the vibrant blue and other colors it was, it has many stains, rips and holes, but to me this is what gives it it's personality and what makes it all the more special to him. The blanket shows the love it has received.

Today, while at the hospital with K, N felt it was necessary to take the blanket apart so that she should crochet a new cover to it. WTF!!?? S's special onnie and she destroys it?? Something sentimental and special to both S and I and she takes it apart!! I am so livid. I almost started to cry. I just looked at her and said 'its not his onnie anymore. You should have asked me before touching it' and I walked away. I haven't said another word to her tonight because I can't. If she wanted to crochet something for S, fine, but don't involve the old one.

This is a perfect example of why it's hard to live with N. This has nothing to do with her dementia. This is her personality. Her way is the better way and she spends most of her time changing things when I'm not looking to fit her way. She saw a ratty blanket and took it upon herself to mess with it. She would never for a second think of talking to me about it first.

I'm sure the anger will fade, but right now I am just trying to figure out a way to save S's onnie :0(

My Growing Man, S

Between K's leg and M's first year, S has kind of gotten ignored recently. I wanted to take the time to talk about my little man.

In the last few months he has melted my heart with how awesome he has embraced the role of big brother. He loves to be around M. From the early days when he called his baby brother his 'little co-conut' to now his 'Maxie-poo'. S loves to play and watch M for me. S thinks it's totally awesome when M laughs at him or gives him his trademark grin and now that M is crawling, S couldn't be happier.

Today while I laid down I watched S play with M in the nursery. He showed M how to use all his toys. He put M on the bouncy zebra toy and when M started to fuss, S said "it's okay maxie-poo, I got you" He does things like this all day long and I can't help but grin when I hear them.

Things like this make me so happy because sometimes I get frustrated with S with his behaviour and lack of impulse control. I sometimes worry about how mature S is compared to his peers and fear how difficult the routine of school will be for him. But my worries completely dissapear when I see how in love he is with his brother; how S's gentle spirit and compassion shine through when he's with his brother; and how mature he really is when he is playing the role of big brother.

I imgine this relationship will only continue to grow when M starts to walk and then run. I have a feeling I will be yelling at the two of them real soon while they are covered in mud with a handfull of bugs. Nothing better than that :0)

Phew...That Was a Long Day!

And to our surprise, since K is otherwise healthy, no lab draws!

Surgery is schedule for Wednesday. We will need to be there first thing. As long as there are no complications she should be able to go home late that afternoon. They are going to give her some Versed and then once she becomes 'super happy' they will put the gas mask on her and put her out before sticking any IV's or such into her which makes me happy. They did not plan on doing any biopsies so I did put in that special request which they said they would be happy to do (the cancer nurse in me just wouldn't be happy without one, and I'm not sure if I had said this before, but my step-brother died at the age of 4 from bone cancer, so this hits a little close to home).

We went an visited the Chidren's Hospital so K could see how fun it was. She saw a few of the playrooms and wanted to play today. I told her she would have to wait until next Wednesday, which might be a little mean, because I'm thinking she might not be able to visit next week being right after surgery. We had our special 'girls only' lunch at Subway and K got the cutest porcelain doll from the anesthesia department for being good

I also visited with financial and they said that my out of pocket was going to be about $1400! While thats crazy I was thinking higher so I guess it could be worse. They said I should apply for financial review because of my single parent status and the lady thought that between insurance discounts and some financial aid I may even be able to cut that amount in half.

The stupidist thing of the day is that it costs money to park in the parking deck - the only parking available - and they only take cash, which I did not know until I tried to exit the deck. I NEVER carry cash on me and I was only able to scrounge up $1 from the change compartment in the car. So now I have a stupid $3 IOU on my car for next week. UGH. Stupid deck only taking cash!!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Tomorrow is Big Day Number One

Tomorrow K and I will be spending the day at the Childrens Hospital for her pre-op visit. We will talk to anesthesia and the interventional radiologist to get our game plan for next Wednesday. There will also be some blood work, which I have prepared K for, but I am still dreading.

I will have more information tomorrow about the times and exact procedures but right now I am thinking we will go in early in the morning, she will be put under a general anesthesia with a nerve block, they will perform the radio frequency ablation and then she will get to go home late that day.

Today has been rough as K just doesn't seem to be getting pain relief anymore. Three time today K spent almost an hour just sobbing on the couch, complaining of pain and I wasn't able to give her anything. I think I will be asking the doctor for something stronger tomorrow for the next week, but I hate to do so because it will probably be a narcotic. Of course the most important thing is that she is comfortable so I may just need to accept the narcotic meds for the next week knowing relief will come soon.

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