Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tells it Like it Is...

Finch and Angel were playing a game. Angel fell down and started crying.  Finch decided the game was over and walked away....
Mom: Finch!  Go see if Angel is ok! [like go give her a hug and ask if she needs anything]
Finch: She is NOT ok. [task completed, walks off]

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Very Happy Echo

Seraph had a sedated echo cardiogram this week.  It's like an ultrasound on her heart.  They sedated her so she'd lay still long enough for them to get a good look at everything.
Seraph didn't mind being up at 6am.  I had to be up late to do her midnight feeding and then switch to pedialyte at 2am.  I was really tired.  Thank heavens Daddy was driving! Seraph loves driving.  She mostly watches out the window and kicks her feet.
Seraph liked the toys outside of xray.  She hated xray.  They make her sit still and mommy leaves!! I like to stand back by the computers so I can take a peek at her xray as it pops up on the screen.  Her xrays looked fantastic this time :)  yay!
 There was a computer in the examination room!  Seraph couldn't quite reach the keyboard...but some nice person had left the mouse on the floor for her to play with.
There was a LOT of waiting....and Daddy got lots of work done on his phone.  Thankfully, I had the iPad along to keep Seraph busy.  (I brought it to read a book while she was sedated, but once she saw it, she demanded her app-play time!)
 The nurse practitioner and the cardiologist were super smart - no lab coat today so Seraph had no negative reaction to them even when they listened to her heart and lungs. Seraph was congested from allergies, but they felt she was OK to be sedated.
 Seraph was very happy and very social...until the IV-team started putting on gloves. It was a HUGE warning signal for her. She cried immediately and looked around for a way to escape.  I used to offer to help hold her still.....but I just can't do it anymore. I figure she needs big hugs when they're done and that's my job.
 We almost left her favorite puppy under the chair, but the NP saw it.  I would've had to buy her a new one.  She loves her puppy that much!
 After the IV...we moved to the echo room.  I held her on my lap while they started sedating her.
Seraph was almost a year old before she decided to allow me to give her comfort via hugs and touching.  Before that she would just shove everyone away.  Now she wants me to hold her and give her love.  I never knew it was something to be grateful for....but I am ever so grateful she let me hold, comfort, and sooth her as the meds started kicking in. :) She is one tough cookie!

Recovery time was fast.  We had our chat with the cardiologist.  It was all good. Her heart function/xrays/valves...everything looks good.  We've set up a heart Cath in August.  Cardiologist is optimist about her next open heart surgery...and feels we'll be able to do it in August.
He also cut back on several of her meds.
It was crazy talking to him....because this was the first time that it was all good news. I feel better about her upcoming surgery.  I think she'll do well.

Here's a picture of Seraph the day after her echo:
They told me she would be cranky....boy were they right!  but she was also happy to be home.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Tulips and Italian Chores

July 2008 - the twins were less than a month old. I was still nursing Angel. Seraph was in the step-down unit of the children's hospital (better than ICU and almost ready to come home).
I was invited to a lunch for moms with heart babies (babies born with a congenital heart defect.)
Seraph was asleep in her hospital bed (with nurses watching over her) and hey, free food, so I decided to go.

I remember four things about that lunch:

1-everyone thought Angel (5 lbs and looking every bit like a preemie) was my heart baby and that I (being completely crazy) had somehow unhooked her from all the monitors and snuck her out of the ICU.  I got dozens of odd looks until one mom finally confronted me about not being allowed to take babies out of their rooms.

2-The (crazy-pushy) lady sitting next to me decided I was fat and proceeded to tell me that I should go on a diet immediately and lose 30-40 lbs.  She used to be fat and now that she'd shed all that extra weight she felt much better and her husband was happier with her now. This after I mentioned the yummy blueberry cheesecake offered in the hospital cafeteria. Yes, I put on weight when I had the twins....but going on a diet with a newborn in the hospital didn't seem like an excellent plan.

3-The heart-baby story about wanting to take a trip to Italy and ending up taking a trip to Holland instead.

4-"don't treat your heart-defect child differently....give her chores just like the rest of your kids."

Chores.  cool.  OK.  I'll do that.  Lame.  Why would any parent need to be told that?...then Seraph's therapist said it again 2 weeks ago. "Give Seraph chores."

What? You mean now? already?

Ok, so...I give Angel chores.  *but* Angel talks.  Angel understands me.  Angel does the job I ask her to do.
I don't give Seraph chores.  What would be the point?

Seraph's new chore is taking her (wet but not poopy) diaper to the diaper pail. At first she'd throw it on the floor and then clap her hands.  Great fun.  Then I'd pick it up with her hand and walk her to the pail.  Four times later, I just tell her to do it...and she does.  Wild cheering and high fives follows.

With my mom watching, I handed Seraph her old diaper today and told her to throw it in the diaper pail.  Grandma's jaw dropped as Seraph walked down the hall, tossed it in the pail, cheered for herself, and then came back for high-fives.

I love my little "Holland" girl. She is fierce and full of joy.


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