Archive for November, 2007

And then the baby just happened….

November 21, 2007

No, the baby hasn’t happened yet. But after I finished telling my doc this morning that I had NO signs of labor, she checked me and said “well, you’re 2.5 cm dilated, and 60% effaced, so something is happening!!!”
Everyone seems to think that means I”ll have the baby this weekend. I am having contractions, but I can’t feel them. I just know they are there (unless you’ve been pregnant, this statement makes no sense)…I feel pretty far from labor. I’m only 38 weeks (on saturday)…so I’ve still got time.

On the other hand, I am HUGE and REALLY uncomfortable. I only tell Scott this, because he has to listen to me complain. I just keep telling everyone else I”m fine. I”m so not fine, I”m so incredibly uncomfortable and so exhausted and just so hoping that this baby comes out soon, because I”m really really needing to get this OUT OF ME. But I”m trying to stay positive. 🙂

So this weekend I’m going to make Scott take me out for Spicy Indian food, red wine, car rides over bumpy dirt roads. Then we’ll go to Toys R Us and try out a few trampolines, come home and have sex. Just so I can have this kid.

A thought…

November 16, 2007

Even I have moments of brilliance, though they are few and far between.

I got an Email this week from a dear friend who was asking some questions about Down Syndrome. She has a friend who just had a baby that has DS. I have spent the past hour clacking away on this keyboard with all the advice and information I can think of….but I wanted to share with you how I ended the letter, because it really describes what this journal is all about and puts things in clear focus for me. Sometimes we say things that we don’t realize will ring true. Then we think back and say to ourselves “wow, that just put things in a nutshell”…well, tonight I had a nutshell moment:

“One thing that didn’t help us very much in the beginning (or now, and I hear it all the time, mostly from well meaning women in the grocery store) was people telling us “you know, THOSE KIDS are the most loving and caring people I know of” or “THOSE KIDS are just so amazing”… There are up days and down days. Ben is a kid, and every kid has up and down days. But I have to admit, He sees a joy in life that I don’t. And for a variety of reasons….mostly just his very existence, his determination, his body’s refusal to give in to what was “supposed ” to happen…I just find it impossible to see anything but pure joy when I’m with him. My son has changed the way I see the world forever, but not because he is one of “those kids”…it’s because he is my Ben. Because I am his mommy, and because he is the single most amazing thing to have ever happened to me. I will never look at the world the same way again.
And that just makes me a parent, not the parent of a little boy with Down Syndrome.”

Now I need to go find a tissue.


November 14, 2007

…I’ve gone from updating during Ben’s naptime (and laundering, cleaning, reading, catching up, doing assorted tasks during naptime) to actually napping….which leaves little time for updating. Or anything else, for that matter. So this will be quick. Ben is still fighting this cold he has…his poor nose is all runny and sad. Thankfully, the cough he had for a few days has eased up. I think if he knew how to blow his nose this would be progressing much faster, but alas, it is not to be. We’re trying to lay low, we skipped three therapy sessions last week. We’ve been going this week, but today school really wiped him out.

Recently we’ve been working really hard on Ben’s eating…specifically getting him over the hump of only eating pureed/baby food. If there is a lump or a coarse texture to be found, Ben won’t eat it. We get tons of ideas on what to feed him, but really, he just wants baby food. I know that you think that rice and mashed potatoes are really soft, but Ben won’t eat it. It used to be he would gag so hard he would throw up all over when we gave him anything that had any texture at all to it…and that obviously got old really fast. So with the help of his OT and his speech therapist, we’ve been doing a lot lately to combat this. Most of Ben’s issues have to do with the low muscle tone in his mouth, so the first step is to work on boosting that. We use this little nubby thing called a “nuk”, which we rub all over the inside and outside of his mouth…it “wakes up” his muscles. So the second prong in this approach is to gradually introduce some textures to him….which is working better than I thought. Ben has happily accepted some new foods: waffles, mac and cheese noodles, some veggies that are soft and only mashed or in tiny pieces. This is huge and we are going verrrrrry slowly with the whole operation. He’s not really chewing yet, just mushing the food around in his mouth, so we have to be very very careful what we give him. We are also feeding him regular oatmeal for breakfast now, mixed half and half with applesauce. It’s not his favorite thing, but he’ll eat it so that’s good. This is a very slow process, but Ben is really starting to be a little more brave with what he eats, so that’s good. In addition to all this, he LOVES goldfish crackers, and is really trying to crunch and chew them, which is great…so we eat those too. I never realized how much is involved in learning to eat! It’s actually kind of fascinating to see all this unfold, even if it does become frustrating sometimes. And as a last comment, why this kid will eat goldfish, cheerios, puffs, waffles and crackers, but not any other textured food is beyond me. Probably because they dissolve in his mouth to some extent. Just another thing that will take time, but will happen.

So we’re back to resting and lying low (as if we’ve left here…with me pregnant and Ben sick), and hopefully he’ll bounce back soon.

November 10, 2007

Heard today on “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me” on NPR:
“Well, for those of you who don’t know, a wedgie is when a bully grabs your underwear, usually from the back and….oh wait, you’re all NPR listeners. You know what a wedgie is.”

How right you are, Peter Segal, How right you are.

Now playing: Anna Nalick – Breathe
via FoxyTunes

A sibling update

November 8, 2007

Yesterday Scott, Ben and I went to see the baby, I had an ultrasound done to get an estimate of the baby’s birth weight. The first thing the US tech said was “wow, that’s a big head”….thanks, lady.

So the weight was estimated yesterday at 7 pounds…that was YESTERDAY’S weight, meaning they are projecting a nine pound baby. I’m glad I have the attitude I do about drugs: I want to do this without, but they don’t hand out metals for that so if I need them, I’ll go right ahead. That attitude makes me a lot more relaxed about the whole thing.

So I’m huge, but still feeling good, just exhausted after a full day of Ben-toting. Sitting on the floor to play with him means getting down on the floor, and getting back up again, which is difficult. Only one month until we meet the new Randall!

It’s not surprising that I feel more relaxed about this baby, there is less to worry about concerning the birth and time after the birth. I’m looking forward to having Scott home for two weeks of leave, and that’s about all I’m focused on right now. My worries all center on what it will be like to be home with two kids instead of one, especially since Ben requires a bit more care than the average 20-month old. What I’ve been trying to convince Ben of, however, is that he may require more care (needing to be carried, lifted, etc; needing to be fed, all these things) but he IS able to play on his own for stretches of time without me. He is so used to being the center of everyone’s attention that this is going to be a huge adjustment for him. I don’t worry about him making the adjustment, because all oldest kids have gone through this…he’ll be fine…but I wonder how it’s going to go for all of us.

In the meantime, Ben has a head cold and has had one since Tuesday. He was all leaky and snotty on Tuesday, better yesterday, and last night developed this icky cough. We saw the doctor yesterday (we were there anyway for Ben’s RSV shot) and they said his lungs are clear, so that’s good. We’re doing lots of steamy baths, vaporizer naps, and nebulizer treatments. I’ve also relaxed the TV rules and let Ben watch a movie or two (he loves the glowing box, it’s usually off until after he goes to bed). You know, what are you going to do when you’re sick except watch TV and snuggle with mom?

Food for Thought

November 7, 2007

A few further thoughts on the idea of struggle, as well as a picture of Ben.
I remembered this story the other day and thought it related well to the entry I wrote about Ben and his milestones. This is one of my favorite parables:

A man found a cocoon of an emperor moth. He took it home so that he could watch the moth come out of the cocoon. On the day a small opening appeared, he sat and watched the moth for several hours as the moth struggled to force the body through that little hole.

The moth seemed to be stuck and appeared to have stopped making progress. It seemed as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no farther. The man, in his kindness, decided to help the moth; so he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The moth then emerged easily. But its body was swollen and small, its wings wrinkled and shriveled.

The man continued to watch the moth because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to and able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the little moth spent the rest of its life crawling around with a small, swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.

The man in his kindness and haste did not understand that the struggle required for the moth to get through the tiny opening was necessary to force fluid from the body of the moth into its wings so that it would be ready for flight upon achieving its freedom from the cocoon. Freedom and flight would only come after the struggle. By depriving the moth of a struggle, he deprived the moth of health.

Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If we were to go through our life without any obstacles, we would be crippled. We would not be as strong as what we could have been. Give every opportunity a chance, leave no room for regrets, and don’t forget the power in the struggle.

A picture of what doesn’t look much like struggle

Halloween Success

November 1, 2007

Ben continues to amaze me. He had such a big day yesterday, and just kept a smile on his face while I dragged him all over town. We had school in the morning (pictures after the link at the bottom), then went to see his Nana (Scott’s mom) at her work for lunch, then up to my parents for a visit. Home for a quick nap and some dinner, then off trick-or-treating with Dad and his buddy across the street (again, pictures below). The dads took the boys around the block, and Ben and Naeem had a GREAT time. Ben was super excited when he got home. Halloween 2007 was a big success. 🙂 Today we laid low to make up for the business yesterday, and we have a laid back weekend ahead of us.