Saturday, April 7, 2007

Sleep 101

Ever since Wren stopped sleeping I have been doing everything at a rush. I estimate I have about 45 minutes between him going to sleep and needing to take to the bed myself otherwise I can't compensate for all the interuptions which are likely.

I know its been only a few days - definitely less than a week - but already it feels as if those long sleeps are a dream. There was the ER night, and then last night with one three hour period - but there were a few days before that which were a bit shaky.

I am wondering if its a matter of confidence. Now that I doubt his ability to sleep I think he senses it. He smells my fear and wakes more quickly.

So far, this evening he has woken twice since I put him down to sleep half an hour ago. That is very unusual. I set him down in the swing, gave him Tylenol and got ready for bed. Of course he has now gone to sleep - snoring - and I shall have to move him and no doubt wake him in the process.

I know its not 10pm but I am going to bed.

Doing the right thing

Do you ever try and do the right thing but the way it happens feels wrong? I have been trying to do the right thing and give away the vast supply of expressed breastmilk I have from the time Wren was in hospital unable to nurse. I think I have 40 bags at least of about 5oz each and have thrown away half as much. I tried to find recipients but didn't have any luck until someone put me onto Milkshare. Milkshare is a really cool donor milk sharing site which hooks up those willing to donate breastmilk with those in need. The recipients range from adopted babies, surrogate-had babies to babies of those who cannot breastfeed their own children for various reasons (surgery, medication, supply). Anyway, we all agree its great, right? I have even found a few families in Seattle who need milk for their babies.

Here is where it gets icky. Of course I understand that you would want to ensure that the person who is giving you milk is healthy, you don't want to get your baby sick - you are doing this to give him or her the best start. So you want the donor to prove they are healthy. This means filling out a really long medical and personal history as well as having a blood test for HIV 1 &2, Hepatitis B & C, Syphilis and HTLV I & II.

Now, I don't know what the HTLV s are and I am not sure that my standard prenatal screen would cover them. Regardless, to give this milk away is getting harder and harder. It now seems I would need to get a new bloodtest done. Also, I have to document any days of fever or medication, vitamins, whether I am vegetarian etc etc.

I really do understand that its to keep the babies safe but honestly, it feels too hard right now. It makes me feel icky - like I am being judged. Throwing it away is also hard. Sigh.

Meanwhle, I had very little sleep since Wren woke every 90 minutes except for one 3 hour stretch. Josh was also up a lot in the night because Wren screamed and wouldn't be rocked back to sleep. I stood firm and refused to nurse him on the 5th time he wanted to nurse back to sleep but eventually caved in. Bear in mind he usually nurses only once overnight.

Sigh, again.

He seems okay this morning but a bit less happy and a bit more clingy than usual. I suspect he is getting a cold as he had a stuffy nose and cough in the night. Its either that or allergies. Josh and I both have stuffy noses this morning.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Dandelion spring (and leg stuff)

Wren wore shorts for the first time this afternoon. It was a balmy 67 degrees and the dandelions are all in bloom. Frost picked one for Wren and rubbed it on his forehead to give him a yellow spot. Wren enjoyed holding the dandelion and tried to eat it. we didn't let him.

In these pictures you may be able to see that his left leg (the one on the right of the picture) is a bit swollen. The color isn't as visible in the picture but you might be able to see that it is blotchy. This evening the color is better but it is still bigger.

Our pediatrician is submitting an adverse reaction report to VAERS. We are wondering whether the reaction had something to do with the Synagis shots he had at the same spot on his thigh 3 days before. The shots that were given in the left leg were Prevnar and HIB which are not usually responsible for swelling like this.

Anyway, besides sleeping a lot (probably due to going to bed at 1am last night) Wren has been quite happy today and enjoying being outside.

Swollen leg, again

Wren is acting fine but his leg is noticeably swollen and slightly discolored again. I am not sure what to do so I am phoning people who might. Since I have no car today I am not about to rush off anywhere but its disconcerting.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Night in the ER

Just a quick post before sleep. I have just come back from the ER (with Wren) who had a vaccine reaction. His left leg swelled up and turned purplish. They checked for venous flow (in case it was a clot) but that was good. He has had a fever relieved by tylenol. They eventually discharged us when the purple subsided but it is still enlarged.

The attending recommended we limit future vaccinations, report this reaction to the CDC monitoring ppl (number provided) and try and find out which shots were given in the left leg.

She suggested we stick to HIB and Prevnar for 6 month checkup but none of the others for a bit.

Sleep, hopefully. Josh is changing Wren from his spitup covered onesie and soggy diaper. I was not prepared for 4 hours in the ER. The Attending said "this April is like January with all the cases we're seeing".

She also said "his murmur sounds like a washing machine."

Does that mean its worse or is she less tactful than cardiology?

4 month appointment & vaccinations

Wren had his four month pediatrician visit today. It went fine but 4 hours after the shots he has developed a fever of 102 and is very sad alternating between napping and crying and not wanting to nurse much. I have given him infant Tylenol and hope he feels better soon.

I have always been on the fence about vaccinations so whenever a reaction occurs - however mild - it strikes my heart with fear and doubt. It doesn't help that he had 4 shots today (we refused Hep B). The nurse said that the DTaP shot is most likely to cause fever - the flyer said 25% of children get a fever. Still, it makes me sad.

Anyway, at 4 months he met all the expected milestones of smiling, responding, reaching and grasping, rolling front to back, squeals, coos and drools. The only thing asked which he does not yet do is laugh. She asked about that a couple of times and then said "well, perhaps he is not a laugher". Hrmm... I beg to differ. He will be a laugher when he hears a good joke. So far he has not found life amusing.

He also had a hemocrit heel stick. He bled well from the foot - nothing like last time when he had to be squeezed and poked for ages for a blood stick - but his hemocrit was 29 only up a tiny but from 2 months ago (28). So, he is back on the iron citrate(??) drops daily.

He weighed 17 lbs (7.7kg) - 90%ile
Height: 26 inches - 80th %ile
Head 16. 7/16 - 35%ile (up from 25th)

We were given the "how to introduce solids" pamphlet which I am going to ignore for now. It says 4-6 months you can give iron fortified baby cereal.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Mr Interested

We have just returned from a walk and bike ride (Frost riding, me walking, Wren wrapped in the Moby) in the cold evening air. It is a time of foundations and flowering - all around the neighborhood cherry trees are in bloom and the excavators are in full dig.

Wren has been practicing noises and making shouts and squeals whenver he is alert. He is starting to become more regular in his naps - a short one in the morning, a long midday or early afternoon nap and another couple of short naps before a 9pm bedtime.

Frost is very good at riding the new bicycle - just shows you that buying things cheap at a thrift store may not be the way to give your kids the right start. That last bicycle was a bomb from the start and Frost was just waiting for a better model to get the hang of it.

Ah, the stove just beeped that it is at 400 degrees and ready for the gratin and salm for dinner. Frost is going to play I SPY MYSTERY while I cook.

My global family is once again on the move. Mum has just left Adelaide, Australia for a 3 week trip to the UK to see grandad, Caroline, Mike and Brenda. Dad and Ingrid leave shortly for China and Singapore before Dad gets here around the end on the month. Frost and Grandad are in discussion about what chemicals they are going to experiment with.

Frost is impatient and Wren is kicking and huffing for attention. I am looking forward to a good bath later on if Josh gets home in time. Here are some pictures of Wren in the bath on the weekend.