Sunday, June 28, 2009


Grumpy Robbie at the zoo.

We met our friend DaRonda and rode the train!

It was REALLY hot that day, so mommy kept me soaked with water to keep me cool.

I'm still fascinated by my birthday balloons.

Since they don't float any more, they're down on my level.

I really love my birthday Moose, too! That's his leg in my arms.

I love sleeping in my own crib these days.

I can even hold myself up on the side.

Though sometimes it's tricky to hang on!

Mommy? Can I eat the camera now?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Still going

Robbie had a pretty good night. Only woke once on his own (I had to wake him twice for breathing treatments. He did NOT appreciate that.) and was breathing pretty well.

He sounded pretty okayish this morning when we got up. I called the doctor to find out when we needed to bring him in for follow up and they wanted to see him right away, so off we went. No time to do another treatment before we left.

By the time we got to the doctor's office, he was rattling something fierce. I was honestly afraid she was going to send us to the hospital. I actually stopped walking down the hall of the office because I was certain that was NOT his lungs I was hearing- but it was.

Fortunately when we got in there, his oxygen was still 96% so even though he sounded horrid, he was doing okay.

Dr. P checked him over and announced that he was starting to get an ear infection. she also wanted to swab him from RSV. It's not remotely RSV season (hello, it's 100 degrees today) but he sounded so awful, she wanted to be sure. It was negative, fortunately. She had him do another breathing treatment while we were there and that cleared up most of the wheezing.

We left with a prescription for an antibiotic. It's Aug.mentin. She said it's fairly broad spectrum and she gave a high dosage. She is hoping that if the haziness that was on his X-ray yesterday was the start of a pneumonia, this will help fight that as well.

So we're home. We've been doing breathing treatments more like every 2 hours because that's when he seems to start wheezing again. Robbie HATES the nebulizer. It's the machine, not the stuff. As soon as I turn the machine on, he starts yelling. And yells all the way through the whole treatment.

But then, he also cried hysterically when the nurse put the pulse-ox on his toe. Then when the nurse looked at him, he burst into tears again. He's a might bit touchy these days. In the grand scheme of things, a sticker on the toe or a loud machine isn't so bad.

I'm just glad it's not IVs and oxygen. Someone should tell the kid he's doin' okay.



Everyone's okay, but Friday was a heck of a day.

Let me backtrack:

Tuesday night Robbie was fussy. Now, not to brag, but Robbie is a really happy baby. He's just really mellow & good natured. He gets cranky when he's tired and cries when you feed him (because his stomach hurts) but other than that, he's really a good natured kid. He got that from David, not me.

But Tuesday night, he was a fuss pot. It was one of those nights where you look forward to bedtime because man, the quiet will be nice.

Around 2am, he started to get fidgety. By 3am, he was basically up. And stayed that way until 5. He was clearly not feeling well, but I couldn't pinpoint what was wrong. I tried Mylanta and Tylenol but nothing seemed to help. Finally around 5 am, he slept a bit, though still pretty fitfully.

At 9, he woke up coughing. In preemie land, cough = BAD news. I called the doctor and asked to be seen.

Dr. P had all good things to say. I was feeling pretty crappy. I was feeling pretty guilty that Robbie got sick. We have been out and about quite a bit lately. I am pretty anal about keeping things wiped with antibacterial wipes, but there is only so much I can do. But Dr. P said it's actually good for him to get out and see things and to be social. And that really, he's big enough now that getting sick once in a while is good for his immune system. A cough isn't the thing we'd want to see, but that so far his lungs sounded okay and really there wasn't much to be done for him.

But then she added "though, he sounds like a kid who's going to start wheezing tomorrow." Fabulous! She said if he got worse to bring him back.

Thursday was about the same. Not great, but no worse. Thursday night, however, he started breathing pretty heavily. Around bedtime I decided he really sounded uncomfortable and ended up calling the nurse line. I wasn't sure if what he was doing was wheezing or not, but he didn't sound right. The nurse was great, walking me through all the symptoms and ultimately deciding that was okay- for now.

Robbie slept well and I really hoped he'd wake up feeling better. It was not to be.

He woke up sounding awful. I hoped being up and about would break things loose, but again, it just wasn't going to happen. By mid-morning, he was starting to sound a little occasionally rattely when exhaled. I called the doctor. Dr P isn't in on Friday so they arranged for us to see the covering doctor about an hour later.

I have a guest from out of town staying with me, so I had her with me. Off we went.

I swear, by the time we drove to the doctor's office, he was so much worse. In the exam room he went from occasionally sounding yucky to full out wheezing. The nurse who checked him over asked if we had a nebulizer. When I said no, she replied "I bet you're gonna get one today." She was right.

She took his pulse ox. It should be at least 95, preferably closer to 100. It was 94. That's not scary low, but it's certainly not what you want. And considering how many months I spent staring at monitors with low pulse-oxes, I really hated it.

I also admit that I read a few blogs that instantly came to mind. I was pretty nervous.

The doctor ordered a breathing treatment with some albuterol. The nurse got us started. Robbie did okay, but really didn't love the mask. They checked his oxygen again- 95%. Better, but not great, and he was still wheezing.

Another breathing treatment. Still 95% and still wheezing.

That's when she said the words I really could gladly never hear again, "You're going to need to be admitted to the hospital." GAH! No more hospitals! But I knew it was for the best. We ultimately decided to go back to the hospital we normally deal with and the doctor went off to make the arrangements.

We had planned a barbecue for the weekend, so I called to start cancelling that stuff and of course, called David at work to let him know what was going on.

The doctor came back in and said that the hospital didn't want to do a direct admit, they wanted to work us up through the E.R. so she sent us on our way.

At the E.R. things went pretty quickly at first. We were triaged and given a room very quickly. They started with another breathing treatment which really did nothing except annoy Robbie further.

The nurses were great and the doctor very nice. That was something, at least. My friend from out of town is childless and she mostly looked shell-shocked.

They decided that their course of action was to do a chest x-ray to rule out pneumonia. No one thought he had pneumonia. He doesn't have a fever, and really, other than the wheezing, was not behaving that sick. After they ruled out the pneumonia, they'd do some steroids and another breathing treatment. If those didnt' work, we'd be admitted. Everyone kept talking more like "when you get admitted" than "if you get admitted" though, so they didn't seem too hopeful that it would work.

Then we had the X ray. And it was hazy. Well, crap. They were afraid it was indeed pneumonia after all. Everyone was surprised.

That meant blood work and an IV. The nurse got a vein pretty quickly, which was nice, but Robbie was still screaming. I'd warned my friend it was going to be ugly. She looked traumatized. They took the blood but ultimately couldn't get the IV to flush so he didn't get one. I asked that they not poke him again until we confirmed he'd need IV meds. They agreed.

They decided to go ahead with the steroids and breathing treatment while we waited for lab results.

That was amazing! It was like someone turned on a light switch to Robbie's normal personality. Suddenly he was happy, playful, smiling and best yet- BREATHING NORMALLY. He just sounded so much better.

They checked his oxygen and we got 96 & 97. Phew!
Then even better news- the bloodwork was normal! Not only was his white blood cell count normal, but the marker for any inflammation in his lungs was zero. WE COULD GO HOME!

We were discharged with steroids & a nebulizer for home. By that time, David had gotten to the hospital with us, and we were all elated.

So home we are. Robbie still hates the nebulizer. He has to get a treatment at least every 4 hours, which means waking him in the night (the machine is loud, so he definitely wakes up) but in the grand scheme of things, it really could have been so much worse.

We'll be seeing Dr. P today to follow up, but so far, he seems much better. He's still coughing, but the wheezing has stayed away.

Please continue to pray that he gets better quickly, but for now, we're hanging in there.



Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Robbie Giggles

A short, dark, but totally worth it video. Turn your sound on!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Then and Now

The day that Robbie was born was not the typical excitement filled event that most people think of when they think of the birth of a child.

My morning had started with symptoms leading the doctors to believe that I was nearing both organ failure and a stroke. We had about an hour between being told the time had come and actually making it to the OR for the C-section.

David and I were both terrified. No one could even guarantee that Robbie would survive birth and what would come after was greatly unknown.

Once we got into the operating room, things were mostly quiet. We didn't know if we were having a boy or girl, though I was convinced he was a girl, (and called him "she" for the 6 months I was pregnant- sorry, Robbie.) so there was even more unknown.

I was completely drugged up both from meds for the surgery and meds to keep me from seizing or stroking, and was pretty out of it. David was just quiet. Neither of us spoke much.

When they pulled Robbie from my belly, I heard one doctor quietly say "He's out." Before I could process the pronoun "he", the same doctor said, in a more excited tone, "Oh yeah! It's a boy."

My first thought was surprise. I'd been so sure he was a girl. I thought "really? A boy? I'll be darned."

But David.... David leaned down and whispered in my ear "It's a boy." I wasn't sure if he wanted to make sure I'd heard or if he was telling himself. But I knew he was proud. You could hear the emotion in his voice. More emotion than I'd ever heard from him.

Before I could even respond, he followed it with "I wish my dad was here to see this." Then he bowed his head and sobbed. Joy for his son and sorrow for his dad.

Watching him be a dad and knowing he learned from an amazing one has been incredible.

Here's to fathers everywhere.

Father's Day 2008

Father's Day 2009


Saturday, June 20, 2009

June pictures

Posted an update on Robbie's blog.

The pictures only:

Out to lunch with mommy & her friends.

My pictures are tasty!

Someday my comb-over with rival The Donald's.

Chillin' out with Daddy.

There are teeth in there!

Grandpa's trying to teach me bad tricks.

Baby in a do-rag.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Nothin' much

I haven't had a lot to say lately. Things have been pretty decent at home, really. Robbie had about a week and a half of not-so-awful reflux. He was puking more like twice a day instead of up to 20 times a day. There was a lot less crying and it lasted much shorter times.

I actually dared to hope things were improving.

Of course, today we had a 2 straight hour post-tube-feed inconsolable crying, puking jag.

I think Reflux is on the same team Aunt Flow was when we were TTC. Their both sneaky, underhanded bitches.

The big news of the week is that Robbie has officially broken 15 pounds and has made the transition into his own bedroom. The transition was much harder on me than him.

The first night, he looked around with curiosity, seemingly thinking "well, this is odd. Usually I go to bed now." I watched him on the video monitor and he just looked around for about 10 minutes. He then promptly passed out and slept 12 hours.

The next night, same thing. Fell asleep right away and slept 12 hours. (He does wake a couple of times in the night, but only for brief periods and usually only needs help settling down again one of those times.)

This morning he was up mighty early, but you know, you can't win them all. I've now adjusted to not having him so close. Have to trek across the house to turn his feeding pump off and on is annoying, but all in all, the transition went easier than I really could have imagined. (Of course, I type this now. He'll wake up in the an hour and be up all night. I really shouldn't tempt fate here.)

All in all, things are pretty good at home. I wish his stomach would quit betraying him. I suppose I passed on the gene for a body that hates you. Sorry about that kiddo.

I keep praying for things to continue to improve and just thanking God for this special time together. I have to go back to work in 2 months and I'm dreading it already. But I also know that a lot of people don't get 2 months TOTAL to stay home with their children and I've been blessed with a year. I know how good we have it. (We won't discuss the state of our financial status because of the year at home. It's pathetic, really. But completely worth it.)

Anyway, this isn't a post to say much except that I love my family and things are going as okay as they get in these parts.


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Great Article

Just read the bittersweet article written by a food critic who is also the mother of a non-eater.

There is a bit about a mouse licking a donut that actually moved me to tears. I know that silent hope of maybe finding something your child might sort of like.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Catching up

It really has been such a crazy few weeks in Robbie's world.

The week before his birthday, he finally cut his first tooth. I'd begun to doubt they were ever coming, really. We'd had several rounds of drooly-chewy-whiny-gum-swelling and still nothing.

But about 10 days before he turned one, we were playing and I found myself covered in drool. I asked him if he was ever going to get those teeth and tried to take a peek. He wouldn't have it, but finally let me stick my finger in his mouth and have a feel. And...hey! that's sharp.. there was something poking me.

So we wrestled a bit more and I had a peek, and sure enough, there was a little corner of a tooth in there. And much to my surprise, I could see another one right next to it just under the surface of his gums. Sure enough, the next day, his second tooth and broken through. Two in two days!

Thankfully, he took it very well. The 4th day, he was a bit crabby and seemed more bothered by his mouth than normal, so I gave him 2 doses of Tylenol during the day, but other than that and some restless sleeping for a few days, he was pretty unaffected.

He's also been gaining weight pretty well. He had a really awful reflux flare up the weekend of his birthday (yeah, happy b-day to him. ugh.) and was on a light diet for a few days, but outside of that, he's gaining an average of an ounce a day. As of tonight, he was 14 lb 13oz.

He's still sleeping in the bassinet next to our bed. The trouble is that is has a 15 lb weight limit, so in the next day days, he's going to be transitioning to his crib. (Yes, I know, you're all gasping that he's 1 and still in our room. But it worked for us. Let's move on.)

He's obviously getting stronger and stronger as well. He sits up quite well and only falls over occasionally, usually when reaching especially far for something or twisting around backward to watch something (usually one of the pets or his dad.)

In a very tiny thing that made me very happy, he managed to feed himself a puff the other day. The solid food is still very intermittent. He'll eat an ounce or two of baby food, but lately he's been puking it back up very quickly as well. And anything with chunks at all, and he gags and chokes.

He has gummed a few puffs and some yogurt whips, but usually if they make it to the back of his throat without being completely dissolved, he freaks out and I end up having to sweep it out of his mouth or he'll gag himself to the pukes.

The puff he fed himself, he actually picked it up and put it in his own mouth and CHEWED it. It was amazing. Then he swallowed it! Of course, 2 seconds later, he gagged until he threw up some milk, but hey, baby steps, right?

He's also been able to visit with more people and do more things. On Saturday he went to a birthday party for his NICU buddy, Gavin. Overall it went well. Gavin's a preemie superstar and had a good time. He's crawling very well and kept coming over to Robbie and another preemie friend, Lexi, and trying to push them over. I don't think he quite gets the concept of "play" yet, but at least they interacted a bit.

Robbie, on the other hand, is a completely sensitive soul. Every time one of the other kids would cry, Robbie would well up with tears, look at the crying child with great concern and start to whine. I hope he keeps his sensitivity as he ages.

We also had a big outing this last week. We visited the daycare that Robbie will be going to when I go back to work.

I was extremely, extremely nervous about it. I dread going back to work as it is. I wish I could stay home permanently, but it just isn't in the cards. Thinking of having to leave Robbie with someone else is daunting anyway, but then you add in all of his feeding difficulties, and I was really concerned they would say they couldn't handle it.

We ended up spending about 2 1/2 hours there. I did a complete G tube feeding for them so they could see what was involved. They seemed relieved that it was as easy as it was. (It's really quite simple.) My biggest concern, though, was the writhing and crying that comes with a feeding. Robbie didn't puke, so they didn't get the full experience, but he did whine and cry a bit. They got to see that it's not the pleasurable experience that eating is for most people. And they were okay with it.

We talked a lot about everything, went over all of my questions and all of theirs. In the end, I came out feeling MUCH better about everything.

I still wish we could hit the lotto before August so I could just stay home, but barring that, I at least feel like he'll be well cared for in my absence.

Overall, it's been an amazing few weeks. We still have a long way to go until "caught up" but it's nice to see some strides in the right direction.

We could still use some prayers in the stomach department. I know his feeding issues will take a long time to be resolved, but if we could just get him to outgrow this God forsaken reflux, it'd be a HUGE leap in the right direction.

And without further ado- pictures!

See my teefers?

My two favorite toys in the whole wide world- a tube of Aquaphor & a travel pack of Q-tips.

Can I have the camera, mommy?

Mmm, tasty fingers.

It's a Robbie-In-A-Box!

How cute am I?

Standing at the couch.

At Gavin's birthday party.

Giggly boy


Get Over It

It's such a stupid thing.

I have so much worse things to worry about. Bigger things to regret.

So many people have so many larger worries. They have so many greater sorrows.

Even if it had worked out, I'd probably have stopped by now, or at least, greatly reduced the amount.

Knowing all of this, why does the mere mention of breastfeeding still make me cry with sadness?


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Day brighteners

Just a couple of short Robbie videos to brighten your day.

This one started as an attempt to get Robbie smiling, but ended up with a little more doggy lovin' that I think Robbie bargained for.

And this is just Robbie's latest "trick." All he wants to do these days is pull up on my hands.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Robbie's B-day party

The party was a big success. We had about 25 people total.

There was a brief hiccup in the morning when the lawn mower wouldn't start. But David borrowed a neighbor's mower and did the front and we moved the party up there, so it was okay. There's more shade there anyway.

Robbie did well. He loved the other kids and paid mostly no attention to the other adults.

He didn't really eat any cake, but he did mash his hands in it a bit and got frosting everywhere.

After a fiasco trying to order a fish cake from a local bakery, my friend Lisa swooped in and saved the day and made an amazing one for us and even brought a smash cupcake for Robbie. She totally rules.

Robbie was tuckered out after the party and even took a 2 hour nap. (Which is unheard of for him.)

He got lots of great toys and a ton of books, and a few outfits. We didn't get ANY duplicates and Robbie loves his stuff.

Without further ado- Pictures!

I am one today.

Family photo.

Robbie visiting with Clare & Thomas

Catching up with his NICU buddy, Gavin.

Clare has pretty hair!

Robbie doesn't need cake. He has a bib.

The amazing cake!

Smash cake.

Hmm, this feels different.

No, I DON'T want to eat any, mommy!

The aftermath.

Great-grandma, grandpa, Robbie & Mommy.

What'd I get, Mommy?

I'm the best present ever!

Chillin' in my new sunglasses.

Hi Grandpa!

Are all these people here to see ME?

Relaxin' after the party.


Monday, June 1, 2009

Birthday Video

This is very long, but it's what I played during Robbie's birthday party yesterday.

Hope you enjoy!

A year in the life


1 month

2 months

3 months

4 months

5 months

6 months

7 months

8 months

9 months

10 months

11 months

One year old!