Monday, January 13, 2014

Here We Go Again...

Well, it's the beginning of the year again, which means that one of my children has to go under the knife…again. I can't say I'm glad that this seems to be becoming a trend in our household.

The first time was, thankfully, a minor noninvasive procedure when B was 2 to put tubes in his ears and have his adenoids out. He'd been relatively sickness free for the better part of his life; right up until November when he'd gotten his first ever ear infection. That damn thing just wouldn't go away. Things would be going great while he was on antibiotics, we'd finish the round and the next day he would be in pain again. It jumped from one ear to the other and then back so he had a double ear infection. After 2 months of pain we finally decided to do tubes in hopes that would help. At the insistence of B's speech therapist we also discussed having his adenoids removed to lower the chance that built up fluid was the cause of his not speaking. Rich worked that day so I was on my own, waiting nervously in the lobby while my baby was out cold. That was cake compared to being alone while handling post-op anesthesia wake up. That was a nightmare. My baby didn't know who I was and was crying uncontrollably for his Mommy, even though I was right there trying to comfort him. However, I can officially say this was one of the best decisions we've ever made. B hasn't had a single ear infection since and his speech drastically improved post-op.

Our second go around in the operating room was last January. B was 4, and I was halfway through my pregnancy with R when the situation arose. We discovered he had a hiatal hernia; a hole in his intestinal wall that was causing his intestines to be pushed through int his groin, which in turn caused his testicles to swell. I was assured that it was fairly common and that the procedure was easy and quick. But this was more invasive than the last procedure and the thought of someone cutting into my baby's stomach and fishing around his intestines was a little too much to bear. However, it was important we get it fixed before the hernia became strained and cause pain and permanent damage. I was lucky enough not to have to wait alone this time. Rich had been moved to the swing shift at work, and my mom took the day off to be there for support. Again, the waiting was cake compared to waking up from anesthesia. I don't know if he recognized me this time or not, if he didn't he didn't say anything to that effect. but he was pretty out of it, and upset that he had IVs and cords attached to him. It took everything we had to keep him from ripping off the monitors and tearing out the IV.

No, here we are again, the beginning of a New Year, and I'm facing the operating room again. Only this time, it's my youngest baby going under. Even weirder than adding to the OR trend, is that this case is also penis related. I imagine this is only the very beginning of penis related issues in my house. I'm outnumbered; penises 3, vaginas 1. Anyway, R was born with something called a penile torsion. Basically it means that his penis, or at least in his case the foreskin, is twisted. It was glossed over by every nurse and doctor that looked at him after birth, or if they saw it I wasn't informed. I noticed it a few days later and brought it up to his pediatrician at his newborn check-up. It went a little like, "So I noticed this thing," *points* "that's not normal is it?" The doctor took a closer look and said something along the lines of, "Oh, no, I guess it isn't. Remember that circumcision I told you to come back for in a week? Yeah, we can't do that." I was told R would have to be at least 6 months old before they even consider circumcising him and it would have to be done by a urologist so the torsion could be corrected. It was even mildly explained to me HOW they go about fixing one of these things and I'll spare you the gory details; it made my stomach churn.

We finally made a visit to the urologist today and got some good news. The torsion is not very severe and the doctor believes he can fix it with no problem. The bad news, or at least the bad news for Momma Bear, is that my poor little 8 month old baby boy has to go under. I was wary about putting my 2 year old under for his tube surgery, let alone my baby. Add to that the doctor suggests a form of anesthesia in addition to general anesthesia that is like an epidural. They want me to allow them to put medicine in my baby's spine. The doctor said this will give him pain relief for 24 hours, opposed to the 4 hours awarded by topical numbing agents. Supposedly the worst pain is in the first 24 hours, and he recommends it to all his patients who are not yet walking. Sigh. I'm not looking forward to this, but I know it must happen. If we choose not to do the surgery R could have issues with direction and painful erections when he's older. That's not something I want to strap him with.

No one wants to put their children through pain, even if it is necessary. In addition to the thought of my baby being in pain I have to worry about him waking up from anesthesia. He'll be starving, because he's not allowed to eat for a while before the procedure, and if he's anything like me or his brother he'll be disoriented and scared, and there won't be anything I can do except hold him and wait to his mind to clear. Being that I have vivid memories of waking up from anesthesia at the age of 4 with my entire body tinglingly with that fall-asleep-on-your-arm-funny asleep feeling. It's not that I was traumatized by it; I've been put under several times since then without any marked anxiety or bad wake-ups, but the very fact that I can remember it means something.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Excuse You!

People are rude. Let's just put it bluntly. The last time I checked it was not socially acceptable to walk up to an overweight person and proclaim, "Wow! You're huge!" So why does the fact that I have a tiny human inside my abdomen somehow give people the green light to make comments on how big I am? Somehow because I'm not actually fat gives perfect strangers permission to comment on my size?

I cannot tell you how many times per day I see customers at work, people I have never met before and don't know from Adam, who feel the need to comment on my swelling belly.

"When are you due?"

"May 20th"

"Oh wow! Are you sure you'll make it that long?" or "Are you having twins!?" or "That's going to be a BIG baby!"

Take your pick of responses, and I can promise you there are loads more. I swear to you I am not that big. I am 33 weeks pregnant, in the last trimester of pregnancy, and roughly 7 weeks away from delivering. That's 7 Saturdays from now if you really need a visual of how little time that is. I am technically 8 MONTHS PREGNANT, so yes, my belly is supposed to be quite round.

And it's not just strangers that feel the need to comment. Although the fact that they are strangers makes them stand out a bit more. My co-workers drive me crazy with their constant daily comments about the size of my belly. It's really not necessary to make a comment every single time I see you. If I just saw you yesterday I can almost guarantee you the belly did not get bigger, at least not in any way that you'd be able to detect with the naked eye. Yet I find I'm greeted with "Whoa you're huge!" or "Hey fatty" nearly every day.

Honestly, I know I'm round, I look in the mirror every day. But I'm also doing the most amazing thing ever imaginable, I'm growing a tiny perfect little human IN MY ABDOMEN. And if you really must know I'm measuring right on track with how far along I am, so as of right now I will not be having some Guinness record breaking baby.

Here I am the day before I delivered (or the day of delivery?) with Braedan. He was a whole 7 lbs 6.5 oz:

Now here I am at 32 weeks pregnant with #2:

I think I need to do some collaging of the two side by side, but I'm really not that big. I've got a ways to go so save your comments for 6 weeks from now.

Monday, February 25, 2013

One step for man... giant leap for mankind.

That's the kind of night I'm having. I feel like I just embarked on an emotional adventure of a lifetime. No, I'm not talking about becoming a mother for the second time. That part of my life I'm good with, nervous of course, but good. This new adventure is in regards to my firstborn.

If it's not common knowledge already, Richard is not Braedan's biological father. I was 18, young, and to put it bluntly, stupid. Braedan's biological father, we'll call him "S", hasn't been in the picture. I left him when Braedan was 4 months old, and the last time he ever saw Braedan was on his first birthday. I officially got primary legal custody of Braedan shortly after his first birthday. All this means is that Braedan lived with me all the time, and S had no contact that I had sole legal guardianship and decision making. That process was an emotional roller coaster in itself.

The one thing that helped me through it all was Richard. Due to legal requirements I had to wait until Braedan was 8 months old to file for custody and coincidentally that happened to be the same time that Rich entered our lives. We hit it off pretty quick and I knew that he was a great guy. He understood what I had been through with S and he didn't push the issue, and was there for the times when I just had to cry. He was there for me when I had to face S in person at Braedan's first birthday, and he was the first to get the victory phone call when the judge officiated the custody arrangement. Three years, to the day, after we started dating we became husband and wife.

Rich is, for all intents and purposes, Braedan's father. Though they don't share DNA it is ridiculously uncanny how much they seem to look and act alike. We never pushed Braedan to call Rich "dad", but he's figured out now what a dad is and who that person is for him. And now...we're taking the step to make that official. I'm getting emotional just writing about it. Chalk it up to pregnancy hormones if you want! But the thought that my husband could officially be Braedan's father, that Braedan's birth certificate would show Rich's name as the father, and that we would all have the same last name, is something that means so much to me.

I'm not going to lie. I am terrified. Absolutely terrified of this process. It scares me that I will be forced to contact S. I'm afraid that "reaching out" to him will make him fight back, fight for something that he obviously doesn't care for. Even before I found out I was pregnant control was a huge thing for S. After we split up he continued to try and control and manipulate and it's been a comfy existence not having to deal with it. But the fact remains that he still has rights, and I'm afraid that bringing it up (and asking [or threatening] to take that away) will make him exercise those rights just to control the situation. That he'll say no just because he can. I don't want this to be a long drawn out process. Everyone involved in our lives, including S's parents (who are involved in Braedan's life) know that S doesn't care about his son. I'm hoping and praying that he sees what's best for Braedan and agrees to sign over his rights. But I think I know him too well to put too much hope into that scenario.

We will need all the prayers we can get in the next few months.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

What have you done with myself?

Is there an influx of hormones in the 23rd week or something? I feel like I'm off my rocker.

Want to know what I've been doing all day? Scrubbing my floors. Like on my hands and knees with a bristle brush and toothbrush scrubbing. Ok so maybe people actually do that but I HATE cleaning. I seriously get more cleaning done when someone is coming over than I do just regular cleaning.

The other night Rich came home from work at midnight to find me scrubbing the oven.


I also feel a little manic the past few days. Like I could burst into tears at any moment, and I'm normally not like that, even while pregnant. Last night I drowned my sorrows in a tall glass of ice cold milk...and there were casualties. In the form of an entire bag of Lindt truffles. My Sees candy almost didn't make it but I've been holding on to that treasure for as long as I can, because I've been craving Sees this whole time and we don't have any near us. I kid you not, Rich found me passed out on the bed surrounded by Lindt wrappers. It was probably a sad sight.

I guess it doesn't help that the insurance company is stressing me out, and Braedan's surgery for his hernia is tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

I'm back!

I promise I have not forgotten about the blog! In my effort to stay off social media I sort of just lumped the internet in general in there and neglected the blog for a while. Then as I was making my way back into the etherverse my New Year got really interesting.

On New Years day I got a call from my mom to say that Braedan was having some unusual swelling of his testicles. They were going to wait until my aunt, who is an RN, could look at it the next day but to be prepared because she might be taking him to the ER. At this point they were still in California and I was sitting at home in Colorado 1000 miles away from my baby who needed his momma! I stressed for a whole day before hearing from my aunt that she thought he might have a hernia and to get him checked out by the doctor as soon as they returned home. A hernia? How in the world does a 4 year old get a hernia!?

We saw his pediatrician the Monday after he got back from vacation and she couldn't say whether or not he had a hernia for sure, but that he definitely had a hole in his abdominal lining that was causing fluid to build up in his scrotum. Both circumstances involve a hole in the abdominal lining but a hernia means that intestines are pushing through the hole, where the other problem called a hydrocele is just fluid. We were referred to a pediatric surgeon for further analysis. Oh we go...

We saw the surgeon a week later and he confirmed that Bam does in fact have a hernia, and it needs to be repaired sooner rather than later to avoid the hole getting bigger and/or developing a problem. So, how does a 4 year old get a hernia? Well apparently it's fairly common. About 2-5% of boys will have this type of problem. For most children the problem fixes itself by 12 months, but for others it sticks around and requires surgical intervention. We're in the latter group. Oh joy! So my poor precious baby boy is scheduled for surgery next week.

Although I am glad that we caught the problem before it was really a problem (he's not in any pain now), I really hate putting him under. Braedan has only been put under once and that was to get tubes put in his ears at age 2. Ironically, it has been almost exactly 2 years since he had his first surgery. He was so disoriented when he came out of anesthesia that he was crying for his mommy and I was sitting right next to him telling him I was right there! He just didn't comprehend. That was the hardest part. I also had to go it alone as both my mom and Rich had to work that day. Luckily for me, Rich works evenings now and my mom is taking the day off to be here. So, I will get to have my awesome support rocks to keep me sane.

My resolution this year was to focus on the positive. I can not be more glad that my son has been amazingly healthy since birth. It's a blessing that this is our biggest problem.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Slugs, snails, and puppy dog tails...

That's right folks, it's a boy and we are just as shocked as you are!

We certainly were thinking it was going to be a girl, and I'm honestly thinking about buying a lottery ticket because the odds were against a boy. All of the wives tales (and not to mention the fact that Rich is the only boy in his family and the youngest) suggested we should be having a girl but they were wrong!

I'm still a little shocked, but excited for Braedan to have a little brother. I am glad I can finally look at baby stuff and know what I'm looking for!

We don't have names yet as we decided to wait to discuss names until we knew the sex of the baby. We started talking names this morning after finding out, but haven't come to an agreement. To keep a little element of surprise we've discussed keeping the name quiet until the baby is born. So have fun guessing until then!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


Happy New Year! Rich and I rang in the New Year with some very good friends and had a great time. I still miss my baby boy, but he probably had more fun than me! I'm a little jealous he got to spend new years with our family in California setting off illegal fireworks. :)

Tomorrow brings lots of changes for this blog and for the Liggett family. We have our anatomy ultrasound scheduled for tomorrow morning and hopefully we'll be able to find out the sex of the baby! I plan to change the look of the blog to reflect what we find out, after we tell everyone else of course.

I'm very anxious for tomorrow. For so long I've tried not to get my hopes up for one gender over the other, and so the baby is just that, a baby. Ambiguous for now. To think about knowing the gender, of giving the baby a name, seems very surreal. So look tomorrow for an update on what we find out!