Monday, March 25, 2013


Last week got a little interesting. By interesting, I'm using Wash's definition.

Wash: "This landing is gonna get pretty interesting"
Mal: "Define 'interesting'."
Wash: [deadpan] "Oh God, oh God, we're all going to die?"

On Thursday, my nurse came out to give me my progesterone shot. It's the last one. Hooray! She got out the doppler and began searching for Rory's heartbeat. She couldn't find anything. I kept twisting and turning to see if we could get her to turn or move but I wasn't feeling anything. Finally, we found her and got her to kick. Her heartbeat started at a normal 145 BPM but then dropped down to 90. Alarmed, my nurse called my doctor and said that she thought I needed to come in and be monitored. Doctor agreed and Ben and I took off.

I was supposed to go to the doctor that day at 1:30 so it wasn't much of a difference to go to Labor and Delivery Triage instead. They hooked me up to the monitors and began some tests. My heart rate was too fast. Rory's heart rate was too fast. Blood was taken to check for diabetes or preeclampsia. I laid on the bed and tried hard not to let my mind run away. I wasn't having many contractions and they were still mild. Finally, everything came back normal. My heart rate had come down and so did Rory's. They did a quick sonogram and Rory looked great. Her fluid level was right on the borderline of normal/high but it wasn't enough to warrant any intervention. I'm dilated to a 2. I was sent home with orders to take it easy but that I was off of bedrest.

The next day was officially 37 weeks. This was the day I had Milly. There were already a lot of labor warning signs and I assumed that this would go much the same way. My mother had taken the kids the night before in anticipation of Rory's possible arrival. Ben took me to breakfast and we did a little shopping. I came home to rest and then went out with Mom and Milly. We shopped around and I realized that contractions were getting stronger and closer together. It's working! We're almost done! Look at the cute Easter headbands that make your daughters look like giant flowers!

Grandma left before the kiddos came home on the bus from school. We played a bit and made dinner. Suddenly those kind of contractions became double-over-and-nearly-scream contractions. They were 2 minutes apart and lasting for over a minute. I could barely breathe between them. We called my parents and they came back over. We loaded up and took off for the hospital assuming that we would be a family of 6 in no time.

We make it into Labor and Delivery and start getting hooked up. The doctor checks me and I'm dilated to a 3. That's it?!? After all of this? I feel like I'm being torn in half! They check me and realize that I'm pretty dehydrated. Rory still sounds fine but she's not turned down correctly. She's hitting my pelvic bone. My bag of waters is right there but Rory's not hitting it enough to break it. They hook me up to a saline IV and unhook the other monitors. They tell me that I'll go home after getting hydrated. So...we're not having a baby? I "get" to go labor at home? Well...alright. I get three bags of saline and the contractions all but disappear. The dehydration was making them seem 10 times worse than what they were. So we go home around midnight and try to sleep.

Ben takes me the next day to breakfast and then to get a pedicure. He goes and buys a birthing ball. The man is a flipping saint. We load up the car and go pick up the kids from the grandparents. Here we find out how hard Gideon is taking things. The night before he had started fussing when my Dad got there. Papa cuddled him and Gideon fell asleep on his shoulder. When Grandma and my sister came over, they got everyone loaded up to take them to dinner. Gideon began crying when he woke up and didn't stop. They passed him around at the restaurant trying to soothe him. My mother finally held him and covered him up with a jacket to block everything out. He fell asleep again. He cried when they left and passed out that night. We came to get him on Saturday afternoon. He was clingy and needed so much extra reassurance. For the last week his life has been upside down. Mama and Daddy keep disappearing for some reason. Sometimes Daddy picks him up from day care and sometimes it's Grandma. One night he'll sleep at home and the next he'll sleep at Grandma's. He just doesn't understand what's going on and it's making him upset.

We spent Saturday night out on a date. The kids went to a Parent's Night Out that we had registered for a week ago. Ben and I went to dinner and then came home to rest. I took a hot bath and stayed off my feet. We called his parents and filled them in on everything that's happened. Ben went and picked up the kids and we put them to bed. Then we tried to go to sleep. From 11:30 to 4 AM I could not sleep. My heart kept racing, I was having bad contractions and I could not lay down without intense pain. I sat up at 2 AM and drank 32 ounces of apple juice to see if hydrating would make the contractions stop. They stopped but I was still in a lot of pain. At 4, I woke Ben up crying. I just needed sleep and I couldn't sleep. He convinced me to take some sleeping pills and to not worry about the kids in the morning. I could sleep as long as I needed. I took the pills and finally drifted off. I got on-and-off sleep until noon on Sunday. I got to cuddle my oldest for an hour. I played with Milly and watched as Gideon stayed in a quiet room with his iPad for hours. My babies were OK. I cooked dinner that night. Sunday was a great day.

In the midst of all of this, we've been trying to buy a house. I'm not even kidding. We found one house that we really like and we're submitting a bid. We would move in May. It's exciting but it's adding a layer of HOLY MOLY to our lives.

Today is quiet. Milly is twirling while she watches Mickey. The kids are at daycare. I feel fine and haven't seen much labor signs so I think she's staying put. I'll see my doctor tomorrow.

Now we just wait.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013


ECI just left after evaluating Milly for the second time. She can hear now and she's making good progress.

Kind of.

Milly has qualified for ECI services regarding speech and cognition. Milly has almost no attention span. Her motor skills look fine but she doesn't answer or even acknowledge people. She doesn't play or interact much. She threw a million tantrums in the hour they were here.

Yes, she's tired from the Daylight Savings Time change. She's on antibiotics for a red ear that's hurting. She's still working on those frakking molars. And she's two. Two year olds are temperamental.

Or are they? I don't know what the typical development of a two year old looks like. My kids don't work that way. She acts similar to how Sophie was at two. Does that mean it's autism? I don't think so. I think it's a combination of learned behavior from her siblings and no social interaction.

Milly needs to be with her peers on a regular basis. A play group, Mothers Day Out or preschool would do wonders. It's just not happening right now. We're in a holding pattern until the new baby gets here and I can actively participate again.

I think that's the hardest part right now. I feel that this is all my fault. I can't be the mother that my kids need. I have to tell them to wait. Am I neglectful? No. My kids are fed, clothed, clean and loved. I just can't go the extra that I know they need.

A battle is looming. I'm ready to fight but I'm waiting on my body.

Friday, March 8, 2013

What's My Line?

Gideon has moved into script-talking. There is a little spontaneous speech but the majority of what he says is a litany of preset scripts gleaned from normal situations or TV.

When Gideon asks for something he wants, he will say "Pweash?" and sign. A normal response is "Yes, you may!" followed by the item of desire handed to him. (iPad, cup of drink, food, toy, etc.)

Lately, he's been purposely dense if the response is anything other than a hearty agreement and handing over of the item.


[Gideon hands me an empty sippy cup.]

G: "Miyuk? Pweash?"
(Milk? Please?)

Me: "Not right now, buddy."

[Gideon furrows his brow. Leans in to me.]

G: "Yesh, you may!!"

The implication behind this:

"Mom, DON'T BE EMBARRASSED. You just forgot your line. It happens! Lets try that again."

Nice try, Dude.

Monday, March 4, 2013

To Care and Be Cared For

Since my children were born, I have been the one to care for nearly all of their medical needs. I tracked what the two oldest ate in their respective NICU stays. I'm always the one to take them to regular check-ups. I know their medical histories and can tell a doctor when they started barfing and how high the fevers got. I was the one to stay with Gideon in both of his hospital pneumonia stays. I've held each kiddo down for shots and wiped tears after. I know that when passing out stickers and suckers that Sophie and Milly like any kind of sucker but Gideon prefers orange and that Milly eats stickers.

Last week, I had to give up my usual position. On Monday, the girls went to the doctor for their 5-year and 2-year check-ups. My mother took them. She was the one to hold Sophie's hands while the doctor looked in her ears. (Sophie hates people touching her head.) She held Milly during her shots and cuddled her after.

On Thursday, we got a call from the school nurse saying that Gideon was listless and running a fever. Ben went to get him and laid him down for a nap. I can't drive and I'm not supposed to pick him up. I held him during breathing treatments that night and let him sleep on my chest. On Friday, he was worse and my mother took him to the doctor. His fever had spiked to almost 103. Both ears were infected and the strep test was positive. She brought him home and whisked the girls away for the weekend. I was able to give him medicine and cuddle but Mom was the one who held my feverish baby while the doctor swabbed his throat. How that must have scared him! Ben was the one who held him down for medicine he refused to take. Ben took him to the duck pond on Sunday when he was feeling better.

On Sunday, Sophie smashed her finger at Grandma's house. My mom and dad calmed her down, cleaned it and put ice packs on it while she curled up in her Minnie Mouse blanket. When she came home, I didn't like how much it was still bleeding and I called the after hours nurse who said to get her to the ER. Ben took her. He held her and told her how brave she was. He and two other nurses and a doctor wrestled her to get her bandage off. (Forget soccer. I'm putting her on a wrestling team.) He held her for an X-ray which showed a broken fingertip. Her first broken bone. He dried her tears, praised her bravery and carried her out.

Three times this week I was reminded that there are many other people that can care for my children. Ben told me that God was possibly doing this on purpose to release my sense of control. Perhaps God was asking me to take care of Rory since I'm the only one who can right now.

It truly does take a village!