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Friday, January 30, 2015

A Few of My Favorite (Tubie) Things!

In the 8 months since Little Dude got his G Tube, I've found some resources and products that have made this whole thing easier and wanted to share them with other tubie families as well.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Loving My Body Even When I Hate It

I've always hated my mid-section.  I remember asking my mom if I was fat when I was 6 or 7 because I didn't like how much my stomach stuck out.  Even at my thinnest, I never had a flat stomach.  At 10 months postpartum with my fourth child, I have to be very careful how I dress so my stomach doesn't make me look pregnant.  After being pregnant four times, my stomach is saggy, wrinkled, and covered in ugly stretch marks.

Last week, Princess came in my room to ask me something while I was getting dressed and I saw her staring at my stomach.  After a minute, she asked me this question, "Mommy, why does your tummy look funny and fat?"


Don't you love how kids say exactly what they're thinking?

In that moment, I had a choice.  I could pass my insecurities about my looks on to my impressionable daughter or I could teach her that even when something doesn't look perfect, it can still be beautiful.

I smiled at her and said, "God gave me four babies that grew in my tummy and made it really big.  Do you remember how big my tummy was when Little Dude was still in it?"

Princess nodded.

"My tummy might look a little funny now, but when I see it, I think about how lucky I am that God gave me FOUR babies.  I love my tummy because it's where you and your brothers and sister grew until you were big and strong enough to come out."

Princess smiled as she said, "You're pretty lucky, Mommy!  It's good that your tummy looks like that because now you have me!"

So, do I wish my stomach was flat and not covered in stretch marks and wrinkles? You bet!  But, thanks to Princess's question, I can finally see my stomach as something other than ugly. 

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Where Have I Been?

Today is Princess's 7th birthday, and I'll be writing a birthday post about her soon (or eventually...hopefully before she turns 8). 

So far, I've failed miserably at my 2015 goals.  I haven't so much as started to think about doing any of the things on my list.

Here's why...

No, he hasn't been in the hospital all this time-he was actually only there for one night.  However, it's been a terrible year for him health-wise.  He started getting sick on December 31st and ended up with pneumonia.  Just for fun, he was on amoxicillin for a double ear infection when he came down with pneumonia.  The ER doctor switched him to a stronger antibiotic and in a few days, he seemed to be on the mend.  He had 2-3 good days when I was mentally cheering for myself for getting him through pneumonia without a stay in the hospital...and then he got RSV which is what landed him, you guessed it, in the hospital.  However, the doctor that read the x-ray mis-diagnosed him with worsening pneumonia despite being on his second antibiotic of the year, and put him on an even stronger antibiotic before discharging him from the hospital with retractions while breathing, a fever, and a high heart rate.  We took him to Urgent Care at a different hospital the next morning (January 18th), and they did what the first hospital should've done right away-run a test for RSV.  It came back positive and, while we've managed to stay out of the hospital, he's been at the doctor twice this week already because of worsening breathing and has been throwing up quite a bit.  Thankfully, the G Tube allows us to keep him hydrated by giving him small amounts of formula or Pedialyte more frequently.  The doctor told us that we just need to make it past days 5-7 and then RSV typically starts getting better.  Yesterday was day 7 so hopefully Little Dude will start improving now!  I miss my happy little boy.

Things that happen when your baby has been sick with pneumonia and/or RSV for 23 days....

Your daughter wakes up on her birthday and excitedly asks you where the treats are for her to bring to school today.  You hype up a package of oreos that you quickly dig out of your "sanity" stash before stuffing it into her backpack.

Your house is a disaster and your laundry is "this" close to being classified as a national disaster.

You have to call your mom on the way home from taking the baby to the doctor because you keep falling asleep while driving.

You have significant mom guilt over the fact that your three oldest kids have spent the last three weeks being shuffled from one person to the next while you are at the doctor's office, ER, or hospital with their baby brother.  The mom guilt is worse because it's your oldest child's birthday this month, and you keep remembering that Little Man's birthday last year fell right in the middle of a nine day hospital stay with Little Dude.

The extent of your social media presence is an occasional update for family on Facebook and quick pictures on Instagram (if you want updates on Little Dude, IG is where you want to be!)

It's January 22nd and so far this year, you've only left the house to go places with medical personnel and equipment.  And church.  Once, in between the pneumonia and RSV.

Your almost-potty trained 2 year old will have a regression so bad that you're going to have to start the whole process over again.  Someday.  Definitely not right now.

You keep thinking, "It can only go up from here, right?" and then remember that you have a medically complex child...

Friday, January 16, 2015

Little Dude - 10 Months

Age: 10 months

Weight and height: 16 pounds, 11 ounces and 28 inches long.  He lost a little weight while he was sick this past month.

Wearing size: Size 3 diapers and 6-9 month clothes. 

Likes: He's very sociable and LOVES attention.  He loves being on the floor to play and army crawl around and he's obsessed with paper, which is not good because he eats it and then chokes on it. 

Dislikes: He really hates it when I do his G Tube and skin care every morning-not because it hurts, but because he can't roll over and play when I'm doing it.  He also hates his skin care routine because he strongly dislikes having his hands, arms, and head touched and manipulated.  To get him to lay still and stop fighting me, I play a Youtube video on my tablet for him to watch while I'm taking care of his tube (he's a big fan of Peter Hollens, Lindsey Stirling, and Baby Einstein).  His sensitivity to the other kids had been disappearing, but being sick so much lately has set him back and he doesn't tolerate them being near him very well right now.

Eating habits: He gets five bottles a day with 5.5 ounces of water and 3 scoops of the Alimentum formula.  He drinks about 50% of his formula throughout the day, and the rest is tube fed.  He gets pureed baby food 1-2 times a day, and I just started giving him gluten free baby puffs which he seems to like.  

Sleeping habits: He takes a morning nap from about 9:30 am to 10:30 when I wake him up for his next feeding.  He's such a light sleeper that when I try to tube feed him so he can sleep longer, he wakes up anyways.  He stays up until after his 1:30 feeding and then sleeps until his 4:30 feeding.  He's dropped the third nap of the day and goes to bed around 8 pm at night after his 7:30 feeding.  
Milestones: He's getting better at sitting on his own and is able to do it for about 60 seconds now before tipping over.  He's really good at army crawling and leans to his right side to avoid putting pressure on his G Tube.  We're working on getting him up on his hands and knees, but he's not very interested in that.
Miscellaneous: January is a very busy month for Little Dude with MANY doctors' appointments at Mayo.  We will be at the clinic 1-3 times a week with him and he has multiple appointments on quite a few of those days.   

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I appreciate each of my readers and would love to connect with you on Facebook and Instagram!

Friday, January 2, 2015

My Word of the Year

This is the first year I've picked a word of the year.  I wasn't going to, but after seeing a post on Instagram about someone else's word of the year, one word kept popping into in my head.


This year will be a year for growth for me, for my family, and for my businesses.

I can't wait to see Little Dude to grow in health, in developmental milestones, and physically.

I have hope that Star will grow after barely gaining any weight or height for over a year.

I have plans to grow my businesses-my pattern shop, my boutique, and my blog.

I want to encourage Princess to grow in her love for reading.

I want my whole family to grow in their love for God.

If you have a word of the year for 2015, please share it with me!  I'd love to see what you've come up with.

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