Tuesday, April 24, 2012

There's always a silver lining...

 Today was a pretty rough day... Well, let's preface that with my weekend. I worked nights from Thursday to Sunday. I often don't sleep well during the day, but this weekend was the worst in a while as I was only able to sleep 3 1/2-4 hours each day. Sunday night shift ended up being pretty busy and Monday morning was awful- three nurses from nights ended up staying for part of the day shift and I didn't get done until about 1pm (I went in a 7pm the night before).

  I got a little nap on Monday afternoon. Brandon noticed on Monday evening that Bennett's left ear was draining.  I went to look at it and it was DRAINING- I mean sticky, yellowish-clear fluid dripping down his ear. One of my doctor friends said if it bugged him (or me) I could take him in but he was okay so I figured I'd get up and take him to early morning clinic at the hospital. Sophia woke up at 1230 crying because she had to go to the bathroom, so I helped her go and get back to bed. Brandon's alarm woke me up around 530 or so, then Bennett got up at 545 so out of bed I got. His ear wasn't draining as much, but he had a rash on his left cheek now and he was pulling at both ears. I took him downstairs for some breakfast hoping to get him to go back to sleep for a bit when I heard Noah calling me, asking for "bwekfast." After pouring Noah a bowl of cereal, I let go of my hope for more sleep and got dressed so once the daycare girls got to my house I could take Bennett to the doctor. I put my workout clothes on, planning to go to the gym after Bennett's check-up.

 At 7:03am my phone rang- it was my dad. He doesn't call me frequently, and NEVER calls me early in the morning. He let me know that my Grandma Ollie, who has been suffering with Alzheimer's for the last 12 years, passed away around 1:00 am. I was both very saddened and very relieved, it was bittersweet news. I was happy that she was now free from the awful disease that stole a woman who was so independent and full of life, but saddened that my children would not know her (and more saddened that they would never know the Grandma that I knew). My dad told me he would call me back with details on the funeral and we hung up. I prayed that God would keep me and my family strong and thanked Him for ending Grandma's suffering.

 Once Ashli got to my house, I got Noah watching a movie and loaded up Bennett and headed to the doctor. He ran around the waiting room, playing like nothing was wrong. Finally, his name was called and we went back to see Pam, the NP. She asked about his ear and I told her the left ear had been draining some fluid. She asked if he had tubes, to which I replied "no."

"Oh," she said, "normally ears only drain like that if they have tubes in or if the eardrum is perforated."

Great.

She looked in both ears and sure enough- perforated left eardrum from infection. The right ear was also infected and he had impetigo on his left cheek from the bacteria-filled drainage from his ear. Yikes! So we left with scripts for Amoxicillin, antibiotic ear drops and an antibiotic cream for his cheek. Good grief! Of course, the retail pharmacy where the prescriptions were sent didn't open until 9am, so Bennett and I went up to the OB floor to hang out for the half hour we had to wait. It was hopping! My poor coworkers and I have been working really hard for what seems like a really long time now. Luckily, we have a great family up there and the people I work with make the busyness more bearable.

I took Bennett home after getting his meds and dosed him up, then put him down for a nap. I was going to go to the gym, but instead passed out on my bed for three hours! I woke up feeling much better. The rest of the day was spent playing with my kids and replanting my seedlings for my garden. I feel like I've been dealt a hard hand sometimes and on days like this wonder how much more I can take. Then I realize that things could be much worse- as sick as Bennett gets sometimes, I still have him with me and that's more than I could ask for in itself. I have two other beautiful, happy, healthy children. I have a husband who loves me very much (as I do him). We have a great support system. We don't have to live paycheck to paycheck. We both have jobs we love. We have a wonderful church family. Most importantly- we have God in our corner fighting for us every step of the way- and remembering that helps me most days. One day at a time- it can only get better, right?? AND- only 262(ish) days until Jamaica! There's that silver lining I've been waiting for- its not too far away.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Living the Dream...

  Lately I've been feeling like I'm in a rat race- there's always something I HAVE to get done right away; I want to play with the kids, but I really should get "such-and-such" done. My temper has also been flaring a bit more as of late, which is something I neither like nor am proud of. So I've decided to make a change! The first step was to get that sweet baby of mine to sleep through the night: at 15 months old, that shouldn't be such a task. Getting up twice a night was getting to be ridiculous- especially since he stops crying as soon as he sees me and lays back down- and it was making for a VERY tired momma. Last Monday night, he got up twice and cried for about 30 minutes and went back to sleep by himself. Then I went to bed on Tuesday night expecting to get up at least once and woke up... to my alarm on Wednesday morning! Seven whole hours of sleep- I don't even remember what that's like! And now today is Sunday- and he's slept all night every night since! I'm starting to think I should have a "my baby is FINALLY sleeping" party!

Bennett enjoying our spaghetti supper!
 So, with all this extra sleep I've been getting, I'm trying to be more productive- starting with my children. Today, I looked around the house and noticed the dishes on the counter and the toys on the floor and thought "who cares?" The best thing I did the whole night was spent it on the floor wrestling and playing with all my kids. I'm pretty sure I had more fun than they did! What a great feeling- making great memories with my sweet babies instead of doing something I'll just have to do again tomorrow or the next day. I love being a mommy!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Anyone know where I can buy a big bubble?

    So, if you know me well at all, you know that I am and have always been a complete klutz. I trip over everything! Apparently, I have a couple of children that follow in my footsteps. The most obvious is my sweet baby boy Bennett. He has been having trouble sleeping as of late, and Sunday night was no exception. I got a total of three hours of sleep in between calming Bennett down and trying to fall back asleep (working nights has been taking its toll on my body). The last time he woke up was around 5am Monday morning, and by 6:30am, I was done trying to fall back asleep and just got up and exercised. I figured I could take a nap with the kids in the afternoon before having to work that night. Once the kids got up, I threw all the sheets in the wash and took a shower and was folding clothes. By 10am, I was feeling super-productive!

  Sophia was "helping" me fold and put away laundry when I heard Amanda yell from downstairs,

"Umm... Erin..."
  
     I went to investigate (being the resident daycare nurse and all). I go to the kitchen to discover my baby bleeding profusely from his forehead and screaming his face off.

"He was walking around downstairs and tripped and hit the fireplace," Amanda informed me.

      Yep, sounds like one of my kids! So I get the bleeding to stop and Sophia goes upstairs and gets me a bandaid- Ironman of all things!

"You are definitely NOT Ironman," I said to him with a smile as I put it on his poor head.

 I then called the clinic to see if they could do stitches since his laceration was pretty big and I really didn't feel like spending my afternoon in the ER waiting room.
   
 I sent Bennett to the basement to play while I continued my laundry duty and waited for the doc to call me back. About 40 minutes later, I hear again,

 "Ummm... Erin....."
      
     NOW which one of the kids got hurt? I had a feeling my laundry was not going to get put away today... I go to the kitchen to see... BENNETT bleeding profusely again, this time from his upper lip!

"He was playing by the stairs and fell against the banister."
  
      Poor Amanda. This one definitely needed stitches as well.

 "Well," I say, "now I HAVE to go in."
      
       Right after I got Bennett buckled into his carseat, the clinic called back.

  "We can get you in at 2:15 today."
    
  "Well, Bennett just fell AGAIN and cut his lip, so I don't think that we can wait until then. Thank you though."
Bear's bandaids on the way to the hospital
  
  And so we were off to the ER. We got there around 11am and apparently the ER is a rocking place to be on a Monday morning, so there we waited for a few hours. BTW- it is VERY hard to keep a 14-month-old entertained in an ER waiting room for ANY period of time. We did a lot of walking in the hallway outside the ER waiting room, playing with the blocks, walking some more in the hallway, back and forth, back and forth for what seemed like forever. One of the nurses came out every so often to assure us they were getting us in as soon as they could. Being a nurse myself, I understand how busy things get and I was just thankful that Bennett's condition was not life-threatening and that we were able to wait as long as we did. I saw a friend of mine while we were waiting and she looke at us and said,
 
   "Wow, you guys look tough!"

   RIGHT! I had TOTALLY forgotten that the evening before, I was wrestling on the floor with the kids and noticed at bedtime that I had a significant shiner under my left eye. Now, here I am the next morning at the ER with a black eye and a child with not one but TWO facial lacerations that need stitches! At that point, I was sure a social worker was on his or her way down to file a 960 and take my kids away! I even asked one of my social worker friends to come to my house and interview my kids so that there would be a positive review at social services (I was only partly kidding about the request)!

   Finally, after what seemed like days (and right after Bennett had finally fallen asleep for about 20 minutes), they called his name. And the time now was.... 2:15pm. Yep, I guess I could've made that clinic appointment!

"I can help you with your stuff, Erin," the nurse said.

  That was nice, but how did she know my name? I looked at her nametag. Abbie. Right- she had followed me for a few days as a nursing student last fall. At least it was a familiar face to me! They got him into the suture room and a couple nurses looked at his face and put some numbing cream on both lacerations.

"This will have to set up for about 30 minutes. Can I get some crackers and juice for him?"

  Absolutely! It was so nice, since both he and I had missed lunch as well. Bennett was loving the graham crackers and juice and was starting to perk up a bit when Dr. McKinnon came in. It took three of us to hold Bennett down, but the doctor got all eight stitches in- four on the forehead and four on his lip. I just keep reminding myself that chicks dig scars. My poor little boy! The running stitch count at our house is now 13. We got home around 3:30pm and Bennett ate some lunch. I was able to sleep for about 20 minutes once Brandon got home, then I headed off to work at 7pm for my night shift. These kids sure keep my on my toes, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I'm just so thankful he's here, I'll take every ER visit and stitch he's willing to give me! Here's to being a mom of boys!
All done with stitches!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

It seems never-ending... it's a good thing he's cute!

 Bennett has decided that he's going to give me a run for my money. On Monday night around 11pm, he had a febrile seizure and went into SVT. That bought us a trip via ambulance to the PICU at Sanford in Fargo and a two day stay filled with all sorts of tests. We finally got discharged and got home earlier today. I don't get this kid- he has open-heart surgery and comes home on Lasix for a month... he has a seizure and comes home on Atenolol twice daily "until we tell you to stop." Praise the Lord for insurance- I can't wait to see this bill. He is worth every penny though. I am just thankful that God is with us always and helps us through every setback Bennett has. Please read Bennett's CaringBridge journal for all the details (starting March 13)... http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/bennettwevers/journal/2

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Helpful girl...or not

 Lately, I've been unable to sleep very well. In fact, I've averaged about 4-5 hours of sleep per night. Bennett will wake up around 4 or 5am, and I just can't fall back asleep. This morning was one of those days~ I settled Bennett back to sleep at 4am and my body decided I was up for the day. I got some stuff done and played with the boys when they woke up at 7am. B wasn't feeling well, so we stayed home from church and just rested with the kids all day. We put them all down for a nap around 1pm, so B and I laid down too. He got up and went to work at 2pm, but left me sleeping. When I finally woke up at 4pm, I heard ALL of the kids downstairs. No, that can't be right...
  As I came down the stairs, I heard Bennett squealing.

"Sophia, how did Bennett get out of his crib?"
"I got him out. I just climbed in and held on to him VERY tight."
"How did he get into his high chair?"
"I used a stool and put him in."

Oh my goodness! This little girl thinks she is way older than she really is!

"Why didn't you wake me up?? I need to be awake if you guys are, honey."
"I wanted to let you sleep. Anyway, I need to practice being a mommy."

What??? Isn't she only five? Where does this mentality come from?

"You don't need to practice quite yet. You need to be a little girl as long as you can, honey."
"Well Mommy, I'm not going to be little for too much longer."

Isn't that the truth?! After this, I had her repeat something we've been teaching her: the order of life. Granted, life doesn't always turn out the way you plan (case-in-point: Bennett), but trying to follow the order will make life a little easier.

"Sophia, what's the order?"
"Go to college, get a job, get married, have babies. That's the order."
"That's right, let's just be a little girl for a while, okay?"
"Okay Mommy."

Next time, I'll have to have B wake me up before he leaves; I can't have any more helping going on while I'm sleeping! Hopefully, tonight will be better and I can get some good rest. Thankfully, I'm off nights for a few weeks so my body should acclimate to real life again. I can't wait until I can cut back at work and only work 2 days per week!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Playing "Doctor"

 First of all, I'd like to apologize for not write for a few months- life got in the way! I'm going to try to catch up here soon but we'll start with the present.
 Yesterday, I hear Sophia playing in her room and she calls to me,

"Mommy, do you want to play doctor with me?"

This intrigued me, what could she possibly mean by this? So I walked into her room and asked,

"How do we do that?"
"Well, I put on my BennyBear shirt and take my telescope and listen to your heart and give you a shot so you don't die, and that's how you play doctor."

Playing "Doctor"
Well, that sounded good to me! She also asked if I had another "BennyBear shirt" (shirts we had made for Bennett's benefit last June) so that Noah could play too. I gave her one of my small shirts, which she was swimming in, and she gave her shirt to Noah. They proceded to spend the next 30 minutes listening to everyone who got within five feet of them with the telescope (a play stethescope I bought for her when she was Bennett's age) and giving us all shots (poking me in the arm with a ponytail holder she had folded in half). Bennett managed to avoid them, but still sneak a peek at me around the corner. It was such a fun time, and I hope this is the only way she ever tries to play doctor, unless she becomes Sophia Wevers, MD!
Peek, Mommy!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

They don't have to be blood to be family...

What am I going to do with my Noah?? Sophia and I come home from her dance recital and no more than 30 minutes later he has run full-speed INTO the counter! He cried so I picked him up and hugged him and was going to send him off to play when I noticed blood on his hand. I looked at his head more closely and sure enough, he had cut his head open! It was a small, maybe 1/2 inch gash right above his hairline near his right temple, but was it DEEP~ I'm pretty sure I could've seen his brain if I looked hard enough! I debated for a few minutes, wondering if he would need a stitch or two... do I take him in, do I leave it? I decided that since it was a head wound I should take him to the ER to get checked out. The problem was, I did NOT want to take three kids under six to the ER on a Saturday evening by myself, especially if I had to hold one down for stitches! I literally called EVERYONE I could think of, but they either didn't answer or couldn't watch the kids. Finally, I called good old "Uncle Dave." This man has gotten me out of more pickles- we are so blessed to have him in our lives! Our conversation went something like this:

"Hey Erin, what's up?"
"Hey Dave, are you busy right now?"
"Ummm kinda, I was just headed to my parents' house for supper with the family, why?"
"Well, Noah cracked his head open and he might need some stitches. I was wondering if you could watch the other two. No big deal if you're busy though, we'll work it out."
"No problem, I'm only a few blocks away anyway. I'll swing by and pick them up- they can come with us."
"No, I don't want to interrupt your dinner!"
"It's no big deal, I'll be right there."

  And he was- he got to my house a few minutes later. He drove my suburban and he put a carseat in the back of his car so I could drive that to the ER with Noah. Then he took my other two kiddos out to the Dunham's (where they always have a good time!). Noah and I spent less than two hours in the ER and left with a coloring book and WITHOUT any more stitches (he got five stitches in his left ear right before Bennett was born). So I headed out to the Dunham's to get my kids, whom they had fed (I hadn't even started dinner before Noah's debacle!). And, they had supper waiting for me and Noah! The kids had a blast, and we stayed and visited for a little while before heading home and getting to bed. We are so very blessed with the people we have in our lives and so thankful to know the Dunham's!