Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Isn't it just the way of it

Doesn't it seem that often when you finally bring something up and express it outside of your mind, you almost jinx the situation? If you tell someone you don't have that problem with your kid, next thing you know...voila. If you mention that sleep is going well, ah well, your doomed for a few bad nights. And, because I mentioned I hadn't yet had a period here the other day...guess what is making an appearance. Pure coincidence already set in motion.

In other news, R is doing fine. Still did breathing treatments on him. N was really wheezing and not sounding so good so she got a few hersself. She tolerated the first two well, the third not so. I think she was happy to be in R's spot and "getting a turn".

The early intervention specialist (let's call him MP) told me today that R is counting as in MP: One R: Two MP: Three R: Four. When I or Noemi came around, R stops. MP and I laughed saying that R is dumming himself down so he can get away with more and both agreed there was a certain truth to that. R is scary. Max now knows how to work the cable box to get to his pre-recorded shows and can read enough to pick the show he wants and to save them instead of delete, restart, that kind of thing. Today, R did it. The exact right buttons in the exact right order. Scary. Not the OMG he can't catch a breath scary, but scary non the less.

There are a few rules that preschool enforces so I do as well. One is picking up toys and the other is clearing the plate. Since R sees Max do this, it only took a bit of encouragement and praise to get him to do this himself. He has to stand on his tippies and slides it into the sink. He is so proud of himself. N doesn't seem to need or care about praise the way her brothers do, my first attempts to get her were met with looks like "are you crazy? I'm not doing that!" so I just left her be and lo and behold, she is starting to come around and will clap for R when he does it, then do it herself and get a big smile. Yes, I do use sibling rivalry and competition to my benefit on occasion. :) The thing is, they are both pretty good at it and neater about it than Max. Yes, sometime the plate falls or some stuff fall off, but not as much as you might expect.

Guess who isn't working (other than a quick email check after the kids are in bed to make sure nothing urgent has come in) nights this week? It feels good, but I almost don't know what to do with myself. Changes coming on the work front, but that's a topic for another day and should all end fine and maybe even good or better than good.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


I have a friend that says I have post traumatic stress syndrome. Although, PTSS doesn't look like quite the right acronym. I know she is right about this. I've read and heard this is common of parents ... of mom's... who have survived a child/children in the NICU. I still can't really look at pictures of the twins from the hospital or think too much about that time other than the abstract.

The further out from the end and as the twins have grown and done better and all of the specialist follow up's have tapered off, the easier it has become.

Until....something happens that takes you back.

We've had a winter of normal kid sick stuff. Colds and coughs. Pink eye. Nothing that had me worried since Thanksgiving week when R had some strider/breathing difficulties, croup, and cough which made me remember the prior Thanksgiving weekend where we spent in the hospital, but with aggressive breathing treatments, it stayed in control. I've been so thankful that we were able to get the flu and H1N1 vacinese and boosters early in the season. Heck, we hasn't even been to the peds so far this year until yesterday when I took N in for pink eye and ear infection.

Last night was a rough night. N only had a short late nap on the way home from the peds. R was coughing and fussy and crying on and off. I thought he may also be getting an ear infection, but no fever. I tried to get them to sleep upright in the stroller, but they were only content there if I was in the room. They wouldn't fall asleep in it. N was in her night time diva mode where any attention, no matter how needed for her twin was ticking her off, which just makes it all more difficult. Finally, probably in complete exhaustion, they settled and we got a bit of sleep. Morning came all too soon and I had Noemi get aggressive with breathing treatments with R since it seemed like his cough was getting worse. By about 2 pm, I have Noemi do yet another treatment while I call the peds because he was getting worse. He was really struggling to breath and pulling and was just wanting to be held and lethargic. Peds said bypass them and go to ER.

I'm crying. Just like that. I'm back to the early trauma. Noemi's crying. And, we pack up and off we go. On the way, trying not to loose it and calling to get some plans in place in case he gets admitted. By the time I get there, thankfully, he was breathing much better. Finally the treatments started to kick in. Since we were there, I decided to go in and check in, but as we waited, he continued to improve. Net result is, I told them we were leaving, got home, gave him another treatment, and put them all to bed. My neighbor came down to help, watch the twins while I ran to the drugstore (because as luck would have it we were out of Albuteral and no way was I going into the night without having that on hand) and is such an sweety just called to say she had her clothes all set out and could be here in 2 minutes if problems should arise in the middle of the night.

Haven't heard a peep from the twins sent they went to bed. Not a cough. Sleeping solid, sound, and peaceful.

I'm so happy that we got it under control and we are all sleeping at home. And, praying it stays that way.

If I hadn't had to live it and seen it, one could think that I over reacted, but I have too much history and know better. Watching your kid not be able to catch a breath is not something you forget. Trust me on this.

Just another reminder of how fragile life is and the rocky beginning the twins had. I could have lived without it.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Buried Under

I've just been buried under by life and responsibilities lately. Nothing too exiting or too terrible going on. Just working too much, too stressed, trying to enjoy the kids. Just mundane everyday stuff. One cold after another. Pink eye here. Pink eye there. Snot noses. Cough cough. Nothing serious, just annoying.

I've wondered on and off if I could be depressed, but think it is just situational. I'm starting work every weekday early (6:30 am). Working every night after the kids are in bed (from 6:30 pm - 9 or 10 pm). Breaking from 3 pm -6:30 pm to spend time with the kids. Then, have trouble falling asleep. I'm just tired and have nothing extra to give. The project I'm working on is in serious trouble. We are getting all kinds of "help" and some of it is helpful and some of it not. Out of the blue, I got called by an old colleague/friend with a job offer. I'm not sure I'm free to transfer out at this point, but if I am...I'll likely make the move. It will put me out of the house, but the office I would work out of it closer to my house than the grocery store or Max's school. Can't get much better than that, especially in LA.

I've wondered if I could be seriously ill, but had a physical and my labs were actually even better than they have been in recent past.

My hormones are whacked. No time or energy to do even basic research on menopause or peri-menopause. After I stopped pumping, I went on the pill (one of those seasonal ones where you go 3 months without having a period) that I quit in month 2 because the break through bleeding was driving me crazy. And, I haven't had a period since. My ovaries hurt every now and again. One of the benefits of so many failed fertility treatments is that I know it is just them trying to stim with no success (or I really am seriously ill :). The last week or two, I've been oozing oil and having to wash my hair and face twice as often as usual because I can't stand it.

Not to say that it is all drudgery and no fun. I'm getting out with all the kids more and more frequently. Heck, we did both Walgreen and Costco yesterday getting the twins to nap late, but we were out of milk so it had to be done. Last Monday, Max's school had a fundraiser at a local dinner that I took them to an early dinner. Last weekend, we went to a local single mom's get together and had a good time. I took Max to meet Sid the Science Kid. I've met up with a few friends for dinner. And, missed a few events due to sickness and total lack of energy. I'm only lasting tonight because I dozed off today when the twins were sleeping next to Max playing on my laptop.

The weather turning nice. The pictures are from today. We have entered what I call "Outdoor Bathing Season". It extends both outdoor time and bath time and is a big hit around here. I'm fortunate enough to have a hot water hookup to a hose outside so with warm water and warm enough temperatures outside a lot of fun is had and it is a lot less stressful for me. We have moved up to baths not quite every day, but close. I have learned to get one kid out of the tub at a time and towel and diaper before getting the next to avoid poo and pee cleanups, but still end up shouting by the end for Max to get out of the tub and "EVERYONE OUT. OUT OF THE BATHROOM THIS MINUTE." A lot of trouble can be had in a short period of time in the bathroom. Trust me on this one. We don't even bother to put the paper on the roll right now. It is too much of an enticing science experiment to unroll and unravel.

I'm still trying to cook as much as possible, mostly on the weekends as there just isn't the time during the week. Yesterday was pancakes, Costco pizza, and beef stroganoff. Today was french toast, PJ and pork/beans (yes, an odd combo, but it was by request), and what I'll call chicken roll (chopped chicken mixed with broccoli, mayo, cheese, dill, garlic salt wrapped in cressant roll dough except I apparently didn't have broccoli in the house so substituted corn and peas) with enchalatas made for tomorrows dinner as well. Almost any and all cooking really needs to be done (if it is going to get done) in the morning with or right after breakfast. The kids are usually content to play and get along well enough to get it made and set aside for later freeing up the rest of the day for fun and games.

However, dinner is at 4 pm right now (need to live on Central Time zone for work reasons and it seems to be a good schedule all around) with twins in bed by 5:30 pm and Max by 6:30 pm. The twins are taking one nap starting about 10 or 10:30 am depending on the day and wake up time and sleeping a good 3 hours usually (of course, longer last weekend when we had some place to be and when I couldn't enjoy it). The problem is that I'm hungry again before I go to bed so am eating another meal or snack too late and doing too much stress eating. I'm just trying to be aware and cut myself some slack. I can handle a lot of stress, but things have been even much for me. I actually started crying when I thought I got called for a jury panel, but ultimately got released because it would have just put too much strain on an already tight schedule. And, I've cried or gotten teary over other things that normally I could take in stride, but I'm just too tired, and too stressed with whacked hormones.

Taking the twins with me to pick up Max and doing the whole dinner bedtime solo is actually going fine most of the time other than the last bit of chaos getting the kids dried and diapered and out of the bathroom (which is why the outdoor bathing is extra nice as it takes away even that battle). I actually quit work early on Friday and could have left them with Noemi, but they like it so much and while a hassle, isn't horrible.

Max is at a fun stage with a lot of whit. The things that kid comes up with. He is a master negotiator. He makes me laugh. He also can get too silly and the potty talk gets old.

N was recommended for speech. In all my free time, I've pushed and pulled for that and expect Regional Center to fund any day now. Mental note, follow up on that. She still puts everything in her mouth, but we have moved from having to pry her mouth open to get it, to having her throw it on the ground in a huff, to her smiling and taking it out and handing it over (at least most of the time). If you can't find her, go check the bathrooms and she can be found in the one that was left open. She has mostly stopped eating the cat food and dumping the cat water, but has moved onto mixing them and putting them in the toilet. She looks sadly at the open toilet paper holders. She has been released from PT and can walk and climb with the best of them and has been faster than R as evidenced by her running away with glee with either some toy he had or tried to take.

R is really talking. Not that anyone would really understand him, but I can usually make out the intent. He can still get a bit whinny, especially if not feeling well. He recently cut all 4 canines at once. He was really hard to like there for a bit. He's my cuddler and he and I can usually carve out 5 or 10 minutes before bed to cuddle and rock while N is off playing solo or with Max. He loves playing kissy kissy smoochie smoochie. He has the most radiant smile. He's smart as a whip. And, as my mom says, watching and picking up like a sponge everything from Max. It's going to get a bit scary soon. Trouble with a capital T. He's been walking around the house saying "mine, mine, mine, MINE, MINE. MINE, mine". I was trying to coach some better behavior and Max came in and countered with "no, you should shout mine and grab". They both laughed and you can guess whose advice he took.

Sadly, another weekend has come to an end with another work week ahead. I wish it didn't fill me with dread.