Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Farewell, My Friend...

Rosemary started at South when I did. We opened the school together- she was a math teacher with experience, and all of us looked up to her. She was a friendly, funny, and smart. When I ran into her in the hallway before this school year started, she asked me how Juliana was. I started to cry as I told her about the eating battles, and the three holes in her heart. She listened to me and gave me a hug while I cried.

Later that same week, I asked Tino (my boss) why all the department heads were wearing purple wrist bands. He told me that it was in support of Rosemary (now the math department head) who was battling pancreatic cancer. I was stunned. I immediately sought out Rosemary, and apologized to her for crying about Juliana in front of her when she was going through her own battle. She just smiled and told me it was okay. She told me about her treatment and that doctor thought they had caught it early. At the end of our conversation, we both were in tears.

As the school year continued, she and I would check in with each other- she'd ask about Juliana and I'd ask her about her treatment. She continued to come to work and she was getting thinner and thinner. A few weeks ago, we were told that it was her last day. Treatment had stopped, and she was going into home hospice. Every day since then, I have dreaded checking my email.

On Monday, Tino sent out an email that her condition had gotten worse. She was in a coma. This morning, as I came into school, I ran into the head of the school's library. She was crying. I knew why, but I still asked, "What's wrong?" She told me that Rosemary had passed this morning. I started to cry. I know that she is no longer in pain, but the loss still hurts.

Rosemary, you will be missed. Rest In Peace, my friend.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

It's Spring...Wait, It's Snowing?!?

This week, it warmed up into the 60's for several days. Noah and Juliana got to spend lots of time outside. On Wednesday, Ryan took them to the park and Noah ran around for an hour and a half. The fresh air seemed to do both of them good. They even slept longer than normal. On Thursday, we went up to Auntie Jaime's house, and played outside on their jungle gym and bounced in the bouncy house. All the cousin's had a good time, and boy were they tired on the way home!

On Friday, I heard that the forecast for the weekend did not look nice- rain and snow, so I left school as soon as the bell rang to get the kids and get some more outdoors time in. A lady at work, had given me a giant fire engine for Noah to play with. As soon as we got home, I got it out of the van, and Noah dragged it over to our neighbor's house to show Pam and Tim it. We played outside until Daddy came home, and I noticed the temperature was dropping.

This morning, I got up to rain, but by the time we left for swimming lessons, the rain had already turned to snow. Happy first day of spring everyone, let's hope this snow doesn't hang around for very long! Although, the Chili Dawg would be happy- here he is in the glorious snow earlier this month.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

The Babysitter's Off...

This week, our beloved babysitter is off. Her husband won an all expense paid vacation to Vegas, but it was only good for Sunday-Thursday of this week, otherwise they would have gone during spring break.

Fortunately for Ryan and I, Framma Vicki (that's how Noah says Grandma) was able to take off of work and come down Sunday night to watch Noah and Juliana on Monday and Tuesday. Unfortunately for Framma Vicki, Noah and Juliana were both sick with nasty colds. On Monday, Framma couldn't get Juliana to eat much- just 3/4 of a tub of carrots. I tried to prepare my mom for a frustrating day, by telling her that when Juliana is miserable, she won't eat for anyone, but my mom was still upset by the lack of eating on Juliana's part. Noah complicated the matter by not eating either. Framma was finally able to bribe Noah into eating with a bag of fruit snacks. Tuesday went a little better for Framma. Juliana was feeling better and Framma was able to get her to eat. On the other hand, Noah, was a bit disobedient. He refused to go on the potty for Framma and then it was a wrestling match to get him to wash his hands when he finally went on the potty. Needless to say, Framma was a bit worn out by the end of the day. Juliana was very taken with Framma this time, and kept reaching for her while I was holding her.

Yesterday, Ryan stayed home with the kids, while I went to work. Noah said they had fun. Daddy took them to the toddler park and Noah ran around for an hour and a half. Noah and Ryan also built a very elaborate Geo-Trax railroad using up almost all of the Geo-Trax. Juliana didn't eat so well for Ryan- just some Yo-Baby yogurt, but she napped pretty well for him. I came home from school and took Juliana to feeding therapy. Juliana didn't really do well at this session either, but we did get to come home with the vibrating spoon to try for a week. Miss Peggy (Juliana's therapist) was also nice enough to send a sticker home for Noah- Noah loves going to feeding therapy. When we got home, Noah and Ryan were playing in the backyard, and Ryan had hung up the baby swing on the pergola, so Juliana was able to swing outside with us.

Today, I am home with the kiddies. Juliana got up promptly at 6 AM. I got her to eat a little bit of baby food with the vibrating spoon, and then she gagged and projectiled it all over. I got her cleaned up and put her down for her nap, and then Noah got up at 7:45. Too bad they can't coordinate their sleeping in. Today's plans involve me trying to get Juliana's Early Intervention appointment scheduled, and then hopefully more outdoors time for the kids if Noah is feeling up to it.

Thanks, Mom, for taking the time off of work to watch our kids. We love you!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Nightmare of a Week...

Last week was a nightmare. It started on Saturday, when Noah and I were on our way to the grocery store. Ryan called and told me that he had to take Juliana back to get her blood drawn again because her white blood cell count was abnormally low meaning it could be celiac disease, cancer, or lab error. I wanted to throw up. Juliana was a trooper, just like the last time she got her blood drawn- no tears at all.

While we were at the grocery store, I bought Noah a donut from Dunkin Donuts and got myself an iced coffee. Halfway through the store, my heart started to race and I began to feel VERY weird. Needless to say, my heart raced for the rest of the day- and that is VERY uncomfortable (now I have a small glimpse into how my dad and my sister-in-law felt when their hearts would go into atrial fib).

Saturday night and Sunday night were basically sleepless nights for Ryan and I as we were waiting to hear Juliana's lab results. Finally, Monday night we got a call from the allergist that her white blood cells were normal. What a relief!

Tuesday, Ryan left to go out of town for the week. Tuesday night, Noah's nose started to run and Juliana decided that her week and a half of sleeping through the night was done. The remainder of my week was spent soothing Noah who has a bad cold, and getting up at night with Juliana who went on an eating strike and began projectiling again.

Needless to say that when Ryan came home Friday night, I was VERY happy to see him... even though he came home sick and has now gotten Juliana sick. I did manage to get these pictures taken of Noah and Juliana "reading" together this week.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

More Things I've Learned...

I guess I really am a lifelong learner. Here are some new things that I've recently come to learn in the past 2 weeks.

1). By working his charm on Peggy (our new and much better feeding therapist), Noah came home with this windup clock that is only slightly annoying.

2). If Juliana doesn't want to eat at bedtime, NOTHING will change her mind- not even rocking her to sleep, popping her Nuk out, and slipping the bottle into her mouth.

3). Noah could be enticed to poop on the potty one time, after Ryan showed him the train that he wanted so desperately.

4). Pullups do NOT containg diarrhea. EW! Why does this NEVER happen to Ryan?!? I even had to clean up the floor!

5). Buying a medium iced coffee to help me "wake" up caused my heart to race for hours (like 10). I will NEVER do that again.

6). Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred can kick your butt in the 20 minutes that it takes you to do it. (Okay, I already knew that, but for those of you looking for a quick workout, that's the way to go).

7). When Noah is sick, and Ryan is out of town, he requests Grandma over Momma.

That's all I have for now. Enjoy!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Still No Answers...

Yesterday my dad and I took Juliana to Children's Memorial so that I could get a second opinion on Juliana from another gastroenterologist. I was glad my dad came, because it kept me from crying in front of the doctor. Why was I trying not to cry?

The doctor told us that her head is too big for her body, which we already knew, since her head is in the 80th percentile and the rest of her is in the low percentiles. He suspects something is neurologically wrong with her, and has referred us to a pediatric neurologist. He has also recommended that we add occupational and developmental therapy to our list of therapies. This was not what I had hoped to hear, and it was very hard to take it all in.

In addition to that, today the allergist called about Juliana's test results. On a positive note, she didn't test positive for any allergies, but her white blood cell count was low. Ryan took Juliana to get her blood drawn again, so that they can see if it was an abnormal blood draw or if she still has a low white blood cell count.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers.
Isn't she soooooo sweet?!?

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Happy Birthday, Noah!

My little boy turns 3 today. Wow, has the time gone by so quickly! I remember when we brought him home from the hospital. That night was the longest night, he screamed himself hoarse. But, it only got better from there.

Noah, you are a good big brother to Juliana (even though it took you 7 weeks to acknowledge her existence). I love how when she is crying, you do your best to entertain her. You bring her toys, you make silly faces, and you always pull her exer-saucer closer to where you are playing so she can watch you.

I love that you are a "momma's boy" right now. I know this won't last for much longer, and I treasure this time. I love that every night you have to look at one of your train books and ask Daddy, "what's that one?" even though you know almost all of them. I love our "snowball" fights downstairs, and that you love to sing songs (and if anyone knows any other verses to "The Wheels On the Bus- I'd like to hear them). I love that you like to be outside and have a great imagination. I love that you are constantly putting one of your Thomas movies in a box and asking us to close our eyes so you can give us a "surprise".

You have a beautiful heart, little boy, and I look forward to seeing you grow up.

Happy Birthday, Noah! I love you!