Friday, August 31, 2012

Appointments #10: A Dark Day For Mommy And The Follow-Up

Yesterday was the pits. No other way to put it. Just another horrific day in a string of horrific days. I was at work, doing my thing, having a decent and busy day. It was pretty great to be so occupied after two days spent with a son upset by phantom causes (he's back to his old self).

Then out of nowhere, I couldn't see. Or rather, I couldn't read (insert illiteracy jokes here). My computer screen, paperwork, signs. I could make out people and shapes but numbers and letters all began to run together. I was laughing at this point because it was just so nuts. I was rubbing my eyes and shaking my head as if that was going to fix things. I thought I was talking myself into not being able to see. I still thought the whole thing was funny...until it wasn't.

Everything started to get a little blotchy so I headed up to my supervisor's office just to talk about what was going on. She's a friend so I wanted to see if she thought it was weird. She thought it was weird alright, and dragged me right into the boss' office...the boss man just happens to be my dad.

He wasn't laughing about it either and had keys in hand to take me to the Emergency Room. I wasn't going there! They treated me like garbage last time! I wanted my doc! She was on call and off birthing babies somewhere but she communicated to a nurse that she wanted me in the office for a urine and BP check ASAP. Todd left work, picked me up, and we were off. And by this point, absolutely nothing was funny about what was going on.

I got in the car and right away, started to feel car sick. I reclined my seat but Todd's AC is broken, a horrific headache had kicked in, and I was having monster cramps a.k.a. contractions. I figured they were Braxton Hicks and just clutched my guts and my head and quietly cried while Todd rubbed my leg. It was miserable. What the Hell was happening to me???

Hold on to that question because things only get weirder. As we approached the doctor's office, my left hand went numb. As we walked to the building, my mouth went numb. By the time we got to office, my whole face was numb (like novocaine numb) and I was freaking out. The nurse asked me to give a urine sample and I just cried and cried. I was overwhelmed. But she did explain that the numbness was being caused by me and my anxiety, which was more than understandable as it was a scary situation. I was taking in more oxygen than I was letting out carbon dioxide thus, I was numbing up.

On to the urine.

Right off the bat, I was dehydrated. I knew this. I've been feeling sick for 2 weeks or so. But luckily there was no protein present. And my BP was an excellent 105/65. I had the normal amount of swelling in my ankles, the baby's heart rate was 144, and his growth was good. The nurse said everything was perfect with the pregnancy and she felt confident in saying I was having an Ocular Migraine...which causes temporary vision loss. She's had them (even when not pregnant) and said pretty soon I would start having the worst headache of my life but it was already in full gear.

I was instructed to "blow off the rest of the day", go home into a dark room, cover my eyes and relax. It was suggested that I have the TV on or have Todd talk to me so I wouldn't focus so much on my breathing. I was also told to take 2 Tylenol with something caffeinated. Todd brought me up a Pepsi on ice (HEAVEN) and put me to bed as he picked up our son. But I could NOT get any rest.

I was having contractions about every 10 minutes.

Again, these are probably just Braxton Hicks. I'm having the baby in 24 days but my due date actually isn't for 31 days. October 1st. It's too soon. But I was still concerned because the contractions were "measurable", which is something you're told to look for. Every 10 minutes. They never got closer together, they never got more intense, but they also never went away no matter what I did. AND Sullivan has repositioned himself onto a nerve in my leg so that horrific feeling is lingering. No rest for me.

My dad dropped off dinner for us (B-Spot...mmmmm, chocolate banana marshmallow milkshake) and I was right back in the bed where I've been until now. Where I am at this very moment with a sleeping Spencer next to me. My vision has cleared up...or I wouldn't be phone-blogging...which is comforting but my headache has only worsened. I was expecting it to be gone by now. Silly me.

I have an appointment at 1:30 to actually see my OB/GYN so we'll know what's what then. I'm expecting her to say that the baby is fine (most important) and that this is something I may just have to tough out. We'll see in a few hours.

***
My doctor confirmed that I'm having, what she called, an Opthalmic or Retinal Migraine. She gets them herself. There are many triggers...lack of sleep, hormonal changes, chemicals/medications, stress, etc. So basically, any of the above in my case. Usually the vision changes come first and the headache follows for a few days. She wrote a prescription for something safe for pain (which Todd is currently picking up). Hopefully I can get some rest tonight.

And all is still A-OK with Sullivan! I'm
up exactly 1 pound from 2 weeks ago. My BP was 100/60. He measured perfectly and his heart rate was 147. She said to keep track of the kick counts, of course, and wasn't concerned about the contractions. Back we go in a week! I just hope this upcoming week is better than this past week.

Tomorrow, I can say, "I'm having a baby THIS MONTH!"

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Poor Baby: A Tough Few Days For Four-Eyes

My poor little guy has been having a rough past few days. After we got home from the babysitters on Tuesday, he started screaming/crying/whimpering and never stopped. It was a cry I had never heard before. He was in agony. And as I had become sick to my stomach at work, very out-of-the-blue, I was also in agony. He wouldn't eat, he wouldn't play, he wouldn't let me put him down. Finally, after a few hours of terror, he passed out. Literally cried himself into a nap.

When Todd got home from work, I suggested he wake Spencer up and try to give him his nightly milkshake (Carnation Instant Breakfast) or he might be up all night. Big mistake. Huge. And totally my fault. He woke up and SCREAMED, so of course he was back in the bed with mommy...but he could not be consoled. The way he was crying was killing us both. We knew he didn't have an ear infection because he was just at the Audiologist the day before. No fever, not constipated, no injuries. And if you tried to lay him down, you would feel his wrath. He didn't want a teething ring or a popsicle, and he spit his Tylenol all over me.

We're GUESSING that he's teething. But we've been thinking that for awhile. Due to his issues, along with the possible Hypothyroidism, teething can be delayed so while he's been chewing things and drooling for what seems like an eternity, we haven't seen any chompers. I'm HOPING that it's teething because if it's not, I'm clueless and I can't stand to hear him like this. I really hope it's nothing to do with his thyroid medication. He's been takign it for 2 weeks now. Sigh.

I stayed home from work yesterday because I had been tossing my cookies...or imaginary cookies because I was all emptied out...and I was worried about Spence. He woke up late (probably exhausted) and started crying all over again, fiiiiiiiinally stopping to inhale some breakfast, thank Buddha. He had to be starving. Crying takes a lot out of you, physically. He was just a mess. I really hate saying this, but it was just the tiniest bit nice to feel so needed. He really wanted to be with mommy. He was my little sponge. But something had to give. I couldn't take seeing him like this anymore.


When he woke up from his nap, he seemed to have drastically improved, hooray! He had a bottle, ate a good lunch with gusto, and played happily. I even got to work on homework for a few HOURS because he was so involved in his toys...and a postcard from Canada from his Great Aunt Nan! It looked like the storm had ended. My little guy was back in action.


Todd had Spencer's glasses when he got home from work. I'm still a little broken up that he has to wear them. But they don't look AS bad as I thought they would and he doesn't seem to mind them, as long as they stay in place. Sadly, they're a little too big still (even though they are the smallest size) so even with the strap, they slip or become askew. If that happens, he rips them right off. It might be a bit of a challenge to find a way to get them to stay on but we'll work it out. He seemed pretty happy, staring me down, staring at his mobile. And he looks like a kid in glasses, not like a sick kid, which is what I was worried about. I'd still prefer he didn't need them but we'll deal. And once he grows a little, we'll upgrade to a better pair.



Todd called him "Spencer Potter" right off the bat.

So remember when I said the storm had ended? Joke was on us! When Todd brought Spencer up to join me in bed for a little snuggle time, he rolled over and I don't know if he hit his glasses on his nose or face, or if his prior moodiness had just returned, or what the Hell happened but he FREAKED OUT!!! Screaming all over again. And he wouldn't let me cuddle him to my chest, yet I HAD to hold him. He would only let me prop him on my hip. It was so bizarre and again, like nothing he had ever done before. He was a mad man. 


So despite the fact that it was killing my back, my hip, and my neck, I held him there until he fell asleep. And it took several attempts before he let me lay him down next to me without screaming his face off. I'm praying it's teeth. I want him to get teeth and I DON'T want all of this to be caused by something else. I hope he wakes up on the right side of the crib this morning or the babysitter is going to have quite the terror on her hands. And I'm not complaining about the crying because he RARELY if EVER cries. I just hate it because it's hard to see your child miserable without being able to do anything about it. Sigh.

OB/GYN appointment tomorrow. Looking forward to it, per usual. And super looking forward to a 4-day weekend as my body and brain are beat, but you know that because I can't stop mentioning it. Outside of seeing the doc and an End Of Summer family get together, my weekend is full of nothing and that sounds mighty fine to me. The more naps I can schedule, the better. 25 days (or less) from today, things are going to get chaotic!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Ready Freddie: Post Script

Just a SUPER quick update about today's goings on:

1. Spencer's physical therapist was very, very happy with the progress he's been making. While she didn't see him do it (she doesn't just leave him on the floor to his own devices...she holds and manipulates him), she was pumped to see the pictures of him doing his push-ups. She could physically feel the changes. And she was also happy to hear he's been spending a lot of time in his therapy chair with no complaints and good posture. A good report all around. He would typically go back in 4 weeks but as you know, that's C-Section day. So he gets a lengthier break of 6 weeks and I'm excited to see what happens it that time.

2. His speech therapist got a new job, quickly, and hasn't been replaced! Hopefully they get someone new soon at the school soon because I want to make sure his routine stays in place. I want to know if he's making the progress that I hope he's making. But maybe with 6 extra weeks to work on the exercises, he'll knock the socks off the new therapist. Here's hoping.

3. His hearing test went great, according to Todd. His ears were clear, no fluid, and no signs of infection! And speaking of infection, she was thrilled that at 1 year old, he's never had one in either ear. Pretty rare for a infant. His hearing will affect his speech so I'm pumped. His hearing is exactly what it should be for a fella his age. He'll go back in 6 months for another re-screen but his doctor had no concerns. FINALLY, some good news and no need to add another doctor to his team.

4. School has officially started and I feel really good about it...and just a little bit accomplished. I actually got such a jump on it that my entire 1st batch of homework (due 9/10) is done. Hollaaaaaaaaa. I also spent some time reading the text, taking notes, and doing practice questions (it's an Intensified Algebra class) in preparation for the first quiz. I am determined to do well. I want that A!!! Plus, I want to get ahead so I don't have anything hanging over my head while Sully and I are in the hospital or during our first days home. So far, so good, but it's only Day #1. I know this.

5. And...GOOD NIGHT!

Ready Freddie: All My Bags Are Packed And I'm Ready To Go...

I'm 35 weeks pregnant? There's no way. There's no WAY that there's only 4 weeks until my C-Section. I JUST had Spencer. We JUST found out I was pregnant again. I JUST had the horrible bout with Hyperemesis. We JUST found out that he was a boy, and a healthy one at that. All of these things just happened so it's impossible that in 28 short days, Sullivan Richard *insert 2nd middle name here* Gansert will be here.

28 days or less, I should say! I've got a feeling...


I rallied this weekend and feel confident that we're ready for the main event. The bag for the hospital is officially packed with new socks, slippers, and undies, fresh jammies, and awesome "going home" outfits for Sully...I brought options in case he's bigger than I predict. Outfits are all laid out for Todd and I to wear to the hospital and a bag is packed for Spencer to kick it at Aunt Sherry's for the day.

The bag!

Our clothes for the big day...lots of black, white, and gray in our wardrobes.

Sullivan's "going home" outfit if he's the size I predict.

Sullivan's "going home" outfit if he's BIGGER than I predict.

Spencer's outfit (hoodie not pictured).

Spencer helped me pack (he's actually trying to put on a pair of my undies in this picture).

We made a last minute decision for Spencer to NOT spend the night at Aunt Sherry's the first night of Sullivan's life. I'm going to be in pain and probably ├╝ber-exhausted as I was before. There's no reason why Todd needs to sleep at the hospital when he could be at home with Spencer. In a way, I think knowing Todd is with him will help me relax. And I'll be on pain killers with nurses to give me a hand. Todd will be back bright and early after dropping Spencer at the sitters to keep his routine on track. I think it's a good plan and will make everything easier on everyone.

I'm really going to miss Spencer but he'll visit me daily!

And speaking of my favorite guy, he's been doing push-ups like crazy over the weekend. And I was finally lucky enough to snap some photos because he's been doing it longer and longer. He LOVES when Todd and I applaud him for doing it. He's such a ham...but I know it's hard work. I think the folks at physical therapy are going to be pumped today. Sitting and crawling are riiiiiight around the corner, no doubt! I'm a proud mama.


Backing up to what's up with Sully at week 35, there really isn't much to report anymore. At this point, he should be rotating to a head down position...but he rotated a while back. It's all about growing. Gaining weight, fat, and making sure his lungs are mature. If he was born today, he'd have a 99% survival rate. But I'm still not going to relax until I've got him in my arms.

Sooooooooooon!!!

Stay tuned tomorrow for an update on his PT/ST appointments as well as the repeat hearing screen he has today. Of course I'm going to be a jittery mess until I get the full report. School starts today (even though my course if web-based so I don't have to go to campus) so that will distract me a little. It was kind of exciting to see "Pre-Nursing" on my materials. Eek!

4 days until my next OB/GYN appointment.
12 days until Spa Day with Carol High Hair.
23 days until our 3rd wedding anniversary.
24 days until my last day at work.
28 days until the C-Section.

Friday, August 24, 2012

One Month From Today: My 100th Post

100 posts and 1 month to go. Wow.

It's so hard for me to believe that one month from today (or less), Sullivan will be here. The closer it gets, the more anxious and excited I am. His room is ready, the new stroller and car seats are here, and after we pick out his "going home" outfit, I'm packing the hospital bag tomorrow. I've got 4 appointments left with my OB and both Todd and Spencer will be with me!

I'm still feeling pretty lousy (I really believe it's the flu or something...nothing baby-related) but I spent a great day with Spencer. Having such an amazing little boy and enjoying the simplest things with him makes me so pumped for Sully to get here and complete our family. The days will be twice as good and my heart will be twice as full. And I know Spencer will be the best big brother.

Today, he spent A LOT of time in his physical therapy seat without any complaints. And as of last night, he's constantly been doing push-ups and putting a ton more weight on his arms. This is part of what PT has been working in. That's just how it seems to be with Spencer: one day he may not be doing something and then BOOM, he is. Just like that. He find his way.

And he REALLY likes how we applaud every time he props up. Ham.

We just read two bedtime stories and now he's snoozing next to me. He worked hard without even knowing it. He makes me so proud and I just love him so much. I may have had one or two blue moments recently and that's OK. I can have those moments...they just can't mean anything to me. I prefer to put stock in these moments, where one of my sons is movement around in my guts and the other is next to me, farting in his sleep.

It's been a good day.





Good day indeed.

Monday, August 20, 2012

I'm Feeling Fishtastic: No Room In My Schedule To Be Sick

I'm 34 weeks along today...and sick as a dog. And STILL wondering exactly what that means. But we'll get to that shortly. Let's get the Monday Sullivan Report squared away. 34 weeks. 1 month and 4 days. 35 days. Soon.



Mr. Man is about the size of a small pumpkin right now. I was told at last week's ultrasound that he was around 4 pounds 9 ounces so he's right in track. He's about the size of a pineapple but I wont hold that against him! He's opening and closing his eyes and he's got finger and toenails that are ready for manicuring! If he were born today, he'd need just a little monitoring but would be fine. Still, in 2-3 weeks, I'll be full term and then won't have anything to worry about. I'd prefer to be worry free.

After recovering from all the appointments and emotions of last week, we went to Granger Danger 2, a summer party our friends Sugar and Pete's house. We got to sit outside in perfect weather, socialize with pals we haven't seen, and hear some bands with Spencer. It was totally what I needed, especially when I just got to shoot the breeze with my girlfriends, many of whom are mommies. It's funny to see how much we've changed yet how much we've stayed the same. Spencer was playing the shy game for a little while but by the end of the night, he was shaking his head like a maniac and rocking out to Lords Of The Highway. It was a great night with friends and my little family.

Looking tuff for Granger Danger.

It's tough to be a gangster.

Kickin' it with mom and feeling a little shy.

Snuggling up to Aunt Jen.

Family.

Listening to Miss Firecracker in the great outdoors.

Starting to get partied out!

Discussing jewelry with Aunt Potsie.

Sunday was a planned outing with the females of my family (and Spencer!) as it was our annual before-school tea party. But the second I got into the car, I felt horrific which caused a bad attitude. We got to the tea room and there was no AC on. I tossed my cookies (sorry Clementine's) and started to come around...plus, the air kicked on. Whew. I was able to eat...the best potato soup EVER...and enjoy my afternoon.

Sisters (and the best soup EVER).

With my niece/godchild.

34 weeks and really ready to be done.

Until we got into the car to head home, that is. Again, I was dizzy, sweating, and carsick. I had to text Todd to meet us in the driveway to grab Spencer because I was doomed. I ran in and threw up violently. VIOLENTLY. Todd, Spencer, and I crawled into the big bed and napped for houuuuuurs. I rallied just long enough to try and eat and then I was out cold again.

I felt pretty good on my way to work this morning. I just thought maybe I was overtired. But no such luck...I tossed my cookies twice at work and headed back home. I pretty much haven't left the bed all day. I should start looking for bed sores. Todd is off today so he was able to watch Spencer...and take him to pick out his glasses which will be ready in 3 weeks.
Sigh.

I feel weak and a little off. But Sullivan has been moving plenty despite the stress my body has been going through for the past 2 days. And Spencer and I got to spend a little time together listening to music in the big bed until he dozed off during "House Of The Rising Sun".


Neither Spencer nor I have any appointments or any plans this week (besides dinner Thursday night with his godmother who abandoned us to live in Columbus...pffffffft) which is fantastic. Next week it's back to 2 appointments for him and 1 for me, plus school starts! I had planned to pack my hospital bag today but got horribly ill instead so...tomorrow. There's always tomorrow!

Until there ISN'T and Sully is here!!!

7 days until school starts (Intensified Algebra).
11 days until my next OB/GYN appointment.
30 days until our 3rd wedding anniversary.
31 days until my last day at work.
35 days until the C-Section.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Appointment #9: The Middle Part Of An Appointment Sandwich

Before I start rambling, this guy is worth any stress I complain about. Note that.


I kicked this week off thinking the only appointment I had was my weekly OB/GYN check-up. Piece of cake. But after spending what felt like half of my life on the phone on Tuesday, Mommy and Spencer's dance cards were once again full. Lucky us. Lucky that I've so efficiently scheduled and color-coded our lives.

I've discovered there is no color set aside for "break time".

WEDNESDAY = Pediatric Ophthalmology follow-up.

Spencer had an eye appointment back in June where they discovered he had astigmatism...no big thing...and was farsighted. Typically, we would go back in a year for a recheck but the doc was worried about "drifting" (his eyes turning in) and muscle damage so we scheduled an appointment for December.

After seeing Spencer's Pediatrician (I still can't decide if this stuff should be capitalized) for his 1 year well check-up last week, she recommended that we don't wait that long. What wasn't noticeable to us back in June is noticeable now. His eyes ever-so-slightly turn in (one eye at a time, not like cross-eyes) when he's looking at things close up. Rats.

No one wants Spencer to end up with any permanent eye/muscle damage so I called to move the appointment up...but our doc is booked so far in advance that I had to take him to see someone else. Double rats. And instead of having the luxury of only having to drive to Westlake rather than dealing with the hospital like we did in June, we were off to Rainbow Babies at UH for the check-up. Grrrrrr.

I really didn't want Spencer to wear glasses. Like I've said, in the grand scheme of things, having to wear glasses is NOTHING. But Spencer deals with a lot of things and has no idea what's going on. Wearing glasses would be something he'd have to adjust to. And I kept thinking of him wearing a dorky little strap to keep them on. My sister reminded me that Dr. J wore the strap so Spencer would "have to own it". And that's how it's going to go.

Spencer has pretty good eyesight, and has great control over his eyes, but being slightly farsighted, he's trying to bring things into focus which causes the turning in. Doc said its good we're addressing it now because some babies/kids don't care about seeing in focus so there is no turning and therefore, the problem is never caught and too much damage is done. He'll have to wear glasses all day long but then he won't try so hard and the crossing will be corrected. And my awesome friends have been listing off cool people in glasses to help me not feel so mopey about it. I hope he adjusts quickly.

Before glasses...sigh.

THURSDAY: OB/GYN Appointment #9.

This was the 1st of my last 5 OB/GYN appointments before Sully gets here! I love my doctor, the nurse, and everything about finding out what Sullivan is up to. Ever since I got to see the 4D picture of his face (and those LIPS), I've become more anxious for him to get here!

I haven't been feeling so hot lately (emotionally or physically) and a new symptom has kicked in...the bones of what I guess you would call my "pelvic girdle" KILL. Like pelvic growing pains. But everything is starting to shift and change for the big day, even though he won't be making his debut through Ye Ol' Birth Canal. The doc said my bones are actually stretching out and it's very common and very painful. Fun.

Other than that, my BP was good, I'm up 1.5 pounds, his heart rate was 147, and he measured right on track. Beautiful. Not so beautiful was how a woman in the waiting room made me feel regarding my son. The thing she said to me...I don't want to remember this bitch for the rest of my life so, I'm rising above it.

Spencer turned on the charm, of course, and then we went to get his glasses. But no one had any small enough! One place ordered in the smallest they could find for him to try...or we have to find a specialty store. I REFUSE to get him Miraflex. They look like toys...like he'd be wearing Mr. Potato Head's glasses. So that case isn't closed and despite buying him 3 new pairs of jammies to make me, I mean HIM, feel better, I cried the whole way home.

Then I cried again in my driveway. After a year, 2 appeals, multitudes of phone calls, and a few letters...Spencer was finally approved for his secondary health insurance starting from his 2nd day of life. It took so much work. It took so long. Everything takes so much and so long. I'm just exhausted. Period. But spending some time with my family and son at an impromptu, and delicious, dinner at least ended the day in a somewhat decent way.

Snoozin' at the doc.

Waking up to hear the heart rate.

Getting dolled up for dinner.

Snatching Aunt Sherry's bread.

Just tried lobster! More adventurous than mom!

FRIDAY: Pediatric Endocrinologist evaluation.

Yesterday morning, we headed to the Pediatric Endocrinologist which wasn't as stressful as I assumed it would be. Yes, his TSH is elevated but it's borderline and he doesn't have any other symptoms of Hypothyroidism. All pluses. He's starting a VERY low dose of some meds and we'll see how it goes. There's a chance he might react in a way that tells us he doesn't need the meds. But if he does...no big deal (and no big price tag, thank Buddha.

He'll get a blood test in 4 weeks and have a follow-up in 8. I'm thinking positive. But I'm not so positive about the fact that he has lost a pound over a week. Not awesome. He's been eating fine, trying new things, having his Instant Breakfast...I don't get it. They said he could be getting even longer, burning more calories from being more energetic, or it could just be a difference in scales. She wasn't overly concerned so I guess I'll just keep my eye on it. He's so so skinny and small, something the bitch from yesterday was happy to remind me of over and over, LOUDLY.

Post-appointment, we picked up Aiden's school supplies (and MY school supplies since I'll be taking a pre-req for nursing school starting on the 27th, eek!) and went home to veg. Napping was in order and deserved. When Todd got home from work, we were running an errand and decided to grab a quick bite to eat. Ended up having a nice dinner at Brio, totally unexpected but totally awesome since we haven't really gotten to hang out lately. And I needed to just do something nice that didn't involve doctors, but did involve dessert.

I was in bed snuggling with Spencer by 7:30.

Ready for another doctor's appointment.

Amusing ourselves while waiting for the docs.

Copping a feel! Yikes!

Out cold on mommy...and on his brother!

He had mashed potatos and creme brulee.

Chilling with daddy before bedtime.

Today, there are plenty of options for brain-numbing fun. But I think I'm skipping the Lakewood Car Kulture show in favor of reserving energy for Granger Danger 2 tonight (I missed Granger Danger 1 as I think we were living in the hospital then). Spencer is going to get to see some cool bands and meet some cool people, and I'll get the opportunity to see some of my pals for probably the last time before Sully arrives.

Yes, I'm exhausted and yes, my bones ache, and yes, some of the bands are far past my preggo-bedtime...but I need a little fun. My little family needs more fun. And I can have this kind of fun from a lawn chair! If I don't go, I know I'll regret it.

So...now you're all caught up. Now YOU go do something fun!