Thursday, April 30, 2009

Hi Ho, it's back to work I went

Day 1.
Before leaving for work I cuddled with my boy. I then fed him, watched him drift back to sleep and then I headed out for the day. Yeah, it was hard. It would have been harder if I didn't have a crazy complex situation walk in my door at around 7:30that morning. Nothing like that to take your mind off of things. Mid-way through the day as I was getting back into the swing of things I thought, "I really should not have taken some additional sick days. I can do this" (I got cold feet a couple of nights ago and asked to use some of my sick time to change my work week to 1-2 days a week rather than 2-3). That thought dissipated when I pulled up in the driveway and could already hear Coben crying before I even opened the door. I walked in and Alicja was doing all that she could to console him but he wasn't having it. I scooped him into my arms and he grabbed onto my neck and stopped crying. He still had those pathetic little whimpery, sobby sounds which is totally heart-breaking but my presence calmed him down. (now, why this doesn't work when i'm with him all day long i don't know!)Alicja said that she thought he might be colicky which made me laugh on the inside. Nobody knows colicky until they've met Cady at that age. Alicja started caring for Cady around the 4 month mark when colic usually starts to recede. At any rate, Alicja said that he cried most of the day. So now I don't regret reducing my time. It's one month, he's still little, and it's mostly transition work right now anyhow. I love my job. I really really love it. But I love my kids more.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Drum Roll Please

We had Coben's two month check-up yesterday. All the tests are in:

Spinal Tap-Negative

Cat Scan-Negative

Blood Work and UA-Inconclusive

Ultrasound of the Heart-Negative

Chest Xrays-Negative

EEG-Negative

EKG-Negative.

So, the diagnosis is: "I don't know".

Nothing really fits and everything has been ruled out. I'm hoping that we can now just end this chapter and move onto the next one...please.

We are growing another big one though. He's 90th percentile for weight and 75th for height. Cady is still in the 75th percentile for both (she was always in 75th height and 90th weight just like Coben for her first year).

Cady refused to talk to Dr. Bacon. Dr. Bacon asked plenty of questions to assess verbal ability, processing, development, etc...and Cady wasn't budging on her refusal to speak. It's always funny to see her shut-down when 99.9% of the time she never stops talking! The pains that wake her up crying many nights? Growing pains. The knock-knees not expected to cause any problems.

Coben on the other hand was prescribed antacid. Dr. Bacon asked about his crying patterns. Does he cry at times even when he doesn't need anything? I was embarrassed to admit that "no, he is often inconsolable" because we've already been down this path once. I told her that he cries a lot (when he's not sleeping) but that it's nothing compared to Cady and we can handle it. Having 2 sisters and 2 brothers that I was old enough to remember through infancy I know it's not just the "normal" crying that babies do but I also did not want to go through what we did with Cady and try this and that and everything under the sun just to find out that there is no answer and it's something we'd have to ride through. We decided to just bypass looking for answers and let the fussiness pass in its own time. Besides, he sleeps a lot which makes it really not that bad because we get LONG breaks in between. BUT, after further assessment Dr. Bacon thinks he has a silent reflux. He has been congested nearly every day since birth and he eats every two hours day and night (which is a lot for his age)and he wants to be held constantly. All signs of silent reflux. The constant eating is him trying to get relief. We can't ever lay him down because it hurts. He also wakes up gasping sometimes. I didn't even share that part but now it makes sense. The other part that didn't make sense about his crying is that he is so laid-back. Cady was an intense baby, she never slept and the crying seemed to go hand-in-hand with her temperament but it just seems like a disconnect with Coben. Anyhow, if the antacid works then Rob and I might be able to have dinner at the same time and THAT is something to look forward to.
So, that's that.
I go back to work tomorrow and am hating it!

Last thought. I overheard this in the bathroom tonight while Cady was brushing her teeth:

Cady: Hey, that's Piglet.
Rob: Yup, that is Piglet. What does Piglet start with?
Cady: P. Piglet starts with P, just like mommy's name.

Man is she smart.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Updated Update

Coincidentally, after blogging last night about all the new priveledges that Cady thinks she is getting when she turns three, she inititated a conversation about it this morning.

Cady asked me to make her some noodles for breakfast. Then she said, "I can't do it by myself because I don't have a baby yet. But I can do it when I'm five because that is when I'll have my baby."

Huh.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Catching up...

Whew! It's a little harder to blog now with two kids. Especially since my normal blogging time (after bedtime for the kids) is now spent doing Wii fit until about 11 at night since there really isn't any other time to do it. Speaking of bedtime, we are so lucky that we have a good sleeper. Coben is usually in bed by the same time as Cady which is around 8:00. He wakes up at 11 to eat when Rob and I go to bed and then goes right back to sleep. He runs like clock-work...for now. Clock-work includes his 4 a.m. "Let's Partay!" times when he is more vocal than we ever hear him during the day. He amuses himself by flapping around and cooing. I spend about 5 minutes thinking he is the absolute cutest thing in the world and just recently I've trained myself to roll over after those five minutes and sleep right through the rest of it.

So as I'm rambling on about sleep, many of you are probably wishing I would cut to the chase regarding Coben's incident and the follow-up to the incident. We do not have the EEG results back yet. Let me tell you what kind of fun that was! The EEG instructions are to put the child to bed after midnight and wake them up at 4 a.m. and KEEP them up. Do not let them sleep in the car and don't feed them close to the appointment time and then they want him to sleep during the appointment. Yeah, seriously! We did what we could to make sure he went in tired and that's all I'm going to say about that.

The Cardiology appointment was on Friday. They did an EKG and a really extensive ultrasound. The only finding was completely insignificant. He has a small opening which is typical for newborns and it is expected to close up. The cardiologist was unable to find anything that should have caused his oxygen saturation levels to dip down to 74. Her best guess is that he may have aspirated when he vomited. Having vomit in his lungs may have caused all of the things that I witnessed (not being able to wake him up, losing all muscle control, pale, etc...) and it would have compromised his lungs beyond just that moment causing him to still have low oxygen saturation levels after five hours of oxygen. But she said it is purely a guess. I was holding Coben upright when it happened and he immediately went limp. It would have been more likely she said if he was laying down and had cried afterward thereby inhaling vomit into his lungs. So, who knows. She said in the future we can experiment with taking him up into altitude and doing an overnight trip at an elevation level between Denver and Dillon. An airplane ride should probably not be our first experiment (although they do have oxygen I suppose).

Cady. She continues to do well. Last night in the car she said, "Mom, I think you are going to have another baby!" Very funny. She reminds me daily about how disappointed that she is that she did not get to see Coben come out of my belly. I'm sure I'll be hearing about that for years to come. She is absolutely excited about her upcoming birthday. Anytime something comes up that she is not allowed to do because she is too little, she interprets to mean that once she is three she can do it all. So she informs me on an almost daily basis that once she is three she can use the stove, light a candle and use sharp knives. Boy, won't she be surprised when she finds out that being three isn't all that it's cracked up to be. If anyone is at a loss for a good birthday present for a three year old, I was informed by her this morning that she would like a bottle of Saline Drops and a Booger sucker for her birthday. I guess Coben has it all and she'd like a slice of that action!

Ummm..that's about it over here. Spring is here and I'm elated to be outside again with Cady (plus one) and even more excited to be outside again and NOT PREGNANT!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Coben Update

Today we had our follow-up appointment with Coben's regular pediatrician. My friend Deb emailed me last night and said that she would watch Cady while I took Coben to his apopintment. I never would have asked nor realized it was something that would be so helpful, she just told that she would be by to help. It was a really nice thing to do and it gave me a chance to listen to Dr. Bacon with both ears.

Dr. Bacon checked Coben out from head to foot. She asked a lot of questions and she talked about different possibilities. Once I provided answers to her questions though, none of those possibilities panned out and she admitted that she also had no clue. She decided to submit a referral for an EEG to at least rule out the possibility that Coben had some kind of seizure although she said that she expects that nothing will turn up in that direction either. Once everything has been ruled out it sounds like it's just going to be a case of nobody knows and let's hope it was just a one time deal.

Rob and I already talked last night about giving up the sleeping in shifts. It's not something that we can maintain until he is grown and at some point we are going to have to have faith that he is going to be okay. It doesn't mean that we slept soundly, but we slept. I also realize at some point I am going to have to stop obsessively asking, "does his color look okay?" and poking him everytime he is asleep. He looks great and acts great. I wish that was a relief to me but it's not. He looked and acted great just moments before it all happened too.

I REALLY believe in the power of positive thoughts so please keep Coben in your thoughts so that one day we can look back at this and say, "Remember that ONE time that thing happened with Coben? Boy was that scary."

Saturday, April 4, 2009

The REALLY bad day

Snowboarding season is almost gone and Rob hasn't been once. I've really wanted to make it possible for him to hit the slopes at least once before it all melts and then an email came over last week. One of the mom's in my mom's group has a mountain condo that she was renting out for less than 1/2 of what it normally rents for...A practical give-away. I talked to Rob and we decided to go for it. Rob could spend one day boarding and Cady could go sledding....something she has been dying to do. For me, just being away, even if stuck in the condos with the kids is still a vacation.
We almost didn't head up as all the roads from Denver to Dillon were closed because of winter weather. But by Friday afternoon, they were opened back up and we figured we'd attempt it and just turn back around if it was messy. Not the case. One could hadly tell that there was a storm, the roads were clear and dry.
That evening we hung out at the condo. Cady and I played "fancy ladies" and did some pedicures and a peeling face mask. Cady slept in her own bed all night long which is always a bonus. That night, Coben woke up only a couple of times but really didn't seem that interested in nursing. He did the same thing the previous night back at home. I figured that maybe he was just finally starting to slow down and that it was just something to watch. The only other significant thing that happened through the night was me having to take Coben into a steamed up bathroom because he was stuffy...AGAIN. I didn't think much of that either since Cady and I both have colds...YET AGAIN.
The next morning Rob got up early to go boarding. There was a huge winter storm in effect and the roads were pretty messy. He made it there safely and gave me a report of the roads because Stacy was thinking of coming up to keep me company. Coben woke up in a great mood. He still didn't seem interested in eating which was starting to cause me some concern but he was in a great mood. Very interactive and sweet. No more than 1/2 hour after Rob's phone call, I was carrying Coben into the living room and he vomited all over me, twice. Lots of vomit. Then his body went totally limp and he turned white. I called Rob who was up at the slopes and let him know that I was calling our Dr. I called our Dr's office, explained what had happened and was told to get him in immediately. I told her that I could call Rob now and probably make it down to Denver before their walk-in clinic closed for the day. She told me that she didn't want me to wait to get to Denver but to take him in NOW. The problem is that Rob had the car and I had no idea where to take him since it was our first night in town. I couldn't put Coben down to make phone calls or look things up on the internet so I called 911 and explained what was going on and asked for an ambulance. For a moment I thought it might have been an overreaction. Coben was starting to come to and was tracking me with his eyes (yet he was still limp and not moving). The operator called for an ambulance and kept me on the phone. Before I got off the phone with the 911 operator the medics arrived (which scared the bejesus out of Cady who unbenownst to me was putting on make-up at the time). They could not have come soon enough because Coben was getting worse now instead of better. His body was still limp, I couldn't inspire him to move at ALL and now he was a ghostly shade of white. His eyes were unfocused and just kept rolling around in his head. He was starting to close his eyes in this state and I was just plain scared out of my mind. The medics took him from me, asked a couple of questions, tried to wake him up but couldn't, and said "we need to get him out of here, NOW!" and started running with him toward their truck. I grabbed Cady's coat and we ran out after them.
They wanted Cady to ride in the jump seat in the back because we didn't have her car seat (they were reluctant to transport her at all) and she FREAKED OUT! (who can blame her). I didn't think we'd be able to get her in except (beautiful big sister that she is) when I explained that she needed to be back there to watch over Coben for me since I had to ride in the front. The kind medics gave her a stuffed animal to love on while we rode over. So, we are riding in this big tank of a mountain medic vehicle during a white-out winter storm. The truck is sliding around and having trouble getting started from a stop and we could MAYBE see only about a foot in front of us. It was a scary ride to the hospital which was in the next town over. Meanwhile, I'm trying to see what they are doing to Coben and I can't see a thing except they are crowded around him and doing stuff. I later learned that they couldn't even arouse Coben during a needle stick.
We get to the hospital and get him in a room. The nurses and the Dr. that we worked with were AWESOME. They were really kind to us and took great care of not only the patient but his worried parents (Rob was arriving soon, he had a long drive down from the mountain and no idea where the hospital was). The Dr. explained that they needed to rule out several things. Coben was raspy so they wanted to rule out infant pneumonia. They had to rule out head trauma. I'm embarrassed and totally ashamed to admit that he rolled off the couch the previous day on my watch. Yes, it only takes a second. And the worst case scenario is that they would do a spinal tap to rule out spinal meningitis. They did a CAT scan chest x-rays and both looked good, yay! No head injury or pneumonia. They catheterized him and took a urine sample. They poked just about every place on his little body (including the top of his head) to try and find a vein on his little roly-poly body that they could hit. The poor kid had band-aids and poke-marks everywhere and they STILL couldn't get blood from him. He was attached to monitors and oxygen the entire time. Finally, the Dr. informed us that they did in fact need to do a spinal tap to rule out spinal meningitis. So, five hours later they had ruled out everything and were still unsure of the cause of his strange behavior. They wanted us to get back to Denver ASAP though which we had already decided we were going to do. They took Mr. Butters off of oxygen and realized that he could not be taken off of oxygen without his saturation dipping below an unsafe level so we had to purchase an oxygen tank to get him down the mountain. We finally checked out five hours later and headed down the mountain only to run into a closed I-70 due to an accident. We were SO lucky that we were in the perfect spot to jump onto the frontage road and we avoided it all and got to town in a reasonable time. I cannot imagine being stuck for hours trying to get a baby on oxygen to Children's Hospital.
Anyhow, we got to Chilren's and they took another history. They looked at his CATscan, X-ray, Bloodwork and decided to take him off of oxygen and watch his levels. His levels stayed consistent during the three hours that we were there so we were given the option of leaving him for overnight observation but their recommendation (if we were comfortable) was to send him home and follow-up on Monday. They were unable to provide any answers for what had happend up on the mountain. Even though he was at a higher altitute up on the mountain his symptoms weren't quite consistent with "altitude sickness" He didn't turn blue around the mouth, his heart rate did not elevate and the fact that he was completely limp doesn't fit. I would love for them to say that it was altitude because then I would know that we were safe at home at 5280 feet and have nothing to worry about. How the heck are we ever going to sleep again? Even with him sleeping in our room, even if he's in our bed, turning white and going limp and losing oxygen are not things that cause you to wake up. And even if we wake up every hour, that gives him the potential to have an hour to go without oxygen. I've never been so happy to be home again with my family. I hope Monday finds more answers.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Random Tidbits

Sometimes I get lost when I'm driving. Sometimes it's me and sometimes it's mapquest. Okay, most of the time it's me. Cady's new thing, anytime we are in unfamiliar territory or I'm circling around looking for parking is: "Mommy, are you lost again? Do you need to call daddy for directions?"

And she's good for the mommy brain. Our first snow in a long time was last week. As I was dropping Cady off at school she asked:

Cady: Mom, did you bring my snowsuit?
Me: Yes
Cady: My boots?
Me: Yes
Cady: How about my gloves and hat?

And this was followed the next day by this inquiry as we were all loading up in the car.
Cady: Mom and Dad, Did you get Coben's diapers and wipes?

It appears that the kid realizes just how much help we need in our newborn fog. After all, we did forget diapers for Coben's first pediatrician appointment and had to ask the P.A. if they had a diaper on hand for us to have. And her response was, "It's okay. First time parents?" Aghhh. It was doubly embarrassing to answer that question.

Last night:

Rob was taking care of Coben in the office while Cady was eating dinner. Coben was letting out some good cries.
Cady: Hey Dad? Rooooob! You should try singing to Coben!

Here's something interesting. Cady has a song. Annie's Song by John Denver is Cady's song. The first time I realized this was when she was just over a year old. We were at the grocery store and the song came on. I could barely hear it and hadn't noticed until Cady stopped talking, got a look of wonderment on her face and said, "Mom!! It's my song!" And the other night I was flipping the tv and a John Denver special was on (okay, so what if I did stop and watch for a minute?) and he just happened to be singing Annie's Song. Again, Cady very excitedly started whapping me in the arm and yelling, "Mom, mom! It's my song!!!" I'm not sure what her connection is to that song, but it's clearly HER song!

And finally, she also has a tv show. She has declared that Good Eats (which she calls the Alton Brown show) is HER show. Good girl!