My Breastfeeding Badges of Honor

Tales of Strings and Things

6:10:00 PM Edit This 0 Comments »
I know y'all are dying to know the news on the Gavin front. I apologize for not posting this sooner. It's been a crazy week and I have been beyond exhausted.

Dr. H's office called me bright and early on Tuesday (last Tuesday the 18th - Yes, I've keen working on this post for that long. lol). Gavin's x-rays were clean and clear. They didn't show any lumps, masses or balls of string in his stomach. At least none that were showing on the x-rays, which is awesome. Dr. H said that he's not really concerned with it being a serious health issue, as far as it being a threat to his life and well-being. So for now he wants us to keep an eye on him. If Gavin develops projectile vomiting, a severe stomach ache or develops issues going to the bathroom we are to call him ASAP because those are signs and symptoms of a bowel obstruction. So far we are doing well. He's still eating his blanket, which isn't what we would like in a perfect world, but for now it is what it is. At least until we can figure it out and figure out how to stop it. So for now we will watch him and pray that it stays status quo.

Other than the Pica, things with Gavin have been...well, things with Gavin. A daily roller coaster ride that never stays the same from one moment to the next.

Monday I spent the day at school working with some of the other moms to prepare a Thanksgiving feast for the students. It was a huge success! And now Thanksgiving break has started. Making today Day 3 with Gavin home. In the grand scheme of things, in the land of living with Gavin, has it been the worst we've ever had? No, not by a long shot. It was just one more trying and exhausting day after another in a long line of trying and exhausting days. Complete with a very dramatic, loud and public meltdown at Patty's office. He kicked, screamed, punched and threw things. All of which probably sounded like we were trying to kill him to an outsider. Fun was had by all, can't you tell?

13 Things I am Thankful for this Year

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Thirteen Things I am Thankful for

1.... Rob, my darling husband. He is the love of my life. I can't imagine life without him.

2.... Gavin Alexander, my beautifully unique oldest. His Autism definitely makes life more complicated and difficult, however, I'm truly blessed to have him as my son. He has helped me become the mother I am today.

3.... Elliott Richard, my kind-hearted trouble-making middle baby. While every baby truly is a miracle, Elliott Richard is my first miracle baby after I was diagnosed as infertile. I am grateful for him each and every day.

4.... Emmett John, my snuggle bug baby.

5.... My pregnancy with Emmett John ended with a happy, healthy baby boy and absolutely no time spent in the NICU.

6.... Rob's adoption of Gavin finally went through - completeing our family and putting an end to 7 years of emotional warfare.

7.... Everyone managed, by the grace of God, to survive the last 7 years of legal Hell and emotional warfare.

8.... Rob is so understanding of my health and physical limitations.

9.... My friends and family. Each and every one of you who has been there, loved and supported us during our struggles. First, while we fought to protect Gavin. Now while we struggle to find our footing again. You've never judged or attacked, only shown us unconditional love and support to the best of your abilities. I will be forever grateful for all of you.

10.... All of your (my faithful blog readers) positive thoughts and prayers over the past year.

11.... Laughter. I may not laugh as much as I like lately but I'm grateful for the times I do get to laugh.

12.... Dr D. and his amazing nursing staff and all their medical expertise for making #3, 4, and 5 possible. Rob and I firmly believe that without these wonderful people Elliott Richard, Emmett John and myself would not be here today.

13.... And my completely shallow thing that I am thankful for, my cell phone. While it's the polar opposite of girlie and what I want, it is exactly what I need and I couldn't get along without it. (Thank you to my darling husband for forcing me to use it. Somehow you always know...which is really irritating sometimes. ;) lol)



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Not Me Monday

5:00:00 AM Posted In , Edit This 1 Comment »
This week I definitely did not....
I did not.... realize that while I had only been cheating on my milk-free diet in the smallest, ney tinyest of ways that was more than enough to cause the 4:00 am wake up calls I've been getting from Mr. Emmett John. That would make me a mean mommy who had caused her baby's pain in a moment of weakness.
I did not.... find Gavin jumping {like ceiling brushing jumping} on his bed at 5:00 am one morning. Since he's 8 years old {chronologically anyway, mentally he's more like 3 years old} he has obviously already learned that bed jumping is a bad idea.
I did not.... then scream "Gavin Alexander what on Earth are you doing?!" scaring the pants off of him in mid-jump. Doing so would have increased both the danger and odds of him injuring himself, which we luckily managed to avoid.
I did not.... begin insisting that Elliott Richard take naps {which is often a battle to accomplish} so that Emmett John and I could nap with him. That would be selfish and self-centered and a desperate act of an exhausted mother of 3.
I did not.... secretly get excited that the paperwork for Emmett John's ENT doctor had come in the mail because I seriously love to fill out paperwork. Because that would be sad and probably even bump up my ranking as a nerd. {It goes back to the whole love of writing problem I have.}
I did not.... use a website to rate the reading level of my blog.
I also did not.... then have my feelings hurt when I learned that my blog is painfully simple and low on the reading level scale.
And last but certainly not least, I did not.... spend more time marveling at my M&M's (Mini Miracles) than doing housework this week.

Our Funkalicious Saturday‏

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I hate winter. Don't get me wrong, it's beautiful and is home to some of my favorite holidays. However, it's also incredibly cold, which is not a good climate for those of us with fibromyalgia. Plus as beautiful as the snow and icicles are, they are Hell on the roads. Especially when there is currently a salt shortage which leads our "fearless leader" Governor Strickland to issue a statement saying that Ohioians simply need to learn to drive in the snow. {Jerk.} For his information, most of us know how to drive in the snow because we've lived here our entire lives. It's merely a matter of a little thing called "Public Safety" that we prefer to have the roads plowed and salted down. Silly Ohioians, wanting safe roads. {Pfth.} Looks like those of us without 4x4 vehicles are S.O.L. (Sorry Out of Luck) {That includes us, by the way.}

Anywho, back to the temperature and it's reeking havoc on my body. I am hurting. Big time. I slept horribly last night for two reasons. First, I was having some seriously bizarre dreams. The kind of dreams where you wake up, say "what the..." and then go back to sleep only to pick-up right where you left off. {I hate that.} Second, I kept waking up in excruciating pain. It was next to impossible to find a comfortable position and believe me when I say I tried. Lucky for me, I have about the best husband in the world. When Elliott Richard woke up at 4:00am but Emmett John didn't, Rob got up with Elliott Richard and left us to sleep in! {Woo who!} Granted, I'm not sure that 7:30am classifies as "sleeping in" but I'll take what I can get at this point. {lol} I had hoped the extra sleep would help to ease the pain. Unfortunately, it didn't. I still woke up in excruciating pain and with a migraine to top it off. Even after taking two extra strength Tylenol and a 3 hour nap with Elliott Richard and Emmett John; I still feel as if someone beat me with a baseball bat while I slept. Needless to say, I'm a tad grumpy today.

Today is my little sister, Jenn's 18th birthday. {Okay, technically she's Rob's little sister and my little sister-in-law. We choose not to use the in-law part though.} We are heading over to Mom and Dad G's for a birthday dinner to celebrate. First, we have to go shopping though. While I can't partake in the dinner {We are bringing Emmett John approved food from Burger King for me. Yum.} I'm still really looking forward to hanging out with the whole family. I just love these family dinners. {Although between you and me blogosphere, I wish people weren't freaked out by my nursing Emmett John. But that's another post, for another time.}

Well, we're off to party. Emmett John has been fed. And I hear a family debate brewing. :) I'll be back later with updates on the family.

{Ever notice how when you start a blog, get a rhythm going and then have to stop you can't quite get that groove back later? I hate that.}

Today's Twitter-isms

4:32:00 PM Posted In , , , Edit This 2 Comments »
I needed some pajamas to wear. Daddy offered his pajama pants and t-shirt. What wife can refuse her hubby's comfiest clothes? (lol) So I am wearing Daddy's comfy pajama pants and t-shirt. Elliott Richard is less than pleased with this arrangement.

Elliott Richard: Mommy, dose are Daddy's pants!

Mommy: Yes, they are.

ER: Take dem off!

M: Daddy said I could wear them.

ER: No! Take dem OFF!

M: Daddy, can I wear your pants?

Daddy: Yes, Mommy.

ER: Daddy, you wear Mommy's pants too?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Daddy has an XBox 360. On his 360 he has what Microsoft calls "Arcade Games", which are games that you can purchase on the XBox Live network and download. Elliott Richard is obsessed with one called "Marble Blast" where you control a marble and have to navigate through these courses. Unfortunately, Daddy was working on the computer. This is the conversation that followed:

Elliott Richard: I play Marble Bast?

Daddy: After Daddy is finished working.

ER: I know! I play Marble Bast. *points right index finger to the sky* Perfect idea!

13 Random M&M Facts

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Thirteen Random M&M Facts

1.... All 3 boys were born on even numbered days (18, 4 & 26).

2.... All 3 boys were conceived in odd numbered years (1999, 2005 & 2007).

3..... All 3 boys were born in even numbered years (2000, 2006, 2008).

4.... They were born on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday (so every other day) respectively.

5.... From induction to delivery I was in labor for 15 hours, 10 hours, and 10 hours.

6.... I was an odd numbered age at the time of each birth (19, 25 & 27).

7.... There are 6 years, 1 month, 12 days (or 2232 days) between Gavin and Elliott Richard.

8.... There are 8 years, 5 months, 8 days (or 3078 days) between Gavin and Emmett John.

9.... There are 2 years, 3 months, 23 days (843 days) between Elliott Richard and Emmett John.

10.... Gavin's name was picked out at 20 weeks. Elliott Richard's name was picked in shifts - Richard at 20 weeks and Elliott at about 30 weeks. Emmett John's name was picked out 24 hours (almost to the minute) before his birth.

11.... Emmett John was the earliest and smallest at birth. He is also the longest and heaviest at 4 months (3 months adjusted) old.

12.... Gavin was the longest at birth (21.5 inches). Elliott Richard and Emmett John tie for second place (19.5 inches).

13.... Gavin was 4 days late. Elliott Richard was 22 days early. Emmett John was 27 days early.



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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!



My Visual Personality

8:40:00 PM Posted In , Edit This 2 Comments »
Youniverse Personality TestYouniverse Personality Test

Just for fun. Swiped from Katrina. It's actually pretty accurate.

Happy Hump Day!

9:02:00 AM Posted In , , , , Edit This 0 Comments »
It's Wednesday, the week is officially half over. So let's do a quickie...a quick loose-end wrap up that is. ;) lol

I can't wait for the weekend to get here. I love Friday to Monday because we don't have any appointments. Then between Tuesday to Thursday we are hammered! So I live for the weekends. (lol) Next week is Thanksgiving break at school. They only have school on Monday, which I will spend at school helping to cook Thanksgiving dinner for the students for lunch. So it's likely going to be a long week next week.

I'm thrilled to inform you that the Twins are both officially healthy again! I spent Monday morning scrubbing our Mudroom and making it fit for a sick kitty. So Cosmo had his own apartment for a while complete with room service! (lol) I got his pad all decked out for him and then Gavin and I stopped by the local chinese restaurant on our way home from school to pick up a pint of plain white rice. Once he ate that he seemed to make a complete turn around. Now all three of our kitties are back in the general population of the family. :) The added bonus being the complete lack of poo dribbles all over my house. :) (Woo who!)

The bane of our neighborhood existence is now GONE! (Double woo who!) There was a house the was once a part of our neighbor's Ron and Herman's house. Then when the city made our street wider they made the owners at the time remove a wing and relocate it. Well, it stood literally 6 feet from our garage. The people who used to live there...well, it was bad. They abused their dogs, which led to many calls to the dog warden and Humane Society from me. They abused each other. (One of our first nights here we had to call the cops because one of the daughters was fighting with her baby-daddy and he was brandishing a gun!) It was just a nasty situation. They were foreclosed on a few years ago. Then an attorney bought the house and left it empty. Well, transients were sleeping in it and it then someone has been setting empty houses fires lately, so we finally got the city to agree to destroy it. Yesterday while Gavin, Emmett John, Grandma G and I were with Dr. H the city finally came in and started the demo. They are wrapping up today, which is awesome! If someone had set fire to the house it was so close to ours that we wouldn't have stood a chance. It's kind of freaky though because they are breaking up the foundation and a concrete slab on the back of the lot next door so our house keeps shaking. It feels like they are nudging our house with the construction equipment. Rob took some video for me so I'll have to pick one and post it later. :)

I thought I had more to update on but I can't remember anymore right now. I still haven't heard from Dr. H's office but I will be sure to update when I do. I think I'm going to go lay down now...Mr. Emmett John got sick this morning and I'm feeling pretty nauseous myself. Ick.

ROTFLMAO

8:34:00 PM Posted In , Edit This 0 Comments »


This is Mr. Emmett John to a T! lol

Let's wrap it up

6:53:00 PM Posted In , , , Edit This 1 Comment »
So we left Dr. H's office and went into the basement of the building to their Radiology department. Mom G hung out with Mr. Emmett John. We waited for maybe 5-10 minutes before the pager (like they use at popular restaurants) went off. I went back with him but then the Radiology tech kicked me out of the room. Gavin said he was okay with me leaving the room, so I went. Before I left I explained to him what was going to happen. He took one look at all the big tubes and whatnot coming from and going to the x-ray machine and asked if we were going to suck his stomach out of his body to take it's picture. (God love him.) I then explained again what would happen and tried my best to assure him that we were not going to suck his stomach out to take it's picture. I was an absolute nervous wreck while they were in there but Gavin did beautifully. He told me later that he was still a little scared about the whole stomach sucking thing but after the first x-ray (they took 2) he was okay. :)

Now we wait. As I said before, Dr. H said he will call me tomorrow and give me the results. If there is something there, we will formulate a plan of attack. If the x-ray is clean, we will just keep an eye on Gavin. If he gets worse, we will obviously call Dr. H back. So now we play the waiting game. Fun. Fun.

I just want to say that I am so incredibly proud of Gavin. Dr. H had about a half dozen newborn patients come in while we waited which threw his schedule off in a big way so we ended up waiting for like an hour in the waiting room. Gavin almost lost it a few times but for the most part he held it together. When we saw Dr. H he answered his questions to the best of his ability and he held it together. The x-rays went far better than I had even dared to hope for. It felt as if I had a hybrid of Gavin-before-Autism and Gavin-with-Autism. His answers and many behaviors were very Autistic. But the manner in which he handled the day was very unlike Gavin with Autism. It was nice and I am so proud of him.

Does this xray make me look fat?

12:34:00 PM Posted In , , Edit This 0 Comments »
Dr. H came in with a med student. We talked. He cracked jokes about how my kids are on "very short list" of super difficult cases. (lol) He said hi to Mr. Emmett John. Then he checked out Gavin. Dr. H said his tummy felt fine. He sent us downstairs for the x-ray. If the x-ray doesn't show anything, then we'll keep an eye on him and report back if there's any change (ie. Vomitting, stomach ache, potty issues etc). If the x-ray does show something, well then the ride will get a whole lot bumpier and grumpier. Dr. H said we would form a plan of attack then if need be. So x-ray today. Phone call from Dr. H with the results tomorrow.

Hopefully Gavin does okay in the x-ray. I'll be sure to let y'all know.

Hanging in the Office

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We sat in the waiting room for about 45 mins. Now we're in the exam room. Today seems to be the day for newborns...teenie, tiny, sleepy newborns. I can hear them all screaming. Emmett John is content for now. Mom G is with me to help with Emmett John. Thank God for her. And the wait continues...I'll update when I have something new to report.

*vigorously waves the white flag*

6:03:00 PM Posted In , , , , Edit This 0 Comments »
Didn't God see my white flag? Doesn't he understand that I can't possibly carry anymore? Can't he see how much pain I'm in? Hasn't he noticed how I'm buckling under the weight of all I carry now? Can't he see how much I'm struggling? How little sanity I have left? My patience is gone, too. Can't he tell I feel utterly alone? That I feel as if everything I touch falls to pieces. Can't he hear me screaming for him? Why doesn't he answer?

All I've ever wanted, ever since I can remember, was a family. The stereotypical American dream...a house, a husband, a cat and a dog, 2.5 kids. Granted I have .5 more kids and I traded the dog for 2 more cats than the stereotypical American dream but you get the point. Now that I have want I wanted, I don't know if I was up for the challenge.

I've read the poems about being a parent to a child with "something more". I've heard the euphemisms. It's all crap. Complete and utter crap. I didn't plan a trip to Italy and end up in Holland. I am the mother of a child with special needs. Technically, if there is something more complicated than special needs, that would probably fit better. So far Gavin's laundry list of diagnoses are:

Asperger's/Autism
PTSD
ADHD
Bi-Polar
OCD
Sensory Integration Disorder

And now it has come to our attention that Gavin may also have Pica. Apparently he has been eating toilet paper and the stitching on his comforter. Last night he came downstairs and asked us if his gums were bleeding. I told him no and asked why they would be bleeding. He cheerfully informed me that he sometimes cuts his gums when he's eating his blanket. So we had the food vs non-food conversation. During which I asked him why he would eat toilet paper and his blanket. He said because it tastes good and we don't feed him enough so he eats these things.

Now I don't owe anyone an explanation on this matter, however, I will offer one. First of all, we do feed Gavin enough. In reality he eats more than me, the nursing 28 year old grown woman. Also because of his Autism and various mental disabilities he does not possess the ability to self-regulate so we have to limit his access to food. We have tried in the past to allow Gavin to eat until he feels he is full. What ends up happening is he eats until he vomits. Then after he vomits, he tries to go back and eat some more. So we cannot allow him to attempt to self-regulate during meal times. We make sure that he at least gets all of the suggested values on the food pyramid everyday. So please, rest assured that Gavin is getting plenty to eat.

I checked his comforter last night to see which part of it and how much is missing. All of the "decorative" stitching that holds the center of the comforter together, is gone. He's eaten it. The fact that he's eating the toilet paper actually solves a mystery Rob and I have been pondering for a while, where does all of our toilet paper go. Now Gavin believes he's been eating his comforter for 2 years, however, I know that the last time I washed it (maybe a week or so ago) all of the stitching was there. Just to give you an idea of Gavin's mindset about this whole situation, while I was checking his comforter last night Gavin asked me if I would be replacing it. I told him no. Then I aksed, "Why would I?" His response, "Because this one is almost gone." Yup, he expects us to help him continue this behavior. (Oy vay.)

Obviously it's not a good thing that Gavin is eating non-food items. This is new territory for both Rob and myself so the first thing I did was call Patty. She said that contrary to what Gavin is claiming, she does not believe that we are not feeding him enough. She has seen his inability to self-regulate and as such trusts that we are feeding him plenty. She said that us not feeding him enough is an excuse. She doesn't have a lot of experience with Pica so she suggested I call Dr. R and Dr. H and ask them for their thoughts. So I called both of them and left messages with their nurses. Dr. R said Pica is more of a physical, developmental disorder and we should call Dr. H. Then Dr. H's nurse called back. He wants to see Gavin tomorrow (Tuesday) morning and then he will likely refer us for an x-ray. Dr. H wants to make sure that the string Gavin has eaten hasn't formed a solid ball in his stomach because if it has and it tries to make it's way through his system in one piece it will likely cause a bowel obstruction. And so that is where we are now. (By the way, it's 8:30am on Tuesday now because I had to take a break last night when my laptop died.)

In 2 and 1/2 hours I will pack up Gavin and Emmett John. We will pick up Grandma G and head to Dr. H's office. While we are there I will change Gavin's name! (Yay!) Then our morning of ultra-fun, super cool doctor's appointments and tests will begin. (That was sarcasm by the way.) I will update from my phone on Twitter while we are gone and if I get a chance I'll post updates to the blog as well.

Prayers and positive thoughts would be much appreciated.

*waves white flag*

8:29:00 AM Posted In , , , , , , , Edit This 1 Comment »
This was my Sunday:

  • Woke up with a migraine and a fibro flare? Check.
  • Twins still sick and dribbling poop everywhere? Check.
  • Tried to nap but in too much pain to lay down? Check.
  • More cat poop? Check.
  • Massive Emmett John diaper blow out, which equals still more poop? Check.
  • Doubled the laundry to be washed thanks to dribbles and blow outs? Check.
  • Broke the light switch in the ceiling fan in our bedroom? Check.
  • Cut power to the whole house when I was supposed to only cut it to the bedroom? Check.
  • Then spent an hour and a half in the living room with lit candles and all three boys while Rob inspected the damage, went to the store, picked up dinner and fixed the switch? Check.
  • Fell asleep begging God for a single night of sleep without waking up every hour? Check.

PS. I got the sleep. :)

Google It

7:35:00 PM Posted In Edit This 1 Comment »
cheerio confessions ~ Yup, that would be my blog. Welcome! :)

what should be done with an accidental dose of trileptal? ~ Ouch. We've been there. I hope it turned out okay for you.

confessions of a cf husband ~ A wonderful blog about a beautiful family - Nate, Tricia and Gwyneth Rose. Tricia has CF and had a double lung transplant this year. Gwyneth Rose was a micro-preemie. You can check out their story at Confessions of a CF Husband.

susanb573 blog ~ An intelligent blog about Susan's journey through surrogacy. She has carried two sets of twins for two different gay couples and is currently planning a sibling project for one of her sets of IP (Intended Parents). I think her story is facinating and you can check it out at Adventures in Surrogacy.

morelli chaos ~ This is the blog of a dear friend of mine. I have known her for about 3 years now. She is a mother of three and a nurse. I absolutely adore her. You should check out her blog at Morelli Chaos.

legos and safaris ~ Well, we certainly have plenty of Legos around our house. As for the safari, I've never been to one but life is pretty crazy and jungle-esq around here so nothing would surprise me at this point. (lol)

not me monday ~ Ah yes, MckMama's blog meme/carnival. I love Not Me Monday. It's so nice to know I'm not alone.

song that goes how many times can break.. ~ This would be Rob's current favorite song.

Oy Vay!

11:12:00 PM Posted In , , , Edit This 1 Comment »
Okay, so we met with Dr. R yesterday. We have opted at this time to not try another Bi-Polar medication because we want to be sure the dust has settled from the Trileptal reaction. However, he is now thinking that while Gavin's official diagnosis is Asperger's, which is a high functioning form of Autism, Dr. R feels that he is now moving up and down the Autistic Spectrum between varying levels of functionality.

Imagine a bead on a string. The end of the string in your right hand is high functioning Asperger's. The end of the string in your left hand is the lower functioning Autism. Typically, a child with Autism/Asperger's will have knots on either side of their bead holding it in place. This does not seem to be the case for Gavin. He seems to move freely between varying levels of functionality. So for the moment we are going to keep him on his current medications and try and just keep him grounded as much as possible. Dr. R wants us to try and interact with him as much as possible, even if all we are doing is playing next to him without any real interaction at all. Hopefully, that will entice him out of his head and back to the higher functioning land of Aspergers.

Overall, Gavin has been doing pretty well lately. We are still having our moments of attitude and back talk, which is so irritating. But for the most part he seems to be making every effort to...not be a rude little snot? (lol) Things could be finally looking up just a bit. Only time will tell.

Let's see...what else.

So I've been reading MckMama's blog for a while now. I am hooked. I admit it. I follow her on Twitter. I have her blog listed on Viigo. I check from my laptop. Anywho, she calls her children MSC's, which stands for Many Small Children. I like this. I decided at the pediatrician's office the other day that I would call my boys M&M's, which stands for Mini Miracles. I feel I should share this with you so that you will know what the heck I'm talking about if I ever say M&M. I am not referring to the candy. Just my very sweet and kissable Mini Miracles.

Moving right along...

The Twins are sick. Oddly enough, my beloved Cleo is not. Which tells me that Tweedle Dumb and Tweedle Dumber have been getting into or gotten into something that is not agreeing with them. If only they could be satisfied with the bowl full of cat food but since they aren't and since they choose to eat things that cats should probably not eat, they are sick. And by sick, I mean with the runs. They are pooping all over my house! It is gross. It is disgusting. And yet, I can't seem to do anything more than laugh hysterically while I help Rob clean it up. Okay, I cannot lie, well, actually I can but I choose not to. Honestly, Rob's been cleaning it up way more than me. However, in my defense, I'm usually caring for an M&M when I spot the poop spots. So we looked up the issue on the web since it really doesn't warrant a trip for two to the Vet ER. And seriously, we don't have like $3000 to take them. Well, the web says that they shouldn't eat for at least 24 hours to give whatever it is that is irritating them a chance to work it's way out. So we've taken the food away and been feeding Cleo while she's locked in the bathroom. The Twins are less than thrilled with this arrangement. But life sucks. Maybe if they would stop eating bad things they could have a bowl full of food again. But they won't. So they're sick. And my house is...well, let's just not think about that right now.

And last but certainly not least, the paperwork for the adoption has come through! Everything is really official now. I will pick up our copy on Monday from my attorney and then I can drive all over God's creation and change Gavin's name. :) Those papers also mean that Gavin will never go to Nick's or his mother's again. He will never see them, talk to them, hear from them or generally contact them again - at least while he's a minor. Whoo woo!

And with that bit of amazing good news, I am going to get Emmett John ready for bed and go catch some zzzzz's before it's 4am, which arrives way to fast.

Obiter Dicta - What?!

5:00:00 PM Edit This 0 Comments »
I was looking for a way to say "comment" in an unique and unusual way. www.dictionary.com gave me this:

ob·i·ter dic·tum [ob-i-ter dik-tuhm]
-noun, plural ob·i·ter dic·ta [ob-i-ter dik-tuh] .
1.
an incidental or passing remark, opinion, etc.
2.
Law. an incidental or supplementary opinion by a judge in deciding a case, upon a matter not essential to the decision, and therefore not binding as precedent.

I liked that I hadn't seen it on any other blogs. Plus I felt that the legal reference made it uniquely fitting to my life and blog. :)

Hope this helps. :)

A Super LONG and Long Overdue Post

8:14:00 AM Posted In , , , , , , , , , , , , Edit This 2 Comments »
Okay, Emmett John is fussy so this is going to be the fastest update I can manage. (Yeah, right. lol) Please forgive me if this seems jumbled and disconnected, Emmett John and Elliott Richard aren't big on sleep at the moment.

I'm sorry I haven't posted in nearly forever. I simply haven't been in the mood, which stinks because I was hoping to partake in NaBloPoMo (National Blog Posting Month) but I can only do so much. I do apologize though if my being MIA has made any of you worry.

Gavin

About a month ago Gavin was started on a new bi-polar medication, 150mg Trileptal BID. Everything was fine. It seemed to be working. His moods were gradually evening out. Then the bottom fell out. His moods took a nose dive. He began rapid cycling again. So we called Dr. R and he decided to double Gavin's dose to 300mg BID, which he had planned to do anyway. So two weeks ago, we double the Trileptal. We give Gavin his meds and proceed with getting ready for Gavin and Elliott Richard's flu shot appointments. On our way to Dr. H's office for flu shots, Gavin broke out in a serious rash. Dr. H wasn't in the office but one of the other peds saw him and confirmed that it was a reaction to the Trileptal. She said that there wasn't anything we could do for the itching (apparently Benedryl doesn't work on drug reaction rashes), so that was fun. We were told to keep an eye on his breathing etc but told he should be fine. (Ever try explaining to an Autistic 8 year old that he can't scratch and you can't help the itch? Yeah, I don't recommend it.) Since the ped wasn't worried, we sent Gavin to my Mom's as planned. At like midnight or 1am our phone rings. Gavin now has a fever, the chills etc. His breathing was fine so Mom gave him Tylenol for the fever and we all went back to sleep. He was fine in the morning so it appeared that the worst had passed. Until he got home. The chills, fever etc had returned. He was now running a 104 degree fever! So Rob is calling Dr. R and Dr. H's offices trying to figure out what to do. I'm trying to get Gavin comfortable and giving him Tylenol etc. Dr. R's office decides he has the flu and not a drug reaction at all. Dr. H's office said to keep a very close eye on him, if anything changed or the fever hit 105 we were told to call back ASAP. To give a general idea of how Gavin was feeling, he went to bed at 5pm and slept through the night until 8am the next day!!!!!! (This is a big deal because I don't think he's slept that much since he was Emmett John's age!) On the bright side, he recovered really quick. On the not-so-bright side, I'm definitely not going to win "Mother of the Year" this year. When Gavin went back to school, I accidentally gave him the 150mg dose of Trileptal. Luckily, he survived and we now know for 100% certain that Dr. H was right (it was a drug reaction) and Dr. R was wrong (it was NOT the flu). So while he broke out in a rash again, he handled it like a champ and it was gone within a day or two. So since this whole drama went down Gavin has been unmedicated for his bi-polar, which at the very least is making things interesting. Rob and I see Dr. R today to figure out what the next step is.

Other than that whole mess, things with Gavin have been fairly....typical for Gavin. He's rapid cycling. We're struggling to keep up with him. The whole situation is just exhausting. Of course that could have something to do with the fact that he hasn't adjusted to the time change at all. He puts himself to bed at 6pm every night and asks for him meals an hour early. We've tried to explain it to him but he doesn't get it. Poor thing. Hopefully he'll adjust soon.

On a positive note, a few days after the adoption was finalized (we should have the paperwork any day now - woo who!) the school had an Awards Assembly for the students. Gavin received awards for Perfect Attendance (which was blown for this grading period with the drug reaction), an award for meeting his reading goals with his Title 1 tutor, and another one I can't remember. (Hey, I already told you I wasn't winning Mother of the Year.) The school even went and changed his name on all of his awards so that they read Gavin G. :)

Elliott Richard

Well, unofficially potty training has begun. We've started buying Elliott Richard Lightning McQueen Pull-Ups. It took a little bit of convincing to get him to wear them but now he's in love. He's now changing his own diapers, well, he's taking his wet (and dirty - unfortunately) diapers off and then running around the house buck naked screaming "New biper!" He also tells us (sometimes before and sometimes after the diaper removal) that he's peed or pooped. He will sit on the potty, sometimes for nearly an hour. Then he gets up, puts on a Pull-Up and pees. Oy. So progress is slow and basically non-existent at some points but we are getting there.

During Gavin's whole Trileptal reaction, Elliott Richard received his flu shot. I expected a lot of tears and screaming. Daddy said that he was fine with the shot. (I was meeting with the ped about Gavin.) It was having his legs held down that ticked him off. Once they let him go, he was fine. lol I swear he never ceases to amaze me.

Other than that stuff, there's really not much to report in the land of Elliott Richard. He's still completely obsessed with Emmett John and helping me as much as possible. Which usually means that whatever I'm doing is taking twice as long as it would normally but whatever. He's growing like a weed. Eating us out of house and home or not eating at all. (I just love the terrible two's!) And as his hair grows back from his first hair cut, I'm thrilled to say that it is still wavy/curly! :)

Emmett John

I think I probably have the most to update on when it comes to Mr. Emmett John.

I'm thrilled to report that Emmett John is now the new and improved wireless version. We saw Dr. K and our nurse Vick at the Apnea Clinic last month (yes, I'm really that behind). The only concern they had was one Apneic episode that wasn't a full-fledged episode. His breathing slowed way down and then seconds after his breathing picked up again his heart rate dropped. Since they didn't happen simultaneously, it doesn't count as a true Apneic Episode and he was cleared for release. :)

Since then, he's gained a few pounds and grew a few inches. He now weighs 17lb 3oz and is 26.75 inches long!!!! That's the 80th and 90th percentiles respectively!! Craziness I tell ya.

He's been babbling and laughing (whenever he isn't screaming in pain from the reflux) for a while now but he's recently added the squealing to his list of tricks. He seems to have a very select sense of humor though. Only certain silly noises, scaring/startling him and whatever it is Daddy does seems to amuse him. Although there are times now when he will laugh when he hears someone else laugh, which is super cute! He gets super excited when he sees Mommy, Daddy or Elliott Richard. (Gavin hasn't shown much interest in him so Emmett John doesn't see him hardly ever.) He's rolled over but didn't seem terribly impressed with the accomplishment and hasn't done it in a while. He can't decide between his thumb, his Nuk binkie (he'll take other binkies but strongly prefers the Nuks), and this little blanket I actually bought for Gavin like 7 years ago. He had his first bowl of cereal on Wednesday. In keeping with his tradition of being polar opposite of everything I know from raising Gavin and Elliott Richard, Emmett loves his cereal. I couldn't shovel it in fast enough. lol He holds on to toys that we hand him for a moment or two but gets the biggest kick out of reaching/batting at his hanging toys on his bouncy seat. Speaking of which, he loves that bouncy seat. He'd sit there and kick (making it bounce) all day long if it weren't for little annoyances like hunger and diaper changes. lol

We are keeping a close eye on his reflux because he is on 15mg of Prevacid once a day and he developed a hoarse voice about two weeks ago that isn't really going away. It hasn't gotten any worse, which is something I suppose, but it's not really improving either. We saw Dr. H yesterday for his 4 month checkup and 3 of the 5 vaccines he was due for. Dr. H said to give it until the middle/end of next week, if it hasn't gone away by then I'm supposed to call back and he'll send Emmett to a ENT to have his vocal cords checked out. Other than the hoarseness, Mr. Emmett John is practically perfect in every way. And quite possibly the cutest 4.5 month old in the house. ;)

The Adoption & Legal Issues

Not a whole lot to report on this front. The paperwork for the adoption has been filed. We are just waiting on the judge to sign and date them and get them back to my attorney. At that point I can drive around town and change Gavin's last name with everyone. The school is almost as excited about this as we are. ;)

As for the fact that Gavin will never see them again, well Rob is currently out having "Guy Time" with Gavin to discuss that very fact. Per the suggestion of Dr. R. So I will be sure to update you on how that went when I know more.

There is still the small matter of the contempt motion that Pam filed against me. I filed an objection on September 4th and we just learned that the courts are requesting transcripts from the court date on July 31st. (You know, the court date I didn't attend because I felt it wasn't in Emmett John's best interest?) John, my attorney, emailed Pam's attorney handling the matter and informed him of the adoption and the circumstances surrounding the adoption and the only response he's received so far was "I'll have to get back to you." This lead me to believe that Pam and/or Nick hadn't informed him that Nick no longer has any rights to Gavin. That was probably an interesting conversation. The way John has explained it to me, Pam can drop the whole case but since I didn't do what I was court ordered to do the magistrate can still try and force the jail time issue if he really has a bee in his bonnet over me. This remains to be seen, however, I'll be sure to let you know as soon as I do.

Life in General

Life in general is...well, it's life. I'm exhausted. Emmett John gets up at 4am every morning. Elliott Richard usually isn't too far behind - getting up at 5 or 6am. I'm up so I usually just bring Elliott downstairs with me so that Rob can sleep. That way if we have a few empty hours during the day I can grab a nap. I've started seeing my therapist, Nina, again. I love her. She also has a massage therapist, Kim, whom I also love. She does wonders for my fibro, which is currently kicking my butt. So overall, things are...trying to find a new sort of norm.

Okay, I started this at like 8am this morning. It's now 4pm. Emmett John is screaming because he's tired and starving. I have a raging migraine. We are going to lay down. (Woo whoo!) As soon as Daddy mows up the leaves. (Stupid lawn. Stupid trees. Stupid fall.)

Tuesday Toot

5:39:00 PM Edit This 2 Comments »
I voted!

Enough said.

Ah...true love...

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