Thursday, October 27, 2011

Some new experiences for Addison

I left Addison for the first extended amount of time on Friday the 21st so I could attend the SYTYCD concert with Carol as a birthday celebration. Carol and I had a great time. It was a much needed mommie night out! Addie did great with Aunt Missy and was sleeping peacefully when I returned FIVE hours later.

The next day, Melissa and I took Jack and Addie to the outlet mall in San Marcos as a continued celebration for my birthday weekend. Addison did wonderful. She loved her stroller and all the new sounds and environments. She stayed in her stroller for over three hours, happy as can be. She took a bottle once and dozed off for a while. Put her feet up on the cup holder, played with her butterfly hanging toy and even laughed out loud at her crazy mom a few times. It was a great day!! She was so well behaved that it allowed me to spend way too much money! ;)

Wednesday Addison had her first outdoor playdate at the local DQ playground. We met some friends of ours from Grayson's school and the boys played on the playground while Addie hung out with us moms. Interestingly, while we were outside there was a fire truck and ambulance that came screaming by. I watched Addie very closely to see how she would react to the noise, after our football game issue, and she was totally unphased. I was surprised really. I thought that it would be a similar type noise event as the bell tower and the band playing but she didn't seem to mind at all. Slept through it really. So who knows. It will be interesting to see what other types of noises set her off and what doesn't. Maybe the football game was just a perfect storm of stimulation and stranger awareness.

I got a video of Addie laughing today for Facebook. She is laughing and smiling more and more every day, though there are some days that she just isn't in the mood. I find her little moods pretty amusing. She definitely has her own mind.

We have a busy next couple of weeks (well months really) coming up. This weekend is our last home weekend for a while. Monday is Halloween. Addie will be going in her stroller, rocking her orange and black tutu and cheering on her brothers as they trick or treat.

Next Wednesday, the 2nd, we have a meeting with her PT and service coordinator to up her PT to twice monthly. Really working on her reaching and strenghtening her core to help her sit up.

Next Thursday afternoon, we're driving to Llano to watch Raychel cheer and then staying over night Thursday so hopefully I can attend Jacob's last game of the season while Mom watches Addie. Won't be attempting to take her to a noisey game again this year. (IF ever....)

The weekend following that is the Battle reunion which I'm looking forward to. I didn't go last year because I was soooo sick with morning sickness. So it's been since Elizabeth's (a cousin) wedding since I saw our extended extended family.... and I also look forward to an opportunity to show off Addison! Naturally I already have her outfit picked out!

Love this time of year! A cold front is rolling through as I type. So much to look forward to and be grateful for! Tis the season for thanksgiving afterall! But I really am trying to be thankful all day, every day and not just one day a year.

Happy Fall everyone!
~ Aimee

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

4 month well baby appointment

Taking a few weeks ago... She's smiles much easier now!

Addie had her four month well baby appointment today and it went great! She weighed 18 lbs 9 ozs and is 26 and 1/2 inches long. She's grown 2 inches and gained 2 and half pounds since her last well baby on August 31st. Her head circumference has gone up 2 cms in 6 wks but Dr. N isn't concerned because she's growing at a faster pace overall. We just make big kids. She is going to forward her measurements to Dr. G (our nsg) just to make sure he doesn't want to see her sooner than her next appointment with him on November 14th.
She said that Addie is developmentally a 3-4 month old. Really good news to hear! For her to only be behind, in EVERY milestone, including the physical ones, by a month is AWESOME news. Dr. N was thrilled with Addie's head control. Addie showed off, picking her head up to a 90 degree angle when on her tummy and she even pushed up on her elbows for her. Dr. N squealed... and Dr. N doesn't squeal. So it was a proud momma moment for me, for sure!
Dr. N is pleased with Addison's improvement in her vision, but she is still visually delayed so I'm glad we're going to the opthamologist next month to get that road started.
I spoke to Dr. N about starting Addie on foods and she feels that she does have good enough head control to start. So we're going to start her on rice cereal in about two weeks and then veggies in about four weeks. I'm excited to see Addie start foods. I know a lot of hydro kiddos have sensory issues and food issues, so it will be interesting to see if Addison's love of nursing carries over to a love of solids.

We are a very busy household and I'm loving every minute of it. It's difficult to juggle everything but there's never a dull moment and the house is often filled with laughter. Even Addie's laughter has joined in. Sweetest sound ever. It's hard not to get misty everytime she laughs. Mom got her to laugh the first time, right after she turned 4 months old. I caught the tail end of it as I was in the other room getting dressed! Stinker. But thankfully I have had many encore performances from her. So thankful.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Frightening Friday Night

We had been planning for about a month now to take the kids and go see Jacob play football on October 7th. His first district game was in a town very close to our house so that seemed like the best game to attempt.

I had Addie an adorable black and orange tutu to wear, their school colors, and we were all set. We arrived about 15 mins before the game started and were in time for the run through and welcoming of the boys on the field. Addie was doing great! She was smiling at Maurie and seemed happy to be out of the house.

Raychel got back from standing beside the run through and went to pick up Addie out of her carrier. I was helping to unfasten her straps and stuff and as Raychel was lifting her out of the carrier, Addison started to scream. Raychel tried to walk around with her to calm her and it didn't work, so Melissa tried. Took her far down the side of the field, away from the stands and band and I could see Addie was still fussing. I walked down to see if I could help and she would settle and then scream, settle and then scream. I took Addie out to the car to try to get her away from the noise and try to nurse her. She wouldn't latch. She'd scream and try to nurse and then scream some more. At this point, after trying for what may have been a total of two minutes, I texted Maurie to have Melissa bring all my stuff and the boys. We were heading toward home with the very real possibility of detouring to the Children's Hospital along the way. The town we were in was probably 45 mins to Children's and we had to head towards home to get to the hospital anyway.

Thankfully Melissa decided to come with us and offered to drive. I was able to sit in the backseat with Addie and try to calm her down. I did a no no and got her out of her carseat and held her and rubbed her back and talked to her in a soft voice. I told myself that if she was still crying when we got to the other side of Hutto (where we had to decide home or hospital) that we were heading straight to Dell Children's ER.

About five miles down the road, Addie started to settle. I wish I knew how to describe the way she was screaming. As a mom of three, screaming babies aren't a new thing to me. But the way Addie was screaming was different. It was a scared scream, an in pain scream, a why did you do this to me scream. I was scared that it meant something was wrong with her shunt. As a hydro parent, you can never dismiss the possibility of a neurological issue. I knew her soft spot wasn't bulging, I knew her eyes weren't sunsetting, I knew she wasn't vomitting. All classic signs of a shunt failure. I knew Dr. G (her nsg) told me that shunt failures typically don't go fast like that. They are slow to build. They are gradual and rarely emergent. But I do know they can be emergent. And I was trying to figure out if that was what was going on. I knew the decision would be mine. So I decided that she had until we got toward home to stop screaming.

I was very thankful that she quieted. She snuggled in to me and looked around in the dark. She didn't pass out or fall asleep which was oddly comforting to me as well. She didn't stop screaming out of exhaustion, she stopped because she was comforted,or at least out of pain for the time being. When we got her home, she acted as if nothing had happened. She was alert, cooing, looking around, trying to sit up. All typical Addie behavior.

The best thing I can figure out was it was noise related. The band had just settled into the stands and started playing. The stands were metal and I'm sure there were a ton of vibrations. She started crying right as she was picked up by a "stranger" (sorry Raychel!) and was taking out of the buffer of her carrier seat. I think it was just too much all at once for her.

She did act similarly to this when we were on the Duke campus and the bell tower started chiming. Not to this extent but you could tell the loud noise wasn't pleasing to her ears.

Friday night was just another reminder how quickly things can change in the life of a hydro child. I was very thankful we didn't end up at the ER and I'm very thankful this was the first time it was a real consideration. Realistically I realize we will have to go to the ER at some point in her life. I'm just thankful we haven't had to yet.