Adenoids and Ear Tubes

I’ve been waiting to update about Eli’s surgery so I could keep all emotion out of it.
If your child has had their adenoids removed, you know what I’m talking about. (Or any surgery for that matter)
Surgery is hard. It’s hard to take your perfectly healthy child to the hospital knowing that they are going to wake up miserable and snotty.

Surgery day had anxiety but it did go well. Eli’s breathing obstructed when they initially put him under. It was one of my fears especially with anesthesia. Our doctor wasn’t super concerned and it never happened again but it may mean that we go for another sleep study soon.
His adenoids were only partially removed because his palette is weak and removing too much of his adenoids would cause more speech issues and damage structural support.
His inferior turbinate was small, so she widened that while she was in there and placed new ear tubes.
His left ear was still functioning fine but she cleaned it and replaced the tube. His right ear was a problem- the original tube had been pushed down into his ear. The eardrum healed with the tube inside rendering the tube useless and his hearing poor at best.

We believe this happened in the course of taking him to a different ENT for regular ear cleanings. But whatever the cause, we now know that his tubes are functioning and his ABR revealed better hearing results then the first time. His levels are within normal ranges! This is obviously what we have been praying for and we are anxiously awaiting to hear more words from him.
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So here’s our adenoid surgery recovery story-
His waking from being out under was a little more difficult than the last time.
As soon as I saw him, I knew we would be staying over night in the hospital. Barry held him and he just thrashed around and moaned. The nurse hovered a lot and ultimately told us that his pulse ox wasn’t where she wanted it to be. (Stayed around 92 but did fluctuate).
The kicker- We caught a cold at the hospital, so in addition to major surgery, he was sick.
No one could seem to get him to want to drink much and we discovered that he needed a stronger pain medication.

The hospital stay was as unpleasant as any other hospital stay- plus we had Wyatt with us. Eli was so uncomfortable and we were being monitored so frequently that no one really slept. But once they were satisfied with his pulse ox and fluid intake, they let us go home.

Once we arrived home, it was clear that Tylenol and Motrin were still not going to cut it. We got Eli on his steroids and a codeine/Tylenol blend with Motrin alternating. It never seemed to touch the pain. Before the 3 hours was up, we were all desperate for him to take his next dose.
He barely ate and was living off applesauce.
His nose was so clogged that he couldn’t breathe and his throat was very sore.
Naps and bed time were a nightmare. He was so scared to go to sleep that the only way he would even try to sleep is when he was being held or when my husband slept in the room with him. He would reach his hands through the bars of his crib and hold my husband’s hand or hair. :(
His nose was constantly weeping- first a pink/yellow liquid, then later to a thick yellow mucus.
When we got home, we were hoping that he would perk up, but all he wanted to do was moan, cry and lay around. In fact, we were so worried that first night, that I almost took him to the emergency room.
By the third day, we had him on antibiotics and all the typical “sinus infection” treatments you can think of. His poor nose was raw and bloodied on the outside. :(
By the fifth day, we began breathing treatments and the rotten dragon breath had peaked. All he wanted to do was snuggle and moan.
After a week, he was still needing pain meds and we were beginning to regret our decision to have the surgery. It’s so hard to see your child in pain and for him not to understand why.

On the upside, he was trying very hard to make new sounds and seemed to be responding better to noises.

Week two, the snot prevailed and we got off pain meds. When he spoke, he sounded very nasally but he was beginning to look a little better. Less puffy and more interested in food. He was still mopey and very tired all the time. Most mornings, he slept until 8:30 or 9am (which is odd considering he normally wakes between 6:45 and 7).

Week three, we still had snot but it was finally beginning to clear up in color. He had his first speech session since the surgery and it was quite successful. He participated more than he ever has in the past but he still sounded nasally. He went from making “b” and “d” sounds to making “m”, “n” and “l” sounds.

Week four, we are currently in. He is completely clear and doesn’t sound as nasally- I almost don’t notice it at all. He’s working hard to make new sounds and he’s back to his happy self. He seems more alert, especially upon waking. It’s as if a fog has been lifted. He’s not as puffy and generally appears more well rested.
He’s eating and drinking normally and happy as can be.
I feel a sense of relief now that we are a month out. We had begun to doubt our decision but now it seems like there was never any other option. We are happy with the results and looking forward to more progress.

Everything we researched and heard about this surgery said it would take 5-10 days to fully recover but that typically after a week the child is back to their regular life. For us, it took about 2 weeks to see some improvement and a full month before he was back to his regular self.
Our ENT joked that we should never remove his tonsils (and I hope we never have to) but this was just how long it took Eli to heal. I definitely think the cold prolonged the issue and I don’t believe that his having Down syndrome had anything to do with it.

I hope that this will help someone else looking for more information on this surgery. There are plenty of great resources but there just weren’t personal stories out there like ours.

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Isolation

I’ve found being a SAHM to three 2 and under to be quite isolating. I’m sure it’s a shared experience no matter how many children you stay home with. But going from working mom to SAHM has been a shock to the system. In 4 short months, my life has become unrecognizable and I have been transformed in ways I’m only now beginning to see.
The thing is, I’m not sure that all the changes have been good or healthy for me. Which is really hard to admit since staying at home was and still is my dream.

There are obvious benefits, and I’m not doubting or regretting this season of my life- being a SAHM is rewarding, fulfilling, and wonderful. I love being here with my children every day.
But, like anything, there are adjustments to be made and I suck at change.

I started this process with the biggest perma-smile you can imagine. I was super mom. I did it all. I was so happy for my dream to finally be a reality, that I did everything I imagined SAHM moms do. Crafting, cleaning, educating…schedules, routines…I had to make up for lost time. I had to be fun. I had to be good at this.
And since I’m type A to the core, my eye started to twitch with all this new pressure I had place on myself.

I feel like I walked off a cliff. In many ways I kind of had to- I DO have my hands full over here. My cliff dive has made me feel like I’ve lost a bit of myself in my goal to be thebestmomeva. It’s not just that I had less and less time for friends, tv, personal hobbies, adult conversations, reading…but more that I’ve noticed a shift in my thinking and responses to people.
I’ve gone into myself a little. Stopped saying what I think and feel. Pulled away from social situations where I normally thrived. I even feel incapable of socialization some times. I get frustrated more easily with things that didn’t bother me before (especially my own children).

Part of me knew this was going to be a sacrifice. Not only being a mother, but staying home for my children. Everyone tells you how hard being a mom is but not many people talk about being a SAHM. Financially, emotionally, physically (#whodecidedmomwasajunglegym). At first I joked. “See everyone in five years!”
But that feels more real than I had intended.
I’m officially a hermit. Can we just say that?

My kids don’t like it when I eat my own food, watch tv, talk on the phone, edit pictures or hold one of their siblings. So there’s that.
What’s going on in the world? How do I know? The weather? Not a clue.
And you know that? IT’S OK.
This journey is new to me, and I’ve been hermiting away because I have a 6 month old and two busy toddlers. I’m out numbered by little people who don’t listen. But oh how I love them. They need me so much right now and I need to be the best I can for them even if it makes me uncomfortable.

I’m starting to come up for air. Slowly. You might see me out in sweat pants. Or without makeup. You may see me braving the store with all three kids or trying to go to the park. I’m trying and it’s not enough for someone else to recognize it. I need to see it too. I need to give myself that grace, accept this short season in my life and embrace it even when it’s difficult. Because eventually they won’t be little, and eventually I won’t be donning a wardrobe of sweatpants every day.

The blog post below has so resonated with me this week. I relate to every thing she talks about. I need that grace. I need that love. But I need to give it to myself first, because that mom guilt can really be killer.

So here’s my virtual “tip of the hat” to all the SAHM’s before me. You’re awesome and kudos for coming out of it alive. To my mother, her mother and her mother before her. You ladies are warriors. This stuff ain’t for sissies.
Sometimes loving comes easy. Other times, it nearly kills is.
Faith can be work, love can be labor, hope can be long.
1 Thessalonians 1:3

Dear Mom Who’s Trying,

I see you…rolling out of bed to the sound of the grumpy cries (and bickering) of little people…the same crying that drenched your day yesterday, well into the time of night you claim as “me time.” You didn’t get enough sleep…and you’re ready to quit before the day begins.

I see you…trying to remember how funny you used to be, how *those* jeans used to fit, how light-hearted you used to feel — before the responsibilities and turns in life became weighty.

I see you…doing the next thing, cleaning up from the last meal in time to prepare for the next…perpetually chasing the tyranny of the urgent.

I see you…checking social media like a drug, hoping for that thing that will inspire you, but find yourself crushed in your spirit with discontentment, guilt, and anxiety.

I see you…clinging to your favorite Bible verses, but really longing to cling to Christ himself — Christ, who you know is closer than breath, but yet feels elusive somehow.

I see you…loving and holding your children tight, but so quickly letting their hearts crash to the floor with your piercing and angry words…and you say, never again.

I see you because I see me.

I see us giving ourselves pep talks, and pulling ourselves up by our boot straps, and proclaiming, “I am enough. I will be brave. I am an overcomer!” And yet, in the quiet, honest moments of our day, we know that pushing through, pressing on, being brave …in themselves, is simply NOT ENOUGH.

And so, some of us, who aren’t brave enough, strong enough, optimistic enough…give up. Because striving in our own strength can only result in pride or hopelessness, greater self-righteousness or greater discouragement. You can’t win by might.

‘NOT BY MIGHT NOR BY POWER, BUT BY MY SPIRIT,’ SAYS THE LORD ALMIGHTY. (ZECHARIAH 4:6)

Sister, of course you feel like you can do better tomorrow. Of course you think you’ll be less grumpy when your circumstances change. Of course you want to be beautifully brave like everyone else you see. It’s only normal that we think more trying, more striving, more “me making myself more” is what it takes.

“…by my Spirit” is only by faith, only by humbling yourself, only by decreasing that he might increase. By his spirit means that we “cease striving, and know that [he] is God.” (Psalm 46:10)

Today, if you feel defeated before even trying…or if you feel confident and on top of your game…

…consider if the on/off switch to your bravery is fueled by might and power…your own.

Dear friend, if it is, you are in for a roller-coaster. You are strapping in for a ride that can only take you high on self, or low on self-loathing.

But, if we might take our Redeemer at his word…that “he is before all things, and in him all things hold together,” (Colossians 1:17) we might be reminded that our true identity and state is that we have nothing righteous, good, or noble to offer. Any strength, bravery, overcoming, or victory is paid for by the blood of Christ, who made us worthy.

So, let us not fight for a good day today through will power, pep talks, or peer pressure. The best good we will know this day will begin and end at the person of Christ. To that hope, we sow good works and obedience and let this sink in:

But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship,created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

Taken from: http://www.gracelaced.com/blog/dear-mom-whos-trying?utm_content=bufferca3ef&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Mr. Lucky- 5 months

IMG_1551.JPGAge: 5.5 months
Weight: 17lbs
Size: 9mo and some 12mo clothes, size 3 diapers but size 4 at night
Eyes: light blue
Hair: he has three dark brown, long Homer Simpson hairs mixed in with a thick head of short blonde hair.
Sleeping: 2 naps a day with one cat nap, waking 2-3 times at night.
Eating: nursing like a champ, and very interested in food. I didn’t want to start solids until he was 6 months old, but Wyatt watches all of us eat all day and he decided he needed to do that. So far he loves everything he’s tried, and had a reaction to oatmeal just like Eli did. We decided to skip cereals and just go with veggies.
Milestones: talks all the time, grabs and chews on his feet, sits on his own for a few minutes, pushing up on his hands, rolling all over the place, great little personality.
Teeth: none
Favorite toys/activities: loves to look at anyone and smile while you talk to him, likes his jumper, and to try to grab toys to chew on.
Words/sounds: ooo, aaah, goo, whoo, mmm, ddd, babb but no words yet. And officially babbling with his favorite sound- dadadada
Nicknames: Mr. Lucky
Looking forward to: him sleeping through the night!!! And sitting independently so he can play better with Eli and Ruby.

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