Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!!!!

We hope you have a day filled with love and lots of yummy sweets! We sure will have that at our house, as well as the birthday song, since it's Kelly's birthday too! We also would ask that you READ THE POST BELOW about Lacy's upcoming hospital tests. It is a LONG post, but all the information is there.

"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' do that. And if you lend to those whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' lend to 'sinners' expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful" Luke 6:32-36

"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends" John 15:13

Lacy is headed to the hospital....

Please join us in praying for Lacy.

I wish I had been able to post updates along the way so this would not be so long, but things have just been to busy to do so! And, it’s really, really long…to be fully informed, you need to get to the end…sorry. I am sure I will re-read this and end up changing or adding something later, but for now, this is what I have.

I will start back to when we potty trained Lacy. Which started on January 13, a month ago now. So, I knew that I was pumping Lacy will fluids on purpose to give her many opportunities to learn how to use the potty. AND, it’s much worse for a girl to go extended periods NOT urinating, than to go frequently (although this too can cause damage over time, weakening the bladder and then literally losing the ability to ‘hold it’) SO, short term increase in fluids, JUST FINE:).

So we removed the extra yummy fluids and rewards after each potty trip after the 5th day as Lacy was ‘trained’ by day 2. But on that day, something awful happened. Lacy got another Urinary Track Infection! If you are wondering how I knew, this is how. Lacy will SCREAM, cry, and shake when she urinates. Then after that painful episode, she REFUSED to go and attempted to hold it completely. But, what happened is off and on, some would leak out, as she physically could not hold it and would scream “NOOOOOO!” , crying and shaking. Just hurt so much. I was thankful we were able to get right into the doctor. Although, bribing Lacy with candy we literally only got 4 drops, but the test came back flaming! UTI indeed.

This was Lacy’s 2nd UTI(that we knew of!). Thankfully it did not seem to make Lacy regress. She had one accident the next day, but she was still in pain, so I do not count that. I started rewarding her again with candy to reinforce her, and all seemed well after the second day of antibiotics. On the last and 7th day of her meds, she had reoccurring symptoms! We were able to take her right into the doctor(not her doctor) and this time she did not have a UTI, but she did have concentrated urine which causes the same symptoms but without an infection. The bladder is irritated which makes you feel like you have to go constantly and then causes pain when it is released. Why this happened is unclear. (yes, she was very hydrated)

This was quite the experience getting a sample this go around. Of course Lacy HAD to go wee right before we left for the doctor, and so she was empty while we were there. We got enough of a sample for the UTI test, but not enough for a urine culture analysis. We were trying to leave to go to Portland, but had to come home with a hat and I was able to pump Lacy with fluids and a while later collect a sample, go BACK to the doctor, drop it off, then come home and get loaded up to head to Portland. The tests came back a few days later and we waited to discuss the results with Lacy's follow-up appointment.

About a week later we met with Lacy’s doctor to discuss all her symptoms. Which would be 2 UTI’s, 2 definite concentrated urine episodes, and very frequent bathroom trips. I should mention our trip home from Portland back to our house, which is about an hour and 15 minutes, Lacy went to the bathroom FIVE times. Not exactly easy when you are trying to drive somewhere! But, my little munchkin stayed dry and I was so proud of her! Lacy will go as much as every 20-30 minutes, sometimes even more, sometimes less. She goes very OFTEN.

With all of this going on, my doctor felt is was necessary to look further into her problems and will have Lacy undergo a VCUG and ultrasound. Now, the VCUG is a little invasive and with a little prep a child can do ok with these. However, the difficulty is in Lacy’s age. This makes the test VERY tricky. Lacy must show up to the hospital on an empty stomach, which, for Lacy, often means a seriously cranky child. Then for the ultrasound, she needs to have a full bladder. Well considering she is urinating all the time and is only 2, this is obviously going to tricky for sure.

Then, let’s chat VCUG. This is where continuous X-ray photos will be taken. I do need to mention that Lacy’s mommy is PREGNANT and therefore can NOT be in the room when the X-rays are taken!!!! For this test, she will need an empty bladder. This is because a catheter will be inserted, then a contrast will fill her bladder and it will probably feel much fuller than she is used to having it(aka uncomfortable). Tricky part is we need Lacy to HOLD it. So pictures can be taken and the bladder needs to be quite full for the next step. Lacy will then release and while she is urinating, the continuous X-ray photos will be taken to see where the urine is traveling and if all the valves are working properly(or finding anything else going on).

I am not sure if you are already seeing the many difficulties within that test for a 2 year old who will not fully understand what is going on, if she knows how or literally is able to 'hold it', and know how to handle any discomfort. This is where God has totally blessed us with taking care of so many details of the tests.

First our great friends and neighbors two doors down are more than familiar with VCUGs. Their youngest daughter and Lacy’s GREAT babysitter has had, I think they said about 12 VCUGs throughout her lifetime, due to reflux! I remember Chris talking about Emily having some scary kidney infections, but I forgot the actual cause. Talk about a family that KNOWS VCUGs! First, they said NOT to go locally-she needed to go somewhere that could handle a little toddler. Emily had definitely been through some that were not a good experience and we chatted and chatted about how to avoid that. The best part is they had friends who’s daughter just had a VCUG done at Legacy Emanuel Hospital in Portland and raved at how well the test was administered. What a HUGE help.

Then, an old friend I went to elementary school through high school graduation with, has reconnected with me as we both are now in the mommy stage of our lives. We keep updated as we both are bloggers and on Facebook. I had mentioned on Facebook that Lacy was having UTI issues and would you believe that she told me she taught kids and parents about this exam, along with providing procedural support for this test to children for 3 years while working in NY!! Talk about an expert! Ok, from there, Erin went above and beyond to make me feel better and to help us in our journey. She was always quick to email me answering any questions, had me call her and she went through the entire procedure and what we could do to help set Lacy up for success, what I should be bold in asking the hospital to provide for Lacy….and get this…she contacted Emanuel for us with a contact she has in the Childlife program so we can get a support staff member to physically be there while Lacy has her test to make it as comfortable as possible! Rolling out the red carpet for sure! Erin has been a huge blessing, with wonderful information, leads, as well as emotional support. THANK YOU ERIN! Click HERE to visit Erin's blog and check out her adorable little guy!

On top of Erin helping, our friends passing on a great hospital for little ones, there are a couple other things that will happen to ease Lacy’s tests. First, Emanuel will administer a slight sedative to relax her and help with anxiety. Since Lacy has to hold in the contrast and release, this means she must be awake for the test. Next best thing in my book, is being awake but drugged! Then, as I will not be able to stay with Lacy for the entire time, my mom is also coming and will be able to stay throughout the entire test. How sweet is this, my dad is coming so I will not have to be alone when I have to leave Lacy’s side(that has been REALLY hard for me!!) It is so great having my parents so close, on top of them being so loving and helpful. I also made a book for Lacy with photos of herself and of things she will see when we go in for the test, that will explain in words she can understand of what will be happening and how to cope. Another way I am prepping her is teaching her a calming breathing technique. Anytime she feels me tug on a tangle in her hair, or I bump a ‘boo-boo’ of hers, I have her practice deep breathing to relax. I fight between wanting to laugh at how ADORABLE she looks while doing so, and then crying because she really is trying to cope and that makes me so proud. Being pregnant and hormonal, usually it is the tears I am fighting.

So, we do not have a date for the test yet as everything is still being finalized. Legacy Emanuel of course was not a hospital that was ‘in-network’ for our insurance, so we had to do a couple things and once those are taken care of we should have our appointment by Monday or Tuesday. I should mention if nothing is found in these tests, my doctor will then want to do a blood glucose test, checking to rule out diabetes as well. We would love for you to join with us in prayer for a pain-free hospital experience, an anxiety-free Lacy, and either a clear minor cause of her problems or nothing at all!!

There you have it.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

24 weeks

And man is that little girl of ours growing! (and the mommy too!) Here are the 20 week photos to compare! I have been so blessed with tons of maternity hand-me-downs, including that pair of Seven for all Mankind I am wearing;) I am so thankful for that, as this time, my due date is JUST different enough that I really was in need of more winter clothing than I had the first time around. And both of pair of my jeans were pretty worn out and one had a whole in the elastic band! New clothes were a big help!

As the baby is getting bigger, so is mommy. Just last night I had to remove my wedding ring! This is a LOT earlier this time around, but I think it is more because of my horrible cracked and sore hands. My knuckles are swollen more from the cracks and bleeding than pregnancy swelling. I also started having nose bleeds again. I still am having leg cramps and keep forgetting to pick up some Cal/Mag to see if that will help. And then, on both of the balls of my feet I have planter's warts! Doesn't a pregnant lady's feet go through enough when they are making a baby?:) I did not realize how uncomfortable they are and how they BURN even after you put your feet up. The baby is really moving a lot more and much more distinctive movement, and I just LOVE feeling our baby move around! Energy-wise I am doing great and overall feel good. (reading this and maybe it sounds worse than it is...really, I do feel good!!)

I did have someone ask me today, since she noticed I was really growing, if I was planning on having a 9 lb baby too, (someone we knew just delivered a 9lb-er) Apparently, I must look huge...did not exactly love that comment, but I will roll it off my shoulders! As I feel good and the baby is doing well, all I can ask for.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Our future Rock Star

Uncle Cory we all thought of you and wished you could see Lacy and Fritz on the drums! When Lacy and I first pulled into town last Thursday, we met my mom, Fritz, and his friend at Fritz's house to hang out for a while. Fritz is taking drumming lessons and while he was playing with his friend, he let Lacy test out the set. Now...Lacy has not really played with toy drums much, let alone anything close to a whole drum set and no one showed her what to do. My mom sat her down and AWAY she went! It was crazy the things she was doing at once...hitting different drums or symbols, crossing her arms to hit different parts, and singing and playing at the same time! Seriously, I was watching her just thinking, whoa...this is all natural and she is LOVING it. I could not stop laughing! I HAD to capture Lacy rocking out, so I just used my mom's phone along with the snapshots. The quality is terrible of course, but you can still hear everything and somewhat make out where she is hitting. There are two short 30 sec videos. Enjoy!

Pump It Up Jr.

Last Friday while in Portland my mom had the day off work, as did my dad. So, we all went to Pump It Up Jr. again. I was looking forward to this time, as this scheduled play time is only for ages under 3. Much better for my super cautious little one. Since it had been quite a while since Lacy had been, we started at ground zero. WHICH meant she was fine on the small jumping gyms with very little slides. BUT, it took a couple times of her pregnant mommy climbing up the ladder CARRYING her, calmly explaining 'it's OK that the slide wiggles, it's so fun!', her panicking(aka screaming and crying) at the top, then squealing with delight as we scream down the slide. That part she loved and eventually I was able to wean her off of needing me with her and she concluded it was safe and understood the big slide was going to move around and she was good to go! I should have pulled out my new lens from the beginning, but I kept my old one on for most, thinking I needed a bigger frame for the photos. At the end I switched...Lacy was so hyper she wanted nothing to do with the camera or looking at the camera, so I did not get any of her LOOKING at the camera with the new lens. Oh, I know for next time.

Random side note-When I was sitting in the obstacle course with Lacy as she jumped in one spot, two older boys(HOPING they were actually 3) came through. ALL BOYS:) Fine, right? So one boy says in a growling voice 'we are the bad guys' I responded with something like, 'oh, well, you have fun bad boys' and faster than fast, the boy comes over and SMACKS me over the head SO hard TWICE and dashes off before I could grab him or talk to him. I would NEVER have even though about hitting an adult, let alone doing it TWICE and on the head! His mom was not around...but I did talk to Lacy about how that was not ok and how it made me feel that he hurt me.

Papa and Lacy had so much fun together playing in the bouncy areas together! Ma'am was feeling pretty sick and just was there to smile and watch:) Lots of giggles and smiles were had that morning. Also, Lacy did great in panties! Although...we did leave with a crying little girl on our hands. She had played so hard, ending up tired and very hungry and thinking that was grounds to not obey mommy...yeah, I don't think so! :) But, overall it was a great morning.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

A couple favorites at Ma'am and Papas

Lacy has and gets to do so many fun things when she visits at my parents house, but this last weekend, she really gravitated to a couple things. First, my mom bought a record player a while ago and my mom pulled out some children's albums that my brother and I listened too as kids. Lacy LOVED them! She would dance around in the room, or sit and read books while listening. I instantly recognized the album covers when I mom pulled them out, but I could not remember what they sounded like until they started and it was a great flashback with memories flooding as Lacy danced away.
And then comes the baby carriage:) Lacy will push anything in the carriage and goes all over saying hi to everyone, just going back and forth. Good fun for her. So fun to go to Ma'am and Papas.