Archive for the ‘My Story’ Category

Addicted to Sanitizer

About a year ago, I was in a restaurant with Kyle when a family came in and sat next to us. The mother pulled a roll of Lysol wipes and cleaned EVERY thing in sight. Then squirted sanitizer on the table and sat her little girl down and gave her some too. Me and Kyle sat there and laughed at this crazy woman until long after we left. 

Shortly after Kyson came home, he came down with a cold. The doctor sent us home with Benadryl and a humidifier. But a few days later he became dehydrated and we went back to the doctor. After a catheter, a long wait in the ER, and a blood test we were admitted for having RSV… The three dreaded letters that make all preemie parents cringe.


I seriously thought I was going to lose him.  

Human respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) is a virus that causes respiratory tract infections. It is the major cause of lower respiratory tract infection and hospital visits during infancy and childhood. It usually rears it’s ugly head during the winter months, similar to the flu. 

In the United States, three out of five children get RSV in their first year of life. By the age of 3, almost all children have been infected. Out of the infants infected, about 2% will develop bronchiolitus and need to be hospitalized. The most severe cases can end in death. These two outcomes are more likely if the patient has immunity issues or was born premature. 

For most people, RSV produces only mild symptoms, similar to the common cold. The Centers for Disease Control consider RSV to be the “most common cause of bronchiolitis (inflammation of the small airways in the lung) and pneumonia in children under 1 year of age in the United States”  

RSV Symptoms
 
•Low-grade fever for several days
•Difficult or rapid breathing and deep coughing.
•Irritability
•Listlessness
•Poor feeding
•Blueish or purpleish tinge to skin 

Studies have shown that the lung scaring from RSV may take two years to heal completely as long as there are no other colds in that time period. Most of us aren’t that lucky. Doctors say that with every cold after RSV, it’s like opening those old wounds again. 

Recurrent wheezing and asthma are more common among individuals who suffered severe RSV infection during the first few months of life. Whether RSV infection sets up a process that leads to recurrent wheezing or whether those already predisposed to asthma are more likely to become severely ill with RSV has yet to be determined. That’s why it is imperative to stay away from cigarette smoke and any harsh chemicals that can be breathed in.


Before and After RSV

Kyson stayed in our local hospital for the night until I decided they had no clue what was going on. (We had random people coming in our room to see the premature baby everyone was talking about like a sideshow) That night he went into respiratory distress and the next morning his doctor sent him to the ICU at a children’s hospital in Atlanta. It was scary, but he will think it’s cool one day that he had to ride in an ambulance into Atlanta in the middle of Christmas shopping traffic. (:

I’m so terrified that Kyson will have asthma or even get so sick again that he can’t breathe. So guess what…

I’ve become the lady with the clorox wipes in my diaper bag. That’s why I obsess over wiping down carts at the store AND using a cart cover. I now agree with smoking laws where I didn’t used to and I’m married to a smoker. Rain, sleet, or snow, you better bet he smokes on the porch!

So with RSV season kicking off, make sure you take care of yourselves and be careful. Stay away from sick people at ALL costs.   

 

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It Begins: A Reflection on Last Year

Right now a year ago, I was on my way to Greenville. I was discharged from a long night in the hospital triage the day before with HEAVY bleeding and then sent home to rest. Then to the doctor on Monday. I was there 10 minutes before Dr. Parker sent me to the high risk unit at Greenville. Thank God for that man. He was the only doctor that listened to me. No more sleeping on puppy pads for me, they’ll figure out what’s wrong. 

I got there and checked in. I was pretty calm about it despite the woman that was in labor next to me screaming. I walked to my room and everything was happy and going smoothly. The ultrasound lady came in and I realized that these were the same specialists I had been seeing all along! A blood pressure mishap turned into a good thing because these people already had records on us and knew all about what was going on. They said that he would be about five pounds but not to let the weight fool me. He would still have problems. He was only bigger because I was bigger.

Then they brought in the magnesium sulfate. Oh what a horrible, horrible thing to do to a person. It slows down and hopefully stops labor but it makes you sick. And since its pretty much just salt water in an IV, it burned and felt like glass ripping through my veins. That was THE worst part of my week there. That and the shots. They gave me shots once a day to speed up his lungs. Sometimes I swear I still get a pain where they stuck me. They hurt so bad. 

They didn’t know whether I’d make it through the night so I was treated like anyone else. I couldn’t eat or drink, just lay there. So I slept. All the family was there waiting and I was sneaking ice chips because I was so thirsty. Eventually the ice and the magnesium sulfate mixed in my stomach and made me barf salt water all over my mom and Kyle. Everyone cleared out after that and everyone went home except Kyle and my mom and dad… I think. After that night, I don’t remember much.           

Instinct

(Continued from 9/17)

Three months before, in June, I went in for a check up. The blood pressure cuff was too little and snapped off my arm while it was doing it’s thing and the new nurse had no clue what she was doing and tried to hold it on with both hands mashing it into my arm and let it finish. She should have started over but the nurse took it as fact, even though the thing wasn’t touching my arm good in places. My blood pressure was supposedly 169/90-something. I have never had high blood pressure before nor did I have it ever again. (Mine usually hits right at 114-ish FYI) But still they decided to send me to a specialist for my ultrasound, as I was now classified as high risk. Everything was normal even though I was leaking somewhat but the stupid nurse told me it was probably pee without even checking me.

Follow Your Gut!

Being high risk, I was scheduled for ultrasounds with a specialist at the hospital once a month. In July, I went in as usual and I hear her utter the most frightening words any expectant mom could imagine. “Let me go get the doctor.” Dr. Mabie, all the way from Greenville, comes in and tells me that there is a subchorionic hematoma in my placenta, which is really just a fancy word for a patch of blood floating around the outside wall (also a pretty good indicator for a threatened miscarriage). He asked if I had picked anything heavy up or noticed any bleeding. I was puzzled. Not a drop. Nothing.

Until Sept 17.

(To Be Continued…)

When you know something is wrong but the doctor says you’re fine, what do you do? You know your body more than anyone. But he has a degree. If you feel like something is not right, do NOT hesitate to pick up the phone and call your doctor at any hour. Don’t feel stupid even if they make you think you are. The life and health of your child is most important. And if he doesn’t give you a good enough answer go to the hospital or find another doctor.

NICU Pics (WW)

I found these in my old cell phone today. These are from the NICU.

The Country Mouse vs The City Mouse

Our bodies are made of about 60% water. In babies, the percentage is much higher at 78. Pretty cool, huh? So we can say water is pretty important. Right up there with oxygen. It keeps us alive. Makes us feel good. Ever had a hangover? You were dehydrated. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wouldn’t water be one of the few things that separate a house from a tent in the yard, other than air conditioning and directv? So am I right to be fighting mad when my father in law runs my well dry?

We live on a farm. We have cows and chickens and a nice creek with a big ole pond behind our house. It’s not our farm, it’s my inlaws’, but we’re about to start building our house here… or maybe we were until I blew off the handle the other day. We propped up a single wide this past year, roughly 100 yards from the chicken houses (sounds like Georgia to me!) so the agreement was that he would drill our well for us as a gift IF we let him use it as a backup for emergencies, like when his THREE other wells mess up. Sounds reasonable, what are the odds of that happening?

Well it did. And after a few days, with no warning that he had even been using it, red mud started coming out of the faucets. It occasionally does this if it rains alot because of something scientific that I can’t explain but Kyle can. Then once it stops raining for a few hours, everything’s back to normal. So I waited on my shower until in the morning. It never happened.

We went three days with no usable water whatsoever. I couldn’t clean, cook, bathe, wash clothes or dishes, NOTHING! So I was mad. When Kyle told him about it, he said “oh well” (no pun intended lol) because he had to have water for the chickens or they would die. That’s understandable since the chickens are his way of supporting his family. But why should we have to pay for the power to run water all day and night to the chicken houses since the well is hooked up to OUR power?? And my son shouldn’t have to start wearing pampers and drinking his milk out of a Dixie cup when the water at their house hasn’t been touched!!! There’s a 9 month old baby over here!

So Day 4, I woke up and the water was clear again. So I started washing things and I went all day with clean water until I tried to wash diapers, I put them through the rinse. It was clear, so I turned the hot water on. It was clear but when I went back to get them out, they were blood red with caked on mud. Now I know that my FuzziBunz can probably take anything you throw at them but I had just bought a brand new Blueberry Minky with bamboo inserts that cost me $35 and I was livid.

So I hulked out and started screaming at Kyle. Not yelling, screaming. Then as he continued to shrug it off and watch Spongebob instead of God forbid, caring about the muddy water, it made me madder so I threw my diapers into the front yard and packed up Kyson to go stay at my mom’s until the water cleared. Little did I know, they were all out in the pasture working on one of the wells and probably heard every mean, hateful thing I had said. I agree that I overreacted. But I still stand by my arguement that we need clean water to live. It’s not optional. But now they’re all hurt butt over what I said but I meant every word.

Kyle, who has been domesticated, went down there to use their washer to soak the mud out of the diapers before it set in. His mom told him that she WAS going to buy Kyson a new carseat (I mentioned it the other day and apparently that meant I was broke and needed her to buy it??) but then she just had to go buy a new well pump. Like, she was punishing me?? My God!!! But it does make me sad. I like Jimmy (Kyle’s stepdad) and think alot of him. And he’s terribly mad at me. I’m just wondering if you guys think I’m being a spoiled, stuborn, high maintainance, brat or just looking out for my family? Be honest. 🙂

Machines can’t replace God

Right now, nine months ago, I had been laying in a bed hooked up to magnesium sulfate for a week. I hadn’t been up to go to the bathroom in three days and I hadn’t had anything to eat for two. The nurse was telling me I was having stomach cramps because of this. It couldn’t be contractions because they weren’t showing up on the monitor. It had been 10 hours and I was begging for something to make it stop. I feel pretty hardcore now looking back because I was in labor and taking it like a pro. Thank you yoga for helping me learn to breathe and relax! So the shift changed and this older nurse came in. She’s like “honey, you’re having a baby. Machines can’t replace God.” She was so kind. I loved her.

The good nurses were the older ones. I had three or four younger ones that were almost hateful. Ugh. And mama just about slapped one of them because she said she couldn’t talk to me about what was going on but a doctor could. So I asked for a doctor. Which could be any random person because I was so far from home my doctor couldn’t be there. (Its like on TV when one doctor goes around with a bunch of students and props up in the corner while the students are quized over what to do in your situation. They’ve got to learn somehow but I felt like a freaking guinea pig.) When she came in the nurse was rolling her eyes like “i told them this and they didn’t listen”. Mama was halfway across the room before daddy had to grab her.

Back to the story. So my contractions were already off the charts but I was only 3cm and not moving. So they knocked me out for a few hours. I finally got some help with my cervix at 6pm since Kyson was killing me trying to claw his way out. I wouldn’t know cause I was dead to the world. After round three of whatever that stuff was wore off, I was far enough to get that wonderful, holy, beautiful epidural. It was all smooth sailing from there.

And Kyson was born at 11:24 that night. And now he is nine months old today. He’s mastered the art of sitting, crawling, and pulling up all in one month. See there! Therapy my butt!! Hahaha. So that makes his adjusted age 7 months and a week. Right on time like I said. : ) It really has gone by fast. The NICU and the first three or four months dragged by but after that, it’s a wild ride. I want to keep him exactly like he is right now but I can’t. It makes me sad but I’m glad that he’s finally growing and hitting milestones on HIS own time. He’s gonna be tall and skinny like my Papa. I’m so proud of him. And I’m just so happy now because he’s proving everyone wrong.

Wic Woes

So Kyson goes to the health department for insurance reasons and for that sweet free formula that as long as I’m unemployed, we still qualify for. 🙂 Don’t judge. His formula bill every month is more than my car payment.

So alot of times at the health department you see young, um, (what’s the word?) ….. less intelligent people with 4 or 5 nasty little kids running around tearing stuff up and one on the way and she is too busy on her cell phone, talking about whooping someone’s ass, to tell them to quit.

So if all squares are rectangles, then rectangles must be square. So I must have gotten knocked up too and they have to save my baby’s life by teaching me the right way to raise him, because clearly, I’m an idiot if I’m in this lobby.

So they call my name. Only they just say ‘Brown’ because Kyson must be an ethnic name and they won’t attempt to say it. Just try it. “Kee-sawn”, like the lady at the birth certificate office said it, would be better than nothing. Hahaha. But I get back there and since Kyson is on preemie formula, they have to have a prescription, WHICH I had already faxed that morning. So Penney (the nurse) comes in and tells me that Dr. Jones didn’t check yes on the ‘baby food’ line. So ok, he forgot. But no. She has to go call them and and tell them to fax another one with a check mark next to baby food. And returned promptly when the receptionist told her that he was seeing patients and was very busy and it would have to wait.

He’d already sent you one. Can’t you just mark it for him??? And three months ago, he had to send another and he was eating baby food then! Why WOULDN’T you give an 8 month old food? And why do I need a prescription anyway? You can buy it all day long and it costs the same thing so why would I want it if he didn’t need it? So he can be fat like me? And do termie babies have to have their doctors sign off that they can eat baby food? No. I was mad. Especially when these are the same people that keep bugging me about therapy cause he didn’t know how to sit up when he was 7 months. Um. He’s two months behind you fools!!! And then they were amazed when I showed them how use his corrected age on the growth chart. So why are they giving me a hard time? Is it because he’s little? Or do they get kickbacks or something through these special programs they do for the preemies? I understand they have regulations but it’s just silly.

So now I have to wait to get another prescription sent before I can have baby food, meaning I have to come back in a few weeks. When usually I just buy it or make it myself anyways. It’s just the inconvenience. And the assumption that all young moms are morons. It makes me sick.

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