Friday, February 25, 2011

Fear

Fear.

Complete fear and nervousness.

It's what I am full of right now. Every time my cell phone rings with a number that I don't recognize I fear that it will be more bad news. The last few weeks have been full of test after test and appointment after appointment to try to get to the bottom of what is making my son ill and what is making his stomach hurt. Blood tests, fecal tests, an ultrasound and more. So far we have been told that he has either Crohns disease or ulcerative colitis and probably celiac disease. But no definitive answer yet and that is just killing me. I just want to know...not just be told "possibly" or "probably." I can't stand seeing my baby in pain and I want to fix it, but I can't until I know how...and so far I haven't been told how because we don't have a diagnosis yet. I just want to fix it...mommy's are supposed to be able to fix everything aren't we?

So, On Monday my baby boy has yet another trip to the hospital. A trip that includes more tests, biopsies and putting my baby under anesthesia. An endoscopy & colonoscopy. Those words are haunting my dreams...they are not tests that a 4 year old should have to endure, but they are the reason for our trip to the hospital.

And with this trip I am yet again filled with fear.

Fear of my baby boy remembering all of this, fear of waiting and fear for the possible results.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

What is Playing Wednesdays (on Thursday)

One of my favorite artists finally released her new album this week and I can't even begin to tell you how much I've been looking forward to it. It's the lovely and amazing Adele and her new album entitled 21.

There is only one word that I can use to describe the album: SWOON!

I am absolutely enthralled with this album and Adele herself. It is filled with the warmth and emotion that only she can bring to the table. Her voice is so amazing...Man, that girl can SING! (And the song writing is impeccable.)

Definitely check it out...you won't be disappointed!





(Make sure to get the Deluxe Edition...it has some live versions of the best songs on the album. Take a listen to the 2nd video that I posted here...it's a live version of my favorite song that was recorded in her living room! Swooning yet again!)

Monday, February 21, 2011

I'm getting old...



Ok...I think that I am officially old. And yet I still find myself having to buy acne cream/face wash. I am so confused.

My weekend consisted of getting excited to clean my house and buy a new dishwasher. Therefore I am old. Because when appliances and cleaning your home get you all in an excited tizzy, you are old, right?

But I also ordered myself some Proactiv last week to combat the adult acne that has graced my face since becoming a mom 4 years ago. The strange part of my order was making sure to get a good moisturizer to help combat the wrinkles & sun damage.

So therein lies the confusion. So if I am getting old, why am I having to deal with a teenage problem like acne?



ps. I really, am truly excited about the new dishwasher. I can't even begin to put it into words. My old one was a disgrace to my kitchen. It wasn't getting the dishes clean and it was leaving gross white residue on everything. Ugh...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Get. Off. Your. Damn. Cellphone.

Just a quick little rant for today:

You.

Yes, you.

Please, get off your damn cell phone.

When you are:
  • ordering coffee at Starbucks
  • in line to buy your groceries at the store
  • ordering food at the drive-thru
  • picking up you prescription at the pharmacy
  • in my office for an appointment
  • at the counter at the bank
Because damn it...it's frickin rude.

And by doing it, you are making the person helping you feel like they are nothing more than wallpaper on the wall.

But in fact they are people.

Real people that deserve more respect than that.

That. Is. All.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

What is Playing Wednesday

So...if you watched the Grammy's on Sunday you will have seen that Arcade Fire won for Album of the Year. I was so glad that for once a really, really great album won. So if you haven't taken the time to listen to them, so should. Do it. Now. You won't be disappointed.







Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Why I Dislike Valentine's Day

So yesterday was Valentine’s Day. Which I’m sure that you already know. But I just have to tell you that Valentine’s Day when you are a parent is much, much different than before you had kids. It just doesn’t have the same importance that it used to have…for many reasons. I think that I finally hit that “I’m an old fuddy-duddy” phase of adulthood, because I look at things so very differently than I used to, and I find myself really not liking Valentine’s Day anymore.

#1 – The last thing that I want to do is to have to make reservations waaaaayyyy in advance and sit in a crowded restaurant being waited on by a server that would rather be spending their time with their “special someone.” And the crowds…ugh, don’t even get me started on the crowds on a holiday like Valentine’s Day.

#2 – The struggle of finding a babysitter on Valentine’s Day is like trying to get the “IT” toy of the year for your kid at Christmas. Since there are so few good babysitters nowadays, you have to practically fight other couples in order to schedule a babysitter for Valentine’s Day. Or if you only use family members to watch your kids, you are scheduling months in advance in order to beat your siblings to reserving grandma’s time.

#3 – The cost of Valentine’s Day is just ridiculous. Why would I want my husband to spend double or triple the amount of money on flowers that he could bring me any other day. Or chocolates. Or cards. I also think that getting these items as a surprise on a “normal” day means so much more to me. I would rather get something “just because” rather than because of a holiday…it means that he is thinking about me on his own, not because he’s supposed to.

I just would rather stay at home in my yoga pants & a tank top, cuddled up on the couch watching a movie with my hubby. Or sitting outside under the stars by our fireplace. Those moments are the ones that I treasure so much more. Those are the moments in which our love shines through…the moments that don’t need all the hoopla surrounding them. They are the moments that we spend together because we WANT to, not because we are supposed to!

Monday, February 14, 2011

My little Valentine

So, while I am celebrating "Being Together" day with my hubby, I actually do have a Valentine this Valentine's Day.  He a handsome little man that managed to steal my heart just over 4 years ago. His beautiful brown eyes are burned into my soul. His sweet smile gives me goosebumps and everytime he says "I love you so, so, so much" in his amazing little voice, my heart just melts.

He's my little Caleb. The boy that just melts my heart when I think about him. He's funny, smart, goofy and just about perfect and I couldn't ask for a better Valentine!

So who's your Valentine?

Happy "Being Together" Day

Valentine’s day is more than just a holiday to tell someone that you love them to me…it is the anniversary of my first date with my husband Chris. As of today we have been together for 14 years….and those 14 years have been a wild and crazy ride! We have been through illness, moves, living with in-laws & parents, having a child, among many others and we have managed to stick together through it all. And I can say that I love him more than I ever imagined that I could.

iPhone photo of us on our 10th Anniversary trip to Vegas
 So, today instead of telling him Happy Valentine’s Day, I say...

Happy “Being Together” Anniversary Chris

I LOVE YA BUNCHES AND CHEERS TO US! 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What is Playing Wednesday



With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I figured that this weeks What is Playing should be about love. So, this week I picked a debut album by a couple that is definitely in love and they have a great story to go with their debut. Tennis is a husband/wife duo that met in college, fell in love, got married and saved up the money to buy a sailboat and they spent seven months traveling the Eastern Seaboard together. And while sailing they wrote and recorded songs about their journey together.

The music has a very 1950's beachy-pop sound, but with an indie-modern update to it. It has a very nostalgic feel to it that I just am in love with!

The whole album is just so full of happiness and love...you can just tell that these two adore each other and they are willing to tell the whole world through their music and lyrics. If you head on over to Amazon you can actually get one of the singles off of the album for free...Make sure to check it out!


Monday, February 7, 2011

Not being in control. And being scared of it. (Part III)

It’s been a rough last week for me. And my husband. A rough week full of anger, fear and sadness. I knew that I needed to write about it…if anything to help myself to get over it and to try to digest it. To try to make sense of it. And hopefully to get support from my friends. So here it goes…and since it is a long story, I will put it up over the next couple of days in a few posts. (Read Part I here and Part II here.)

Part III

Monday morning came and we all got up early to get ready to go to the hospital for the little one's tests. At that time were still weren't even sure exactly what kind of tests that he would be getting done. Xrays, ultrasounds or possibly still the CT scan that had been mentioned. Everything still felt up in the air...and I was scared of what we would find out.

We checked into the hospital and were sent up to the third floor to check in at medical imaging. We were the first appointment of the day and all alone in the waiting room. Caleb didn't seem to notice that anything was amiss and was having a great time watching Nick Jr. on the TV, while Chris and I were oddly quiet, contemplating what could happen and both of us trying to not worry too much. Caleb's name was called and we walked back to the room with a technician to find out that he was just going to be getting an ultrasound. (Thank goodness....I was worried about what types of tests that he could have been scheduled for!)

But even as my relief came that all he would get was an ultrasound, little Caleb got very scared and began crying. He was hungry and cranky and starting to get a cold...which didn't make for a very good patient. But the ultrasound technician was an absolutely heaven-sent...she was patient, kind and wonderful with Caleb. Chris and I had to keep taking turns sitting next to him trying to get him to stop crying. He wasn't in pain...just scared and he didn't really understand what was going on.

The test took about 90 minutes and as we were leaving the technician gave us a little bit of good news. She stated that if the doctor had seen something that alarmed him, he would have came into the room to talk with us and that it was a good sign that he didn't need to see us before leaving. Hearing that was one of the best news that I have ever had! I knew that we still needed to get the official word, but hearing that almost put a spring into my step as we were leaving!

And Caleb forgot all of his worries and tears as he got to pick out a toy from the toy closet when we were leaving. When the tech unlocked the door and he saw everything that he could pick from his eyes got huge and he didn't even know how to pick...he was overwhelmed. In the end he picked out a new semi-truck to add to his ever expanding collection of cars!

Since none of us had eaten anything that morning, we let Caleb pick out a place to go out and eat breakfast...and he chose to get a big chocolate chip pancake at IHOP. Which Chris was all for...since he absolutely LOVES pancakes and we don't ever go out to breakfast together as a family.

Since we had both taken the day off of work to deal with this as a family. We just continued on as we had all weekend...together. We enjoyed our breakfast, went home and lounged around the house. We all took a nap together in our bedroom, snuggled in each others arms. All three of us. It was wonderful.

All that was next was waiting to hear the official results from the test. And we did the next day. Nothing was found. The tests came back negative. They found nothing. And this was one time in my life that "finding nothing" was exactly what I wanted.

I was elated.

I was excited.

I cried. I cried with happiness and relief. And then I called my husband to share the news.

We still have some more tests to get through to figure out this whole stomach ache thing. Next up are the poo tests and at the end of the month he has to go in for a colonoscopy. So, we still aren't done with this. Not by a long shot. But we will get through whatever else comes...and we will do it together, as a family. One strong, united family.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Not being in control. And being scared of it. (Part II)

It’s been a rough last week for me. And my husband. A rough week full of anger, fear and sadness. I knew that I needed to write about it…if anything to help myself to get over it and to try to digest it. To try to make sense of it. And hopefully to get support from my friends. So here it goes…and since it is a long story, I will put it up over the next couple of days in a few posts. (Read Part I here)

Part II

Telling the hubby wasn’t easy…mostly because I didn’t really know what to tell him, but I also wanted to just break down and cry. Cry at the thought that my baby might have something really wrong with him. But I did find a way to spit out the news to Chris…and his response was what I expected. Upset, sad and full of questions. Questions that I didn’t have the answers to. The worst thing was that he was at work and I couldn’t see him to get the hug that I so desperately needed from him. I needed strength from someone if I was going to continue to give mine to the little one that was in the backseat of my car still crying over having his blood taken.

Then it seemed like everything began spinning even more out of control. In the span of about 30 minutes I received two calls that just made everything seem worse. The specialist that we had seen earlier in the day called because after talking with some colleagues it was determined that since Caleb was only four that there was no need to expose him to unncesseary radiation, so the CT scan was being changed to an ultrasound. And then she dropped the bomb that she also believed that the test needed to be done ASAP, so I should expect a call from the local children’s hospital to schedule the test for Monday…only 2 days away! Within 15 minutes of the call from the doctor, the hospital called to set up the test for first thing Monday morning and told us to have him at the hospital by 7am.

It was all happening so fast and I was so very scared for my wonderful, sweet little boy.

All that I kept thinking over and over again in my head was “Why?” -- Why was this happening? What was happening? Hadn’t our family already been though enough over the past few years with my husband’s Crohn’s disease, my grandmothers passing and Caleb’s club feet?

I just hugged my little one and spent the rest of the afternoon devoting myself to just being with him and spending every moment that I could with him. When my husband got home from work, he did the same. It became not about what might happen to him or us, but instead just an evening of living in the moment and spending time together as a family.

And that is how we spent the rest of the weekend. Just being together. Just holding each other. Playing. Running. Going to the park. We went bowling with another family. Instinctively we just knew that being together was what was going to hold us together and help us get through this.

At least during the daylight hours. Because at night I wasn’t sleeping. At night I found myself holding my breath for fear that I would start crying and that I wouldn’t be able to stop. I still couldn’t believe that they thought that something could be seriously wrong with my baby boy. And that the something that could be wrong was his heart.

I felt like my heart was breaking. But I made it through the weekend. With a smile plastered on my face. And I was ready to take on Monday morning and whatever it would bring. I would face it and deal with it. I knew that I could handle it…mostly because my husband would be next to me and we would weather this storm like we had with all of the others that came before. We would do it together and everything would be ok. Because it had to be.

To be continued - Part III tomorrow… 

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Not being in control. And being scared of it.

It’s been a rough last week for me. And my husband. A rough week full of anger, fear and sadness. I knew that I needed to write about it…if anything to help myself to get over it and to try to digest it. To try to make sense of it. And hopefully to get support from my friends. So here it goes…and since it is a long story, I will put it up over the next couple of days in a few posts.

Part I

Over the past couple of months the little one has been having stomachaches. Now like most parents since the stomachaches didn’t come with anything else, I just assumed that they were a typical toddler tactic of trying to get attention. But in our case, since they didn’t go away even after ignoring them I realized that we needed to see a doctor about them. This is mostly because intestinal issues run in both sides of our family. My hubby has Chrons disease and several family members on my side have had colon cancer. And I began to notice that the pain seemed to be real for the little one. He was doubling over and having to “breathe” through the pain.

So just after the first of the year I took him to our family physician. And because of the family history she recommended that we take him to see a specialist. After 3 weeks of waiting we finally got in to see the specialist. The doctor was wonderful. She talked with me. Took down the symptoms that the little one had and wrote down our family history.

Then she examined the little one. The entire examination seemed to be going well. She was making noises and putting the little one at ease. She listened to his stomach, his back, his chest…you know, all of the things that she should be doing. She just kept saying one sound over and over again “whoooshhh” I thought that it was just a little game she was playing with Caleb. I didn’t think anything of it. Until it became something. Until she turned around and said that she could hear a sound coming from his belly…a sound that shouldn’t be there.

I didn’t know what to think. Especially because she started talking about his aorta and how it carries blood to his abdominal region and how she should be able to hear it as loud as she was able to.

I couldn’t think. I couldn’t concentrate on what she was saying. All that I heard was aorta and shouldn’t be able to hear it. All of this was coming from a gastroenterologist. I just wasn’t prepared for what I was hearing. I couldn’t ask questions because she was talking about his heart. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know how to react. So I just gathered together our things, our paperwork and acted as if I was strong and wasn’t worried. She was talking about needing a CT scan, some blood work, some fecal matter tests. But while I was hearing about these other tests…I wasn’t really listening.

I was worried. I was worried to my core. I was thinking to myself, “What just happened? What was she talking about?  She was supposed to look at his stomach and now we are talking about his aorta?” I was definitely in shock.

So armed with my instruction sheet and a note card with the date of our follow-up appointment we headed down to the lab to get blood work done.

And going to the lab wasn’t pretty.

Caleb has had a bit of a cold and was a little dehydrated, so taking blood was not an easy task at the lab. And mommy was distracted. I was still trying to digest what I was told. So, while I was holding him on my lap, I wasn’t as comforting as I could have been. I was hugging and trying my best to comfort, but all that I could do was hold him. Hold my baby boy and try to give him strength though my touch.

He cried. He wailed. And I wanted to cry right along with him, but I knew that I couldn’t. I knew that he needed his mommy to be strong. So that is what I was. But inside I was crying. And still trying to digest everything.

But we made it through the lab work. And then on the way out I was given my to-go bag. It was huge, because since the doctor is still trying to diagnose what exactly is wrong with Caleb and his stomachaches, she decided to test for anything and everything. The bag that we were given for the wonderful home tests (fecal tests…. YUCK) was HUGE. Seriously huge. And it came with instructions. No red meat for 7 days, no citrus fruit for 7 days, no excess Vitamin C, no ibuprofen. Ugh. And so many different vials and collection cups. Ones that can be kept at room temp. Ones that have to be refrigerated, ones to be frozen. It was overwhelming. And I was walking around like a zombie. Still pretending to be strong, but seriously freaked out. All the while trying to comfort my little one, still in pain from the blood work. Outwardly I looked ok, but inside I was a mess.

And then it hit me…I knew that I needed to tell my husband about this…and since I didn’t even know exactly what I heard, I didn’t know how on earth I was going to tell him.

To be continued - Part II tomorrow…
 
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