Baby Book Addict, Life

Being a parent can be tough…

… especially when your little one is sick and you don’t really know why. For those of you who follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you probably have some idea of what’s happened, but for those of you who don’t I wanted to pop in and post a little update.

Two weeks ago our sweet Katelyn started vomiting. And let me tell you, this went WAY beyond spitting up. This was forcefully splattering our faces, getting in our hair, drenching bath towels. Yuck. I didn’t know what had happened. My precious girl went from a happy not-at-all spitty baby to this vomit machine. In just a few days. It was ridiculous. We were both at our wits end not knowing what to do. I was afraid to even put her down because even when sound asleep she would open her mouth and formula would come back out! Without her ever waking up, I was afraid she would choke.

So I did what any parent would do after about 24 hours of her throwing up forcefully after every bottle (sometimes during a feeding while the nipple was still in her mouth!). I took her in to the doctor. Unfortunately, that first day I was only able to see a nurse practitioner. I didn’t care, I just wanted to get an opinion on what was going on with Katelyn. I knew something was wrong. Babies don’t just start randomly throwing up like this. It wasn’t normal. Her weight was fine. Her belly sounded normal. I was told it was “probably” reflux but to come back on Monday for a weight check (we went in on a Thursday).

After a very long weekend, Monday finally rolled around. I told my husband that I didn’t care what he had going on at work, I wanted him to come to the doctor with me. If I was going to have to make an ass of myself to get the help we needed for our daughter, I wanted him by my side. I knew this wasn’t reflux – we dealt with that with Garrett. This was something totally different and I was scared something was seriously wrong. Luckily we saw the doctor this time. And he immediately saw something different. He told us she had lost 4oz in 4 days, asked us a bunch of questions, felt around on her belly, and then calmly told us that he wanted us to go down the hall for an ultrasound, that he suspected something called pyloric stenosis. He also explained that if it was indeed pyloric stenosis then she would require surgery.

Wait, what?! Surgery?!? Yes, surgery. Our baby girl had to have surgery on the day she turned 1 month old. Very, very scary.

To explain, pyloric stenosis is, in the most simplest terms, when the muscle that connects the stomach and the small intestine gets too large to let food pass through for complete digestion. Since nothing or very little can pass through, the vomiting takes place. Dehydration and extreme lethargy can also occur. So the surgeon had to go in and cut through the muscle to make it where food can pass through again. So you know, this condition usually presents between 2 and 8 weeks of age. It is something that is seen in 3 out of 1000 babies. It is most common in males, especially first-borns. So for our girl to have it is even more rarer. It’s also hereditary… we’re still trying to figure out where it came from. In addition, now that she has had it her future children are 20% more likely to have it.

And while my daughter had to have surgery at 1 month old and will forever bear the scar on her belly, she is back to being her happy self. No more vomiting. Hardly even any spitting up. I can lay her down without fear that she will choke on vomit. It was scary for all of us. It was tremendously stressful. But our girl is happy and healthy again. I am just so relieved that what we went through was so easily fixed – a lot of parents and children don’t have it as easy as we did.

Think of this as a public service announcement. While you may never come across another parent dealing with pyloric stenosis … I want you to know to trust your parenting instincts. I was told my girl had reflux. I had my doubts. I knew it was something more serious than just plain old reflux. Don’t be afraid to get a second opinion. Trust your instincts … no one knows your baby better than you.

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Baby Book Addict, Life

Baby Book Addict #2!

On May 9, 2015 and 1:31pm, we welcomed our second child into the world. She was 7lb 15oz and 20″ long. Her birth story is just as quick as Garrett’s … but a lot more painful.

It was a Saturday morning. Thankfully it was Nathan’s Saturday off (he works every other). Him and Garrett had just gotten back from picking up McDonald’s for breakfast. I had already eaten before they both woke up, but Nathan brought me a hot chocolate. As we’re standing in our little entryway, he hands me my hot chocolate and all of a sudden I feel like I’m peeing myself. I calmly put my drink down on the table, told Nathan to go ahead and eat with Garrett because I needed to go to the bathroom.

When I got to the bathroom I had a feeling my water was breaking, but when it broke with Garrett it was all in a gush. This was just a trickle. But it kept trickling. So I did what any normal woman in labor would do, I  shaved my arm pits, considered washing my hair (decided against it because it takes too long to dry because it’s so long) and got dressed. By that time Nathan was in the bedroom asking if I was okay. I calmly looked at him and told him yes, but that we needed to get started on our way to the hospital.

At the beginning of my pregnancy, I knew that we would be moving mid-pregnancy. I also knew that I had two options … stay with the doctor that I love to pieces, who is now an hour from my house, or find a doctor who delivers at the hospital 20 minutes from my house. I chose to stick with my doctor. I knew we were facing an hour drive to the hospital. So I didn’t really want to waste too much time. We made it to the hospital parking garage in 45 minutes flat … I won’t tell you how fast my husband drove 🙂

After getting settled into my birthing room, and being checked out, I was already dilated to 4. Then the IV hell began. I have horrible, horrible veins. With Garrett it took 3 people to get an IV in me. With this pregnancy, it took 5 people and a total of 2 hours. It finally took the anesthesia guy being able to numb my vein to get it in place. Yeah,  fun. At that point my doctor came in and informed me that I could have the epidural at any point, but that my contractions were so irregular that she was afraid that taking it so early would possibly slow down the process. This terrified me. I only had 5 hours from my water breaking with Garrett until I was holding him in my arms. The last thing I wanted was a looooong labor. So I held off. Besides, the contractions weren’t painful at the point, just mild cramping every so often.

Big mistake.

Both of our parents were in the waiting room by this point, and they took turns coming back and visiting with me. My in-laws were in the room and my contractions were starting to come a little harder and more often. But still only uncomfortable. Luckily, they could pretty much tell that they were not the people who needed to be in the room at that point. They left and my mom came in. At this point the nurse came around and I told her I wanted the morphine and to get the fluids going to get the epidural process starting.

I got my morphine shot.

16 minutes later I was pushing my baby girl out.

Folks, 3.5 hours from the moment I walked into the hospital until I was holding my baby. One hour from the time my doctor told me my contractions weren’t consistent enough to be considered in labor until I had our daughter. Talk about a whirlwind.

No epidural. Only a morphine shot that really hadn’t kicked in. Talk about things not going according to plan. But you know what, she’s healthy. That’s all that matters. It’s true what people say … you really do forget about the pain the moment they are out of you.

So now, I am proud to introduce you to our daughter, Katelyn.

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Baby Book Addict, Life, Miscellaneous Ramblings

A complication I never saw coming…

What I have to share today is extremely hard for me to write. But when I talk about it, I feel better. So I feel it’s best to share my story here.

When I announced my pregnancy on here about a week and a half ago, I never thought that I would end up in the hospital four days later.

With Garrett I had a pretty normal, somewhat textbook, pregnancy. The only “complication” I had was gestational diabetes … which was easily controlled with my diet.

Tuesday, November 4th, was a normal day for me. Election day. I got up, took Garrett to daycare, went to work, had a good, but busy, day. Went to pick Garrett up. Had a good drive home. And was on my way to go vote (Garrett was very excited to go vote, by the way!) …. only to start to feel extremely nauseous. And then I started to feel funny. I don’t know what made me look down, but I did. And thought I had peed my pants.

Oh, if only that had been what it was…

No, instead I was bleeding. A lot. So I turned the car around, called my husband, and headed straight for the hospital.

To shorten this extremely long story … I had a hematoma (fancy medical term for blood clot) behind the placenta. Luckily it had started to break up on its own. Unfortunately, because it was behind the placenta, we still do not know if it did any serious damage.

While in the hospital, I had two ultrasounds. Both showed a healthy bouncing baby with a heart rate of about 166. That is encouraging. What is tough is that there is no guarantee that the placenta hasn’t been separated at all. That could cause a miscarriage. At any time….

So I’ve been taking it pretty easy since getting out of the hospital. At first, I was so weak I did nothing but sleep. Now I’m feeling much better. But I’m still cautious. And taking it one day at a time.

Because at this point, that’s all I can do.

Baby Book Addict, Life

Three Weeks In…

…at daycare and things are going really well!!

I have to admit, I was a little nervous about the whole situation. He’s never been cared for by anyone other than family. He’s never not been the center of attention. I didn’t know how he would react. But I’m so pleased to say that he has really taken to daycare. And I hate to say that he actually gets upset when he doesn’t go on Thursday and Friday!

Those first couple of days were rough on momma. The first day I chose to take off and stay close to home (I work an hour from home) just in case something terrible went wrong and I needed to be there. Hub and I both went and dropped him off. He didn’t cry, but he was apprehensive about us leaving. I was perfectly fine driving the 13 minutes back to our house. And was fine through a phone conversation with my mother. I lost it when I sat down on the couch with the dog and looked up at the pictures on our entertainment center. I broke down and cried like a baby. I second guessed our decision all day that day.

But I have never second-guessed it since. He loves it. His little personality is really coming out now. He’s such a ham! His vocabulary is expanding daily (he is a little bit behind where he “should” be, but not to the point where therapy is needed). In three days he went from barely being able to hold a fork to feeding himself with it. And can I just say that the kid now actually eats? Feeding time has always been a fiasco in our house … from the constant spit-up from his reflux as an infant to his pickiness now as a toddler, dinner time is a challenge. Not so much anymore, he does so much better now. He eats it without me having to constantly repeat “eat your food”.

I know I was apprehensive about placing him in daycare when it was technically a choice and not a necessity. But I am seeing my little boy blossom in ways I never expected each and every day.

And I respect my time with him more than I ever did. When you see your child all day every day, you tend to lose sight of what’s important. I treasure every moment I get with him on Friday, because that’s “our” day now.

Sometimes I tear up wondering where on earth my little baby has gone to. But at the same time I love seeing the little boy that he’s growing into. (He is more than likely going to be an only child).

How on earth will he be TWO next month?!

Baby Book Addict

Happy birthday, Garrett!

Oh. My. Gosh.

How on earth is it that this perfect little boy has been in our lives for a year now? I find it so unbelievable!

And what a year it has been. There have been many tears. Lots of smiles. Sweet perfect giggles. Oh and the snores are pretty sweet as well! It has by far been the best year of my life.

Right now he’s a happy little dude. He crawls like a champ. Can walk with assistance, but chooses not to most of the time. He babbles to himself constantly. He can say “hi”  and “da” (his word for dog). He’s a picky eater 😦 But he loves apple juice and cheerios. He loves music and dances a lot! His new obsession is to take items out of one thing and putting them into something else (he puts everything in the waste can I keep in his room). Oh and he’s found the dog bowls, that’s been lots of fun!

As I said it’s been the best (and hardest) year of my life. I know it will only get better from here and I’m so looking forward to seeing him grow over the next year!

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Baby Book Addict

Garrett at 5 months

Wowzers.

I almost can’t believe that it was FIVE months today since we welcomed our bouncing baby boy into our lives. Where on earth does the time go? It just seems almost unreal.

So what is Garrett into now?

He loves bright colors. He is a pro at rolling from back to belly, but not so much from belly to back. He has a play mat that he just loves to lay on for hours! He loves his morning nap in his swing with the music playing. He can sit up while supported and prefers to be sitting up because he loves to see everything that’s going on. If he had the coordination to get his arms and legs going at the same time, he would already be crawling. I suspect he will be crawling by Thanksgiving. We’ve started the spoon and we are not impressed with it yet. Teething is in full swing and I think the bottom two will pop through relatively soon.

These last five months have been challenging, difficult, and a blast. I’ve never had something give me such joy every day of my life. Even when I’m having a bad day all it takes is one look at him and he can give me his grin and it’s like everything bad disappears. He’s definitely the best thing to have ever happened to me.

Baby Book Addict

Garrett at 4 months

Wow, I still can’t believe that Garrett turned 4 months old on September 30th. I have no idea where the time has gone – it’s definitely flying by.

And he’s changing soooo much!! It’s truly amazing.

He has pretty awesome head control. He wants to sit up a lot. He babbles quite often – this one’s gonna be a talker!

Monday he just went wild with rolling over! He’s been doing it for quite some time now, but that was the first day that he actually realized what it was he was doing. And once he started there was no stopping him! He’s actually much better going from back to belly than he is belly to back (I would have thought the opposite would be easier).

When he’s doing tummy time he pumps those legs like he’s trying to crawl. I’m definitely gonna have a stinker on my hands!

At his 4 month check up (Tuesday), he weighed 12lbs and was 23.5″ long. Still very much on the small side, but the doctor said that he is growing adequately and should be caught up by the time he’s a year old. I still don’t quite understand how they can compare a 5lb baby (at birth) to a 9lb baby (at birth) in their growth patterns, but I guess that’s why I’m not a doctor, haha!

We got the go-ahead to start solids. Our doctor gave us very specific instructions on how to introduce them. Cereal is first, night feedings, for the first month trying a different cereal each week. At five months we move the cereal to morning and start vegetables (green ones first) at lunch and dinner. Then we will move on to fruits. We started on Tuesday night and it did not go very well. I think I ended up wiping more of it away than he ingested. And he screamed the entire time. So we didn’t try that for very long and moved on to his bottle. It’s definitely going to be a very long process getting him introduced, but I’m definitely ready to start solids!

So altogether lots of great things are happening. He’s definitely growing up.

However, there is one possible problem. The doctor (the new one) heard a heart murmur during his examination. They have scheduled us to have an ultrasound at the heart center at the local hospital to have it checked out. If you have been a long-time follower, you already know that I had an issue show up on his heart during my anatomy scan around my 20th week of pregnancy. Nothing ever seemed to come of it, so I just assumed everything was alright. No one at the hospital mentioned anything like this, nor did his previous doctor. So I’m a little concerned that all of a sudden this pops up – I hope it’s nothing, but we do need to have it checked out. My dad had a heart murmur when he was born and he’s perfectly fine, but it is something to have looked at closer.

Overall it’s been a wonderful past 4 months. And I’m so looking forward to seeing him learn new things everyday in the future.

I’m such a lucky gal 🙂

Baby Book Addict, Life

Random Mommy Ramblings…..

This post is going to be long and have absolutely nothing to do with books, just a heads up 🙂

Breaking up is hard to do ….. breaking up with your pediatrician, in this case. I have had it with my pediatrician and her office. I originally loved our pediatrician, she was so nice and attentive when we were in the hospital. She answered all my (silly, first time mom) questions with ease and enjoyment. I was glad I had a good recommendation for her, it made me feel good that he was going to be well taken care of. Then came his two-week appointment – she was out of the office that week and I would have to see one of the other doctors. Okay, I can deal with that – it was just one appointment after all. I went with my list of (still silly, first time mom) questions, Garrett and my mother in tow. And I felt absolutely dismissed by the doctor we saw. It was like she wanted nothing to do with me or Garrett, she just wanted to get in and out of there as quickly as she could. Because of this I let Garrett’s reflux go way too long (she did tell me that it was “completely normal” – how was I supposed to know any different??). Everything seemed to be going smoothly until about a month ago we noticed that Garrett was starting to have more trouble with his reflux again. We tried to make an appointment – we were told it would be a week before we could get in to see our doctor (but we could get in immediately to see the abovementioned doctor we saw at the 2 week appointment, um – no, thank you!). I was beyond irritated. A WEEK before you could get in to see your doctor? I could understand if she was the only one in the office – and this wasn’t necessarily a sick baby appointment anyway. We almost switched doctors, we argued back and forth about it. In the end we ended up not taking him to the doctor, but did switch his formula on our own and, while he still has reflux, things are much better – I’m almost completely positive that he was allergic to Similac or something along those lines.

So what does all this have to do with finally deciding to break up with our pediatrician? Well this week Garrett has developed a cough. I’m not really surprised, I had a cold two weeks ago and did everything I could to make sure I didn’t pass it to him. Plus the weather is turning – it’s just starting to become cold season. I didn’t think much about it until yesterday when he really started coughing. I definitely started to take notice at it a lot more closely. Then this morning he woke up terribly stopped up. I told Nathan we would have to have a doctor’s appointment today. So I called in to work and waited around for my doctor’s office to open (8:30am). I finally get through to make the appointment and I start in with my spiel about who I am and why I’m calling and immediately the woman who takes appointments transfers me over to the nurse desk (no, I did not ask to talk to the nurse, if she had let me finish what I was saying she would have realized I wanted to make an appointment to see the doctor). I start in on my spiel again and immediately the nurse asks me if he has a fever – no, he does not. She then proceeds to tell me that I should keep him elevated, get a humidifier, and a saline nose solution for him and not to call back unless he produces a fever … and she hangs up. That is not what I wanted. I wanted an appointment with my doctor. I don’t care if I spend the $200 to see my doctor for her to tell me the exact same thing – it’s what she’s there for and by golly I want to see her.

So I called Nathan and told him exactly what happened. He, like I am, was immediately ticked off. This is not the first time that this office has ignored our concerns. But it sure is going to be the last one. He calmed me down and said he would call me back, he had a meeting or something to go into. When he called me back he informed me that he had spoken to his co-workers (he works around 3 or 4 women who are mommies themselves and who know that we’ve had disagreements with our doctor in the past) and they all said the same thing – SWITCH DOCTORS. So that’s what we are doing. We are going to see another pediatrician today, we have an appointment at 3:30. They didn’t question him wanting to see a doctor when he called the other doctor’s office – they just made the appointment. Which is exactly what the other office should have done. But I am at the end of my rope with the doctor’s office we’ve been going to. And as much as I hate switching doctors, I just can’t deal with this anymore. I need a doctor who will listen to my concerns, answer all my (silly, first time mom) questions, and put me at ease. Plus I’m paranoid about colds – when I was 16 I let a cold go from bad to worse and ended up with pneumonia – so I know what colds can turn into if not taken care of. Hopefully we will be a lot better off in the long run. And I’m sure this cough is nothing but the common cold, but he’s only 3.5 months old and I want to know that he is okay – not to ignore something because I’ve written it off as “just a cold.”

Switching gears – I have determined that I have absolutely, 100% lost my entire mind. I have baby fever. WTH!? How can I have baby fever when my baby is still a baby? LOL!? Never in a million years did I ever think that I would want another child. I thought Garrett would be it for us. We would be a family of three. But the last few days I’ve realized how quickly Garrett is growing up and that my family doesn’t feel complete yet. Obviously I don’t want another baby right now. My goodness, if I was to get pregnant tomorrow they would only be 13 months apart! That’s insane. But I think it will happen before I originally intended for it to happen. I had originally said that I wanted to get Garrett out of diapers before I started thinking about another one. Now I’m thinking that I will try again after his 1st birthday. Nathan and his brother are 21 months apart, my dad and uncle are 25 months apart and my mom and aunt are 29 months apart. I’m honestly beginning to think that it would be the ideal time to start trying again. Everytime I think of this the first thing that runs through my head is “you’ve lost your f’in mind, Tara!” but I can’t help myself. I’ve even already got names circulating in my head – and yes, I think I will be one of those cheesy parents whose children’s first names all start with the same letter! Please, someone tell me how insane I am, lol! I don’t want to even think about how hard keeping track of two children will be … one is hard enough and he’s not even moving yet! But I think part of my problem is that I am slowly inching toward that next big age milestone – 30 – and I always said I didn’t want to be pregnant in my 30s (I don’t have a particular reason as to why, I just don’t want to be). Either way, it’s definitely something that I’ve been thinking about 🙂 And Nathan is so funny. We recently booked a trip to Hawaii in December. Just the two of us, my parents are going to watch Garrett. When I started talking about having another baby he looked at me and said “isn’t that why you wanted to go to Hawaii?” Haha. No, that’s not why – but it could be fun 😉

Baby Book Addict, Miscellaneous Ramblings

Random bookish ramblings

Happy Labor Day to those in the US. Hopefully everyone has been enjoying their long weekend …. At least those of you who get a long weekend. It’s been a quiet weekend at home for us and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.

I’ve been taking advantage of having time to go through some stuff here at the house. I am such a hoarder! Not really, but I do have a lot of crap.

After a lot of consideration, I decided to purge a lot of my books. And by a lot I actually mean 93 books. That’s right, 93 books from my Mt. TBR that I know I will never read are going to either my local library or the Goodwill tomorrow. I’m long past due regarding this decision. My shelves are just a little ridiculous to be completely honest. I might as well let others enjoy them. Besides, I still have a grand total of 405 unread books that are staying here 🙂

Hi, my name is Tara, and I am a bookaholic!

Also, while cleaning out of my shelves I found quite a few good ARC’s that I have with nothing to do with them. So I’m considering a giveaway. But I’m still considering if I should just do one big box giveaway (I think I have a good 7 or 8 of the ARC’s) or if I should break them up somehow. I’m still thinking about it …. What is your opinion? One big box where the books would be a complete surprise when they arrived in the winner’s or break them up and offer them two or three per winner?

A quick Garrett update – he turned 3 months old on Aug. 30th. I can’t believe how much he has grown and changed. It’s unreal. Last night he slept through the night without the aid of his reflux medicine. We were up in the air as to what to do last night at bedtime. He ate at 7:30. I asked Nathan if he wanted to treat it as his final meal and give him his medicine, Nathan said no, that he would stay up and feed him again at 10:30-11:30. Well 10:45 rolled around and he was still sound asleep. So instead of waking him up we just let him sleep. Well, he slept until 6:15! And he’s gone all day today without his medicine. I was going to give it to him with his first bottle this morning, but Nathan wanted to see how he responded without it. So that’s what we are doing. So far no problems, but I’m sure it will be a few days before it leaves his system completely. I was just glad to know that he slept through the night without the medicine, I was afraid that that was what was making him sleep through, but maybe now he’s used to it enough. I hope 🙂

Oh and I am sad to report that I am putting Gone Girl aside for now. It’s just not working for me right now. I’ve had it out from the library for over a week and am barely 100 pages in. It will be due back this coming Saturday and I know that there is no way I will finish it before then. So I have decided to put it aside and maybe come back to it sometime in the future. I should have known better than to jump on the bandwagon, it almost always disappoints me when I do that. Oh well, maybe sometime in the future.

Hope everyone has a good upcoming week.

Baby Book Addict

Garrett update

 

So I haven’t updated you on Garrett lately. Wednesday he will be 11 weeks old.

First ….. We are sleeping through the night!!! Hooray! We are sleeping from 10:30-6 every night and have been for 2 weeks now.

We did change his reflux medicine. I can tell a big improvement. This new stuff is a lot more expensive, but if it soothes him then I am happy.

However, one thing I am starting to notice now is that he’s beginning to have tummy aches after bottles. I originally thought it was gas, so I started adding gas drops to every bottle. That hasn’t helped a whole lot. My grandmother thinks its his formula. I’m wondering if we shouldn’t switch it to a sensitive formula. He has never really seemed to be 100% content after feedings, whether it be from his reflux or his belly issues. I had brought up the issue of potentially changing his formula with the pediatrician, but she shot that idea down without me even fully explaining what was going on. But I’m starting to really get the “mom knows best” feeling on this subject and am contemplating changing him anyway. What can it do? Hurt him more than the one he’s on now already does? If that was to be the case we’d just go back to what he’s been on. It breaks my heart to see him in pain. It’s terrible.

He’s really starting to “talk” to us now! It’s the cutest thing ever in my opinion! I love it. I’m just purely amazed at how much he grows and changes and learns in just a matter of days. It’s truly miraculous.

He is soooo close to rolling over. He can get on his side but can’t figure out how to bring those legs all the way over. I’m anxious for him to reach this milestone!

This upcoming weekend we will be taking him on his first official overnight trip! I’m anxious about it, but seeing as how we seem to always be on the go, I want to get him in the habit from a very early age. We aren’t going far from home, just down to Nashville. And my parents are going with us, so we will have lots of help.

I guess that’s really all I’ve got for now. Until next time 🙂