Friday, December 28, 2007

I made it a whole year!

A year ago, I entered the hospital looking like this...

15 hours of labor...

and came out with this.

It's been the best year of my life. Without a doubt. Not even close.

I wish I could slow time down, or maybe hold that tiny newborn again for just a little while, because the baby that newborn has turned into doesn't have much time for sitting still. He's busy, and sweet, and wonderful, and amazing, and brilliant, and so, so, so funny.

I wish all of you an extraordinarily happy new year, filled with as many wonderful memories, laughter and joy as we have had in the past year.

Happy birthday to Gabe!

Friday, December 07, 2007

like my own personal outbreak monkey

You'll recall that on Gabe's first Halloween, he was also diagnosed with his first ear infection. It caused several days of crying and complaining and whining (on both of our parts), but he recovered. Then I started feeling like crud, and it turned out that I had a sinus infection and double ear infections. There was more crying and complaining and whining (this time only on my part), but the antibiotics helped and I slowly recovered.

We went to Florida for Thanksgiving, and there were a few shining days of good health, where I wasn't blowing my sinuses out or struggling to clear my ears and all I had to worry about were the mosquito bites I kept getting all over my legs.

On the last day in Florida, though, Gabe's nose started running again and I mentally begged the world not to let him get sick again. We came home, and although the runny nose continued, it also didn't get worse, until last weekend. On Saturday a faucet turned on in Gabe's nose and I was forced for the first time ever, to whip out that evil nose sucky device that I'd carefully avoided for 11 months. Still, this was still a cold, it was doable.

And then.

I tipped Gabe back on Sunday morning as I got ready to feed him and saw a strange sight- something white along the inside of his lips. I took a closer look and saw... blisters. Lots and lots of blisters and white patches all along the inside of his lips. I called the pediatrician on call, who assured me that he was fine, but had a highly contagious virus called Coxsackie virus, otherwise known as Hand, Foot, and Mouth. A miserable virus, but nothing dangerous. As long as he continued to drink fluids and continued producing wet diapers, we could just give him pain relievers and not worry.

The next day, I started to feel like a steamroller ran over me.

The day after that, the vomiting and diarrhea started up on Gabe's part. Then a cough was added into the mix, and the coughing and vomiting encourage each other to add to the fun. Then the coughing and vomiting would happen right at bedtime or naptime, so there was no sleeping to be had around here. Lots of laundry, though, LOTS of laundry.

Yesterday his mouth started bleeding where some of the blisters burst, and my heart ached a little for how bad he must be feeling. Surprisingly, he has been relatively cheery despite the illness, and the only indication that he doesn't feel well is a bit of clinginess, a reduced appetite and night wakings. Also the cough that sounds like an 80 year old emphysema patient.

Today on a repeat trip to the pediatrician, we found that the diarrhea has given him a yeast infection. The holiday spirit is really rampant in our house these days.

To top it all off, Tango (the dog) started acting strangely over the last couple of days, as if he is in pain or extremely upset over something. He doesn't want me to pet him and flinches away from you if you try to scratch him or rub his back. Today he ran away from me and tried to hide when I went to pick him up, and when I called him back, he was so worked up that he pooped on the floor. A rush trip to the veterinarian, $65 later, and he thinks it is psychological. Maybe something happened to him a few days ago that was painful, maybe Gabe hit him or a toy fell on him or something, and he is reacting to that stress. Or maybe the baby learning to walk is pissing him off and he is trying to show me that he is upset. Who knows, but according to the vet, nothing is physically wrong with him.

All of this was enough to send me over the edge this afternoon, and after tearily asking my neighbor if she would watch Gabe while I ran the dogs to the veterinarian, I had a good little moping fest in my car. It's just a bit much. I'm sick, Gabe is sick, Josh is working long hours, and now the freaking dog is sick too?

I'm going to make a small request here, friend to friend, that you would take one teeny moment to send us good thoughts for improved health by the time I have to load my 11 month old, his stroller, car seat, pack and play, and luggage onto a flight to Germany on Wednesday. We can use all the help we can get around here.