Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Struggles at School

Sidekick has been a real pain in the ass at school the past few weeks, and his teachers, the director, and I were not able to figure out what the F was going on with him.  His class does a color system for behavior and they move their clothes pins accordingly.  Purple is the best and red is the worst with four colors in between.

Sidekick has always been super smart, spunky and spirited, often "teaching" the class during circle time when he knows everything.  (Ugh!)  However, his spiritedness and spunk have gotten him into deep water at school.  Circle time has been awful (not sitting still, talking, not listening, etc.) and his overall listening was atrocious at times.  When kids get on red, they get a red note explaining why and they have to sign their names.  At first, red notes devastated him, but most recently, he ran around the class singing, "I got a red note."  Yep. He didn't care at all. 

I dreaded picking him up from school and hearing bad news.  My almost perfect kid had turned into a complete monster.  Then his momma turned into a monster the rest of the night because she was so disappointed in her son's behavior.  It became a vicisous cycle, and our evenings just kind of sucked, and quite frankly, I didn't want to be with him because I hated his behavior at school and I took that out on him, and we just weren't "gelling".   

I finally talked to the director about coming up with a new system since the current system was completely ineffective for Sidekick.  We decided he would have a sticker chart and have to get four stickers a day for daily things (circle time, academics, rotations, and nap).  Knowing that circle time was his pain point, I bribed him and told him that if he gets a star during circle time, he could play on my iPad that evening.  I do NOT let him on my iPhone or iPad normally, so this is a huge treat for him.  I was desperate.  We set up his weekly goal of getting eight out of 20 stickers.  He wanted to make s'mores if he got eight.  Week one was a success, and I think he got 12 stickers.  I was so proud of him.  The second week, we upped his required stickers, and he got 18 out of 20!  Amazing!  So... he's back on track, but what was very troubling was this...

I felt like the director and teachers were thinking he may have ADHD (and maybe he does), and it started freaking me out. I've always been a proactive Momma, so knowing that his four year doctor appointment is coming up, I found it important to see how things go with a new system in place.  School started keeping track of his day in a spiral notebook to help all of us figure him out and what triggered his bad behavior, and then  I could show it to his doctor.  Fortunately, the notebook has stopped because he's been doing so great, but things still are a concern of mine. Was it just some type of a phase?

Oh!  And how can I forget... with a broken clavicle, he has to sit outside at a table alone and play with something.  He has no way to get rid of his pent of energy, so this may have contributed a little.. but the bad behavior kind of started before the broken clavicle.  But in his defense, a broken clavicle doesn't help things.

All of this behavior leads me to this...

Sidekick has a July birthday, and the cutoff for kindergarten is August 1st.  As soon as I got pregnant and realized my due date, I immediately thought... great (or more accurately "shit").  I'm in education, so I know how hard it is to decide whether or not to "redshirt" a kid, especially a boy, who has a late birthday.  So, while he can go to kindergarten next year, I'm totally on the fence about it especially with his recent behavior at school. 

This mom stuff can be really challenging, and overall, I've never found it very challenging or overwhelming on a day to day basis.  Sure we get in funks every now and then, but motherhood overall is not that difficult for me.  It's all the outside crap (work, errands, household chores, etc.) and lack of "me time" that make motherhood suck at times... not having Sidekick (if that makes).  I just want to always do the right things for him, and sometimes I'm not sure what the right things are.  Case in point:  Kindergarten in 2017. 

Friday, July 29, 2016

Another Trip to the ER

Sidekick just can't catch a break in 2016!  Let me remind you how he year has been so far:

1.  January:  One week sick and out of school with Croup.
2.  February:  One week sick and out of school with RSV (I think that's what he had)
3.  March:  Two weeks out of school for surgery to remove tonsils and adenoids and get tubes in ears.

And now July (almost one year from our last ER visit)...

I was outside on the playground talking to Sidekick's teacher when I dropped him off yesterday morning.  I saw him lying on the ground crying and told him he was okay and to come over to me.  He dragged himself off the ground and slowly walked towards me while holding his shoulder.  Sidekick has an amazingly high pain threshold, so to see him crying so much made me think that this might be a little more than a little boo-boo.  I eventually calmed him down and put him down so I could leave.  As soon as I put him down and his arms raised up since my hands were basically under his armpits, he immediately screamed and cried in pain. 

I decided to take him inside to get him away from all the kids and we headed to the office.  As soon as the director saw him crying (she knew that isn't normal for him) and holding his shoulder, she told me to take him for an x-ray.  I looked at her and dropped the F-Bomb.  I was out of town for two days for work and had a lot to catch up on, and a trip to the ER was not on my agenda.

I put him in the car seat and he again screamed as I was trying to get his arms through the five point harness.  I drove home to tell my mom (she's still in town) and she came with us to the ER.  Sidekick loves, and I mean LOVES the hospital, so he was excited to go.  We arrived and there was no one there, so we got right in (amazing!).  People came in his room to talk to him and check him and ask what happened.  Here was his explanation:

"I was playing Titty Tat (Kitty Cat) and Lion. (Mind you I have no idea what this game is.)  I was the Titty Tat crawling and Ty tripped on me and knocked me over."
I have no idea if that's what happened since I didn't see it, but I guess it seems logical and that's the story he's sticking with. 
He happily laid in the bed at the ER while being examined and did a great job with getting x-rays, especially since the technician needed to put his arms in painful positions.  We immediately got the results back that he broke his collar bone.  Poor dude.  He needs to be in a sling for four weeks, so that has pretty much ruined the rest of our summer.
I kept him home from school today and he just watched TV while I worked.  He's in a lot of pain and is just struggling with his new "normal".  Of course it's his right collarbone, so he's having to learn to function with his left side.  He's doing great but he gets frustrated with simple things like getting himself up on the sofa.  It's amazing how much our collarbone is used for just simple things. 
Being the cool mom I am, I got him a skull and crossbones patch and wrote his name in cool purple paint on his sling.  It looked super boring, but now it looks fun and he loves it!
I'm so lucky that he is so laid back and nothing really fazes him.  He's such a trooper! 

Friday, July 8, 2016

And in the Blink of an Eye he's FOUR!

Sidekick is FOUR years old today!  FOUR!!!!  That means he's one finger away from a full hand and one finger away from going to Kindergarten. I've been telling him lately that it makes me sad that he is growing up so fast.  His immediate response every time is, "Nobody else is sad.  I'm growing up to be a good man."  And he is.  I can see it every day.  His compassion, confidence, selfLESSness, humor, outgoingness, and kindness are setting him up to be an awesome man (if only I can find someone like him. Haha.)

I started a few traditions when he turned one:

1. I put balloons in his bed in the morning right before he wakes up. He woke up this morning and in the most excited voice said, "Woooowwww."  And he ran in to thank me over and over again.
2.  I trace his hand every year to see how much it has grown.
3.  I write a letter to him every year, add the number of dollars for the number of years he is, and put it in his treasure box.  I'm not sure when I'll give him all of the letters, but it will be fun to read them together.
4. We release a balloon in honor of his Donor (a very special time for us)

When I took him to school today, about six friends squealed, ran towards him, hugged him, and said "Happy birthday!!"  He looked at me and said, "Momma, I can't believe my friends are so excited it's my birthday."  I felt tears welling up in my eyes as I watched these kids that he's known since he was 13 weeks old surrounding him with so much love. I felt so lucky that he was in such a great daycare with such great friends.  And sadly, they all go separate ways next year when they graduate from Pre-K. 

We are heading to my mom's tomorrow for the week.  My nephews will be there also.  I'm looking forward to hanging at the beach, not rushing around, letting Sidekick soak up the fun with his cousins, and getting away from work. 

His birthday party will be towards the end of the month. I rented out a indoor play area at a church. We invited about 20 kids, so this is a real party for him.  He wanted a flower theme (whatever that means), so I turned his idea into a 70's theme, complete with "groovy" cupcakes and each kid will make a tie-dye shirt.  I also wanted him to know that a birthday is a good time to be thankful for things.  He loves books and as been obsessed since he was about six months old.  So, we are doing a book drive and donating the books to a great organization.

So... we made it four years. While three was really rough because he was a total "threenager", I hear having a "fournado" has it's own set of challenges.  Regardless, I am truly blessed to have him in my life, and I cannot imagine what my life would be like without him. I'm so proud of the boy he has become, and I've never loved anyone the way I love him. 

UPDATE:  We went to release the balloon after I picked him up from school.  Sidekick decided he was going to send up the balloon to God to thank him for his Donor. He really seemed to have a plan with regards to where this balloon was going.  It was a hot day and as we were walking to our favorite pond, the balloon popped.  I got such a great picture of his reaction, and it just made my heart sink a little bit. 

Friday, June 17, 2016

Finding Balance. Finding Me.

My world changed 3 years and 11 months ago when I became a Mom. It was the most amazing day of my life (and one that took a while to achieve). Along with that day came the "loss" of my life the way I knew it. It's what every mom feels as our role in the world has suddenly changed and we muddle through the days finding our new "normal". I was given the gift of an amazing boy who forever changed my world in the most incredible way possible, but my priorities changed from that day on. 

Aside from work, I don't have time away from Sidekick. I don't get alone time. I don't have family in the same state who I can call up and ask for help at the drop of a hat. I don't have someone with whom to juggle all of the responsibilities of having a family. I'm burnt out, and I've been burnt out for a while. 

I haven't really taken care of myself in almost four years. I barely run anymore. It's either a quick run before I pick up Sidekick from school, or I bribe him to sit in the BOB and go with me on the weekends, which makes running even harder because I have to push him. I used to be a voracious reader, and it now takes me months and months to get through a book. I used to get pedicures a few times a year (and a manicure every once in a while), and I'm lucky if I get one pedicure a year.  I haven't gotten my hair highlighted since before Sidekick was born, and I loved and miss my blonde highlights. I used to walk aimlessly and happily in the park, hike in peace and quiet, or sit on the sofa all day and watch TV.  That all ended three years and 11 months ago. But I don't regret not doing any of that.  I really don't because Sidekick is truly the best part of my life. And quite frankly, these missing things are not unique to me. Every woman gives up things like that as soon as she becomes a Mom. And every Mom tries to regain her sense of self in the midst of this crazy (and oftentimes chaotic) thing called "life".  

As a SMC, I don't have the ability to just up and leave to do anything because apparently it's illegal to leave a child Sidekick's age alone. :) Unless I'm working or am lucky to get that quick one or two mile run in before I pick up Sidekick from school, I don't get a break from the daily grind. I don't have the luxury of putting him to bed at night and going to Target to wander around. I can literally count on one hand the amount of times I've been out in the evening (not counting work related events) without Sidekick since the day he was born (babysitters aren't cheap). This has always been my biggest struggle being a SMC... the loss of my sense of freedom. I wouldn't change it for anything, but I need I find a balance. 

So, I'm trying to change things up a bit. The other night I decided that after I took Sidekick to school the next morning, I was going to go running.  A real run. A run that challenges me, a run that makes me feel/hear the beat of my heart in my ears (I'm still trying to figure out if that's a good thing), a run that let's me be "one" with nature All. By. Myself. And in a zone where my focus is not on my stressful job or my child but the challenge at hand. In the end, I ran an entire four miles without walking. The last time I ran that far without walking was when I was pregnant with Sidekick (or maybe it was when I ran my last half marathon, which coincidentally was the day before I conceived Sidekick).  Actually, I can't remember if I was running four miles when I was pregnant because I was so sick the 16 weeks of my pregnancy and then had to taper running back when I was about 30 weeks because running was harder with a baby on board.  Back in the day, I would have brushed off a four mile run as no big deal. Today, I celebrate it. 

I didn't enjoy that four mile run very much because it was really hard, but I felt like I accomplished something for me. Not my child. Not my job. Me!

While running, I realized that it'll be okay if I take Sidekick to school earlier in the morning or pick him up later in the afternoon once in a while so that I can give myself a break and breathe. The other day I decided to really commit to reading more often so that I can escape my world and be part of someone else's. 

Guess what I just realized?  I can sit down on the sofa next to Sidekick and read while he watches his one show a day before bedtime. And on the weekends, it'll be okay to let him watch TV in the morning, while I read my book in bed. Watching TV won't kill him or even his brain cells, and he'll be super happy having extra TV time. It's pretty much a win-win situation. 

Sidekick isn't going to love me any less if I make these little changes. In fact, I think he may love me even more because once in a while I'm going to try to take care of myself and when I do, that'll make his Momma a little happier. 

I realize every Mom feels this way at one time or another, not just the single Moms, which is why I felt like sharing my epiphany:
To remind ourselves that it's okay to take care of ourselves and breathe, even if   it's a few hours a week.
I just wish it didn't take me three years and 11 months to figure out. 

After my run, I felt rejuvenated. I felt like I could take on the world. I now feel like I am ready to challenge myself to not feel guilty taking a little time for me. After all, a happy Momma means a happy family. 

Join me, fellow Mommas, in this pursuit, won't you?  Who's in?

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Catching Up and Catching my Breath

It's been an interesting month to say the least. It's been a month where I have just be trying to keep it all together and have had some snags along the way. April and May are my busiest months with work, so any curve ball that is thrown my way can really make me stress out.

My mom lives in Wisconsin and was visiting a friend in Chicago at the end of April.  She was driving and wasn't seeing things correctly, so she pulled over to let her friend drive.  They decided to head to the eye doctor near by and when they arrived, my mom couldn't balance and walk. Her friend took her to the ER where she was on "stroke watch", but she had none of the symptoms/check marks for a stroke, so they were going to keep her over night for observation.  Shortly after that, she started slurring her words and they assumed it was stroke and quickly administered TPA to break up the clot.  Upon further diagnostics, it was determined that she had a stroke of the nerve. After being in the hospital for a little more than a week, she was taken to a rehabilitation center when deemed stable, so they could to physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy.

It's hard to be five hours away from her during my busy work season with a kid, but I knew that she was in great hands, and there was nothing I could do.  Plus, my mom is like me.  We like to be left alone when we don't feel well.  Sidekick and I FaceTimed with her every night, and I usually talk to her during the day. She was happy in the rehab center, and she was joking that she was on vacation where they cook and clean for her.  Haha!

We were planning on surprising her for Mother's Day at the rehab facility, and the day before we were supposed to leave, Dog all of a sudden couldn't walk in the morning.  It seemed like she had a stroke, which is really kind of funny after what my mom had gone through.  I joked with my mom that her grand dog was following in her footsteps. 

I took Dog to the vet later that night fully preparing Sidekick for the possibility that we might have to put her to sleep.  He decorated the back of the car with a balloon, her bones, a couple of toys, and an electric candle.  It was so sweet.  The technicians put her on a gurney and wheeled her in a room.  She was diagnosed with Vestibular Disease (vertigo).  She was on three different meds we were hopeful that she would get better within 72 hours. I knew I couldn't leave her because no kennel would take her so we could visit my mom, so our plans were off.  After almost 48 hours, there was no improvement. 

On the Saturday morning of Mother's Day weekend, Sidekick and I were playing outside and I carried Dog (who is a golden retriever, not a small dog) outside to lay in the front yard.  About 30 minutes later she stood up and started walking.  She wasn't that steady, but she was walking!  I quickly called the kennel, jumped in the shower, got us packed, and headed to the kennel.  Within an hour, we were on our way to surprise my mom!  During the drive, she called to ask how Dog was doing, and I said she was doing better and that the doctor who called said it could take two weeks to get better. All the while, she had no idea we were heading up there.

We got up there at about 6:00 and she was so surprised to see us, especially after knowing how poorly Dog was doing.  We hung out there a couple of hours and then headed to my friends' an hour away to stay the night.  Late Sunday morning, we headed back to my mom's, were able to pick take her out of rehab, and went to brunch and the park.  At about 2:30, we hopped in the car for another five hours and headed back home.  Sidekick was such a great traveling companion!  He's such a go-with-the-flow kind of kid, and I am so grateful. 

Here we are a few weeks later, and while I thought we were for sure going to put Dog to sleep a couple of times, she rallied and is doing well! She seems weaker, but she's eating and able to take short walks (which seem to take forever!).  Nonetheless, I followed my gut and wasn't totally prepared to put her to sleep just yet without giving her enough time to see if she could somehow recover, and she did.

Dog, Sidekick, and I are headed to Atlanta to visit my sister and her family.  It's roughly a ten hour drive, and my limit is about six hours.  We are driving straight through because it doesn't make sense to drive it over two days.  I am slammed with work this week, so I'm still not able to wrap my head around this whole thing and getting packed, organized, etc.  Originally my mom was going to drive with us, but she's not up for travelling yet.  (She was released from rehab last Friday.)  So, we are off to an adventure!  It ought to be interesting. 


Sunday, May 1, 2016

How to Run Your First Race When You are 3 1/2 Years Old

How to Run your First One Mile Race (which happens to be in the rain) When You are 3 1/2 Years Old in 12 Easy Steps
1. Be super excited at the starting line
2. Take off running with the big kids.

3. Stop about .2 of mile in and insist that your mom take off both shoes to get (imaginary) rocks out of them.
4. Hydrate using the falling rain.

5. Take a little walk and then haul ass again.

6. Decide to pick up a branch along the way and sweep the trail.
7. 1/2 mile in, request your super hero cape to be put back on for fast running powers.

8. Stop to play in a puddle with branch.

9. Whine a bit and completely stop.
10. Approach the finish line with Momma's coaxing while still sweeping the trail with branch.
11. See Batman approach you as you are close to the finish line, drop the branch, and zig zag to the finish line to avoid him because you are scared.
12. Collect your Finishers Ribbon and say "Dat was really far."

His run may have been more painful for me than my 5k, but I'm so proud of this little dude.

 I've run about seven times since December, so I was totally unprepared for this race.  Plus, I have only pushed Sidekick in the jogger one time in about the past 12 months.  He's hated sitting in the jogger (even a stroller) since he was 2, but I really wanted to do the race, so we practiced last weekend, and I was exhausted trying to get in a groove of pushing him and running. 
My run was amazing!!! It was raining on race day, and the race was on gravel. Gravel and rain don't mix well, and gravel, rain, and a jogger with a 36 pound kid really don't mix well.  Nonetheless, all of that only slowed my normal pace down (and by normal, I mean my last race that I ran which was a half marathon the day before I conceived Sidekick. He'll be four in July, so that was a LOOOOONG time ago!) by about 40 seconds.  I wasn't expecting to do that well at all.  I felt good and was so happy that my body could do it, and I hope to concentrate on running again. I don't really enjoy running and never have, but I like the challenge and the sense of accomplishment in the end.
So, all in all, we both had a successful experience, and I hope we both get out there again for another race!  (Too bad Sidekick is almost too big for the jogger though.)

Friday, April 22, 2016

Little Words= Big Sweetness and a Health Update

I've had one heck of a week (and let's face it, year) juggling work, household chores, errands, trying to find time to run (only happened one time this week), etc. Sidekick was in his bed last night "sleeping" while I was in the laundry room. I heard a sweet voice yell:

"Momma, you can get a rice crispy treat because you are doing a great job doing the laundry. I am really impressed because you are doing so fantastic. Do you know what impressed means? It means you are doing a great job."

I seriously love this kid and appreciate the fact that he appreciates me and all the work I do. Regardless of the crappy week, he just turned it around for me. And he wouldn't give up asking me if I had a rice crispy treat until I finally did. Screw the calories that night. They were worth it!
It's just one of those amazing Mom moments that mean the world to us. It's the little things that make all the difference.

On another note... we are both healthy and back on track.  My little "issue" involved an ER visit (after my OBGYN sent me there) and three appointments with a urologist, primary care, and surgeon the following days. I was in severe pain (pelvis) for two entire weeks.  I barely ate and had to take pain meds (morphine in the ER) to control the pain.  We knew from the scan in the ER that I have several kidney stones, one of which is 7 mm- yikes!  I had an elevated white blood cell count and blood in my urine.  Most people I saw were pretty sure that I had an appendicitis, but tests were inconclusive.  And then 14 days later, I started feeling better.  So... I could have had kidney stone shards that were passing or some funky virus.  Whatever it was sucked so badly, and I was so sick.

I had kidney stones for the first time shortly after Sidekick was born (apparently this is common).  I had to have one removed and three crushed a few weeks later.  I guess I'm going to have to figure out what I'm going to do next about them.  I certainly don't want to have them removed because that required a stent that caused me so much pain for five days.  I'm hoping we can crush them.  I can totally live with a bruised back from the electrodes/shocks (or whatever breaks them up).  Unfortunately, right now, I am so swamped with work (my busy season), so I don't have time to deal with those damn kidney stones, but I know I have to. 

Sidekick has a follow-up appointment with the Audiologist next week. I know since his surgery, his hearing is so much better, so I'm pretty sure we'll get the "all clear" with him.  He's been so much better since his surgery and can hear so much better.  Thank goodness!

We've had a pretty rough start to 2016, so I'm hoping we are due for some easy, happy, good times!

During one of my sleep deprived nights of Sidekick not sleeping well after his surgery, I decided to sign us up for a race.  I signed up to run a 5K while pushing him in the Bob, and I signed him up for a one mile run.  What was I thinking on both counts??  I used to run half marathons, but the last one I ran was literally the day before I had my eighth IUI and got pregnant.  I haven't run a race since, and hadn't run in almost five months.  So... we've been training.  He's doing much better than I.  He's a strong little dude, and can easily hike 3 miles, so surely he can walk/run one mile with the other kids, right? There is no way in hell I can run a 5K while pushing him when I can barely run two miles not pushing him.  I am so out of shape, and it's killing me. Sidekick on the other hand has great form and a pretty strong runner.  I can't wait to see if he can finish it.  I am so glad I have an athletic and adventurous kid!  He's perfect for me.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Road Kill Breath

I was told that Sidekick's breath will smell during the healing process, but I had no idea what that meant.  I quickly learned.  It smells like road kill.  I am not kidding.  Sidekick liked to snuggle with me when he wasn't feeling well, and I wanted to vomit every time he came near me.  Seriously... it was the worst smell ever!

He is back to school this week after a long two week hiatus.  I have to say that was not a fun two weeks.  For over a week,  he woke up every four hours and needed his medicine.  Then I fought him to take this nasty tasting medicine which resulted in screaming and crying on his part in the middle of the night. It was awful.  He never, and I mean never, woke up that many times as a newborn! And then like clockwork, he'd climb into my bed between 3:00 and 3:30 AM.  Again, this is something he has never done, but I knew if he was doing it, then he was definitely not feeling well.  I have a king sized bed, and by morning, I'd find Sidekick on my pillow breathing on me with his road kill breath while I was hanging off the edge.  This kid rarely moves in his bed, so I couldn't understand why he wanted to be so close to me when he has never slept with me before.  But holy crap!  I probably would have been more tolerant if he didn't have road kill breath.

At the beginning of week two, we were definitely sick of each other.  I was juggling work and him, but he would just lay in my bed and watch TV, while I was two floors down working.  I'd check on him every 1 1/2 hours or so, and he was totally content.  I hated that he was watching so much TV, but I knew that's what he needed to do to heal. His normal one-show-a-day turned into hours and hours a day.  Very quickly, he began asking for things from the Easter Bunny that he saw on commercials (so that's how that happens!). 

We ended up having a knock down yelling fight one day because I wanted to meet a friend and go running with him in the jogging stroller, and he didn't want to go. I was so angry because I had been taking care of him for a week at that point with no break from him, and I felt like he was being such a little shit by not doing ONE thing for me!  He was feeling better and it was a beautiful day, but he wanted to watch TV instead.  I was frustrated and angry with him, and we both lost our shit. I felt like everything was spiraling out of control.

The next day, Grandma came to save us!  I had to get out to see customers, so she came in town and took care of him Wednesday-Friday while I worked.  Sidekick was so excited to see her and ran to her with a balloon for her and beads around his neck when she was walking out of the terminal to baggage claim.  And at the point, he became a new person.  A person who was happier, excited, and more entertained. A person who was so grateful to have someone in his life besides me.

He was out of school for two weeks total, and we (more so my mom) slowly started getting him back to real life by doing things with him and limiting TV.  He was completely exhausted doing anything, but the slow transition helped him acclimate back to school. 

He's done great in school this week, which I hadn't expected. He's been a little clingy when I drop him off, but overall, he's been a good listener and has behaved well at school.  Phew! I was expecting a rough week.

And then there is me... with a recent trip to the ER and now an appointment with a general surgeon tomorrow.  Good times!  Grandma is still here and will be here until when we figure out what is wrong with me. Hoping for some answers tomorrow, but that'll be another post. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Surgery Complete!

Poor little Sidekick has been on the slow road to recovery.  Surgery went well, and I held up great until they wheeled him away.  Fortunately, he was given a medicine that made him very loopy, so he couldn't really talk well which was pretty entertaining because he was slurring his words. He was totally fine leaving me, but I'll tell you, that 50 minutes was a long time hoping he'd be okay and there wouldn't be any devastating complications like what happened to my friend's son. 

He was so brave the entire time in the hospital.  I'm amazed at how resilient kids are.  They don't know to be afraid; therefore, they aren't. He brought Taggie, Turtle (the dog), and a lot of Tinys (his imaginary friends) with him.  They all went into surgery with him to protect him. 

His tonsils and adenoids were very large, and there was a lot of thick fluid in his ears, so the tubes were definitely necessary. I was warned that some kids have a hard time coming out of anesthesia, and that they can be confused and upset.  I'm glad to know that Sidekick was pretty normal when it came to this.  He was a mess, and I couldn't calm him down. The nurse in recovery was yelling at him telling him to stop crying and to use his inside voice. She said when he stopped yelling, she would give him a slushie.  A couple of things:
  1. My kid just got his tonsils ripped out of his throat.  If I can't help him calm down, then don't F'n yell at him because that's not helping.
  2. My kid doesn't know what a slushie is, so guess what?  That's not going to help him calm down.
  3. Just shut the F up and let me take care of my kid!
We got to his room quickly, and the goal was to get his pain under control.  I was hoping he would get checked out within a few hours, but when the doctor checked him again three hours later to release him, he looked at him and asked how I thought he was doing.  I told him that I didn't think he looked all that great, but that I would expect that.  He said that he looked too pale, and he didn't want to send us home yet. He told Sidekick "lights out" and time to take a nap (something he wanted him to do right away, but Sidekick was just upset and having the TV on helped him calm down).  I turned the lights off, found a white noise App, laid next to him, and he drifted off to sleep quickly.
When he woke up, I begged to new nurse for his pain meds because it was time. She said that he seemed okay and not in a lot of pain.  I explained that the doctor told me to stay on top of giving them to him every four hours for three days to stay on top of the pain.  She seemed resistant to give them to him.  WTF?! I felt like I was fighting with her to give my son what he needed before the meds wore off too much. She finally gave them to him, and his eyes swelled up a little and were red.  I asked her about it, and she noticed it too.  They eventually went back down to normal, and after another slushie, we were released, three hours later than planned. 
As soon as we got home, Sidekick was famished!  He immediately wanted pancakes, so I made him two.  He devoured them and wanted another one.  Despite the fact that I thought he would blow up, I conceded.  As soon as that third one was gone, he asked for a banana with peanut butter and a fourth pancake.  I realized that if he was hungry now, I should take advantage of it because he might not be hungry again for a couple of days when his throat starts hurting him again. 
When it came time to give him his meds again, his eyes turned red again and swelled up within minutes, only this time it was much worse. It was so strange. I called the doctor on call who said it was most likely not a reaction to his pain meds. This doctor has a different protocol than Sidekick's doctor.  Sidekick's doctor prescribe narcotics and the doctor on call doesn't (poor kids!).  He said that if the swelling doesn't go down by the next time he has to take his pain meds, then to just give him Tylenol the rest of the night until morning when I would call his doctor. 
Not satisfied with his answer, I called Sidekick's pediatrician, and thankfully she was on call that night.  She told me to give him Benadryl, which mine expired almost two years ago, at the same time I give him his pain meds, and to spread the pain meds out to six hours instead of four.  When you are a SMC with a kid sleeping at 9:30 PM, you have to rely on your Village, which I rarely do.   I called a friend who went to the store, picked up some Benadryl, and delivered it to me at 10:00 PM.  I felt so blessed.
Within a couple of hours, Sidekick's eyes were back to normal.  What's strange is that no one really knows what exactly happened.  It looks like the surgical tape caused a reaction, but his eyes flared up two times within minutes of getting his pain meds, so something goofy was going on.
That was a really long 15 hours, in writing and reality.  More updates to come as I catch up with my blog. 


Monday, March 14, 2016

Losing It! Confession

This parenting thing is hard. It is mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausting. In less than three months, Sidekick has been really sick two times, both lasting one week each. He is now really sick again, and once again, I find myself in trouble with balancing him and work since he can't go to school. Work has been harder and more stressful than ever, and I am so overwhelmed.

To add to my plate, Sidekick is having surgery on the 21st. He's been diagnosed with mild hearing loss (hopefully due to fluid in his ears that has been there for months) so he's getting tubes. Easy surgery, right?  Add the removal of tonsils and adenoids, and it's a whole new level of recovery. He'll be home for two, yes two, weeks!  We don't enjoy being trapped inside laying around, so two weeks is a long time to be stuck at home. If this doesn't push me over the edge, nothing will. 

For the past several months, I've literally been going through the motions. I've been doing what I can to keep it together and keep our little family as stable as possible, trying to keep my son happy and healthy (unfortunately not very successfully), and trying to keep myself sane while juggling everything. I admit it... It's really hard doing it all alone.

I haven't worked out in months because I choose to pick up Sidekick from school at a decent hour instead of go for a run (which is not good for me mentally or physically).  I have no idea when I've done a big grocery store run because I have just enough time to run in and grab what I need to get by.  Three inches of my hair got cut off because I hadn't gotten it cut in four months because I couldn't fit it into my jam packed world. I have had TMJ so badly for several weeks that it keeps me up at night. I need a root canal and crown, but it just doesn't fit into my schedule. For the first time since Sidekick was born, I truly feel stressed and that my life is spinning out of control. 

And now with Sidekick being sick, surgery might be cancelled because he has to be fever free one week before. 

So... Being a Momma is hard, and being single Momma is even harder.