Friday, January 23, 2015

First Pediatric Checkup

Edison has type A blood, and I have O, which makes it a little more difficult for him to process any leftover blood cells that I may have shared with him. With this increased risk for jaundice, we took him to meet Dr Elliot when he was three days old just to be sure his bilirubin levels were staying low. 

Contrary to this picture, he liked Dr Elliot and was very relaxed during his exam. He also peed on all the things, including me, while being weighed. Poor Joyce had to break out the mop because he did such a good job making a mess. They thought he looked great, and were very pleased with how well he was eating and thus keeping his bilirubin levels down.
 He weighed 7lbs 1.5oz, but he had THREE dirty diapers right before weighing in…all the time went spent the night before putting in the work didn't even get to be measured!
As a preventative, we were encouraged to really watch his feeds and keep him eating. Well, Baby Ned isn't a slacker in that department and he took the good doctor seriously. We walked out of the office nursing.
That is a benefit of being on kiddo number three…you have no shame and will nurse anywhere, even while taking selfies;)

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Coming Home & Meeting His Siblings!

We got to go home today! After 36 pretty sleepless hours in the hospital, we were ready to say the least. 

Obligatory pictures with Mom and Dad, dressed and ready to go home! 
Tiny little guy taking a cat nap while we waited for discharge papers to come through.
Ned put on his 'HOWDY' hat for the chilly weather outside. You have to have a little A&M to start out with…we don't want our kids to get the wrong idea about where they will be going to school!
He did great on the ride home, but did have his first blow-out. I was impressed, not even two days old and already making giant messes. He's going to fit in well at our house;)

Otto met us at the door where he had constructed a 'finish line' out of crepe paper. I like the way he thinks, we did it! No more pregnant! Woohoo!
He is just enamored with his brother. When we FaceTimed from the hospital his first reaction was, "My baby came out!!! Is your stomach flat now?"
He has since been telling everyone, "We have a new baby! And we're not babysitting him, we get to keep him FOREVER!" His favorite feature are Edison's "little tiny feet, especially his squishy heels.".

Meri was a little more hesitant, but just as excited.
She is very concerned about how we are caring for Ned, and the first time we sat down to nurse in front of her she demanded that I get the baby a bottle. Breast feeding has really just never been her thing;) She talks to him in a little momma voice complete with baby talk. It's just adorable watching the nurturer in her come out.
Holding 'his' baby for the first time!
Meri got a chance too! (Bandaid for effect, her face is healing wonderfully.)
Baby Ned has had lots of visitors. Hannah and Sarah in the hospital, and my parents with Abbey and Michael after getting home.

My Mom was super sweet and spoiled our big kids while we were at the hospital and for several days after we got home. Thank you Mom!
And while Abbey was here she made sure to take pictures for me;)
Uncle Mike! I predict these two getting along well in the future. Third borns unite!
Aunt Abbey (and Queen Elsa).
Excited to be home as a family of FIVE! Let the fun begin!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

He's Here!

Third Little Weldy surprised us all and arrived in a dramatic fashion early this morning at 1:43am. He is perfect and beautiful and seems like a very calm tiny man, much in contrast to his birth.

Seven pounds and six ounces. 20 1/2 inches long.

Meet Edison Louis! He has already been dubbed 'Baby Ned' by his siblings.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Third Little Weldy: Thirty-eight Weeks

Abbey and Michael are here! Michael goes home tonight, but Abbey is here for the long weekend and I am pumped! Today we went to a play date, napped, AND made seven freezer meals with more planned for tomorrow. I feel like progress will be all kinds of made in the next three days. Or we'll have fun, one or the other. 

The Highlights:

How Far Along: Thirty-eight weeks! Just 12 days shy of when his sister made her appearance and 24 days from Otto's delivery. The count down is on and he has 18 days before eviction papers are served, I really think he'll decide to come out before then…okay, I really HOPE. 
How Big is Baby: 6.8 pounds (ha!) and 19 1/2 inches. I'm thinking seven and a half at this point. 
Weight Gain/Loss: Totally gained that measly pound I lost back…and a couple of his friends. Large and in charge. My face is really getting round, a sure sign that the end is near. 
Sleep: Yeah, no. General restlessness, needing to roll over, potty breaks,, lots of interruptions and not much rest. BUT I do nap for thirty minutes most afternoons while practically sitting on Otto on the couch (he's watching cartoons and doesn't generally notice I have him pinned), and those naps are lovely. 
Best Moment of the Week: Having family come to visit! Two of my Uncles stopped in for a surprise visit yesterday, and now my siblings are here with the promise of my Mom coming for the night on Sunday. 
Movement: He's still in there. His movements are limited because he's really running out of space, but he does his best to shake things up throughout the day. He gets a little feisty when my round ligament cramps up, which in turn makes me text Chris things like, "I'll take an epidural now and I'd like to keep it until birth." 
Symptoms: Getting really achy at night now and there's definitely an 'oh woe is me' attitude hanging around. I'm kinda a grumpy sad mess, it's pathetic. I know it, my family knows, but it's not going anywhere until this guy decides to join us. Let's all cry and eat chocolate. 
Food Cravings: Radishes and ice. Both crunchy and cool. 
What I am Looking Forward to: Sending items flying off my to-do list this weekend. Abbey is a great encourager, and the kids LOVE having her here.  
Meri: Is doing well, she kept the drama to a minimum this week, only getting her hand caught in an elevator door once. (Yes, yes she did. Looks can be deceiving, that girl definitely has a little crazy in her. I'm aging rapidly from it.)
Otto: "Hey Mom, how's that baby going to get out? Are you just going to POP?" I'd just give him a brief walk through of how things kinda sorta go down, but the poor guy has been a little queasy lately about all things medical. He can't even think about the stitches in Meri's face without turning a green, so I'm sure learning about birth would scar him for life. 
Chris: Won't even guess when this guy will make an appearance or his size. I think he's realizing how close we are and is just a touch flabbergasted by how little time, if any, that we have left. 

Here's a current mug shot. Can I be done? PLEASE.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Meri Mae

Our life has been a touch on the crazy side lately. New baby on the way, two preschooler who realize something is changing, Chris putting the final touches on his master's thesis…you think that would be enough right? 

Nope. Let's pile a little more on for funsies. 

At Halloween we noticed a small red dot on Meredith's cheek between her nose and eye. It was really small, pen dot sized, and flat to the surface of her skin. Moles run in both sides of our family and we assumed she was getting a beauty mark. 

At Thanksgiving it had doubled in size, but was still small and flat. 
Thanksgiving, meeting baby Michael
Two weeks later, doubled again. At this point we caught on to the possibility that this wasn't your typical mole and I called her pediatrician for a referral to a dermatologist.
Week before Christmas
After bedtime one night before Christmas, I heard fussing on the monitor and Chris went to check her. She was still sleeping, but was covered in blood. Somehow she had bumped it while sleeping and it was bleeding aggressively. I'll spare you the pictures, but it. was. awful. After a bath, and washing her hair a few times, we finally got the bleeding to stop with two bandaids applying pressure. Over the next few days we noticed it had doubled in size again. 

At our scheduled appointment with the pediatric dermatologist, it was diagnosed as being a pyogenic granuloma. The doctor didn't feel comfortable with removing it, and frankly I wasn't happy with how he would remove it. His method of removal had the potential to leave a more noticeable scar, but my main concern was that wrapping my awake, medical personnel fearing, two year old in a sheet and holding her to a table, before treating something right in her line of vision would mentally scar her for life. Me too. You would think that a practice specializing in children would have a more compassionate treatment option…but no. 

We got another referral, this time to a pediatric plastic surgeon at Dallas Childrens, and left. 

The plastic surgeon agreed with the diagnosis and was SO kind to Meri. It was the first time we've gone to a doctor, for her appointment or someone else's, where she hasn't burst into hysterical tears. It was very reassuring that this was the right place and the right doctor. We scheduled the first appointment on January 2nd to have her spot surgically removed. General anesthetic was an intimidating thought for Chris and I, but would be so much kinder to our little girl. We went home to nervously wait, but were happy to be getting this behind us. 

Cue December 31st. 

Meri woke up about 2:30am and was cheerfully yelling from her room, "I come with you, Mom. I sleep in your bed!" Being pregnant and appreciating sleep, I scooped her up and stuck her between Chris and I. She was super cheerful, but kept trying to get closer and closer to me. After a few minutes I realized that her core temperature was low, and even with both her Dad and I sandwiching her with blankets on top, she wasn't warming up. 

We did what parents do. Wrapped our still grinning two year old in a warm blanket, handed her the iPad, then started Googling all the horrible things that could cause low body temperature. Bad, bad things come up you guys. When she started asking for water, the option of Type 1 diabetes made me worry. So we pulled out the blood sugar meter. It was normal (80), but the finger stick made her mad which led to crying, then coughing, then vomit. It was almost a relief to see something we'd dealt with before. Vomit and a now rapidly increasing temperature? This is just a virus, we can handle it. 

But then we couldn't. Her temperature went from too low, to far too hot in about five minutes. I was holding her, towel at the ready waiting for more of a mess, while Chris cleaned up from the first incidence of vomit. One moment she was sad and tired, and the next she just wasn't there. Her eyes were still open, but she wouldn't respond, and she had stopped breathing. My immediate thought was that she had aspirated something and was choking, but after flipping her over and a round of back blows I realized her jaw had locked. Seizure. 

The most panicked version of Chris I have ever seen called 911 while I continued to try to revive her. From somewhere in my freaked out brain came the idea to take her outside. It was cold out, right at freezing, maybe the temperature would shock her into taking a breath. I laid her on the front porch, my pointer finger still trapped between her teeth, and thankfully she started gasping every two or three seconds. Such a relief. HUGE relief. 

I handed her to Chris, who was still reporting a play by play to the EMS dispatcher, and ran to find presentable clothes, my id, and shoes. Meri was conscious, but disoriented and her breathing still wasn't in a normal rhythm. 

The paramedics arrived quickly, and because she still wasn't truly there, we decided a trip to Children's Emergency room via ambulance was the best call. Meri and I left with the crew, and Chris went to wake Otto and follow us.
Poor girl slowly came back to her senses on the ride, but had a temperature of 104 and continued to vomit. She was miserable, but when she started fighting the very kind paramedic and then the triage nurse, I knew she was really back to our Meri. After a heavy dose of Motrin we sat in the waiting room to wait for it to bring her fever down. She instantly fell asleep and didn't even wake when her very pregnant Mom took a trip to the bathroom while holding her. (Classic sign of a febrile seizure, deep sleep immediately following.)

It took two hours for her to cool off and then wake up, but she was so much better. The doctors and staff were wonderful, and did a great job being compassionate to our nervous girl (seriously, props to Children's). She tested negative for the flu, and after rehydrating with juice and popsicles, we were released to go home.
Our sweet girl enjoying her second purple popsicle.
Sadly, this could happen again. Apparently some children are more prone to febrile seizures and can experience them anytime they have a fever. Most children outgrow them by five or six.

So. Here's the plan if it happens again, or if it happens to your child. Trust me, even if you have CPR training (I do, I've even used it on a two year old after pulling him out of a pool), recalling it during an emergency with your own child doesn't happen.

1. Roll the seizing person to their side to help their airway remain clear if they vomit. CALL 911.
2. Don't put anything between their teeth or in their mouth. (I had a bruised nail bed for several days and it didn't help her in the slightest.)
3. Watch them. Most kids will recover on their own in 1-2 minutes, but febrile seizures can last 15 minutes.
4. If you notice bluing of the lips or nail beds, begin CPR and continue until help arrives. (<---- link="" p="" refresher="" to="" video="">

A week (and another yucky bleed) later, she had recovered from the virus that triggered the seizure and we got to take her back to Children's for her rescheduled surgery. They were excellent, and really did a wonderful job keeping us informed and Meri calm. One more selfie with the parents before going back; you can see how much her spot had grown. 
Post surgery, we picked Otto up from a good friend's and headed home to chill, thankful that all the crazy was behind us.
She is healing well and has a follow up on January 30th, Third Little Weldy's due date! 

We are so glad this girl is back to her normal antics. Video of her performing a spot on rendition of Twinkle Twinkle using one of Otto's ninja weapons as a microphone?  I thought you'd never ask.  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Third Little Weldy: Thirty-seven Weeks!

First cervical check and GBS test happened this week. (36 weeks, 4 days) My OB laughingly commented that this is the most favorable my cervix has even been at this point. 2.5 cm dilated, 70% effaced, and baby is head down +3 station. With both his siblings I was 1cm and 50% effaced at 36 weeks, and riding high. Apparently, third borns do their own thing. Don't worry Dude, I GET you. 

The Highlights:

How Far Along: Thirty-seven weeks. Holla! Full term little boy, way to go! 
How Big is Baby: Ginormous. Baby Center estimates 6 1/3 pounds and about 19 inches, but we all know they aren't talking about Weldy babies. 
Weight Gain/Loss: Lost a pound this week, still weighing in a pound heavier than when I delivered with this guy's siblings. Stress apparently is useful for something:-/
Maternity clothes: Shirts are too short, and my lower belly is starting to show, down right attractive. I measured my girth today just for kicks, 44.5 inches around. 
Stretch Marks: Still nothing new! 
Sleep: Not the best. Meri is in our room, sometimes in the pack'n'play, sometimes in bed with us, and sleeping with a toddler adds a level of difficulty. But we are glad to do it! She may be there until she goes to college;)
Best Moment of the Week: I made a few things just for baby! Woohoo! He will be wearing more than just hand-me-downs! (Those were washed too.) Just glad to have made it through this week, and last, they have been doozies. 
Movement: Lots of squirming and stretching, and hiccups are pretty common at bedtime.
Symptoms: My back and round ligaments continue to protest, and at night the stiffness really kicks in…Chris made me do yoga this week and it was nice to stretch everything out. He did do it with me, he's not a complete slave driver. 
Food Cravings: Eh. Food is loosing it's charm. I'd really just like a nap, or five.
What I am Looking Forward to: One quiet week. After that he is welcome to come on out…but I'd like a few days of normal routine to knock a few things off the 'Before Baby' list and clean bathrooms before adding a little person to our chaos. 
Meri: Was so sweet to distract us from the baby countdown for the last two weeks. Ha. Ha. just kidding. She's doing great, and has now added to her name choice. O-t-t-o Airplane-Michael, your sister is really excited to meet you!
Otto: Is still concerned there could be two babies in there. In fact, he's been praying that there will be. "God, could you please put a baby in Mommy's back too? The lady didn't check. I want a boy baby AND a girl baby." He asked me the other day, "Mommy, did you know your stomach just keeps getting bigger?" Yes, yes I do. 
Chris: Is fantastic. He loves his kids well, and I love him for it. Tell you what, little guy, you have a really great father. He may not be willing to commit to a name for you before he sees the whites of your eyes, but he's the best in just about everything else. He put your carseat in the car…and while he wanted to take the designer out and shoot them, he didn't. Get ready to ride around town in style!