Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Goals. And Set-backs

As parents we are constantly questioning whether or not what we're doing for our children is truly what's best for them. I've been questioning that more and more lately. You see, I work from home but really it's mostly care for Sophie and squeeze work in when I can. Y also telecommutes 90% of the time. We are blessed to be in this situation but it also means The Little Miss is always with us. We run errands together, we play together and we're just together.

Sophie had been making progress with little things. She was making the transition from bottles to sippy cups at sleep times, having more independent play time, being more adventurous around unfamiliar people (interacting with them rather than clinging to me) and just being a happy, adventurous toddler.
Since Y's surgery we've had a major regression. While she was away from us in those 4 days Y was hospitalized, she didn't eat well, she didn't drink well and did not sleep well. I wasn't too surprised by not sleeping well just because she's used to our sleep-time routines. I couldn't walk into another room without bursts of tears. We thought once Dad was home she would return to her old self. A month later and it hasn't happened.

We discussed our issues with Sophie's pediatrician at her 15-month check-up where he described her as having a "severe case of separation/stranger anxiety triggered by a traumatic event". We now have to do our best to recognize her limits and don't push them until she's comfortable with a situation otherwise we may have even more setbacks. In the meantime we can hope she has plenty of positive experiences to ease her anxiety.
So here I question whether or not it's been best for Sophie to stay home with me. Are we doing her a favor or are we just hindering her development? Sure she gets park time and play date time but she's not surrounded by new people daily whether at daycare or another environment.

Our "goal" was to have her completely weaned from the bottle by 14 months at the latest. It hasn't completely happened. We had a "goal" to try and spend at least one weekend or night a month away from the Little Miss so we could spend some time together. Alone. It doesn't look like that's going to happen in her current state.

Don't get me wrong, she's progressing normally in her development and even ahead of the "standards" but I feel like her anxiety is holding her back.

Or maybe I should just attribute all my feelings to "Mommy Guilt" and move on.

Wordless Wednesday: It's That Time of Year Again

Monday, February 22, 2010


I still need to catch-up on posts but thought I would share this little tidbit.

The Little Miss is becoming quite perceptive to emotions. On days I'm feeling down or just all around frustrated, I will scoop her up where she will lay her head on my shoulder, arm around my back. With that sweet little hand she'll gently pat my back providing the much-needed comfort I didn't know I was seeking.

She was especially perceptive when her Dad was having surgery and I couldn't hold it together, breaking down into tears when I picked her up. It was that sweet pat on the back that got me through the night.


I love my sweet, sweet girl.

Monday, February 1, 2010

When Life Gives You Lemons....

make lemonade. Or have your Gallbladder removed.

I've been MIA from the blog world for a while. Here's a run-down of our life for the past 6 weeks:
  • LONG Christmas visit to Missouri. Cold. Snow. Even colder. More Snow. Oh look! Mommy and Daddy get an hour and a half away from the Little Miss to have lunch out. Did I mention COLD!?
  • Attended my niece's performance of the Nutcracker Ballet. She was the lead role of Clara. Jen's a photographer. She'll take pictures! Oh yeah, we want you to do professional family pictures, too. What do you mean you don't have everything you need!?
  • Return home. Lots of work meetings. Lots of photos to edit. Lots of real PAYING work. Lots of bills to know all that mundane stuff.
  • Transitioning the Little Miss from milk in bottles to milk in a sippy. Morning = success. Nap 1 = mostly success. Nap 2 = not so much. Bedtime = I. WANT. MY. BOTTLE. DAMMIT!
And that brings us to the past two weeks......

Thursday, January 21. Y is up in the middle of the night being sick. Back and abdominal pain that goes away once he vomits a few times. We think nothing of it - must have been something he ate. Fast forward to Monday the 25th. I was exhausted so crashed early while Y was finishing a deadline. Around 1am I wake to The Little Miss crying and Y throwing up. I don't get much sleep that night because Y continues to vomit for a total of 10-12 times by the time 5 am rolls around. He's in SEVERE, crippling pain and decides he needs to go to the ER. Having the Little Miss and knowing it's a 45 minute drive to the ER, I call an ambulance.

He eventually gets taken to the ER, I get things together for Sophie to stay with her grandparents, call our dog boarder to get the dogs because I just have a feeling this isn't going to turn out well and off I go.

After spending an entire, exhausting day in the ER, Y was admitted 7pm Tuesday night with suspected gallbladder issues. Ultrasound revealed multiple gall stones but there was some question whether or not that was causing all the pain. Y's doped up on morphine so not fully aware of the questions and here I worry. Y had Leukemia as a child and has been in remission since age 8. Some of his blood levels were coming back elevated and having sat in on his ultrasound seeing odd "spots" on a few organs my mind flies straight to the worst....cancer. I'm distraught (and exhausted which doesn't help) and wondering how I'm going to hold it together when I see our daughter.

A really expensive, high-tech MRI was done Tuesday night that ruled out any other issues and confirmed the gallbladder as the culprit. Wednesday, surgery was performed. His gallbladder was so inflamed it was near rupturing so out it went. In speaking with the surgeon post-op I found out our week wasn't over. A few stones had "escaped" and he'd need another procedure Thursday. Lovely.

Meanwhile, Sophie is NOT doing well with all this. She's super clingy, confused, asking for "Dada" and the "Oggies", and I'm doing all I can to keep it together. I can't take her with me to the hospital and she's not coping well with her grandparents so I call a friend to stay with her at our house. Thursday our friend stays with her here - she's not thrilled but does okay....this whole time she's not eating well, not drinking much and not napping until she's so completely exhausted she cries herself to sleep on whomever is holding her at the time. Sleeping through the night which she's done since 4 months or so? Yeah, no longer the case. She wakes scared and upset and I'm so 100% exhausted that we end up co-sleeping for the rest of the night.

Thursday's procedure goes okay. Y had Demerol for sedation and was SO out of it he doesn't remember conversations we had that night. There weren't any more stones located so he was in the clear. Friday rolls around. Much to my dismay, I agree to let my in-laws pick up Y and try to give the Little Miss a "normal" day. We wait and wait and wait on one of three Drs. to sign off on Y's discharge on Friday. By 3:30pm I'm agitated and start calling the nurses to prod things along. I FINALLY get someone to call the Dr. we're waiting on while I'm on the phone - he'd be there within 15 minutes. NOT. Try over an hour later he shows up, signs off on the chart and Y was finally able to come home.

Sophie was so excited to see her Dad. She was really unsure at first but then began to hand him absolutely every toy in reach. Because his gallbladder was so inflamed and in such bad condition, he was sent home with a drainage bag and tube sticking out of his right side. So the normal post-gallbladder-removal lifting restrictions are even more strict and I get the pleasure of draining and cleaning the bag every day.

And I'm caregiver for the Little Miss and Y 24 hours a day with no break. Plus trying to work so we have money to pay for all this craziness and deal with all the other household things that occur on a daily basis and well, I'm feeling a little worn down. Sophie is terrified I'm going to leave her again so I can't even pee by myself, in fact, she's usually on my times. Fun times.

But, all that said, I'm SO glad it was just gallbladder surgery. Each day Y gets stronger. Each day things begin to get back to normal. This coming Wednesday Y's tubing and drainage bag will be removed and the lifting restrictions won't be so strict. Each day I appreciate all Y does to help out around here even more. I may be losing my mind; I may be exhausted; I may be wishing for just ONE solid night of sleep, but I know I don't want to have to experience anything more devastating than this and know I'm LUCKY to have what I have.

So when life gives you lemons, take a look at this sweet face
and smile.