Category Archives: medical/health

Thanksgiving Recap 2012- Wah wah.

Thanksgiving Recap 2012- Wah wah.

Sometimes life throws curve balls at us. Other times, it feels like life drove our car into a concrete wall at 60 MPH, and then, for good torture measure, gave us a paper cut and poured some lemon juice on it.

I’m feeling a little more like the second right now.

Our Thanksgiving was supposed to be awesome. Jared had the whole week off from work. His sister was coming in; we hadn’t seen her in a year, and she’d be meeting Evelyn for the first time. We were getting our foster dog (more on that in a later post!). We were going to take Evelyn to see Santa at the local mall, even!

It all started to go downhill when Jared got a bad cold. He started feeling under the weather Thursday or Friday of the previous week. He then had to chaperone a church youth dance that Saturday night, and by Sunday, he was pretty miserable. Sarah, his sister, was supposed to get in around 7 PM Sunday evening… but due to a bizarre airport switcheroo/delay, didn’t make it until midnight.

Monday we had to take my car into the shop for some problems. So, the only car available to us was Jared’s monster truck, and the only person who is vaguely comfortable with driving that beast on the road was Jared, who by this time was pretty much holed up in our room with a heating pad stuck to his head to help relieve the pressure. So, we stayed home and watched a lot of TV and played with Evelyn. Wednesday my car finally became available again, but all of us were feeling kinda off (except Jared, who had finally given in and gone to the doctor, who diagnosed his sinus and two ear infections and gave him antibiotics, so he was starting to move and interact like a human again…). So we didn’t do anything.

Thanksgiving was good, except for the “offness” continuing. Even Evelyn was showing slight signs of feeling unwell with a little cough. We decided to keep an eye on it, because it wasn’t like the doctor’s office was going to be open on Thanksgiving.

Despite that, I made a pretty good dinner, if I may say so myself. We tried brining a turkey for the first time. I am not sure how effective that was, but hey, it was a new thing. We had a delicious cranberry fruit salad, stuffing, mashed potatoes, rolls, and with the leftover cranberries, I even made my first attempt at cranberry sauce for the turkey! (It was actually pretty decent for a rough experiment.

 

After going into a Turkey coma, Friday showed us that Jared, despite his attempts to prevent it, had been kind enough to share his germs with the rest of us. Including Evelyn. Going to the pediatrician showed that she did indeed have RSV, a cold variant that is more dangerous for infants because it likes to get down into the chest, which can cause bronchitis or pneumonia. Poor baby was not feeling well.

(By the way, it is never fun to be told that you might have to take your baby to the ER over the weekend if she starts having a hard time breathing due to this virus. And, even though she’s miserable, you can’t give her anything. And, Mom, btw, you can’t take anything either since it could affect her feeding.

Sarah rallied the troops by taking us out for dinner (which was very sweet, considering how incredibly boring hosts we were and the fact that Jared got her sick) that evening, which was good because by Saturday, we were all down for the count.

Now THAT is an exciting Thanksgiving, wouldn’t you say?

Okay, despite the sarcasm, it really was a good visit, and Evie loved getting attention from her Aunt Sarah. They had some sweet cuddling sessions! Hopefully it won’t be another year before we see her again, because she is pretty dang cool. As if Evie’s onesie could lie.

Anyways, I guess the moral of this story is families share a lot, which is good, except when it’s germs. Then you are welcome to keep them to yourself. Next time Jared is sick, we’ll lock him up in the office room and install a doggie door to slide meal trays and medicine under until he is feeling well again.

Just kidding, dear. Kind of.

Horton

Horton

If it’s not one thing going wrong right now, it’s another!

In my last post, I mentioned that we discovered that Evie has GERD/acid reflux. Before you think I hastily rushed to this conclusion to medicate her, let me show you some of the symptoms she was exhibiting:

  • Spitting up (increasingly more in the past 2-3 weeks)
  • Irritability during or after feedings (particularly in the evenings and night!)
  • Coughing/ sputtering during eating
  • Refusing to eat
  • Crying when placed on her back, especially after a feeding
  • Arched her back while crying/feeding
  • Choking after some feedings- particularly bad Thursday
  • Spits up forcefully, causing stomach contents to shoot out of her mouth

After last week, this was just getting worse and worse.  She had a nasty choking episode at 2:00AM friday morning, then a forceful vomit later on in the day. She she then had a bad night Saturday, slept very fitfully.. and Sunday was just a mess. She forcefully threw up around 5:00-6:00 pm, and then 1:30 am (1:30 one was particulary bad, but both had vomit coming out of her nose and mouth and was most of her feeding).

There’s a lot they recommend you do, like keeping the baby elevated after feedings for 15-30 minutes, smaller feedings, sleeping in a car seat or adjusting the baby’s crib to a 30 degree angle, but it wasn’t working.

And let’s face it. Getting between 1-3 hours of sleep a night and getting covered in curdled baby vomit multiple times wasn’t working for me, either.

Monday we were able to meet with a pediatrician, who agreed with our assessment that the fussiness was mainly in part to what appeared to be acid reflux. She wasn’t too concerned, since Evelyn’s been gaining weight rapidly, but she could tell, even in the appointment, that Evie was a little fussy and in discomfort from the issue. So she prescribed us some medicated drops for the reflux and told us to call in if we didn’t notice a difference within a week.

Within 24 hours, we had ourselves a new baby. If I hadn’t been so sick with a cold, I would have slept marvelously in 1-2 hour stints throughout the night because this little girl was not nearly as fussy as she had been in the past.

Y’all, when I see that doctor again, I might just hug her.

Unfortunately, remember that cold I mentioned? Well, Wednesday night, Evie started showing signs of being congested. I’ll have to put that down in her baby book. You know, where you put things like “Baby’s first words” or “Baby’s first time to crawl”? I’ll put down “Baby’s first cold: Wednesday, August 15, 2012.”

Just kidding. Sort of.

Anyways, like probably most first time parents, I was extremely anxious. There’s not much anyone can do for a cold, but should I take her to the doctor anyways? Blah blah blah. We called the office in the morning, and the nurse told us that if she didn’t have a fever (she didn’t) and if she wasn’t extremely fussy, then go with a humidifier and saline drops and bring her in if she got worse, a fever, or really fussy (though, before the acid reflux medicine, how would we have known differently?).

Well, we didn’t have saline drops OR a humidifier, so that meant going on a field trip to Target with a sick baby. Yay! (Remember, this blog is a no-sarcasm zone…)

Anyways, meet Horton. He’s our new humidifier.

He beat out a frog and a penguin during the in-store audition for the job, and has a special place next to the bed where I have Evie sleeping in her car seat. (He made a convincing argument that he’d go better with the jungle theme in Evelyn’s room, and that his nondescript gray was being true to type, not boring.)

Don’t judge me for having conversations with animal-shaped humidifiers in a Target store until you’ve been sick for a week with a nasty cold and running on 1-3 hours of sleep a night. If you’ve been there, and you still want to judge me, then go ahead.

Plus, if you’re going to be sick, might as well be sick with a bit of whimsy thrown in, yes?

Anyways, please send Evelyn good thoughts so she can get better soon and enjoy being a healthy baby for a while, before the next calamity, like teething, sets in. 🙂

The trouble with mandogs…

The trouble with mandogs…

(Warning: Some images in this post may appear too graphic for some audiences. If blood makes you queasy, read on at your own risk!)

Remember those cute, peaceful pictures of adorable doglings that I posted yesterday?

Well, clearly, I spoke too soon.

To begin this story, you have to get a little history. One of our neighbors has a dog, cute little thing that looks like a mix between a min schnauzer and a shih tzu. The biggest problem with this dog, and said neighbors, is that the dog loves our yard and makes frequent jailbreak attempts to get over to our side of the fence. (They do say the grass is always greener…)

If it were just her getting into our yard and trying to play with our dogs, we wouldn’t care. Size-wise, they are pretty evenly matched, and she’s generally a sweet, fun little thing, but the problem with the holes is that it makes our yard less secure. These neighbors don’t have the greatest fence on the other side of their yard, and our little Iggies could easily get out onto the street and get into some major trouble if they made their own jailbreak. We’ve actually run out of rocks, stones, and other miscellaneous objects to stop up all the holes that dog is digging. We’ve started pulling bags of dirt.

But last night, Neighbor Dog broke through again. And while she and Stevie were frantically running through the yard, something happened. I was inside at the time, but according to Jared, he saw Stevie take a bit of a tumble, but get back up and running again. From a distance, everything seemed fine.

All I know is that when I came back out, I took one look at Stevie and knew something was wrong when I saw this:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you don’t know much about greyhounds, especially their smaller counterparts, they have very thin skin with relatively no body fat and very little fur, so it’s common (especially with racing greyhounds) to shred up the whole section, all layers of skin, in falls or tumbles.

Something this big needed to go to the vet. Even Jared agreed after taking a closer look that it would probably be a good idea. The only problem was that it was 8:00 PM, which meant we had to go to an emergency vet to get it taken care of.

Just in case you didn’t think about it, the emergency vet is a really sad place. I wouldn’t want to work there. Just in the hour or two we were in the front “waiting” room, we saw several crying people and sad, sad animals. It seemed like a night for some serious lacerations on dogs, too, from what we saw and heard.

We came at a pretty good time, so we didn’t spend too long before somebody came and took a look at Stevie. At first they thought it would be relatively easy to sedate him, clean out the wound, and patch him back up, but quickly after they started they realized that the injury was actually a lot worse than it looked like. In order to do the extent of cleaning and stitching up that they would need to do, they had to put him under anesthesia (also very dangerous for sight hound breeds). They told us to go home to try and rest, and they’d call us in a hour or two once he woke back up.

Try and rest. Ha. You’re telling that to a woman who has anxiety to begin with, whose special dog has to go under for what seemed like fairly easy to care for wound, and to top it off, is now in her 9th month of pregnancy and is riddled with those fun pregnancy hormones and symptoms.

Go home and rest. Good one, right?

Nearly 6 hours and $600 later, we were able to bring Stevie back home:

(We’ve been trying to think of some good nicknames for him while he’s got those awful stitches in. Our favorites have been Frankenpup, Dog of Frankenstein, and Stevie Stitcheroonie.)

So far, he’s been okay, but he’s seriously grounded. For the next several days, most doggy privileges have been revoked. Potty outside on a leash only so he doesn’t get excited by anything and run off; inside he can’t jump, climb stairs, run, or play; most of the time he should be in a small confined space (like his kennel) to make him recuperate better.

It’s looking like it will be a fun two weeks.

On Spring Break and Hospital Trips…

On Spring Break and Hospital Trips…

I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to write lately. There’s a lot of things going on in my life right now, and I have started to write a post several times and just never finished them. Someday, perhaps.

Fortunately, I am on Spring Break this week. Unfortunately, I’ve been sick for the past week, so I haven’t really had a chance to enjoy it up to this point in time. Because sick and pregnancy goes hand in hand with each other, apparently, especially with that special ironic twinge that you can’t take most medications to alleviate symptoms.

Fortunately, being sick means I have had a lot of time to “relax”. Unfortunately, “relax” means you get so bored that plucking hairs out of your head one by one seems to be the only route to retain a semblance of sanity. (Which I pretty much lost about 4 years ago anyways, when I started teaching seventh grade.)

Fortunately.. okay, enough of that.

Even with my cold/cough, Spring Break started with a big of a bang. I’ve had a medical issue a few times throughout the pregnancy that has given us a couple of scares, and it reoccurred Thursday evening and went into Friday. Since this was a little longer than previous times, I called the doctor’s office on my lunch. Really, since this wasn’t new, I was expecting to be told to just wait a little longer or to come in later in the day. You can imagine my surprise when they “strongly recommended” that I go straight to the Emergency Room in the hospital.

Now, before you get your panties all bunched in a wad, everything is FINE. Baby Boothe was never in any distress. In fact, she’s kicking or wiggling right now as I write this. Honestly, the scariest part of the whole experience was being told that I should go to the E.R. and having to get subs to cover my classes at the last minute. (Fortunately, I have some awesome, supportive coworkers that immediately stepped to the plate when I told them I needed to leave.)

Anyways, I talked to Jared, and he immediately got himself pulled together to meet me at home to take me to the E.R. (Who ever wants to the emergency room by themselves?!) Our hospital’s emergency room is actually quite pleasant and calm, or was when we went in at noon on a Friday. There was a little confusion, because at 23 weeks, apparently that goes straight to their OB/labor unit. And then apparently my doctor’s office and nurses never actually talked to my doctor before telling us to go to the E.R.

On the upside, I got a taste of what it will be like to check in whenever I do go to the labor. The rooms aren’t too bad, and they have a good sized shower in the bathroom. And the nurse that hung out with us while we monitored Baby Boothe’s heart rate was quite pleasant. (After 15 minutes, the heart rate was still perfect, and the issue had been fading away, so we were discharged pretty quickly because it was clear that Baby Boothe was not in distress.)

The moral of the story? I really don’t know. I can think of a couple of things that are rather clever, but none to positive to say.

Let’s just leave it at the fact that this Spring Break can only get better from here…right?

Lazy Weekend Recap

Lazy Weekend Recap

This weekend has been a four day weekend for me. Technically, it should’ve been only a 3 day weekend, but I missed work Friday due to a migraine that had just been getting worse and worse over the week. (One of those unexpected side effects of being pregnant- most migraine and pain medications are off limits. And sometimes, Tylenol just doesn’t cut it).

Despite the discomfort, this weekend has allowed me time to reflect how lucky I am. A couple of things that specifically come to mind:

1. I have an amazing, thoughtful, sweet husband who goes out of his way to make my life easier.

2. I have a wonderful home, and even though it’s not perfectly what I want it to be (who’s home ever is?), is more than I thought I would have at this time and place in my life.

3. I have two adorable dogs to cuddle with when I am feeling yucky/sleepy/frustrated/needing snuggles.

4. I have good friends and family members to spend time with and who truly care about me.

Case in point:

Exhibit A: Friday evening, I was feeling a little bit better (after sleeping most of the day), so Jared offered to take us out so I didn’t have to make dinner. We went to one of the better Mexican restaurants around here. It was packed and noisy, which started to make the headache come back, and I couldn’t eat too much. It was the third time we had tried eating there since we found out about Baby Boothe, and each time I come home on the verge of puking, so we decided we will try visiting there again in about 7 months or so. Jared felt bad, but I thought it was so sweet that he was just trying to make life easier for me.

Exhibit B: Saturday we did some errands. Jared even suggested we could go to Kohl’s and search for some clothes that will fit me a little better. (For somebody who has struggled with how I look and weigh for most of my life, it’s been a little challenging to accept the changes that are occurring around my midsection, even if they are for a good cause!) He even cheerfully bought me some of the clothes I tried on.

(Side note: I will say that so far, my favorite place with the best prices for maternity clothes has been Burlington Coat Factory. Found these great looking black pants with a comfy elastic waistband for $10! Score!)

Exhibit C: We had some friends come over Saturday night. I was getting the house cleaned up and Jared was upset that I wasn’t sitting and cuddling with the dogs. But I know how proud of our home he is, and to make sure it looks nice, it takes teamwork. And we had a great time when our friends came over. Even if we stayed up a little later than we previously wanted…After all,  I have a feeling that once Baby Boothe comes, time for friends will be a little more limited.

Exhibit D: All the extra things around the house Jared sneaks in. Like trying to help me with dinner last night, and cleaning up the entire kitchen. Or getting up with the dogs in the morning because Stevie doesn’t know how to sleep in. (After all, THE FOOD WON’T WAIT FOR HIM PAST 7:15! If we try to push it, he lovingly will jump on our heads and lick us until once of us gives in and feeds him. And with his dog breath, you might as well just not let it get to that point…)

I know that there’s more that I am forgetting with my sleepy brain, but at least there’s the general idea. So much to be grateful for in my life. Sometimes things like work overwhelm me, and I just need times like now to recenter and realize that the main things in my life that define me are not my career at school. It’s the things here at home that are the most important and meaningful to me.

So here’s to the best decision I’ve ever made in my life: choosing this great guy as my husband. 🙂