A Mommy Blog About Raising Men, Not Boys.
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Thursday, February 25, 2010

The Hip Bone's Connected to the PAIN Bone

When I was pregnant with the first child, I heard a lot of excuses about some hip discomfort I had. Mostly that it was due to the stretching of the tendons or ligaments or whatever in your hips that will cause them to "slip" especially when you are carrying a BIG baby. It makes getting up and down hard and is often to blame for the pregnant waddle - our bodies don't WORK right anymore.
I also heard a lot of smack about how, at 34, my body wouldn't handle being pregnant as well as a twenty something's so I could expect hip problems during pregnancy.

19 months later as I was waddling around carrying TWO, my hip problems were much worse, and to add insult to injury - after I delivered they didn't go away. I had major problems, I'd get stuck in chairs and no not because of my ass. I couldn't make my hips MOVE to get up or down, and sometimes not to swing around to get out of the car. In short - my hips staged a rebellion.

It truly went on for years and I think it only just settled down in the last year or two. It's not been perfect but, soooo much better. I can't remember the last time I got stuck in the car - unable to make my torso move because my hips simply wouldn't cooperate.

But apparently now at 7 months we're back in full swing as I woke up at about 3 am in agony-on my left side and my left hip was screaming. As was I. My husband rushed to me and I assured him it wasn't the baby but the pain, my god the pain was unbelievable. It just kept getting worse and worse and I was struggling to move my leg - but it didn't occur to me it was truly "that hip problem" until he helped me get up and I walked around..........and it popped into place and the pain stopped.

This morning I coughed and I actually felt it move - which hurt A LOT.

So now what? Two more months of this. Great. I can hardly wait.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

I'm Not Saying the Boy LIKES The Circus.....

The husband won tickets to THE BIG APPLE CIRCUS and I've got to say it was fairly amazing. A not for profit group who does a real live old fashioned tent show - they are NOT what you are expecting at the circus. It was intimate, it was traditional and possibly more meaningful for MY family - it was put on by a group that specializes in bringing the circus to special needs families.

I didn't know this when we went in, but learned it pretty quickly based on the number of groups that we saw there plus my husband had read about it.

They even do a special show called Circus of the Senses for hearing and sight impaired children.



It makes me a little weepy - some people's hearts are so big it amazes me.



Bello the clown was back with the group and I have to admit, his acrobatics are nothing short of heart stopping. I don't even know how someone who isn't a little tiny gymnast person DID the stunts he did - but he did and made it look effortless.



If you ever get the chance, this isn't the glitz and glam and themed stuff you get at Ringling. Don't get me wrong - I still like the big circus even though last time we went it was more like performance art than a circus.



But the BIG APPLE CIRCUS? Just WOW.






Monday, February 22, 2010

Kitty Came Home

With tons of tears running down my face I loaded up my tortoise shell kitty and took her to a vets office that I'd never been to. Seems kinda rotten, dying someplace you don't even know - but I guess no one gets to choose anyway.
I learned that they had a special room, just for pets that might be euthanized - and it had it's own exit - so you don't have to cart out your dead through the waiting room of healthy happy animals. I was escorted there without much to-do when I walked into the office sobbing - they seemed to know JUST who I was and led me right back.
The nurse came in and discussed some very preliminary blood work that would let them figure out if she had system failure vs. illness - and of course I agreed.
I didn't have any HOPE - but I agreed.

The took the blood out of her NECK - and I about threw up.

After about 30 minutes the vet came in with the test results.

None of her systems were failing - she was, obviously at 18 - an OLD CAT - but her systems were in better shape than they would've expected at her age. No what they found was a very very sick cat. Upper respiratory infection plus kidney/bladder infections had taken her perilously close to death.

With no other option, other than to just put her down, I agreed to IV fluids and antibiotics shots and surprise surprise, I brought home a meowing and pissed off kitty.

Due to her age, and the severity of her illness, it's still quite possible she will die. But if she gets better, the vet felt she would get BETTER and return to her quality of life she had before which was just fine.

So we'll wait. The vet says that if she isn't better in 3-4 days she might not get better and to be prepared for that. And so we are.

All I know is that today I made the worst decision of my life, to take the life of my friend - because I thought she was suffering. If I had been right, I know that it would've been the right thing to do for her. But I don't know how I would've ever lived with the overwhelming guilt of denying her life,and of watching the life leave her little furry body.

I got off this time. And I'd like to thank whomever for that.

I wasn't ready.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

They're Not Just Pets

My 18 year old baby is having trouble walking, and is visibly unwell.
She's a tortoise shell cat that I got at a pet store in 1992. She's cantankerous, and doesn't like much of anyone, and hangs her butt over the litter box on a regular basis - missing it.
Her name is LaVerne and yes, she used to have a partner - Shirley. While LaVerne would scoff at most affection she LOOOOOOOVED Shirley. Once Shirley was at the vet and LaVerne howled for hours looking for her. If Shirley had found a particularly comfy hiding spot to sleep, and LaVerne couldn't find her - again with the howling, until we drug out the sleeping ball of fur to show her that Shirley was ok.

I held her in bed after she got fixed (it's cruel that they don't give animals pain killers after - how would YOU like a hysterectomy and no pain killers after?) and we both cried - big tears running down our faces.

She has a small worm which is really just pom-pom balls sewn together that as a kitten she'd fetch, and as an older cat she still loves. It's her baby and every time we move, we make a point to secure Wormy someplace that we can get him out immediately.

She knows that wherever Wormy is - that's home. Always has been. For 18 years.

Suddenly today, she cries when she walks, and she's walking poorly. She struggled down the stairs, had some water and struggled back up them and under my bed.

I took Wormy and slid him under the bed to her. I don't know if I am strong enough to make a decision to put her down. I guess I just hope if it comes to that, I'll do the right thing.

Until then, she has Wormy, a warm safe place and all my love. I don't know what else to do for her.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Spring Is Coming

Previous owners must've planted bulbs. They didn't come up last year, so this was a surprise!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The ValenTimes

We usually make a fairly big To-do about Valentine's but I dunno if it's the impending baby, or the constant back and for the UNC or just simply being worn out from existing, but this year, we were both a little MEH about the whole thing.

BY GOD THERE WILL STILL PRESENTS THOUGH!




I for one wanted a Hello Kitty Keyboard, and my Valentine came through !




Yeah, I'm 41. SHUT UP!







I also got a special present from the kids. What do you suppose that they want?

They are so thoughtful. In all fairness, I kinda wanted this too. I can't cook but BY GOD I can bake.





And I got this.


It's an energy drink.


Bizarre isn't it. I'm A+ though so I'm afraid to drink it.


And most importantly, I got the husband his life long dream of a gift........a giant three wick candle (the least appropriate gift for a man on the planet).





And the boy picked out this for him. Because nothing says I Love You like ZOMBIELAND! Those were the ValenTimes around here. Hope yours were chocolate covered butter goodness filled as well!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

20 Years of Reflux - Or More

I have had acid reflux as long as I can remember. I actually had it as far back as in grade school, starting about 5th grade. I can distinctly remember being in class and having this terrible burning in my stomach - and thinking I had to put something in my stomach to make it stop.

In panic, I started eating paper.

It actually worked then, this eating of paper, believe it or not. I'd tear off small pieces and just sort of calmly eat them and the acid factory in my stomach would calm down. In my 20s someone I worked with handed me a Tums and I was hooked.

I know this might sound odd - but I didn't know what they were for really - indigestion or something I thought, and I certainly don't have THAT. Right?

It wasn't until - oh late 20s when I mentioned to a doctor about my Tums addiction and that I couldn't sleep without them beside me - at the request of my then boyfriend (now husband) that I learned I had acid reflux.

So they put on me on generic Zantac and over time, the dose has had to increase. They also added a pumper blocker eventually when the Zantac wasn't getting it so by the time I'm 40 - I can't believe that I can actually digest my food because from all the meds I'm on I doubt I'm producing stomach acid at all.


With my previous two pregnancies I stopped taking my Zantac, and simply lived on Tums. I asked my OB with the first baby "How many is too many?" and his answer was "When you're up to a bottle a day, let me know." I would say I stayed around - oh, a third of a bottle a day. THAT is a lot of tums.

By this late date in medical science they've decided I CAN take my Zantac so I am.


But something started happening a few months before I got pregnant with this baby, and I don't know but it seems to be getting worse. I'll take a bite....and it clears my airway but then - for lack of a better term - IT STOPS.


This sensation is difficult to describe but I think it might be what it feels like right before the ALIEN bursts out of your chest. It's as though there is this expanding BALL in your chest.......and you need to burp,but you can't. You ARE able to speak,but you hurt so much you can barely muster enough words to convey that you ARE NOT choking.


In previous months, I've been able to get through it - relax......just relax and breathe - take a drink and it passes.


Something is changing and I don't know if it's being pregnant or what but it's getting far worse. A couple of weeks ago we went to a Bridal Show for a goof, and were nibbling our way through the caterers (shut up! We PAID to get in dammit!) when upon eating a bite of delicious teriyaki beef.....suddenly the ALIEN was there,bursting through my chest but worse, much worse than ever before. I rushed to the restroom and promptly threw up all the delicious appetizers and wedding cake I had consumed. (Quite a lot). But I felt much better and went about my day.


It's happened at lunch a few times, recently at the Olive Garden - I didn't get to the puke stage but oh it was brewing. And then there was last night.


We went to the OUTBACK for an early Valentine Dinner (all you Valentiners, you are welcome - my three crazy kids won't be there messing up your date) and it wasn't enough that one boy was having a very autistic evening and was whining and crying about everything and wouldn't eat. I had about 4 bites of my dinner when I suddenly felt it.....THE ALIEN WAS AT THE TABLE.


I tried to breathe, tried to relax....but to no avail. So quickly went to the restroom and yes - puked up my stuck food. Then, I puked up the food I had eaten. Then I puked up all the beverage I had consumed which had not come up with the food. But the pain didn't stop.


When it subsided to manageable, and after the waitress had been in to check on me, I calmly went back to the table and talked, noted that the boy was still acting nutty, and then had to excuse myself for more puking in the bathroom.


I sat in there for quite a while this time, feeling queasy and headachy and thinking I might actually have a problem that wasn't going away this time.......and went back to the table.


The husband had already decided - and had the food packed and the kids coats on and we went to the car where the pain came back at me in full force and I puked out the car a few times (hey I'm a FUN DATE PEOPLE!).


We drove to the hospital and as we grew near - it stopped.


It just STOPPED.


I opted to go home, which probably worried the husband a lot more than was fair, but I know for a fact that they need to look down my throat and they won't DO that while I am pregnant. I know cuz I already mentioned this - in a more minor form, to my OB.
I just wonder if I'm gonna be stuck on ALL LIQUID before the baby comes - at this rate, I very well might.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Welcome To Atlanta Part 4 - REAL SNOW




It's happened. Atlanta got hit with 2-4 inches of snow (depending on where you are) and man......IS IT GREAT!


My kids have never seen REAL snow. Ever. They've seen the light dusting we've had 2-3 times in Atlanta but with all the years in Florida, I'm afraid they have not ever seen what INCHES of snow look like.






I think that they liked it.



If you need me this weekend, I'll be hibernating.......

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

What u dont want to see at the ob

eeeeeeeeek

Monday, February 08, 2010

Inapproriate toys

Sunday, February 07, 2010

And Then They Ruined the Cabbage Patch Factory....

The newly opened BABYLAND Cabbage Patch Hospital was much anticipated by us. I know,it's UBER corny - but we loved the old place so much.


The original Babyland was set up like an orphanage - and your children would go in to see all the happy beautiful dolls just waiting to be adopted and to be part of your family. Little rooms like a nursery, a preemie ward (ok slightly creepy-but points for realism) and school room, and a playground increased the happy little people experience.


It was small, but rather lovely in it's way.




The new place still has the cabbage patch, and they do deliveries but - they didn't set up all of the sweet little vignettes to make their new "hospital" like an imaginary place.


It's a big fucking gift shop.


The entire place is open - one huge room. With displays of dolls sitting around, but not the way they used to be - as though they live there. They're just on display. The entire "adoption" thing is lost to me now. It's just a place to go buy dolls.


Maybe they aren't done. Maybe it's going to change. But seriously. LAME.


I'm in no hurry to go back and the other place was a fun place to run up to, fresh mountain air, nothing to do on a Saturday - let's go to Babyland. The kids would play and we'd watch the creepy little dolls be born and it was - nice. Wholesome. I don't know.


It's OK now. But they kind of washed out the magic in their new build. I hope they figure out how to put it back.


Saturday, February 06, 2010

The North Carolina Plague

We travelled on Tuesday to North Carolina, to UNC Chapel Hill for our next round of interviews to hopefully get our littlest boy on an experimental treatment for autism. The trip over was a portent and omen I swear. My throat and ear were aching and on fire. I just felt, BLAH. Not good. Plus about halfway there, this annoying MIST started falling that gradually worked up to LIGHT RAIN.
You know the kind - where you ALMOST need your windshield wipers but cannot do without them? It was about this same time that it occurred to me that I was going to throw up. We stopped in NC for dinner at Cracker Barrel (friend to travellers everywhere) and I ordered grilled chicken, hot tea (by now I had chills), apple sauce and something else. I dunno what.

I had some tea, some applesauce and went to the bathroom and puked them up.

At which point I noticed that Cracker Barrel no longer has out their fancy soap and lotion in the ladies room. I know it's a cost cutting thing, but man, when you are on a road trip - those were sort of nice pick me ups, at least to me. I miss them.

We got to Chapel Hill about bed time and found it covered in icy snow and zonked out. I apparently kept the husband up all night moaning, shivering and sweating. He got me some Tylenol and I did sleep some better after that.

Our appt went well at UNC - and we got our medicine for the boy (or placebo) but YAY we found out that after this study we can participate in the NEXT one where he is GUARANTEED to get the enzyme. So, yes, we're IN for that one. I'd like to see if we can't get the OTHER boy in that one.

Everyone kept telling me how terrible I looked. Which is probably a sign that I looked really, really terrible.

After that we went to the 501 Diner which is a place where I am positive that XTA took me for breakfast like 13 years ago. It was still really good. I had an English muffin. And some tea.
And their toilets and floors are very clean - I know this because I threw up in their bathroom.
I want to go back there and eat food - without throwing up.

To add to my vomit highlights I'd like to add that I also threw up in an intersection - hanging out the car window - showering puke all over three lanes of traffic and my car,which my sweet husband cleaned up off the outside and some of the inside of the car. He laughed as he did it, which made me laugh and feel less stupid and helpless. No one is as brave in the face of vomit as my husband. I have 12 years of proof.
I also threw up at the South Carolina rest area- but it wasn't as clean.

He took me to the doctor when I got home, and VOILA my strep test turned colors the second they put it in the tube. Yes. Strep throat. So a ZPAC and another day's worth of sleep and I'm not completely better but MAN am I better.

And the most important thing - the boy got his medicine. We don't know if it's the placebo or not. But this isn't about us. Well it is. But it isn't. Because we know we can get the enzyme in a few weeks for sure regardless. If this works - it could make all the difference in my little boy's life - it could change his world.

If it works - it could change a lot of worlds. So we accept huge inconvenience and travel - and expense, and we accept that we might get the placebo.

And I would puke every meal I ate for the rest of my life, if that was what it took to make my little boys better.
I only took one picture the entire trip. Those of you who know me, KNOW how crazy that is. But here they are, my sleeping Princes in the hotel in Chapel Hill.