Monday, January 28, 2008


My mind is going in a million directions at once. Instead of letting a lack of specific direction prevent me from posting, I'm going with the flow. So excuse me if this gets a little disjointed. Just consider it a little peek into my brain. lol

First an update on Sean. He's greatly improved over last weekend. Although he's a bit hoarse sounding now, I'm not sure why. It does leave me a bit on edge though. I just keep remembering how Carrie was before her cancer dx. One illness after another at the end of her antibiotic treatment or as soon as it was over. I hate having that always in the back of my brain! I wanna know who to see to get my innocence back.

Generally this has been a weird illness season all around. Nothing huge like the flu (yet) but there's always something going around to keep these guys feeling off. Just this morning I was thinking...ahhh, everyone is feeling well and back at school. Yeah right! I was almost home from dropping Michelle off this morning when my cell phone rings. Olivia's in the nurse's office. She's not feeling well and has a slight temp. Luckily I had just gotten to the village and was only a few blocks from school. She was home, in bed, and napping in no time.

My sister's going to love it when I call her tonight and tell her. We switched kids for the night Saturday night. This was after I assured her that everyone was well...not even a runny nose in the lot! UGH!!!

Talking to my sister this weekend was a bit enlightening. I complained to her that it had gotten so I couldn't mention anything about my life without my mom getting all atwitter. It had gotten so bad that I just stopped talking about what was going on with me altogether. My sister let me know that my mom "had a reason" why she was acting like she was. Seems she had a dream a few months back that my house caught on fire. No one was able to get out or into the house to help us because it was so messy and cluttered. Yes, my house was in such bad shape that it was giving other people nightmares! Things made a bit more sense to me. I know how upsetting those dreams can be, I've had them quite a bit since I was teen. Actually my first one was as a teen. Seems I died in a fire after trying to get my sister awake (she was horrible to wake up in the morning) and then subsequently trying to rescue her when she didn't awaken. Anyways, I wish my mom had TOLD me about this instead of letting it come out like it did.

I'm sure my mom is happy to hear that things are improving here. Tom has really taken an interest in getting this place back in shape now that his mom's place is done. It's been great! Working with him I've realized that I was a quite a bit more depressed then I thought I was lately. Dealing with a demanding newborn, on the go constantly with Tom barely around and working himself to got to me. Thankfully I feel that I'm on the otherside of that now. I'm motivated to get things done, Sean can entertain himself for a bit longer now so I'm able to do some things, and I'm not putting things off until they are unbearable things I HAVE to deal with...or else.

This weekend was productive although I'm not sure anyone would notice except us. Tom and I were busy pulling things apart, cleaning and reorganizing. I actually have cupboards with NOTHING in them!! I haven't seen my small linen closet as empty as it is in a looooong time. I was putting a really good dent in the laundry until this morning. I think I jammed up my dryer this morning. Waaaah! I turned the dryer on and heard the signal that my lint filter was full. (usually empty it every other load, must have forgotten with the last load) I pulled the lint filter out, emptied it and jammed it back into it's slot. Then I heard a horrible noise and smelled hot rubber. My guess is that something got caught on the end of the filter screen and I jammed it into the drum area when I tried to put the lint filter back into the slot. Hopefully that's all it is and Tom can unjam it tonight after he gets home from work. I REALLY want to get the laundry taken care of! I only have about 13 loads waiting for me downstairs. lol

Our community has been hard hit this last week. Midweek NV was killed in a car accident. He was 23 and had graduated with Drew. I haven't seen or talked to Drew since the accident so not sure how he's dealing with it. On Sat morning AM was killed in a headon collision. He had graduated last year and was the boyfriend of one of Liz's friends. His younger brother is in Luke's class. AM's aunt was one of Sean's nurses last week. I had asked her how he and his family were doing. You see AM had a brother C who was in Pat's grade. When C was 16 (AM was 13 or 14) he was killed in a snowmobiling accident. AM was involved with the accident and I knew he had had a hard time dealing with that fact. I feel so bad for the M family. No family should have to go through such a tragic loss once, much less twice. :o(

Well, kids are due off the bus any second now, Sean is sleeping in my arms and Danielle is a bit odorous and needs some attention.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Loooong Weekend ~ The end

So now it's Sunday afternoon, Sean and I are home from the hospital (story in the entry before this). Everyone is clamoring to hold Sean. All I want is to get out of the gross clothes I've been wearing since Friday afternoon and take a shower. Oh and go to the bathroom. Do you realize how hard it is to have to use a public restroom constantly? I'd do terrible in a dorm setting. lol

I get out of the shower and decide...since Sean is still happy with all the kids...I'll clean the tub. It's needed it for a while and it bugs me everytime I go in there. Problem is, I'm usually just running in while Sean is occupied for 2mins. I managed to clean the whole tub and surround, it felt so good to get it done. I then attacked the sink and started on the walls. Before I knew it I had worked my way out and down the hall walls. Yeeehaw! By the time the hall walls were done Sean and the rest of the kids were ready for me to have Sean for a while. So we sat down and had a good long nurse session. Eventually Sean fell asleep and I stuck him in bed.

I then attacked the laundry. I'm embarrassed to admit I've been behind in laundry for a looong time. It literally thickly carpeted my whole hallway. So the washer and dryer were going (Tom had done laundry when I was gone). The dishwasher was going (Luke had filled and started it before we got home) I started cleaning up the pile of pans. It felt good to get something accomplished. It also was nice to actually care what the house looked like (hasn't happened in a while I'm sad to admit).

Sean was still pretty needy for attention and his fever was really low grade. His rash wasn't too bad but tended to bother him on and off (it itches). Tom made me a margarita or two and we just relaxed. Having only had 5hrs of sleep while we were in the hospital I relaxed a little too much. Before I knew it I was headed to bed with Sean and Danielle.

Everyone was home Monday morning as it was Martin Luther King Jr Day. That hadn't happened in a long time. I was up bright and early thanks to going to bed at a decent time. Everywhere I looked I saw things I wanted to tear apart, declutter, clean, and organize. I jumped around from one area to another doing a bit here and there. I hate when I do that as it never accomplishes anything great. I decided if nothing else we would get the hallway cleared of clothes.

We had a good incentive to work and get things done since my parents said they'd be out later in the afternoon. Olivia took care of Sean while everyone got to work. Poor Michelle and Eileen worked for TWO hours sorting clothes. THAT is too many clothes!!! (and that's not all of it) All together we worked for 4 hours around here and got a LOT done. I was spot cleaning the kitchen floor when my parents got here. It's looking a lot better here now. Hopefully we can keep it up and deep clean even more.

We had a great visit with my parents. They brought us a treat of Pizza Hut pizzas. The perfect thing after having done all that work. We had a deep and heated discussion about retirement, pensions, social security and life insurance. lol Pat and Jess were here and stayed until after 10. It was great having them here, they haven't been around too much lately.

By the time my parents were leaving I was a bit concerned about Sean. He was starting to feel warm, his rash was really bad and he sounded hoarse. It didn't amount to anything thankfully. He's still off a bit but improving more everyday.

Michelle's first day of school went well today. Her night class was dropped due to low enrollment so no 12 hour school day for her. She's done by 3:20 now. Tomorrow is only one class for 1.5 hrs. Tomorrow I don't have to wait for her because she has to work afterwards, so she'll walk. This week is Regents week (NY state testing). That means the high school kids only need to go to school on Thurs and Fri if they have to take one of the tests. Luke has a test on Thurs morning, Val on Friday morning. Hopefully we can all stay healthy.

Loooong Weekend ~ The beginning

As I said in the update below this weekend's story is long and needs it's own entry.

I already mentioned that all the kids had been sick and on antibiotics. Val was put on zithromax that she finished up on the 10th. Sean was on amoxicillin which he finished on Mon, the 14th. On Mon (the 14th) Val had body aches and a really bad headache. By Thurs she still had the headache and her glands were swollen. Sean started a fever on Thurs which ran pretty high at night (as fevers usually do). Fri morning I decided to get Val back into the dr's. I figured since I was already going in it wouldn't hurt to make Sean an appt to have his ears and throat looked at. They were scheduled to be seen at 4:15 that afternoon.

Having to pick up Michelle from work at 3:45 we headed to the city a bit early. I stopped by Walmart, picked up some photos I had developed and ordered a 50pc box of chicken to be picked up at 5:30. My thinking was that we'd go to the dr's, go back to Walmart, pick up a few things that we needed (BIL asked me to pick him up some things, we were out of toilet paper, milk and bread). We'd grab our box of chicken and have dinner taken care of, allowing us a relaxed night. WRONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

By the time we got to the dr's office Sean was miserable! He was obviously feverish, moaning and crying. While doing his vitals they took his temp which was 102.9. They were surprised when I told them he'd had ibuprofen 3hrs ago. His heartrate was 203 and his O2 rate was 92%. They were all a bit on edge about how inconsolable he was.

The dr walked into the room while reading Sean's chart. He took one look at him and asked him how he'd like to spend some time at the hospital. OH NO! He did a quick exam and throat culture on Val and then turned his attention back to Sean. He did a throat culture on Sean too and then told me he thought it was best to admit Sean. That babies as young as him don't show typical symptoms to many serious diseases like meningitis. He wasn't too comfortable with how agitated Sean was and he wanted to run tests to make sure he wasn't dealing with something really serious. It also would help him from becoming dehydrated which he was heading toward.

So now I'm stuck with a few dilemmas....what do I do about the preordered box of chicken? What about the serious need for toilet paper (down to a few tissues in the house lol)? And of course...what am I going to do with Danielle, Val and Michelle? I make a few calls and we figure out how and who will be picking up the girls from the hospital later. Wonderful mother that I am, I decide to do a Walmart run on the way to the hospital. We literally ran through the store, practically knocking people over as we did. I felt so rude. I felt very deserving of the mother of the year award in the checkout line. It was quite obvious that Sean was pretty sick. He was wimpering in his carseat, his cheeks blazing red from the fever. The cashier kept sneaking looks at him as she scanned my groceries. I kept thinking she's going to stop scanning and call social services any second now. I wanted to blurt out my sob story and defend myself but refrained.

When we arrived in the ER they tell my our dr had called to see if we'd arrived yet making me feel even more deserving of that MOTY award. They have someone come get us and bring us to Sean's room. Everyone scurries to get him admitted. His temp is now 104.5. His diaper change involved a urine collection bag being stuck on.

Tom gets there and Seans calms a tiny bit when Daddy takes him (he LOVES his daddy). The dr arrives, Tom and the girls leave and the fun begins. During the spinal tap we started getting worried because they couldn't get any samples. The poor thing needed to be poked 3 times. According to my untrained eyes (although I have seen samples from spinal taps before) it looked pretty clear to me so I was hopeful for good results. After getting Sean cleaned up they then had to put in his IV and draw blood for tests. I have NO idea how the dr managed to get an IV in those teeny tiny veins but he did. They got their blood, hooked up the tubes and dosed him up on tylenol. The dr explained that we'd probably be staying until at least Monday. If tests showed anything we could looking at a one or two week stay. If it was serious then we'd be transfered to the hospital in Syracuse. So we waited for test results.

Late into the night the dr reported that his bloodwork was what was to be expected for someone fighting an illness and there were no cancer worries. He found the spinal fluid to be clear and free of white blood cells...YEAH! Quite a few of the other tests would take a day to produce results. In the meantime the dr prescribed an IV antibiotic started. Respiratory therapy came in to do a nasal wash. They needed a sample to test for croup, rsv and influenza A. The tylenol had taken the fever down. Sean relaxed a bit and dozed. I decided it was too close to midnight to risk falling asleep. I didn't want to fall into a deep sleep only to be woken by the nurses taking Sean's vitals. So I stayed awake. They finally got to his vitals at 1:30 (fever was still down). I feel asleep at 2 and slept (if that's what you want to call it) until the nurses came in at 4 for vitals again. (fever still down)

Sean woke up Saturday morning with a temp of 99.6. Unfortunately it didn't stay down there for very long and before we knew it he was over 104 again. Tylenol knocked it down into the 102 range. He got another dose of IV antibiotics and they added eye drops after he woke up with gunky eyes. As the day went on we learned that tests for the scary things came back negative. They sent us to radiology for a chest xray. We came back to find out he tested positive for Group A strep again. The dr added zithromax to his meds. Xray showed that he had pneumonia which totally shocked me.

He had the greatest set of nurse/patient care assistant (PCA) there could be. They both were in love with Sean and came in to talk and play with him whenever they got a chance. Just before their sift was due to end Sean got inconsolable again. He was crying really hard and I had NO idea what was wrong. His nurse came in and said...something's wrong for him to be acting like this suddenly. She unwrapped his IV (was covered with gauze so he wouldn't chew on it) and I gasped. His hand was HUGE. His IV had blown and all the fluid was going into the hand instead of his vein. I felt bad since I figured it probably blew when I was holding his hands up and and away from his chest during his chest xray.

The nurse called the dr and reported it. Since his fever wasn't out of control he opted to let him go for the night and reevaluate him in the morning. (dr or someone from the ER has to start anyone under 2yo's IV). Thankfully his body cooperated and his temp stayed down all night.

Not to make things too easy though he decided Sun morning with the potential to be discharged on the horizon would be the perfect time to break out in a fine full body rash. After the dr examined him and said it wasn't a reaction to the zithromax, the diagnosis of roseola was added to the list of things he had. We were prescribed liquid zithromax and discharged. By 1pm on Sun we were in the van and heading home. It was a frigid but beautiful sunny day. The kids were standing in the doorway, jumping up and down cheering as we got out of the van. Tom acted jealous that no one cheered that Dad was home, only Mom and Sean. I told him too bad, so sad he gets to hear it almost every night when he walks in the door.

Sorry this was so long. I actually fell asleep mid post last night. I have more to talk about but will do it in part 2. Of course I couldn't talk about Sean and not share a picture of the cutie. This was taken early last week just before he got sick.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Missed time report

I've been MIA but not quite as much as it looks here. While I haven't been writing, I've been looking and playing with a fresh look for here. (and this tan and blue template is NOT the look I expect to see a change again sometimes soon) I don't know why it takes me so long to figure out graphics. It used to be the most time consuming and frustrating part of making webpages too.

We all had a great Christmas even though some of us were sick. Jake was dx with strep the Fri before Christmas. Carrie and Luke had to miss Christmas eve because they had it also but weren't covered with antibiotics by then. We didn't want to risk exposing SIL's newborn and all those kids, so Sean, Carrie, Luke and I stayed home for the night.

I worked hard and stayed up late the week before Christmas to make sure I had most things done. I still ended up not going to bed until 3am Christmas day. I can thank my older kids for that. I actually had to tell them....go to bed NOW! I have work to do so I can go to bed! For the first time ever I took a nap after presents were unwrapped and Tom did the assembling and unfastening. ahhhhh!

All week after Christmas the kids didn't feel good on and off. After our New Year's Eve celebration at church they were all complaining and were exhausted. The next day I made an apt for everyone (Michelle on down) that weren't being treated already to get a throat culture. The next day it was reported that 6 tested positive for Group A strep (that requires antibiotics), the other 2 tested positive for Group B strep (that the body is able to fight off itself but can be helped by antibiotics). One also tested positive for haemophilus. Needless to say I opted to treat everyone. To make things even better some of us also dealt with a stomach bug. Luckily it wasn't that bad in terms of accidents. It seems most people made it to where they needed to be, when they needed to be there. Poor Val still doesn't feel well. This has been going on since the beginning of November for her (when she was hospitalized). She's feeling pretty broken right now.

I've been enjoying Michelle being off from school. Because kids were home from college she was given less hours at work (they allowed college kids to come back and work while they were home on break). This meant I had days at a time when I stayed home. You'd think that my house would benefit from this, but it didn't.

Michelle starts classes tomorrow and the madness starts. We'll need to be out the door by 8:45am on Tues and Thurs. (as soon as the little kids get on the bus) I am NOT looking forward to dragging Sean and Danielle out of bed and into the cold. The poor girl has to stay at school until 9pm!! Oh well, it's her LAST semester! After this she will have her 2yr degree.

Tom and his brother are done working on their parents' house. Woohoooo! It is now on the market. It was so weird to have Tom get home before nightfall and be home all weekend. We had a bit of an adjustment period for the first few days. I was used to doing everything by myself. We actually ended up arguing over who was going to make mashed potatoes one night. lol Thankfully we're all adjusted and things are going well.

With Tom home I find I'm feeling a lot better. Just before they finished the house I realized that I was barely making meals and totally avoiding the housework. This place was a disaster area!!! With him home and being gungho about getting things in order/fixed up around here my attitude has changed. Until this weekend things were improving but very slowly. I'll talk about this weekend in a separate entry since it's a long story and this entry is already long enough.