Friday, September 28, 2012

The One With September's Friday Photo Dump

I cannot believe how fast this month flew by... even faster than the Summer months did!  I know it's not going to slow down anytime soon, either between the holidays & our new little baby coming.

As always we had a lot of fun again this month.  It was full of...

more stretching & growing...

silly time with Paige...

lots more cuddle time than normal...

of course, LOTS of Utes games...

fun bath time...

a fun trip to the state fair...

talking to daddy on the phone (mostly pretend... yes, she thinks calculators are phones & yes one phone is not enough)...

a fun first trip to the circus for Paige & Mom (Dad was there too, but he has been lots!)...

getting Paige to smile with her eyes open (now that's a big, momentous occasion)...

letting grandpa spoil her on HIS birthday...

And another fun photo shoot of Paige...

It might just be my favorite one yet... more on that next week, though.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The One With The Things That Saved Me

When I was pregnant with Paige, I felt great... fabulous, even.  I didn't get sick and I was happy (I had MAYBE 2 mood swings the whole 9 months). The only 'side effect' was that I was tired.  I really, really enjoyed being pregnant & knew how lucky I was.

So, when I got pregnant again this time, I was very hopeful that it would be the same.  You know, like I would be one of those mutant women who have fabulous & easy pregnancies every time... ;)  (and I mean mutant with the most respect!)

I was naive...

So, in attempt to enjoy every moment & document my memories, I am posting today about the things that have saved me in this pregnancy (so far...).

My friend Carlye told me about pregnancy rage when she was pregnant.  When I got pregnant this time, it took a little while to realize I was experiencing what she was talking about.  Its getting better, but still happens here and there.  I sometimes get annoyed for no reason & can't shake it.  Once I realize what I'm experiencing each time, I go get a shake (the ones from Nelsons Frozen Custard are saved for the worst episodes because they are the best & most expensive... well worth it, though), & often the trip to get a shake is accompanied by a trip to Target.  If by chance I can't get out of the house (which sometimes spurs the pregnancy rage), a candy bar or chocolate often helps enough.  Did I mention I have the biggest sweet tooth with this pregnancy? It's starting to worry me...

Gummy Prenatal Vitamins
Thank you to whoever invented these!  I am not the best pill swallow-er anyway, but I was so sick & would miss a few days at a time because I just couldn't swallow it &/or keep it down.  This, of course, concerned me, so I looked up online & found some gummy prenatal vitamins.  I think they are yummy, and Target even has their Up & Up brand of them (which means cheaper... and sometimes they have coupons for the Up & Up brand too... even better).

I always thought Zofran was for the women who were throwing up all day every day in their pregnancy, so it didn't even phase me that it could help me.  Don't get me wrong, I threw up much more than I wanted to, and was sick to my stomach all day every day.  I think I was around 16 weeks when my midwife asked if I wanted some.  I said no, thinking that I was supposed to feel better 'any day now' and didn't want to waste money if I didn't need to.  I mentioned it to Rick a day or two later & he looked at me like I was crazy.  He talked me into calling my midwife back the next day to get a prescription & boy am I glad I did!  I got it right before we moved, so that was helpful.  It didn't make me 100% better, but I would take any little bit I could!  My morning sickness lasted for 5 more weeks... another reason why I am glad I got it when I did.

Rick & Paige
Without them being so patient, that would have made this pregnancy a lot harder!  Don't get me wrong, it wasn't easy for either of them, but the fact that Rick would come home & help clean (even more than normal), be patient with my food choices (what I could and couldn't eat), & pay extra attention to Paige on top of everything else he had going on, was so so so helpful!  Of course Paige is too young to really understand, but she did really well considering.  I could tell on my worst days that she needed extra attention & I am so grateful for Ricky stepping in when I couldn't.  I didn't like how it affected her or how hard it was on Rick, that's why I decided to take the zofran.

My Recliner
I have spent more hours than I can count putting my feet up on our recliner.  I've had to take many naps & resting breaks there.  Just call me a swussy :)  

Wrist Braces
I had carpal tunnel surgery back when Rick & I first met.  It's been really pretty good since then.  I had several friends & neighbors who had the surgery before me tell me that theirs came back, and mine slowly has been coming back, but it hasn't been too bad yet.  Pregnant women often get carpal tunnel, even if they haven't had it before, but when I was pregnant with Paige mine was actually better... weird.  This pregnancy, not so much.  I finally found the perfect, most comfortable braces out there & I wear them at night to ease the symptoms.  I wouldn't be able to tolerate it very well without them.  I call them my boxing gloves :)

Core Exercises
My stomach muscles have felt... well, torn apart.  I asked my midwife about it, assuming the only thing I could do was to buy a support belt, but she told me some exercises I could do for a few more weeks that would help.  Oh boy, am I glad I asked her!  It was so bad it hurt just to stand or sit, but lately I have felt very little pain there because of those exercises.  Hallelujah!! 

My Ultrasound
Because I was sick & exhausted for so long, I honestly didn't feel as excited about being pregnant again as I did before I got pregnant (gulp... I HATE admitting that).  Don't get me wrong, I was thrilled to be able to be pregnant.  I was thrilled to know that I would soon be holding another baby that was created in my very own uterus.  I knew how lucky I was to have this opportunity.  I waited & prayed for this second baby for a long time.  I was beyond thrilled to have our family grow... but being sick 24/7 for 20 weeks straight starts to wear on you...  But once I saw that sweet little profile, foot, hand, heartbeat, etc. on the ultrasound, I was instantly in love.  It was exactly the thing I needed to boost my spirits & be more than excited about being pregnant... throwing up & all.  :)  It made it all worth it.  It was amazing.

Pregnancy isn't always the most comfortable time of life, but I sure am glad for all of these life savers!  They've made my pregnancy much more enjoyable, and I am so excited to meet this little girl!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The One With An Update On Paige

A friend of mine mentioned to me last month that I haven't posted anything about Paige & her adventures with her doctors lately.  Honestly we haven't had much of anything new happen, until lately.

**Consider this your warning... it's a long post**  :)

Just in case you're not in the loop, Paige's pediatrician has been watching several things about Paige since she was born (an odd and small head shape, her eye problems/ptosis, her delay in speech, etc.), so she suggested we see a geneticist.  We were seeing a geneticist, who did several tests, but none of them came out with results to give us any answers. Only one test came back with something not normal & it was an ultrasound.  We found out that she has a bicornate uterus (a split uterus), a partial fallopian tube & they couldn't tell if she had ovaries or not.  They said unless we do an MRI on her uterus & ovaries, we'll have to wait until she's a teenager to find out more information about that.  Although I am SO grateful to find that out so early, it didn't answer any of our questions.  Basically we stumped the geneticist. :)

Paige has always been on track for all developmental milestones except for speech.  She's a very smart girl, she knows about 60 signs & everyone is always so impressed with how much she understands.  We've been working with a speech therapist for about 9 months now, but haven't seen the normal amount of improvement in that time frame. 

I know that Paige will eventually catch up with her speech, but I've also known for a long time that something was just off.  Besides speech therapy & working with Paige to talk all day every day, we haven't seen any other specialists lately.  We honestly didn't know where to go from there... until about a month ago.

We were driving home one Sunday night & Paige was trying to say one of the maybe 5 or 6 words she knows & she couldn't.  She started to cry and sign please (because she wanted help).  Maybe it's the pregnancy hormones, but I broke down.  I cried too, but didn't let her see.  It broke my heart.  She's stopped being able to say words before, but never to this extent of feeling sad that she couldn't do it.  By the way, she hasn't been able to say that word (or even the 'b' sound) since.

The next morning I called Paige's speech therapist & her pediatrician to see where we can go from here.  Like I said, it might have been the hormones from being pregnant, but I just knew we had to try to do more at this point.  Her speech therapist suggested she might have early signs of childhood apraxia of speech, but they can't test for it until the child is 3 or 4.  Her pediatrician & speech therapist both suggested we go see a neurologist.

Although the neurologist is booked out more than 2 months, they were able to get us in the same week we called because of a cancellation (this has happened before & I can't help but feel like it's meant to be).

I really liked the neurologist & he suggested we do an MRI of her brain & some basic genetic testing if our insurance would cover it.  Her pediatrician suggested that we do an MRI of her uterus & ovaries at the same time, if we have to do one on her brain, so we don't have to wait as long to find answers about that issue.

Up until the night before I was all for the MRI.  For some reason, that Sunday night, as I put her down to go to sleep, I became a mess.  I was getting very anxious & nervous about the whole thing.  I just kept hoping that she would be okay and not scared, I guess.

The morning of, we all woke up before the sun rose... much earlier than any of us have woken up for who knows how long.  I could tell that Paige was confused as we walked out to our car as to why the sun wasn't out yet.  Our appointment was at 6am, so that meant that Rick could come with us until he had to be to work by 8 (he doesn't have paid time off until he's worked there for one year).  I cannot tell you how glad I was to have him there for that first half.  They did the typical things, checked her height, weight, lungs, etc.  They gave her a blanket to take home & they even let her pick out a prize after they poked her for her IV.  Rick held her while they poked her & he told me later that she was signing 'all done' after they poked her, and she made it clear that she was ready to go home at that point.

Paige & I were so glad to have daddy there with us.

I don't know if it was because I was pregnant, the lack of sleep, because she is older, or because of the risk of what they would tell us afterword, but I was still a ball of nerves.  I was more anxious then, than I was with any of her surgeries.  I don't know why, it seems so silly, but I was.  I even began to feel so guilty for wanting her to have the MRI.  I was also nervous that the sedation would have side effects that would delay her even more, like the anesthesia did.

The MRI took much longer than they told me it would, and as I waited I tried to keep busy & wrapped myself in her new blanket that someone took so much time to crochet.  I felt like the blanket comforted me much more than it did Paige.

Paige, of course, did great.  They said it took longer because her cute little body is so tiny & they had a hard time getting a good shot of her pelvis.  When they took me back to her she was super loopy (much more loopy than with the anesthesia... her head was bobbling & all), but happy (much happier than with the anesthesia).  It was so good to see her.  My eyes began to water as I saw her in the tech's (for probably the 10th time that morning), but I quickly pushed it back as I took her into my arms.  She began talking & signing, almost more than normal (in a funny drunk sort of way), so I am taking that as a good sign that the sedation hopefully won't delay her speech.

She slept for most of the day after we got home

She was so loopy the 2 times she did wake up.  It was so cute!
Although, I haven't heard back from her pediatrician, I did get a call from her neurologist.  He said that her MRI is 'not entirely normal', but that it still doesn't look too bad.  I guess in the back part of her brain (where we process info), has less tissue than normal on both sides.  He says because of that we know it's not from an injury, but that it must have just developed that way.  He says he doesn't have a specific diagnosis for this, but we are still on track to doing some general genetic testing to see if that gives us any answers.  He also said that they "think" they saw 2 ovaries, although, they are higher than normal.  So, I think that's good news... :)

Once again we don't have very many answers, but at least we are trying.  I feel like I have to keep 'fighting' for my sweet girl to find answers to the best way we can help her.  I am, so glad, though, for such good doctors & how well Primary Children's Medical Center handles things.

Friday, September 7, 2012

The One With Photo Friday: Our Fun For Paige Day

After being so busy lately, and after chanting the mantra 'I will be patient with my toddler today' in my head over and over the other morning, I decided it would be good for both Paige & I to have a fun day.  Well, a 'fun for Paige day'.  I put off working (don't tell my boss) so I could focus on her (not something I am always able do).
Thank you pinterest...

Paige trying to show that she's 2 years old
We didn't do anything spectacular, just little things that she likes.  Things like, riding her bike, running in the back yard, taking a long bath, going shopping & taking pictures of her.  Believe it or not, she likes shopping & getting her picture taken just as much, if not more than I like to go & take them... we make a pretty good team.  Now, if I could just get her to stop doing her 'cheese face' or 'pretty smile' every time my cell phone or camera point in her general direction.  I did manage to get a few normal faces this time, though by telling her to sing ('la la la') instead.  A mom's gotta do what a mom's gotta do.

I'm embarrassed that I don't do days like this more often, in fact, I've often felt guilty for working as much as I do, which can take more attention than I'd like away from her.  Finding a balance between being a mom & wife (as far as helping financially) can be very tricky for me at times, but I might just be getting the hang of things finally. 

I'm so glad I spent the day focusing on her.  I vow to have more days like this, because it's not only good for her, but good for mamma too.  Especially since before we know it, we'll have one more little one to give attention to.

One of my attempts of the belly kiss... it would have been better if Rick was around to take this one :)
Belly Kiss attempt #2

And don't you worry, I saved the best for last.  I thought it would be cute to copy this picture from pinterest, but instead, I got this...